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October 15, 2004


Frank McGahon

You want to leave the other guy with four flags, that way whatever he picks you end up with the last flag. If you can leave him with multiples of four, he won't be able to flip it over to you, so if you're first, take one flag, if you're second hope that he takes 2 or 3 and leave him with 16.

Abiola Lapite

Damn, that was quick! Tres bien, Monsieur.


i worked backwards too, realizing that you must have 4 flags at the 2nd to last round, then 8,12,16,20 .

winning strategy for any player : make sure you leave a multiple of 4 after you've picked your flags.
of course if your adversary goes first and knows the strategy you're guaranteed to lose :)

winning strategy for any such games where you can pick any number of flags from [ 1 to (N-1)] : leave a multiple of N flags after your move and you should be able to win .

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