How to use Meta in FMs the proper way
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  1. #1

    Question How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    So I've been asked by a few people to pitch into the big discussion about reading meta. As most of you know, many people think that meta reading is a terrible strategy in FMs and the way they have explained what meta reading is, I would agree... but you also know that I use meta reads every game. However, it's NOT in the way people have described so I'm going to clear a few things up about the uses of meta.

    The improper way and worst way of using meta

    To start off, instead of repeating what someone has already stated, I'm just going to reference that post. Helz did a good job at explaining what most people think of when we talk about meta reading in his guide about Macro Meta Crunching.
    This is by far, one of the worst ways to read meta, but I still use it..... because other people are using this type of meta reading, I use it against them and exploit the vulnerabilities of it. This of course requires a basic understanding of what people are looking for to be able to flip it onto someone. I only recommend using this against newbies who are easily manipulated into falling in such traps.

    So if that is not I how to use meta to scumhunt then what kind of meta do the high end players refer to when scumhunting?

    The way Skilled players use meta

    I literally use meta to judge a skill level of a player - and this goes much further than saying: this player is good or bad. In recent times, the amount of scumtells in games have sky rocketed and it's no longer a matter of finding scumtells or scum hunting but filtering out the false positives to identify the real scum in the games. I have always said, it is 100x harder to get onto my town reads list without a PR check than it is to get on my scum reads. So how do I use the meta to help me filter? Referring back to Helz's guide on Communication he mentions a big part of it.

    1- In the part about "tone", understanding a players meta, you'll have a better understanding in what tone to read his posts giving you insight into what he is trying to convey.

    2- Probably the most useful thing about meta reading is in his 3rd part: Application of Communication. I use meta to judge if a player is capable of pulling off most of these strategies - or if I can plainly read him face value. Understanding what level of wifom players usually play on can yield incredible translation powers of what they are trying to do while saying the exact opposite.

    Lets delve deeper into what I mean by examining the examples Helz's lists and how I apply meta to it.

    Insulating a town read from a scum night kill- If you are able to pick up that Player X is probably a Doctor there are 2 ways to play it out. You can try to pull attention off the slot or you can scum read the slot. From the scum perspective (See perspectives in part two) it makes sense for scum to target players they think they cannot lynch. By scum reading the slot you can provide incisive for scum to leave the slot alive.
    Wifom lvl 0: This is a perfect example of pro-town wifom manipulation, however, unskilled players will take it at face value and question why are you scum reading this "obvious town" person? Thus they will scum read you and sadly may expose what you were trying to do in the first place.

    Wifom lvl 1: Which is where meta comes in. You need to be able to judge if a certain player is "actually scum reading player X" or "is wifom protecting player X by making it appear that he is scum reading him". That is the question in is purest and basic form.

    Now if I know that a player has used this kind of strategy in a previous game, then I can then assume that he knows how to use it effectively, it doesn't mean that he is automatically town for doing this but I can right off the "scum tell" in the list as a potential pro-town gambit. Does this mean I ignore it for the rest of the game? No - but I will put it on hold in case that is what he is doing and if it is not what he intended to do, then by not pushing the issue the wifom manipulation takes place anyways.

    Wifom lvl 2: The tricky part is understanding all the consequences of the wifom manipulation and then judge if it is better to stay quiet or speak up. What do I mean by that? Well, if the person that is "scum reading" player X is scum, then he might be trying to pull the healing/lookout roles off from that person making them think that scum will not target someone who might be lynched. Thus giving scum a less risky high value target. Again, knowing if the person you are trying to analyze has done this in the past will influence your judgement if this is something he might be doing now.

    Wifom lvl 3: or what I like to call the counter wifom lvl. If you know that a player has enough skill to pull off wifom lvls 0, 1 and 2. Then you are back to square 1 when it comes to reading a player for his alignment because he could be doing any one of those. Sometimes the best move is to ignore any wifom manipulation and perform what needs to be done with a PR move. For example, in this case, a lookout can watch player X.


    Being able to use meta will give you a better idea how to treat a player. Sometimes it's best to let him do what he wants, sometimes, it's best to expose him and destroy the wifom, other times, it's best to stay quiet, let the wifom take place and double check by ignoring said wifom.

    One thing of note about wifom lvl 0 plays, if someone does this and has the knowledge and perfect capability of understanding lvl 1 or higher, then this is highly scummy whereas if a newer or unskilled player does this then there is a much higher chance that this is a false positive.


    The same can be said about Helz's 3 other situations. You need to use meta to know if a player is
    1- capable of such plays,
    2- frequency of such plays
    3- and has the ability to counter-wifom such plays

    If someone can read you all the time, then maybe you should start looking into changing what wifom lvl you use. Being unpredictable and unreadable is not a scum trait but the result of people not knowing what level of wifom you are intending to use as almost every action/reaction can have both pro-town and pro-scum results if you analyze it deep enough.

    Even after all this time, I still find my guide from long ago relevant and helpful for newer people.

    Some specific player metas that people should be aware of.

    Yayap:
    Most people know that I keep almost everything I really think hidden regardless of my alignment. Everything I openly say usually has some sort of wifom manipulation until I'm ready to unleash hell on someone. Even when I identify a scum, I sometimes let that person live if it's early in the game while thinking that I don't suspect him - this is to give me time to analyze his interactions with other people. Once I catch one scum, I can usually tie them to their teammates. In the early days, if you are town-reading me, then you are being fooled. Always neutral or scum read me until I start to unleash what I've been hiding. Be warned, I use myself as bait very often too, as a lynch train just as much as a PR magnet. As for reads, people overestimate my scumhunting abilities day 1. I excel in night actions predictions and what "should" happen if such and such is x alignment making me a much bigger threat in day 3+. Day 1, I'm too busy trying to evaluate new peoples skill level to be able to read them.

    Slaol:
    He very often starts a bad train on someone and tries to get info based on how people respond to such trains. He also will flip that same train later and say it was to gain info. He does this both as town and scum so it does not mean anything alignment wise. You can choose to use him for your own reads if you wish, by helping his train... but beware, you need to make sure Slaol is correctly meta reading you so that you don't end up being the brunt of his attack later on.

    (had more info for much older players, not so informed about the new generation - may update this later if I think it's needed)

    Eventually I might make a thread on what is scummy and reasons why... but too lazy right now to think of everything I want to bring up.

    Spoiler : :

  2. #2

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    This guide is well written and provides a strong basic understanding of ďWIFOMĒ and meta as it relates to scum hunting, TPR hunting, and gambits. I agree with all that was said and wish I had the eloquence to put it to such words as this. A++ guide.

    Do my meta read next, Yayap-senpai.

  3. #3

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    I do not think I can understate the value of this post. It really does break complex levels of play into piratical application I have never seen detailed so well.
    Quote Originally Posted by Helz View Post
    if we could just stop catering to the toxic attitude and apathy that has become the culture of this site.
    Its easy to tear something down. Building something real takes a level of conviction and dedication that is not cool or fun.

  4. #4

  5. #5

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    @Yayap stickied i forgot the first time i read
    I love oops

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  6. #6

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    This guide is very interesting, and I'd like to discuss some more about it. Note that this post reflects my opinion, which I believe to be right, of course, but am in no way saying it is the absolute truth. Also remember that what you, reader, who are currently thinking about your reply, will express your opinion too, and that whatever it is, it might not be the absolute truth. Keep a healthy amount of doubt and open-mindedness, please. This is both a warning and a self-reminder.

    ~~

    The "Proper way to use meta" described here is extremely well-made here. I'd argue it is uncontestably the core of meta use, because it has very low odds of failing, especially when followed with basic logic, such as "a player can evolve, so their skills may or may not have grown since the last game I played with them".

    However, saying it is the only way to use meta is wrong. The way described in Helz's Macro Meta Crunching (link on the thread's first post) is also valid, simply to a lesser extent. A read based only on that kind of meta, that I will here call weak meta, in opposition to strong meta, the way that is described as "proper" in this thread, is extremely weak and should never be used as single grounds for a lynch, because of its unreliability.
    The issue with completely ignoring it is that it eliminates a tool, a way to orient your thoughts. While you cannot use it alone to build a proper read and even less to build a proper case, you can use it with other elements. Disregarding weak meta completely is taking away a useful tool. Giving weak meta too much importance is forgetting that it is a tool.

    Weak meta can be compared to an autocorrection tool. Saying that weak meta should NEVER be used is like saying autocorrect should not exist. Autocorrect allows for some ease of use with computer writing. However, relying purely on autocorrect to review your text, which can be compared to using only weak meta and nothing else to support it, will obviously give horrible results.

    ~~

    I am aware that the community here, and the mafia communities in general, tend to over-rely on weak meta (but not to overuse it). But to say it should not be used at all is to throw a good tool in the trash can.
    Spoiler : Quotes :
    Quote Originally Posted by S-FM Hey peter View Post
    There are two wolves inside you. One is addicted to crack. The other one is also addicted to crack. You are addicted to crack.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stealthbomber16 View Post
    MM IS AN ANTI-VAXXER
    Quote Originally Posted by BananaCucho View Post
    Mallow are you really an anti vaxxer
    Quote Originally Posted by The Lawyer View Post
    Besides your lamp and your refridgerators, do you find anyone else suspicious?
    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    God is a goofy loser.

  7. #7

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    I only played on Mafiascum before i came onto here and when i came onto here i saw Meta being used like straight away almost and i really really disliked meta from my time over on MS. However thanks to a few absolute geezers my thoughts on Meta have shifted somewhat and i see it moreso a legit tactic if used correctly.
    Share Our Wealth, for not Sharing the wealth leaves the risk of dying when the communist arrive, and we dont want communist now do we.

  8. #8
    Ganelon
    Guest

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    I actually agree with this guide after a reread.

    I have a few things to add here, inspired by something Frinckles discussed last game: what meta actually is.

    Meta doesnít have to be player-specific; it can be alignment-specific as well. This is what we typically refer to as Ďtellsí; after all, you learn most of these tells by seeing them in others, time after time. Only rarely can one come up with a tell based on mere reasoning alone; pure logic-based reasoning cannot be applied to such things, because there are many variables to consider.

    Thereís something else I would like to add. I often feel as though the differences between the mod and FM are overstated; fundamentally, at the core, they are the same game.

    The difference emerge from the fact that in FM, days are substantially longer than in the mod. This means that scum are forced to plan their game ahead of time; no longer can you one rely on mere instinct and on-the-spot improvisation to survive. This also means the Townies need to look harder to spot the scum.

    However, that being said, without naming any specific tells, I feel like some of the most important meta things scum/town do still apply in FM.

    I feel like the real difference between the two lies mostly in the, how shall I put this? You need more information to properly gauge someoneís alignment here than on the mod, especially with more experienced players (faking towniness is difficult, but not impossible, although in the long run itís arguably an untenable position).


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #9
    Ganelon
    Guest

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    Quote Originally Posted by Magoroth View Post
    I actually agree with this guide after a reread.

    I have a few things to add here, inspired by something Frinckles discussed last game: what meta actually is.

    Meta doesnít have to be player-specific; it can be alignment-specific as well. This is what we typically refer to as Ďtellsí; after all, you learn most of these tells by seeing them in others, time after time. Only rarely can one come up with a tell based on mere reasoning alone; pure logic-based reasoning cannot be applied to such things, because there are many variables to consider.

    Thereís something else I would like to add. I often feel as though the differences between the mod and FM are overstated; fundamentally, at the core, they are the same game.

    The difference emerge from the fact that in FM, days are substantially longer than in the mod. This means that scum are forced to plan their game ahead of time; no longer can you one rely on mere instinct and on-the-spot improvisation to survive. This also means the Townies need to look harder to spot the scum.

    However, that being said, without naming any specific tells, I feel like some of the most important meta things scum/town do still apply in FM.

    I feel like the real difference between the two lies mostly in the, how shall I put this? You need more information to properly gauge someoneís alignment here than on the mod, especially with more experienced players (faking towniness is difficult, but not impossible, although in the long run itís arguably an untenable position).


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    You need to catch players off-guard, or to force them outside of their comfort zone, in order for them to reveal their true colours.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Ganelon
    Guest

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    Last but not least, if you wanna get better at the game, play scum.
    Not kidding either


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  11. #11

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    Quote Originally Posted by Huey The Long View Post
    I only played on Mafiascum before i came onto here and when i came onto here i saw Meta being used like straight away almost and i really really disliked meta from my time over on MS. However thanks to a few absolute geezers my thoughts on Meta have shifted somewhat and i see it moreso a legit tactic if used correctly.
    That's the point I'm trying to make here, exactly. Weak meta is not the almighty power that can be used to singlehandly solve games. That's bad. However, using it cleverly will really improve your ability to win games.

    Plus, that works on sites where you don't know anyone. You can ask others for someone else's meta, or even the person itself. Of course, the info is different, but still useful.
    Spoiler : Quotes :
    Quote Originally Posted by S-FM Hey peter View Post
    There are two wolves inside you. One is addicted to crack. The other one is also addicted to crack. You are addicted to crack.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stealthbomber16 View Post
    MM IS AN ANTI-VAXXER
    Quote Originally Posted by BananaCucho View Post
    Mallow are you really an anti vaxxer
    Quote Originally Posted by The Lawyer View Post
    Besides your lamp and your refridgerators, do you find anyone else suspicious?
    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    God is a goofy loser.

  12. #12

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    Quote Originally Posted by Magoroth View Post
    I actually agree with this guide after a reread.

    I have a few things to add here, inspired by something Frinckles discussed last game: what meta actually is.

    Meta doesn’t have to be player-specific; it can be alignment-specific as well. This is what we typically refer to as ‘tells’; after all, you learn most of these tells by seeing them in others, time after time. Only rarely can one come up with a tell based on mere reasoning alone; pure logic-based reasoning cannot be applied to such things, because there are many variables to consider.

    There’s something else I would like to add. I often feel as though the differences between the mod and FM are overstated; fundamentally, at the core, they are the same game.

    The difference emerge from the fact that in FM, days are substantially longer than in the mod. This means that scum are forced to plan their game ahead of time; no longer can you one rely on mere instinct and on-the-spot improvisation to survive. This also means the Townies need to look harder to spot the scum.

    However, that being said, without naming any specific tells, I feel like some of the most important meta things scum/town do still apply in FM.

    I feel like the real difference between the two lies mostly in the, how shall I put this? You need more information to properly gauge someone’s alignment here than on the mod, especially with more experienced players (faking towniness is difficult, but not impossible, although in the long run it’s arguably an untenable position).


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Saying meta is not player-specific, unless you talk about site meta, is just to extend the word's meaning to the word "tell"'s.

    As for the mod's meta, which is a completely different topic btw, it is definetly different from FM's because of the phase lenghts. Sure, the idea is the same, but there are tells in FM that do not exist on the mod. For example, sheeping holds a completely different value, which greatly affects how wagonomics are used, and how much they can be used.
    Spoiler : Quotes :
    Quote Originally Posted by S-FM Hey peter View Post
    There are two wolves inside you. One is addicted to crack. The other one is also addicted to crack. You are addicted to crack.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stealthbomber16 View Post
    MM IS AN ANTI-VAXXER
    Quote Originally Posted by BananaCucho View Post
    Mallow are you really an anti vaxxer
    Quote Originally Posted by The Lawyer View Post
    Besides your lamp and your refridgerators, do you find anyone else suspicious?
    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    God is a goofy loser.

  13. #13
    Ganelon
    Guest

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    Of course. I agree with you. There are FM-specific tells.

  14. #14

  15. #15

  16. #16
    Ganelon
    Guest

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    Something I need to add is that thereís also alignment-specific and role-specific meta tells. That is, in and of themselves they are not indicative of anything necessarily, it is only from empirical observation that they actually became significant.

    Thereís also a (third? fourth?) type of meta which I think is what most people think of when they refer to meta, player-specific. This has two subtypes, person meta (if that makes sense) and game meta. Iím not going to talk about game meta as itís essentially been covered by Yayap already. Instead Iíll go over person meta real quick. Person-specific meta refers essentially to a players personality, and how they conduct themselves outside of the game. Iíll give an example of this since itís relatively difficult to put into words plainly although it essentially simply refers to emotion, and the players psychologival make-up as a person. For instance, Mm last game put a (negative) post aamirus made about him in his signature, which gave me a microreason to townread him for. This is HEAVILY game specific however, and you need to understand the context in which the post was made to actually derive a read from it. In and of itself him putting that post in his signature doesnít mean shit; it could also be faked. Itís all about the context.

  17. #17

    Re: How to use Meta in FMs the proper way

    Quote Originally Posted by Magoroth View Post
    Something I need to add is that there’s also alignment-specific and role-specific meta tells. That is, in and of themselves they are not indicative of anything necessarily, it is only from empirical observation that they actually became significant.

    There’s also a (third? fourth?) type of meta which I think is what most people think of when they refer to meta, player-specific. This has two subtypes, person meta (if that makes sense) and game meta. I’m not going to talk about game meta as it’s essentially been covered by Yayap already. Instead I’ll go over person meta real quick. Person-specific meta refers essentially to a players personality, and how they conduct themselves outside of the game. I’ll give an example of this since it’s relatively difficult to put into words plainly although it essentially simply refers to emotion, and the players psychologival make-up as a person. For instance, Mm last game put a (negative) post aamirus made about him in his signature, which gave me a microreason to townread him for. This is HEAVILY game specific however, and you need to understand the context in which the post was made to actually derive a read from it. In and of itself him putting that post in his signature doesn’t mean shit; it could also be faked. It’s all about the context.
    I confirm the validity of this reasoning, btw. I never think about doing that kind of thing as scum (although I will think about it now that it was said lol).

    As for the dictionary thing, it's an interesting point that's being made. Meta is not something directly AI, but simply information that doesn't seem AI by itself, yet becomes AI to various degrees when cross-analyzed with the player's game or "person" meta.
    Spoiler : Quotes :
    Quote Originally Posted by S-FM Hey peter View Post
    There are two wolves inside you. One is addicted to crack. The other one is also addicted to crack. You are addicted to crack.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stealthbomber16 View Post
    MM IS AN ANTI-VAXXER
    Quote Originally Posted by BananaCucho View Post
    Mallow are you really an anti vaxxer
    Quote Originally Posted by The Lawyer View Post
    Besides your lamp and your refridgerators, do you find anyone else suspicious?
    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    God is a goofy loser.

 

 

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