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No More Jockeys house rules

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Basic rules

Summarised from Alex Horne's original 2009 writeup of No More Women:[1]

  • Take turns to name a (typically famous) person, and to eliminate a category that person belongs to (eg. "Salvador Dali: No more artists."). Once a category is eliminated, players can no longer name any people who belong to it.
  • A player may challenge another player's move, if they think it named a person who belongs to a forbidden category. If the challenged player concedes, they are eliminated.
  • A player may be asked to "name another", if opponents suspect a category may only contain a single person. If they player is unable to name a second person, they are eliminated.
  • Last player standing wins.

Rules from YouTube

The game was refined over video calls on the No More Jockeys YouTube channel between Alex Horne, Tim Key and Mark Watson in 2020 and 2021. The following additional rules are stated or very obviously apparent from play:

Challenging

  • Any player (who's still in the game) can challenge a move.
  • Only the most recent move can be challenged.
  • A challenge can only be made only after the full move (both name and "no more X" category) has been called.[2]
  • A player's third incorrect challenge results in them being eliminated.[3]
  • Online research is permitted to support a challenge, but may only be performed after the challenge has been made.[3]
  • Players are allowed no more than 90 seconds of internet research to support a challenge.[4] If the search fails, the challenging player may not repeat the challenge in order to search again.[4]

Categories

  • For category purposes, a person's "name" is typically the version of their name that they're most commonly known by,[5] although this is not always adhered to.[6]
  • Players can't talk about the categories, except during a relevant challenge.[7]

Changing your mind

  • If only a name has been called, it can be safely retracted and changed.
  • Categories can be clarified after being called, or changed entirely.
  • A retracted name call can be replaced with a challenge.[8]
  • If the named category does not actually apply to the named person (eg. if the player was mixing them up with someone else), the move may be corrected to avoid a challenge[9]

Elimination

  • If a move is successfully challenged and a player eliminated, their move is invalidated: the category that they called during that move has no effect on the game.
  • If a category refers to the players of the game as a group, then once a player is eliminated they are no longer counted as part of it.[10]
  • Eliminated players can still talk about the game, but can no longer issue challenges. However, they may not make any comments on the validity of a name while others are deciding whether to challenge it, nor suggest or warn against possible challenges.[11]

Name another

  • It's strongly implied that a "name another" doesn't have to be a valid move in itself at that point in the game. There have been no challenges even considered on this basis, and in some cases the named other would have been a game-losing move.[12]

Secret additional rule

  • "There's one that no one really knows: the first turn always has to be a woman."[13]

House rules for BlogNomic Slack

Some house rules and clarifications have been agreed for playing No More Jockeys on the BlogNomic Slack channel, given that the game is asynchronous and that players will be from different social backgrounds and countries. Those rules are currently:

  • Since games are played asynchronously and can last days, players are permitted to scroll back and check past moves and categories. (Which sounds too easy, but in practice people still make mistakes.)
  • If no game is in progress, any player may start a game by playing a move. Others may join the game by responding with a move, if they haven't already played a move in the game. At any time the first player may play their second move: this locks in the established playing order, which must now be followed.
  • If a player isn't familiar with a person that's been called, they are permitted to google the name and view the first page of results without clicking through any links, to establish some context and decide whether to challenge.
  • Online research is permitted before naming a person you have in mind, but may not be done entirely speculatively. (Searching for a picture of Stanley Lebor to check if he has a moustache is allowed, as is searching for "the actor who played Howard in Ever Decreasing Circles" if you can't think of his name, but you're not allowed to google more broadly for men in 1980s sitcoms with moustaches because you need one for your move but can't think of any.)
  • For the purposes of the game, a person's "name" is always the version of their name that they're most commonly known by, and in the Anglosphere. Where the person has a Wikipedia page, the title of that page is considered to be their common name.
  • A category can't leave zero people remaining (eg. "No more living people" followed by "No more people who aren't alive"). Worded more strictly: a player only wins the game if, given an additional turn after all other players had been eliminated, they would still be able to name a person.

These house rules are open to negotiation.

References

  1. BBC Comedy Blog: No More Women
  2. No More Jockeys – Set 2, Game 1 (23.07.20)
  3. 3.0 3.1 No More Jockeys – Set 1, Game 6 (04.06.20 – Wonder Thursday #1)
  4. 4.0 4.1 The Christmas Specials, Game 1 – No More Jockeys (03.12.20)
  5. No More Jockeys – Set 1, Game 4 (21.05.20)
  6. No More Jockeys – Set 1, Game 10 (19.06.20)
  7. No More Jockeys – Set 3, Game 5 (04.11.20)
  8. No More Jockeys – Set 1, Game 11 (25.06.20) (... "You know what, I'm going to start typing up these rules tomorrow.")
  9. Set 2, Game 3 – No More Jockeys (20.08.20)
  10. Set 2, Game 3 – No More Jockeys (20.08.20): Horne was explicitly not counted for "any of us" in the "No more people that any of us has ever been on TV with.", after being eliminated
  11. eg. Key's face during Set 1, Game 10
  12. eg. in Set 1, Game 7, where the "name another" of Cristiano Ronaldo fell in the earlier category of "names with a letter repeated 3+ times", but was immediately accepted without reflection or comment
  13. No More Jockeys: How a Lo-Fi Lockdown Game Took YouTube by Storm, Esquire Magazine 22.01.2021