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Botticelli is a game frequently played by members of the University of Chicago quizbowl team while driving to tournaments. The game is similar to 20 questions and involves the guessing the identify of a notable figure from history, literature, or popular culture.

Different sets of rules for Botticelli were followed by Seth Teitler and Andrew Yaphe.


As played on the high school quiz bowl Discord

One person, often called the bot, thinks of a person who is as famous or less famous than Sandro Botticelli[1]. They provide the guessers with the first letter of the last name of their person and 4/4 or less of the quiz bowl distribution that the guessers are not allowed to ask people in. The guessers then ask the bot various questions about people whose last name begins with that letter in the form "Are you X?" "Is your person X?", "Did you do X", et cetera. The bot answers either "No, I am not X", "I don't know", or "Yes, I am X". If the bot answers "No, I am not X" and is correct, the question is successfully answered and play moves on to other questions. If the bot answers "I don't know", gives an incorrect guess, or says something to that effect, any other guesser can say who the person is if they know it. If a guesser correctly says that person, a freebie question is awarded. Guessers can ask a freebie in the form of a yes/no question about who the bot's person is, such as "Are you real?" or "Is your person an author?". If the bot answers "Yes, I am X" to a non-freebie question, the game is over because the person who the bot was thinking of has been revealed. The person who asked that question is then permitted to become the bot.

As played in the high school quiz bowl Discord, the rule that people are supposed to be as famous or less famous than Sandro Botticelli is often violated.


Vespucci, most closely associated with Peter Austin, is identical to Botticelli, but involves the guessing of a geographic location.

Botulism is a hypothetical variant of Botticelli first described by Bruce Arthur. Botulism would involve the guessing of objects or concepts, rather than persons or locations. No game of Botulism has ever been played, and Arthur himself has argued that it is probably not a good idea for a game.

Fettucine is a variant devised by the Stanford quizbowl team on their trip to ACF Winter 2009 at Caltech. It involves the guessing of food items.

Tamagotchi is another variant invented by the Stanford quizbowl team on their trip to ACF Winter 2009. It involves the guessing of toys or games.

Cesar Pelli is a variant thought up by Auroni Gupta, involving the guessing of notable South Americans.

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