Author Topic: New Stat: Status  (Read 5062 times)

Ariel

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New Stat: Status
« on: June 15, 2010, 11:49:47 AM »
+status

Roll +status whenever you demand service or respect according to your station or standing.

   On a 10+, they totally fall in line.

   On a 7-9, they fall in line, but you or the MC choose one:
      
  • You've lost face in the eyes of you peers
  • The loyalty of those below you is shaken
  • Those above you doubt your ability to govern
  • It breeds contempt
  • You don't have jurisdiction is this instance, so it'll cost you

   On a miss, they don't owe you shit.
      

Roll +status whenever you enter into a contract, pledge or covenant. One's word and name are all one is. As such, these are metaphysically binding. Breaking them begets fuckery.

   On a 10+, there are loopholes or clauses in your favour

   On a 7-9, it's binding

   On a miss, there are loopholes or clauses that are definitely not in your favour

Also, based on your status score, you'll have a small number of mostly loyal attendants, serfs, slaves, concubines, handmaidens, wards &c. Somewhere between 0-10. Not quite a gang in the Chopper sense but a number of useful NPCs the PCs will be responsible for.

The ideal came to be when reading some commentary on Genji's Tale, wherein when a courtier was doing something sneaky or private and thus going it 'alone' he'd have at least two or three attendants with him. TWO OR THREE. My list of names is going to be huge.

This might be a strata thing and not a stat in it's own right but I feel that if the PCs want a group bigger than 10 or so, they can pick up the Chopper, Hocus or Hardholder kits.

John Harper

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2010, 09:13:37 PM »
Those are pretty good.

I kinda want something more for the 7-9 result in the pledge move. Seems like a place to have to make some hard choices, yeah?

Ariel

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2010, 09:19:16 PM »
It does need a list really: 10+ should be pick 3, 7-9 pick 1 or 2, miss don't pick any. When I think of a good list, I'll post it up.

Ariel

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2010, 03:33:10 AM »
It's a list:

Whenever you invoke an ancient contract roll +status. On a 10+ pick 3. On a 7-9 pick 1. On a miss, don't pick any.

  • There are clauses only you know about
  • You know of all the clauses
  • The cost is not dear
  • The sanctions aren't severe
  • The penalties for a breach are not high

Daniel Wood

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2010, 08:41:56 AM »

Can you give some examples of where the Make A Contract/Pledge Service/Whatnot would get used in play, fiction-wise? It feels like a weird move to me -- especially with the 7-9 being essentially 'you do that thing you just did in the fiction'. That kind of makes me wonder if it's really a move, as opposed to just an important component of the fiction?

By contrast, the whole 'Call on an ancient pledge' move makes total sense and sounds awesome. Maybe it's like John says, and you just need more in the 7-9 -- or maybe a second move that is just kind of generally-about pledges would work better than the actual make-a-pledge move, leaving that to be purely fictional?

More likely I am just not understanding the scope of play.

Ariel

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2010, 09:03:31 AM »
You're spot on. The first "make a pledge" move is super weak and IMHO shitty. John's advice was right; it needed a list.

The second move is my taking that into account. Thus, one should ignore the make and pledge and focus on the invoke an ancient contract.

As for examples, I imagine that humanity's standing with the world is a matter of adhering to ancient and primordial dealings with various aspects of reality. Everything has a kind of spirit or kami. Much of the original contracts are either forgotten or taken for granted (the air lets you breath, the water quenches you thirst, &c.) Thus, there exists a whole ton of unwritten and often metaphysically legalistic dealings that not every knows about. That's the fundamentals of 'magic' and 'ritual' in the setting. However, I have no interest in writing in all in detail before hand. So, the players get to invoke ancient contracts with various elements, spirits and people to serve as a kind of magic. But it's very much 'there's no free lunch.'

Say, as a player, you really need to climb a wall. What was that momma said about being descendant of from spiders or they owing your House a favour? "I invoke the ancient pledge of the Spiders to my House that has yet to be repaid! Lend me your claws, Queen of the Arachnid!' Make the roll and you can climb surfaces like a spider for awhile. But it'll cost you and you'll have to hold up you end of the bargain, or else.

This could also work with human NPCs, too. There is a vast and complicated system of contracts, pledges, oaths and titles that exist already. It's merely a matter of calling on them. It's not without its complications, however.

Again, the if you do it, do it, comes into play.

Jeff Russell

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2010, 09:24:46 AM »
Okay, your introduction post made me go "could be neat" but this latest post right here made me sit up and go "flippin sweet!" I'm all *about* bizarre and extensive contracts with supernatural forces as a basis for magic! 

I really like the change from your first pledge move to the 'invoke an ancient contract' move, but I will say that "the cost is not dear", "the sanctions aren't severe", and "the penalties for a breach are not high" seem to fit into fairly similar conceptual space, especially the last two. I feel like it would be nice to have a choice specifically where the MC offers a bizarre clause or term that complicates things.

Thinking about it a little more, I think the way I'm seeing it is that your move is mostly dealing with "what if you break the contract?" (which is a great opportunity for fuckery, no doubt). But I'm really interested in "what do you have to do to not break the contract?" as a source of fuckery. If contracts are so fundamental to this world and how its entire physics and metaphysics works, I'd be more interested in how people try to fulfill the letter and not the spirit of the agreement rather than "who cares if I break it, you can't do that much to me". But that's just me! Maybe the 'try to break every contract you can' thing fits more with the dark grittiness you talked about in the introduction.

Ariel

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2010, 09:42:16 AM »
Sanction, cost and penalties are all slightly different in my mind. The Sanctions are things that you can't do, the Costs are things you must sacrifice, pay or do and the Penalties are the shit that rains down when you don't hold up your end of the bargain. The clauses are small but specific 'wiggle room'. Exceptions really.

As to the 'who cares if I break it,' lots of people, and not just humans either.

"You're the fucker who screwed the Scarlet Prince of Blood out of his due. Me and the Baron of Crows here owe him a favour and I think I know just how to repay him."

Daniel Wood

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2010, 04:29:22 PM »

Okay, if the first move is ditched that's definitely on the road to awesome. That said, I am in agreement that the list could get sharper, too. For me it's not so much the redundancy as the vagueness. This stuff about knowing about clauses doesn't seem very strong to me, it seems like the beginning of a whole lot of ultra-arbitrary GM decision-making without any structure or intent provided by the move. I think that by 'there are clauses only you know about' what you mean is 'the deal is particularly favourable to you', and vice versa. If the intention is that the actual clauses will be fabricated on the spot by the GM, and that will then become an entirely-fictional advantage... well that seems like a tall order. Specific consequences of the clauses seem like a better fit.

For a pick 3/1 I'd get rid of the clauses and go for something like:

* Your part of the bargain is easily fulfilled.
* You know what your part of the bargain is.
* Something about the wording or the history of the pledge gives you an advantage. Take +1 forward in future dealings with the other party.

Also I assume the basic hit/miss is 'the contract is actually useful for what you are trying to do' vs. 'you invoked the wrong deal, sucker' -- but something about 'on a miss, pick 0' make me unsure. But I mean, this is AW, a miss means you are fucked, not just less-advantaged. You were looking for wall-climbing and instead you got web-spinning, and oh by the way this will cost you your firstbrood, which any arachnid scholar will tell you means your first one hundred children.


Ariel

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Re: New Stat: Status
« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2010, 07:51:11 AM »
Whenever you invoke an ancient contract roll +status. On a 10+ pick 3. On a 7-9 pick 1. On a miss, you invoked the wrong deal, sucker.

  • You know a secret clause or loophole
  • The cost is not dear or is easily fulfilled
  • The sanctions aren't severe
  • The penalties for a breach are not high
  • You know all that's expected of you

I'm not really a fan of the hold+1 moves beyond 'when another PC helps you,' but that's just me. If you ever use this move, it's a fine addition.