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- Don't quote Mod's or other players' e-mails. - Don't speak to anybody outside the game. - Only e-mail those you have been allowed to. ------ - Inactivity can get you kicked/replaced. (~7 days) - Complaints are settled privately with the Mod. - RED is for voting. No other colors allowed. - Edit your messages quickly or not at all. - Cloning (multiple usernames) is forbidden. - Put "mafia" word in your e-mails subject line. - Always check your inbox in the "morning". - Don't expect game themes to produce obvious roles. - Roles resemble paper-rock-scissors system.
I. A short description of the game:
Mafia play-by-post is a game modeling a battle between an informed minority and an uninformed majority. Players are secretly assigned roles belonging to one of the 2 sides: either "mafia", who know each other; or "townspeople", who know only the typical initial setup of 1/3 mafia players and 2/3 town players. In the game's "night" phase the mafia covertly "murder” a townsperson. During the day phase, all of the surviving players debate the identities of the mafia and vote to eliminate a suspect. Play continues until all of the mafia have been eliminated, or until the mafia outnumber the townspeople. Depending on the game theme and style, players are given various Night Time Abilities. Usually you would have “doctor”-type roles that can protect other players, “cops” that can investigate players, “warden”-type roles that can imprison players, blocking their use of night time abilities, “godfather” which means the head of the mafia, generally being immune to cops’ investigations etc.
II. Generic rules:
1. It's forbidden to quote (or pretend to), in any extent, e-mails from the mod or other players.
2. Do not talk to anybody whatsoever about the game, OUTSIDE the game topic.
3. Dead men don't speak! If you're dead, don't say anything, however harmless it may seem.
4. If you don't post for about 10 days, you're in danger of being eliminated or replaced.
5. If you have any concerns regarding the game, talk to the mod, or wait until the game is over.
6. Use red color only to vote and unvote players during the game. vote: INTERNET STRANGER
7. Editing posts is allowed only to correct typos and bolds, and only within minutes from posting.
8. Only mafia members and players chosen by the mod are able to communicate during the night.
9. Obscene language, cloning and using external resources will be followed by heavy punishment.
10. Please try and remember to put "mafia" word in the subject line of every e-mail message.
11. Always check your inbox in the "morning". There may be info or mandatory actions waiting.
12. When trying to come up with believable roles, remember: a theme is only a theme, not a bible.
13. When you e-mail your targets, use this template: your name, your role, the action, your target.
--Example: Daemon, village idiot, bitch-slaps Gridfon. (This greatly helps me to avoid mistakes!)
Specific rules for my games:
1. 33% (rounded up) of the votes number are required for a deadline lynch (at end of the day).
2. 50% (rounded up or +1) of the votes required for instant death or no lynch (ends the day!).
3. Role declarations are possible only after receiving 1/2 of the deadline required votes.
4. Use vote Name for voting, unvote Name for unvoting, vote NO LYNCH for ending the day with no lynch.
5. In case of vote ties, insufficient deadline votes or sufficient no lynch votes, nobody will get lynched.
6. Game days last 4 normal days, game nights last 2 days, and get shorter later on. Starting hour: ~8.00 GMT/UTC.
7. The night results are returned at the end of the night and apply to the next day.
III. An example of how roles interact. Please pretend there are no “sides” involved.
Remember: Mafia has no sense of time. In order to avoid any disputes, all night time abilities are performed simultaneously.
The roles name don't matter, what they can do at night matters, so let's say we got this Rock Concert mafia game night situation: A Bodyguard protects a Celebrity. A Paparazzo goes to take pictures of the Bodyguard. A Psycho wants to murder the Celebrity. The Celebrity wants to sing to a Tycoon. This is how it’s played out:
The Bodyguard has observable Night Time Activity (NTA), he visits the Celebrity and protects her from night attacks.
The Celebrity goes to sing to the Tycoon, she has NTA. Her singing makes players she's singing for unable to attack her. If the Tycoon could kill other players, AND he would have targeted the Celebrity that night, he would have failed to kill her.
The Paparazzo follows the Bodyguard and finds out the name of who the Bodyguard “visited” that night. Has NTA.
The Psycho attacks the Celebrity but fails to kill her because the Bodyguard was protecting her. He has NTA.
The Tycoon has a passive ability of "bribing" anyone that “visits” him into not voting for him the next day. The Tycoon never leaves his room, so he has no visible NTA, and the Celebrity cannot vote for him next day.
Any other player that has passive abilities or has not employed any skills usable at night, also has no NTA.
What if we add another character to the story.
The Groupie, who’s able to cancel anyone’s NTA by going into his/her room, manifesting their obsessive adoration all night long, the Bodyguard, in this case. (Of course, there are roles that can block other roles and that are not even required to leave their room so they can use their abilities.) What we get is this:
The Groupie has a blocking NTA, which has priority over its target NTA. The Bodyguard would be confined to his room.
The Bodyguard is unable to use his skills, as such he has no NTA and the Celebrity is not protected.
The Psycho attacks and kills the Celebrity, and has, obviously, observable NTA.
The Paparazzo doesn’t take any pictures of who the Bodyguard visited because the Bodyguard never left his room (no NTA).
And even if she was indeed killed that night, the Celebrity still gets to peform her NTA, which in our example is a blocking NTA that lets her sing for the Tycoon, which would not have killed her, should he have had such a role and intention.
The Tycoon still bribes the Celebrity into not voting for him during the next day, even if she will not make it. Still, he would not have an observable NTA to those roles that would be able to notice such a thing, like the Paparazzo.
IV. The technical aspect of role interactions
All these roles usually (well, in my games, at least) target players' "rooms" (a generic name for a player's location), in order to perform their abilities. And it doesn't matter who is inside a targetted room! There may be roles that force players to switch rooms, so if Player A targets Player X's room, after, Player B switched Player X' and Player Y's rooms, results in Player A targetting Player Y that night. Also, it DOES NOT MATTER if the use of one's ability "requires" leaving their own room (like when spying somebody), other abilities targetting that player still work! Basically, we're in Schroedinger's world, where most players with night actions both in and out of their room at the same time . There are some exception to this rule, like roles with the ability to "hide" somewhere out of their rooms; or when players are targetted by roles' abilities that specifically restrict other players from literally 'leaving their rooms', like locking/guarding the door.
In the morning, emails are dispatched to roles that are expecting some info or those that have been affected somehow. An important distinction is that one usually gets notifications of things happening on the 'home front', at their own room, and if there are consequences that directly affect their occupants, like being blocked when trying to leave (perform an action). You don't get notifications for other players 'visiting' your room unless they've done something to you that has some direct implications (like being unable to vote the next day etc.). Investigations of any kind usually don't result in notifications to their target, nor does being saved by a doctor in most cases, but certainly not when the target wasn't actually attacked so the doctor would intervene.
V. There are a few very important rules that have an easily attainable potential of ruining any game, if ignored.
OMG Rule #1: Do not quote anything, real or imaginary, from any e-mails you receive, related to the game.
Except for the actual name of your role, YOU ARE FORBIDDEN TO QUOTE ANY PARTS OF ANY E-MAILS FROM THE MODERATOR. Town people can benefit from quoting roles or investigation results, in order to prove their innocence, because certain sentences can be recognized by other townies. MAFIA DOESN’T HAVE THIS LUXURY. For example, in a Sci-Fi themed game, you are given this role: “You are a Predator, a savage hunter that tracks down dangerous beasts and kills them for sport. [etc]”. When you declare your role, you have to do it using your own words, something like: “I am a ferocious Predator, which likes to hunt other species.”. Please don’t take it personally, but if you do quote from mod’s messages, you’re out! In general, roles achieving instant credibility by simply being stated are something that can easily kill a game, so please abide by this simple and fair rule that protects everyone’s chance at winning the game.
OMG Rule #2: Never EVER discuss anything game-related outside the game’s boundaries, no matter what.
However harmless you may think this is, no matter the circumstances, revealing anything to people involved in the game or not can and will ruin everything as soon as the info makes its way to the wrong people. Don’t use IRC, private messaging, e-mail, phone, IM’s, telepathy or any other way of divulging information or contacting other players and specs. The only exception: Mafia clans and various other groups that are allowed by the moderator to communicate ONLY BY E-MAIL DURING THE NIGHT. Again, remember, dead can’t speak. If you’re dead, refrain from posting or otherwise communicating anything to anyone, about the game.
- If you go inactive for a longer period of time, like around 7 days, you not only may slow your team down, but you may be replaced or eliminated. Signing up for the game is a promise to the other players and the mod that you will see it through.
- Any complaints about modding the game have to be made privately, by contacting the moderator by e-mail. Wait for the game to end if you’re unsatisfied with the reply and you wanna make it public.
- Use RED color for voting, unvoting players or switching votes. Do not use colors for anything else. (Examples: vote Name or unvote Name)
- Editing your messages is permitted only to correct spelling errors, votes not colored, and only within a few minutes from posting and only before any other post was made. You could get a penalty for not doing so.
- Obscene and vulgar language has no place in this game. Just please stay off the game if you can’t stay off dirty-talking.
- Cloning (using multiple usernames in a single game) shall have permanent and severe repercussions.
- Don’t forget to always mention the word “mafia” in e-mails’ subject sent to the moderator. Messages missing this word may end up in the Bulk/Spam folder or be rejected altogether.
- No matter which role you have, always, and I mean always, check your inbox in the morning. You may have e-mails with info or mandatory instructions applicable during the next day.
- The game theme (story, images etc) serves as inspiration for the roles, but they are not, and they should not be, a source of roles “lists”, which would make many role claims instantly believable.
- Roles have abilities manifesting themselves in a way resembling the paper-rock-scissors system. Do not feel “wronged” when things don’t work out exactly how you’ve planned them; others may have interfered. Roles cannot be perfectly realistic, and after all, this is a game.