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Should I go back to LG Core Curriculum? Advice to get LG from -4-ish to -0 consistently?

Excellent.FondueExcellent.Fondue Alum Member
edited February 2021 in Logic Games 267 karma

I've taken the LSAT once so far and scored (what I estimate to be) a -3. On PTs, I generally get anywhere from -1 to -5, with an average of -4 in a normal section. There is a lot of fluctuation is my LG performance, depending on the section.

I've been doing games for a long time now. I started with the PowerScore LG bible and went through that twice. Since then, I've FoolProofed a bunch of games and also drilled most of the early games (PT1-20) by game type.

I don't feel particularly weak with any of the most common games (sequencing, grouping). If I just sit through a section in BR, I can almost always get to -0 on my own. Here are my weaknesses right now:

  • Execution: I find that during the timed section, I sometimes let my nerves get the best of me. When I'm just reviewing, I feel like I can calmly work through a section, but during the timed run, my form just goes out the window sometimes.

  • Making inferences: This has to do with nerves as well. I find that I tend to rush into the questions because of a lack of confidence with making inferences up front (i.e., before starting the question).

  • Timing: On my actual administration, I didn't have enough time for 2 of the questions, so I had to guess them. That's how I know I lost at least two points in LG. I sometimes lose time on the easier games in a section. On some sections that are quite hard to me, I sometimes manage my time so poorly that I cannot comfortably finish all 4 games.

  • Weird games: I struggle with what PowerScore calls pattern games, mapping games, and, to a lesser extent (because they are so rare) circular games. I froze when I came across the Employee's Workpiece game in PT72, and I tend to have a lot of difficulty with games that have bizarre setups. And this is despite having worked through the weird games in the early PTs.

I've watched a handful of the videos in the LG section of the Core Curriculum, and I've worked through a few question sets. I've done every game in there already, and I've probably seen the explanation videos for many of the games. Is there anything special about the LG Core Curriculum that I won't get just by drilling games and watching the explanation videos for each game? Does J.Y. add anything extra in the LG Core Curriculum?

How can I best spend my time if I want to get from where I am to -0 consistently? I am scheduled for the April test, so I still have more than two months, and I feel like I definitely have plenty of time to get to -0 consistently before then, since I'm so close!

Should I just drill games, watch the explanation videos, and then FoolProof?

Were any of you stuck at the -3/-4 range before getting to -0 consistently?

I've heard many people who have gotten to -0 consistently on the games sections swear by the LG Core Curriculum, but I wonder if it would be a good investment of time for me, given my situation.

I would also appreciate any advice from you all about how I can get from where I am now to -0 consistently. I know that if I can get to -0 consistently, I will be able to score in the 170s consistently. I'd also love any advice about addressing my weaknesses mentioned above.

Comments

  • FautApprendreLSAT1FautApprendreLSAT1 Alum Member
    308 karma

    Following!

  • JakejakeJakejake Monthly Member
    30 karma

    Also following!

  • kkole444kkole444 Alum Member
    1682 karma

    Hello @"Learned Astronomer" I think I commented on your other post
    Execution-- this will come with time and mastery of the section. don't worry too much about this, what i post lower will fix this with time. In addition I always close my eye and take deep breaths before each section and never let a past section affect the performance of the next. the deep breaths help me clear my head and relax.
    Inferences-- keep track of all the games and the inferences of those games that you did not get on something notebook, excel, google spread( I can give you mine it has my color codes but its easy to copy over and make it your own, plus I believe it has every LG from the CC in it so you can make a sheet to keep track easily). with this I would recommend getting faster at the easy games, like the 1 layer, conditional sequencing and being able to recognize and set up the game(s) fast. Another thing that will help is picking up on the way JY progresses through certain questions, for example on a MBT question run through the AC's quick and see if any jump out. For BR if there is anything that you did not get as fast or faster than JY or if there was any doubt anywhere while doing the game mark it down, maybe not in the highest critical category but maybe the 'understand it but went over time'. In my google sheet these types were marked as yellow.
    getting to -0

    I was stuck at -4 for the longest time, but when I started to keep track and practice the questions I was bad at and go over inferences I missed I crept down to -0 and for the most part I stay there with a PT here of there where I go -1 or -2. I also had a color code system for the ones that I got any question wrong/missed an inference(s) then yellow for the correct answer choices but went over time, and green for "i once struggled but did it correctly under time". I would not bombard myself with lost of games in one day, I would at max do 4ish games. I would pick those games apart and see where I went wrong in my thought process, mark it down, try the game later in the week. Another big time save for me was making sure I knew what game board I needed to draw as soon as I was done with the stimulus. I would do this by picking up on key words "selecting" was an indicator for grouping or in/out. Another would be group x is paired with group y, this was normally a double layer sequencing I would also keep track of these indicator words and study them on flash cards. Once I knew what to draw/diagram right after reading the stimulus it save me so much time. the next big thing for me was skipping hard questions, I would never skip and once I did that I came back to questions with a fresh mind and saw (most of the time) the answer faster. Some people do not recommend doing games everyday, but I do I do 1 super easy for speed then a complicated inference-filled game everyday I study as warm ups.
    As for the MISC games many of them are not pure MISC there are a few but many of the ones in the 70's and 80's break down into 4 or 6 sub game boards. However I would focus on the core games and get those done 100% then move into MISC because many MISC use all the tools you developed in learning the core games! Lastly Quality study time over lots of study time. This was arguably the biggest thing keeping me out of the high 160's low 170s for a long time that and not skipping. I would study for hours on end with little to no breaks, then I would only study 3 hours versus 8 and I would learn more and be more ready to learn the next this compiled and my score greatly increased after doing this. If you have any specific or want me to clarify just let me know. I started at a 142 diagnostic and my last PT was a 169.
    I hope you kick the LSAT's ass!
    Kole

  • kkole444kkole444 Alum Member
    1682 karma

    If anyone wants the google sheets message me and I'll get it to you(:

  • patra5cgpatra5cg Monthly Member
    107 karma

    Hi @"Learned Astronomer",
    "Making inferences:" I have done all the games from PT40-PT89 almost three times, and I really think the key to accuracy is to make most key inferences before going to the games (frames are highly recommended). Most of the games give you key clues about how to make frames, for instance, either/or rules, chunks, restrictive elements, hints about numerical distributions, and etc. For instance, if one rule says either A or B can in position 1, the other says either C or D can be in position 3, those two either or rules can be combined to make 4 frames and having those frames can speed you up dramatically when solving questions. I would recommend not only use one rule to make frames, try to find two key rules.
    "Getting from where I am to -0 consistently": Even thought it may sound boring, I would say repetition is the key. People I know who got -1 or -0 on the game section almost all did each game from PT40 at least 3 times. Because no matter how hard you think about the game, it's likely that you may forget what you've learned from this one game after a day or two. Repetition, however, can help you memorize patterns and it's highly likely you will get new insights every time you repeat the game. I also experimented this method myself, and it helps with my accuracy and speed greatly.
    I hope it helps~

  • MarkFungMarkFung Alum Member
    25 karma

    I recommend Manhattan. I have read Bible fisrt, and then Manhattan, the later one works better for me, the diagram is just simpler(although many the same as Bible). Personally I think LG is all about your practice and develop your own mind set, the former helps you to solve normal games and the later helps you to solve wierd games. Bc wierd games are unique, so you cannot use someone else's approach to solve it unless you genuinely know how it works, and you know the best how it works when you develop your own.
    Btw, I do not think "-0 consistently" is very realistic, and it is certainly not worth the time to be obssessed with getting a -0. I believe if you can do -1~0 consistently, you do not need to worry about your LG any more.

  • kkole444kkole444 Alum Member
    1682 karma

    I agree with @patra5cg I have done just about every game from 1-45 and 65-89 and mastered everyone. It takes time but it is such a great feeling when you start to make inferences on new games that you know before you never would have made or when you get a much lower time than the suggested time.

  • kkole444kkole444 Alum Member
    1682 karma

    (sorry for two split posts) also @patra5cg is correct that the high scorers I work with make many if not all of the critical inferences up front or at least aware of them if they need to map them out for a question. Learning when to split I thin is more of an art form I normally stick with the general rule less game boards than questions excluding the acceptable situation question. Tune your approach to you, you know yourself the best. I normally do a partial spilt on pure grouping because I personally hate them more than any other game type. it is also super important to combine rules into chains and see what comes from that, always push the new rules up to the old rules and see if any inferences drop out.

  • Guy_FawkesGuy_Fawkes Monthly Member
    118 karma

    following!

  • kkole444kkole444 Alum Member
    1682 karma
  • yunonsieyunonsie Alum Member
    611 karma

    There's a lot of good advice above! I was in the same boat as you in terms of average LG score and the things you described under execution, inferences and timing (the nerves are awful). It was the fool proof method (essentially hard core repetition) that got me comfortable and CONFIDENT enough to score -0 on the last couple LG sections.

    Confidence is especially important in LG (imo) since you constantly have to trust the set up that you've created. I used too much time doubting myself at the start, which led to a poor/panicked diagramming, which led to few inferences, which led to doubt during the questions. Even unusual games (like circular games) come a lot more easily to me now.

    I spent months drilling, so I thought I was ready to tackle LG, but continued to struggle with the same problems. After tweaking my fool proof method, it straight up started to WORK. I recommend drilling entire sections - I started with all the PTs I used from 36 to 58. That way, I can't avoid any games that are particularly challenging and I'm forced into taking a deeper look at the "easier" games. Of course, a variety of game types is more reflective of test day too.

    First try: Go through all four games, timed
    Second try: Go through all four games, untimed, but now I play around with it. Sometimes I switch the elements and positions (if relevant) to see if it's easier to read. Or test and see if creating multiple worlds is a good idea. Take lots of time for inferences, etc. It's amazing how much of this is relevant to similar games.
    Third try: Go through all four games again, timed
    Fourth try: Keep repeating through the games until you've answered all the questions correctly and under time

    I usually go through a section 4 - 5 times and sometimes I cut out a game if it's actually that straightforward.

    It's time consuming, but I can really see why it gets recommended so often. I didn't go back to the core curriculum at all.

  • Excellent.FondueExcellent.Fondue Alum Member
    267 karma

    @patra5cg Thanks for your comment! I do love working with frames (by which I'm guessing you mean game boards/possibilities?). I find sometimes, though, that I will decide to build frames/split the game board and then realise that I can't actually fill in very much, or that it was a mistake to do so. On other occasions I find that I will make a mistake like forgetting one of the possible frames or read carelessly. Have you run into any of these issues and do you have any advice on how to get better at these?

    Do you also have any advice for how many frames is worth it for a given game? Do you always build them whenever you can, or do you base that decision on factors like how many questions there are in the game, whether it's game 1 or 2 vs. 3 or 4, and how many frames exist? Also, how many frames would you say is too many? There was a fourth game recently where I built 7 frames in total, showing all the possible worlds. In general, is this too many?

    Could you also share with me your LG review process? How do you study each game? Do you ever go really slow and deeply into a game? How many games would you do a day if you wanted to intensely prep to get to -0, like I do? And given where I am would you go back to the Core Curriculum? Thank you!

  • Excellent.FondueExcellent.Fondue Alum Member
    267 karma

    @3020795671 said:
    I recommend Manhattan. I have read Bible fisrt, and then Manhattan, the later one works better for me, the diagram is just simpler(although many the same as Bible). Personally I think LG is all about your practice and develop your own mind set, the former helps you to solve normal games and the later helps you to solve wierd games. Bc wierd games are unique, so you cannot use someone else's approach to solve it unless you genuinely know how it works, and you know the best how it works when you develop your own.
    Btw, I do not think "-0 consistently" is very realistic, and it is certainly not worth the time to be obssessed with getting a -0. I believe if you can do -1~0 consistently, you do not need to worry about your LG any more.

    Thanks! Have you been able to get to -0 to -1 consistently? Do you still have variations in your LG score every now and then?

  • Excellent.FondueExcellent.Fondue Alum Member
    267 karma

    @kkole444 said:
    I agree with @patra5cg I have done just about every game from 1-45 and 65-89 and mastered everyone. It takes time but it is such a great feeling when you start to make inferences on new games that you know before you never would have made or when you get a much lower time than the suggested time.

    Thank you! How many times have you done each game? Is there any reason why you skipped 46-64?

    For a completely new LG section that you encounter, on average, how quickly are you able to finish the first 3 games, and then all 4 games? I just want to get a sense of what I should aim for because it sounds like you've mastered the section. How consistently are you able to hit -0 to -1 on LG?

  • MarkFungMarkFung Alum Member
    25 karma

    @"Learned Astronomer" said:

    @3020795671 said:
    I recommend Manhattan. I have read Bible fisrt, and then Manhattan, the later one works better for me, the diagram is just simpler(although many the same as Bible). Personally I think LG is all about your practice and develop your own mind set, the former helps you to solve normal games and the later helps you to solve wierd games. Bc wierd games are unique, so you cannot use someone else's approach to solve it unless you genuinely know how it works, and you know the best how it works when you develop your own.
    Btw, I do not think "-0 consistently" is very realistic, and it is certainly not worth the time to be obssessed with getting a -0. I believe if you can do -1~0 consistently, you do not need to worry about your LG any more.

    Thanks! Have you been able to get to -0 to -1 consistently? Do you still have variations in your LG score every now and then?

    Sorry I haven't replied earlier, I don't check the notification a lot. As I said LG is all about practice, and always figure out is there any way to fasten your thinking process during the br. If someone can finish a game under 5 mins, it's not he/she is smarter, but the method he/she uses is better. And yeah I still have variation in my LG, but mainly bc I am not a very strict(I'm Chinese so I am not sure if this is the right word but I think you can get it) person.

  • kkole444kkole444 Alum Member
    1682 karma

    @"Learned Astronomer" I apologize I missed your comment earlier. I skipped 46-64 just because of time. I try and do the first games in under 14 minutes, however, this changes from section to section because of the number of questions and game type. If one is a basic 1 layer sequencing and the other a basic double layer sequencing then 14 minutes is about average. If I see that the 4th game has more questions I'll sometimes just jump to that game first(likely to have more question stems with additional rules) and it helps get more low hanging fruit. Of the last 6 PTs I've gotten 2 -0's. 2 -1's 1 -2 and a -3. I will sometimes go too fast or get too comfortable with the first game or two because they are the 'easy' ones and I'll let a question or two split by, stupid mistakes. As a drill to help speed and accuracy in the 'easy' games is to put a couple 1 start/2star games in a problem set and try and do them as fast as possible and once you find a correct answer do not double check, just move on, always force yourself to move fast through the easy games. On the -3 section I got lazy with diagraming and it cost me easy points.

  • WickedLostWickedLost Monthly Member
    472 karma

    @kkole444 said:
    Hello @"Learned Astronomer" I think I commented on your other post
    Execution-- this will come with time and mastery of the section. don't worry too much about this, what i post lower will fix this with time. In addition I always close my eye and take deep breaths before each section and never let a past section affect the performance of the next. the deep breaths help me clear my head and relax.
    Inferences-- keep track of all the games and the inferences of those games that you did not get on something notebook, excel, google spread( I can give you mine it has my color codes but its easy to copy over and make it your own, plus I believe it has every LG from the CC in it so you can make a sheet to keep track easily). with this I would recommend getting faster at the easy games, like the 1 layer, conditional sequencing and being able to recognize and set up the game(s) fast. Another thing that will help is picking up on the way JY progresses through certain questions, for example on a MBT question run through the AC's quick and see if any jump out. For BR if there is anything that you did not get as fast or faster than JY or if there was any doubt anywhere while doing the game mark it down, maybe not in the highest critical category but maybe the 'understand it but went over time'. In my google sheet these types were marked as yellow.
    getting to -0

    I was stuck at -4 for the longest time, but when I started to keep track and practice the questions I was bad at and go over inferences I missed I crept down to -0 and for the most part I stay there with a PT here of there where I go -1 or -2. I also had a color code system for the ones that I got any question wrong/missed an inference(s) then yellow for the correct answer choices but went over time, and green for "i once struggled but did it correctly under time". I would not bombard myself with lost of games in one day, I would at max do 4ish games. I would pick those games apart and see where I went wrong in my thought process, mark it down, try the game later in the week. Another big time save for me was making sure I knew what game board I needed to draw as soon as I was done with the stimulus. I would do this by picking up on key words "selecting" was an indicator for grouping or in/out. Another would be group x is paired with group y, this was normally a double layer sequencing I would also keep track of these indicator words and study them on flash cards. Once I knew what to draw/diagram right after reading the stimulus it save me so much time. the next big thing for me was skipping hard questions, I would never skip and once I did that I came back to questions with a fresh mind and saw (most of the time) the answer faster. Some people do not recommend doing games everyday, but I do I do 1 super easy for speed then a complicated inference-filled game everyday I study as warm ups.
    As for the MISC games many of them are not pure MISC there are a few but many of the ones in the 70's and 80's break down into 4 or 6 sub game boards. However I would focus on the core games and get those done 100% then move into MISC because many MISC use all the tools you developed in learning the core games! Lastly Quality study time over lots of study time. This was arguably the biggest thing keeping me out of the high 160's low 170s for a long time that and not skipping. I would study for hours on end with little to no breaks, then I would only study 3 hours versus 8 and I would learn more and be more ready to learn the next this compiled and my score greatly increased after doing this. If you have any specific or want me to clarify just let me know. I started at a 142 diagnostic and my last PT was a 169.
    I hope you kick the LSAT's ass!
    Kole

    This was so helpful to read! Would you be willing to share your list of indicator words for the different types of games?

  • kkole444kkole444 Alum Member
    1682 karma

    Yes absolutely!! I have to re make it(in process) because it was deleted off of the google sheet I made, however, I think I fixed the problem of having things deleted off the sheet, I had to change a permission...

  • LivinLaVidaLSATLivinLaVidaLSAT Alum Member
    410 karma

    For anyone looking for something outside of 7Sage, Manhattan Prep LG Guide is gold. Walks you through the different game types. Has scaffolded drills to help you build up the required skills for each game type. The book provides you with a great framework for success in LG. Covers everything younedd to know. I find their approach to diagramming superior to PowerScore because it's friendlier and more intuitive.

    The Manhattan Prep LG guide was the whole cake and JY's video explanations were the icing on the cake. I got to -0 using the fool proof method without seeing any of the curriculum. It works if you work it! Let patience, diligence, and consistency lead the way.

  • yang9999yang9999 Alum Member
    413 karma

    @"Learned Astronomer" said:
    @patra5cg Thanks for your comment! I do love working with frames (by which I'm guessing you mean game boards/possibilities?). I find sometimes, though, that I will decide to build frames/split the game board and then realise that I can't actually fill in very much, or that it was a mistake to do so. On other occasions I find that I will make a mistake like forgetting one of the possible frames or read carelessly. Have you run into any of these issues and do you have any advice on how to get better at these?

    Do you also have any advice for how many frames is worth it for a given game? Do you always build them whenever you can, or do you base that decision on factors like how many questions there are in the game, whether it's game 1 or 2 vs. 3 or 4, and how many frames exist? Also, how many frames would you say is too many? There was a fourth game recently where I built 7 frames in total, showing all the possible worlds. In general, is this too many?

    Could you also share with me your LG review process? How do you study each game? Do you ever go really slow and deeply into a game? How many games would you do a day if you wanted to intensely prep to get to -0, like I do? And given where I am would you go back to the Core Curriculum? Thank you!

    7 frames is way too many. I generally try to stick to no more than 4 (5 at most) frames if a game allows me to split game boards. I also try my best to portray linked options together on one board instead of two (e.g. those times where two pieces can switch positions with each other). Also, if you have multiple piece options but those multiple pieces are all restricted, you can draw shapes to fill in the board to indicate that only that type of piece can go into those slots (see PT 88 Game 2 -- JY's explanation there broke the game open for me because i was spending too much time writing out all the scenarios). Framing is definitely an art -- and it may take exposure to a few games before you gain the intuition for when to frame and when to not frame (many games that can be done with framing can also be done without framing and still get you through the questions -- it's just that the questions in these circumstances will generally force you to make a frame anyway). On occasion I will go slow without a timer on the hardest games that have stumped me, and then, once I remember the process for solving the game, I time myself to see how long it takes to execute that process. Oh and one more thing: never rush through the "blurb" at the beginning of the game before the rules begin -- you may miss a critical fact that allows you to , for example, restrict the numerical distribution of pieces, or you might miss the fact that slots can be empty!

  • mere_mortalmere_mortal Monthly Member
    91 karma

    @patra5cg said:

    "I really think the key to accuracy is to make most key inferences before going to the games (frames are highly recommended).

    I am brand new to this, but I think I have a fear of making frames/worlds whatever you want to call it early on before even heading into the questions, because what if it turns out you spent all that time creating elaborate diagrams of possibilities, and then the questions dont really even require all that work / writing? I dont know, I just have that fear.

  • kkole444kkole444 Alum Member
    1682 karma

    @mere_mortal as you get better at games I will become more obvious when you should split versus when you should not. when you look at the rules and start thinking of combining them think if they will make more games than questions. for example say if you have six game pieces and 1 is placed on the board per a rule and then another rule says either A or B is in spot 6. then the next rule says C cannot be in spot 1. There are only a few possible ways the game can be configured. And many people would split the game on rule A & B because 1 game piece is placed and we know C is not in spot 1 so there are almost 3 spots where you know exactly what game piece goes where. And not the 6 piece sequencing turned in to a 3 game piece sequencing game. Also I normally do partial splits on games. I'll Split on a certain rule but will not make all the possible game boards. I do think to get familiar with the rules and also have some boards to work off of it need be. As you continue in you will become more sensitive yo noticing what games to split and what not to split, grouping interchanging typically has a lot of possible game boards because all the pieces are interchangeable, so I would not recommend on some of those games. But Pure grouping is a common game to split or partial split.

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