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Mafia Tips and Trix Thread

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Mafia Tips and Trix Thread

Post by Alisae on Sat Dec 03, 2016 7:44 pm

Got some tips or tricks? Post them here, and if some people think they are valuable, I'll put a link to the post in the OP. Also it would be nice if you posted some places where you played mafia and your experience.
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Re: Mafia Tips and Trix Thread

Post by Alisae on Sat Dec 03, 2016 7:49 pm

**note: the following post is PRE WRITTEN, BEFORE I GOT MY ROLE PM. It has ZERO bearing on my alignment**

Hello, everyone, I’m mhsmith0, your friendly (with 7/9 odds of that actually being true) neighborhood Inexperience-Challenged (IC)! As an IC, I am bound by the guidelines shown in Being a Good IC. If you’re new to the site, there are a number of things you’ll need to know:

How to Vote:
As noted (probably) in the mod’s OP (Original Post), you vote either by bolding someone’s name or using vote tags, which look like:

[v]Player Name[/v]
While we’re at it: don’t self-vote. Self-voting can sometimes be appropriate behavior for mafia; it is virtually never appropriate behavior for town. Do not do it.

The Setup:
As noted by the mod, this is Matrix6. The specifics of how the matrix works will doubtless be discussed in more detail as the game goes on, but what you need to know is this:

  1. There are seven town players and two mafia players.
  2. There is EXACTLY ONE town player who is a Jailkeeper OR Cop OR Tracker. If someone claims this role and is not countered, you should consider them to be confirmed town (at least for day one).
  3. There MAY BE exactly one town player who is a Doctor or 1-shot Bulletproof. However, in two of the six setups, this role might not exist. This means that a player who claims a role and is not countered MAY still be lying.
  4. A jailkeeper and doctor cannot both exist in the same game. Neither can a 1-shot bulletproof and cop.
Basic Lynch Mechanics and Role Claiming:
When a majority of living players vote for the same slot, that person is lynched. On day one, the fifth player to vote for someone is what is known as the “hammer” vote. If you are the third or fourth voter, it is common and courteous to make this very explicitly clear (L-2, L-1 notation after your vote, preferably in bold and/or large letters).
If there are four votes on someone and you intend to be the fifth, you should state hammer intent. This gives the player you want to hammer a chance to make a final defense and potentially role claim. DO NOT hammer someone without giving them a chance to defend themselves and if necessary role claim.
If you are a vanilla townie, this is appropriate behavior because someone who seems suspicious or “off” may simply be a town PR (power role), and because it is considered highly suspicious behavior and may get you lynched the next day.
If you are a town PR, this is appropriate behavior because you may end up hammering the OTHER town PR, and because hammering without caring for a claim is often a signal that YOU are a town PR, and because it is considered highly suspicious behavior and may get you into a situation where you are forced to claim your role the next day.
If you are a mafia, this is appropriate behavior because it is considered highly suspicious behavior and may get you lynched the next day.
If you are a vanilla townie who is up against hammer intent on you, DO NOT FAKE CLAIM. It is common for the actual town PR(s) to counter claim you, and that will allow the mafia the ability to kill the town PR at night. Defend yourself, but if you have to claim a role, do not lie.
If you are mafia who is up against hammer intent on you, do whatever you think will advance your win condition. This may be self-defense, or fake claiming a town power role, or may simply be claiming vanilla townie. Use your judgement about what will help your team the most.
For the town, lynching each day is essential, with very specific exceptions. Do not ever no lynch on day 1.

The mafia will win when they equal or outnumber the town. This means that, for the mafia to win, they must at some point reach what is known as MYLO (mislynch and lose) or LYLO (lynch correctly or lose).
MYLO happens when the town only outnumbers the mafia by 2 during a day phase, and LYLO happens when the town only outnumbers the mafia by 1 during a day phase. This can happen as early as day 3 given two mislynches and one or two successful night kills.
In MYLO/LYLO, the mafia have the ability to win by quick-hammering a town that has votes on them. As a consequence, it is important to have all of the relevant information you can get as town. For starters, during MYLO/LYLO there is typically a mass claim of power roles if any remain alive. This helps ensure that there is a cleared town member, or if there are countering claims, it helps to narrow down who might or might not be mafia. If you are in MYLO/LYLO, and it is possible or outright known (based on flipped roles) that at least one town PR still exists, DO NOT VOTE before the mass claim happens.

Random Voting Stage (RVS):
On MafiaScum, games typically begin with what is known as RVS. Because town has not information about who is or is not mafia, while mafia know everyone’s alignment (though not roles), games typically begin with voting and questioning other people. RVS usually starts with silly-looking votes for silly-looking reasons, but it is through these votes and the reactions to them that we can start to determine who seems likeliest to be mafia.

Scum-hunting is hard! But even harder than scum-hunting is fake scum-hunting. If all town-aligned players invest into the game, and are truly trying to figure out who is and is not mafia, then it becomes massively harder for mafia players to blend in and either actively drive mislynches or sit back and watch town destroy itself; moreover, their insincere attempts to pretend to be trying to sort and solve players’ alignments stands out starkly against a town that is collectively engaged in sincere, energetic and aggressive attempts to find the mafia. If most to all town-aligned players are inactive, or lazy, or just choose to let someone else do the work, then it becomes much harder for town to win. Moreover, it’s simply a much more fun game when everyone is active and engaged.

**note: the following post is PRE WRITTEN, BEFORE I GOT MY ROLE PM. It has ZERO bearing on my alignment**

Since this is a newbie game, I figured I'd share some resources that I myself have found VERY useful (shamelessly copied/paraphrased from other sources). I'll be hiding them under spoiler tags, so feel free to ignore if you aren't really interested. This is 100% OPTIONAL, but I found it extraordinarily useful in improving my game. You may or may not.

Note that some of these are actually useful advice for scum (shown in big red font). I make no apologies for this; the point of this game is to have a learning experience, which includes for the scum team. Moreover, ALL of you will be on mafia teams if you keep playing this game. Doing so well is another part of developing your game.

Voting Analysis:
thewysecat wrote:Vote analysis is…vital
Nothing written in thread is as crucial as the names put in red and the reasons offered to justify those lynch votes. They are the best guide to player motive and thus to player alignment. And so it is the core of your scumhunting.

Vote analysis is huge in scope...
...because it encompasses everything from the micro-level of analysing individual votes to the macro-level of analysing voting patterns within and across multiple game days.

Micro vote analysis:
thewysecat wrote:
Understanding how a scum’s motives and a townie’s motives differentiate their respective voting behaviours
So scum vote for townies right? Well, yeah…often enough, but that doesn’t get you very far. Firstly scum vote for other scum far more often than might be initially assumed, but your biggest problem is that townies vote for other townies…a lot!
So how does a townie tell the difference?
Well if each townie is bringing their best game then they should be intellectually invested in their lynch vote. They want that player killed. Consequently, they want to influence and persuade their fellow townies and drive their preferred lynch. In short, it matters to a townie who specifically is lynched that game day.
A townie might initially throw a vote or two around to see what happens, but essentially a townie lynch vote ought to be righteous in the moment of being cast.
Simultaneously a townie will be continuously reviewing their reads and triaging their suspects (everyone else in the game). They are genuinely searching for the best vote. That means if they change their vote…that process is righteous too.

Well preferably they [scum] want a townie lynched, but more than that they want to blend in. Ideally they also want someone else set up to take most of the heat for mislynches.

So…scum voting is therefore a part of their elongated active lurk – look busy, but don’t help. They want to surf along on the edge of your consciousness and low in your triage of suspects. Meanwhile townies throw suspicion at each other over misconstrued nothings.

So whether on or off the current leading mislynch, a scum in this mode is relatively passive and their lynch vote rationales underwhelming.
Also fake scumhunting is hard! It’s difficult to both contrive some reason to vote someone and then plausibly ‘sell' that contrivance. It is much easier to window-dress plagiarised arguments or just try and slip a token 'scumhunt' into thread without fanfare.

If a scum does try some fake scumhunting it will lack righteousness. It will smell feeble. You will struggle to see how or why this vapour is vote-worthy relative to alternative issues present in the thread. Knowing this some scum players might try and fake passion for their vote to disguise the deficit in intellectual integrity underpinning it. Then you are looking for a disproportionate level of zeal and/or confidence. A scum in this mode is not necessarily harder to spot, but can be harder to lynch since they can impress weaker-minded townies. They can shamelessly segue from one terrible vote underpinned by garbage to another and not miss a beat. Scum also tend to gravitate to this mode the closer they are to the win.
In summary: If all is well for them, scum are just trying to find a quiet spot for their vote where they hope to avoid any scrutiny for their choice and its rationale and/or where they retain the maximum level of freedom to redeploy it if that suits their aims.
Either way, it is a truism that a scum-advantageous town environment is one where it is an accepted norm for most lynch-votes to be cast for reasons other than the quality and history of the lynch target’s own voting choices.
For example, scum might vote on people for alleged anti-town behaviours that usually amount to their (townie) lynch target saying/doing something daft about roles or mechanics. Or it might be some alleged incongruity woven from the target tripping over themselves in their mis-communication of something or other. Maybe even some misspeak that gets twisted into an alleged scumslip. All of this is normally absolute garbage! The reality is that most clumsy in-thread behaviour and expression labelled as anti-town is (regrettably) town-indicative. Typically, scum are more calculating and careful in what they say and how they say it.

The point is you want to parse out the difference between the player who really believes this guff is vote-worthy and the player who can hardly believe his luck that townies seem to believe this guff is vote-worthy.

Macro vote analysis:
thewysecat wrote:
By definition, this is analysis in hindsight. It is looking into the past with fresh eyes based on the new information from death alignment reveal. Also by definition the further into the past you look the better the information you have because you have more death reveals on players active that game day.
This is why d1 in particular is gold-dust to any town. If you cannot spot all the pro-scum vote choice shenanigans I have listed above while d1 is happening you can go back and re-read it on subsequent days and spot those shenanigans in retrospect!
This approach is useful at any time, but really comes into its own on d3 and beyond.
Incidentally this is why townies should work really hard to get the maximum amount of data from the maximum number of players into thread on d1. As they play d1, they should be thinking about d3 when they and their team-mates will re-read d1 (and d2) both chronologically and after filtering by author to get an intensive re-read on their top suspects’ vote choices and behaviour on those days.
Only the very best mafia think of d1 in the same way whilst they play d1. More likely they have sort of drifted through d1 taking the high-odds easy mislynch with a minimum of effort. They often get away with that laziness during d1, but they can be exposed for it on d3 by a vigilant town!
So what types of Vote Analysis are there?
There are two broad types:
(i) Analysis within game days; and
(ii) Analysis between game days
(i) Chronological vote analysis within game days
What I will term type (i) vote analysis looks into the chronology of how votes came down and the fluctuations of different lynch trains rising and falling within a given game day. … Then colour it (red & blue) with known death reveals (and yourself in blue too is my habit). Next sub-divide it into key phases. Finally try and spot ‘events’ or transitions of potential significance.
Catching scum with type (i) analysis
You are looking for any signs of scum tactics – for example, trying to save a scumbuddy under a lynch threat. This is rarer than you might imagine even amongst relatively unsophisticated 3-man scum teams, but more likely when a team is down to two.
Spotting fellow townies with type (i) analysis
However type (i) vote analysis can also help you pick up on town-indicative conduct. I will give an example hypothetically at first. Let’s say the clear mid-point d1 lynch vote leader, Player Z, is now known (through subsequent death reveal) to be a townie. Later in d1, Player X drives hard an alternative lynch on Player Y who is lynched that day and flips town.

Odds are that Player X is likely town too. Why?

Because what scum motive would Player X have to so prominently drive a mislynch on townie Y and get his hands dirty when sitting tight and doing nothing would have provided him with a townie death anyway?

Be careful - narratives like this are bewitching. Nothing about Player X is definitive based on this alone. You must re-read at the micro level too and cross-verify for righteousness.

(ii) Vote analysis between game days
What I will term type (ii) vote analysis looks at lynch counts at ‘snap-shot’ moments in time and works on presumptions about how scum will want to place their votes in relation to one another. Overwhelmingly, these snap-shots are the final lynch counts of each game day. After all, it is the votes at game day end which really count. It can be useful to take other snap shots at game day mid-points, but for now I will just focus on end of game day.
Place these end of game day snapshots side-by-side, with known alignments in red and blue and look for signs of scum ‘parking’ their votes tactically. Places that – at the time - seemed nice quiet spots for scum to hide out but which in retrospect stick out when you layer in alignments from death reveal.
Health Warning!
Note my use of the word presumptions. Not absolutes. Be careful - narratives woven from these presumptions can be bewitching. You always also have to synthesise your macro analysis with micro analysis of your suspect’s vote choices and reasoning.

D1 scumhunting:
Colonel Thomas Rainsborough wrote:...Seriously, I want you all to write down your personal list of behaviours in-thread that on d1 you consider scum-indicative and which town-indicative
Once you have your lists, now I want you to try a new approach to the game. You are going to catch a mafia d1! Instead of believing this myth that d1 is always a crap-shoot and mafia will likely get a townie lynched that day believe something akin to the opposite.

[size=150]I believe that d1 is the mafia's hardest day. They will leave a legacy of clues on this day specifically that will help you throughout the game.

If things are going badly for a town as they move into d3, d4, d5 there is more and more 'sludge' in thread - townies posting garbage, getting into fights, confirmation bias written large etc etc. The mafia have all sorts of camoflage to mask their insincerity. So you go back to d1 and you read it again through the lens of all that has happened since...

Oh and that's the clue - you are looking for [size=150]insincerity [/size]most especially in why they vote for who they vote on. (They may be insincerely voting on a buddy) How do you spot insincerity - their reasons make no sense or their move from one person to a new target 'jars' you cannot see the progression or evolution in their thinking that is characteristic of a clueless townie or their vote is lazy in its level of scrutiny when you know this person as town is diligent and even sometimes insightful.

So mid-d1 I want you to sort by author and re-read each person's opus. Pick your top 2. Vote for one of them and drive that lynch. See what flows from that. Something might happen that will change your mind, but mostly you will stick with it.

Then every day subsequently most especially when you feel lost and frustrated that you haven't a f*cking clue who the mafia are they are so well hidden. Do the same again and re-find the scum. Things that would not have led you to lynch someone on d1 will now stand out as a clue based on what has happened d2 or d3 etc. Always do vote pattern analysis every day

Either way, d1 is 'pure'. Insincerity has a sharp relief. Mafia don't have as much townie generated 'sludge' to hide behind. Fake scumhunting is hard. bk as scum team lead was doing a good job, but even then ultimately his solution to getting through d1 was to vote on a buddy. I don't blame him. It's one of my favourites too. It has so much long-term value and a good mafia knows that d1 is tough because he is thinking deeply about what it is to be a mafia.

So catching mafia based on d1 is easy? Well of course not. You have a problem. largely useless townies who don't know how to scumhunt drifting into inactivity or just jumping on a bandwagon since they are so unconfident in their own ability to scumhunt or relying on some lame linear reason to vote for someone or its opposite - something woven out of too much complexity as if mafia were masterminds

Theories about how scum place their votes:
The following scum-tendencies are decently reliable since they are based on experiential data and because they are a natural consequence of the micro-level behaviours articulated in part I – that scum are placing their votes tactically and trying as much as possible to fly under the radar.

They provide a way of framing your micro-level vote analysis, but remain only narrative without the it.


a) On the whole, scum teams like to spread out their votes early on in the game because they are trying not to associate themselves with one another.

b) It is very rare for a scum team to have all their final votes on the same player early in the game. This is especially true on d1 and pretty reliable on d2 as well. An exception would be if the whole town (or close to it) is voting on the lynchee.

c) This latter point hints at a variable – how many votes did the lynch ‘winner’ have? The more votes, the more likely it will be that the scum will be willing to accept some bunching. For example 2 out of 6 votes is ok, but not 2 out of 4 votes. That kind of thinking.

d) Less reliably, this potentially implies something about the order in which those votes go on. Votes #1 and #2 are less likely to both be mafia since they cannot know whether there will even be a vote #3. Whereas one amongst votes 1-3 and another at 5 or 6 looks more likely.

e) Another variable that impacts here though is the size of the scum team itself. Point b) is very good guidance against a standard 3-man team. Against a 2-man team it is harder to say since we are only talking 2-0 or 1-1 as options for deployment rather than options of 3-0, 2-1 and 1-1-1. In the latter case 3-0 is very unlikely, but in the former 2-0 is far more plausible.

f) As a related point, you can say that if a scum is lynched relatively early in the game then it is pretty likely that at least one of his team mates was on that lynch for the credibility boost and for the tactical option (not taken) of jumping off if to help save his buddy if that play seemed viable. Again this varies depending upon how many votes were needed to lynch the scum. If it was only 4 votes to 3 then may be all 4 voters are town, but even then I’d say better than 50% odds that one colleague was bussing. Then again this is also better guidance against a standard 3-man scum team. A 2-man team has far more to lose from bussing but also more credibility to gain. Ergo the deciding factor is what kind of scum player are we dealing with here…

g) If a scum is being lynched in a near landslide then his buddy or buddies are very likely to be on the lynch and perhaps prominently so…

h) Throw-away votes that had only an indirect impact on the final lynch outcomes are more likely to be scum votes. In final votes counts on d1 and d2 of 6-3-1 or 5-3-1-1 or similar …I am interested in looking for scum amongst those 1s. Those solo votes were effectively voting on the lynch leader but possibly trying to keep out of the way while it happened. If a townie cannot get their first-choice lynch but have a chance at their second or even third-choice over someone they don’t want lynched at all then they need to act - not sit on the sidelines. This scum tendency can be another by-product of point a) – the desire to avoid bunching…Ergo by the same principle only one of those throw-away solo votes on a given game day is likely to be scum. It is a lot less likely that both the 1s in a 5-3-1-1 are scum.

i) Related to point h)¬ ‘parked’ votes that were tucked away in a reasonably sized pack of votes at one point but have then been left high-and-dry when the tide on that candidate went out…are more likely to be a scum left clinging to a stale vote backed by stale reasons…

Crunkus List of Things to Focus on (irrelevant/joke ones removed):
crunkus wrote:Playing this game well is easy. You just need to focus on the following short list of things:

1. Identifying moments of townie sincerity.
2. Identifying moments of legitimate scummy insincerity (harder).
3. Communicating your process openly for your fellow teammates to better assess you correctly and therefore reduce the scope of their possible incorrect assessments.
4. Producing situations where moments of sincerity or insincerity bubble out either by design or indirectly.
5. Being persuasive enough to affect the flow of the game in a manner that's best for your team.
6. Encouraging others on your team to do all of these things more effectively.
7. Reviewing the words of revealed scum to look for aberrant patterns of interaction not easily explained another way, individual interactions involving that player which in retrospect seem decidedly odd that may have escaped notice the first time around, and may have escaped notice.
8. Identifying reactions to certain situations that deviate from any reasonably expected townie approach to the same information.
9. Noticing who is doing what and who is not doing what and who is possibly putting more effort into appearing to do what while not really accomplishing what they'd otherwise probably be doing if they weren't scum.
10. Not losing your shit.
11. Identifying when you need to take a step back from a firm position you have, look at how that position may be affecting the way you view other points of data, and taking a comparative and honest look at the other possibilities.
12. Comment on as many different trains of thought as possible and encourage the same from others. Then go beyond commenting, and encourage productive discussion on as many trains of thought as possible.
13. Go back and re-read.
14. Summon additional hours in the day through dark magicks.
[size=150]15. If you're scum, try to forget that you are scum and that you know what you know whenever possible, unless it is important that you don't...and you're good enough to execute properly. Then attempt to win the game for the town. If you were town, you'd probably botch it up anyway.
16. Go back and look at the voting record and think in terms of moments and what tactical voting might look like or whether it would even be required in that situation. Don't accept common wisdom. Most common wisdom and thinking associated with voting is manure. Manure can be very useful in the right applications, but it stinks and is not something you want outside the correct context.
18. Never assume you cannot be understood. This is the first step toward not being understood. I don't care if you tried already and it didn't appear to make a dent. What do you know about that person's dents? What you've read in thread? Most of it is pointless blather. Keep trying, and try a different way. Maybe they are scum. I don't care. Don't give up, don't feed me that "the town is better off without me" tripe. The town is not better off without you. The town is better off resolving your resolve it.
19. Read your own posts once in a while several days after you wrote them. Bring a swear jar. You'll be needing it. We're all terrible at this and there's nothing like a bit of temporal distance to give you a big slice of how much. It's good to remember from time to time when you are trying to pick through who is opportunistically trying to get you killed and who may generally have no clue what you were actually trying to communicate.
20. Just because someone is presenting you as saying something you didn't does not mean they are purposely misrepresenting you. See #19. Clarify with more patience than anyone has a right to have.
22. Look for people trying to make a silk purse out of something you suspect from previous experience they know is a sow's ear. Scum love over-justifying what stated fairly and simply is just terrible reasoning.
23. Resist the urge to point out scummy behaviour right away. Give them rope. Caught a contradiction? You aren't in the slightest bit suspicious. Seek clarification and offer positive feedback. Let it crystallize. Then keep in mind that you are probably wrong about this. Also, don't take too long.
24. Don't lie to your teammates, excepting rule 24 and a half.
25. Put thought into your night orders. As GM one thing is clear...a lot of people treat most night orders as after thoughts. As a player who is always town, I notice a lot of people are made to look worse than they need to be the next day because they didn't put much thought into their night orders. Think about all the variables that might be involved in your decision. You likely have days to think about it. It's okay to send the GM a message saying..."thinking, will respond probably tomorrow".

Sample Scum-catch #1 – CTR on Thryfing:
Colonel Thomas Rainsborough wrote:This is Thryfing's first post of the game. I want everyone town-aligned in this game to read it and try to tune-in to why I felt certain a scum wrote this

Thryfing wrote: ...
bkbkbk wrote:I wonder why certain players are painting Peanut as foolish or stupid rather than, perhaps, insincere for his enquiries? Surely to say a man is a "moron" is to say that he has honest intent, but lacks the mental capacity to act appropriately?
If you think Peanut is being insincere for his enquiries, don't you think he should be the one fed to the Vagus instead of people mis-painting him?

How about you or anyone else not voting for him explains how for even a second they believe that Thyrfing sincerely suspects that bk is mafia premised on the reason he cites for voting for bk? His whole post is a: "shit, I suppose I'd better get into thread and post something and dump a vote somewhere before going back into the shadows"...

Anyway, you see nervous scum stumble into the game this way all the time and thus accidentally announce: "Hi, I am scum". First, open up with a bit of an active lurk fake bonhomie thing, then....

Next latch on to some random snippet and twist it into some contrived BS to dump a vote on a townie. Then find some obvious but essentially trivial piece of vague pro-town mechanics to endorse to pretend you are interested in the town's wellbeing...

Oh yes, bk's point about IH's comments on Peanut are well-observed and sound and yet Thryfing manages to distort that into the idea that bk doubts Peanut's sincerity when he says no such thing. What bk is noting is that IH has potentially scumslipped by giving away that he knows for sure that Peanut is sincere since he only accuses him of being idiotic - ergo IH knows Peanut is town because IH is scum...

And all of these things you will find in Thingy's post. IH is likely his pal and maybe one other voting Peanut or finding reasons not to vote for Thyrfing.

Thyrfing didn't come into thread to make that one lousy post that ignored a host of things he might talk about and pluck out one quote to attach to a crappy vote to and another pro-town titbit that he randomly elevated above a range of others he might have endorsed or commented on because he is invested in this town's survival. He did it because its expected and he has to do something or other since he is invested in his survival...

Sample Scum-catch #2 – TWC on Harb:
thewysecat wrote:So catching up. Still no Harb. That's a shame. Since he may well claim d3 reaper and the sooner that is resolved the better.

Some of this maybe redundant if Harb does claim and is not countered, but I think it gives the full context to my day so far...

Harb & Pagane were my top 2 yesterday based independently on vote data. But Pagane flipping scum only made me suspect Harb more. The data point I thought relevant from day 1 I have quoted before on d3 and re-quote in my last analysis on d2. I just didn't pursue it yesterday because I did not want to hunt 2 scum at once. I think Harb already guesses what I was thinking. It's basically this section:

thewysecat wrote:
Transition from Point 2 to Point 3:
08:35 GMT: Pagane (1) by sjg11 off of Ugluk (2)
17:45 GMT: Unvote (1) by Phatality off of pelagius (4)
18:42 GMT: Pagane (2) by Phatality off of No vote (0)
20:07 GMT: Unvote (1) by Petunia off of pelagius (3)

Point 3 - Pel vote is collapsing as sjg11 leads the way
pelagius (3): Ugluk, thewysecat, shadowfriend1
Ugluk (2): Harb, Pagane
Pagane (2): sjg11, Phatality
shadowfriend1 (1): pelagius
Phatality (1): Palin
No vote (2): Petunia, Dodgy

Transition from Point 3 to Point 4:
20:13 GMT: pelagius (4) by Harb off of Ugluk (1)
The mood had turned against a Pel lynch and sjg11's move also took the Ugluk lynch down to 2 and Pagane up to 2 and this made me think that scum might begin to worry about Pagane. It was at this point that Harb did a - to me- slightly surprising thing in comparing and contrasting Pagane & Pel and concluding that he wanted to vote Pel. Thus boosting that lynch over the Pagane move at what seemed a key moment. It also seemed contrary to all he had done of Pel up to that point.

As I say that may be redundant.

The other relevant data is of course end of d2

thewysecat wrote:
D2 end
Palin (6): dodgy56, Pagane, Petunia, Phatality, shadowfriend1, Ugluk
dodgy56 (1): Harb
Phatality (1): Palin
Petunia (2): sjg11, thewysecat
If you make the assumption of not 3 scum votes on Palin, then one scum is outside. I retain a strong town read on sjg11 and so obviously I am finger pointing at Harb in that context. I did not rule out 3 voters on Palin the same way I ruled it out for Pel, but I still felt it a pretty strong data point. Obviously I am now backpeddling on that unless I want to vote sjg11, but I don't.

Sample Advice for Scum
Sjg's Advice to Scum Team:
Post 1:
Alright guys, I'm here to pass on my wisdom regarding how to play as scum.

Now my normal tactic for new scum players is to lurk. Simple, effective way to win the game.

But this game is slightly different for two reasons that make lurking a less productive strategy:
1. It's a newbie game. Everyone will be a little lost and confused so being lost and confused isn't as strong an excuse as it is normally.
2. It's a newbie game. The main purpose is to improve as players not, necessarily, to win.

So for these reasons I'll suggests a different way of playing the game but, firstly, there's a mindset you need to get into before you start. You have to enter the thread with the desire to find scumtells from players. This will allow you to push lynches on town players and will allow you to effectively fake a town thought process, since you are legitimately hunting for scumtells. There is a small and subtle difference but it'll be almost undetectable in a newbie game.

Moreover it will allow you to lead the town which will give you the opportunity to lead it astray.

Post 2:

As for what a scumtell is, it's simple. A scumtell is something you think a scum would be more likely to do than a town. These can range from simple things like bandwagoning to more complicated cases.

Post 3:

Alright dudes, your resident Sith Lord is back. Let's get to work my minions. (Plays Emperor's tune thingy)

Con, keep up the level of activity and engagement. Good start.

Subotai, start posting when you get here. If you need something to allow you to get started you could discuss the plans con suggested, like character reveals. If you see anything you think looks scummy then point it out. The other players should like you for it.

Now win it for sjg. He's looking forward to being able to mock the town mentors in the AAR.

Post 4:

A good night kill target is someone who is:
1. Unlikely to be protected
2. Can contribute to the town in a positive manner
3. As a bonus, may have a power role.

Post 5:

You've come up with a plan to win the game. That's great. It's always good to have a plan in the back of your mind as scum, particularly in the end game.

But, what's your backup plan? What will you do if the plan goes wrong, as it likely will? You need to prepare an out for when things go wrong or it's probably wise not to try the ploy/play/plan. As scum it's normally better to err on the side of caution.

Behaviors, by TWC:
I have made this point elsewhere often and I shall make it here. If all you have is anti-town behaviours then lynch on those if you must but sadly most anti-town behaviours are town indicative. Upto and including - so it turned out - Petunia's d2 behaviours. This - in my opinion - is what Palin was lynched on and was the basis of all the grief Ugluk took. They did something(s) you did not like and were unapologetic about it. Only a ballsy scum does that. They exist, but rarely. Ugluk to be fair might be one of them. But scum live more usually in the null-space. They are in the corner of your eye on the edges of awareness until suddenly you time? or too late? Lynch on pro-scum indicative behaviours - active lurking, hedging, politicking, weird votes or switches in logic, incongruencies in positions held/advocated and actions taken - things they are doing to stay in the null space. Palin just had a daft idea and didn't care what you thought about it.

On engagement, effort, emotion and tone:
Soah wrote:
Spiff was doing stuff that you just don't see wolves actually do -- claiming a PR with still 24 hours remaining on d1 and openly antagonizing the people pushing him the hardest, rather than just slink away and wait for a shiny object to appear that drags the votes away from him

Cron was working super hard at developing his reads and he had the proper emotional investment in what he was doing. I don't feel like pulling up his posts to cite specific examples, so let's just talk again about the Trundle thing. He soulreads a guy as a wolf based on one post and has four reasons for it, and he's super proud of himself and patting himself on the back for it. Wolves aren't trying that hard to develop quick reads and they tend to struggle to come up with that level of insight and they aren't good at getting the subtle emotions right. And his whole day was full of things like that. Cron has played several wolf games on this site and his posting was bland and forgettable each time.

I don't have time to adequately respond to that post but one thing I can say quickly is that when I'm talking about emotions, I'm specifically excluding anger. It's the easiest emotion to fake and it's one that is often not alignment-indicative even when it is genuine, unless it can be traced to an origin in something distinctly villagery.

Emotions like pride, paranoia, surprise, suspicion, etc, are more difficult to fake. Wolves often fail to even identify spots in which emotion should be present in their posting, and their efforts at actually displaying more complex emotions are often quite clumsy, for example by stating their supposed feelings rather than displaying them.

But in the case of Cron, a lot of what was clearing for him was just the sheer depth and breadth of his reads and interactions. It's just hard to fake that much content so quickly and make it sound good. And few wolves are ever going to stalk other players' online statuses in order to catch lurkers.

Ugluk wrote:Scum have no genuine questions of their brethren, so it is difficult to appear to engage in earnest, and often they don’t even think to try, beyond light banter and distancing votes.

Game review of an EXCELLENT performance by the mafia, by one of the losing town (Sunbae):
I don't mean to fellate the wolf team too much, but being a day or two away and getting to think about this game from a broader perspective and feeling better made me want to come back and say more on this performance. Keeping in mind all this shit is just like, my opinion man, I got this.

Wolfing mishmashes can be broken down into 3 phases: Night Actions, Thread Presence, and Planning. With that in mind, if I ever wanted to show new people what I mean by this I would show them this game.

- The night actions were near perfect. Every single action they made had a positive impact. The people they killed were PRs. The people they peeked/isolated/reflected/redirected/etc all had a positive impact. They isolated dot and negated two angels. I believe they had mor kill himself? They vanillaized the seer. Just a great job of sifting through everything and finding the correct actions to use at the correct time on the correct people. Then you had their angel work in which Gamer was saved d2, roman took shots d3 and was angeled, and bop took shots d4 and was angeled (despite none of them being really outed the night before at all).

- The thread presence by the wolves at various stages was top notch. When it was lynch time they went hard to achieve mislynches. Lord was going nuts about Lissa being saved d1. Chart and all. Visor turned the lynch towards NAC and off of Lord on d2 by posting giant shields and yelling a bunch. Eod3.2 had 5-6 wolves going hard at weatherguy (and if exactly 6-7 villagers hadn't voted together there the game would have been over a day earlier).

When it was organization time, Bop was making charts. Visor was herding ita shots of like 7 villagers and an outed wolf. Lord was showing vote count charts and why that made lissa a wolf. Gamer was shaking peoples lists up. Wolves weren't clearing anyone that didn't need to be clear and presented a poe of mostly villagers for everyone to argue over knowing that as long as the focus was there, they were going to be fine. They also for the most part didn't mind just defending each other and turning convos elsewhere.

When it came to killing time, wolves shot villagers that were posing a problem, outed wolves, or wolves that were about to be an issue to get max credit. Roman came in and blasted jason (who had a great Roman case). Gamer blasted fakegamer to get max value (and beneh prodding him to do it in thread was a nice touch I thought). They were also helping create shot lists that had mostly villagers in it for the first few periods.

As for the lynch, they did an awesome job of creating a thread atmosphere to lynch people without taking any of the heat for it. The tortuga lynch was great work by benneh to set up a false mechanical scenario. Turning the d2 lynch from Lord to NAC vs IAWY was great work by visor. The eod3.2 lynch while unsuccessful also was a great job of benneh, bop, and monte pushing an idea that puts the blame on the villager rather than them if it goes through.

- Then the overall planning phase crushed too. While I touched on the night actions and general in thread approach already, this also includes the way they recognized it was correct to out themselves on day 4 since Bop was getting the most heat and make it more of a leveling game instead of a lynch bop the day vig game. Benneh outed himself despite not being fully outed, monte outed himself as well, and visor used his new villa cred to present the argument to lynch monte instead because the wolf vig wouldnt have outed themselves. The overall gameplan was just top notch.

I don't really post a ton of tl;dr shit in post games very often, but I wanted to give a lot of love to what they accomplished here. I nominated benneh for best wolf performance in the thread, but really everyone played their role great and it was more of a group performance than one person crushing. Dont you dare vote some random v+ team that sweeped over these guys at the end of the year, because that was basically the perfect wolf mishmash performance.

Game review of a poor town performance, by one of the winning mafia (CTR):
So this wasn’t the most successful of towns. Mostly this was because it was insane. It took ill with anyone using logic and rather than letting data drive its conclusions it preferred to invent enticing conclusions and narratives and then make the evidence fit those pet theories. We were in some sort of weird perpetual confirmation bias world. Again it took ill with anyone who objected. Of course, prominent townies will take much of the heat for this, but to be fair there was some mafia skill in fostering and harnessing this town insanity.

My own in-thread persona evolved from this town personality. The plan was always to get dirty enough that I could explain why I was surviving the night, but for the first day and a half – far from allowing the chaos to continue – I battled to try and make the town see sense exactly as I would have done as town. Personally, I feel I was the best townie the town never had. However, each attempt only made me more unpopular. Fairly quickly it became obvious that if I wanted to avoid the town doing something that would actually help it, I should just tell them the truth about what a good idea it was and they’d do the opposite. No one was reading my long posts properly anyway or they didn’t understand them. Thank goodness I wasn’t actually town; I’d have gone mad.

I dislike being mafia. My sympathies are normally with the town. By day 3, I’d officially given up any vestige of sympathy for this one. From my perspective, almost every nuance of this game’s mechanics seemed to elude the majority of this town. I kept telling them the best way to proceed and they just wanted to call me scum for it. I rolled with that.

Here are some things that I recall:

The offensive townie roles were therefore an extension of the town’s lynch. The lynch is always what kills a town, but it is also the only way it can win. Anything that is marginalizing the importance of that town weapon is town harmful. Imagine a town with no lynch ability and facing a night kill – it can never win. Therefore a town with a weakened lynch (offence) is a weaker town. It’s as simple as that.

Repeatedly this town was unable to interpret what was happening because it was unable to grasp the mechanics. Inexplicably it became entranced by the night game and completely ignored lynch data from the day. Again, the night game is the mafia’s home field advantage – why play us there? Our manipulations in thread to secure a day lynch is where we are vulnerable as we have to respond in real time without the thorough dialogue and planning that characterized our night play. For example, we had a bad day one. Bwlvych and Robert were both implicated in the sjg11 and Zebb momentums and Robert was early on Ironhammer. Only Ironhammer had as bad a day one record and so I had to nudge the town in that direction as the only way to scum up more townies for day two. Even then noob Bwlvych couldn’t resist a bandwagon and voted 6th on Ironhammer – right in the sweetspot. Zebb knew this and at least had enough sanity to base his day two vote on such thinking. We entered day two doubtful we could prevent a Bwlvych lynch and I offered up Palin and then myself as alternatives though the latter took off more than I imagined.

However, any day 2 lynch data was also thrown away. That said, of course, our strategy was premised on (i) Get a plurality or (ii) lynch one to make the other one golden. This was typical of our discipline as a team after an honest appraisal of our day one performance.

Oh, and allowing an alleged fellow townie to drive a lynch premised on something he knows to be a lie is not acceptable. It is a pure scumtell. I called it. Ignored. Amazing. The town spent the whole game entranced by its own narratives that it had invented and then anything that happened was interpreted through that lens of confirmation bias. Strategic Convergence was pure BS. The VIAP-HPW link the same. Palin’s alleged incongruity the same.
The End of the World

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