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Triactor: A Day at the Piecepack Downs
A game for the piecepack by Jonathan C. Dietrich, Ken MacKeigan, Julie Taylor
Version 1.0, 2004/10/20 Copyright © 2004, Jonathan C. Dietrich 3 ­ 6 Players, 30
­ 45 Minutes per race Equipment: 8 unique piecepack suits, paper, pencils,
optional playmat, optional cash or tokens, optional timer

Summary of Play
· ·

· ·

Place your bets. Take turns rolling the dice, choosing one die, and moving the
corresponding horse. When a horse enters a space containing the coin that
matches its suit, the horse stops in that space, reveals the coin, and moves as
if it just rolled the value (number) on the coin. Continue until the first three
(3) horses cross the finish line. Calculate and pay out winnings based on the
individual player's bets and the total number of players betting on each horse.
Repeat as time allows, or until an agreed upon number of races have been
completed.

Objective
·

To make the largest winnings by betting on the top three horses.

Setup
·

Initial Race
·

· · · ·

Using 24 tiles, setup the board as detailed in figure 1 in the center of the
table. Set all other tiles aside as they are not used in the game. Note: the
four corner tiles ("steps" 7,16, 29, and 38) are face up. Which tiles are used
for the corners is not important (but using aces or nulls might be a nice
choice). If using the optional playmat, place it in the middle of the board.
Give each player a pencil. (or agree to share the pencils that you have)
Randomly determine a starting player.

Start of each Race (including the first)
· · ·

· ·

Place the 8 pawns near the start line, these will represent the horses. Some
will sit just off of the board, which is ok. Turn all coins suit side up on the
table, and mix well. Place one randomly selected coin of each suit on the board,
as indicated by the letters A-H in figure 1, one coin per letter. Coins are
placed suit side up. These coins represent events in the race for their
corresponding horse, from a sudden burst of speed to a misstep. Set aside all
other coins as they are not used again until the start of the next race. Be
careful not to peak at the values of the coins you are setting aside. Give each
player a small piece of paper to use as their betting slip for this race.

Place Your Bets
·

Each Player has three (3) "betting credits" to use for each race. (Winnings can
not be used as betting credits in future rounds.) These credits are spent on up
to three bids, which are secretly written on the player's betting slips. All
bids, except INFO which is described later, make use of shorthand letters to
indicate the horses you are betting on.

 
If you are using the standard piecepack suits and the card suits, you can use
the following shorthand letters. Horse Name Solar Eclipse Midnight Madness
Crusader Ahoy Ahoy Heart Attack Pummel Horse Diaphanous Billy the Club
·

Suit

Shorthand Letter S M C A H P D B

S M C A H P D B

Zero Horse Bets
·

INFO: Choosing this allows a player to look at the values of any three (3) of
the coins on the board prior to making any other bids. Although not a bet, this
action still requires one (1) "betting credit" and is denoted by the word INFO
on your betting slip. After you have made this bid, show the other players your
betting slip and choose the coins you wish to look at. Then you can make your
other bids. This action represents having paid for some inside information about
the upcoming race. (Note there is no reason why you couldn't spend two (2) of
your credits to look at six (6) of the coins, just write INFO twice.)

·

One Horse Bets
·

WIN: This bet pays out if the chosen horse places first. It requires one (1)
"betting credit" and is denoted by the horse's shorthand letter once on a line.
(eg. S means a bet for Suns to WIN) PLACE: This bet pays out if the chosen horse
places first or second. It requires one (1) "betting credit" and is denoted by
the horse's shorthand letter twice on a line. (eg. MM means a bet for Moons to
PLACE) SHOW: This bet pays out if the chosen horse places first, second, or
third. It requires one (1) "betting credit" and is denoted by the horse's
shorthand letter three (3) times on a line. (eg. PPP means a bet for Spades to
SHOW)

·

·

·

Two Horse Bets
·

EXACTOR: This bet pays out if the chosen two horses place first and second in
the exact order listed. It requires one (1) "betting credit" and is denoted by
the shorthand letters of the two horses on a line in the order you think they
are going to finish. (eg. DB means a bid for Diamonds to come in first, followed
by Clubs) EXACTOR BOX: This bet pays out if the chosen two horses place first
and second in the any order. It requires two (2) "betting credits" and is
denoted by the shorthand letters of the two horses on a line with a box drawn
around them. (eg. DB means a bid for Diamonds and Clubs to come in first and
second in either order)

·

·

Three Horse Bets
·

TRIACTOR: This bet pays out if the chosen three horses place first, second, and
third in

 
the exact order listed. It requires one (1) "betting credit" and is denoted by
the shorthand letters of the three horses on a line in the order you think they
are going to finish. (eg. CPS means a bid for Crowns to come in first, followed
by Spades, and then Suns)
·

TRIACTOR BOX: This bet pays out if the chosen three horses place first, second,
and third in the any order. It requires three (3) "betting credits" and is
denoted by the shorthand letters of the three horses on a line with a box drawn
around them. (eg. CPS means a bid for Crowns, Spades, and Suns to be the first
three horses across the line in any order)

·

After everyone has placed their bets, players need to write on the back of their
betting slips the shorthand letter for each horse that they have bet on. Each
letter written on the back should only appear once. (eg. If you have the
following bets SS, SMC, PPP, you would write the letters SMCP , in any order, on
the back of your slip.) The order that these letters appear is not important.
This information is shown to all players, and allows them to see which horses
you have a stake in, but not the exact bets you have placed. (This is like
seeing the posted odds of the race during the race)
·

ADVANCED VARIENT: Do NOT write anything on the back of your betting slips until
after the race is completed (but before payout occurs). This means that you will
have to guess at which horses people have stakes in. Once the race is completed,
fill out the back of your betting slips as per normal in order to do the payout
calculations.

The Race
·

Roll the active dice.
· ·

The current player rolls all active dice. All dice begin the race as active. If
there are no active dice, return all inactive dice to the active state and then
roll all of them. Once a horse finishes the race, remove its die from the game
until the end of the race. It will not become active again until the start of
the next race.

·

Choose a single die to be used.
· ·

The current player chooses one of the dice rolled to be used. Optionally use a
timer to limit the amount of time a player has to make this decision. (15 ­ 30
secs)

·

Move the horse that matches the chosen die.
· · ·

A die with the value of NULL showing has no effect on the corresponding horse.
(Which mens this horse will not move at all during this set of dice rolls!) This
die is now inactive, set it aside. A die with the value of 2 ­ 5 showing moves
the corresponding horse that number of steps forward. This die is now inactive,
set it aside. A die with the value of ACE showing moves the corresponding horse
one step forward. This die remains active. Do not set it aside!

·

Movement rules
· · ·

A "step" is one unit of forward movement. A die roll of 3 entitles a horse to
move 3 "steps" forward. A "space" is the amount of room taken up by a horse.
Each "step" has more than one "space". The track is made up of the straight
aways (face down tiles, which show a 4×4 grid) and the corners (face up tiles)
The straight aways have 2 "steps" per tile, each with room for two (2) horses (2
"spaces"). The corners have 1 "step" but room for four (4) horses ("4

 
spaces"). This gives the entire race a total of 45 steps as marked in figure 1.
· ·

A horse may finish its move in any of the available "spaces" in the target
"step". There is no penalty or advantage for moving from the inside to the
outside lane or vice versa. A horse that attempts to finish their move on a
"step" that has no empty "spaces", will not be able to execute their full move.
Instead they may only move forward to the farthest "step" that is still less
than their allowed move, and has an empty "space". This may mean that a horse
that should move forward in fact ends up staying still. A horse will never end
in a "step" behind where it starts a turn. A horse that enters or attempts to
pass a "step" that contains a portion of its matching coin, must stop at this
"step" and resolve the coin. An event has occurred for this horse. (Coins are
placed covering more than 1 "step", as shown in figure 1, to optimize space. For
clarity, events occur at the following "steps": 5,8,14,17,27,30,36, and 39.)
· ·

·

There need not be an empty "space" in the "step" with the coin in order to
resolve the coin. Just set the horse beside the board for now if needed. View
the value of the coin. Treat it as if the horse just rolled the value shown on
the coin starting from this "step".
· ·

If it is an ACE this means that the horse moves one "step" beyond where the coin
was and the die for this horse is returned to the active state. If it is a NULL
the horse stops here. If there is no room (no free "spaces" in this "step"), it
must move backwards from here to the first "step" that has an empty "space".

Calculate Winnings
Once the first three (3) horses have crossed the finish line, the race is over
and winnings are calculated. For each player calculate their winnings by doing
the following:
· · · ·

For each bet the player made, determine if it is a winning bet and will payout.
(Descriptions of when each bet pays out is included with the bet descriptions.)
For each winning bet count the number of players that have the horse (or horses)
in question written on the back of their betting slips. Now look up your
winnings by looking at the row corresponding to your bet and the column
corresponding to the number of players that have that horse written on their
betting slips. Either record your winnings on a piece of paper, or if playing
with cash, take cash or tokens from the bank equal to your winnings.

The person with the largest winnings after the agreed upon number of rounds,
wins!

License
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons
Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License. To view a copy of this license,
visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/ or send a letter to
Creative Commons, 559 Nathan Abbott Way, Stanford, California 94305, USA.

 
Tables
Zero Horse Bets
Name INFO Code Betting Credits 1 Effect Look at the values of three (3) of the
coins prior to placing your other bets.

INFO

One Horse Bets
Winnings Name WIN PLACE SHOW Code Betting Credits 1 1 1 1
given the number of players betting on horse X

2 8 4 2

3+ 4 2 1

X XX XXX

16 8 4

Two Horse Bets
Winnings Name EXACTOR EXACTOR BOX Code Betting Credits 2-3 1 2 32 32
given the number of players betting horse X + number of players betting on horse
Y

4-5 16 16

6+ 8 8

XY

XY

Three Horse Bets
Winnings Name Code Betting Credits 3-5 TRIACTOR TRIACTOR BOX
given the number of players betting horse X + number of players betting on horse
Y + number of players betting on horse Z

6-8 24 12

9+ 12 6

XYZ

1 3

48 24

X YZ

 
Appendix A: Example of Movement Please refer to figure 2. Assuming it is your
turn, and you only have the A die left to roll (all others are inactive), here
are the possible outcomes. Roll a NULL and the A stays where it is, the next
player will get to roll all dice. Roll an ACE and A moves to "step" 4 and you
pass the A die to the next player who will also have to roll it Roll a 2-5 and
the A moves to "step" 5 where it stops and triggers its event. (Because both
"spaces" in "step" 5 are taken, just set A beside "step" 5 for now. Flip over
the A coin. If the coin is a NULL, then A must move back to "step 4" because
both "spaces" in "step" 5 are taken. The next player will get to roll all of the
dice. If the coin is an ACE, then A moves to "step" 6 and the next player must
roll the A die as well, as the A die is not made inactive. If the coin is a 2,
then A moves to the last "space" in "step" 7. The next player will get to roll
all of the dice. If the coin is a 3, then A moves to the last "space" in "step"
7, because both "spaces" in "step" 8 are taken. The next player will get to roll
all of the dice. (Note that an event is not triggered when A reaches "step" 8
because events only effect the corresponding horse. Only when H reaches it does
it get triggered.) If the coin is a 4, then A moves to "step" 9. The next player
will get to roll all of the dice. If the coin is a 5, then A moves to "step" 10.
The next player will get to roll all of the dice. Appendix B: Contributions &
Thanks Jonathan C. Dietrich was responsible for basic game concept, dice
mechanics and types of bids and authoring the rules. Julie Taylor was
responsible for theming, proofreading and simplification of board and movement
rules. Ken MacKeigan was responsible for bid mathematics. Note that although the
above statements indicate specific contributions, all of those involved helped
with play testing and brainstorming, making it hard to indicate further specific
contributions. Special thanks go out to Andrew Butters and Chris Shiell for
their additional help with play testing and working out lots of the little
details. Appendix C: History
· ·

2004/06/30 version 0.9, initial release. Entry in Group Projects design contest.
Winner of "Best Eye Candy" award. 2004/10/20 version 1.0, updated with
clarifications and suggestions from Clark Rodeffer. (Optional timer added,
explicit about winnings not being used as betting credits, reduced suggested
players from 3-10 to 3-6, explicit about removing the finished horse's dice from
the game till end of race, and clarifications about resolving triactor and
exactor bets.)