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How is your party using Resources?

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  • How is your party using Resources?

    My players are a wandering exorcist and a pirate captain. Through their adventures, they have come to have extremely respectable wealth- they went from 1 pirate ship to a small armada (6 ships currently) and the pirate crew has grown from 30 to over 150. They have raided treasure fleets, Fae dreamcastles, Deathlord Tributary ships, and more. Currently they have Resources 4 and i gave them a one off treasure fit for "a single Resources 5 purchase each".

    They have bought nothing.

    I set the upkeep of the ships and crew at Resources 3. They have hard won artifacts already. They just don't need anything. They don't really want anything either.

    So, what are you using your resources on? What things can I give my players the opportunity to buy?


    ..."But I've bought a big bat, I'm all ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me"

    Message me for Japanese translations.

  • #2
    Bribes, extravagant foods, entertainment. Nothing huge, I don't think you're often likely to come up with stuff that actually tax their resources unless they need to replace or do serious repairs to some of their ships.
    Honestly in mine most of the group are resources 3 except the merchant who's resource 5. Granted my party are Dynasts, so they have a bit more impunity with their spending. Honestly expecting one of them to just buy a tea shop at some point just so they can have people who annoy them thrown out through the walls by their enforcer.

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    • #3
      Tbh, there's not much necessary, you're mostly just going to spend it on luxuries. Like people in the real world.

      Mostly when I see PCs spending a lot of cash, it's buying food to feed starving countries, bribes, or paying armies.


      My characters:
      Dr Soma Vaidya, viper-totem Lunar and kung-fu doctor
      Brother Alazar, Zenith occultist and last survivor of the Black Monastery of Leng
      Shadow of Kings, Twilight barbarian scholar, master of lost First Age crafting techniques. Has a lot of clones. Picture by Jen.

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      • #4
        Give them the opportunity to solve problems just by throwing money at things sometimes. Can they bribe another group of competing pirates into joining them? Are there any bribable heads of state that need to ignore piracy?

        Listen to them if they ever express a desire for a thing they can’t immediately get and give them an opportunity to buy it later on.

        There are magical things in the setting that aren’t full on artifacts that can be bought from the right person. Hell, even some minor artifacts are common enough that you could probably buy them. Does everyone have a Collar of Dawn’s Cleansing Light?

        Do any of them have NPCs they care about? Do those NPCs live lives of luxury yet?

        Are there any “quest maguffins” they need? Can they just buy those? Maybe not all of them, but...

        Encourage everyone to consider the kinds of things rich people get to do in real life and whether they want to do that in game. Maybe have them meet up with a Guild Merchant Princess next time they’re in a neutral port and let them see her just buy her way out of problems and petty annoyances.


        ....

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        • #5
          This is where I have found it useful to implement "living standards" one can choose to maintain themselves at.

          Among....well, arguably-most social circles, a leader is expected to keep their followers to a certain "quality of life", as it were. Your household troops/loyal followers don't want to be treated like dirty peasants, and would appreciate getting better food, better living quarters and more. Likewise, if you are a leader, you are expected to maintain yourself to a higher standard, not just hoard wealth. And, as always, things need repairing, and repairs cost money.

          For example, in my mortal games a "low to mid-level noble" would be set at Resources 3 (I basically rewrote the Resources system). That doesn't mean they are rolling in cash. No, they have to maintain themselves, their families, their retainers, their estate, their equipment, to a standard acceptable to their peers. That costs money, and if you actually get into the nitty-gritty my players never really had all that much money readily available, and actually went into debt and took out loans quite a few times. They made money from their holdings, yes, but that income in turn went into their own upkeep, the upkeep of their estates, maintaining their retinues, etc, holding feasts, paying dowries, keeping up with fashion, etc. It costs a rather-large amount of capital to keep a warrior-noble fighting-fit, with adequate equipment, healthy horses, a well-armed retinue, etc etc etc

          Keep in mind that Resources isn't "money", per se, it represents the wealth from a sustaining source.
          Most of "my" Resources ratings were enough to maintain a hypothetical group of people at that level for a year, with a little left over for additional expenses. Going below that "maintenance level" usually impacted the character.groups Influence rating, or affected them socially. If a warrior-noble has a few bad years and is left largely-destitute as a result, their good name will suffer, since they will not have the capital to pay an acceptable dowry, keep up with fashions at court, or present themselves to an acceptable standard of living as expected of nobility. Their equipment might even suffer, since they might lack the capital for regular maintenance.

          For example, let us examine a noble family from the Hundred Kingdoms. They are nominally rated as having Resources 3. This allows them to maintain their country manor-house, keep servants and armed soldiers, maintain a wardrobe in good fashion, eat good food regularly, put money aside for a wedding, and hold feasts every so often, and for the warrior to keep their equipment (sword, spears, shield, dagger, bow, armor and several horses, as well as several servants) in good order and fighting-fit. In addition to keeping themselves "at condition", the family will also have the ability to put aside some money for expenses at that Resources Rating, allowing them to "purchase" goods, services and etc at that Rating-level. A new sword or a set of armor wouldnt be breaking the bank for the noble-family, so long as it wasn't every other week.

          However, let us see what happens when the family falls on hard times. Due to a hard winter, or a number of bad harvests, or bandit-raids on their tenants, the family has decreased capital. Now, they are rated as Resources 2 as opposed to 3. Due to a lack of funds, their manor-house starts to show signs of disrepair, they have to let servants go, their clothing starts to become out-of-fashion or even in disrepair, their food gets closer to peasant-fare than refined delicacies, and the warrior of the household to have issues with their equipment: armor and weapons rust, horses become thin, etc etc . As a result, their social status takes a hit, since they are not (cannot) maintain themselves to an acceptable standard.

          Essentially, if my players have a Resource Rating, I am going to assume it is getting used at, well, keeping them alive, not just sitting somewhere.

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          • #6
            Better ship.

            [Edit - less flippant answer]

            Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
            So, what are you using your resources on? What things can I give my players the opportunity to buy?
            I use Resources on the things I want. That's what you should offer. What are your characters doing and how might they use money to make their lives easier.

            Exorcism and pirate supplies. Salt. Rations. Bones of revered saints.

            New ships. Better ships.

            Heroic crewmembers.

            Exceptional equipment of all varieties. Fancy clothes. Nice weapons. Equip the crew.

            Maintainance. Bribes. Gifts. Ransoms.

            Land. Build your own port.

            Exotic components for Crafting and Workings. Offerings to gods.

            You're ST dude. You make the plot. Make being wealthy useful. Wealth can buy your way around a lot of things. Before every roll ask yourself if this is something they could pay someone else to do for them.
            Last edited by JohnDoe244; 08-24-2019, 06:16 PM.


            Hi, I'm JohnDoe244. My posts represent my opinions, not facts.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
              Currently they have Resources 4 and i gave them a one off treasure fit for "a single Resources 5 purchase each".

              They have bought nothing.

              I set the upkeep of the ships and crew at Resources 3. They have hard won artifacts already. They just don't need anything. They don't really want anything either.

              So, what are you using your resources on? What things can I give my players the opportunity to buy?
              This Edition had kind of moved away from that model of "having Resources allows you to make basically unlimited purchases of things with a level below your rating" in favour of a greater focus on limited quantities at any given time, and handling paying of debts.

              Is the wealth of these characters in a form liquid enough to ensure that their crews are reliably paid on time and in full? So they always have cash on hand for maintenance fees, or are there some handshake agreements that can accumulate interest? They're a form of organised crime, so how many palms are being greased? How are all of these things affected if there's a sudden extra expense, such as major damage to one or more ships? If there income is entirely dependent on their piracy, then keeping on top of their expenses requires constant raiding; the accumulated value of their treasure being lower than the cost of all their maintenance doesn't mean that it's never going to run out. So they have anybody to advise them to try investing in a more sustainable income stream? Do they have the standing to make such a thing feasible?

              What is the actual notice of their piracy, anyway? What have they been trying to accomplish with acquiring all of this treasure of they don't actually have a need to spend it?


              I have approximate knowledge of many things.
              Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
              https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post

                This Edition had kind of moved away from that model of "having Resources allows you to make basically unlimited purchases of things with a level below your rating" in favour of a greater focus on limited quantities at any given time, and handling paying of debts.

                Is the wealth of these characters in a form liquid enough to ensure that their crews are reliably paid on time and in full? So they always have cash on hand for maintenance fees, or are there some handshake agreements that can accumulate interest? They're a form of organised crime, so how many palms are being greased? How are all of these things affected if there's a sudden extra expense, such as major damage to one or more ships? If there income is entirely dependent on their piracy, then keeping on top of their expenses requires constant raiding; the accumulated value of their treasure being lower than the cost of all their maintenance doesn't mean that it's never going to run out. So they have anybody to advise them to try investing in a more sustainable income stream? Do they have the standing to make such a thing feasible?

                What is the actual notice of their piracy, anyway? What have they been trying to accomplish with acquiring all of this treasure of they don't actually have a need to spend it?

                Actually I'm curious, I have no idea how to manage the Resources of my players. Did you find any guidelines in the books around the theme of your first sentence, focus on limited quantities and paying of debts ?

                Since my first plays, I really didn't have any good opportunities to do cool stuff with Ressources.

                Also, are people from your Command merit loyal to you, and they don't need to be paid ? I don't mean let them live in the dirt and die in sadness, but like I don't think I will ask one of my players to pay Ressources 3 to afford the loyalty an well being of the hundreds of men of the Command 3 merit, because I think it is already included in the cost of the merit. Or should I ?

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                • #9
                  The concept of wealth can be hard for the characters themselves to handle . Like my character in wizards lunars game is a maugli / Tarzan like character who was raised in a jungle by a talking Bear and became the king of the jungle conquering the local man eating white apes. So his territory and influence is over ruins of a lost first age city and manse he has manse 5 and resources 5. But that’s actual butt load of treasure the character himself had no concept of wealth and at best kept a pouch of rubies for playing marbles . So how does it work when you have fabulous wealth in treasure but no income ?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Chausse View Post
                    Also, are people from your Command merit loyal to you, and they don't need to be paid ? I don't mean let them live in the dirt and die in sadness, but like I don't think I will ask one of my players to pay Ressources 3 to afford the loyalty an well being of the hundreds of men of the Command 3 merit, because I think it is already included in the cost of the merit. Or should I ?
                    You should.

                    Command means they're your soldiers. Their job is working for you. Who's paying them if not you? How are they eating and being equipped?

                    Originally posted by Beast of Bitter Oblivion View Post
                    The concept of wealth can be hard for the characters themselves to handle . Like my character in wizards lunars game is a maugli / Tarzan like character who was raised in a jungle by a talking Bear and became the king of the jungle conquering the local man eating white apes. So his territory and influence is over ruins of a lost first age city and manse he has manse 5 and resources 5. But that’s actual butt load of treasure the character himself had no concept of wealth and at best kept a pouch of rubies for playing marbles . So how does it work when you have fabulous wealth in treasure but no income ?
                    The book specifically describes Resources as "income" and the economic level you live at.

                    If you live in the dirt in the jungle, I'd peg that as Resources 0.

                    The Merit is about how easy it is for you to acquire things: whether on credit, with silver or with pretty sea shells. Having a bag of shiny marbles which you don't realise are valuable doesn't help you charter a merchant navy.


                    Hi, I'm JohnDoe244. My posts represent my opinions, not facts.

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                    • #11
                      Your Command dots will work for you if you have Resources 0, but they'll probably have to rely a lot more on pillaging than they would if you could pay them.

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                      • #12
                        We're basically rebels raiding our nation because we were enslaved

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                        • #13
                          Alucard's probably right then; presumably your soldiers aren't motivated by pay, but by anger and defence. But they do need to eat, etc. So pillaging and looting is going to be the order of the day.


                          My characters:
                          Dr Soma Vaidya, viper-totem Lunar and kung-fu doctor
                          Brother Alazar, Zenith occultist and last survivor of the Black Monastery of Leng
                          Shadow of Kings, Twilight barbarian scholar, master of lost First Age crafting techniques. Has a lot of clones. Picture by Jen.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by The Wizard of Oz View Post
                            Alucard's probably right then; presumably your soldiers aren't motivated by pay, but by anger and defence. But they do need to eat, etc.
                            Hmm, now I want to look into things around how the finances of the IRA worked during the War of Independence. After all, a lot of those lads were going of into the wilderness so they couldn't exactly have a normal source of income, and it wasn't exactly a salaried group, but people have more than just basic needs of food, clothing and fuel (and in their case guns and bullets). Was Collins sending each cell commander a budget, and they'd distribute it among the soldiers as a stipend when they'd go into town for the necessities or entertainments?

                            Hmm, have to look into a good source...


                            I have approximate knowledge of many things.
                            Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
                            https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
                              You should.

                              Command means they're your soldiers. Their job is working for you. Who's paying them if not you? How are they eating and being equipped?


                              The book specifically describes Resources as "income" and the economic level you live at.

                              If you live in the dirt in the jungle, I'd peg that as Resources 0.

                              The Merit is about how easy it is for you to acquire things: whether on credit, with silver or with pretty sea shells. Having a bag of shiny marbles which you don't realise are valuable doesn't help you charter a merchant navy.
                              Well I live in ruins of a palace manse in the ruins of lost first age city or outpost that’s been overrun by jungle over millennia . So what your saying even tho I have the scarlet empresses ransom worth of orichalcum dooorknobs I still have resources 0. ?

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