Adventuring Ph.D.

Games Within Games


game - information on the games to play within Alyria

Alyrians love games!  They've invented a number of games to play including hangman,
Fnargh, chess, two kinds of solitaire, darts, blackjack, tag, and capture the flag.
You can invite players to a game of tag simply by TAGGING another player.  See HELP
TAG for more information

Hangman, Fnargh, and solitaire are handheld games that may be purchased from
vendors around Alyria. See their respective helpfiles for more information on
each of these games.

Chess can be played from anywhere in Alyria with any other player anywhere in Alyria.
Alyrian chess does not use standard rules.  It is a modified version of Fischer960.
More information about how to play chess can be found in the HELP CHESS helpfile.

Players can also challenge each other to games of combat skill in the arena.  Any
player with the challenge setting on may be issued a challenge.  HELP CHALLENGE
for more information.

The GAME channel is used for internally-run games like Capture the Flag. The game
announcer is the only one who can send over this channel, and will do so to
announce flag stealings, player deaths, and other interesting information.  See
HELP CHANNELS for more information.


capture the flag - instructions on how to play

To promote the development and perfection of their Adventurers' combat 
instincts and fighting prowess, the Council of Seven unanimously funded the
construction of a magnificent arena. The Capture The Flag Arena is not located
on the surface of Alyria, but held in an extraplanar realm reachable from the
Recall Points of New Rigel, Rune, Tellerium, Xaventry, Maldra's Keep, Vir and

In order to start or join a CTF team, Adventurers level 30+ may CTF START or
CTF JOIN a game that has already been started. The Red and Blue teams face off
in an moderately-sized field which separates two Keeps. There are multiple
ways to enter each keep, as well as multiple ways to traverse the winding
pathway. Within each keep is a Flag Chamber, which contains either the red
team's flag, or the blue team's flag. To score points you must take the
opposing team's flag from their Flag Chamber and drop it in your Flag Chamber.

The game will end after a team scores the predetermined number of points, or 
when the time runs out.

In order to facilitate experimentation and risky tactics, the Council of Seven
has decreed that no PK stats will be collected from within the CTF arena.

Start a game with CTF START <'RED'||'BLUE'>, indicating which team you wish to
be on. Setting up a game involves a series of options, after which players can
enroll in the game. Players will have to be in one of the aforementioned 
Recall points to join, and will have 5 minutes to do so, or until all of the
team slots are filled. If the game is not at capacity after 5 minutes, the 
game will be canceled.

To join a CTF game, you must be in one of the Recall Points of New Rigel,
Rune, Tellerium, Xaventry, Maldra's Keep, Vir or Sigil. When the enrollment
period for the game begins, CTF JOIN <'RED'||'BLUE'> [<password>]' will join
the team, space permitting. If the game's starter has set an entry fee, that
gold will be taken from your inventory or default bank account. Once you join
a team, you will immediately be transported to the Gargoyle Gate to await the
game's start.

The arena area of moderate size, about 100 rooms. The two sides are
approximately symmetrical, with two keeps at the west and east sides of a 
field. Moats encircle the keeps, and provide access to a back entrance to 
them. Portals and numerous paths link the two keeps together. A reagent shop
is located in each keep, and a Safe room with a mount shop is contained in the
center, where Adventurers will be held for a moment after respawning.

The arena is entirely LPK and Psychotic, which will help prevent one team 
snowballing to victory, and some skills cannot be used in CTF to encourage
aggressiveness over turtling and hiding.

Some strategies are:
 1. Post your most powerful player(s) in the Flag Room for your
    keep, and send your fastest player(s) to capture the other
    team's flag.
 2. Listen to the Gargoyle who guards the back balcony to the
    keep. He will inform you if he sees someone scaling the
 3. Post hidden players along the path, to look for incoming
    enemies and thus warn other team members.

 The following subcommands are available:

 REQUEST <min level> <max level> - sends an automated message over the game
         channel to anyone listening and notifies them of your desire to begin
         a CTF game with players of <minimum level> to <maximum level>.
         Minimum and maximum levels must be between 61 and 241.

 START <red or blue> <minimum level> <maximum level> - set up a CTF game,
       choosing from a set of options which dictate the game rules. Minimum
       and maximum levels must be a number from 61 to 241.

       CTF options are as follows:
       Time limit - The maximum duration of the game, in Real minutes, 20-60.
       Captures - The number of captures required to win, 1-12.
       Players - The number of players each team must have, 2-9.
       Cost - The amount of gold it will cost each player to play. The winners
              will share the pot. 0-5M gold.
       Password - Password-protect the game?

 CANCEL - cancels a game which is in the enrollment phase and has not started.

 JOIN <'RED'||'BLUE'> - join a CTF game during the enrollment period.

 INFORMATION - See information about the current CTF game.

 TALK <message> - Delivers a message to your team mates during an active CTF


alyrian chess - information on playing the Alyrian Chess game

 Chess is a game of logic and skill between two players called 'White'
 and 'Black'. Each player has sixteen pieces: A King and a Queen, two
 Rooks, two Knights, two Bishops, and eight Pawns. These pieces face
 each other in individual squares on opposing sides of the chess board,
 which has sixty-four squares - eight across, eight down.

 Alyrian chess is a modified version of Fischer960 chess- all non-pawn
 pieces will start in a random location in their back row.

 Each piece is moved according to its own rules. When a piece is allowed
 to move onto a square occupied by an opposing piece, the piece is
 considered 'taken' and is removed from play.

 The King is considered in 'check' if he is in imminent danger of being
 taken by an opposing piece.

 The objective of the game is to get the opponent's King in 'checkmate';
 which means that the King is trapped on all sides and cannot move and
 no pieces on his side can come to his rescue. When a checkmate occurs,
 the game is over.

 It is possible to reach a stalemate in chess. This means that enough
 pieces have been taken by both sides that there is no real way to get
 the opposing player's King in check. When a stalemate occurs, the
 game is considered a draw (neither side wins) and is ended.

 CHESS LIST - Lists all games and suspended Alyrian Chess games.

 CHESS INFO [<#>] - If you are currently playing an Alyrian Chess game,
     this will display information about that game (such as whose turn
     it is). If a number is specified, it will display information about
     that specific Alyrian Chess game. Numbers are displayed in CHESS LIST.

 CHESS BOARD [<#>] {<'flip'] - If you are currently playing an Alyrian chess
     game, this will display the current chess board visually (note that this
     doesn't look good on clients that can't handle ANSI). If a number is
     specified, it will display the board of that specific Alyrian Chess
     game. Game numbers are displayed in CHESS LIST.

     The 'flip' option shows you the board reversed from your current

 CHESS PIECES <#> - Displays the current chess coordinates of all pieces on
     the specified board, making it more accessible than the CHESS BOARD

 CHESS HISTORY [<#>] - If you are currently playing an Alyrian chess game,
     this will display the current chess board move history. If a number is
     specified, it will display the move history of that specific Alyrian
     Chess game. Game numbers are displayed in CHESS LIST.

 CHESS START '<title>' [<password>] - Begins a new chess game. Titles
     must adhere to normal public channel rules. If you do not specify
     a password, the game will be considered 'open', which means anyone
     can join. If you specify a password, only a player who knows the
     password can join that game.

 CHESS STOP - Stops the current chess game, if no other players have
     joined. If other players have joined you must use the CHESS RESIGN

 CHESS RESIGN - Resigns you from the current Alyrian Chess game and
     cancels it.

 CHESS DRAW - Offers your opponent a draw. Your opponent, on his next move,
     must issue a CHESS DRAW as well, or the match will continue. If you make
     another move before the CHESS DRAW command is accepted, it will be
     automatically cancelled.

     To cancel/reject an offer of a draw, type CHESS DRAW CANCEL.

 CHESS LOCK - Registers a chess game as being between the two players
     that are currently playing it. This means that if one or both of
     you quit, the game will be saved and only you and the other player
     can rejoin it later.

     Normally, if a character logs out of the game while playing an
     Alyrian Chess game, another player can step in and pick up where
     he left off. The CHESS LOCK command prevents that.

     Alyrian Chess games will not be saved unless they are LOCKed.

 CHESS MOVE <source> <destination> [<piece name>] - Moves a chess piece
     as requested, based on the rules outlined below under 'PIECE

     If your King falls in check, your next move must take him out of

     When a Pawn reaches the other end of the board, it must be
     promoted - when moving the Pawn the last square, you must specify
     the piece name to which you wish to promote the Pawn. The piece
     to which the Pawn is promoted can be any of the chess pieces 
     of your color, with the exception of a King or another Pawn.

     When it is your turn to move, a yellow [TURN] flag will appear
     on your prompt, as an extra reminder to move.

 CHESS CASTLE <'kingside', 'queenside'>
     When your King and one of your Rooks have not been moved during
     a game and there are no pieces inbetween them, you can 'castle'.
     This means your King will be moved two spaces towards the
     chosen Rook, and the Rook is moved to the opposite side of the

     Castling counts as one move.

 Each piece is governed by its own rules, as follows:

 Pawn      - Can move only forward, never sideways or backwards. Pawns
             can move forward diagonally only to capture an opposing
             player's piece.

             The first time a Pawn moves, it may move one or two
             squares forward. After that, it can move once every turn.

             If a Pawn reaches the opposite end of the chess board,
             it must be promoted into another piece. Promotion means
             the Pawn is removed and replaced by another piece of the
             player's choosing - any piece except another Pawn or a

 Knight    - The Knight moves in an 'L' shape - that is, one square
             in any direction and then diagonally one square away
             from its starting square. Knights can jump over any
             piece in their path, so long as the square to which they
             are moving is empty (or filled with an opponent's piece,
             which would then be taken).

 Rook      - Rooks can move horizontally or vertically any number
             of squares along their row or column. Rooks must have
             a free path to move; that is, they cannot be blocked
             by other pieces. If an opponent's piece is in the way,
             the Rook stops on that piece's square and the piece
             is considered taken.

 Bishop    - Bishops can only move diagonally. There is one Bishop on
             each color square for each player. Bishops can move
             diagonally any number of squares, and must have a free
             path to move; that is, they cannot be blocked by other
             pieces. If an opponent's piece is in the way, the Bishop
             stops on that piece's square and the piece is considered

 Queen     - The Queen can move any number of squares diagonally or
             horizontally, and must have a free path to move; that is,
             they cannot be blocked by other pieces. If an opponent's
             piece is in the way, the Queen stops on that piece's square
             and the piece is considered taken. The Queen is considered
             the most powerful piece on the chess board.

 King      - The King can move one square in any direction, horizontally
             or diagonally. The King must have a free path to move; that
             is, it cannot be blocked by other pieces of the same color.
             If an opponent's piece is on the square to which the King
             moves, that piece is considered taken.    

  castling  - When your King and a Rook have not been moved during a game
             and there are no pieces in between them, you can 'castle'.
             This means your King will be moved two spaces towards the
             chosen Rook, and the Rook is moved to the opposite side of
             the King.

  en passant - A special capture of a pawn by another pawn which can only
             be made immediately after the victim pawn moves two squares
             forward. The capturing pawn captures by moving diagonally
             as it would for a regular capture, but in this case, the
             capturing pawn moves one square behind the victim pawn.

  If a chess game has not had a move made in three real life days, it is
  considered defunct and is automatically removed from the list. Non-locked
  chess games are cleared during reboots as well.

  How to Play Chess - Rules and Basics

  Learn to Play Chess


Fnargh - the dice game of Fnargh!

The dice game of Fnargh can be played solo or in a group: the group version
simply consists of each individual playing with their own game, with the highest
score winning.  

Fnargh, like some other Alyrian games, implements system of rewards for players
who achieve high scores. For details, see the item's shop description.

A game of Fnargh lasts 13 rounds, in which the dice are rolled, with the option
of rerolling dice a maximum of two times. The resultant collective die roll is
placed into one of the 13 categories.  Each die roll must be placed in a
category, meaning that players might be forced to take a score of 0 in
some categories.  The game is over once all 13 categories have been filled, and
can be restarted with fnargh restart.
To roll the dice, fnargh roll. 
To reroll specific dice, fnargh reroll <Ordered number of the dice to
For example, if you were to roll a 6, 5, 3, 1, 1, and wished to reroll the 1s,
you would fnargh reroll 4 5. After two rerolls, you must choose a category
to place the dice roll into. 
To see possible categories and their explanations,fnargh categories or
 look categoriesfnargh. 
To see your current score, fnargh score self and to show others your
current score, fnargh score room.
BonusFnargh are a special category, that may only be scored after initial
Fnarghs have been rolled. After the first 50 points available in the
Fnargh category, the BonusFnargh category opens up, and each BonusFnargh
rolled is worth 100 points. If a player takes a 0 for the Fnargh category,
BonusFnargh are not available. An additional 35 bonus points are available
if, at the completion of the upper section, more than 62 points have been
scored in it: An average of 3 successful die faces per category.  

To see the current high score,fnargh highscore.  
To input a high score, simply finish the game, recording a score in every
category, and fnargh score self or fnargh score room, and the high
score shall be marked.


solitaire - grab a pack of cards and play solitaire

 Solitaire is one of the many games played throughout the world of Alyria.
 Solitaire sets are produced by the followers of Uath and can be purchased
 at your neighborhood REWARD UNIT shop.

 Solitaire is a general term for a card game played by one person. There
 are many variants. Currently Uath's Solitaire set can be used to only one
 variant: Rakshasa Solitaire. More variants playable by the same set may
 be offered as upgrades for purchase in the future.

 Solitaire, like some other Alyrian games, implements system of rewards
 for players who achieve high scores. For details, see the item's shop

 The Solitaire set is operated via the USE command. You can issue a command
 to the Solitaire set by typing USE SOLITAIRE <command>. It may be helpful
 to create ALIASES for frequently used commands such as MOVE and VIEW. See
 HELP ALIASES for more details.

 The following commands are available for the Solitaire set:
  SETVARIANT <variant>
  SHOW <target>
  HIGHSCORES [<type>]
  HIGHSCORES 'rewards'
 Additionally, the following settings are available:
  SETCOLOR <suit> <color>

 SETVARIANT <variant>
     Sets the variant of Solitaire.

     Shows the rules for the currently selected variant.

     View the current game board.

 SHOW <target>
     Show the current game board to another person in the room.
     Give up the current game. This records your current score.
 HIGHSCORES [<type>]
     Without specifying a type, this command shows your personal high score
     and your rank in each of the supported high scores tables. You can
     additionally specify the type of high score board, and the board will
     be displayed. The available types are shown on the command menu of the
     Solitaire set.

 HIGHSCORES 'rewards'
     The 'rewards' option lists all rewards granted by this item for the
     currently selected variant. The command also lists all rewards granted
     for the selected variant to the player who is issuing command.
     Sets the display mode. The available display modes depend on the
     variant. The different display modes affect the size/width of
     each card displayed. Players who have wide screens may prefer
     a wider display mode.

     Toggles anonymous high score reporting. If Anonymous score reporting
     is enabled, your scores high scores will still appear on the high score
     tables and will still be associated with you. However, if anyone else
     tries to view a score that has been reported anonymously, they will see
     Anonymous in place of your name.
 SETCOLOR <suit> <color>
     Allows for changing the color code of each suit. Valid suits are: hearts, 
     diamonds, clubs, and spades. Almost any single character color code is 
     valid (e.g. W, c, etc.).
     Toggles the automatic displaying of the board after making a move.
     Turning this off may reduce spam.


dartboard - instructions on how to play darts

 The game of darts is traditionally played in pubs across the world. Many
 variations of dart games abound, mostly differing due to region however
 they all share one thing in common and that is the use of a thrown dart
 to strike a dartboard for points. These games are generally ones of agility
 but luck still plays a small part. All dart games have their origins
 in the combative arts; however the darts used here are designed for accuracy
 to the exclusion of damage potential.

 A dartboard is large circular board made of cork or wood that is divided
 into twenty wedges like a pie. Each wedge is numbered one through twenty
 representing their point value. In the very center is a small black dot
 surrounded by a slightly larger red circle known as the double bull's eye
 and bull's eye, respectively.  The point value of a bull's eye is twenty-five
 and the double bull is fifty.  The board also has two thin rings known as
 the doubles and the triples.  The triples ring bisects all the wedges and
 has a point value equal to three times the number upon which it overlaps.
 The doubles ring circles the very outside of each wedge and is valued at
 two times the number over which it lay.

 Three games are recognized in some form or another around the world of Alyria.
 They are Cricket, 301, and 501.  In all the games, players normally Cork to
 see who goes first and then alternate turns by throwing three darts per turn.
 Players then take as many turns as is necessary to finish the game.

 Corking is used to determine who shoots first regardless of what game is
 going to be played. The winner of the cork is the one who gets the highest
 amount of points by throwing a single dart.  The syntax is generally,
 'Let us Cork.', 'You Cork.', 'I'll Cork.', or 'Who won the Cork?'.

 The game of Cricket is more time consuming than 301 or 501.  In this game
 points do not matter. The object is to try to hit a particular number three
 times thus 'closing' it. The numbers we shoot for are normally 18, 19, 20
 and the bull's eye.  Doubles count as two strikes and triples as three.
 The first player to close all the target numbers and bull's eye wins.

 301 is easier than Cricket and very similar to 501.  The object of this
 game is to subtract the number of points you get each turn from 301. It
 is a simple race to zero but with one catch, to begin subtracting points you
 must first throw a double on any number and to finish the game you must throw
 another double. It is called 'double in, double out'. The first double
 thrown is subtracted from 301 to start the countdown. Once reaching zero
 points, or less, the next double thrown will finish the game.

 Though 501 is different from Cricket, it is almost exactly the same as 301
 except you do not have to double in. Each player starts with 501 points and
 race to zero by subtracting the number of points they get each turn. The
 first player to score a double on any number after reaching zero, or less, wins.

 As with any game, a player should take a few practice throws first to get a feel
 for it.


rakshasa solitaire - grab a pack of cards and play spider solitaire

 Rakshasa Solitaire is one of the most popular variants of Solitaire card
 games around.  In some regions, it is also referred to as Spider Solitaire.
 Fittingly, Alyria manufactures portable Solitaire sets which support this 
 variant.  These sets can be purchased at your neighborhood REWARD UNIT shop.

 For general information about Solitaire and the Solitaire Set, see 

 The rules of Rakshasa Solitaire are simple.  First, a game of solitaire can
 either be played with 1, 2, or 4 different suits.  The general rules are the
 same in each case, but greater numbers of different suits make the game more

 The game begins by dealing ten stacks of cards face down.  Four of these
 stacks are dealt six cards, and the other six are dealt five cards.  The top
 card of each of these stacks is turned face up.  Additionally, there remain
 five sets of ten cards to be dealt in later.  

 The goal of the game is to create eight sets of cards of one suit, in
 descending order.  Specifically, a set must contain these cards in the this
 descending order: King, Queen, Jack, Ten, Nine, Eight, Seven, Six, Five,
 Four, Three, Two, Ace (Rakshasa).  Once a set is created on the board, it is
 devoured by the Rakshasa, and removed from play.  The game continues until
 all eight possible sets are created and the board becomes empty of cards.  

 During play, the player can do one of two things.  The first option is to
 move a card or run of cards from one stack to another.  When moving a run of
 cards, all cards in the run must be of the same suit and in descending order
 of value (Aces/Rakshasas are low).  A legal move must result the combination
 of the run of cards moved and the top card of the destination stack to be in
 descending order of value, however, the suits do not have to match.  When
 moving cards to an empty stack, the latter consideration is irrelevant.  

 The second option available to players at any point is to deal ten cards
 from the remaining undealt cards.  This can be done five times total during
 a game, and can only be performed when there are no empty stacks on the
 board, or if it is not possible to fill all empty stacks.  

 The portable Alyrian version of Rakshasa solitaire includes configurable
 game board display, the ability to share the status of your current game
 board with others, and the recording of high scores.

 For general Solitaire Set commands, see HELP SOLITAIRE

 The following commands are available for this variant of Solitaire:

  SETSUITS <# of suits>
  MOVE <# of cards to move> <stack # to move from> <stack # to move to>
  MOVE <hint #>
 Additionally, the following settings are available:
  SETHINTS <option> - options are OFF, LIST

 SETSUITS <# of suits>
     Rakshasa Solitaire can be played with 1, 2, or 4 suits. The more suits
     there are, the harder the game becomes as it becomes more difficult to
     match cards for a valid move.

     Starts a new game of Rakshasa Solitaire. You can

 MOVE [<# of cards to move>] <stack # to move from> <stack # to move to>
     As explained in the RULES above, a move consists of a run of cards
     being transferred from one numbered card stack to another. When
     viewing the game board, the row of numbers above the cards are the
     the numbers of each of the 10 card stacks. An example of a move is
     MOVE 1 2 3. This will move 1 card from stack 2 to stack 3. See the
     RULES above for details about movement restrictions. If only the
     from and to stack numbers are specified, then either the largest
     run in the from stack will be moved, or only as many as it is legal
     to move to the destination stack will be moved. There is always at
     most one valid move between two stacks unless the destination stack
     is empty.
 MOVE <hint #>
     If you have generated a numbered list of hints (either automatically,
     using the SETHINTS LIST setting, or by using the HINT command), you
     can specify the number of the hint to execute.

     Deals a set of 10 cards, one to each stack. See the RULES above for
     Reverts the effect of the last move made. This can only be done for
     one move in a row and is only valid for moves that do not complete a
     set. Deals cannot be undone.
     Shows a list of possible moves. This is the same as the list displayed
     automatically with the game board when SETHINTS is set to LIST. There 
     is no scoring penalty for using hints. Note that moves of partial runs 
     onto a destination stack of the same suit are not shown and neither 
     are moves to empty stacks.

     Changes hint display. When set to LIST, a numbered list of possible 
     moves will be displayed whenever the game board is displayed. These
     hints can then be executed directly using MOVE <hint #>.


tag - begin or continue a game of tag with another player

 By typing tag and a player's name you give them a useless and
 REALLY annoying red [TAG!] flag that they see on their prompt. 
 To get rid of a tag simply tag someone else, (or yourself),
 but please... no tagbacks :)


challenge - challenge a player to one-on-one combat

 Challenge allows one player to challenge another to a fight to the
 death in one of multiple, randomly-generated player-killing Arenas.
 Both players must be level 25 or greater.

 The player issuing the challenge can be pretty much anywhere in the
 world as long as they are in a SAFE room (except from within a
 player-killing arena); when the challenge is issued and accepted,
 both players will be transported to a random location within one
 of many randomly-generated arenas. Each arena has its own tricks
 and perils, not to mention actually having to fight the other player.

 From the moment of transfer into the arena, both players have
 fifteen real-time minutes to find each other and fight to the
 death. At the end of the time limit, the arena will be reset and
 all players within it will be returned to their previous locations  
 (prior to the challenge acceptance).

 Arena combat can be forefited earlier by either combatant using
 the 'CHALLENGE QUIT' command.

 For players who wish to fight groups of people, several large
 player-killing arenas exist in major townes and cities; the most
 popular is the Player Killing arena under the Town Square in the
 city of Rune.

 Once a challenge is issued - regardless of acceptance by the other
 party - another challenge cannot be issued for twenty realtime

 There is no gold or experience loss for players slain in an arena.
 Slain players will be reincarnated instantly, minus some vital

 You cannot challenge Immortals to arena combat.

 CHALLENGE REQUEST <min level> <max level> lets you issue an
 announcement over the GAME channel that states you are looking for
 a sparring partner from <min level> to <max level>. If you are
 seeking someone of the same level, <min level> and <max level> can
 be identical. Only one challenge request can be issued worldwide
 by any player every 3 minutes, and players themselves can only issue
 one challenge request per player every 15 minutes, in order to
 prevent spam abuse.


blackjack - information on playing blackjack in Alyria

Alyrians love games of all kinds and that includes blackjack!  Blackjack dealers 
can be found in numerous locations around Alyria including New Rigel, Sigil,
Tellerium, Templeton, Arcane Archipelago, and Smuggler's Gulch.  All you need to
start playing is a voucher or any amount of gold!

Blackjack is a game played between you and the blackjack dealer (otherwise known
as the "house").  The object of the game is to get as close as possible to 21
without going over or "bust".

Once you have located a dealer, the game can be started by giving the dealer any
amount of gold or any blackjack voucher.  Blackjack vouchers are worth a
predetermined amount of gold printed on the voucher and can be obtained as a
reward from the tourism representatives located in major Alyrian cities.

The dealer will deal 2 cards to the player and 2 cards to themselves.  Both of
the player's cards will be face-up but only one of the dealer's cards will be
visible.  The player can either 'hit', 'stay', or 'double down' by saying it
to the dealer.

Saying 'hit' will prompt the dealer to deal you one card.  If you hit and go
over 21, the game is over and you lose, forfeiting any gold you paid to
begin the game.

If you 'stay' or 'double down', the turn is passed to the dealer and the
dealer then has the option to hit or stay.  The dealer will always hit if his
face up card value is under 17,  The dealer will always 'stay' on 17 or
higher unless he has an Ace.  

Choosing to 'double down' means that the player doubles their original bet,
but receives only one more card and then stays. You may only 'double down'
on the your initial turn.  Once you have 'hit', you may only continue to
'hit' or 'stay'.  When using a voucher, if the player chooses to 'double
down' they will give dealer an amount of gold equal to the credit from the
voucher, ie: 5000 additional gold for a voucher worth 5000g.

Choosing to 'stay' means that the player does not want any more cards.

Once the dealer has taken their turn, the player will again have the option
to 'hit' or 'stay'.  This process will repeat until the player goes 'bust'
(their cards total more than 21 points) or chooses to 'stay'.  Then the
 dealer will continue with their turn until the dealer chooses to 'stay'.

When both the player and the dealer have chosen to 'stay', the dealer will
flip over his remaining card and compare their score to the player's.  If
the dealer has the higher score, the player forfeits whatever gold they
paid to play.

*If the player goes bust or the house wins, the player forfeits the gold they
 paid to begin the game.
*If the player and the house tie, the player wins back the amount of gold they
 paid to begin the game.
*A regular win yields 1:1 earnings, while on a double down, a win yields 2:1.
*A blackjack yields 3.5:2.

*If you have card values less than 10, you should hit, no matter what the
 dealer shows.
*If you have card values 10 or 11 when the dealer shows 3-6, Double Down.
 The probability of the dealer busting is high, and the payout will be
*If you have card values 10 or 11 when the dealer shows a 10, you should
 hit, unless you are feeling lucky and hope to get another 10 or Jack.
*If you have card values 13-16 when the dealer shows 13-16, you should
 stay. Chances are, the dealer will hit a card and bust.
*If you have card values 12-16 when the dealer shows 7-10, you should
 hit and hope to not bust.