Let’s play Secret Hitler, a social deduction game in the vein of Resistance/Avalon/Mafia/Werewolf, for 5-10 players.
At the beginning of the game, each player is secretly assigned, by PM, to one of three roles: Liberal, Fascist, or Hitler. The Liberals have a majority, but they don’t know for sure who anyone is; Fascists must resort to secrecy and sabotage to accomplish their goals. Hitler plays for the Fascist team, and the Fascists know Hitler’s identity from the outset, but Hitler doesn’t know the Fascists and must work to figure them out.
The Liberals win by enacting five Liberal Policies or killing Hitler. The Fascists win by enacting six Fascist Policies, or if Hitler is elected Chancellor after three Fascists Policies have been enacted
Whenever a Fascist Policy is enacted, the government becomes more powerful, and the President is granted a single-use power which must be used before the next round can begin. It doesn’t matter what team the President is on; in fact, even Liberal players might be tempted to enact a Fascist policy to gain new powers.
Secret Hitler is played in rounds. Each round has an Election to form a government, a Legislative Session to enact a new Policy, and an Executive Action to exercise government power.
Pass the Presidential Candicacy
The new Presidential Candidate is the person below the previous President, or, at the beginning of the game, the person at the top of the list of players, as announced by me.
Nominate a Chancellor
The Presidential Candidate chooses a Chancellor Candidate by naming any other eligible player in bold in-thread. The Presidential Candidate is free to discuss Chancellor options to build consensus and make it more likely the government will be elected.
Eligibility: The last elected President and Chancellor are “term-limited,” and ineligible to be nominated as Chancellor Candidate.
Vote on the government
Once the Presidential Candidate has chosen an eligible Chancellor Candidate, players may discuss the proposed government until everyone is ready to vote. Every player, including the Candidates, votes on the proposed government, by sending a PM with “Ja” or “Nein” (“Yes” or “No” if you prefer) to @jostly. Once I have received everyone’s votes, I will announce the result, as well as how everyone voted.
If the vote is a tie, or if a majority of players votes no:
The vote fails. The Presidential Candidate misses this chance to be elected, and the Presidential Candidacy moves down the list, as per the first point. The Election Tracker is advanced by one Election.
Election Tracker: If the group rejects three governments in a row, the country is thrown into chaos. I will reveal the top policy and enact it. Any power granted by this policy is ignored, but the Election Tracker resets, and existing term-limits are forgotten.
Any time a new Policy is enacted, the Election Tracker is reset, whether it was enacted by an elected government or enacted by the frustrated populace
If a majority of players votes yes:
The Presidential Candidate and Chancellor Candidate become the new President and Chancellor, respectively. If three or more Fascist Policies have been enacted, and Hitler is elected Chancellor, the Fasicsts win the game at this point
The game then proceedes to the Legislative Session
During the Legislative Session, the President and Chancellor work together to enact a new Policy in secret. I will draw the top three tiles from the Policy deck and send them to the President in a PM. The President will reply by PM with one tile to discard, and I will send the remaining two Policies to the Chancellor. The Chancellor in turn will pick one of the two Policies to enact, and may do so by announcing the chosen Policy in-thread.
From the time I announce in-thread that the Legislative Session has begun, until the Chancellor announces the chosen Policy, neither President nor Chancellor may say anything in-thread.
If there are fewer than three tiles remaining in the Policy Deck at the end of a Legislative Session, they will be shuffled together with the discards to form a new Policy Deck.
At the start of the game, there are 11 Fascist Policies and 6 Liberal Policies in the deck. As Policies are enacted, they are removed from play, shifting the odds of drawing each type.
If the government enacted a Fascist Policy, the sitting President gets to use that power, and the Executive Action phase will be played.
Any Presidential Power granted must be used by the President before the next round can begin. Before using the power, the President is free to discuss the issue with the other players, but ultimately the President gets to decide how and when the power is used. Gameplay cannot continue until the President uses the power. Presidential Powers are used only once; they don’t stack or roll over to future turns.
The President chooses a player to investigate, by formally announcing: “I formally investigate [player name]”. I will send a PM to the President with the loyalty of the player, either Liberal of Fascist. Hitler will be reported as Fascist, with no mention of the special role.
The President may share (or lie about!) the results of the investigation at their discretion. No player may be investigated twice in the same game.
Call Special Election
The President chooses any other player to be the next Presidential Candidate by announcing “I nominate [player name] as the next Presidential Candidate”. Any player can become President - even players that are term-limited.
A Special Election does not skip any players. After a Special Election, the Presidential Candidate returns to below the President who enacted the Special Election
If the President passes the presidency to the next player in the rotation, that player would get to run for President twice in a row: once for the Special Election and once for their normal shift in the Presidential rotation.
The President executes one player by announcing “I formally execute [player name]”. If that player is Hitler, the game ends in a Liberal victory. Otherwise, the game continues, and there will not be any announcement on whether the executed player was a Liberal of Fascist; players must work out for themselves the new balance of power. Executed players are removed from the game, and may not post, vote or run for office.
The Veto power is a special rule that comes into effect after five fascist policies have been enacted. For all Legislative Sessions after the fifth Fascist Policy is enacted, the Executive branch gains a permanent new ability to discard all three Policy tiles if both the Chancellor and the President agree.
The Chancellor may, upon receiving the two Policy options by PM, announce to the thread: “I wish to veto this agenda.” If the President consents by saying “I agree to the veto”, both Policies are discarded and the Presidential Candidate passes down the line as usual. If the President does not consent, the Chancellor must enact a Policy as normal.
Each use of the Veto power represents an inactive government and advances the Election Tracker by one.
Here is a link to the rules PDF: Secret_Hitler_Rules.pdf
Credits & License
Secret Hitler was created by Mike Boxleiter, Tommy Maranges, Max Temkin and Mac Schubert.
Secret Hitler is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
This Forum adaptation of the rules is also released under the same license. The only changes are to allow for a moderator to handle secret communication and passing of policies through forum PM.