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Lifeline

Period

Modern

Category Board, Space, Territory

Description

Lifeline is a territorial elimination game for two players. It was invented by Michael Amundsen and Luis Bolanos Mures in February 2022, and was inspired by Go and Kanare Kato's Meridians.

Rules

Lifeline is a territorial strategy game for two players (Black and White) that is played on the cells of an initially empty hexhex board. The recommended board sizes are between 3 and 12 cells per side.

Definitions:

A group is an entire set of connected stones of the same color. A single stone, not connected to others of its color, is also a group.
A group is dead if there is no path of connected empty cells between that group and any other of its color.

Play:

On your turn, perform the following actions in the stated order:

1. Place a stone of your color on an empty cell. If it is your first turn of the game, perform this action twice.
2. Remove all dead enemy groups.
3. Remove all dead friendly groups.

The board positions at the start and at the end of your turn must be different.

The last player to make a placement wins. Note that, after your first turn, you will always have a placement available unless you have no groups on the board.

To make the game fair, White will have the option, on their first turn only, to swap sides with Black instead of making a regular move.

Note that, in this implementation, the two stones you place on your first turn are only visible after both cells to place on have been selected.

Alternative balancing methods:

The balancing method described above is what is called 'strong pie' in the options.
This implementation also offers two other methods, for players who would like to explore alternatives.

Weak pie: Just like with strong pie, White will have the option, on their first turn only, to swap sides with Black instead of making a regular move.
But instead of placing twice on their first move, players alternate placing one piece each (with no removals) until 4 setup stones are placed.
Consequently, White's choice will be made after Black has placed only one stone.

Komi pie: The first player chooses a whole number of komi (between 1 and 12) and the second player chooses whether to play as White (pass) or as Black (place a stone).
The first 4 stones are placed in the same order as with weak pie (Black, White, Black, White).
Throughout the game proper, White will have the option to spend a point of komi instead of making a placement.
A point of komi is spent by clicking the shield icon next to White's name.

Author

Michael Amundsen and Luis Bolanos Mures

Creation date

2022-02

Ludeme Description

Lifeline.lud

Concepts

Browse all concepts for Lifeline here.

Identifiers

DLP.Games.1545


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lkjh Maastricht University Data Science and Knowledge Engineering (DKE), Paul-Henri Spaaklaan 1, 6229 EN Maastricht, Netherlands Funded by a €2m ERC Consolidator Grant (#771292) from the European Research Council