Our weekly group is taking a break from playtesting for a couple weeks to play some Laundry Files, GMed by cookiemonger. *beams* I’m so proud.

I’ve been muddling around with the relationship rules since my thoughts about using social currency to “buy” relationships, but I’ve been hung up on how to guarantee players some kind of NPC relationship when they don’t have so much control over how NPCs enter the game to start.

Then I remembered the NPCs I have guaranteed to players.

The Masks that I began developing for my game are intended to connect PCs to the world via the Rumors system. I didn’t really have another purpose for them at the time, and so their development fell by the wayside.

Meanwhile, the social conflict system I was developing to use the “intangible” assets turned out to be less of a subsystem and more an entirely separate game. I’ve shelved it to focus on the uh, the game I wanted to develop.

A couple weeks back I threw together a relationship matrix and then set it aside because I didn’t know what to fill it with — it occurred to me that instead of trying to buy things with intangibles, players might “buy” relationships.

Yesterday I realized that I had NPCs for players to buy relationships with — the Masks. I’d already developed Allegiances and built the Masks into Rumors.

Why not?

Relationships may provide PCs with power when trying to accomplish (or thwart) quests handed down by their various allegiances — and I think I know how players can build and track those relationships now. I mean easily.

I’ll need to redesign the character sheet again.

I think I have all the pieces worked out.