War, Peace and Reward
by, 19th August 2011 at 10:57 PM (323 Views)
Before Bulbagarden needed a bunker to shield us from the chaos of the rest of the site, there was Fun and Games. It was a quaint little village surrounded by pedantic one liners and amusingly mild games. It was a good break from the chaotic action of the Bulbaverse. But then I noticed another breed of game, one that was fairly more rigid around the edges.
These.. didn't belong in Fun and Games, or did they? Are these roleplaying games? I asked myself.
No, not quite.
But I let them be and cooperated with the users that ran these fascinating mini events. They were short punchy games that involved a closed group of people. I'm always a fan of open games, but little did I realize at the time that these were mafia games. I didn't understand the fuss over groups of users 'killing' each other off nor did I understand why they were closed off. Well that was before I decided to take the opportunity to figure it out.
In the late fall of 2010, @Fwee~ hosted her own mafia, Pokemafia. Mafia was something that only popped up once every 6 months or so, they came and went quietly without so much as a peep from the section. With this new opportunity to take mafia for a spin I figured I may as well give it a shot. I had plenty of time on my hands then and decided to take the plunge into something new.
The game opened - I was granted a role, a persona; my identity. Lo and behold I get the cute and innocent Wigglytuff. Hmm, interesting, am I going to need to roleplay this or something? Boy I was ignorant, no, there's no roleplay. I mean unless you want to, but that's not something that would be to easy to do as a pokemon. Glancing at what I was given, it turns out it was only a cover for my true identity. I was a cold hard killer for the mafia.
With my license to kill, I was granted a team of mobsters. There were 3 of us total, but we had it in for the rest of the town. I didn't know much about what I was doing at the time, but luckily @Pidge was up on his mafia knowledge and knew the drill. I followed his lead, and laid low. The game moved rather slowly, but the intensity of the voting had me enthralled. Intentional deceit is tricky and makes you feel guilty, but it's an absolutely necessary action in performing the duties of a mafioso. Well to get you through some of the game.
Just down the road from Fwee's Pokemafia, a perfect storm was brewing that would transform this section of Bulbagarden from a sleepy hallow into a terrifying beast. Midway through Fwee's Pokemafia @Mijzelffan was just beginning his mafia project, BMGfMafia. Mizzle as we [see @$aturnYoshi] affectionately refer to him, was playing Fwee's game concurrently and let me in on this. I loved the way Mizzle carried Fwee's game, he made it more interesting than the other people participating and I would love to see what he could do with a mafia game in his control.
So in October of 2010, Mizzle turned Bulbagarden into a Mobster's paradise. The game was alien to many, but the allure of discovering roles framed after members of the site was too good to pass up. Everyone was curious to see if they made it in. I was in on that boat too. Everyone wanted a piece of the action.
On the other side of the street, Fwee's game, as is a sad fate of many a mafia game, was loosing business, not to Mizzle's game, but to lack of activity. People were dropping out and she herself was updating less.
So naturally I migrated over to Mizzle's game full time.
Now versed in the mechanics a bit better and ready to hit the ground running, I was pumped at starting this mafia game and playing it right. I opened my role PM and caught a glimpse of a familiar face. Me. To quote @hurristat at a particularly engaging moment, "Oh ho ho." This was awesome.
Now I thought for a second, "Now did Mizzle just give us 'ourselves' or are we supposed to be different people and I just happened to get myself."
It was the latter.
So to start the game, I did something that would have taken anyone off guard. I acted myself. I had the perfect storm in our favor, nearly 90% of the people were new at the game, many people saw me as 'me' instead of the game me, and we organized our mafia team rapidly.
My early mission: to take out the voice of reason, or rather the experienced members of the group which were then Badal and Fwee.
Our first phase was random. In many communities, the first voting phase always seems to happen in waves. Sometimes everyone will be serious and vote for a single person. Another time everyone will decide not to vote. Since this was our first one, nobody knew what to do so we acted all crazy. But we eventually convinced the town that Badal and Fwee sounded pretty crazy and got them lynched early on.
Unfortunately, I love to talk behind the scenes. I was sending PMs to the group every 10 minutes it seemed like. In fact, Mizzle's poor inbox was bursting at the seams and I forgot because of my mod status, he would continue to receive messages regardless if his inbox were full or not.
Whoops >> Sorry about that Mizzle.
He was right to blow up at me the next day, er night. He was alarmed at how much talking a mafia could do during a day phase, and introduced us to Quicktopic for the first time. Apparently our group was defying all standard convention of mafia elsewhere. But since we were all mostly new, we were forging our own path, our own mafia style. Ours was either full force or passive aggressive.
We were cunning. We had master plans. We thought we had this in the bag.
We didn't count on Gible. aka @Hellion.
Our arguments were legendary. Going in, I never guessed I would have to defend myself as hard as I did against this guy. His actions were quiet to start, but he gained confidence behind his stance as we moved along. Behind the scenes I would be constantly speaking with @lizzxxk, @Sarcastically Insane, @Aladar and @Keldora Dragon. Little did I know that all our comments were being fed straight to our rival.
In the first nights in our plans against ousting Badal and Fwee, Hellion was only making small waves and looking for trouble. We thought we could put him on the chopping block soon so we mentioned that. His ability let him see whatever messages we made about him. That little tidbit gave him ammo to use against us in the thread the next day.
Instead I kept cool and played it off the accusations very nonchalantly. Only he and I understood the dance, the less experienced members were still trying to make light of our conversation. We were both armed with an aggressive, but neutral tone, we were natural at it which plays a strong advantage if you're trying to hide a malicious role.
Behind the scenes I was complimenting his through insight and his perceptive thoughts. Hellion certainly was. Yes, he was aided by his role, though the role only gave him parts of dialouge.
It's funny because this fed into a vicious cycle. The more and more Hellion was working to take us down, the more and more we talked about figuring out how to take him out. This meant Mizzle had to spend extra time clipping away our massive PM walls just to give Hellion his info. XD I remember sending pages of detailed plans that must have been a nightmare for Mizzle. I'm really sorry about that, in recent games I've certainly taken up brevity.
In another way, this challenge was almost like facing off against myself. I could only think of Mirror Link in the Water Temple, trading off blow for blow. We were evenly matched and many of our comments were sound, even if by default I was supplying the majority of the BS. It helped to add truthful statements, something Hellion also understands very well.
In those heated moments we developed an intense, but respectful rivalry in our passion for the game. From that moment, I reveled in debates and enjoyed that spirited conversation in deconstructing the opposing side, dissecting their actions and hidden meanings. This is the thrill of mafia.
Hellion played a clever gambit by threatening he would die because he felt confident we were mafia from our now lucid discussion on him. We played into that by keeping him alive on purpose, however, that was his goal all along.
My goal was to turn this into lunacy which succeeded. Fortunately we took him out the next turn and discovered he was none other than Serebii which we thought worked to our advantage.
That was actually quite the twist for myself since this was the first time I encountered an independent role. Since it wasn't town we tried to frame his role as something more negative than it sounded.
But Hellion was good, and our players were finally catching on to what he meant by 'reading our PMs.' By the next phase, we tried to somehow mislead that this info was tainted and this nearly came out to a draw sparing myself, but with the resurgence of Badal a moving force as the new cop in the game, he sniffed us out and got the ball rolling in favor of the town.
Yes, I was knocked out, it was nearly a draw, but to give our team the advantage, I let them vote me. But Badal was also up on his game and got the town to pick us off one by one after we had such a good streak without losing a single member (Hellion was our tipping point). Fortunately Sarcastically Insane convinced the then naive town to turn against the most helpful cop they've had yet. If most people weren't new, it's likely that SI would have lost the game then, but he kept at it and finished it off for a win for all of us.
That was a fun game, and I'll never forget it.
Late that winter, Mizzle launched a sequel to his now super popular BMGf mafia and @Ryuutakeshi and I launched right into our own mafia projects, Falconwing and Warriors. With the games being such a hit, it quickly culminated enough interest to create our own board and thus
the Power Puff Girls were bornthe War Room was born.
And it's been almost a year since Mizzle released the game that quite arguably started it all. Without it, we wouldn't have such a pool of dedicated and talented users.
Mafia games encourage a lot of talents, among them communicative and leadership talents that have actually aided in our decisions for mod candidates. The team building, strategizing and decision making processes churn within the game and it's easy to recognize who carries the talent and who falls to the wayside.
We realize there are talents of all sizes and we can't be everywhere at once. That's why we want to open the floor to everyone and have you all take the opportunity to recognize who you think deserve recognition for their in game services.
Mafia can be a hard game, and it certainly requires deep thought, perseverance and dedication. We want to recognize these talents for all.
On behalf of the War Room Staff
and Ryuu, who put a lot of effort into starting this, and Hellion who put a lot of effort into finishing.
This week we welcome you to the first War Room Awards.
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