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Contemporary Development With Functional Programming

The Schnapsen Log

July 31, 2014

A Tangled Web

Martin Tompa

“It is always the best policy to speak the truth — unless, of course, you are an exceptionally good liar.” —Jerome K. Jerome

You are playing in the finals of the Austrian National Schnapsen Championship. Your opponent is Katharina, the reigning Schnapsen champion, and this game is as close as can be. A crowd of players has gathered around your table.

Unseen cards:


♣ KQJ
AKQ

Your cards:
KQJ

♣ A
T

Trump: J
Stock: 1 face-down card
Game points: Katharina 1, You 1
Trick points: Katharina 20, You 41
On lead: You

Because it is a national tournament, you are playing the sharp rules (das scharfe Schnapsen), whereby you may not close the stock when only one face-down card remains. Katharina was on lead the previous trick and didn’t show any marriage.

Plan the play. When you think you have a good plan, you are welcome to read my analysis.

© 2014 Martin Tompa. All rights reserved.


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About the Author

Martin Tompa

Martin Tompa (tompa@psellos.com)

I am a Professor of Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Washington, where I teach discrete mathematics, probability and statistics, design and analysis of algorithms, and other related courses. I have always loved playing games. Games are great tools for learning to think logically and are a wonderful component of happy family or social life.

Read about Winning Schnapsen, the very first and definitive book on the winning strategy for this fascinating game.

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Homework on Expected Values, Apr 26
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