We played two games of the witch game today. It went fairly well for a first play ever. There were some complexities that need to be excised and some power levels that need to be adjusted, but all in all it was a fun game.
The first game went as follows:
Mike: Gossip Pastor who loved Dwayne
Dwayne: Constable Witch Hater who loved Beret
Bob: Defense Attorney Martyr who hated Mike
Beret: Magistrate Witch
TJ: Clerk Recluse who loved someone (perhaps Mike?)
The game started off well with me trying to influence everyone into sharing identities with me under the guise of trying to find out the witches. I allied with bob to try to get him killed and told everyone that he was a witch, but Beret tried to defend him as an ally witch.
Dwayne thought I was on his side since I was a Puritan, but I lied to him about Bob to try to convince Bob to talk people into sharing cards with me.
TJ was discovered by some action cards, and I shared with Beret and got killed. The game ended with a huge slaughter.
I was killed by the witch, Dwayne was killed by the magistrate (who was also the witch), TJ survived, Beret was killed by Dwayne and my votes and Bob survived (to his dismay).
Game two was a 4 player game with the following setup:
Mike: Shy Prosecutor who hated Bob
Bob: Witch Hater Governor who loved Mike
Beret: Councelor Witch Hater who I don't remember the attitude of
Dwayne: Witch Hater Peeping Tom who loved Mike
We figured out that everyone was good, but it took a while. I lost horribly by the end of the game. We had to call it off a little early since we had a 1:00 meeting.
Hate and love cards were well received. People liked trying to fulfill them, and found them moderately humorous.
We played with claim tokens instead of claim cards. They were not so well received - apparently the text was too small, and the minus 2 and plus 2 tokens seemed a bit powerful. We are going to try with having only +1 and -1 tokens in the future.
The action cards seemed fairly balanced. None stood out as too good. The Reevaluate card was well enjoyed.
The Magistrate's ability seemed to be very powerful. People didn't like the diabolus ex machina feel to the card. The Mayor's pardoning ability didn't receive nearly as much fire as the Magistrate's condemnation.
The Peeping Tom was popular, but the Constable seemed a little lackluster.
In certain games Shy, Witch Hater, and Recluse can be hard to fulfill. The Martyr role is really funny to play with (as random people who see your role can decide to lie for you and make an alliance without your consent.)
All in all it was a good $5 for me and my whole family (The game was not actually $5, it was free (Also I didn't play with my family as much as my co-workers)).
I have not yet changed the rules to fix the problems that we found, but they are posted online already. You can find them here.