Griftlands is a roguelike RPG for deck building and a lot is happening. Klei’s first foray into a somewhat overburdened genre gives players two different packages to manage, along with several systems they will have to pounce on to get the most out of each run. One of these systems is the relationship mechanic. Klei allows you to approach the game in a variety of ways, often giving you the option of walking in weapons blazing with your battle deck or using your wits across the negotiation deck. These choices can affect your relationships with the characters in the world. If you want to run successfully, managing these relationships is key.
Each character in Griftlands can be in one of five different phases of a relationship with you. The scale runs from loved to hate. At first glance, you might assume that it doesn’t really matter outside of the story, but that would be wrong. Griftlands also strata in a system called Social Boons and Banes. These upgrades give your character important features that affect him during each run. To get new ones, you have to either become beloved or hated characters around you.
As you can expect, beloved characters give you Boons, while hated characters give you banes. The easiest way to become a beloved character is to complete missions for them, drink with them at the bar or help them in random events. Basically, treat people well and become your friend. The most common way to have a Hate character is to kill their friends and allies in general. If you enter a battle with a character, you don’t like it automatically, but the game gives you the opportunity to save them if you cause enough damage. Almost without questions, this is an opportunity to take advantage. Making them will make the other characters hate you, which will complicate your current run.
In fact, in some ways it is more important not to become hated than to become loved. If you collect too many social banes, your run is basically over. That’s why we recommend never killing anyone if you can help them. Otherwise, be nice to everyone you meet and end up with more friends than your enemies and you’ll be well on your way to defeating the Griftlands.