Chris Hecker, creator of spy-versus-sniper game of wits SpyParty, has written an analysis of what he considers to be a perfect play of his still-in-beta video game, carefully dissecting the one-shot, one-kill frame job designed by player Tytalus.
On the official SpyParty website, Hecker offers gameplay video from both sides, with player Nolan as the sniper trying to root out the identity of Tytalus' spy, and Tytalus setting up a computer controlled partygoer to take the bullet meant for him.
"One of the advanced ways to play SpyParty as the Spy is to try to 'frame' an NPC, and get him or her shot by the Sniper," Hecker writes. "This is quite distinct from the Sniper choosing to shoot the wrong person even though you were trying to complete your missions; that happens all the time, even in elite games. Framing somebody is a step beyond that, where the Spy spends precious time doing certain actions in a certain way to try to implicate another partygoer, to 'help' the Sniper shoot the wrong person."
Hecker goes on to explain how Tytalus' strategy was part careful observation, devious planning, patience and a little bit of luck.
"In poker terms, he was dealt a good hand, he turned it into a great hand with consistently excellent play, and he got dealt the perfect card on the river to take him unambiguously over the top," Hecker writes.
The gameplay is brief, less than two minutes' worth of spy fakeouts and sniper study.
Hecker's analysis of that SpyParty play, however, is lengthy and insightful. It goes a long way in helping to understand his aim of crafting a SpyParty multiplayer experience that's on par with timeless competitive games Go and Poker.