Persona vs Fate

I noticed in doing a review of my characters’ beliefs for artha rewards that one of my players last session got a single Persona point but no Fate. Another player got only as much Fate as Persona.

This is a new group, so I’m assuming things’ll get better. But I wanted to make sure I’ve got my head on straight about this.

You get a Fate artha for driving the story forward with a belief. You don’t have to achieve it, you just have to move things along. The character playing Daniel in Hochen made a big deal about rushing to check on his mother and insisting that the party sleep overnight in her home to protect against the demon. That seems to me to be driving the story forward, earning a fate point.

No one else did anything remotely comparable, so I didn’t give out Fate rewards for their beliefs. Was I wrong? They really didn’t drive the story forward, they let the story happen to them, so I figured no Fate was appropriate. They did accomplish at least one personal goal apiece, though, so they netted some Persona.

I’ve had sessions like that. In terms of Beliefs, you get Fate for pursuing but not completing a Belief. If you complete it, you get a Persona.

This often happens with new players using pre-genned characters. Given how intricate character creation is in Burning Wheel, sometimes it’s just hard to get into the headspace of a character that’s mostly completed for you. Then again, they created Beliefs themselves, so perhaps the proper question is this: what did you do as GM to challenge their Beliefs? If the players aren’t being proactive in chasing them, then it’s up to you to step up and be proactive in challenging them. (This isn’t to assume you weren’t, btw.)

This was a one-off (well, a two-off now - we used the same characters in Thelon’s Rift). I undoubtedly didn’t challenge as many beliefs as I wanted to. Part of it has been that since we’ve been writing up beliefs at the beginning of the session, I haven’t had time to prepare more personal conflicts. That is something I would aim to do a lot more in a campaign.