A spy moves to purloin (note the guest list resting on the tray)

Purloin Guest List is one of the missions in SpyParty.

Mission Description Edit

In this mission, the spy is tasked with stealing the guest list from Toby. How this is done depends on whether Toby is acting as a waiter or as a bartender. Because purloining the guest list can involve taking a drink (which is always done with the left hand), this mission cannot be attempted while the spy's left hand is occupied (holding a drink, book or statue).

With Toby as Waiter Edit

The guest list is resting on Toby's tray. When Toby offers a drink to the spy he or she will have an opportunity to steal it. The spy does not have to wait for Toby to decide to visit them; they can use the "Request a Drink" action to summon Toby to their location. Once the guest list has been purloined, the spy can optionally return the guest list to the tray. Taking or returning the guest list from Toby as waiter requires an action test, which determines how stealthily the spy performs the action:

  • Green: The spy refuses a drink and does not take or return the list. The spy can see the list blinking (or the space where it will be returned), but it looks unchanged to the sniper. The next NPC that accepts a drink from Toby takes (or returns) the list, causing it to appear or disappear more quickly than it does on a white action test (though the exact timing varies somewhat). This can result in unlimited overtime.
  • White/ignored: The spy accepts a drink, and both players can see the guest list fade out/in slowly.
  • Red: The spy accepts a drink, and both players can see the guest list flash on Toby's tray for a few moments.
  • Aborted: The spy is clumsy with Toby's tray, failing the action and resulting in a loud, conspicuous crashing sound. The sound is captioned on the screen if the option to do so is enabled in the game preferences. This penalty is applied if the spy attempts to move before the action test completes, or while the spy is interacting with Toby following a red or white action test. On a green action test, the spy can move immediately after the action test with no penalty.

With Toby as Bartender Edit

Toby keeps the guest list in his pocket. When he goes to serve a patron, he takes the guest list out of his pocket and places it on the bar, then prepares the drink and sets it on the bar. The spy can then purloin the guest list immediately, or can choose to delegate the purloin to another partygoer. In the latter case, a 60-second timer begins (visible as a slowly-draining meter in the spy's missions list). The spy must then join a conversation circle which contains at least one other person, and send them to purloin the list. (If more than one other person is in the circle, the delegate will be the one closest to the spy.) The spy will start talking, and the delegate will immediately leave the circle and go to the bar, request a drink, and take the guest list. If the delegate does not obtain the guest list before the purloin timer runs out, the purloin fails. You can delegate to an AI already holding a drink; if that drink has more than one sip left in it the AI will gulp at the bar. This is one of only a few cases where an AI will gulp.

Unlike purloining when Toby acts as waiter, there is no action test, and the guest list cannot be returned once it is taken.

Spy Strategy Edit

You will of course want to purloin when the sniper isn't looking, if at all possible. Try purloining when the sniper's view is obstructed, or when they are distracted with another activity. For example, you can call Toby over to you, and say "banana bread" just before he arrives. This induces the sniper to lowlight people who were not in conversation; this may create an opportunity for you to purloin unobserved.

Summoning Toby and using delegates can be convenient, but you must be careful about when you exercise this option. If Toby is summoned while he is on his way to serve someone else, he will immediately change direction to go to you. In a similar vein, sending a delegate to purloin for you will cause the delegate to immediately interrupt their animation. An observant sniper may notice this, which can cause them to zero in on you.

If you didn't get a green action test, or if you purloin at the bar immediately instead of delegating, your character will be holding a drink after the purloin. This could make you more suspicious to the sniper if they didn't see you take the list, but noticed quickly that it was gone. You have the option to gulp the drink to quickly get rid of it, although you'll get shot if the sniper notices that the drink disappeared from your hand and realizes you only just got it.

Rushing the purloin can be a viable strategy, as the sniper may be too busy memorizing statues to notice it. However, if they quickly notice the list has disappeared, the sniper will have a very small list of people who have interacted with Toby for suspects.

Returning the guest list to the tray is risky. If the spy manages to pull it off, the sniper may never realize it was taken. However, returning it gives the sniper another chance to notice a tell.

Another risky but potentially useful strategy is to green test the purloin, then call Toby back before someone else takes it and accept a drink. This can make the sniper think that no purloin is pending, potentially eliminating you from the list of suspects when the purloin does happen. However, this requires Toby to visit you twice in a short amount of time, which may be noticed by the sniper and tip them off to what you're doing.

When taking a drink at the bar without intending to purloin, you may wish to select a delegated purloin anyway. This gives you the opportunity to delegate later if you change your mind, and if the purloin timer runs out, it's functionally equivalent to just taking a drink.

Sniper Strategy Edit

Camping the purloin with Toby as waiter involves keeping track of who Toby has served. If the guest list blinks or fades gradually, shoot the person Toby just served. (They will be holding a drink if they haven't quickly gulped it.) If the list fades almost instantly, it was a green purloin, which is harder to catch. To do so, you have to remember the people in the "purloin chain": every time a guest rejects a drink, you add them to the chain, and every time a guest takes a drink and the list stays on the tray, you clear the chain. When the list disappears, one of the people in the chain is the spy, and everyone else can be lowlit.

If Toby visits the same person twice in a very short amount of time, that person is likely the spy; they may be trying to obscure a green purloin by calling Toby back and taking a drink. In rare cases, Toby may visit a number of people and return to the spy to offer them a drink again of his own volition with the purloin still pending, allowing them to do this without calling Toby themselves. If you are certain it was a green purloin, and the person who actually takes the list was not already in the purloin chain, that person is not the spy.

If Toby suddenly changes direction while in transit, that may be a sign that the spy has summoned him. If that is true, the next person Toby visits would be the spy, and they may be trying to pull off a purloin. Keep in mind, though, that Toby can also suddenly change direction when his original target's left hand becomes occupied, or his path becomes suddenly obstructed.

If you hear a loud crashing sound, the spy is right next to Toby.

With Toby as bartender, if you witness the guest list being taken, that person is either the spy or the delegate. If the pad they came from was not a conversation circle, they are the spy. If it was a conversation circle, the spy will be the person who started talking and was standing closest to them at the moment they left.

Map Specifics Edit

  • Balcony: The sniper's high viewing angle, the map's small size and the small number of partygoers make it difficult for the spy to purloin successfully. There are also no statues or bookcases, meaning there are three fewer possible missions for the sniper to have to track. Against an experienced sniper, anything less than a green action test is almost guaranteed to get the spy shot.
  • Ballroom: The sniper's low viewing angle makes it difficult for them to see the guest list, making it more likely that they'll miss the purloin.
  • Courtyard: The sniper has a reasonably good viewing angle and can almost see the entire map at once; the central pedestal is the only source of cover for the spy. There are no bookcases, so the sniper need not keep an eye out for a microfilm transfer. Only the high number of partygoers works in the spy's favor here.
  • Gallery: Due to local liquor laws, Toby will not go outside; the spy must be inside to purloin the guest list. The map's depth and many NPCs cause a lot of activity and cover inside the building, making it potentially difficult for the sniper to spot the purloin.
  • Library: There are many partygoers on the map, and sniper can only view about a third of the map at once, providing many opportunities for the spy to purloin without being seen. Additionally, the pillars can provide some cover, as the sniper cannot move laterally to get around the obstruction. However, the sniper's high viewing angle makes it fairly easy for them to see if the list has been taken as Toby moves about.
  • Moderne: Toby is a bartender on this map. The bar is behind some conversation circles, so the sniper has to deal with occlusion from other party guests.
  • Pub: Toby is a bartender on this map. The clearest view of the bar tends to be from the side of the building (where the hanging sign is located), although people standing at that end may obscure the view.
  • Terrace: Toby is a bartender on this map. The bar is obstructed only by the bodies of the partygoers. The sniper may find themselves needing to move to the left to get a clearer view.
  • Veranda: When the sniper is off to one side of the map, the building blocks the sniper's view of the other side, affording the spy an opportunity to purloin there. Viewing the map from the middle increases cover from other guests along the sides. There are also a large number of guests.

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