So, I've been thinking about Profit Factor. And I keep thinking "Hey, isn't each of these streams of income actually going to be a thing? A tangible (or intangible) deal that brings you vast piles of money? And wouldn't it be kind of cool if they could be pulled out and looked at, and when you got more, it would reflect what you just got?"
If you have a holding as a source of profit, that does not mean you control it. It means you have a stake, an interest, a percentage. You get a share from profits, but could potentially get that holding to do something else instead of giving you money, whether temporarily or permanently.
- Fundamental Research: Gained by getting valuable and rare archaeotech or xenotech into the hands of researches, or aiding a research group in some way. When certain core pieces of technical research are used (and they are used often), you get a tiny cut of the take. You should note what kind of research it is (lastech, grav-tech, cybernetic, etc). You can choose to forego your "cut" where the research is being used in order to be shipped prototypes and samples of the end products - which will generally mean a huge arsenal of nothing special, but with the occasional truly odd item.
- Fundamental Exploration: Gained by being the first person to map entire systems or interstellar features, and releasing those charts into distribution in such a way that you always get a throne or two when the charts are printed. You should note the chart in question. You can forego this income from the Administratum to instead gather information on who obtains and accesses these charts - giving you a good chance, if you're in the region, to have a scattering of information on any ship you sight.
- Trade Route Basics: As per fundamental exploration, but for a travelling route; your share comes from use of said routes and charts, as a petty tariff. The profits can be foregone for the same purpose as above, or in order to promote shipping of certain (very rare or less) good on that route, making them one step more common there.
- Banked Capital: This holding represents pure money, banked and held in some system. You can convert other holdings into Banked Capital, and can convert Banked Capital into other holdings, as a matter o finance - this typically requires time, a number of commerce rolls, and so on - but it is possible to convert one holding into another relatively reliably in this way (all of them being valued at the same Profit Factor, that is - trading holdings while losing PF is easier yet).
- Noble Family: For whatever reason (and there are too many possible ones to list), you have a small stake in the affairs of a planetary elite. You can forego these profits in order to gain social access of all sorts - invitations to the best parties, visibility among the elite, excellent guides to the local markets in rarities and archaeotech (easier 'find' rolls, not easier acquisition rolls), and so on.
- Heavy Production Facility: As a result of bringing in financing, supply materials, personnel, or acting as shipping agent, a share in such a facility might be given out. A heavy production facility will normally be dedicated to the ongoing production of a single military or industrial item, which should be named. You can forego these profits for a month to automatically succeed on any Acquisition of those goods, so long as the total penalty on the acquisition would not be greater than (the profit factor x10).
- Spire Docks: Through heavy trade, financing, or simply by building more docks onto a spire, a stake in a set of spire docks can be obtained. You can forego these profits in order to keep one vessel (or hull under construction) per point of profit securely docked and under work for as long as desired. With enough time (measured in months), simple components such as cargo holds can be constructed at spire docks - whole hulls cannot be built at such a location, though.
....Anyway. I have a whole pile more to type up, potentially. But, before I burn a whole pile of time: Useful to you? Got any ideas for cool holdings in this pattern? Etc?