Neopets Cellblock is a classic one-on-one strategy game played by the inmates and guards in the Darigan Citadel dungeon, high above Meridell. They have to do something to pass the time! As you can imagine, they have had lots of practice and some of the elite Cellblock players are quite good. If you can make it through the tournament-style gameplay all the way to the top tier, you will have to square off against none other than the Cellblock master himself, Master Vex!
How to Play
The Cellblock game board, simply put, is a grid. You and your computer opponent take turns placing stones of respective colours on the grid, one at a time. Your ultimate goal is to complete a line of five consecutive stones of your colour before your opponent. The lines can be vertical, horizontal or diagonal. Seems easy, right? Well your opponent’s job is to do everything possible to stop you from completing your five stone streak.
In the early tournaments, the game board begins with two of each coloured stone in the centre of the grid in a 2×2 arrangement. On your turn, you may only place a stone on a cell adjacent to a stone already on the board. As you progress through the game to the later tournaments, these four initial stones will no longer appear at the start of the game, starting Tournament 10. Additonally, with the disappearance of the starting stones comes a new challenge: random cells will be filled with rock obstacles which render the cell unusable. Beyond Tournament 1, you do not need to play your stone adjacent to a stone on the board, but may place it anywhere you’d like.
Cellblock is set up as a series of games against different opponents. You must beat your opponent in at least half of the games to win the series and advance to the next opponent. As you progress through the tournament opponents, the number of games per series increases. Below is a summary of the various opponents and the number of games in their respective series.
|Opponent||Number of Wins Needed to Advance|
|Prisoner One – Clop||1/3|
|Prisoner Two – Barallus||1/3|
|Prisoner Three – Squire Meekel||1/3|
|Prisoner Four – The Yellow Knight||3/5|
|Prisoner Five – Number Five||3/5|
|Guard One – Galgarrath||4/7|
|Guard Two – Haskol||4/7|
|The Warden – Master Vex||5/9|
Each computer player is “smarter” than the previous, so as the series get longer, the game becomes harder as well. If you manage to best Master Vex, you will advance to the next tournament and begin at Prisoner One again. But here comes the worst news yet: the players get “smarter” as the tournaments progress as well. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself beating beat up on by Prisoner One in Tournament 14.
So, what are you rewarded with for all of your hard work? Neopoints, trophies and an avatar! Each round costs neopoints to play, but if you win, your payout is 4:1. Prizes are summarized below:=
|Level||Tournament 1||Tournament 2-10||Tournament 11||Tournament 12+|
|1||100 NP||200 NP||400 NP||400 NP|
|2||200 NP||300 NP||600 NP||600 NP|
|3||300 NP||400 NP||800 NP||800 NP|
|4||400 NP||600 NP||1 200 NP
|1 200 NP|
|5||500 NP||1 000 NP||2 000 NP||2 000 NP|
|6||600 NP||1 500 NP||3 000 NP||3 000 NP|
|7||700 NP||2 000 NP||4 000 NP||4 000 NP|
|3 000 NP||6 000 NP
|6 000 NP|
The avatar is awarded during gameplay sometime after Tournament 10. The exact requirements are unknown.
Unfortunately, like all other gambling features on the site, you cannot win any more neopoints after you reach a daily maximum – but you can keep working towards the trophies/avatar!
Cellblock Cheats and Tips
- Always try to keep your opponent on the defensive. You have the advantage of playing first, so always use your one-move head start to threaten your opponent.
- Always go out of your way to prevent your opponent from making a line of four consecutive stones without one of your stones on the end of the line. If this happens, you are guaranteed to lose on the next turn. To avoid this, always keep an eye out for three in a row without blockers and place a stone to block your opponent from achieving four in a row.
- Sometimes, when playing the early opponents in Tournament 2+, you can confuse the computer by placing leaving a one cell gap between a pair of stones and your active stone. The computer does not realize that you can place a stone in the void on your next turn to create a line of four! Unfortunately, your opponents catch on to this strategy in later tournaments.
Well, you are ready to brave into the dark dungeons of the Citadel and try your luck at this fun prison yard game. Be careful though, Master Vex is very sore loser. Make sure you don’t end up becoming “Prisoner Six”. 😉