Mafia Rules / How to Play

The popular forum game that separates the good from the bad, the strong from the weak, and the loose-cannon cops from the slightly schizophrenic. That's all after we figure out who's who, of course.

Moderator: Game Masters

Forum rules
Before you make a topic/post, consider the following:
-Is there a topic for this already?
-Is your post on-topic/appropriate?
-Are you posting in the right forum/following the forum rules?
User avatar
Shadow Yoshi
Dark Knight
Dark Knight
Posts: 4305
Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2013 12:56 pm

Mafia Rules / How to Play

Postby Shadow Yoshi » Sat Jul 26, 2014 4:20 pm

Welcome to the Mafia forum!

Mafia (also called The Werewolf Game) is a bluffing and detection game which pits an informed minority (the Mafia) against an uninformed majority (the townspeople). The game is played in a single thread and it cycles through day and night "phases", which last a day or two each. People who play the game are assigned a "role" at the beginning which determines which team they are on. If they are in the Mafia, they will know the identity of the other Mafia members and agree on who to kill each night phase. If they are a townsperson, they will not know anybody, and each day phase they will all vote on who they think should be lynched. But be warned - the Mafia will be voting each day phase as well.

It appears a very straightforward townspeople versus Mafia battle until you realize that the townspeople don't know who anybody is. They don't know who to trust. They have to use their wits to determine who is in the Mafia, and who they should vote for. Instant Messenger interrogations take place, with high-speed questions from high-strung townspeople. People form and break alliances, while the Mafia members lie, scheme, attempt to frame those who are innocent, and murder the townspeople suspicious of them.

The game ends when the townspeople have lynched all the Mafia members (townspeople victory), or when the number of Mafia members equals the number of townspeople (Mafia victory).
(special thanks to Savvy-Sauce and Mashi from Last Life for this overview as well as ideas for the rest of the topic)

How the game is played
A game of Mafia starts out with a signup thread. In this thread, whoever is hosting the game (known also as a "moderator") will post the game structure with a signup list however many spots they need to fill to play the game. Users that are interested in playing the game will reply with something along the lines of "sign me up", "I'll play", or simply just "in". Once the list of people is filled up, the game will start. Note that most Mafia games take around 15-20 people, and signups are done on a first come-first serve basis.

After signups are complete, the main game thread is posted and role PMs are sent out. The first post will have the game structure and the list of people playing - some hosts choose to update the first post's player list to reflect who has been killed, provide generic copies of role PMs, and post links to beginnings of phases as they happen. The more the host can provide in the first post, the better! Around the time that the thread is posted, the host will send out role PMs - these are PMs sent to each player that notify them of their role. Mafia members will additionally receive a list of all other Mafia members.

The game will start with a night phase - it is at this time that players will strategize and the Mafia will decide who to kill. The host can choose how long he wants the night phase to last, but generally they will last about a day or so. All other special roles will choose what they want to do during this phase as well.

After the night phase is over, the day phase will begin. At this time, players may vote on who they want to lynch (be aware that the Mafia will be lying about who they think is suspicious). To vote, simply post the player's name in bold red (failure to do so may result in your vote not being counted). You are allowed to change your vote (post again with a different player's name), but you cannot retract it. If you do not vote, you will receive what's called a "phantom vote" (more on that later). It is possible for a "Knife in the Box" or "Insta" to occur (two players having the same amount of votes or one player having more than half of the votes, respectively), but that will be explained later on. Once the day phase is over and the votes are tallied up, the player with the most votes will be lynched and the next night phase will begin.

The night and day cycle will repeat itself until one team wins.

Basic roles
Mafia member (also called Mafioso) - along with the rest of his team, picks one player to kill during the night phase; is aware of the other Mafia members
Doctor - chooses one person to "save" each night; this player will be immune to a Mafia kill
Sheriff - chooses one person to "inspect" each night; he will find out what this player's role is (in the form of a color)
Townsperson - has no special powers

Basic game mechanics
Ballot-Box Game - Lynch votes are sent to the host in private (as opposed to being posted in the thread). This opens up the ability to fake votes.
Cardflip Game - When a player dies, his color is revealed to the public. This is a common mechanic and is done by default in most games. Hosts may choose to also reveal the player's full role (as opposed to just their color, as that can be misleading, see "More advanced roles" for why this is significant), but that is a lot less common.
Faction Game - Instead of Mafia vs. townspeople, players are divided into multiple teams with different roles and similar or different win conditions.
Mystery Game - A role list is not supplied, and players only know their respective role.

More advanced roles
Godfather - Is a Mafia member but will appear green (townsperson) when inspected or killed. Generally knows he's the Godfather.
Miller - Is a townsperson but will appear red (Mafia) when inspected or killed. Generally does not know he's a Miller.
Vigilante - Is almost always a townsperson. Has one kill each night phase.
Doublevoter - Sometimes described as "charismatic", their lynch vote will count for two (could be aligned with either side and might be colored accordingly).
Deputy - Becomes the Sheriff when the Sheriff is killed. May or may not know his role at the beginning of the game.
Serial Killer - Is a third party. Has one kill each night phase and wins the game if he is the last man standing.

This is by no means an exhaustive list. The great thing about Mafia is that hosts can design their own games using a combination of roles, and new roles can be created as well!

Rules
1. The role PM must not be directly discussed. It is fine, however, to discuss your role itself - this is encouraged in some situations, and of course players will lie.

2. Screenshots are not permitted in any form.

3. Logs/PMs/interactions with players are permitted to be faked, as long as they abide by rule #2. It is not permitted, however, to falsely assume the identity of another player (e.g. Player 1 comes on to the IRC disguised as Player 2).

4. Editing posts is not allowed in any form, but double posting is permitted. This is to prevent people messing with information they have previously posted.

5. Lynch votes are designated by bold red. The host may choose whether or not to count votes that fail to abide by this rule.

6. Phantom votes are given to players who fail to vote during the day phase without a legitimate excuse. A legitimate excuse would be something like a power outage or lack of internet access. The host then has the power to remove the player from the game at their discretion. If a player periodically accumulates phantom votes, the Game Masters will decide whether or not to hand out game bans.

7. When two players have the same amount of lynch votes at the end of a day phase, the player to be lynched is chosen at random. This is commonly called a "knife in the box".

8. When a player has accumulated over 50% of the lynch votes, this player is killed and the night phase begins immediately. This is commonly called an "insta".

9. Talking to dead players is prohibited. Likewise, dead players are not allowed to release any information about the game (their role, others' roles, etc.) until it is over.

Terminology
Bandwagon - When multiple players suddenly start voting for one person with little reason.
Claim - The act of revealing your role (done truthfully or not).
Instant Kill (Insta) - When one player receives more than 50% of the lynch votes. This player is killed and the next night phase begins.
Knife in the Box (KitB) - When two players have the same amount of lynch votes at the end of the day phase. The player to be lynched is chosen at random.
Safety - When a player is not sure of who to vote for and places a vote on a random person to avoid a phantom.
Seer - Another name for the Sheriff. When used as a verb, this means the use of the Sheriff's power (e.g. "he was seered red").
Third Party - A player (or players) that are not aligned to the Mafia or the townspeople. They will often have different conditions to win.
Vigi - Another name for the Vigilante. When used as a verb, this means the use of the Vigilante's power (e.g. "he got vigi'd").

If there's anything that has been left out or anything that should be added, please let me know. Thank you for reading!

Ignoritus
Lakitu
Lakitu
Posts: 482
Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2013 1:16 pm

Re: Mafia Rules / How to Play

Postby Ignoritus » Mon Oct 06, 2014 6:31 pm

I've spoke with the staff on this, and I'm just going to put forth a final warning on this:


These mafia games are becoming a mess quickly because no one is playing by the rules and the rules aren't being properly enforced. I just want to establish a few things right now:

1. From now on the flaming will be treated as it would anywhere else on the forums (as it should be). We've let a lot of crap slide in this department.

2. Mafia-centric punishments will be distributed for broken rules including being kicked out of games or receiving temporary bans from future games.

3. Common sense is not listed as a rule. The biggest example of this that people seem to be repeatedly breaking is that you are to play for the team you are assigned and no one else. We shouldn't need to explain stuff like this, and thus we aren't always going to.


This is meant to be a fun group game, and I want it to stay that way. Please don't take it too seriously, and please play nice.
"Like i cna barley even read half.of what is going on"

User avatar
FallingSnow
Ninji
Ninji
Posts: 822
Joined: Sat Dec 21, 2013 4:32 am
Location: Steam, playing dota or something

Re: Mafia Rules / How to Play

Postby FallingSnow » Sat Dec 13, 2014 2:25 pm

Going to add two things before we start M12 just so that we hopefully avoid them.

First, we're going to start setting up warnings for the mafia specific forum which will be listed somewhere (I'm not sure where yet). The way it is currently going to be setup is that you get two warnings, a single-game ban, a two-game ban, and then hopefully we won't have to go beyond that. Repeated offenses may skip the second warning. Pseudo and I likely won't be too strict about this stuff unless it involves some of the more extreme offenses. Now, I'm going to list some of the rules and the corresponding punishments for each.

1. The role PM must not be directly discussed. - Likely a warning.
2. Screenshots are not permitted in any form. - A warning or ban depending on the severity.
3. Logs/PMs/interactions with players are permitted to be faked, as long as they abide by rule #2. It is not permitted, however, to falsely assume the identity of another player (e.g. Player 1 comes on to the IRC disguised as Player 2). - As far as I know, this hasn't happened yet, but it would likely result in a single-game ban.
4. Editing posts is not allowed in any form, but double posting is permitted. This is to prevent people messing with information they have previously posted. - A warning if you're caught. Don't do this please.
6. Phantom votes are given to player who fail to vote during the day phase without a legitimate excuse. - We're leaving this one to the game host for now. If you're noticed periodically not participating among many games, you will be warned.
1. From now on the flaming will be treated as it would anywhere else on the forums (as it should be). - You will be reported and receive board warnings for this.
3. Common sense is not listed as a rule. - Just don't be dumb please, thanks.


Second, I'm going to bring about three additional rules.
1. Do not sign up for a game if you do not intend to participate. This goes with some of the rules before, but I felt it needed to be reiterated. - You will receive warnings for this if it is consistent.
2. Do not quit, or suicide, from games. This ruins the game's environment and strategy when players ragequit. You're aren't supposed to be allowed to do this. After the issues we've been having recently, we're going to start enforcing this. If you're upset with the game, you have to deal with it. - This will result in a warning and then ban following additional usage.
3. Use good sportsmanship. This ties in with a lot of other rules and includes things such as trying to win the game with logic, avoiding the use of flaming, not spamming players with downreps (this will get you board warnings), not quitting the games, not hating players for backstabbing you when they were mafia, not hating players for lying, and many other things. - Generally, this won't get you in trouble, but specific cases may earn you a warning.


In general, warnings will expire after 3 matches (about a month). We want this game to be fun for everyone, and we're sorry that we need to use a warning system to get there. To everyone that already follows the rules, good job. Enjoy the games! All we intend to do is make it more fun for all of you. Now, enjoy Mafia, everyone!
If you have any questions, you may ask them in the general mafia discussion topic.

User avatar
FallingSnow
Ninji
Ninji
Posts: 822
Joined: Sat Dec 21, 2013 4:32 am
Location: Steam, playing dota or something

Re: Mafia Rules / How to Play

Postby FallingSnow » Thu Jan 08, 2015 8:22 pm

Adding a new rule and clarifying an existing one.

Targets of instant lynches may receive one final chance to post and change opposing votes before they are killed. This prevents people not having the chance to argue for their lives. If the player death occurs because the day phase has ended, he/she does not get this chance.
Note: Does not apply to users who have already posted during the day phase, only players who have yet to post

You may not vote safety in order to obtain a random lynching. Safety votes do not count towards anything and may earn you phantoms in matches where the hosts are particular about them (as phantoms have not been clearly defined up to this point). You are encouraged to try to find out any information you can to try to lynch someone deemed suspicious.
For example:
  • One player lynches Joey
    Every other player lynches Safety (Safety votes do not count towards vote totals)
    Joey dies
Yes, voting is risky, but sometimes you need to take chances.

User avatar
Pseudo
Tellah
Tellah
Posts: 5544
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2014 12:04 am
Current Project: ???
Location: the atlantic coast

Re: Mafia Rules / How to Play

Postby Pseudo » Thu Jul 07, 2016 3:52 pm

I'd like to clarify a couple of things here based on some confusion that recently came up in Mafia 30 - this is how things have been run de facto for a while now even though it somewhat contradicts some of the earlier rules in this thread.

Most hosts on this forum only enforce activity, not voting. This means that a day with no lynch is more common than people voting random players as safety votes. This also means that phantom vote systems are not normally used. As I said, this only applies to most hosts, and some use a more standard phantom system.

• However, it is important to reiterate that activity is still expected under this system. You shouldn't take not having to vote as an excuse to not play the game and we will ban you from future Mafia games if it becomes a pattern.


You are not allowed to revoke your lynch votes, only change them to another player. This is something that's critical to clarify, since it has come up several times in the past including the current game.
Love and Tolerance FTW!!
previously Pseudo-dino but you probably guessed that yourself

come visit my YouTube channel, where I play games (including smbx)

"sterydy Behemoth expiable novae iconically night owl ticklish turbocharger bactrian riveting . Solidus quits frothy managua scrimper shadowy enthusiastically rearrangement curviness matronliness pinyin piroshki gradual hysterically locker room versed . Horrendous unicorn transnational parka lasso very forbiddingly laborsaving cochabamba hair-raising floozy philter transnational ."
- a spam account 2016

My Switch friend code: 1353 - 7698 - 1308 (add me!)

so... i'm actually a girl

User avatar
Shadow Yoshi
Dark Knight
Dark Knight
Posts: 4305
Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2013 12:56 pm

Re: Mafia Rules / How to Play

Postby Shadow Yoshi » Tue Aug 16, 2016 11:31 am

To clarify why there are now things that are struck through in Pseudo's post:

Lynch voting is mandatory and failing to do so (except in cases of an insta) will be handled at the host's or the Game Masters' discretion. When two or more players have same amount of votes and also the highest amount of votes, a knife-in-the-box (KitB) will occur. Possible examples of this happening in a 16-player game include:

- Two players having 8 votes each
- Three players having 5 votes each
- Five players having 2 votes each (and the other six players having one or no votes each)
- Everyone having 0 votes each (which means nobody voted...hopefully that never happens!)

In every case like these, the player who is lynched will be decided at random from the group of players that has the same and highest amount of votes. The reason why lynching is important is because it provides an incentive for people to be active (in the form of interrogating players, etc., to move the game forward) to prevent a random killing.

User avatar
Pseudo
Tellah
Tellah
Posts: 5544
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2014 12:04 am
Current Project: ???
Location: the atlantic coast

Re: Mafia Rules / How to Play

Postby Pseudo » Mon Apr 17, 2017 6:02 pm

Just want to make something crystal clear to all Mafia players: in-game rule decisions are always ultimately up to the current game's host, regardless of what any game master or the creator of the game has told you in conflict.
Love and Tolerance FTW!!
previously Pseudo-dino but you probably guessed that yourself

come visit my YouTube channel, where I play games (including smbx)

"sterydy Behemoth expiable novae iconically night owl ticklish turbocharger bactrian riveting . Solidus quits frothy managua scrimper shadowy enthusiastically rearrangement curviness matronliness pinyin piroshki gradual hysterically locker room versed . Horrendous unicorn transnational parka lasso very forbiddingly laborsaving cochabamba hair-raising floozy philter transnational ."
- a spam account 2016

My Switch friend code: 1353 - 7698 - 1308 (add me!)

so... i'm actually a girl


Return to “Mafia”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests