Incorrect rulings.

I guess it depends on your philosophy. I just wanted people to know how it turned out in the end. I agree that correct rulings matter.

My reference to that rule is being able to reference verbiage that dictates deciding whether any ball being “stuck” or “not stuck” doesn’t give a player a right to simply play on at their discretion.

All situations where a ball has come to rest need to be dealt with immediately and not after a player has drained all other balls in the multiball.

One option in the rules would be to call both of these situations “stuck” then make it clear that only some stuck balls can be returned to flippers.

I feel the “that’s not a stuck ball” comments, which happen often in these situations, are confusing to people without deep rules knowledge, partially because the arcade definition of “stuck ball” is different.


I mostly agree. However, part of setting up games for tournament play is to check to see if a game has a slam tilt switch and if it does, to make sure it’s at least somewhat looser than the regular tilt (if not completely disabled).

If I’m getting slam tilts before tilt warnings, I’m going think hard about going back to another event where that same person is doing setup. I’ve always completely disabled slam tilts before an event. Bend contacts as far away from each other as possible or electrical tape, done. I suspect in this case it may have been overlooked or they didn’t have keys. If it was me and I didn’t get a warning, I’d accept the DQ, then suggest to the setup person(s) that they should check slam tilts before the event in the future.

Get your normal tilt setting right and you won’t need a slam tilt.


I do.

You have to remember that a stated philosophy behind the PAPA/IFPA rules is (I’m paraphrasing) “if in doubt, screw the player.” If you don’t agree with this philosophy, modify the rules for your events.

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30 posts were split to a new topic: Seeking clarification on a ruling (split from Incorrect Rulings thread)

Except where the ball has come to rest touching a player-controlled mechanism, right? AFAIK, having a ball trapped under an upper flipper, like on TSPP, is not considered stuck because the player can raise the flipper at any time. Extremely technically speaking, it would also cover a ball in a basic cradle being not stuck even though “at rest” because the player simply flips to move it again.

Correct. The biggest takeaway is “when in doubt, trap up and ask a TD”.

In that situation a TD would simply rule “play on”.

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Quite simply this.

Once a TD has made a ruling, whether you think it is incorrect, whether you know it is incorrect, whether it’s the stupidest call of all time - that’s the ruling.

By all means put your case forward, politely and calmly, but you have to accept it at that time. By all means speak to the TD after the event and put forward your point of view - citing rules and displaying evidence as much as you want.

If you feel that the TD is incapable of making the correct ruling or is incompetent, or not listening to you simply don’t enter any further comps they run.

There is already enough stress running competitions without players adding to it by flatly refusing to accept a TDs decision.

I’ve seen threads on here with people saying they are going to run less comps because of the stress - don’t be one of those people who moves that along quicker.

As for “protest better” - do you mean something like this?



On review (after the tournament), we decided this should have been accidental interference and not player error or a slam tilt. The situation was that the player nudged while draining and the game reset, clearing scores for all players. It was not a slam tilt. The ruling (from two officials, I asked another TD to evaluate the situation without providing my provisional ruling and they came to the same conclusion) was that this was accidental player error resulting in a catastrophic malfunction, hence the dq. I felt pretty shitty about it but it seemed like the correct ruling at the time. As @pinwizj says, default to screwing over the player right.

That the game had reset before was not brought up before or during the event. We ask every week for players to call out games with issues that should be pulled from competition before we play them and this was never brought up.

As for consistency with rulings - the prior time with this resetting Lost World, someone came to a TD and said “The game reset while we were playing, I know this is a problem with this game” and it didn’t get a lot of scrutiny once it was corroborated, the game was swapped out. This time (the time a player got DQed that is being questioned here), an experienced player came to a TD and said “someone tilted a ball out and the game reset” and a different ruling was made. The prior ruling was not brought to the attention of the officials at that time. We have 90 games to keep track of that we aren’t able to maintain ourselves and this kind of thing does get overlooked. We’re doing our best though - really. We followed up amongst ourselves to figure out what we should do if this happens again prior to this thread getting started.

On the Fish tales outlane thing - the ball was clearly above the inlane wedged between the post and the inlane insert. It was touching the inlane/outlane post but not resting above it. I was the player impacted this time but I would have made the same ruling if it was mine to make and I feel very comfortable saying that’s what the ruling for this particular circumstance on this particular game should be from here on out.


While we are on the subject of rulings… how would the inability to choose your house on Game of Thrones be treated? On a four-player game of GOT, P1 and P3 had the ability to choose their house, P2 and P4 did not. What would have been the correct way to proceed? The ruling was suck it up and play on.

I understand wonky game modes are technically considered “normal course of play” but in this example, it gave an extreme advantage to half the players.

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There was some discussion of that GOT situation here

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Suck it up and play on. Try and fix the issue after the game (shooter lane switch just needs adjusted).

If you can’t fix it, put on casual mode or pull the game.

This scenario on GOT happened to my son at Pinburgh last year, though only on his game so P1, P2, and P3 had an advantage. TD was called and due to such a huge disadvantage, he was allowed to play a separate game. I believe this was escalated to several TD’s and a group made the decision, but not certain on that as this is second hand from my son. (Edit: clarified below that single TD made the ruling). In any case, it does emphasize that whatever ruling the TD makes is what stands.

I was in that group. Bowen made an immediate ruling based on significant game feature denied. None of us objected and nobody voiced any disagreement with the ruling afterward.

This comes up on Stern Star Wars too. I rule new game on Game of Thrones. If it’s the same for everyone I’m also OK with everyone taking the first choice offered by the game. Seems like Star Wars will give player one choices but act up on players 2-4 for some odd reason. If you can’t fix it or play a different game try to make it fair for everyone.

With .95 code on Deadpool the scoop will intermittently not register. My ruling was to play on to finish game and I deactivated it from the tournament. Unfortunately a player kept on hitting it on last ball and it never registered and during the attempts to hit it they drained. Since it was the 3rd ball and i wasn’t sure about the bug i think i made the right call. Other players experienced the same issue just not as frequently as they did.

I really don’t think this is a code issue. Stern scoops have had this problem dating back to at least Tron, maybe even further. Adjust the switch, it is not staying closed as the ball settles, which causes this problem.

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I heard from a local op that he’s already had to disassemble and replace the switch or something. I don’t remember the details but it sounded pretty involved for a game that’s only a few months old.

Interesting, our DP on location has had 2 microswitches break so far. The tabs actually sheared off the switch completely. I can’t imagine how this happened, especially twice. If this is happening for others their might be a design problem.