# LSAT and Law School Admissions Forum

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## Setup and Rule Diagrams

morrisonxia
• Posts: 6
• Joined: Nov 13, 2023
#104014
Diagramming this one was really challenging for me.
Why use both the chain diagram and the linear diagram together for this question? If we're noting the rules and making the chain, wouldn't the linear diagram be obsolete and take more time away than being useful? I'm guessing I'm missing something-- how do we know when to use a chain vs linear vs both?
Jeff Wren
• PowerScore Staff
• Posts: 304
• Joined: Oct 19, 2022
#104022
Hi morrisonxia,

This is game classified as a Pure Sequencing game. Pure Sequencing games are really a sub-category of Basic Linear games in which all (or almost all) of the rules are sequencing rules.

It is true that in these game the sequencing chain created by linking the sequencing rules is the real key to completing the questions.

Writing out the linear diagram (here with spaces 1-7) is often optional in these games; however, it can be helpful and I certainly wouldn't consider it a waste of time. For one thing, it should only take a few seconds to draw out and number seven spaces.

The reason that it can be helpful is to show certain inferences that are not as easy to see in the sequencing chain. One of the important steps to any sequencing game is to test the endpoints (who could be first and who could be last). If the variables who could go first or last are very limited (as in this game), it can be very helpful to show that in the main linear diagram. In this game, knowing that H must go first and only P or V could go last is very helpful and can save a lot of time in answering the questions. While it's true that you could figure this out from reading the diagram, it's better to just figure this out once during the setup and then capture it in the diagram to save time.

We also added that only J or L could go second in the main linear diagram. Because this is so limited, it is very useful to show in the diagram and helps answer certain questions (such as question 2).

Also, the rule that S cannot be seventh is best captured as a Not Law in the main linear diagram.

While there are definitely examples of people taking too long during the setup of a game (for example, writing out many templates/possibilities for the wrong type of games or just staring at the rules looking for obscure inferences that may or may not exist), writing out a main diagram is not one of those.

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