When playing with the pie rule, what’s a good first move?
And when should you swap?
Man, I dunno. It’s tricky.
Let’s look at an 11x11 board.
So some moves are obviously strong enough that you should immediately swap them. And some moves are so bad you shouldn’t. And some moves are… well, fair, and it shouldn’t matter whether you swap them or not.
First off let’s look at the “bad” plays. Don’t open here, or your opponent won’t swap and you’ll be left at a disadvantage:
One thing’s for sure: if you’re brand new at Hex, and you’re playing with the pie rule, it might be better not to swap a strong opening if you don’t yet know how to use the piece you’ll be left with. Taking the center might be better than getting a ladder escape you won’t be able to use.