The Yahtzee Playing SurfaceNovember 9, 2011
Dear Yahtzee Manifesto,
Last weekend I invited over some friends for some Tex-Mex and a spirited post-dinner game of Yahtzee. On not one, but two different occasions we had quite a controversial situation arise. While my friend Larry was tossing his second roll of the dice, the dice coming out of the cup collided with the dice he had set aside, making a complete mess of an otherwise valiant attempt at locking up the Upper Section bonus. This very same thing happened to my friend Cheeto two turns later! In each case they chose to take whatever course of action most padded their score… I was left with such consternation that I couldn’t even offer a ruling and the game carried on. To this day I carry around a small amount of emotional pain in feeling that, as the host, I should have been more responsive in coming up with a fair and just house rule. The game felt completely tainted and I haven’t been myself since. Please help me in my anguish.
Frustrated over Fives,
Jamal Pickels - Rockport, Texas
We here at the World Yahtzee Institute feel your pain. It’s a shame such careless play marred what was sure to be a spectacular night of food, friends, and sweet Yahtzee action. The problem you pose is as profound as it is perplexing. So much so that it prompted Louise and I to throw a few games in order to simulate such an occurrence. I must say that after many o’ lively game (is there any other kind?) we found it difficult to even replicate such an unfortunate occurrence. Now it must be mentioned that we were playing on one of the World Yahtzee Institute’s rather stately beech tables donated to us from the estate of Sir Edmund Hillary. With such a bountiful playing surface in which to roll, we found no problem in avoiding our dice we set aside.
Now since you were playing in Texas, and everything is bigger there, we must assume that you, being the conscientious and courteous Texan host that you are, provided your guests with an ample playing surface in which to toss the five beauties. With this in mind, it is always good to remember that mistakes do happen (take the creation of the Jeep Liberty, for example). As such, it is our recommendation that the player, in this case either Larry or Cheeto, be asked to put the set aside dice back to their original state and preform a re-roll. While re-rolls are typically avoided at all costs, we find no other way to restore the integrity of the game, which is of course top priority. It may be wise to kindly remind the person who caused the infraction that it takes little effort to place the dice a safe distance from their tossing pathway. Your suffering over such an unfortunate occurrence only proves you have a passion for the game and its values. For this, we commend you.