The guests arrived between 7 and 8. The sun was setting behind the large barn. The house was filling with side dishes brought by guests, as the patio filled with guests. We served Negroni’s and wine, there being a loose Mediterranean theme. At 9 we instructed the guests, some 24, to each carry a side dish down into the field. The narrow path is mowed and was lit with lights beneath the wall of brambles. It led to a large rectangle of mowed lawn, surrounding an apple tree lit with rope lights, and surrounded by a thicket of yellow flowers and an idyllic view of distant rolling acclivity. A long table to seat 24 was set.
The game commenced with a speech. You have been given a card. On that card is either the assignment of Townie, or the assignment of Agent. The agents have been given a task, some aberrant deed to perform in the course of an hour. Some samples:
Rub someone’s head.
Effect a pouring of drink in memoriam for some dead homie(s).
Toast us all (a little speech).
Get three people to look at the moon [a full moon had just risen] and profess a lie about said moon.
The Agents and Townies alike were on full suspicion to note aberrance and to report it on cards they were given. Bonus point for the precise deed. The point system, no longer even clear to me, was designed to prevent Agents from performing multiple, self-initiated aberrant actions. The Townies were to be only on alert, and to act as normal as possible.
At the end of the hour, we did a go-around. Pass if you were Townie. If you were Agent, describe your deed, so others could rejoice in acknowledging your stealth or, alternatively, in confirming their sound suspicions.
The ballots were counted, but the rules may have been unclear and tallying scores was nearly impossible. (One guest suspected everyone, some wrote down essays on behaviors involving nearly everyone). Deductions for false accusations. Deductions against you for accusations that you were an agent, whether or not it was so.
It worked well. A lot of silly fun was had.