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Diamondeye

Night of the Werewolves: A CFC Mafia Variant

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Quite a few of the current Gameroom mafia players on this forum are now originally from the Civilizations Fanatics Center forums like myself. Seon, Backwards Logic, Methos, Renata and Winston Hughes, per example. On the other hand, several of the players who originate from this site - .orgers - are now also playing in the games of the CFC; AskThePizzaGuy and Beefy187 to name a few.

All of the players mentioned above have tried being part of a Night of the Werewolves ("NotW") game on the CFC site. This series is an alternative version of a standard mafia setup, unique to the forum of CFC. Most of the NotW games (including the first, which gave the series the name) take place in the Fall From Heaven II universe - I have already mentioned this in a previous entry concerning the setting of mafia games.

But what is it - apart from the setting - that makes NotW games so different from mafia games? I think this questions is very legit since, as I mentioned above, the two forums now share a player base of ten or more regular players, several of them with some hosting experience (including yours truly). I came to think of this because, over at the CFC, I have just started the 20-man game that I am hosting as "Mini-NotW VIII" (Yeah over at CFC 20 players is a mini, nyah nyah), and I am actually wondering whether it'd be better described as a mafia game. The game breaks with several of the core traditions of the NotW games (note that most mafia games share at least one but normally not all of these);

First of all, my game breaks with the tradition that everyone has a unique role. There is no such thing as a basic townsperson in the standard NotW games. To expand on this, allow me to mention other aspects of the typical NotW games. My current game on the CFC is also (due to the first issue) in exclusion of the tradition that every player has a personal goal in addition to their Victory Condition, These goals are a good way of creating a motivation for different (mafia) factions to wage war on each other; make it the goal of one of the mafia factions to eliminate a certain member of the other faction! If you're feeling particularly nice, add a nice little reward to the more spicy and off-track goals to make them worth the effort.

Personal goals can also help add some fluff to roles that would otherwise be boring and standard; got a boring standard townsperson or two who need some encouragement? Make it their goal to become the new mayor of the village to win an extra vote, or have them secretly suspect their neighbour for witchcraft and want him dead! Other ways to add that fluff to characters that are also typical for the NotW series is that there is typically a number of items that can be used my most players, although some of them might have varying effect depending on who is using/wielding them. NotW games also tend to have more thorough character backgrounds and descriptions and - and I think this could very well be one of the major differences - considerably more focus on in-thread roleplaying. Per example, in my last NotW, a game called "Everybody Wants to Change The World", I was, as Game Host, very annoyed at the amount of out-of-character post that a certain pizzaguy was posting.

Another thing that I have noticed is that the NotW games tend to eliminate dead players completely from the game, meaning that once you are dead it is normal to speak to other dead players and the Game Host about the remaining players and even about the mechanics of the game. This does of course also mean that NotW players are prohibited to comment on/try to influence the actual game once they have died. Often, this results in private dead-to-dead (or dead-to-GM) conversations as well as a large public conversation (in the game thread) once the game has ended.

All in all, though, I believe the major difference in respect to NotW games compared to regular mafia games is the overall atmosphere; all of the above mentioned traditions are working to create a certain room for roleplaying (remember that the original NotW games take place in a fantasy setting, after all).

I'd welcome a discussion of this in the comments section, especially if those who are actually active on both this forum and CFC have any opinions to air or want to remind me of other aspects of the NotW games that I have forgotten.

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Comments

  1. autolycus's Avatar
    One more aspect that you implied but didn't state was that everyone has a public role in which to play. This makes a large difference. In the LOTR Mafia that recently ended over on CFC, everyone had a role with a fair amount of backstory and personal goals, including cover roles for the mafia, but since roles were not initially public, it was risky for anyone to actually try to play their role. The same thing occurred in MNOTW VI:X-Men.
  2. Diamondeye's Avatar
    @Autolycus: That's true. In NotW, people have a role, often (though not always) with a public description (in my M-NotW "Everybody wants to change the world", the roles were mostly named after their magic spheres, per example).
  3. Beefy187's Avatar
    I'm still getting used to NotW games over there. And often I have difficulty following the unique story lines like Fall from heavens.
    But if its like Dark Radiance game which is fairly standard real lifeish setting, I did enjoy the game a lot.

    Role playing certainly added the feel that you are living in the world.

    If time allows it, I'll keep playing those NotW. Its really worth it.
    iirc, large game Seon is hosting here "inavi" is going to be based on NotW set up.
  4. yueyuan's Avatar
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