Learn to Play Freecell the Dreamagic Way
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Lesson #6: Playing Very Hard Games

Now we come to the very heart of the matter, solving very hard games. First, how does one recognize that a game is going to be very hard? Well, you may see, at the outset, that you have many of the problems outlined in previous lessons. Or, you may start out with what you think is a very sound strategy, then discover along the way that there are very serious problems that were unforseen. In these cases, you may very well not be able to find a single goal that you think might be attainable, like making a hole in one or more columns, or playing many low cards to home. In those cases, you have to depend upon your instincts and begin to simply "make progress" attacking many of the columns at once. In that case, careful stacking is very important, since it may reveal avenues to victory that were not apparent at the outset.

Also, the principles and tricks we taught you become very important. Often, you can see sequences of moves that combine several of them. For example, this button starts an animation that combines the relay with a a Win-Win sequence. Clicking on this button will show you a sequence where a paradox is deliberately formed to execute a Win-Win. Finally, this button will show a sequence of moves that combines a complex set of relays.

One more trick remains to be demonstrated. Suppose you have essentially painted yourself into a corner. None of the sequences you can see will lead to an obvious breakthrough. At that point, choose the sequence that will lead to the most stacking. A winning strategy may be uncovered during this sequence that you couldn't see when you started it. In some situations, you really have no other choice. This button <> will show you how that might work.

Below, as in previous lessons, are a set of games we have determined are very difficult. You may very well find them impossible to win without replaying them many times. These are both the most challenging, but also the most satisfying of all Freecell "puzzles." After you have played these...and all the previous simpler games...you will be ready to become a champion Freecell solver.

Please send your comments and suggestions to the author, Willy Chaplin at:
willy@dreamagic.com (Willy Chaplin)