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 Scum/Baddie hunting: what is it?
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  Posted Aug 20 2016, 12:21 AM
Hi http://mafiamaniac.org/smile/biggrin.gif

I was thinking... I can get my best Scum/Baddie reads based off when I think someone isn't Scum/Baddie hunting.

So I just have a simple question then...

What does Baddie hunting look like to you? Can you tell when people are and are not doing this? What cues you in to tell you someone is not trying to solve the game? Is it simply asking questions or is there a whole lot more to it? I'd like to hear from you guys on how you approach this very pivotal part of this game we call Mafia.


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  Posted Aug 20 2016, 10:15 AM
Well, I guess this is the right thread for theories, but I believe the question is as old as the game itself and there are a lot of playstyles in "traditional" Scum Mafia that don't exactly translate to the "Den" Mafia playstyles here. However since you asked for opinions, here's mine:

First off, I wouldn't call them reads per se, but yes, I do add a player higher on the list of baddies/indies suspects:
- If I find a player that does not ask any questions whatsoever out of other players / simply tries to "go with the flow"
- If I find a player that does not actually want to lynch and get information when there's a player counter-claim or any other type of situation that needs a public stance.

Both conditions are debatable and not foolproof of course, but I've seen a lot of other players applying them as well (out of reason or instinct). "Flying under the radar" and "Neutral stance" may be more appropriate names for these patterns..

On both accounts, my reasoning for considering them suspects and not Baddie per-se is because there are several Goodie roles in a Mafia game that don't actually blend well with attraction attention to oneself in the game thread and I've also experienced a lot of players who are afraid to go "Baddie hunting all the way" in the game thread based on the fear that they may inadvertently reveal something about their role and get them killed before they can use their abilities. Both reasons don't apply to vannila Mafia games, but I believe they apply in Scum Mafia games as well as in Den Mafia games. There is no axiomatic difference between the variants (Scum/Den). It's just a slightly more shifted focus on abilities rather than relying only on votes & reads that differentiates the two variants in my head (and the reason which I am still hung up on this Den variant).

My reasoning for marking them higher on the suspect list if they exhibit the two patterns described above is that by not interacting / not doing anything in a Mafia game, as long as the information does not flow and is not acted upon, it basically benefits ONLY the informed minority. This game, at its foundation, is tilted towards that principle: "if you are uninformed and don't do anything to change that, you are gonna lose". Entropy is going to get you. It's so basic at its core, I refuse to be "understanding" of players that say they don't "get" that principle. Playing a Mafia game like you are watching a movie with a happy-ending marks you as extremely naive or a likely baddie - either you are delusional or you are actually deceitful because it suits your wincon.

However, this game is cooperative (despite it's paranoid approach to cooperation), so if you have 1-2 players appearing to be active Baddie hunters in a 13 player game, until they are dead and someone else needs to carry the torch further, one can choose not to aggresively hunt for a while. Because as long as there are persons rowing, the boat moves forward. Just be ready to row as if your life depends on it if there's no one at the oars.


... A red bird of my desire came and sat upon my shoulder, and I wrote a note and tied it to its leg and sent it off into the west. It said, "I'll be back," and it was signed by me.
... I saw my earlier selves as different people, acquaintances I had outgrown. I wondered how I could ever have been some of them.
... *shrug* Good-bye and hello, as always.

Spoiler for The three laws of the ol' faithful goodie killer

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  Posted Aug 20 2016, 04:53 PM
QUOTE (araver @ Aug 20 2016, 09:15 AM)
Well, I guess this is the right thread for theories, but I believe the question is as old as the game itself and there are a lot of playstyles in "traditional" Scum Mafia that don't exactly translate to the "Den" Mafia playstyles here. However since you asked for opinions, here's mine:

First off, I wouldn't call them reads per se, but yes, I do add a player higher on the list of baddies/indies suspects:
- If I find a player that does not ask any questions whatsoever out of other players / simply tries to "go with the flow"
- If I find a player that does not actually want to lynch and get information when there's a player counter-claim or any other type of situation that needs a public stance.

Both conditions are debatable and not foolproof of course, but I've seen a lot of other players applying them as well (out of reason or instinct). "Flying under the radar" and "Neutral stance" may be more appropriate names for these patterns..

On both accounts, my reasoning for considering them suspects and not Baddie per-se is because there are several Goodie roles in a Mafia game that don't actually blend well with attraction attention to oneself in the game thread and I've also experienced a lot of players who are afraid to go "Baddie hunting all the way" in the game thread based on the fear that they may inadvertently reveal something about their role and get them killed before they can use their abilities. Both reasons don't apply to vannila Mafia games, but I believe they apply in Scum Mafia games as well as in Den Mafia games. There is no axiomatic difference between the variants (Scum/Den). It's just a slightly more shifted focus on abilities rather than relying only on votes & reads that differentiates the two variants in my head (and the reason which I am still hung up on this Den variant).

My reasoning for marking them higher on the suspect list if they exhibit the two patterns described above is that by not interacting / not doing anything in a Mafia game, as long as the information does not flow and is not acted upon, it basically benefits ONLY the informed minority. This game, at its foundation, is tilted towards that principle: "if you are uninformed and don't do anything to change that, you are gonna lose". Entropy is going to get you. It's so basic at its core, I refuse to be "understanding" of players that say they don't "get" that principle. Playing a Mafia game like you are watching a movie with a happy-ending marks you as extremely naive or a likely baddie - either you are delusional or you are actually deceitful because it suits your wincon.

However, this game is cooperative (despite it's paranoid approach to cooperation), so if you have 1-2 players appearing to be active Baddie hunters in a 13 player game, until they are dead and someone else needs to carry the torch further, one can choose not to aggresively hunt for a while. Because as long as there are persons rowing, the boat moves forward. Just be ready to row as if your life depends on it if there's no one at the oars


Thank you so much for your thoughts on this. The part about as long as *someone is trying to solve the game was a different perspective that I haven't heard before and I thought of a question about this actually...

Now if you have 2-3 Goodie players who are actively trying to solve the game, BUT their reads are not the best, but lets say someone else has better reads but isn't playing as game solvy. No my question regarding this is who would the baddies want to NK more? As I understand it, what you suggest for having a few rather than everyone solving the game by scum/baddie hunting means that those players are going to get NKed sooner and others will have to step up to the plate when they are out of the game (is that what you are saying?). Now what happens if a baddie decides to be one of the people who are baddie hunting? It seems like its a funny way of Burden of Proficiency for the a bit. The person playing game solvy dies and then more step up, so if that person does die you eventually lynch them? How does this tie into reads exactly?

Thanks for advice on this guys!!

This post has been edited by QuickTwist: Aug 20 2016, 04:53 PM


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  Posted Aug 20 2016, 09:17 PM
To be quite honest, I'm not particularly good at picking up on someone's intent solely through their posts. I'll usually have to combine it with facts or inference I determine from their actions or the actions of others. A lot of times the views of others that are better at spotting inconsistencies can sway me.

For myself, I always act as if I'm hunting baddies even when I am one. Once or twice this has gotten me in hot water because someone else knew of my true form and called me out on it when I may have otherwise skated for another day or even two. But it would have been inevitable, Mr Anderson. Doing this has also netted me an MVP so I stick with it.


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  Posted Aug 21 2016, 06:02 AM
QUOTE (QuickTwist @ Aug 20 2016, 11:53 PM)
Thank you so much for your thoughts on this. The part about as long as *someone is trying to solve the game was a different perspective that I haven't heard before and I thought of a question about this actually...


QUOTE (QuickTwist @ Aug 20 2016, 11:53 PM)

Now if you have 2-3 Goodie players who are actively trying to solve the game, BUT their reads are not the best, but lets say someone else has better reads but isn't playing as game solvy. No my question regarding this is who would the baddies want to NK more?

The baddies need to choose between active/vocal goodies who cannot be framed as suspects and silent goodies who may have a particularly powerful role. The "doctor" needs to choose the same.
This question is a form of WiFoM - see wiki. Which means there isn't any perfect answer, it's a circular logic conundrum.

QUOTE (QuickTwist @ Aug 20 2016, 11:53 PM)

As I understand it, what you suggest for having a few rather than everyone solving the game by scum/baddie hunting means that those players are going to get NKed sooner and others will have to step up to the plate when they are out of the game (is that what you are saying?). Now what happens if a baddie decides to be one of the people who are baddie hunting? It seems like its a funny way of Burden of Proficiency for the a bit.

That happens a lot actually, and the wolf who dons a sheep's cloak and maintains a good cover without making any logical mistakes has a very high chance of winning, and as Prof. Templeton already said, winning a MVP award with it.
However, that baddie would have to carefully choose which pieces of information to obscure / not attract attention to and be very careful not to analyze things from a wrong perspective i.e. to always analyze from publicly-available information as if he were a goodie. If you can be vocal and still shift focus away from your teammates or bus them without compromising your team's overall chances, then that's a good strategy as a baddie.

QUOTE (QuickTwist @ Aug 20 2016, 11:53 PM)

The person playing game solvy dies and then more step up, so if that person does die you eventually lynch them? How does this tie into reads exactly?

I don't really understand this question.
What I meant was - suppose X and Y are active goodies during D1, D2 and they both get killed at the end of N2, then D3/D4/so on, other goodies, even if they weren't as active during D1 &D2, should try to fill X&Y's shoes and get active and vocal. Imagine X&Y as drivers behind the wheel, after they die, someone else needs to be driving the thing or it's gonna fall off the cliffs.
Now if you see Z&W trying to get active and vocal and you suspect one of being a baddie ... that is also possible.


... A red bird of my desire came and sat upon my shoulder, and I wrote a note and tied it to its leg and sent it off into the west. It said, "I'll be back," and it was signed by me.
... I saw my earlier selves as different people, acquaintances I had outgrown. I wondered how I could ever have been some of them.
... *shrug* Good-bye and hello, as always.

Spoiler for The three laws of the ol' faithful goodie killer

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  Posted Aug 21 2016, 07:19 PM
QUOTE (Prof. Templeton @ Aug 20 2016, 08:17 PM)
To be quite honest, I'm not particularly good at picking up on someone's intent solely through their posts. I'll usually have to combine it with facts or inference I determine from their actions or the actions of others. A lot of times the views of others that are better at spotting inconsistencies can sway me.

For myself, I always act as if I'm hunting baddies even when I am one. Once or twice this has gotten me in hot water because someone else knew of my true form and called me out on it when I may have otherwise skated for another day or even two. But it would have been inevitable, Mr Anderson. Doing this has also netted me an MVP so I stick with it.


I greatly agree with this (your) method. You should always look like you are trying to solve the game even if you are Scum/Baddie. If you only do it as Goodie, then all the times that you don't do this will open you up for being a possible baddie. http://mafiamaniac.org/smile/thumbsup.gif http://mafiamaniac.org/smile/highfive.gif http://mafiamaniac.org/smile/yes.gif

QUOTE (araver @ Aug 21 2016, 05:02 AM)
QUOTE (QuickTwist @ Aug 20 2016, 11:53 PM)
Thank you so much for your thoughts on this. The part about as long as *someone is trying to solve the game was a different perspective that I haven't heard before and I thought of a question about this actually...


QUOTE (QuickTwist @ Aug 20 2016, 11:53 PM)

Now if you have 2-3 Goodie players who are actively trying to solve the game, BUT their reads are not the best, but lets say someone else has better reads but isn't playing as game solvy. No my question regarding this is who would the baddies want to NK more?

The baddies need to choose between active/vocal goodies who cannot be framed as suspects and silent goodies who may have a particularly powerful role. The "doctor" needs to choose the same.
This question is a form of WiFoM - see wiki. Which means there isn't any perfect answer, it's a circular logic conundrum.


Thanks for the explanation. I just ask because I do not know the way things are done here. If I were to ask elsewhere (on a different site/different person) I would likely get an different answer.

QUOTE (araver @ Aug 21 2016, 05:02 AM)
QUOTE (QuickTwist @ Aug 20 2016, 11:53 PM)

As I understand it, what you suggest for having a few rather than everyone solving the game by scum/baddie hunting means that those players are going to get NKed sooner and others will have to step up to the plate when they are out of the game (is that what you are saying?). Now what happens if a baddie decides to be one of the people who are baddie hunting? It seems like its a funny way of Burden of Proficiency for the a bit.

That happens a lot actually, and the wolf who dons a sheep's cloak and maintains a good cover without making any logical mistakes has a very high chance of winning, and as Prof. Templeton already said, winning a MVP award with it.
However, that baddie would have to carefully choose which pieces of information to obscure / not attract attention to and be very careful not to analyze things from a wrong perspective i.e. to always analyze from publicly-available information as if he were a goodie. If you can be vocal and still shift focus away from your teammates or bus them without compromising your team's overall chances, then that's a good strategy as a baddie.


This I understand. AFAICT, the thing you want to do as Scum is misdirect Town so that you get enough myslynches to win the game for your faction. I believe personality traits is also a factor here, however. Lets say you are a baddie and you know who is a Goodie. If you share more than you normally would as goodie then your position as baddie is compromised, even if it might get you some goodie cred short term, people will find out that you know more than you should and that is not a good play as a baddie.

QUOTE (araver @ Aug 21 2016, 05:02 AM)
QUOTE (QuickTwist @ Aug 20 2016, 11:53 PM)

The person playing game solvy dies and then more step up, so if that person does die you eventually lynch them? How does this tie into reads exactly?

I don't really understand this question.
What I meant was - suppose X and Y are active goodies during D1, D2 and they both get killed at the end of N2, then D3/D4/so on, other goodies, even if they weren't as active during D1 &D2, should try to fill X&Y's shoes and get active and vocal. Imagine X&Y as drivers behind the wheel, after they die, someone else needs to be driving the thing or it's gonna fall off the cliffs.
Now if you see Z&W trying to get active and vocal and you suspect one of being a baddie ... that is also possible.


I can see the reason for the confusion. I meant if the goodie is playing game solvy and does *NOT* die. Its kinda like a burden of proficiency thing, which is why I asked about reads.


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