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-   -   Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars (http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread.php?t=159882)

whswhs 09-27-2018 07:34 PM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by scc (Post 2211968)
Gawk, you're right of course. My point is that most people seem to think that if someone has Status 0, that's all they'll pay for, even if they can afford more.

I take it, rather, that lifestyle gives rise to other people's estimates of your Status. If you are paying for a really good city apartment or a large suburban house, if you frequently eat at nonchain restaurants, if you wear pricy clothes, that tends to be evidence by which other people will judge you to be of higher Status. Though of course it's also the case that if you spend that money on pricy things that the established high-Status people disdain, you may get classed as nouveau riche and not get credit, or even get a bad Reputation or an OPH that lowers the expected reaction.

Then there are people who put money into non-lifestyle stuff. Athletics, electronics/computers, musical instruments and music, crafts equipment, a more elaborate kitchen than your Status needs, or something like Kromm's Bartending toolkit. . . . There's a complex tradeoff between "X doesn't care about Status as much as about that peculiar hobby" and "X's having that hobby is evidence of being high enough in standing to have that sort of hobby."

Rupert 09-27-2018 07:58 PM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by scc (Post 2211942)
No. That sort of thing is where GURPS Status breaks down, but things like accommodation footage and amount/quality of food don't change with TL, what does change if what level of lifestyle you can afford at a given Status.

Quality of food changes with TL by quite a lot, and reliability of supply changes enormously. At low TLs a bad harvest means that your society has to choose between nobody getting enough and some getting enough/plenty and others starving. At high TLs even in bad years the only reason someone has to have insufficient food is that their society has decided that things should be that way - there's plenty of good food for all.

Quote:

Originally Posted by scc (Post 2211968)
Gawk, you're right of course. My point is that most people seem to think that if someone has Status 0, that's all they'll pay for, even if they can afford more.

That's players being miserly, even when their characters would more reasonably be spending money on consumer goods and other comforts at the same rate as their peers (i.e. up to or past the amount their income can support).

scc 09-27-2018 08:26 PM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Rupert (Post 2211979)
That's players being miserly, even when their characters would more reasonably be spending money on consumer goods and other comforts at the same rate as their peers (i.e. up to or past the amount their income can support).

No, it's perfectly legitimate to pay for a higher level of Status then your entitled to, points wise, you even get the reaction bonus. What I don't think you get is access to jobs that pay equal to your Status.

AlexanderHowl 09-27-2018 08:50 PM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Jobs are somewhat dependent on Wealth (though some have Status requirement as well).

whswhs 09-27-2018 09:27 PM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by scc (Post 2211985)
No, it's perfectly legitimate to pay for a higher level of Status then your entitled to, points wise, you even get the reaction bonus. What I don't think you get is access to jobs that pay equal to your Status.

In some societies, if you aren't paying the CoL for your Status, your Status falls. In others, it stays the same, but you acquire a Reputation and may have trouble getting credit.

vicky_molokh 09-28-2018 01:33 AM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Kromm (Post 2211814)
This seems true as well.

By dint of being Canadian and having made many of my friends in graduate school, where most of the foreign students came from Europe and Asia, the majority of my contacts live outside the United States. When I read about how living expenses are proportioned in the U.S.A., I find it anomalous. Among other things, it seems U.S. culture is skewed toward owning houses and away from renting apartments, favors living outside the city core, and assumes motor-vehicle ownership. Most of the people I know everywhere else rent apartments in the city, and walk or bike. There's also the fact that just about all the world is more socialist than the U.S.A., which adjusts how much goes to taxes and how much is paid for services (from trash collection to hospitals).

Consequently, I'd be hesitant to give too much weight to modern U.S. cost of living in my in-game economics unless I were running a game set in a specific U.S. city where I knew the real-world breakdown (and in that case, I'd do my research locally, not ask people who lived outside that city). I certainly wouldn't base the economic assumptions of a generic game system on that.

Added to the uFAQ (including the next post too).

Kromm 09-28-2018 07:27 AM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by whswhs (Post 2211975)

There's a complex tradeoff between "X doesn't care about Status as much as about that peculiar hobby" and "X's having that hobby is evidence of being high enough in standing to have that sort of hobby."

It's very, very complex, in part because it depends on the observer as much as the hobbyist. As is my custom, I'll use myself as an example. I have three main hobbies, and here are my experiences with them:

Argentine Tango: People whose "knowledge" comes from bad popular media straight-up say, "That's a rich person's dance," as those media depict tango as a world of men in tuxes and women in gowns, in fancy ballrooms. Thus, the badly informed assume I have pretensions to a rarified lifestyle. People whose knowledge comes from dance science, dance theory, ethnochoreology, etc. are aware that Argentine tango has its origins in slave culture and slums, that it still has a lot of "the street" in it, that it's often danced in grimy clubs, and that the ballroom tango the media loves to depict isn't even the same dance. They tend to class me with struggling artists and the demimonde as shady, even sleazy. And people who actually dance Argentine tango know that it appeals to a vertical cross-section of society, from poor to extremely rich, and that dancing it means only that this dance appeals to you more than others. Of course, there are tango dancers who put on airs, or starve for their art, or are slimy and looking only to pick up someone for the night, but all together they're a drop in a very large bucket.

Mixology: Many people, upon seeing the shelves full of bottles and tools in my home bar, utter something like, "It must be nice to have money to throw around." A few identify costly or hard-to-come-by bottles and figure I display them to show off; i.e., they're status symbols. Those who know me better are aware that aside from gifts, most of that stuff was paid for by me not going out to bars like most cocktail-drinkers (each night skipped pays for one or even two bottles!), not having a car, not having a TV, and having a strange lifestyle in general; a few see these "sacrifices" as signs that I'm not well off and of lower social status. I've even had comments that a home bar must mean I'm an alcoholic, on a fast slide to the bottom of the heap! But my fellow amateur mixologists know that there are rich mixologists who tour the world and poor ones who make do with a couple of bottles after working for minimum wage all day and that on that scale, I'm pretty much dead average. Of course, there are snobs who show off their $1,000 whisky and drunks who try to pass off alcoholism as a hobby, but they're not most mixologists.

Roleplaying Games: The majority reaction is insulting comments about living in my parents' basement, having a "neckbeard," having no social life, and maybe worshipping Satan. These commentators don't care about my social standing because they accord me what GURPS calls a Social Stigma . . . though in real life, social stigmas are taken as coding for low social status, because the stigmatized are often blocked from upward mobility. The minority who know games either realize that I'm mainly a GURPS person and throw out a quick, "Eew, GURPS! It's full of math!", which is effectively a way of placing me lower down the social ladder among gamers, or realize that I'm an employee of a games publisher and accord me a position high up the social ladder among gamers. Only a minority within the minority realize that I'm a middle-class dude with other interests, and that gaming isn't any weirder than fantasy football or a more interactive form of the fantasy a TV series represents. Of course, there are games writers who walk on their fans, and gamers who are addicted to gaming and letting their life disintegrate, but they don't typify the hobby.

PS: I use myself as an example to avoid sounding judgmental of others, as my personal belief is that if I want to analyze the motivations of real-life people, my life is the only one I have the right to dissect. Yet I'll bet that at least one reader believes that some of my comments above were made to "show off" that is, to showcase my Status or desired Status. It doesn't matter that I know I didn't say any of those things for that reason; that person knows I did . . . which further drives home my point.

Kax 10-03-2018 05:32 PM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Nemoricus (Post 2211798)
GURPS $ are roughly based on the value of the US $ in 2004.


From what I read last (GURPS 3e; the reference was removed in 4e) it was a USA $ as of 1980 or 1984.

Which changes all CoL calculations in this thread rather a lot.

AlexanderHowl 10-04-2018 06:59 AM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
I remember reading that as well. I think, to a certain extent though, GURPS monetary units are a good shorthand for fictional currency values because it is simple. If you want a real world conversion, things get more complicated, and I would suggest that you increase the effective cost of things by 3% per year from 1980, just to account for inflation, meaning that a GURPS $ buys $3.07 nowadays. That would mean that COL for Status 0 would be around $1,800 per month while Average income would be $7,800 per month, which would reflect my experiences quite well.

ericthered 10-04-2018 07:30 AM

Re: Conversation Rate of G$ To Real World Dollars
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Kax (Post 2213829)
From what I read last (GURPS 3e; the reference was removed in 4e) it was a USA $ as of 1980 or 1984.

Which changes all CoL calculations in this thread rather a lot.


Yes it does: I thought that was the proper number. Have the numbers been updated as books continue to come out?


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