On the number of bonds

On the number of bonds

On the number of bonds

I realized this week that characters cannot add more bonds as time goes on but, rather, keep the number they started with. The Bard always has six or less, and the Wizard never has more than 3.

Having a lot of bonds with a single character could obviously be a bad thing — but how does establishing more than the initial number of bonds upset the game?

As the characters journey together, wouldn’t their relationships become more complicated? And isn’t one way to show how messy relationships get to have multiple bonds?

Why the decision to keep the number of bonds at the starting level? Why are they treated as a resource?

12 thoughts on “On the number of bonds”

  1. Bonds are a resource! They’re how much you can work together. We’ve dabbled with some moves that let you write a new bond (not replacing an old one) which is kind of cool and useful. But in general, having more bonds == being more powerful.

  2. Yeah, I think the bonds kinnda represent a characters ability to invest outside of themselves. Thus the Bard can connect with many people in significant ways while the wizard will almost always seem just a bit “shifty”.

  3. If memory serves (and it probably doesn’t!), bonds usually only come into dice-rolling play for Aid Another. And I’ve never seen such a roll!

    Most of the time, it seems like the bonds just guide play — especially since the xp is 1/session.

  4. Huh. Aid is a huge tool, I think.

    If you just want Bonds to be XP, you could instead ask everyone one thing they learned about another character at the end of the session and give them 1 XP for that. Way easier.

  5. I like moves that give extra bonds, especially if something else is attached to it. Like getting telepathy with the person you have a telepathy bond with. (The bond slot can only be used for that)

  6. Bonds are also player hooks. They can be anything, especially plot points for character development. If your bard has six, how many of those will bite him in the ass down the road?

  7. Well from my understanding, limited as it is William Nichols , Bonds are first established to give the party some way of having an immediate tie to their past. Quick easy “Party”.

    And as time goes forward you can resolve those bonds. Examples I’ve seen are when someone saves an individual and the previous bond was “I owe them my life”, well you saved theirs. So now you don’t owe them. What is the motivation to be connected to this person. And when you resolve you gain XP of course. I mean, life changing moment, that’s an experience! 😉

    I think that going back to resolving them, you should realize these are bonds that create strong ties. These are the key threads to your relationship. Beyond 1 or 2 is a weak relationship. Certainly you can “Want to make them tougher” or “Owe them a debt” at the same time, but really, which one motivates their relationship more? The desire to clear the debt? Or the desire to make them tougher?

    I think there can easily be a misunderstanding as a bond as the catch all “The reason I aid is one of these!” as opposed to why someone would strongly stay with them.

    And resolution really changes the dynamic as well; do they stay now that the bond is no more. Even if they resolved it on good terms, people fall in and out of our lives all the time, think about old friends sometime and wonder why they left.

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