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Advice for Mafia Mods

DetectableNinja
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11/20/2011 1:47:04 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Here are 2 that I came up with:

1) Once you know that you want to mod/what the backdrop is, get to work! Start crafting the roles, the rules, etc. The game is your marble, and your imagination the chisel!

1a) For starting out with a theme, make a character list of all the characters you'd like to use, maybe even splitting them up into Maf/Town right away. Then, craft roles based around the characters, not vice versa.

1b) Remember to take into account how much flavor (creative descriptions of the style) you want to put in. Personally, I like a LOT of flavor in my games.

2) Please please PLEASE save all the role PMs/rules on a word document for reference, at least initially while you're setting the game up. Once you know all your players, make a spreadsheet of the players, characters (if it's a theme game), roles, and night action at least. For AC Mafia, I used three: one for voting, one for night actions, one for overall status.
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bluesteel
Posts: 12,301
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11/20/2011 2:20:44 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
1) Don't give town unnecessary ways to confirm themselves, like using unique role PM titles or flavored "I win with _______" statements. Don't tell vanillas they were roleblocked.

2) Ask players to submit night actions ahead of time (during the DP).

3) Send delinquent players a personal PM reminding them to submit their night actions. Tell them almost everyone else has already submitted. This makes a huge difference, although it can be annoying. Keep a spreadsheet or docx of all night actions so you know which are missing.

4) Be willing to replace inactives asap. They can always come back in the game once their former role has died, if they want to come back. Especially replace people who are holding up the game (have not submitted a critical night action or are currently being pressured for a claim).

5) There is almost always a town bias. When in doubt, overpower the mafia and underpower the town.

6) Brainstorm mafia fake claims. If you haven't left enough GOOD fake claims for mafia, re-balance the game. This means that for characters, you have left plenty of main characters unassigned and for roles, you have left at least a few standard roles unassigned (vig, JOAT, bulletproof, etc).

The real question should be: if mafia claim near to last, can they claim a really solid character? If no, you've assigned too many good characters to town.
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
tvellalott
Posts: 10,864
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11/20/2011 4:41:29 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I have three tips for first-time mods;

1) Keep it simple: You'll have no doubt played in games with complicated, original roles and thought "I want to make a character called the cartwheeler who can redirect the vigilante and make him shoot the killer in the bell tower" or whatever. Don't! Stop! Keep it very simple in your first game; you don't yet realise how complicated it is to mod even the simplest games. Get creative later; your first game should be almost exclusively classic roles. There is a reason they're used so often while the voodoo witch isn't. They're easy to balance, fun to play and easy to keep track of.

2) Find an experienced mod and have them co-mod with you: This means, before the game starts show them all your characters and get them to help you balance. It means have a mod pm with them and if you aren't sure of what should happen if a bodyguard is protecting a bulletproof player, ask. It also helps to have someone else to keep a vote count.

3) Don't get involved unless you need to: For god sake, don't help the mafia or the town if you think one team is winning to easily. Don't tweak roles after the fact because the cop was night killed NP1. Thems the breaks. If mafia get lucky, don't then boost town to compensate (or vice versa). That's not fair, is it? A way to combat this is to work out worst case scenarios for both teams; work out the quickest possible win for both teams. It will help you balance and prevent mod interference being necessary.
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innomen
Posts: 10,052
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11/21/2011 12:08:36 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
My advice: Don't talk more than absolutely necessary to the players, no chat no prolonged explanations. Keep it simple, and straightforward, no back and forth with questions and answers more than is needed, and just give information that is needed.
DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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11/21/2011 3:41:59 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/21/2011 12:08:36 PM, innomen wrote:
My advice: Don't talk more than absolutely necessary to the players, no chat no prolonged explanations. Keep it simple, and straightforward, no back and forth with questions and answers more than is needed, and just give information that is needed.

Lol. I broke that tip with medic a lot during Mob Wars. We were practically chatting it up the whole time. lol
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Logic_on_rails
Posts: 2,445
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11/23/2011 3:57:00 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
A lot of good advice has already been given, so I won't repeat that.

The most important thing in Mafia (assuming balance in town vs. Mafia) is an equal skill set on both sides. In particular, one must be careful with the composition of the Mafia. Inactive people in the Mafia are a surefire way to severely weaken the Mafia and come under attention for example. It is strongly recommended that inactives not be placed in the Mafia.

Also, try to mix up balancing methods. Mods too often think something like 'Well, Danielle and Blue are playing, so the only fair way to balance teams is to make sure they're not aligned together' . This is a very bad way to go about things, and adds an element of predictability to the teams. Instead you CAN put your ultra brilliant players on 1 team, so long as they are facing a Mafia team with no weak players (like inactives, people who don't play seriously etc.) and who have what are considered good players. Variation in how the game is balanced will over the long run make things more fun for the good players as targeting them isn't such a surefire method.

That's all I have to say for now/
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F-16_Fighting_Falcon
Posts: 18,324
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11/23/2011 4:00:24 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/23/2011 3:57:00 PM, Logic_on_rails wrote:
A lot of good advice has already been given, so I won't repeat that.

The most important thing in Mafia (assuming balance in town vs. Mafia) is an equal skill set on both sides. In particular, one must be careful with the composition of the Mafia. Inactive people in the Mafia are a surefire way to severely weaken the Mafia and come under attention for example. It is strongly recommended that inactives not be placed in the Mafia.

Also, try to mix up balancing methods. Mods too often think something like 'Well, Danielle and Blue are playing, so the only fair way to balance teams is to make sure they're not aligned together' . This is a very bad way to go about things, and adds an element of predictability to the teams. Instead you CAN put your ultra brilliant players on 1 team, so long as they are facing a Mafia team with no weak players (like inactives, people who don't play seriously etc.) and who have what are considered good players. Variation in how the game is balanced will over the long run make things more fun for the good players as targeting them isn't such a surefire method.

That's all I have to say for now/

So is randomizing better than assigning players to certain roles?
tvellalott
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11/23/2011 4:17:41 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/23/2011 4:00:24 PM, F-16_Fighting_Falcon wrote:
So is randomizing better than assigning players to certain roles?

I like Danielle's method of randomly assigning the characters to the numbers and letting people unwillingly pick their own.

If I look at the team and it just looks too unbalanced, I might switch a player or two around. It's all a matter of taste really.
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bluesteel
Posts: 12,301
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11/24/2011 9:18:09 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
More advice:

When you are designing your game, think "would I want to be mafia in this game?" Too many mods think "would I want to be TOWN in this game." Town is always fun, no matter what role you have, because you get to guess who the mafia is, and you are part of the *collective* thrill of catching mafiosos together. If someone quits just because they get a vanilla role, they are not a great loss to the game.

Given that you need to identify with the mafia's situation, it is extremely hard to craft a game when you have never played as mafia before. People who have never done so have a pro-town bias because being mafia is much harder than it first appears. Trust me.

So play enough games that you are mafia at least once before crafting your game.
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
Alex
Posts: 2,058
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12/2/2011 4:31:36 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
Bluesteels
6) Brainstorm mafia fake claims. If you haven't left enough GOOD fake claims for mafia, re-balance the game. This means that for characters, you have left plenty of main characters unassigned and for roles, you have left at least a few standard roles unassigned (vig, JOAT, bulletproof, etc).

The real question should be: if mafia claim near to last, can they claim a really solid character? If no, you've assigned too many good characters to town.:

And tvellalots:

3) Don't get involved unless you need to: For god sake, don't help the mafia or the town if you think one team is winning to easily. Don't tweak roles after the fact because the cop was night killed NP1. Thems the breaks. If mafia get lucky, don't then boost town to compensate (or vice versa). That's not fair, is it? A way to combat this is to work out worst case scenarios for both teams; work out the quickest possible win for both teams. It will help you balance and prevent mod interference being necessary.:

I find these two hugely important and see these mistakes made a lot.
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tvellalott
Posts: 10,864
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12/12/2011 9:13:24 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Not a huge deal, but make sure you make meaningful PM titles when you send out roles, make mafia threads, mason threads, cult threads, whatever...

Just sending "Role" is annoying because at any given time one of our people might be modding one beginner game, be mafia in another and be mason in another (or whatever, don't read into this). That's a lot of threads and something generic might get lost in the mix.
Make it stand out!
"Caitlyn Jenner is an incredibly brave and stunningly beautiful woman."

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socialpinko
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12/18/2011 5:05:54 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
1. If a theme doesn't work, don't try to force it. It will just turn out bad for the players. Just because you think X theme would be cool, doesn't mean it's a good fit for mafia.

2. Decide on roles and town to mafia game balance before formulating characters. Some characters might not fit perfectly but balance should come first in a fun game.
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F-16_Fighting_Falcon
Posts: 18,324
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1/15/2012 12:09:49 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Hypothetical Modding question:

What happens if the cop is watched by the watcher and the bus driver switches the cop with a vanilla? Will the watcher "see" the bus driver visiting the cop? Or will they be forced to watch the vanilla instead?
drafterman
Posts: 18,870
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1/15/2012 12:22:19 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/15/2012 12:09:49 PM, F-16_Fighting_Falcon wrote:
Hypothetical Modding question:

What happens if the cop is watched by the watcher and the bus driver switches the cop with a vanilla? Will the watcher "see" the bus driver visiting the cop? Or will they be forced to watch the vanilla instead?

They will end up watching the vanilla and see the bus driver target the vanilla. They will also see anyone else that grid to visit the cop visit the vanilla as well, since their targets would have been bussed.
F-16_Fighting_Falcon
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1/15/2012 12:24:38 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/15/2012 12:22:19 PM, drafterman wrote:
At 1/15/2012 12:09:49 PM, F-16_Fighting_Falcon wrote:
Hypothetical Modding question:

What happens if the cop is watched by the watcher and the bus driver switches the cop with a vanilla? Will the watcher "see" the bus driver visiting the cop? Or will they be forced to watch the vanilla instead?

They will end up watching the vanilla and see the bus driver target the vanilla. They will also see anyone else that grid to visit the cop visit the vanilla as well, since their targets would have been bussed.

Perfect! Thanks. That makes sense. I was leaning toward watching the vanilla but I didn't realize that the watcher would see the bus driver visiting the vanilla as well as see other targets visiting the vanilla who had attempted to visit the cop. It can get really complicated.
F-16_Fighting_Falcon
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1/15/2012 12:26:44 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Also should they get a result like "X and Y visited the vanilla" or just "X and Y". If it is the former, they will KNOW that they have been bussed since they intended to visit the cop, not the vanilla.

Also, for investigations, would you say it is a better idea to give "innocent" or "X is innocent" as a result?
lovelife
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1/24/2012 6:55:25 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I think there should be a system for mods, that they can track the players they use and mark whenever they need to replace certain ones, that way they and other mods are able to see who is most/least likely to need to replaced, and players that are most likely to be active can be given preference, and also for players (especially new ones, or ones that don't/can't remember the typical activity level of certain other players) so they don't become as frustrated.
I think it might increase the activity level by not having nearly as many people that will need replaced put into games, and making people that have an interest in playing value logging in and being active more.

just an idea, I think something similar was suggested in the past.
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drafterman
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1/24/2012 7:04:34 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/15/2012 12:24:38 PM, F-16_Fighting_Falcon wrote:
At 1/15/2012 12:22:19 PM, drafterman wrote:
At 1/15/2012 12:09:49 PM, F-16_Fighting_Falcon wrote:
Hypothetical Modding question:

What happens if the cop is watched by the watcher and the bus driver switches the cop with a vanilla? Will the watcher "see" the bus driver visiting the cop? Or will they be forced to watch the vanilla instead?

They will end up watching the vanilla and see the bus driver target the vanilla. They will also see anyone else that grid to visit the cop visit the vanilla as well, since their targets would have been bussed.

Perfect! Thanks. That makes sense. I was leaning toward watching the vanilla but I didn't realize that the watcher would see the bus driver visiting the vanilla as well as see other targets visiting the vanilla who had attempted to visit the cop. It can get really complicated.

I had to diagram it once.

So take the two bus targets.
Have the driver visiting each target.

Then take all the targets who visit player A and connect them to player A.

Then take all the targets who visit player B and connect the to player B.

Then swap player A and B.

Now you have all your "new" connections. So you know who visits who and who gets results on who.
drafterman
Posts: 18,870
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1/24/2012 7:07:58 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/15/2012 12:26:44 PM, F-16_Fighting_Falcon wrote:
Also should they get a result like "X and Y visited the vanilla" or just "X and Y". If it is the former, they will KNOW that they have been bussed since they intended to visit the cop, not the vanilla.

Also, for investigations, would you say it is a better idea to give "innocent" or "X is innocent" as a result?

This is subjective. It depends on how much information you want to give.

In the Beginners game I modded, I didn't tell them that their target was changed; I wanted them to figure it out through deduction. Personally, I think telling them gives too much information.
kyro90
Posts: 4,400
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2/9/2012 7:04:44 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I am planning on making a mafia sometime next week, any helpfull hints for newbz?
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drafterman
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2/9/2012 7:12:38 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/9/2012 7:04:44 PM, kyro90 wrote:
I am planning on making a mafia sometime next week, any helpfull hints for newbz?

Play more than 1 game.
kyro90
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2/9/2012 7:18:02 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/9/2012 7:12:38 PM, drafterman wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:04:44 PM, kyro90 wrote:
I am planning on making a mafia sometime next week, any helpfull hints for newbz?

Play more than 1 game.

Lol I am already in 4 games lol
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TUF
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2/9/2012 7:54:18 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/9/2012 7:04:44 PM, kyro90 wrote:
I am planning on making a mafia sometime next week, any helpfull hints for newbz?

You need to sign up here to mod a game. I Highlt doubt it will be next week.
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royalpaladin
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2/9/2012 8:08:13 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/9/2012 7:18:02 PM, kyro90 wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:12:38 PM, drafterman wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:04:44 PM, kyro90 wrote:
I am planning on making a mafia sometime next week, any helpfull hints for newbz?

Play more than 1 game.

Lol I am already in 4 games lol

That is not enough.

First, there is a mod sheet that we have to follow. If you sign up now, you will probably be able to mod a game in about 3-4 months.

Second, modding a game is much more difficult than playing a game. One must think about how to balance the game in terms of roles, characters, etc. Have you even played in a game with characters? Most games that people play have characters and roles. I am considered a moderately experienced player, and I am having a little trouble creating a perfect game. I doubt that you will be able to do it afte playing only four games.
F-16_Fighting_Falcon
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2/9/2012 8:12:03 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/9/2012 8:08:13 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:18:02 PM, kyro90 wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:12:38 PM, drafterman wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:04:44 PM, kyro90 wrote:
I am planning on making a mafia sometime next week, any helpfull hints for newbz?

Play more than 1 game.

Lol I am already in 4 games lol

That is not enough.

First, there is a mod sheet that we have to follow. If you sign up now, you will probably be able to mod a game in about 3-4 months.

Second, modding a game is much more difficult than playing a game. One must think about how to balance the game in terms of roles, characters, etc. Have you even played in a game with characters? Most games that people play have characters and roles. I am considered a moderately experienced player, and I am having a little trouble creating a perfect game. I doubt that you will be able to do it afte playing only four games.

You are an awesome mod. I'll play in any game you mod. Seriously.
royalpaladin
Posts: 22,357
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2/9/2012 8:13:34 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/9/2012 8:12:03 PM, F-16_Fighting_Falcon wrote:
At 2/9/2012 8:08:13 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:18:02 PM, kyro90 wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:12:38 PM, drafterman wrote:
At 2/9/2012 7:04:44 PM, kyro90 wrote:
I am planning on making a mafia sometime next week, any helpfull hints for newbz?

Play more than 1 game.

Lol I am already in 4 games lol

That is not enough.

First, there is a mod sheet that we have to follow. If you sign up now, you will probably be able to mod a game in about 3-4 months.

Second, modding a game is much more difficult than playing a game. One must think about how to balance the game in terms of roles, characters, etc. Have you even played in a game with characters? Most games that people play have characters and roles. I am considered a moderately experienced player, and I am having a little trouble creating a perfect game. I doubt that you will be able to do it afte playing only four games.

You are an awesome mod. I'll play in any game you mod. Seriously.

Thanks, lol :)
kyro90
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2/9/2012 8:16:07 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Aww lol nvm then... :P
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royalpaladin
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2/9/2012 8:21:42 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/9/2012 8:16:07 PM, kyro90 wrote:
Aww lol nvm then... :P

Feel free to sign up on the list. By the time your turn comes, you will be a solid player.
kyro90
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2/9/2012 8:24:41 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 2/9/2012 8:21:42 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
At 2/9/2012 8:16:07 PM, kyro90 wrote:
Aww lol nvm then... :P

Feel free to sign up on the list. By the time your turn comes, you will be a solid player.

Ehh... Maybe I will do that a few months before summer just too be safe...
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