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mikepage
01-15-2008, 02:39 PM
Here is a description of the practice game FARGO

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHj6KUw8xzE

dr_dave
01-15-2008, 03:05 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>
Here is a description of the practice game FARGO

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHj6KUw8xzE <hr /></blockquote>Thanks for the video. As always, nicely done. FARGO seems like an excellent drill for accurately measuring offensive ability at any level.

FYI, I've posted links to your video and the rules page under "drills" here (http://billiards.colostate.edu/resources/index.html). I also have links to other useful drills (from me and others) there.

Regards,
Dave

Artemus
01-15-2008, 03:55 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>
Here is a description of the practice game FARGO
<hr /></blockquote>

Fargo looks like a variation of the Allen Hopkins Q Skill Challenge which has the following rules. I like the rating system of this and the fact everyone is held to the same standard of running the first 10 until getting the last 5 without getting greedy or jumping the gun. Both games are good: (Actually, the rating system and scoring is double what's listed in the Hopkins game) This is a shortened version of 50 racks instead of 100. The ratings should also be doubled for the longer version - 10 racks =
1 set X 10 sets = 100 racks.

1. Rack fifteen balls on the Foot Spot, in any order, and place the cue ball ON the Head Spot. Break the balls. If you miscue or miss the cue ball completely, it is a foul. Re-Rack, break again and subtract one from your score. If you miscue and contact the rack, you may choose to continue shooting, leaving the balls where they lie and not take a foul.

2. If you scratch on the break, it is a minus 1, unless the cue ball goes off the table, then it is a minus 2. After a scratch on the break, you may place the cue ball on either the Head Spot of Foot Spot and shoot any ball on the table, or place the cue ball anywhere behind the Head String and shoot any ball above the Head String. On the break, if you scratch or the cue ball goes off the table, all balls made on the break stay down but do not count as points. If you do not scratch on the break, then all balls made on the break count as one point each.

3. After the break, if you do not have a shot or do not like the shot you have, you may choose one of three options. (a) Place the cue ball anywhere behind the Head String and shoot any ball above the Head String. (b) Place the cue ball on either the Head Spot or the Foot Spot and shoot any ball.
(c) Place the rack over the cue ball (where it lies) and move the cue ball anywhere inside the rack and shoot any ball. All of the options noted above are a penalty and incur a minus 1.

4. After the break, whether you made a ball or not, proceed to shoot, calling each shot. Try to run the table, shoting the ball in any order UNTIL THERE ARE FIVE BALLS REMAINING. If you do pocket ten balls, then the last five balls must be shot IN ROTATION (in numerical order starting with the lowest number ball). If you MISS A SHOT, the rack is OVER. There are no second chances or mulligans! The first ten balls score 1 point each, and the last five balls score 2 points each. On each rack you can score a MAXIMUM of 20 points.

5. When there are six balls on the table and you pocket two or more balls in one shot, they all stay down and are each worth 1 point. Shoot the remaining balls in rotation, in which each ball is worth 2 points each.

6. Ten racks comprise a session. In one session you can score a maximum of 200 points. The score from FIVE SESSIONS (50 racks) determines your Official Rating. The highest possible Official Rating is a perfect score of 1000 points.

Here is the Rating System:

0-150 - Recreational Player
151-300 - Intermediate Player
301-450 - Advanced Player
451-600- Developing Pro
601-800 - Semi-Pro
801-900 - Pro
901-1000 - Touring Pro

mikepage
01-15-2008, 04:47 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Artemus:</font><hr>

Fargo looks like a variation of the Allen Hopkins Q Skill Challenge [...]<hr /></blockquote>

Yes that's right. Below in red is the original post introducing FARGO (Nov. 1999). It was titled "proposed Q-test alternative."

Since then many people have found the decision of when to switch introduces a substantial new depth with it's own strategy that may make it a better game than it is an offensive skill test.

The flip side of that, though, is that it is the only skill-rating test I know of that is not a mere measure of OFFENSIVE skill. Q-skill, EO, progressive practice tests, etc. essentially measure a player's ability to make balls and control the cueball.

Take, for instance non-elite players Cowboy and Sherlock. These two have the same ball-making skills and the same cueball control. But Sherlock beats the pants off of Cowboy in an 8-ball or 9-ball tournament match or gambling match.

We imagine Sherlock has a much better defensive game than Cowboy. Does that mean Sherlock plays better safes? Oh that's probably part of it. But the bigger part, I think, is that Sherlock has better self awareness; he knows when to duck and when to go for the out. He does a better job playing the percentages.

Despite having the same offensive skill, Cowboy would do noticeably worse than Sherlock playing FARGO. Fargo scores, which include a penalty for either overestimating or underestimating your own ability, are probably a better measure of how people would actually match up. Try it for a while, and I think you will see what I mean.

****************
(from Nov. 1999)
<font color="red">
I have an idea for an alternative test to use for a standardized rating.
Here are some of what I think are desirable features in such a test.

1. simple rules
2. takes a short amount of time
3. measures a mix of skills
4. is a good test for beginning through pro-level players
5. does not have a big chance component
6. has no major strategy/skill component unique to the game

Equal Offense and Q-skill each have some of these features and fail at
others. Before saying my new idea (skip to the bottom if you're
impatient), I'll say how I think EO and QS do on these measures.

1. SIMPLE RULES

EO rules are simple. QS rules are mostly simple but after-the-break
options are complicated.

2. TAKES A SHORT AMOUNT OF TIME

EO takes me 45 minutes while QS takes me 30 minutes. That's a big
advantage of QS if all else was equal.

3. MEASURES A MIX OF SKILLS

EO measures 14.1 skills, (including opening up new racks, a specialized
skill . These includes seeing patterns, avoiding cue ball trouble, soft
shots, little cue ball movement, breaking up clusters etc. Q-skill
measures a mix of 14.1 and rotation (9-ball) skills. The rotation
component of QS adds a lot: tougher shots, hitting harder, multi-rail
position, etc.

4. IS A GOOD TEST FOR BEGINNERS THROUGH PRO-LEVEL

EO and QS are both good tests for beginning players. In fact players who
average less than 40 or 50 or so are doing almost the same test. Both are
progressive (get harder as you go) in the sense that you are only trying
the tougher component (opening up a new rack in EO or running balls in
rotation in QS) if you first succeeded at the easier component (hitting in
a bunch of balls in any order). Both are good for intermediate players
too. Both fail, however, for strong players. Maxing out an inning of
either game is too easy for these to be good skill tests for strong
players. The scores for players who max out two thirds or more of their
innings are determined by rare screwups, so this is an inefficient way to
distinguish a middle-of-the pack touring pro from efren, for example.

5. DOES NOT HAVE A BIG CHANCE COMPONENT

Chance components average out in the long run, but that--the 'long
run'--is the problem. In a skill test you don't want to wait for the long
run. Reducing the chance component where possible allows the testee to
zero in on his true average more quickly. The
zero-points-for-scratch-on-the-break in the MM Q test is an example of
this. It introduces more variations in a person's score and so is bad for
a skill test.

************

The following idea removes, imo, many of the deficiencies of EO and QS
mentioned above.

****MY IDEA****

In a nutshell, it's similar to the Q-test with one major variation: switch
to rotation whenever you choose.

_____________________________________

play 10 innings.

Place a coin heads up on the rail; turn the coin tails up to switch to
rotation mode. Balls pocketed before switching to rotation score 1 point;
balls pocketed in rotation component score two points each.

Open break; no penalty for scratch.

Spot balls pocketed on break.

Start with bih anywhere on table.

call shot for everything.

Foul (scratch or no rail) ends inning.

Only balls pocketed on legal shot score points. Extra balls pocketed
score 'at the going rate.'
_______________________________________

So a beginning player will do basically never switch to rotation. An
intermediate player might switch to rotation after about 10 balls (after
fewer on a particularly good table or more on a tough table). A strong
player might just take a few shots to knock balls into the clear and then
switch to rotation. Ten rounds of this would separate efren from the
middle-of-the-pack pro just fine. All my proposed rules have some
justification interms of the desirable features listed above.

</font color>

Artemus
01-15-2008, 05:01 PM
This, as you posted is the primary difference:
"In a nutshell, it's similar to the Q-test with one major variation: switch
to rotation whenever you choose."

Both can be good depending on what games you primarily play. I think if a person is focusing more on 14.1, he's better off playing Q-Skills because it makes him have to create his own patterns further into the rack, that is unless he plays it safe in Fargo and doesn't opt to go in rotation at all to acquire additional points.

If a guy jumps the gun for more points, then it's connect the dots like 9-ball.

But as I stated earlier, both games are good and maybe the best aspect of both is that you're required to maintain focus and feel some pressure instead of banging aimlessly and not caring if you miss.

Ralph_Kramden
01-16-2008, 12:33 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>
Here is a description of the practice game FARGO

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHj6KUw8xzE <hr /></blockquote>

I like the passive/aggressive way the scoring system plays out.

Scoring by pocketing any ball would be easier than 14:1 because it is an open break with BIH. Most balls will be spread out and not tightly clustered inside a semi broken rack. Also the last ball and cueball position would not be an issue.
Scoring would be harder than 14:1 after the numerical runout option because to earn progressively higher averages the balls need to be pocketed from the lowest numerical order.

If playing an opponent for a wager and taking the passive route, 15 points could easily be achieved but could be costly. Being too agressive may or may not earn more points and could also be costly.

In this game thinking ahead is the key as to when to start the lowest number ball run. IMO. You can pocket any ball but must be able to clear the clusters and blocking balls before starting that run. The sooner the balls are open the more aggressive the game can become.

A very good game Mike. Thanks for sharing.

Artemus
01-16-2008, 03:50 PM
The one aspect of all pool games that's important is the BREAK. Not only is it important to make balls on the break (except for 14.1) but to control the CB in order to continue the run.

What I don't like about FARGO is that it does nothing to teach you the importance of breaking or reward you. If you make balls on the break they need to be spotted. If you don't get a good break and separate the rack, you can still open them up on the very first shot if you choose to with BIH. Also, if the CB gets away from you leaving a long difficult shot or has you snookered, it doesn't matter because you again get BIH. If you scratch, there's no penalty.

Yes, you can also get BIH with Q-Skills, but it's a 1 point reduction in your score. Most players are unwilling to give that one point up and end up taking the long hard shot and blow the entire rack with a big fat zero. It's also a penalty if you scratch or knock the CB off the table.

In 8 ball, 9 ball, or rotation if you get a bad break with no balls made or bad position, with better players that's a loss because you're sitting on your butt while they're running out.

I think altering the break rules would strengthen the game of Fargo and also not getting BIH. Until there is more emphasis on the break and controlling the CB on the break, I think Fargo is the weaker game of the two compared to Q Skills. YOU MUST BE GOOD AT BREAKING THE RACK AND CONTROLLING THE CB IN REAL GAMES INVOLVING 2 PLAYERS.

bsmutz
01-16-2008, 04:48 PM
So I take it that, in your humble (not) opinion, that one pocket and Snooker are also inferior games in that there is less importance placed on making a ball on the break? Aren't those games played with two players, also? It's just a different game than what most people are used to playing and also allows for tracking one's progress whether played competitively or not. No big deal if it doesn't incorporate safety play or stress making a ball on the break and getting position for the next shot. If it is to you, I recommend changing the rules to suit yourself.

wolfdancer
01-16-2008, 05:13 PM
Mike, thanks for the post. Looks like a good way to practice.

Artemus
01-16-2008, 05:15 PM
Now you're turning into a stalker? Why don't you STFU you little whine bag!

Sure, I could have included 1P like I did 14.1, but anybody with an ounce of sense would have figured it out, unlike you. That's why you don't fit in with the Googan gang, you lack about 70 IQ points. Stay in the NPR where you post the most and belong.

When you break in Fargo, you don't use a soft break or safety type break. It's an 8-ball/9-ball type hard break.
Therefore, if most players are using this to prepare for 8-ball and 9-ball, (which are the two most played games in leagues or elsewhere) break practice is vital.

Fargo is an excellent practice game. I happen to see the break rules as a major weakness.

bsmutz
01-16-2008, 07:42 PM
"YOU MUST BE GOOD AT BREAKING THE RACK AND CONTROLLING THE CB IN REAL GAMES INVOLVING 2 PLAYERS."
Sorry, I thought you meant what you wrote. My bad.

av84fun
01-17-2008, 12:20 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Artemus:</font><hr> Now you're turning into a stalker? Why don't you STFU you little whine bag!

Sure, I could have included 1P like I did 14.1, but anybody with an ounce of sense would have figured it out, unlike you. That's why you don't fit in with the Googan gang, you lack about 70 IQ points. Stay in the NPR where you post the most and belong.

When you break in Fargo, you don't use a soft break or safety type break. It's an 8-ball/9-ball type hard break.
Therefore, if most players are using this to prepare for 8-ball and 9-ball, (which are the two most played games in leagues or elsewhere) break practice is vital.

Fargo is an excellent practice game. I happen to see the break rules as a major weakness. <hr /></blockquote>

I agree with you Artemus. A scratch on the break should be loss of rack.

In addition, as I stated on response to Mike's post on another forum, I think the absence of safety play is also a flaw in any game that would rank the shooter as Fargo does.

If you are a poor breaker and have a weak safety game, then whatever your rank in Fargo and other similar one person games would drop like a stone in actual competition.

Below, I have copied my post from the other forum which suggests a modification to Ghost Ball to incorporate the possibility of safety play. A similar rule could be adopted for other games but the ranking points would have to be adjusted somewhat...although I think they are pretty much guesstimates anyway.

Thanks Mike! I am a big fan of single player games for exactly the reasons you cited...including the ability to simulate real pressure....and I will certainly try Fargo.

The one issue I have with most such games is that they are entirely offensive and safety skills, which are critical to nearly all pool games, are absent and therefore, not measured in the "rating" scores.

I don't mean to hijack this thread but I am just curious if you read my posts re: "Ghost Plus" which introduces a safety option into the standard Ghost Ball game.

Briefly, you play the Ghost but have one opportunity per rack to play a CALLED safety.

If you leave the Ghost hooked requiring a 1 rail kick, you get ball in hand and can continue the run.

In the Advanced version, you need to leave a jump shot or at least 2 rail kick and if not, you lose the rack.

In either version, a scratch on the break is loss of rack which adds at least some ranking weight to breaking skills.

Artemus
01-17-2008, 05:51 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote bsmutz:</font><hr> "YOU MUST BE GOOD AT BREAKING THE RACK AND CONTROLLING THE CB IN REAL GAMES INVOLVING 2 PLAYERS."
Sorry, I thought you meant what you wrote. My bad. <hr /></blockquote>

Actually, I AM. Are YOU? Have YOU played both Fargo and Q-Skills to make a comparison? Could you possibly even run a rack of either if your life depended on it? Have you EVER run a rack of ANY GAME as long as you've played? Do you even spend enough time at the table to qualify for playing, or are you just a forum mouth. On the first 2 pages of the main forum, I've seen no posts or nothing by you on pool that's of benefit to anyone. There aren't even any posts at all except for the stalking ones.

The little northwest stalker, NUMBNUTZ, strikes again like a stealth pool banger in the night.

Artemus
01-17-2008, 06:04 AM
Right, Jim. Yesterday I played many games of Fargo and Q-Skills with equal time to both and all I can say is BIH after the break and no penalties for a scratch is HUGE between the two games. Sure, they're played a little differently as the game progresses with your shooting choices, but the BIH gives a major advantage. It wouldn't matter to a newbie player or a banger because they'd miss anyway, get out of position, or play wrong patterns. But it does matter to someone that has half a game.

I'm not quite understanding how your safety play idea can be integrated for those two games. I think you're correct and on to something though about the lack of safety training and practice. Hey, maybe the key is to invent a game for 1 or 2 players that only scores points with a good safety and you never pocket balls. The more difficult version of the game would be when there are less balls on the table.

DeadCrab
01-17-2008, 08:41 AM
What if you scratch after the break?

Does that end the rack?

Artemus
01-17-2008, 08:47 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote DeadCrab:</font><hr>
What if you scratch after the break?

Does that end the rack?
<hr /></blockquote>

The rule for Fargo is vague, unless if the scratch rule on regular shots also applies to the break. That would end the inning with a Zero, but I'm not certain.

Here's the rule again for Q-Skills:

2. If you scratch on the break, it is a minus 1, unless the cue ball goes off the table, then it is a minus 2. After a scratch on the break, you may place the cue ball on either the Head Spot of Foot Spot and shoot any ball on the table, or place the cue ball anywhere behind the Head String and shoot any ball above the Head String. On the break, if you scratch or the cue ball goes off the table, all balls made on the break stay down but do not count as points. If you do not scratch on the break, then all balls made on the break count as one point each.

3. After the break, if you do not have a shot or do not like the shot you have, you may choose one of three options. (a) Place the cue ball anywhere behind the Head String and shoot any ball above the Head String. (b) Place the cue ball on either the Head Spot or the Foot Spot and shoot any ball.
(c) Place the rack over the cue ball (where it lies) and move the cue ball anywhere inside the rack and shoot any ball. All of the options noted above are a penalty and incur a minus 1.

mikepage
01-17-2008, 08:56 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote DeadCrab:</font><hr>
What if you scratch after the break?

Does that end the rack?

<hr /></blockquote>

No, it doesn't. This is something we discussed quite a bit nearly a decade ago. There were a few people, like there are here, who felt it should. But the opinion held by most and that won the day is there should be no penalty for scratching on the break. All may not agree, but this is something that was considered carefully and decided the way it was for, imo, good reasons.

Artemus
01-17-2008, 09:02 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote DeadCrab:</font><hr>
What if you scratch after the break?

Does that end the rack?

<hr /></blockquote>

No, it doesn't. This is something we discussed quite a bit nearly a decade ago. There were a few people, like there are here, who felt it should. But the opinion held by most and that won the day is there should be no penalty for scratching on the break. All may not agree, but this is something that was considered carefully and decided the way it was for, imo, good reasons. <hr /></blockquote>

And those reasons would be (fill in the blanks)

How about the BIH vs. NO BIH option?

Let me ask you a question. It didn't dawn on me until this morning. The name of the game is FARGO. You are from FARGO. Did YOU have something to do with altering Q-Skills to create a different version called FARGO?
Could this be "pride of authorship or creativity"?

1+1=2. See how I can also use math formulas to figure out life's everyday problems? /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

DeadCrab
01-17-2008, 09:08 AM
Right. But what about a scratch AFTER the break?

Artemus
01-17-2008, 09:12 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote DeadCrab:</font><hr>
Right. But what about a scratch AFTER the break?

<hr /></blockquote>

Rules from both games clearly state, "END OF INNING" "END OF RACK"

mikepage
01-17-2008, 09:47 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Artemus:</font><hr> [...]
Let me ask you a question. It didn't dawn on me until this morning. The name of the game is FARGO. You are from FARGO. Did YOU have something to do with altering Q-Skills to create a different version called FARGO?
Could this be "pride of authorship or creativity"?

<hr /></blockquote>

It's not that complicated, and nobody's hiding the ball. Read the red portion in the fourth post of this thread to find exactly why, how, and when this game began.

And no, I didn't name the game. Somebody else (Tom Simpson or Pat Johnson??--I don't remember) proposed the name.

[ QUOTE ]
1+1=2. See how I can also use math formulas to figure out life's everyday problems? /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif <hr /></blockquote>
Amazing.

wolfdancer
01-17-2008, 10:39 AM
1+1=2. See how I can also use math formulas to figure out life's everyday problems?


Amazing. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

wolfdancer
01-17-2008, 10:59 AM
In reality, Bill is a nice guy that you would enjoy meeting...well, most folks would enjoy meeting. He has a pool room, a separate building on his property that has both a 9 ft'r, and a 10 ft'r, that's dedicated to snooker play.
He and his wife are great hosts;and make you feel at home the minute you enter their house.
Bill's a pretty strong player, and an excellent snooker player. Despite your earlier claim that he might not be too smart,he is an engineer for a large company.
He might not agree with you, but "STFU"?....that's kind of an NPR reply
Fargo might not be for you....but I tried it yesterday, and seemed like a good way to keep track of one's offensive skills.

Artemus
01-17-2008, 11:40 AM
Try Q-Skills next and report back on the difference between it and Fargo based on the BREAK RULES and 1st shot after break without CB in hand.

Maybe I would like him and maybe I wouldn't. Maybe he would like me and maybe he wouldn't. Forums have a way of either bringing out the worst in people or having others form opinions that are totally off the mark from reality.

"STFU" might be a NPR response, but stalking is NOT GOOD anywhere. I don't seek him out here or on the NPR. I'd appreciate you having a fireside chat with him now also, OK dad? You aren't one of the self appointed forum police officers here, are you? I hope not, you seem like a decent enough guy.

av84fun
01-17-2008, 11:47 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Artemus:</font><hr> Right, Jim. Yesterday I played many games of Fargo and Q-Skills with equal time to both and all I can say is BIH after the break and no penalties for a scratch is HUGE between the two games. Sure, they're played a little differently as the game progresses with your shooting choices, but the BIH gives a major advantage. It wouldn't matter to a newbie player or a banger because they'd miss anyway, get out of position, or play wrong patterns. But it does matter to someone that has half a game.

I'm not quite understanding how your safety play idea can be integrated for those two games. I think you're correct and on to something though about the lack of safety training and practice. Hey, maybe the key is to invent a game for 1 or 2 players that only scores points with a good safety and you never pocket balls. The more difficult version of the game would be when there are less balls on the table. <hr /></blockquote>

If I understand Fargo correctly, you run out...in straight pool fashion, with an option to convert to rotation in order to double your point score from then on.

The safety option could therefore, be integrated in the same fashion as in Ghost Plus...except only withing the rotation portion of it.

During the rotation segment, at any point when you get out of line or there just isn't a reasonable route to the next ball then you could call and play a safety as per the Ghost Ball rules.

I LIKE single palyer games...all kinds of them...but when those games purport to measure the skill of the player, when scratchs on the break are forgiven and/or when no safety play is allowed, then the rating system is simply not going to comport with real world play since breaking and safety play are crucial to actual skill achievment.

Regards,
Jim

Artemus
01-17-2008, 11:55 AM
OK, here's what I'm not getting, you stated the following?

"During the rotation segment, at any point when you get out of line or there just isn't a reasonable route to the next ball then you could call and play a safety as per the Ghost Ball rules."

Isn't the whole reason for calling and playing a safety to STYMIE OR SNOOKER the incoming player in a two man game in addition to not getting a foul called on yourself?

If you don't have a shot in the rotation portion, and you pull off a truely effective safety, wouldn't you have at least as bad a shot if not worse? Either way, it ends your rack. Correct me if I'm missing the point.

mikepage
01-17-2008, 01:01 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote av84fun:</font><hr> [...]

The one issue I have with most such games is that they are entirely offensive and safety skills, which are critical to nearly all pool games, are absent and therefore, not measured in the "rating" scores.

I don't mean to hijack this thread but I am just curious if you read my posts re: "Ghost Plus" which introduces a safety option into the standard Ghost Ball game.

Briefly, you play the Ghost but have one opportunity per rack to play a CALLED safety.

If you leave the Ghost hooked requiring a 1 rail kick, you get ball in hand and can continue the run.

In the Advanced version, you need to leave a jump shot or at least 2 rail kick and if not, you lose the rack.

In either version, a scratch on the break is loss of rack which adds at least some ranking weight to breaking skills.
<hr /></blockquote>

I like it! That's a nice variation to playing the ghost.

Here's a two-player game I made up a year or two ago that is just about playing safeties. You hit in balls like in 9-ball, but only for the purpose of setting up for a safety. I'll call it FARGOHOOK, so named because, well... 1+1=2.

http://myweb.cableone.net/fargopage/fargohook.pdf

Artemus
01-17-2008, 01:08 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>

I like it! That's a nice variation to playing the ghost.

Here's a two-player game I made up a year or two ago that is just about playing safeties. You hit in balls like in 9-ball, but only for the purpose of setting up for a safety. I'll call it FARGOHOOK, so named because, well... 1+1=2.

http://myweb.cableone.net/fargopage/fargohook.pdf <hr /></blockquote>

AMAZING! Now you're catching on. See how much easier life is for yourself and especially others when you can break the math down to its simplist form? I think you may have picked up a few new followers as a result. /ccboard/images/graemlins/wink.gif

av84fun
01-17-2008, 05:10 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>

I like it! That's a nice variation to playing the ghost.

Here's a two-player game I made up a year or two ago that is just about playing safeties. You hit in balls like in 9-ball, but only for the purpose of setting up for a safety. I'll call it FARGOHOOK, so named because, well... 1+1=2.

http://myweb.cableone.net/fargopage/fargohook.pdf <hr /></blockquote>

Thanks Mike and amazingly enough, I too (very recently and without knowledge of your game) invented a safety game that I call Tennessee Hook 'Em. It is MUCH like yours.

In my game, you break as ususal and spot any ball(s) pocketed...first on the head spot, second on the foot spot and their on the center spot. If you pocket more than 3 balls...scream YES!!!!...and toss them on the table at random! (-:

But the objective is NOT to pocket the lowest numbered ball but rather, to make contact with it but leave the opponent (phantom or real) hooked...i.e. to play a safety shot.

1 point is awarded for a successful hook requiring only a 1 rail kick. 2 points are awarded for a hook requiring a jump shot or 2 (or more) rail kick.

After each successful hook, the lowest numbered ball is removed from the table and the shooter gets BIH again and proceeds to play a safety on the next lowest numbered shot.

Play continues until there are only 2 balls left on the table (since hooks are rarely played in that situation).

That's the practice version. In the competitive version, just like in your game, the opponent can challenge the existence of the hook but must PROVE a non-hook by making contact with the OB with an unchalked cue and without contacting a rail.

The shooter's inning ends when he fails to achieve a successful hook.

The player accomplishing a hook on the 3rd from last ball...leaving 2 balls on the table, breaks the next rack and continues until failing to accomplish a hook.

As you can see, our two games are similar...great minds right! (-:

Regards,
Jim

Artemus
01-17-2008, 05:24 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>
I like it! That's a nice variation to playing the ghost.
<hr /></blockquote>

Do you mean that's a nice variation to playing the ghost in 9-ball or 8-ball, or do you mean that's a nice variation to playing Fargo and could be included as an option in the Rules of The Game? In other words, do you think the rules should be changed to add the safety feature?

Artemus
01-17-2008, 05:29 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote av84fun:</font><hr> I too (very recently and without knowledge of your game) invented a safety game that I call Tennessee Hook 'Em. It is MUCH like yours.

In my game, you break as ususal and spot any ball(s) pocketed...first on the head spot, second on the foot spot and their on the center spot. If you pocket more than 3 balls...scream YES!!!!...and toss them on the table at random! (-:

But the objective is NOT to pocket the lowest numbered ball but rather, to make contact with it but leave the opponent (phantom or real) hooked...i.e. to play a safety shot.

1 point is awarded for a successful hook requiring only a 1 rail kick. 2 points are awarded for a hook requiring a jump shot or 2 (or more) rail kick.

After each successful hook, the lowest numbered ball is removed from the table and the shooter gets BIH again and proceeds to play a safety on the next lowest numbered shot.

Play continues until there are only 2 balls left on the table (since hooks are rarely played in that situation).

That's the practice version. In the competitive version, just like in your game, the opponent can challenge the existence of the hook but must PROVE a non-hook by making contact with the OB with an unchalked cue and without contacting a rail.

The shooter's inning ends when he fails to achieve a successful hook.

The player accomplishing a hook on the 3rd from last ball...leaving 2 balls on the table, breaks the next rack and continues until failing to accomplish a hook.

As you can see, our two games are similar...great minds right! (-:

Regards,
Jim

<hr /></blockquote>

I like this game and think it should stand on its own and be played in ADDITON to Q-Skills or Fargo with those games left as is in their rules.

mikepage
01-17-2008, 06:07 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Artemus:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>
I like it! That's a nice variation to playing the ghost.
<hr /></blockquote>

Do you mean that's a nice variation to playing the ghost in 9-ball or 8-ball, or do you mean that's a nice variation to playing Fargo and could be included as an option in the Rules of The Game? In other words, do you think the rules should be changed to add the safety feature? <hr /></blockquote>

I was thinking it is a nice variation to playing the ghost in 9-ball.

In FARGO you don't CHOOSE rotation until you've already made a judgment you can handle getting out in rotation. If you then hook yourself while trying to get out, you either screwed up or chose to switch too early.

Artemus
01-18-2008, 06:05 AM
Yep, I agree on all counts. We're reaching some milestones here. Must be that new math. /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif

Cornerman
01-18-2008, 09:59 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Artemus:</font><hr>

What I don't like about FARGO is that it does nothing to teach you the importance of breaking or reward you.. <hr /></blockquote>In case anyone got the wrong idea from some of these posts, there is no set rule that says that you can't play FARGO (or Q-Skills for that matter) in the a manner you choose. By all means, play with no ball-in-hand or ball-in-hand, just like we may choose if playing the ghost. Choose to play that a scratch on the break is a zero if you want. FARGO is at it's simplest a practice game that you (the reader/player) can use to make self assessments on your game.

Now, if there's a FARGO tournament, then everyone should play by whatever specific ground rules the TD is enforcing. Same as any other tournament.

There should be no reason to say "what you don't like about FARGO is...," because it makes little sense since it was devised as an alternative practice game, rev'ed up from Q-Skills.

Fred

Artemus
01-18-2008, 10:41 AM
That was a good snap back to reality Fred. It always comes back to 1+1=2 and anytime you make it more complex there are problems, which I'm always fighting against. I plead "temporary complexitis insanity", ( /ccboard/images/graemlins/blush.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/crazy.gif

wolfdancer
01-18-2008, 02:51 PM
You aren't one of the self appointed forum police officers here, are you? I hope not, you seem like a decent enough guy.
No, to the first part, and the jury is still out on the last part.
I think Fargo is a good practice game; also believe Mike has shared some great stuff here, with the link to his videos...and I'd hate to see him run off.
Fireside chats went out with FDR, but I think you and Bill can settle your differences without me /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Artemus
01-18-2008, 04:03 PM
Nobody is trying to run Mike off. I guess the good news that I gleaned from the rest of your post is that you won't be nosing around any more. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif Adios
Remember, NPR needs you badly.

wolfdancer
01-18-2008, 04:58 PM
Are you trying to do your best LWW imitation?
I haven't insulted anyone here on this side of the board....and you aren't going to decide where I can post.
What the **** is your problem anyway?
Every time I read your posts, you are arguing with someone here. Steve, Bill, Mike....
They all have a lot more to offer on pool then you do.
17 negative posts on the Fargo thread....that says a lot about you.
Start your own pool blog if you think you have so much to offer....
I'd rather read positive stuff in this section...then your negative bs

Artemus
01-18-2008, 05:11 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote wolfdancer:</font><hr> Are you trying to do your best LWW imitation?
I haven't insulted anyone here on this side of the board....and you aren't going to decide where I can post.
What the **** is your problem anyway?
Every time I read your posts, you are arguing with someone here. Steve, Bill, Mike....
They all have a lot more to offer on pool then you do.
17 negative posts on the Fargo thread....that says a lot about you.
Start your own pool blog if you think you have so much to offer....
I'd rather read positive stuff in this section...then your negative bs
<hr /></blockquote>

Aaahaaaa!! I caught you lying! You ARE a self-appointed forum police officer. You can't help yourself here or in NPR. (I have no clue who LWW is nor care. Apparently you do because he didn't follow YOUR rules) I guess your bifocals need changed because you MISSED the part where I stated that Fargo was an EXCELLENT game.

There was no argument with you, that was just playing with you. Now you're starting to sound like some old coot with nothing better to do than pick fights yourself. Where's your sense of humor?

wolfdancer
01-18-2008, 06:21 PM
Like I wrote....you seem to be the one challenging every post on the pool side. What do you consider yourself....an informed critic?
I'm going to drop any further discussion with you though...if you need the attention, find another target, thanks!

Artemus
01-18-2008, 06:50 PM
<font color="red"> WARNING!! WARNING!! WARNING!!! WARNING!!!

SELF-APPOINTED FORUM POLICE NOW INFILTRATING SECTOR 4!!

LAY LOW!! TAKE COVER!! LAY LOW!! TAKE COVER!!

SELF-APPOINTED FORUM POLICE NOW INFILTRATING SECTOR 4!!

WARNING!!! WARNING!! WARNING!!! </font color>

Greg in VA
01-20-2008, 12:21 PM
Thanks for posting this.... I find it interesting so far. After one session of 10 racks, my score was 130 on the nose.... including two HORRIBLE 5's and an 8! So, there is room to improve but I'll NEVER get to AA. I do find the transition point decision is what makes this so interesting. I suspect that keeping my ego in check will also keep me between 130 - 160 in the scoring.

Not sure if releasing my ego in the "decision making process" will make me a better player...... Thoughts?

Is there any interest in starting a thread to post scores?
Maybe help the pressure a bit more....Obviously one would have to have an HONEST desire to improve there game vs. trying to appear as a great talent to the board.. Thoughts?

ps. I now realise that if I just knock the first 13 in and then switch, maintaining that avg. should lead to a score of 170. hmmmm.............

Bambu
01-23-2008, 11:35 PM
Yeah, thats the frustration of Q-skill. One or 2 bad racks kill your whole average. Nothing is worse than getting great scores in the beginning, then following them up with early, careless mistakes. I imagine fargo would be similar in that respect.

CarolNYC
01-24-2008, 06:16 AM
Mike,
Allen taught me the Q-skills one day while we were playing at his house-is your only difference ,basically,the switching to rotation,besides those rule changes? Also, are you switching only to get more points?And, what does "when your playing someone casually mean"
You talk nice!
Carol

mikepage
01-24-2008, 07:03 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Bambu:</font><hr> Yeah, thats the frustration of Q-skill. One or 2 bad racks kill your whole average. Nothing is worse than getting great scores in the beginning, then following them up with early, careless mistakes. I imagine fargo would be similar in that respect. <hr /></blockquote>

For the prevalence careless mistakes early in racks, yes they are similar.

But one difference is it's nearly always possible in FARGO to choose to play the last innings a little more aggressively if you are feeling behind.

mikepage
01-24-2008, 07:14 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote CarolNYC:</font><hr> Mike,
Allen taught me the Q-skills one day while we were playing at his house-is your only difference the switching to rotation? Also, are you switching only to get more points?And, what does "when your playing someone casually mean"
You talk nice!
Carol <hr /></blockquote>

Hi Carol.
The decision when to switch is the main difference.

But try it. That simple-to-say difference makes it feel like a very different game. Also, there are a number of after-the-break options and situations in the Q-skills game that are gone here.

For the "playing casually with a friend," I was just pointing out that you pocket 200 balls in an hour "practicing" by yourself and only 100 balls an hour "practicing" with a partner.

I talk nice? You must be sensing I grew up a handful of stops along the New Haven line from Grand Central Station.;-)

here are the rules:

RULES: FARGO


Except when clearly contradicted by these additional rules, the General Rules of Pocket Billiards apply.


1. TYPE OF GAME:

FARGO is a game that consists of 10 innings (or frames). The player's game score is the total of the scores for these 10 innings. In each inning, the player scores points until he either misses or succeeds in shooting all 15 balls. Fargo is a challenging game, with aspects of both straight pool and rotation, and is suitable for both beginner and expert players.


2. PLAYERS:

Any number of players can compete.


3. BALLS USED:

A standard set of balls, 1-15, plus the cue ball.


4. THE RACK:

A standard triangle rack is used. The balls are racked at the beginning of each inning for each player. The player may choose to rack his own balls and to place balls in the rack in any order that he believes is to his advantage.


5. OBJECT OF THE GAME:

To score more total points than the opponent(s) in a predetermined number of innings (300 points is the maximum in a 10 inning game).


6. SCORING:

Each inning consists of a "random phase" and a "rotation phase". In the beginning of each inning the player places a coin on the table rail with the heads up (or some other conspicuous marking device may be used, such as a piece of paper with "random" written on one side and "rotation" on the other). Balls are then pocketed in any order (i.e. in "random" order) and they count one point each. At any time during the inning, including before the first ball is pocketed, the player may choose to turn the coin over. This designates the beginning of the rotation phase. After the coin flip, the lowest numbered ball on the table must be contacted first (i.e. the balls are shot in "rotation"). Any legally pocketed balls after the coin flip count two points each. There is only a single coin flip each inning.


7. OPENING BREAK:

At the start of each inning the player breaks from behind the headstring and has a free break (no special balls to cushion or other requirements once the break stroke commences, and there is no penalty for scratches or jumped balls). Any balls pocketed on the break shot or jumped off the table are spotted, and the player begins by taking ball in hand anywhere on the table.


8. RULES OF PLAY:

8.1. Fargo is a call shot game. The player must designate the ball and call a pocket for each shot. He need not indicate kisses, caroms, combinations, or cushions (all of which are allowed). A legally pocketed ball entitles the shooter to continue at the table until he fails to pocket legally a called ball, or until he has pocketed all of the balls.

8.2. The player is entitled to any additional balls that are pocketed on a shot, as long as he pockets legally his called ball; the additional balls count the same as the called ball.

8.3. Initial playing order is determined by lag, or if several opponents are playing, by lot. Shooting order for subsequent innings is determined by the scoring results of the preceding innings - the player with the highest score shooting first. If several opponents are playing, all of the players shoot in order of their partial scores, with the higher players going first. In the event of a tied score the playing order is the same as for the previous inning. When playing on separate tables, or in separate locations as in an internet competition, the player order is determined by the Tournament Director as appropriate and practical for the situation; this includes the option of playing the entire 10 innings and reporting the scores to the Tournament Director at the end of the game.


9. PENALTY FOR FOULS:

There is no point penalty for fouls; the player's inning ends and any balls pocketed on the foul stroke do not count. After the coin flip (i.e. during the rotation phase), contacting first an object ball other than the lowest numbered ball (a bad hit) is a foul


FARGO FAQs

1) Do I have to call my shots?

Yes, see rule 8.1. The ball and the pocket must be designated, the other details are irrelevant, just as in Equal Offense or 14.1. Shots must be called in both the random and the rotation phases.

2) What if I scratch on the break?

See rule 7. There is no penalty for a scratch on the break, or for jumped balls.

3) If an extra ball slops in during the rotation phase, does it count as two points?

Yes, see rules 6 and 8.2. Balls pocketed legally before the coin flip (during the random phase) count one point each, balls pocketed after the coin flip (the rotation phase) count two points each.

4) After I turn over the coin and take a shot in the rotation phase, may I change my mind and flip it back to the random phase?

No, see rule 6. After the coin is flipped, you are committed to the rotation phase for the rest of that inning.

5)If I shoot in 14 balls in the random phase, may I flip the coin to get two points for the last ball?

Yes.

6) Are combinations OK in the rotation phase?

Yes, combinations and caroms are allowed in the rotation phase. The requirement is the same as in 9-ball, namely that you hit the lowest numbered ball first, with the addition that the ball must be designated and its pocket must be called.

7) What are some good strategies?

This depends on the player's skill level. A beginner (say someone who typically scores less than 100 should simply try to pocket all the balls he can randomly; if he gets to a point where he knows a cluster is going to stop the run, or if he runs down to the last two or three balls, only then should he consider flipping the coin. An intermediate player (100 to 200 points) should clear out all the clusters and trouble balls during the random phase, and play as many balls as possible at the end of the run in rotation. An advanced player (over 200 points should break out only the most difficult clusters during the random phase, and he will be able to break out the remaining clusters during the rotation phase; with a lucky break and a good spread of the balls, he may be able to play the entire 15 balls in rotation.

8 ) How do I rack the balls to make the rotation phase as easy as possible?

In general, the corner balls roll the farthest, balls along the sides and the rear of the rack tend to stay together, and the three balls in the middle usually don't roll very far.On the break shot, you want a good spread of the balls to minimize the number of clusters, but not so much scatter that the nearby balls are widely separated. Experiment with both ball position in the rack and various break shots to see what works best for you.

CarolNYC
01-24-2008, 07:34 AM
Thanks Mike-yes,Im going to try it today-for the past two days, no ones been home-until tomorrow /ccboard/images/graemlins/smirk.gif
I like the change in that,if I was playing AGAINST someone, drill vs. drill,and they were ahead, I'd TRY to change to the 2 pt.balls.......interesting!
I understand the casual-thank you!
[ QUOTE ]
along the New Haven line from Grand Central Station.;-)
<hr /></blockquote>
AHA!
I like it!
Have a great day!
Carol

BigRigTom
01-24-2008, 09:16 AM
Thanks Mike for this great practice drill/game!
My friend and I played it last night for the 1st time and of course we had several questions...most of which you have just answered in this post of the rules!

The only specific question left for me was:
If you have a good rack but for what ever reason you choose to shoot the random phase thru the 14th ball is it still ok to switch to rotation for the 15th and final ball to increase your score to 16 instead of just 15?

Finally, I would like to post the description and these rules on my own forum with reference to your web site there as well.
I just felt it appropriate to ask your permission before doing that. Do you have any objections?
(or you could register and post it yourself if you think that would be better...)

Thanks again for a really fun drill/game. /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif

Ralph_Kramden
01-24-2008, 09:46 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>
1. TYPE OF GAME:

FARGO is a game that consists of 10 innings (or frames). The player's game score is the total of the scores for these 10 innings. In each inning, the player scores points until he either misses or succeeds in shooting all 15 balls. Fargo is a challenging game, with aspects of both straight pool and rotation, and is suitable for both beginner and expert players.<hr /></blockquote>

Mike - When you say, "either misses or succeeds in shooting all 15 balls", do you mean that unless a player misses he keeps shooting until all 15 balls are pocketed? Does the cueball come back up and play continues if you pocket a ball and scratch on the same shot, just like a scratch on the break?

We have been playing the game with the run ending if any ball is missed, or the cueball scratches at anytime after the breakshot, whether or not a ball is pocketed.

The game of Fargo that we have been playing is a 1 rack version for the most points possible against an opponent. If for instance your opponent makes 14 points and either misses or scratches his rack ends. Then you must earn at least 14 points in your rack to tie his score.

If your score is 5 points more than the opponent he owes you $5. If your score is 3 points less than your opponent you owe him $3. Play can be for any number of racks or until the $$ runs out.

The Fargo rules we play are exactly the same as you have written with one exception. The cueball is always BIH after the break but any balls made on the break stay down for 1 point each. If the cueball scratches on the breakshot any ball pocketed on the break spots and play continues.

It's a good practice game by keeping score for 10 racks and also a good money game by playing this way.

CarolNYC
01-24-2008, 12:31 PM
Mike,
I played for the past couple of hours-after awhile,I got into it challenging myself to switch to the rotation after,like, the first 3 shots,ha ha ha-its very inspiring and you can get into it-I like it-thank you for sharing!
Carol

mikepage
01-24-2008, 02:42 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote BigRigTom:</font><hr> [...]
The only specific question left for me was:
If you have a good rack but for what ever reason you choose to shoot the random phase thru the 14th ball is it still ok to switch to rotation for the 15th and final ball to increase your score to 16 instead of just 15? <hr /></blockquote>

Yes it is. So when you're down to two balls left on the table, pocketing them lowest ball first gets you 17 points and highest ball first gets you 16 points.

[ QUOTE ]


Finally, I would like to post the description and these rules on my own forum with reference to your web site there as well.
I just felt it appropriate to ask your permission before doing that. Do you have any objections?[...] <hr /></blockquote>

Thanks for asking. Please share any way you like with anyone who might enjoy it. I plan to get the rules and a few other things on a web site in the future. But for now I don't have a website. One link to the rules (and the rating chart) is here:

http://www.xhost.org/fargorules.html

mikepage
01-24-2008, 02:51 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Ralph_Kramden:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote mikepage:</font><hr>
1. TYPE OF GAME:

FARGO is a game that consists of 10 innings (or frames). The player's game score is the total of the scores for these 10 innings. In each inning, the player scores points until he either misses or succeeds in shooting all 15 balls. Fargo is a challenging game, with aspects of both straight pool and rotation, and is suitable for both beginner and expert players.<hr /></blockquote>

Mike - When you say, "either misses or succeeds in shooting all 15 balls", do you mean that unless a player misses he keeps shooting until all 15 balls are pocketed? Does the cueball come back up and play continues if you pocket a ball and scratch on the same shot, just like a scratch on the break? <hr /></blockquote>

That should probably say "either misses, COMMITS A FOUL, or succeeds in pocketing all 15 balls."

see rule 9


9. PENALTY FOR FOULS:

There is no point penalty for fouls; the player's inning ends and any balls pocketed on the foul stroke do not count. After the coin flip (i.e. during the rotation phase), contacting first an object ball other than the lowest numbered ball (a bad hit) is a foul

Bambu
01-26-2008, 01:09 PM
Thats a good point. Being able to play for more points does make things a bit more interesting than q-skill.

BigRigTom
01-26-2008, 05:51 PM
Fargo is my new practice drill of choice since I play both 8 ball and 9 ball in the APA it is a great exercise to keep the mind and stroke both in tune at the same time.

Great job Mike!
Be sure to let me know if you start fiddling with the rules but I think they are pretty damn good just they way they are. /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif

Artemus
01-26-2008, 06:32 PM
Bambu, what is your highest 10 rack score, highest 50 rack total, and highest 100 rack total in Q-Skills? Do you actively post and participate in the BUD Bowl?