Standard Roles for Newbie Games?

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Should all Newbie Games use standard role PMs?

Yes
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73%
No
19
27%
 
Total votes : 71

Mr Stoofer
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Post Post #0  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 4:17 am

Mr Flay has written a set of Role PMs for Newbie Games which I now use for all such games I mod. In light of recent discussions, how about making them (or something like them) compulsory?

:edit: the versions below have been amended from Mr Flay's versions in light of the discussion in this thread.

"Approved" Role PMs

The Mod wrote:You are Mafia, along with your partner _________. Your goal is to eliminate the pro-town players so that only you remain; you win if this happens. During the Day, try to blend in with the rest of the players, and get someone lynched (if that someone is not your partner or yourself, that will make things much easier). You may talk with your partner when it is not Day, and send me a choice via PM of who you wish to kill.

Note: You may talk with your partner privately during confirmations to plan strategy, but no kills will happen until Night One.
The Mod wrote:You are the Doctor, and you can protect people from harm. Each Night, you may send me a choice via PM of who to protect; if they come under attack by the Mafia, they will live. You win if the scum are eliminated, so choose wisely at Night, and try to lynch correctly during the Day.

Note: Doctors are 100% effective in Newbie Games (the person they protect will never die on the night they are protected). You may not protect yourself.
The Mod wrote:You are the Cop, and you can tell good from bad. Each Night, you may send a player's name to me; I will let you know if your investigation shows that they are Mafia or Town. You win if the scum are eliminated, so choose wisely at Night, and lynch well during the Day.

Note: Cops always get a correct result in Newbie Games (no sanity issues). You cannot investigate yourself.
The Mod wrote:You are a Townie, and you've got no special powers at Night. No investigations, no protection, no gun to shoot people. Your only powers are the ability to post, vote, and think. Help lynch Mafia during the Day, and you will win the game, along with the rest of the Town.
Last edited by Mr Stoofer on Thu Apr 12, 2007 10:01 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Post Post #1  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 6:05 am

They're newbie games. For educational purposes. There's no compelling reason for them not to use standard PMs other than to appease ADD-addled ICs. Who would be better off on the sidelines anyway.
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Post Post #2  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 6:21 am

I approve... 'nuff said.
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Mr Stoofer
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Post Post #3  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 6:48 am

MrBuddyLee wrote:They're newbie games. For educational purposes. There's no compelling reason for them not to use standard PMs other than to appease ADD-addled ICs. Who would be better off on the sidelines anyway.

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mith
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Post Post #4  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 6:49 am

There's probably some wording changes I would make (I'll think on it), but obviously I approve of the idea.

Mr. Flay
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Post Post #5  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 7:47 am

Whoa, cool. :oops: Is that my most recent iteration (328), Stoof? I think I've worked out most of the bugs by then...

I agree with mith that some of the wording is still shaky - I'm especially displeased with "But, you do have a vote, which is quite powerful (though no more powerful than anyone else's vote).", but it's been in my Townie PM forever. MeMe should chime in here too, if possible, as she's run twice as many newbies as I have.

Also, is it worth wikilinking the role names, the word Quack, etc, or is that just confusing?
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Post Post #6  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 8:20 am

I'd go with Mafia over Scum, personally.
Scumchat is awesome. Yarr!

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Post Post #7  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 8:28 am

Is bringing up insane/ineffective variants needed in the PM?

I could see having a link to those variations in the wiki, so long as the Newbie rules wiki page (that seems top be brewing in another thread) clearly states that in a Newbie, docs and cops are 100% effective.

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Post Post #8  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 9:15 am

gorckat wrote:Is bringing up insane/ineffective variants needed in the PM?

I could see having a link to those variations in the wiki, so long as the Newbie rules wiki page (that seems top be brewing in another thread) clearly states that in a Newbie, docs and cops are 100% effective.
I would say that it's a good diea to leave the clauses in. Many of the newbies we get are completely raw, but a significant percentage also come from other forums, where they've had low levels of experience with ineffective Cops/Docs. And sadly, not everybody reads the wiki (or even the first post of the Newbie Queue) before jumping into their first game... I've seen questions about sanity/effectiveness in the past, so I think it's probably a good call to leave them there.
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Post Post #9  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 9:24 am

I added those clauses because a) I was getting a lot of Docs who wanted to protect themselves, and b) Cops in Newbies should know that they are sane/reliable, but not try to extrapolate that to every other game they play.

I agree with CES' change from Scum to Mafia. That's my default because I tend to make (non-newbie) games with multiple factions, and the townie PM thus references Scum by default.
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Post Post #10  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 9:25 am

I can agree [response to Glork] but I find the wording unclear. I don't think it's necessary to introduce the term "quack" or even "sanity." And I don't think it's obvious what it means that a cop is "100% effective."

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Post Post #11  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 9:27 am

How about "guaranteed to find whether or not your target is a member of the Mafia"? Somewhat lengthy, but much more clear, I think.

[edit] And "guaranteed to protect your target from the Mafia's kill" for the doc... [/edit]
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Post Post #12  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 9:57 am

First post edited in light of the above. I agree with changing "scum" to "Mafia", I've made the Cop role clearer, I've taken out the reference to "quacks", and I've clarified the Doc's "effectiveness".

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Post Post #13  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 9:59 am

Another question is whether it's standard or not for mods to allow NG Mafia to talk during confirmations. Thanks for the updates Stoofer.
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Mr Stoofer
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Post Post #14  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:00 am

For Townies, how about: "Your only weapon is your vote" instead of "But, you do have a vote, which is quite powerful (though no more powerful than anyone else's vote)"?

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Post Post #15  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:03 am

Why not just do the following:

  • Give each game the same title
  • Give each day the same deadline
  • Give each game the same set-up
  • Give all the players a quota of posts they cannot surpass and must meet
  • Tell players what they should post about and in what order
  • Tell players who they should lynch
  • Tell players what their night-choices should be


If you're striving towards absolute conformity, you might as well think big. We can make it so every Newbie game is exactly the same! Oh boy, doesn't that sound exciting!
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Post Post #16  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:07 am

Hi PJ, that's Not Very Helpful. They've already got the same setup and flavor (or should); titles are irrelevant, and the rest is gameplay, which mods shouldn't be interfering with.

If you see anything in what we're trying to do that DOES impact gameplay, please let us know. Personally, I'd like to see a sitewide discussion on deadlines, as i think we sometimes let games linger on too much, but that's for another thread...

Stoofer, I like that change too. "(if that someone is not your partner or yourself, that will make things much easier)" is probably an unnecessary clause, but I find many people have NEVER been scum before...
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Post Post #17  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:15 am

Basically, I prolly won't be modding any more newbie game if the role PMs are going to be standardized. I'm pretty sure I know how to write a role PM after being here for a year and a half, and having me copy-paste something somebody else did is not very appealing.

I like being able to scroll down the newbie games, read each mod's rules and roles, and see some of the mod's personality shine through - for example, MeMe's games always have the characteristic "if you don't like it, do something about it" attitude coming with them, and this is apparent from both her roles, rules, and implementation of the game. I think doing this will quickly lead towards other conformities - such as the same introductory post for each game, the same exact rule-set for each game, the same explanation of the set-up for each game, the same vote count structure for each game, the same deadline implementation in each game, and so on and so forth. I'm not a big fan of things which are completely cookie-cutter, and I can tell that's where this is headed.

If you are going to enforce something like this at all, I would rather hope you would instead have a list of requirements which must be mentioned in a PM, but allow it to be the mod's discretion for what order and wording is to be chosen, or some such thing.

Edit: This is like having a strict dress code on mafia scum, and I'm not even seeing why it is necessary. We're already just finishing the path of removing all flavor from all newbie games, and now we're already jumping into standardized role PMs. I am weary of what types of things will come next. I have always prided this site for it's creativity, and it appears as if we are headed towards the exact opposite direction as of late.
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Post Post #18  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:34 am

Glork wrote:I approve... 'nuff said.


You have strayed from the acceptable sentence structures which I can recognize. ERROR ERROR.

Gorckat wrote:Is bringing up insane/ineffective variants needed in the PM?


I'm afraid I can't let you do that, Dave.

Mr Stoofer wrote:First post edited in light of the above. I agree with changing "scum" to "Mafia", I've made the Cop role clearer, I've taken out the reference to "quacks", and I've clarified the Doc's "effectiveness".


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Post Post #19  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 11:15 am

Gives PJ a juice bottle. That said, I do see where he's coming from.

For the townie PM, I generally include a phrase of the form "Your only powers are the ability to post, vote, and think." I think that's a useful version, since I want townies to realize that they can have an influence on the game.
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Post Post #20  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 11:51 am

My own personal objection would be that standardized roles don't quite leave room for the least bit of flavour. I'm in favor of keeping newbie games very similar in set up and I'm in favor of keeping them as "clean" as possible, but they are still meant to be fun as well and if little things like adding a town name can increase that fun somewhat by adding some background, I don't see how that can hurt.

I had played some mafia games on another site before going here but still the newbie games were a good way of getting to know the site and learn from players BUT if I wouldn't have found them enjoyable, I wouldn't have stayed to hang around, probably. Mafia is not a role playing game really, but you can't strip newbie games from all flavour. (Because I assume standardized role PMs also leave little room for different "stories").
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Post Post #21  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 12:00 pm

pj, I will keep your objection here in mind. It is not my intention to make everything on the site standardized, or to have too many rules, or anything along those lines. And if anyone ever feels I am going too far with something like this, feel free to shout at me whether by PM or in public.

I don't agree with you here, though. We're talking about Newbie games, which are for the benefit of the new players.

I have no doubts that you can run a game with your own version of the rules and roles and flavor and so on and not have any problems, but I also wouldn't have expected some other very experienced mods to get so carried away with flavor that it started affecting gameplay. And that's the whole point. I think it's gotten so ingrained into the community that "Mod is God" that mods have sometimes forgotten that their purpose is to run the game, not to entertain themselves.

I've seen too many cases of careless wording from mods, or seemingly minor changes to the rules that just aren't thought through at all, and we need to avoid that in the Newbie games.

That said, I think your suggestion of leaving the order and wording up to the mod is probably a fine one, though I do think we should have a good standard for reference, and some documentation (whether just in these discussion threads or written up somewhere on the wiki) so that everyone understands the intent of the rule/requirement.

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Post Post #22  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 12:12 pm

I agree mith. Perhaps the "rule" should be: Here are some Role PMs that have been approved by mith and a number of other experienced Mods. You can use your own role PMs, provided that they contain, in substance, the information in these versions, no more or less.

Also, I've incorporated Thok's suggestion.

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Post Post #23  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 12:42 pm

mith wrote:That said, I think your suggestion of leaving the order and wording up to the mod is probably a fine one, though I do think we should have a good standard for reference, and some documentation (whether just in these discussion threads or written up somewhere on the wiki) so that everyone understands the intent of the rule/requirement.


Mr Stoofer wrote:I agree mith. Perhaps the "rule" should be: Here are some Role PMs that have been approved by mith and a number of other experienced Mods. You can use your own role PMs, provided that they contain, in substance, the information in these versions, no more or less.


i like the idea of having suggested role PMs. not necesarrilly standard ones. we already use C9, so all the roles themselves are standard. but i think that the mods can write their own PMs.

i really hope that the standardization does not carry over to much to everything else on this site, because that would just not be fun.
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Post Post #24  (ISO)  » Wed Apr 11, 2007 12:55 pm

If we're doing templates, I prefer the idea of a checklist. Just say, "Townie PMs must contain:" and let mods word it as they wish. Checklist items would also include negative statements (eg. "No title for the role other than Townie").

It's more formatting than anything else, however. I completely agree that standardizing the content of roles is necessary for Newbie games.
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