SpyParty is a spy game about human behavior, performance, perception, and deception. While most espionage games have you spend your time shooting stuff, blowing stuff up, and driving fast, SpyParty has you hide in plain sight, deceive your opponent, and detect subtle behavioral tells to achieve your objectives.
Unlike the suave and confident spies you might find in films or books, most spies in spy games are more like super powered commandos--more Rambo than James Bond. By contrast, SpyParty is a new and quite different game about the more interesting and deeper aspects of being a spy.
The first day of the Teien Tournament was a round robin featuring 17 competitors. Each player was scheduled to play every other player for two games: one as spy, and one as sniper. At the end, the four players with the most wins advanced to a small bracket to be played on the second day. Continue reading →
In real life, spies benefit from being anonymous. In SpyParty, they benefit from being notorious.
SpyParty is a game with a lot of skill expression. It’s also very difficult—even those at the top level of play will often say that they feel like they aren’t good enough. Both of these things stem from the fact that SpyParty is a multiplayer strategy game. The mechanics of play and counter-play are well documented and explored within the community, and adapting to your opponent is considered a vital skill to victory. If you don’t know what your opponent is doing to beat you, how can you possibly beat them? Continue reading →
Once again, SCL Diamond Leaguer @bloom_sp has posted a mash-up of music and SpyParty cast dialogue. The dialogue is from multiple casts spanning both the SCL and the Summer Cup, among them the Season 4 Championship Cast.
In 2015, I attended PAX West for the first time. I wrote a brief diary and a not at all brief essay about the experience. When I decided to return in 2016, I thought it’d be fun to make custom shirts for all the booth attendees. I settled on the admittedly minimalist design you see above, on the left, and they were well-received enough that it’s become a tradition. Continue reading →
The big surprise at this year’s PAX West was the release of a new venue called “Teien,” which translates loosely to “Garden.”
The venue is a small pagoda-like structure surrounded by walkways, trees, and tranquil water. Inside are two book shelves and two sets of three statues each, along with two conversation circles and window pads at either end. The aesthetics, however, pale in comparison to two decisions which set Teien apart from every other venue to date: Continue reading →
This video is a big thank you to the community volunteers who ran this cast all season long. They’ve been extremely generous with their time and, as you can see, with their enthusiasm. It’s been a joy casting with you all, so I gave you the collective honor of counting us in to some of the funniest and most exciting moments of SCL Season 4. Thank you!
Individual games of SpyParty are mental sprints, but for the players still playing in Challenger, SCL Season 4 has been a marathon. After ten weeks of regular season games and five more in the Challenger tournament, 368 total Challenger matches have been played, and now there’s just one left. The prize is automatic promotion from the chaotic mess and mass of its unforgiving Swiss system, to Iron and possibly beyond.
Our Challenger Tournament finalists are set, and they followed very different paths. Our first finalist is turnipboy, the #1 seed who narrowly missed auto-promotion in the regular season, got a first round bye, and has won all of their four matches by a comfortable 9-4 margin. Their last step to the finals was a 9-4 defeat of plastikqs.
turnipboy’s opponent is the #10 seed, lazybear, who joined in Week 3, did not secure a bye, and narrowly won their first round matchup with walliard, 9-7. But the lazybear that began the tournament is clearly not the one still in it, as he’s scored better margins against better players since then, most notably a 9-5 win against #3 seed sheph just this week.
For the first time in the tournament, all higher seeds won their matchups.
ryoo‘s deep run came to an end after meeting #1 seed turnipboy, who lived up to his seeding with a strong 9-4 victory. All three of his matches have been by that exact margin. He’ll be unlikely to win that comfortably against his next opponent, however: #5 seed plastikqs, who defeated #13 brskaylor 9-6. brskaylor cruised into the quarter-finals without even allowing an opponent to reach four wins before running into one of Challenger’s best.
On the other side of the bracket, sheph defeated davidw 9-4. Before this loss, davidw had yet to even play a close match, winning 9-3 in each of his previous two bouts. sheph, on the other hand, survived a scare in the second round, defeating watermeat just 9-8 before winning definitively in round 3, 9-1.
lazybear (#10) was nominally the favorite over pofke (#34), but the latter was clearly underseeded due to late SCL entry, and was considered the favorite by many, particularly after their 9-1 thumping of monaters in the previous round. But lazybear’s incredible run continued with a comfortable 9-3 victory.
There are just four players left, and only #10 lazybear has made it this far without the aid of a first round bye.