Free the Oreos
Free the Oreos is a multiplayer game for everyone aged over 6. Here is what you need for the game:
- 9 identical squares drawn inside a bigger square:
- 24 matches in order to construct those 9 little squares:
- Placing an Oreo inside each little square:
- Players will remove matches in turns. A player will remove exactly one match whenever it is his/her turn.
- In order to free an Oreo inside a square, all the matches of that square must be removed:
To free the Oreo sitting on top-left, all four sides of the square must be removed.
- The player who removed the last side of a square is known as the one who freed the Oreo.
Goal is to free more Oreos than your opponent.
Defense vs. Attack
Attacking Strategy: You should remove the last match surrounding the Oreo in case you want to free it.
Defending Strategy: In case there are two matches around a specific Oreo, you should avoid removing either of those matches. Otherwise your opponent can and will free that Oreo in his/her turn.
Two experienced players will use the defending strategy as long as possible. But in the end the game will be in a position where defending won’t be possible:
In such situation, game can continue as follows:
At the end of this sample game first player freed 6 Oreos as the second freed only 3.
- Can you find a winning strategy?
- At most how many Oreos can a player free in a single turn? Show your answer with a sample game.
M. Serkan Kalaycıoğlu