# Nack Ballard Recommendations

B = Blue
C = Copper (gold/bronze)
E = Ebony (black)
G = Green
P = Purple
R = Red
Y = Yellow

Algebraic notation (similar to chess): Columns left to right are lettered abcdefghi. Rows bottom to top are numbered 123456789. For example, the bottom left square of the board is a1.

I went ahead and analyzed this Pro game of 504. I recommend you read through my comments as you look through the game. There were no big mistakes from 0 to 70 (of 504).

At 70, after cashing the R column, Ch1-e8 is bad, because it will take you two more moves to poise the 8-row. Instead, you should create a C three-line diagonal (e.g., Cg8-c7). Less attractive would be to create a G three-column (Gc3-a5) because it is blocked by Ya3, but that would still be much better than Ch1-e8 as played.

[An efficient move changes your ball mass by -2.5 (negative numbers being good). Because you’re fighting a +3 drop each time you make a move (cashes don’t count), your ball mass increases by 3 – 2.5 = 0.5 per move (which I don’t count in most assessments, it’s just a fixed constant that you’re fighting). To break even over a sequence of moves, you need a turn-gaining drop 20% of the time, or actually more often when you account for the fact that you will occasionally be forced to make an inefficient move.]

Ch1-e8 (as played) only helps your ball mass by -1 (instead of the standard -2.5). In short, it is an error of 1.5. Looked at another way, just prior to cashing that line, you will have invested three moves (value of 7.5) to poise the removal of 6 balls (thus a mass increase of +1.5). By contrast, Cg8-c7 will require only two moves (this one plus one more) to poise the removal of 5 balls, thereby meeting the standard of -2.5 per move, and maintaining an increase of zero.

At 92, after cashing the E diagonal, Pc2-c4 is a blunder of +2.5. Better is to play Gc3-e8 or Gc3-a7. Even playing a Y to a4 (if legal) would be much better than Pc2-c4.

At 152, Ya3-g5 is a blunder of 2.5. To hold par, you need to move a Y to h7, creating a 4-line column. (Oversight?) Even extending a C or G two-line (or some independent Y two-line) would be better than Ya3-g5.

At 192 (after you played Rg4-d3 and Rf3 dropped), moving Ge3 is a +2.5 blunder (there is positional compensation in unblocking the central R row, but I’d estimate you get back -0.7 at most). You should keep busy elsewhere until the drop gives you a G two-line somewhere. For example, Cb7-a3 unblocks a B six-line.

At 244, it is a +1 mistake to cash with Yc1 because it is part of a potential six-line on the 1-row. You should cash with one of the Y balls in the upper left (or delaying the cash is a fine option).

At 254, after you poised the P row, you got an unfortunate Cd5 ball, but you should NOT move it immediately. Rather, best is to poise the Y column. For example, Yg2-i4/i5. Next Yg8 or Yd3 can cash, followed by (a) Gc4-g2 + Cd5-a3, or (b) Bc2-i6 + Eb2-e6/g8 + Cd5-a3.

Granted, both plans might get blocked, but some resource might arise along the way that could be a back-up (e.g., a C drop pairs somewhere) or even an improvement (G drop on the 4-row could open the Cd5-a3 path faster while gaining an additional turn).

As 294, after you cashed the B column, Yb6-e4 is a blunder of +2.5 (actually 2.0 if you are able to cash the e-column as an 8-line). Better is Yb7-f2, so that you can cash two five-lines instead of one. Examine this carefully.
[Scroll both diagram forward two frames, by clicking twice on the fourth button ]
The Yf1-e1* actually misses an opportunity to save 0.5 (as I hinted at parenthetically in the previous paragraph). I like Re6-a3, intending Ed7-e6, E poise, E* + Ce7-c7, Y-e7 and Y-e6*. If it doesn’t work out, I still have Yf1-e1* in my back pocket. No big deal, though; the real mistake was Yb6-e4.

At 394, after the Yh6-i5 poise (which was fine), the Y* was a hard-to-see mistake, costing +1. You can get -2.5 for the 2-row and eventually -3.5 for the i-column (including the Yi8 ball) for a total of -6 (compared to the instant -5 as played).

Hence, what you should do is use Cd2 and Ch8 to cash the C diagonal, and move Ri7-a5 (though no hurry). The next two Y drops can be used to cash the 2-row, and Yh1 can be used for the i-column later. You can even get by with one Y drop if you move Gf1 somewhere (e.g., f8), thereby liberating Yg1. There is no hurry, though, on the Y plan. You might just rather play elsewhere for the next dozen or two moves.

At 494, Ef2-d5 is a big mistake of +1.5 (2.5 less than ball unit you get back for the potential vertical six-line). Best looks to be Yh4-b1, or Yb7-i5 may be better yet if an E is on deck to drop.
[Scroll both diagram forward six frames, by clicking six times on the fourth button ]
At 494, after the E poise, the E* costs +1. Instead, I would wait for a P pairing. If an E (but no P, G or R) is about to drop, then Eg5-e3 looks good, followed by cashing the E row. The E six-line potential remains, but you buy more time and space for a P drop to pair somewhere. If no E, P, G or R is about to drop (or you don’t know), then Ra7-e8 looks good, unblocking the Ga4+a8 doublet.

You also made all kinds of unnecessary minor errors. In particular, you should strongly resist breaking up a healthy doublet. Instead, find a different source ball, move a different color, or DELAY THE CASH. (Admittedly, delaying the cash makes the resulting position harder to visualize, which in the short run may lead to more mistakes, but eventually you’ll discover that delaying the cash has many hidden benefits.)

# How many points do I earn with an each removed ball?

You have to line-up at least five balls of the same color to remove them from the game-board in Color Lines Puzzle Game.
By default, you would earn two points per removed ball. For example, there are six green balls that can be removed next at the screenshot below.

By removing them, you can earn twelve points, but wait…

Have you heard about the bonus points?

## How can I earn additional bonus pints?

To earn bonus points you have to turn off “Next Balls” suggestion by clicking on it.

There is an opportunity to remove six blue balls, so let’s do it.

As you can see, the score for removing six balls is now thirteen. One point is added for turning off “Next Ball” suggestion.
Turning off suggestions will increase the game difficulty, but you will be rewarded with an extra point each time when you remove a line.

# How to get a list of the best players by country

It is always interesting to see how your score stacks up against other players in your country.

In order to do that, click on “Countries” menu item and find your country.

Click on “Members” link and sort them by the “Best Score”.

# How to learn from the best players

Do you know that you can click on any player profile and see his/her score history?

Just load player’s profile and move your computer mouse over the score history on the top.

You can also see the game screen on the bottom left and notice how remaining balls are positioned.

i Color Lines Portal allows to add other users as “friend”, send private or public message.

# Best Games

“Best Games” widget was added to i Color Lines Puzzle Game.

It shows three best games of day, week or month.

# Replay and Analyze Your Game

Do you know that you can replay and analyze your own game?
Just go to your player profile and watch your game like a movie.

You can go ball-by-ball or line-by-line.

# How to play color lines game – strategy video

Watch this video to learn Color Lines Puzzle Game strategy and tactics.

Find tips and tricks in Help Section or Frequently Asked Questions.

# Colored lines game strategy

The proven strategy is to constantly clean the board and anticipate where new balls can land.

For example, let’s look at screenshot of the new game below.

Two new red balls and one violet are coming next, and you already have two violet and two red on the board.
You can try to move red ball to start the first line.

Two green balls and one black are coming, and you have two black and one green.

The suggestion is to move the red ball to have at least three red aligned and wait for having more green and black balls on the board. At the same time free the way for potential violet balls.

Black, yellow and violet are coming, and there are two violet, and two greens and two blacks are aligned.

It is your next move which color ball to move. Black or violet might be more preferable to move. Let’s move violet ball.

Violet, red and green balls are coming and you have an opportunity to clean five violet balls, or unblock red ones to make them eligible for cleaning. Note, if you a ball to unblock other color line, put it to the same color to create or increase the other line. Let’s move a green ball to unblock red line.

Two yellow and one read are coming. It might be a good idea to move a red ball to its line, clean it if we are lucky, and may be let new yellow balls to align themselves. And yes, it worked, red ball came to complement another four.

Unfortunately yellow balls are scattered. Black, violet and yellow are coming next. Let’s deal with violet balls now.

Now we are in good position. One violet and two yellow balls are coming. Violet are ready to be clean and yellow already formed some lines, we just need to free some space for yellow balls, at the same time form a black line.

We got 20 points and various opportunities with yellow balls. Now it is a time to start your game and work out your strategy!