I have decided to strip out the entire Betrayal economy (in which Actors get mad at each other for revealing aura-counts). The concept of betrayal is a little screwy; after all, each Actor is expected to horsetrade for information about other aura-counts. It’s pretty hard to justify anger at somebody for doing what everybody is doing.
Removing betrayal issues reduced our deal-items to just three possibilities: tell aura count, give relic, and promise no attack. That’s a little thin; I’d like to get something more in there, but for now I’m at a loss.
I now have the complete deal cycle operational; I can negotiate a deal with another Actor. All the relevant Verbs are functional, although I have not properly tuned them. Mood adjustments and relationship adjustments due to Actors’ actions are not yet implemented, so the deal-making is still incomplete.
I’d also like to add a new consideration to the decision regarding telling aura-counts: Actors should be reluctant to attack those whom they like, and this should be reflected in a lack of value for information about aura-counts.
But am I correct in assuming that Actors should be reluctant to attack those whom they like? Would not the imperatives of the contest overrule personal preferences? And why would the player share the reluctance of the other Actors?
Another deal possibility is an idea I came up with earlier: an alliance against a third Actor. Actors A and B agree to share all their information about Actor C, with the implication that both will attack C. The problem with this is that it’s a pretty strong action.
And what of the utility of Power and Truth? Should they not affect behavior? Should not pTruth affect deal-making decisions? What operational effect should pPower have? These are still important but unimplemented elements of the design.
I still have a great deal of design work to do. The working deal-system is really just a first draft, and will need more fleshing out.