Pinburgh: strategy fun with semifinals bank selections

I thought others might enjoy a “behind the scenes” story about the strategic thinking and choice deferral that went into my Semifinals group…

I had just advanced to the Semis, and because of my seeding, I would again have choice of bank for my group to play. However, per the Pinburgh rules, I was unable to select the center Bank that I had just selected and played in the prior round. I was relatively indifferent on whether we played on the left or right bank. But I vastly preferred that we play the center Bank again, and didn’t really want to play the left bank since two of my Semis group opponents had just played and advanced on that bank.

As the 2 seed (and with the top seed driving the other Semis bus), I knew that I would have the next highest seed in my group, which was @pinwizj. I also knew that he had just selected and played the left bank (Dialed In), and thus, he would be only be able to pick the center or the right bank… or defer. I thought there was a decent chance he might want to play the center bank, so I rolled the dice and deferred choice.

I think I caught Josh somewhat off-guard with my decision, but he thought it through, and also made a good strategic choice. He realized that the next highest seed in our group was Dave Stewart, and that it was fairly likely that Dave would want to immediately replay the Dialed In Bank on which he had just played well. So Josh rolled the dice and also deferred.

Dave did what Josh expected and wanted, and picked the Dialed In bank, somewhat to my chagrin at the time. Thankfully, I was able to put my unfruitful deferral sequence behind me with a monster ball 1 on Dialed In, and ended up advancing – and getting some much needed game time on what was used for the Finals bank.


I’m assuming that deferring choice isn’t seen as sandbagging :stuck_out_tongue:


Sandbanking maybe…


I’ve found that knowing your opponents taste in games is helpful when driving the bus in these situations. There are times that I have deferred not because I was truly indifferent but because I wanted to postpone my choice until later, or set up a later choice, and was relatively confident that the person I deferred to would choose something I liked. Works maybe 70% of the time; as here, they can trip you up by deferring as well, or by not choosing as you expected.

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Personally, if I were in your situation, I STRONGLY would’ve leaned towards picking the DI bank because @sk8ball picked it his first round and thus was likely to pick it in the finals. So, if you were playing to win, you needed practice on that bank.


I choose often on not only games I feel comfortable on but can predict a wingman (Doesn’t apply to finals). So if Bowen blows up bank 3 and I get grouped with him and two other guys who were on another bank or played bank 3 poorly then that is what I am picking.


I just wish I realized I could pick the same bank someone else picked… in the moment I overlooked the ‘max two groups per bank’ :frowning: