How to Play Mafia!

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How to Play Mafia!

Post by saturnlite88 on Fri Oct 26, 2012 2:36 am

HOW TO PLAY MAFIA!

If you have mafia questions, post them in this thread and we will answer them!
Got suggestions for this thread? Let us know and maybe we can add some stuff!


Welcome everyone! This is the subforum for the wonderful game Mafia, which is an addicting party game that you can play through posting messages in a thread on this forum. Once you find us you won't be able to leave. We are obsessed with this game of ours. We started playing mafia on another website in summer 2012. The idea for it was given by lucyjoan, who narrated the first game. Since then, a lot of games with several themes and have slowly been attracting new players. Most of us consider each other to be friends. Some consider each other to be their only friends.

How can I get in on the action? you may ask. It's easy! Just sign up for any of the games before they start! You have lots of options of games to play, often a game just for beginners, plus cool games with several people and fun themes, and sometimes smaller games with really specialized themes that attract a smaller number of people. Look for announcememnts in the Mafia forums for signups!

But before you signup, you should read this thread and learn the rules, roles, rights and wrongs of mafia!

First, for a comprehensive look at how mafia is played, there is a wiki available online! This is more in-depth than I could ever get, and is a good resource for questions about things that haven't popped up in any game of mafia on Mafia Online so far.
Wiki: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

Another good resource is this tumblr page of resident amirite mafioso lucyjoan that condenses many past mafia games into an easy-to-read, funny transcript.
Tumblr: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]


What is Mafia?

At its core mafia is a psychological game between an informed minority - the mafia - and a uninformed majority - the town. The mafia know each other, while the town members have no idea who is a part of the town and who is part of the mafia. The whole game is overseen by a narrator that gives out the roles, decides specific rules for the game, and communicates with players. Each game is played in its own unique thread in this forum, but may be preceded by a signup/discussion thread.

The game is divided into cycles of day and night. They cycle just as you would expect, with day following night following day, each beginning and ending at regular, predetermined times set by the narrator. Normally, a full cycle will last 24 irl hours, so a game will last about a week or two.

Each team's goal is to kill all the members of the other team. The mafia can kill one person of their choosing every night. In the morning, the narrator tells everyone who was killed. Then all players, mafia and town, spend the day debating who is mafia and who is town. Throughout the day players will vote on who to lynch. The person with the most votes at the end of the day will be killed and their role will be revealed. The mafia have the disadvantage of numbers, so they cannot control the vote, but they will try to lead the town astray in the vote to get someone innocent killed. After the lynch, the cycle repeats.

Once one team manages to kill the other team, the game is over and the winners are pronounced. The mafia can usually win just by becoming the majority thereby gaining control of the vote. It is important to know that you can still win even if you died. Your narrator will explain your win condition!

This is the most basic version of the game (called a vanilla game), but every game we have played so far has been some variation from this basic model that has included different power roles that change the balance, pace, and enjoyment of the game. Virtually every game will have at least a doctor and a detective (see below) to help the town out. Often times the roles hidden in the game are to the point of role madness where there are more power roles than non.


Rules

These are common basic rules but understand individual games may vary. Defer to your narrator at all times. They are ALWAYS right.

  • Never PM (personal message) another player unless you are working with them and the narrator says that you can PM them. Mafia members can PM one another, but generally the town can PM no one unless they have certain power roles. Anyone can PM the narrator at any time. Anyone can also post anything publicly in the game thread (if they are still alive.) This rule extends to talking about the game with other people in real life, on other forums, etc.

  • Once you are dead, you cannot participate in the game. You cannot help your team, you cannot PM anyone, you cannot give info on the thread, and you cannot vote. You are allowed to make jokes and such on the thread, but keep it to an appropriate level.

  • Make votes clear. Say "I vote _______." It may help to make it bold so that it stands out. You can take back your vote later that day, but make sure it is obvious. It is your responsibility to make sure your vote gets counted properly.

  • Try to be active. The game can go on for several days so be prepared. Narrators may remove inactive players from the game. If you need to quit for any reason, let the narrator know so they can make adjustments or find a replacement ASAP.

  • Do not troll the game. Do not try to break the game, try to lose, or post things WAY off topic. In other words, respect the game.

  • In the event of a tie, the result will be determined by the narrator. Usually, both parties die, but not always.

  • It is okay to reveal your role to everyone (roleclaim), but understand that they don't have to believe you, and it can be dangerous to do so, as you may become the next target of the mafia.

  • You have to make a pun before every game you play.


Roles

A game may include any number of hidden roles in the game to make it more interesting. Each game is different, so be on your toes!

Many powers that the roles have are X-shot, meaning that they cannot be used every night but only X amount of times. For example, a 2-shot roleblocker can roleblock any one person they want on two separate nights.

Also note that roles are not strictly mafia or town. It is possible for the mafia to have a roleblocker, etc.

Pro-mafia Roles:

Leader: The leader's power varies from game to game, but usually it gets to determine the mafia's kill each night.

Mafioso member: A member of the mafia. They may be sent to perform the kill at night.

Recruiter: Can convert a non-mafia player into the mafia.

Traitor/Double Agent/Spy: A role that can be very different game to game, but usually can chose to support either the town or the mafia.

Janitor: Can destroy the evidence of the mafia's kill so that in the morning the narrator does not reveal important info about the kill.

Pro-town Roles:

Doctor: Can choose one person to protect each night from death.

Nurse: An assistant to the doctor, that shares in the planning of who to protect, and will replace the doctor if he or she dies.

Detective/Cop: Can investigate one person each night to learn if they are mafia or town. Occasionally, a cop may be unknowingly afflicted with a mental condition that affects their investigation results:

Insane Cop: Always gets incorrect results (if they investigate a mafia member, they get town, if they investigate a townie, they get mafia)

Paranoid Cop: Always gets mafia results

Naïve Cop: Always gets townie results

Jr. Detective: An assistant to the detective that shares in the investigation results and will replace the detective if he or she dies.

Watcher: Watches a person for a night and is informed of any people that visit them, but not what actions they take. (e.g if a mafia tries to kill a person and the doctor saves that person on the same night the watcher watches this person, the watcher will receive the names of the doctor and mafia member but be unaware of what actions these people performed on the person.)

Tracker: Will track a person and see who they target that night, but not what actions they perform (this is essentially the opposite of a watcher).

Roleblocker: Can roleblock a player to prevent them from using their power that night.

Jailkeeper: A doctor/roleblocker combination. They essentially remove a player from the game for a night.

Vigilante: Has a (usually X-shot) chance to kill a person at night, with the goal of trying to kill mafia members.

Grudge: A role where you can only win if the person you hate, your grudge, is killed before you.

Lover: A role where you can only win if the person you love survives to the end of the game. Often, if they die, you commit suicide.

Commuter: You leave the game for the night, so that you cannot be targeted, killed, or helped, or perform any actions.

[size=125]Other Roles: [/size]

Serial Killer: Can kill each night with the goal of being the last player standing.

Jester: Wants to be voted out.

Bomb: Will kill the person that voted for them last if they are voted out, or will kill the person that kills them at night.

Survivor: Needs to live until the end to win, but does not care who wins. (A serial killer that cannot kill, so to speak.)

Bodyguard: Can protect someone else, dying instead of them if they are targeted to be killed that night.


Advanced Mafia:

Here is some extra vocab, hints, and important things to know if you want to get ahead of the game and be an expert player.

Gang wars: A game set up where there is more than one mafia competing against each other and the town.

Posting rush: Where many people suddenly begin to post in the last few hours of the day.

Side game: A mafia game with a very specialized theme like My Little Pony that is crammed between the larger games while signups are going on.

Day length: A cycle is usually 24 hours, but has sometimes been 48 hours. Longer days mean a slower game but give players more time to consider the game while meeting all their irl requirements.

Humor: Players have known each other for several months and are used to the humor of the other players. We make fun of each other and joke a lot, knowing not to take anything too seriously. Especially puns. Common jokes involve bears, grudges between players, and lying about being the doctor.


Game Tactics and Tips:

The mafia doesn't want to be found out, so they may kill random people rather than people that accused them in the thread (which would look bad), but quite often they use reverse psychology and try to be active enough to steer the conversation towards an innocent person. The best advice is to think like the mafia would!

Looking at how people vote is an important part of the game. The mafia knows this and will try to split up their votes.

If someone seems to have a "gut feeling" that someone is in the mafia, they may be the detective!

Remember that almost always, the narrator tells the thread the role of the person that died. Don't heavily defend a fellow mafia member if their fate is already sealed!

Remember it is okay to die (it may not be as much fun though). Sacrificing yourself for the greater good of your team may be necessary and is very noble.

Inactive players can really mess up a game. Try to play as much as you can and vote, but if you are having an issue with an inactive player, it may be best to vote them out. If the mafia remains with only inactive that don't vote, they may be able to control the vote earlier than if those people were active!


Got any questions? Ask them here or ask your game narrator!


Last edited by saturnlite88 on Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:20 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Re: How to Play Mafia!

Post by boxtop on Tue Nov 27, 2012 8:53 pm

I have a question about the "Janitor" role. When he destroys the evidence of the kill, what information does the narrator not give, compared to when the evidence is still there?
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Re: How to Play Mafia!

Post by Mary on Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:04 pm

We've only had that role once but the person's role was hidden. So like we thought someone was a detective so we killed them and had the janitor clean up the evidence so there was no confirmation that that person was the detective.

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Re: How to Play Mafia!

Post by boxtop on Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:16 pm

I'm not sure I completely understand...who does that benefit?
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Re: How to Play Mafia!

Post by Blake11roys on Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:18 pm

It's a mafia role. They benefit because if somebody accused one of them and then was revealed as the detective then the person that was accused would probably be lynched.
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Re: How to Play Mafia!

Post by boxtop on Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:23 pm

Ah, I get it now. Thanks!
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