Roller Derby Test O'Matic

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Forum > General Discussion > Mercy? No Mercy?

  1. http://rollerderbyworldcup.com/2013/07/16/mercy-rule-jammer-penalty-changes-announced-for-2014-bt-roller-derby-world-cup/

    This seems to be an odd choice of modifications. I get most of them, as it results in more people on track more of the time, but the mercy rule? I'm not sure who gains from that.

  2. If the purpose of a tournament is to figure out which is the best team on the day, a mercy rule makes sense. If the people in charge are organized about things it means the next bout can start sooner and the winning team is rewarded by being that much better rested for their next bout.

    I don't necessarily agree that 100 points is the best cutoff.

    If the purpose of a tournament is for losing teams to gain the maximum of experience by playing to the bitter end of a blowout, then a mercy rule doesn't make sense.

    B&T have made their priorities clear.

    What do you think about the changes to the jammer penalty rules? I am very skeptical of any rule change that makes penalties less punitive, in that it has the potential to encourage more penalties to be committed.

  3. I agree with the dislike of penalties being less of a, well, penalty. I think they are 30 seconds so people spend more time on track? But, penalties are avoidable, they are not things you must get during a game, so I'm not sure the logic.

    With jammer penalties there's a bit more give, as power jams are a bit rubbish, but for blockers? I'd be very curious to know the inner workings of who decided on the rules, and how they decided on them. Or in other words, I'd like them to show their working, the problem, the goal, and how they see this planing out.

    Also, there's already ambiguity; with the jammer release on a "full" pass, is the word "full" there to mean 5 points? Or just completing a pass? If they mean a full 5+ point pass, jammers can intentionally get No Impact No Penalties, which would be a weird addition.

  4. It seems like a rather ham-fisted attempt to minimize passive offense during power jams.

    But I agree completely with you that the way to prevent power jams and/or box time in general is to skate cleaner and not get penalties.

    I think they would have more success by going the other way with it. Instead of making penalties less penaltous they should foul people out at 3 or 4 penalties. I bet that would result in less total penalty time than the 30 second rule.

    The 'full pass' thing is a problem. Add to that what my favorite PBM said about it, which was basically "and just who do they expect to keep track of that?".

  5. My Dad once suggested putting a large spike in the center of everyone's car steering wheel, because everyone would drive incredibly carefully then.

    They could alternatively have used the current rules set, specifically the bit where in a "No Pack" the front team can coast and the rear team must skate. If they clarified that "sustained" failure to reform would never be a penalty for the front team as long as the gap between the two teams is always closing, and that the rear team (as the rules say) MUST sprint, then we'd see sprinting packs & goating during power jams; valid, currently used, and sensible tactics, and not terrible to watch.

    Or, now we're in crazy hypothetical back-seat rules committee land:

    During a Power Jam the pack is always defined as the foremost group of 2 or more skaters.

    But, I think it depends what their goal is. If it's to make games look more interesting even during a super unbalanced game (and don't forget, the World Cup is probably the best exposure we get in the media) their solution, whilst clunky, might well work.

  6. "Clunky but possibly effective" is a good way to sum it up.

    Your dad was on to something. Making things too idiot-proof only serves to create more idiots in the long run.

    I keep coming back to MADE rules when thinking about this tournament. Everything it seems they're trying to prevent goes away when players aren't allowed to stop on the track. And when you give up a point every time you get a penalty.

  7. So it looks like they've backed down on the Mercy rule and have now said its optional, so that's good. They also explained a bit more about why they had the rule.

    I'd love to try MADE, and plan on setting up a little group near me to explore all the non-WFTDA rule sets. I just get the impression, having played WFTDA, I'll just be stuck asking too many "yeah, but what if..." Questions.

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