Passenger Ship logistics

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
PsiTraveller
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby PsiTraveller » Wed Oct 09, 2019 3:24 am

Depends on what you view as food. An algae fence with strong lighting could provide oxygen and supply biomass for consumption. http://www.variconaqua.com/products-services/biofencee/

Or you go the hand wavium tech of food reactors and say X amount of food is available per day. Traveller has an Imperial food supply based on vat food.
You could go bugs and have a biosphere of maggots eating waste and producing biomass. https://www.washingtonpost.com/business ... rc404=true
phavoc
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby phavoc » Wed Oct 09, 2019 6:33 pm

AndrewW wrote:
Tue Oct 08, 2019 3:41 pm
phavoc wrote:
Tue Oct 08, 2019 3:24 pm
The rule about it offsetting life support costs don't match reality as the rules are written. By that I mean you incur life support costs regardless of whether or not a cabin is occupied. If that is the rule, then having hydroponics cannot offset any costs since they are fixed. But I don't think anyone is actually paying attention to the add-on rules that fly in the face of logic.
It offsets the per person cost, not per stateroom.
Per HG - Biosphere: This is an area depicted to flora and fauna, either for the production of food or as a leisure area. Every ton dedicated to a biosphere will eliminate the life support costs for two passengers.

We also have the Stables description (also per HG) - Used by traders, stables are low-grade housing for animals and, in some systems, slaves. Stables come with their own air scrubbers and waste-collectors, avoiding the need to tax the existing life support systems of the ship.

Stables cost Cr25000 per ten tons. A ten ton stable is capable of housing 20 human-sized or 10 cattle-sized creatures. Life support costs are Cr250 per ton.
Really these are just barracks.

Life support costs are Cr250/ton for all staterooms, except for luxury, which are Cr500/ton (also per HG)

From the CRB, we have a bit more of a mish-mash of rules. From the table - Life support costs are Cr1000 per stateroom, Cr3000 for double occupancy, Cr100 per low berth, Cr1000 per person.

If you look at the description below, Life Support and Supplies: Each stateroom on a ship costs Cr1000 per month. This cost covers supplies for the life support system as well as food and water, although meals at this level will be rather Spartan. Each person on board a ship who is not in a low berth will cost an additional Cr1000 in life support costs.

This has been a perennial problem between books. In some instances you are supposed to ADD the new rules on top of the previous ones. In other instances you are to DISCARD the first rules and use the second set.

HG is breaking the costs down per ton, so it's still Cr1,000/month for a stateroom. The HG rule does not mention double occupancy (unless I missed that), just cost per ton. Which if you read it as stated, that becomes a fixed cost. If you read the biosphere as written, it states it as per two passengers. So within the same book you have two different understandings of essentially the same thing.

So EITHER costs are fixed OR they are variable, depending on the number of people on board. From a simple, logical perspective, life support costs for the machinery should be built into the annual maintenance. The variable costs are for food, chemicals, filters, etc, for actively using life support. But filters and chemicals are cheap (as would O2 be as well, since it's a free byproduct of processing your own fuel - everything else gets recycled). But the calculations for life support costs assume a fixed cost when you look at ship descriptions.

This has been a continuous disconnect. In the case of the biosphere, I don't think you would actually save any real money from food production. Old School brings up a very valid point - the need to stagger crops with different growing seasons/times to provide fresh fruit/vegetables. The idea always sounds better than the practicality. If you just want fresh herbs/flowers then it would would like a champ. Even on cruise ships today it is more efficient to pick up what you need when you get into port. The logistics train is well-oiled machine. War, of course, throws off every well-oiled machine - especially when someone is trying to shoot holes in your machine.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby AndrewW » Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:41 pm

phavoc wrote:
Wed Oct 09, 2019 6:33 pm
This has been a continuous disconnect. In the case of the biosphere, I don't think you would actually save any real money from food production. Old School brings up a very valid point - the need to stagger crops with different growing seasons/times to provide fresh fruit/vegetables. The idea always sounds better than the practicality. If you just want fresh herbs/flowers then it would would like a champ. Even on cruise ships today it is more efficient to pick up what you need when you get into port. The logistics train is well-oiled machine. War, of course, throws off every well-oiled machine - especially when someone is trying to shoot holes in your machine.
The biosphere reducing life support costs is about more then just food production.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby phavoc » Thu Oct 10, 2019 4:33 pm

AndrewW wrote:
Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:41 pm
The biosphere reducing life support costs is about more then just food production.
Specifically which costs are you talking about? Per the book food is included in the life support charge.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby AndrewW » Thu Oct 10, 2019 5:24 pm

phavoc wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 4:33 pm
AndrewW wrote:
Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:41 pm
The biosphere reducing life support costs is about more then just food production.
Specifically which costs are you talking about? Per the book food is included in the life support charge.
Biosphere can eliminate the per person cost part of the life support cost.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby phavoc » Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:02 pm

AndrewW wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 5:24 pm
phavoc wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 4:33 pm
AndrewW wrote:
Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:41 pm
The biosphere reducing life support costs is about more then just food production.
Specifically which costs are you talking about? Per the book food is included in the life support charge.
Biosphere can eliminate the per person cost part of the life support cost.
I feel like a hamster in the wheel asking the same question. You are stating the "per person cost part of the life support cost". The book does NOT split out the costs in such a manner.

So which cost are you talking about? Can you point me to where in the rules there are two separate life support costs?
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby AndrewW » Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:19 pm

phavoc wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:02 pm
So which cost are you talking about? Can you point me to where in the rules there are two separate life support costs?
Traveller Core Rulebook, page: 145 wrote:Running Costs Summary
Life Support

Cr1000 per person
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby AnotherDilbert » Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:30 pm

phavoc wrote: So which cost are you talking about? Can you point me to where in the rules there are two separate life support costs?

Core, p145 wrote: Life Support and Supplies: Each stateroom on a ship costs Cr1000 per month. This cost covers supplies for the life support system as well as food and water, although meals at this level will be rather Spartan.

Each person on board a ship who is not in a low berth will cost an additional Cr1000 in life support costs.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby phavoc » Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:53 pm

[i wrote:[/i]AndrewW post_id=940046 time=1570735156 user_id=15054]
phavoc wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:02 pm
So which cost are you talking about? Can you point me to where in the rules there are two separate life support costs?
Traveller Core Rulebook, page: 145 wrote:Running Costs Summary
Life Support

Cr1000 per person
So life support is Cr1,000 per stateroom PLUS Cr1,000 per person? (my costs were also from the same pg 145 of the CRB. And a double-occupied stateroom is Cr5,000 per month?

If so, then what does this statement mean, also from pg 145 of the CRB - Life Support and Supplies: Each stateroom on a ship costs Cr1000 per month. This cost covers supplies for the life support system as well as food and water, although meals at this level will be rather Spartan.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby Moppy » Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:56 pm

it is

Code: Select all

(staterooms + people) * 1000 Cr
The rules should be clearer.
phavoc
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby phavoc » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:00 pm

Moppy wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:56 pm
it is

Code: Select all

(staterooms + people) * 1000 Cr
The rules should be clearer.
Indeed. This has been a known issue for quite some time. One would hope continually pointing out rules that are contradictory would get them fixed. Sadly that is not apparently the case. Since ships already have annual maintenance for all the OTHER equipment on board, it's damn stupid to insist that life support gear have a separate fixed cost. While I see it's important to have the crapper working at peak efficiency, one would hope the anti--gravity/inertial compensator and fusion plant also hold up between annual maintenance. Failure of either one of those could spell death, while there is usually another crapper somewhere in the ship you can use.
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby AnotherDilbert » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:37 pm

phavoc wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:00 pm
Since ships already have annual maintenance for all the OTHER equipment on board, it's damn stupid to insist that life support gear have a separate fixed cost.
This has nothing to do with annual maintenance. Life support, presumably included in stateroom cost, require annual maintenance just like everything else.

I can only imagine the life support system requires consumables regularely:
CT Beltstrike, p3 wrote: Life support supplies include food, air and water (to replace leakage from the recycling process), and consumable elements of the life support system, such as filters, C0₂ absorbers, and so on.
Condottiere
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby Condottiere » Sat Oct 12, 2019 7:07 am

Basically rehashing an old issue.

Rules have a tendency to be ambiguous, with multiple possible interpretations; pick one and stick with it.

As regards to life support, I get the impression nuclear submarines have cheaper solutions than those presented in Traveller, and whereas with Stables and Cockpits it's clearly stated that life support is self contained, is it the case with default Staterooms? Or Engineering, or the Bridge?
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby Moppy » Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:07 am

Condottiere wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 7:07 am

Rules have a tendency to be ambiguous, with multiple possible interpretations; pick one and stick with it.
They don't if you write them properly, but RPG companies tend not to have technical writers on their staff, and they're expensive to hire.

People often say that conciseness and correctness mean more words so they don't want to do it (I've heard that on this forum from a Mongoose dev), but often it just needs a better choice of words.

In the case of the life support costs in Mongoose, it appears twice, and is stated in a different manner each time. So we have 2 different explainations in 2 different places. It should only appear once, and could also be stated with fewer words. Fixing this would actually shorten the rulebook.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby Old School » Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:46 am

Moppy wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:07 am
Condottiere wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 7:07 am

Rules have a tendency to be ambiguous, with multiple possible interpretations; pick one and stick with it.
They don't if you write them properly, but RPG companies tend not to have technical writers on their staff, and they're expensive to hire.

People often say that conciseness and correctness mean more words so they don't want to do it (I've heard that on this forum from a Mongoose dev), but often it just needs a better choice of words.

In the case of the life support costs in Mongoose, it appears twice, and is stated in a different manner each time. So we have 2 different explainations in 2 different places. It should only appear once, and could also be stated with fewer words. Fixing this would actually shorten the rulebook.
Do even play the game, or enjoy the thought of doing so? You seem to have nothing but complaints.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby Moppy » Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:20 am

Old School wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:46 am

Do even play the game, or enjoy the thought of doing so? You seem to have nothing but complaints.
Well, you aren't saying I am crazy, which you means you believe most of them are actually valid, as in "not imaginary".

But the main point here was that rulebooks don't have to be bad, not that this rulebook has problems.

So maybe some of us just have different standards?
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby Old School » Sat Oct 12, 2019 5:04 pm

Well, you aren't saying I am crazy, which you means you believe most of them are actually valid
That’s quite the leap of logic. You didn’t answer my question. Using your logic, I’ll take it that you don’t actually like Traveller, since you did’t specifically state otherwise.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby Moppy » Sat Oct 12, 2019 5:22 pm

Old School wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 5:04 pm
Well, you aren't saying I am crazy, which you means you believe most of them are actually valid
That’s quite the leap of logic. You didn’t answer my question. Using your logic, I’ll take it that you don’t actually like Traveller, since you did’t specifically state otherwise.
Well whatever you might say (edit: I'm saying you're joking not lying, just to be clear), I believe that if you thought I was crazy you would not be trying to converse with me seriously.

I do enjoy Traveller, but that doesn't mean I can't talk about things that could be done better, or mention a way in which they could be fixed, which I did here. That seems to be a constructive thing to do?

“There are only two kinds of languages: the ones people complain about and the ones nobody uses.” - Bjarne Stroustrup on programming languages, but it also applies to games.
phavoc
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby phavoc » Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:31 pm

Technical writers aren't needed. PROOFREADERS, however, are worth their weight in gold.

I'm not going to bother to jump between editions since each edition is supposed to stand on it's own. Not everyone collects all the previous editions, so using them to justify anything in the current edition is rather pointless. Or at a minimum from the jumps between publishers and the personalized spin each one places on the game and it's mechanics.

From MGT 1st edition, costs of food (water and air costs are negligible since they are the byproducts of fuel processing and/or can be freely collected at any gas giant or ice ring):

Standard of Living Cost / month Cost / week Cost / day Soc Standing
Very poor Cr 400 Cr 100 Cr 13 2
Poor Cr 800 Cr 200 Cr 27 4
Low Cr 1,000 Cr 250 Cr 33 5
Average Cr 1,200 Cr 300 Cr 40 6
Good Cr 1,500 Cr 375 Cr 50 7
High Cr 2,000 Cr 500 Cr 67 8
Very High Cr 2,500 Cr 625 Cr 83 10
Rich Cr 5,000 Cr 1,500 Cr 167 12
Very Rich Cr 12,000 Cr 3,000 Cr 400 14
Ludicrously Rich Cr 20,000 Cr 5,000 Cr 667 15

Living expenses assume housing, food, and clothing at basic levels (well, the table looks better in my view... not so much in preview, but you can suss out the info yourself p87 of CRB. I split it out in per week/per day costs).

That's all from the book. Assuming food costs are no more than 25-30% of your budget, you can see the justification in the rule is either extremely weak, or they posit a massive markup on things. I tend to think it's the former because the life support rules have been so silly since day one. The rules are quite contradictory and I cannot fathom why they weren't fixed in the 2nd edition. Which means by layering on the biosphere rules, you are trying to build upon a faulty foundation. Which leads to confusion and people doing hand-waves or coming up with their own rules. HG switches the costs up anyways, so why NOT add in verbiage that makes it clear? That's not an unreasonable ask.

For those who continually defend Mongoose's errors I would ask - why? Mongoose is a purportedly professional publisher and they earn their living through publication and creation. As a customer you have every right to expect them to create error-free products, and when an error is found, to correct it. Why people continue to provide excuses is something I don't understand. I can go back to the original AD&D books that were put together before computers. They are loaded with information and have few errors. Traveller, many versions any way, have been riddled with errors that each publisher seems to continue in some very odd tradition I suppose.

I've said this before, and it's one of the primary reasons I've stuck with MGT, is that when they screw up royally, they do stand behind their products. When v1 was published and we had the debacle called Mercenary, they stepped up and not only replaced it with a corrected book, but added in other stock as a way of saying sorry. That's a lot for a publisher to do and it means a lot.

However, with that being said, it's still not a reason to NOT point out these things. There were plenty of people in the review process (many on this board) who pointed out issues - some of which has made it to the light of day. Mongoose made decisions and they have to stand by those decisions. Being taken to task for poor proofreading is part of doing business - thin skinned publishers really shouldn't get into the business.
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Re: Passenger Ship logistics

Postby Old School » Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:32 pm

Phavoc, your points are well taken regarding errors in the text. Proofreading is not Mongoose’s strong point.

As for the “justification in the rule is . . .extremely weak”, this argument, which is a matter of opinion, can be used anywhere in the rules, for any rule you don’t like. The ruleset is designed to be simplified. My response to arguments concerning its lack of realism or justification is “well, duh”. You’re not going to get realism out of a simple rule set. Abstracting something, such as operating costs of a ship, by design creates shortcuts and simplifications.

I particularly don’t understand the focus on this particular rule, as every single item in the economics of commercial vessel falls apart upon examination. That’s to be expected. Its a game, not real world economics.

Character creation rules, shipping rates, damage and ranged weapons modifiers, all are garbage when compared to reality. The only difference is that some bother any given reader enough to hone in on, while others don’t. That's why I don’t understand the need. If a rule bothers you, modify it to your liking. Designing a ruleset to please everyone isn’t possible.

The extent you’re directing your criticisms of “those who continually defend Mongoose’s errors” at me (you may not be, but my comments on Moppy’s criticism is the most recent “defense”, I suppose): I’m on record many times on this forum and others with criticism of Mongoose’s failure to address errata adequately. What I do defend is the ruleset itself. Again, no ruleset is going to please everyone, and the more you simplify it the less realistic it becomes. I’m firmly in the camp that additional complexity makes games less playable once you pass a certain point. The crunch-level of a game system is a matter of taste, and Mongoose is on the light side by design.

I think your expectations of Mongoose are a bit high. Their products provide a living for what, three people? Perhaps by adding a fourth, or contracting a professional proofreader, your concerns would be largely addressed. It would likely put Mongoose out of business as well. Their products are a tiny niche within a niche industry, full of fans whose favorite activities are complaining about the products, and complaining about what they cost. I defend Mongoose because they exist. Running a game company full time is fraught with financial risk, subjects the publisher to unending criticism, and has a very limited upside. I’m glad they do what they do, because I enjoy the game.

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