Looney Labs Icehouse Mailing list Archive

Re: [Icehouse] new Treehouse rules layout

  • FromCarlton Noles <carlton.noles@xxxxxxxxx>
  • DateMon, 23 Jan 2006 09:59:05 -0500

On 1/23/06, Jonathan Chaffer <jchaffer@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
First, the terminology is inconsistent. How do up, down, forward,
backward, and upstream relate to one another? I saw some concerns
about "right" and "left" mentioned on the list, but I think those
could be okay substitutes. Alternately you could use "east" and
"west," which would handle the note about the lines being parallel
nicely, I think.

Tip, Aim, and Wild are fine, terminology aside.

I guessed the right meaning for Swap, but it was ambiguous until I
read the older rules. I like the suggestion from the list: "Pick two
pieces. Trade their positions and orientations."

Hop confused me at first, but it turned out I was just overlooking
the general rule about gaps forming as needed. Once I saw that all
was clear.

Dig is by far the worst. I'm still not sure I understand what's
intended with this rule. What's "upstream?" "Between" a piece? My
best attempt at a paraphrase, given my understanding: "Move a piece
any distance in the direction it's pointing (or not at all) and stand
it upright. If it ends up below another piece, turn that piece
upright if necessary."

It occurs to me that the problem with 'Left', 'Right' , 'Forward', 'Backward'  terminology arises for the abstract nature of the game. For instance when we played left or right made essentially no matter in winning what did matter was over all orientation for example if the goal was  3^ 1> 2<   (^=upright >=right <=left) then 2> 1< 3^ would also win because of the relative Identity of the positions. Similarly the house starting position on the rules 2>1^3< could also be 3>1^2< and might be described in Zendo terms thus  => a small upright with a medium and a large flat on opposite sides both point toward the small piece <= and ANY positiong that would match this description would win regardles off pointing Right, Left, North, South, East, West, Forward, Backword, etc. the problem of course is how to fit all that on the inside of a tube.

Another issue is that many of us are rules lawyers (myself included) and while precise interpretations are important for us and for tournaments and the like. For a casual player they just need the basics to play a game and they can make up the rest (in fact isn't making things up sorta encouraged?) Not saying the rules shouldn't be as clear and complete as possible. Just that every possible situation need not be covered.

Carlton "Kermit" Noles
"Games Lubricate the body and the mind" - Benjamin Franklin
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