Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Suicide-Chess, Carampool and other new game ideas

Day before yesterday I invented couple of games. Yesterday we had to test-out the pool version. It works pretty ok.

Kind of reversed games. I like carambola, but there's not that many tables around. So I had to invent new rules to pool to get some of the carambola-feel into it.

Note: Found out that this has been already invented in this exact form: (Added 2nd March. 2007)

Pieces move the same way as in the normal chess. King has no special value, it can be "eaten" at any point of the game. The rules are simple. You need to get rid of your pieces. If you can eat something, you must. If you have multiple choices, you can choose which piece you'll eat on your turn. But if you can, you must. Who has no pieces left is the winner.

Tip: Get rid of your queen as quickly as possible.


This is kind of mixture between pool (8-ball), carambola and Finnish Korona. Played on a normal pool table. Each player takes 7 balls. One takes the numbers 1-7 and the other 9-15. You place the balls on your side of the table. On the line, where you normally would put the white ball in equal spaces. So seven balls on each side of the table, on the line. White ball in the middle of the table. Small numbers starts.

The idea is to shoot one of your balls, hit the white ball and then drop any of your opponent's balls down. Any ball can drop any of your opponent's balls, but you must hit the white ball first. Yes, it might be weird to shoot with a number ball and hitting the white ball with that, but that's how this goes.

If the white ball goes down, you lift it on the table. The one who's turn it is can choose where he wants to put it. In the middle, or on either of the spots on the lines on each side of the table. If a spot is not free, like in the beginning only the middle is free, then you can't put the white there, before it gets free. If all three places are occupied by another balls, then you can place it only in the middle, as close as possible.

If you drop the white ball or don't hit the white ball first, but you also drop one of your opponent's balls, it (the opponent's ball) is then lifted back on the table. If the table is one of those pay-per-play tables that don't give the balls out, then first you can lift 8-ball and after that the one who made the mistake looses one ball. There has to be some consequences in errors, otherwise you could "accidentally" drop all of your opponent's balls incorrectly.

You don't lift a ball if you put your own ball down. That's not a mistake, but you just can't continue. Same goes, if you don't hit the white ball first, but nothing goes down, you just can't continue.

The last ball is not lifted on the table. If you pocket the last ball incorrectly, you lose. If you have one ball left (pay-per-play -version) and you do a mistake pocketing your opponent's ball incorrectly, you lose.

Carambola skills are usefull in this, and also you need to be extra accurate, as the opponent can shoot his ball away if it's next to a pocket. As long as he hits the white ball with that one.
Optional rules: If you don't hit the white ball first, and nothing goes down, the opponent can then put the white ball on any of the three spots.


The name might give you a hint... It's kind of mixture between football (soccer), basketball and pool. Normal soccer field, but junior size - or not. Football in the middle, and the idea is to get the ball into the opponent's goal. How to get it there is different. I have two variations of it. The first one requires a bit of customizing of the equipments.

1. Each player has a ball, that has been attached to the wrists with two elastic bands. Short enough, that you don't trip over when you run, but long and elastic enough that you can hit the football with it.

2. I think this is more interesting way, and it doesn't require any special/custom equipment. Each team has 7 balls. Each team different color. You're not allowed to touch other team's balls. You can throw or roll the balls. You can also pass the balls to the other team members if they don't have a ball, but are closer or in better position to the football.

The idea is then that you are not allowed to touch the white football with anything else, except with another ball. Throwing or rolling your ball and hitting the football with that and getting it into the goal is the ... well... goal of this game. And of course the team which scores the highest, wins.

Note: The name "Suicide-Chess" has been changed from "Kamikaze-Chess" due to the fact similar game, Kamikaze-Chess was already invented in early 1900's.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Uncle-Sami wants you to read this post!

My sister just told me that she's getting married and I'm gonna be an uncle.

My baby sister. She was underaged when I left Finland. I guess the image in my head was still that sweet-innocent little girl. But on the other hand she has been dating this guy from Peru for like 7 years now. I guess it was about time for this.

...And I'm gonna be an uncle.

Feels weird. So from now on, you can call me Uncle-Sami.

Stephen Hawkins is planning to take Virgin Galactic tour to space, too!

Stephen Hawkins is planning to take Virgin Galactic tour to space, too!

Read more on Yahoo!

Remember to support my attempts to go to space with my Send Sami To Space -project.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

American language vs. Mexican language

I stubled upon an article in BBC acrhives. It was interesting to read, but I was thinking there might be some idea behind it. So I googled a bit and I came a cross with couple of writings here and here. So I decided to post my thoughts to these kind of americans:

Kurva, I tried to check the official language. So I went to, chose The World Factbook and chose United States. Under the section "People" it has a paragraph that is about languages:
English 82.1%, Spanish 10.7%, other Indo-European 3.8%, Asian and Pacific island 2.7%, other 0.7%

So what's the official language? Scheisse, it didn't state it here. That's odd. Och sen jag ska titta här: Finland. Tiny county in the middle of nowhere. The same part states:
Finnish 92% (official), Swedish 5.6% (official), other 2.4% (small Sami- and Russian-speaking minorities)

Wait a second. Finnish and Swedish are official languages? It states it there. So USA doesn't have an official language?

Maybe it's Navajo or Cherokee... Ich weiss nicht.

Finland stands as a bilingual country. And it works fine. The ratio 9 to 0.5 is quite large, but finnish speak swedish also. It's mandatory in school to study also swedish. There's 8 to 1 ratio between english and spanish in the States. The gap is much smaller than in Finland, so I would recommend for all those in the States to learn english and spanish. Now, go and check what it says for South Africa and check the ratios on those languages...

Majority is english in the States. (English comes from England, you know. Now say "thanks, UK, for your lovely language.") So it would be wise for the traveller to know the local language a bit. It may not be a necessity, but it makes life easier. I haven't lived in that many countries, but at least I can get my uno cerveza, adim pivo, ein bier bitte, pint o' laagah mate, una birra, een bier astublieft, en öl tack, yksi olut...

You can survive with english-only in Europe, but it just makes it easier to know the local language. Except in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. They really enjoy speaking english, which makes it really hard to learn the language. Maar ik prata een beetje. Deutch is auch schweer, aber ich spreche ein bichen Deutch. Auch.

Mental note: "Jalla jalla, hajaku hajaku, biaaatch... learn proper dutch already!"

But in any case. Don't get scared of the amount of the languages in the world. Be brave. Visit Europe for example. Trust me, it'll be grand. We don't bite and we do speak english. Among other languages.

And if you're planning to raise a point about "Europe is different countries, USA is one." Check wikipedia for EU. Yes, independent countries, but still a Union.

Post Script. If you do visit, try not to get angry when you get pissed. We like to laugh a lot and have a good time when we get pissed. ;)