Leftism (playing leftmost when several cards are clued) results from the following efficient principle:
one should clue playables as soon as possible (ASAP).
1) A clue that is not given ASAP = not a play clue
Consequence: with the right timing, single-card clues can be save clues.
2) If the following conditions are met, ASAP = play left
- the clue is not on chop
- the cards are not the same age
- it is 100% true to say: “if the playable card were not the newest among them, they would have clued me earlier” (also called the “wait factor”)
Consequence: you can still "play left", but only if the situation logically allows.
3) If the above conditions are not met, ASAP ≠ play left.
Because “ASAP” contains “possible” and that is quite important.
Sometimes, it was not possible for your teammates to give the clue earlier, for a number of reasons. In these cases, you cannot logically deduce where the playable card is and the clue should therefore not be considered an immediate play clue and you should NOT play leftmost.
Consequence: not all off-chop clues mean "play left", so you may sometimes safely clue cards that are in reverse order.
The end result is a less systematic, more analytic, more situational playstyle than what you may know.
Other LL links:
The first impression a CL player might have after playing LL is – it’s slower and therefore less efficient. Let’s look into the advantages of both styles.
Note that not all these points have the same "weight".
You can save unique cards safely
True, with either value or colour if context allows
True. Value is more appreciated. You can save non-unique cards safely True, with either value or colour if context allows It depends. Therefore more sensitive to buried second copies.
Handles situations that the other style can’t handle
Play per clue efficiency
Less immediate plays.
Since you can save more easily, and saves will become plays in the longer term, play per clue ratio is not as obvious.
More immediate plays. Play per clue ratio seems more obvious, more easily observable.
Safer playstyle. Allows many clues – on chop or off-chop – that would cause bombs in CL.
This way you can save cards that are neither critical saves, nor immediately playable.
More importantly, cluing a group of cards in reverse order is situationally allowed.
More aggressive playstyle. Since saving tolerance is lower than in LL, more clues would be interpreted as plays, regardless of context. Therefore higher risk of bombing with “original” save clues. Pace
Lower % of clues that cause an immediate play.
May cause pace issues.
Higher % of clues that cause an immediate play.
Solves some pace issues.
Used very situationally – when the clue otherwise makes no sense and/or when the next player really is going to play because they have no way of knowing they shouldn’t.
Arguably better for safety and worse for pace.
Situation and history are far more important. Requires deeper analysis.
Therefore harder to master.
Much easier to teach to beginners. They can reach decent scores very quickly. Overall
More freedom in clue-giving.
More mid-term / long-term planning.
"Good engine, great brakes."
More immediate speed.
"Awesome engine, poor brakes."
Other LL links:
When the following cards are successfully played, the subsequent effect applies.
m1: the team loses a clue*
m2: for the next three moves, no cluing
m3: for the next three moves, no discarding
m4: for the next three moves, no playing**
m5: the team loses a life or the game ends
*on BGA, you need to remember that you have one less clue token for the rest of the game, unless m1 was played when there were no tokens left
**if m2-m3-m4 are played consecutively, the next player can do nothing on their turn and the team loses
In several 2-player games, I found myself wishing my teammate discarded from the left instead of from the right, because it would make things much easier to handle.
So I’m thinking it would be good if there were a way to warn your teammate in such situations. The first thing that occurs to me is an empty clue.
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