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I need a semi-anonymous system that allows players to rat each other out

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terrorbullgames
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I've often come across a game theme or idea that would benefit from semi-anonymous action, so if we can get this nailed, I'm taking you all out to dinner.

So I have a game where players are encouraged to rat on each other and at the same time there are great social pressures that mean they should probably think very carefully about doing so.

If Player A rats on Player B, I need the following possible outcomes: 1) It remains undiscovered and the originator (the rat) is never known 2) It is discovered and the originator is never known 3) It is discovered and the originator is also known

Of these three outcomes, (2) needs to happen more often than not.

I have just one solution at the moment and it's rather inelegant. It requires having a set time or period in the game for 'ratting'. This would be a moment where the object of the rat is fixed (ie. if Player B does x then the 'rat phase' is triggered) and all other players (whether they intend to rat or bluff) are required to take part. They register their rat or bluff by means of a token or card that all look identical when face down, but reveal the true intention face up. The object of the rat (Player B) then rolls a die that tells him one of two things: a) reveal a rat token/card of your choice b) mix all the tokens/cards together and reveal the topmost The weighting of this throw would be heavily skewed to (b). In the event of (b) it would hopefully not be obvious who had ratted you out (especially as it could be more than one player and you don't get to see the other tokens). In the event of (a) you might want to avoid the player who you think would rat you out and go safe, or funnily enough, you may want to expose the rat even though it lands you in trouble. This part of my solution is the only bit I like because counter-intuitive behaviours rock my boat.

But I'm sure you clever people can do better.

TLDR: I need a board game mechanic that allows players to act with the possibility of their actions not being attributable to them (but always allowing the possibility for this to happen)

DogBoy
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It might not fit your game

It might not fit your game needs, but the following mechanic seems like it might be interesting:

Components (players are identified with colours and/or icons):
A mixture of "non-rat" and "rat" cards. Both cards come in "identifiable" form (bearing the colour/icon of a player) and "anonymous" (plain) form. Probably, more rat cards are anonymous than identifiable, whereas non-rat cards are about 50% anonymous.

Setup:
Each player gets a shuffled pile of cards containing:
* all their identifiable player-specific cards, and
* some anonymous cards

Mechanic:
Players maintain a hand of cards. This hand can contain identifiable cards which can be traced back to them (since they bear that player's mark) and anonymous cards which can't (since they are plain).
When ratting occurs, each potential ratter plays a card and the cards are shuffled together. The potential rattee then reveals the top N cards (N will affect the probability of a rat action going undiscovered).
* If they are all non-rat card, no rats are discovered.
* If there are any rat cards, someone ratted! Reveal all the cards. Some players may be proved innocent, and some may be unmasked as rats (either directly or by a process of elimination). The rest will be "under suspicion". (Note that if more than one player rats, and the rest of the players identifiably non-rat, all the rats will be unmasked regardless of whether or not they ratted anonymously.)

Properties:
* Playing an identifiable non-rat card means that you will not fall under suspicion.
* Playing an anonymous non-rat card risks falling under suspicion if a rat is discovered. It also means that if someone else rats anonymously, nothing can be proved against them.
* Playing an identifiable rat card is risky, since if any rats are discovered then you will be unmasked.
* Playing an anonymous rat card means you will certainly be under suspicion if any rats are discovered, and you may even be unmasked.
* The only way for a rat to be discovered but remain unidentified is for someone else to play an anonymous non-rat card. (So there need to be enough of these to make the game interesting.)

Notes:
In a paranoiac theme, being "under suspicion" should probably carry some game penalty (although obviously not as much as being unmasked as a rat).

terrorbullgames
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Nice idea but

Thanks for your reply and the time you took thinking about the problem. Really appreciated.

The two main problems I see are:

1) Would motivation would you ever have to play an identifiable rat card that could be traced back to you?
2) Anonymous ratting requires multiple anonymous rats (or at the very least one other anonymous card) to be really successful.

Also, your solution unfortunately has the same constraints as mine - namely that it has to take place at a certain time in the game against a designated player. Any ideas how to broaden this out so players can simply rat on each other when they want with relative impunity (but always at the slight risk of being discovered)?

It's a tough one, no? Something that a computer game could do very easily, but a board game ...

InvisibleJon
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A bag of tokens can simulate the action of a person or authority

terrorbullgames wrote:
TLDR: I need a board game mechanic that allows players to act with the possibility of their actions not being attributable to them (but always allowing the possibility for this to happen)
(I wrote all this before reading past, "I have just one solution at the moment and it's rather inelegant," or reading any responses.)

Okay. You want three outcomes:

"Zero result": Ratting doesn't have any consequences.
"Anon. Tattle": Ratting punishes the person being tattled on.
"Public Tattle": Ratting punishes the person being tattled on and reveals the tattler.

Of these, anon. tattle happens more often than public tattle.

I suggest a bag of tokens. (Note that a deck of cards is mechanically similar to a bag of tokens, but tokens are easier to "shuffle" and provide a greater level of anonymity.)

The Bag:
The bag of tokens metaphysically represents the authority figure that you're tattling to. It starts pre-populated with a number of "no action" tokens. (Note that these "no action" tokens could include minor game effects. The relevant thing is that these tokens do not act as tattling tokens.) The more "no action" tokens the bag starts with, the less likely the authority figure is to act on tattler tips; adjusting this will significantly change how the game plays.

The Tokens:
You (and each other player) start with piles of anon. tattler tokens (one pile to tattle on each other player), piles of public tattler tokens that identify you as the tattler (again, one pile to tattle on each other player), and a screen to hide your token piles from the other players.

Tattling:
At various times during play (When? That's up to you. I don't know enough about the game you're creating to really offer a good solution here.), the Authority bag gets passed around from player to player. When you get the bag, you MUST put your hand in the bag, jostle the tokens that are in the bag, then pass the bag to the next player. The important thing here is that you must make it look like you added a token to the Authority bag, whether you did or did not.

Game pressures encourage the players to prefer their anon. tattler tokens over their public tattler tokens, making anonymous tattling more likely. As you run out of anon. tattler tokens, you'll have to use your public tattler tokens and you'll be exposed for the rat you are! Alternately, you can make a rule that says that when you add tokens, you add two anon. tattler tokens and one public tattler token. However, this requires complete honesty and could fail due to accidental or intentional cheating. It's easier to just give players more anon. tattler tokens than public tattler tokens (perhaps a 2:1 ratio?). Also, this gives players a strategic element to consider: Tattler publicly early, then anon. tattle later, or vice versa?

Another way this can work: All players start with a small number of both types of tattle tokens. During play, you may do things that are "illegal". When you do, each other player gets more public and anon. tattle tokens to use against you. These tokens come from a public pool and go to each other player's private (hidden) pool.

Consequences:
At various times during play, one or more tokens get drawn from the Authority bag. "No Action" tokens do nothing. Anon. Tattler tokens punish the player the token identifies. Public Tattler tokens punish the player that the token identifies, but everyone knows who tattled.

Mechanically, the authority becomes more likely to go after a player than do nothing as the ratio of tokens shifts from "no action" to tattle tokens. If this isn't what you want, you can add a stash of "no action" tokens to each player's secret stash. When you get the Authority bag, you can add no tokens, or any one token you want to add.

Etc.:
Whew! That's where I'm at with this. Those are my thoughts.

(Goes and reads the rest of the thread.)

Okay. My ideas don't seem too different from the others presented on the surface, but the token bag does bring several significant mechanical differences. Notably, that ratting is persistent - a prior ratting maintains its presence from turn to turn. If this is an issue, there needs to be a way to flush the tokens from the Authority bag from round to round without anyone seeing what was in the bag. You could do this by prepping multiple bags at the start of the game (Play rounds 1-3 with the red bag, 4-6 with the yellow bag, and 7-9 with the blue bag), or by periodically dumping the contents into the box (without looking at what comes out) and resetting the bag.

InvisibleJon
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A preemptive response...

A token system encourages use of identifiable ratting by limiting each player's supply of anonymous ratting.

terrorbullgames wrote:
Also, your solution unfortunately has the same constraints as mine - namely that it has to take place at a certain time in the game against a designated player. Any ideas how to broaden this out so players can simply rat on each other when they want with relative impunity (but always at the slight risk of being discovered)?
I'll grant that a bag of beads does require everyone to participate at a specific time during the game. Fortunately, it does not require players to target a designated player. You can put any token you wish to in the bag, or none at all.

genericm
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just thinking out loud here

The action taken by a player when he wishes to rat must be taken by all players at the same time, or just simply taking the action would declare him as the originator of the accusation. (be it drawing a card or placing a chit in a bag or anything.

on top of that, it seems you have two bits of information that you want to be revealed at different times, the target and the originator. Those two bits of info should be kept separate, (i.e. 2 cards or two different chits)

Also you may at times have multiple originators who wish to rat at the same time, so their two cards or chits must be kept separate from another players who wish to rat at the same time.

so my thought is when the ratting time comes, have everyone place two cards on the table randomly (have everyone look away or something.) Each player may place cards designating the target of their rat and then an identifier card designating them as the ratter. Then design a random way to reveal these two cards separately, based on a die roll or something else.

Alternatively a player who did not wish to rat could place 2 decoy cards with no information.

Anyway just break your problem down to its base elements and solve your problem there.

Have Fun!

Gizensha
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It's the 'ratting remains

It's the 'ratting remains unknown and the player is undiscovered' and 'people can rat at anytime' that seem to be the real awkward factors to me

If the ratting remains unknown, how will it affect game play? Final scoring, perhaps, but that seems like it would need a heck of a lot of trackables to me, unless the effects were entirely independent of when they were ratted...

The ability to rat at anytime, hm... Hidden slope for each player which stores marbles of the various players colors and leads to a central container, with some shoots coming out of before the central container. If it gets to the central container no-one can tell who ratted (top feed with some randomness as to where abouts it comes out), if it comes out before the central container, it becomes obvious who ratted due to who's shoot it was going down? Would need the hand where the shoot is to be able to remain hidden at all times.

As I said, though, probably impractically elaborate...

Then again, a less elaborate version might be to have a cup for each player, a number of plain and colored counters/marbles/chips/whatever, matching the player colours, and each turn the cup is passed after a player puts a chip into the cup, with a mechanic that sometimes reveals the contents of a cup? Although how you'd discover who ratted under such a scheme isn't obvious to me, unless you required doing so via deduction and only able to if the cup has only very recently been emptied.

InvisibleJon
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Make ratting a regular, recurring part of the game.

Instead of forcing all players to rat at the same time (although you still can do this), make ratting a part of each player's turn (like drawing a full hand of cards would be). At the start of the turn, you grab the bag, put your hand in, and shake it up. You may or may not be adding a token to the bag when you do this.

Alternately: If you really, really want players to be able to rat any time they want to, make the action of taking the bag, putting your hand in, and taking it out again an essential part of getting a useful in-game advantage. Example: "You may [process of ratting] at the beginning of any other player's turn to discard your hand and draw three cards." You look like you're ratting, but when someone calls you on it you say, "I needed better cards. If you had the cards I had, you'd've done it too."

Piqsid
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My ideas

I think what you need is to define a topic about which you will be playing. To say that you are going to rat someone out, means that they will be making a statement that may or may not be false. This could be abstract (Liars dice or poker), or it could have a more complex theme (Clue). I think it is important because the way to rat on someone is different depending on what it is.

Also, in order for you to rat on someone, or call their bluff, they need to be bluffing. It looks like you want the results to usually be that someone is ratted out, but by an unidentified person. But if the main player is not lying or bluffing, then they can never be ratted out. If you are not lying, then you will have no tension when revealing the tokens. So if someone always needs to lie, then the only evidence that they are lying you need is the fact that it is their turn.

A way to always have the opportunity to have someone lying, but not always have them lying, is for the “Facts” of the game not be set. For example, if you are trying to catch a killer, and each player needs to give an alibi, you can have the active player state that he was in Location X during the crime. All the players lay their evidence cards down, and one is randomly picked. There might be only two or three cards that show the active player’s location. If one of those is not drawn, then there is no evidence against the claim, and the claim becomes fact, and the active player has an alibi.

As to why you would want to reveal who played that evidence, it might have to do with private motives. If each player is dealt private motivations (ie a crime they actually committed) then it is in their best interest to lay evidence that will clear them, and revealing what each player is doing will reveal that private motivation.

I mean when I think of being “Ratted Out” I think of gangsters telling on their buddies to get an easier sentence. Imagine a game in which everyone is a captured gangster and you are all guilty of something, but if you can give enough useful information to the DA, you get to go free.

Along those lines, if you found out who ratted you out, you can threaten a hit on their family and they might recant or stop giving negative evidence against you.

Once I begin thinking of this theme, the mechanics of delivering information becomes clearer. Every player is dealt a hand of evidence regarding weapons, motives, locations, connections, payoffs, mistresses, or anything else that can be used as evidence. All of this evidence will conflict with each other, and what is presented as fact at the beginning of the game, may turn out to be a lie later on. If you get ratted out, you can lean on the player who did it, and they may play contradictory evidence later on and the earlier evidence can be thrown out.

The more I think things through, the more I want to develop the game further, but I have enough irons in the fire right now. I do have other ideas, but I have no idea if this matches the theme you are looking for, so I will keep them to myself for now.

A game you may be interested in is Android. I’ve never actually played it, but I’ve read a lot about it. It deals with people playing evidence against the other players that may or may not be anonymous.

Good luck.

terrorbullgames
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Some nice ideas so far

Invisible Jon -thanks for your considerable effort and for writing clearly and indepth. I can see exactly what you want to achieve but - and maybe I'm missing something here - your system treats all ratting as the same. In other words, players rat to the authority figure (bag) but cannot direct their rat to a specific player? Am I right? If you get ratted out, it won't then be as a direct consequence of another player's ratting, but simply because the bag's ratio of rats to non-rats has reached a point where it's likely to spit out a "rat" counter.

Maybe I should have given a bit more detail. I want players to modify their own behaviour to be as "good" as possible - but also to know that if they chose to be "bad", there is a good chance they'll get away with it. The other players should be more likely to rat them out for bad behaviour. The "more bad" you are, the more rats you'll generate, the more likely you are to be found out.

So I like the idea of having legal and illegal actions and illegal actions triggering the ratting. I think it's a valid point that having ratting as a regular and fixed part of gameplay may not be so undesirable and has certain advantages.

terrorbullgames
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"true" and "false"

Hi Piqsid - thanks for your contribution too (it appeared while I was writing my last response). To be honest, I got a bit lost in the talk of falseness and evidence and will have to read your post more carefully, but if I understand it, you're questioning the nature of ratting and how to deal with a rat who's telling lies? So ratting on someone and getting them in trouble for something they didn't do would "break" the game?

If that is what you're worried about, it's a very fair point. I'm hoping that social pressures within the game will keep players silent on the whole. If they chose to rat, they are taking a considerable chance. Maybe players would still rat for no good reason apart from to gain a tactical advantage, but this doesn't worry me so much - they still have to weigh up those same risks. In my game, the truth of what's going on isn't that necessary to know.

DogBoy
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terrorbullgames wrote:Thanks

terrorbullgames wrote:
Thanks for your reply and the time you took thinking about the problem. Really appreciated.

The two main problems I see are:

1) Would motivation would you ever have to play an identifiable rat card that could be traced back to you?
2) Anonymous ratting requires multiple anonymous rats (or at the very least one other anonymous card) to be really successful.

1) It might be stuck in your hand and you want to get rid of it. Also, playing it and getting away with it might give you points.
2) Yes. That's why you'd need quite a lot of anonymous non-rat cards.

terrorbullgames wrote:

Also, your solution unfortunately has the same constraints as mine - namely that it has to take place at a certain time in the game against a designated player. Any ideas how to broaden this out so players can simply rat on each other when they want with relative impunity (but always at the slight risk of being discovered)?

It's a tough one, no? Something that a computer game could do very easily, but a board game ...

OK, the hardest case is the following: -

1) Players can rat on anyone at any time
2) If someone rats on someone else then it should have a game effect more or less immediately
3) If someone rats on someone else, then it should be usually be hard for any other players to determine who the rat was

Clearly, 1) 2) and 3) together mean that whenever someone rats, everyone else has to behave in an outwardly identical fashion. This suggests that you can't voluntarily initiate an anonymous ratting, since your anonymity will be compromised by the fact you initiated the rat-a-round. I'd guess that the cleanest way to solve this is to force everyone to rat-or-not-rat at predefined times (e.g. each turn or each round).

It's not obvious that it can be done without custom components; here's another try:

Components (players are identified by colours or icons):
2 decks of cards with readily distinguished backs, which I'll call "Rat" and "Trace" decks.
The Rat deck consists of some player-identified cards and a lot of blank "Nobody" cards.
The Trace deck consists of some player-identified cards and a lot of blank "Anonymous" cards.

Setup:
Each player gets an individual Trace deck consisting of all their own Trace cards and a number of Anonymous blanks shuffled together.
Each player may also get a few of each Rat card for convenience.

Mechanic:
In the rat-a-round, each player chooses a Rat card and plays it without anyone else seeing what it is. To rat on player X, choose and play a "Rat X Out" card. To abstain from ratting, choose and play a "Rat Nobody Out" card. Then, without looking at it, the player deals a card from their Trace deck face down on top of their Rat card. Most of these Trace cards will be blank, but some will identify the player.

Somehow, randomise these card pairs (e.g. everyone turns away while player A mixes them up, then everyone turns away while player B mixes them up). Then, reveal N pairs (N will determine how likely ratting is to have an immediate effect).

Properties:
* Each rat-a-round, each player may rat out one person or nobody
* There is a small and easily design-tunable probability that your action (rat or don't rat) can be traced back to you
* You cannot know in advance whether your action is traceable
* Requires randomising pairs of cards (or other components) while keeping the pairings intact

Variant:
* The Trace decks can contain ambiguous cards as well, e.g. cards with pairs of colours on them, which go in more than one player's Trace deck.

InvisibleJon
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Clarifying my token concept...

terrorbullgames wrote:
Invisible Jon -thanks for your considerable effort and for writing clearly and indepth. I can see exactly what you want to achieve but - and maybe I'm missing something here - your system treats all ratting as the same. In other words, players rat to the authority figure (bag) but cannot direct their rat to a specific player? Am I right? If you get ratted out, it won't then be as a direct consequence of another player's ratting, but simply because the bag's ratio of rats to non-rats has reached a point where it's likely to spit out a "rat" counter.
Ah, I should have been more clear here. It's time to treat this like rules and write an example:

Red, Yellow, Blue, and Green are playing. You're playing Red, and you're setting up the game.

At the start of the game, you set up the Authority bag with six "no action" counters.

You get:
* your red privacy shield
* a stack of three "rat on blue" tokens (Imagine this as an all-blue token.)
* one "red ratted on blue" token (Imagine this as a blue token with a red line through the middle of it.)
* a stack of three "rat on yellow" tokens (Imagine this as an all-yellow token.)
* one "red ratted on yellow" token (Imagine this as a yellow token with a red line through it.)
* a stack of three "rat on green" tokens (Imagine this as an all-green token.)
* one "red ratted on green" token (Imagine this as a green token with a red line through it.)

The other players get similar stacks of tokens for ratting on other players and ratting tokens that say "This ratting came from me." Based on the visual vocabulary established above, what does a red token with a blue line through it mean? That means that blue ratted on red (Hey, that's you! Blue's a fink.).

Now we jump ahead several turns in the game. Everyone has had several opportunities to stick his or her hand in the Authority bag. Unknown to the players, the contents of the Authority bag are:

* six "no action" tokens
* two "rat on red" tokens (you haven't been making any friends this game)
* one "yellow ratted on red" token (the yellow player decided to spend this token early)
* one "rat on green" token.

No one knows that the tokens that the anonymous tokens that rat on you came from green and blue. No one knows that the token that rats on green came from blue. Only the players who put the tokens in the bag know that they did that.

Something triggers an Authority check. You draw three tokens out of the bag and get a "no action" token, a "rat on red token" and a "rat on green" token. The ratting tokens are removed from play. The "no action" token goes back in the Authority bag. You've been ratted on, and someone ratted on green. You have no way of knowing who ratted you out; the same goes for green. Green or blue may think that it was their token that ratted you out - they each may even be sure of it - but they're wrong. They don't know that there's a second anonymous "rat out red" token in the Authority bag.

Whether the bag gets purged of all tokens and reset at some point during play is up to you. I'd recommend it (actually, I recommend a set of three bags that you set up at the start of the game). That way, you have an incentive to use your "I ratted on you" tokens at times where you think there are lots of tokens in the bag and your token is less likely to be drawn.

(Ah! An incentive to use your "I ratted you out" tokens: If you have them when the game is over, they cost you Victory Points.)

terrorbullgames wrote:
Maybe I should have given a bit more detail. I want players to modify their own behaviour to be as "good" as possible - but also to know that if they chose to be "bad", there is a good chance they'll get away with it. The other players should be more likely to rat them out for bad behaviour. The "more bad" you are, the more rats you'll generate, the more likely you are to be found out.
This strongly implies that players should start with few (or no) tokens for anonymously ratting out other players, and that "being bad" gives the other players anonymous (or trackable - it needs play testing) "rat you out" tokens.

This means that the player's choices are: I can play by the rules and make slow, steady progress. I can "cheat" and advance more rapidly but when there's an Authority check, there's a chance I'll get caught.

It's still not clear to me how you're punished if you're caught squealing. Are you imagining an in-game penalty ("Get in the corner Bart. You too, snitchy.") or if knowing that the other player ratted you out is a sufficient penalty.

terrorbullgames wrote:
So I like the idea of having legal and illegal actions and illegal actions triggering the ratting. I think it's a valid point that having ratting as a regular and fixed part of gameplay may not be so undesirable and has certain advantages.
As I see it, there are several possible rat-related events that can trigger:

* Players get additional "rat out a player" tokens (either anonymous ones or trackable ones).
* Players get to put zero, one, or more tokens in the Authority bag.
* Players get to draw on or more tokens from the Authority bag.
* The Authority bag gains more "no action" tokens.
* Purge the Authority bag of tokens / replace the current Authority bag with a "fresh" bag.

larienna
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I did not read completely

I did not read completely your post, but I think I have an idea that could help you.

I want to implement an espionage system in one of my game. For all the examples below, you need a series of cards that contains the special event/effect and a target player color.

Then you can have many options. each player draw X cards and play y card. Shuffle and reveal all or some of the cards played. You can also add cards randomly to the deck of played cards so that the players does not know if there is really somebody targetting them.

Another variant, select x cards randomly from the top of the deck and give y cards to everyplayer. Then draft this deck of cards from a player to another. Each player can remove y cards and add z cards to the deck.

This mechanic is more interesting because you can do counter espionage (discard a card targetting you) and you can try to guess who is plotting against you. (I did not had any cards targetting me but when it reached the end of the table I got 3 bad events, so these players are plotting against me).

In summary, the espionage system is linked with the random event system and the players can influence it's outcome.

Since you need to make each special effect for each player color, this system would work great if you do not have that many special effects.

Lindsey
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Gradually revealed identities

How about something along the lines of...

At the each turn, each player draws N cards (or tokens, or other thingy). These cards each show an identifying mark, with a generic reverse side. Without revealing which identities they're looking for, the players then find the ratting tokens which have the marks they drew. (You'll need player shields so the ratting tokens aren't seen by the other players.) Put the identity cards in front of the shield so everyone can see their backs.

To rat on anther player, you put a ratting token into the bag (or card into the deck, etc.). For it to be potentially anonymous, you need at least three people to have put something in the bag before any tokens are revealed. (If it's just two, then the two players who have put in one token will immediately know the source of the other token.) So you could have this be a regular event in which each player must add a token, or at least appear to do so. (Possibly a generic unmarked "no ratting from me" token would work best.) Or you could just strongly encourage players to put something in the bag (i.e., bonus victory points, money, actions, sheep, etc.)

You could pull one token out at some regular interval, or toss out two (or some number) unrevealed, and reveal the rest, or some other such scheme. (Other posters have already had lots of ideas for this aspect of things.)

At some point in the game, you reveal one (or some) but not all of each players' identity cards. (This could be a regular event, or perhaps the target could accuse a single player as ratter, forcing them to show an identity.)

So you could rat out Jim using your igloo identity. You toss your "Igloo - rat on Jim" token into the bag. At the end of the round, one of the ratting tokens revealed is your "Igloo - rat on Jim" token, and it has the specified effect on Jim. But no one knows that you're the Igloo. Then each player reveals one of their identity cards, chosen (for example) by the player to their left. If you're unlucky, that might just be your igloo -- and everyone will know you were a rat.

Gathering the ratting tokens each round could be a bit awkward. But otherwise I think this could work. If you're okay with players being discovered as rats at a delay, then you could just have a big draw of identity cards at the start, and have everyone stick with the same identity marks throughout the game. That would be mechanically easier, but would have some big effects on the likelihood of getting caught at different parts of the game. (Early ratting would almost surely be caught eventually, but late ratting would be relatively safe.)

Willi B
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2 SETS OF CARDS

Everyone puts in a card in turn order (RAT OR NO RAT) top to bottom.

Before, anything is done, a second randomized stack of conditions are shuffled and the top card is revealed.

Choices of this second stack should be a mix of the following cards in whatever percentage you desire:

Reveal the first player's card.
Reveal the second player's card.
Reveal the third player's card.
Reveal the fourth player's card.
Do nothing.
Randomize and reveal a card.

DogBoy
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Joined: 12/15/2009
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DogBoy wrote:

* Requires randomising pairs of cards (or other components) while keeping the pairings intact

Incidentally, this could be done with resealable containers like envelopes.

Envelopes seem to fit a paranoiac denunciation theme, so my proposed mechanic now works as follows:

Players must regularly make a Report to The Authority. This involves all players
* choosing a Report card (which might be a Denunciation of a particular individual, or might be a Business As Usual card), then
* adding a face-down Signature card from their pile (which will either identify them as the author, or be a non-identifying Confidential Source card)
* all cards are put in identical envelopes addressed to The Authority and the envelopes are shuffled
* some envelopes get added to the Secret Archives, and the rest are made opened and their contents made public knowledge

Pastor_Mora
Pastor_Mora's picture
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Joined: 01/05/2010
Here's an idea

Setup for 1 Cop Player and 3/5 Criminal Players. Criminals have each one hitman per player in the game, six tokens with their respective colour, 4 bribes tokens and a 48 cards deck for all of them, Cop has two detectives per player in the game. Game board depicts 6 treasure locations to steal from and a Jail. Plus, a central Rat cards pile space, six Action card pile spaces, one for each Criminal player.

Objective: the Criminal players have to steal treasure locations and the Cop has to nail hitmans and collect bribes. Game ends with a Criminal stealing all treasures or a Cop having less than two detectives.

Scoring: Criminals get 1 Victory Point for their first hit, 2 for the second, 3 for the third, and so on. Cop gets 1 VP per hitman caught and 1 VP per bribe collected.

Setup: All players start with 10 cards minus the number of players, all their hitmen and detectives.

Turn sequence: at their turn the Criminals can play one card facing down in the Rat pile and one card facing down in their own Action pile. Then the Cop reveals the Rat cards and decides to deploy detectives into "ratted" locations and/or take an offered bribe to stay away of a "ratted" location. Then all Criminal's Action cards are revealed and effects are resolved. At the end of the turn, all players replace the number of cards played (one or two). Criminals that steal a treasure location place a token of their colour there. If the Cop deployed a detective where their were planning a robbery, their hitman is caught and placed in the Jail. If their hitman was deployed in a "Hit" assignment, a detective arriving there will be killed. Hitmans can be released from Jail by paying 2 bribe tokens. Extra bribe tokens (4) can be gained by returning a treasure solen (remove token from treasure location).

Criminals cards deck: Steal treasure location 1 to 6 (2 x 6 different cards), Rat a posible Hit in treasure location 1 to 6 (2 x 6 different cards), Set a Hitman in location 1 to 6 (2 x 6 different cards), Offer bribe to clear treasure location 1 to 6 (1 x 6 different cards).

PS I'm with the previous posts here, if the game is "Ratting" and is not an abstract, you shoud stick to a mafia or espionaje theme.

Keep thinking!

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