Social Rules Idea

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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby Fetch » Thu Mar 24, 2011 6:07 pm

I'd count that as similar request altho I might allow it if it were a little cleaverer. Say:
PC: "give me your gun"
Guard: Willpower "no"
PC: "Ok, I'll toss my ammo under that car if you do to, then we'll both be disarmed. What, you're a big guy, you can take me, right?"
Guard: out of Willpower "Fine, but you toss in first" and he will to.


It might also be worth pointing out that when you spend Willpower to drop the level of Sway your opponent doesn't necessarily know. It would be valid to spend the points to drop the Sway but make a Subterfuge test to convincingly agree to whatever the highest level of Sway is. Heck, you could do that even if they didn't initially Sway you that high. You're willing to go part way but want them to think you're all in, basically.
With the order to kill the cop above you might buy down the Sway to beat instead of kill but lie and say you'll kill them because you don't want to get in trouble.
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby The Doctor » Thu Mar 24, 2011 7:03 pm

Rereading, can't find this. Do orders that would constitute a morality sin for the character get anything in defense?
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby Fetch » Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:16 am

Actions that would be sins against Mortality gain protection as if they were Ideals at their same level.

It's buried in the Ideals section. You get some more of them than Ideals since there's several per level but you can't change them as their set by your Splat. And yes, they can potentially double up with Ideals and Passions.


I think I may have a way to handle timing of social tests. Some adjustment may be needed.
Code: Select all
Sway | Time Required
1    | 1 Round *
2    | 1 Minuet
3    | 7 Minuets
4    | 15 Minuets
5    | 30 Minuets
+1   | +30 Minuets

Changing Passions and Ideals are treated as as a Sway level equal to the subject's Composure or Resolve respectively for the purpose of determining test time.

* Working this quickly characters likely don't have time for more than a a quick sentence or two, not enough time to invoke many Passions or Ideals as bonus.  If your subject fears you this will help your intimidation but if they fear something not present you won't really have time to verbally invoke that fear.  On the up side without a held action it's often impossible to Just Walk Away from or otherwise interrupt a command given this quickly.

Characters would be able to drop the time required but each drop would inflict a -1(-2?) so trying to get someone to do a Sway 3 action with a simple command (ie in 1 Round) would suffer a -2. In cases where the aggressor doesn't know what level of Sway they are aiming to hit (changing a Passion) they choose how long they are taking to explain their position and take penalties accordingly.

This might make it too easy to walk up to someone and bark "Kill your wife, scum!" altho I have difficulty imagining anything too horrid one could accomplish this way. Taking another -4 onto the wife killing example above just puts the best mortal talker ever further into a chance die.
More mild things tho? "Lets steal this computer." Assuming average stats and no relevant Passions/Ideals thats a -1 for petty theft (Morality 7), -2 for average social defense, -2 for doing level 3 Sway in one Round, and you need 3 successes.
With a pool of 5 or less you're on a chance die and need to draw a 30, 6 (professional actor/politician) needs to draw a 14, and not until a base pool of 15+ can you (fully) succeed on average. That's not bad IMO. Someone you have a bond with who's vary persuasive can get you to do something crazy thru pure force of personality, assuming you aren't stubborn enough to resist (burn Willpower) that day.
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby Milk Waffler » Sun Mar 27, 2011 11:34 am

And actually, your example just clarified why I have hesitation for this system. It moves beyond persuasion and into mind control. You can literally walk up to people, say "kill your wife", and they have to go do it. Or, more likely, willpower drain them with a different persuasion, and then tell them to kill their wife.


Stockholm syndrome anyone?

Just thought I'd bring up that humans can do something very simmilar to mind control. There's probably people held captive by somali pirates right now that are starting to agree with them, even though they are the victims and have every reason to hate with all of their will.

Mind control isn't beyond the capabilities of human persuasion, it just takes a long time. This shouldn't be discounted.
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby The Doctor » Sun Mar 27, 2011 2:39 pm

Yes, but that's the key. It takes a long time, and is because of the entire structure of the person's environment of captivity. Not just...one sentence.
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby Fox Folger » Sun Mar 27, 2011 5:03 pm

The Doctor wrote:Yes, but that's the key. It takes a long time, and is because of the entire structure of the person's environment of captivity. Not just...one sentence.


This is actually how natural mental influence works in the system a lot of this seems to have been cribbed from (Exalted): you need to systematically deny someone the ability to regenerate willpower for a long time before they start doing stuff against their Intimacies or Motivation.

Should prolly stick a clause like that in.
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby Fetch » Mon Mar 28, 2011 12:09 pm

Fox Folger wrote:This is actually how natural mental influence works in the system a lot of this seems to have been cribbed from (Exalted): you need to systematically deny someone the ability to regenerate willpower for a long time before they start doing stuff against their Intimacies or Motivation.

Should prolly stick a clause like that in.

It's been a while since I read Exalted but I did outright steal Unacceptable Orders from there and I see Passions as serving a similar role to Intimacies and Ideals as being similar to Motivation.

I don't recall anything else worth stealing but bring it if you got it.

The big difference, on a conceptual level, is that Exalted is very all or nothing.
"Kill your wife!", 1 success past your defense, and now you'll do it.
Oh no, I spend 1 wp and now I'm immune to any of your social influence for the rest of the Scene.
Willpower is allot cheaper in WoD then Exalted and one of by goals was to make sure social characters have clear and effective things they can do that still leave interesting choices in the hands of the player of a given character(how are your Passions and Ideals set up? Is it worth the wp to buy down all the way or is some level of compromise ok?). By contrast Exalted's system was designed with the goal that social PC's can influence NPC's but that PC's can prevent themselves from being controlled by players other than their own, magic powers aside. The assumption is that the ST should rarely spend NPC wp to resist social tests while the players are free to ignore social tests if they want.


In any case, I'm feeling good about this social system, having the "Kill your wife" objections shown to be an uncommon problem at worst. We can always tweak it if little problems crop up in play. If there aren't any more major objections I'm thinking I can have this all on the character sheets within 2 - 4 weeks.
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby The Doctor » Mon Mar 28, 2011 1:52 pm

If we're moving ahead with it, I'd like to tweak social defense a bit, I'm not particularly happy with which stats are chosen, and whether or not it should be higher or lower of the two.

EDIT: Now that I have time to reread to remember my issues, I don't like that manipulation is both offense and defense for social interactions with that, and intelligence feels a bit awkward for defending social compulsion. I understand you're trying to avoid making wits/physical defense stats used for even more things, or having your social health levels also be your social defense (resolve+composure), but we're going to have to double-up somewhere, so I'd like it to make a bit more sense. Composure and resolve make the most logical defense against persuasion - how long you can argue with someone without throwing your hands up in frustration and doing whatever they want to shut them up (composure), and your stubbornness and unwillingness to let anything dissuade you from your goals (resolve). But again, that's exactly your pool for willpower, so it's a bit awkward to have them be your defense and health levels. If I were to keep one of the two...it's a toss-up. On one hand, composure is already used for initiative and spotting ambushes, resolve isn't used for anything. On the other, taking resolve as one of the defenses puts the other one into social, and if we're ignoring composure...that leaves either of the two offensive social stats.

EDIT EDIT: Forgot the other one. Higher or lower? In combat, everything's fast paced and frenetic, everyone trying to do a bunch of things at once, which is why lower of the two defensive stats makes sense - you can be super quick, but if you don't have the mental acuity to analyze incoming threats and respond, you're not going to be able to do much but flail about. Social combat, however, is very slow paced and methodical - you structure your argument, present your case, and address rebuttals, so I would lean more towards higher of the two (just like animal defense, which is totally out of left field, by the way).
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby Fetch » Mon Mar 28, 2011 2:57 pm

I was thinking about this too. I want to avoid doubling up but it's true that Intelligence is a bit of a stretch, to put it mildly. I'm thinking lower of Resolve or Composure. As for lower vs higher, the fluff about flailing around in combat and things being fast is fine but it's really a system design decision that defense be lower and hence more expensive. If it were the higher we could just as easily talk about how in combat you can be fast enough to avoid the attacks or preceptive enough to set yourself up where they can't get at you without getting off balance. In the case of social action I guess we'd say that you are balancing their arguments and yours and need to keep your focus on what their saying even as you have to keep distance to keep from falling for simple manipulative tricks. Or something.

For now I am also assuming you can socially "dodge" to double defense. Only one defense may be dodging at a time? Social dodge will probably see more use than physical dodge, just at a guess.
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Re: Social Rules Idea

Postby Fox Folger » Mon Mar 28, 2011 6:46 pm

Fetch wrote:
Fox Folger wrote:This is actually how natural mental influence works in the system a lot of this seems to have been cribbed from (Exalted): you need to systematically deny someone the ability to regenerate willpower for a long time before they start doing stuff against their Intimacies or Motivation.

Should prolly stick a clause like that in.

It's been a while since I read Exalted but I did outright steal Unacceptable Orders from there and I see Passions as serving a similar role to Intimacies and Ideals as being similar to Motivation.

I don't recall anything else worth stealing but bring it if you got it.


From the section on using natural mental influence to compel behavior which would violate one's Motivation: "If a character is reduced to zero temporary willpower through social attacks opposing their motivation" (in this system, any social attack against your motivation requires you to spend willpower to resist if your MDV doesn't block it-- if you have no willpower, you can still resist the compulsion, though*) "and she goes (permanent Willpower+Essence) days without ever recovering back her full willpower, her will is broken. In this state (which lasts until the character has full Willpower), successful social attacks may compel her to take actions betraying her motivation."

I always liked that system. Lets a character have some core principles no amount of bargaining will betray, but also lets the truly terrible force them into breaking those principles anyway. Of course, most PCs in Exalted just use mind control anyway, so it doesn't often come up.

*This is for all the people who don't play Exalted-- Lucas already knows this, I assume.
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