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Old 11-15-2014, 03:26 PM   #1
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Reaction Table House Rules

I'm not happy with the current reaction tables, so here's a swing at putting together something that I like better.

Descriptions are written with the assumption that an NPC is reacting to a PC.

-3 or lower: Disastrous
The NPC despises the PC. The NPC will refuse interactions or act against the PC even if doing so is very costly to them including possibly fighting them. If they accept employment it will be to maximize the damage they can cause against the PC and associated people or organizations.
-2-0: Very bad
The NPC hates the PC. The NPC will refuse interactions or act against the PC even if doing so is costly to them including possibly fighting them. They will not normally accept employment. If they must they will take any possible opportunity to act against them and will leave whenever they can.
1-3: Bad
The NPC really dislikes the PC. The NPC will refuse interactions or go out of their way to act against the PC. If employed they work badly, will take any opportunity to profit at the expense of their employer and betray them for a small price. The NPC will drop the job if ever offered a better one.
4-7: Unfavourable
The NPC dislikes the PC. If engaged the NPC behaves testily. Expected requests or transactions are frustrating, unproductive or expensive. Even slightly unusual requests or transactions are denied. If employed the NPC works badly and would betray them for a large price. The NPC will drop the job if ever offered a better one.
8-13: Neutral
The NPC is uninterested and ignores the PC. If engaged the NPC behaves civilly. Expected requests or transactions go smoothly. Unusual requests or transactions are denied. If employed the NPC views the PC as "just another boss".
14-17: Favourable
The NPC likes the PC. If engaged the NPC behaves pleasantly. Unusual requests or transactions are agreed to if easy to accomplish. If employed the NPC works hard and is loyal within the conventions of the job.
18-20: Good
The NPC really likes the PC. If engaged the NPC is friendly. The NPC will go out of their way to help the PC with requests or transactions and will even volunteer to help if they think they could help the PC. If employed the NPC works as hard as they can, is loyal and is willing to do unrelated favours for the PC.
21-23: Very Good
The NPC thinks highly of the PC. If engaged the NPC is very friendly. The NPC will volunteer to help the PC and will agree to costly requests or transactions. They may fight for the PC. If employed the NPC works as hard as they can, is loyal and is willing to do inconvenient unrelated favours for the PC.
24 or higher: Excellent
The NPC is extremely impressed by the PC. If engaged the NPC is deferential to the PC. The NPC will volunteer to help the PC and will agree to very costly requests or transactions. They may fight for the PC. If employed the NPC works as hard as they can, is loyal and is willing to do very inconvenient unrelated favours for the PC.

Haggling
Note: The price reduction due to good reactions represents a sustainable level. Good reactions can produce substantially better deals, even free things but it significantly drains social capital to do so and might reduce the sustainable bonuses as well until replenished.

1. Start with the list price of the goods.
2. Modify list price by the local price modifier for those goods.
3. The goods may not be in the state implied by the list price. Goods in big crates in a warehouse are effectively worth less than goods on shelves in an established shop in the merchant district with a merchant to sell them. That transition in particular will generally cut off 20% of the price.
4. If the items are awkward for the buyer to sell due to being expensive, uncommonly sought after, of short shelf life, awkward to store or unknown to the market that will add to the reduction in step 3 by 30% for the first and 10% for each additional factor.
5. If the buyer needs to pay taxes or another cost to bring it to a location where it can be sold the price will be reduced by the amount of that cost.
6. Determine what price the characters think the goods have. They will know the true price if they are familiar with the goods otherwise they require a Merchant (or skill specific to the goods) roll with penalties if the goods are obscure or far removed from markets they are familiar with. Otherwise they will have to estimate (probably conservatively) from a similar good.
7. Determine what price the characters are representing the goods as having. If a character is actively misrepresenting the price and it seems absurd or the other character successfully detects the lie the price will generally be dismissed after which the negotiations could end or proceed with a penalty for the liar. Naturally a seemingly absurd price that is true will be treated the same.
8. Make a quick contest using Merchant, Diplomacy, Sex Appeal or Fast-Talk (if misrepresenting the price) to see if one character manages to sway the other closer to their represented price. If one of them wins and gets a greater margin of success each point of the margin of success will remove 10% of the difference of prices.
9. Each character can select a price they will won’t compromise on. It’s generally more polite to break of negotiations when it becomes apparent that this will not be achieved than after a protracted haggling.
10. For each character add 1 for every reaction category removed from neutral (bad or worse reactions will refuse interactions or act maliciously if they can though) and chose a penalty for haggling extremeness. If either character is under an unusual pressure to free up capital or space or otherwise complete the deal that will add a penalty to their roll.
11. Make a quick contest Merchant roll with a bonus or penalty equal to the result from step 10. If both fail or tie and they are representing the same price that is the price they would agree on. Otherwise the winner will shift the other’s price 1% for every point of margin of success + 2% for every point of haggling extremeness penalty.
12. If the deal isn’t within both character's step 9 parameters or their represented prices haven't converged due to persuasion and haggling it fails.
13. Otherwise each character decides whether they will accept the deal.

Temporary Reaction Boosting
Being worked on.

Last edited by Sindri; 12-04-2014 at 09:00 PM.
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Old 11-16-2014, 04:03 AM   #2
tetrahedron
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Toronto, ON, Canada
Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

What would you say was the greatest improvements to the game by implementing this? I've considered trying an expanded reaction table (I assume you also found the applicable modifiers vs. the current reaction table chart always seemed to trend into the good categories far to often?), but not to this extreme. How did it change your play?
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Old 11-16-2014, 08:24 AM   #3
whswhs
 
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

The change from a width of four to a width of three for reaction bands would put me off too much, aesthetically.

Bill Stoddard
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Old 11-16-2014, 09:38 AM   #4
Dwarf99
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Fayetteville, Arkansas
Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

Social Engineering goes into great detail on what each reaction band does. Personally, just like Stoddard said, I'd be ok if you kept the original reaction bands. But I'd be ok if you expanded the upper end to include the additional 4 point categories. That way you could say... play a nymph with their +10, and get +4 from those affected by personal talents for a maximum of 32. You still might not end up being as granular as needed to fully benefit from a maximum roll of 32, but keeping 4 point reaction bands pretty much leaves your average Joe untouched.
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Old 11-16-2014, 09:59 AM   #5
Lamech
 
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

I think its a good idea. I thought the existing one had extreme results too easily.
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Old 11-16-2014, 11:22 AM   #6
vicky_molokh
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lamech View Post
I think its a good idea. I thought the existing one had extreme results too easily.
Well let's see . . .
Alexander the Great.
Charisma +4,
Attractive +1,
Reputation +3
TOTAL +8.
Should he really be enjoying merely the lower end of Good reactions on average?
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Old 11-16-2014, 11:28 AM   #7
Edges
 
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Well let's see . . .
Alexander the Great.
Charisma +4,
Attractive +1,
Reputation +3
TOTAL +8.
Should he really be enjoying merely the lower end of Good reactions on average?
With people of the same Status level? Sounds about right.
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Old 11-16-2014, 11:41 AM   #8
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edges View Post
With people of the same Status level? Sounds about right.
I found myself wanting to click +1 on this, but unfortunately, you can't do that with every site.
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Old 11-16-2014, 01:06 PM   #9
vicky_molokh
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edges View Post
With people of the same Status level? Sounds about right.
A typical someone of the same status level would not be affected by the Reputation (among his troops and other soldiers), making that a net +5 instead, which is barely above neutral. That's not what the reaction to someone who is described as awesomely charismatic would look like. In fact, this table means that someone who is described as borderline-superhumanly charismatic (+5) barely gets above neutral reactions on average. That's . . . pretty underwhelming.
----
Other considerations:
This table makes it much more lucrative to use Influence Skills, but not to put more than one point into them:
Sex Appeal gets awesome in use, being the only semi-reliable way to ensure Very Good reactions.
Diplomacy becomes kinda good in a different way than before: it now gets you a Good reaction on success, but you're likely to get the (neutral-ish) default reaction otherwise.

Note that it's still better to put points into Reaction Modifiers than Influence Skills, because one RM affects most Influence rolls, but one skill is only suitable in some subset of situations. Oh, and RMs still provide reaction bonuses, but they're pretty bad without skills.

So yeah, now there's more synergy between modifiers and skills, but it seems odd in the way they work.
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Old 11-16-2014, 03:08 PM   #10
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

Quote:
Originally Posted by tetrahedron View Post
What would you say was the greatest improvements to the game by implementing this? I've considered trying an expanded reaction table (I assume you also found the applicable modifiers vs. the current reaction table chart always seemed to trend into the good categories far to often?), but not to this extreme. How did it change your play?
Well I haven't used it yet. The intended advantages are to
1. Totally remove the ability to randomly produce very bad and very good reactions without any modifiers and make bad and good reactions very rare.
2. Make the number of reactions odd, so that there is balance between the number of good and bad reactions.
3. Remove the kludge of interpreting potential combat situations far more seriously than general reactions.
4. Require more reaction bonuses to dominate the table.

Quote:
Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
The change from a width of four to a width of three for reaction bands would put me off too much, aesthetically.

Bill Stoddard
Well neutral has a width of six, but I can understand that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dwarf99 View Post
Social Engineering goes into great detail on what each reaction band does. Personally, just like Stoddard said, I'd be ok if you kept the original reaction bands. But I'd be ok if you expanded the upper end to include the additional 4 point categories. That way you could say... play a nymph with their +10, and get +4 from those affected by personal talents for a maximum of 32. You still might not end up being as granular as needed to fully benefit from a maximum roll of 32, but keeping 4 point reaction bands pretty much leaves your average Joe untouched.
If I "kept the original reaction bands" that would mean not using these rules at all. The core of these rules is not reducing table domination of high reaction bonuses. Adding more than one reaction band could work but I'd have a hard time coming with relevant differences as they get stretched.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
A typical someone of the same status level would not be affected by the Reputation (among his troops and other soldiers), making that a net +5 instead, which is barely above neutral. That's not what the reaction to someone who is described as awesomely charismatic would look like. In fact, this table means that someone who is described as borderline-superhumanly charismatic (+5) barely gets above neutral reactions on average. That's . . . pretty underwhelming.
Alexander deserves a reputation among other leaders and his reputation among his soldiers should certainly be +4 but let's look at your example. You can't just look at averages. With a total of +8 bad and unfavourable reactions simply don't happen, he's capable of hitting excellent and the average is good. That's superb! Significant acts of social engineering don't work by hammering people with charisma, attractiveness and reputation and leaving it at that. It functions through repeated interactions that build on the foundations you set before...

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
This table makes it much more lucrative to use Influence Skills, but not to put more than one point into them:
... Which brings us to this. I didn't even consider maintaining the current style of influence skills. I still want to have things work like I described in this ( http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread.php?t=126069 ) thread where influence skills actually modify the results rather than overriding them.

I'm planning on posting rules for that and haggling at some point later on.
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