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Topic: Good beginner sites?
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Posts: 1
Registered: Nov 5, 2008
Good beginner sites?
Posted: Oct 12, 2009, 7:17 AM

What are some good sites with basic strategies for a new player, like me, to learn from? I've been playing for a week now and I want to learn some good common opening moves, etc. Help?


Posts: 542
Registered: May 9, 2002
From: Northeast USA
Re: Good beginner sites?
Posted: Oct 12, 2009, 10:10 PM

Hello there!

You've come to the right place! This is by far the best Pente site for playing online and also for learning resources by far.

First of all, playing live games here against opponents of a similar skill level or slightly better skill level will let you gain experience and improve your game over time. Also, you can watch good players play against each other live and learn how they play and what they are thinking.

In addition to this, take advantage of the strategy center. Here you can play against a computer opponent AI with multiple skill levels. Check out the Tutorials and Puzzles for useful learning aids.

But, by far the most important learning tool that you should use extensively is the Game Database. This will allow you to check out various opening positions and check out which moves are the common responses and how successful they are in general -- you can also see the skill level of the players that use this move and filter your searches in various other useful ways. After a while, this can improve your game dramatically.

In addition, you can check out the forums, in the analysis section and the other sections for discussions of specific openings and game positions. Important ones to learn are "The Wedge" and "The Hammer" and a handful of other ones.

If this is not enough, you can scroll down to the bottom of the Dashboard page and click on the "Links" link for more Pente resources. I highly recommend PenteWorld for excellent puzzles, and Mark's Five-In-A-Row for the following:

-- Download Pente 10.4 software -- this program has the same AI that is used here on this site.
-- Download Pente Opening Book -- This opening book is used by the AI, and is fairly extensive, although it's a little bit dated and some of the ratings given to the various openings are innaccurate, but this will be an excellent starting point for beginners.
-- Download 131 Pente games -- These high profile games are saved in the text format that can be recognized by the above program. It's possible to create your own games and save them using this program also.

In addition, there is one link that I cannot find here any more so I'll link to it directly. It includes lots of very descriptive analyses of high level games from the 80s (many of which correspond with the 131 games downloaded above, so you can scroll through those games with the program while reading the descriptions!


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