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Old 12-10-2012, 07:12 PM   #21
cosmicfish
 
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

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Originally Posted by starslayer View Post
Unless you have a habit of letting PCs build characters who directly challenge the game world setting there will be no true 'one size fits all' answer for this sort of question, and I feel that dismissing 'I don't want to fiddle with prices' is kind of disingenuous to the overall problem.
I do not think it is disingenuous at all - I am looking for rules to fit a narrative, not changes in narrative to fit the rules (which is where piling on debt or debilitation come in). If a player wants "expensive item(s) but low wealth and earning potential" I want to do that without adding caveats just so that the rules add up nicer.


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Originally Posted by starslayer View Post
Used/beaten/useless costs less: You can have a +5 flaming sword because the social and utility components of the item are weakened due to there being so many of them out there, you don't need extreme wealth to buy the item, but its effect on gameplay is going to be mitigated because it is not a unique thing;
And this is exactly what I am talking about - you are suggesting changing the game world so that the item is less valuable. That is explicitly NOT what I am looking for.

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Originally Posted by starslayer View Post
The Noble gets to buy it with starting wealth for the price it would sell for, which is not very much. It was a prestige item when he was a rich noble and could afford to deck it out with the newest fashions and trends, now it's just an awkward under-performing space-plane.
But still valuable - just because it is impractical for commercial exploitation does not mean that it is suddenly cheap. Luke Skywalker could probably have made a ton of credits by selling his father's lightsaber at the end of A New Hope (as it was quite possibly an extremely rare and valuable collectible) but that does not mean that having that lightsaber would make him a highly-paid mercenary or otherwise enable him to make an income commensurate with the sale value of his possessions. Wealth assumes a certain correlation between income and net worth, and I am looking to skew that relationship.
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Old 12-10-2012, 07:31 PM   #22
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

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Originally Posted by cosmicfish View Post
Wealth assumes a certain correlation between income and net worth, and I am looking to skew that relationship.
What do you think of PK's houserule for Trading Points for Money (previously linked by JP42)

http://www.mygurps.com/h_money.html?p=ih&v=0

Amount grows geometrically per CP. For example, 50 CP gets you 200x starting wealth in gear. 100 CP gets you 20,000x starting wealth. This not Wealth; it's a one-time swap.

PK rules also offer Sig Gear plot protection as a separate feature bought separately.
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Old 12-10-2012, 07:35 PM   #23
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
What do you think of PK's houserule for Trading Points for Money (previously linked by JP42)

http://www.mygurps.com/h_money.html?p=ih&v=0

Amount grows geometrically per CP. For example, 50 CP gets you 200x starting wealth in gear. 100 CP gets you 20,000x starting wealth. This not Wealth; it's a one-time swap.

PK rules also offer Sig Gear plot protection as a separate feature bought separately.
I think this is by far the best solution I have seen, and am mostly just waiting to see if the forum has any other ideas or is going to rally around this one. I have posted on the GCA forum to see how to implement it there - the campaign that I am being prodded into running will be for newbies and want to let them design their characters in GCA to minimize errors and questions.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:05 PM   #24
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

I think the myGurps solutions are elegant and endorse them. They are ALL worth looking through, are well thought out.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:17 PM   #25
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

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Originally Posted by cosmicfish View Post
I do not think it is disingenuous at all - I am looking for rules to fit a narrative, not changes in narrative to fit the rules (which is where piling on debt or debilitation come in). If a player wants "expensive item(s) but low wealth and earning potential" I want to do that without adding caveats just so that the rules add up nicer.



And this is exactly what I am talking about - you are suggesting changing the game world so that the item is less valuable. That is explicitly NOT what I am looking for.
I'd suggest something equivalent to a Vow of poverty, but kicked over to a metagame level. 'Person who has a crazy valuable item but can neither profit from it nor cash it in' seems pretty much unfounded in reality, so going straight to fiction-level props seems appropriate. (And buying the thing with RPK's points for cash rule fix, of course, because the Basic Set version totally fails at the high ends.)

Though when you get to Mal and Han, I'd suggest that their somewhat struggling lifestyle can be justified by their other Disadvantages...if you don't mind the possibility that they'll eventually break out of it. Han's asset isn't that huge...the Falcon might be somewhat exceptional for a small freighter but it's really not that huge an asset in the Star Wars universe, unless it's compared to the resources of common-folk on an impoverished backwater like Tatooine. Meanwhile, Han has some very serious Enemies...and he does seem to make fairly real money, when he's actually making money rather than playing rebel hero.

Mal's ship, meanwhile, is probably not one that's actually a great investment. It was sitting in a second-hand yard when he found it, it probably only survives by the grace of Kaylee, and Mal isn't really a man of business sense. He got a ship because he wanted a ship, and he keeps flying because he can't stand not to, not because it's necessarily the best way to keep fed. Man has a bit of an Obsession, even before he goes picking up his other problems.
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But still valuable - just because it is impractical for commercial exploitation does not mean that it is suddenly cheap. Luke Skywalker could probably have made a ton of credits by selling his father's lightsaber at the end of A New Hope (as it was quite possibly an extremely rare and valuable collectible) but that does not mean that having that lightsaber would make him a highly-paid mercenary or otherwise enable him to make an income commensurate with the sale value of his possessions. Wealth assumes a certain correlation between income and net worth, and I am looking to skew that relationship.
I dunno how much an old lightsaber would go for, really. I mean, if he were able to auction it to the crazy rich of the galaxy as Darth Vader's original lightsaber, sure, but he doesn't know that and probably couldn't find the handful of buyers who'd really care.

On the other hand, having a Death Star in his kill log probably could place him as a highly-paid mercenary fairly soon, if he were on the job market as a pilot. (He wouldn't be worth that much as a foot-soldier until after Dagobah.)
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:34 PM   #26
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

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I do not think it is disingenuous at all - I am looking for rules to fit a narrative, not changes in narrative to fit the rules (which is where piling on debt or debilitation come in). If a player wants "expensive item(s) but low wealth and earning potential" I want to do that without adding caveats just so that the rules add up nicer.



And this is exactly what I am talking about - you are suggesting changing the game world so that the item is less valuable. That is explicitly NOT what I am looking for.


But still valuable - just because it is impractical for commercial exploitation does not mean that it is suddenly cheap. Luke Skywalker could probably have made a ton of credits by selling his father's lightsaber at the end of A New Hope (as it was quite possibly an extremely rare and valuable collectible) but that does not mean that having that lightsaber would make him a highly-paid mercenary or otherwise enable him to make an income commensurate with the sale value of his possessions. Wealth assumes a certain correlation between income and net worth, and I am looking to skew that relationship.
I think we are potentially having a miscommunication.

My point is: If the item can be leveraged for wealth then there needs to be some explanation AND mechanic for why its not being leveraged for wealth. If the item cannot be leveraged for wealth, then the item is worth a lot less then its 'sticker price'- these two factors are true in both the real world and can be reflected in the GURPS world very effectively and cover a huge number (possibly all) sources of 'item rich, money poor'.

Luke Skywalkers' father's lightsaber is a great example of an item that is probably worth a fortune to the original owner only, radically less to sell- lightsabers are immensely personal items that are hand crafted, that are really only useful in the hands of a limited number of precognitive psychics. Lightsabers might have value based on lineage and ownership, to collectors, but as a weapon or item it would only be a curiosity to the world of money, and in and of itself not do anything to command money- to a non force-user its a prop to pretend you are a force-user, and probably priced as such.

Another great real-world example is a tailored suit. I might pay $1300 to have a suit hand-made for me, if I loose some weight and the suit is now baggy on me and for whatever reason I did not have it re-tailored I'd have to search far and wide for a buyer, and probably get less then $200 for it. I can't leverage the suit for money- a finely made, but baggy, suit is not going to win me any advantage in negotiations and business vs a cheap but well fitting suit.

Though perhaps I am misunderstanding you- could you list a few more examples; perhaps there is something I am not seeing rather then not communicating effectively.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:55 PM   #27
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

I'm not tracking the problem with high Wealth coupled with high Debt. Then counter any implied status from the Wealth with a negative Reputation (Tramp Starship Captain)- a group known for thier shady pseudolegal dealings, lack of reliability, recreational barfighting, and occasional piracy.

Plus, since said captain cannot pay for his Status upkeep he loses it anyway, right? (I'm asking- I don't know.)

Last edited by acrosome; 12-10-2012 at 08:57 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 12-10-2012, 09:25 PM   #28
cosmicfish
 
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
I'd suggest something equivalent to a Vow of poverty, but kicked over to a metagame level. 'Person who has a crazy valuable item but can neither profit from it nor cash it in' seems pretty much unfounded in reality, so going straight to fiction-level props seems appropriate.
If the value to the person is greater than the value to the world (whatever value that is), then why sell it? In some cases it may be sentimental ("This was your father's lightsaber"), in other cases it may allow a lifestyle that would otherwise be unattainable to the owner (Mal could not live as he wanted without Serenity, even if he could probably make a lot more money by selling it), or it may enable the only career that the individual wants or can pursue (a MechWarrior selling his extremely valuable battlemech might never get another job again!) - while I gave fictional examples, I do not think that they are unfounded in reality.

And regardless - I am getting a lot of narrative help on why someone would or would not have a certain value of wealth with certain paired disadvantages, and that is not what I am looking for. I am looking for a rule that allows a character to have Wealth at one level but starting equipment at a substantially different level - WITHOUT adding disadvantages other than those that negate specifically and solely those advantages bundled into Wealth. I (and my players) will take care of the narrative.
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Old 12-10-2012, 09:34 PM   #29
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

The issue here is how character points intersect with in-game profits. When we're talking about something like the Millennium Falcon, we're talking about a capital good. It's going to multiply your income if you use it for that purpose. It would be the same as if you owned a factory in the nineteenth century.

The way I would price that is to figure out how much it's going to increase your income per session, and then price it based on that. If there are three pay periods per session, that item should be priced differently than if there are three sessions per pay period. I think. Or it might not make sense to price it as a capital good at all if you're running a one-shot where it's not going to come up.

I would price it based on the frequency that it would matter in the game.


The other issue is purchasing items that don't increase your income in any way, but that are still expensive. If you can't monetize it, like that fitted suit, then it should be priced using the normal wealth rules, as per PK's suggested rules (or something very similar).


Maybe you could split the Wealth advantage into two parts: Assets and Income. You could adjust the value of the Income advantage by how often it comes up in the campaign. If it's rarely going to come up, then apply a price modifier. I'd figure some numbers based on what percent of sessions you earn any money, and then apply something like an Accessibility or Gadget limitation to capital goods.

If you own the Millennium Falcon, maybe you pay for it out of Assets, and then put a limitation on your Income to represent needing to have your ship available.

It might make more sense to have only separate income rolls, with the Income advantage working as a modifier on your income rolls, where the modifiers to the roll are priced separately.

Maybe that would be something like Income +3 (Gadget, Millennium Falcon, -x%) [?].

I would have to sit down and figure up what all the different numbers should be on this stuff. This seems to be one of the biggest problems we have in GURPS: figuring point prices of traits that give you advantages over time in-play. It's the same problem we have with trying to price a trait that allows you to learn skills faster. How should that be priced? We need to figure an answer for that.
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Old 12-10-2012, 09:42 PM   #30
cosmicfish
 
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Default Re: Gear rich, money poor

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My point is: If the item can be leveraged for wealth then there needs to be some explanation AND mechanic for why its not being leveraged for wealth.
Yes, but I can handle the explanations independently - Debt, Vow, Code of Honor, Compulsive Behavior... there are a ton of options for explaining WHY a character would do so, but not until I have Wealth parsed into its components so that I can have what I need (initial wealth) separate from what I do not (earning potential).

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Originally Posted by starslayer View Post
Luke Skywalkers' father's lightsaber is a great example of an item that is probably worth a fortune to the original owner only, radically less to sell- lightsabers are immensely personal items that are hand crafted, that are really only useful in the hands of a limited number of precognitive psychics. Lightsabers might have value based on lineage and ownership, to collectors, but as a weapon or item it would only be a curiosity to the world of money, and in and of itself not do anything to command money- to a non force-user its a prop to pretend you are a force-user, and probably priced as such.
And if that narrative suits you, that is fine... for YOUR world. In my universe, a lightsaber, a powerful (if dangerous) relic of a devastated order that once watched over the galaxy is probably of immense value. Not to everyone, of course, but what ever is? An authentic viking sword nowadays is completely useless as a weapon - but it is still worth a ton of money. Heck, a top-end high-power sniper rifle is worth more than some cars to the handful of people capable of using them effectively (of which there are some!).

And General Grievous cannot be the only person crazy enough to want a lightsaber and borged enough to not have much to risk...

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Though perhaps I am misunderstanding you- could you list a few more examples; perhaps there is something I am not seeing rather then not communicating effectively.
There could be any number. In Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Li Mu Bai could probably have sold the Green Destiny sword for an immense sum, but would he? In Alan Dean Foster's Flinx series, the main character possesses a starship superior to any other known to exist, and could have sold it and retired in a life of luxury, but doesn't because the ability to explore that it provides is simply worth more to him. Many other stories feature characters who have something that would be immensely valuable that they choose to neither profit from nor sell, simply because money is not their motivation.

And again, the issue is not the story behind it - it is the severability of Wealth into its component parts.
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