Assassins is a mock combat game for a large number of players. Each person has to try to survive whilst everyone else is 'killed'. The last person to be left alive is, not surprisingly, declared the winner. The game shall be open to people who live for much of the time within a five mile radius of Great St. Mary's Church in Cambridge city centre.
Everyone who wishes to play should provide the Umpire with:
Anyone found to have supplied false details to the Umpire will be disqualified, This includes using a deliberately misleading name.
The main aim of the game is for everyone to have a good time. The aim of each player is to be the sole survivor.
You will be given details of your targets by the Umpire, in the dead of night (well - secretly anyway) shortly before the start of the game. Of course, you will not be informed about whom your assassins are.
The following gives an outline of the various weapons which can be used against enemies. It is not an exhaustive list and players are encouraged to use their imagination; however, the Umpire may make any kills carried out with an unauthorized weapon invalid, so do come and check before using your latest creation in the heat of battle. In general, all weapons must be completely safe (for both people and property) and actually do something, to indicate to the victim that he/she has been killed. All non-obvious weapons must be clearly labelled.
Messy weapons and water weapons should be used sensibly; where the rules state "with care", no large-calibre water weapons (larger than a Supersoaker XP270 or a Storm Force 2) should be used, smaller water weapons should be carefully aimed and not used to excess.
Ideally, weapons should be specific to the victim - killing bystanders is to be avoided if possible, even when the effect is harmless.
The Chief of Police is likely to take a tough line over policemen/women using weapons that could easily endanger the lives of others, such as contact poisons. Police found to have used such may be suspended.
Represented by a water pistol: You must get a definite hit with the main jet. If you just splash them with water (e.g. at extreme range or out of ammo) then it is only a flesh wound - they can carry on as normal. If they are hit in the head or torso then they are killed instantaneously.
If your private room contains expensive equipment (e.g computers) which may easily be broken by maniacs with water pistols, you may ask the Umpire and have it declared out of bounds for water- based weaponry only. Your assassin will be reminded of this. Note that other weapons may still be used, and also that you may not use water weapons out of such a room.
Water pistols may not be used in shops or parts of shops where the PRINCIPAL goods on sale are electrical appliances, books or other goods which are likely to be the worse for it. Obviously if the adjacent goods are tinned foods or pencil sharpeners, you may shoot away. This should be common sense, but is worth emphasizing.
Water and messy weapons may not be used in the rooms of non players, and must be used with care in staircases and other indoor areas. To clarify, using CPSs and water bombs inside will not count, except in specifically registered areas. Contact the Umpire to register an area.
If small water pistols are used, it is a good idea to confirm the kill immediately with the victim who might not have noticed the hit if wearing thick clothing. This avoids arguments later, when the water has evaporated.
Cap pistols may also be used, although almost point blank range (clear shot from less than one metre) is needed to claim a hit. In case of doubt, it will probably not count - for clarity of outcome, projectile weapons are preferred.
Projectile weapons may only be used if they are safe - rubber band guns are considered safe, as are SOFT pellet firing pistols (if you aren't happy to shoot yourself on exposed skin at point blank range, it isn't safe). Nothing else should be assumed to be safe without consulting the Umpire, and kills made with such are liable to be disallowed - in the event of an actual dangerous weapon being used (BB guns are included in this), disqualification is likely, too. Avoid head shots.
Hand launched rubber bands are an acceptable weapon, as long as head shots are avoided.
represented by a cardboard poster tube or a newspaper rolled up and stuck with Sellotape. The effect depends upon the location of the hit:-
Head .......... Unconscious for 5 minutes. Body .......... Immobilised but conscious for 5 minutes. Arm or Leg .... The limb is immobilised for 5 minutes.
Using the immobilised limbs for the game (or acting at all, in the case of head or body hits) will result in death. Coshing someone in th3e legs when they are late for lectures, but not finishing them off, counts as unreasonable behavious, and attracts arbitary penalties.
Foam, soft rubber, retractable plastic or cardboard knives may be used. If the knife has been made by you eg. from cardboard, it must be plainly labelled "KNIFE". Plastic ones which are more obviously knives don't need this. Plastic swords are permitted, but please be careful. Cardboard swords must be clearly labelled "SWORD". A rolled up paper tube is a cosh, not a sword.
Note that nothing with any metal in the 'blade' counts as a knife uness specifically lisenced. This includes the cutlery in a college cafeteria. Kills made with such weapons will be invalid.
Also note that many novelty weapons will function as knives, including root vegetables (which do not need to be registered, only labeled - and cannot be considered poisoned). And finally, note that carrots can be thrown, while normal knives cannot.
Cards, letters, parcels containing contact poison or some sort of audible detonator (letter bombs). Musical birthday cards are a special type of letter bomb, requiring no additional detonator or label. It will kill the victim if it goes off while held, although signing it from e.g. A. Sassin might be an idea.
Cards, letters, parcels, etc. should not be sent through the UMS or Royal Mail. Also, anything 'poisoned' with talcum powder, or similar, should have a note on the inside to the efect that it is safe really.
'Blackmail' letters must be individually approved by the umpire before use. These are poisoned letters which offer a poisoned victim the chance of an antidote in return for promptly killing a player chosen by the sender. The receiver will be made wanted if the killing breaches normal targetting rules, but at least he won't be dead... perhaps a legal method of killing could be contrived. Note also that an inappropriate choice of target by the sender (e.g. a non-player) may end up making the sender wanted too.
Bombs can be deadly in their effect, but they require careful preparation and setting up if they are not to kill innocent bystanders.
A bomb is represented by a box or container consisting of two pieces: Firstly, the detonator - to tell the victims that the bomb has gone off. It must bang or bleep sufficiently loudly to be heard by any victims. Remember rule 1.2.4, "A victim is not dead unless they know about it." Secondly, there must be explosive. The size of the bomb is determined by the volume of the explosive. 'Explosive' could, for example, be cotton wool or plasticene, or water placed in a closed container like a wine bottle. It must be reasonably space-filling, however. Air-filled objects are not considered to contain explosive, except in the special case of balloons.
You must furnish the umpire with details of the construction of your bomb along with your report.
The volume of the explosive must be marked on or in the bomb in litres, as must the blast radius, and it must be labelled 'BOMB' in large letters. If your construction might worry passers-by, write on it something like:
"This is an imitation bomb for the mock assassination game run by the Cambridge University Assassins' Guild. Any queries may be addressed to this term's Umpire, Tom Garnett (tmg27) of Jesus College."
In the event of the bomb being triggered, the blast shall be assumed to act in a 'reasonably' straight line, and along this line may encounter obstacles. 'Reasonably' means that a bomb placed right up against the door (outer or inner, for those with double doors) to a room, will blast in all directions into all corners of the room through the door, not through the side of the wall.
For people with 'oaks' this may sound unrealistic, but this is a game not reality, and I have to be fair in this respect at least to those with only one door.
The blast radius of a bomb can be generated from its volume by the following formula:
r = 2.4 + 2.6 * ln (V)
Where V = bomb volume in litres, r = blast radius in meters, and the logarithm is the "natural" log, to base e.
Table of Bomb Volume vs Blast radius: m 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0 4.5 5.0 5.5 r 0.6 2.4 3.5 4.2 4.8 5.3 5.7 6.0 6.3 6.6 6.8 m 6.0 7.0 8.0 10.0 12.0 14.0 16.0 18.0 20.0 r 7.1 7.5 7.8 8.1 8.9 9.3 9.6 9.9 10.2
If there's something between the victim and the bomb, it will subtract from the blast radius as follows:
Door ..................... 1 m Window ................. 0.5 m Plasterboard wall ........ 1 m Brick wall ............... 3 m Stone wall ............... 5 m Cupboard ................. 1 m
'Ready made' bombs include alarm clocks, tape recorders, plug timers, and such like. Party poppers also count as bombs, but remember that they are of extremely limited volume and are hence only likely to be useful as letter bombs. They can be used as detonators for larger bombs.
NOTE: Bombs operated by timers are not permitted. Some method of detonating them involving a person's action of some kind must be used. This is because it is unfair that people should be blown up while asleep; there is no defence against it. Similarly, bombs detonated directly, by the bomber's actions alone, (eg. radio controlled) are disallowed. "Dead man's triggers" (bombs that go off when you die) may not be used for the same reason.
The one exception to the triggering rule, is that timers may be used on bombs INSIDE a player's room, because there is a defence to this. It consists of locking the door...
Bombs can be triggered by the victim in various ways. There are endless possibilities: drawing pins positioned to pop balloons, smoke detectors (if the victim smokes), vacuum cleaners booby-trapped with confetti in the exhaust, etc.
Note: Constructing a bomb which is intended to kill the occupants of an entire staircase or college, is not generally valid as it validates rule 1.2.4
If you can defuse a bomb without causing its detonation, so much the better. It is a good plan to start by removing the explosive, however this will not render the bomb totally harmless as detonators contain a limited amount of explosive and are considered similar in effect to letterbombs. If the bomb detonates, all detonators attached to it are destroyed and considered harmless.
Devices which prevent motion sensors or other triggers from going off for a certain period of time are permitted, if you can work out how to make one!
Also consider remote bomb detonation. For a bomb left outside your door, detonation from within your room may be done with, say, a coat-hanger underneath the door or by opening the door whilst standing at a safe distance.
You may not remotely detonate a bomb using another explosive device. All bombs are considered bomb-proof.
Please provide the umpire with details of how you defused / detonated the bomb as part of your report. Try and make this interesting for inclusion in the news report. All bomb equipment should be returned to its maker via the Umpire, unless it is defused or dud and you wish to reuse the components to build a new device. Even so, you should keep track of the components and try to prevent their loss: they will still be returned to their original owner later in the game. Components of a bomb that has detonated may not be reused for the duration of the game by any player.
To reiterate, get the reusable bits of a bomb to the Umpire - your assassin would like to use them again sometime.
Those who wish may construct barricades/bomb shelters/bunkers. These must be registered with the Umpire before use.
A tank is proof against anything that cannot penetrate it - but note that larger water guns (and any well aimed projectile weapon) can penetrate - and will take full effect if they do. Grenades affect tanks as they do shields, boulders/safes will crush them, and a lightsaber collapsed against a tank has impaled the driver.
Also note that assassins are highly trained in anti-tank warfare and may use any knife as a tin-opener, killing the occupant(s) if they stab the tank (thrown knives don't have this effect. You are warned that other weapons may be licensed with various anti-tank properties.
Any weapon that can be built into, or fired out of a tank may be used, as per the normal rules, also note that involvement of a tank in no way alters the normal water rules. Games and Puzzles may be able to supply spare cardboard boxes.
Deaths should be reported to the Umpire as soon as possible after the event, stating all salient details (when, where, how, and whether any innocent bystanders were killed). It is best if both assassin and target report the death to make sure there is no mistake. Creative/amusing reports are encouraged. Regular failure to submit reports is cause for being made incompetent, as it makes the Umpire's job difficult. This is especially that case for indirect attacks.
When a player is dead he may, if he wishes, join the "police force" with the purpose of killing any wanted criminals or incompetents, such as those who are found to have killed innocent bystanders. The members of the police force will be announced to all players.
Sucessful police officers may earn promotions to higher ranks provided they demonstate skill and fairness in their application of the law. The actions of the police force will be coordinated by the high-ranking Chiefs of Police.
Police may also attack players openly bearing weapons, or obviously attempting to kill someone, in "pre-emptive self-defence", but otherwise the player cannot be killed by police. Police should not collaborate with assassins unless the target is a wanted criminal. This includes giving information. Those who violate this are liable to be made wanted for corruption.
Police officers should take great care not to kill innocent victims. In general, police who kill innocent bystanders will be made wanted, whether the bystanders are innocent players, non players or ducks.
The umpires will consider individual cases though, and if there are extenuating circumstances the officer will be allowed to resume his duties. These would include bystanders who deliberately threw themselves in front of a criminal to stop a bullet, or if the police misidentified a passer-by with reasonable cause - this includes those who lie about their identity. If police shoot innocent players, the players will not be killed, but the police will be wanted anyway.
Police who make no attempt of any sort in a kill period, despite having a selection of reasonable targets, may be made incompetent. Advanced warning of this will be given.
Resurrection of competent and keen police officers is likely to occur, to keep the force at high efficiency.
You may attack anyone - however anyone who is NOT one of:
...is an innocent victim. So you will probably be made wanted, except in extreme extenuating circumstances.
No assassination attempt may be made if victim or assassin is in an out-of-bounds area. The following are always out of bounds:
Assassinations CAN take place in the Phoenix User Area, Cockroft 4, departmental/college computer rooms etc, but only as follows:
Computer rooms in libraries are defined as computer rooms, not libraries. A computer room is, in general, defined as a place where the public (or any clearly defined group, e.g. members of a college) are permitted to use computers. Players' private rooms do NOT count.
"Formal college dining halls" shall be taken to mean in a hall for the
purpose of eating food which is served to the table. I am aware that this
applies to some colleges' informal dining arrangements.
Any meal where you get the food yourself from a servery is in bounds.
Any further suggestions should be communicated to the Umpire as soon as possible. Please use your common sense!
Once the game starts, you must make a reasonable kill attempt within each game period as specified by the umpire. These periods will be 1 week long to start with, and decreasing towards the end of the game. Poisoned letters will not count as 'reasonable' attempts for later kill periods, but you will be informed of these via. the web site. Please note that in this game, unlike previous ones, the kill period refers to elapsed time between events, and thus each person will have a different deadline. Your time limit will be sent out with your targets. Being actively involved in a kill attempt (even one on you) may suffice to keep you competent, at least early in the game.
Players missing the time limit will be put on the wanted list for incompetence. Players who are on the wanted list for incompetence can be removed if they catch up on the previous period's attempt, as well as making an attempt for the current period. Police are not exempt from incompetence, unless there are only very few wanted criminals around.
I will not be instituting kill periods within which you are required to kill someone, this game - only attempts will be required.
Whenever you make an attempt on the life of another player or an innocent, successfully assassinate him or her, are attacked youself, or become involved in any other game related incident, you must notify the Umpire as quickly as possible. If you can, confirm the exact details of the event with the other assassins involved, though be careful about exposing youself to danger, when doing this.
In general, all players concerned should submit reports; the Umpire can update the game news more quickly and with fewer problems if this is done.
A witness is any player or non-player who is in a position to see an assassination take place. Witnesses can, of course, talk about the assassination to other players. Killing your target when there are many witnesses present will get your name in the News. That is to say more than 10 witnesses will unmask your present pseudonym.
In game terms, dead witnesses tell no tales but provoke investigation. The police force has a very up-to-date forensic department, and players do not escape the Wanted List by disposing of witnesses.
Each player may begin the game with one pseudonym of their choice, which
may be used in the news in place of their real name. Every time they have
legally kill another two assassins, they earn the right to use one more
pseudonym; but only so long as they remain on the right side of the law (ie.
not wanted for any reason).
Police Officers and wanted criminals have no secrecy; their pseudonym(s) are always published together with their real names. They are encouraged to use them anyway, as it makes reports more interesting.
Players may at any time make a choice of the penname under which subsequent reports involving themselves are to be published - subject to that penname being either their real name, or their first pseudonym, or any of their pseudonyms (if a player has earned one or more extra ones). Obviously, the actual pseudonyms themselves may not be altered once devised. Players may not use the pseudonym of another for reports, even if the other is dead. (Players are free to lie to other players however.)
If you are responsible for the death of an innocent victim (see rule on Permissible Targets) then you are put on the Wanted List (a public file containing the names and addresses of known criminals).
Getting other people to open your mail/door for you will make you responsible for them (if they die you will become wanted, unless you have a very good explanation). If the other person is dead already expected to become wanted, or worse, for Necromancy. Non-players MAY NOT defuse or detonate bombs intended for you, this is a skill unique to assassins.
Players who incompetently attempt to murder innocent victims will also be put on the wanted list. If an innocent person is killed by genuine mischance, and players could not be expected to foresee this they may appeal to the Umpire. Poison letters are considered attempts on those to whom they are addressed; poison on door handles will be considered to be an attempt on the life of ANYONE who may reasonably be expected to try to open the door. So if you poison a communal door, you have attempted to murder innocents, and are on the wanted list. To discourage indiscriminate contact poisonings (which get tedious), it's now assumed that people other than a room's occupant could reasonably try to open its door.
If you are on the wanted list the police will come after you... The police may not attack wanted criminals indirectly, as this is dangerous to bystanders. Wanted police may not instigate attacks against anyone who is not wanted or incompetent - but may defend themselves to the best of their ability.
Incompetents will be treated somewhat separately from other wanted criminals - they have fewer rights, for a start. If you are actually a competent player, then it is suggested that you make a direct kill attempt, or a *successful* indirect one, in which case your competence will be recognised.
Those who are incompetent will be put up on a seperate list to the wanted list, and will be expected to die quite soon, to police, or bored assassins. Police may make indirect attacks against incompetents - they no longer have rights.
This term's Umpire is Tom Garnett (firstname.lastname@example.org) of Jesus College.
The primary method of contacting the Umpire is through email, though players are welcome to visit. The Umpire is immortal. No one may be killed in the Umpire's staircase), which is also a no-water-weapons zone. The Umpire's room is number 11, Staircase 4, Library court, Jesus.
If you have any queries, send mail, or visit the Umpire (but try to arrange the meeting beforehand), preferably before the query becomes a matter of life and death (yours or anyone else's).
Player-Umpire communications may be made public at the end of the game for everyone's enlightenment and amusement. If you do not wish a certain communication to be made public, please tell the Umpire.
NOTE: It is the responsibility of players to read their e-mail and read the news to see whether they have been put on the wanted list. Players are deemed to know that they are wanted/police as soon as the Umpire sends e-mail to that effect, or adds them to the web site. They are not wanted/police before this.
This may seem a bit unfair, but is less so than expecting the Umpire to guess if a player has logged on recently. Players are not wanted before the Umpire announces the fact and therefore are not automatically permissible targets, even if people know they will be wanted soon. Of course, you may shoot anyone displaying a weapon, or blatently attacking you.
The game has its own World-Wide Web pages, which will host these rules and game news:
To avoid waste of bandwidth, game news will not be distributed by email.
The history of this set of rules is thought to be: