Forum Archive :
Today I came across some comments mentioning a chouette variation
called "Interlocking Chouette". It's supposed to be a variation played
with many players (>10) and on two boards at once. Can anybody give a
detailed explanation on how it works?
Thanks in advance,
David Levy writes:
Sure. We Backgammon by the Bay players (http://www.bgbythebay.com/bgbb/)
have an interlocking chouette every Monday night.
There are two games, two tables, two boxes, two captains but ONE rotation
for the players outside. Everyone is in both games. When a game finishes,
the winner is the new box, the loser goes to the bottom of the rotation and
the person at the top is the new captain. If scoring on paper (but see last
paragraph), keep separate scoresheets for each table and consolidate at the
end of the night.
You can use your preferred chouette rules for everything else: consulting
or non-consulting, one cube or individual cubes, when do you keep the box,
An interlocking chouette works with as few as six players, though we
usually wait for the seventh before opening the second table. As the game
dwindles late in the evening, we keep the interlock going until there are
(1) We always have the box on the same side of the board, playing with the
same color checkers and moving in the same direction. That makes it easier
for a crew member watching one game to look at the other and figure out
what's going on.
(2) With two score sheets, circling the loser doesn't maintain the
rotation. If scoring on paper (but see last paragraph), it is best to write
everyone's name on a small slip of paper and keep track of the rotation
(3) Beware of the hidden increase in stakes. If you normally play in a five
dollar chouette, with say six players, you are playing for 5/point five
games out of six and 25/point the other, for an average of 8.33/point. The
interlock doubles this. When you're in the box you're playing at one table
for 25/point and the other for 5/point. So you're playing for 30/point 1/3
of the time and 10/point (in the crew at two tables) 2/3 of the time for an
average of 16.67/point.
Things got complicated in our chouette for a number of reasons. We use
individual cubes. Different players wanted to play for different stakes so
those willing to play for more would start with the cube at two when one of
them was in the box. Many extras. Settlements. People dropping out for a
time to get food. One person would by pizza for everyone and collect via a
scoresheet. Scoring errors and rotation errors were varied and frequent. In
short, scoring on paper was a huge pain. So I wrote a program for scoring
the interlocking chouette and managing the rotation and someone brings a
laptop to the game. If interested in more information about the program,
decode my reply-to email address and contact me.
Thomas Koch writes:
1. Does action at the two boards always start at the same time? Or can
the people at board 2 start a new game, even if the game at board 1 is
not over yet?
2. Do Box A and Box B have a special position in the rotation?
3. At what point do new players enter the rotation?
4. With individual cubes the Box who is playing at board 1 has to
watch for her cube at board 2 at the same time, right?
That's it for the moment. This variation sounds like a lot of fun. But
I guess it's quite complicated to get it running for the first time!?
David Levy writes:
> 1. Does action at the two boards always start at the same time?
No, the new game starts immediately.
> 2. Do Box A and Box B have a special position in the rotation?
Think of the active players as not in the rotation. For example:
Table 1 Table 2
Box P1 P2
Captain P3 P4
If P1 loses, P3 is the new Box and P5 then new Captain. The rotation
becomes P6 then P7 then P1
> 3. At what point do new players enter the rotation?
You can handle this as you do in your normal chouette. My scoring program
adds people to the bottom of the rotation immediately so they are ahead of
the loser of the games in progress that they are not involved in. This
differs from most other chouettes I've played in.
> 4. With individual cubes the Box who is playing at board 1 has to
> watch for her cube at board 2 at the same time, right?
Yes. It also means that there are problems if the box and captain of board
1 are the sole takers on board 2. We don't let that happen except in no
contact bearoffs where one of the crew keeps rolling. We also play that if
the box takes some but not all cubes, he must drop the box and captain at
the other table first.
Another hint: If you are the box or the captain and table 1 and much of the
crew doubles at table 2, you probably want to go with the double if it's
not too crazy. You're not going to be able to follow the game at the other
table carefully to find a better moment to double.
> That's it for the moment. This variation sounds like a lot of fun. But
> I guess it's quite complicated to get it running for the first time!?
This seems normal to me now. The San Francisco Bay Area has been running
interlocking chouettes back to the 1970's. Fun, fast and better than box
takes a partner.
- Automatic doubles with carryover (Alexander Zamanian, Jan 1999)
- California rule (Peter Anderson+, Nov 2001)
- Captain drops and others take (Grafix8888+, Sept 2000)
- Chouette cube strategy (Stanley E. Richards+, Mar 2011)
- Cube proxy (Ilia Guzei+, June 2003)
- Dream chouette (Phil Simborg+, Sept 2009)
- Extras (Daniel Murphy, Feb 1997)
- Extras (Albert Steg, July 1996)
- Extras (Anthony R Wuersch, Mar 1995)
- Fish-hunt rules (Chuck Bower+, Feb 2006)
- Interlocking chouette (wintom+, Jan 2008)
- Jacoby rule (Doug Doub+, Aug 2005)
- Legal plays only (Gregg Cattanach+, Aug 2001)
- Los Angeles Rules (Joe Russell, Apr 2013)
- Los Angeles Rules (Justin N.+, Aug 2011)
- Lure of the chouette (Bob Koca+, July 2004)
- Mandatory beaver (Roland Scheicher+, Mar 2002)
- Mandatory beaver (David Montgomery, Jan 1999)
- Money management (Albert Steg, Sept 1998)
- Online chouette rules (John Graas, July 2003)
- Order of succession (leobueno+, Aug 2011)
- Order of succession (Albert Steg, June 1995)
- Procedure when captain doubles (Bill Riles+, Feb 2010)
- Split cube actions (Neil Kazaross, June 2003)
- Strategy (Michael J. Zehr, Sept 1998)
- Variable stakes (Christopher Yep+, Apr 2000)
- Waiting for teammate to double (Øystein Johansen+, July 2001)
- When box takes a partner (Dan Pelton+, Mar 2009)
- When does player retain the box? (Daniel Murphy, Jan 1997)
- When is consulting allowed? (Dave+, Mar 2000)