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Subject: Traitor Cards-Knowledge of the ones you did not select rss

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Chris Miller
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So I have a question after reading the rules about information that can be given out about the Traitors you did not select. Below I have the rule about traitors selected, but I want to know about the traitors you did not select.

So this is what the rules say sort of on the subject:

"Players are never required to keep secret their reserves, Cards, or Spice held, or traitors selected although they are never normally obligated to reveal this information either, save for the number of Treachery cards held in the Bidding Phase."

So this came up in a game. Can this information be Truthtranced or bribed out of someone?

Thank you,
 
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Brad Johnson
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We play that yes, traitor draw information is available for deal-making and Truthtrancing.

It's very common for a player to let his ally know that leader 'x' is guaranteed safe in a critical battle.

Also, a Truthtrance question such as "Did you draw but not select leader 'x' as a traitor?" would be perfectly valid (but perhaps of dubious value.)
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Chris Miller
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Thanks from the quick response tempus. I figured it was ok with the truthetrance as the scope of that power has come under many debates in my group. This particular problem has actually come up yet but we are going to be playing a game in the near future and I was rereading the rules (because I am the guy in our group that actually reads the rules) and I thought about this.

One last thing. Could this information be:

Bribed: honesty not mattering
Deal made in public: Binding Truth
Deal made in private: Non binding truth
 
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Brad Johnson
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I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "Bribed: honesty not mattering". But yes, traitor information, like any exchange, could be announced as a public deal and thus required to be truthful, or not announced publicly and thus may not be truthful.

Here's how I would handle it, for example (as always, others may vary):

Players x and y announce publicly that player x will pay 5 spice to player y to learn the name of an x faction leader that player y drew. (The purpose, of course, is so x knows a leader that will not be able to be called traitor in his battle with player z.) Player y may secretly tell the leader's name to player x. (Just because the terms of the deal are public does not mean that the information exchanged has to be public too. But because the terms of the deal were public, player y cannot lie to player x.)

On the other hand, if player x and player y step away and discuss strategy, and player y gives the name of a 'safe' leader, player x may want to be a little cautious, because that information given secretly could be a lie.

In my interpretation of the rules, 'bribery' has no particular special meaning beyond that of any deal that is made. If pressed, I guess I would say that 'bribery' simply means that spice is exchanged as part of the deal. But we play that any deal, involving spice or not, can be made publicly binding. (Because any deal could be structured to result in a net zero exchange of spice. Better to just not make an artificial distinction.)
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Rich
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I usually play 6 man, and our group rarely allies. However, when someone is making a play to win, players will help if they can. It's sort of the unwritten rule in our group to prolong the game if at all possible. This often leads to the Guild, always going last, to commit a huge stack of tokens for a "dial out" victory in a battle somewhere. Other times it will lead to a faction not involved in the battle to play Truthtrance or Karama to help out somewhere.

I have often seen one player tell another something like, "Hey, Staban Tuek is safe against Harkonnen," when the game is on the line.

We have justified this table talk help as falling under the scope of the bribery section of the rules. "You have helped me by going into battle to try to prevent someone from winning, so I in turn will help you by playing a Truthtrance (or telling you so-and-so is not a traitor)."

The only knowledge my group has considered bad form to share is treachery card knowledge of the Atreides. I disagree with my own group's ultimate decision on this matter. I think it's perfectly acceptable for an Atreides to ask a Truthtrance of a player which could completely give away his hand! "Do you hold in your hand a projectile weapon, snooper, hajr, and karama?"
 
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Brad Johnson
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In my book, your example of sharing safe leader information to save the game is completely valid and, in fact, quite common. I agree that it's perfectly within the bounds of 'bribery', as you state.

Your group's taboo on the sharing of treachery card info is interesting. It certaintly can weaken the Atreides a bit if he can never share his knowledge with anyone else. In my groups, it's very common for Atreides to share card info, usually on a 'need-to-know' basis with his ally, and sometimes with non-allies as well, particularly if the game is on the line. Sometimes just for profit.

I'd certainly allow you to use a Truthtrance to ask your example question about a player's hand, but I'd think it was a big waste of a good card. If you know what the player holds, you could just say "Hey everyone, look out, Bob has a projectile weapon, a snooper, a hajr, and a karama!" If you wanted to. (Of course, if your group has a house rule that says you can't do this, then that's something else. I really don't think there's anything in the rules as written that explicitly prevents it, though.)
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Chris Miller
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Thanks again. You answered what I was asking even though you I asked it poorly. I guess I had always considered Bribery different than Deals thats why I asked it the way I asked.
 
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Klaude Thomas
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tempus42 wrote:
(Just because the terms of the deal are public does not mean that the information exchanged has to be public too. But because the terms of the deal were public, player y cannot lie to player x.)

Alliances XII.E.2. specifies that allies can speak in private. The only way I believe that rule can be given meaning is if non-allies cannot speak in private. Therefore the information exchanged must be public. I know we often don't play it that way in forum games, but IMO Dune plays better when run strictly.

tempus42 wrote:
In my interpretation of the rules, 'bribery' has no particular special meaning beyond that of any deal that is made. If pressed, I guess I would say that 'bribery' simply means that spice is exchanged as part of the deal. But we play that any deal, involving spice or not, can be made publicly binding. (Because any deal could be structured to result in a net zero exchange of spice. Better to just not make an artificial distinction.)

Bribery is just a heading. The way I think rules should be read is that headings should not carry meaning - only rules text should carry meaning. Headings are like a road-map: they tell you what you will find where. I know this is quite a legalistic approach (in many contracts headings are specifically excluded from having meaning, and on the whole they shouldn't be assumed to have any), but it does resolve problems in getting to a crisp meaning in many cases.

Anyway, the rules contained under that heading specify deal-making. They don't strictly speaking offer any mechanism for transferring spice: they just tell you that it is permitted to make a deal involving spice. Which is literally true since there are mechanisms in the game for transferring. (And ofc fits with the designer's clear statement on the matter!)

But setting aside legalistic arguments - is the game better played the way I suggest? I think so. I think it comes to a more satisfactory conclusion, more quickly, with more scope for solo victories. Because it is actually quite hard to win against the combined spice of everyone at the table!
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