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Live by the Sword - Naccel count

Posted By: Ian Shaw
Date: Wednesday, 3 February 2010, at 1:31 p.m.

In Response To: Live by the Sword (Nack Ballard)

Here's my Naccel count for Stick's position.

Blue

• Far side is 5. (offsetting shifts n7 to S1 and n16 to S3).
• Block around n3 = 3
• leaving two odd pips on n-1
• Total = 8(-2) or 7(4)

White

• offsetting shifts n2 to n1 and two from n16 to n17
• block on n16-17 = 11
• midpoint mirror with n7,n5 = 4
• the rest of the near side is symmetrical about S0, so disappears. Total = 15

So the lead is (15 - 8) * 6 - -2 = 44 pips. Getting the direction of the leftover pips right requires a little thought.

For contrast, and to keep in practice, I'll perform a cluster count.

Blue

• offsetting shift 22-20 and 6-8
• 10 around 8 point = 80
• plus 2 on 5 point = 90
• plus 1 on 20 point = 110
• plus 2 on midpoint = 136

White

• shift of 8 pips to get rear chequers to 20 point.
• offset by moving 14-13, 17-15 and 20-19
• rear stack = 80
• any opposing points (these are on the midpoints) = 50
• two on 10 point = 20
• 5 on six point = 30, for a total of 180.

At present, I still find the Cluster Count faster, and working out the race lead is also easier because there is only a simple subtraction required. However, I've been counting this way for years, so I've much greater experience than with Naccel.

In this position, Blue's Cluster Count is easy as soon as you see the cluster of 10 chequers about the 8 point. White's count is a multiple of both 6 and 10, so it's quite easy in both counting methods. It should be noted that multiples of 6 come up about 66% more often than multiples of 10, which favours Naccel.

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