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Subject: Help a newbie get started rss

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William Smith
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Hi all -

Quite awhile back, while purchasing another game second hand, the seller also had a copy of Stasis Pro Football for sale so I picked it up as well. In particular I was attracted to the option of solo play.

I've only been a football fan for a few years, and even then have only been really following the NFL very closely this present season (having payed more attention to the CFL prior to now), but I have a more than workable knowledge of the game and most of the intricacies.

My first glance at the rules book when I'd first purchased the game, along with seeing all of those cards, left me feeling a little overwhelmed so I haven't ever dug into it. I'd like to start. I was hoping to find a 'quick start' or 'basic tutorial' in the files section or on the fan sites, but no luck in that way.

The version I have was published in 1981, but doesn't specify which edition it is. The cover image is the same that is on this site for the 1983 (third edition) release.

So first things first:

- not knowing what edition of the rules I have, my understanding is that I am best to print off a copy of the 6th edition rules available here: http://www.sycarion.com/statis-pro-football/

- I notice with some dismay that I am missing both the football marker and the first down marker. Fortunately, it looks like I can print off my own from the files contained in the templates.zip file at the same site

- the team cards in my version are all 1980. Now, I don't know my American Football history, but I guess it doesn't really matter as the stats speak for themselves. Is this assumption correct? The files section here has cards for 3 of the 2011 teams .. I guess I could print those off and use them to start. Good idea? Bad idea?

- there is an alternate solitaire version in the files section, which I have read is favorable to the solitaire version included in the game. I'm thinking I will start with the 'official' solitaire version and graduate up to the alternate version designed by James Gordon.


But from there, just scanning the copy of the rules that came with my version leaves me feeling overwhelmed and a little dizzy. What is the best way to approach learning this game, in the absence of anyone to play it with who has any experience with it at all? I think I already know the answer - print off the 6th edition rules, read them, read them again, and then just suck it up and start trying to play a solitaire game, coming back here for any clarifications.

Thanks!

 
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Blue Tyson
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No, the cards won't matter a lot...and you can buy current seasons from people that make them on ebay.

Definitely start with the simple solitaire game to get the hang of it. One thing about it was it let me play games quickly.

You have any questions we will be happy to help.
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Blue Tyson
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Another way to do it is to play it online via a hangout or software, etc. or talk to someone while you are working it out....
 
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William Smith
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I've thought about trying out the Vassal module (I'm well acquainted with Vassal, having developed a few modules for various games myself), but without rules enforcement, figured that it wouldn't do much to help me learn to play the game.

I see that there is a Statis-Pro for Windows application .. I'm on a Macbook, but I'm sure that I could run it under Parallels. This might be a good way to go. Unfortunately the link at http://www.sycarion.com/statis-pro-football/statis-pro-for-w... is broken, but I will search around.

Some of this is probably just a psychological barrier. As is the case with many games, I read the rules and go "huh?", but once I actually begin to put them into practice with the actual game, things usually begin to click. Part of it is also that it being such an older title, and a sim, it is a bit out of the norm of what I'm accustomed to.
 
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Blue Tyson
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I've never used one of those programs.

Basically you setup the players on the board.

Decide on a run or pass.

Work out the defense, general run, pick the ball carrier, pass, prevent and/or blitz.

I'd suggest just run a few plays with the basics.

e.g. set them up, do the kickoff return which is a card that picks a return, a card for distance.

Then running the ball..pick a ballcarrier...inside left or right, or sweep left or right.

Card will tell you the blocking combo/tackling combo ratings or boxes...then resolve.
 
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Avri
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Welcome to one of my favorite games for more than a quarter century, William.

There certainly *appears* to be a lot going on in SPF, but if you have a basic knowledge of Football and take it slow, step by step, the game ends up just getting out of the way.

I'm not sure about the 80/81 cards, but at least from 86/87 onwards each team has a cover card showing the actual record and starting lineups of the team. Pick two that interest you, and lay the suggested lineups on the Offensive and Defensive boards.

You'll want to open the rulebook to the page with all the charts, flip a coin to determine who kicks off, shuffle the FACs and turn over the first one . . .

The KO chart will tell you where the ball goes and which return man (found on a team kick return card) received. Flip another card, for the return. First down.

Pick an offensive play, then turn over an FAC and consult the solitaire chart for "First Down" to learn the defensive play.

Turn over an FAC and consult either the "Passes" section to determine if the intended receiver is covered and the pass thrown elsewhere, or the "Runs" section to determine which linemen are involved in the blocking.

Turn over another card to determine whether a pass is complete, incomplete or intercepted (adjusting via the coverage chart and defending player), or how far a run goes (adjusted by the defense versus run chart.)

Mark off time, down and distance. Rinse repeat.

Before long you'll just be calling plays and watching the action play out in front of you, without seeing the charts and FACs.

Anytime an FAC or solitaire chart gives a result you're unsure of, check the rulebook - it's all explained somewhere.

Enjoy, and feel free to come back and ask any specific or general questions!
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Paul Oakes
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Good luck with this, I used to play in a 6 team league with a very poor Steelers (late Lynn Swann and not much else). The team cards used don't matter unless you want a specific team or the current players, and old cards give you a bizarrely comprehensive knowledge of the teams of that era.

As has been said, once you work out your first-choice line ups and what changes you make if you need better pass defence etc. then the game flows quickly as you don't need to rotate tired players; I still have nightmares about Tony Dorset alternating 25 yard runs with 40 yard receptions no matter how I covered him.

The game works with more than 2 players. A third can be the umpire so the others can just worry why they have no run defence, speeds things up a lot. With 4 you can have Offence and Defence coaches with an inactive coach as umpire.

The most fiddly part is keeping the clock - you need to mark the time spent each play, and apply any variation as needed (ball leaving the pitch, injuries etc.).

And the first thing you'll discover is what the Z-card numbers mean when one turns up on your 55 yard TD pass.
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The rules are very intuitive, although football has changed quite a bit since the game came out (I don't know if the newer rules address that or not). I think a solitaire game will clear it up pretty quick.

One thing to look out for is some statistical cheese. The numbers on the player cards are intended to produce the averages the player had for the season, regardless of outliers. If there's a list of starters like someone mentioned it's a good idea to use it, just playing the best guys on each team will net some silly lineups.

For example, in my version of the game Walter Payton (one of the best running backs ever) can't produce nearly as well as his brother Eddie, a special teams player with 6 career carries. Eddie's 2 rushes in 1980 (one for 7 and one for 8 yards) give him a 7.5-yard average, blowing Walter's (fantastic) 4.6 avg on 300+ carries out of the water.

I want to say there are also some scrub QBs who can't throw interceptions because their 3 attempts for the year don't forecast a season's worth of throws very well.

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Blue Tyson
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It does have an empty backfield rule from memory...

Eddie Payton should be a 4 endurance though in that case...where you can only use him a maximum of once per quarter, then have to take him off the board.

Scrub QBs should be injury rated Cs I think...only allowed to play if up by 20 in the last quarter or in game injuries...not start.

If doing games by yourself you just use common sense here.

Rubbish backup skill position generic cards it needed, really. Strat might have some?

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Avri
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If your are starting to worry about backup players being overpowered, you probably have a good handle on the game and are ready to use the Endurance rules as mentioned above.

As I recall (at least from my 80s and 90s Giants teams) there are plenty of "generic" players who would only get put in due to multiple injuries (or sell out formations like 8 men on the D-line.)

Makes me want to bust open my two ton box and play some 1990 Giants / Niners . . .
 
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Blue Tyson
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The line players are rated on a formula based on the stats....so the backups descend in certain progressions, with game designer input obviously on which players get which.
 
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Nick South
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Absolutely thrilled to see someone else get into this game. I actually have started a blog on wordpress to run my replays of Statis Pro Football.

I'll apologize if I repeat information already mentioned.

1. You have the first year of Statis Pro football that we all recognize (although there is a mid-70s version I just bought but haven't gotten yet). There are files online to get the other Statis Pro Sets (80-91) and user created sets up to 2007 or so. Lee Harris ran a site for awhile that had them. He doesn't run it anymore, but lucky this site has those files.
http://www.sycarion.com/statis-pro-football/

2. The official solitaire version on the actual cards will work fine as you get used to the game. I made my own rules - simplifying the Gordon ones as they do add considerable time to a game.

3. I wouldn't worry about keeping stats or anything else as you go through the first paces. Try playing two teams controlling both offenses to get a feel for how the game works. The more you play, the easier it becomes. It looks overwhelming, but I promise you it's not. The game is fairly simple to play.

Enjoy. It's a great game. Ask away if you have any more questions.
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Blue Tyson
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A guy on ebay sells ones he has made and there are other groups...I got the 2011 one to play a couple of games with, for example, definitely had the year after that done too.
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bluetyson wrote:
It does have an empty backfield rule from memory...

Eddie Payton should be a 4 endurance though in that case...where you can only use him a maximum of once per quarter, then have to take him off the board.

Scrub QBs should be injury rated Cs I think...only allowed to play if up by 20 in the last quarter or in game injuries...not start.

If doing games by yourself you just use common sense here.

Rubbish backup skill position generic cards it needed, really. Strat might have some?



Ah, that's good to hear. I don't remember any injury or endurance rules, but then I haven't played in many, many years. Were those rules always part of the game?
 
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Blue Tyson
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Yes, absolutely.

For skill guys

0 = target whenever you want
1 = must wait one play before targeting again
2 = must wait two plays
3 = target once a series only and then remove
4 = target once per quarter only as per 3
 
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Justus
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ldsdbomber wrote:
Drop me an email William if you need further help, the sycarion website is basically all my stuff from my website that I moved servers but never got back up on the new one, so some guy just reposted all my stuff (he asked me I should say). At some point I will put all my old stuff back online here

http://statisprosports.wordpress.com/

I am sure Ive got a box full of spare first down markers and the like also

ps "harris" was my pre married surname


HE'S BACK!!!!

It was one thing to congratulate griffereiths....but now he's lurking the forums!
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Nick South
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ldsdbomber wrote:
Drop me an email William if you need further help, the sycarion website is basically all my stuff from my website that I moved servers but never got back up on the new one, so some guy just reposted all my stuff (he asked me I should say). At some point I will put all my old stuff back online here

http://statisprosports.wordpress.com/

I will put all the rules editions up there soon, please note that the FIFTH edition rules are IMO still the gold standard (and the last ones officially approved and released) so I would use those not the 6th-8th editions.

I am sure Ive got a box full of spare first down markers and the like also

ps "harris" was my pre married surname


So good to see you posting again! Thanks for uploading those old issues. I've been doing a self-made dice version, but I've never seen the one Jim originally did. I'll have to incorporate that into my future replays! Also, if you don't mind, I'd like to link your wordpress on mine not that anyone goes there, but just for a reference point to all your material.
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William Smith
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"I will put all the rules editions up there soon, please note that the FIFTH edition rules are IMO still the gold standard (and the last ones officially approved and released) so I would use those not the 6th-8th editions."

This is *very* good to know, as I was just starting to familiarize myself with the 6th edition rules and was planning on re-reading them while on the train tomorrow.
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Blue Tyson
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So what is the difference?
 
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