The 'Shroom Mafia 4 - Lounge Thread

Lee Chaolan

Oh, excellent!
So first up I’d like to apologise for the whole “confirmed inno” thing. While the initial issue was the result of an oversight on the part of the hosts, the way that I acted to quickly show the exploit in the system was selfish and ultimately hurt the game for everyone involved. I realise now that I should have just approached the hosts sooner and let them deal with the situation without taking it into my own hands just to prove a point, and so for that I want to say sorry to everyone playing and especially to the hosts for not trusting them to resolve things in their own game.

I made some assumptions about how the game worked, decided that the damage was already done and that my actions wouldn’t of really made a difference, however in hindsight I can see that this is the opposite of the truth. If I had just contacted the hosts about it first, they would have had all the info on hand to make a better decision and this wouldn’t have been as big of a deal as it was. The morale of the story here is that if the hosts make a mistake, let them know and let them decide how to resolve it, don’t take things into your own hands. Regardless of whether or not you think you know better, ultimately it’s their game and you need to respect that. I realise that better now and hope that this is something that everyone can also learn from instead of repeating my mistake.




On another note, for feedback regarding the quest system, I thought it was a fun, if mostly superfluous, way to tie in the theme of the game to a game mechanic. It added a bit of flavour without majorly impacting the mechanics of mafia, and the prospect of having role powers get upgraded was exciting and motivating enough to do every quest. I think that this is probably the right balance of freeform actions being combined with mafia without changing so much that it becomes a different game, and I even think it could possibly be pushed a little more to allow these actions to be a bit more creative in the future.

However while it was a good idea on paper, the implementation had a few issues. It was never really made clear just exactly how integral the quest actions were to the game, resulting in a ton of ultimately pointless discussion of quest actions and questions on how they worked. Pretty much everything that TPG asked on Day 2 is something that should have already been clear from the beginning, and there wasn’t enough explanation in either the game thread or ‘shroom article to stop these kinds of questions, which were going to be inevitable considering that it was a completely new mechanic. There were also a few issues with the rules which I honestly think should have been relatively obvious and would have been resolved with some more careful planning.

Sorry if this sounds a bit too harsh or something, I’m in critical-thinking game review mode at the moment haha. While there were a few issues that came up during the game, I think that the hosts did a fantastic job of fixing things as the game progressed and I can’t find any fault in the way that they handled things.

TLDR, sorry for not resolving an issue with the hosts when I should of and instead hurting the game, I think it was a well designed, even if we had a few bumps on the way, and that the hosts did a good job dealing with anything that came up. Thanks for hosting!
 

Nathan Fielder

Celestial Guide
Chat Operator
Retired Forum Mod
Retired Wiki Staff
Former 'Shroom Staff
I don't really have much of an insight on how locations/quests worked seeing as being an independent that part of the game was never relevant to me. I guess that in itself is a bit weird but whatever. The presentation of quests is great but how they worked in practice looked to be a bit messy (and maybe a bit OP that mafia can collab on theirs) but I'm not really the best person to comment on that. Teams in roles are kind of pointless and there's not really any reason why mafia/independents shouldn't have them too.

I had fun recruiting people though, special thanks to the mafia for recruiting the last member for me. We make a pretty great team!!


~ Theam Yorke
 

Polly

Ace Parrot
Awards Committee
MarioWiki
Reverse Input
ive already said some of this elsewhere, but just for the sake of including it here, just gonna leave a few "brief" feedback points (note from future me: i evidently wrote this sentence before the rest of the post :dry:)

first off, just want to say thanks to the hosts for putting together this game! as a fellow host i understand that sometimes it can feel like all the post-game feedback is always about things to fix, so i do want to recognise the effort that was put in here, what with having to put together what's essentially 2 roles for each player, plus all the flavour for the quest actions, all the rolecards, etc etc. so big kudos for being able to pull all that together. and i'd also like to commend you all for being able to keep the game going properly throughout its whole run, with absolutely no delays and, given how much you had to juggle, quite timely results

that being said, i do have a few points of feedback, mostly relating to the gimmicks that were unique to this game. i dont really have a good segue to move into this, soooo im just gonna go at it with bullet points:

quests: alright, yeah, so this is probably the big one, and the other points are really just sub-points to this one... from what i understand, this feature is actually the result of initial planning having a free-form action system, which was then watered down for simplicity into what it is now, and... yeah, it unfortunately kind of shows. now, let me make it clear, i 100% think the decision to not include complicated freeform actions was the right one, but unfortunately it seems like the replacement system has a few issues with the way it ended up being implemented.
first off, from my experience as an innocent, i felt like the quests didn't always fit the amount of points they gave. in particular, i decided early on that there wasnt really a point doing the "hard" quest because, due to it taking 2 nights, it averages out to giving the same amount of points as doing 2 easy quests, so you might as well just do those so you get the points instantly. this means that the only "difficult" ones are the ones which require you to be somewhere at the same time as someone else/while no one else is there, and while those are alright, apparently some of the systems in place made that a lot harder than it should have been. i havent taken time to cross check everything, but here's one good example: one of my "medium" quests was to visit pipe plaza with at least one other person present. the night i considered doing that quest, meta knight made a post saying he was going to go there and he needed to have no one else present, so i figured i would be polite and leave him alone. now, at the end of the game, i find out we were both on the same team, meaning that two people who should be working together to get our goals done have strictly contradictory quests which we specifically cant collaborate on. now, if this was done as a balancing mechanic to stop us from getting stuff done too quickly, then i guess thats fair, but given the sheer number of quests that the mafia had (more on that in a second), i think doing stuff like that feels like its putting more restrictions on town just because you're scared we'll get done too soon despite the fact that we can't actually coordinate with each other and only have like 2 people in our teams.
the other major example of mechanics preventing quests from not working properly is that, apparently, we weren't allowed to visit places on the map that weren't in our quest lists??? this is honestly really baffling to me, and the only reason i can think of to make this desicion is that you want to cut corners on how much you're writing so you have less work to do as a host and while i can understand that mentality on paper, if you really dont want to put effort into writing night actions for players visiting locations based on what they actually want to do instead of a predetermined list, then maybe you should just rethink whether or not you want to use locations as a mechanic at all?? and also think about the way you present it? like, not only does this prevent legitimate strategy opportunities that the innocents sorely need (e.g. what happened with Shoey trying to help FWD, a fellow innocent, to get his quests done) and make innocents who have done their quests basically dead weight, but it really just makes so much of the framing and communication behind the mechanic feel pointless at best, and misleading at worst. like, sure, the npcs would help with quests if no one else was there, but did you actually tell anyone that? and furthermore, doesnt that defeat the whole purpose of a collaborative quest action in the first place, since you're no longer coordinating with the (unbenownst to the player, shockingly limited amount of) people who are visiting locations? and also, the fact that you put a whole map (which, while i understand the desire to make it based off of shroom killing game, is honestly confusing to read given the enormous amount of dead space it has, having 5 floors for maybe 2 floors worth of content) there when we cant actually pick and choose where to go just feels, again, a little misleading. ultimately, as an innocent, my personal experience with the quest system was just that it ended up being a glorified way of going "give me 2 points please" that was full of flavour that was nice, but not really substantive or useful
and that's without even getting into the mafia side of things! since i wasnt on the team, i dont have a lot to say here (maybe one of them can give some insight), but despite them needing a little more than double the points of any other team, i still think the system was waaaaaaaay more to their favour than ours. i'll keep it short but:
-5 people on a single team, who can communicate in private, is always going to fill out their actions faster than 2 people who have no way to coordinate
-also since they're all the same team, this means all their upgrades unlock at once, which essentially doubles the entire opposing factions power level all at once, which kinda sucks for town (even if you dont want to mix innos/mafia, splitting them into smaller teams would at least help mitigate this issue somewhat)
-they seem to be the only team whose quest actions are actually more useful than "give me points", having sabotages (something that i think most of us were completely unaware was even a thing?) and the blackout night as part of their quest actions. this one feels like a double-whammy: firstly, they had powers that we were unaware of that allowed them to screw over our quest actions, further slowing down what's already a slow pace while being unable to even use this info for scum hunting purposes because we just dont know its something we can sus, and then it turns out this is in ADDITION to their regular roles. sabotuer should have been a role action that can be done to 1 location per phase, not multiple quest actions that can be performed simultaneously, and the same goes to blackout night. honestly, the fact that blackout night was EASIER and MORE BENEFICIAL to get done than my "hard" action that does basically nothing is a little ridiculous
-im aware that the innocents had at least one quest that had a similar result but like... why would you do that? not only does it rely on ONE sole individual compared to the FIVE that were able to do it for mafia, but it has a smaller area of effect and still blocks out innocents rather than the mafia one thats specifically everyone except the mafia, so unless all the mafia specifically had quests everywhere except the 2nd floor, i dont really see this as beneficial to town

anyway i realise thats a lot of words and it probably sounds like im being super negative, especially since i havent really suggested many improvements as of yet. and, well, the reason for that is that the feedback i'd give would depend on what you actually want a "quest" system to be, since right now i feel like it could go either way, depending on whether you want to focus primarily on the "points" aspect or if you want to put more stock in the "locations" aspect. like, all the above is just speaking from the experience of this game specifically, and i realise that its the first time youve done something specifically like this, so please take it all with the intention that im just pointing out things to be worked on for the future, not me saying that its bad and will always be bad, so i hope you dont feel like this is all attacking lol

role upgrades: this actually isn't a new concept, since its been a mainstay of awards mafia, along with the associated locations system, so i guess there's more frame of reference to work from if people want to do this in the future just in terms of what role upgrades can look like (putting aside the method of how they're actually unlocked). that being said, i feel a little mixed on the way they were in this game. i think theres a lot of good (and a couple of bad) roles in play, but i think im mostly a little baffled by how they're paired together? i havent really looked in detail but some examples that stick out to me are having watcher as an upgrade for tracker instead of being its own role, and gravedigger being a "weak" role to compensate for an upgrade that is supposedly stronger than other roles but honestly i would have just included in a base roster. overall it seems a little haphazard, and i think maybe taking a different approach to role upgrades - and also taking into account that there's a good chance several players might not ever unlock said upgrades - might be beneficial e.g. rather than giving someone two roles, buff their existing role, kind of like what the doctor's "white mage" protection did, but as an upgrade to the existing power rather than an additional power alongside the original


anyway, i dont really have a lot of other feedback to give, so once again i will say thanks to ns, wt and goombuigi for putting this together. despite the bumps in the road, i think this turned out pretty well, especially considering its meant to be a big "landmark" game and is also the second game hosted for each of you. apologies on my behalf to you and the players for not being able to participate as much as i would have liked, but this was still a fairly fun game during the times i was able to participate properly, so thanks for hosting!
 
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