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Old 11-17-2014, 01:12 PM   #21
Sindri
 
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Expand the reaction table only to expand trait maximums to compensate? That seems an odd choice.
Well it's more important that the reaction table functions well with most PC face characters than gods of beauty. Also if you want, say, nymphs to be perfectly beautiful and thus transcendent that means that a god of beauty that's more beautiful than that needs to have some sort of trait to represent that.

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Hmm. So you're saying that it's not possible for these things to happen naturally, only through manipulation. I'm not sure there will be any progress made in either direction on this part of the topic between the two of us.
The relationship between Charisma and manipulation is... complicated. If you ever try to persuade or impress someone you are in a sense trying to manipulate them. If you even try to make a conversation pleasant for someone you are in a sense trying to manipulate them. Is it necessary to cynically manipulate people into doing things that are bad for them but useful for you to do some thing impressive? No you don't need to do that.

You especially don't need to do that if you have the sort of significant circumstantial modifiers that will make future historians point you out in an attempt to refute the Great Man theory. Nor is it manipulative for people with Charisma to leverage that into other social traits. They are legitimately well suited to handling responsibilities that require deft social skills.

Furthermore they are good at social interaction and people like doing things that they are good at and when someone who is good at something spends a lot of time doing it, it's not surprising if they pick up additional traits related to that.

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You only get the worse reaction on a failure, and after having some level of reaction modifiers (e.g. +5), you only have a decent chance of failure against the most stubborn people (Will 15-20). So back in the RAW you had to also choose between a Good reaction from a skill roll (also risking a Bad one if your effective skill is low), and whatever reaction you're likely to roll. But now the reaction you roll is extremely unlikely to be worse than the reaction you get on an Influence success.
Well I feel like the end result should have failure be a significant consideration since it's an important balancing mechanism for Diplomacy. I'm not sure if it's necessary for Influence skills to benefit from Reaction Modifiers if they are already modifying them directly.
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Old 11-17-2014, 02:34 PM   #22
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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What percentage of favourable reactions would you encounter in your day to day life with a +0 modifier?
A hell of a lot better than 16%, that's for sure ... that being the actual odds of rolling 14+ on 3d6 with no modifiers. Are you truly claiming that anyone who isn't attractive beyond the norm, notably charismatic, possessing of obvious status, or quite skilled at wheedling people are going to get blown off by over 4/5ths of everyone with whom they try to interact?

If your answer is "yes," then you live in a lot surlier area than I do, and Yankees aren't notorious for being chummy with strangers. Even though I have an offbeat accept locals find unusual, I'm used to having my questions answered, to having shopkeepers treat me respectfully, and to strangers giving me directions.

I don't know ... what's your motivation behind those higher numbers? Is it as I expect, and you're tired of having high-reaction mod PCs steamrolling social interactions, and want to nerf that?
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Old 11-17-2014, 02:48 PM   #23
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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A hell of a lot better than 16%, that's for sure ... that being the actual odds of rolling 14+ on 3d6 with no modifiers. Are you truly claiming that anyone who isn't attractive beyond the norm, notably charismatic, possessing of obvious status, or quite skilled at wheedling people are going to get blown off by over 4/5ths of everyone with whom they try to interact?

If your answer is "yes," then you live in a lot surlier area than I do, and Yankees aren't notorious for being chummy with strangers. Even though I have an offbeat accept locals find unusual, I'm used to having my questions answered, to having shopkeepers treat me respectfully, and to strangers giving me directions.
I wouldn't describe a neutral reaction as being blown off. Getting blown of is unfavourable. A neutral reaction means a random person giving perfunctory directions or answers or a smooth interaction with a shopkeeper or person whose job it is to answer your questions.
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Old 11-17-2014, 03:42 PM   #24
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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Well it's more important that the reaction table functions well with most PC face characters than gods of beauty. Also if you want, say, nymphs to be perfectly beautiful and thus transcendent that means that a god of beauty that's more beautiful than that needs to have some sort of trait to represent that.
Actually, it's most important for a system to support a full range, from 25-point kids fighting against Freddie, to 500+ Exalted Solars and beyond. With your system, being Attractive is mostly not noticed at all.

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The relationship between Charisma and manipulation is... complicated. If you ever try to persuade or impress someone you are in a sense trying to manipulate them. If you even try to make a conversation pleasant for someone you are in a sense trying to manipulate them. Is it necessary to cynically manipulate people into doing things that are bad for them but useful for you to do some thing impressive? No you don't need to do that.
This is something that I feel Storyteller/WoD handles . . . well, not better, if we include Social Engineering, but makes a point of distinguishing. There's Appearance, there's Charisma, and there's Manipulation, and they're considered different attributes in WoD. Likewise, in GURPS, there's the Reaction Roll approach, where one tries to act naturally and rely on the natural reaction, the Influence approach, where one tries to push people beyond their natural reactions (at the risk of appearing pushy and getting a negative result), and there's the Manipulation approach, where one pushes the envelope even further, with some chance of an even nastier negative reaction.

There are people with a, what you seem to be calling (and I do not exactly disagree) a cynical approach. They're likely at home with Skinner & Co., and are inclined to see social interaction as a purely push-here-get-result-there thing.
Then there are the incorruptible-pure-cuteness sorts of people, who go through life almost never caring to adjust their social interactions . . . and even our indomitable friendly neighbourhood sociopath tends to like them and come to their help in times of need, without being asked to (unlike for his other close acquaintances).

Manipulation and Influence isn't necessarily about asking people to do something that is bad for them. It's more about the approach, about deliberately replacing what they want to do with what you want them to want. Actively changing moods. Stepping outside the bounds of natural reactions. Applying skill and finesse and technique to social interactions. Adding art or engineering towards that that started out as primal and untamed. It need not necessarily be bad.

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You especially don't need to do that if you have the sort of significant circumstantial modifiers that will make future historians point you out in an attempt to refute the Great Man theory. Nor is it manipulative for people with Charisma to leverage that into other social traits. They are legitimately well suited to handling responsibilities that require deft social skills.
Intelligence != Charisma, so no, it does not necessarily imply that they're well-suited to handling the responsibilities they gain through the latter.

As for the theme of refuting the Great Man Theory - actually, it more sounds like an attempt to make individual traits by which characters are differentiated less differentiating them.

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Furthermore they are good at social interaction and people like doing things that they are good at and when someone who is good at something spends a lot of time doing it, it's not surprising if they pick up additional traits related to that.
People don't always like doing what they're good at. There are memoirs of great musicians saying that they've been forced to do music throughout their childhoods, for example. And it's quite possible for some person to have interests lying in a different sphere.

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Well I feel like the end result should have failure be a significant consideration since it's an important balancing mechanism for Diplomacy. I'm not sure if it's necessary for Influence skills to benefit from Reaction Modifiers if they are already modifying them directly.
Indeed, whether to apply them is a difficult question. But if they don't apply, then (a) Allure becomes significantly better than Appearance for what it does (which is odd, but kinda makes sense), (b) it might become tempting to just bite the bullet and go Reaction Modifiers all the way (despite their reduced usefulness), all the time, because failures become more likely - end result:
across the board nerf of social characters; if someone throws points at being social, said someone will now throw lots of points, and instead of having a Gorgeous Character, a Charismatic Character, and a Pleasant-Sounding-and-Famous Character, you'll get all your faces trying to stack all the traits, because having one trait even at superhuman levels is rather unimpressive.
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Old 11-17-2014, 05:13 PM   #25
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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Actually, it's most important for a system to support a full range, from 25-point kids fighting against Freddie, to 500+ Exalted Solars and beyond. With your system, being Attractive is mostly not noticed at all.
Priorities exist regardless of whether you'd like something to do well in everything.

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This is something that I feel Storyteller/WoD handles . . . well, not better, if we include Social Engineering, but makes a point of distinguishing. There's Appearance, there's Charisma, and there's Manipulation, and they're considered different attributes in WoD. Likewise, in GURPS, there's the Reaction Roll approach, where one tries to act naturally and rely on the natural reaction, the Influence approach, where one tries to push people beyond their natural reactions (at the risk of appearing pushy and getting a negative result), and there's the Manipulation approach, where one pushes the envelope even further, with some chance of an even nastier negative reaction.
Things are pretty desperate if WoD is a competitor in mechanics. Precisely one of the things I'm trying to push away from is the idea that these are approaches. They aren't approaches, they are tools.

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There are people with a, what you seem to be calling (and I do not exactly disagree) a cynical approach. They're likely at home with Skinner & Co., and are inclined to see social interaction as a purely push-here-get-result-there thing.
Then there are the incorruptible-pure-cuteness sorts of people, who go through life almost never caring to adjust their social interactions . . . and even our indomitable friendly neighbourhood sociopath tends to like them and come to their help in times of need, without being asked to (unlike for his other close acquaintances).
That's rather unfair to behaviourists. It's also not what I meant by cynical. Social interaction is push-here-get-result-there, there's nothing magical about it. The cynicism I'm talking about is "everyone's out to screw everyone over for personal profit so why shouldn't I join in?" sort of approach.

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Manipulation and Influence isn't necessarily about asking people to do something that is bad for them. It's more about the approach, about deliberately replacing what they want to do with what you want them to want. Actively changing moods. Stepping outside the bounds of natural reactions. Applying skill and finesse and technique to social interactions. Adding art or engineering towards that that started out as primal and untamed. It need not necessarily be bad.
No it isn't about having someone do something that is bad for them. That was my whole point. If you are trying to get someone to like you, be impressed by you, do something good for themselves or even have a pleasant time you are trying to manipulate something about them. That's not what we refer to as manipulation in practical terms but it's manipulation nonetheless. Social interaction is rather odd in that what for one person is a very deliberate action is for another an ingrained habit and for another a fundamental part of their personality. Functionally though these frequently behave the same so automatically differentiating them isn't a good plan.

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Intelligence != Charisma, so no, it does not necessarily imply that they're well-suited to handling the responsibilities they gain through the latter.
It means they are well-suited to jobs that require handling social situations. It doesn't matter that there might be other parts of the responsibilities that they can't handle well. The point is that their social abilities are generally relevant to other social traits that they might leverage their abilities into acquiring and thus they are thus not necessarily unethical in pursuing those traits.

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As for the theme of refuting the Great Man Theory
What "theme"? There's no theme. The point is that people who acquire a lot of followers for whom circumstantial bonuses are contributing a large percentage of their bonuses are going to be the sort of people historians interested in refuting the Great Man theory will tend to point to not proving that viewpoint right.

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actually, it more sounds like an attempt to make individual traits by which characters are differentiated less differentiating them.
That's not what's being attempted any more than reducing the damage increase per strength level because it produces unrealistic effects is an attempt at reducing differentiation. The point is making things work more reasonably. It will end up, as a cost, making the differences between low levels less extreme. On the other hand it will increase the noticeability of differences at the higher end because further purchases have more room to improve things.

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People don't always like doing what they're good at. There are memoirs of great musicians saying that they've been forced to do music throughout their childhoods, for example. And it's quite possible for some person to have interests lying in a different sphere.
A person doesn't necessarily like doing what they are good at. People do.

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Indeed, whether to apply them is a difficult question. But if they don't apply, then (a) Allure becomes significantly better than Appearance for what it does (which is odd, but kinda makes sense)
Allure as in the talent? Talents having reaction bonuses baked in is silly. I don't really care to balance with that in mind.

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(b) it might become tempting to just bite the bullet and go Reaction Modifiers all the way (despite their reduced usefulness), all the time, because failures become more likely
So you adjust prices until reaction modifiers and influence skills are comparable purchases.

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end result:
across the board nerf of social characters; if someone throws points at being social, said someone will now throw lots of points, and instead of having a Gorgeous Character, a Charismatic Character, and a Pleasant-Sounding-and-Famous Character, you'll get all your faces trying to stack all the traits, because having one trait even at superhuman levels is rather unimpressive.
Faces already try to stack all the traits. If you are stepping forward as the face of the whole group buying Very Handsome Appearance isn't gonna cut it unless you are operating at low enough points that no one can actually do their job.

Furthermore we want our specialists to desire having all the traits. A swordsman doesn't buy superhuman strength and then consider fighting to be handled and he shouldn't. The way to get people to only buy some of the social abilities is to push back against having "a face character" who does all the social interaction as a reasonable party strategy. If social abilities are important everyone should be able to contribute just like everyone needs to be able to contribute in a fight. People have "a face character" because if you can have one person handle all the social stuff it's wasteful to have more than one person have the abilities to do that, but generally in play everyone would like to be able to talk to the NPCs.

A nerf isn't necessarily a bad thing. Social traits are seriously cheap for what they do if the characters actually get a chance to use them properly. Having one trait at superhuman levels is only unimpressive compared to the overpowered normal rules. Having superhuman beauty is a powerful tool not an "I win" button for social challenges.
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:20 PM   #26
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

If the issue is the frequency of extreme results occurring on random rolls, instead of expanding the table and thus requiring all other reaction-affecting traits and mechanics to be modified, why not just change the roll for an initial random reaction? Instead of 3d6, maybe you roll 2d6+3 (from 5 to 15), or even 1d6+7 (from 8 to 13).

"Extreme" reactions are then solely determined by GM fiat... typically explained away by adding some sort of Intolerance or attraction trait to the NPC so that he reacts that way to the PC(s) in question.
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:29 PM   #27
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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If the issue is the frequency of extreme results occurring on random rolls, instead of expanding the table and thus requiring all other reaction-affecting traits and mechanics to be modified, why not just change the roll for an initial random reaction? Instead of 3d6, maybe you roll 2d6+3 (from 5 to 15), or even 1d6+7 (from 8 to 13).

"Extreme" reactions are then solely determined by GM fiat... typically explained away by adding some sort of Intolerance or attraction trait to the NPC so that he reacts that way to the PC(s) in question.
Well I don't believe that this does require all other reaction-affecting traits and mechanics to be modified. Putting that aside narrowing the possible rolls while keeping the rest of the table would reduce random extreme reactions but make it far easier to guarantee extreme reactions. Narrowing the possible rolls and removing the the rest of the table except by GM fiat would be unsatisfactory for people playing heavy social characters.
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Old 11-18-2014, 02:48 AM   #28
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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Things are pretty desperate if WoD is a competitor in mechanics. Precisely one of the things I'm trying to push away from is the idea that these are approaches. They aren't approaches, they are tools.
That's an odd way to phrase it. I'm pointing at Storyteller because it more clearly illustrates that which is more subtly shown in Social Engineering. And if acting natural vs. consciously trying to influence someone vs. manipulating someone are not approaches . . . well then nothing is ever an approach. (Whether or not traits and skills are tools is another matter - I'm certainly willing to consider skills to be tools. But whether to use this, that, or neither tool - that's an approach.)

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That's rather unfair to behaviourists. It's also not what I meant by cynical. Social interaction is push-here-get-result-there, there's nothing magical about it. The cynicism I'm talking about is "everyone's out to screw everyone over for personal profit so why shouldn't I join in?" sort of approach.
You don't always have to push. Some results are achieved whether you deliberately push or not. (And sure, there's nothing magical. That is beside the point.)

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No it isn't about having someone do something that is bad for them. That was my whole point. If you are trying to get someone to like you, be impressed by you, do something good for themselves or even have a pleasant time you are trying to manipulate something about them. That's not what we refer to as manipulation in practical terms but it's manipulation nonetheless. Social interaction is rather odd in that what for one person is a very deliberate action is for another an ingrained habit and for another a fundamental part of their personality. Functionally though these frequently behave the same so automatically differentiating them isn't a good plan.
Let's not muddle the line between Influence and Manipulation. You seem to be saying that the two and one and the same because they are one and the same.
There's a way to describe people for whom some approach is part of their personality to the point of always using it: the Inappropriate Manner quirk for skills and the Mind-Numbing Magnetism quirk for descriptors such as 'talkative' or 'poetic'.

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It means they are well-suited to jobs that require handling social situations. It doesn't matter that there might be other parts of the responsibilities that they can't handle well. The point is that their social abilities are generally relevant to other social traits that they might leverage their abilities into acquiring and thus they are thus not necessarily unethical in pursuing those traits.
Thing is, too often jobs that require handling situations also require handling lots of other stuff. The primary example seems to be positions of power within a state, where getting there is largely social, but doing stuff there is economical, judicial etc. And thus we get lots of people who are professionals at Getting There, but are awful at doing what they promised to be doing, either through stupidity or malice (or both!).

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What "theme"? There's no theme. The point is that people who acquire a lot of followers for whom circumstantial bonuses are contributing a large percentage of their bonuses are going to be the sort of people historians interested in refuting the Great Man theory will tend to point to not proving that viewpoint right.
The primary method of refuting the Great Man Theory seems to be centred around causality . . . overall, this whole branch seems like it is potentially misleading in this discussion, and I'm not quite sure how it is best handled in the context of this discussion.


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That's not what's being attempted any more than reducing the damage increase per strength level because it produces unrealistic effects is an attempt at reducing differentiation. The point is making things work more reasonably. It will end up, as a cost, making the differences between low levels less extreme. On the other hand it will increase the noticeability of differences at the higher end because further purchases have more room to improve things.
Well, IMHO, all those talks about reducing ST damage should come with some way of increasing granularity: we already have the problem that half the ST purchases do absolutely nothing for Thrust damage.
On one hand, nobody wants to have 20 enumerable reaction levels for all the half-dozen or so classes of reaction results (trade, romance, request for information, request for aid, combat etc.).
On the other hand, human-scale ranges of traits should have a reasonable noise-to-signal ratio. About 50% roll results fall within the 8-12 range (inclusive), which is roughly a noise range of 2, 50% of the time. But it takes a change of 3 or so to achieve a measurable change of reaction. But the difference between a person whom others find unremarkable (Appearance:Average) and one people are attracted to (Appearance:Attractive) is +1 . . . and the problem is, already that is too low a modifier to achieve a noticeable differences in the outcomes on the table of attraction.

Reputation -4 is the level of Joseph Stalin and Adolph Hitler. In practice, it's not particularly bad in RAW, and even less so under the house rule table.

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A person doesn't necessarily like doing what they are good at. People do.
People also have one ovary and one testicle per person and slightly fewer than two legs. Talking about people as a group when discussing individual characters, even many of them, seems off.

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Allure as in the talent? Talents having reaction bonuses baked in is silly. I don't really care to balance with that in mind.
Yes, the talent. If you prefer Alternative Bonuses, that's quite fair - I like them too. But Allure is one of the few talents whose alternative bonus is a Reaction Modifier. And I really don't see what would be a better idea of a benefit for it.

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So you adjust prices until reaction modifiers and influence skills are comparable purchases.
If you don't like how easy high/low reactions are to get, then perhaps just adjusting the reaction modifier absolute costs might be the way to go.

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Faces already try to stack all the traits. If you are stepping forward as the face of the whole group buying Very Handsome Appearance isn't gonna cut it unless you are operating at low enough points that no one can actually do their job.
Depends on point cost and level, indeed. But it is important that faces at low point levels are able to do their job against targets of low point levels. 25 points is realistic, Very Handsome Appearance is realistic, using it as your shtick in social interactions is realistic.
But having one trait at the human maximum level should be a Big Deal. Having several is an even bigger deal.

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Furthermore we want our specialists to desire having all the traits. A swordsman doesn't buy superhuman strength and then consider fighting to be handled and he shouldn't. The way to get people to only buy some of the social abilities is to push back against having "a face character" who does all the social interaction as a reasonable party strategy. If social abilities are important everyone should be able to contribute just like everyone needs to be able to contribute in a fight. People have "a face character" because if you can have one person handle all the social stuff it's wasteful to have more than one person have the abilities to do that, but generally in play everyone would like to be able to talk to the NPCs.
Ideally, we want to have different flavours of specialists: in combat, we want to encourage diversity, with beefy tanks, flashy dexterous swashbucklers, sneaky dexterous rogues, perceptive dexterous rangers, strong fighters, strong and dexterous lightning-bruisers, harmonic monks etc.
Same with social traits: it's good to have all sorts of characters, those who stack up one primary traits, those who disperse between several, those who go for one-trick ponyism, those who focus on skills, those who get a bit of each, those who fill a certain narrow social niche quite well while not being face characters in other social niches etc.

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A nerf isn't necessarily a bad thing. Social traits are seriously cheap for what they do if the characters actually get a chance to use them properly. Having one trait at superhuman levels is only unimpressive compared to the overpowered normal rules. Having superhuman beauty is a powerful tool not an "I win" button for social challenges.
+2/+6 (average:+5) is not an IWin button. Used on its own with an average roll, it either does nothing or shifts one line against same sex and opposite-sex gay characters, and shifts two lines for opposite-sex and same-sex gay characters. So you maybe get a -0% or -20% discount at the local marketplace; not a big deal.
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Old 11-18-2014, 02:50 AM   #29
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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Originally Posted by Kallatari View Post
If the issue is the frequency of extreme results occurring on random rolls, instead of expanding the table and thus requiring all other reaction-affecting traits and mechanics to be modified, why not just change the roll for an initial random reaction? Instead of 3d6, maybe you roll 2d6+3 (from 5 to 15), or even 1d6+7 (from 8 to 13).

"Extreme" reactions are then solely determined by GM fiat... typically explained away by adding some sort of Intolerance or attraction trait to the NPC so that he reacts that way to the PC(s) in question.
Given that even Basic Set says GMs can predetermine reaction rolls, I suppose deciding to roll 1d+7 instead isn't even strictly a house rule. It seems like a reasonable thing to do for NPCs who are less varied in their relationships with other people.
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Old 11-18-2014, 04:57 AM   #30
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Default Re: Reaction Table House Rules

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That's an odd way to phrase it. I'm pointing at Storyteller because it more clearly illustrates that which is more subtly shown in Social Engineering. And if acting natural vs. consciously trying to influence someone vs. manipulating someone are not approaches . . . well then nothing is ever an approach. (Whether or not traits and skills are tools is another matter - I'm certainly willing to consider skills to be tools. But whether to use this, that, or neither tool - that's an approach.)
I personally don't keep any Storyteller or Storytelling system information but the most broad strokes in easy recall so for me it doesn't illustrate much.

They're absolutely not approaches. Approaches in some sense conflict but charisma and influence are additive not alternatives and a lot of the time you can't even replace one with the other during a period of time because only one is a possible tool.

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You don't always have to push. Some results are achieved whether you deliberately push or not. (And sure, there's nothing magical. That is beside the point.)
You don't have to conceptualize what you are doing as pushing but there is no fundamental difference between pushing thought of as pushing and pushing not thought of as pushing because there isn't anything magical about social interaction.

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Let's not muddle the line between Influence and Manipulation. You seem to be saying that the two and one and the same because they are one and the same.
I refuse the line! I haven't been capitalizing manipulation and I'm not talking about Social Engineering's use of the term. Influence skills are Influence skills.

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There's a way to describe people for whom some approach is part of their personality to the point of always using it: the Inappropriate Manner quirk for skills and the Mind-Numbing Magnetism quirk for descriptors such as 'talkative' or 'poetic'.
That's not what I'm talking about.

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Thing is, too often jobs that require handling situations also require handling lots of other stuff. The primary example seems to be positions of power within a state, where getting there is largely social, but doing stuff there is economical, judicial etc. And thus we get lots of people who are professionals at Getting There, but are awful at doing what they promised to be doing, either through stupidity or malice (or both!).
It doesn't matter. It's understood that there exist people who have leveraged social skill to get promoted in mostly non-social jobs and that sometimes people get promoted for one useful ability while lacking others.

Please give me the benefit of either assuming I'm not stupid or refraining from trying to snipe cheap rherotical points.

My point was that it was not automatically unethical for someone with strong social abilities to decide to leverage those into more social traits.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
The primary method of refuting the Great Man Theory seems to be centred around causality . . . overall, this whole branch seems like it is potentially misleading in this discussion, and I'm not quite sure how it is best handled in the context of this discussion.
It was never intended to be a branch, it was intended to bring to mind the sort of person whose social achievements are significantly buoyed by people who strongly agree with the positions that they espouse. That's the sort of thing people point to in an attempt to show that there were general forces that allowed the person to achieve what they did and that they thus could have been replaced by a number of people. Actual theories of the methods of history don't have anything to do with anything.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Well, IMHO, all those talks about reducing ST damage should come with some way of increasing granularity: we already have the problem that half the ST purchases do absolutely nothing for Thrust damage.
They do, but they still end up with each level of strength adding like a tenth of a d6 of damage and that's just less perceptible than the previous table. You just put up with it because that's implicit in rescaling ST damage so that ten levels don't add as much damage.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
On one hand, nobody wants to have 20 enumerable reaction levels for all the half-dozen or so classes of reaction results (trade, romance, request for information, request for aid, combat etc.).
On the other hand, human-scale ranges of traits should have a reasonable noise-to-signal ratio. About 50% roll results fall within the 8-12 range (inclusive), which is roughly a noise range of 2, 50% of the time. But it takes a change of 3 or so to achieve a measurable change of reaction. But the difference between a person whom others find unremarkable (Appearance:Average) and one people are attracted to (Appearance:Attractive) is +1 . . . and the problem is, already that is too low a modifier to achieve a noticeable differences in the outcomes on the table of attraction.
The lowest level of appearance removes bad reactions and triples the chances of good reactions in my table.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Reputation -4 is the level of Joseph Stalin and Adolph Hitler. In practice, it's not particularly bad in RAW, and even less so under the house rule table.
One could make an aesthetic argument that other social traits should have a cap similar in magnitude to right sex appearance.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
People also have one ovary and one testicle per person and slightly fewer than two legs. Talking about people as a group when discussing individual characters, even many of them, seems off.
It's a good way to avoid meaningless anecdotes.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Yes, the talent. If you prefer Alternative Bonuses, that's quite fair - I like them too. But Allure is one of the few talents whose alternative bonus is a Reaction Modifier. And I really don't see what would be a better idea of a benefit for it.
I prefer no bonus. There's no reason to bake anything else at all into the has-+1-to-skill-with-this-limited-list advantage. Frankly I'm not sure if I'm going to end up having talents at all either.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
If you don't like how easy high/low reactions are to get, then perhaps just adjusting the reaction modifier absolute costs might be the way to go.
My primary aim here isn't nerfing the ease of hitting high reactions it's cutting down on the extremeness possible with +0 reactions, making the number of categories odd so there is balance between good and bad reactions and removing kludges that classes like potential combat use to make the reactions make sense. Making it harder to hit high reactions and thus making differentiation at high reaction bonuses is just a bonus and it's frankly rather tiresome that it's the part getting most of the attention.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Depends on point cost and level, indeed. But it is important that faces at low point levels are able to do their job against targets of low point levels. 25 points is realistic, Very Handsome Appearance is realistic, using it as your shtick in social interactions is realistic.
But having one trait at the human maximum level should be a Big Deal. Having several is an even bigger deal.
It is a big deal. Completely removing and adding possible categories is a big deal. Getting some more bonuses and having the average reactions be good is a big deal.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Ideally, we want to have different flavours of specialists: in combat, we want to encourage diversity, with beefy tanks, flashy dexterous swashbucklers, sneaky dexterous rogues, perceptive dexterous rangers, strong fighters, strong and dexterous lightning-bruisers, harmonic monks etc.
Same with social traits: it's good to have all sorts of characters, those who stack up one primary traits, those who disperse between several, those who go for one-trick ponyism, those who focus on skills, those who get a bit of each, those who fill a certain narrow social niche quite well while not being face characters in other social niches etc.
We want to produce different flavours of specialists. The way we get there is by making them want all the traits.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
+2/+6 (average:+5) is not an IWin button. Used on its own with an average roll, it either does nothing or shifts one line against same sex and opposite-sex gay characters, and shifts two lines for opposite-sex and same-sex gay characters. So you maybe get a -0% or -20% discount at the local marketplace; not a big deal.
Superhuman beauty is +8/+2. If that's where your reaction mods end up at it for this table it means for +8 that no person reacts badly to you, that your average reaction is good and that you can get excellent reactions. That's really significant. With the default table it means for +8 that no person reacts badly to you and that a roll of 11 is an excellent reaction. Appearance isn't just about what result you can get from this person right here, it's about constantly getting favours from people after doing little more than hitting a button.

Last edited by Sindri; 11-18-2014 at 05:08 AM.
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