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Old 11-12-2004, 09:01 PM   #11
Kyle Aaron
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Timbo
2) It is untrue that we do not use resources more efficiently now than 10, 20, or 30 years ago. I don't want to go into a lot of detail but trust me we do.
If I trusted everyone on the internet who said, "trust me," I'd have given all my money to a Nigerian scammer and believe that aliens were behind the Jewish plot to take over the world...

Of course we use resources more efficiently than 30 years ago. But the improvement in efficiency in labour has been orders of magnitudes greater.

For example, a farm in 1960 used one-half as much fertiliser and herbicide/pesticide than a farm in 2000; but it also used about twenty times as much labour.

So, the use of resources, while overall more efficient, is not universally so, and the use of labour is orders of magnitude more efficient than that of resources.

Quote:
3) The cost of the conveyers is mostly license fees not cost of production.
Therefore deals will be cut for different prices for different companies, goverments, etc. Also Whitestar Trading would pay almost nothing for thier conveyers so they could bring in whatever they want for almost nothing.
Indeed. But there might be other reasons for restricting how many conveyers go out there. People can do a lot of damage with them. I mean, I'm sure Uncle Sam could sell nukes cheap to every country in the world if he wanted to, but he has other, non-commerical reasons to restrict their sale. For every extra conveyer you sell, that makes it more likely someone will do something silly with it. Sure, the Patrol can arrest him later - but the damage is done.

As to the worth of 1935 Reichsmarks, who said our timescammers would be paid in cash? I'm sure they could fit $10 million of gold on a conveyer in a single trip.
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Old 11-12-2004, 10:06 PM   #12
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

Chello!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bob
As to the worth of 1935 Reichsmarks, who said our timescammers would be paid in cash? I'm sure they could fit $10 million of gold on a conveyer in a single trip.
[Indiana Jones flashback] "We have treasures donated by the wealthiest families in the Reich...." [/IJ fb]

Or something even more easily portable like diamonds.....

Personally, I think the tourist trade would do wonders. and what about colonization? Why bring the goods to you when you can go to the goods? and what even something ~odd~ happens at the colony site? Aliens? Roaranoke?

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Old 11-12-2004, 10:56 PM   #13
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Commodities prices will drop like a rock. Remember, in our history gold rushes started when settlers looked at a region and realized that all they needed to get rich was a pack to carry the gold in. People used to find fist-sized lumps of gold lying in California streams. In Pennsylvania crude oil used to bubble up from the ground in sufficient quantities to be collected by bucket. Imaging what must be lying around in uninhabited worlds, where people haven't been picking up the good stuff for twenty thousand years.

The real money is going to be in unique information. Even if a worldline is broadly identical to Homeline, that doesn't mean the details are the same. Sure, both timelines had a Picasso - But in their version he was a modernist architect. His designs might not be comfortable, but how much would a snob pay to live in a Picasso design. And on a personal note, I would cheerfully murder a hundred kittens for a new never-seen-before Modigliani.

Getting away from art, very different worldlines will have put time and effort into developing different technologies. You can't be good at everything, and odd parralel (Parallel? Parrallell? Paaraaleel?) worlds may be very advanced in materials design, or electronics, or software - Imaging a world where Microsoft Windows works all the time!

And tourism - See the Avesbury Haligdom, grand jewel of the Waelwulfsson Dynasty! Visit the Temple of the Mount in Unconquered Jerusalem! Wallow in decadence in the famous Tokyo love hotels!

Wait. That last world in the guide book...
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Old 11-14-2004, 12:49 AM   #14
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

Now that's an interesting idea. Famous people. Or significant people.

Doing a PhD thesis on Julius Caesar? How about kidnapping him? That'll violate the rules? Well, find a respectably Julius-like corpse, stab it twenty times, and grab Julius thirty seconds before he's nabbed by the Senators.

Hey, if Bill and Ted could do it, why not you?

I can just imagine an old Bill Shakespeare, kept alive by 21st century life support, yelling through his oxygen mask, "of course I wrote it, thou wretched knave!"

Yep, academic researchers would definitely want to give it a go:)
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Old 11-14-2004, 08:41 AM   #15
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

Subquantum Conveyor: $30 million for 2 tons of transport
- no projector is needed, this only jumps around within its own quantum level
- LC 2: this can only jump between Homeline and a single Empty world
- Legality Class 2: a corporation with licenses can own it
- I-Port program for plotting target position: $500
- Operations: one operator is required, with Electronic Ops (Parachronic)
- Cost: approx. 30 minutes worth of fuel, + operator's salary, + maintenance

Thirty million as a starting cost for a now-infinite-in-your-lifetime resource is not that bad. You just have to pick a resource that isn't already fulfilled by someone else. Oil isn't a good choice today, but will be as Homeline's own oil fields start to wear out. Diamonds are probably a pretty poor choice - it seems unlikely that deBeers will let you live. But what about super-rich soil? Caribou? Primordial fern salads? Mahogany lumber? Silks and spices? Plutonium?

Sudden new resources rarely have an impact on things which are already a commodity, but they usually impact rare and expensive things pretty hard. Homeline middle class homes may be decorated with fine cherry and mahogany woods, draped with silk, and serving archaeopteryx steak for dinner, with only a little more expense. And the entire Fad Industry would have a whole slew of new things to bring in!

I can just see Renaissance Barbie and terbil pets from Q5.
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Old 11-14-2004, 12:09 PM   #16
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

I've just finished reading The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde, a wonderful time travel/alternate universe story. One of the important devices in the plot is a portal which allows a person to actually enter a book. A master criminal is blackmailing the government by threatening to alter important works of fiction, but another sinister character has another use for the device:

"Anything that the human imagination can think up, we can reproduce. I look at the portal less of a gateway to a million worlds, but more like a three dimensional photocopier. With it we can make anything we want."

I recall a science fiction story, I forget the author, about a universe-hopping scout who gets big money for discovering alternate universes with useful resources. In this case the resources are pieces of popular culture. Imagine how much a Beatles album would be worth snatched from a universe where they never broke up? Or where Buddy Holly never took that fatal plane trip and lived to make hit after hit? (Yes, that's the premise of the "Holly" world from IW)

That would avoid the problem from Isaac Asimov's novel The Gods Themselves, where "mining" the energy from a proto-universe threatens to destablize the balance between other universes. If only information is taken from another universe, nothing is affected.

Unless it would make a good plot...
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Old 11-15-2004, 01:34 PM   #17
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

I like the comparison to nuclear weapons. Infinity should treat the tech as that kind of threat. The potential ramifications of changing echoes and moving other worlds across quanta are large.

I plan on having a pretty tight hand on who operates conveyors and under what security. A large portion of the Patrol's job is maintaining the proper, legal use of conveyors.

Counter proliferation and how Infinity plans on maintaining control are major factors in my game. Who gets access is critical. How you protect the tech is even more so. Keeping the political muscle to avoid other nations just taking the tech is another area of interest to me. How savvy Infinity has to be to keep the nations of the world in line is a pretty neat game dynamic. The access to parachronic navigation is the big factor in my game.

Real estate is another: if you donít move in space, where you move between timelines can be interesting. Driving a mobile conveyor just isnít possible in some lines. Where the projectors are is quite important. How does Infinity manage these deals? Maybe offer up exclusive rights to a given parallel to a country that is willing to make a fair trade for a conveniently located island perhaps?

Even if grain (as suggested by 4e) isn't the big resource shift, I like the commodities issues. It's the small and valuable stuff that is more fluid than oil or grain. It's the control of the supply and the elasticity of the product that will encourage cross-time growth in business etc.

Information is going to have all kinds of value, and as a GM, keeping the worlds fluid and protecting the vulnerable ones will be an interesting player-motivator.
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Old 11-16-2004, 12:02 AM   #18
Kyle Aaron
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

If they treat conveyers as like nuclear weapons - which I think is reasonable - then what about parachronozoids? Those with Jumper advantage?

I mean, if you choose limitations, and make it a bit random like the gear they had in Sliders... you can have Jumpers for 20 character points.

My GM is starting me on 50 CP, so I won't take it. If I had 100CP, I'd take a 20CP Jumper with pleasure. Hell, it's cheaper than the CP I'd need to get enough wealth for a machine to do it...

That's like a mobile personal nuclear weapon. Think of how much chaos one mad player-character can create normally... now give him Jumper ability. Oy, vey.

How would they handle that? In many game worlds, psionics of all kinds are screened for, trained, restricted, etc - because they're feared for their power. How much more would they fear a Jumper?
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Old 11-16-2004, 02:38 AM   #19
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

Another thing to think about is labor. Outtime labor can be incredibly cheap. Just compare TL3 wages with TL8 wages. You can pay 4-5 TL3 laborers for the price of 1 TL8 laborer.

Scary thought: A TL3 wizard (according to GURPS Magic 2nd edition) made about $1000 a month. That's about how much I make selling fast food.
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Old 11-16-2004, 08:28 PM   #20
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Default Re: Infninte Economy

Yep, labour. And like I said, that leads to social troubles. Right now in the affluent western world, cheap immigrant labour and racism lead to various social and economic troubles. Take away the race issue, and change it to a parallel or echo world, and...?
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