Social moves

  • 5 Replies
Social moves
« on: June 22, 2014, 12:48:14 PM »
In version 0.81 at least, there is no manipulation move. The only social pressure move is command. How come?

Re: Social moves
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2014, 07:26:09 PM »
Good question! The main social moves in UW actually fall into the three primary Moves; Face Adversity, Get Involved and Assessment. If a character uses their +Influence stat (or, in some cases, their Physique stat *nudge nudge wink wink*), it's by-and-large a social move

Face Adversity with Influence is negotiating, begging, bluffing, fast-talking or doing anything else social that will get you out of a dangerous situation
Getting Involved with Influence uses diplomacy, bribery, presence or social graces to assist an ally who looks like they're gonna face-plant
Assessment with Influence is the most subtle usage; conversation, misdirection, charm, seduction, all to get information about a subject (it could be info about the person you're seducing/charming/befriending, or simply extracting info from them)

I'll be making a side-bar about this when writing the detailed Move section
« Last Edit: June 22, 2014, 09:59:29 PM by Archangel3d »

Re: Social moves
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2014, 08:27:14 AM »
I see. The Getting involved part makes sense, but using Face Adversity for social pressure seems to risk getting either blunt or mind-controlling, since there is nothing in the move's results that involves the opposite player.

Anna's player: "Zofi, please, you have to help me get the captain out of jail!"
Zofi's player: "Forget it. I'm taking the loot and getting out of here."
GM: Okay, Anna, roll+influence for Facing Adversity to overcome the opposition.
Anna's player: Yay, 10! I overcome the opposition! Guess you're coming with me, Zofi.
Zofi's player: "..."

Getting involved makes sense, but as it only supports another move, increasing the result of the roll, we're still left with the strangeness of using Face Adversity to influence somebody.

How has this worked out in play?

Re: Social moves
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2014, 11:04:41 AM »
OH! Inter-party social moves. Sorry, my bad.

That was a conscious decision on my part. I've never been a fan of dice-driven inter-party conflict. I much prefer to have the players agree on the outcome "behind the curtain" and then play it out. That said, I'm toying with Get Involved being able to downgrade as well as upgrade (from 10+ down to 7-9, or making a 7-9 a failure. I still have to see if I like the way it plays.

Re: Social moves
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2014, 03:30:25 PM »
I think I also pointed out this. I can understand the you as a developer do not like inter-party conflicts. However AW is a game of inter-party conflicts and because of that I (for one) would assume most players would be searching for this kind of move if it was not there. Maybe including it as a peripheral move (as in "you may include this in your games if you think it makes sense") would be a good idea.
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Re: Social moves
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2014, 06:27:58 PM »
Yes, I also think that social conflicts, not least between main characters, are completely central to this kind of game. If in doubt, look at the inspirational material for this kind of space opera/SF - Firefly, Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek, Star Wars, Stargate Atlantis, etc, etc. Always these social conflicts between the main characters (and other characters, not-so-main).

And since social conflicts work fundamentally different than shooting people or sneaking och jumping across a gap, I really think you need to put a manipulation move back in there, even if your group specifically doesn't use it that much.

Systematically expecting the players to decide the outcome of a social conflict behind the curtain looks to me like it demands a kind of "crossing the line" on the players part, which might work well enough when it comes organically, but which shouldn't be mandatory. I like my players to be able to drive their characters' agendas as hard as they can, and have the mechanics support them doing it - without sacrificing opposing players' freedom of action in an indecent way.

That is, by the way, where AW's Read a Person and Manipulate work in concert in a way that I have not seen a hack do differently without seriously sacrificing quality of play.