When asking/browsing questions on strategy to be used for games like Connect 4, Yahtzee, 2048, etc. I sometimes found people answering by giving a link to a research paper on the game, that most casual players can't understand.

Should answers that actually give 'rules of thumb' that a human can follow, rather than an optimal computer strategy be encouraged and preferred?

  • 2
    Upvote the answers you feel are useful and downvote the answers you feel are not useful. It's really not any more difficult than that.
    – Rainbolt
    Feb 18, 2015 at 19:54
  • This question is very similar to this one, I believe there is some good advice there as well. meta.boardgames.stackexchange.com/questions/655/…
    – John
    Feb 24, 2015 at 16:46

2 Answers 2


Answers should always suit the question.

If the OP is looking for research, give them research. If they're asking for general strategy, give them understandable things. If they're asking for the perfect strategy without explaining what they mean by that, figure out which one they mean and give them what they want - but they probably do mean the latter.

And on the flip side, if you're dissatisfied with existing questions and answers about any particular game, just ask a new question, making it clear that you're not looking for research papers, so it's not a duplicate of the old one.

  • 1
    But also, because questions and answers are meant to be a resource for other readers, I think posting answers which are at a different level than exactly what is requested by the asker is also okay, in some circumstances.
    – David Z
    Feb 19, 2015 at 23:53
  • @DavidZ I tend to think it's best to answer as the OP wanted, and then also go on to provide other information if you think it's helpful, rather than just posting an answer that doesn't really suit them (unless the existing answers have it well-covered). Another option to keep in mind is just posting a new question and answering it yourself. You can link to it from the original question, and that way everyone's happy - people can look at the question that's at the level they want.
    – Cascabel
    Feb 20, 2015 at 0:00

Personally I think that providing information at a lower level is a good thing, if all you know is that people say to do certain things it might hurt your play when playing someone who understands why and is able to change play style to counter. On the other hand there needs to be more to an answer then giving a link to an explanation and if the answer does that without attempting to explain and break down what is in the link then it is a very poor answer and probably should be deleted.

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