Welcome to Chow Ka Fat's "Three-way Artificial Intelligence Mastermind" Web Page, the most feature-rich on-line version of the board game classic. (Or being another classic itself?)
-There are billions of possible code combinations (or permutations, using the proper mathematical term). You have to take a life's (or several lives') time to break all the codes.
-There are altogether 1,424 different game settings to suit players of different levels.
-You may choose to be the Codebreaker or the Codemaker. You may also choose to watch the computer play with itself. (Hence the phrase "Three-Way" in the title of this homepage.)
-Equipped with Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) of this programme, the computer can break the
most difficult code using an incredibly small number of steps within seconds! (Believe it or
For beginners: choose the most elementary game setting (No. of colours: 5; Start from: Trial 1; Length of code: 3; Hints contain error(s)?: No error; Order type: Fixed order; Colour repeated?: No repetition). There are only 10 possible secret codes under this setting.
For those who want challenges: choose the most difficult game setting (No. of colours: 10; Start from: Middle; Length of code: Unspecified (3 - 8); Hints contain error(s)?: May contain error(s); Order type: Random order; Colour repeated?: May be repeated any times). HEALTH WARNING: Do not guess blindly. There are as many as 214,356,000 possible secret
codes under this setting!
For a detailed introduction to the Online version of my programme, some notes about the A.I. of my programme as well as some links to other Mastermind sites, please click HERE.
You may download the PC versions of my programme with full multimedia and graphical features. As the programmes are stored as zipped files, you will need the Winzip / WinRAR or any built-in unzipping programme to upzip the file. To cater for different PCs, I have prepared four versions for you to choose. Two are written in Flash MX 2004 with ActionScript (Flash Versions 1 and 2) and the other two in Visual Basic 5 (VB Versions 1 and 2). Flash Version 1 is executable on a usual PC without the need of installing any plug-in programme while Flash Version 2 can be run only after your PC has isntalled the Shockwave Flash programme. VB Version 1 is equipped with a full range of background music and sound effects but may not be executable on certain PCs as it requires some plug-in programmes while VB Version2 does not have these features but is executable on a usual PC. Before downloading, you may wish to read the detailed introduction to the features of these PC versions: INSTRUCTIONS ON PC VERSION MASTERMIND (FLASH) or INSTRUCTIONS ON PC VERSION MASTERMIND (VISUAL BASIC).
N.B. As I may modify the programme from time to time, the release dates of the two PC versions are given below so that the users may know which version is the most up-to-date version.
Here are the step-by-step instructions for downloading my programme.
Mastermind is a game of logical reasoning. Provided that the Codebreaker has the ability of making rigorous logical reasoning, sufficient prudence and patience, he / she can surely break the code. In the following webpages I provide the novice Mastermind players with some Mastermind codebreaking strategies. However, I have to say that there are many ways to break Mastermind codes. What I introduce are not the only methods, nor are they meant to be the quickest codebreaking methods. Nevertheless, if the Codebreaker adopts the strategies I introduce, they can then break the codes in a systematic way. Moreover, the strategies are applicable to any game setting and no preparation work is needed. As a matter of fact, these are the strategies used by my programmes.
In a summary, the strategies I adopt is to assume a possible code first and then make modification to the assumptions according to the hints provided by the Codemaker. Each time only the least possible modification is made to the previous assumptions and the assumptions must remain consistent with the hints given (i.e. no logical contradiction should exist). The process repeats itself until the code is broken or inconsistencies are found among the hints.
Note: To facilitate easy discussion, I use digits to represent colours in the following webpages. Now please click the following links: