Multiple stat gains vs single stat gains in a single option

Ok, so here’s what I’m trying to say: Let’s say I’m making a choice statement in which each of the options will result in a change to your personality stats. For instance, there are two options. The first would increase your Careful/Impulsive statistic in the positive direction, the second would increase it in the negative direction. But what if I want to make the second option also raise Lawful/Chaotic at the same time? What I mean is, is it a breech of etiquette to have multiple personality stats available in a single option? My concern is that it creates a conflict of interest in the type of character you want to play, because let’s say you want to play a Careful and Chaotic character, but all the Careful options also raise your Lawful statistic.

Personally I don’t see anything wrong with this. Most of my personality *choices have #options that affect multiple variables.

Having said that, if you are only providing two options, it might be more fair for those options to only affect the same variable. If you provide more options (I typically do 4), then I think most players can find at least one option they can live with most of the time.

You can also opt to always give players an out! Adding an “I remain silent”/“I nod”/“I wait for the other character to continue speaking” option (which doesn’t change any personality variables) can allow a player who doesn’t like any of the other options to choose a neutral/personality-less response.


Balance is the key. You don’t have to do everything perfectly in each choice menu, but over the course of the game (in particular over the course of the smaller scale intro scenes where people are really building their character), you want balance. If you’re doing 1,2 in one menu, do 2,1 in another or 1,1,1 or whatever. Just try to keep in mind as you go how things work TOGETHER. I can deal with being pushed to one side on stat a to get what I want from stat b if a later choice will allow me to get stat a to what I wanted too. I mean, assuming the stats don’t HAVE to be tied together (like assuming you aren’t TRYING to make your players build a careful and lawful character; if you are, I’d probably rethink the design of the stat options and consider gearing more toward “archetype” choices than individual stats anyway).


I basically agree with the first comment on that. If you are planning on doing only two options per choice, then I’d only make them affect one stat. If you have more options, you can add variation by mixing the affected stats, so each player will find what they want.
Now, it also depends on the amount of customisation you’ll allow.
If you plan on making a pretty fleshed out MC where the player only influences smaller details, then you wouldn’t need to give as many options to the players as if you do an MC who’s to be fully shaped by the player.

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Most of the choices will have four options at least, not two. And the personality choices seriously matter in my game for fleshing out the character, so all of this is good to know. Like, the personality of the MC deeply affects not only some gameplay options, but also the first NPCs you’ll meet and how quickly you gain points in certain skill statistics. So I just want to make sure all routes for creating the character’s personality are possible. Levviathan said it best in his post on balance.

*their :slightly_smiling_face: I’m glad it was helpful!


Piggybacking on this thread, although it’s not exactly a choice statement to create a personality, but due to something the player character does. What do you think of choices like these, where by choosing one option to alter one stat, means you also affect the other stats whether you like it or not?

For example I have now a choice where you can either:

  • Fight someone if you don’t want to bribe him, increasing your bold personality stat, and earning you reputation with one group (his enemies) but losing it with the other (his allies);
  • Use the what little money you have to bribe him, which will the reverse the two groups’ reputation increase/decrease, but does not affect your bold stat;
  • Run away, reducing your bold stat and losing reputation with both groups, but you don’t spend any of your money either (running away may also have another consequence later depending on an earlier choice).

This is happening in full view of both groups hence the mix of reputation increase/decreases. So they don’t exactly have a neat consequence, whatever you pick. It’s rather noisy and messy in terms of what kind of stats are affected.