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Buying & selling droids?


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#1 Jshock

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 04:41 PM

My group is playing through long Arm of the Hutt, but this is more of a general question that a rules specific one. While cataloging the contents one of the holds (the one full of droid parts), I mentioned to tone of the players that there was @ 2k credits worth of spare parts; also that he could probably build a droid if he wanted. The player had a completely different idea; he figured he could probably build a droid, then sell it off for more than the value of the parts. Now this may be a cruel and despicable idea, but I don't want to squash it (because it's not a really BAD idea, either). How much do you think a hand built droid is worth? Do you think he should basically break even on the cost, or is it worth a little more for creativity? I personally plan on making it a sentimental, heartbreakiing scene either way.



#2 LethalDose

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 06:11 PM

Jshock said:

My group is playing through long Arm of the Hutt, but this is more of a general question that a rules specific one. While cataloging the contents one of the holds (the one full of droid parts), I mentioned to tone of the players that there was @ 2k credits worth of spare parts; also that he could probably build a droid if he wanted. The player had a completely different idea; he figured he could probably build a droid, then sell it off for more than the value of the parts. Now this may be a cruel and despicable idea, but I don't want to squash it (because it's not a really BAD idea, either). How much do you think a hand built droid is worth? Do you think he should basically break even on the cost, or is it worth a little more for creativity? I personally plan on making it a sentimental, heartbreakiing scene either way.

Huh… Well, there's a lot in there.

First, building and selling the droid is fine.  You can do it with whatever level of complexity you want.  For the simpest option, I'd have them roll a mechanics check to build the body (see third bullet point for skill uses in beta txt. p 77) followed by a computers check to program the processor.  Adjust difficulties as you see fit.  Every uncanceled success increases the value of the droid by 10%, Advantages let them keep some parts, threat wastes parts or makes the droid defective, Triumph/despair… use your imagination.  Basically, it'd be like building anything else out of parts, and using your expertise/knowledge/time to increase the value of the raw materials for sale.  If they want to bargain for a better deal, toss an appropriate social skill in there (negotiations, coerce, whatever).

Thats the boring part.  The fact that you seem to have some moral qualms about allowing the construction and sale of a sentient engine, aka a droid, is WAY more interesting.  

I don't think theres really reason to believe that this is an issue in the Star Wars universe.  First, it seems pretty clear that the vast majority of droids are viewed as livestock or tools in the universe as a whole.  While there may be obvious exceptions to this rule, it does seem rather pervasive.  Some owners may become particularly fond of a particular droid, but even then, its not often more than a well-loved pet.  Second, some droids are barely sentient.  Any 5th degree droids, and probably most 4th degree droids, are unlikely to be capable of holding a conversation or displaying much personality.  Finally, they PCs could simply do a memory wipe after ensuring the droid was functioning properly, and let the new owner boot it up.  The original droid has no memory of ever being owned; no harm, no foul.  

So, for the most part, I wouldn't worry to much about the issue. But it gets fun when you do.

Lets say they do build and sell the droid.  Does the droid remember being sold off immeadiately after being built?  Is it sad? Mad? Does it wonder why it was created?  Does it have a bizarre personality quirk? Like vengance?  Maybe it knows exactly who built it, and who sold it to a sadistic, abusive owner.  Does it escape?  Does it try to join the heros?  Does it quietly shadow them and help from the wings?  Or does it have some perverse need to show it love to it's creator by killing him/her, turning it into a new villian for your campaign.

So… yeah, letting the PCs build and sell a droid sounds f***ing awesome!

-WJL



#3 kinnison

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 08:16 PM

There is no moral qualms in the SW universe for selling a droid.   Some people in SW think of droids as sentient beings.  Some only think of them as tools.  The Separatist army in the clone wars had as less empathy for them as you would for a pair of boots.

We know there are $2000 worth of parts, but that does not necessarily means they all can be used to build a droid.  You might have parts for two or three different droids, or missing key parts like a motivator, vocabulator or processors.  This can be explained via roleplaying.  heck the droid built could be owned previously by Trex and when given the opportunity try to sabotage the ship.

When the droid is built, it would obviously be used, and not necessarily up to specs.  WHen trying to sell it I would only allow half the list price of a new droid of the same type.  This can be modified by negotiate or even streetwise.  which begs the question, is spending several hours building the droid worth the effort to gain a few hundred credits?

some old  RPG numbers for the price of new droids:

1st degree (21-B medical droid) : 4500

2nd Degree (R2 Unit): 4500

3rd Degree (C3PO): 3000

4th Degree (Battle Droid):

B1 Battle droid is 1800

super battle droid 3300

Droideka: 21000

5th Degree Droid (Binary load lifters, Gonk, Tredwell): 1000

 

 


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#4 Lunatic Pathos

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Posted 25 April 2013 - 03:46 AM

When those hours are otherwise spent lounging while your ship flies through hyperspace, heck yeah its worth it. And don't trounce creativity for the sale of 'realism'. This is wide open for story ideas. Personally, I like to let the dice (threats/advantages) decide the results, so even as a GM i'm playing to find out what happens.

#5 Andrew Tatro

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Posted 25 April 2013 - 04:00 AM

More current RPG numbers for droid prices, taken from the Beta book:

1st degree Medical Droid:  12,000 credits

2nd degree Astromech Droid: 8250 credits

2nd degree Maintenance Droid:  7500 credits

3rd degree Protocol Droid: 8000 credits

4th degree Security Droid: 9600 credits

4th Degree Assassin Droid: 65,000 credits (note that this is an enemy that's capable of fighting a whole party

4th degree Antiquated Battle Droid: 6500 credits



#6 ErikB

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Posted 25 April 2013 - 04:31 AM

kinnison said:

There is no moral qualms in the SW universe for selling a droid.

 

It is probably fair to say that most of the characters in Star Wars don't seem concerned by the idea of owning droids, but that doesn't mean that players or individual PCs couldn't have issues with people feeling they can own sentient beings, fit them with restraining bolts to force them to do what they want, and casually have their memories erased if they start acting up.


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