What Strategies to use for Winning the Game 2048

What Strategies to use for Winning the Game 2048

by Mihai Neacsu on 22 March 2014 · 4635 views

The new hit wonder in the online game industry, the game 2048 can be quite addictive. We talked about it before and warned you that it can ruin your work schedule and productivity, but that did not stop you. You are probably playing it right now and starting to look for some strategies to get a higher score and finish the game. Unless you want to use an automated solution with hints, here's our approach.

Stick to a corner

When building up, move only in 3 directions and keep all the big numbers into a single corner.

For example, let's make the top-left corner our 'sticky corner'. You can choose any corner and apply the same strategy, but we'll use top-left in our guide. Start by moving only up or left and repeat. If you get stuck, move to the right as well, but not down.

That's it. This simple strategy should allow you to get a high score and in most cases, finish the game. See below how a game in progress will look like with this strategy applied.

5 full What Strategies to use for Winning the Game 2048

Further tips

Avoid the empty moves. Every time you move the table, a new number shows up so try to combine numbers with every move in order to have as many free spaces as possible. This implies that you should combine 2s and 4s as soon as possible and not end up with a few bigger numbers and a lot of small ones. Keep it balanced.

Avoid the move 'down'. Even if moving down will combine tiles. In some cases you'll get stuck and the move 'down' is your only choice. In that case, make the move 'down' and then back up if possible. Then stick to the same strategy as before. If moving back up is not possible since a 2 just spawned into the top-left corner, then you have 2 options: you can quit the game now and start a new one or try to clear the 'sticky' top-left corner and get the highest tile back there. See an example of this later case below.

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Moved Down Moved Right then Up

Give this a try and let us know how it works out for you, or share your own strategies in the comments section below.

Update: Since this game is so addictive, I kept playing and further putting this strategy to the test. Here are more screens with the 2048 tile and right before it.

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When everything lines up just right Tile 2048 shows the option to continue

Update 2: You can even get to 4096 with a little bit of practice as you can see from my latest score below.

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Working in a 'snake' pattern The black 4096 tile
Comments (4)
kshu's profile
kshu on 26 Mar 2014
Up to 1024 or more, you can get away with more 'empty moves'. Another thing to look out for is to avoid having an empty cell in the upper row and be forced to move right. Then you might get a 2 or 4 in the upper left corner, which is hard to overcome. This is much more important than avoiding 'empty moves'.
dan's profile
dan on 25 Mar 2014
Wow, you're a math 'monster')) I can't wait for my fever to recede 'coz it's no fun playing with a headache. Notably, I can see the grid even when I close my eyes. My biggest flaw is "empty" moves - I manage to compile large numbers in the upper tile, but then one empty move leads to a series of them:/
kshu's profile
kshu on 25 Mar 2014
I almost got to 4096 but got a bit careless at the end and blew it :). I tend to keep the whole upper line fix, not only the top-left square.

Sometimes I work in a snake pattern, with the biggest number on top-left on the first line, then decreasing each time to the right and continuing on the second line in reverse. Something like:

256 128 64 32
2 4 8 16

2048 seems a lot easier after wasting 2 hours a day with it :).
dan's profile
dan on 23 Mar 2014
Nice of you to share your strategy. I was trying to work out my own, but I was moving in all 4 directions and got caught every time. Will try out yours tonight!
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