Veto Power, as it applies to Mafia, describes how a faction can prevent lynches that are harmful to them. This is subtly different from controlling the lynch.
These are the two most common instances of veto power being exercised:
- There are equally many scum alive as there are Town. For purposes of an example, consider a scenario where there are three scum alive and three Town alive. A majority (four players) is required to lynch. However, even if all three Townies band together, they cannot possibly lynch scum without their consent (which will not be given). Thus, at even numbers the scum will endgame the Town.
- The four-player dilemma. There are two Townies alive and two scum from different factions. Normally the scum can band together, lynch the Townies, and then play for a draw; but here the Town holds veto power over the lynch, and can force the scum to play like a true Prisoner's Dilemma.