Thursday, 15 November 2012
Ruthless Snark: Bryss' Guide to Scottish Rules Lawyering, Part 1
Hello! Today's topic is rules interpretation. Why on earth am I bringing up the interpretation of rules? Well, many reasons. One, as an occasional rules writer I know I need to be clear (unless the game I am writing for is Munchkin, of course, in which case being devious is encouraged) and examples of what I should and shouldn't do are nice. Two, I'm reading law, and therefore I have different names for most of the terminology. Three, my Legal System lecturer has a very specific style in which emphasis is put on certain words to hold your attention and you know I like mimicking styles.
Time for a jump break, I reckon. After which I shall show you the correct way to rules-lawyer. Remember, persuasiveness > rules, unless your opponent appeals to a higher civil court. Not criminal, as nobody's dead. We are NOT going to intermingle criminal terms with civil ones.
The court hierarchy is rather simple. At the bottom are Your Opponent's Court and FLGS Court. If neither of those agree with you, you may appeal to Local GW Court, but beware, as your opponent also has the right to appeal. The highest is the Supreme Court at Warhammer World, which is binding on Local GW Court and, unlike the other courts, does not go on circuit. IT DOES NOT MOVE. Also note that Forge World rules mess up this hierarchy a tad. And don't ask me how an English establishment is at the top of the Scottish legal system, I think there's a loophole in the Act of Union somewhere that allows it. At any level EXCEPT Your Opponent's Court you may request a jury, but this can be a double-edged tape measure, so to speak.
Incidentally, if your Warhammer World appeal fails, do NOT try to appeal to the European Courts, as you'll be laughed out the door for appealing regarding a silly plastic men game. And for believing Warhammer World is a Court.
Now then, time for a quick lecture on the interpretation (I hate typing that word, I always make a mistake somewhere) of statutes. The Warhammer 40k rulebook is divided into areas such as Units, Movement, Shooting, etc, each of which is its own individual statute. These are cited as follows. If I want to cite the Snap Fire mechanic, I tell you to refer to the Shooting Phase Act 2012, p13, s.4. Here, p is Page and s is Section. Now, Snap Shot has only one paragraph, but if it had two paragraphs and I wanted to only reference the first one, I'd cite s.4(1). With me so far?
Each Codex is made up of two statutes. If I want to cite a rules entry, I refer to the Codex (Forces of the X) Act 20--. If I want the army list, it's the Codex (Army List) Act 20--. Simple and easy. Forge World stuff is usually Imperial Armour (book name) Act 20--. Experimental rules are Statutory Instruments and are cited as S.I.UnitName for convienience.
That's all the groundwork done. Next time, I'll teach you the rules of statutory interpretation and give you relevant case law examples. See you then, and remember, ALL OF THIS IS UTTER BALLS. If it weren't for the fact that I'm this mad normally, you'd swear I wrote this while drunk.