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Subject: Simultaneous Bombs rss

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Jonathan C
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To lead in to my question:

We had our regular Tichu group last night, and saw six 4-card bombs--in the first hand. It was most unbelievable. Our wives had a combined 5 bombs, called Tichu and went out 1-2. I had the King bomb, and my partner had 3 Aces (oops, I didn't pass him the 4th Ace). That first round was pretty insane.

Because all the bombs were of the four-card variety, there was never any contention over which bomb would win. However, at one point, two bombs were played simulatenously, and it led me to wonder the following:

What if two suited bombs are played simultaneously, of equal rank, and contain the same number of cards? Who wins the trick and the lead?

I realize the chances of this are pretty miniscule, but it is theoretically possible. In no way do the rules indicate a hierarchy of the colors, so it seems that this case simply isn't covered. A high-stakes Tichu game could be left hanging. And we aways play high stakes...arrrh
 
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Eugene van der Pijll
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looleypalooley wrote:

What if two suited bombs are played simultaneously, of equal rank, and contain the same number of cards? Who wins the trick and the lead?

The bomb that was played first. The second bomb is equal to the first one, and so cannot be played.

In theory, bombs cannot be played simultaneously. After each play, there is a "bombing phase", in which each player gets the opportunity to play a bomb. This is done in turn order, with the person who just played taking the last turn.

In practice, this means that if two equal bombs are played simultaneously, the winner of the trick is the player who is closest to the right of the previous player to play.
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Curt Carpenter
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pijll wrote:
In practice, this means that if two equal bombs are played simultaneously, the winner of the trick is the player who is closest to the right of the previous player to play.

If playing counter-clockwise. Otherwise vice versa.
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Chris Gray
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If you needed any confirmation, pijil's post is exactly correct. The game would bog down too much if, after every hand, the entire table had to pass on a bomb (in turn order) before the next player take his turn.

I would even argue that a reasonable time must be given for other players to play a bomb. For instance, if one player is left with five cards, and has the lead, and he leads a dragon and instantly bombs it, I would state that an opportunity for other players to bomb must be given first, as they didn't have a reasonable chance to react to his dragon being played.
 
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Jonathan C
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pijll wrote:
looleypalooley wrote:

What if two suited bombs are played simultaneously, of equal rank, and contain the same number of cards? Who wins the trick and the lead?

The bomb that was played first. The second bomb is equal to the first one, and so cannot be played.


Did you read my question?

The bombs are played simultaneously. They are literally thrown down on the table at the same moment, and no one at the table is able to distinguish which one was played first.

pijll wrote:
In theory, bombs cannot be played simultaneously.


But this sentence doesn't matter, because practically speaking, bombs can be played simultaneously.

pijll wrote:
After each play, there is a "bombing phase", in which each player gets the opportunity to play a bomb. This is done in turn order, with the person who just played taking the last turn.


From the official Tichu rules, emphasis my own:
Quote:
Bombs can be played at any time, even out of turn order, to take a trick. And they beat everything, whether it is a single card or a card combination. A higher bomb beats a lower one, first the number of cards in the Bomb determines its value (thus a "Run" bomb beats a "4" bomb.) Furthermore: anyone who wants to play a bomb may.


I don't think the "turn order within a turn order" theory is upheld by the rules.

pijll wrote:
In practice, this means that if two equal bombs are played simultaneously, the winner of the trick is the player who is closest to the right of the previous player to play.


I can see this as a valid houserule, but question was simply, is it actually covered in the official rules. It does not seem to be.
 
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Chris Gray
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In the rules. They're just saying it goes in turn order.

If you play counter-clockwise, that would be "the person sitting closest to the right of the last person to play".
Clockwise = left.

The instructions suggest to play counter-clockwise, following the tradition of similar Chinese games. The instructions also say, If that's too confusing, just play clockwise. Most groups I have played with play clockwise.
 
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Chris Gray
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Again, in theory, everyone has a mini-turn where the pass on the ability to play a bomb before the next player takes his/her turn.

In practice, this would be too cumbersome, making for a long, slow game. So, for the convenience of playing a fast, fun game, all players gloss over the "in theory". So, when practice conflicts with theory, you have to cram it back in. So, in case of a bomb-tie, the player who is sitting closest to the last player to play would get to play his bomb. Not sure if this is explicitly covered in the rules, but is the standard play.
 
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Curt Carpenter
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looleypalooley wrote:
I don't think the "turn order within a turn order" theory is upheld by the rules.

I'm not a big fan of it myself, but it is explained in detail in the faq:
http://www.fatamorgana.ch/tichu/Tichu_english.html
Search for: What happens if two players want to play a bomb at the same time?
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Jonathan C
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furtherbum wrote:
Again, in theory, everyone has a mini-turn where the pass on the ability to play a bomb before the next player takes his/her turn.

In practice, this would be too cumbersome, making for a long, slow game. So, for the convenience of playing a fast, fun game, all players gloss over the "in theory". So, when practice conflicts with theory, you have to cram it back in. So, in case of a bomb-tie, the player who is sitting closest to the last player to play would get to play his bomb. Not sure if this is explicitly covered in the rules, but is the standard play.


This is an annoying rules contradiction, then. The rules clearly state a player may play a bomb at any time. Pick a time. Two players pick the same time to play a bomb. Thus their bombs are played simultaneously. Theoretically they may indeed play bombs at the same time as I read the rules, and yet the turn-order-within-a-turn is mentioned in the Fata Morgana rules, but not the Z-man edition rules. Even "outside of turn order" is even explicitly stated under the rules for bombing.

This issue could easily be cleared up if the suits were ranked, e.g. if the bombs are equal, Red beats Blue beats Green beats Black, etc.
 
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Curt Carpenter
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looleypalooley wrote:
This issue could easily be cleared up if the suits were ranked, e.g. if the bombs are equal, Red beats Blue beats Green beats Black, etc.

This is an insanely rare case. Like so rare that only a tiny fraction of playes will see it, ever. I don't recall ever seeing multiple simultaneous straight bombs of equal rank in probably over a thousand games.

Anyway,that's not really the point of the FAQ. The point is simply to resolve order of simultaneous bombs. Although once multiple bombs have been revealed, the hand is kinda tainted anyway. I don't like taking bombs back, but the FAQ is what it is.

But yeah,if you really cared about simultaneous equal straight bombs, you could house rule an order the ranks. But I bet you'll never see it (again).
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Mark Tyler
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curtc wrote:
But yeah,if you really cared about simultaneous equal straight bombs, you could house rule an order the ranks. But I bet you'll never see it (again).

He didn't see it. The question was hypothetical.

In general, a game of Tichu progresses without any concern about the timing of bombs, overlapping bombs, bombing your own lead, etc. This is fortunate because the official rules are silent on these issues. To help fill in the gaps with the official rules, we can consult the FAQ, forum posts here, and even the BSW Tichu implementation.

For anyone looking to nip potential rules questions in the bud regarding bomb timing, I recommend a glance at this thread.
 
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David desJardins
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looleypalooley wrote:
This is an annoying rules contradiction, then. The rules clearly state a player may play a bomb at any time. Pick a time. Two players pick the same time to play a bomb. Thus their bombs are played simultaneously.


If you really want to be that pedantic, there's no such thing as simultaneity, which event occurs first will depend on your inertial frame of reference.

As a practical matter, as has already been pointed out to you, the FAQ answers the question, the player whose turn it is in play order (or the one closest in play order) gets priority if you can't figure out who played first.
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Curt Carpenter
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m_r_tyler wrote:
For anyone looking to nip potential rules questions in the bud regarding bomb timing, I recommend a glance at this thread.

That's not even the worst. This one still gives me a headache.
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Jonathan C
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curtc wrote:
m_r_tyler wrote:
For anyone looking to nip potential rules questions in the bud regarding bomb timing, I recommend a glance at this thread.

That's not even the worst. This one still gives me a headache.


Wow..that is...some fantastically entertaining reading!!!

Sounds kinda like my college fight song. You know, the one that goes

Fight! Fight! Fight!
 
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Andy Cassola
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curtc wrote:
m_r_tyler wrote:
For anyone looking to nip potential rules questions in the bud regarding bomb timing, I recommend a glance at this thread.

That's not even the worst. This one still gives me a headache.


Love that thread!
 
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Jeno Szabo
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Well, I usually don't throw in bombs.

I would highly recommend announcing bombing first. Like saying "I bomb". And then wait for a second, and make sure that nothing simultaneous is happening. And then choose which bomb you would like to play, and then play it.

The advantage is that it is easier to tell who announced it first. Also the strength of the bombs are not revealed before the order is decided. (Obviously it is almost always better to play the bomb later, so people will not be fighting on who bombs first)

The quick announcement of the bomb is always good, not only when multiple bombs are dealt. Timing is also crucial when you want to bomb before someone plays his cards. Imagine that someone said Tichu, and would like to play his last card quickly.
 
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Jonathan C
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DaviddesJ wrote:
If you really want to be that pedantic, there's no such thing as simultaneity, which event occurs first will depend on your inertial frame of reference.


Thank you for your ridiculous , elitist response. Do you presume that most Tichu players have read Einstein's Relativity? (I have, but most haven't, genius). It becomes a very practical problem, not a theoretical exercise, when two players throw a bomb onto the table at the same time--and in the rare event those bombs happen to be of equal value. My point is that that it is is annoying that this plausible scenario is treated only in an obscure online FAQ, and not the official rules.
 
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Curt Carpenter
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looleypalooley wrote:
It becomes a very practical problem, not a theoretical exercise, when two players throw a bomb onto the table at the same time--and in the rare event those bombs happen to be of equal value.

Simultaneous bombs of equal value is something I don't think I've ever seen, after a whole lotta games.

looleypalooley wrote:
My point is that that it is is annoying that this plausible scenario is treated only in an obscure online FAQ, and not the official rules.

I don't see what the big deal there is. Anyone who plays enough to see this scenario and worry about it probably doesn't have any problem looking up a faq online. What's annoying to me is the answer in the faq itself. yuk
 
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David desJardins
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People play Ricochet Robots, and the first player to bid a number wins. Somehow people manage to play the game even though in some theoretical sense people could bid "simultaneously". In practice it's not really a problem. Everyone can agree who was first. It's even easier with cards, you can see whose cards were played first because they are under the other cards on the table.
 
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Curt Carpenter
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DaviddesJ wrote:
People play Ricochet Robots, and the first player to bid a number wins. Somehow people manage to play the game even though in some theoretical sense people could bid "simultaneously".

People manage to play Tichu too. Including those who are complaining. Nobody is claiming it's unplayable.

DaviddesJ wrote:
In practice it's not really a problem.

For some of us it has been a problem in practice.

DaviddesJ wrote:
Everyone can agree who was first. It's even easier with cards, you can see whose cards were played first because they are under the other cards on the table.

No, everyone can't. Specifically due to the ambiguity of the timing of playing cards many players choose to announce a bomb rather than immediately play it. At least when bombing "quickly".
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David desJardins
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curtc wrote:
No, everyone can't. Specifically due to the ambiguity of the timing of playing cards many players choose to announce a bomb rather than immediately play it. At least when bombing "quickly".


I've played a lot of games and I've never seen the problem of deciding who bombed first. It's much more often an issue to decide whether one player bombed before or after the next player played to the trick. That happens for a lot of reasons that are inherent to the game, e.g., you don't want to bomb if the next player is going to pass, but you do want to bomb before he plays if he is going to play. So there's a temptation to wait and see if a player is taking cards out of his hand in order to play, before you play your bomb. And of course that creates race conditions.

This makes it strange to me that people argue about the ordering of bombs, which almost never comes up, when the notion of bombs and how they interact with ordinary play itself creates far more issues.
 
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Curt Carpenter
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DaviddesJ wrote:
It's much more often an issue to decide whether one player bombed before or after the next player played to the trick.

I agree with that. I was admittedly conflating the issues.
 
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