puerto rico 

Updated 4/23/2010

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    Ballroom B    Paradise     Terrace, Table #3

Steven Pleva, CT

2009 Champion

2nd: Jeremy Osteen, MD

3rd: John Weber, MD

4th: Geoffrey Pounder, on

5th: Haim Hochboim, is

6th: Aran Warszawski, is
Event History
2002    Arthur Field     152
2003    Nicholas Anner     217
2004    Barbara Flaxington     176
2005     Bill Murdock     164
2006     Chris Moffa     136
2007    Raphael Lehrer     157
2008    Nick Page     164
2009    Steve Pleva     151

John Weber, MD

2010 GM

2 Top Six GM nominations



#1 Ranked Game on BGG ...

Prospector, captain, mayor, trader, settler, craftsman, or builder? Which roles will you play in the new world? Will you own the most prosperous plantations? Will you build the most valuable buildings? You have but one goal: achieve the greatest prosperity and highest respect! A unique game system lets the players choose the order of phases in each turn. For 3-5 players, aged 12 +; length: 90-120 minutes; author: Andreas Seyfarth.


Puerto Rico will have three preliminary heats and three elimination rounds. In the heats, players will be paired at random in 4-player games. If we have an odd number, the remaining games will be 3-player (no 5-player games). Players with games are urged to bring them to the heats to assure that we have sufficient copies on hand. Note that we will not be using any of the expansion buildings. Because PRO is classified as a "B" event this year, newcomers must attend the demo in Paradise Terrace if they expect to be taught how to play. No such instruction will be available during the event itself. However, there should be numerous opportunities to learn the game in Cafe Jay (the Ballroom Foyer) or during open gaming at the convention. Do NOT expect to learn the game as you play in the event.

There will be no significant changes to the tournament format from last year. Because Puerto Rico is a MESE event, the standard HMW rules for advancement will apply. The following additional game-specific tiebreakers (see HMW Tiebreak Rule 6) will also apply:

1 - Number of seconds
2 - Number of points behind the winner in the best game - here a low number is best (i.e., losing on a tiebreak yields a 0 result, losing by one a -1, etc.).
3 - Head to head results among tied players, if appropriate.
4 - Random plantation draw or coin flip (if needed).

However, with an extra elimination (quarterfinal) round we hope to have all heat winners advance with possibly some alternates as well--this has been the case in each of the past five years. Once all heat winners are accommodated, those with multiple wins in the preliminary games will be eligible to possibly receive a bye to semi-final round games--players with multiple wins not receiving byes will be seeded into the quarterfinal round games. The semi-finals will consist of four 4-player games, and the quarterfinals will consist of a variable number of 4-player games depending on the number of advancing heat winners, subtracting out any multiple heat winners with byes to the semi-finals.

As was the case last year, there will be bidding for seating position starting with the first elimination (quarterfinal) round through to the Final. For full details, see the section entitled "Bidding for Seat Position" in the following complete rules for 2010.

GM John Weber
Assistant GMs Barb Flaxington, David Platnick, and Malinda Kyrkos

These are the official rules for the 2009 WBC Puerto Rico tournament.

GETTING STARTED: New players (who did not play last year or in a prior heat this year will be asked to provide a name and badge number; prior players can simply put a check mark by their name and badge number under the appropriate column (heat 1, 2 or 3), noting any changes. Players with games will be asked to set up at designated tables as instructed.. The remaining players will select a card with a table number on it and go to that table. Your card is your voucher to play; please do not mark or write on them as they will be re-used. Each table will be provided with a scoresheet that you should start filling in once the Governor for the first turn is either randomly selected (that player's name and badge information should go in seat 1, then around to the left, etc). Please make sure to write players' names and badge numbers LEGIBLY on the scoresheet so that the appropriate player(s) will be credited with wins, seconds, etc.

PAIRINGS: All pairings in the preliminary heats will be at random. Players should not play with teammates, particularly if one of them has selected PRO as their team game. If you are randomly paired with a teammate or someone you prefer not to play with, you have the GM's blessing to simply switch off with another table.

SPECIAL OPTIONAL PAIRING RULE: All preliminary round games this year will be four-player games (in the event of an odd number, the remaining games will be three-player, NOT five-player). In the third preliminary round, any player that has drawn an indigo seat in both of the prior rounds and lost in both games can request a corn seat in the final preliminary round game. Similarly, although the statistics favor corn seats over indigo, any player that has lost two games with corn can request an indigo seat, and these requests will be honored. Furthermore, in the final preliminary round, we may pair some one-game winners together in order to ensure that an optimal number of one-game and two-game winners are available for advancement to the elimination rounds. Also, although it cannot be guaranteed, we will try to ensure that players face different opponents in their preliminary round encounters, keeping in mind that with 100+ players, it may not be possible to honor all requests in a timely manner.

WHEN YOU FINISH YOUR GAME: The rest of the information on the scoresheet should be completed at the end of play. The scoresheet will be used to track results and to compile statistics on the game.

All information, particularly players' names, badge numbers and final positions, should be LEGIBLE so that the appropriate result will be entered. Feel free to add any comments about the game on the back, and return completed scoresheets to the box labeled "Scoresheets" near the event kiosk. This is the only way you will receive credit for playing in the tournament. Games should be completed in two hours or less. If a game is running long, then players will be asked (usually with no less than 15 minutes before the end of the two-hour round) to complete one more turn and simply add up the scores as if the game had finished, regardless of the board position.

ADVANCING TO THE NEXT ROUND: Players are free to play in one, two, or all three preliminary round games. Advancement to the next round will use the mandatory tiebreakers adopted by the BPA for all HMW events, which are:

1. Most Wins
2. Win in first heat entered
3. Win in second Heat entered
4. Win in third Heat entered

5. GM specific tie-breaker, the following game-specific tiebreakers will be used to break any remaining ties:

1 - Number of seconds
2 - Number of points behind the winner in the best game - here a low number is best (i.e., losing on a tiebreak yields a 0 result, losing by one a -1, etc.).
3 - Head to head results among tied players, if appropriate.
4 - Random plantation draw or coin flip (if needed).

ELIMINATION ROUND PLAY: This year, as in recent years, there will be a quarter-final round, a semi-final round and a four-player Final. All elimination round games will be four-player games. The top performers in the preliminary rounds will be offered byes into the semi-final game. In deciding the optimal number of players to be offered such byes, the first objective of the GM is to assure that (hopefully, like last year) all winners of at least one game advance to the quarterfinal round. A secondary objective will be to assure that as many two-game round winners advance with byes to the semis as possible. If not all two-game winners can be accommodated in this way, we will ask sufficient volunteers among the two-game winners to play in the quarterfinal round, with such players being seeded such that none will meet each other while also providing sufficient spots for other two-game winners to accept byes into the semis. If such volunteers are not forthcoming, the GM reserves the right to select among those players present, either via a random draw or based on relative strength or weakness of opponents (based on numbver of wins by all opponents in the tournament to that point). This system rewards good play throughout all heats of the tournament and provides a little extra incentive for players who have won a game to continue playing for multiple wins and one of the coveted byes. The number of quarterfinal round games will depend upon the number of winners in the heats, excluding any multiple game winners who were offered and accepted byes. Any additional spots will be made available to those on the alternate list using the criteria outlined above. All quarterfinal game winners will advance to the semi-final round, along with {if needed) the top second place finishers (i.e. those closest to winning, meaning that a loss on a tiebreak is better than losing by one point, losing by one is better than losing by two, etc.). An alternate list will be prepared in advance of both the quarterfinals and semi-finals and posted at the tournament kiosk; any player eligible to advance who cannot continue in the elimination rounds because of schedule conflicts is urged to notify the GM/assistant GM and/or post such information on the tournament kiosk.

The four winners of the second semi-final games will advance to play a four-player final, and the two closest runners-up in those games will be awarded fifth and sixth place (as well as being first and second alternates for the Final).

Ties among second-place finishers for advancement to the semi-finals and/or the fifth or sixth place plaques will be broken by:

1- Any prior head-to-head results among the tied players.
2- Overall prior record in prior rounds of the tournament.
3- Coin flip or random plantation draw.

BIDDING FOR SEAT POSITION, STARTING WITH THE QUARTER-FINALS: Starting with the quarter-final round games and continuing in the semi-finals and Final game, we will use mandatory bidding for all four seats. It will work as follows: Each player will randomly draw a random plantation tile (using the trading house values) to determine who bids first. For bidding in the semi-final round games, anyone advancing with a second place finish in the quarterfinals must pick last at his/her table (and hence will be assigned the lowest valued plantation). Similarly, anyone advancing to the quarterfinal round games with fewer wins will be assigned lower valued plantations than those with more wins, who shall be assigned higher valued plantations and therefore be among the first to bid.

Going around in plantation order value (coffee goes first), each player will place a matching plantation tile on a bid value ranging from 0 to 5.0 VP (in increments of 0.5 VP) on a chart to be furnished by the GM. Bids may be zero but in all instances must be higher than any previous bids for a particular seat. Any player who has been outbid will have his/her marker removed and will, when his or her turn comes, bid again--either a higher value for the same seat or a different amount for another seat. A player whose bid is not topped by another bid does not get another bid -- instead the bidding goes around to the next player without a bid marker in play. The process continues until all players' bid markers are on a different seat, with the resulting bid representing the VP handicap to be assigned for that particular game. These VP handicaps will be noted at the top of the particular seat position (1, 2, 3 or 4) on the scoresheet above the player's name and will be subtracted from that player's VP total at the end of the game.

To assist players in determining choice of seats and an appropriate bidding range for each seat, consider the following statistics collected from 535 tournament games of 4-player Puerto Rico played at WBC and EuroQuest events from 2002-2009:

Seat #1 (indigo): 41.46 scoring average, 109 wins (20.1%)
Seat #2 (indigo): 40.75 scoring average, 107 wins (19.8%)
Seat #3 (corn): 43.46 scoring average, 165 wins (30.5%)
Seat #4 (corn): 43.33 scoring average, 160 wins (29.6%)

NOTE: Total wins equals 541 because of double winners in six games.

INDIVIDUAL GAME TIEBREAKERS: In the preliminary rounds, if two or more players are tied in points and in both doubloons and goods (a rules tiebreaker), then all such tied players will be awarded the tied position, be it first or second. Other players behind them do not move up a position, however. In all elimination round games (including the Final), a special tiebreaker (if still tied on doubloons plus goods) will be used: the tied player with the most colonists (including those in San Juan) will be awarded the higher position. If still tied, the tie shall be broken in favor of the player with the best result in the prior rounds' games (all wins counting equally). If still unresolved, the player who accepted the higher VP handicap will be awarded the position and, finally, if still tied, then go to a coin flip or random plantation draw.

RULES CLARIFICATIONS: The 2002 Rio Grande standard game rules (in English) will apply. The following serves to clarify some situations that might raise questions:

1. There is an error on the printed Guild Hall; the rules are correct - its bonus applies only to non-violet production buildings.

2. Use of a manned violet building (including the wharf) is always optional. If you opt to use the wharf, then you must ship all goods of the selected type, however. If you opt not to use the wharf, you must ship per the normal rules if an appropriate ship is available.

3. When order within a phase or sub-phase is important (i.e., placement or movement of colonists in a Mayors' phase, or warehousing at the end of a Captain's phase), you start with the person who selected the mayor or captain and go clockwise around the table. Any player has the right to "call the order" during a Mayor phase.

NOTE: Anyone playing in the Final should expect that this will be done in all Mayor phases in part because we will be keeping track for a likely series replay. If this is the case, players should expect that no more movement of colonists will be allowed once the decision is
passed to the next player in sequence.

4. Remember if one of the three game-end triggering events occurs, you play until the end of a complete round (which means until everyone has had an opportunity to select a character card and all phases triggered by those cards are completed).

5. VP chits are to be kept secret by turning them face down; all other items in the game are public.

6. If you are playing a four-player game, be sure to follow the Rio Grande Rules for four player games. When removing colonists, remember a four-player game has 21 fewer colonists in total, 20 less in supply but also one fewer on the ship (75 and 4 for a total of 79 versus 95 plus 5 in the five-player version). Similarly, there are 21 fewer colonists needed for a three-player game compared to a four-player game, and also remember to reduce the number of VP chits available depending on the number of players as stated in the rules.

7. If a player has an active harbor and a wharf, when shipping during the Captain's phase it is permissible for that player to ship a type of good to fill a regular ship (thus obtaining the harbor VP bonus) and then in a subsequent shipping round to load the remainder of that same type of good on the wharf (again obtaining the harbor VP bonus for the same type of good).

8. Finally, if the VP chits run out of the last turn, be sure to record the number of virtual VPs on paper and add them to the score of the appropriate players. Also, in the semi-final and final round games, please remember to subtract out the VPs bid to arrive at a player's final score for the game.

COMMENTS WELCOME: Feel free to submit any specific suggestions/comments to the GM.

GM John Weber; Assistant GMs: Barbara Flaxngton, David Platnick, Malinda Kyrkos

 GM      John Weber  [8th Year]   NA
    jcw222@Comcast.net   NA

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