## Logic Games Tactic

Prepare for the LSAT or discuss it with others in this forum.
akechi

Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Jun 21, 2013 11:38 am

### Logic Games Tactic

Hello All,

I was wondering how many of you TLSers actually go through the process of writing down all the rules and listing them numerically (i.e. (1) if P -> ~Q, (2) ~Q -> Z, etc).

My games times and accuracy are at a point where I can consistently score between -0 and -2, but I feel that I am wasting too much time by physically writing down the rules every single time - on average I spend about 1-2 minutes reading the directions, writing down the rules, and thinking about the game setup. However, I do not feel confident in my ability to memorize and juggle the rules around in my head without referencing them on paper, so I was just wondering how many of you prefer to not write them down and just think about how the rules inter-play with one another and jump straight into the game.

CardozoLaw09

Posts: 2183
Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2010 1:58 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

I don't think many actually notate them numerically; but as for writing them down? Everyone does.

objection_your_honor

Posts: 625
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:19 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

I would continue to write them down in whatever way you think is clearest. What's likely is your time spent thinking about the game and how the players interact will naturally decrease as you continue prepping. There comes a point where you don't encounter any novel interactions anymore, so that's where you will gain time.

It's an LSAT cliche, but you will begin to see new games as just iterations of the same patterns you've seen over and over again.

Wrong Marx

Posts: 40
Joined: Sat Nov 09, 2013 5:25 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

akechi wrote:Hello All,

I was wondering how many of you TLSers actually go through the process of writing down all the rules and listing them numerically (i.e. (1) if P -> ~Q, (2) ~Q -> Z, etc).

My games times and accuracy are at a point where I can consistently score between -0 and -2, but I feel that I am wasting too much time by physically writing down the rules every single time - on average I spend about 1-2 minutes reading the directions, writing down the rules, and thinking about the game setup. However, I do not feel confident in my ability to memorize and juggle the rules around in my head without referencing them on paper, so I was just wondering how many of you prefer to not write them down and just think about how the rules inter-play with one another and jump straight into the game.

There are additional considerations that come into play. Even if you did have an ability to juggle the rules in your mind and keep everything straight without writing it down, you would still benefit in certain situations from writing the rules down in an organized way. Let's say you come across a difficult question that is taking too long to solve. What do you do? You move on, of course. If you have time at the end (and you will if you have prepared adequately), you come back to that question during the last 5 minutes and try to solve it again. Now, if you had written down your work -- not just the rules, but any question-specific diagrams -- you can quickly get back into the game and figure out what you had previously overlooked. You won't be able to do that efficiently, however, if you either neglected to write down the rules and a diagram, or if your game notes are not organized in a way that is easy for you to grasp them efficiently when you come back later.

Writing the rules in a neat, organized manner should not take you a significant amount of time, but it has the potential not only to save you lots of time in the situation that I described above, but it reduces the chance that you will make a mistake, such as forgetting to apply a particular rule or applying it in an incorrect manner.

You should be able to solve most of the games in 5-7 minutes, including the time it takes to note the rules, draw the diagram(s), solve the questions, and bubble the answers. If you're not at that level yet, then try harder... eventually you'll get there.

Jeffort

Posts: 1888
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2008 4:43 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

Since you are going -0 to -2 in timed sections, you shouldn't drastically change your process since it's working near perfectly! Just figure out the specific reasons for each missed question to weed out the causes of the few mistakes you make and keep doing everything else pretty much the same.

akechi

Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Jun 21, 2013 11:38 am

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

Good point Jeffort, I've been consistently using the same approach / system for the past 5 months and it might negatively affect my scores if I were to change my approach this late into my prep. I was just curious to see if I could gain some insight on how some of the top-scorers approach the LG section in terms of format and execution.

I had a friend who was an EECS major and he took a free proctored LSAT for "fun" and managed to score a 169, without any prior exposure to the LSAT. He said he had little to no trouble with games at all and managed to mentally construct / organize a working and effective game board while using minimum notation. To his credit he has a very strong engineering background.

As a naturally gifted individual he was unable to properly explain his "process", it just made sense to him. That bastard.

O Captain My Captain

Posts: 22
Joined: Wed Dec 11, 2013 1:41 am

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

I was speaking with a girl who was retaking a 171 the other day.

She was telling me about how she did 16 games a day as a part of her study routine.

So here is a logic games tactic:

Do 16 games a day.

akechi

Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Jun 21, 2013 11:38 am

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

O Captain My Captain wrote:I was speaking with a girl who was retaking a 171 the other day.

She was telling me about how she did 16 games a day as a part of her study routine.

So here is a logic games tactic:

Do 16 games a day.

Fortunately, I am past the stage in my prep of needing to do 16+ games a day. When I was first drilling the Cambridge LG packets, I was doing anywhere between 10-15 games a day + extensive review of each individual game. So its not so a matter of volume at this point, I am just trying to fine tune my games section to cut down on some time in order to consistently have ~5 minutes to review.

The advice you have given is definitely applicable to someone in the early stages of their prep, but if I were to to take your suggestion to heart, I would merely be reinforcing the habits that I already have which would only make my times marginally faster, IF at all.

retaking23

Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2012 10:34 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

You should write rules down always unless you are very strong at doing games (-0 even on bad days) and have great recall. The main reason for this is because of the occasional rule substitution questions which sometimes necessitates that you redraw your master diagram. Writing the rules down will make redrawing with adjustments a lot simpler.

I consider myself strong in games (-0 with time to spare most of the time) and I usually jot down the rules for all games. (I don't number them though, which seems like a waste of time.) The few times I don't jot down all rules is on pure sequencing games or grouping games where I basically jump to creating a master diagram instead. I'm comfortable enough with those types and trust in myself enough to do those without questioning whether I translated the rules correctly.

objection_your_honor

Posts: 625
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:19 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

akechi wrote:
O Captain My Captain wrote:I was speaking with a girl who was retaking a 171 the other day.

She was telling me about how she did 16 games a day as a part of her study routine.

So here is a logic games tactic:

Do 16 games a day.

Fortunately, I am past the stage in my prep of needing to do 16+ games a day. When I was first drilling the Cambridge LG packets, I was doing anywhere between 10-15 games a day + extensive review of each individual game. So its not so a matter of volume at this point, I am just trying to fine tune my games section to cut down on some time in order to consistently have ~5 minutes to review.

The advice you have given is definitely applicable to someone in the early stages of their prep, but if I were to to take your suggestion to heart, I would merely be reinforcing the habits that I already have which would only make my times marginally faster, IF at all.

I went -0 in LG on my last two official LSATs, and I found that doing more games than I thought necessary definitely helped me make marginal gains in speed. Since you're already at -0 to -2, marginal gains are what you're after. Your system works, you just have to keep doing dress rehearsals.
Last edited by objection_your_honor on Wed Dec 11, 2013 4:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

dosto

Posts: 784
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 12:50 am

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

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Last edited by dosto on Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

SecondWind

Posts: 132
Joined: Sun Jun 09, 2013 10:06 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

TL;DR

I write some rules down, but others I build directly into my main diagram so that I don't have to remember them. I make sure that all rules are accounted for though (either written down or built into my main diagram).

bp shinners

Posts: 3086
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:05 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

SecondWind wrote:TL;DR

I write some rules down, but others I build directly into my main diagram so that I don't have to remember them. I make sure that all rules are accounted for though (either written down or built into my main diagram).

I would consider both of those "writing it down."

I always write everything down. It doesn't add any time, really, to your process. And there's 0% chance of misremembering something that's written down.

Could I do games without writing stuff down? Probably, after teaching this test for 3 years. Would I? Nope.

KDLMaj

Posts: 145
Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2008 4:07 pm

### Re: Logic Games Tactic

Incorporate it into the sketch when at all possible. Only write it down on the side when it doesn't fit neatly in the sketch, IMO. You're not being tested on your ability to understand the rules on their face- you're being tested on the unstated combinations of rules.

Having said that, for many folks taking 15 seconds to read through the rules first, and THEN going back up and starting to incorporate them into the sketch can really make a difference.