Atari Video Computer System / 2600


· BUG: 9-sided dice - when playing a game of Acey-Deucey against the computer, if the computer becomes trapped it will use a set of 9-sided dice to win!  To reveal this flaw, first set the Left Difficulty to A and the Right to B.  Select game #7 and  start.  “Dial” up a larger number so that you  (the white player) start first, such as 3 and 1.  Set the Left Difficulty to B (set up mode) and set up the board as shown in picture 1.  You should have a “shutout” or “prime” on the computer’s inner table, 2 pieces on point #7, and the last piece on #12.  Switch the Left Difficulty back to A and move your piece on #12 down to #8 (using the 3-1 roll).  Next dial up an acey-deucey for the computer (1-2).  The computer can’t use the 1 and 2 rolls so it will look for an acceptable doublet.  Since it can’t use any number from 1-6 either, control of the dice should go back to the white player.  Instead, the computer will pause for a second and then roll a 9! (picture 2)  If you reset the board and try to close off the #9 point too (taking the two pieces from #7), the computer finally will yield control over to you when faced with an acey-deucey. {Scott Stilphen}

· BUG: Illegal moves - there’s a section in the manual that discusses the possibility of an illegal move that the computer will overlook.  Unfortunately, the diagram provided does not illustrate this point because there’s a mistake on it!  To correct it, set up the board exactly as shown in the manual, but instead of having 2 white pieces on the white point #10 (computer’s side), put them on white #9.  Then simply follow the explanation of the programming “bug”.  To further illustrate this bug, set up the board as shown in the manual, but take 2 pieces from the red side and put them on white point #5.  Dial the 3-5 roll and take a piece either from the white #12 or red #12 and move it 3 spaces.  You can’t use the 5 roll and since the computer accepted the first move -  it’ll keep waiting for your second move forever.  The interesting thing with this setup is that there’s no possible move with a 3-5 roll. {Scott Stilphen}

· The rules state if a player can only use one die, it must be the die with the higher count, but it seems the program doesn’t check this.  The board can be set up so that either the player or the computer can use the lower-count die and the game will continue. {Scott Stilphen}

· The manual states that if you are in a position where the computer accepts an illegal move, there are two ways to correct it.  The first is to set the Left Difficulty to B and move your piece back.  The other solution is to simply RESET the game.  Since the computer accepted your move for the 3 roll, the computer doesn’t recognize the fact that you want to start your turn over.  Even though the piece is moved back, the computer is still waiting for the 5-roll move.  You can’t go any further in the game, unless you move some of your opponent’s pieces as well so that a 5-point move is possible.  The only realistic alternative is to RESET.  The best way to play against the computer is to let it roll the dice so you don’t mistakenly hang up the program. {Scott Stilphen}


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