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How to Host a Phalla (mechanics & balance discussion)

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Posts

  • ElJeffeElJeffe Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 2007
    ArrBeeBee wrote: »
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    I also cheated there a little in mine - I claimed they were totally random, but in truth I made sure that no special roles went to people I'd never heard of who had seemingly signed up just for the game. I didn't want to wind up with a couple of seers deciding never to post, or something, because that can ruin the game for everyone.
    I did the same when I randomised the roles for the commie game. It didn't matter very much, since everybody was a special anyway, but I made sure the most powerful roles - communists, reporters, moles, etc - went to people with good posting records, so that they wouldn't disappear and throw off the balance.

    I have an unrelated question: How many votes is too many? I'm working on a phalla involving elected roles, which means the players have to vote for who they want to die and also for who they want to put into power. Two votes a day players can handle fine, as we saw in Rishiri, but I'm thinking that yet another vote every third day or something would be too confusing. I'd like opinions on the matter.

    I think that may be pushing the limit, but I'm not sure. I think it's a good idea to limit the responsibilities of any one person to lower than X, where X is... some number or other. Figure that in a normal Phalla game, a player has to, at the most, do two things: Keep track of their own special powers, if any, and vote. Even if there are 50 roles out there, keeping track of all the ones they aren't is optional. You can still play the game while ignoring the guardian, masons, vigilante, seer, and everything else. You won't be playing the game as effectively, but you can still participate. It allows players to participate to the extent they feel comfortable, and put in as much work and thought as they please, without penalizing others if they decide to ignore everything but the vote. If you have everyone having to follow three votes plus, potentially, their own roles... suddenly it gets pretty imposing, and you're probably more likely to have people skip votes.

    ElJeffe on
    Maddie: "I named my feet. The left one is flip and the right one is flop. Oh, and also I named my flip-flops."

    I make tweet.
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Nerissa wrote: »
    Also, Shinto outright lied about some of the mechanics. Specifically, he said that all of the monsters were chosen randomly, when in reality he had chosen a head monster for each group and allowed them to choose their cohorts. IMO, this is kinda cheap. If you don't want to give out the information, just say so, but don't outright lie. The narrator is supposed to be impartial. This was the first one I played, and I know the oni got taken out relatively early, I believe the ninjas won? I think it was close, though.
    If he had lied the other way, and said that they were chosen when they were really random, I would agree. However, doing it that way gives the monsters people they can work with, and doesn't really disadvantage the villagers at all (me and my two friends are as likely to be randomly chosen as any other group of three people).

    Thanatos on
  • UtsanomikoUtsanomiko Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    I've only payed passing attention to Mafias in general, but I watched the Kingdom Of Phallacia game play out with a lot of interest. Afterwards I had a lengthy phone discussion with DarkPrimus about the last couple days of the game and his actions during its entirety. The end seemed quite hectic (almost as much as the finger-pointing of day 1), but the deceptions made were quite interesting nonetheless.

    So anyway, afterwards I was thinking about what sort of Phalla I'd like to see run or specifically join in, and the idea I was bandying about involved a WH40k Inquisition covenant. It could essentially pit Radicals against Puritans in how to deal with a particular issue (perhaps the fate of a newly-discovered planet of abhumans with their own thriving culture & tech, and whether it should be integrated, strictly subjugated or outright destroyed and expunged from all records), but the further details would be in the specific schools of thought and methods, and achieving their exact goals through either persuasion, subterfuge and deflection, or (maybe initially) outright gang on the least covert agent and !Condemn them. These would be outlined specifically in their PM so each player has a clear grasp on their school, tenets, goals, and how each relates to the situation). For example, a Puritan might first team up with a Monodominant simply because they're both not radicals and insist the populace are mutants, only to assassinate or !condemn him when his goal turns out to involve destroying the world's technology as well. He may finally side with an outright Radical whose goal does include preservation, which wasn't apparent as his overt tactic was to persecute any Puritans rashly advocating exterminatus.

    Anyway I think it's got potential and people here in ODAM would be interested.

    The other day I mulled over what ways to expand on that, to add more depth and intrigue beyond general group-forming in an all-Inquisitor group. I especially wanted subterfuge and covert operations. First I figured that giving everyone limited special powers (an overt assassination/deflection per night or seer a minor detail with an investigation skill) would keep the likely multiple cells more competitive, but you'd greatly have to limit them to make the game last and it still wouldn't give them further material to work with.
    So what I've got so far is the notion of Imperial Agents, players who do not vote on eliminating Inquisitors but instead command different forces of the Imperium occupying the world under scrutiny, and thus gather information on it daily, which they can either report publicly for all to debate or give exclusively to an Inquisitor they've entered a pact with (or even order them to devote a 2nd investigation onto a specific target, but either tactic may being the Agent under fire if caught). I'd figure an Inquisitor could either publicly eliminate an agent and comandeer their forces or convince one group to eliminate another (how to get them to beneficially take on such actions I haven't entirely sorted out).

    If the group was large enough, some of these agents could also turn out to be covert Inquisitors, posing as commanders yet holding their own investigations, agendas, and secretly partaking in the votes. I still like the idea that each Inquisitor can once per day either investigate (seer part of another's tenets, goals, or loss conditions), overtly attempt one kill or guard against one attempt (usually themselves, so two or more would have to gang up. Maybe they can only kill Agents?).

    Mainly there would be Commanders of the Imperial Guard, occupying the planet divided into individual regions with hundreds of regiments. They'd receive the overall picture on the populace and insurgency, things that would factor into the narrative, but would be able to carry out specific actions on dealing with i=those issues, all the way up to the elimination their entire region or another regiment if so directed.
    The real controversial issues could be brought up by the present Adeptus Mechanicus legion and Oders of the Sisters of Battle, and their respective Magos and Canoness. The former might gain narrative insights on the importance of the world's technology and the later examples of their heretical nature. Good ammunition for one side or another, and lucrative targets to eliminate or subvert. I also thought of Arbites Judges to deal with the law and Assassins to hire for covert kills, but I'm even less sure about them.

    Anyway they're just thoughts that popped up voer the past week. Thought I'd get the ball rolling about what might or might be neat for a Mafia/Phalla variant.

    Utsanomiko on
    hmm.gif
  • Last SonLast Son Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Utsanomiko wrote:
    Huge post on 40k phalla

    That could be incredibly fun, but everyone would have to be participating actively. The other thing is you'd basically be telling the players how to act by assigning them to the different factions of the Ordos which, if that role clashed with the player's own thoughts, could cause people to either go vastly against their role or stop playing.

    So basically, totally awesome idea but would require dedicated people willing to play their roles.

    Last Son on
  • UtsanomikoUtsanomiko Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Last Son wrote: »
    Utsanomiko wrote:
    Jibber-jabber

    That could be incredibly fun, but everyone would have to be participating actively. The other thing is you'd basically be telling the players how to act by assigning them to the different factions of the Ordos which, if that role clashed with the player's own thoughts, could cause people to either go vastly against their role or stop playing.

    Sure, optimally everyone would need to be flexible in taking on a role or else lose interest. Then again not everyone pulls off being secretive or a rogue, anyway. It would greatly depend on how flexible those stances are compared to what actual action they need to have carried out (by the surviving equally-minded forces) at the end to win, as well how much actual situation discussion is done or whether it becomes background for "Inquisitor Bob, you seem the most eager to let mutants live. I don't think everyone else agrees wit that," or "Tad's got a Assassin and gonna kill the Magos! I saw I'ma psyker- whoops."
    I'd pound out the details and work out intended gameplay myself, but like I said I'm not experienced in Phallas and just wanted to throw in my two cents on what elements perk my interest and hear thoughts from people that are.

    Utsanomiko on
    hmm.gif
  • thorgotthorgot Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Having posting restrictions or things people have to roleplay as tends to make the game harder for people to swallow. Just an FYI.

    thorgot on
    campionthorgotsig.jpg
  • CantideCantide Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    I just had a crazy idea for a Phalla game, and this seems to be the place to share it.

    Imagine a Phalla... with leveling. Every player starts at level 1, and gets to secretly choose a class. The villager classes are made public to everyone, while the monster classes are shown only to those were randomly chosen as monster beforehand. I won't go into the monster classes, but there'd be three basic villager classes: fighter, cleric, and wizard, which would cover the 3 general Mafia roles of vigilante, guardian, and seer. All villager class-oriented details would be posted publicly to prevent people from sharing PMs to confirm others' roles.

    Every day that a person survives, they level up and gain new abilities. These would be largely one-shot things. Wizards, for example, might earn a single vision when they reach level 5, then again at level 8, and then 10, 12, and so on. Fighters would accumulate vigilante kills in the same manner. Clerics would be a bit different, getting better at healing HP( see below ) and eventually learning how to pre-emptively stop someone from taking damage. Because every villager will be a special, for balance reasons classes can never be as powerful as a standard Phalla role.

    One of the obvious questions at this point: why wouldn't everyone just choose to be wizards? I mean, if every single villager could seer someone, this game could end real fast. To balance this, the wizard needs to be weaker, or the other classes need to be stronger. Or both, which brings me to the other new mechanic: HP.

    In addition to getting abilities when leveling, each person will also gain HP. HP will do nothing in regards to voting; whoever is the target of a vote dies. It is only important for monster attacks. Monsters get more attacks than usual, maybe 4 per round. Each attack does HP damage, which is permanent unless healed by a cleric. Let's make up some numbers. Say a wizard gets 4 HP/level, a cleric gets 7/level, a fighter gets 12/level, and the monsters do 5/level damage. As you can see, clerics and fighters can both survive an attack, but wizards never will unless they're being guarded. Basically a village of wizards would be slaughtered. People will need clerics to stop the HP damage from piling up, and fighters who can't be offed by a stray attack. Of course, monsters can choose to target and hurt themselves as well, so a survivor of an attack could not be automatically judged innocent by his peers.


    There a number of reasons why I'm fond of this idea for a Phalla. First, it makes everyone important; no generic villagers. But at the same time, no one is absolutely key. The entire game will not hinge on whether the seer survives the first round, or whether the guardian forgets to send his PM one night. And the ability to choose their role offers players a lot more freedom. They don't have to worry about getting stuck with something they don't like. There are still a lot of flaws and kinks to work out, but I think I'm going to try and run something like this when my turn comes up.

    Cantide on
  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    With leveling: I think you might have to tweak those numbers a bit, or the monsters are going to be severely outgunned. It could work as a general mechanic, though... maybe. I'm not sure that you really want too many people surviving a monster attack anyway.

    Quick question about Rishiri:

    The members of the elected council weren't immune from attack, were they? I seem to remember them getting bumped off fairly regularly.

    Would making them immune from Vigilante & Monster attacks (not staking) make sense in a future Phalla? It would seem that it would a) give an incentive for people to try and get elected -- as opposed to dodging the election if at all possible -- and b) make the council something you definitely want to be careful not to elect monsters to.

    GrimmyTOA on
  • tuxkamentuxkamen Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Smasher wrote: »
    I think it'd be constructive to go through all the past games and see what separates the evil victories from the village victories.

    Newham (Evil victory): There were 3 of each special, with the seers and guardians splitting one use per night across all of them and the vigilantes each getting a kill every night if desired but progressively becoming more insane with each villager they killed.
    <snip>

    The non-guardian specials all got slaughtered in relatively short order; however, this was largely due to them not hooking up and trying to act on their own, which drew monster attention quickly. If the specials had played better the game would have been fairly significantly more balanced, if not tilted towards the village due to the large base network. At the same time, the third cult succeeded in deducing and killing three of the main cultists, which isn't a factor that can be counted on when balancing games.

    Honestly, special play had almost nothing to do with that. We couldn't build a network because a) one seer was told that a cultist was innocent (*not* a Hastur cultist), b) The cultists took down one seer and vigilante immediately, and c) *everyone* we seered but one person was either a cultist or killed right away--it literally went vigilante, cultist (told innocent), cultist, cultist. Hard to build a network when you're that successful. (Side note: You were the final seering, and innocent, but then we both died.)

    The two seers did get together through a vigilante, but it was doomed from the start with one seer's only contact being a cultist, and the guardians not fully defending the other one (me). So I guess that aspect could have gone better. Also, on a mechanics note, you didn't get more crazy as a vig unless you killed innocents. Cultists were like sweet, sweet Prozac.
    <snip>

    Castle (village victory): A medium size game, with seer/guardian/vig along with three one-time use items that conferred similar respective abilities to whomever used them. Three servants served as a standard stonecutter group. There were four assassins with one kill a night, and a wraith with no clear victory objective who could kill once per night, as well as retaliate against anyone killing him. The wraith proved to be a big wild card, killing both the guardian and two of the assassins. The items proved to be the biggest balance issue, as they could be traded in such a way as to prove a significant number of nobles innocent to each other, which more than made up for the seer dying the first night. Fixing this would probably be easiest by making them untradable.

    Just standing by on the outside of this, I have to agree, that game wasn't very well-balanced because of the items. Even the conditions of moving items around were exceptionally villager-friendly.

    tuxkamen on

    Games: Ad Astra Per Phalla | Choose Your Own Phalla
    Thus, the others all die before tuxkamen dies to the vote. Hence, tuxkamen survives, village victory.
    3DS: 2406-5451-5770
  • AroducAroduc regular
    edited March 2007
    tuxkamen wrote: »

    Newham (Evil victory): There were 3 of each special, with the seers and guardians splitting one use per night across all of them and the vigilantes each getting a kill every night if desired but progressively becoming more insane with each villager they killed.
    <snip>

    The non-guardian specials all got slaughtered in relatively short order; however, this was largely due to them not hooking up and trying to act on their own, which drew monster attention quickly. If the specials had played better the game would have been fairly significantly more balanced, if not tilted towards the village due to the large base network. At the same time, the third cult succeeded in deducing and killing three of the main cultists, which isn't a factor that can be counted on when balancing games.

    Honestly, special play had almost nothing to do with that. We couldn't build a network because a) one seer was told that a cultist was innocent (*not* a Hastur cultist), b) The cultists took down one seer and vigilante immediately, and c) *everyone* we seered but one person was either a cultist or killed right away--it literally went vigilante, cultist (told innocent), cultist, cultist. Hard to build a network when you're that successful. (Side note: You were the final seering, and innocent, but then we both died.)

    The two seers did get together through a vigilante, but it was doomed from the start with one seer's only contact being a cultist, and the guardians not fully defending the other one (me). So I guess that aspect could have gone better. Also, on a mechanics note, you didn't get more crazy as a vig unless you killed innocents. Cultists were like sweet, sweet Prozac.

    To be fair though, all three cults played damn well/got really lucky, take your pick. If one special had come out on day 1, the village would have instantly had a 9 (plus?) circle. Instead, the cults managed to beat the odds and find eachother immediately without killing anybody, and then went on to kill a seer every day for the next three days. The wrong result for the seering thing certainly didn't help them at all, but the village didn't do a good job of helping themselves either.

    That's the kind of artificial thing that I think corrupts the game entirely. It's about mob mentality and deciding who to trust and who to not. It shouldn't be about automatically having a 100% certain group that you can trust even after a seer dies or the like. That also goes into reporting the seer deaths and whatnot. Waaaaaaaay too much information gets given out and it makes it easy for people to distinguish between the liars and the truth, and that's so not what the games are meant to be about.

    Aroduc on
  • tuxkamentuxkamen Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Oh, I don't think we would have won, don't get me wrong; with the conversion and the deflections I'm sure it would have ended badly for us.

    I don't really get your instant-circle claim, though. I could see how it would get three of one of the roles together, maybe, but it would still need to depend on the faith of the other groups (who would not necessarily have met). We (the seers, at least) did not know each other, and I don't think the vigilantes did either.

    tuxkamen on

    Games: Ad Astra Per Phalla | Choose Your Own Phalla
    Thus, the others all die before tuxkamen dies to the vote. Hence, tuxkamen survives, village victory.
    3DS: 2406-5451-5770
  • SmasherSmasher Starting to get dizzy Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    The idea is that one of the guardians reveals himself, and posts some part of his PM (or reveals some non-critical mechanics, if the PMs are unique). The guardians all protect him if he looks legit, the vigilantes attack him, and the seers seer him. The public guardian can validate his PM against the other two to make sure they're legit, and then have the vigs and seers send him their PMs to make sure they're all legit too. Bam, insta-network.

    I'd forgotten the details of the early days of Newham. When you put it that way, I take back the part about the specials.

    Smasher on
  • AroducAroduc regular
    edited March 2007
    If even that. It's a huge HUGE risk for a monster to go public like that when they're in no danger really. In the communist one, I came out as a seer and gathered 3 guardians, another seer and three vigilantes to me by the end of day 1. People have been given the luxury to be able to be 100% certain of others roles, so they don't like taking chances or risking their own lives for the greater good. They need to be shaken out of that complacency. :P

    Aroduc on
  • ElJeffeElJeffe Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 2007
    This gives me an interesting idea for my upcoming game.

    A couple interesting ideas, actually. The one I'll mention is that all special roles are going to receive unique PMs, so they can't be compared.

    ElJeffe on
    Maddie: "I named my feet. The left one is flip and the right one is flop. Oh, and also I named my flip-flops."

    I make tweet.
  • tuxkamentuxkamen Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Smasher wrote: »
    The idea is that one of the guardians reveals himself, and posts some part of his PM (or reveals some non-critical mechanics, if the PMs are unique). The guardians all protect him if he looks legit, the vigilantes attack him, and the seers seer him. The public guardian can validate his PM against the other two to make sure they're legit, and then have the vigs and seers send him their PMs to make sure they're all legit too. Bam, insta-network.

    I can sort of see that happening, but that's a specific case and a lot different from 'one special' being able to do it. Also, it's a ripe target for a) first-night conversion or b) overloading defense with multiple kills. (I think it probably should be a rule that guardians can only block X attacks.)

    I also don't like that situation potentially happening, and need to consider ways around it.

    tuxkamen on

    Games: Ad Astra Per Phalla | Choose Your Own Phalla
    Thus, the others all die before tuxkamen dies to the vote. Hence, tuxkamen survives, village victory.
    3DS: 2406-5451-5770
  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Give everyone slightly different PMs. That would remove an aspect of the game that's never sat quite right with me.

    Or, you know, just say they're all unique messages, just so long as people don't know that they're all the same.

    Another possibility I thought of was the idea of having imperfect vigilantes and/or guardians. I like the idea of a vigilante having one kill but it seems hard to justify it in the narrative. One bullet is a little bit lame. So say the vigilante decides he's going to kill Villiager A tonight. Ok, he does it, that's an innocent dead. Next night he goes for a bad guy. You think this werewolf/mafia member/cylon is going to go down without a fight? Flip a coin, heads the Vigilante is successful and it's one dead bad guy. Tails, he fails to finish the job. I'm torn whether this should result in the death of the vigilante (it is a dangerous job afterall) or simply have him be forced to retreat. The upshot of this, though, is that the vigilante now knows for sure that his target was a bad guy.

    A similar system could be put in place with the guardian. Every time the guy he's protecting gets attacked flip a coin. Heads, he fights them off, tails he dies defending the villiager. Of course the immediate problem with this is the random element it adds to the game, which some purists may not agree with. Also balance, as this would clearly weaken the good guys a bit, but with fragile vigilantes/guardians you could afford to throw an extra one in, I think.

    SUPERSUGA on
  • tuxkamentuxkamen Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    This gives me an interesting idea for my upcoming game.

    A couple interesting ideas, actually. The one I'll mention is that all special roles are going to receive unique PMs, so they can't be compared.

    Ow, damn, post got eaten.

    Good idea, seems like the easiest approach.

    Someone asked about random vs. preferential picks of players for roles. I don't agree with preferential picks, because if you can't trust new players to be able to fill roles, then they'll never get a chance to show that they can really play (I'm a good example, I guess). On the other hand, there are glaring examples of stupid when new players play. I guess I'm for preferential un-placement or rejection of players based on past history, but nothing more than that--and I don't even feel comfortable doing that. I guess only if my seeding was really bad. Perhaps I would simply say 'you are habitually a waste of a spot, sorry', and take the flak for it.

    Also, still looking for someone who won't be playing my game but is experienced to look over the structure for glaring balance holes.

    tuxkamen on

    Games: Ad Astra Per Phalla | Choose Your Own Phalla
    Thus, the others all die before tuxkamen dies to the vote. Hence, tuxkamen survives, village victory.
    3DS: 2406-5451-5770
  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    tuxkamen wrote: »
    I guess I'm for preferential un-placement or rejection of players based on past history, but nothing more than that--and I don't even feel comfortable doing that.
    I have to say I agree. I think it should be random unless, perhaps, if the players are completely oblivious to the fact the roles might be picked. Again, I may be biased here, as I'm not a well known poster and don't want to miss out on the mere possibility of getting a special role just because of that.

    SUPERSUGA on
  • thorgotthorgot Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    SUPERSUGA wrote: »
    Give everyone slightly different PMs. That would remove an aspect of the game that's never sat quite right with me.

    Or, you know, just say they're all unique messages, just so long as people don't know that they're all the same.

    Another possibility I thought of was the idea of having imperfect vigilantes and/or guardians. I like the idea of a vigilante having one kill but it seems hard to justify it in the narrative. One bullet is a little bit lame. So say the vigilante decides he's going to kill Villiager A tonight. Ok, he does it, that's an innocent dead. Next night he goes for a bad guy. You think this werewolf/mafia member/cylon is going to go down without a fight? Flip a coin, heads the Vigilante is successful and it's one dead bad guy. Tails, he fails to finish the job. I'm torn whether this should result in the death of the vigilante (it is a dangerous job afterall) or simply have him be forced to retreat. The upshot of this, though, is that the vigilante now knows for sure that his target was a bad guy.

    A similar system could be put in place with the guardian. Every time the guy he's protecting gets attacked flip a coin. Heads, he fights them off, tails he dies defending the villiager. Of course the immediate problem with this is the random element it adds to the game, which some purists may not agree with. Also balance, as this would clearly weaken the good guys a bit, but with fragile vigilantes/guardians you could afford to throw an extra one in, I think.

    There are lots of vigilante roles already defined by previous games on these forums and others. Notable ones that we've had include:
    bomb: kills attacker and self (I think there was one of these)
    limited kills
    unlimited kills
    kill every x number of nights

    Most people would agree that mafia isn't about chance, so your idea of flipping a coin simply wouldn't be fun. The whole point is that people's mistakes and successes win or lose them the game, not an invisible die roll. That was pretty much the only annoying part of the Cthulu game. (Besides the utter wrecking of the village, that is.) The best way to balance a vigilante is to limit his kills in number or frequency, not to introduce chance.

    thorgot on
    campionthorgotsig.jpg
  • UtsanomikoUtsanomiko Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Cantide wrote: »
    [Snip classes and role ideas]

    I think it's an interesting concept, and addresses some issues people have stated about individual active participation and dependence on specials. It at least deserves some testing to sort out the exact numbers, balance when players get what skills and how powerful are monsters.


    It sounds a little like my thoughts on Phalla, though with a stronger focus on multiple small cells while mine had more of a split in roles and types of actions (which might reduce interest unless there's clearly two different sign-ups for public Inquisitor vs Commander players, further alleviated by 'hells yeah, Warhammer' interest found on the board).

    Utsanomiko on
    hmm.gif
  • ElJeffeElJeffe Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 2007
    tuxkamen wrote: »
    Also, still looking for someone who won't be playing my game but is experienced to look over the structure for glaring balance holes.

    I'd be willing to look it over. I don't plan on participating in any games for awhile.

    ElJeffe on
    Maddie: "I named my feet. The left one is flip and the right one is flop. Oh, and also I named my flip-flops."

    I make tweet.
  • ElJeffeElJeffe Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 2007
    As to the classes thing, it seems like a cool basis for a game. It doesn't really sound like a mafia game, though. It sounds... just different.

    ElJeffe on
    Maddie: "I named my feet. The left one is flip and the right one is flop. Oh, and also I named my flip-flops."

    I make tweet.
  • thorgotthorgot Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Sounds more like a dungeons and dragons forum game with voting to me.

    thorgot on
    campionthorgotsig.jpg
  • tuxkamentuxkamen Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    tuxkamen wrote: »
    Also, still looking for someone who won't be playing my game but is experienced to look over the structure for glaring balance holes.

    I'd be willing to look it over. I don't plan on participating in any games for awhile.

    Okay, Your Highness, sending it. Thanks in advance.

    tuxkamen on

    Games: Ad Astra Per Phalla | Choose Your Own Phalla
    Thus, the others all die before tuxkamen dies to the vote. Hence, tuxkamen survives, village victory.
    3DS: 2406-5451-5770
  • Aroused BullAroused Bull Registered User
    edited March 2007
    tuxkamen wrote: »
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    tuxkamen wrote: »
    Also, still looking for someone who won't be playing my game but is experienced to look over the structure for glaring balance holes.

    I'd be willing to look it over. I don't plan on participating in any games for awhile.

    Okay, Your Highness, sending it. Thanks in advance.

    Your Enchanted Highness.

    Aroused Bull on
  • CantideCantide Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    As to the classes thing, it seems like a cool basis for a game. It doesn't really sound like a mafia game, though. It sounds... just different.
    thorgot wrote:
    Sounds more like a dungeons and dragons forum game with voting to me.

    Yeah, that's kinda the point. Every Phalla game so far has changed a few things like the number of monsters/specials, how specific powers work, etc., but they've been essentially the same. The core nature of the game has never changed.

    I'm not saying there's anything wrong with those games; I've greatly enjoyed all the ones I've been in and look forward to future Phallas. But I'd just like to try out something different, see what works and what doesn't. The superhero game I originally signed up to run is just another variation of this idea. The goal of it was test out new powers and variations of old powers( for example, there were specials whose powers only worked on the people they voted for, and specials whose powers only worked on people who voted for them ), and find any that were worth keeping around. My idea for a tournament-style Phalla approached things from the opposite direction, removing all specials and just leaving the persuasion and deception aspects.

    To sum up, the current formula was have for Phalla games is good, but I'd like to see if we can't make it better.

    Cantide on
  • PlutoniumPlutonium Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Imagine a Phalla where the lines between good and evil were a bit.. Blurred.

    Soviet Phallastan!

    3 sides in this game:

    The CIA Cell

    The CIA will take the place of the assasins, only in this game, every night, they choose one member of the village and have them defect - leaving the game. One of the CIA members is the "Analyst," who can seer one person a night to find their alignment. When all surving members of the village have defected and at least one CIA member is still alive, it results in a CIA victory, and they call in the aerial bombing of the remaining KGB in the village. They start out knowing each other.

    The KGB

    The KGB take the place of the specials in this game, and preferably three exist. They start out knowing each other. Their objective is to wipe out the CIA before the entire village defects and the CIA can call in the Napalm.

    The Interrogator: Can "seer" one person a night to find their alignment.
    The Political Officer: Can prevent one villager from defecting per night. The "Defender." Also, if the CIA tries to cause a KGB member to defect, the narrative will say that the person was protected by the political officer.
    The Assassin: Can kill one player a night. Objective is to kill all of the CIA members before the village defects. If all the CIA are dead, it results in a KGB Victory - ensuring the Soviet Control of the village.

    The Village

    A village in Soviet-occupied Phallastan, each night the villagers will vote to execute one member of the village who they believe is a part of the Soviet occupation force in their country. One-use items could be distrubuted among them, such as a "Stinger" (free kill) or a "Prophetic Vision" (free Seer) The Village's objective is to kill off all the KGB members, resulting in a villager victory - allowing them to double cross the CIA and remove the infidels from their holy Phalla land.

    Plutonium on
  • thorgotthorgot Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    That sounds just like a regular game with two groups of monsters. Though the narration could be fun.

    thorgot on
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  • Last SonLast Son Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    It would be interesting to be the KGB, since they have to protect the village while the village tries to kill them.

    Last Son on
  • PlutoniumPlutonium Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Last Son wrote: »
    It would be interesting to be the KGB, since they have to protect the village while the village tries to kill them.

    Yeah, I tried to make it have a little of the Full Metal Jacket-esque "fighting for the interest of people we hate us." Alternatively, the roles of the CIA and KGB could be switched around and it could take place in Vietnam. I just wanted to add a bit of moral ambiguity.

    Originally, I was thinking of a normal Assasins vs. Villagers phalla that took place in a Russian town where the KGB were the specials and the when the CIA chose people, it was called "Defecting" instead of killing. The narrator could be a total communist believer and phrase it like this:

    "Last night, the capitalist pigs were twarted by the courage of brave Rygar, who, being educated the day before in the great inevitability of victory for the Bolsheviek struggle, resisted cowardly Amerikan promises of automobiles and free trips to their Bourgois 'Disneyworld'."

    Plutonium on
  • ElJeffeElJeffe Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 2007
    I've been kicking around the idea of a game in which everybody knows each other's roles at the outset. It would be more like a game of chess than the paranoia-fest that is Phalla, though. It'd work best with three opposing sides, forming secret alliances and trying to fucking over the others.

    You'd know, for example, that each side had a guardian (or two), but you wouldn't know who the guardian was protecting. Was he protecting the vigilante, who granted the side an extra kill? Himself?

    I dunno, it might suck, and it would be wickedly hard to balance properly while still making it fun, but it could be interesting.

    ElJeffe on
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  • thorgotthorgot Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    I've been kicking around the idea of a game in which everybody knows each other's roles at the outset. It would be more like a game of chess than the paranoia-fest that is Phalla, though. It'd work best with three opposing sides, forming secret alliances and trying to fucking over the others.

    You'd know, for example, that each side had a guardian (or two), but you wouldn't know who the guardian was protecting. Was he protecting the vigilante, who granted the side an extra kill? Himself?

    I dunno, it might suck, and it would be wickedly hard to balance properly while still making it fun, but it could be interesting.

    Sort of like Aroduc's game with complete information?

    thorgot on
    campionthorgotsig.jpg
  • ElJeffeElJeffe Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 2007
    Something like that, yes.

    ElJeffe on
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  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    I think that would be a great game if it was huuuuuge. You know, three or five sides of twenty people each, all just thrashing away at each other.

    Could be fun -- although I think that the main thread would be very quiet much of the time. Everything would rely upon surprise, and there wouldn't have to be any public discussion of who to stake, so everything would go on in-house.

    Also, I feel like only the people with special roles would have much to say about anything at all. They'd end up being the 'generals' of their group, with the regular people just following orders once a day.

    Might be more fun as a live game, is what I'm saying.

    GrimmyTOA on
  • Elbonian ManElbonian Man Registered User
    edited March 2007
    I think that'd be awesome Jeffe. It wouldn't be like a normal phalla, but I think it'd fit in oDaM fine. You could either have small sides, say 7 people each that are all specials, but some would be one-shot and some repeating, or a large game where you only have a 3-5 on each side.

    Elbonian Man on
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  • NerissaNerissa Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    I just had an odd idea for a "speed Phalla" game, but I'm not sure how well it would work.

    The game runs as normal, but instead of a standard 24-hour day, each day runs until a certain percentage (I think you could reasonably use anything from 50% to 75%) of the surviving players have voted. The day ends the second the last vote is made, and the next day begins as soon as the narration goes up. You could provide a 5-10 minute window after the last vote for specials to get their names in if you wanted to.

    The biggest drawback I can see is that the narrator would pretty much have to be paying attention 24/7 and ready to end a day on a moment's notice.

    You would probably want to rethink penalizing inactivity for this type of game as well.

    Nerissa on
    Personally, I like D&D because I find OCD much more interesting than ADD.
  • NerissaNerissa Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    OK, I've been thinking about my whole secrets thing. Here's what I came up with.

    First off, in order for a secret to count, the person whose secret it is needs to live through the night that it is confirmed. Since witches don't get any secret other than that they are a witch, their secrets won't count.

    Bad guys (witches, in my case) get a bonus kill for each confirmed secret. They may gain any number of bonus kills on a given night, but may not use more than one per night.

    Good guys get a clue from me. However, as people confirm secrets, the next person will need more, and the reward will be correspondingly greater.

    The first person would PM me one other living person's secret, and (if confirmed) get a list of 10 random names, with a guarantee that exactly one of them is a witch. (At this point, that should be only slightly better than random odds since I'm planning on starting with 4 witches out of 40 players.) The second person would PM me 2 other people's secrets and get 9 names, exactly one of whom is a witch. And so on, when a person PMs me N correct secrets, they get (11-N) names, with exactly one of them a witch. Once you've "used up" another person's secret, you can't use it again later, but other people can use it. There is no restriction on how many different sets of secrets a given person can turn in, but since each response set is random, the new information may or may not be related to the old.

    Some individuals, due to their roles, will have restrictions on whose secrets they can and cannot use. For example, my "masons" will start the game in pairs, each knowing their partner's secret. They will not be allowed to use their partner's secret for this purpose.

    Confirmation will be an all-or-nothing matter. If someone sends me 3 secrets and 1 is incorrect, their response will simply be "one or more of these is incorrect, please try again". If two people send in the same number of secrets the same night, whichever hits my PM box first gets checked first. If they are incorrect, then I check the next one. If the first person is correct, the second will get a response to the effect of "someone else has already turned in N secrets, please try again when you have learned more."

    I'm debating allowing provisional submissions. i.e. if the next number is 3, a person could send in 4 names. If they are the first person to submit 3 names, I only check the first 3 names on the list (they would know which ones I checked). If someone else sends in 3 names before them, I check all 4.

    Nerissa on
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  • ElJeffeElJeffe Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 2007
    First, that sounds so ridiculously complicated on your end that I would weep for your sanity.

    Second, and more problematically, there's very little expected gain for the villagers, so there's little reason to give up secret to anyone unless you're the seer and know somebody's innocence for a fact.

    Consider the first case, where you have yet to submit any secrets. You PM someone, and ask if they'd like to trade. If you give them your secret and they're a villager, they've just received a minute reward in the form of a list of 10 people containing one witch. If they're a witch, though, you've just received a stiff penalty in the form of one of your own getting capped. Further, there's no reason for them to even give you an actual secret, even if they're innocent. They only need to get yours. There's no advantage for them in giving you theirs, especially later in the game, when it would be more difficult to figure out which person out of five just gave you a faulty secret.

    And lastly, it would be very easy for the village to use this construct to automatically win the game. Here's what they do:

    By mid-game, there will be a network consisting of at least two people who know each other's identities. This is pretty much a given. The village, on day one, announces their plan - nobody is to give out any secrets, and nobody is to submit any for a reward. Since nobody is giving out secrets, the witches have no chance of gaining any and mucking up the works.

    Now, the village waits until the village contains exactly 9 innocent villagers. At this point, one of the trusted folks submits a name. Bam, you now have a list which contains exactly 9 innocents. This means that anyone not on the list is a witch. At this point, it's just a matter of eliminating the known witches and figuring out the identity of the last one, who is statistically very unlikely to win.

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  • SmasherSmasher Starting to get dizzy Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    I think there's an even bigger problem than that.

    Suppose one person somehow becomes publicly verified as an innocent. The simplest way would be for the guardian to come out day one and have the vigilante attack him, but the exact manner doesn't matter. He then issues a call for everyone to send him their secret. After he gets a bunch of secrets he starts turning them in. If a group of secrets goes through that means all those people are innocent, since the witches don't have a secret. If a group doesn't go through, he can rotate the set of secrets he turns in until he figures out which one was fake, and then outs that person as a witch. This could hypothetically let the person "seer" pretty much the entire village by day two.

    You could partially counter this by setting a limit on how many secrets a given person can turn in in a given amount of time, but that can still be circumvented. Say you let each person do at most one turnin a day. The publicly identified villager (let's say the guardian for simplicity) turns in one secret. If he happens to run across a witch on his first attempt, so much the better. After turning in somebody's secret successfully, he knows that person is innocent. The guardian then sends villager 1 some of the secrets sent to himself, and villager 1 sooner or later verifies two more people. The guardian gives some secrets to villagers 2 and 3, etc.

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  • NerissaNerissa Registered User regular
    edited March 2007
    Hmm... good point. Do you think giving the witches an additional secret would solve that?

    Nerissa on
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