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  Tringo Ate My Baby  
 
 
Posted 2005-02-01 by Tony Walsh
 
 
     
 
It pleases me to see that the overwhelming dominance of the Adult Industry in Second Life is threatened by an innocent puzzle game. Tringo, invented by SL resident Kermitt Quirk over his Christmas holidays, blends the sensibilites of Tetris and Bingo. It's a game of skill, but the stakes can be quite high. Not only is Tringo well-designed, taking Second Life's technical parameters into consideration, but its popularity is growing. Lately, "Tringo" has begun to rival "Erotic Avatar" and "Naked Bubblebath" events, and based on how SL culture has been sliding into the hot tub lately, this is a refreshing change.

Fortunately, Tringo is not only free to play, but easy to learn. After watching a few rounds, I was able to jump in and compete with the best of `em, reaching the coveted top-5 spot by my third round. Points are earned by fitting random shapes together--each cluster of 4 squares gets cleared, with more points being scored for putting together more contiguous squares. Prize money comes from a game pot, which starts at L$100 minimum but can conceivably be limitless. Following are the complete Tringo rules (written by its developer), peppered with screenshots of my first Tringo experience.

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Starting Up
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There are 3 boards to the Tringo set. The first one on the left (the one that's mostly black) is the example board. This shows all 35 game pieces that will appear during a round. As the pieces are called they will be highlighted in purple on the example board, and then fade to dark blue.
The middle one is the main scoreboard which shows the pot value, and the top 5 scores during the game.
The last one on the right is the game board. This shows the current game piece, how many turns are left in the round and the turn timer. These boards are explained in more detail throughout the instructions below.

To play Tringo you'll need a game card. To get your card, just find yourself a seat and then click the main scoreboard. When you are ready to leave, simply click the scoreboard again to put the card away. Currently Tringo will only allow one card per player.

The game will start by the host putting $100 into the game pot. Players are welcome to also add donations but that's completely optional. If you wish to add to the pot, just right-click the scoreboard and choose Pay from the pie menu. When the game is over, the player with the highest score will win the pot. In the case of a draw, the pot is split.

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Gameplay
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One round of Tringo consists of 35 turns and the objective is to score points by making solid sets of blocks on you card. On each turn, a game piece will be displayed on the game board and on the lower-right of each card. You have 10 seconds to fit the piece onto your card by clicking the spot you wish to place it. Use the red dot at the centre as a point of reference when placing your piece. Whenever you make a set your score will increase and the set will be cleared from your card. If you miss a piece you will incur a penalty of -7 points.

The scoring for each sized set is shown below...
2x2 - 5 points
2x3 or 3x2 - 15 points
3x3 - 30 points

If you are getting near the end of the round, and you're fairly sure you're not going to be able to fit any more pieces the freeze button may save you. By double-clicking this button your entire card, and your score, will be frozen. You will not be able to place any more pieces during that round, but you also do not incur the penalty for the remaining pieces you miss.
 
     
 
   
 
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Dinozoiks wrote:
Wow! Thanks for that Tony. Just posted a bunch of other tips here... http://www.dino.co.uk/labs/2008/45-tips-when-designing-online-content-for-kids/ Hope it helps someone... Dino...
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Yeah, there's a lot of weird common sense things I've noticed they've just omitted from the design. No idea why though....
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