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Old 12-05-2016, 09:09 AM   #1
RogerBW
 
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Default [Basic] Reputations for bad people

Consider the town bully, or the feared chief of the secret police. He's basically intimidating rather than loved: people do what he wants because they're scared of him, not because they approve of him. In GURPS terms this is a positive reputation - it makes people more likely to obey the person, it boosts Intimidation - but when the town bully shows up with three bullets in him begging for help… well, maybe the town won't be so willing. So I propose this modifier, adapted from Patron:

Grudging: You obtained your Reputation through coercion (e.g., force or intimidation). People provide aid only because there is no other choice, and they definitely do not have your best interests at heart! You will eventually throw your weight around too much (GM's judgment) and flip the Reputation to a negative one: lower your point value accordingly. -50%

Thoughts?
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Old 12-05-2016, 09:13 AM   #2
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

Isn't there a specific instance of social regard for this?
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Old 12-05-2016, 09:22 AM   #3
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

Social Regard (Feared) is something you get from membership of a specific social group, not as an individual. "You are treated well because of what you are, not because of who you are."

I could see that as an argument from precedent that (Grudging) should be a -0% modifier, since SR (Feared) costs the same as SR (Respected), but I'm also thinking of the way everyone dogpiled e.g. Beria once he started to slip from the peak of his power.
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Old 12-05-2016, 09:25 AM   #4
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

I had ball-parked Reluctant/Intimidated for my attempt at redoing the Contacts rules
http://forums.sjgames.com/showpost.p...&postcount=185
Quote:
Reluctant/Intimidated- -40%: The PC has threatened, blackmailed or otherwise coerced the Contact. There is a risk that the Contact will report to the authorities or the PC's rival.
This would be a similar deal, I'd say.
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Old 12-05-2016, 09:31 AM   #5
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

I think what you want for this is to have two different Reputations, both applying with the same people: "A dangerous man to cross," for when you're in a position to lean on people, but "A mean SoB," for when you need help. They might be ±1 or ±2. Often they'd cancel out, but sometimes one would apply and sometimes the other.
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Old 12-05-2016, 10:41 AM   #6
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerBW
Consider the town bully, or the feared chief of the secret police. He's basically intimidating rather than loved: people do what he wants because they're scared of him, not because they approve of him. In GURPS terms this is a positive reputation - it makes people more likely to obey the person, it boosts Intimidation - but when the town bully shows up with three bullets in him begging for help… well, maybe the town won't be so willing. So I propose this modifier, adapted from Patron:

Grudging: You obtained your Reputation through coercion (e.g., force or intimidation). People provide aid only because there is no other choice, and they definitely do not have your best interests at heart! You will eventually throw your weight around too much (GM's judgment) and flip the Reputation to a negative one: lower your point value accordingly. -50%

Thoughts?
Being the town bully or feared chief of the secret police is a positive reputation in GURPS terms? Where did that come from? In most of my games, those would be negative reputations.

Yes, they are based on being intimidating rather than loved (though that doesn’t preclude having relationships that are based on being loved. I understand Frank di Nitti, head of Murder, Inc., was also a beloved family man.) The difference between a negative and a positive reputation (as I run it) is initial approachability. The first reaction of most people to someone with a positive reputation is to draw closer/pay attention to them. The first reaction to someone with a negative reputation is to hunker down/leave. If the town bully walks into the bar, the first reaction is going to be to maybe finish your drink, pay your bill and, it is to be hoped, get out without him noticing and deciding to make an issue out of it.

People are only willing to obey you if they can’t avoid it. This isn’t precisely a time and distance issue. If the feared chief of secret police has your daughter and has made it clear that she’ll suffer for any missteps you may make, he can send you to Timbuktu for a decade and you’ll be fine with that. On the other hand, if the town bully’s hold on you is purely personal and physical, he may find you’ve had a good long natter with the local constable as soon as you were out of arm’s reach.

In short, I think your solution is in need of a more appropriate problem.
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Old 12-05-2016, 10:52 AM   #7
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
Being the town bully or feared chief of the secret police is a positive reputation in GURPS terms? Where did that come from? In most of my games, those would be negative reputations.
Having a negative Reputation makes you less intimidating. It makes your life harder, because people don't help you. And therefore it costs points. None of those things is true of the examples I gave.
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Old 12-05-2016, 11:42 AM   #8
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerBW View Post
Having a negative Reputation makes you less intimidating.
Social modifiers are circumstantial by their nature. Having a reputation as, say, a murderous tyrant is doesn't give people a good reaction to you in general, but it makes your intimidation much more convincing until someone is sure they have the upper hand over you. Why wouldn't you be more intimidated by someone whose bad reputation consists of being well known for hurting people? Conversely why would you be MORE intimidated by a gun in the hands of a person famous for being a philanthropic do-gooder than you would in the hands of a famous psycho-killer?
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Old 12-05-2016, 12:00 PM   #9
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerBW View Post
Consider the town bully, or the feared chief of the secret police. He's basically intimidating rather than loved: people do what he wants because they're scared of him, not because they approve of him. In GURPS terms this is a positive reputation - it makes people more likely to obey the person, it boosts Intimidation - but when the town bully shows up with three bullets in him begging for help… well, maybe the town won't be so willing. So I propose this modifier, adapted from Patron:

Grudging: You obtained your Reputation through coercion (e.g., force or intimidation). People provide aid only because there is no other choice, and they definitely do not have your best interests at heart! You will eventually throw your weight around too much (GM's judgment) and flip the Reputation to a negative one: lower your point value accordingly. -50%

Thoughts?
I like it. It's a nice analogue to Unwilling on Allies/Patron and if enforced properly could be a headache - as limitations should be. Reminds me of what Biff from Back to the Future might have. Maybe give a hard number for when too much is too much? Perhaps 6 or less on 3d?
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Old 12-05-2016, 12:10 PM   #10
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Default Re: [Basic] Reputations for bad people

I can't remember if this is RAW or a houserule, but I've been known to let a negative reputation count positive for Intimidation checks if the reputation is for bloodthirstiness or violence. It's definitely RAW to do this for Appearance.
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