Earnings during career

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cavebear
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Earnings during career

Postby cavebear » Wed Oct 28, 2015 2:19 am

Here is something I was thinking about at lunch today:

As I am rolling up a character I want to know just how much the character actually earns every year as they move up the ranks. I want to be able to take a portion of the yearly pay and buy personal equipment, as well as invest some of the money so that after the character leaves the character creation part of the game and goes into the adventure part they have some basic equipment that they would or should have picked up over the years on top of what they can buy out of their mustering out benefits.

What say you?
-Daniel-
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby -Daniel- » Wed Oct 28, 2015 4:24 am

I never thought of the mustering out benefits were separate from what my character earned while I worked all those terms. My savings and earnings over time built up to my "pile o' cash".

Now the other part of your question is a valid one, why is the character limited to such a degree on what they buy using this many year earnings. Why couldn't the character buy a Motorcycle or a TL 12 pair of Binoculars? That answer I do not have.
cavebear
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby cavebear » Wed Oct 28, 2015 9:34 am

I never thought of it either, before yesterday, but really it kind of says it in the name "mustering out benefits". To me this is stuff you get at the end of your career not during it. You get your normal pay every year, buy a house or three over a career, go through 4 or 5 ground cars, maybe new or maybe all you can afford is a beater but none the less you have been making purchases over the years of your career.

And remember, rolling 3 times on the cash is an option. You can roll less. You may even roll only up to 3,000 credits if your luck sucks, so I would hope that maybe over the course of your career you were investing some of your pay every year so you wouldn't end up living on the streets.

I've had, over the last 30 odd years, at least 15 computers ranging from desktops to laptops to tablets. I've spent, in most cases because I usually build my own PC's, 3 to 5 thousand bucks for many of them. Why would I only buy a cheap TL crap computer after a career? :roll: :lol:

Makes you go "?" :mrgreen:
Condottiere
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby Condottiere » Wed Oct 28, 2015 1:31 pm

At least half of the mustered out characters should be paying alimony and child support.
-Daniel-
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby -Daniel- » Wed Oct 28, 2015 4:04 pm

@cavebear; Some good points. Couple of thoughts to add to the overall conversation.

The term "mustering out benefits" is a game mechanic and not an indication of some sort of post career prize. If we are going to compare real life then we need to be clear there are no real "career blocks" in real life. I have been working for my present company for more than 15 years, no one has asked me to roll a die to see if I get to keep my job. For me, I think we need to use care when discussing "in game" vs game mechanics.

If we think of my 401k for example. I do not get to touch that money until I retire. So we could say it is one of my "mustering out benefits". However, I can say for sure it is not some sort of instant money I received for retiring. I have been paying into it all along.

Your computer example is another fun one. In the last 20 years I have not purchased a computer for my personal use at all. Yet I have had cutting edge (and some less than cutting edge) desk tops, lap tops, and tablets. My company supplied them and handled the upgrades over time. So if I left the company today I would not own any computer.

Now, I offer these not because I disagree with you, I do think at times the 2k limit seems odd. If I want to have a character who starts his "adventuring time" (a pure game mechanic) with 30k of stuff and little cash, so be it. Allow the GM to control the TL or have a veto on specific items and leave it at that. :mrgreen:
Rikki Tikki Traveller
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby Rikki Tikki Traveller » Tue Nov 24, 2015 3:04 pm

I have always used it as "This is what you have when you muster out". So it is a combination of any severance pay as well as whatever you have gathered along the way.

The CR1,000 rule to me isn't realistic for someone in a longer career. Personally, I will likely houserule it as CR1,000 per term in initial gear to represent stuff you bought/collected/stole along the way; then use the cash benefits to buy other stuff, which also likely came during living those terms, but is roleplayed out afterwards.
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cavebear
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby cavebear » Thu Nov 26, 2015 3:34 am

Rikki Tikki Traveller wrote:I have always used it as "This is what you have when you muster out". So it is a combination of any severance pay as well as whatever you have gathered along the way.

The CR1,000 rule to me isn't realistic for someone in a longer career. Personally, I will likely houserule it as CR1,000 per term in initial gear to represent stuff you bought/collected/stole along the way; then use the cash benefits to buy other stuff, which also likely came during living those terms, but is roleplayed out afterwards.
I like your idea about CR 1000 per term. That would really help flesh out a characters possessions that they would have been purchasing throughout their career. Starting a game as a 38 yr old that only has a small kit bag worth of stuff doesn't make much sense. Were you always a homicidal hobo? Probably not :lol:

Even if you were in the army or navy you would constantly acquire stuff. For instance, I would sail anywhere from 1 week to 8 months at a time. I would load up the car and take it down to dockyard to bring all my gear but after a 6 month deployment I would need two car loads to get everything off. I tend to pick up a lot of interesting stuff. We had guys buying motorcycles and storing them in rope stores. :mrgreen: The ship probably sat a meter lower in the water on its return trip than when she left! Plus nobody lives on a ship in the navy outside of deployments. You always have a barracks on base or rent/own accommodations off base. After a few trips you tend to have a lot of stuff.

So when your army or naval career is finally over and you start your adventuring, where is your home base? Does it become the ship you now own or are you operating off of a planet in a local system that you keep coming back to. Your character might have rolled that he/she is now in a marriage, and your husband/wife and kids keep the home fires burning. Very few people would have nothing and be an adventurer. You would really have to be playing a rouge or ex felon to start the game with so little.

Keith
CaptainOrs
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby CaptainOrs » Wed Dec 02, 2015 6:35 am

Condottiere wrote:At least half of the mustered out characters should be paying alimony and child support.
LOL!!! :lol:
Thanks,
Capt.
CosmicGamer
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby CosmicGamer » Wed Dec 02, 2015 2:11 pm

We are talking about game mechanics where Navy must be throwing away and buying new air rafts and ships boats whenever they break down instead of trying to repair them because over 1/3 of even the one term enlisted can muster out with one. :o

I can go on and on and on, but the general idea is that I while I really disagree with the real life Navy comparisons as they are far from the experiences I had and can relate to, there is no need to. The rules are not some simulation of real life where you play the average Joe doing average things. There are often reasons behind the mechanics to make the game more fun or simpler to run for the GM.
cavebear wrote:they have some basic equipment that they would or should have picked up over the years on top of what they can buy out of their mustering out benefits. What say you?
Just some possibilities
1) I think if one created some per term system it should replace the muster out benefit, not be in addition to it.
2) I guess one could creating some form of realistic pay for every rank of every career but then what's next? How much is spent on things like rent, utilities, taxes, food. How much is spent on things that get replaced fairly often like a new computer every term, new cloths, a new vehicle. How much does one person spend on entertainment and such vs put away as savings. This degree of spending and saving simulation gets real cumbersome real fast. The muster cash role sums up quickly how much money one has
3) Limiting what the characters have at the beginning of a game. One could debate why the game designers did this but there is no doubt, to me, that there are several possibilities.
a) The main one, which the game publisher has mentioned and I'll put in my own words, is that major purchases are something fun and useful to role play as fitting to the adventure, campaign, and setting concepts of the GM.
b) If you give more money than the initial 2000 to spend for simulating the average Joes "items accumulated over ones life", how many people will be spending that money on souvenirs and furniture and such vs adventuring gear?
c) While not all games are based on trade, the rules are based on the general scenario of the characters somehow having a ship and needing to buy cargo. Limiting initial spending until one knows how much they have to spare makes some sense.
d) I see the 2000Cr spent as something the characters do before the GM starts the game and the remainder is available for the characters to properly prepare once the GM has set things in motion. If one allows player characters to spend all that money on start up adventuring gear before the game starts they may be
i) broke and ill prepared for the GMs adventure
ii) too well equipped for what the GM had in mind
iii) How often has the scenario been "you wake up in a strange place with none of your possessions"? How pissed will you be about losing all your stuff and what a waste of time acquiring it.

I think a 1000Cr per term rule for the companion is simple and doesn't cause any issues.
egoaz2ca
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby egoaz2ca » Wed Dec 30, 2015 8:02 am

One thing that has bothered me is that forced exit of a career always earns nothing for that last benefit term. This feels slightly too harsh. I could see an alternate rule that give only cash but roll is -[1D/2] with a minimum of 1 for the last term.
Condottiere
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Re: Earnings during career

Postby Condottiere » Fri Jan 01, 2016 3:31 pm

Perhaps you could activate the Exit Strategy option, in that the player declares at the start of that term that their character is planning to quit, and gets an extra bonus, either on accumulating his 401K, or is more careful during survival roles, or dies three days from retirement.

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