“Forcing” MC’s to Believe Something


I’d suggest a cunning vs sincere stat. Cunning people can often tell if the other is trying to manipulate them (takes one to know one) while sincere people trust others easily.

As for the benefits of being sincere, i read somewhere that “Sincerity/Honesty promotes authenticity” which can make people loyal to you or trust you more (all the benefits a shounen protagonist gets really) and the list goes on and on. Also being sincere doesn’t provoke negative feelings in the player as it is seen as a “good” trait


I like that idea actually, so long as you try to allow for a middle ground option (ie I can find a balance where I can speak with moderate confidence on a subject and avoid falling for the lies espoused). Even if its not always successful or the outcome is a watered down success (you convince the majority of a group to believe you, but the most devout don’t trust you or something). I’d hate needing to min/max something like this.

Also I like greyed out options for what you’re suggesting–So You’re Possessed does something similar with the Confidence stat, where there’s a list of options and increasingly high confidence stat checks for each to be available.

You could always do something like noticing mistakes in their speech, contradictions to the doctrine or just “Yes, this is part of the belief, but you can’t help but note they emphasize it a little more than you’d expect”. Things that might be overlooked (or at least you’d have no reason to question on a “sounds right and he’s the expert” level) if you aren’t 100% confident that you know the doctrine.


If you do it as an opposed pair, have the suspicion end throw out false positives sometimes to balance the open-minded end missing actual deceptions.


This was my first impulse as well- allow overly skeptical characters to occasionally be too vigilant for their own good, with false alarms and such. However, I was reminded of a discussion I saw about D&D where a DM gave his PC’s with high passive perception scores useless information so that they wouldn’t only notice purely helpful facts. There was an argument about whether this was fair, because it was, in a sense, punishing a character with unique, pointless data just because they had invested in a skill. And I’m torn on that, because on the one hand, most people wouldn’t enjoy it if having a high strength stat meant they would accidentally break things, because they were looking for a benefit for their investment, not unique punishments. (Though I could see a game with a message about the importance of the Golden Mean or something having punishments for going too high and/or too low on stats, I think most players would be unhappy with that sort of arrangement.)

However, it would also suck if every time you noticed an extra detail, you KNEW it would be important, or at the very least helpful, because otherwise why would they throw it in there? It’s a complex problem, I think. I suppose it essentially boils down to how you reward a player without ruining challenge, but with more of an investigative and social spin than the typical combat one you find in game design.

Still, good point, and something I will consider.


That’s why I specified opposed pair; if it’s done as an opposed pair both ends need to have their uses and ideally keeping a balance should have its uses too. It’s not a punishment for high suspicion, it’s a punishment for low trust. If you just do the one I’d concur that there shouldn’t be a drawback.

It doesn’t necessarily have to be a direct inverse relationship like that, but I hate it when there’s two opposed stats that don’t feel like opposing poles; I’d rather things that are inversely correlated but not directly opposed be separate stats that aren’t raised simultaneously.


From The Martian Job: André is very charming and attractive—and he knows it. That rubs me the wrong way.

How handsome does a man have to be for a lesbian to have this as the “i don’t like this guy” option

Not what you meant by forcing an MC to believe something but still.


Just bc someone is only interested in one gender it doesn’t makes them blind when it comes to the other gender I think. I notice it too if a guy is more handsome or easier to converse with and stuff but that doesn’t mean I’d want to go out with him.
And I also heard straight women admitting among themselfes that a woman was pretty, but that never left me the impression that they would actually be interested in her it was just something they noticed.


This is true. There’s a difference between noticing someone is attractive and being attracted to them (“He flashes a smile custom-printed to melt hearts” vs “He smiles at me and I melt inside”).

Also, had one coworker who was young and pretty, and I can guaruntee that not all the women who sniped about her wearing makeup or spending all her time “flirting with guys” (otherwise known as “doing the most labor intensive job with an otherwise male staff”) were attracted to women.