Responsibility of player when TD makes a favourable and questionable ruling?


I hope those types of people don’t own spike games.


Assuming you know the correct ruling and are an experienced TD yourself, you passed up an opportunity to help another TD improve. That TD will probably continue to make that ruling in the future.

I’m still learning the corner case rules myself but there were times in the past as a novice when I had no idea why rulings had certain outcomes and just accepted whatever the ruling was since most TDs had more experience than myself.

Now, whenever there is a ruling I’m paying more attention to the scenario and trying to understand how the written rules apply. There are absolutely some players who exploit malfunctions or even try to persuade TDs to rule an extra ball in cases where it would not apply and in those cases it does fall on the other players to be aware of the rules and interject.

That being said, low stakes tourney, who cares. The amount this matters to me is proportional to the money in the pot.


I am fine with a play it as it lays rules if that is was an events wants to do. Most of the events I take part in use IFPAPA rules with minor additions (extra balls). I like that it teaches players what expectations they should have when they play at larger events. Although I am not sure your threshold is, this is a 50 person league that significantly impacts PCS.


I think Gentleman Jon gets it best: “If you’re unsure, rule it how you want; it’s your tournament. I’ll give you my opinion afterwards.”

The TD is the final arbiter, even if they’re wrong. You can always help people learn afterwards, though!


I am of the personal opinion that you should throw a hissy fit, loudly and whenever possible. Follow the TD around. Bemoan how dumb they are. Tell them they suck. Put a “kick me” sign on their back.

If there are multiple TD’s I recommend impugning them all the same, for uniform applicability.


See I’ve been back and forth on that one. It’s the tournament directors choosing. I was always in the camp of my choice is to let the player choose. What harm comes from that. You’re imconvuemced as the player and have to deal with the stuck ball and interrupt your game. Least you can get is choice of flipper.

I caught so much flack for that. Even though I was consistent on that. It’s the only thing I’ve ever had complaints about. Still don’t get the issue with that. I have changed since just to appease the noisy few.

95% of the time if I put it opposite of what you want you,you’ll just easily pass it over in 1/2 a second.


The origin of this rule has far less to do with flipper choice, and far more to do with whether the ball goes back into the plunger lane versus being put on a flipper.

We had an IFPA WC match decided because a ball was stuck just outside of the shooter lane on a very drainy old EM game. By rule the player was allowed to choose what flipper they wanted the ball on, thus using this “stuck ball” as a way to gain control in a very uncontrollable game. They then made the appropriate shot that gave them the win.

Our new rule would have allowed me to put the ball back into the plunger lane to avoid giving the player ‘free control’ over the ball in play.


All this talk about disabling the interlock switch, am I missing the point?
I just make sure that the coin door ball saver is on in the settings.


I don’t think this can be done on WPC games. Also doesn’t it save the ball then auto fire it back into play?


Yes. We turn coin door ball save on for sterns. Flippers die. Put stuck ball in drain. Close door. It shoots out the number of balls that were in play when you opened the door.

All other eras that use interlocks that disable high power we disable those switches.


In that scenario if the ball was stuck mid playfield would you still put it in the shooter lane? I understand scenarios where back in the shooter lane makes sense and would do that but for the vast majority of stuck balls I’m not putting it in there.

I also won’t make a ball placement choice on if I feel the game is playing really hard/uncontrollable/drainy or if it’s playing nice,easy and safe.


I use a deterministic approach. If placing the ball in the shooter lane allows for the ball to get back into the same area in which it was stuck, then that’s what I’m doing. Outside of that it’s on the flipper (left half/left flipper, right half/right flipper).

Here’s a stuck ball that happens quite a bit, and if it’s in the ‘red’ area I put it in the shooter lane:


I agree with those decisions and is exactly how I do it now as well after getting heat for letting them choose a flipper if it wasn’t stuck in a shooter lane scenario. I see nothing wrong with those but going back to the EM at ifpa world championships if it was stuck in the middle of the playfield on the side the player wanted you would then place it on that flipper correct? It’s an uncontrollable game as you stated but that doesn’t mean you will always put it in the shooter lane to never give a player any control does it?

No one is purposely getting balls stuck. If running events comes to people purposely getting balls stuck somewhere to get the ball placed somewhere else manually I’m out :wink:

Glad we both have nothing better to do today than to debate a rule that neither of us are in disagreement on :slight_smile:


Middle of the playfield would go to the flipper. The scenario we had was that there was a divot at the top of the gate, so you could short plunge to try and get the ball stuck in exactly that spot where it exits the plunger lane “onto the playfield”.

None of these decisions have to do with whether a game was controllable or not. Like most ruling evolutions this came from an exploit at a particular tournament where the written rule was player had choice.


So the number 1 rule should be fix your games to not cause exploitable issues that we have wrote more rules to work around them :wink:


I like to think that it got us to a better rule than “player choice” which has been a goal for a while to remove any sort of player choice from everything as much as possible :slight_smile: