Live Action Mafia

Some initial thoughts
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Author:  Daniel Grazian [ Wed Sep 09, 2020 1:06 am ]
Post subject:  Some initial thoughts

I haven't put that much thought into this game, especially compared to my usual habits, but here is my initial impression:

1. The mafia are absolutely dominating. Luke is acting as a dictator, and ksedlar doesn't appear to be in imminent danger of being executed. vluo is low-profile and not seemingly in danger, and beanboy has a nice thing going of attacking ksedlar substantively but uselessly.
2. The setup was extremely favorable for the mafia (I actually thought 3 would have been favorable for the mafia.) However, I think that the mafia are doing so well that they would be strongly favored even if one of them was removed from the game.

Nice job! :D

Author:  brunnerj [ Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:30 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Some initial thoughts

I don't think 3 is actually mafia favored. I think mafia would have won with only 3 this game, but like they did outplay town so that is to be expected.

Apparently I should have gone with my meta guess that gms would put 0 gay knights with high probability because of ksedlar and I's rules discussions during kickoff (we claimed gay knight was OP if town could get a proven townie to dictate with high probability).

I should have mentioned to town that when trying to explain what mafia actions were taken, they have to replace town actions - i.e. there needed to be some player's who's claimed actions *did not* occur. This is by far easiest to explain with the roles whose effect is "do nothing"; in particular, there actually aren't very many consistent mafia sets explaining all the roleblocks and drives on day 2 that leave lukesci and vluo innocent because there were actually very few nontargeting roles. Basically, at most one visitor can be bad, and it's dangerous for mafia to claim stalker safely.

Author:  sammyluo [ Thu Sep 10, 2020 1:21 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Some initial thoughts

oof mafia is too hard

Author:  sammyluo [ Thu Sep 10, 2020 1:46 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Some initial thoughts

Honestly I'm fairly unhappy with the setup/roleset of this game. It's virtually impossible to catch mafia without a complete role reveal scheme and (ideally) central coordination, which is no fun for newer players or people who like to operate independently, and runs high risks of failure through one or two inactive players or an early mafia centralization of power. Also a bunch of role interactions were fairly unintuitive or seem designed to increase inconvenience for town (vigs losing their shot over a roleblock, the non-associativity of taxi drivings, GNs essentially being unable to revenge kill while publicly revealed, arguably the not knowing when you're roleblocked). Maybe these issues would seem less bad if we'd done a better job of considering weird cases though (should've more seriously made contingency plans for the luke-is-mafia case oof).

(Also I'm kinda annoyed that I got dragged into a bunch of in hindsight meaningless plotting video calls by Katie when I should've been doing math, but that's mostly annoyance at myself for not wanting to say no to people)

Author:  megaol [ Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:28 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Some initial thoughts

I also prefer higher powered roles with traps to prevent OP central coordination. Town information gain was just too slow this game -- very little investigative power, most of which can be roleblocked easily, and not even alignment reveals upon death. IMO, the game would've benefitted significantly from at least having that (or at least knowing the number of mafia beforehand) -- otherwise it's really hard for town to figure out how it's doing, or what to do next; even with complete central coordination, you only get a noisy signal once per day on how many mafia there are. I would believe that with good play, you can start figuring real things out through central coordination Day 3ish, but town probably won't play well, and without that full central coordination town basically has no chance of ever gaining real information. Like mafia can fuck things up through all of: roleblock/taxidrives/lies, so most of the investigative roles used for their naive purpose probably have their effectiveness multiplied by like 0.5 this game. The lack of feedback on progress and general public info gain makes the game less fun imo.

I think the game is very mafia favored at 4, though mafia vastly outplayed town making it a steamroll. I think a usual game would not be favored at 3? though I think since this was a game with lots of new players, mafia is favored at 3. Like mafia ~win as soon as they kill off like the 5 most active townies, with at least one active mafia left. I was in fact sketched out by how many of the "random" town targets (sammy's douse, my execution, dg's execution) were high profile players, but I didnt really think it weird enough to point out... maybe I should've. Games with lots of new players should in fact be very town biased given good play, to account for the fact that town loses competence a lot faster than mafia. This especially combos badly with the fact that IMO town only should, even with good play, start doing well 4-5 days in, with a real innocence network forming, and random proofs becoming available through central coordination. However, by then all the active players will have died, and you'll never actually play the interesting part of the game.

Maybe town will realize that katie's sketchy for still being alive? Maybe town will realize that things have gone so weird under the luke/vluo dictatorship that they're probably bad? But, probably not, now that the experienced players are mostly dead. I think even with all the current townies replaced with experienced active players, mafia would probably worm their way out of these suspicions?

Other random things: vig should clearly random shoot to prove themselves asap. It's a reliable, proven townie (unless maf decide to 1:1 beef them, which is also good). I shouldve realized this and secretly told yannick to shoot n1. I also shouldve realized that me being successfully framed for python's murder was reasonably strong evidence that the gk pair was fake, since it's hard for the frame to just happen by accident. That said, town's main problem was how badly it failed at the coordination game, and failed to be the ones actively making decisions, instead of just getting sheeped by the mafia, and passively accepting the "randomness" chosen other players (always the mafia).

Author:  megaol [ Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:56 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Some initial thoughts

oh, theres also the obvious issue of GK dictators who havent died yet lmao.

Author:  python [ Thu Sep 10, 2020 10:55 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Some initial thoughts

Mafia started the game with about 85% win probability, since town roles were sufficiently weak that game was mostly vanilla, and new players always help mafia since town effectively only has a couple days to get its shit together before all the experienced players die off. Ksedlar's arso claim d1 I think was terrible, because even if Katie was arso, it was still correct for a town vig to shoot her and thereby become proven town. If a vig shot her, town would have been favored I think, as the best mafia would be dead and a town would be proven good. As it was, the vig not shooting her gave Katie the ability to claim a reason why my sketch-psychread on her was false (she was acting sketchy on purpose to claim arso), so it helped mafia, but it was a very high variance play, and most of the variance was bad for mafia. Mostly, game came down to two things: the town vig didn't shoot the arso claim d1; and town was too inactive day 1 for all the visiting roles to properly reveal. We ended up with the worst case scenario, which is exactly as many visiting roles revealed as there were mafia, which allowed mafia roleblockers and taxi drivers to prevent any stalkers from proving themselves n1. Plausibly, this means we should've waited to reveal anything until day 2 and hope a stalker got lucky, but I think without a confirmed townie day 2 town was in trouble (again, for the reason that town has to act quickly before all the active townies die and active mafia dictate everything).

I think after the vig didn't shoot and stalkers didn't get proven, the game was effectively over at the start of day 2. Luke and Victor managed to get dgrazian hung and sammy doused, despite me advocating for dousing mhguo (I wanted to execute dgrazian anyway due to psychreads). I probably should've mentioned this to Josh, which maybe would've gotten Luke caught given he claimed I advocated dousing sammy, but I was getting sketch vibes from sammy anyway and told them to Luke (ironically, because I thought he was too trusting of GKs while I thought mafia were likely to fake claim), so I didn't have that strong an objection to this plan. It was good for mafia that the fake GK pair managed to manipulate all the info to frame megaol, but I think that was mostly just icing on the cake at that point.

Author:  brunnerj [ Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:08 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Some initial thoughts

mhguo claimed stalker to me day 2 and correctly said i was roleblocked; i thought it was unlikely that a new player was mafia making that claim falsely so didn't like the dousing suggestion and personally liked dousing sammy.

I also disagree with all the claims that town roles are just really lower power or vanilla this game. Town's roles are actually pretty good but are just really hard to use and coordinate well and really need all players to claim their daily actions. Nearly every role can prove themselves that role.

The fact that they are hard to use and coordinate well can make them feel weak, especially when town doesn't get everyone's day 1 claims.

Author:  lukesci [ Sat Sep 12, 2020 6:22 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Some initial thoughts

If Katie had been vig-shot day 1, I might not have attempted to dictate (or done a lot worse at it).
I think Sammy and Josh are saying similar things about the role setup, just with different valence. I think I'm on the Sammy side, normally we have traps to disincentivize role reveals, this time we had taxi drivers which incentivize getting everyone to reveal.

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