Laundry list

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This is a page for players to note possible ruleset problems which should probably be fixed at some point, because we tend to forget otherwise. It would be poor etiquette to scam any of these, but we would deserve it.

Not yet fixed

  • "Each Believer may cast one Vote on a Votable Matter by making a comment to the Official Post that comprises that Votable Matter using a voting icon. [...] A Believer’s Vote on a Votable Matter is the last valid voting icon that they have used in any comment on that Votable Matter." - this is a little opaque/redundant when an idle player makes a vote-icon comment before unidling.
  • The Seasonal Hiatus is a bit of an activity roadblock - is it worse for the game than just continuing over Christmas would be? Is there a way of making it more responsive to periods when the game is active and the players want to continue?
  • "A keyword defined by a rule supersedes the normal English usage of the word." - what exactly counts as being "defined"?
    • Relatedly, we should define what constitutes a 'keyword' in the first place.
  • Sometimes proposals are timestamped "incorrectly" - a player starts writing a proposal at 3pm, finishes at 6pm, and then posts it with a timestamp of 3pm. The ruleset blindly refers to "the oldest pending proposal" and how long it has been "open for voting" without referring to timestamps. We should probably find some way to make timestamps the authoritative age of a proposal, but in a way which can't be exploited.
  • If a player "must" perform a series of steps in sequence, is there an acceptable delay between steps?
  • When a rule says that a gamestate change just happens, we're usually implying that the person who initiated the action is responsible for making that change too - should probably codify that somewhere.
  • The scope for simultaneous DoVs is strange. The rules presumably allow them because they deter "everyone wins" scams (which would otherwise always go to the scammer), but what actually happens if such a scam is pulled and everyone wins? Just an awkward voting race where players vote immediately for their preferred players and delay voting on others?
    • Having multiple people winning at the same has been attempted (although the rules were wonky and got removed before use) and might be a valid alternative for when more than one person wins. Problems would arise when determining deferential votes, ascension addresses, vetoes and even dynasty direction if they were allowed to be co-Emperors. Also what's the point in winning if everyone's an Emperor? Does it just become a weird not-metadynasty where nobody can make DoV? In any case if something wonkly were to happen with everyone achieving victory and being new Emperors, I believe a CfJ would be in order so that the next dynasty doesn't go on indefinitely.
  • LocalSettings.php for the wiki should be updated to number section headings by default. (Requires server access.) This might be a non-issue since the table of contents numbers the rules anyway.
  • The rules for "must" and "should" imperatives could use an overhaul: see Imperative Rework.
  • Add some (preferably mandatory) way of identifying users whose wiki account and EE account usernames are unrecognizable from each other.
  • Might be a good idea to change the "Older Core Game Documents" section of the front page to a more easily readable Category (by putting [[Category:Gamestate document]] or something at the end of all of the individual pages, and new ones as we create them).
  • Incomplete atomic actions are an invisible tripwire: we moved away from having them time out because this was exploitable (if you make a bad roll in step 2, abandon the action and wait for it to time out), but invisibly trapping people in "cannot take dynastic actions" (even if they idle and come back) isn't great either.
  • The appendix rule about what variables default to should also say that simple true/false states default to being false.
  • The "Players" core rule (which we rename each dynasty) should probably literally just be called "Players", otherwise it's easy to end up with a dynastic rule with the same title and potentially cause confusion and/or problems. (An attempted fix in September 2020 got derailed.)
  • What should happen when an atomic action is modified by a proposal, midway through somebody taking it? (This can easily happen if someone neglects to perform one step correctly, and somebody points it out hours later.)
  • The concept of a "valid vote" is a bit erratically written. (Does "A valid Vote is, except when otherwise specified, a Vote of FOR or AGAINST." say that FOR and AGAINST are the only valid votes, or that any vote which is valid has to become one of those two? Why talk of "a valid Vote other than VETO" if the former?)
  • This possibly got set aside in anticipation of The Second Switch, but it'd be good if CfJs could be multiple choice, instead of always being "this specific fix or nothing happens".
  • "If the Admin enacting a Proposal reaches a step which cannot be applied immediately" doesn't cover CfJs (yet they are implicitly covered by the "shall update the Gamestate and Ruleset" CfJ enactment process)
  • Rule, Proposal and Wiki page titles are classified as Flavour Text, which have no meaning, and are just strings of characters. But we still refer to them all the time by their titles. It's somewhat ambiguous whether we can do so, and whether using quotation marks ("") helps.
  • Mantle Limitations now being active by default in most dynasties suggests we should write that the other way around: remove all mention of it from Victory and Ascension, and have a Rare Special Case rule that allows the mantle to be passed if the Emperor wants to switch it on.
  • What happens if we have two players with the exact same username? (Admins are, I think, prevented from creating new accounts with duplicate names, but it's possible for someone to sign up, change their display name, then request to join the game under that name. Also possible for a player to change their name by proposal, if nobody realises that the name is already in use.)
  • The glossary definition of "Core Proposal" is at odds with that of a Core-tagged proposal; it pre-dates it by at least six years. We could probably live without defining it, as it doesn't seem to have been used much (if ever).
  • That a proposal's "stated effects are immediately applied in full" means that it's possible for proposals to do things beyond amending the gamestate and ruleset. (Prior to 2021 a proposal was enacted "by updating the Ruleset and/or Gamestate to include the specified effects".) We should probably go back to admins being able to ignore clauses which are outside the scope of the game like that.
  • "If a set of valid values is not specified in their definition, game variables defined to hold numeric values can hold only non-negative integers" regularly trips up non-mathematicians (and inattentive mathematicians) when a variable is casually defined as an integer, and then bugged or scammed to a surprisingly negative value. This was discussed but not fixed in April 2023.


  • Idle players may still count as players for the purposes of proposals, as argued here. (Rule 1.2.1 only excepts rules, not proposals.) Fixed.
  • What happens if we vote through a proposal that says "two days after this proposal passes, Player X gains 1 point" (or more dramatically, "two years after this proposal passes, Player X may declare victory in whatever dynasty is being played at that time")? Is such an "invisible rule" legal? Fixed.
  • Dynasty #110 changed admin idling so that if they fail to announce the idling, it's illegal. Given that not every admin rereads the core rules when unidling, this risks leaving dangerously quorum-changing ghosts if an admin idles themselves out without posting the required paperwork comment. Update: it is now a 'should' clause
  • "When a DoV is failed, if it has a number of AGAINST Votes that exceed Quorum, the Apprentice who posted it cannot make another DoV until after 120 hours (5 days) have passed since the time their DoV was failed." - but DoVs can be failed when they reach a number of AGAINST votes that equal quorum. This should probably just lose the comma'd clause entirely.
  • "Random" decisions are required to be "taken from a uniform probability distribution over the entire range of possible values", but there's only an implicit requirement that the GNDT be used for this. Apart from secret Imperial rolls, it'd help to make the GNDT compulsory here.
  • "a wiki page shall be blanked when it becomes gamestate" (enacted eluctantly in June 2013 as part of a wider fix) risks blanking the entire BlogNomic wiki if we accidentally do something to make all of it gamestate. Fixed
  • "If a game variable has no defined starting value for new Shuttles, or for existing Shuttles upon the variable’s creation, then that starting value is zero (for numerical variables) or blank (for a text string or list)." - what if zero or blank are illegal values?
  • “When the Mayor has a valid Vote other than VETO on a Proposal, then all votes of DEFERENTIAL are instead considered to be valid and the same as the Mayor’s Vote…” - this should have an "on that Proposal" in there. fixed
  • "If you make a GNDT dice roll, do you have to use it?" - if there's a rule of "a player may roll DICE4 once a week to gain that many victory points", can I roll DICE4 a few times in succession and use the last one for the action, explaining that the others were just for fun? Fixed. Is it? I don't see anything aside from the fair play rule.
  • "Invisible end numbers due to scientific notation in the GNDT"
  • "Can they interrupt those steps with other game actions?" Fixed, they can as long as it's not an atomic action.
  • Re-implement Dormancy. It got emergency-removed in Axemabaro I, but it hasn't been returned yet. It's back.
  • "Defaulting" could use further definition, when we say something like "players have Food, defaulting to 10". It's covered in the Idle Players rule, but nowhere else.
    • (For anyone who doesn't know, this is Agora terminology (Rule 2126b) that people started using at BlogNomic out of Agoran habit, even though it wasn't defined over here; the default value gets set when the piece of gamestate is created, or if it would otherwise fail to have a determinate value (e.g. after being changed infinitely often in finite time). It probably works the way that people expect it to work even here, though.) Under simple English, "default" with respect to computer terminology means a value used in absence of a choice made by a user. Since blognomic is computer based it stands to reason that this is the definition being used. Check a reputable online dictionary, it could be anywhere from the third to fifteenth definition for "default".
  • The ruleset doesn't explain dice very clearly, it just says "The DICEN command can be used" without explaining how to do that. The new dice roller script displays its own documentation.
  • The ruleset doesn't give defaults to referring to a proposal name. If a proposal includes a reference to a proposal just by its name and without a link, some odd interactions can occur if another proposal with the same name appears later in the queue. fixed here
  • The special case rule names of "No Collaboration" and "Alliances" seem to be giving some players the impression that in a No Collaboration dynasty with Alliances off, players are not allowed to have allies or exchange favours. Clearer titles of "No Private Communication" and "Public Alliances" may make it clearer what these rules are actually doing.