Zoom Schwartz Profigliano
Zoom Schwartz Profigliano, also known as figliano, is a verbal "tag" drinking game with many variations. One player at a time is active ("it"). The active player states a command from a predefined set of words, which typically include "zoom," "schwartz," and "profigliano." The command shifts active status to another player, 'tagging' them. Play continues until a player fouls by giving a command when not active, by failing to give a command promptly when active, or in some cases by giving a command which is prohibited by the current state of the game. The game lends itself to bluffing where the active player uses nonverbal communication to suggest that someone else is active. In a high-speed game a player might give a command passing active status to one player while looking at a different player, confusing the situation.
Figliano requires at least four players, with six to eight optimum. The first player holds an imaginary ball. They pass it by looking at another player and stating one of the accepted calls. The ball is given to the person defined by the word chosen. The ball is passed either to the person looked at or to another player that was previously ricocheted off of in the prior pass, depending upon the word used. During play, only passage words are allowed to be spoken.
Figliano is often a drinking game where a player who fouls must take a drink. In non-drinking forms the fouling player is simply embarrassed. Either way, the fouling player starts the next round. There is also a children's version where a break in the conversation eliminates the player. The games can have as few commands as the basic "Zoom", "Schwartz" and "Profigliano", but some variations have as many as fifteen commands. Play usually begins with two or three basic commands, then additional commands are added as the players become more proficient, increasing the difficulty factor.
Zoom—This call is for passing the 'ball' to the person the caller looks at. It is a foul to call zoom to a player already being engaged.
Schwartz—This call is for passing the 'ball' to the player that just passed the ball or the zoomer. It is a foul to look away when calling schwartz.
Figliano—A contracted version of Profigliano. It is a no-look or look pass back to the person you are currently engaged with.
Techniques to stimulate a mistake by another include: using all six words instead of only a few, constantly changing who the 'it' player is looking at, and varying the speed.
The game lends itself to coaxing a non-active player into speaking a command word by looking at them with the expectation of a response when speaking a command word or visualizing an expectation of a response from a non-active player who was looked at in the last pass.
The player starting the round must start by stating the name of the game (Zoom-Schwartz-Profigliano in this case) and must start with the first command (Zoom in this case).
- Game Description on BBC h2g2
- "The Rules of Sprodzoom" by Gareth Rees and Simon Arrowsmith
- "The Great Quux Poem Collection" by the Great Quux includes poems about the game written in January 1977. This represents the earliest documented evidence of the game.
- The Official Rules for Zoom Schwartz Profigliano: Eshelman, Oshevsky, Groid, Hegeman, Comaneci, Nadia, Bozit, Boar, Obiwan, Ben Kenobe, Freznik, What/What, Lagnaf, Queeth and Kowalski by Jon Melzer and Bruce Hackett