Mafia and Seek
January 10, 2014 - Game Sketchbook
We all know and love that old party warhorse, Mafia, and its lupine cousin, Werewolf—they have been adding more than their share of deception, intrigue, and fun to living room parties since the 80’s. But, let’s be honest, parts of Mafia suck. The first few rounds are almost always random guesses, when you’re out, you’re out, and as Jane Mcgonigal explains, it is a game that can be beat.
Enter: Mafia and Seek.
Mafia and Seek is a pervasive take on the classic game in which, instead of players sitting in a circle and opening their eyes one by one during the nighttime round, everyone leaves the room and the action happens in real time and space. All the players leave the room and sneak around the rest of the house/museum/park/wherever you’re playing the game. The mafia make kills by tagging their victim. When the mafia make the kill they text the moderator, who then texts the rest of the players to summon them back to the room. The daytime round continues as usual: one person must be voted off. You can play it straight up that way or take a look at our rules for the “afterlife” round to keep playing the game after you sleep with the fishes.
- Stay together. The Mafia can only kill one person per round. If you are a witness and live to tell the tale, you can get vengeance.
- Trust no one. Be careful who you pair up with; they might not be so trustworthy as they seem.
- Keep your distance. If they can’t tag you, they can’t kill you.
- Spy. Find a hidden vantage point and watch where people go and who they talk to.
Special thanks to Greg Albright, who has been spearheading game design on Mafia and Seek from the beginning.