Jörg Rathlev on 25 Apr 2001 21:30:22 -0000

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spoon-discuss: Removing the debt system

I think one of the main reasons why we don't find a new banker is the debt system. (Another reason is, of course, the 50-points-fine provision in the banker rule, which my proposal would also remove.)

The debt system makes it much harder for the banker to keep up with the game, and makes it harder for players to know their current score. I don't know my exact score, at least. Managing the debts simply is way too much work, and being able to pay a little bit later isn't that much extra fun.

This is especially bad as managing points is an important part of the game. Not knowing one's exact score makes playing less fun, and sometimes even impossible (e.g., you might not even know if you have enough points to purchase a go stone or something, so you can't).

I propose to replace the debt system with something much simpler: Antipoints.

If you don't have enough points to pay something, the points will simply be created and transfered, but antipoints will be created in your posession as well, resulting in a negative score. When you receive points, the process is reversed.

This makes calculating one's score as simple as subtracting the number of points transfered to someone else, and adding the number of points received.

My proposal also proposes to make the banker (instead of the bean counter) responsible for counting the number of points owned by each player. He has to keep track of most of the point transfers anyway because most points are transfered from or to the bank, and since calculating scores is really simple with the antipoint-system, this doensn't seem too much work.