If you've had even the smallest look at the ‘Games' forum here on DDO, there is no doubt you've seen the term ‘mafia' quite a bit. It is by far our most popular game, with at least two games running at any given time.
The quickest and best way to learn about mafia is to join a game and play, but to help your transition from newb to pro move along as quickly as possible, I've decided to build this guide to help new players learn everything they need to know…
Let's get started!
How do I join a game, pl0x?
Whenever you see a "Mafia Sign-Up" thread, simply go in and add your name to the list of players. If you are too late, you can always put your name down as a replacement. I personally wouldn't recommend being a replacement until you have a couple of games under your belt.
Once you've gotten your name on the sign-up list (generally this involves copy-pasting the most current version of the sign-up list, adding your name to one of the blank spots and posting the new list) simply wait for the moderator to send you your affiliation and role. This may only take hours or it may take a week, depending on moderator dedication and player interest, so don't sign up for a mafia game if you're going away on holiday or something.
Make sure you send a friend request to the moderator or change your settings to allow PM's from users who aren't your friends. Often the inability to send out the relevant information holds up games and nobody wants that!
Got your role and affiliation? Grats! You're in your first mafia game.
Role? Affiliation?Day phase? o.O; What does this crap mean?
Regardless of all the tricky roles and sub-groups, there are three things you could possibly be…
TOWN: Town is the majority team. Between two thirds and three quarters of players will be ‘Townies'. Town wins when all anti-town players have been killed. Unless it's part of their role, no townies will know who any of the other townies are.
MAFIA: Mafia is the minority team. Between one third and one quarter of players will be ‘Scum'. Mafia wins when they have an unbeatable ratio of living players (50% and over). Mafia makes up for their number disadvantage by knowing who each other are and being able to communicate in a private PM created by the moderator.
THIRD-PARTY: Third-party players are generally lone-wolves and have no team. They have special non-townie/non-scum win conditions, specific to their role.
Before I continue onto Roles, I need to explain the two different phases.
Day Phase (DP): During this phase, living players discuss the game in a thread created by the moderator (something like "Lost Mafia, DP6") and try to decide if and who to lynch. This is done by majority vote (Generally something like "VOTE tvellalott"). If over 50% agree by vote to lynch a player, that player is killed.
So, it's the Town trying to work out who the Mafia are and lynch them while the Mafia are trying to get the Town to lynch one of their own, while trying to avoid being lynched themselves. Once a lynch has been decided or the time-limit for the Day Phase is up, the Night Phase begins.
Night Phase (NP): This phase takes place entirely in Private Messages (PMs). In most games, each night phase the Mafia, as well as using their individual roles, can choose one player and attempt to kill them. The town/third-party players send their decision to the moderator, who looks at all the roles used, who used them, who they were used on and works out what happened. Once all the roles have been submitted or the time-limit for the Night Phase is up, the next Day Phase begins…
Different roles are what makes the game of Mafia so, so good. I'll try and explain as many roles as possible, but a creative moderator can easily make up a new role or modify an existing role (what we call ‘flavouring'), so this is hardly the be-all and end-all list. Off the top of my head, these are the most common roles…
Vanilla: No powers.
Cop: Each night the cop gets to ‘investigate' one player and find out if they're "Guilty" or "Not Guilty"
Doctor: Each night the doctor gets to ‘protect' one player. If that player is targeted by a mafia kill or some other kill role, it is negated. Some doctors can protect themselves, some can't.
Watcher: Each night the watcher gets to ‘watch' (who would have guessed!) one player. If someone visits that player during the night, for any reason, the watcher will receive a report telling them exactly who it was.
Tracker: Each night the tracker gets to ‘track' (see above joke) one player. If that player visits anyone during the night, for any reason, the tracker will receive a report telling them exactly who they visited.
Vigilante: Each night the vigilante gets to attempt to kill one player.
Bulletproof: The bulletproof player cannot be killed at night.
Miller: The miller is town-affiliated, but appears guilty if investigated by the cop.
Bodyguard: Rules vary, but generally the bodyguard gets to protect a player, much like the doctor, but instead of the kill being negated, there is a 50/50 chance that either the bodyguard or the attacker will die.
Bomb: Dies alongside anyone who targets him for death during the night.
Granny/Paranoid Gun Owner: Kills anyone who visits her at night.
Mason Recruiter: The masons are a sub-group of town. Generally the mason recruiter gets to choose someone every night. If that player is town affiliated, they will join the masons and be added to a Mason PM, where they can privately communicate, much like the mafia. If that player is NOT town affiliated and depending on the moderator, just the mason recruiter or even all of the masons may die. Masons win with the town.
Goon: No powers.
Godfather: Appears innocent if investigated by the cop. Generally has the final decision on who the mafia will kill and which mafia player will be sent to do that killing.
Role-blocker: Each night the role-blocker chooses one player and their night action will be negated.
Stalker: Each night the stalker can choose one player and have their character and/or role will be revealed to them.
Politician: Each night the politician can steal someone's lynch vote for the next day.
Lawyer: Can choose one mafia player and make them appear Not Guilty upon Cop investigation.
Bus Driver: A rather complicated role, the bus driver selects two players and switches them around. Any night actions used on player A will instead target player B and vice versa.
Serial-Killer: Must survive to the end of the game. Each night, the serial killer may choose one player and attempt to kill them. Occasionally the serial-killer will have an additional win-requirement, like "Must kill Players x, y and z".
Survivor: Must survive to the end of the game.
Fool: Must be lynched to win. Surviving to the end of the game or being killed during the Night Phase count as loses.
Cultist: Similar to the Mason. The Cult Recruiter chooses one person each night and they are converted to "Cult". Cult wins when they have the majority of players.
It is important to remember not to assume a role works a certain way and to always refer to your ROLE PM to determine how your role works.
Captain Hindsight says "You shouldn't have spent so much time on DDO."