After your oponent’s first step forward, place a vertical wall next to your opponent’s pawn.
Black’s move, and White is down 5 walls to 10. That said, White is 3 moves across the board and has Black boxed in. Black will tend to move towards the right side of the board. White can respond by building a horizontal wall across the board that will push Black back to the left.
White is spending walls but also White is managing steady progress across the board. On top of this, White is in full control of the movement flow. How did this happen? The initial sidewall is so immediate that when Black sees it, it “feels” like something must be done. At the same time. The sidewall pushes Black around, but it doesn’t create obstacles for White. Notice how the two available paths for White don’t wind or have extra spaces. The path to the right is shared, so it won’t matter if Black tries to elongate it. The path to the left is wide open, but White can close it quickly, or, if Black closes the right, White can “turn” the horizontal wall upwards and push the path (now shared) towards the goal.
Here is a great response. After White’s sidewall, Black plays a horizontal wall to begin closing the left side of the board.
With the left side of the board one wall from closing, Black can move to the right and quickly force his own path if White threatens to close the right side. Black also now has more immediate control over White’s path, and can use walls to attack. Because Black can quickly control his own path, White’s walls suddenly have less impact, and threaten to become an obstacle to White himself.
This is a great opening for intermediate players. It throws beginners off balance when they see it, and usually you can tie the game up early because the responses are unintuitive.
That said, this opening can be used all the way up to the highest levels, because you have to manage the entire board after opening moves.
Aggressive and complicated. This opening deserves much more in depth study.
Screenshots from the Quoridor Freeboard, the most amazing thing to happen to Quoridor recently. Paste this code (QNBPNKwgKuL3AA) into the textbox below the Quoridor Freeboard and click “input”. You will be able to walk through this opening and play around with different ideas. Paste any of the other codes below the images into the board to start from that position. I’m working on have the board embedded into this site.