Social Links

Social Links

Personae are powerful entities. A Persona-wielder can create fires or ice out of nowhere, resist blows that would kill normal people- but most importantly, they can fight the threat of Shadows, something beyond the scope of anyone else. It is their duty and the purpose of their power.

However, it would be folly to ask a Persona user to do this alone. Personae are expressions of one's inner nature, their 'true self'- and they are only as strong as the person who wields them. A truly realised Persona user is one who strengthens himself by relying on the support of those they trust and love. As the Persona user forges bonds with others, their Personae grow stronger from the power that lies within that same bond. It's this curious aspect of Persona that one refers to when they mention 'Social Links'.
What is a Social Link?
A Social Link is a bond between an Actor and another character, who may also be an Actor. It represents the strength of their friendship, but also the level of understanding in each other- and in turn, of yourself.
Social Links are organised by Arcana. Thus, you can have one Social Link per Arcana in the tarot (from Fool to Judgement). The only exception to this is that you may not possess an Arcana identical to your Primary Arcana- if your Primary Arcana is Magician, for example, you cannot form a Magician Social Link.
The Arcana attached to each Social Link might represent what the person means to you, or how you define them, or the part of yourself that they appeal to. Thus, a Magician Social Link is likely to be with a person whose situation or personality mirrors that of the Magician Arcana. A character does not have to be the same Arcana to different people.
Every Arcana has ten ranks, which represents how strong the relationship is. Each rank increases your maximum Realisation by 1 and provides more XP for your Personae during fusion. Advancing in a rank is a subjective element based primarily on when the GM feels it appropriate.
Actors can form Social Links with other Actors. In this case, the Social Link is defined by the Primary Arcana of the other Actor.
What do Social Links do?
Social Links provide several functions, which differ slightly depending on certain circumstances. The overall functions are listed below.
Fusion XP Bonus: All Social Links provide a boost to the amount of Gained XP a Persona starts with on Fusion. Social Links only provide Gained XP to Persona that share their Arcana- so a Magician Arcana only provides XP to a Magician Persona on fusion. Every rank of a Social Link provides a 10% XP boost in this way, meaning a maximum of 100% bonus when brought to Rank 10.
Primary Fusion Bonus: Since you cannot form Social Links with an Arcana identical to your Primary, these Persona gain XP slightly differently. Any Social Link of an Arcana you don't possess (eg. a Magician Arcana when your Arcana are Priestess, Empress and Emperor) grants a 5% XP Boost per rank to any fused Persona of your Primary Arcana. This stacks with the benefit of other non-Arcana S-Links as well, to a maximum of 200%.
Contacts: All Social Links count as Contacts.
Realisation: Social Links increase your maximum Realisation by a value equal to their Rank.
Special Abilities: Social Links possess abilities unique to the individual, which can often assist you in some way, often in Personal Time or Investigations. The stronger the bond, the more useful these abilities become.
Danger to Social Links
Social Links are not perfectly safe. They can be damaged through the normal way- disagreements, arguments, clashes can all harm a relationship. In these situations, it's possible for a Social Link to decay- at which point it'll subvert to a previous rank or be destroyed entirely.
Should the person with whom you share a Social Link die, however, the link does not break- it remains where it was when the person died.

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Example Social Link

Name Photography Club President Shiro Yamamoto Arcana Justice
Rank 4 XP Bonus 20%
Days Available Tuesday afternoon, Thursday afternoon, Sunday morning/afternoon
Special Ability
Photography Club Go!: Once per week, you can ask Shiro to send the Club out on what amounts to a thinly-veiled stakeout to a location no larger than the school or a few city blocks. Until nighttime, the club will intensively watch the location and report in with their amateur walkie talkies, providing a +30 bonus to Awareness tests during investigations; furthermore the day after, you will receive the photographs, which can be studied as part of an Investigation action.

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