How to beat mini-shogi?

Hello lishogi.com community

I am new to the shogi community and have gravitated towards minishogi. I feel as if it the perfect introduction to shogi and a great mind teaser in of itself. I am committed to beating level 8 Stockfish minishogi as soon as possible. Unsurprisingly, I have failed on all attempts. Please share your advice on how I can achieve my goal as quickly as possible. So far I have hypothesised the following rules for minishogi.

1. Create a row of your gold general, silver general and bishop.
2. Try to play as gote.
3. When creating your opening move identical pieces to your opponent. So if your opponent moves the silver general move your silver general.
4. Create a nash equilibrium of continuous moves make your opponent chose a favorable move through attrition. For example, placing bishop next to the opponents silver general to threaten the rook and retreating once it moves nearer to the king. Another example is to move the king under the gold general when the rook is threatening to take and check your king in front of your pawn. In this situation you should move under your gold general.
5. In the middlegame you essentially continuously recapture pieces in a nash equilibrum until your opponent makes a mistake.

Looking back I realise that I should start at level 1 and work my way up to level 8 instead of starting at level 8.

Please share any thoughts or theories you may have on the contents in this posts.

Thank you

PyongyangShogiTeam

Trying to beat Stockfish at minishogi is quite the self-challenge; I'm not sure many people could even do it. In some post-game engine analysis of my games, Stockfish regularly finds forced checkmate sequences of 20+ moves. I even saw an evaluation of +M41 once.

1. Creating that row you mentioned *tends* to be a good opening, as it gets the pieces ready and also puts a lot of pressure on the opponent's already small territory. But never be afraid to do something different if your opponent goes for something different or is too passive.
2. Since playing as gote isn't a choice most of the time, I would not really say this is a "strategy" at all. Plus I would say that having the tempo up of sente is an advantage.
3. I'm not sure about this; but since there's so few moves available I don't see why it would be bad, strictly speaking. Just make sure you aren't mindlessly moving pieces. Every move should have a purpose.
4 and 5.
I'm not really sure what you're getting at with these points honestly. Nash Equilibrium is like.. a hypothetical mathematical game theory no? Unless you know the entire game tree, or can look deep enough to approximate it (like Stockfish), I don't see how this could be super helpful. I guess I would have to see your examples to know exactly what you mean.

I would say the best way to improve is to:
Learn the basic shogi checkmate patterns. Look for them *every single turn*, even if you think there isn't one.
99% of minishogi games are like this: an even game for 12 moves straight, then suddenly one mistakes leaves forced checkmate in 5.
Always look at check sequences and captures.
Always look at what your opponent wants to do.
Always look at sacrifices.
Learn when material is and isn't worth picking up. Related: never underestimate a tempo; it more often than not determines the game.

You can't post in the forums yet. Play some games!

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