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Old 10-22-2018, 09:14 AM   #11
johndallman
 
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

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Originally Posted by Daigoro View Post
In fact, for these kind of "support" Ally, I think it'd be easier to make a new Ally Limitation to describe their general reluctance to join you in the field, than try to shoehorn how they work into the Contacts write-up.
On Call: Your Ally is not with you by default when available, but has a base that you know of (it may well be your base too). You need to plan the Ally's activities, and/or communicate with them by some means, and they'll behave sensibly within what they know about the situation and your objectives. The advantage of this is that your Ally is less obvious, and doesn't get attacked when you do; the drawback is that you have to arrange plans and/or communication. +0%
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Old 10-22-2018, 09:40 AM   #12
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

I draw the line between hireling and Ally on two edges.

Is this person someone who works for you or who does work for you? Do they go into the field by your side, do they go out and interact with the story in your stead? If they do they are an extension of your character and not just a reflection of who you can hire.

Is this person unique to your character? Could you pick up the newspaper tomorrow and hire their replacement? Is there nothing exceptional about their skillset? Do they not need to have access to your secret identity or your finances? If there is an element of trust or unique application then they are more than someone you can hire, but potentially they're as much a Dependent as they are an Ally.
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Old 10-22-2018, 10:45 AM   #13
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

Hirelings can be loyal, exceptionally skilled and willing to take risks. It is just expensive/time consuming/unreliable to obtain such hirelings. From what I remember about Alfred though, someone like him is well within the capabilities of people as rich as batman to eventually obtain.

Allowing someone to get such a hireling during play is entirly reasonable if the character puts in the appropriate level of effort. I would probably also allow someone to start play with such a hireling, provided that a huge amount of money is spent on it (which can represent things such as having previously hired a large number of people and selected the best among them).

In this particular case, Alfred could be either an Ally or a hierling. The easiest way to tell might be to examine if Alfred happens to become more powerful whenever Batman does (since Allies automatically stay at a CP value proportionate to the character's).
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Old 10-22-2018, 11:00 AM   #14
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

I figure him to be an Ally based on two factors:

1) Reciprocation. Alfred being kidnapped is a plot hook. Batman HAS to go get him back out of a personal sense of obligation. Perhaps even a Sense of Duty beyond Ally. But, Alfred has every reason to expect that he can call on Batman for aid as well. The groundskeeper, the board at Wayne Enterprises, and the the people in the science division who are just hirelings don't enjoy that level of reciprocity.

2) Plot Protection. Being an Ally in a heroic game gives someone plot protection. Sure, they may get kidnapped, inconvenienced, or be unavailable from time to time, but they never actually get killed. I really think that fits Alfred.
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Old 10-22-2018, 01:04 PM   #15
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

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Originally Posted by Daigoro View Post

In fact, for these kind of "support" Ally, I think it'd be easier to make a new Ally Limitation to describe their general reluctance to join you in the field, than try to shoehorn how they work into the Contacts write-up.
I use the Minimal Intervention limitation from Patrons
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Old 10-22-2018, 01:12 PM   #16
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

One role Alfred takes up on occasion is ambulance driver/paramedic, so he can extract a very wounded Batman - like after Bane broke Bats's back! - without drawing attention between Batman and Bruce.

Also, add archer to Alfred's skill set, at least in the Adam West!Batman version, with proper aim at a range to split the arrow in the bullseye repeatedly.

Bruce can probably hire a butler with the same general skill set, true, but there's a level of trust involved with Alfred, who Bruce views as family, that Bruce could never allow himself to have towards any other butler, regardless of background or skill set.
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Old 10-22-2018, 01:20 PM   #17
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

Bruce's own (extensive!) trust issues are separate from how well his associates can be trusted. Some versions of Batman border on Paranoid, but that doesn't forbid Allies and Contacts - it just means those Allies and Contacts had better be very understanding people.
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Old 10-22-2018, 01:24 PM   #18
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

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Bruce's own (extensive!) trust issues are separate from how well his associates can be trusted. Some versions of Batman border on Paranoid, but that doesn't forbid Allies and Contacts - it just means those Allies and Contacts had better be very understanding people.
This is true. I tossed that out as another argument against "hireling", which it looked like someone was arguing for above.
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Old 10-22-2018, 01:43 PM   #19
Refplace
 
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

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Originally Posted by Phantasm View Post
This is true. I tossed that out as another argument against "hireling", which it looked like someone was arguing for above.
Add to that list Alfred is an iconical example of Unfazeable which would be hard to find in a hireling, more so to replace. Alfred really justifies plot protection based on his activity and longevity IMO.
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Old 10-23-2018, 12:11 AM   #20
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Default Re: Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's Ally or a function of his incredible Wealth?

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Originally Posted by Refplace View Post
I use the Minimal Intervention limitation from Patrons
I'm all for generalising the rules for Allies, Patrons and Contacts, especially sharing enhancements and limitations.
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