I am a relatively experienced roleplayer (both traditional and independent games), but I am new to Burning Wheel, so new, in fact, that my group has yet to play a real session.
Still, my GM and I have stumbled on the rules for testing social skills. We were hoping y’all would help us.
In the hopes of explaining clearly, I’ll start with an example.
Brian has a B2 Falsehood. He has the following intent and task: Get Aaron to give me all relevant information about the local thieves’ guild by convincing him I am his friend and want to help him out of the jam in which he now finds himself. Naturally, this is a bold face lie, so it’s a Falsehood test. Brian opts to FoRK with his B3 Persuasion, moving him to 3 dice on the Falsehood test. It is the only FoRK Brian possesses. Aaron’s Will is only 3, so Brian rolls his 3 dice against Obstacle 3. He fails and suffers whatever consequences he and the GM devised when they set terms. He records a difficult test for his B2 Falsehood.
Later Brian lies to someone with a B4 Will. That gives him a challenging test.
The next day, he lies again. This time the target has a B5 will. Another challenging test. That makes 0 routine, 1 difficult and 2 challenging tests toward Brian’s advancement.
Now Our Question
In social skills, the obstacle is a fixed stat. Most characters are going to have at least a 3 in that stat. So if you only have a 2 exponent, how do you get routine tests without using multiple FoRKs (that you might not possess) and/or helping dice? And if you can’t get routine tests, how do you advance the skill?
Or are we reading the rules wrong? Do social skills produce versus tests, just like martial skills? That is, in the above example, would Brian roll his 3 dice while Aaron also rolled 3 dice (courtesy of his B3 will)?
Finally, if social skills don’t produce versus tests, why don’t they?
Thanks in advance for any help you can offer.