Werewolf: CRC week 3, day 3

Challenge: Make an active game.

There are 2 more things that I want to make clear about my goals for this weeks game. I am not making a "sport". Sports are both highly structured and skill based. That doesn't really fit the spirit of what I am trying to do. Also, I do not want to require any special equipment to play. The game should be able to be played with a group spontaneously. The key here is flexibility.

Have you ever played Werewolf? You might also know it as Mafia (which was rethemed Werewolf by the great Andrew Plotkin). It is super fun, but it is not necessarily the most active of games. It gets played all the time at cons or with older groups (adults, high schoolers, etc).

You need a group of people with someone to lead the game. Everyone starts with their eyes closed (a phase in the game called "night") and the leader silently picks some number of werewolves. They open their eyes (and will have their eyes open during subsequent nights) and silently pick 1 person to kill. They close their eyes and the leader picks out a seer who opens their eyes. The seer indicates who they wish to know the truth about (human/werewolf). This is also done silently so that the werewolves do not know who the seer is. They then close their eyes.

The game shifts to "day" and everyone opens their eyes. All players (including the werewolves and seer) then determine who they want to collectively kill. That person is out and may no longer speak. The game shifts back to night and everyone closes their eyes again. The roles and sequence stays the same every night. The game ends when either both werewolves are dead or they outnumber the rest of the players.

This game is ridiculous amounts of fun. There are tons of varients that include different characters or rules but the core is always the same. The basic idea is to set an informed minority against an uniformed majority. Hidden information and misdirection is a common mechanic in board and card games, but it seems it is not as widely used in active games.

I want to leverage the inequity of information. I'm not sure exactly how I want to do that, but it is certainly an interesting direction to take. I've been fiddling with some variant of active Werewolf that can be played in full sunlight. There is a common active Werewolf variant called Ultimate Werewolf, but it requires a large, dark, play space to play the night portions in. Like I said before, I want flexibility. Ultimate Werewolf is awesome when you can put together a game, but you have to have just the right conditions to make it work. I'm still thinking though. Thinking, thinking, thinking...