The expected first comment! I’m not really sure why this is true, though. The artha economy relies on artha coming in for BITs and artha going out because of tough rolls. This doesn’t change either end; you’re just more likely to benefit from spending artha.
I’m playing on maybe the low end of conflicts, with a little less than one conflict on average—but those sessions also tend to have less artha awarded. Probably 1-2 fate for most characters, with sometimes 3 for someone who was in the spotlight, 1-2 persona to go around the table, and I’d say deeds probably come up every 3-5 sessions (but clumpy, because aligned beliefs make it likely for several characters to earn deeds at the same time). There are more DoW than Fight or RoC, so although players do spend fate to shrug off wounds it’s a limited sink. The artha is all earned. For persona and deeds things are working fine; fate has hit a problem.
Buildup isn’t even quite right; because of the glut, players aren’t pushing as hard for fate artha from acting on beliefs or instincts, even when I’d award it if it didn’t slip my mind. They don’t spend it and don’t care much about more. In other groups I’ve played with this might wreck the game, but they’re still playing BW just right. One part of the reward cycle is just missing.
Oddly, it’s the Elf who spends fate most often for one more die on skill songs, and a lot of it’s luck: she’s the one who seems to come up one short of the Ob most often. The others tend to either have multiple sixes but enough successes or be 2 or more short with one six and not interested in the <10% chance of getting what they need. Too many statisticians, or maybe too few? Too much pessimism? The problem is mostly psychological. A few bad rolls (and my players have had impressively bad luck with the dice all campaign!), with 3 sixes producing no new successes, and they’ve kind of given up. Their expected value (what they expect, not actual average) is so low they don’t bother.
Epiphany is a good point, but the artha have been spent on such varied skills that I think it’s still too far away to be really motivating. Especially when there’s the “eh, I can spend it tomorrow” problem going on.
Allowing two Fate to be spent is likely to lead to a lot of 2 fate for 2+ dice deals. Spend to open-end a six, then reroll a traitor too! That might be too good.
I think I’ll give it a try and report back on what happens. It’s still on the psychology of it: before you roll another die can always be the one that saves you. After you roll it’s too easy to think the extra die isn’t enough to help. Since Persona gets spent and Fate doesn’t I’ll go with making Persona into Fate. I feel comfortable with the teeth my failure consequences have, and the hope is that they’ll use artha to really win when it matters—but it matters all the time and there’s never enough artha. (Currently they don’t use fate artha to really win even when they should, like they’ve just given up on it and pin all their chances on persona and the rare deeds instead.)