Why should I trap up during multiball if another ball becomes stuck?


Believe it or not there are players in our community who are assholes. There are players who have a rep for restarting games in an unlimited qualifying tournament. There are players who have a rep for exploiting weird edge cases when nobody is looking. There are players who have a rep for throwing tantrums or just acting like shitty people. TDs figure this out pretty quickly and take appropriate action. There are people I keep an eye on way more closely than others. There are people I have banned from my events. There are people I wouldn’t invite into my home or location to play.

So yes, while you may get away with it at one event without getting a ruling against you (to make it clear this is not what happened in this instance I’m just saying in this hypothetical world we’re discussing), its not like these things don’t have consequences down the road.


We definirely have our “flagged” players list where you are far more likely to have an IFPA TD officiate your match compared to other matches we choose to follow. (In situations where there are more matches than officials)

Tim - let me know if we should add you to the list :wink:


Only put me on it if it also comes with a 50% wppr reduction.

Also I must be a pretty bad cheater if my first instinct when I think I discover a “gap” in the rules is to post about it on Tiltforums…


Thanks for explaining your perspective better, Tim. I was watching live and in the chat, and I didn’t understand the nature of your misunderstanding re: player intent.

Given what were were seeing, here were the possible explanations as I saw them at the time:

  • The game was behaving as intended, with the captured ball a beneficial feature of the multiball.
  • There was a stuck ball and @CFFLegs didn’t realize that a beneficial and incorrect 1-ball multiball was happening.

Even though the “knowingly playing an illegal 1-ball advantage” scenario was theoretically possible, I figured it to be so improbable that I didn’t really consider it. And I was wondering why you were! And it turns out you weren’t!

For what it’s worth, I thought the commentators did the right thing finding Josh to ask him to take a look at the situation once they became aware of it. Nobody should expect one of them to say something to @CFFLegs while she was playing.


Not relevant to this recent case in the OP but relevant to the rules:

I agree we should clarify in the rules as to if it is OK for an opponent or non-official to engage a player actively playing that is thought to be playing on during a stuck ball or other beneficial malfunction scenario.

Is it OK to say to the person playing “hey, your playing a 1 ball multiball, trap up” or “hey, plunge the ball in the shooter lane that flew in there” or “hey, trap up, jackpots are registering for no reason”?

The assumption has been that this is ok to do, but the rules are grey.

I think the rules should allow this. The last thing you want to do while your opponent is racking up a score acting oblivious is to walk away to find someone for a ruling and lose track of what is actually happening. I feel the rule might be better something like:

“Any situation which indicates the presence of a beneficial malfunction should be verbally indicated to the active player and brought to the attention of tournament officials. Players are permitted to verbally engage active players to indicate a current beneficial malfunction. Any player player engaging an active player under this rule in an abusive manner may face a ruling under player conduct including possible disqualification from the game and/or event”

I recently had a player flip the f@ck out on me at an event when I calmly told them they were playing a false 2-ball multiball (a ball fell out of a physical lock) and should drain a ball. Screaming at me over and over “Don’t you fucking talk to me and interrupt me on purpose while i’m playing!!!.” he was out of line, but I’d rather the rules more explicitly cover this type of thing.


Probably my worst day of pinball came from a situation like the one @cayle described - I saw someone with a beneficial malfunction, I didn’t know how to address it, I may have come off as a bit hostile but the situation was escalated by the other player and personal insults were thrown my way. I would appreciate if there was a standard IFPAPA procedure for this, and a way to check against abuse of the system.


I haven’t made it all the way through this thread yet, but I had to stop and hit this statement because it brings up a couple of important points.

Ignorance of the law is no excuse.

In Pinburgh 1, Rob Wintler-Cox kept a ball in the plunger lane on Jackbot. There is an obvious solution to this one, plunge it. But he didn’t, and at the time didn’t even realize it was against the rules. The assessed penalty was a replay of the game, keeping whatever points he got in the replay capped at the time of the penalty.

Intent should never matter in a ruling.

That’s the crux of what a lot of these debates have been recently. Removing as many cases as possible where judging intent is even a thing. Sometimes unavoidable, but in this case, a rule is a rule.


100% agree. Although if their ignorance didn’t materially affect the game, I’m not gonna do anything most of the time.

In my opinion it most certainly should sometimes. What if two friends are in matchplay together and one advances from what seems like his friend throwing a game to affect the results of the grouping? If the player tells me he/she didn’t do it on purpose I would do nothing. If they told me they threw the game on purpose to make sure the other person advanced for whatever reason, then I would most certainly do something. What? I don’t know.


It was toy box multiball.

My theory was that because the toy box was disabled, the elevator was coded as a ball lock in it place. (A theory that for some reason ‘made no sense’ to Tim, and when I suggested it was told to ‘stop making stuff up’)

But yeah, I don’t know for sure.


Side question here - we play “intended operation of the machine” balls in the shooter lane as OK during multiball - Pinbot and Jackbot bagatelle field to shooter lane is OK, one-way gate failed or airball is not.

We apply a similar rule to games with one-way gates going to the shooter lane - if that is how the game is supposed to work and the player is not defeating the normal operation of the game in some way or benefiting from a crazy airball, it’s OK.

Is this the correct interpretation of the rules as written?


if this happened in Switzerland please specify - or are you reffering to the I500 game in Germany?


Side side question: I’ve seen this feature mentioned for Jackbot previously, but my experience with the game suggests that the ramp is always in the up position during multiball. Therefore, any time the ball lands in the plunger lane in JB is just as unlikely as any other game, and should be handled the same way as any other machine with no auto plunger – the player should manually put the ball back into play. What am I missing here? Are we talking about some feature of Mega Visor and not the regular part of the multiball? EDIT: Or , based on what @keefer wrote above, maybe the juggle cheat during regular play to raise the vortex value?


I think you’re right - even during Mega Visor, the ramp is only down when you’re in single-ball play after locking the other balls.

So- scratch the JackBot example, and @keefer is right about the ball in the shooter lane ruling.


But @keefer specifically said this happened on JB at Pinburgh 1.


Not that recent - this was Belgian Pinball Open in a head to head match vs. another guy on X-Men. magneto dropped a ball, I mentioned it. And he flipped right the hell out. Was pretty spectacular D:


OK then how about PinBot which does have the ramp down in MB, or BoP (granted not really used in tourneys much). Or what about AFM dirty pool? is that ok, or does that need to be cleared out too?


AFM dirty pool is specifically called out in the IFPAPA rules as being a legal move.


The rules quoted in the OP specifically say that a ball in the plunger lane while other balls are in play must be immediately plunged. IMO the rules don’t leave anything up to interpretation.

Pinbot, BOP, bk2k etc - you MUST plunge the ball or be prepared for a beneficial malfunction ruling against you.


How about World Cup final? Since it’s a timed mode does that on apply?


Its actually detrimental in World Cup Final to not plunge balls because the game will make Germany score faster if you leave balls in the plunger.