How to play Town of Salem card game

“Town of Salem” is not a traditional card game, but rather a browser-based game that is inspired by the party games “Mafia” and “Werewolf”. It’s a game of murder, deception, and strategy, typically played with 7 to 15 players. Each player is assigned a role with different goals and abilities. The game is divided into two phases: day and night, and players must use their skills to eliminate the opposing team while avoiding suspicion themselves.

Basic Setup and Roles

  • Roles: Players are randomly assigned roles from three main factions: the Town, the Mafia, and Neutrals. Each faction has different win conditions.
    • Town members (good guys) need to find and eliminate the Mafia and other villains.
    • Mafia members (bad guys) need to kill the Town members.
    • Neutrals have unique objectives, varying from surviving till the end of the game to being the last player standing.


  1. Night Phase: During the night, many roles can use their abilities. For example, the Mafia can choose someone to kill, the Doctor can heal someone, potentially preventing a Mafia kill, and the Sheriff can investigate people to determine if they are Mafia.
  2. Day Phase: During the day, all players discuss their findings and accuse players of being Mafia or other evil roles. After discussion, a voting phase begins where players can vote to put someone on trial.
  3. Trial and Defense: If a player receives enough votes, they are put on trial and have a short time to defend themselves. After this, a final vote is held to determine if the player is innocent or guilty.
  4. Execution or Pardon: If the player is found guilty, they are executed and their role is revealed. If pardoned, the day ends.
  5. Winning the Game: The game continues until one of the factions fulfills its win condition.

Tips for Playing

  • Communication: As a Town member, share information with others but be careful not to reveal too much about your role. As Mafia, you need to lie and deceive other players.
  • Strategy: Think about the roles that have been revealed and how they interact with each other. Use this information to deduce who might be lying.
  • Bluffing: If you’re an evil role, you may need to lie about your role or actions. Be convincing!
  • Note-taking: Keep track of what happens each night and day, as this can help in figuring out roles and lies.
  • Adaptability: Be ready to adapt your strategy as the game progresses and roles are revealed.

General Strategies

  1. Keep Detailed Notes: Use the in-game notepad to keep track of claims and suspicious behavior. This can be crucial for recalling facts in later stages of the game.
  2. Pay Attention to Voting Patterns: Often, how players vote can reveal alliances or suspicions. Mafia members, for instance, might hesitate to vote against each other.
  3. Be Cautious with Information: Revealing too much can make you a target, especially if you have a powerful role like the Jailor or Doctor.
  4. Adapt to the Game’s Progress: Your strategy should evolve as roles are revealed and players are eliminated.

Strategies for Town Members

  1. Coordinate with Other Town Members: Share information discreetly and work together to identify threats.
  2. Be Skeptical of Claims: Especially in later stages, be wary of players who claim roles that are unlikely or already taken.
  3. Protect Key Roles: If important roles like the Jailor are revealed, roles like the Bodyguard or Doctor should prioritize their protection.

Strategies for Mafia Members

  1. Coordinate Kills and Claims: Communicate with your Mafia teammates to avoid contradictory claims and to decide who to eliminate.
  2. Fake a Role: Have a believable cover story and role claim ready. Be consistent with your lies.
  3. Sow Discord: Subtly try to turn the town members against each other.

Strategies for Neutral Roles

  1. Survival is Key: For roles like the Survivor, staying alive is the main goal. Avoid drawing attention to yourself.
  2. Manipulate Both Sides: For roles like the Witch or Serial Killer, you’ll need to manipulate both the Mafia and the Town to achieve your goals.

Specific Role Tips

  • Jailor: Be strategic about whom you jail and execute. Try to confirm roles without revealing too much about yourself.
  • Investigator: Share your findings carefully to avoid exposing yourself to the Mafia or Neutral Killing roles.
  • Godfather/Mafioso: Make sure to keep track of what roles have been claimed and try to eliminate roles that threaten you the most.
  • Jester: Act suspiciously enough to get voted on trial but not so much that you’re executed by the Jailor or Vigilante.

Bluffing and Deception

  • Creating Doubt: Sometimes, casting doubt on someone’s claim or pointing out inconsistencies in their story can be more effective than direct accusations.
  • Counter Accusations: If accused, sometimes counter-accusing can create enough confusion to save yourself.

Endgame Strategies

  • Count Votes: In the endgame, be aware of how many votes are needed to lynch someone and who is likely to vote with whom.
  • Final Pleas: If you’re on trial in the endgame, your final defense can be crucial. Make it count.

Remember, “Town of Salem” is as much about social manipulation and psychology as it is about strategy. Being able to read other players and react accordingly is key. And most importantly, each game is different, so stay flexible and enjoy the challenge!