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Mar 8, 2017 10:38 AM

Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 18193
Quick Start Guide To Mafia

This is written by Soren, all videos (above) and
articles linked belongs to their respectful owner.

Welcome to Mafia Society, we are a club primarily focused on forum mafia games, where we also offer non-mafia games and other various social activities from time to time. Mafia is a very intricate game that is designed around analysing behaviour in a controlled environment, for new players this can be daunting and hard to get into. For this reason, this will be a basic guide to mafia that aims to provide an introduction to the game, which will hopefully be enough to get you started for your first mafia game.

What is Mafia:
  • If you haven't already, you should watch the 1 minute video above, as it offers a quick and simple overview to what mafia is.
  • To start, lets explain what a game of mafia is. There exists a town where villagers live in peace, however a group of mafia has decided to invade it and plan to take over. They plan to take over by killing a villager each night until they are all dead. The villagers are smart and caught on to their plans, but do not know the identity of the mafia and so they have to figure out who the mafias are and lynch them in order to save their town from peril.
  • In a 12 player game, there will be 9 townies and 3 mafias. The general ratio of town to mafia in a game is 3:1
  • For townies to win the game, they have to get rid of all the mafias.
  • For mafias to win the game, they have to get rid of all the townies.
  • There are certain mechanics in the game which will be explained throughout this guide, such as the voting system, the day and night cycle and power roles.

Day Phase:
  • Before the game starts, you will have received your role pm which tells you whether you are town or mafia, this will determine how you approach and play the game.
  • All games contains power roles, if you are one that is included in your role pm. I will talk more about what power roles are later on.
  • Once everyone has received their role pm, the game can start and will begin with the day phase.
  • Day phase usually lasts for 48 hours, but can vary from host to host.
  • The day is where the crux of the game takes place, where every player will be voting, posting and discussing.

    • The Voting System
      • When you have suspicions or believe someone to be mafia you will be placing a vote on them.
      • You can change or rescind your vote as much as you want throughout the day.
      • Depending on the moderator, either if a person reaches more than half of the votes or if a person has the most votes at the end of the day, they will be lynched, and their identity (town or mafia) will be revealed.

    • Playing as Town
      • If you are town, you only know your own identity and alignment (alignment refers to whether someone is aligned as town or aligned as mafia) while being in the dark about everyone else's identity.
      • Your most crucial power during the day is your ability to talk and vote.
      • Discuss and ask questions to see if you can find someone who acts suspicious.
      • Use your vote to pressure other players and on people that you suspect to be mafia.
      • Make sure you vote because the only way town can get rid of the mafia is through lynching them. (There are some exceptions to this, but you don't need to know that right now).

    • Playing as Mafia
      • If you are mafia you will know who the other mafias are, and with this knowledge you know who all the townies are as well.
      • Your primary objective during the day is to blend in with town and make sure no one suspects you.
      • Your secondary objective is to prevent town from lynching mafia.
      • In other words, do what a townie is supposed to do in order to appear like one while also pushing your hidden agenda.

Night Phase:
  • We enter night phase once day has ended.
  • By this time, someone will have been lynched and it would have been revealed as to whether they were town or mafia. Now town must go to sleep and wait for the next day phase.
  • Night phase usually lasts for 24 hours.
  • The game thread is usually quiet at this time and you are not expected to post in the game thread.
  • This part of the phase is where you send in night actions to the host if you are a power role.
  • While mafias will be discussing in private in their secret club, as to who they want to kill.
  • Once night ends, the person that the mafia has decided to be killed will be revealed and the next day phase starts.

Power Roles:
  • I have been mentioning power roles throughout this guide, but what are they?
  • To explain, for a townie you can be either two things, a vanilla townie or a townie with an ability.
  • A vanilla townie is one where your only power is your ability to talk in the game thread and your vote.
  • While a town power role is the same as that except that they also have an additional ability, whereby they can submit a night action during the night phase to the host.
  • Here are some examples of the most common power roles:
    • Cop: A cop can, once per night, choose a player of their choice and learn whether they are town or mafia.
    • Doctor: A doctor can, once per night, choose a player of their choice and protect them from being killed by the mafia.
    • Roleblocker: A roleblocker can, once per night, choose a player of their choice and block them from using their night ability.

Some Considerations
  • Mafia can become heated with discussion, try not to get too caught up and if you do, take a break.
  • At some points in the game you will be pressured and accused of being mafia, and some players can do this aggressively, try not to get too worked out up over it, as that is the nature of the game. There are unacceptable forms of aggression such as insults and personal attacks, if this ever happens contact the host or a member of staff so that appropriate action will be taken.
  • Keep in mind that you are playing with real people, do not attack them personally nor rouse their emotions up.
  • As addicting as mafia can be, try not to join or play too many games at once. It can become exhausting and you don't want to become burnt out or let that affect your performance.
  • Mafia is a time consuming game where you are expected to read the entire thread, post several times during the day phase and vote. Make sure that you have adequate amount of time before signing up, as inactivity is incredibly frowned upon.

Wrapping Up:
  • I hope that this has given you a general idea of mafia and how it is played, if everything is still a bit unclear trust me, the best way to learn is to play the game. Once you have played the game you will get a much better understanding of how everything works through first hand experience. I would recommend starting out with a basic mafia game, so that you are not overwhelmed by complex game mechanics. If you are one to read, you can also choose a game and give it a read or even follow an ongoing game and see how it pans out.
  • Make sure that you read the rules for games that can be found in their respective sign up and game threads, it is important that you understand and follow the rules.
  • Now if you've gotten this far into reading this guide and are starting to feel like you are ready for a mafia game make sure to check out the Game Queue thread to know when the next games will be going into sign ups, alternatively you can check under "Current/Upcoming Mafia Games" in the main club page.
  • If you have any questions feel free to leave them below or send a pm to me.
  • This concludes the guide and I will leave a commonly used terms section and links to various articles below that ranges from talking about how to play the game, certain strategies and mafia theory. Check them out at your own leisure.

Commonly Used Terms
  • Alignment - refers to whether someone is aligned as townie, mafia or third party.
  • Burden of proficiency - refers to the illogical expectant that a good scum hunter should have caught scum and that they are scum if they haven't.
  • Bus - when scum votes/pressures/scum reads their scum budy
  • Counter Claim - when someone claims the same role that someone else claimed
  • Fake Claiming - when someone lies about what role they have
  • IIoA - information instead of analysis, when someone provides information and no analysis
  • Majority Lynch - it takes a majority vote (more than 50% of the players) in order for someone to get lynched
  • Mass Claiming - when everyone claims their role
  • Meta - refers to how a player normally acts as a certain alignment
  • MYLO/LYLO - mislynch and lose or lynch and lose, refers to the state of game where if a townie gets lynched, mafia wins.
  • OMGUS Vote - voting someone for the sole reason that they voted for you.
  • PbPa - post by post analysis, when all/most of a player's posts are analysed
  • Pluraity Lynch - person with the most votes at the end of the day will be lynched
  • Pocketing - a scum strategy where they attempt to make town townread them
  • PoE - process of elimination, used as a tool to narrow down the list of suspects
  • Power Role - a role with abilities
  • RVS - stands for random voting stage, occurs at the start of a game where random votes are placed in an attempt to break the ice and kick start the game.
  • Scum - refers to non-town aligned roles.
  • Soft Claim - refers to when a player drops a hint regarding their role
  • Tell - commonly used in corporation as town tell or scum tell, refers to an alignment indicative action based on meta
  • TPR - third party role.
  • VCA - vote count analysis
  • WIFOM - stands for the wine in front of me and is the inability to figure out and/or predict night actions due to reverse psychology among other effects.

Quick Start Guide to Mafia Provided by other Sites

Further Reading

Modified by osieorb18, Feb 7, 2019 2:29 PM
Mar 8, 2017 10:44 AM

Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 11884
How to play as;

Scum: Bus.
Town: Pray.
TPR: Cry.

True story.
Mar 8, 2017 11:01 AM

Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 7338
wen294 said:
How to play as;

Scum: Bus.
Town: Pray.
TPR: Cry.

True story.
Mar 8, 2017 11:16 AM

Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 12359
That further reading section looks delicious, quite a few links I haven't seen before =3

Good job soren! ❤ You covered many important aspects of the game.

If I may suggest something, perhaps you can link to some posts/games where players have used such methods and strategies to demonstrate how one can apply them. I realize this requires quite a bit of effort, but it would probably be helpful to the new players if not all of them.

Lulu ❤
Mar 8, 2017 12:07 PM

Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 11884
grave_robber said:
If I may suggest something, perhaps you can link to some posts/games where players have used such methods and strategies to demonstrate how one can apply them. I realize this requires quite a bit of effort, but it would probably be helpful to the new players if not all of them.
Probably best to add them from games that have yet to come. So that when it comes up you can just link it straight away instead of having to go through the archives to look for them. It'll cost less time and effort that way.
Mar 8, 2017 12:17 PM

Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 18193
@Togs thanks ^^

@grave_robber I wouldn't mind doing that. Everyone is free to help if they remember a post in a game that they think demonstrates a certain skill well and can link it to me.
Mar 9, 2017 2:03 AM

Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 7338
Well in the 1st Summer Event there kinda was this counter claim chaos. Perhaps, it could be used as an example? :D
Mar 9, 2017 6:33 AM

Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 6565
greenwillow said:
Well in the 1st Summer Event there kinda was this counter claim chaos. Perhaps, it could be used as an example? :D

That one was rather elongated though over a couple phases. Would be hard to link it concisely. The one that immediately comes to mind for me for a counterclaim was Magical Girl Crossover, but that is probably only because it was me doing the counterclaiming.

For fakeclaiming I can also remember Lamby in Lucian's game fakeclaiming cop to push a lynch on a scumread. That was cool.
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Mar 14, 2017 6:15 PM

Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 18193
Update: Added a strategy example section in further reading. I'll update it over time as I come across them, if anyone happens to be browsing through old games and encounters something good, or remembers some, find me the link and I can add it in.
Mar 14, 2017 10:54 PM

Joined: May 2012
Posts: 2859
Here is an interesting post by @grave_robber
Mar 15, 2017 4:20 AM

Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 18193
Gruffin said:
Here is an interesting post by @grave_robber
Holy shitballs
Thanks, I added it~
Apr 27, 2017 8:49 AM

Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 18193
Added an example of VCA by coromandel.