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Social Influence, Presence vs. Socialize

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  • #16
    I definitely think Socialize can be used "directly" in social influence actions, rather than just in support (that is, reading Intimacies and intentions and hiding your own). However, at least as I run it, there are definitely some distinctions.

    First, Socialize is typically going to be slower than Presence. This depends on how they're both described, of course, but absent a really good stunt, Socialize-based influence attempts are pretty much always going to take longer than Presence-based ones. That's because Socialize-based influence will generally need to establish a social context first.

    However, Socialize is generally going to be more subtle than Presence, which has its own benefits. Presence is pretty much always going to involve, sooner or later, asking straight out for what you want, whereas Socialize can use much more circumspection - gentle hints, mentions of previous favors you've done for your target, or even, in extreme cases, never even talking directly to your target, simply guiding the society you're both part of into thinking that your target is actually socially obligated into doing what you want, without you ever having to be so crass as to ask them to do it.

    When it comes down to specific social influence actions, I think you can use Socialize to Persuade, but I think it's probably better suited for Bargain and Threaten, in both cases when it's social standing or other intangible society-based rewards or punishments on the table. "If you do me a favor, I'll see to it that you're invited to the Satrap's next soiree" is a Socialize-based Bargain, while "If you cross me on this, you'll be the laughingstock of the Poet's Society by sundown" is a Socialize-based Threaten. Instill and Inspire are both possible with Socialize, I think, but you'll need to stunt appropriately, so that the influence is primarily coming from the target's peers, rather than directly from you. Socialize would be very appropriate for doing either on a large scale, though, rather than against just a single target. I'd probably call for a Socialize + Manipulation roll to create a propaganda campaign that influenced a whole city or nation, for instance.


    • #17
      Originally posted by DrLoveMonkey
      not all abilities need to actually be universally applicable

      It's still not really the same though, and kind of a strawman.

      The complaint with Sail is never that it isn't universally applicable, but that the situations in which it can be applied are presumed to be uncommon, highly niche, and difficult to implement. Even then, once you're actually there, you're not really limited in using Sail to do its thing.

      I don't think anybody expects social Abilities to be universally applicable, but they should at least be applicable in the situations they seem made for, which are presumably common given that they've got a system to represent them of significant intricacy and attention.

      This conversation is really about establishing the circumstances in which Socialize is applicable, and discussing how frequent they are.

      And that includes the fact that those circumstances are something you can pro-actively seek out with a greater degree of ease than finding a vessel, a suitable body of water, and a situation ensuring that they meet, and (as I want to keep reiterating) something that you can establish on your own terms; you don't need to be a sorcerer or a god to create the environment in which you can ply people with your grace and civility.

      Hell, it might be a bit indirect, but I think there's room to apply the system in a manner that will create not only the scenario, but the actual rules within which your formal scene will function; applying social actions with the Socialize Ability to establish, say, a club, build up its reputation and prestige, and draw connected, powerful, talented or interesting people to want to come and use their Socialize Abilities to learn and use and care about your rules.

      (Which, since you have the mastery of them, you'll be able to deftly wield to keep them in your orbit)

      Really, what better Ability is there to establish the foundations of, say, your very own secret society?

      Originally posted by DrLoveMonkey View Post
      Socialize already applies to read intentions AND guile in every social situation, it’s okay if you can’t twist it into also applying to your persuade/instill/inspire actions.
      I think "twist" is the wrong term; it's pejorative in a manner that implies that to apply it in this manner is unnatural, even a little bit contrary, rather than a basic function of how it works and why it is a distinct Ability.

      (Incidentally, while the social system on the whole is pretty great, I do think it would have been nice to have something like a formal system for something like argument or debate. There are some other compelling to actual social interaction that I think would be interesting to do more directly, but can still be handled by novel and motivated applications of things like Instil and Inspire actions.)

      Originally posted by DrLoveMonkey
      Where on earth did I imply that trailblazing through the jungle couldn’t have socialize?
      That was my mistake, my apologies.

      I have approximate knowledge of many things.
      Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed) Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)


      • #18
        Hmm, I'm getting caught up in this subject in that manner that has me being aggressive and not properly reading what others are saying. I apologise for that, and am going to keep it in check herein.

        I have approximate knowledge of many things.
        Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed) Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)


        • #19
          Oh and to the OP, this scene from Game of Thrones provides some good use for socialize. It’s not really safe for work so be warned about that.

          So looking at it a bit closer, the gist of it is kind of like this.

          Tyrion: How dare you treat a lady this way, much less your future queen. (Social expectation for a king to be noble and care for his family)

          Geoffrey: You can’t talk to me that way (social expectation that the king is exempt from frank critisism)

          Tyrion: I am both your uncle and the hand of the king, in fact I CAN talk to you that way. (Social expectation that senior family and kings advisors can be more frank and blunt with critisism)

          Meryn: You’d better shut up or else the kings guard will shut you up. (Using presence to attempt to intimidate, probably?)

          Tyrion: YOU, on the other hand, are absolutely not allowed to talk to ME that way. (Social convention that a guard can not threaten a member of the royal family over a noble argument)

          At which point he walks away with Sansa and has a much more intimate conversation, asking her quietly if she wants out of her situation. Here he’d use presence to try and coax and answer out of her, but read intentions, still socialize, to try to figure out what she’s really thinking.


          • #20
            Thanks guys this is proving very helpful. Also thanks for the GoT reference I have heard, and figured, it would be good reference material but I lack cable and HBO to watch it. If you know any good shows for reference on Netflix ill check them out. I am listening to an Audio book of Machiavelli's The Prince to help with this character as she has goals to reshape the political landscape of the region.


            • #21
              Originally posted by gfrobbin84 View Post
              If you know any good shows for reference on Netflix ill check them out.
              I think The Borgias is still there, and might work...

              Really, any historical drama based on high society might convey some of the basics.

              Originally posted by gfrobbin
              I am listening to an Audio book of Machiavelli's The Prince to help with this character as she has goals to reshape the political landscape of the region.
              How are you finding it?

              I have approximate knowledge of many things.
              Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
     Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)


              • #22
                Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                How are you finding it?
                I'm liking it not far in yet, but it is helpful more with overall strategy on how to pursue things than actual info on dealing with things more individually.


                • #23
                  I remember when someone was first explaining the difference between Charisma and Manipulation to me, I think the examples might be analagous to Presense & Socialise.

                  The character using Charisma (Presence) barges into the Dynast's office yelling "The Bull of the North has completely wiped out the 3rd legion, you must send the 5th legion North to reinforce our allies at once!"

                  The character using Manipulation (Socialise) arranges to have tea with the Dynast. After making some small talk, they say "Oh, by the way - you recall my cousin Tagada, she was recently admitted to the Deliberative? Yes, we're all very proud. She tells me that there's a motion that will be proposed any day now, which is sure to pass. It would impose heavy taxes on Houses whose legions are stationed on the Blessed Isle, some kind of deterrent to civil war, I suppose. If you gave marching orders to the 5th quickly enough, you might be able to save a small fortune. The timing could look suspicious, but I also hear that the Tepets were calling for reinforcements in the North. I'm sure that would be an adequate pretense, no?"

                  I kind of like to imagine that the latter character convinces the Dynast that they owe them a favour in return, too.


                  • #24
                    The Dowager Countess from ‘Downtown Abbey’ could be a good source of inspiration of a person twisting even normal conversation into a Socialise-based influence. Especially when it fails her because others refuse to play the game forcing her to use more direct ‘Presnece’ based influence. She’s good at both, but one certainly is her favourite.


                    My Homebrew: Architect of the Regal Puppet Style (WIP) || Monkey Style || Radiant Halo of Incandescent Might || Pale Driver, Ruination of the Edifice of Tyranny || Sublime Percussion, Just a Whole lot of Fun || Idris, The Graceful Heart of Purpose