Age Range
Number of Participants
15-20 minutes

Quick overview

A roleplay game where the group must catch and execute the mafia before the mafia takes over.

Game type


Supplies you’ll need


Game run-through

This game has many variations; here is one such variation.

Essential Characters

  • Villagers – all players without specific parts who’s only aim is to catch the mafia.
  • Mafia Member – number of members depends on how many people are playing the game, a useful ration is 1 in every 5 is a member of the mafia, but this is very much up to your choice. Their aim is to kill all non-mafia members.
  • x1 Saint – as the saint, your constant prayers can every turn you can choose to protect a single person from the mafia, you can protect yourself but the protection only lasts one round and you can’t protect the same person twice in a row. Their aim is the same as the villagers.
  • Narrator – Probably you, this character is not actively involved in the story but more directs the others as to what they have to do. Their aim is to keep the game running and embellish the story.

Non-essential Characters (The first time the game is played you may not want to use these to keep it simpler. You can’t reveal you’re character to anyone)

  • x1 Hunter – as the hunter, you keep a gun in your house, if you are killed by the mob in a last act of desperation you can kill someone else with you, you’ll still die but you may get revenge on the person you believe was in the mafia. Alas, if you are killed by the mafia you die the same as any other. Their aim is the same as the villagers.
  • x1 The Shepard – up late guarding your sheep, you don’t go to sleep with the rest of the village, when the group close their eyes you are allowed to peak at your own discretion during the time the mafia alone are awake, you can’t tell anyone what you’ve seen – WARNING: if the mafia spot you, you’re probably dead. Their aim is the same as the villagers.
  • x2 Star-crossed lovers – deeply in love these characters refuse to let each other out their sight, if one is killed the other will also be as they tried to intervene and were killed in the process. Their aim is the same as the villagers.
  • x1 Apothecary – the apothecary deals in potions and poisons and has two non-reusable potions; the first heals, the second kills. They can use either at any point, on anyone but once used they can never be used again. Their aim is the same as the villagers.

Game play

  • Begin by having everyone sat in a large circle.
  • The Allocation of roles: Have everyone close their eyes and begin to walk around the outside of the circle. Tell the group that if they feel you tap their shoulder they are a specific character. If they do not feel you tap them on the shoulder they are a normal villager.
  • Introduce the game: The narrator introduces the game and scenario e.g. “Once upon a time in the sleepy little village of… there lived a lovely bunch of people, they lived happily together until one day the mafia convinced several members of this once happy community to turn rogue. At first not much changed, sheep went missing and shady people came and went but then one night everyone went to sleep and the mafia took a far more evil role.”

Everyone closes their eyes

  • The Mafia claim a victim: Once everyone has closed their eyes, the narrator instructs the mafia to open their eyes; they must then choose a victim who they wish to kill by both pointing silently at the victim. Once they have pointed at the victim and the narrator acknowledges their choice, the narrator tells them to close their eyes.
  • The Saint protects a villager: Unaware of whom the mafia have targeted, the saint is instructed by the narrator to wake up and must now choose to pick a villager who they will defend. Once they have chosen by silently pointing at the person, they are instructed by the narrator to close their eyes.
  • Apothecary: If the apothecary is in play they are now instructed to wake up. They are given the option to save or kill someone by pointing silently at them with either a thumb up or thumb down, if they wish to do nothing they just shake their head. Whether they do anything or not, the narrator then tells them to close their eyes.
  • The Great reveal: The narrator announces it is now morning and instructs everyone to wake up. They reveal what has happened during the night; who the mafia have killed, if the saint was able to save them and if the apothecary did anything. The narrator can play this bit up as much as they like and embellishing the story can help add to the gameplay.
  • Mob Justice: Enraged by the murderer (or attempted murderer) in their midst, the living members of the group must choose a member of their community to hang. They must debate who they feel the mafia could be and then vote for who they want to hang. As narrator, you may want to stir things up to get them incriminating everyone. If the hunter is in play, here is where their role takes effect. At end of the decision, the person is killed and reveals whether they were in the mafia or any of the special characters. Again the narrator may want to embellish this story.
  • Everyone goes back to sleep: Having finished a round everyone goes back to sleep and the process is repeated until either all the mafia are caught or all but one of the non-mafia are dead.