Tournament Rules

There will be no novice and experienced divisions.  Instead, each player, each player is expected to know the rules before attending a heat.  This can be done in several ways:

All players are eligible for all special awards.

The traditional beginner rules will apply to players with 0-1 games of experience:

Experienced players must know the rules and use the two-minute timer from the start of the game.

Optional Rules: No advanced options are used unless all players agree in advance. Random movement order is not recommended. If you wish to play with the advanced options, please notify the GM in advance and he will attempt to place you with like-minded opponents.  Saturday morning is the official optional rules event -- all players are encouraged to agree to optional rules during this heat!

Squirt Gun: The squirt gun is used only if all players agree. However, within reason the GM will attempt to place players who want to use the squirt gun together during each heat. The Thursday night heat is the official squirt gun event -- it's usually hot, so all players who do not opt out of using the squirt gun will be seated in games that use it!  This is a blast -- don't miss out!

Questions and Rulings: The GM and Assistant GMs are allowed to answer questions in their own games. Players who disagree with any action taken or rules interpretation in their game by another player (including a playing official) are encouraged to seek a ruling. Rulings will be made by two non-participating officials with ties resolved by the GM or a Senior Assistant GM (who is not in the game in question). Any such ruling is final and binding on that game and on all other games until an official clarification is issued and posted on the website.

Water under the Bridge: Errors made in a previous player-turn cannot be corrected once the next player has rolled the dice. Pay attention to the details!


Gangsters is a G-rated event where young gamers and teen players are welcome.  Non-period swearing, crude jokes, and other forms of poor sportsmanship are unwelcome.  Minor infractions will result in a warning by an official and may result in a player being assigned to the GM's table in future games. Subsequent or major infractions will result in ejection from the tournament.  Moonshine, hooch, and assorted fire water are permitted at the tournament; however, drunken behavior will result in removal.

Time Limit: Each heat and second-round game will last a maximum of two and three-quarters hours; the final will be allowed to run to completion (unless a majority of finalists wish to use the normal time-constraints). A thirty-minute and a fifteen-minute warning will be given.  At the fifteen-minute warning, every player in games which have not completed takes one more turn and then the players complete a game turn (so that each player has moved an identical number of times).  At that point (if no one has met victory conditions), the winner is determined on the basis of tie-breakers.

Timers: Use of a timer to enforce the two-minute move/recruit time limit is required. The GM will loan a timer to any game without one.  Players are expected to keep the non-timed portion of each turn to a minimum (Suggested: 30 seconds); a timer may be imposed on the non-timed portion of each turn (3 minutes total) at the request of any player.

AREA: All games will be A.R.E.A. rated. Those without a rating will be given a nominal starting rating of 5000. There is no charge for this service. Click on this link to see current Gangsters' AREA ratings. For additional information, email the AREA Administrator, Glenn Petroski.

Cash: Cash must be kept in a single location on top of the game table during play (typically under the player chit or player reference card).  The only exception is for a quick count.  No notes regarding other players' cash may be kept.  A player who has any cash in an off-table location forfeits all cash.  A player with cash in two on-table locations forfeits the cash in one of those locations.  Cash on top of the card covering the rest of the cash is not considered a separate location.

Gangsters® is a registered trademark of The Avalon Hill Game Company.