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Subject: German tournament rules (ATP) rss

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Hilko Drude
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The following rules are used in the tournaments of the ATP (Association of Tichu Players), which organizes the German championships and many other tournaments. Some other organizers use the same set of rules, and many players in Germany have switched to these rules when playing at home as well.

- Any victory (i.e. 55:45, 80:20, 25:-25, 105:95 etc.) counts two victory points. A double victory counts three, regardless of Tichu points. A draw means 1 victory point for each team Tichu points are given as normal, except that a double victory counts only 100. These victory points are what you're after, the Tichu points are only used as a tie breaker (it's a bit like with soccer's points and goals :-)
- There is no Great Tichu.
- If the dragon wins the last trick of a game (meaning the third player finishes with the dragon), the trick will not be given away.
- It is allowed to raise your own trick. A trick therefore ends when all four players have passed.


(Edit: Before I wrote 95:105 - to make it clearer, I changed it to 105:95)
 
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Anthony Rubbo
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HilkMAN wrote:
The following rules are used in the tournaments of the ATP (Association of Tichu Players), which organizes the German championships and many other tournaments. Some other organizers use the same set of rules, and many players in Germany have switched to these rules when playing at home as well.

- Any victory (i.e. 55:45, 80:20, 25:-25, 95:105 etc.) counts two victory points. A double victory counts three, regardless of Tichu points. A draw means 1 victory point for each team Tichu points are given as normal, except that a double victory counts only 100. These victory points are what you're after, the Tichu points are only used as a tie breaker (it's a bit like with soccer's points and goals :-)
- There is no Great Tichu.
- If the dragon wins the last trick of a game (meaning the third player finishes with the dragon), the trick will not be given away.
- It is allowed to raise your own trick. A trick therefore ends when all four players have passed.



Blasphemy!!!
 
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Hilko Drude
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That's a strong reaction... laugh
I would be very curious to know if it refers to all changes combined or to any single one. The rules as stated have been working very well in what must be around 100 tournaments or more, despite being called "seltsam" (strange) by Fata Morgana.

When I go back to the original rules (doesn't happen much anymore), I always feel there is something missing. If you can overcome your initial disgust, try them out...
 
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Justin
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does a tichu count as 1 point?

my snap judgement is that i don't like de-emphasizing the tichu calls, that's what i enjoy about the game.
 
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Hilko Drude
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A Tichu counts no extra victory points, but I still think that a Tichu is more valuable here than in the original rules. That's because a Tichu that you get away with will almost certainly secure those two victory points, while a blown one will nearly certainly make you lose. Some of the most exciting games I have played were those where a player went out with a Tichu and no other points (or even minus a few). Now in the ATP version the other team will do their utmost to make it a draw at least; while in the original they would just try to get as many points as they can. In the ATP version the other team cannot afford to even lose another 5 Tichu points, whereas that is nearly irrelevant in the original. That is one of the strengths of the ATP rules, I would say.
 
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David desJardins
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(Edited after clarification, below.)

When you explained the rules before, it sounded like you didn't give any credit toward victory points for making Tichu. The Tichu points only go into a separate category for tiebreaks at the end.

Now I undertsand, if my side makes Tichu plus 5 card points (105), and the other side makes 95 card points, then we get 2 VP and they get 0 VP. I think this is different from what most other readers understood, when they said you were de-emphasizing Tichu calls.

I still don't see the point of changing the rules. I guess it makes the game faster, because most hands can be thrown in when one side or the other has a win locked in? That doesn't really seem like a plus, to me, but it might be good for tournaments.

Is the point to make it easier to catch up from large deficits?
 
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Hilko Drude
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Well, whoever has the majority of Tichu points gets the victory points - so this might well be a 110-90 result secured by a successful Tichu. The winning team gets two victory points for this; same as for a 100-0 or a 55-45. In other words: If you successfully call a Tichu, your team only needs to secure another 5 points to get the victory points.
 
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Hilko Drude
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Sorry, that was not my intention. I will try again:

At the end of each round, you count your Tichu points just as you would in the regular game, with the sole exception that a double victory counts 100 instead of 200 points. You then check which team has more Tichu points and award them 2 victory points. Write it down as follows (example for a 60:40 victory of players A and C versus B and D):

A..... B..... C..... D
2/60 0/40 2/60 0/40

If A and C score 10 points, but A successfully called a Tichu, it will be:
A....... B....... C....... D
2/110 0/90 2/110 0/90
(this would be a rather marginal win in the original game, but much more valuable in the ATP version)

A double victory gets you three victory points (the only way to get three!) and 100 Tichu points. That would look like this:
A...... B..... C...... D
3/100 0/0 3/100 0/0

If A called a Tichu but C went out first, A went out second:
A... B... C... D
3/0 0/0 3/0 0/0

After a few games (typically four), partners are changed, therefore every player's score would be written down separately.

The tie breaker is only relevant at the end of the tournament. Say 15 people end the tournament with 29 points, then the Tichu points would decide about the placement.

I hope I made it clearer now.


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Matthew M
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He's merely pointing out that the number of points you win by doesn't matter...a win is always going to be worth the same amount. Contrast that with the rules as written where it is possible to win and still only make up 10 points on your opponent.

This makes a Tichu call more powerful, which isn't needed IMO.

-MMM
 
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Justin
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ah...ok ok ok. i was really thrown off by "tichu points". i thought the rules were doing something special with just the tichu calls, and didn't realize that the term was a reference to all normal scoring.
 
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Mark McEvoy
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To be clear: these scores are used for fixed-partnership play, rotating-partnership play, or both?

I thought I saw that sort of scoring used at BSW once in a rotating-partnership format, and assumed it was used to prevent some suboptimal-play shenanigans (if you had to allow/deny specific players specific amounts of points to preserve your own standing). It served to make a player only care about winning the hand, and not about how many card points he'd allow his partner/opponents to accrue.
 
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David desJardins
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The ATP scoring definitely seems to increase the value of being dealt the phoenix and dragon. In the standard scoring, the player with phoenix-dragon tends to make Tichu but with a relatively low score, so you have a lot of 110-90 type scores. In "ATP scoring", these are a lot better. And, it seems likely that, while making the Tichu, partner can throw some points on your tricks to make sure you get to at least 105.
 
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Hilko Drude
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DaviddesJ wrote:
And, it seems likely that, while making the Tichu, partner can throw some points on your tricks to make sure you get to at least 105.


Well, preventing that can be the art of the game, indeed. However, even once you know you have won/lost a game, you will still try to get as many Tichu points as possible, as they counts as tiebreaker, which will be quite relevant in any larger tournament (remember, these are mainly tournament rules).
 
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Matthew M
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HilkMAN wrote:
DaviddesJ wrote:
And, it seems likely that, while making the Tichu, partner can throw some points on your tricks to make sure you get to at least 105.


Well, preventing that can be the art of the game,


Maybe so...the question is whether or not that game is Tichu

-MMM
 
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Hilko Drude
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Quote:


Maybe so...the question is whether or not that game is Tichu

-MMM


True - but can't you say that about any rule variant on BGG?
 
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David desJardins
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Quote:
However, even once you know you have won/lost a game, you will still try to get as many Tichu points as possible, as they counts as tiebreaker, which will be quite relevant in any larger tournament (remember, these are mainly tournament rules).


Ick. That makes it even worse: you know after 10 seconds what the outcome of the hand will be, but you still have to play the whole thing out for the minor tiebreaker points. Not to mention you're rotating partners so you're likely to be paired with someone who is way behind in VPs and knows that the tiebreaker won't matter for them---hard to believe they are going to be very motivated to play carefully or well, at this point.
 
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Hilko Drude
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That has never been a problem - after all, the rules have been used in well over a hundred tournaments, and nobody I know of has complained about lack of motivation from anyone (besides, in those tournaments where you are seated according to your current score, that issue is avoided altogether). Well, it might be difficult to convince anyone of these rule variants who isn't up to trying anything new - no problem. Besides, I didn't invent these rules, I am just the messenger here (although I personally like them a lot), so don't shoot me... blush
 
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David desJardins
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HilkMAN wrote:
the rules have been used in well over a hundred tournaments, and nobody I know of has complained about lack of motivation from anyone


If people don't like the rules enough, they just won't play. If you had two competing tournament regimes, otherwise comparable, with different rulesets, you might learn something about what players prefer, by seeing which is more popular. But, when there's only one choice, it's not saying much to observe that the participants who keep coming back are happy with it.

Taking away Grand Tichu seems to reduce the variety and interest of the game. Reducing the importance of the play after the first player goes out, also seems to reduce the variety and interest of the game. Not penalizing the Tichu caller for going out after his partner also seems to reduce the variety and interest of the game. Leaving aside any "problems", I guess I just don't see what would be the argument "for" such rules.

I can see that, for tournament play, you need something to prevent the better players from running up huge score differences against weak players, and having that total carry over directly. So this seems like a sound argument for some sort of "compression" of scores (similar to bridge events, that use IMPs rather than total points). But, beyond that, the reasons for many of the choices here seem very unclear.
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Hilko Drude
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Oh, there are plenty of other tournaments as well. Usually with lower participation - it would be safe to say that the ATP ones are the most popular ones. Of course this might also be due to regional differences etc.
 
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Curt Carpenter
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This whole thing strikes me as nothing short of an abomination. These tournaments should be banned and the culprits arrested for defiling a perfect game.

Excuse me while I barf all over the floor. gulp
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Richard Irving
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This system really strikes me as poorly conceived for a tournament.

Essentially what it does is treat every hand as a complete game. When you play a game to 1000 points, the strategy changes depends on the game situation. If the score is 900-500, you'll play differently if you are behind than if you are ahead.

It also eliminates the distinction between situations:
A) 55 to 45: This is a game with no Tichu call, where the "win" is often decided more by lay of the cards than skill of the game. But it gives full reward for least amount of skill shown.
B) 175 to 25: This is a successful Tichu call (which implies some risk), but the players received NO REWARD for taking the risk under this system. If they had not tried for Tichu, they still would have won the game--under the rules of this tournament it probably would have been the wiser strategy.
C) 125 to 75: This Tichu call made the difference between a win and loss.
D) 25 to -25: This blown Tichu call converted a "win" to loss. This is the flipside of situation B--a bad Tichu call strategically under the rules of this tournament, made worse by blowing it.
E) 75 to -75: This blown Tichu call makes no difference, but it may have been tried because it was the only way to win the hand. You still would lose the game if you had not called Tichu.

This shows that these tournament rules radically change the game:
If you think that your team will take more card points, you should not call Tichu, even if the hand justifies it. If you think your team will be outscored in card points, you should call it even if it only has a marginal hope of success, there's no real penalty if you fail.

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joshua g
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curtc wrote:
This whole thing strikes me as nothing short of an abomination. These tournaments should be banned and the culprits arrested for defiling a perfect game.

Excuse me while I barf all over the floor. gulp


I wish this was Facebook so I could click that I "like" this post"
 
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Hilko Drude
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joshuaAN wrote:
curtc wrote:
This whole thing strikes me as nothing short of an abomination. These tournaments should be banned and the culprits arrested for defiling a perfect game.

Excuse me while I barf all over the floor. gulp


I wish this was Facebook so I could click that I "like" this post"


Ah, boardgamegeek has a thumbing system... works practically the same way...

Almost forgot about this thread which was one of the first I posted on boardgamegeek. Glad I stayed on despite the witch hunt going on here. I don't reckon anyone who hated these rules four years ago ever tried them?laugh
 
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Jeff Chunko
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My question was "do people still play by them?"
 
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Curt Carpenter
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HilkMAN wrote:
I don't reckon anyone who hated these rules four years ago ever tried them?laugh

Nope.

Practically speaking, I can't even imagine being able to round up four people willing to try. We generally don't play games that someone says are good, but we think look bad, just to prove that they are (subjectively speaking, of course). Game time is too precious, and we don't have enough time to even play the games we know we like, or suspect we like, like a backlog of purchased but unplayed games.
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