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Old 05-25-2014, 08:23 PM   #11
whswhs
 
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

I used to do it the way you're describing—a reaction roll and then an Influence roll. But when I was working on SE I had to get it clear how things were in the RAW, so I discussed it with Kromm at length. Now I both understand that it works differently, and think that it really makes more sense that it should do so.

Basically, an Influence roll represents you trying to get another person to behave in a desired way, by using a particular way of approaching them—reasoned negotiation (Diplomacy), formal politeness (Savoir-Faire), bafflegab (Fast-Talk), threats (Intimidation), whatever. If the attempt succeeds you get the desired behavior; if it fails you don't.

But what if you don't try to use any particular skill to shape their reactions? Well, the reaction roll reflects what happens when how they feel about you becomes visible. If you ask them for something—not using an Influence skill, but just making a simple request—then their reaction becomes evident at that point, and the reaction roll occurs at that point. If you don't try to interact with them, they may react anyway, especially if you have some noticeable trait that they care about; that can be represented by a spontaneous reaction roll. If that comes up positive or negative, you'll see them react. If it comes up neutral, you won't.

In that last case, I would have no problem with your making an Influence roll to try to get their cooperation. Basically their reaction isn't really set anyway.

But if they have a positive or negative reaction, especially a strong one, I'd say their reaction has already been set, not by your deliberate attempt to shape it, but by their initial impression of you. At that point, their behavior has a certain natural inertia.

Look at it this way. Suppose you attempted Intimidation against a mugger, and lost the Influence roll, getting a Bad reaction. Would it be reasonable for you to get a second attempt at Intimidation? A third? Should you get to keep attempting Intimidation until it works? I would say no; the initial failure defines the encounter. But a Bad reaction that the mugger forms on their own really is no different. In either case the reaction is set.

Of course you can take an action that reframes the scene. Maybe you turn into a seven foot tall green-skinned monster and snarl at him. Maybe you draw a weapon. Maybe you say, "Come and take it," and when he does you throw him into the wall. Or maybe you invite him to join your gang and get bigger payoffs for his skills. In such cases you certainly could get a new reaction or Influence roll—by giving him something different to react to/be influenced by.

Social interaction in GURPS isn't designed to be played out "blow by blow" like physical combat. It's divided into discrete bits of dialogue, each aimed to gain some result. All the things that people say in one dialogue, all the gestures they make, and so on, contribute to a single roll. (Or to the absence of a roll—the GM can always decide that your speech was so effective that they other people just gives you what you want.)

I think what you're looking for is really a social engineering analog of Technical Grappling, where you try to gain control points toward the other person on an emotional level. And that could be an interesting alternative system; maybe you should try to work it out and submit it. But I don't have a problem with the RAW for the games I run.

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Old 05-25-2014, 08:43 PM   #12
David Johnston2
 
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
I used to do it the way you're describing—a reaction roll and then an Influence roll.d
That's not the way I described it.
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Old 05-25-2014, 09:31 PM   #13
whswhs
 
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

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That's not the way I described it.
I wasn't replying to you; I was replying to Sindri, the OP. Sorry; I took it for granted that you wouldn't read my comment as a reply to you unless I explicitly quoted you.

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Old 05-25-2014, 09:56 PM   #14
Sindri
 
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
I used to do it the way you're describing—a reaction roll and then an Influence roll. But when I was working on SE I had to get it clear how things were in the RAW, so I discussed it with Kromm at length. Now I both understand that it works differently, and think that it really makes more sense that it should do so.
That was my understanding of Basic pre-SE and how I'd probably run it if called upon to run GURPS right now but what I'd like is a way to get away from that. No longer having Influence Skills indirectly interface with Reaction Rolls by modifying their effects (Neutral, Good etc) but rather directly modifying the results (11, 14 etc) of a Reaction Roll.

Quote:
Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
Basically, an Influence roll represents you trying to get another person to behave in a desired way, by using a particular way of approaching them—reasoned negotiation (Diplomacy), formal politeness (Savoir-Faire), bafflegab (Fast-Talk), threats (Intimidation), whatever. If the attempt succeeds you get the desired behavior; if it fails you don't.

But what if you don't try to use any particular skill to shape their reactions? Well, the reaction roll reflects what happens when how they feel about you becomes visible. If you ask them for something—not using an Influence skill, but just making a simple request—then their reaction becomes evident at that point, and the reaction roll occurs at that point. If you don't try to interact with them, they may react anyway, especially if you have some noticeable trait that they care about; that can be represented by a spontaneous reaction roll. If that comes up positive or negative, you'll see them react. If it comes up neutral, you won't.
No objections here.

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In that last case, I would have no problem with your making an Influence roll to try to get their cooperation. Basically their reaction isn't really set anyway.
This isn't really a high priority to solve in a social ruleset but I don't like this. The difference between being having to choose either an Influence Roll or a Reaction Roll and being able to do a Reaction Roll and then follow it up with an Influence Roll is significant. It seems like this would to some degree incentivize characters with noticeable traits spottable at a distance to trigger Reaction Rolls and an approach of letting the NPC react to them first and then move in to influence him.

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But if they have a positive or negative reaction, especially a strong one, I'd say their reaction has already been set, not by your deliberate attempt to shape it, but by their initial impression of you. At that point, their behavior has a certain natural inertia.
This pushes the results even further to extremes. I'm not sure if neutral reactions should always be interpretted as unset reactions rather than reactions set at neutral some of the time.

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
Look at it this way. Suppose you attempted Intimidation against a mugger, and lost the Influence roll, getting a Bad reaction. Would it be reasonable for you to get a second attempt at Intimidation? A third? Should you get to keep attempting Intimidation until it works? I would say no; the initial failure defines the encounter. But a Bad reaction that the mugger forms on their own really is no different. In either case the reaction is set.
Certainly it's a problem to let characters just keep hitting the skill button until they win. It's a challenge of any use of quick contests.

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Of course you can take an action that reframes the scene. Maybe you turn into a seven foot tall green-skinned monster and snarl at him. Maybe you draw a weapon. Maybe you say, "Come and take it," and when he does you throw him into the wall. Or maybe you invite him to join your gang and get bigger payoffs for his skills. In such cases you certainly could get a new reaction or Influence roll—by giving him something different to react to/be influenced by.
This is basically Second Reaction Rolls. However Second Reaction Rolls considers, at least as I read it, "using [an influence] skill" to be a change in approach equivalent to "offering a bribe".

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
Social interaction in GURPS isn't designed to be played out "blow by blow" like physical combat. It's divided into discrete bits of dialogue, each aimed to gain some result. All the things that people say in one dialogue, all the gestures they make, and so on, contribute to a single roll. (Or to the absence of a roll—the GM can always decide that your speech was so effective that they other people just gives you what you want.)
I don't really think social interaction should be done in sentence by sentence excruciating detail. It would probably end up working worse. I do think the discrete bits of interaction should be smaller than "trying to persuade this guy to do a thing". More like "attempt one: using method a to persuade this guy to do a thing".

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
I think what you're looking for is really a social engineering analog of Technical Grappling, where you try to gain control points toward the other person on an emotional level. And that could be an interesting alternative system; maybe you should try to work it out and submit it. But I don't have a problem with the RAW for the games I run.
I'm not sure. I would like to see the social interaction rules ripped apart and put together again like the Technical Grappling rules. I'm skeptical of whether emotional control points are the right direction though. Of course I'd be interested in reading someone's attempt at it.

I don't really think I'm the person to engage in core innovation of the social interaction rules either. I can patch stuff to make things more agreeable to me but I don't have either the expertise in actual social engineering (and while I certainly could track down such a person I'd rather not waste their time) or experience running heavy social games that I would want in someone doing that.
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Old 05-25-2014, 10:21 PM   #15
whswhs
 
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

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I don't really think I'm the person to engage in core innovation of the social interaction rules either. I can patch stuff to make things more agreeable to me but I don't have either the expertise in actual social engineering (and while I certainly could track down such a person I'd rather not waste their time) or experience running heavy social games that I would want in someone doing that.
Most of my games are heavy on social interaction, and what went into SE was the product partly of the need to "save the appearances" of the published rules and partly of my experience with the kinds of social processes that (my) players like to play out.

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Old 05-25-2014, 10:23 PM   #16
Sindri
 
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

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Most of my games are heavy on social interaction, and what went into SE was the product partly of the need to "save the appearances" of the published rules and partly of my experience with the kinds of social processes that (my) players like to play out.

Bill Stoddard
Certainly. I'd just like an appearance saving-less ruleset built out of SE.
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Old 07-28-2015, 02:31 AM   #17
vicky_molokh
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

Riiise.
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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
[ . . . ] Now I both understand that it works differently, and think that it really makes more sense that it should do so.

Basically, an Influence roll represents you trying to get another person to behave in a desired way, by using a particular way of approaching them—reasoned negotiation (Diplomacy), formal politeness (Savoir-Faire), bafflegab (Fast-Talk), threats (Intimidation), whatever. If the attempt succeeds you get the desired behavior; if it fails you don't.

But what if you don't try to use any particular skill to shape their reactions? Well, the reaction roll reflects what happens when how they feel about you becomes visible. If you ask them for something—not using an Influence skill, but just making a simple request—then their reaction becomes evident at that point, and the reaction roll occurs at that point. If you don't try to interact with them, they may react anyway, especially if you have some noticeable trait that they care about; that can be represented by a spontaneous reaction roll. If that comes up positive or negative, you'll see them react. If it comes up neutral, you won't.

In that last case, I would have no problem with your making an Influence roll to try to get their cooperation. Basically their reaction isn't really set anyway.

But if they have a positive or negative reaction, especially a strong one, I'd say their reaction has already been set, not by your deliberate attempt to shape it, but by their initial impression of you. At that point, their behavior has a certain natural inertia.

Look at it this way. Suppose you attempted Intimidation against a mugger, and lost the Influence roll, getting a Bad reaction. Would it be reasonable for you to get a second attempt at Intimidation? A third? Should you get to keep attempting Intimidation until it works? I would say no; the initial failure defines the encounter. But a Bad reaction that the mugger forms on their own really is no different. In either case the reaction is set.

Of course you can take an action that reframes the scene. Maybe you turn into a seven foot tall green-skinned monster and snarl at him. Maybe you draw a weapon. Maybe you say, "Come and take it," and when he does you throw him into the wall. Or maybe you invite him to join your gang and get bigger payoffs for his skills. In such cases you certainly could get a new reaction or Influence roll—by giving him something different to react to/be influenced by. [ . . . ]
I am interesting in better understanding the intent behind both the RAW and this post. On one hand, infinite retries with the same approach should indeed be forbidden. On the other, Second Reactions have already been mentioned, and 'can roll again at -2/at no penalty/at +2' are not unheard of in reaction results. So how do the two sides of this coin interact? How are the lines drawn? It has already been mentioned that 'use a (different) skill' seems to be an implied for of a changed approach.
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Old 07-28-2015, 05:14 AM   #18
D10
 
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

Look I think we are talking about two entirely different psychological constructs. Reactions are perceptions.

While influences are direct attempts at influencing behavior in the direction of a given outcome.

The initial reaction will modulate how a given influence roll affects said behavioral response.

Some influence rolls like diplomacy, are specifically geared towards affecting perceptions (such as diplomacy), it cant work if there isnt a pre-existing perception to be affected by it, its no wonder diplomacy at skill 20 gives you +2 to reactions, as its meant to reflect the fact that a guy so skilled at it would learn how to present himself in a way that is well adapted to being well perceived.

But in a situation where for instance, a guy is being approached by a seductress PC in a bar, and she succeeds in her sex appeal, I as a GM would interpret it as the equivalent of a fickle positive reaction (depending on margin), that can be rerolled at any moment as soon as the guy has a reason to become suspicious, frustrated or maybe just bored.

Its praticly impossible to create a comprehensive rule system that is capable of arbitrating human interactions without GM fiat, and there will be so many disagreements about specifics that I wonder if its worth trying at this point in time.

But as I see it, there is no end to how many reactions rolls can be called for or influence skill used because their evocation is dependant on context, game flow and GM fiat more than anything.
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Old 07-28-2015, 07:50 AM   #19
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

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…Second Reactions have already been mentioned…. It has already been mentioned that 'use a (different) skill' seems to be an implied for of a changed approach.
My understanding is that 'use a (different) skill' is an example of a change of approach, not a requirement for a change of approach. (I'm not sure if you were saying it was. I just wanted to clarify.)

In my games, reaction and/or influence rolls are often made several times during a particular social engagement. The social engagement is generally resolved when the PCs either accept the most recent reaction/influence outcome (e.g. getting a good enough result for their purposes) or give up (e.g. getting a result so bad that social interaction has effectively ended).

Particularly good or bad results do carry over into subsequent attempts, not so much in a + or - bonuses or penalties way, but in a bad reaction requires at least a very good reaction to undo way.

What parts of the above are strict RAW, RAW with various sanctioned options turned on, within the bounds of RAW allowing for stylistic/genre conventions, or not RAW I'm not sure (but would be curious to know).
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Old 07-28-2015, 11:11 AM   #20
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Default Re: Influence Skills Modifying Reaction Rolls

I just gave up on the RAW system and did my own that is based on using both the reaction roll and a skill.
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