self-nominated character trait votes each manuever

In another thread (about a Blossoms game) Paul B wrote the following, I split it off to here because I thought other BE players might benefit from it:

Wow Paul, thanks for the tip about BE p.331, I never noticed that! I was thinking that waiting until end of phase for trait votes seemed like a long time, but that rule will help tide us over until end of phase.

Note, because of the specific wording (fulfilled, no longer in direct conflict, still emotionally attached) for our group I’d expect about one of these votes – not per character, but among the whole group – every 1-2 maneuvers.


Personally, if we were ever to revise BE, this would be at the top of my list to get the red pen.


The rate of change is just too fast. Trait votes are meant to be an opportunity for the other players to provide some very clear feedback as to how they’re perceiving your character. They’re not meant to reflect moment-to-moment or session-to-session impressions of a character but something longer lasting and deeper.

I thought you made a pretty cogent argument over in the source thread, Thor. Probably worthy of a little errata for BE…there IS an errata page somewhere, isn’t there? Maybe along the lines of just noting that “completed Beliefs to which you’re still attached” should be added to the list of nominated CTs at the end of the phase?


I think that’s a pretty good solution!

Thor, does the following give you any pause? (quoting myself from the other thread)

Just to go back to the frequency of trait votes for minute, I’d like to point out that some groups just don’t play as often as others (much as they’d like to). We’ve been playing our current BE Infiltration phase for six months (eight months if you count from the start of world-burning), and our disposition is still about 12-7.

In my opinion that’s too long to go without any trait votes. Hence my excitement at the (possibly poorly edited?) character trait rule on BE p.311.

How many sessions have you played? If it’s still 10 to 12 or so, then I think you’re right on track.

Yeah I would guess 10-12, so we’re on track in terms of # of sessions.

Hmm, I can see what you mean – that although some of the individual instances of characters being portrayed certain ways might be forgotten after several months, our impressions of the character will live on. If we can’t remember how a particular belief got resolved, it probably doesn’t deserve to be made into a trait.

I still think it would be fun to have the payoff of a trait vote more often … but I guess if we want that we’ve got to play more! Or do 2 maneuvers / session.

Okay, you sold me on the errata…


Once/phase is really a torrid pace compared to standard BW, given the clarification.

Given a 2 maneuver/night pace and a weekly schedule, that means a BE Phase can be played out in 5-8 weeks. Another reason to really amp up the pacing of your maneuver.

I think it’s interesting that there’s a whole swath of mechanics in the game that are designed to be inaccessible except once every 2-3 months, at the most.


Yes. I think about it as a series of rewards and feedback mechanisms that act as gears.

Session-to-session there’s Artha. That rewards you for play of Beliefs, Instincts, and traits, as well as comedy, general helpfulness, and leaping into the spotlight.

The next wheel out is the trait vote. Here your friends examine their impressions of your session-to-session play as a whole and tell you what they think about your character and how you’re playing it.

In BW, there’s an even bigger wheel, which is the epiphany. Depending on how disciplined you are, it should take somewhere between three and 12 months of play to reach, possibly longer if you don’t play every week. Are you the kind of guy that can spend your Artha only on one particular stat, skill or ability, or do you spread it around? When you’ve got the Deeds points you need to epiphany your Sorcery, will you spend it on Herbalism to save your dying friend instead?

Both BW and BE are designed for longterm play. We love longterm play!