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View Poll Results: Should this proposition be implemented? - READ THE THREAD BEFORE VOTING!
Yes, let's give it a shot. 15 100.00%
No, let's not. 0 0%
Voters: 15. You may not vote on this poll

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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:54 AM   #1
Loyal
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Default Suggestion for Mafia games - Anonymity

Had this bouncing around in my head for a couple days, so here goes:

One problem with Mafia games is metagaming, in which players will make judgments and decisions against other players based not on what the other player has said or done this game, but by what the other player is likely to do based on what they've said or done in past games, or even outside of the game altogether. This leads to such things as voting to lynch a particular player because they're smart enough or unpredictable enough that one doesn't want to take the risk that the other player is on the other team and capable of doing serious damage.

I feel this isn't very fair for the victim, and runs counter to what Mafia is about.

So, my suggestion? Remove everybody's identity. How do we do this?
  • Create a dozen or so throwaway accounts, however many we need. Name them things like Mr. Smith or Frank Greenwood. Include one Game Master account. Have a notepad list handy with the (preferably random) passwords of each, to be held by the acting GM. The player accounts will be assigned randomly to players as they sign up. They'll use these accounts until the end of the game, at which point they'll return control of the account to the GM, who will PM the list, and the GM account, to the next GM. The new GM changes the passwords on each account and repeats the process for the players in their game. This helps ensure we don't have to create a ton of new accounts with every game.
  • Players are not allowed to declare their actual forum identity. Along the same token, players are not allowed to guess at or declare the real identity of other players. Naturally the no-outside-communication rule applies here.
  • To ensure that players don't accidentally post in the Mafia game with their real accounts, or use their Mafia identity to post in the forum proper, Mafia threads are placed in their own subforum (discussion of the game can take place in signup threads, which will remain in this subforum). Only Mafia accounts (including the GM account) are allowed to post in this subforum, and they cannot post anywhere else.
So, what do you guys think?
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Unread 05-29-2012, 01:03 AM   #2
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This is crazy enough to work.

I would stipulate that I, as Games Forum Mod, can ask for a list of names from the GO at any time if I feel that things are getting dicey - Mafia is already mildly vitriolic and posting under a throwaway account might result in some unsavory behaviors.

Also a GM/GO account seems unnecessary. In fact, I would prefer that there not be one. But, if the mafia games are to be placed in their own subforum, it'd probably be necessary?

Game list would be kept in the public, though.

EDIT: On the other hand, the meta is a part of the game. I think it would vary from GO to GO but if somebody would want to give this a try, then I'd be for getting it set up.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 01:10 AM   #3
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I like hiding the player's identity to remove the metagaming factor. I'd play if it ever came up.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 12:46 PM   #4
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I think you should be able to guess at who is really who. It takes away a lot from the game to be unable to say, "I KNOW that, whenever Bill is scum, he makes up an excuse and doesn't play". Like, a lot of what helps the town is analyzing how people behave, compared to their past games. Complete anonymity will weaken the town significantly, I think.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 01:57 PM   #5
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Man, I support this.

Only problem I can see is i'll know every time which player is fenris. (Protip it's the jerk )
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Unread 05-29-2012, 02:10 PM   #6
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Does that mean that every player ends up being Fenris, then?
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Unread 05-29-2012, 02:31 PM   #7
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If this is possible, I'd like to see it implemented.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 02:34 PM   #8
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Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare.
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Quote:
I would stipulate that I, as Games Forum Mod, can ask for a list of names from the GO at any time if I feel that things are getting dicey - Mafia is already mildly vitriolic and posting under a throwaway account might result in some unsavory behaviors.
Understandable, though this may compromise your ability to fairly participate in the game? I figured that might be an issue regardless, but...

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Originally Posted by rpgdemon View Post
I think you should be able to guess at who is really who. It takes away a lot from the game to be unable to say, "I KNOW that, whenever Bill is scum, he makes up an excuse and doesn't play".
I disagree that there's really all that much merit to be had in knowing who's who. There's about as much garbage reasoning derived from this methodology as legitimate points, and even the legitimate points are only as valid as your impression of who the person is.

There is nothing I can do to stop players from guessing at the identity of another player, or even acting on these guesses. Allowing players to share their suspicions, however, or allowing them to demand that a particular player identify themselves, would defeat the entire point of the exercise.

Quote:
Like, a lot of what helps the town is analyzing how people behave, compared to their past games.
It helps scum, as well. Scum's job is to pick up on who's got the Bodyguard, or Vig powers, and knowing the person behind it helps them there, too.

Quote:
Complete anonymity will weaken the town significantly, I think.
Nope.

I've seen games where, aside from a few exceptions, nobody knew anybody else outside of the context of a FPS game. As you might imagine, not the best place to glean impressions of intelligence or how one behaves when in a rational setting.

Town still did just fine because they relied on cues like, "this player's gotten awfully quiet since people started voting for Joe Everydude over there, I wonder if I should look into that," or "Barbie Mill's been posting a fair bit and voting, but most of it's been fluff posts to make it look like she's active and contributory, I should bring that up."

Y'know, time-honored clues that continue to be used in these Mafia games, and are actually based on what's happened in the game.

This is hardly the town-crippling modification you make it out to be.
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Last edited by Loyal; 05-29-2012 at 02:52 PM.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 09:22 PM   #9
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I don't know how well it'd work, but would like the subforum to be placed as a read-only format for those that aren't the anonymous usernames? Mainly because right now I'm getting a hella lot of fun simply by reading some of the shenanigans in the other mafia games without even considering information-gathering in regards to player behaviour, etc.

It would still be nice for everybody else not participating to see all the random humour running rampant in the games.

I'm looking at your game, Fenris.
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Unread 05-29-2012, 10:33 PM   #10
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Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare. Loyal has indicated, by your reading this, that they are now President and you have to fart gourmet mustard arugula into your Obamacare.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhiya Ravenwing View Post
I don't know how well it'd work, but would like the subforum to be placed as a read-only format for those that aren't the anonymous usernames? Mainly because right now I'm getting a hella lot of fun simply by reading some of the shenanigans in the other mafia games without even considering information-gathering in regards to player behaviour, etc.

It would still be nice for everybody else not participating to see all the random humour running rampant in the games.

I'm looking at your game, Fenris.
That's the idea, yes. The limitation is on posting only.
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