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Subject: Spymaster using the timer (and telling their team they can continue guessing) rss

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Mark Stockton-Pitt
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In a recent game we had an issue come up where as soon as a team identified the 2 words the spymaster had given a clue towards, the spymaster slammed the timer down in front of them. We argued that this was clearly against the spirit of the game (that the spymaster gives no information except the clue and number), whereas the other team argued that the rules state any player can use the timer. The spymaster also told there team they could use their extra clue when they were considering passing, basically saying they could safely guess again using the same clue. Now, we were all confident the second thing shouldn't have happened, but there was some dispute about the first.
What do people here think, do you let the spymaster use the timer on their own team?
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Pater Absurdus
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therearerules wrote:
In a recent game we had an issue come up where as soon as a team identified the 2 words the spymaster had given a clue towards, the spymaster slammed the timer down in front of them. We argued that this was clearly against the spirit of the game (that the spymaster gives no information except the clue and number), whereas the other team argued that the rules state any player can use the timer. The spymaster also told there team they could use their extra clue when they were considering passing, basically saying they could safely guess again using the same clue. Now, we were all confident the second thing shouldn't have happened, but there was some dispute about the first.
What do people here think, do you let the spymaster use the timer on their own team?


I think that sounds like an interesting and potentially fun way to plahif everyone agrees before hand but it seems like lawyer ball if they do it mid game like that.

Also, I think I would prefer to play without those shenanigans.
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Jeff Wood
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therearerules wrote:
In a recent game we had an issue come up where as soon as a team identified the 2 words the spymaster had given a clue towards, the spymaster slammed the timer down in front of them. We argued that this was clearly against the spirit of the game (that the spymaster gives no information except the clue and number), whereas the other team argued that the rules state any player can use the timer. The spymaster also told there team they could use their extra clue when they were considering passing, basically saying they could safely guess again using the same clue. Now, we were all confident the second thing shouldn't have happened, but there was some dispute about the first.
What do people here think, do you let the spymaster use the timer on their own team?


Obviously a bad thing to do and against the rules about giving information. By this logic of using the timer as such, the spymaster could place the timer directly on the card he/she wants the team to guess...or use one-knock-for-yes, two-knocks-for-no to play twenty questions.

Information is information.
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Alison Mandible
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It occurred to me at some point that spymasters probably shouldn't flip the timer on their teammates for fear of the appearance of something like that. But I'm still surprised someone did it so baldly. You barely have a game left if that's legal. Don't allow it.
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Ben Kyo
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Definitely not allowed. It came up during our game, when the spymaster flipped the timer on his own team because he wanted them to make a decision - effectively communicating that the card they were leaning towards picking was the right one.

After that we simply said that spymasters cannot use the timer.
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Rob Rundle
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Benkyo wrote:
Definitely not allowed. It came up during our game, when the spymaster flipped the timer on his own team because he wanted them to make a decision - effectively communicating that the card they were leaning towards picking was the right one.

After that we simply said that spymasters cannot use the timer.


Whilst the example given supports your house rule, I would find this rule generally unacceptable. Our club rarely use the timer, but when it is used, it is most often the Spymaster playing it on his/her own team, because they're just taking so long. I don't see anything unethical about saying, effectively "Just get a move on, you're driving me crazy!".

I would have solved your problem by ruling that the use of the timer (by anyone) is only allowed after a few minutes have passed. (Or, more cruelly, by putting the timer on every team as soon as the clue is given - perhaps allowing one turn of it after the sand has run through.)
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Andy S.
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If someone tried this ploy in one of my game groups I can guarantee there'd be a big fight. That is such a blatant "gaming" of the rules that it would be objected and rejected immediately. It doesn't matter that "the rules don't say you can't do that". The laws don't say "you can't kill someone by filling their mouth with asteroid debris from the Gamma Quadrant and making them choke on it and die". But if you manage to get your hands on asteroid debris from the Gamma Quadrant and then kill someone with it, don't be shocked if your "not against the rules" defense gets you a life sentence.
 
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I agree that it's against the spirit of the rules. If the opposing spy master continues to do it, just flip the timer yourself as soon as they've given the clue. devil
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Scott Russell
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I've never used the timer and don't think that I will.

When teaching the game, I often ask if the guessers want to use their "extra" guess, but am careful not (or at least try not) to give any information based on tone of voice or when I guess.

For example, I'll wait a few seconds and/or until it looks like they are done before asking. I wouldn't do it at all, but it seems like a lot of people forget about the extra guess possibility. Then you have that awkward, "Who's turn is it?" moment.
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