Local Bylaws

  1. At least 2 players assemble in a rough circle.
  2. The most confident player starts. Ideally the next person should be reasonably confident too so that everyone else can get the hang of how the game works.
  3. Players take turns clockwise.
  4. Each player:
    1. Says “Local Bylaws state:”
    2. Recites the current list of Local Bylaws in order (this list is initially empty)
    3. Adheres to all local bylaws in this list
    4. States a new local bylaw, which gets added to the list for the next player.
  5. Rules 3, 4, 7, 8 and 12 can be overridden by local bylaws.
    1. In particular, the list of local bylaws will not always grow by one each turn as laws can cause previous laws to be deleted (this is encouraged for long games)
    2. These rules and local bylaws should be interpreted in such a way as to make it possible for a player to delete previous local bylaws
  6. In the event of contradictory or paradoxical local bylaws, or if a player cannot reasonably complete their turn while adhering to the active local bylaws:
    1. Take the most elegant route possible
    2. Adhering to the spirit of these rules as much as possible
    3. Adhering to the spirit of the active local bylaws as much as possible
  7. Players are encouraged to help each other remember local bylaws.
    1. There is no penalty for forgetting.
    2. You don’t have to get the exact wording right, just get the meaning across
  8. The game may involve props
  9. The game may not involve
    1. Anything illegal
    2. Behaviour contrary to any actual local bylaws, or the rules of the premises
    3. Offensive or excessively disruptive behaviour
    4. Unpleasantness
    5. Bullying or humiliation
  10. Players should make reasonable effort to ensure their local bylaws can be understood, and enjoyably followed, by the other players.
    1. Be particularly nice to children here
    2. Most people aren’t going to have this list of rules memorized, so don’t make local bylaws depend explicitly on things written here
    3. Not everybody has an undergrad degree in mathematics or computer science
  11. The game ends when all but 1 or 0 players have chosen to leave, or have been told to leave by the owner of the premises.
  12. It is impossible to win or lose a game of Local Bylaws.

For example:

There are 4 players: Alice, Bob, Catherine, Daniel sitting in a circle in that order. Alice has played the game before.

Alice: Local bylaws state: each player must stand while speaking.

Bob stands up.

Bob: Local bylaws state: each player must stand while speaking, and “and” must be replaced by “macaroon”.

Bob sits down. Catherine stands up.

Catherine: Local bylaws state: each player must stmacaroon while speaking, “macaroon” must be replaced by “macaroon”, macaroon each player must do a chicken dance.

Catherine sits down. Daniel stands up and starts doing a chicken dance.

… you get the idea.


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