questions about hypnotic and other things

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questions about hypnotic and other things
« on: November 07, 2016, 01:21:09 PM »
We're playing 2ed and loving it!
However a couple questions have popped up during play. Some of these are as of yet hypothetical, but they might come up in the not so far future.

Firstly, an issue has come up with hypnotic: A player wants to use it multiple times on the same npc, before all the hold has been spent. In the beginning of the game we allowed it, because why not. But since then it has essentially meant, that it's impossible for the MC to exhaust the hold, before new hold is gained. Normally I'd just rule that hypnotic could only be used on someone when you don't already have hold on them, but I fear that wouldn't be being a fan of the player's character.
How'd you guys rule it?

Also, about the Waterbearer's "peacemaker": I assume it works on PC's, but what if they don't want to meet with their rivals? Do they just have to, because the move says so?
And an aside: Has anyone played a game with both Angel and Waterbearer? I could imagine issues, but I haven't tried it yet.

And lastly, let's say a character has both "leadership" and "pack alpha". When he want's to order his gang to do something, that they rather wouldn't, which move would you make him roll? My gut says leadership, because it's better, and then if he fails, he can use pack alpha when the gang complains about it later. But I'm curious to hear your thoughts!

Best regards,
Lars

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2016, 02:56:33 PM »
OK, here's my take.

1. If someone wants to build up 18 hold on Hypnotic, I'd let 'em. Remember that it requires time and intimacy every time. If Rolfball is thoroughly under your PC's thumb, as an MC on a meta-level, so what? If the player is taking the time to repeatedly arrange "time and solitude" with Rolf, keeping him under her thumb must be important to her. It only matters if this is someone who would attack your Skinner in the first place. As the  NPC's, though, Rolf's been spending an awful lot of time with Venus lately. He's always bringing her gifts or stepping in when someone else tries to start a fight, or maybe not. Rolf chooses when to spend that hold. What's that going to do to his relationship with the other PCs, his gang, the NPC community leader etc? How useful is Rolf going to be when he gets let go from the town's guard force because he missed too many shifts canoodling around with Venus?

2. Someone else will probably have better ideas but I'd use the Seduce/Manipulate rules for PCs.

3. Do you want your gang to advance, regroup, hold position, hold discipline or put their damn backs in it? Leadership. Are you imposing your will on them? Pack Alpha. Are you doing both? Player's choice.

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2016, 04:12:07 PM »
1. Yeah, I'd allow it, but bear in mind that an NPC who wants free can do all sorts of stuff to burn Hold, often without coming into the Skinner's presence (sending them messages about the latest gossip is 'serving as their eyes and ears' after all, and sending gifts can be 'giving them something they want'), and can thus get free of the first Hypnotic without giving the Skinner the chance for more. An NPC who doesn't want free probably isn't gonna attack the Skinner anyway, so it's a moot point there.

2. Yeah, I'm pretty sure it works on PCs and they have to come. It says nothing about what they can do once there, of course. So...all it does is make you come to a meeting, with certain prerequisites (ie: alone, unarmed, or bearing gifts)...and the other party has to do the same. Once there, nothing prevents you from killing everyone else there or saying 'fuck off' and leaving.

A Waterbearer and an Angel would be very interesting, and would make a really good team if built with that in mind. If not built with that in mind, Step Into The Flow might really devalue an Angel's contribution...unless, of course, the Angel immediately grabbed it, too. Which could be very interesting in its own right.

3. I'd say that you generally have to use the one your gang came with, making taking the other largely superfluous (and, as an MC, I'd thus warn players not to take it). Which Move you have says as much about the nature of the gang as it does about your own abilities, IMO. If you do let them take both, I think they get to use whichever they like. That's a serious investment and they should reap some rewards for it.

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Ebok

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Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2016, 10:25:39 PM »
1. Sure! They can refresh the hold, it's just another opportunity for that hold to go the other way. But it doesn't say +3 hold, it says 3-hold, so the most any NPC might have on them at any point in time is 3-hold. You can burn through that in a single high-pressure scene. Soon as what they want and the PC wants are different, it doesn't take a whole lot to burn it up.

3. The move says more about the type of followers to me then about the PC. If they've got both pack alpha and leadership then did they end up with two different gangs too? If not, then I don't think they should be able to select the other at all; as that would be sending conflicting messages to me about who the people are that follow him. They're different styles of leadership, basically. If they want both, it would be an either or, not back to back.

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2016, 02:02:22 AM »
1. Sure! They can refresh the hold, it's just another opportunity for that hold to go the other way.

Plus potentially having to seduce/manipulate or (whatever Go Aggro is called now) the NPC every time you want to arrange time and solitude. Sure the PC probably has Hot+3 but if it matters to the NPC to get out from under all that hold, he's not going to let the PC refresh it without having to succeed in two rolls every time. Sounds like that NPC is now a Threat waiting for a low roll to crop up. Or maybe his friends are the threat.
"Rolfball is willing go with you but Dibbs, the guy who runs the motor pool (which the Savvyhead, Driver and/or Hardholder have a stake in) where Rolf works steps between you and the door. 'He's got work to do. He's not going anywhere', he says, thumping a lug wrench in his open palm. What do you do?"

Still being a fan of the character, definitely making AW seem real. Just playing NPCs simple motivations off of each other and potentially creating a PC-NPC-PC triangle. The PC has a lot of dramatic options at this point but they may not be good options.

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2016, 02:26:32 AM »
(whatever Go Aggro is called now)

Off topic, but Go Aggro remains Go Aggro...shy would it be anything else?

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2016, 10:20:46 AM »
(whatever Go Aggro is called now)

Off topic, but Go Aggro remains Go Aggro...shy would it be anything else?

Because Go Aggro's description is no longer about influencing behavior, it's about:

"Going aggro on someone means..."

1) a) Threatening them when it's not, or not yet, a fight
1) b) Attacking them when it's not, or not yet, a fight

It's "not a fight" means:
a) "The target isn't expecting the attack"
b) "The target isn't prepared to fight back"
c) "The target doesn't want to fight back"
d) "The target can't fight back effectively"

The only indication that it's about behavior change is the 10+ option for them to cave.

Seduce/Manipulate contains changing behavior with threats, and enumerates that alongside/separately from "bluffing." You could argue that "threatening them with when it's not a fight" is clearly under Go Aggro, but ... it's also very clearly under Manipulate. You can only really distinguish the two by (as someone on SG suggested) by working backwards from the move's results.

You can still play Go Aggro vs. Seduce like you did in 1e, nothing in the text directly contradicts it, but it's not clearly the "earnestly threaten violence to get your way" move anymore. It seems to be a more general "use violence to get what you want" move, with "getting what you want" possibly being "someone crumpling in front of you and just giving it up without pushing you to the actual act of violence" (although the 7-9 example text results suggest you *do* actually engage in the act of violence, you're not just threatening... which is also unclear.)

There's also now the Sucker Someone move, which interacts with / replaces Go Aggro for some situations.

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2016, 02:45:16 PM »
The real answer, because I didn't have my pdf handy and thought it had changed to Sucker Someone or Get The Drop On or something like that.

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2016, 04:26:34 PM »
Wait, what? Suckering someone is a thing, but it's separate from Go Aggro, and applies in somewhat different situations.

Go Aggro reads:

"When you go aggro on someone, make it clear what you want them to do and what you’ll do to them." Followed by the rules text for what happens on various roll results.

If that's not the Move for threatening violence, what is it? How could it be more clear? Sure, the description notes that it can be an attack under some circumstances, too, but that was true in 1E, and it definitively remains the move for immediate threats of violence.

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2016, 05:34:05 PM »
"Suckering Someone: When you attack someone unsuspecting or helpless, ask the MC if you could miss. If you could, treat it as going aggro, bur your victim has no choice to cave and do what you want. If you couldn't, you simply inflict harm as established."  If you can miss, you roll, but on 10+ they have to take the harm - they can't cave. To quote, "Since the victim doesn't have the option to cave, a 10+ means they have to take the harm." If you can't possibly miss, there's no uncertainty to roll for, so they take the dmg. I think I described it fairly as being the replacement for Go Aggro in certain situations. Perhaps I should have used more nuance?

As to GA:
"If that's not the Move for threatening violence, what is it? How could it be more clear?"

Because "to do it, do it." Going aggro is triggered by going aggro. Going aggro is given a definition on pg 139:  "Going aggro on someone means threatening or attacking them when it’s not, or not yet, a fight. Use it whenever the character’s definitely the aggressor: when the target isn’t expecting the attack, isn’t prepared to fight back, doesn’t want to fight back, or can’t fight back effectively." Which, broken out, goes back to the numbered list I provided in my previous post. In other words, a shit-ton of things unrelated to threatening someone seems to trigger the "threaten" move. To quote, "Going aggro on someone means threatening or attacking when when it's not, or not yet, a fight." It's literally inclusive of "shooting someone in the face who thought we were still having an argument", which involves no threats, and no caves to in (that actually seems to turn it back into sucker someone). In fact, the 7-9 description suggests you *didn't* threaten: you actively attacked ("A 7-9 is a hit, but that doesn't mean the attack itself has to connect") as your means of altering behavior.

Meanwhile, "threats" are explicitly listed under Manipulate.

It used to be clear that Go Aggro was "earnest threat of violence, where failure to get what you want *would* end in violence" and manipulate was "empty threat of violence." Now Manipulate really doesn't give a shit about whether your leverage is sincere or not, and Go Aggro is expanded to "attacking someone who's not expecting to be attacked," with conflicting examples as to whether a threat is actually involved. It's actually not at all "the" threat move; it seems to be "the" "uncontested violence" move, with "threat" being "verbal violence", but... no. No, it's definitely not so clearcut "*the* move for threatening violence" that it couldn't be more clear.

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Ebok

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Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2016, 06:14:37 PM »
miedvied, I strongly disagree with your reading of the information. Go Aggro always was about making a threat before combat had begun, it's about using the leverage of impending harm to change their behavior. Those fours points basically say, if they're shooting at you right now, you cant use go aggro to shoot them without trading harm as established. If they stop shooting at you, like they're running, hiding, cowering, or otherwise, you can certainly catch a guy not-prepared to fight back and threaten him to get what you want.

Go aggro is not conflicted when it comes to threats of violence, it's literally defined primarily by the sentence that says to explicitly threaten them: "make it clear what you want them to do and what you’ll do to them". That is the rule. Right there. You're misreading the rest.

Verbal violence is not all verbal threats, its a threat that you're not going to back up physically. If you're not really going to hurt them, then threatening someone is verbal manipulation. If you are actually going to shoot them if they don't, then it's very much a physical threat you're using words/gestures/implications to make clear, as required by the move.

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2016, 07:04:51 PM »
Wait, what? Suckering someone is a thing, but it's separate from Go Aggro,

And I have a bad memory.

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #12 on: December 14, 2016, 04:58:48 AM »
Thank you all for your answers! And also for the aside about Go Aggro - a nice refresher on the move.

I'm thinking, I'd allow the Skinner (or whoever has the move) to use Hypnotic again and again but not gain more than three hold - as Ebok said, it doesn't give +3 hold.

I'm also gonna rule that if a character somehow ends up with both gang moves she just uses the one she likes. Maybe I'd advice that she stays with that move.

You didn't really comment that much on Peacemaker. I'm thinking I won't force anyone to do anything they won't, even if that means not letting the Waterbearer getting the full benefit of their move. But I'm still curious: how would you do it?

Edit: I just found this reply by Vincent, so that seems to answer my question on Peacemaker: http://apocalypse-world.com/forums/index.php?topic=7552.msg34115#msg34115
A follow-up then: what are some ways you could justify the non-choice for the other players?
« Last Edit: December 14, 2016, 05:58:27 AM by pastorlindhardt »

Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2016, 02:35:54 PM »
Well, the Waterbearer is, definitionally, sorta a stabilizing influence in the area, and one with a whole lot of in-world leverage. Most have either Step Into The Waters or Embargo, and either of those gives just about anyone a built in reason to be willing to do what they say (either to avoid an Embargo or keep access to the best healing available...those don't have to be explicit threats or anything, they're jjust reasons to keep the Waterbearer friendly) and even those without that have control of access to The Source, which is not something anyone wants to lose.

So...can you contradict them? Sure, in theory. Is it worth contradicting them when all they want is for you to have a conversation? Probably not, no.

Alternately, it could be a supernatural compulsion, powered by The Source. The Waterbearer is a pretty overtly supernatural playbook in many ways.

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DannyK

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Re: questions about hypnotic and other things
« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2016, 03:59:51 PM »
I wouldn't interfere with the Skinner player's use and abuse of their moves. After all, a Brainer can explicitly keep puppeting someone, and the Hocus can wield unnatural influence over a whole gang.
Plus there's all kinds of things you can do with the setting and how other NPCs feel about their buddy Deek being under the Skinner's spell, neglecting other responsibilities, doing bad things to fulfill the Skinner's whims, etc.

Also, the character can always miss a roll even with a +3 Hot, and then Deek gets 2 hold on the Skinner. That should be fun!

In general, I like to let the PC's have their sick OP moves as written. If they do abuse them, that makes life easy for the MC.