Neutreeko
by Jan Kristian Haugland © 2001, 2002

Neutreeko is a simple game played on a board with 5×5 squares.
I created it using elements from Neutron and Teeko, hence the name.

Initial setup: The players have three pieces each. They are placed as shown in the figure.



Movement: A piece slides orthogonally or diagonally until stopped by
an occupied square or the border of the board. Black always moves first.

Objective: To get three in a row, orthogonally or diagonally. The row must be connected.

Repetitions: A match is declared a draw if the same position occurs three times.

Tactical depth: There are positions for which perfect play leads to a win in 51 moves (that is,
26 moves by one player and 25 by the other one). Only about 3% of all legal positions are neutral,
including the starting position. These things can be explored with the Neutreeko oracle (see below).

Strategy: Neutreeko is a highly tactical game with little room for long-term strategic planning. But if neither side
has an attack coming up, it can often be a good idea to immobilize your opponent by forcing him into a corner.

Starting position dilemma: The starting position was chosen so as to avoid a short distance to a "draw-loop",
but the disadvantage is that there is essentially only one way to play the first 15 moves correctly, which
of course can be memorized. In the unlikely event that someone wants to arrange serious competitions
in this game, it may be necessary to somehow generate a new starting position for each match.

Dao: When I first announced Neutreeko on usenet in 2001, I learned that a game with very similar rules, Dao, had
already been published. However, compared to Neutreeko, Dao appears to be drawish and to lack tactical depth.

Perfect opening play
Puzzles

External links: http://hrx.free.fr (download program)
http://www.iggamecenter.com (play online)


Software

File

Description

Neutreeko.java

Oracle (in java, not compiled)
Various board sizes and winning conditions

Neutreeko.exe
ndata.txt

Neutreeko.exe is a readily executable
version of Neutreeko.java with fewer
features. Only works together with ndata.txt.

Unfortunately not available for 64 bit

Tip: Open a DOS-window and resize
it before starting up the program.

If the program behaves strangely, the newlines
in ndata.txt have probably been corrupted.

Neutreekoexe.zip

Neutreeko.exe + ndata.txt

Teeko.java
Dao.java
Breakth55.java
Breakth37.java
Posita.java

Oracles for other board games