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Old 09-30-2018, 03:47 AM   #1
madhopper50
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Default Money in TFT

Since the purging of any reference to metrics is being done, how about purging any reference to "dollars" ("$")? Gold-silver-copper pieces seem more appropriate for archaic fighting/fantasy playing.
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Old 09-30-2018, 01:08 PM   #2
Steve Jackson
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Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

The refererence to "gold pieces" is itself a fantasy-ism; people have been naming currency for a long time. It's in books, and thence games, that "gold piece" became a generic term. And "dollar" is an old word and has a convenient symbol.

Fun fact: A "piece of eight" was a real coin. Silver, not gold. It was designed to be broken into eight pieces to make change. Why eight? I do not know.
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Old 09-30-2018, 01:13 PM   #3
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Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post

Fun fact: A "piece of eight" was a real coin. Silver, not gold. It was designed to be broken into eight pieces to make change. Why eight? I do not know.
Most likely eight was chosen because 8 is a power of 2. The whole coin was
a Spanish milled dollar, a typical round coin. The coin could be broken in half, and each half broken in half again, and each quarter in half again. And it looks just like your half, quarter, and eighth on a typical pie chart. each eighth was a bit; there are 8 bits to a dollar. This is the origin of the famous "shave & a haircut: two bits!" song. The cost was a quarter, or two 1/8 pices of 8 (two bits)!

EDIT: This year, the Canadian Mint created their own "answer" to the piece of eight. It's called the Maple Flex Bar, and despite its tasty-sounding name, isn't edible. It's a 2-0z silver bar that can be broken up into 19 pieces and bartered with for trade. The smallest divisions are 1/20th Oz. Here's a picture of one.

https://media.discordapp.net/attachm...298&height=241
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Last edited by ParadoxGames; 09-30-2018 at 01:31 PM.
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Old 09-30-2018, 02:13 PM   #4
madhopper50
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
The refererence to "gold pieces" is itself a fantasy-ism; people have been naming currency for a long time. It's in books, and thence games, that "gold piece" became a generic term. And "dollar" is an old word and has a convenient symbol.

Fun fact: A "piece of eight" was a real coin. Silver, not gold. It was designed to be broken into eight pieces to make change. Why eight? I do not know.
Good answer for "fantasy-ism", but it is "The Fantasy Trip". I love TFT (bought it when it first came out) and the ability to modify the system to suit my likes, so no "$" for me.
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Old 09-30-2018, 03:27 PM   #5
Terquem
 
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Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

I once had a waitress ask me if I wanted my pizza cut into six slices or eight slices. I told her to cut it into six slices because I didn't think I could eat eight slices.
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Old 09-30-2018, 03:41 PM   #6
Chris Goodwin
 
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Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

I think it depends on the world. Cidri seems to me like it would be metric, but I'm sure most fantasy worlds wouldn't be.

Likewise I like the idea of prices being in a standard $ with conversions to whatever the local coin might be. Thalers (from which the name "dollar" derives) were first minted in 1519. Units of weight pretty commonly turn into units of currency (drachma and pound, for instance).

Has there been written material about money in Cidri other than what's in the basic TFT materials, then or now?
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Old 09-30-2018, 04:55 PM   #7
JLV
 
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Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Goodwin View Post
I think it depends on the world. Cidri seems to me like it would be metric, but I'm sure most fantasy worlds wouldn't be.

Likewise I like the idea of prices being in a standard $ with conversions to whatever the local coin might be. Thalers (from which the name "dollar" derives) were first minted in 1519. Units of weight pretty commonly turn into units of currency (drachma and pound, for instance).

Has there been written material about money in Cidri other than what's in the basic TFT materials, then or now?
There was a lengthy debate on this topic around the time the game went to Kickstarter. The general consensus was that the rules should be written simply ("$", simple 10-10-10 Copper-Silver-Gold conversions, and prices done consistently using those standards) and the players/GM could feel free to complicate it as much as they want. "So how many Thalers do my Bezants actually convert to?" becomes a role-playing question instead of a rules issue.
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Old 10-01-2018, 01:29 PM   #8
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Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
The refererence to "gold pieces" is itself a fantasy-ism; people have been naming currency for a long time. It's in books, and thence games, that "gold piece" became a generic term. And "dollar" is an old word and has a convenient symbol.

Fun fact: A "piece of eight" was a real coin. Silver, not gold. It was designed to be broken into eight pieces to make change. Why eight? I do not know.
There were peso d'oro...
The standard trade dollar was in fact silver, but a similar coin in gold was made and used at $16 value.
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Old 10-01-2018, 01:44 PM   #9
Charles G.
 
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Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
Fun fact: A "piece of eight" was a real coin. Silver, not gold. It was designed to be broken into eight pieces to make change. Why eight? I do not know.
Why eight? Simple - try breaking a coin into ten more or less equal pieces (let alone 7 or 11 or some even weirder number)...

Eight is simply one whole divided in half, divided in half one more time (fourths) and one last time (eighths). This can be done pretty well by hand and eye. Anything else is difficult to borderline impossible to do by hand.

Base 10 is not the only way to count things - base 12 (duodecimal) was used in some cultures, and as hinted at by the pieces of eight example, is actually better for counting and measuring (at least in pre-computer age societies) since base 12 has a superior highly composite number vs. base 10. It's not a coincidence that there are 12 inches in a foot, for example...
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Old 10-01-2018, 05:16 PM   #10
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Default Re: Metric system in TFT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLV View Post
There was a lengthy debate on this topic around the time the game went to Kickstarter. The general consensus was that the rules should be written simply ("$", simple 10-10-10 Copper-Silver-Gold conversions, and prices done consistently using those standards) and the players/GM could feel free to complicate it as much as they want. "So how many Thalers do my Bezants actually convert to?" becomes a role-playing question instead of a rules issue.
10 copper to the silver is a huge verisimilitude issue for anyone who is in any way competent at numismatics... because copper has never been so valuable in the real world.

The US penny has an interesting valuation in the 1792 coinage act, section 9, defining the following coins and values. unreduced fractions retained, but text reduced to numbers (excepting the Eagle for demonstration of textual form)
The value of a grain of "standard gold" is thus about 37 mils per grain, 2.4 mils per grain for "standard gold"), and copper about 0.038 mils per grain.

This gives gold a value of around 977 x that of copper, and 15.4x that of silver; silver about 63.46x that of copper.
  • Gold Eagle ($10.00): "two hundred and seventy grains of standard gold" or 247 4/8 grains of "pure gold." (20.25 grains of non-gold in the alloy, then)
  • Half-Eagle ($5.00): 123 6/8 gr. pure gold, 135 gr standard gold.
  • Quarter-Eagle ($2.50): 61 7/8 gr. pure gold or 67 4/8 standard gold
  • Dollar ($1.00): 371 4/16 gr pure, or 416 gr standard silver
  • Half-Dollar ($0.50): 185 10/16 gr pure or 208 gr standard silver
  • Quarter Dollar ($0.25): 92 3/16 gr pure or 104 gr standard silver
  • Dismes ($0.1): 37 2/16 gr pure or 41 3/5 gr standard silver
  • Half-Dismes ($0.05): 18 9/16 gr pure or 20 4/5 gr standard silver
  • Cents ($0.01): 11 dwt (pennyweights) copper (264 gr)
  • Half-cents ($0.005) 5 1/2 dwt copper. (132 gr)

That's about the highest value of copper historically - modern copper extraction was absent, silver was flowing rapidly, and gold was still largely placer mined...

Modern mining has not massively increased gold availability as much as it did silver, and copper mining has shot so far up in capability that copper values are now much less value compared to silver.

Assuming a $1 reference of any reasonable size
Note that bronze or brass coins can be good $0.1, with copper as $0.01, and gold coins would be debased to about 60% gold (copper-gold alloy) to get a similar weight gold coin in real world pre-industrial, late-/post- -renaissance Earth, about 75% in Cidri.

TLDR Copper is logically not a good value for a $0.1 coin - unless it weighs 10 times as much as the silver coin.

Corollary: Gygax's coin names are idiocy.
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