I probably won't have more time to invest into my bot (I just spent about 5 hours total in it), so I rather share my strategy.
I'm using the Echo Alorithm (without any min/max) for the perfect shortest path to the opponent. This works really well (And I suspect the top bots to doing this as well
). If there are multiple paths, I'm choosing the one closest to the enemy (reducing the max distance in one direction between me and the enemy), or closest to a wall (So I don't waste space on my path), or the one with the highest score (based on the floodfill method at the moment)
However when you are closer to the enemy, you have to choose a different strategy, so you could use your strategies here. (My bot will follow the other bot into a trap , which happens with not perfect bots).
I was planinng to implement a min/max with a simple evaluation function, when I'm closer to the opponent.
I also evade moves that generate a crash, except I'm moving into a territority that's smaller than the opponent's teritority (which would give myself a disadvantage over the perfect opponent bot)
I was planning to add a better evaluation function for the territory size (I'm currently using the floodfill method here in the forum, but it's not optimal) and for the end game (when both bots have their own space).
You sure can improve your rank by a few positions by using the Echo Algorithm at the beginning.