GeekWolf (like TeenWolf but without Michael J. Fox)

Last night I played a rousing game of Werewolf, a game that attempts to explore and expose group dynamics, the wisdom of crowds and other social nuances. I was apprehensive at first but there were some interesting folks (begin namedrop now: Cal Henderson of Flickr, Ben Trott of Six Apart, Tom Coates of Plasticbag, among others) playing and so I thought I would give it a shot. First round I was accused of being a werewolf (but I wasn’t) and it was because I had an air of confidence about me. I hadn’t thought about it but I was calm and confident – until I was accused of murdering my fellow villagers. That accusation changed the whole game for me and put me on the defensive. I was able to fend off the mob for some time but was eventually lynched on suspicions of being a werewolf late in the game.
Here are a couple observations about this game:
1. I really didn’t anticipate the strong feelings of anxiety and mistrust I would have during this game. Once I realized I was a target I felt flush, didn’t know how to act to try to ensure my safety, and it inhibited my ability to read the situation.
2. Accidentally adding an extra wolf to the mix (more than the recommended ratio) make the game much harder.
3. Another thing that makes the game harder is if the seer doesnt help the other villagers at all even when he/she knows the identity of one of the werewolves.
4. The game is fun. I regretted not playing a second game. I actually felt too drained immediately after the first game but by the time I walked back to my hotel I really wanted to play again.


5 responses to this post.

  1. That sounds pretty fun. We should play it as a group sometime. I’m already thinking strategy. 😉

  2. Isn’t there a variation of this game called Mafia? Jonathan Lethem writes about it in the first story of his collection Men & Cartoons.

  3. Yes, I have heard of one with witches and the mafia but I am sure there are some others as well.

  4. I’d like to play this game.

  5. Which of the etech Werewolf games (on the Tuesday night) were you in? The first or the second? I was in the first head – loud redhead, quickly labelled a “dynamic personality”. If I put you up for nomination, then I apologise, but you’re right – it was really good fun.
    Your descriptions of how it made you feel are interesting – I actually ended up playing agressively by feeling quite negative – I assumed that I would be killed each night, so I was pretty vigorous each day.
    And, of course, each day I survive only made me more confident in the absurdity of my nominations…
    Lots of fun, anyhow, and a great bunch of people to play with.

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