Tip #1: Every rule in Reversi has at least one exception
There will be almost in any game a situation in which the tips listed below will not apply. However, they are the basic starting point for anyone wishing to play to win.
Tip #2: Corners are very valuable
Almost all Reversi games revolve around conquering corners. The reason is simple: discs placed in corners cannot be flipped for the rest of the game. They are often a great base to build “stable” discs - discs that cannot be flipped anymore by your opponent.
Tip #3: X-squares are very dangerous
X-squares (B2, G2, B7, and G7) are located directly diagonally in front of corners. It is very dangerous for a beginning player to place a disc there during the opening and mid phases because the opponent can now easily get to a corner.
Tip #4: Isolated C-squares can be trouble
C-squares (B1, G1, A2, H2, A7, H7, B8, and G8) are located on the edges and are next to corners. Placing a disc there without any disc next to it can spell trouble for a beginner as that position can be attacked by a more skilled player.
Tip #5: Quiet moves are better than loud moves
This is the secret of playing better reversi. Loud moves (moves that flip many discs) allow many options to your opponent for the next move. Quiet moves instead force your opponent to open up play and make unfavorable moves.
Tip #6: Avoid walls
Walls are long, unbroken lines of discs of one color sealing one side of the board. Let’s say you made a wall between E1 and E8 and all the discs in play are to the left side of the board. Your opponent can continue play there without breaking the wall and you’ll be forced to take bad move after bad move without having access to the right side of the board.
Tip #7: Keep balanced edges
Many Reversi games are fought along the edges. An unbalanced edge (usually made by five discs - for example C1, D1, E1, F1, and G1) can be attacked by a skilful player who will give you a corner in order to take the other corner and the whole edge in between.
Tip #8: Keep control of the diagonals
The two diagonals (B2 to G7 and G2 to B7) become very important in the end game. If you are able to keep control of them and your opponent can’t find a way to force you to give up a corner, you stand a very good chance to win the game.
Tip #9: Access is everything
If your whole game depends on a particular empty square, make sure you have access to it at all times. The best plans go up in smoke when a player realizes he/she can’t get to the much needed square late in the game.
Tip #10: If in doubt play odd
If you are forced to make a bad move late into the game, it is usually a good idea to play in an area where an odd number of empty squares are left (3 or 5, for example). The reasoning behind this is that if you play in an area with an odd number of empty squares left, you’ll usually end up with the last move in that region and then your opponent will be forced to make a bad move somewhere else.
Note: all the above tips apply also to Large Reversi (keep in mind that the location of the X-squares and C-squares changes); Small Reversi has a somewhat more complex strategy
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