Frequently Asked Questions

What is

We are a service dedicated to the playing of classic games ("parlor games" such as board and card games) between real people over the Internet.

We aim to provide not only the best gaming experience available, but also to do it in a way that is dead simple. There's nothing to download and nothing to install, all you do is log in and start playing.

Last but not least, we are into promoting a friendly, social atmosphere. We have found too much anonymity and rudeness in the big gaming services, and we're here to change all that.

It's "parlour", not "parlor"!

For you Brits and Aussies, "" will work just as well.   :-)

Is it free?

For now, yes!

So you're going to blast me with ads, right?

There may eventually be some ads on the site pages but they will not be intrusive. This site is dedicated to your enjoyment.

What is FIBS?

FIBS is a popular public backgammon server, and the one we use to support backgammon here. To the FIBS folks we are "just another client", though we aim to become recognized as the best.

Don't worry about creating a FIBS login; we'll give you an easy way to do that the first time you elect to play.

Do I need Java?

Nope. No Java, no plugins, just a suitable web browser.

What web browsers are supported?

Browsers tested successfully are:

Firefox works very well on all platforms. Netscape 6+, Galeon and Phoenix all use Firefox's rendering engine and so should work just as well.

MSIE 4 will probably not work. Netscape 4.x will definitely not work. We've not tried Opera but suspect it would have some problems.

Mac users should run Firefox. MSIE 5 on OS X works but is really slow; ditto for Safari.

What platforms are supported?

You need one of:

Also at least a 1024x768 color display.

Why do I get "Login failed"? I'm already logged in.

You logged in to ParlorPlay, but the FIBS backgammon server (which we do not control) also has its own login. You are getting this error either because the FIBS name and password you provided are not correct, or you have not yet created a FIBS account.

If you have put a FIBS name and/or password in your profile, remove them and try again. You will then be able to create a FIBS account when you go to play.

The backgammon window opens but nothing happens or it's too slow.

Again, use Firefox if you're on a Mac.

If you think you have a compatible web browser but lag seems excessive, or things are just not working, it could be that your ISP is intercepting normal (port 80) web access and doing something clever with it (like trying to conserve bandwidth, filtering porn, or even prying into your browsing habits). In that case try this alternate entry to ParlorPlay and please let me know what happens.

Why do I have to give you my email address?

During signup we require a valid email address because we are serious about controlling abusive behavior, and so that we can contact you in the future about important issues related directly to ParlorPlay. We will never share this information with others unless required to do so by law.

Also during signup you are encouraged to share a bit of information about yourself such as your name, general location, interests, and a photograph. This is all optional. However please do share (especially the photo) as it makes things so much more personal and fun for all members.

Why do some images have jagged edges?

MSIE on Windows does not handle transparent PNG images properly, and as a result the checkers and points on the backgammon board are noticeably ragged. If this bothers you, download Firefox.

How do I get rid of the clicking noises from Internet Explorer?

MSIE on Windows by default emits a clicking sound on each network access, which becomes quite annoying with this client. To fix that, do this:

  1. Open Control Panel
  2. In Windows 98 select Sounds; in XP select Sounds and Audio Devices and click the Sounds tab
  3. Scroll down to Windows Explorer
  4. Set both Complete Navigation and Start Navigation to "None"

I'm behind a firewall. Is that a problem?

Probably not. If you can use your web browser, you should be able to play here. An exception would be if your firewall is obnoxious enough to strip out JavaScript, as we use JavaScript for just about everything we do.

All I see is backgammon. Where are the other games?

They will come. In the meantime, please make sure your profile accurately reflects your favorite games, so we can focus development efforts where they are most wanted.

Why does ParlorPlay change some of my FIBS settings?

Like most graphical FIBS clients, ParlorPlay needs some specific settings in order to work efficiently. It forces the following:

Therefore if you use ParlorPlay and then go back to something like telnet, you may need to change one or more of these back to your preference.

Everything suddenly stopped. What now?

Some possibilities are:

What is RepBot?

RepBot is a robot on FIBS that attempts to help people decide if they want to play with another person. It's not officially sanctioned by FIBS but we find it useful, and so include its output in the window that you see when someone invites you to play.

You can also dialog with RepBot directly by opening a chat window (i.e. click on RepBot in the list of players). After doing this you can type "help" to see the commands that it understands.