When I saw Jolly Blackburn's review of Finger Hockey not long ago, I knew I had to have it in my collection. Within a few days I'd contacted John Taylor--the game's designer--and purchased a copy. We played our first game the same day that it arrived. All enjoyed it, but there were a number of questions that arose which the current rule sheet couldn't answer. Fortunately, John was happy to answer the questions I sent him. In fact, a new and more detailed rulebook is already in the works! But in the meantime, I thought it might be helpful for others if I post my questions, and John's answers, here.
1. The rules say that a player can "move the goalie to cover the net better" and that "this counts as one shot." Question: does this move have to be done by flicking the goalie, as with any other piece?
Answer: no, the player may adjust the goalie freely to the exact position desired, without having to flick it. This move counts as one shot.
2. Question: what happens after a goal is scored?
Answer: after a goal is scored, play begins again from the starting position, with the player who was scored against taking the starting shot.
3. The rules say that if any of a player's pieces are knocked offside, even accidentally, the player will get--at the beginning of his turn-- one free shot for each of these pieces to try to get them back onside. Question: does a player get these free shots anytime his pieces are offside at the beginning of his turn, or does he get them only if the opponent actually knocked him offside?
Answer: the player gets the free shots if and only if the opponent actually knocked his pieces offside. If the player's pieces are offside as the result of the player's own actions, or because the puck was knocked out of the opponent's endzone by either player, the player does not get the free shots.
Note that this makes possible a tactic called an "offside trap." A player may deliberately knock the opponent's pieces into the player's own endzone while the puck is there, then hit the puck out of the endzone, thereby making the opponent's pieces offside. Since the opponent's pieces were still onside when first knocked there, this does not count as knocking them offside and the opponent will not get any free shots.(!)
4. The rules say that you cannot "play the puck" while any of your pieces are offside. Question: what exactly counts as "playing the puck"?
Answer: "playing the puck" means hitting the puck with any of your own pieces. It is perfectly legal to cause the opponent's pieces to hit the puck while your pieces are still offside. If you accidentally play the puck while still offside, a penalty occurs: a face off at the center with the opponent taking the first shot.
5. Question: what do you recommend to lubricate and protect the board's surface?
Answer: John recommends a silicone lubricant spray, available at your local hardware stare. Just spray it on a rag and wipe the board with it.
Missed this. Great stuff.