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CitizenKeen

Wealth Rules

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So, I’ve been considering using some sort of Wealth rules.

You’d have a Wealth rating just like a Skill. At chargen, you can buy it like any skill. After chargen, you can only change it with a narrative justification. Or double XP. Or somesuch.

Instead of a cost, every item has a Cost Rating similar to the Rarity Rating (1-10, difficulty is halved and rounded up). You’d still use Rarity Rating to know if you can even find an item, before buying it.

When you want to buy something, you roll Wealth against difficulty. Success means you bought it. Failure means you didn’t. Treasure would be handed out as free Boosts. (So the goblin king’s hoard has 10 Blue Dice to be split amongst the group. Note on character sheet. When you want to get something, add 3 Blue Dice, mark it off, etc.)

Obviously, this would require some thought with regards to the Negotiation skill.

Thoughts?

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I like the idea if your players are cool with that idea, but i see two problems

1. What stops your players from continually buy very expensive items, speaking there is no limit. (other than dm saying no because it would be kind of arbitary when would they run out of money)

  *This might be fixed if the level went down for every successful check? maybe

2. This is less of a problem but i know my players like numbers and the bigger the number in their currency box the happier they are. Now like i said this is not as big of a problem if your players are happy with playing this way.

Overall, I like the idea, just might need to be tweeked some also, maybe the negotiation  can add blue die or you could do a negotiation check followed buy a buy check with the negotiation  making the buy check easier. Just spitballing here, can't wait to hear others ideas.

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1 hour ago, CitizenKeen said:

Thoughts?

I dig it!  I've seen similar mechanics in other games and often wondered how it would work.  I'm interested to hear the results from playtests.

47 minutes ago, Fuzzyursa said:

1. What stops your players from continually buy very expensive items, speaking there is no limit. (other than dm saying no because it would be kind of arbitary when would they run out of money)

Giving your players a ಠ_ಠ might help, but at the end of the day, if they've invested XP in Wealth instead of Talents and Skills, why not cater to it?   To me this doesn't represent a hard figure, but more a character's ability to access wealth.  I agree there should be some guidelines but if a player builds their character to exploit this, then it's not preposterous to assume that's the kind of game they want to play.  If THAT is a problem, no amount of rules will fix what a quick OOC table chat can. 

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1 hour ago, CitizenKeen said:

<--- snip! --->

Instead of a cost, every item has a Cost Rating similar to the Rarity Rating (1-10, difficulty is halved and rounded up). You’d still use Rarity Rating to know if you can even find an item, before buying it.

<--- snip! --->

Thoughts?

The biggest issue I see is that rating and the cost of an item don't always scale. Some items - say a warhorse in a fantasy setting - might be Rarity 6 but rather expensive at 1500 currency, while another Rarity 6 item might be a little less pricey (e.g.: a Protective Tonic at 125 currency). What's to stop the players from purchasing a warhorse, then bartering with another merchant to trade that warhorse for ten tonics?

I would recommend not tying the cost rating to Rarity. That means a lot more work for you, but in the end it will balance out better.

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1 hour ago, Simon Retold said:

The biggest issue I see is that rating and the cost of an item don't always scale. Some items - say a warhorse in a fantasy setting - might be Rarity 6 but rather expensive at 1500 currency, while another Rarity 6 item might be a little less pricey (e.g.: a Protective Tonic at 125 currency). What's to stop the players from purchasing a warhorse, then bartering with another merchant to trade that warhorse for ten tonics?

I would recommend not tying the cost rating to Rarity. That means a lot more work for you, but in the end it will balance out better.

Oh, absolutely. Of course. Two separate ratings. The column that's currently Cost becomes a Difficulty instead of a 100x integer, but Rarity remains.

A new sedan might be a Rarity 3 and Cost 6 (depending on where you set 10), while an unloved first edition might be a Cost 1 and Rarity 9.

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On 5/17/2018 at 11:56 AM, Fuzzyursa said:

I like the idea if your players are cool with that idea, but i see two problems

1. What stops your players from continually buy very expensive items, speaking there is no limit. (other than dm saying no because it would be kind of arbitary when would they run out of money)

  *This might be fixed if the level went down for every successful check? maybe

2. This is less of a problem but i know my players like numbers and the bigger the number in their currency box the happier they are. Now like i said this is not as big of a problem if your players are happy with playing this way.

Overall, I like the idea, just might need to be tweeked some also, maybe the negotiation  can add blue die or you could do a negotiation check followed buy a buy check with the negotiation  making the buy check easier. Just spitballing here, can't wait to hear others ideas.

1. The same thing that prevents players with an insane amount of money from buying the best magic items: supply (DM choice). Second would be you still use items, large chest, piles of gold, whatever as ways to increase and decrease. This is the same as White Wolf's background in the World of Darkness.

Something to keep in mind though is that wealth needs to have some situational modifiers based on how far away you are from your "home base" as that can influence available cash.

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On 5/17/2018 at 7:49 PM, themensch said:

To me this doesn't represent a hard figure, but more a character's ability to access wealth.

It could work as it suggests wealth's a motivation, part of the character's persona (narratively it suggests and implies a motivation for wealth too- worldly goods, possessions and money are what your character lives for, you could even play with it being stackable in some way (at the highest level they're showing off their goods in great museums or stately properties perhaps and flaunting it way too much- or the opposite and they are secretive and guarded about it lest it gets stolen, perhaps obsessively so to the point of paranoia) but after a certain point having a greed and guard penalty- character flaw perhaps of greed and desire and the challenge of having to protect it.

 

Could be a really neat idea played in this narrative-rich (pun intended) way and give the GM options to throw some consequences at the players. There's theft and so on to consider- this wealth is likely to draw attention or be a hassle to try and protect and maybe keep secret. The character could be tempted into making choices because of opportunities to further such wealth.

 

Re the greed thing wealth doesn't have to be a bad character aspect- they may just like displaying the treasures they collect, similarly be into rare and precious antiques or be driven in the business they conduct.

 

As Doomgrin75 states wealth also doesn't have to give a player stupid amounts of coin- it's tied up in property, possessions, whatever and often back home.

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Generally, what I've seen is costs below your wealth level you can always afford (within reason) while costs above your wealth level require a roll and (might) reduce your wealth level permanently. So an average wealth character can always afford to go to the movies, but would have to roll to afford a new car, but a poor character might need to roll for even that movie ticket, and might not be able to make rent if they went anyway. 

I really like the idea of those systems, but the problem I have is how to adjudicate wealth going up. Your the first person I’ve seen address that angle, but even yours is just a temporary, well, boost. How would you handle characters that want to improve their overall wealth level? Just spend XP? Or do they need to give up some number of the accumulated boost dice? Or do they need to also make a roll?

No group I’ve ever played with has actually wanted to keep track of money and equipment purchasing and such so I am very interested in finding an alternative to handling it. 

 

 

Another question. How would such a system deal with a party that was like the crew from Firefly, with a ship with maintenance costs and assorted fees and such?

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9 hours ago, Forgottenlore said:

Generally, what I've seen is costs below your wealth level you can always afford (within reason) while costs above your wealth level require a roll and (might) reduce your wealth level permanently. So an average wealth character can always afford to go to the movies, but would have to roll to afford a new car, but a poor character might need to roll for even that movie ticket, and might not be able to make rent if they went anyway. 

I really like the idea of those systems, but the problem I have is how to adjudicate wealth going up. Your the first person I’ve seen address that angle, but even yours is just a temporary, well, boost. How would you handle characters that want to improve their overall wealth level? Just spend XP? Or do they need to give up some number of the accumulated boost dice? Or do they need to also make a roll?

No group I’ve ever played with has actually wanted to keep track of money and equipment purchasing and such so I am very interested in finding an alternative to handling it. 

 

 

Another question. How would such a system deal with a party that was like the crew from Firefly, with a ship with maintenance costs and assorted fees and such?

I think treasure/rewards you can simply categorize as a "wealth rank" based on your campaign setting. If they gain something, make a wealth roll with wealth as the skill and maybe intelligence or cunning based on whoever manages their funds at a difficulty of the next rank to see if they have improved their status. If they buy something above their wealth, make a roll . Upgrade the check for each level of wealth exceeded to see if they deplete their funds. Failing means they drop a level...

I am considering making some charts that involve boons, investments, debts, theft, etc. but the gist is use the story system, maybe even some skill challenges to handle wealth.

 

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Getting your players focused on something other than acquiring wealth is 90% of the struggle. If the PCs have clear non-financial goals you can avoid bookkeeping altogether, and players will be less apt to try and break an easily-breakable system (my answer to players asking Fuzzyursa's first question would be 'if you want to buy crap, play &^%$ Monopoly').

The other factor to consider is whether you are going to use the narrative power of the dice to your benefit. What exactly can advance/threats & triumph/despairs convey to make an interesting story on a wealth roll? The example of Firefly is a good one, because I could see all sorts of interesting complications. Being in debt is a good way to bring in the Challenge die, with a Despair meaning someone like Badger has come a-knocking....a Triumph might mean a new patron with an interesting job off-world.

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