“Honor Among Thieves” vs. “All Bets Are Off”
During playtesting, we discovered that a major point of contention, or better yet conflict, arose from the terms of negotiation between players. Could you make a deal with another player, and then break that agreement and brutally kill that player’s mobsters? Should players be bound by the terms of their agreement? In most early game sessions, we allowed players to police their own agreements and pacts. If someone broke an agreement and stabbed you in the back, then you probably wouldn’t trust them anymore, nor would you be foolish enough to enter into another agreement with them. But, there were definitely those game sessions where conflict between players went beyond the game table and tempers — real world tempers — flared with the threat of real violence. As a result, we introduced the “Honor Among Thieves”/”All Bets Are Off” token which would set the terms of negotiation. If “Honor Among Thieves” is in effect, players are bound to uphold and keep the agreements they make so long as consideration (in the form of cash) is exchanged. Alternatively, if “All Bets Are Off” is in effect, players are under no obligation to keep their word and can break agreements with impunity. I personally favor the latter terms of negotiation, but we wanted players to be able to choose. The Alternate & Advanced Rule Book also details instructions for playing games in which the terms of negotiation can be changed by the reigning Don. More than anything, we just wanted Mob Ties™ to be flexible and open to any group of players, especially where feelings might get hurt. Here’s a look at the press proof for the “Honor Among Thieves”/”All Bets Are Off” token.