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Why you should participate in the WCO

Why you should participate in the WCO

Previous blogposts about WCO:
WCO History
WCO Improvements and thoughts

The World Championships Online (WCO) take place a few weeks after the live WC has concluded. Not everyone will be able to make it due to various reasons. This year's live WC will be held in Sheffield, UK. Participating in either the online or live WC, does not exclude one from the other event. This means you have two shots at winning a world title ;).

The WCO uses the swiss pairing system which means that you'll be getting paired up against players that have gathered a similar amount of points, resulting in more equal and thrilling matches. More interesting may be even all players are put into one big group. As a newer player, you have a very good chance of getting to play against a top, experienced, player that you usually would not be matched up against.

In WCO #3 (2017-2018) I had to play against Major Nelson in the first round, who at that time, was a rather uknown p…

Why and how you lose to "lotto players"

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Everyone has had to endure this unpleasant experience some time, you get matched up against a player with thousands of games and approximately a 50% win percentage and you know what is coming your way. You start preparing for a game you're not interested in and prepare your setup or load up your favourite "anti lotto/blitz" setup.

Sometimes chance is on your side, your opponent manages to lose the game within the first 30 moves, down a marshal and general, the opponent surrenders (or disconnects as some like to be a prick), you reap your sweet +1.. or +10.. Whatever amount of points it gets you. On the bright side, you can drastically increase this chance by preparing properly.

Now most of the time, this is not how the scenario unfolds. Theoretically, it should about 50% of the time, but since the quick victories mean nothing, there was little thought or investment into it, it just feels like you have won an empty bottle of water. Great.

Often players will feel frustrate…

Trip to Patras (4/4)

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Day #4 (Monday)

With as little as 2 hours of sleep, we grabbed a breakfast, which actually was surprisingly good. I had something with banana, bread and sugar. At first, it did not look that tasteful but I decided to give it a try anyway and liked it so much that I even ended up taking a second one. We, again, did not want to try out luck and ordered a taxi which drove us to the airport. We arrived quite early, but well, better than too late for obvious reasons. Upon arriving at the airport, we decided to just go to the gates as soon as possible. Somehow, both of us were picked for a security check. Fun!

The guy in front of us also was picked out. Upon going through some detection device, an alarm went off for him (and it did too for Dennis and me). Amazing, just what we were waiting for. They took some weird thing and put it on my shoes, hands, chest and then analyzed it.. and determined that nothing was found (same for Dennis and the other, unknown, guy) and we could continue. Still…

Trip to Patras (3/4)

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Day #3 (Sunday)

After a decent rest I woke up and had a good breakfast full of mostly sweets. As we hadn't really made plans of travel arrangement, Dimitrios (Don mitsos) offered us a ride to the playing venue. As we arrived at the playing venue, it was good to see everyone present again. My first game of the day and thus fourth of the tournament would be against John Vandoros. I preferred to play him at round 3, day 1, opposed to round 4 (round #1 of that day), day 2.

During the game I was looking at an early deficit the entire game, I did manage to equalize it, but at the expense of some information giving the initiative to John. I was not really as sharp as I need to be in a game like that and after some back and forth, John managed to make a decisive strike. After the game I felt a bit of a void, after all, on paper, this should have been the most promising game.

The fifth round, after the game against John, I was matched up against his father, Spyros Vandoros. A great opportu…

Trip to Patras (2/4)

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Day #2 (Saturday)

The day started off by taking a quick shower, followed by breakfast and later exploring the area a bit more. Our driver, Greg, whom I have to say, is a responsible and good driver (if I wouldn't write a positive review I would have to walk to Patras.. 😊) picked us up and Charlie (TheOptician) was there already too'as he stayed with Greg. Greg picked up one more person, Ioannis (Périgord) in Athens and our journey to Patras took off.

During the trip to Patras, Ioannis seemed to be quite knowledgeable about the landscape and happily told us, in detail, about the mountains, what area we were in, etc. If you ever need a guide in Greece, ask Ioannis 😊. Greece was nothing how I expected it, I expected things to be flat, like in the Netherlands, but the opposite was true, we were driving through mountain-like areas all the time and also came across some places that had forest fires previously. While it was fascinating to see the difference between an alive forest …

Trip to Patras (1/4)

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Before the actual story, as also mentioned within the small speech, I'd like to extend my sincere and great gratitude to Patras Stratego team, and especially Georgios Trypanagnostopoulos for the special invitation, as well as the work done to organize this wonderful event. For those who were not present, when physically there, it is very obvious that those talented organisers had put in a lot of effort into organizing a wonderful event, something they for sure succeeded at (almost like a spoiler..).

Some tournaments you participate to win, some you participate to experience. This tournament was mostly the experience for me. I always am either "there to have fun" or "in it to win it" and sometimes those two are combined. While of course winning the tournament would have been marvelous, it was not really my main concern. Catching up with some old friends, meeting new people and of course meeting those whom I've interacted with online were my main concern and …

Start of my Stratego experience

The start of my Stratego carreer.

Back in the times, a rather long time ago, at the age of 6, my parents thought it would be a good idea to make me a member of scouting - something I despised from the very beginning - I simply did not care for it at all and mainly saw it as a waste of several hours of my time on a saturday afternoon. Don't get me wrong, there were some ups to it as well, some of the activities were enjoyable. During a rainy saturday afternoon, some kids brought boardgames with them and one challenged me (out of a group of +- 16) to a game of Stratego, a game I had never heard of or played before.
I am not 100% sure anymore whether one or two games were played, I think it was one. By a miracle, I managed to win the game. I remember my miner removing 3 or 4 bombs in a row only to hit the flag - one of the leaders that was observing was surprised because, apparently, I was down quite some material - little did I know.
The game got my interest and it just so coincided…

Stratego videos and their usefulness

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Stratego videos


Technology 2018
There is no denying that the further technical developments go, the more these developments become standards in our live. 15 years ago, one could not possibly have imagined we're able to carry a small device called "smartphone" with us which, compared to devices back then, has a huge processing power. Powerful devices have been incorporated into our lives for the better or worse.

With all these new technologies and such, more options arise. A site like YouTube was founded in february, 2005. Who could possibly have imagined the amount of content available nowadays? definitely not me. Look how easy it has become to make a video using software editing tools which are sufficient so that most computer novices too can produce a decent video and put it online.

Video / image sharing has become such a daily business for most. Been somewhere? don't forget to put videos online on Facebook, Instagram and whatever "social" media one uses. …

WC 2018 Naarden - Part 3/3

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Country teams & Open tournament (sunday - day #4)

After the individual WC, the day after, there always are two more tournaments to be played. 1. Country teams. 2. Open tournament. In the country team tournament, the top players, per country, form a team, this is based on the individual results of the WC and the player's willingness to play for their national team. For other players, the open tournament is available, which often features 5 rounds.

The country team competition was played between: The Netherlands, United Kingdom and Greece. A shocker happened at the end, the team from The Netherlands(Tim, Max, Anjo, Edy) finished on place 3. Team UK (Richard, Alex, Charlie, Jonathan) took silver, while Greece (John, Gregory, Nikos, George) won the gold medal. Video of NL - GR

Video of country team awards

In the open tournament, Axel Hangg won the tournament. Yours truly finished on the second place and Ruben finished on place 3. Some players who were not present during the live WC…

WC 2018 Naarden - Part 2/3

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Main event (friday & saturday - day #2 and #3)

In the previous post the barrage tournament at one of the best if not the best venue ever for a Stratego tournament was discussed. In this post I will take a look back at  the main event of the WC Stratego 2018 in Naarden.

The day kicked off for me with one of the things I heavily dislike; an alarm that goes off early. All of this after a bad night rest which could not possibly have happened during a worse time. Moving forward, a quick breakfast was had. Shower. Clothing and ready to go.

Upon arriving at the venue, some of the other organisers were present already and it was good to see them. Decorations were present too, for which, we owe great thanks to Jumbo. Despite the actions taken the day prior to friday, there were still some things that had to be done. One of these were the goodybags; all ingredients were present, candies, bags, bottle of water and WCO promotion cards. They now had to be put together into one goodybag.



As the…