Welcome to The Bookish Games, a variation of the game most commonly known as Mafia or Werewolf. If you want to know more about The Bookish Games, including How to Play, please check out the links in the menu.
THE GAME IS NOW OVER!
- Greg @ Book Haven as Hush, Team Red Church, Odd-Night Commuter, 1x Vigilante, Post Restriction
- Val (@InnocentSmileyx) as Diamo, Team Red Church, Townie
- Rashika (@RTheBookOwl) as Tric, Team Red Church, Roleblocker, Poisonproof
- Megan (@Megan_Roze) as Marcellus, Team Red Church, Townie
- Kritika (@spidersilksnow) as Tovo, Team Red Church, Cop
- Anne (@amengelhart) as Mia, Team Red Church, Bulletproof, Darkin (Truedark results in Deathproof, 1x Vigilante, Doublevoter; Truelight results Loss of Bulletproof / Vote)
TEAM RED CHURCH WINS!
Congratulations Town! I mean, I’d honestly be a little shocked if you didn’t win with how this game was going. A mafia elimination the first four Days? No kills the first two Nights? That was totally unexpected! But good on you for managing to make it happen.
I honestly believe everyone deserves recognition for making this edition such a great game. In previous games participation has sometimes been a struggle, but it seemed as if everyone was actively engaged this time around and your enthusiasm and problem solving made this edition a real joy to moderate. Thank you for that.
(Inge: For real. I was especially impressed with the 100% success rate on Day lynches, which NEVER happens, but most of the Night actions were on point as well. I honestly think everyone played incredibly this round. Kudos, folks!)
Of course, as always we have to highlight a couple MVPs and for this I have two individuals I would like to shout out:
My first MVP is for Kritika. In all honesty, if it weren’t for Kritika this game probably would’ve had a completely different outcome. Her tie-breaking vote two minutes before deadline on Day One not only resulted in the first mafia elimination (Harker), but also led to Jenn’s suspicious last minute vote switch.
She also successfully investigated two Anti-Town players the first two Nights of The Bookish Games, and though her results confused her momentarily she did eventually share them on Day Four. If she hadn’t shared her investigative results (slightly misled by her thinking “Anti Town” meant Dana and Shannon were on the same team) I believe it is highly unlikely Dana would’ve been eliminated that Day. Her reveal not only guaranteed Dana’s elimination, but also turned the spotlight towards Shannon the following Day who I believe was doing an excellent job of being Pro-Town throughout the game.
So congratulations to Kritika for an excellent game well-played and helping lead your Town to victory! I will be adding this game to your Wall of Fame credits.
My second MVP is for Val. (For whom I do not have an illustration yet so Val, if you would like to be cartoonified for the Wall of Fame please DM me a picture!) I believe Val deserves MVP status this game not only because she is a great analytical thinker but because she successfully managed to be the only player to vote out all the anti-Town players in the game. Whether she helped lead the charge (Jenn and Anna) or put her faith in others (Dana and Shannon), Val successfully navigated the game to determine who she could trust and helped secure the Town’s win through her votes.
Inspired by Nevernight, there were a couple of twists built into the set-up of this game (including one that was never used). These twists included: the Blade contests, a darkin affected by Truedark/Truelight, a Third-party lyncher, and a post restriction. Read on to find out more.
The Blade Contests
As mentioned at the start of the game, each Night a player was granted power(s) as a result of passing a Blade Test. At the beginning of each Day, I would announce what test we would be focusing on in the Spectator chat, we’d create a poll with our top three nominees at the start of each Night, and once the Night ended the person with the most votes would receive their Blade status. Here are how the Blade tests went down:
- Day/Night One: Mouser’s Thievery Blade Test for the sneakiest / under the radar player. Nominees were Anna, Megan, and Meeghan. Anna received the most votes and was granted the Thief and 1x Bulletproof powers.
- Day/Night Two: Spiderkiller’s Poison Blade Test for causing chaos / poisoning minds. Nominees were Rashika, Beth, and Megan. Beth received the most votes and was granted the Poisoner and 1x Bulletproof powers.
(Inge: Beth received all of the votes, actually. She was properly messing with all of our heads, including her own. Hope you’re feeling better now, Beth!)
- Day/Night Three: Aalea’s Secrets Blade Test for gathering information / getting others to talk. Nominees were Jeann, Meeghan, and Anne. Jeann received the most votes and was supposed to be granted the Role Cop and 1x Bulletproof powers but unfortunately died that Night.
- Day/Night Four: Solis’s Swordsmanship Blade Test for the bloodiest / not afraid to vote player. Nominees were Kritika, Shannon, and Val. Val received the most votes and was granted the Vigilante and 1x Bulletproof powers.
Now, there was some confusion later on in the game as player roles were revealed as to whether or not those roles were a result of their Blade status. With the exception of Jeann (who died before she could officially be assigned her Blade role), all Blade roles were revealed upon elimination – they just weren’t explicitly stated as such. (That would be too easy. You know we don’t like to pass up an opportunity to add to the confusion.)
There were a couple of ways to figure it out though. Not only were the roles somewhat clear to guess (Spiderkiller = Poisoner) but I did not do illustrations for any player who received Blade status. As a result, while players who were assigned powers from the start of the game (Jeann and Jenn) had illustrations on their tombstone to reflect their powers, those who received them as Blades (Beth and Anna) did not.
While originally I wanted to incorporate the holy Trinity into the game to help weaken Mia (as reflected in the book), Inge proposed adding Truedark/Truelight phases to the game and we ran with that. On normal Days, Anne’s only power was Bulletproof, but on Truedark/Truelight Days her powers as a result of being darkin were limited or amplified in the following ways:
Day/Night Two: Truelight. A darkin becomes extremely weakened during Truelight, not having access to any shadows/darkness. As a result, Anne lost both her voting abilities and bulletproof powers during Day/Night Two. (Yup, her lack of vote Day Two? That was totally our doing. But we loved how it added to the theories of a Poisoner which, as you can see above, was gifted to Beth that Night.)
Day/Night Four: Truedark. During Truedark, a darkin is at the height of their power. This granted Anne not only a second anonymous vote she could submit during the Day (which she did not choose to utilise) but also made her completely Deathproof.
(Inge: Ideally, I would’ve liked Lord Cassius as a player too, so this twist wouldn’t only affect Mia. However, it made more sense to run an acolyte-only game. But like Asti said, it worked out well with Meeghan being poisoned (sorry, Meeghan 😂), which added to the confusion.)
But Wait, Where’s Mister Kindly?
Those Truelight/Truedark phases above? Those were also supposed to impact a certain Mister Kindly in this game. Unfortunately, Mister Kindly was unable to make an appearance. 😦
You see, usually I feel a bit bad for the first person eliminated in the Games because they get all invested in playing and then due to whatever randomness occurs on Day One they end up eliminated before the fun can really begin. To combat this, I decided before the game started that instead of being eliminated, the first person voted out of the game would return as Mister Kindly, a Mason/Tree stump.
What does this mean? As far as everyone in the game would be concerned, that player would be eliminated like normal at the end of Day One. In reality though, they would be contacted in private by myself, informed that they have been revived as Mister Kindly, and given access to a private Mason chat room with Mia’s player (Anne) where they can discuss the game Day and Night. It’d be giving that player a second chance to be involved in the game, without bringing them directly back into things. And it made sense to me. Mister Kindly is a shadow creature that only Mia tends to know is there, why not limit the role to just observing and communicating with Mia?
Unfortunately, I was unable to put this role into action because the first three deaths were all mafia. And, as a Mason, Mister Kindly needed to be someone Town-aligned with the goal of helping Mia scope out the baddies. By the time we got our first Town elimination (Jeann on Night Three), it was just a little too late and we decided to continue the game without.
(Inge: Y’all are simply becoming too smart.)
Jessamine as a Third-Party Lyncher
In the book, Jessamine believes Mia’s family is responsible for her father’s death and therefore has a huge vendetta against Mia. As a result, we decided to add a Third-party Lyncher role whose sole win goal was to get Mia (played by Anne) lynched.
To assist with this goal, Jessamine was also granted a 1x Framer power. If Mia was investigated the same Night as being framed, she would appear as “Not Town”.
Unfortunately, between the success of the Town’s voting and Shannon’s desire to help eliminate the mafia instead of using them as a distraction, not much happened in the way of Anne getting lynched. Shannon did attempt to frame her and lead a vote on Day Four, but even if the Town wasn’t distracted by reveals that attempt was doomed to succeed as it was during the Truedark phase where Anne was Deathproof.
Poor Shannon, being evil just isn’t her thing.
(Inge: And we love her for that! You’re too good for this world, Shannon.)
Hush’s Post Restriction
I have to say, this is probably one of my favourite twists incorporated into this edition just because Greg did such a phenomenal job keeping up with his restriction while not gaining any attention for it.
Greg, as Hush, was required to include an action within every single one of his posts this game. He was granted some flexibility in the way he chose to incorporate his action (through the use of GIFs, *asterisks*, or emojis), but whatever the action it had to be recognisable by the moderators. (Fun fact: His favourite action to use during the first two Days was this emoji: “😊” which, if I counted correctly, he used a total of 29 times in his 27 comments.)
Why was he limited by this post restriction? Well, in the book, Hush’s character cannot speak. He is limited to communicating through a form of sign language called Tongueless. This was our attempt to limit it while still being reasonable.
(Want to see slightly less reasonable? We were originally thinking we might limit his text to short sentences / lowercase text as Hush’s dialogue appears in the book but decided that would be too limiting / obvious.)
The other roles associated with Hush (you know, to make the post restriction effort worth it) were Odd-Night Commuter and 1x Vigilante. The Commuter power because within Nevernight Hush is often noted as sneaking about in the night and the Vigilante power due to the fact that he was responsible for at least one other acolyte’s death in the book.
Who are all these random characters I don’t remember?
Ah yes, Leonis, Marcellus, Petrus, Tanith, and Tovo. You remember all of them, right? Probably not. These were five minor characters who appeared as acolytes within Nevernight but who were mostly mentioned in passing (in some cases, the only times their names were mentioned was when Mia provided an update on the most recent acolyte deaths).
Once we decided to limit the players to acolytes (saving the Shahiids for Spectators and leaving the Republic to the side), we decided to pull from the minor character list to round out our cast. And as I like to keep things somewhat unpredictable, these minor characters were assigned roles / alliances based on what was needed for the game instead of what could be predicted by the book. There was never any hint within the book that Petrus and Tanith were aligned with the Järnheims or that Tovo was particularly good at looking for clues, that was just us mixing things up.
BEHIND THE SCENES
As always, here is the information for the secret pages and access to the master sheet where we kept track of each Day/Night actions. If you have questions about anything, don’t hesitate to ask!
- The Mafia Night Chats –The Mafia Night chats have now been imported! You can find what the mafia was saying at Night by looking at the blog archives or visiting the Night links on the Nevernight Edition game page.
- GoogleDoc Spreadsheet – This is the Master Spreadsheet that Inge and I used to keep track of everything in the game from number of comments players made to voting history to Night Action form submissions. Click the tabs on the bottom of the page to see what went down each Day/Night.
- Spectator Chat (password: eulogies) – This page grants you access to the Spectator chat where the moderators, ghosts, and spectators discussed gameplay and voted on the Blade tests.
GAME MASTER’S NOTES
A Day-by-Day Recap
Do you want a Day-by-Day Recap of exactly what went down this edition of The Bookish Games? I usually leave all the hard work to you, assuming the GoogleDoc Spreadsheet and Behind the Scenes information is enough (and I’m sure it is), but this game was so interesting and unexpected that I actually just spent HOURS writing a Day-by-Day Recap for you. I was originally going to include it in this post but it is LONG LONG LONG because I even went so far as to screenshot comments and feedback forms to explain everything that went down.
So please, someone go look at it and make all that hard work worth it. lol.
I really don’t have much else to say in regards to this game other than THANK YOU for being such an amazing group of players. It has been such a joy to not only watch you all in action but it’s been a relief to not have to worry about inactivity or conflicts or any of that. Veterans and newbies alike, I thank you all. I couldn’t have asked for a better bunch of players.
(Oh look at me getting all sappy. Yuck.)
(Inge: Adding to the sappiness. Y’all are amazing. Truly. You’re a good lot and I love helping Asti create these whacky games for you. You’re always making me laugh. Thank you. 💛)
The next edition of The Bookish Games will be A Darker Shade of Magic with Crini co-modding. While dates are to be confirmed, we are currently looking at a start date of mid -September. If you would like to be alerted when sign-ups go live, please make sure to join our mailing list.
(Inge: THE EXCITEMENT IS REAL.)
And, if you are interested in volunteering to help co-mod a future edition, please be sure to let us know! There’s a bit of waitlist so it may be a year or two before we can get to you, but everyone is welcome. Our current prospective co-mod list is as follows: Shannon, Anne, Asiya, Beth, and Harker. (I feel like we may be missing a person or two so please do let me know if we’ve discussed this before and I’m just blanking on it.)
Thank you once again for an absolutely fun and chaotic edition of The Bookish Games! Rest up this summer and prepare yourselves for September. I have no doubt that with Crini in the mix it’ll be even less predictable than usual. 😈
Asti & Inge