Eliminating social stats



  • @Tempest

    You hit on something yourself that kind of undermines the point you're trying to make. It's a collaborative writing thing. That implies collaboration.

    Again, i go back to people needing to stop, collaborate and listen. :D

    The rolls, as all rolls, should be discussed OOC, to determine how best to resolve their outcome. This includes giving the player the cues they need in order to achieve the desired result. This is not rocket surgery. There is literally no argument ever that can be made to actually justify that someone cannot play a social character if they are not socially inclined. Even if they're not generally a good writer, you have the ability to help them and, in turn, help them improve their skill.

    In the end, no one can or should force you to play with these people. That's totally your choice. Just don't try to make it out to be anything other than you being an elitist snob who thinks that they're literally too good to play with someone else. And also, don't try to invalidate the rules to suit your inability to tolerate someone who doesn't live up to your standards or to just generally try to help someone grow. Most of the people who fall into these categories are the newer players and the younger players, after all. They don't last long, because they get ostracized and feel dejected. Go figure. Then people whine about how the MU* community is dying.



  • @ShelBeast said in Eliminating social stats:

    Then people whine about how the MU* community is dying.

    It's dying because it's been massively poisoned by weird hipsters and the same 'political correctness/white knight' mentality that has tainted college campuses and the internet everywhere. Which has resulted in a massive dilution of quality in terms of both players and characters. Alt-girls everywhere. Bikerbros everywhere. Anime fox girl biker gang members.

    WoD MUs in particular are suffocating under the weight of trash.

    "Omg you elitist. And you want to ignore the rules too! YOU ARE ALL THAT IS WRONG IN THE WORLD!"

    alt text

    WoD is the prevailing system used by people on this board. Assuming you play WoD.

    The rules for WoD are primarily written for cooperative tabletop play. They are not written for player versus player social maneuvering.


  • Politics

    @Jennkryst said in Eliminating social stats:

    That's how the Vampire Social Combat from the Danse Macabre is supposed to work on Fallcoast. Dunno how much it sees in practice, but it is a social system that literally functions like the physical combat, with Nerve (Social 'health), Guile (Social 'defense), and Dominance (Social 'initiative'), and it's very own merits to make you better at things and new discipline interactions and everything.

    The Danse Macabre's social combat system doesn't see much light because it's terrible. The Doors system is a lot better, but it's calculated for a long-game approach, not to determine if you bluff your way passed a bouncer with a fake ID.


  • Admin

    @ShelBeast said in Eliminating social stats:

    In the end, no one can or should force you to play with these people. That's totally your choice. Just don't try to make it out to be anything other than you being an elitist snob who thinks that they're literally too good to play with someone else.

    You are extrapolating wildly to prove your point, a point generated from your point of view. No one said they are too good to play with someone else; only that, unlike throwing an IC punch, making an IC argument is a completely different thing and far trickier to abstract through a dice roll.

    An obvious example of is this: I can completely accept this sequence: +roll strength+brawl followed by "; walks over and punches you in the face". This is valid RP.

    On the other hand how about this? +roll presence+manipulation followed by "; walks over and convinces you to support him"? That isn't so cool (or at least I don't think you'd agree that it is).

    And also, don't try to invalidate the rules to suit your inability to tolerate someone who doesn't live up to your standards or to just generally try to help someone grow.

    Nothing in this thread suggests we should invalidate the rules; the point of it is whether we should have different rules and what effect such would have on games. It's a debate on systems, not an attack on anyone's value system.

    As for standards and personal preferences, those are going to exist regardless of the mechanics. No matter what your or my gameplay style is we both like some things, and the more our partners cater to them the more likely we are to play with them. That's not a game thing, it's a being human thing. I'm not a misanthrope iRL because I prefer the company of some over others, so in the context of gaming that's an even better reason for the same kind of filter to exist since we're playing them to enjoy ourselves in the first place.

    No matter the game I will always try to play it with people I like. I just happen to be open to meeting new people I will also come to like. Most of us are probably wired in a similar way.



  • @Ominous Well, I was talking statless social stuffs, so there wouldn't be a roll. I could see an exchange where after the right approach comes up (somehow) the player reveals the character trait or note that supports that this actually works on the character, sort of like +prove from ye olden days.

    However, how do you handle lying then?

    Ultimately, it has to be player cooperation, and probably the right to say "I don't like your pose (about ANYTHING) so I am going to invalidate your effort. Try again."


  • Pitcrew

    @Misadventure There was a vampire game that basically used powers as flash cards you could show to the person when you wanted to use them. They had descriptions on when it's acceptable and when it's not, and although it was consent based, it seemed to work back then.

    If anyone recalls the name, appreciated. It's been 10+ years.



  • I really am far more interested in basic, human social abilities. Mind-control and magic is another thing, people can complain but they can't say "I don't think your magic power can do that" if the text says it can.

    I personally have a love of deception and misinterpreted or incomplete information. So I want to find a way where the code holds the "truth" of the situation, and no player involved knows exactly what the other believes or perceives, while allowing as much player decision making as possible.


  • Pitcrew

    @Tempest said in Eliminating social stats:

    MUs have a /social/ aspect to them. At no point in MUing am I actually karate chopping people or performing heart surgery. I am talking to people all the fucking time, though. The social aspect of MUing also tends to determine if anybody enjoys spending their time RPing with me. That's kind of important. Your RL kung fu or medical knowledge isn't particularly relevant to me enjoying the 5 hours I spend RPing with you unless I'm some kind of pedant. Whereas people being bad at lying, persuasion, etc, while they're SUPPOSED to be some suave casanova is actually a noticeable drag on writing. If somebody wants to roll brawl dice at me and punch me, okay, I got punched. It doesn't really matter how they pose punching. And punching has no real "effect" beyond the physical damage. If you pose a god awful bit of persuasion and succeed on a roll, I now have to write a handful of poses of my character falling for garbage.

    It's just the way things are, and the way things always will be. Because we are not just playing a game. MUing is not a video game. It's a collaborative writing experiment. Understanding social dynamics and how to make a pretty turn of phrase or write a convincing argument is a hell of a lot more important than how well you can describe punching somebody with the exact realistic amount of force needed to break their nose and shove bone shards up into their brain.

    Playing with incredibly socially inept people just /is not fun/. Even if your game lets them roll dice to make up for it, they will quickly wind up ostracized on account of not being a fun RP partner.

    I follow your points and they are undeniably correct. It is not fun to play with people who are not fun, that is a locked in argument.

    The place I don't completely agree I think is where we discuss skill at social rp as a fixed state. People tend to improve their gaming skills over time, just like any other. On a MU* that means their writing skill and style as well as their savvy with the social layout of the setting, their skills at reading not just other characters but other players to see what techniques might work to intimidate or persuade or whatever and which would not. I like social stats because they give players an in so they have the opportunity to develop those skills. I was undoubtedly a shitty player when I fist started MU* games because I didn't know how to play! I'm glad that I was not closed out of social opportunities but instead given multiple chances to engage in socializing and politics and whatever, and that there were systems in games to help me do those things so that I didn't just get blown off because I did not yet know what to do.

    I feel like even if Bob is a shitty writer, its cool to let your character be convinced by his shitty writing to buy the Avon he's selling at double the price you should, because it does not hurt you and it is fun for Bob.

    Other people's opinions vary widely, but I hope for Bob's sake some other people are down with the give and take too, so we can keep him around instead of losing him to a lame hobby, like knitting.



  • Are you shitting on my knitting? WOMAN. THESE ARE FIGHTING WORDS. throws down spare pair of knitting needles

    But yeah, I try to be kind to those who play social PCs but may not be able to back it up. I don't play socially focused PCs because I'm an awkward git with a communication/linguistic disorder. It's best I just stick to awkward types.


  • Pitcrew

    @silentsophia I have a tumultuous relationship with knitting, because I love wearing things that have been knitted, but lack the fine motor skills to knit. I'm trying to work through it.


  • Pitcrew

    @silentsophia said in Eliminating social stats:

    Are you shitting on my knitting? WOMAN. THESE ARE FIGHTING WORDS. throws down spare pair of knitting needles

    But yeah, I try to be kind to those who play social PCs but may not be able to back it up. I don't play socially focused PCs because I'm an awkward git with a communication/linguistic disorder. It's best I just stick to awkward types.

    Also the very crux of my point is that you should not have to! If you want to play a beautiful princess who merely needs to bat her lashes to make all those nearby obey her every whim, you should be able to! If you don't want to, that works. But the whole point is to pretend to be awesome in all the ways we wish to! Also stories, collaboration, etc whatever.


  • Pitcrew

    @Sunny

    ETA: For the record, I play a lying character who lies, and I roll. I roll for it a LOT. Unprompted. Because I need to know how successful the character is at concealing her shit, NOT how successful I am at oocly fucking obfuscating things.

    See, and I love that! I find myself more engaged to see that dice were rolled even if the result means that your character conceals the lie, or succeeds on a composure type check. A thing is happening here! What is it? Was there a lie, what was the lie, is it awesome? Why is this person rolling Composure, are they mad, are they sad? A THING IS HAPPENING and I am excited about THE THING and the possibilities that it brings, especially knowing that none of the players in the scene are controlling it entirely because dice are happening, and dice take away an element of control from everyone and that shiz is fun.



  • @Gingerlily said in Eliminating social stats:

    I feel like even if Bob is a shitty writer, its cool to let your character be convinced by his shitty writing to buy the Avon he's selling at double the price you should, because it does not hurt you and it is fun for Bob.

    The problem is, social dice and stats never come up for this level of stuff.

    If it did, sure, that's harmless and not painful to let happen.

    In my experience (YMMV), people only start wanting to flex their social dice for stuff like "i convince you to support me to be King of the World!" or "I persuade you to betray the Emperor with me!" or "I convince you to tell me all the horrible life-threatening secrets you know about Jane!" and of course the standard "I seduce you!"

    Social stats for things like selling/buying shit is one thing. That's a "okay this is done now" sort of thing. When people are trying to use social stats to influence decisions that affect the entirety of my character's future (and thus, potentially force me to RP in a particular way that isn't fun), we're not really in the same ballpark or even universe any longer.

    And I don't mean 'fun' as in 'oh no I lost, no fun'. I mean it as in 'wow, now based off that social roll my character would theoretically be a lot more involved in stuff with Bob, and I as a player do not really enjoy playing with him'.

    This stuff makes it important to remember we are not just playing a game.


  • Pitcrew

    @Tempest said in Eliminating social stats:

    @Gingerlily said in Eliminating social stats:

    I feel like even if Bob is a shitty writer, its cool to let your character be convinced by his shitty writing to buy the Avon he's selling at double the price you should, because it does not hurt you and it is fun for Bob.

    The problem is, social dice and stats never come up for this level of stuff.

    If it did, sure, that's harmless and not painful to let happen.

    People only start wanting to flex their social dice for stuff like "i convince you to support me to be King of the World!" or "I persuade you to betray the Emperor with me!" or "I convince you to tell me all the horrible life-threatening secrets you know about Jane!" and of course the standard "I seduce you!"

    I feel like it is possible that what people usually use these types of rolls for is neither as major as your examples or as minor as mine. I'm still for stepping back and allowing for your character to face a setback or loss of some type that another player's character might have a moment, and still think that the element of 'game' part of roleplaying game enhances that. I fully understand that many players feel differently, but appreciate opportunities to engage with those who do not.

    I think I mentioned somewhere pages ago that my 'social stats are fun use them as much as possible' does not apply to sex related rp. That is a whole other bag of worms and I am fully and vocally in favor of never ever having to rp anything sexual at all, or even the aftermath of a fade to black, that I have not 100% determined I wish to and all other players having that same right.


  • Pitcrew

    @Gingerlily

    Best moments so far have all been failed rolls. Having my character snort in p public was pretty much hilarious.


  • Pitcrew

    @Tempest said in Eliminating social stats:

    @Gingerlily said in Eliminating social stats:

    I feel like even if Bob is a shitty writer, its cool to let your character be convinced by his shitty writing to buy the Avon he's selling at double the price you should, because it does not hurt you and it is fun for Bob.

    The problem is, social dice and stats never come up for this level of stuff.

    If it did, sure, that's harmless and not painful to let happen.

    In my experience (YMMV), people only start wanting to flex their social dice for stuff like "i convince you to support me to be King of the World!" or "I persuade you to betray the Emperor with me!" or "I convince you to tell me all the horrible life-threatening secrets you know about Jane!" and of course the standard "I seduce you!"

    Social stats for things like selling/buying shit is one thing. That's a "okay this is done now" sort of thing. When people are trying to use social stats to influence decisions that affect the entirety of my character's future (and thus, potentially force me to RP in a particular way that isn't fun), we're not really in the same ballpark or even universe any longer.

    And I don't mean 'fun' as in 'oh no I lost, no fun'. I mean it as in 'wow, now based off that social roll my character would theoretically be a lot more involved in stuff with Bob, and I as a player do not really enjoy playing with him'.

    This stuff makes it important to remember we are not just playing a game.

    The only person who has actually judiciously used dice in any social situation including my characters that I didn't think was pure douchebaggery in a social setting was @Pondscum, and she executed it pretty flawlessly, in my opinion. I roleplayed that setback, honoring especially the fact it was 8 motherfucking successes.


  • Pitcrew

    Are we ready to conclude that social stats should determine access to resources and allow players to exchange these resources? It combines social stats actually having an effect, so social interaction isn't entirely dependent on player writing skill; having writing skill matter, so it's not just a random roll; and still allowing the player of the defending character to opt out of someone they simply don't want to agree to for whatever reason.


  • Pitcrew

    @Sunny said in Eliminating social stats:

    @Gingerlily

    Best moments so far have all been failed rolls. Having my character snort in p public was pretty much hilarious.

    Right? But its more fun when the element of chance is what made it happen. That keeps things interesting and potentially novel. If you chose to fail that could be awesome rp for you and whoever too...but I think that not having complete control over it and letting a potential surprise happen is very engaging. This is why I enjoy playing with you, and other likeminded people, because we're all looking to have fun without needing complete control.


  • Pitcrew

    @Gingerlily
    I love rolling composure to see how my character handles (ICly) unexpected situations, though I have noticed the people I RP being fairly split n the issue, some love it because it takes the scene to unpredictable places (which is my main motivation for doing it as well) some are take it or leave it, some complain the ooc message ruins their immersion, and than one who I rarely play these days, would get actively upset and that is one of the reason I think we play less is that our styles in regard to that did not mesh at all.


  • Pitcrew

    @ThatGuyThere said in Eliminating social stats:

    @Gingerlily
    I love rolling composure to see how my character handles (ICly) unexpected situations, though I have noticed the people I RP being fairly split n the issue, some love it because it takes the scene to unpredictable places (which is my main motivation for doing it as well) some are take it or leave it, some complain the ooc message ruins their immersion, and than one who I rarely play these days, would get actively upset and that is one of the reason I think we play less is that our styles in regard to that did not mesh at all.

    I can see that. It does break into immersion, it gives you sudden OOC knowledge of a thing your character does not know if a roll happens and works and thus no composure is broken. It's enticing to know someone was rping feeling or thinking a thing and sometimes not knowing the thing can be kind of torturous with it's curiosity creation. I get super curious too, but excited because 'there is some kind of a FEELING about a THING' going on that neither my character nor I know, and I just stay excited and keep wanting to know what it is which can motivate more play.

    I get that it can also be frustrating because of those exact same reasons, I get frustrated sometimes too if I feel like I am so close to something tantalizing but do not get to play about it. Usually though the prospect of eventually getting to play about it makes it more enticing than frustrating for me.


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