Here’s a snippet of early feedback about the 3e social influence system from the first Marst Chronicle playtest report. Sadly, it doesn’t provide any in-setting context as to how and under what circumstances the players used the social mechanics. But I’m currently working on editing the playgroup’s next session report for publication, and that contains real examples of social influence in actual play, dealing with mortals and spirits alike.
“[The social influence system] flowed nicely, and I only had to go and check the rules a couple times, which speaks to their simplicity. We all feel that the new Intimacy system is great, and I think it may be the best mechanical system piece I have read. … [T]here was always a question about whether or not a player’s influence attempt would work or not, and as an ST and player I love that feeling, as I think it heightens the game. Rolling dice simply means more when there is a possible chance of failure.
“On an RP level, I got a lot of comments about how Intimacies helped the players quickly create a complex character and at the same time drive them to develop more interesting and meaningful histories. This is, in my opinion, a vast step forward from last edition, because Motivations didn’t really do this as well and [2e] Intimacies, while an interesting piece of the game, had no mechanical relevance and thus were often afterthoughts or things you picked up more once you started playing, which left the base character ill-defined.
“… Each [element of the social influence system] worked as intended, did not bog the game down, and did not leave me with the impetus to want to throw off this vile outside force attempting to control my NPCs’ brains.”