JJP PotC: Does Plunder impact tournament viability/TGP?


What if there were multiple games per round and only one game was JJPOTC?


Similar to what we do for Beat the Clock/Safecracker.

If it’s a 3-game round with 4 players, instead of being worth +6 TGP, that round would be worth +4.67 TGP.


Okay, that makes more sense than it being worth 2 TGP total…

@keefer is it technically possible in a four player game for players 1-3 to each plunder a ball from player 4?


Only if player four is @pinwizj and it is game four of final four at Pinburgh and he needs one point to clinch.


Yes, albeit unlikely. I’d laugh pretty hard if I ever heard of this, though.

[Side note: I fully expect there to be a news story some day how someone got shiv’d over a game of POTC.]

I forgot to mention, this also only works when the game is set to balls in reserve (admittedly the default). Setting to balls in play effectively disables ball plundering because I didn’t want to deal with that messiness.

I’ll admit I’m mostly being a PITA, typical of how I deal with perceived rules inconsistencies (AFM dirty pool, death saves, etc.). But sometimes I’m also like…

(Directed at no one in particular.)


I’ve known you long enough that I knew exactly how to take your post :wink:



So based off this will all plunder-enabled games of JJPotC now be counted as 0 for TGP?


The real question is whether it’s possible to plunder more than 3 balls for a particular player. Keith would have to let us know if that’s possible, and if so I would probably make it +255 TGP.


We can make that happen if needed. :wink:


10 posts were split to a new topic: Competition Mode on Stern machines


This is the same with all video games that have any level of customization. It’s fair game, as long as either 1) all of the options are reasonably viable and player skill is a greater factor than choice (Dragon Ball FighterZ, Splatoon 2, Puyo Puyo), or 2) there are at least a few options that are overpowered but at a similar level of overpoweredness (Marvel vs. Capcom 2, Pokémon, Fortnite).

For anyone reading this who isn’t familiar with competitive video gaming, this term is “competitive balance,” which was first used by players but was soon also used by the developers. A lot of development time and resources are made to ensure these games are as balanced as possible, though nowadays, most such games are adjusted post-release with updates and patches. (A “buff” is when an option is made more effective, while a “nerf” is when it’s made less effective. An option can be buffed and nerfed at the same time, such as Smeargle in Pokémon Sun and Moon, in which it receives more usable moves but can no longer use Dark Void.)

I don’t see why this couldn’t also work in pinball. After all, Game of Thrones and AC/DC already have selectable options, and from what I’ve seen, you guys even have tiers for these games (though I rarely ever see them called “tiers”).

Depends. There are some video games that can pull off competitive play with three or more players, though doing so is tricky due to the fact that players can gang up on other players. Competitive Tetris can be done in this way due to minimal effects on other players, and Dissidia FInal Fantasy NT manages to do this as a 3-D fighting game by not assigning victories based on elimination, but overall aggression (though the default mode is 3 on 3). Racing games are usually done with at least 4 people at a time when used in competitions (though racing game competitions are rare).

But yeah, the problems that arise are why stuff like Scrabble and Smash Bros. are rarely played with 3 or more players at once while in a competitive setting.


To hit on the competitive balance end of the spectrum, JJPOTC already does this to an end:

From the community end, we can mess with the settings and figure out what is best for competition. How often should you plunder? What should be safe? I think if we had a few folks who were interested play through some experiments to see what would work best, we can find a happy medium that allows for the feature to shine without pulling it wholesale.

For the first point, JJPOTC is more of an “imbalanced but fair” game, but there’s enough creative space to support 4 players without screwing someone into a bad decision.

I can choose to go first to secure a character. If Plunder Character is on, I can milk the MAP for Plunder 1 Character if I don’t get it. If I don’t think I can get it, I can learn other strategies and take advantage of other characters’ benefits. I’ll play more inlanes, or loop all day, or jam the modes, etc.

Character draft is completely balanced as is. We haven’t seen the full iceberg when it comes to strategic theory and I have faith there’s enough strategy.

As a community, we will figure out Plundering and make it such that it is involved but competitive.


Remember it’s not collusion if 3 players all gang up and plunder the same 4th player … as long as they don’t talk about it in advance :slight_smile:


You can, but entirely through your OWN actions (tilting!).
Not through someone else’s actions.

To roll this reply in with the rest of the thread, if there’s a way to start the game and make it clear that’s it’s in the correct competition mode, it should be added, with all the mysteries and stealing stuff turned off (as much as possible).

I don’t get why a pseudo-random loss of another player’s ball is “fun”, either.


My reading of the TGP Guide (https://www.ifpapinball.com/menu/tgpguide/) doesn’t care about this.

“The TGP will now include games played that are fewer than 3 balls, including timed formats where players are attempting to reach a score or objective as quickly as possible. Any game where it’s possible for the player to finish on the first ball in play, will be calculated at 33% value for TGP purposes.”

If you tilt on ball 1, then your game ended in 1 ball. Nothing in this draws any distinction about how you lost balls, only that it’s possible for the game to end in less than 3 balls.


“For example, if players have a goal of reaching a certain feature in a game as a way of winning that game or match, the fact that it is POSSIBLE for the player to reach that objective on ball 1 means this will count as 1/3rd of a game played towards TGP.”

Goal: Collect 3 super skill shots on Metallica. 100% TGP.


Here’s one for the theory-crafters:

Head-to-head strike tournament on Target Pool. Player 1 plays, plunges, nudges up top, tilts.

Player 2 plays, plunges, surpasses score on ball 1, stops.

Is this 1/3 value?


I think the spirit of the rule is that TGP is only 1/3 value if the player is trying to end the game in only one ball. As in, that’s the primary goal.

You could argue that in the scenario you put forth, player two is trying to accomplish a goal in one ball, but that’s kind of like saying a game where player 2 in a two-player game is DQ’d because they accidentally go first shouldn’t count towards TGP because no one actually played.


After further review it’s POSSIBLE that in any tournament that all players except for one DQ themselves for player conduct. This would make it possible that the winner of the tournament could have played zero games of pinball. For 2019 all events will be graded at 0% TGP :slight_smile:


Darn, I shouldn’t have said anything. :wink: