Contact Double Agent is one of the original missions in SpyParty. It is one of the four missions used in beginner maps.
Mission Description Edit
To complete this mission, the spy must be in the same conversation circle as the double agent, then select the "Contact Double Agent" action. The spy can identify the double agent by the yellow triangle over their head. What the sniper knows about the double agent depends on the map: some maps reveal the double agent to the sniper, others don't, and still others show the sniper several "suspected double agents." Any suspected double agents that are revealed to the sniper are marked with a yellow triangle; one of them will be the actual double agent, and none of them will be the spy. (Note that any map which displays suspected double agents to the sniper will do so even when the Contact Double Agent mission is unavailable.)
When the spy chooses to contact the double agent, they will be given an action test, after which both players will hear the spy speak the code phrase: "banana bread." (Players will often refer to this mission as simply "banana bread" or just "BB.") The words are spoken in a male voice even if the spy is female, and will be captioned on the screen if the corresponding option is enabled. If either the spy or the double agent leave the conversation circle before "banana bread" is spoken, the attempt will fail. If it was the spy that moved, they will incur a penalty (see the Action Test section below).
Whenever the spy is in a conversation circle that doesn't have the double agent in it when this mission is active, an action called "Fake Contact Double Agent" will be available. This action works exactly like the regular "Contact Double Agent" mission, except the mission will not complete. Faking contact with a double agent also has an action test. Note that if the double agent enters the conversation before the words "banana bread" are uttered, the fake contact will turn into a real one.
Action Test Edit
The results of the action test dictate how stealthily the spy performs the mission. Moving prematurely will incur a penalty, where both the spy and sniper will hear the spy cough, along with a corresponding animation (and optional caption).
- Green: The spy does not display a talking animation, and utters "banana bread" as soon as the action test completes. The spy is free to move without penalty immediately.
- White/ignored: The spy displays a talking animation, and utters "banana bread" after a short delay. The spy is free to move without penalty as soon as the option to "Stop Talking" appears. If the spy completes the mission but moves before "Stop Talking" appears, they incur a penalty of two coughs.
- Red: The spy displays a talking animation, utters "banana bread" after a short delay, then coughs twice. The spy can move without further penalty when the option to "Stop Talking" appears. If the spy completes the mission but moves before "Stop Talking" appears, they incur a penalty of an additional two coughs.
- Cancelled: As long as the words "banana bread" are uttered before the movement occurs, the action is not considered cancelled and the mission succeeds. Otherwise, a cancellation penalty is incurred:
- Before the action test completes: One cough
- White action test: Two coughs
- Red action test: Three coughs
Spy Strategy Edit
Since the sniper can safely lowlight anyone not in conversation at the time of the audio signal, it is best to make sure as many characters as possible are in conversation. If you plan on faking contact, try to minimize your chances of being in conversation with a suspected double agent. One way to do this is by being in conversation with only the ambassador.
All other things being equal, it's generally not advantageous to drop a fake banana bread, as it simply gives the sniper another chance to lowlight people. However, a fake (or real) banana bread may help you cover another mission while the sniper is distracted with lowlighting people who were not in conversation. It can also serve to help you frame another character.
Since you must be in a conversation to complete the mission, you can try to get lowlighted by quickly exiting a conversation after "banana bread" is spoken. This is most effective after a green action test (because the spy can move immediately), but it is also possible to leave after the "Stop Talking" option becomes available after a white/ignored action test. If the sniper fails to notice that you just left the conversation, they may think that you were out of conversation the whole time, thereby securing a lowlight. This is referred to among SpyParty players as "Banana Bread and Bail" or the "Banana Split."
Experienced snipers are aware of the Banana Split, and if they catch you at it, they may highlight or shoot you for doing it. However, if the seduction target is in the same conversation circle, you can frame them by immediately executing a red flirt action test after the contact. This will cause the seduction target to leave the circle immediately, making them look like they're "splitting."
Many spies prefer to make contacting the double agent the last mission they do. Doing the contact last prevents any lowlights the sniper gets from helping them catch the spy doing other missions, and the sniper may chew up several of the 10 seconds the spy needs to win by looking around for people to lowlight. Because of this, a late banana bread has a way of inducing snipers to take a shot rather than risk a spy win. If you believe you are a strong suspect, you might want to consider another mission instead of contacting the double agent. On the other hand, if you think the sniper strongly suspects someone else, or if you aren't going to have enough time to complete missions, you might want to consider dropping a banana bread in the hopes of inducing the sniper to shoot.
Sniper Strategy Edit
If you see someone coughing, shoot them.
Many snipers lowlight people who weren't have been in conversation at the time of the audio cue (as opposed to highlighting people who are in conversation) because experienced spies will try to minimize the number of people not in conversation at that time. However, if there are very few people in conversation, you can highlight them instead. Also note that the spy can't contact the double agent and accept a drink from Toby at the same time, so anybody in the midst of that action when "banana bread" is uttered cannot be the spy.
A person who is displaying a talking animation when "banana bread" is uttered is suspicious, but with a green action test, the spy can contact the double agent without appearing to speak. However, if you already heavily suspect someone, talking during the contact may be enough to warrant shooting them. You might be tempted to lowlight anybody who is in conversation only with people who aren't suspected double agents, but remember that the spy may be faking contact.
It is possible to counter the "Banana Split" by making note of any character who exits a conversation immediately following "banana bread" being uttered. However, be aware that the spy may try to frame their seduction target with a red flirt right after the "banana bread."
Sometimes the double agent leaves a conversation circle just as the spy reaches it, which may prompt the spy to pursue them. If a character appears to be "chasing" a suspected double agent from place to place, it might be the spy attempting a contact.
Be aware that many spies prefer to contact the double agent for their last mission. This means that a late banana bread may indicate that you have 10 seconds to shoot someone or lose. If you hear "banana bread" and believe that it was the last spy mission, you may want to consider shooting your top suspect at that point. Be aware, however, that this may be a ploy to get you to shoot if the spy is running out of time or believes they aren't suspicious.
Map Specifics Edit
- Ballroom: The sniper can watch all conversation circles at once. The average contact will allow the sniper to lowlight two or three people.
- Balcony and Modern: Ideally, the spy should only utter "banana bread" when all partygoers (or all except the Ambassador) are in the conversation circle. This will ensure that the sniper cannot lowlight anybody. The low number of partygoers means that even one lowlight is significant progress for the sniper. With only one conversation circle, the spy typically won't be "chasing" the double agent around.
- Veranda: The size of the map and the number of partygoers makes it more difficult for the sniper to accurately lowlight everyone who isn't part of a conversation. However, it also means that the spy may find that the double agent is clear on the other side of the map when they find it convenient to attempt a contact.
- Courtyard I and Courtyard II: The sniper has a good view of the map and can typically identify those who are not in conversation when contact is made with reasonable ease. If the spy is careful, they can sometimes give up only one or two lowlights.
- Panopticon: There are four conversation circles, but the sniper can only view about a third of the map at once. This makes it difficult for the sniper to be able to accurately determine who was in conversation at the moment "banana bread" is uttered.
- Gallery: There are only two conversation circles, but the inside one tends to be more crowded due to NPCs having an aversion to bringing drinks outside. Because there are so many other pads for NPCs to visit, the sniper can often get a significant number of lowlights.
- High-rise: There are only two conversation circles inside the apartment. When there are lots of people in them, it can be hard for the sniper to tell who is where.
- Pub: All conversation circles are outside the pub.
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