Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-30-2019, 08:50 PM
Personal is offline
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: The Beach
Posts: 2,264

Botticelli General Questions

I've been following the last few rounds of Botticelli and think I have a decent grip on it, but is there a particular set of written rules for the version used here anywhere?

Also, I note in the sticky thread that Idle Thoughts was going to move over a Botticelli thread with a list of letters already used. Does such a thread exist and if so should it be stickied or something?
Old 11-30-2019, 10:10 PM
Prof. Pepperwinkle's Avatar
Prof. Pepperwinkle is online now
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Chateau Pepperwinkle
Posts: 60,792
Elendil's Heir has come up with and maintained a list of letters already used.
Here's the link:

I'll see what I can come up with about rules. Someone else may already have them.
Old 12-01-2019, 08:38 AM
Prof. Pepperwinkle's Avatar
Prof. Pepperwinkle is online now
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Chateau Pepperwinkle
Posts: 60,792
Here's a link to the Wiki site with rules:

We have a few idiosyncracies, of course.

Basically, the game goes like this:

The Host, who won the previous round, picks a person, real or fictional, and provides an initial letter from the name. (Isaac Asimov could be I or A. John Quincy Adams could be J, Q or A. Socrates is just going to be an S. Queen Elizabeth II, however, is an E. Titles don't count UNLESS they're part of the name. Queen Latifah could be a Q or an L.)

Players then ask Indirect Questions (IQs). An IQ has to reference someone who has the same initial as the Host is asking for. (If the letter is A, then you could ask "Were you the second POTUS's wife?" for Abigail Adams.) All IQs (and DQs) have to come from your own noggin, however. There is no researching for answers. This goes for the Host as well, but he or she is allowed to research the person he's hosting in order to answer questions. But ONLY that person.

Every asked IQ that the Host cannot answer earns the player a DQ, which is a 20 Questions-like question that can be answered yes or no. (The first DQ is usually, and needs to be, "Real?" because otherwise it can be a real stretch answering some questions if the person is fictional.)

It is our practice to allow 3 IQs to be asked per round. There's no limit to the number of DQs one can store up to ask later, but see below.

When 20 DQs have been asked and answered, the Host declares an end to the IQs. He or she may also call an end to DQs if he or she likes, but it's more often the case that he or she lets any outstanding DQs be asked. There will be a time limit.

Then, when the DQs are cut off, everyone who has earned one DQ or more during the game gets to ask one "Are you Firstname Lastname?" question. Whoever gets it right gets to host the next round. If no one gets it right, then the Host gets to go again.

Except that: in order to prevent people coming up with truly obscure persons, it is our practice that at least one of the other players must have heard of this person. If no one has, then the Hosting duties fall back to whoever Hosted the game before the present Host.

There are a few other peculiarities we use:

"American" in a DQ refers to the United States of America. It doesn't refer to Canada, Mexico, Central or South America, which would have to be asked separately.

"The Arts" come in three flavors: performing, visual and writing. Plays are not considered prose writing.

Other players may add to this, and I may have forgotten something, but that's basically it.
Old 12-01-2019, 08:39 AM
Prof. Pepperwinkle's Avatar
Prof. Pepperwinkle is online now
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Chateau Pepperwinkle
Posts: 60,792
And we all hope you come and play with us!
Old 12-02-2019, 12:58 AM
Some Call Me... Tim is online now
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 1,851
Perhaps it's obvious, but as it's a major part of the game and wasn't mentioned:

If the Host is asked an IQ for which the target is a possible answer, the Host must give a valid answer. Using the example of Abigail Adams and A as the target, if asked as an IQ, "Were you a First Lady of the United States?" the Host might answer, "I'm not Abigail Fillmore"... but if the Host didn't happen to know of her or of any other A answer to that IQ, he or she must answer that "I am Abigail Adams" and award the win to that IQ questioner.

A local custom here is that the target of the IQ questions should not repeat during a round... so if someone has asked an Isaac Asimov IQ already any subsequent Isaac Asimov questions during the same target round would not be awarded a DQ, even if they used a different trivia hook concerning Asimov, and even if they were asked by someone else between when the first Asimov question was asked and answered.

One quibble with the Prof's game description: I think his definition of "round" may have changed in the middle. If by "round" we mean the whole game concerning a given target person, there's no limit per "round" for IQs- just that only up to 3 may be outstanding at any given time. Once the Host has addressed one's outstanding IQs, one may ask another set without limit until the IQ part of the "round" is over.
Old Yesterday, 12:40 AM
Elendil's Heir is offline
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: 221B Baker St.
Posts: 86,558
I would agree with all of the above.

Three other points, which I may have overlooked:

1. If the answers given in a particular round have established that the Host has in mind, say, an American woman who is still alive, you're not limited in your further IQs to American women who are still alive. You can ask all kinds of questions about dead European men, for instance, if that's what you wish, in order to earn more DQs.

2. It's tactically better to ask broad DQs in the early parts of a round than to get too specific too soon. It's not unusual to see questions like "Living?" or "Male?" or "American?" to eliminate huge groups of people from contention, and then get more and more specific in order to figure out who the Host is really thinking about.

3. If you ask the Host an IQ and she answers with someone who fits your IQ but isn't who you have mind, you may rephrase up to three times.

Hope you'll join us, Personal! C'mon in, the water's fine. You'll get the hang of the game very quickly once you get going, I'm sure, and we're always glad to welcome new players!


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:12 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to:

Send comments about this website to:

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

Copyright © 2017