Questions on Act under fire because of Manipulate

  • 6 Replies
  • 4459 Views
Questions on Act under fire because of Manipulate
« on: December 13, 2012, 09:14:38 PM »
I've been wondering how each of you manage the Act under fire that come out of the Manipulate move (the stick). I can imagine some cases, but not the majority. I tried several hypothetical situations, and came to the conclusion that I would be totally lost if this was to happen in a game. I'll provide examples later, but now I'll explain more generally what's bothering me.
This move result has a similar problem than the result of Healing touch, that of a forced Act under fire with no fire coming first from fiction. But where Healing touch is a very specific situation, Manipulate cover a huge bunch of cases.

Examples :
- Dremmer is pointing his gun at Dawn, who is holding a blade on the throat of Dremmer's daughter. Dawn wants to run away from the town, and demand that Dremmer put his gun aside (acting with the leverage of the daughter as hostage), and chose the stick. If Dremmer's player says he shoots anyway, I can create a fictional reason for Acting under fire. The fact that his daughter is held as a shield is making him hesitate and wait for an opportunity, so the fire is that Dawn reach cover before he can Go Aggro (would it be Go Aggro, by the way ?).
For situation with immediate dangers and hot action stakes, I think I can find reasons to act under fire pretty easily. I'm a little weirded out by the necessity to create fiction that enable a move, which is unheard of in AW otherwise, but that's all.

- Felicia the Hardholder is asking Beef the Angel to heal her sister June, who is feverish and dying. Felicia Manipulates him with the leverage of social position, and chooses the stick. Beef doesn't want to approach June, because he thinks she's contagious.
What could possibly be the fire ? When does he make the roll ?

- Helios the Skinner is asking Beef the Angel to heal her sister June, who is feverish and dying. Helios Manipulates him with the leverage of sex (it has been previously stated that Beef was attracted by Helios thin naked torso), and chooses the stick. Beef doesn't want to approach June, because he thinks she's contagious.
What could possibly be the fire ? When does he make the roll ?

When the consequences of hesitation, doubt aren't immediately dangerous and because the fire cannot be something that force a feeling or thought in a PC's head, I am totally stuck for this cases. How do you manage internal feelings and doubt ? Do you put them at stake mechanically ? What would be the results ?
But even in action cases, I'd like a set of guidelines to have it easy.

Thanks in advance.

PS : For the record, I am aware of these related topics where I posted, but they are outdated by far, and my experience made my thoughts evolve. However, they can expand the vision of my problem.
http://apocalypse-world.com/forums/index.php?topic=214.0
http://apocalypse-world.com/forums/index.php?topic=446.0

*

lumpley

  • 1293
Re: Questions on Act under fire because of Manipulate
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2012, 09:38:30 PM »
What does Beef do instead of approaching June?

-Vincent

Re: Questions on Act under fire because of Manipulate
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2012, 03:46:12 AM »
I know you said you realize this topic has come up before in the past, but I'm going to link a thing I wrote about it, last time it came up, because I think it speaks to the problem you're having.
http://apocalypse-world.com/forums/index.php?topic=2858.msg17240#msg17240

Essentially, I think maybe you're approaching it as if PC1 manipulates PC2, and PC2 does something else, and they have to act under fire, so the fire is, can you bring yourself to do the thing you're trying to do, or do you not actually do it at all because you're being manipulated. But from clarifications Vincent has offered in other threads, I think maybe that's not really the model--? From what I understand, the model is more like, PC2 can do whatever they want and they will carry it out normally, but the fire is, you look like (or are or become) the kind of person who ignores what's at stake in the manipulation, or you have to deal with the sorts of things that happen when someone offers you a deal and you don't take it. Manipulation is all about how you are perceived and how you want to be perceived. I mean, I hope to be corrected if I'm putting too much weight on this, but this is the way it seemed to shake out in previous discussions.

In scenario #1, if Dremmer doesn't have a clean shot at Dawn but is trying the shot anyway, I would say that's Act Under Fire, and the fire is, you might actually hit your daughter. I'd probably run it that way even without the manipulation. When the manipulation is in play, there's an additional fire, which is, what does it mean when someone is using your daughter as a human shield and you shoot anyway? What does that say about Dremmer? Maybe you're in the wrong for taking that shot, maybe people won't forgive you, maybe even your daughter, if she survives. I would probably have Dremmer roll for the shot first, roll for what it means second.

In #2 and in #3, both, depending on what Beef does instead, the fire could very well be whatever happens when someone's sick and the doctor ignores her. Beef might look to all the world like he's not doing his job and ignoring a member of the community who is in need. It's his reputation as an angel on the line. Folks like that used to swear an oath, man. He would roll whenever he's doing whatever he's doing other than treating June.

Just spitballing here. My point is, "act under fire" doesn't always have to involve mortal danger. It can be about maintaining your honor in the eyes of people who matter, members of your community or your loved ones. It can be about dealing with the consequences of your choice as a choice, as a reflection of your character (and not just as a practical thing with practical implications). I hope this helps!
« Last Edit: December 14, 2012, 04:08:20 AM by creases »

*

lumpley

  • 1293
Re: Questions on Act under fire because of Manipulate
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2012, 11:44:50 AM »
It's all just present in the act-under-fire outcomes. Say that Beef goes and has tea with his grandmother instead. He has to roll to act under fire.

On a 10+, he's fine, he goes and has tea with his grandmother.

On a 7-9, he flinches, hesitates, or stalls, because he's thinking about Felicia or Helios. You can picture him standing outside the doorway, frowning, thinking, before he sets off for grandma's. Is there a worse outcome, bad bargain, or stupid choice? Maybe. If there isn't, oh well, too bad for Felicia or Helios! They're the ones who chose the stick, not you.

On a miss, you get to make a move, and it doesn't have to be fancy or tricky, and it doesn't have to keep him from having tea with his grandmother. Maybe turn to Felicia or Helios and say "so how mad are you?" That counts as announcing future badness, and you're all set.

Here, I'll repeat this, it's important. Felicia or Helios chose the stick, not you. It may have been a stupid choice. Choosing the stick might be functionally identical to letting Beef walk away for free. That's on them. It's not your job as MC to make it into a good choice.

-Vincent
« Last Edit: December 14, 2012, 11:49:21 AM by lumpley »

*

noclue

  • 609
Re: Questions on Act under fire because of Manipulate
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2012, 12:02:32 PM »
On a 7-9, he flinches, hesitates, or stalls, because he's thinking about Felicia or Helios. You can picture him standing outside the doorway, frowning, thinking, before he sets off for grandma's. Is there a worse outcome, bad bargain, or stupid choice? Maybe. If there isn't, oh well, too bad for Felicia or Helios! They're the ones who chose the stick, not you.
A worse outcome or hard bargain from walking away from a highly contagious patient? What could possibly go wrong? Nah, everything's gonna be fine...
James R.

    "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which can not fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance-that principle is contempt prior to investigation."
     --HERBERT SPENCER

*

lumpley

  • 1293
Re: Questions on Act under fire because of Manipulate
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2012, 12:06:21 PM »
Sure! You can go that way if you want. I'm saying you don't even have to go that far.

A worse outcome for going to tea with your grandma would be, like, you go to tea with your grandma, but you've got stuff on your mind, so it's hard to relax and enjoy it, you know?

An ugly choice for going to tea with your grandma would be, you go to tea with your grandma, but she can see that something's bothering you. Do you tell her about it?

Hey, you know toasted barley tea? In Apocalypse World, your grandma's special tea is like toasted barley tea, only instead of toasted barley it's made with individual packets of ranch-flavored Corn Nuts.

-Vincent

Re: Questions on Act under fire because of Manipulate
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2012, 04:18:07 PM »

So yes, people already said lots of useful stuff, but here's one more thing: just look at the leverage.

In all those examples, you describe what the leverage is, and it is valid leverage -- so it might be helpful to think of it as the leverage causes the fire. If the leverage is sex, then the fire is all the stuff that comes with suppressing desire, passing up a chance at some action, etc.; if the leverage is social position, then the fire is the social malaise, guilt and fear that come with crossing somebody in authority.

The point is, if they really have leverage, then by definition that means there's a reason for the manipulated party to get freaked out if they ignore what the person wants. That's what leverage is. 'Because I'm your friend' is leverage if you really care about being that person's friend -- and it sucks to not do what your friend is asking you to do, it makes you hesitate or stall or feel like shit or otherwise sabotage yourself.

So yeah, look at the leverage if you want the reason for the fire. If you want to know what results from that, it's right in the Act Under Fire move, like Vincent said.