Hypocop

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Cogito Ergo Scum
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Post Post #0  (ISO)  » Sat Jan 19, 2008 7:22 pm

This is a strategy I saw on MtgS a time ago, and I wonder if it's a viable one.

Every player reveals an alignment result on another player, as if they had investigated that player.

Pros I can think of:
- The real cop can publicly give his results without being revealed.
- If a mafioso would want to claim cop later on, he might be caught lying.

Cons I can think of:
- Mafia can narrow down the number of possible cops because of the results given in-thread.
- A roleblocked cop will have to give a result, and might accidentally give false information that will be seen as truth after the cop's death.

What do you think? In what type of game would this be viable, if at all? And would this be possible for other roles as well?

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Post Post #1  (ISO)  » Sat Jan 19, 2008 7:41 pm

There was a game where this was used here, as well, I believe. It was something like sanity mafia, and it ended up working quite well.
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Post Post #2  (ISO)  » Sat Jan 19, 2008 8:50 pm

Shanba wrote:There was a game where this was used here, as well, I believe. It was something like sanity mafia, and it ended up working quite well.


It was used there, and also a variant was used in Covert Ops (hypo-searching mason).
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Post Post #3  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 7:35 am

This is not too bad at all.

I might promote this in a game, it seems to have the right analysis and balance to be "mafia".
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Post Post #4  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 7:56 am

I think it would be pretty viable in open setups and newb games, but it might be a little tricky in closed games.
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Post Post #5  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 10:01 am

Not at all CES, the actual analysis of it doesn't happen until later.

The current analysis would be pitiful (umm..X is a cop because thats a likely inv!) its all about when they're revealed.
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Post Post #6  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 4:04 pm

Eh...it can be useful in certain unusual setups. I think in most mafia games, though, it just wastes a lot of time, and it'd probably be safer for a normal cop just breadcrumb rather then do something like this.

Franky, it wouldn't be all that hard for the scum to figure out who the cop was if everyone was doing this. The town is much better off with standard cop breadcrumbs instead, if the cop really feels the need to do that.

That being said, in some wierd games (games with varying sanity, or like the hypo-searching mason Thok mentioned), it can be a viable stratagy.
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Post Post #7  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 4:07 pm

Shanba wrote:There was a game where this was used here, as well, I believe. It was something like sanity mafia, and it ended up working quite well.
Not really. TDA had to say he hadn't submitted a result one night, making it obvious that he was a cop.

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Post Post #8  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 5:35 pm

as scum, this tazctic would mostly just make it easier for me to figure out who to nk. an open game wth no roleblockers ould probably be th best use of the tactic. it doesn't surprise me in the least that a community of magic players generated this tactic. it fails.

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Post Post #9  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 7:31 pm

I think hypocop would be good if it was done in a setup where number of cops would not be easily given away by the number of players. Also useful in a setup that lacks mafia role blockers. Bad Idea Mafia would work with this.
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Post Post #10  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 8:06 pm

Hypocop does work if every player posts innocent or guilty results on another player at the beginning of each day. This would in no way influence anything during the day. If, however, the real cop is lynched or NK'd, you could see what he did. He would not have to claim until LYLO, so if he died, his information would remain. I am suggesting this in every game I play in, and I will probably vote people who oppose this, because this is clearly a pro-town move.
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Post Post #11  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 11:35 pm

kel -- you are wrong. This tactic helps the mafia quickly narrow down the list of players who might be the cop. It is not pro-town.

If you are a cop, and you have a guilty on a player, finger that player in a way that will make sense to the other town players after you die. That is all you have to do.

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Post Post #12  (ISO)  » Sun Jan 20, 2008 11:52 pm

I agree with Adel.

If everyone posts guilty or innocent on someone, then the scum will right off the bat rule know that something like half the players in the game are not cops. Then you can narrow it down farther, because the people who are cops will obveously tend to think through their choice of targets much more carefully then those who are not cops. The odds are very high that hypocop will just let the scum figure out who the cop is. In some situations, it's actually worse then a day 1 cop claim would be, because at least in a day 1 cop claim there might be a doc who can protect the cop; in hypocop, the scum can figure out who the cop is, and the doc really can't, making it basically the worst of both worlds.
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Post Post #13  (ISO)  » Mon Jan 21, 2008 2:57 am

The mafia would need to find some balance between killing off the people who claimed correct results (hoping to hit the cop) and killing off people with incorrect results (to throw the town off).

It would be pretty obvious if you started by killing three people with guilty results on you.

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Post Post #14  (ISO)  » Mon Jan 21, 2008 4:03 am

Nah. Just do kill the three going against you as suspected cops. It shouldn't be hard to wifom your way out of something as flimsy as that.

EDIT:- I agree with Yos that the biggest weakness with this is the amount of people who won't care about fabricating plausible results. If you put the time in, you could shave off half the town from cop consideration based on that alone.

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Post Post #15  (ISO)  » Mon Jan 21, 2008 6:19 am

You can very easily make it harder for scum to identify who the cop is by having the majority of townies claim innocent results. Of course, co-ordinating this is difficult.

The problem with breadcrumbing is a lack of certainty. Is the cop saying x is town because he thinks so or because he investigated him? If the cop makes it too obvious, then the scum may pick up on it anyway - defeating the point of the breadcrumbing over hypocopping.

Iunno. I think it has applications.
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Post Post #16  (ISO)  » Mon Jan 21, 2008 8:02 am

Primate wrote:Nah. Just do kill the three going against you as suspected cops. It shouldn't be hard to wifom your way out of something as flimsy as that.


Well it's a lot harder now you gave it away in an MD thread. ;)

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Post Post #17  (ISO)  » Mon Jan 21, 2008 11:25 am

Mole: Well, if people start taking that tell very seriously ("X claimed a guilty on Y and was then killed! Y must be scum!") then, if you think that either person A or person B is the cop, just kill off someone who claimed a guilty on person A, and let the town bandwagon person A because of it until person A has to claim. ;) There's more then one way to skin a cat.
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Post Post #18  (ISO)  » Mon Jan 21, 2008 12:21 pm

There are a number of problems with strategies like this. Firstly, without full town buy-in, you can reveal quite a lot about who is and isn't the cop before you even start looking at claimed results (eg, cops will be acutely aware of the hypocop strategy, which means if say the plan is to reveal "cop results" on your first post each day, not doing so is a less-invested tell, i.e. a non-cop tell). Obviously, the more people talk about the cop, the easier it is to find a cop. There are other tells as well - for example, what if you just ask people for a target and alignment, but the cop gets rolename details? Or was roleblocked? Or there's a watcher - should he factor in his findings to the hypo-cop plan or not?

Secondly, it requires town buy-in. People only have a certain amount of investment in a game, and focusing on one plan takes energy away from others. The question isn't just "is this plan good or not?", but also "is this plan better than other plans which take a similar amount of work?".

Thirdly, it places excessive attention and focus on the cop. Put this much effort into a single plan, and people will try to get value from it - which in turn means overvaluing the cop, which is already a big problem in setup-following.

These plans almost always collapse under the weight of their own ambition - by trying to break only a very tiny aspect of the game, you end up gaining little but spending a great deal of energy. Very rarely a good idea.
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Post Post #19  (ISO)  » Tue Jan 22, 2008 11:13 pm

The plan doesn't hurt the cop. 50% choose innocent, 50% choose guilty. With full town buy-in, you get the cop's results nice and easy in a quite recordable manner. The cop will be revealed when he dies anyway. In short, it can't hurt. The mafia won't know whether the person who got a guilty on them was a cop or non-cop, if there was a guilty on that person.
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Post Post #20  (ISO)  » Tue Jan 22, 2008 11:21 pm

and if a paerson posts that they got a guilty on a person the mafia knows is not scum, that person is not the cop. If a person posts that they got an innocent on a mafia player, that person is not the cop. Hypocop greatly assists the scum's process-of-elimination (and I don't mean by nk's) in determining who the cop is.

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Post Post #21  (ISO)  » Tue Jan 22, 2008 11:39 pm

Adel wrote:and if a paerson posts that they got a guilty on a person the mafia knows is not scum, that person is not the cop. If a person posts that they got an innocent on a mafia player, that person is not the cop. Hypocop greatly assists the scum's process-of-elimination (and I don't mean by nk's) in determining who the cop is.


I see.


I guess this is just doomed to failure then.
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