Sunday, January 16, 2011

Bacaball: Scoring

As previously noted there are four designated flag hang locations on a Bacaball field. Three flags are placed randomly at 3 of the 4 locations prior to each point. The "free" flag serves the same function as the flag used in (xball) Race 2 in that a team must hang the "free" flag in the opponent's start station in order to score a point. It doesn't matter when the "free" flag is pulled nor what the on-field conditions may be. Each of the other two flags are team specific flags and may only score for a specific team. The team flags score a point when successfully pulled. A successful pull is one that occurs with live opponent(s) on the field when a referee signals possession, a clean pull. The traditional rule for flag pull possession has been pulling the flag and moving some minor distance, 5 feet, with the flag, without being eliminated. The point is scored as soon as the referee signals a clean pull. On any given point it is possible to score 2 points maximum.
The only other team flag result possible is if a live member of the other team successfully pulls the opponent's team flag. This results in a dead flag that cannot score for the duration of that point.

Under current rules the flag is a relatively meaningless afterthought. Teams play to eliminate all their opponents before they pull the flag and frequently don't even need to hang it if the opponent wants or needs to save clock time. Otherwise the only uncertainty with a current flag hang is the possibility the player hanging the flag is determined to have a prior hit.

In Bacaball the current scoring strategy will continue to exist along with the added complications presented by the opportunity for an additional score during the play of any point. Deficits can be made up faster. Strategies and tactics become truly demanding. Do you play for flag pulls? Play to take away your opponent's pulls or do you play standard strategy of scoring after the opponent is eliminated? Or do you wait for certain flag arrangements on the random draw? Additionally, spectators can see from the breakout what each team is likely looking to do as the addition of team flags provide a focus for understanding what each team is attempting to do as each point unfolds.

Next: Why the larger field and six players?


Mike said...


Larger field + six players to make the game more dynamic I would assume - ie) more strategy with more players etc.

I'd love to see this tried somewhere and filmed and some feedback. Seems really neat.

J-Bird said...

i like it. teams will be able to actually play to their athletic strength.

sdawg said...

I like the direction, but why not just keep one flag an go to points, in the old fashioned way. For example, live player (7pt), kill (3pt), pull (40pt), hang (10pt), with a time limit and the race-to goal set at 700 (i.e., 7 maxes). If both teams end a round with more than 700 points, do a tie breaker with a one-on-one, which is always a crowd-pleaser.

You might get the same effect without adding complexity or introducing potential refereeing difficulty.

Baca Loco said...

Because the object is to create a more diverse game, not more points. The old-fashioned way would result in slow play because of the premium on live bodies. And I would never, never, ever have a match turn on a one-on-one.

raehl said...

The scoring is needlessly complicated.

Pulling the opponent's flag so they can't get a point (changing 0-1 to 0-0), or pulling your own flag before the opponent pulls it (changing a 0-0 score to 1-0), are both a one-point swing. Winning the 'game' so that you can hang the neutral flag is a 2-point swing (changing 0-1 to 1-0). If you just have one flag worth two points when hung, and two flags worth one point when pulled, you get essentially the same result without all the extra complication.

Bacaball is very similar to a couple formats I've put down on paper (scoring wise; penalty wise I think its entirely unworkable) and probably even a few formats I've posted on the internet over the past couple decades. Randomly setting the flags each point is something I'd never though of, however, and I think adds some value to the format as it changes up the field layout a bit each point without moving an bunkers. I'm not sure I would advocate "random" flag placement over a rotation of flag placements though.

J-Bird said...

am i the only one who thinks that if a team of refs in an NFL game can police 22 players and remember every hand-signal, rule, penalty for the infraction AND have to do it all in a really fast time -- we can handle the penalty flag system.

Baca Loco said...

Well, J-Bird, I'm obviously on your side so that makes 2 of us. ;-)

Just to show you I'm in a good mood I won't mock your silly and erroneous simplification of the scoring process. Tho I am impressed that you'd like to take pre-credit for an unnecessarily complex & unworkable format variation. Is that the very definition of chutzpah? I think it is.

Reiner Schafer said...

J-Bird, how much does an NFL ref get paid? What is their occupation besides NFL ref? How many people fight to get those jobs and are willing to put in the time, effort and training to win one?

You really can't compare a well paid profession with basically volunteer positions.

J-Bird said...

Reiner, gotta elevate the sport someway -- this is just another step in that direction. Also, most of those guys started at a youth football level, getting paid close to nothing on a monthly basis.

Reiner Schafer said...

Oh, I'm not saying that a well-trained referee core is a necessity. It's just going to be very difficult to accomplish finding a consistent group of fine outstanding ladies and gentlemen willing to put in the time and effort needed to learn a complex set of rules and get the training to make split second decisions for little remuneration. I'm not trying to be negative. Just stating the obvious difficulty in achieving this goal that I am sure everyone is already aware of.

It's a bit of a dilemma really. Such a referee core is one of the essential elements for a chance of success, but with dwindling numbers taking part, it becomes even harder to accomplish.

Reiner Schafer said...

Sorry, the first line in my previous post should have said "I'm not saying a well-trained referee core isn't a necessity"

Anonymous said...

Refs or no refs, I'm ready to play....put me in coach!