TicTactics

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TicTactics.

TicTactics is a tic-tac-toe game developed by Robert Donner and published by Microsoft in their Microsoft Entertainment Pack For Windows for Windows 3 in 1990. In addition to traditional 3x3 tic-tac-toe, the game includes 3x3x3 and 4x4x4 boards and three varying levels of AI.

The expert level AI will always win or ties on a 3x3 or 3x3x3 game if it goes first, and, while a 4x4x4 game was mathematically solved prior to the release of the game, the AI doesn't employ the algorithm, so you can still win if you're the second player.

This was pre-loaded on my family's Packard Bell 386SX computer, and I played it a little in 1991. At 11-years-old, I could always beat or tie the AI in the 3x3 mode at any difficulty, but I was rarely able to beat the AI on 3x3x3 or 4x4x4, even on beginner difficulty, so I didn't play it much. Years later, in 2018, I tried again and was finally able to beat the AI on expert mode on the 3x3x3 board with first move, and the 4x4x4 board even with second move.

Status

I do not own this game, but I have beaten the expert AI on all boards with first move, and the 4x4x4 with second move.

Review

  • Overall: 2/10
  • Best Version: Windows 3

— This section contains spoilers! —

Good

  • The game nicely implements the rules of three tic-tac-toe boards.
  • The AI features three levels of difficulty.
  • The graphics are quite nice for such a simple game.

Bad

  • The game is media challenged. There's no music, sound effects, or interesting animation upon victory.
  • The game doesn't scale to larger screen resolutions, even though it could have been made to do so fairly easily.

Ugly

  • There's just not much to do with the game. You can play three versions of tic-tac-toe, and that's it.
  • The game is lacking some obvious features. For example, you can't play against a human player, but are instead forced to play the AI. You also can't choose your color.

Media

Links

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