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November 23, 2012 12:12 PM   Subscribe

Circle The Cat (flash friday fun) It's not like anyone was going to be productive at work today anyway, right?
posted by elizardbits (66 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite

 
(I assume by the minimal site design and the comic sans that this is fairly old stuff but afaict it hasn't been posted before. Also, there is a kitty.)
posted by elizardbits at 12:13 PM on November 23, 2012


pro-what-ive at what?
posted by boo_radley at 12:17 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


dupe, sorry.
posted by yeoz at 12:19 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


I DID IT
posted by The Whelk at 12:19 PM on November 23, 2012


It took seven tries and a lot of swearing, but I did it too!
posted by Kevin Street at 12:20 PM on November 23, 2012


My wife won this on her first goddamn try. Needless to say, we are not talking now.
posted by boo_radley at 12:20 PM on November 23, 2012 [5 favorites]


dammit kitty
posted by elizardbits at 12:21 PM on November 23, 2012


I got the little bastard. I think the trick is to focus on the outer perimeter as much as possible.
posted by codacorolla at 12:22 PM on November 23, 2012


Work?
posted by jph at 12:46 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: shit my mom forwarded to me in 2008.
posted by item at 12:47 PM on November 23, 2012 [4 favorites]


can't catch the cat, huh, item?
posted by boo_radley at 12:48 PM on November 23, 2012 [10 favorites]


I caught the cat. Do I get a sticker?
posted by TwelveTwo at 12:51 PM on November 23, 2012


I did it but I had help from the filled in dots that started off being there, so I don't know how much to congratulate myself.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:53 PM on November 23, 2012


This damn cat is related to that dog in Duck Hunt, isn't it?
posted by The Card Cheat at 12:57 PM on November 23, 2012 [2 favorites]


Did it, but placement of given dark dots seems be key. Herding it towards a block of them cuts down the kitty's options considerably allowing time for construction of the perimeter.
posted by the sobsister at 12:58 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


can't catch the cat, huh, item?

I've been trying since 08.
posted by item at 12:59 PM on November 23, 2012 [10 favorites]


oh hey the cat came back
posted by The Whelk at 1:02 PM on November 23, 2012 [7 favorites]


Doing an every-other perimeter until the cat gets right next to an opening seems to be my winning strategy.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:02 PM on November 23, 2012


It took me way too many tries, but I DID IT.

Why does this fill me with more satisfaction than the actual work I did today?
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 1:04 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


I don't get it. How do you fail at trapping the cat?

I guess I'm a mutant flash game cat trapper. Who knew super powers would be so specific.
posted by cmoj at 1:09 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Too easy.
posted by hoodrich at 1:14 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think the trick is to focus on the outer perimeter as much as possible.

The trick is that you can control where he goes by leaving openings strategically. Close off his exits at the last possible minute while filling in blocks surrounding them.
posted by empath at 1:17 PM on November 23, 2012


After about 15 tries I finally got the little bastard. My first guess is the game eventually took pity on me and set me up with some favorable initial conditions.

Is every option initially presented able to be solved?
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 1:20 PM on November 23, 2012


My guess is less than half are solvable.
posted by empath at 1:29 PM on November 23, 2012


I managed to get a run of about 8 wins before I decided I've licked it, so I think they may all be solvable.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:43 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is how Charlie Brown feels every time he tries to kick that football isn't it?
posted by wabbittwax at 1:48 PM on November 23, 2012 [2 favorites]


I don't know for sure if every one is solvable, but anecdotally, it's got to be at least 75% or so. Maybe the random number generator was unkind to you, empath? (or, less charitably, maybe u r worst cat circler evar)
posted by juv3nal at 1:49 PM on November 23, 2012


Sometimes you encircle the cat, sometimes the cat encircles you.
posted by Reverend John at 1:55 PM on November 23, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I think i'm at 70% now that i've adjusted my strategy a bit. There are definitely some taht aren't solvable (or you have to be lucky as to which way the cat goes on the first jump)
posted by empath at 1:56 PM on November 23, 2012


This appears to be a copy, maybe a ripoff, of Chat Noir, as featured in the previous post yeoz points to. Doesn't the contrast between the Comic Sans site and the stylish game design look suspicious?

Regarding game strategy—when Chat Noir was first posted, I remember developing a strategy that let me win most if not all of the time.
posted by Orinda at 2:00 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


[ Yes this was posted 5 years ago, but it's a holiday weekend and a fun game and it's fine as a borderline post ]
posted by mathowie at 2:02 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Why was I not allowed to squish the cat after I trapped it?
posted by Splunge at 2:02 PM on November 23, 2012 [6 favorites]


Managed to circle the cat on the first, second and third try :) The trick seems to be punch the cat in the face.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 2:05 PM on November 23, 2012


THIRD TRY, BOOYAH!

I have never* been so excited about what was obviously a fluke victory over an imaginary cat.

*Okay, maybe once or twice.
posted by Elsa at 2:16 PM on November 23, 2012


Once you get the hang of it - it's easy. As with a real cat - chasing it head on does you know good. Guide the kitty, coax into the big trap, and grab on tightly!
posted by helmutdog at 2:27 PM on November 23, 2012


I quite enjoy the constipated little squat it does once it's been trapped.
posted by elizardbits at 2:27 PM on November 23, 2012


2008? Hell, I've been playing Dice Wars (fullscreen) whenever I want to clear my mind ever since it was posted here in 2006. (Though it looks like it might be the cat from now on).
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 2:29 PM on November 23, 2012 [5 favorites]


Bummer, despite it being flash Friday, I clicked the link anyway on an iPad.
posted by loquat at 2:54 PM on November 23, 2012


Hell, I've been playing Dice Wars (fullscreen) whenever I want to clear my mind ever since it was posted here in 2006.

Gee, thanks for bringing that little timesink to my attention.
posted by MartinWisse at 3:12 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Dice Wars and Chat Noir (this cat game) are both games by gamedesign.jp incidentally.
posted by yeoz at 3:30 PM on November 23, 2012 [2 favorites]


I lost count... 10 tries? And then once more to prove I wasn't hallucinating :)
posted by photojlisa at 3:39 PM on November 23, 2012


I did it on my second go! ...and then never again, oop.
posted by Lina Lamont at 3:47 PM on November 23, 2012


Second try, no problem. Third try, so far every try. Easy-peasy! Maybe you have to be a cat lover!
posted by misha at 4:11 PM on November 23, 2012


Dicewars is insidious as after awhile you're convinced the game is CHEATING and it's UNFAIR. You start trying to determine whether you can find the source code to see.

Throwing out the human player's highest rolled die (or two) and replacing it with a lower one would be an easy way to make the computer opponent "smarter", just saying. Also, what does it say about me that I keep asking for new games until I see a starting configuration which I think gives me a decent advantage?
posted by maxwelton at 4:19 PM on November 23, 2012


maxwelton, it probably offers that choice in the first place because there's a good chance you'll get a setup that could result in you losing before your first turn, so I wouldn't worry about it too much.

It's kind of cool how much Dice Wars is better than Risk, despite Risk's longevity. It probably has a lot to do with the fact that Dice Wars fights are over in a second, while it can take a while to resolve even one combat in Risk.

I'm surprised that Dice Wars isn't played on boards. The only obscure element of its rules are how many new dice are supplied after a turn.
posted by JHarris at 4:51 PM on November 23, 2012


The number of new dice is just the largest number of joined territories you control.

But randomly distributing them over your territories would take longer when it isn't automated.


Le Chat Noir also feels like it could be a board game, asymmetrical like the Fox and Hounds.
posted by RobotHero at 5:24 PM on November 23, 2012


If you like this you should play Go.
posted by Specklet at 5:51 PM on November 23, 2012 [4 favorites]


There's a multiplayer version of dice wars called kdice

I kind of hate it because the other players concede and there is a lot of kingmaking in the game.

As far as single player, it's ridiculously easy, assuming you can survive the first few turns. The computer players will almost always ignore you in favor of other AI unless you are winning.

In the early game, link up all your countries, don't attack any more than you need to to link up. Grab extra countries if they're 'safe'-- all the borders countries have equal or less dice than you. Don't get aggressive, and don't be that concerned about other players getting ahead of you, unless one country is absolutely dominating.

The main strategy is to find a stable, compact set of 6-7 countries on the edge or the corner of the board, and wait until they're all full of dice. Then make one and only one attack per turn, while the other computers fight each other. When you attack, try to split your opponents. Attack more often as you get extra dice saved up. End every turn with 8 dice on every country. You pretty much can't lose, as long as no other country is able to consolidate and max out on dice before you get there.
posted by empath at 6:04 PM on November 23, 2012 [3 favorites]


I was thinking of Go when I was playing it Specklet, at least that phase early in the game where you're dividing up the board and trying to claim just as much as you can with as few pieces as possible.

RobotHero, it was right after I hit Submit when I noticed the other problem is that you'd have to have some way to pick random arbitrary territories from your holdings. There might be a way to do that simply with physical equipment, but I'd have to think about it.
posted by JHarris at 6:06 PM on November 23, 2012


Yep, the strategy here is just like in Go: Put up fenceposts much farther than you think you'll need them, then fill in the fences before the cat gets there.
posted by DU at 6:07 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Any mods reading this: as yeoz above notes, the linked-to site is a rip-off (as in, they stole the swf file) of a game created by gamedesign.jp. The game on their site is located at http://www.gamedesign.jp/flash/chatnoir/chatnoir.html. So as not to give hits to content thieves, the URL in the FPP should probably point there.
posted by JHarris at 6:13 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is reminding me of one or another of those whachacall eternal precepts of warfare.
posted by Trochanter at 6:59 PM on November 23, 2012


[thanks for that JHarris, I updated it]
posted by mathowie at 8:33 PM on November 23, 2012


Being an engineer and somewhat familiar with pathfinding algorithms makes this easier to solve. Basically, it's taking the shortest path always, so the optimal strategy is to close off an outer edge, but leave one circle open, the closest one, as long as possible. A human player would never go there because they would get cut-off inevitably, but a simple pathfinding algorithm won't.

A more complicated version of this would employ a cost function optimizing for which path has the most opportunities, not just the shortest path.
posted by sp160n at 8:35 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


elizardbits: "I quite enjoy the constipated little squat it does once it's been trapped."

Just so you know, you made me go back and play till I trapped it again just so I could see what you meant. When I caught it again, I giggled out loud because your description was perfect. Well done!
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 9:07 PM on November 23, 2012


I just cornered it and left it with only two spaces, then went back and filled in the rest of the board dot by dot... to watch it squirm. Mwaaahahaaaa.
posted by Specklet at 10:16 PM on November 23, 2012 [3 favorites]


This is reminding me of one or another of those whachacall eternal precepts of warfare.

Yeah, if you could be like water, you could drench the sodden bugger. In other news, purple dice control the map. Elections will be held next month.
posted by ersatz at 5:59 AM on November 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yaaarrrggh. This is a horrible, horrible, horrible, horrible thing. But I will get there in the end.
posted by Monkeymoo at 6:06 AM on November 24, 2012


If you like this you should play Go.

I think I should mention Hex here, since it is similar to this cat game. More so than Go, I'd argue, though Go has other undeniable merits of course :)
posted by tykky at 6:46 AM on November 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


My god - I'd forgotten about that one. Used to love it years ago...
posted by Decani at 7:16 AM on November 24, 2012


Second try. BOOYEAH. After that cretin ran off-screen I showed it what's what.

Also, to me it looks more like a classic hair-raising horror movie cat stance than a kitty who needs to poo. But then I've never really seen a cat who needs to poo, so there's that. In other news, off to youtube...
posted by whorl at 4:06 PM on November 24, 2012


whorl: "Second try. BOOYEAH. After that cretin ran off-screen I showed it what's what.

Also, to me it looks more like a classic hair-raising horror movie cat stance than a kitty who needs to poo. But then I've never really seen a cat who needs to poo, so there's that. In other news, off to youtube...
"

Fair enough. You make a good point I hadn't considered.
posted by el puppeto del socko at 12:09 AM on November 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Specklet: "If you like this you should play Go."

Indeed. May I suggest a version for the iPhone that I enjoy. Champion Go.
posted by Splunge at 5:01 PM on November 25, 2012


sp160n: Being an engineer and somewhat familiar with pathfinding algorithms makes this easier to solve.

I have a confession to make.

You see, my spouse--who had to play several games before trapping said cat--is an engineer.

I, on the other hand, have a hugely impractical liberal arts degree, rendering me virtually unemployable.

He solves problems! Puts out fires! Makes things!

I...spell words correctly.

But trappping cats? Turns out that's where I'm a Viking!

This is actually why I came in to this thread early, to gloat so unbecomingly.

You have to grab these little moments of validation with both hands and hold on tight when they come, people! ;)

I'm obviously being facetious. I solve lots of problems, am creative enough to make things myself, and if I don't know how to put the fires out, I at least know where the fire extinguisher is. And MrMisha (heh) is a bigger grammar Nazi than I am. And has spellcheck. So.
posted by misha at 9:55 AM on November 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


In other news, purple dice control the map. Elections will be held next month.

The Legitimists - so they called themselves - had cornered us on the Peninsula Naranjada, our home territory. Their guns were close enough that our glasses shook as we ate in the mess. General Hernandez, who had eaten with us in better times, now stayed in his office.

Sometimes, as we drilled, I would see him on the balcony of his headquarters, looking westward with the pair of binoculars that hung always from his neck. When he left them down, he showed a furrowed brow and an unmoving line of a mouth. He would watch us for a while, see how exhausted his troops had become, and then go back inside. I suppose he spent his time standing at his map of the island, rolling dice that never came out right.

He shot himself in the heat of July. We surrendered soon after.

Since then, I have seen the towers of weaponry that the dogs built in the lands where they usurped authority. A man wearing a purple kepi told me that these towers were built during the war, and only for defense. I know better. They were built after the fighting had ended. They were built as demonstrations of their builders' triumph.

Let them have their sham elections. Rumors of a great revolt reach my ears each day. The Azulistas have reconciled themselves to partnership with the Verdistas, and we who wore the orange at Hernandez's funeral are willing to join them. We will pull down those towers, seize what we can, and then - well, then it will be every man for himself.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 11:25 AM on November 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Fuck. You. Cat.

Goddamnit! I almost had you!
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 3:53 AM on December 15, 2012


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