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Watcher

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Watcher
T-watcher.png
Aliases:
  • Night Watchman
  • Lookout
Alignment:
Role type:
  • Investigative
Choice:
  • Night

A Watcher is an investigative role that targets a player each night, and will learn which other players performed Night actions on the same target. (They do not learn about the nature of those actions, only the user.)

Normal version

Each Night, a Watcher may choose a player to watch. If their action succeeds, they will be given a list of other players whose night actions had the same target as the Watcher's. (In other words, the Watcher will learn about who targeted their target.) Actions taken by a Ninja are ignored for this purpose, and the Watcher will produce the same results as if the Ninja's actions did not occur.

A Watcher's action can fail due to, e.g., a Roleblocker targeting them or an attempt to watch an Ascetic target; in these cases, the Watcher will be aware that their action has failed, and will receive a no result PM. This result should be clearly distinct from the result obtained when successfully watching a player, but with no other actions on that player to watch; a "no result" result leaves it unclear who if anyone targeted the Watcher's target, whereas a "no actions" result guarantees that nobody else (other than a possible Ninja) targeted the Watcher's target.

Variations

Not Normal, but somewhat common in Theme games, is for a Watcher to be modified so that "nobody else targeted your target" and "your action failed, and you received no result" are no longer distinguishable outcomes, producing a more ambiguous report like "you didn't see anything".

Most other simple variants on a Watcher are considered separate roles, with separate names:

  • A Tracker learns who a player targeted, but not what action that player performed.
  • A Follower learns what action a player performed, but not who that player targeted.
  • A Voyeur learns what actions were performed on a player, but not who targeted them.
  • A Role Watcher learns the roles, rather than identities, of players who target the Role Watcher's target.
  • A Motion Detector learns if any actions were performed by or on a player, but not what they were, or who else was involved.

A variant of the Reporter, which determined whether a player performed any action overNight, was historically referred to as "Watcher" at one point.

Use & Balance

Because it is easier to choose who is likely to be targeted by scum at Night than it is to determine who performs the scum kill, Watcher is considerably more powerful than Tracker. In addition, because having the name of a scum to eliminate is better than having someone confirmed Town due to being targeted by the Mafia kill, Watcher is more powerful than Doctor. Last, because the meta is such that Cops and Trackers are more anticipated power roles than Watchers, Watcher has been considered more "cheap" than both of them. As a result, Watcher is a particularly strong power role with negative connotations associated with it.

Aside from pointing out who targeted dead players, Watchers are also functional for identifying who targeted players with other types of abilities. For instance, if the Watcher's target claims to have been Roleblocked the next Day, then the Watcher can expect the Roleblocker to be listed in their report.

Mafia Watchers have been known to exist and have much less stigma attached to them. They can be used to find protective roles (by targeting likely Doctor targets), or to give foreknowledge of possible investigations (by watching a Mafia partner). In a setup with multiple killers, a Mafia Watcher may be able to identify opposing killers. They are fairly solid power roles in scum hands.

Play Advice

Much of the same advice for Doctors applies to Watchers; try to target the person who is likely to be killed. However, Watchers can benefit from also targeting someone and seeing who visits them. Like a Tracker's reports, a Watcher's reports can become more valuable after their is more information about what roles the people named in the report are.

Sample Role PMs

The standardized Role PM for "Watcher" describes the action as follows:

  • As a targeted action: you will learn which other players targeted that player that Night. (edit)

Example (simplest form)

Welcome to game! You are a Town Watcher.

You have the following active ability:

  • Each Night, you may target a player. Assuming no interference with your action, you will learn which other players targeted that player that Night.

You win if all threats to the town are eliminated and at least one town-aligned player is alive.

Confirm by replying to this PM with a summary of your role.

Example (with modifiers)

Welcome to game! You are a Town 1-shot Loud Watcher.

You have the following active ability:

  • Once in the game at night, you may target a player. Assuming no interference with your action, you will learn which other players targeted that player that Night. Your target will learn that you targeted them (but not what action you targeted them with).

You win if all threats to the town are eliminated and at least one town-aligned player is alive.

Confirm by replying to this PM with a summary of your role.

See also