Thin Margins

This is an example of “thin margins” in this month’s game of Connect Four. Recall that I am playing Random Hands, as opposed to Daily Challenges from last month.

It is not possible to turnover a card in column 8. The problem is after shifting the 9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-A onto the doubled Ten, there are no “stepping stones” to handle the mid-range cards in the remainder of column 8. We need any free Seven, Eight, Nine, Ten or Jack (or the Six of Diamonds on top of any Seven to enable a ‘swap’ operation) yet none of these exist. This problem occurs when the exposed cards in all ten columns are not distributed evenly (they are 2-K-A-2-Q-?-5-A-6-A leaving a huge chasm between the Six and Queen). Failing column 8, the best we can do is get a tenuous 12-suit in Clubs, with every card except the Four in column three.

For what it’s worth the last ten cards in the stock were A-9-5-9-A-J-4-J-K-9. Winnable with rot13(haqb) but not guessable sans rot13(haqb). Thin margins indeed. My stats say I am up to Level 46. I have won 84, lost 59 and my percentage is 58.74%.

Here is the current position in Connect Four. Team Red has taken the important squares labelled 16 and 17, setting up threats on the y=6x+4 diagonal, the WHAT column and the 15<x<20 horizontal. I think Team Yellow would need several Uno Reverse Cards to escape from this one.

Do you have a Spider Solitaire that upgrades your level after sufficiently many wins? If so, what level are you up to? Please let me know in the comments!

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