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Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

Discussion in 'Single Player Forum' started by water_moon, May 6, 2008.

  1. water_moon

    water_moon IncGamers Member

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    Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    Link to post #79 which is the updated and live version of the rules

    #####

    These rules have been submitted for examination and improvements. Failure to point out a loop hole/ exploit until after the game has begun may result in a mod kill.


    SPF Tribune
    MAFIA TOWN (water_moon) - With the trial of the century coming up you'd think our little town would be more worried about the media circus surrounding the trial of The Big Boss in only a few days, but the latest in a seemingly random series of murders has rocked the town. Furthermore, this investigative reporter has found that the murders aren't the work of some random serial killer or deranged lunatic. They seem to be targeting ex members of the mafia who are slated to testify against Big Boss about his illegal activities. Sure there are a few randoms in there but the killer or killers could just be missing the main targets, after all the witness protection program isn't called that for nothing even if it is affording scant protection and the DA's office is going to have trouble fighting for a conviction.

    With that in mind the mayor has ordered a curfew, and anyone out at night is likely to be detained and questioned, but do you really think the cops have a hope of catching our killers? I don't either, so I suggest our fair city start a write in campaign, maybe we can give a few leads to the detectives!

    ROLES

    Plain old town members – plain townies, yes, but not nearly so clueless.
    The townies are paired up (one on one.) This is your long time school buddy, neighbor, or romantic interest. You know they weren't recently relocated here “for their protection” and you know what they're up to at night. You have their phone number/email, and you may chat with them at night.

    Power roles:
    DA's office – you're responsible for the safety of those you've relocated, but the best thing you can do is to re-relocate your witnesses. Sure it keeps 'em safe, but they're MIA as far as other townies are concerned. Removes up to 3 players from the game. No more than 1 per night. They are alive for winning conditions, but are unable to vote or participate in any way at either night or day. (Semi doc.)

    Investigative Reporter - you pick who to look at, the entire town finds out who and what they are. Can investigate those dead or alive. Role revealer, on any one person per night. (Combo cop/ undertaker.)

    I'm not sure if I want to put these two in to be paired in the general group or put them together.

    ***********************
    Witnesses – these ex-mafia have turned state's evidence and are trying to stay alive long enough to testify. They each recognize another one of their number, but that person won't know it. I'm setting up a place where they can meet and comment anonymously at night, but at least one member of one assassin group will know where it's at too, and being on the internets, it's always findable. A secret known by more than two, is no secret. This group is townie, but they are the mafia targets. If there are more Assassins than Witnesses left alive by the trial date, the town losses.

    ************************
    Assassins – These are the mafia hitmen. They've been hired to protect Big Boss's interests. But Big Boss isn't stupid, and he certainly didn't put all his eggs in one basket. There are two groups, they are working together but they don't know who the others are. The groups may not be equal. Players may converse privately within their group at night.

    Power roles:
    False witness - Group A's power role. You switch targets for the investigative reporter. And if you're alive and free by the trial you're a very convincing witness, so you can sway a jury pretty hard. Breaks ties at trial time.

    Snoop – Group B's power role. You too can look into somebody's activity, but you'll only know if they have mafia ties or not. Limited role reveal.

    Turncoat – you're the member of one of the above assassin groups. But you, as an individual, get to pick at the start of the game who's side you're really on. You will be given the location where the witnesses meet. You will know some of the assassins. You can stay loyal to Big Boss or betray the man who has made you his goon. But you will testify for the side you chose at the beginning of the game.

    RULES

    Days and nights are 36 hours each. Everyone can talk privately at “night” with their buddies, but during the “day” all discussion is limited to this thread.

    The town isn't quite so bloodthirsty, when you vote it's via a letter to the editor. Thanks to newspaper deadlines and such, there is no unvoting. Voting must be in bold but I encourage it to be around story goodness, so separate lines are not required. The police will come and arrest the person with the most votes. If there is a tie, there is no lynch. But don't be fooled, unless you are a plain old townie, in no way, shape, or form is it okay to get “lynched”. Witnesses will die in prison and assassins can't testify if they're locked up.

    Real world days don't end early, and these won't unless 2/3rd of the players request it so.

    The investigative reporter is the only method of role reveal.

    Posting after I have ended the day will result in a retraction (ie. You must edit it out, immediately) editing is an editor's prerogative, so if you edit your posts once they're up, other than a retraction, we will no longer accept submissions from you (mod kill.)

    When you sign up, please include your time zone/the best times for you to get to a computer so I can try to pair up townies with people they have a chance of talking to.

    The number of days until the trial, and numbers of witnesses/assassins will be dependent upon the number of people joining. But I'm thinking the number of days to trial will be likely 2 or 3 greater than the number of witnesses. Big boss is intent on killing witnesses so I'm thinking 1 more assassin (total).

    Winning conditions:
    The game ends if all the witnesses die. The trial is called off, the Mafia wins.

    If there are more witnesses alive than assassins they can testify for the DA's office and lock Big Boss up for good.

    If the number of assassins is greater than the number of remaining witnesses, the mafia has won. Big Boss walks free and terrorizes the town, those whom he doesn't kill, he grinds beneath his heel.

    In the case of a tie, if the false witness is still alive, the mafia wins. If not then the assassins just don't have the character references needed to be believable enough, and Big Boss gets life.

    Suggestions? Questions? I know it's ambitious and different from previous rounds so I need your halp.
     
  2. goltar25

    goltar25 IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    Only if enough others want me in. I'm not really wanting to play another round just yet, but if enough people want me in, I'll play.



     
  3. Liquid_Evil

    Liquid_Evil IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    I want you to play.

    I'm in as well. Will read rules later.
     
  4. Ray Patean

    Ray Patean IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    I'm in. Will read the rules later.

    Goltar, you should play. Merlin, you too.

    Edit: (Yay! I can edit again!) I'm GMT -5. I typically have access all the time, but when I'm working evenings I may not be able to get to a computer until a little after 8:00pm EDT.
     
  5. Cygnus

    Cygnus IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    I'm in. UTC -7 (Pacific time). Weekday evenings free (after 8PM PDT) but generally hit and miss on weekends.

    I too think both goltar and merlin should play. You guys contribute well when you have the time and it would be a shame to lose you.

    Rules > me. Seriously, I have no idea what's going on. A few questions to start with, with my current thoughts in paranthesis:

    1. Is the Big Boss a role in the game? (I think not)
    2. Will there be two kills a night? (Yes)
    3. Exactly what does voting achieve? Lynch/arrest? (lynch, as in that person exits the game)
    4. If DA "removes" people from the game, is that permanent? Or for a night? (permanent)
    5. Why can't witnesses talk by PM/email/IM instead of a bulletin board?
    6. What's the order of night roles? (assassin -> investigative reporter -> DA, or a witness can claim during the day and be removed before the assassins can kill)
    7. Every lynch of a plain townie clears another townie, right? (right)
    8. Every NK of a plain townie will probably cause his partner to claim, without counterclaims (right again)
    9. Will reporter know which side the turncoat is on if he investigates? (No)
    10. What's to prevent a turncoat who decides to betray Head Honcho from revealing all his mates' names right on the first day? That's take out an entire faction and get the kills down to one per night (no idea)

    I have another 14,464,258 questions, but I'll wait for the results on this quiz before I ask them.
     
  6. Liquid_Evil

    Liquid_Evil IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    Is there any way to exploit the fact that the mafia know that people in similar timezones have a better chance at being paired than those who are not? Just something to consider if so. I can't think of any way currently though.

    Also, I may have missed it, but when is this scheduled to start?

    I'm -7 GMT (mountain time) and can talk most evenings. It's all gonna depend though since school is winding down.

    *Merlin and goltar*
    *Merlin and goltar*
    *Merlin and goltar*
    *Merlin and goltar*
    (seriously, play...same with you Sitro)
     
  7. slayer37

    slayer37 IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    I'm in. Will read the rules later. :grin:
     
  8. lukin

    lukin IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    Unlike the rest of the illiterates here, I have read the rules and am definitely in.

    Some of the roles seem a little confusing (arrest=death/lynch?, investigative reporter is the only way to role reveal? What if I am the DA's office? I can't role reveal on my own?) but I am sure I will get the hang of it.

    As for time zones, I am right down the road from you and Goltar in Sacto so pacific time zone.
     
  9. water_moon

    water_moon IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    1. No.
    2. Yes, if both assassin groups target (different) someones.
    3. They are "lynched" (story line wise the police arrest them under suspicion, but they are removed never to be heard from again, unless some one can help me come up with a darn good way to bring maybe one person back without messing with the balance too badly.)
    4. They're out of the game permanently, but if they're witnesses or assassins they still count for testifying at trial.
    5. Becasue they don't know each other. Each witness will have the name of one other witness. The names are cyclic. A knows B, B knows C, C knows A, but B doesn't know A. Anon. posting lets them converse, but doesn't encourage them to give too may clues to their ID's away. I had though of setting up e-mail acounts for every one but that seemed to convoluted and required setting up a bunch or e-mails. I already have an other wise unused location that allows any body to post.
    6. The false witness switches investigation targets. The reporter gives me who's investigated, but that's revealed as part of the morning news, no need for them to be alive, or present. DA steps in next (remember the DA is a limited Dr.) And then the hits happen.
    7. How so? The town won't know who the pairs are. And the only form of role reveal is if the reporter choose to investigate a person. An investigation only reveals the alignment/role of that individual, not associates.
    8. Quite probably. But then the town has no way of knowing who's telling the truth and who's lying.
    9. If the reporter investigates the turncoat (or a person the false witness swapped with the turncoat) s/he will show as assassin. Either way the turncoat privately leans they are curretly in the employ of Big Boss.
    10. Well they could certianly do that, but then any mafia in any game could turn around and out alll thier fellow members if they became bored. The issue would be then, would you trust them to be telling the truth? (probably yes once at least 1 showed correctly) Hmm, that's a sticky wicket. I really want the element of self determination in there. And I'd prefer that they start out on the killing side (to keep mafia guessing as much as the town), but I need help with this one.

    @Liquid: well I'm thinking more in terms of when a person is avialable (like when they're typically on the forums), I'd like to avoid specific groupings, but I can vouch that having to co-oridinate people in vastly differnt time zones can be a real pain in the behind. I'm thinking very general groupings. Like I tend to be on durning the day, so I catch the Europeans on in the evening or the Aussies who are on in the AM. Some one on in the evenings PDT won't mesh well with those on during the day in the Netherlands, but should be able to catch daytime Aussies.

    I want to get the kinks worked out a little bit before I say for sure when it starts. But probably not until Wend. night, Thurs morning. (Switches will be on the 9s.)



     
  10. Liquid_Evil

    Liquid_Evil IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    What would stop one witness from coming forward each day so that they could be removed to the safe zone by the DA? Just the knowledge that the mafia has first dibs on the killing order?
     
  11. water_moon

    water_moon IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    also, re: inactives. If some one goes AWOL for an entire day cycle (no posts, no warnings of "will be gone") I'm going to try my darnedest to get them replaced. So if you'd like to play but won't be around much at the start, drop me a note about being an alternate.
     
  12. goltar25

    goltar25 IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    Cygnus, water_moon is answering all of your questions, but I'm going to put my bit in as well, since I did help shape the rules to an extent.

    That bit is my brainchild. Blame me for it. My plan here was that the ex-mafia would have a way to anonymously communicate with each other, in an attempt to determine who they all were. With each member only knowing 1 other member, they cannot effectively act as a single unit, and they do NOT want to identify themselves to the assassins. An anonymous posting somewhere allows this. To add a small bit of risk to it, the turncoat knows the website as well, and can read (and post) in order to determine who the ex-mafia are. Effectively, the assassins are hunting for the meeting place of the ex-mafia, or trying to listen in on phone conversations, read e-mails, etc.

    That's a toughie. I mentioned (just now) to water_moon a few possibilities here. One is to make the turncoat a separate person who is not part of either assassin group. They are given both the website of the ex-mafia meeting grounds and the names of some assassins (1 from each group, as an example). And they can then choose what to do with this information. Do they help the assassins by revealing the ex-mafia to them, or do they help the town by revealing some assassins? This requires that enough people play, otherwise, the turncoat effectively reduces the number of assassins, and if that number gets too low, any balance is broken. It also eliminates one of w_m's key desires with the role, that being a member of the assassins who may not be trustworthy.

    The other key goal of this role is a role that has a choice of which side to be on. And there needs to be a fairly balanced reason for each choice.

    Another idea we just came up with is that the turncoat could be punished in some way for revealing (as determined by w_m) all of his assassin buddies. For instance, for every assassin name revealed by the turncoat, a random ex-mafia is modkilled. Then to counter this, the townie-side turncoat would have an extra ability, such as a bodyguard and/or counter to the false-witness's tiebreaking ability.



     
  13. water_moon

    water_moon IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    1. The DA is going to be (severely) limited in the number of people they can cart off. (I'm thinking half the number of witnesses rounded up.)
    2. The assasins can claim witness status too. Frankly if I were the DA I'd make a point of not touching the ones who role reveal, b/c they could very easily be the false witness.
    3. The fun factor. It's not a whole lot of fun to be taken down day one. (I ought to know)



     
  14. goltar25

    goltar25 IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    What would stop a townie from claiming to be a witness in order to be a NK target for the assassins and protect the real witnesses?



     
  15. Cygnus

    Cygnus IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    #7: If my partner is going to be lynched, it makes sense for me to come out in support of him. I'm going to say he's my partner and a townie, he's going to say the same about me. The assassins would have to be very bold to pull off such a dangerous move. If the reporter investigates one of them, the other's caught as well.
    #8: In the absence of a counter claim ... Of course, the mafia could off one of their own and have another claim in the morning to be the deceased's partner, but that's again a risky manoeuvre when the mafia's goal is to keep as many alive as possible.

    As for the turncoat, his winning condition could be that the town wins AND he is not killed by the mafia. That should prevent any less-than-subtle reveals.

    I'm unsure about the whole time zones business. We've just had a sticky issue with RL tells, let's not increase the chances of that happening. 36 hours is plenty of time to send a few emails if you can't get online at the same time.



     
  16. Liquid_Evil

    Liquid_Evil IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    I might actually fall into this category. With school closing down I'm not sure what my schedule will be like after this weekend. So, I guess just throw me in the alternate section just to play it safe. (The town is probably sick of me anyway so it should be a nice breather)



     
  17. maatiarna

    maatiarna IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    I am in and I think that Jason will be as well
     
  18. Merlin The Wizzard

    Merlin The Wizzard IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    Not sure if I am in yet. I will think about it. If I am in, I am in the wester European timezone (just as Sint) which I believe by head is GMT + 1? Or is it -1? I think it's +1 though.

    I'd seriously consider another form of role-reveal as well. If only 1 person can do it, he'd make an excellent mafia target. No role reveal = always bad for the town, and with two groups of mafia out, one with a limited role reveal option himself, it becomes even worse.

    I'd steer clear of anonymous bulletin board posts as well. It's an honest to god very nice idea, but with at least 1 mafia having access, you forget one important issue:

    posting style.

    Given some serious study (and I would, if I got that role), you can probably gender a few fairly safe guesses from posting style alone (I know mine, for example, is quite obvious). And since witnessess are quite valuable, this is a serious setback IMHO.

    If I may be so bold as to place a suggestion :
    Let witnesses act as a sort of mason group as well. Let them communicate with each other at night, if they decide to do so. But require them to CC all messages to you as game host. Purely for tally purposes that is.
    At the end of a night, each mafia group gets a 1% * (number of mafia members alive(snoop counts for 2)) * (number of messages send) chance of spotting a witness.
    So if the 5 witnessess send a total of 7 emails to each other at night, and mafia group 1 has 4 members left, and number 2 has 3, including the snoop, they each get a 1%*4*7= 28% chance to id a remaining witness.
     
  19. Nazdakka

    Nazdakka IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    Me = in, GMT+1 (UK)

    Goltar and Merlin: Joiiiinnn usss.... [/zombie]

    I'm a little baffled, but these comments are on the rules as I understand them.

    1)
    I'm afraid I don't think this role really works. What counts as a reveal?

    "X is an assassin, I know this because I'm the false witness?" Yes.
    "I suspect X" No.
    "I have a very good reason to believe that X is an an assassin" Maybe. Do you really want to have to make this call?

    It's an absolute minefield - I think that a potentially townie-aligned player who can rat out all or most of a Mafia is just going to be awkward to balance. How about this: The assassins know who their partners are, and can night-talk on an anonymous password-protected bulletin board (they all know each others' handles). The turncoat knows where the board is and the password, and can read but cannot post and does not know which handle matches which player. (Thinking again, I'm not sure this works either. I reckon I could spot several people here from posting style)

    2) I haven't totally thought this through... but doesn't the pairing system enable a potential day 1 mega roleclaim from the townies?

    3) If the witness site is googlable, it will be found. By all of the sides.

    4) Partners/timezones: Letting us make deductions about timezones will be awkward. Might work, might not.

    5) What exactly does the False Witness do? Do they simply switch two people for investigation purposes (Bus Driver)? Something else?

    6) With respect to modkilling people who find a loophole in the rules, you should bear in mind that cunning plans are much easier to invent mid-game once you've seen the rules in action as opposed just from reading them straight off.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2008
  20. ahcw

    ahcw IncGamers Member

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    Re: Mafia Round 10 - Witness Protection Program

    I might be in...I'll think about it and give you a heads up.
     

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