Playing Werewolf Online on Zoom

Despite the glimmering hope of vaccines, face to face werewolf remains something off limits to many of us to enjoy, as sitting in a circle with twenty-ish friends, vehemently and loudly protesting your innocence isn’t the best idea in these socially distanced times.

And so, werewolf over zoom is still a thing, and as it allows us games with people in far off countries, may be here to stay anyway.

Playing Werewolf Without a Moderator

Playing with a moderator has the downside of taking your player numbers down by one, and if you have a small group to begin with, this can make a big difference in the feasibility of your game.

Using werewolv.es to facilitate your game means you can play without a human needing to undertake the moderator position. Role distribution, vote tallying and night phase management are all handled automatically for you. However, in order to have a smooth game everyone needs to be mindful of good etiquette (more on this later).

Setting up a Basic Werewolf Game

The OpenGameBot will do the setup for you, once you have created the game, share the link with your friends.

Once they have all joined, use the $$check and $$go commands to start the game.

You need at least six players to start a game using this bot

This bot contains basic setups suitable for people just getting used to the game. People should be familiar with the village roles Seer, Protector, Gravedigger and Lycan.

Zoom Werewolf Etiquette

If you're playing without a moderator, each player should be careful to not talk (or shout!) over each other. Playing in person werewolf can be bad enough for this, but over webcam it's even more difficult to separate individual voices. This can be off putting, especially for the quieter players in the group.

Because some of the normal social cues aren't as obvious via webcam, it may be necessary to adopt a slightly more formal approach to communication in the game, here are some ideas -

  • The player under the most suspicion (or with the highest number of votes) should have priority in speaking
  • When no one is under huge suspicion or look to be in danger of being eliminated, consider having each player speak their piece for 30 seconds
  • Avoid interrupting a player when they're speaking, if you wish to challenge or add to something someone has just said, raise your hand or make it clear that you wish to speak next
  • "Pass the batten" when you've finished speaking, look to see if anyone has anything they wish to add to what was said and nominate a person to speak next
  • Because there's a text chat functionality available in parallel when using werewolv.es to facilitate your game, use this to raise objections as people speak, and the group can decide which objection they want to listen to first