I have a campaign in which I had to make a judgement call about Seduction.
The Intent that came into play: I want them to forget about their duties and sleep with my character.
Seems innocent enough, but it was enough that my players with high seduction have been using this skill in ways other then information gathering as per it’s definition.
Instead it has started being treated more like the “Turn On” move in Monsterhearts. Seducing important people they come across.
My players and I are fine with this, but I (GM) have several NPC’s (which are necessary to complicate these character’s lives) that I don’t want to respond to such advances.
Being NPC’s they don’t seem to get this choice though due to “say yes or roll”.
What would be some solutions I could use in this setting (that feels very strongly like Game of Thrones) at this point?
GA said it way more concisely than I could. I also believe (AWAY FROM BOOKS WARNING), that the seduction skill explicitly says it requires a “somewhat willing victim.” Edit: I read this in revised, that line is not present under the seduction skill description in BWG, make that what you will.
Also “They’re gay/a eunuch” are both fine examples I can think of from Game of Thrones that would be valid for saying the task is invalid for the intent.
“Say Yes” doesn’t mean you aren’t allowed to say no. It means you don’t call for rolls when you don’t care. That’s a different issue.
My Answer? Fine, success he sleeps with you. Failure, you take a midi wound as he shivs you in the gut for blackening his honor. Ready? I’ll even give him a low Will to sweeten the pot.
Seduction isn’t mind control, if they don’t want to do it they don’t do it. In a medieval type setting there would be many reasons as well: honour, religion, relationships, and even attractiveness.
I would really think a bit about whether the NPC would even go with the player.
Seduction isn’t mind control, first of all they might need a relationship to build up before you get the final deed done, most women/men probably wont just randomly sleep with people.
Also there are many reasons why even that won work especially in a medieval like world. Honour, Religion, and even attractiveness might prevent a person from being suceptable to seduction.
Really think about the NPC and whether they would.
Ok, so Instincts or Traits should dictate how some of this plays out, and if it’s a BIG DEAL for the character they can walk away or say no.
As for whether the participant should be willing I can see the arguement going either way. I think the reason for the change is over time someone’s mind can change given the right series of actions.
In my game there’s a clash of cultures going on as people have gathered together into a caravan into the wilds in an attempt to save a portion of humanity from a ravaged homeland.
So, its not strictly medeval, but each culture does have it’s own rules.
These rules haven’t come up in play just yet, but will be complicating the character’s lives soon.
(One has lost his entire clan and wants to form his own, but his current chosen partner is a part of a culture that is both matriarchal and doesn’t marry, which means they will claim the heir for their family heritage rather then his.)
Anyway, going forward, I think I will use the 12 steps of intimacy against a backdrop of the culture itself to modify the Ob while still using their Will as the base.
In addition, if the NPC is completely unwilling then that is the only information that the player would get.
Which is good, because my players have started talking about seducing a god sooooo . . . . .
I appreciate everyone’s input. Feel free to chime in if you have more to add.
Don’t forget possible complications from the friends and family members of the seduced npcs.
Some religions had sever punishment for adultery, there is also the possibility of a jilted lover, family honor, “pitchfork-wedding” (etc.)
If the npc’s in your world started to suffer from similar seduction situations, the pc’s would have some advanced warning.
Seduction, as most social skills, is hard enough to put more obstacles in front of players who want their characters to specialize in it. I’d be careful not to play adversarial to their strengths. Sure, once in a while, have them face an obstacle they can’t easily seduce, but mostly play along with their interests. I wouldn’t like a GM saying just NO to me when I want to seduce some npc. Explaining the risks and applying a high enough disadvantage is enough in most cases.
-make a list of traits that grant a +1 or +2 Ob to be seduced, and apply them to some npcs. Also, situations that make it obviously harder, or easier, to seduce. Put them in situations where they have maneuver quite a bit to find intimacy with the victim (circles or resources rolls, etiquette, write, etc.)
-for important npcs, rely a lot on beliefs and instincts. If the guard has a belief about never leaving the treasure room, seducing him to neglect his duty is gonna be quite hard.
-think of interesting failure twists for seduction: obsessed lovers, marriage proposals, unexpected attention, infamous reputations, new enemies, etc.
Remember all the tests during the Trait Vote, as well. Depending on their intent, fun traits can easily be brought up for voting.