Winning Strategies in the Game of Chomp

Chomp is a strategy game played by two individuals. The competitors play the game on a rectangular bar made up of small cells. Every player chooses a block and eats it (removes) from the board. The player who eats (removes) the poisoned block will lose the game. According to Siegel (2013), this game belongs to the impartial 2-player games.

The winning strategy in this game depends on perfect information. This game also has very easy and simple rules. This explains why there is no documented winning strategy for the game. However, experts argue that a carefully executed move will make the first player the winner. The first player (Player A) will always have a clear strategy to win the game.

To begin with, the game starts with a rectangular group of counters. Players A and B group the counters in unique columns and rows. The players execute their game by selecting any of the counters. The player then removes the counter together with the other counters to the right and those on the top.

Every player will take either a square or a rectangular bite out of the counters. The players will play in turns by removing the counters. The champion in the game is the player who forces the other to take the poisoned or the last counter (Siegel, 2013). The poisoned counter is on the bottom left side.

That being the case, the winning strategy depends on the shifts (moves) made by each individual player. According to Siegel (2013), chomp is a finite game. This means that someone must win the game. Many years of experimentation and execution have showed that the first player can very easily win the game of chop. Experts explain this concept using “the strategy-stealing argument” (Hiaasen, 2012, p. 47).

To begin with, the first player will take the bottom right square. Going by assumption, the other player should respond to this move made by the first player.

This strategy will definitely force victory. On the other hand, the first player might find it hard to win the game if he or she fails to execute this move. The position or move undertaken by the first player is enough to force victory in this game. That being the case, the other player will not have any winning strategy because the first player has made that move.

The person who eats the last block becomes the loser. This is also the poisoned block. If the first player eats the block, he or she will have lost the game. It is provable from the above argument that the first player always has a clear winning strategy. The player needs to make the right moves in order to win the game.

The approach will force the second person (player B) to eat the poisoned block. This explains why it is impossible for Player B to have a winning strategy for this game. Since it provable that the first player can easily win the game because of he or she possesses the winning strategy, a loss will suggest clearly that one of the player’s moves was wrong (Siegel, 2013).

It would be appropriate for Player A to master the right moves in order to win the game. Computers have successfully calculated the best winning moves for the game of chomp. Such moves also identifies player A as the person with the winning strategy for this game. Loosing means the first player has made a wrong move during the game.

Reference List

Hiaasen, C. (2012). Chomp. New York: Ember Publishers.

Siegel, A. (2013). Combinational Game Theory. New York: American Mathematical Society.

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