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Subject: Antiquark Definition rss

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Mac Kern
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I was surprised that "anti-quark" was absent from the list of key terms. Does anyone know the game's definition for that term?
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Chris Van Deusen
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From what I can tell, it's any flavor quark and that anti-flavor. So, for example, a charm and anti-charm, regardless of color.
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Jason Tagmire
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Anti-Quark is any card that says "anti" in the text, so it's the backside of everything except the Annihilation cards.
 
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Lee Valentine
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I also found it completely baffling why this definition was omitted from the rules. I initially thought it meant "anti-color," a phrase used elsewhere in the rules.

Mac, in context of the rule that you are referring to, Chris has it right. While Jason is technically correct, I think his answer is misleading. It might lead you to believe any flavor of quark and any flavor of anti-quark trigger the annihilation rule; he gave the definition without the context you were looking for.

The annihilation rule is asking about a quark and "its anti-quark," where "its anti-quark" means a card of a different color that has "anti-" in front of the same flavor of quark. So a blue charm and a green or red anti-charm together are a quark and its anti-quark. They blow each other up if they are free in the same area, even without an annihilate card.

Watch the video from 10:24-11:50 about annihilation. Just know that annihilate cards annihilating a quark in the beam is now an advanced optional rule, not covered in the release edition of the rules. After Mike discusses annihilate cards, he shows annihilation of a quark and its anti-quark starting about 11:12.




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Mac Kern
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Thanks, all. Jason, I saw your reply to another post where you mentioned that you would have added something "if we had room in the rules." I'd be willing to be that most players would rather have functional rules than a page or two less in the rulebook. No one should have to watch a video to learn the game, and the offical rulebook and video definitely shouldn't have any discrepancies. I think a proficient writer who had played the game once or twice would be able to write a better set of rules than the included ones--there are lots of writers all over BGG that I'm sure would be happy to lend a hand for any future efforts.
 
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Jason Tagmire
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Themackern wrote:
Thanks, all. Jason, I saw your reply to another post where you mentioned that you would have added something "if we had room in the rules." I'd be willing to be that most players would rather have functional rules than a page or two less in the rulebook.


I just want to be clear: the discussion you are referring to was not about a rule, it was about whether or not we would include a game variant.

Whenever a rule question came up, we made room for it.

But we had a decent amount of hands and eyes on this one. If it was a common question, I would have made sure there was room but a few dozen people played this based on the prototype rules and I don't recall questions on what was an Anti-Quark.

I personally don't see it as that unclear as we have 15 Quark cards and the back of each has the word "anti" written on it. But I'm making a note for our internal FAQ which is intended to help unplanned rules gaps, as the video is intended to help get someone off their feet in a purely visual way.
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Lee Valentine
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jtagmire wrote:
Themackern wrote:
Thanks, all. Jason, I saw your reply to another post where you mentioned that you would have added something "if we had room in the rules." I'd be willing to be that most players would rather have functional rules than a page or two less in the rulebook.


I just want to be clear: the discussion you are referring to was not about a rule, it was about whether or not we would include a game variant.


Jason, the rule about destroying a card in the beam is a variant rule because you say it is and you know it is as the publisher. To someone watching the how to play video and comparing it to the printed rules, it looks like there was either a glaring rules omission in the printed rules or that there has been a rules change, although which one is true is not immediately clear.

I think you can just add a text overlay to the YouTube video, which would clarify that instantly: "You no longer have to destroy a card in the beam in response to an Annihilate event, even if there are no other free quarks; doing so is entirely optional to increase the difficulty." I'd also tag it saying that "Scattered" is now called "Background."

Quote:
If it was a common question, I would have made sure there was room but a few dozen people played this based on the prototype rules and I don't recall questions on what was an Anti-Quark.

I personally don't see it as that unclear as we have 15 Quark cards and the back of each has the word "anti" written on it.


Jason, that's a small sample size, particularly if not all the tests were blind tests. Also, did they watch the video? Did they learn completely blind? Are you sure that they interpreted the rule correctly, or are you assuming that they did just because they did not ask about it?

For the record, I found it monstrously unclear in the rulebook. It took me looking at the rules for 45 minutes and searching for a video to figure it out.

First, even if you guess what a quark and "its" anti-quark is, the rules do NOT say they blow each other up. The rules just say that this combo triggers an annihilation, which is defined as the removal of "a quark." I initially thought that I had to execute the equivalent of an annihilate card and nuke a single, free quark somewhere on the board. Then I watched the video and thought that the playing of the annihilate card triggers the destruction of a free quark plus the destruction of a quark/anti-quark pair. Only after rewatching the video and rereading the rules did I understand the true rule.

Second, the confusion arises precisely because of what you have said twice in this thread. There are 15 quarks in the game. On the opposite sides of those cards are 15 anti-quarks.

This leads to several interpretations:

1) A quark's anti-quark is on the opposite side of the exact same card, so it is impossible for the quark and its anti-quark to be in the same zone; so maybe there's just a bad rule. This thought quickly passes.

2) The reference to a quark and an anti-quark refers to ANY flavor of card on its quark side and ANY flavor of card on its anti-quark side being in the same area without being confined. This would be extremely tough. This remains a possibility until you learn otherwise.

3) Maybe this is a typo and they mean "anti-color," which is a phrase used elsewhere in the rules. Maybe I have to confine every free blue quark with a free anti-blue quark, or confine at least one of them with something else to avoid having the free blue and anti-blue trigger an annihilation event. I initially assumed that "anti-quark" was the same as "anti-color" and that it was just a typo, but the difference made me search out a video.

4) You assume that a quark's anti-quark is the back side of a card of a different color but the same flavor: a blue charm together with a green or red anti-charm.

It's an enormous stretch to assume that people are going to:

A) get to step four; and
B) that they are going to interpret the rule to mean that those cards blow each other up rather than any single free quark.

This rule plus the lack of a marked playmat made this the single most difficult to learn microgame that I have ever played . . . . until I played Twin Star.

I strongly suggest that you put a revised rulebook up without all the pages rotated, and that you put a specific example with pictures into the book. Updating the video would be ideal, but adding pop-up text over the changes should be a good alternative.


Lee

 
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Mac Kern
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What's funny is that I thought maybe I'd try my hand at a rules rewrite, and I downloaded the prototype rules as a starting point. Much to my surprise, the passage in question is much more clearly explained in the earlier draft of the rules:

Quote:
If a quark and its anti quark (for example, up and antiup)
are ever present together at the Detector or Scattered, they are immediately annihilated. This can be prevented if one or both of
these quarks are color confined.


Additionally, the original definition of annihilation doesn't have the new definition's problem of implying that annihilation only refers to a single card:

Quote:
Annihilate: remove from the game by placing in the Annihilated pile.


I'm guessing that's why there was no confusion based on the prototype rules
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Jason Tagmire
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I added this to our FAQ on our site. Here's the link. We'll repeat it here in an official FAQ thread here at BGG for easy access.

Quote:


What is a Quark?
The front of the 15 basic cards. For example: Red Up or Green Charm.

What is an Anti-Quark?
The backside of the 15 basic cards. For example: Anti-Red Anti-Up or Anti-Green Anti-Charm.

When the rules refer to a Quark and it's Anti-Quark what does this mean?
This is regarding the flavor of the Quark only, not the color. For example: Any Up and any Anti-Up.


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Jason Tagmire
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Themackern wrote:
Additionally, the original definition of annihilation doesn't have the new definition's problem of implying that annihilation only refers to a single card:


Can you refresh me on the single card problem? I will clarify this on the FAQ as well.
 
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Lee Valentine
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jtagmire wrote:
Themackern wrote:
Additionally, the original definition of annihilation doesn't have the new definition's problem of implying that annihilation only refers to a single card:


Can you refresh me on the single card problem? I will clarify this on the FAQ as well.


Jason, the rules do not say that the quark and anti-quark destroy each other. The rules that got printed just say they trigger an annihilation, which means that "a quark is removed" (see the start of the definition for annihilate). So, you need to fix the "a quark" reference, which isn't always true, and you need to note that the quark and anti-quark blow up each other rather than some other card.

Mac is right, the black-and-white print-and-play rules are fantastically clearer on the issue. All these clear sections were rewritten for the print release, changing their meaning and leaving out key details. The print-and-play also clarifies the rule about annihilating cards in the beam.

I suggest you just copy and paste the sections identified plus the rules about annihilating a card in the beam. A FAQ entry is not enough; the actual printed rules are wrong. I suggest that you note the error (that the two cards actually blow each other up), and post the correct rule.

Lee
 
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Jason Tagmire
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This has been added to the FAQ.

http://buttonshygames.com/pages/faq-pentaquark

How are cards Annihilated?
1) When a Quark and its Anti-Quark are both present and free at the same location (Detector or Background), they are both Annihilated (removed from the game).

2) When an Annihilate Card is revealed during the Beam Phase, a free Quark must be Annihilated (removed from the game).
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Lee Valentine
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There maybe another a potential problem even in parts of the print-and-play, where I have found "quark" being used to refer to quarks and anti-quarks.

This may be a really pervasive problem all over the rules.

Two questions:

1) are quarks and anti-quarks exclusive and different things?
2) if so, do annihilate cards only destroy free quarks or can they destroy a free anti-quark?

If you unambiguously claim an anti-quark is not a quark, you can't expect annihilate cards to annihilate free anti-quarks if it only annihilates "free quarks."

Note, this problem may be pervasive. A number of sections talk about discarding or manipulating "free quarks" or "quarks." If all these also apply to anti-quarks, you may need to do a full edit and rewrite of the rules.

In the base game right now, "quark" is almost synonomous with "non-event" card. It may be easier to just obliterate the reference to an anti-quark. Call all the core, non-event cards "quarks," and then change that anti-quark reference to a "a quark of a given flavor and another of the opposite flavor." Give an example, and add the various anti- cards to the list of flavors.
Lee
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TC Petty III
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Rules are hard. Thanks everyone as this was the only question I was unsure of after reading the rules. It's not especially common and seems like an easy first game mistake to make that doesn't affect too much, but I'm just glad what I insinuated is confirmed here.
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David Tagliaferri
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I played for the first time this Weekend and I also thought there was some ambiguity in the rules, but nothing major. I came here to check on my interpretation of the rules and I must say I did get all the rules correct by only reading the provided rulebook and not watching any videos. It is a good game and the rules, while not perfect, are adequate to play the game correctly. ( I did have to read the rules on what a quark, antiquark is a couple times.)
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Jason Tagmire
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Thanks everyone. We've ramped up our rules review a bit by involving a larger group of previewers, but we still have some hurdles to overcome. Trying to balance being a one person company with a far-too-strict release schedule and a rulebook with a limited size. There are a few strikes against us there, but we're working on it. Thanks again for the feedback.
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Chris Smith

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jtagmire wrote:


When the rules refer to a Quark and it's Anti-Quark what does this mean?
This is regarding the flavor of the Quark only, not the color. For example: Any Up and any Anti-Up.




This is what cleared up the confusion for me.
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