Why Spy is the worst role in the game
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  1. #1

    Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    And by worst role, I don't mean weakest, I mean most detrimental to the quality of the game.

    While the title might be hyperbolic (there are at least four roles in the game that are worse for the game than the spy), I do believe that the mere existence of the spy is detrimental to the quality of the game itself.

    Spy
    The spy is able to see who the mafia kills and who they target, these abilities on their own are decent enough, if not a bit underwhelming at times. But combined with the fact that the spy is exclusively a town power role (therefore making role counting much easier when there's a confirmed spy in the game/graveyard), the spy would be perfectly fine, if not a bit underwhelming for a power role.

    But of course the spy has one more notable ability: the ability to read mafia chat at night. On the surface this seems like a neat ability - after all every now and then it's a lot of fun to catch a mafia based off of their typing patterns in day chat vs night chat as spy; or to trick a spy by emulating a townie's typing pattern during the mafia night chat. But in practice this occurs very infrequently and almost exclusively among new players. After all, it takes a player getting caught by spy due to their typing only once, or for a spy to be tricked by mafia only once for them to wise up and not make that mistake again.

    So in practice the spy's ability to read night chat really only has one effect: it stops the mafia from attempting to coordinate or implement any advanced strategies.

    Because the spy can read night chat the mafia never tries to coordinate their role claims with each other, they're reluctant to share the information they've found via the agent, they're reluctant to discuss who they should roleblock or blackmail due to risking creating confirmed townies in the spy's last will, they're even reluctant to acknowledge each other's roles so that the spy doesn't reveal that the investigator in the game is actually a consigliere turned godfather after the godfather died!

    Even when a spy isn't guaranteed, even when it's only a 20% chance, mafia will still refrain from attempting more advanced strategies due to how potentially incriminating and game losing a spy listening in could be.

    This suppression of strategic choices the mafia has at their disposal is arguably the strongest part of the spy. It's so strong that it has shaped the meta of the game to the point where the spy doesn't even have to be in the game to have this effect. There could be a 0% chance for a spy and the mafia will likely not even attempt more advanced strategies due to how off-meta this kind of mafia strategizing has become due to the risk of the spy. (Ironically this also makes the spy the strongest when it's not in the game. The spy's strongest ability is the suppression of mafia strategy, but since it doesn't have to be in the game to have this effect, that means when it is in the game, all you're left with is an underwhelming power role)

    Depriving the mafia the ability to coordinate, develop, and implement more advanced strategies has several knock-on effects as well. Primarily it weakens the strength of the mafia, hosts counterbalance this weakening in a number of ways, but almost all of these measures end up shifting the balance in mafia's favor by increasing the randomness in the game at the expense of strategy and deception.

    ===

    TL;DR The spy's ability to read night chat prevents mafia from coordinating and strategizing. This effect has permeated the meta leading to far less strategic and coordinated play from the mafia, requiring them to be buffed in other ways, all in all degrading the quality of the game.

  2. #2

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    I have read this before. I feel like I have read this before. Have I read this before?

    I don't remember a game with the Mafia/Triad actually using the Night Chat, and I wouldn't be surprised if it was because of Spy.

    But it has to be said though. The night is how long? 20 seconds? 30? I don't believe there'd suddenly be impactful interactions between the Mafias if Spy got removed or lost the ability to read night chat - just because of how short the nights are.
    GF being able to fake a detective claim because of Agent would be nice though.

    I think there'd be no harm in giving people the option to disable the Spy's ability to read night chat?

    Tbh, I'm curious if @Elixir has a comment on this.
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  3. #3

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    +9999999999999999999999999999

    Completely agreed. When I played the Arcade, I always excluded Spy from my saves for the reasons stated in the OP.

    Ozy, you've probably heard that in ToS when they simply removed the ability for spy to see mafia chat, which was a great decision.
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  4. #4

  5. #5

  6. #6

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Quote Originally Posted by SuperJack View Post
    Where has LagAttack been hiding. This is grossly unreal that a player who clearly had more than 2 braincells has not been kidnapped and brought into our social community where we are able to torture them.
    Haha

    It's about time all 3 of my braincells got the recognition they deserved

  7. #7

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Do I read this as subtle sarcasm?
    Quote Originally Posted by Huey The Long View Post
    Naz will die, i can promise you this, i visited there home, i shared the wealth, placed my book on their nightstand and said every man a king 3 times so they will die from my glorious contagion of my political program
    Quote Originally Posted by Blinkstorteddd02 View Post
    You sure you dont want to lynch Voss again? he may flip scum this time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Distorted View Post
    mags my highest townread and i think hes scum.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Magician View Post
    Yeah I donít read or care to that much. I just vote correctly and thatís that.

  8. #8

  9. #9

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Quote Originally Posted by LagAttack View Post
    Nah, no sarcasm intended, just thanking SuperJack with a self-deprecating joke.

    Also technically speaking, I've been a member of the forum for over seven and a half years
    Has less posts than me smh

    Back on thread topic though, I have never really had communication problems with a spy just because as a member of either Maf/Triad you can really throw them off by what you say.

    AKA If you use a brain, look at % spy drop, then talk accordingly by "accidentally" slipping a name or number, your chances of baiting a spy out are high and as such they can be countered. My only problem currently is that the spy role in general is unprovable (aka a hinderence) and seen as a "easy evil claim" by many people unless there are both Maf and Triad in a game.

    Is it seem as OP by a large portion of the playerbase? Yes, and I think maf/triad should have some way of countering spy without using the above psychological methods since most experienced players do not fall for it.

  10. #10

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Quote Originally Posted by Varcron View Post
    Has less posts than me smh

    Back on thread topic though, I have never really had communication problems with a spy just because as a member of either Maf/Triad you can really throw them off by what you say.

    AKA If you use a brain, look at % spy drop, then talk accordingly by "accidentally" slipping a name or number, your chances of baiting a spy out are high and as such they can be countered. My only problem currently is that the spy role in general is unprovable (aka a hinderence) and seen as a "easy evil claim" by many people unless there are both Maf and Triad in a game.

    Is it seem as OP by a large portion of the playerbase? Yes, and I think maf/triad should have some way of countering spy without using the above psychological methods since most experienced players do not fall for it.
    Spy needs a buff. Change it so that you will receive the amount of Mafia and/or Triad who visit certain people each Night. The order is randomized. You will be able to also "bug" a person neach night, revealing any direct actions against them such as attacks, roleblocks, transports.

    Edit: grammar
    Last edited by WrathCyber; May 5th, 2021 at 11:54 PM.

  11. #11

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Quote Originally Posted by WrathCyber View Post
    Spy needs a buff. Change it so that you will receive the amount of Mafia and/or Triad who visit certain people each Night. The order is randomized. You will be able to also "bug" a person neach night, revealing any direct actions against them such as attacks, roleblocks, transports.

    Edit: grammar
    This is ToS spy and it sucks too.
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  12. #12

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    There are a few roles in the game that we intend on changing at some point. One of the highest priorities is Spy.

    From my notes:
    -Spy de-values Mafia chat and their ability to coordinate significantly by being able to listen in on their chat.
    Recommendation: Remove Spy's ability to read Mafia chat & give them another ability.
    Some thoughts of a replacement ability have been to give them a one-shot auto-vest against Mafia exclusively. Something along the lines of "your intel was solid and you were able to avoid a mafia hit on your life." Or perhaps the ability give information to investigative roles in some subtle way without it being too powerful.

    Not really sure yet, need more brain-storming but the Spy problem has not gone unnoticed.
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  13. #13

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Maybe turn their ability to read mafia chat into an active one, give the Spy limited charges of said ability, and let the Mafia know their chat is being listened to.
    Quote Originally Posted by Huey The Long View Post
    Naz will die, i can promise you this, i visited there home, i shared the wealth, placed my book on their nightstand and said every man a king 3 times so they will die from my glorious contagion of my political program
    Quote Originally Posted by Blinkstorteddd02 View Post
    You sure you dont want to lynch Voss again? he may flip scum this time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Distorted View Post
    mags my highest townread and i think hes scum.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Magician View Post
    Yeah I donít read or care to that much. I just vote correctly and thatís that.

  14. #14

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Quote Originally Posted by Oberon View Post
    Maybe turn their ability to read mafia chat into an active one, give the Spy limited charges of said ability, and let the Mafia know their chat is being listened to.
    No... That would render spy absolutely useless, literally just don't talk the nights you've been warned and poof easy counter.

    I don't think the night chat mechanic is that toxic for the game, rarely ever is it used to a spy's advantage, it mostly just hinders you if the mafia drops fake leads.

  15. #15

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Quote Originally Posted by Varcron View Post
    No... That would render spy absolutely useless, literally just don't talk the nights you've been warned and poof easy counter.

    I don't think the night chat mechanic is that toxic for the game, rarely ever is it used to a spy's advantage, it mostly just hinders you if the mafia drops fake leads.
    It's not useless, it prevents the mafia from talking at night ^^
    Quote Originally Posted by Huey The Long View Post
    Naz will die, i can promise you this, i visited there home, i shared the wealth, placed my book on their nightstand and said every man a king 3 times so they will die from my glorious contagion of my political program
    Quote Originally Posted by Blinkstorteddd02 View Post
    You sure you dont want to lynch Voss again? he may flip scum this time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Distorted View Post
    mags my highest townread and i think hes scum.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Magician View Post
    Yeah I donít read or care to that much. I just vote correctly and thatís that.

  16. #16

  17. #17

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Oh yeah that's true. You're right. Spy isn't as gamebreaking as the OP implies ^^ rarely do I see Mafia getting screwed by a spy. The only thing it counters hard is disguisers
    Quote Originally Posted by Huey The Long View Post
    Naz will die, i can promise you this, i visited there home, i shared the wealth, placed my book on their nightstand and said every man a king 3 times so they will die from my glorious contagion of my political program
    Quote Originally Posted by Blinkstorteddd02 View Post
    You sure you dont want to lynch Voss again? he may flip scum this time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Distorted View Post
    mags my highest townread and i think hes scum.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Magician View Post
    Yeah I donít read or care to that much. I just vote correctly and thatís that.

  18. #18

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Make Spy able to read PMs and give the blackmailer that ability also
    Quote Originally Posted by Huey The Long View Post
    Naz will die, i can promise you this, i visited there home, i shared the wealth, placed my book on their nightstand and said every man a king 3 times so they will die from my glorious contagion of my political program
    Quote Originally Posted by Blinkstorteddd02 View Post
    You sure you dont want to lynch Voss again? he may flip scum this time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Distorted View Post
    mags my highest townread and i think hes scum.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Magician View Post
    Yeah I donít read or care to that much. I just vote correctly and thatís that.

  19. #19

  20. #20

    Re: Why Spy is the worst role in the game

    Quote Originally Posted by Oberon View Post
    Oh yeah that's true. You're right. Spy isn't as gamebreaking as the OP implies ^^ rarely do I see Mafia getting screwed by a spy. The only thing it counters hard is disguisers
    Oh ya disguisers are screwed when a spy is in the game, typically you have to pray that you can fly under the radar until at least D5 or D6 till you're sure every single one of the buggers are dead.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oberon
    Make Spy able to read PMs and give the blackmailer that ability also
    Yes please, give us more strategies to use

 

 

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