haha. So true


Or 16 players and their cousins writing down the scores around a machine with active games going on next to them. Come on people! Designate a score-keeper and let them do it.


Whoops. I missed that announcement, and blatantly violated that rule sometime Thursday… guy was walking away from a late ball save, I said ‘whoah whoah!’ and he turned around and carried on playing. No one in my group seemed to care, but I will be sure to refrain next time.


Yea, I’m the opposite… I get hot when playing, and wear about the minimal amount of clothing allowable :blush: but was definitely comfortable the whole tournament. Wonder if the fella who was joking about my ‘non-compliant’ sandals is reading this…


Idea for next year. Put all the backup games on one side of the middle rows so help combat the log jam of people hanging out and playing games on both sides of the isle. That way only one side of the isle is being played and there’s more room for people.


Great idea. Those middle rows were packed. It was tough to find a place to stand between turns. Sometimes people looked miffed that you blocked their sightline to a game, but like, dude, I have nowhere else to stand without crowding an active player. When I was on a single-player EM I’d leave the area entirely after my turn.

I’m not sure if code allows this, but it would be nice to move the outer rows closer to the walls. Even with the round tables & chairs in that area, there was a ridiculous amount of space to hang out between turns. Giving a couple feet to the middle would be huge.


That’s a good idea, but I wonder if the pin rows’ positions are driven by electric outlet locations as well?


Why is this unsportmanship-like behavior? At what point are you responsible to tell the other player that they are missing out on points on the table? Should I be obligated to tell a player when they have a multiball lit? If they don’t know the behavior/software/rules of a game is it my obligation to tell them it? It’s definitely not “nice”, but when you are playing to win you have no obligation to be “nice” beyond not being rude to your opponents.


I never said you are obligated to do anything. I said penalizing someone who is “nice” is a bad rule.

This makes me frown the eyebrows even more so, because sandbagging is actively being oppressed per the rules. However, sandbagging is also “not nice but playing to win”. But in this case it is a violation of the rules.

It is inconsistent and that is a chalk up on the con side on my board.


When A tells B there is a ball save, A has decided to help B in a way that competitively affects other players in the same game. By telling B, C and D might lose a game they would otherwise win, and this is not fair to them.

If Pinburgh were built on 2 player matches, this would not be necessary to enforce, because A telling B would only affect themselves. (There are many reasons Pinburgh is not built on 2 player matches, and you can probably guess several of them…)


Can’t disagree with that. The thing is, when someone does this, it’s almost an involuntary action. You have to tell them quickly. No time to think about it. It’s more like a natural reaction. Asking folks to change what they’ve been doing for decades is asking a lot.

The other thing is that it is good sportsmanship. I don’t want to win because the other guy accidently walked away from a ball save. I want to beat him fair and square. An honest victory, not a backdoor win. I would rather nothing at all was said about it rather than a new rule against it. Not discouraged or encouraged. Just something that naturally happens in pinball.

The rule might be more palatable if programmers disabled ball save grace periods when a game is in tournament mode. All too often when it happens, the shoot again insert has stopped flashing. Leave the grace periods during modes, but can we loose the ball saver grace period? That alone would prevent many of these situations.

This rule is like the cradle up for a stuck ball rule. I’ve always done what I thought was the right thing by immediately trying to knock the stuck ball loose. Even if no one else notices that I have a ball stuck. Telling someone they’re ball isn’t over or knocking a stuck ball loose have always felt like the right thing to do. Now I’m being told not to do them.


It’s not fair for you to make this choice while two other players are affected by it. If you were playing head-to-head, go for it, I’ve done it myself many times. But you’re aiding a player at the expense of other players, and that should not be allowed.


I think we can all agree that we’d like to be good sports.

So the question here is, what is being a good sport? In tournament play, being a good sport is not coaching one player against their opponents. Telling someone about a ball saver is just an example of that. It may feel unnatural not to do it, but in this case the ‘good sport’ thing to do is keep your mouth shut.

Does it feel weird, yep. Is it hard to do the opposite of what you’ve done forever. Yes. But it’s hard to argue that he rule isn’t clear or fair. Everyone get’s the same treatment, that’s fair. I’m not sure I’d want a TD to do more than give a warning on this one though.

@bkerins what is the punishment at Pinburgh if someone warns another player about a ball save?


When this happened, I warned the player; I did not give a yellow card, which is a more official warning. If the same player did it again, they would get a yellow card.

In a different incident, I did give a player a yellow card for talking to their opponent while it was their turn.

There isn’t really an official rule about enforcement, but we try to be consistent in the way we enforce the same rule throughout the tournament.


Maybe things like this could be avoided completely if we stopped trying to suppress player behavior so much. So many people are accustomed to playing pinball (which can be loud and noisy itself) in loud and noisy environments.

Even in a head-to-head match, aiding your opponent could still negatively affect other players in the tournament, if you aid them in winning.

If everyone was allowed to talk game rules/strategy all the time with anyone, I bet general knowledge of game rules would increase much faster. This would also put more weight on actual in-game performance, and less on rule-knowledge. Less weight on rule-knowledge means less of an disadvantage for players with limited access to games. Being aware of a certain strategy is one thing, but actually executing that strategy should be more important IMO.

I do appreciate the “spirit” of these kind of rules. I just think it just might be unrealistic to expect a satisfactory percentage of the playerbase to successfully make these kind of adjustments.

Personally, I’ll compete whichever way:

  • I like the rules on new games getting deeper and more complex all the time, even though even basic objectives are becoming more and more mysterious to more casual players.
  • I like playing in quieter environments, and other players being discouraged from talking to me or making obnoxious noise during play.
  • I dislike the distraction caused by vocal outbursts, unnecessarily violent rage tilts, players trapping up to ham it up w/ the crowd, etc.
  • I have definitely won matches because of game knowledge, where my competitor actually executed more/better playing skills but lost anyways due to inexperience on that specific game.

But even though it works for me to have the rules lean in favor of my sensibilities, I can’t say I’m confident that this is the best way to grow the “sport”.

I mean, the last thing I want is for it to lean so far the other way that Pinburgh is a raucous mosh pit with air horns and vuvuzelas blaring directly into my ears :trumpet: :anguished: :trumpet:

I just feel that the best way to grow, if that is the goal, might be to allow/encourage players to interact in a way that many are already compelled.


I don’t see the connection at all between avoiding interference and hindering knowledge transfer.

Pinball is a game of focus… so over time convention has established that frowns upon or forbids things that would be distracting to the player mid-game. We avoid playing side by side… we avoid things in the field of view… we avoid addressing the player during play.

We are talking about competitions here. The rules (and even strategy) are openly shared… and even openly discussed at tournaments all the time. Where people usually draw the line is in the middle of a game while competing against that person. After the game, they usually open up (unless they worry about another later match). But we don’t allow coaching mid-ball either.

The ruling about ball saves is simply about EQUALITY and people not realizing their ‘good intent’ can have a serious impact on other people.

Having knowledge of the game is part of the competition… having a strategy and executing upon it is part of nearly every sport. If you want to take strategy and knowledge out of the competition… then play on the same game all the time (IROC style). The variety of games and ability to perform in these ‘cold’ conditions ARE WHAT MAKE PINBURGH DIFFERENT and what it is… vs just a bigger version of an existing tournament.

Competitive pinball is not a ‘skills competition’ - I don’t understand people wanting to keep breaking it down to that to equal everything else out.

Coaching, studying, intelligence, focus, consistency, and situational awareness are all very important elements of competing. Let’s not try to take all those things away.


Yeah, I’m aware of how things already are, as well as what has already been said. I was just offering a different perspective based on my personal experience.


in large venues like this notably in the US convention centres there is always a cold area or its always too cold in some part of the venue, can be worse in the morning so I always bring a hoody with me just incase. I don’t think you’ll ever solve that problem.






At 11:59 I was just spamming refresh, got so into the groove I didn’t notice for a moment that it had gone live! :sweat_smile: This will be my first time at the event, I’m stoked!