Tilt in Mafia

What do Mafia and soccer have in common? In order to win, all the factors have to come together, including professionalism, excellent teamwork, mistakes of rivals and luck. It happens that one soccer team plays very well but they just cannot score, and then they skip a goal from the opponents who played bad during the whole game. This also relates to Mafia, when it just does not work out even if you are a part of a strong experienced team, something. It is very disappointing and you cannot let this feeling go…

What is tilt?

There are no players in Mafia who have never experienced tilt – a suboptimal mental state after losing or making a mistake. Under the influence of negative emotions, a player cannot make judicious decisions. This mental condition also can be caused by accumulated fatigue and negative thoughts associated with personal experiences not related to the game.

There are states that describe the level of a certain poker player: A, B, C. The same structure can also be applied to Mafia:

• A-level is your best game.

• B-level shows your average game.

• C-level is a state of tilt when you cannot think clearly and make the right choices.

Tilt is like a vicious circle. You lose because you are unlucky, or just because it is impossible to win all the time. Then if you do not understand the essence of the game and have emotional instability, you get a tilt. And then you lose again because you cannot cope with previous defeat.

Types of tilt

• Tilt of injustice. A player believes that he is less lucky than others and the fate is not fair.

• Tilt of hating to lose. This is a typical state of aggressive players who cannot lose with dignity. Such a negative reaction leads to further defeats and makes the situation even worse.

• Tilt of errors. This mental state is easy to recognize: you are upset because of small mistakes, which you do not even notice being in a good mood. Some people do not understand that it is impossible to avoid errors and have unrealistic expectations from the game.

• Tilt of rightness. A player believes that deserves a victory more than others and becomes angry if newcomers get lucky.

• Tilt of revenge. A player shows aggression towards players who provoke him. He believes that they are the main cause of his wrong decisions.

• Tilt of failures. This state arises from a range of factors – mistakes, injustice and revenge. When all of them happen in a short period of time, the player cannot cope with it. Negative emotions will grow like a snowball with each game.

• Tilt of despair is one of the most destructive. A player begins to take extreme measures to win and loses control. His mind is blurry; sometimes it is even hard to remember how you behaved during the game.

Tilt can be explicit and hidden. Explicit tilt is expressed in aggressive actions and strong emotional instability. A player with hidden tilt behaves more or less calmly and do not show his negative emotions, but this does not mean that it does not affect the game. It can also manifest itself in a subconscious self-doubt and constant oppressive inner dialogue.


1. Technical defeat.

2. An annoying small mistake.

3. Losing with an initially good position, when it seemed that the victory is already in your hands.

4. Always being in a weak team.

People have different stress and tilt resistance. Some get tilt after a small mistake, and some are able to keep serene even in difficult situations. The former prefer to stay unconscious, and the latter take control of their own mind. There are very few such players, and often they also went through tilt. If you overcome tilt once, then you are able recognize it at an early stage and know how to deal with it.

Among the factors influencing the susceptibility to tilt are self-control and temperament. Introverts are more likely to get a tilt, because often they do not know how to express their emotions. However, for extroverts it is also not that easy due to the tendency of hiding their true feelings under the mask of happiness. Attempts to escape sadness and anxiety only accumulate these emotions.

How to get ready for the game

If you cannot find time for moral preparation, you will never be successful in the game. Do you remember how Elena Isinbayeva used to sit under a blanket before an important performance? Having the right attitude is extremely important, even if you are a famous champion. Isinbayeva noted that it helped her to forget about millions of people who are watching her and concentrate on her own thoughts.

Some players consider such a long mental preparation a waste of time. No one forces you to sit under a towel or meditate for hours, but what is worth doing is to stop thinking about your old mistakes. You can achieve this peaceful mindful state of being in different ways. Try and see what works specifically for you. Live in the present moment. Your aim is to concentrate only on the case why did you come here, and it is to play Mafia. Do not start the game if you are affected by alcohol or drugs, especially in combination with already existing negative feelings. Do not play if you have a frustration about your personal problems, and you cannot temporarily distract from it.

How to overcome tilt

Shortly, in order to protect from tilt you need to understand the essence of the game and become more emotionally stable. Here are some more recommendations for those who are in a tilt state:

1. Stop playing for a while.

2. Express your negative emotions through art, jogging, boxing, crying etc.

3. Take care of your nervous system and forget about the game: go for a walk, read, talk with friends and family, watch a comedy.

4. Analyze your decisions in the recent games. Imagining that you evaluate not yourself, but another player helps to stay more objective and reasonable.

Answer the questions:

1. What did cause your tilt?

2. Describe speech, gestures and non-standard sensations in your body on the threshold of tilt and during it. What thoughts did you have in that moment?

3. Write down typical mistakes you make while having tilt. How can you avoid it, even under severe stress?

4. Determine the line between your stable mental state and tilt. At what point do you lose control?

Helping others

There is always someone at the table who is going through tilt right now or had it in the past. A player with tilt seems inadequate in behavior: too aggressive or too depressed. Do not take advantage of their weak mental state, just talk to them before or after game. Nevertheless, remember that nobody forced them to play and it is their responsibility to face the outcome.


As in life, there are no right decisions in Mafia, only the choices we make and its consequences. Do not regret about your mistakes, even if they seem too obvious and stupid. Analyze it and move on! Remember that if you cannot find time for mindful preparation, then you will never become a top player. If you see someone behaving inadequately, try to help, but only before or after the game.

Even with the best performance your team might lose, and vice versa, with the worst tactics the victory is still possible. As in any game, there is an element of luck here. Take it easy and do not envy, when someone is luck and you are not. If during the game you notice signs of tilt, breathe out your negative emotions, calm down, think about something abstract, and forget about blaming yourself or others. After the game, be sure to analyze what caused your tilt, how it expressed itself and make a plan what to do next. You can handle it! Release your old grievances and mistakes, stay in the present moment and have fun.