Critical Play: Competitive Analysis by Meerim Nurlanbekova

I played Mafia offline with my friends a while back. It is a social game centered around deception, strategy, and the intriguing dynamics of social deduction. It immersed us in a world of hidden identities and suspenseful decision-making. I loved pretending to be a villager when I was a mafia and would usually win! Every time you need to change the way you react and respond, cause if others notice patterns of your reaction, it will be super easy for them to guess who you are! 

For this assignment, I also tried the app! So I played it online and am happy to analyze the graphics of the game below. 

Mechanics: The game mechanics seamlessly blended night and day phases. During the night, each player, assuming different roles like Mafia, Detective, Doctor, or Sheriff, executed strategic moves that added layers of complexity. The subsequent day phase involved intense town-wide voting to uncover and eliminate the Mafia.

Type of Fun Promised: The Game promised a unique brand of fun that resonated with our group. The thrill of deception, the challenge of deductive reasoning, and the unpredictable social interactions kept us engaged and entertained throughout our gaming sessions. Creation of Fun: The fun stemmed from the strategic decisions we made, the tension of hidden roles, and the evolving narrative shaped by our actions. It brought back memories of intense discussions, accusations, and unexpected alliances, creating a memorable and enjoyable gaming experience.

Graphic Design Decisions: The online version of the game is also so much fun! What I really like is the novice player friendly design. The explanation in the beginning. 

Unlike the offline version of the game, in virtual Mafia, you can play with a minimum number of people as the website generates bots as players! Which is wonderful! Very thoughtful of those who want to play with a minimum number of players. 

Simple design, two colors, and fonts are designed well to prompt the user journey.

Handling Abuse: Such games like Mafia with the elements of “killing”, and “accusations” can be very overwhelming and emotional. It is important to differentiate your self from the role you are playing and not take things personally during the game as we all are playing roles! 

Suggestions for Improvement: Developing on the above passage, I would suggest adding it as a rule in order to avoid “heat” and “tension” after the game is over. It is important to set the rule that whatever happens during the game should stay within the game!

Personal Interest: The combination of social deduction, strategy, and the ever-changing dynamics of player interaction captured our interest during those gaming sessions. One thing I particularly liked was the confession stage when you have to reveal your role. People tend to pretend as villagers till the very last second lying, and manipulating others 🙂 A great way to show your acting skills! 


— By Meerim Nurlanbekova

About the author

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.