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Old 12-30-2010, 07:40 PM   #1
Dangerious P. Cats
 
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Default Social benifits of gear

Roleplaying and real life do things differently, in roleplaying there is little motivation to spend more on clothing that has the same protective value as cheper clothing beyond characterisation, in real life spending more on clothing is a common and often sensible decision. How does one replicate the benifits of wearing more expensive clothing in GURPS?
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Old 12-30-2010, 07:57 PM   #2
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Default Re: Social benifits of gear

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Roleplaying and real life do things differently, in roleplaying there is little motivation to spend more on clothing that has the same protective value as cheper clothing beyond characterisation, in real life spending more on clothing is a common and often sensible decision. How does one replicate the benifits of wearing more expensive clothing in GURPS?
You might want to take a look at the Styling rules from High-Tech. A person with Savoir-Faire (High Society) and the skills needed to make clothing should probably be allowed to pimp out their clothing for less rather than have to buy the really expensive versions. You could even set up the potential for a faux pas by setting up a Quick Contest between the designer's skill and a critic's Savoir-Faire (High Society) or Coinsurer (Clothing).
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Old 12-30-2010, 09:09 PM   #3
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Default Re: Social benifits of gear

There are also the rules for status-appropriate clothing in the Basic Set pp. 264-5. Dressing up should let you claim a reaction bonus as if you were higher Status in some situations (and expose you to sumptuary laws and gossip about being extravagant or looking above yourself).
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Old 12-30-2010, 09:42 PM   #4
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Default Re: Social benifits of gear

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There are also the rules for status-appropriate clothing in the Basic Set pp. 264-5. Dressing up should let you claim a reaction bonus as if you were higher Status in some situations (and expose you to sumptuary laws and gossip about being extravagant or looking above yourself).
or a failed Savior Fair roll, doing what you think is dressing up, and failing to pull of the right status level style.
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Old 12-30-2010, 09:44 PM   #5
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Default Re: Social benifits of gear

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Roleplaying and real life do things differently, in roleplaying there is little motivation to spend more on clothing that has the same protective value as cheper clothing beyond characterisation, in real life spending more on clothing is a common and often sensible decision. How does one replicate the benifits of wearing more expensive clothing in GURPS?
I think that in most cases, it's a much more realistic simulation to penalize characters for failing to carry sufficiently pimped gear, than to give bonuses for carrying pimped gear.

Reputation can be a game mechanic, and professional characters, e.g. professional warriors, assassins, courtesans, scholars, treasure divers, are reliant upon being known within the setting as being professionals, that is being highly skilled at their trade and serious about it, but in addition to this known-ness within the setting, other characters will also frequently - and realistically - expect professionals to look the part.

Professionals are likely to carry good functional-quality gear already, as represented by GURPS' Fine/Very Fine mechanics, and using the CF system it's usually not at all expensive to also add a little bit of visual pimpery to the gear, to look better, not in order to get a bonus, but in order to avoid getting a penalty for failing to look the way people expect you to look.

Of course there are some exceptions. Warriors and rangers and so forth, will often wear clolthes and carry gear that is grimy and worn, but that can tie in with social class. A professional warrior may be more skilled in all aspects of combat than a knight, but the knight is higher social class (Status in GURPS) and looks the part (handled via the Cost Of Living mechanic), so people will assume he's more badass than the mud-splattered warrior is. Which is sometimes to the mud-splattered warrior's advantage.
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Old 12-30-2010, 10:20 PM   #6
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Leaving sheer fashion and consumption for pleasure out -- as they're both perfectly possible in a roleplaying game -- the main reason people buy more cloths is maintenance and wear. Unless you want to do laundry every day, you have more than one set of clothes. Even people that wear uniforms usually have more than one copy, so it's not for variety. The clothes wear out (or stop fitting) over time, so you replace them. Most people don't want to track this sort of detail in a game. In GURPS terms, it's subsumed in the generic "cost of living". Feel free to assume that PCs have a normal amount of variety of clothing according to their status and CoL. If they want to buy more beyond the norm, encourage them.

It makes no difference mechanically whether clothes provide a penalty if you don't have them, or a bonus when you do. You just shift the zero point. Certainly it's not a matter of "realism" one way or the other, as reality doesn't come with a fixed zero point for a skill roll determined by a GM.
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Old 12-30-2010, 10:30 PM   #7
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Default Re: Social benifits of gear

I am reminded of a game session where our PC's were to be presented at the court of the High King (we were being honored as heroes for discovering a long-lost library of magical lore). The GM dropped some hints that not everyone at court was pleased to see "rabble" like us being welcomed. As the only member of the party with Savoir-Faire, I spent most of the game session advising the others on what to wear. The GM commented that most battles didn't take this long, and I pointed out that "This is combat, just with different weapons."

Realistically, dressing to impress isn't so much a matter of gaining bonuses as it is avoiding penalties- it's expected that you'll be appropriately dressed, but if you're not (either because of poverty or lack of taste), it will be noticed. There's a lot of fuss about what actresses wear to the Oscars every year, but does anyone remember any of the outfits except the really awful ones? (two words: J. Lo.) A nice suit might give you an edge in a corporate job interview, but jeans and a T-shirt will send your resume into the trashcan before you answer the first question.

Off-the-cuff ( no pun intended) mechanic: roll vs. appropriate social skill or Artist (Fashion Design), with a +1 bonus for Fashion sense. On a critical success, add +1 to reaction rolls. On an ordinary success, no modifier. On a failure, take a penalty of -(margin of failure/2, rounded up). On a critical failure, don't bother with reaction rolls- assume a Poor result, at best.
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Old 12-31-2010, 12:06 AM   #8
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Default Re: Social benifits of gear

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Originally Posted by Dangerious P. Cats View Post
Roleplaying and real life do things differently, in roleplaying there is little motivation to spend more on clothing that has the same protective value as cheper clothing beyond characterisation, in real life spending more on clothing is a common and often sensible decision. How does one replicate the benifits of wearing more expensive clothing in GURPS?
High-Tech and Low-Tech both go into some detail regarding Styling, but this is one of the areas that Social Engineering will be expanding and expounding upon. In short, clothing of a certain Status is essentially a prerequisite for others to recognize that Status (that is, your Status 4 character can't dress like a pauper and expect to be treated as Status 4) -- and dressing "above your station" is a prerequisite for faking Status. So clothing definitely does make the man in these cases.
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Old 12-31-2010, 02:03 AM   #9
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Default Re: Social benifits of gear

IME, dressing like Merchant Rank 1 instead of Merchant Rank 0 gives you a +1 to contested Merchant rolls.
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Old 12-31-2010, 02:27 AM   #10
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Default Re: Social benifits of gear

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Roleplaying and real life do things differently, in roleplaying there is little motivation to spend more on clothing that has the same protective value as cheper clothing beyond characterisation, in real life spending more on clothing is a common and often sensible decision. How does one replicate the benifits of wearing more expensive clothing in GURPS?
In the long run, it boils down to what the GM is willing to do to nudge his players towards perhaps reconsidering their spending habits.

Take a look at the reaction table on page 560 for ideas on how to handle this situation...

Keep in mind, the way the reaction table works, is that you roll 3d6, add the player character's apparent social status to the roll, and then subtract the status of the NPC the player character is interacting with. An apparent social status of 0 places the player character at a disadvantage when dealing with his social equals as they perceive him to be either poor and unworthy of their help/friendship - or he is perceived as being too miserly to be worth helping/befriending, etc. Higher nobility such as Barons and Earls and such, will not even bother to deal with the player character as he is unworthy of their notice. Merchants who are forbidden to sell goods of a certain kind to anyone except nobility, will have the right to refuse sales of a given good type, or perhaps will hike the prices up to higher than they should be. Either that, or they will badly misrepresent the worth of their goods being sold ;)
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