1) Only join a game if you plan on being active, we know situations can arise, but PLEASE only join if you will be active. Multiple issues of inactivity gets notated.
2) Read the game rules. THIS IS KEY, each rule set usually changes slightly based on who's hosting. The chances could be minor or major based on how much the game is reworked, make sure you are familiar to each games rule set or it can cause major issues.
3) Keep your role or role lists to yourself. Giving them to people without proving their legit, or because they are your friend can backfire and ruin games, play intelligently. Avoid giving lists to players not involved in the game, as they may give the info out as well.
4) Read this beginners guide by ace posted below
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As for my tips for playing here they are straight from PM land and some others:
1.)Keep your story simple
Anytime some guy PMs me with a long post about a lot of things I'm usually very wary. If he'd truly want something it would probably be a really short message unless we've been talking for a while.
2.) You don't have to tell people your role
I pretty much do this every game. The only time in any mafia game anybody knew my role without me telling them was when MBH was a DT. You can be very effective without someone knowing your role. The less they ask the more trustworthy they are to a certain extent. It's also why I usually never ask people their role.
3.) Anytime somebody has an excuse as to why they couldn't post (like exams) write it down. Lo and behold in a few hours at least 10 more people will say they'll be inactive because of exams also. Always one of these guys is gonna be mafia. Always because if they wanted to start going after inactives 1 mafia hiding amongst a bunch of these guys means lots of innocent death without strong analysis.
4.) Make sure everyone talks. Quiet people are the first to get lynched. This makes sure that from the get go Mafia have to be involved in the town. Likewise from the Mafia point of view this works very well - if you are active early when you start giving out the bullshit pies only the smart people will pick up on it.
5.) Probably the most important rule of Mafia that most people just don't understand:
It's not what you know, it's what you can convince people to believe. This is really where the Mafia game is won and lost and people just don't get it. In this game you are a mafia mayor and I know this because I read it correctly. Does it matter? Not really, because now I have to convince the town that you truly are. Likewise we all know quickstriker and JeeJee are innocent but in the grand scheme of things it means shit - people believe they are guilty. Once you get people to believe certain things about other players you can start either dividing the town and standing back silently watching them devour each other as mafia, or as a townie bring them all to focus on a few people. The idea is all the same - persuasion is much more powerful than outright facts. If you can lie skillfully or find a crucial mistake to exploit while keeping a straight story people will often trust you easily unless they are smart enough to be objective (coming next).
6.) Reading objectively. This really means learning how to ignore the emotions and fluff in a post and picking out the key information and coming to a conclusion. Doing this you would start to ask yourself some basic questions and realize that a lot of the posts you see can be easily broken down to find major holes. Qatols posts were good - they were good enough to paint him as supportive to the town's plight. Of course I read them objectively and realized that they weren't. He didn't have anything on QS and JeeJee except misguided townies.
7.) Don't revenge accuse. If someone calls you mafia, don't turn around and claim they are mafia unless you are sure. Revenge accusing is just bad as now the town can't see the facts of an argument and it's just some guy mad/paranoid he's painted red. It's also bad because if they are both innocent the Mafia can keep the town focused on these 2 players all the time.
8.) Read posts from the past. Anytime someone dies, you should go back and skim all their posts. If the town is doing bad instead of skimming you should scrutinize them feverishly.
9.) when sharing information everyone doesn't need to know everything. If you're talking with someone privately keep them on a need to know basis. Same goes with the town. A bunch of clueless people are much more dangerous than 1 sane individual. If you tell them too much or too critical info it WILL be misused. Slowly give people more information based on their reactions to past info.
10.) Change your playstyle or at least keep it ambiguous but not threatening. This is obvious.
11.) Not a tip, but partial discussion of what happened this game with so many townies:
Mafia talks to someone through PMs thats innocent (Player X)
Player X starts posting mafia influenced information to the town actively.
People question his stupidity. Problem is he's so active you can't really do much without wanting to lynch him as a town for fear of his stupidity spreading to other players (who probably got Mafia poisoned mouths too, ugh).
Player X is also adamant because not only does he take offense to being called wrong, but the Mafia probably made him feel that those ideas weren't theirs but "his own". So he argues even though he is wrong but doesn't know it.
Player X gets lynched, flips innocent, town has lots of new innocent suspects and no one knows the mafia fucked Player X because Player X was too proud to admit he got his "ideas" from Mafia. The Mafia just stay quiet and watch the new circus.
There are more little things I usually do during a game that Im sure I forgot. But those first 10 are usually good enough to get you through a game.
Tips on how to play
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1 . Just because you are a blue/red role does not mean that you should try to hide in order to avoid getting noticed. In fact, this is generally a huge indication of your role. Acting differently than you have in previous games or being really active on the site while not being active in the thread is an easy way to get caught.
2. If you haven't done so already, read the previous games. This is an easy way to get better quickly. At the very least, please read 1 game before playing. For the first few games have a role list handy and just look at how people play their role. If you want to get into behavioral analysis, try to guess roles based on posts as the game goes along.
5) If you are ever in doubt, or need help, feel free to PM a veteran player, or host for help.
If anyone else can think of some notes to add, let me know and I will toss em in.