Let’s be honest -- I was pretty lazy with the Y post. I mean really. I was in a hurry to get it done so I literally just copied the graphics I did for Hex and shoved it out the door. I did not do it justice in the graphics department, and for that I apologize. One of my favorite games, too! I can excuse myself for my fairly lazy artistic work for “lesser” games, but I feel too guilty for Y. So I return to it, in an attempt to do it justice.
This is a design that I thought of not too long ago, and it is the Y board I wish so badly that I had. Unfortunately there is nowhere I can get it (obviously), and I do not have the requisite skills of a woodworker required to make it, so I shall have to content myself with the design alone. Perhaps some kind saint will come along and start producing these (call me), but until then pictures are all I can offer you.
Anyway. I believe this to be superior to a standard flat Y board for three main reasons (Yes, this pretty much reads like a sales pitch. It kind of is. Be warned that what follows is a designer defending his design, and will come off as very self-serving and arrogant. You have been warned):
1. It takes up much less space than a traditional Y board. Let’s be honest, the triangle is a fairly inefficient shape as far as fitting on tables goes. And since Y requires a relatively large board to be enjoyed fully (a minimum of fifteen spaces to a side, I’d say), it’s difficult to make a board big enough to see but small enough to use.
2. It can be used as a standard Y board if you really want -- just take it off of its stand and set it down, then play normally -- viola. It’ll look something like the old CON-TAC-TIX board, and no one would say no to that.
3. It looks cooler. I mean, come on. There’s something so beautiful about an upright triangle, something vaguely symbolic and monumental...I would love to have a large (3-4 feet tall) version of this resting on my coffee table. It’s a functional sculpture, in way.
In order to play it with the traditional alignment (laying flat), another set of stands is necessary, one at each corner. This prevents the bottom from becoming scratched and also ensures that the pegs can be pushed in to the correct distance and don’t stick out the top too much (the height of the stand is exactly equal to the width of the extruding pegs).
Finally, it gave me a unique and interesting idea. Since the two players will be looking at two different sides of the board, they could easily be looking at two different things, right? I mean, no one would know the difference. Thus I got the idea to use the reversible “pills” that you might remember from Ataxx instead of traditional pegs, which allows both players to play the same color at the same time -- or did I just blow your mind??
Both players would place their pieces with the white peg pointing towards themselves, but your opponent would always see it as a black peg. It’s a little hard to explain, perhaps. Basically what you see as white your opponent sees as black, and vice versa, so to both of you white is friendly and black is enemy (or the other way around).
This makes the Pie Rule a little more interesting as well: after the first person plays, the second person doesn’t switch colors, but assigns colors -- and assigns both players the same color. So the first peg can be put in with either side showing, and the second player will say something like “We’re playing black,” which means that both players will be playing with the black tokens as theirs.
I hope that this makes sense -- it isn’t something that I’ve explained to a lot of people, so I apologize if I sound like I’m talking to a child. It’s really something you have to see more than hear, I think. Or maybe you get it. Whatever.
Anyway, that’s all there is to it. I realize that this is a bit of a departure from my traditional posts, but I hope it marks the start of some more interesting content. No longer will you just see game rules (and the occasional random Semibreve post), but perhaps some more design, history, strategy, etc. We shall see!