A late winter blizzard ravages a small castle on the edge of Ljosalfar lands. Wind howls through the empty battlements and causes drafts through the vacant corridors. The towering greenhouse shudders violently, but somehow remains standing. Yet the plants within, so long untended, have already begun to bloom, as though spring has arrived early. This is Castle Animus, and not long ago, it was full of life. The Duchy of Animus had been a small country of its own, ruled from this castle, respected by its neighbors, the Ljosalfar on one side, and the Amurites on the other. The land was unsuitable for farming, and no valuable mineral resources could be found in the ground, but still the Duchy was prosperous. Its prosperity came from Duke Animus himself, who was not only of noble blood, but also had great magical power. The old archmage was virtually unparalleled in his mastery of life, nature, and spirit magic, and with the resources and respect payed to him for his services to the neighboring empires, he built himself a small country of his own. It was said that of all living mortals, the Duke knew the most about the border of life, and how it could be bent to serve one's purposes. Yet even a mind as capable as his was not immune to corruption. Like so many great mages before him, Duke Animus fell to the whispers of the Ashen Veil, and was stopped and slain in the last moments of a ritual intended to summon some unspeakable horror from the Age of Dragons. In the troubles that followed, most of his relatives were killed, either by the betrayal of his erstwhile conspirators, or while defending the summoning circle during the last great assault. In the end, only one girl, his apprentice and granddaughter, survived to carry on the line as Duchess Animus, and even then only briefly. She was murdered at her own wedding, and most of those who were still left at the castle trickled away soon after. Its benefactor gone, the Duchy of Animus was soon annexed peacefully by the Ljosalfar, and its castle was granted to a young elven lord for valor in battle. He, his retainers, and a few travelers on their way from Ljosalfar lands to Amurite ones, or vice versa, were caught in a late winter blizzard. And so this is where we begin. Castle Animus has not seen the last of its misfortunes. Soon, death and tragedy will again visit these stones that have already seen so much, and all those within will be forced to struggle for their hopes, their beliefs, and their lives themselves. Night of the Werewolves XXV Hello, and welcome to my most recent project. This is the latest in the Night of the Werewolves series of roleplaying mafia games. If you're unfamiliar with them, check out the information thread, and feel free to join this one to try it out. I'll assume that the reader is familiar with the basic format here, and just go out of my way to emphasize a few house rules this time around. All players should read the following sections - some rules are pretty traditional, but others might be unexpected. Time Cycle The game will alternate between 48 hour days and 24 hour nights. During the daytime, execution and item votes may be made, and public messages may be posted. During the night, player abilities may be used in secret by PM'ing the GM. Private messages may be sent regardless of the time of day. Unless otherwise noted, voting and secret ability use will be cut off at 9:00 a.m. GMT, approximately 48 hours after each morning post, and 24 hours after each evening post. Interruptions due to the GM's schedule might interfere, but this will be announced beforehand and an alternate schedule posted whenever possible. Note also that secret messages can be sent through the GM. Just PM me whatever you want the message to be, and whether you want it to be public, or forwarded anonymously to a particular player, and it will be done upon the next morning, midday, or evening post. This is effectively a looser version of the old "secret voice" system from classic NotW. Voting Each player will have one execution vote to make each day, which can be changed freely up until the day's end. Some players may also have secret votes, which can only be made alongside normal public votes, and which cannot be different from that public vote. The placement of these secret votes will not be revealed, and only by observing whether the outcome is different from what it would otherwise be can their presence be detected. On the first day, a player will need at least two thirds of all votes cast in order to be executed. For the next two days, a majority of all cast votes are required for the condemned to be executed. After that, the player only needs more votes than the runner-up to be executed. Players with the most votes, but who are not to be executed, will instead be locked in the dungeon for the night, the next day, and the night after that. While the player is in the dungeon, he will be unable to cast binding votes or use any abilities, but he will not be immune to the day's voting. Support votes will work quite differently in this game than in previous ones. A support vote may be cast by any player, for any player, but this will not change the subject's base vote total. Instead, it will subtract one from the subject's "adjusted vote total," which ends up being just the number of normal votes minus the number of support votes. If the player with the most raw votes against him has a lower adjusted vote total than the next most popular candidate (or than the required minimum for the first three days), then he will be locked in the dungeon instead of executed. Notable items that are revealed in the game will be given to the winner of a vote as well. Item votes will work the same way as normal voting, though there is no support vote equivalent, and there is no minimum threshold. Secret votes will be taken into account for item possession as well. Players may privately proxy their vote to another player, in which case that player's vote will be announced in the evening post as having changed at the last moment. Players may also privately ask the GM to have their vote changed at the last moment as well, if they'd rather keep their vote secret until the day's end. More complex proxies based on the day's events are generally possible, as long as they don't require the GM to make subjective judgements, and don't rely on events revealed in the evening post itself (such as the condemned's innocense or guilt, or the placement of other players' secret votes). This is meant to even the playing field for players whose time zones don't allow them to be online in the brief time before the day's end. The procedure for dealing with a tie will not be made known. Item Handling Several characters will start with items that have a significant function in-game (and some might start with items that are useless, so don't go assuming that something is significant just 'cause it exists). If a player has any notable items upon his character's death, then it'll be revealed upon the next morning post, and immediately go up for a vote. A character can also choose to reveal his own item to the public and have it confirmed by the GM (though note that the lack of an item cannot be confirmed this way). The GM will only post confirmations during the morning, midday, and evening posts. Note, however, that this also entails putting the item up for grabs in a public vote - don't reveal your item unless you're willing to risk having it voted away from you. Items put up for voting this way will stay with the current owner 'till the next morning post, after which they will be put up for a vote. Private item confirmation among two players is also possible and does not cause the item in question to go up for a vote. An item may be privately gifted by one player to another, as long as both players consent to the transfer. Item transfer can only take place during the morning, midday, or evening post, and the transferred item cannot be used for any abilities during the time period in which the transfer is initiated. Also note that strength bonuses given by weapons don't stack, unless otherwise stated. Communication Etiquette Alright, this is a bit more of a gray area, with lots of subjective interpretation, so bear with me here. None of these rules will get you banned from the game for violating them (probably), but we'll all have a better time if you follow them. Firstly, a word on items. Not everything you roleplay as having on your person needs to be from your character PM. Things like a simple dagger or a sentimental charm could reasonably be with you but not significant enough to have a gameplay impact. However, if your character is leaning on a six foot long greatsword as he talks, you really ought to make sure you have one listed in your stats. Now, verbally claiming to have a six foot long +5 vorpal wolfbane adamantine greatsword in your other pants pocket is perfectly fine, as it doesn't break immersion at all if it turns out you never had it in the first place. Note that this guideline goes in both directions - even if you do have some conspicuous weapon, don't roleplay showing it off unless you've already had it publicly confirmed by the GM. Regarding public messages, try to keep night talking to a minimum. Also, if you have OOC stuff to talk about that doesn't pertain to playing the game, talk about it in the signup thread or in the general NotW thread. That means that if you're suspicious of someone 'cause there was no night kill last night, and this person was inactive, by all means post it in the thread. If, on the other hand, you saw an image in the mustard on your chilli dog that totally reminded you of something that one of your fellow players said the other day, it'd probably go best elsewhere. And one other thing: If you're dead, don't make any posts regarding the game, please. I know that the standard "Aw guys you shouldn't have lynched me" can be sort of amusing, but there's too thin a line between that and after-death meaningful communication, which is forbidden. Regarding private messages, there's a reason they're called private. Don't directly copy and paste quotes from private messages into other private messages or into public posts. Summarize them if you want, but don't give a word-for-word quote, and don't give the impression that you're doing so. The big exception here is if you know that the recipient has already seen the PM in question - that is, you can see on your copy of the PM that it was also forwarded to the third party. This exception is there just because it makes group discussions over CFC's PM system a lot more convenient. Finally, remember that this last rule goes doubly for any PMs you have from the GM - do not, under any circumstances, copy and paste your ability description, your motivation, your victory condition, or anything else from your starting PM. The same goes for confirmations of ability use or whatever. Summarize it if you want, but word-for-word quotes are not permitted. Anyway, that pretty much sums up all the points I think need to be reiterated. No need to remind you all to be civil - you guys never have a problem with that. If anything, you ought to be a bit less civil, since your characters tend to be mortal enemies and all. One last request, though - I appreciate having your private discussions forwarded to me so I can keep track of the flow of the game. You all have my word that I haven't included any abilities among the characters that can be used to look at the messages I've been forwarded. It's purely optional, and just for my own entertainment. Character Stats Your PM will include some basic game stats for your character, as well as some background information for roleplaying. The information publicly available in the thread will be your title (unique to your character), your gender (male or female), and your species (human, elf, dwarf, or orc). These should all be pretty self-explanatory. Secret character information will be much more extensive. Your alignment will be specified as good, neutral, or evil, as per the conventions in the FfH universe. Your ethnicity, corresponding to one of the FfH nations (such as Ljosalfar and Amurites) will also be given, as will your true species if your public story isn't your true one. Your strength for endgame determination will be listed as well. Any significant items you have in your possession will be listed, and you'll probably be given more information about their functions than any other character would be given upon obtaining them. Your special ability will also be named and described, though keep in mind that you may not be aware of all its aspects, and it's even possible to have a special ability without knowing it. Your victory condition and special motivation will be listed next. The default victory condition is "innocent victory," but it may be less common than you'd expect. Most characters will have some special motivation that keeps them going, too - these will be highly varied, from simple death wishes and protective hopes to more complex agendas specific to the setting. Generally, fulfilling these motivations will only be good for bragging rights after the game is over, but fulfilling a motivation may also trigger special events that wouldn't happen otherwise. Lastly, a couple of short paragraphs will explain who you are, why you're at Castle Animus, why you have the items you do, how you use the abilities you do, why you want the things you do, and perhaps a few tidbits that might be useless fluff, and might be the key to winning the game. I'm going to great pains to make each character as unique as possible. I'm always a little sad to see them die, so try to live it up while you're still around. Signups And with that, let's get to the signups! I'll keep a list of who has signed up for the game here. I currently have 36 characters designed. If we have an excess player or two, they'll be kept in reserve, just in case another player drops out or is inactive. If we have a much larger excess of players, I'll make some more roles. This game will be using the semi-random role assignment system that's been so popular lately. Just post in the thread to say that you're in, and I'll add you to my list of players. This game will start quite soon after thomas.berubeg's is done, so keep that in mind if you have other commitments to deal with. Current Signups: Seon LightFang Izipo Winston Hughes Niklas Methos Splime Sepuku Renata MooseWarrior Backwards Logic Icekommander TheForestAuro Adrogans thomas.berubeg CCRunner Aramazd BananaLee oyzar PaulusIII ZPV Mergle PrinceScamp Nictel Diamondeye KingMorgan Ekolite Stuck in Pi Frozen In Ice Ozbenno D'Artagnan59 RRRaskolnikov hell_hound rhawn Tolis Jono Love It is signup phase! Players, reserve your spots! Feel free to comment on or suggest additions to the ruleset! Next phase will begin upon the end of NotW XXIV! Public posting is open!