Traveller Trade Code statistics

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Traveller Trade Code statistics

Postby EDG » Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:12 am

I have a feeling that people may not really have a grasp on just what a typical distribution of trade codes should be in a sector. The purpose of this thread is to provide some actual data for us to use when it comes to the distribution of trade codes. This may be an eyeopener for some people!

To generate the data, I wrote a program that generates Classic Traveller UWPs and trade codes, as defined in Book 3 (Basic Worldgen) and Book 7 (trade codes). I then set this to generate a Dense Domain (worlds present in a hex on 3+ on 1d6, area equal to a 2x2 sector grid with 5120 possible hex locations). I did three runs, and totted up each trade code in each run to see how may times they showed up, and then calculated the percentage of worlds in each run with a given trade code.

A few clarifications to the CT worldgen system were required when generating the UWPs that these trade codes are created from:

1) if pop=0 then law,gov,TL, and mult = 0, and starport=X (retroactively). This actually allows us to create Barren worlds in the first place (described in book 7, but there's no explicit means to generate them).
2) To qualify as Va (Vacuum), world size must be 1+ as well as atm 0
3) To qualify as Fl (Fluid Oceans) the atm must be A-C, not A+.
4) I added the Ga, Ht and Lt definitions from the MGT rules so we can compare the CT distribution of those. I also added my suggested Op code as well (if Law Level A+). The Lt definition was modified to TL 5- AND Pop 1+, since otherwise Barren worlds would count as low tech even though nobody lives there.

Everything else was unchanged from the default book 6 basic worldgen system, which is the same as the Book 3 worldgen system. Note that this is not presented as "how things should be" though - it's just presented as what the default CT rules will generate.

The results are shown below:

The first row shows the trade codes.
The second row shows the number of worlds had that trade code.
The third row shows the percentage of worlds that had that trade code (note that this won't add up to 100%).

EDIT: 24/1/08 am: I've taken out the EDG results for now as I'm regenerating them. I'll repost updated results on Thursday night probably. Ignore the comments in this post for now.


Comments

As you can see, the majority of worlds in a Classic Traveller Universe (about 70%!) are going to have the Non-Industrial code, and about a 25% are going to be Low Population too. About 4% of worlds will be Industrial, representing about half the High Population worlds. About 15% of all worlds are going to be Poor, and only about 4.5% are Rich.

While it appears that there are twice as many Ga worlds as there are Ag, bear in mind most of those Ag worlds are less than size 5 and therefore impossible (since size 4- worlds can't hold breathable atmospheres). We should see the number of Ag and Ga worlds become a lot closer in a realistic universe.

Note the staggering amount of Low Tech (Lt) worlds in the default CT universe - nearly 45%! That's below TL 5 - pre-1940s technology! Though I dare say that a lot of them are probably examples of places where the TL is too low for humans to survive in the planet's environment too. On the other hand, only 2.5% of worlds have TL C+ in the default CT universe.

If this disagrees with any published sectors, then that's because those sectors weren't generated using the correct rules. In many cases published UWPs have been hand-tweaked, or the algorithms to generate them were flawed (very badly, in the case of the Sunbane data). So don't take those as "what is expected from Traveller" because they really aren't - the tables I present here are what the unpolluted, unflawed random CT worldgen actually generates.

Make of that what you will... but at least now we have a base on which to build an understanding of how the trade codes should work in the OTU. But the vast number of Ni worlds is probably going to seriously affect how trade is actually supposed to work - and I somehow get the feeling that when CT was written nobody really figured this out beforehand and realised quite how many Ni worlds there ought to be (and I bet if we did an analysis of the trade code distribution in the Spinward Marches and in the Solomani Rim it wouldn't remotely resemble this at all).

Later on I'll be posting similar tables in the placeholder slots below that are derived from the unmodified Mongoose 3.2 worldgen rules and my the rules that are modified with my tweaks from the Worldbuilding 3.2 commenst thread - then we can compare them.
Last edited by EDG on Thu Jan 24, 2008 9:53 am, edited 14 times in total.
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Postby EDG » Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:13 am

As above, but with the MGT 3.2 worldbuilding rules as they are written, with the following exceptions:

Changes/Clarifications/Things not made explicit that should have been:
1) roll 1d6 for orbit zone for temperatures: 1=Inner edge of Hab, 2-5 = central Hab, 6= Outer edge of Hab. (no rules are given in the 3.2 rules for determining the zone, so I made up my own).
2) if size=0, atm=0.
3) if size=0, hyd=0.
4) if pop=0, then gov,law,tech = 0 and starport=X
5) TL chart is the same as CT. (including pop 9 = DM+2, pop A=DM+4).
6) In code is atm 0,1,2,4,7,9 and pop 9+ (not atm 2-4,7-9 and pop 9+ as stated in MGT 3.2).
7) Lo and Ni are minimum pop 1.
8) Wa is hyd A.
9) Lt code applies only if pop 1+.
11) Belts are generated according to CT rules.

Average of 5 runs

Code: Select all

Code   Ag     As     Ba     De     Fl     Hi     Ic     In     Lo     Na     Ni     Po     Ri     Va     Wa     Ga     Ht     Lt     Op
%      13.5   2.9    2.7    5.2    8.9    8.6    6.7    4.6    24.7   9.7    69.5   15.4   4.7    8.2    9.6    24.5   9.9    26.0   10.0

Comments

Overall the average default MGT 3.2 run looks very similar to the average default CT run. The main differences are in the codes that involve hydrographics - De, Fl, Ic, and Wa. Everything else is within 1% of its CT values, but those four codes are off by several percent, most likely because the only DM in the hydrographics rules in MGT3.2 is a -4 if the atm is 0.

The overall similarity is because the worldgen rules for MGT3.2 aren't really that different to CT's. While some may consider this a good thing, it isn't really - it means that there are still a lot of worlds that have the following problems:

(a) they have atmospheres that they are too small to be able to hold onto.
(b) they have tech levels that are too low for the environment they're in.
(c) they are defined by inconsistent trade codes.

While the fixes to problem (c) may be considered by some to be arbitrarily determined, the fixes for (a) and (b) are not. Whether one feels that (a) and (b) are actually problems or "fit what Traveller is" isn't really an issue (though I'd guess that most peoples' image of what the CT universe should be like has already been blown away by the trade code distribution revealed above for the default CT universe anyway) - the fact is that problem (a) runs contrary to physics, and (b) runs contrary to the technologies defined in Traveller itself.

To fix these issues obviously requires some changes to the Traveller universe. As I pointed out in my Worldbuilding Comments thread, worlds less than size 5 can't hold onto breathable atmospheres and water in the habitable zone - that sweeps away all of the small habitable planets and replaces them with vacuum, trace, or exotic atmospheres. I think that's going to really change the trade code distribution. The environmental tech level limits are probably going to change the number of Low Tech worlds too. And tweaks to the Na and In codes are going to change that as well.

So don't expect the distribution of the tweaked version that follows to be consistent with the default CT and MGT3.2 rules, because it most likely won't be. But it will be more realistic and more consistent with Traveller's own technology rules, and that makes it a lot better.
Last edited by EDG on Thu Jan 24, 2008 9:51 am, edited 12 times in total.
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Postby EDG » Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:13 am

So all that said, these are the modifications to the MGT3.2 system that I propose, gathered from my Worldbuilding 3.2 Comments thread:

Code: Select all

------------------------

SIZE: 2d-2

------------------------

ATMOSPHERE: if size 5+     : roll 2d-7+size
     if size 3 or 4 : roll 1d6: 0-2=0, 3-4=1, 5-7=A. DM-1 if siz 3, DM+1 if siz 4.
     if size 2-     : atm = 0

------------------------

TEMPERATURE: roll 2d6:

2-   Frozen
3    Cold
4    Cold
5    Temperate
6    Temperate
7    Temperate
8    Temperate
9    Temperate
10   Hot
11   Hot
12+  Roasting

DM -2 if atm 2 or 3.
DM -1 if atm 4 or 5 or E (Thin Low).
DM +1 if atm 8 or 9.
DM +2 if atm A or D or F (Panthalassic).
DM +6 if atm B or C (runaway greenhouse effect).

If atm 0 or 1, roll 2d6 without DMs to determine average temperature, but temperature swings from Roasting during the day to Frozen during the night.

------------------------

HYDROGRAPHICS: 2d-7+size.
DM-6 for size 3 or 4 and atm A.
DM-6 for atm 0 or 1.
DM-4 for atm 2 or 3.
DM-4 for atm B or C.
DM-2 if Hot temperature.
DM-6 if Boiling temperature.
Hyd = A for atm F (Panthalassic).

------------------------

POPULATION: 2d-2
DM -1 if size 3-. (due to low gravity)
DM -1 if size A.  (due to high gravity)

DM -2 for atm 0-3, A, F
DM -1 for atm 4, 7, 9, D, E 
DM +2 for atm 5, 6 ,8 
DM -4 for atm B
DM -6 for atm C

If Pop < 0, then pop = 0 and mult = 0
If Pop = or > 0, then mult = 1-9 (i.e. if roll is exactly 0, then there's 1-9 people. If less than 0, then there's no people). 

------------------------

GOVERNMENT: 2d-7+pop

if mult = 0, gov = 0
------------------------

LAW LEVEL: 2d-7+pop

if mult = 0, gov = 0

------------------------

STARPORT: As MGT table, except:
DM -4 for pop 3-
DM +2 for pop 7+

if mult = 0, starport = X
if pop = 0 and mult = 1-9, starport = E
------------------------

TECH LEVEL: As CT except:
DM +2 if size S.
DM +1 if atm F (missing from table)
DM +1 for gov 5 (missing from table - shouldn't be a DM for gov 4)
DM +1 if hydro 0 (it'd be hard to live on a bone dry planet).
DM +2 if gov 7 (balkanised worlds tend to conflict more, and war drives technological advances). Keep the DM+1 for gov 0, because of low level conflicts.
DM -2 if gov E (a religious autocracy shouldn't be any less anti-technological than a religious dictatorship...)

if mult = 0, tech = 0. 

------------------------

ENVIRONMENTAL TECH LEVEL LIMITS:
Atm    Minimum Tech Level
0-1    8
2-3    5
4,7,9  3
A      8
B      9
C      A
D, E   5
F      8 

------------------------

TRADE CODES:
Ag (Agricultural): Atm 4-9, Hyd 4-8, Pop 5-7
As (Asteroid Belt): Size 0
Ba (Barren): Pop 0, Gov 0, Law 0, Mult 0, Tech 0.
De (Desert): Atm 2+, Hyd 0.
Fl (Fluid Oceans): Atm B or C, Hyd 1+.
Hi (High Population): Pop 9+
Ic (Ice-capped): Atm 1-, Hyd 1+
In (Industrial): Atm 0-4, 7, 9-C.  Pop 7+.
Lo (Low Population): Pop 0-3 (and mult > 1).
Na (Non-Agricultural): Atm 0-3 and A-C, Hyd 0-3, Pop 6+.
Ni (Non-Industrial): Pop 0-6 (and mult > 1)
Po (Poor): Siz 1-4, atm 0-3 or A-C, pop 5- (and mult > 1).
Ri (Rich): Siz 7+, atm 4-9, pop 8+
Va (Vacuum): Siz 1+, Atm 0
Wa (Water world): Hyd A
Ga (Garden): Size 5+, atm 4-9, hyd 4-8
Ht (High Tech): Tech C+
Lt (Low Tech): Tech 5- (and mult > 1)
Op (Oppressive): Law A+.
------------------------
EDIT: 24/1/08 am: I've taken out the EDG results for now as I'm regenerating them. I'll repost updated results on Thursday night probably. Ignore the comments in this post for now.


Comments

So as suggested earlier, the trade code distribution is quite different in these "EDG runs". There are a lot less Ag worlds now, most likely because we've got rid of a lot of worlds that were smaller than size 5 but had breathable atmospheres and water that shouldn't have had them.

The hydrographics have also seriously influenced the distribution here. Now that I'm taking into account atmospheres and temperature, there's a lot less water around in the habitable zone now, which may also explain why there are much less Garden worlds (though the relative proportion of Ag to Ga is still close to 1:2 as it is in the MGT and CT runs). But this (and the new relation between size and atmosphere for smaller worlds) has really increased the number of De worlds and really decreased the number of Fl and Wa worlds, so these are now really quite exotic planets in the habitable zone - which I think is as it should be in terms of realism. Ice-capped worlds are also extremely rare now in the habitable zone (again, not surprising since the ice would be more likely to melt in such warm conditions) - the entire domain has less than a handful of Ic worlds at most.

The new pop mods have shifted the population around a bit too. There are more Barren worlds (being the less attractive ones), less High Population worlds (being mostly nice shirtsleeve worlds that are now rarer because of the size 5+ limit), and more Lo worlds since the pop 0/mult 1+ worlds count for that now. So the changes seem to have affected the extremes of the population distribution more than the rest of it.

The Industrial worlds are now more plentiful, but nowhere near as much as captainjack claimed elsewhere - it's up by a factor of only 1.5, not 2 (and that's actually a lot better than captainjack's estimate since he was assuming the probability would double if the pop limit was dropped to 8, but here I've dropped it even further to 7). The reason for this is probably the pop DMs - the tainted/vacuum atmospheres now have a DM-1 or -2 on their populations so they can't get pops of 9 or 10 as easily... but now I've lowered the limit for In worlds down to 7 that still leaves a bit of room for In worlds to exist around pop 7 and 8. I suspect an analysis of the EDG UWPs would reveal that most of the In worlds here are pop 7/8.

Na and Ni worlds aren't so different here - Na are about 2/3rds as rare as the CT and MGT runs, but Ni are more common that before due to the fact that pop 0/mult 1+ world count for this.

With the new definitions of Rich and Poor worlds, Poor worlds are now about twice as common as before (about a third of worlds are Poor now), but Rich worlds are about as common as they were before at around 5%.

Vacuum worlds are much more common now thanks to the new atmosphere rules for small worlds.

Techwise High tech worlds (TL C+) are not uncommon now. However, Low Tech worlds are about half as common as before, no doubt mostly due to the fact that we now have the environmental TLs limiting the more primitive technologies. This also results in more sensible worlds that have societies that can actually cope with their environments.

Finally the Oppressive worlds (Law A+) are less common, but not by much. This may be due to generally lower populations, resulting in lower law level rolls.

So overall, there are changes here but I don't think they're particularly drastic. The most major change I think is the sharp decrease in Agricultural worlds, which would make them all the more important in terms of trade. But they're at least now on the same order of magnitude as the Industrial worlds, rather than being about six times as common before - so I think that actually brings a bit of balance to the distribution of Ag and In worlds. But generally I don't think these proposed "EDG tweaks" will seriously change much in terms of trade, and they do fix a hell of a lot of problems that have plagued the Traveller since its inception.

Also, do take a look at the UWPs I posted on this thread to see what the worlds look like in a Dense Domain setting. You can also compare those to the worlds generated by the default MGT 3.2 rules on this thread.
Last edited by EDG on Thu Jan 24, 2008 9:53 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Postby EDG » Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:51 am

EDIT: 24/1/08 am: I've taken out the comparison for now as I'm regenerating the runs. I'll repost updated results on Thursday night probably.
Last edited by EDG on Thu Jan 24, 2008 9:54 am, edited 6 times in total.
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Postby captainjack23 » Tue Jan 22, 2008 5:23 am

Thanks. I've been figuring the probs by hand out of boredom whilst babysitting the Endless SAS Run From Hell*. It'll make an interesting cross check (since I'm halfwway done, anyway)

*If you don't know what I mean by that, go to church and give thanks..... :wink:

(Edit: results posted below)
Last edited by captainjack23 on Wed Jan 23, 2008 2:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby EDG » Tue Jan 22, 2008 11:45 am

*bump* I've taken this as far as I can tonight, but hopefully it's complete enough for people to understand what's going on.

I sleep now! 8)
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Postby Bygoneyrs » Tue Jan 22, 2008 1:43 pm

In the long run, one discovers what works best for anyones own campaign is to just "Tweak" the UWP's to fit what you the GM want and need!

That is what I have been doing now for 30 yrs...

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Postby Droptrooper » Tue Jan 22, 2008 2:33 pm

Agreed. Part of the joy of Traveller was fitting the story to the die rolls bet it in world creation or character creation.

By the way barren worlds come about when you roll 0 or less on 2D6-7 for pop, gov and law level. Not that uncommon. When it goes awry, tweak it to what you want it to do. We are not slaves to the tables. :lol:
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Postby EDG » Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:37 pm

Bygoneyrs wrote:In the long run, one discovers what works best for anyones own campaign is to just "Tweak" the UWP's to fit what you the GM want and need!
While that may be true, it's not really helpful in this context. I guess people are going to tweak the rules in the final product no matter what they may be, but that doesn't invalidate anything I've done here. The aim of all this work isn't to satisfy individual GMs, it's to get as realistic and sensible a setting as possible using a simple worldgen system (preferably while departing as little as possible from a Traveller feel).
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Postby EDG » Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:39 pm

Droptrooper wrote:Agreed. Part of the joy of Traveller was fitting the story to the die rolls bet it in world creation or character creation.
Take a look at the UWPs from the EDG run that I posted elsewhere - do you think you would get any less joy out of them storywise than out of UWPs generated by CT or MGT?
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Postby qstor » Tue Jan 22, 2008 8:11 pm

EDG wrote:
Bygoneyrs wrote: The aim of all this work isn't to satisfy individual GMs, it's to get as realistic and sensible a setting as possible using a simple worldgen system (preferably while departing as little as possible from a Traveller feel).
And I think that's a great idea. I've heard of people complaining with random generation you end up with UWP's that don't make sense.

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Postby Zowy » Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:39 pm

I allways had a problem with how many people lived places that needed outsystem importation of higher TL items just to stay alive. I sure as heck would not want to live in such a place. Way to many systems just will not have the GDP need to pay the shiping costs on imported items.

I know Traveller TL, is the worlds average and you can justify haveing a higher TL for things like Hydroponics and Life support systems, ect. But all the low TL worlds that are poor places to live still bugs me. :?
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Postby EDG » Tue Jan 22, 2008 11:08 pm

Hold off on further analysis, folks - I'm pretty sure the TLs aren't being calculated properly due to a bug in the code. I won't get a chance to look at it til late tonight but I'll see if I can track it down and post updates when it's fixed.
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Postby captainjack23 » Wed Jan 23, 2008 12:24 am

I've moved this here as it seems more useful.
Edited for clarity
Okay, here's the actual counts of the permutations based on 2d6 -7 -(SIZ OR POP)
Code:

Code Count Basic% Round%
0 126 9.72 10
1 80 6.17 6
2 104 8.02 8
3 125 9.65 10
4 140 10.8 11
5 146 11.27 11
6 140 10.8 11
7 125 9.65 10
8 104 8.02 8
9 80 6.17 6
A 56 4.32 4
B 35 2.7 3
C 35 2.7 3


The odd values for the ends are due to the caps on the code values (0 and C)

Note the counts for a 0 outcome and a C outcome differ - the caps are asymmetrical.

Note how frequent 0 results are.

Total permutations = 1296.

simple 2d6 -2
Code:

2d6-2 Code
1 0
2 1
3 2
4 3
5 4
6 5
5 6
4 7
3 8
2 9
1 A


More to come, as well as some uses for this.
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Postby EDG » Wed Jan 23, 2008 1:29 am

Erm, what exactly is that first table showing? And why are you subtracting size divided by population?

And I don't get what that 2d6-2 table is supposed to show either. 2d-2 is just 2d shunted down two steps, so the max and min values are 10 and 0, and the average is 5 instead of 7.
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Postby captainjack23 » Wed Jan 23, 2008 1:40 am

Using the above, we get the percentages for the trade codes.
All were coded using the handy table of Mongoose codes posted by ol' mophead, Grufty.

Code: Select all

	 Sz	 At	   Hy	    Pp	     Gv	     Prob	 %
Ag	1	0.567	0.505	0.417	1	0.119	12
AS	0.028	1	1	1	1	0.028	3
Ba	1	1	1	0.028	1	0.028	3
De	1	0.841	0.097	1	1	0.082	8
Fl	1	0.097	0.903	1	1	0.088	9
Ga	0.583	0.567	0.505	1	1	0.167	17
Hi	1	1	1	0.083	1	0.083	8
Ic	1	0.159	0.903	1	1	0.143	14
In	1	0.443	1	0.083	1	0.037	4
Lo	1	1	1	0.167	1	0.167	17
Na	1	0.336	0.336	0.417	1	0.047	5
Ni	1	1	1	0.583	1	0.583	58
Po	1	0.397	0.336	1	1	0.133	13
Ri	1	0.188	1	0.333	0.567	0.036	4
Va	0.028	0.097	1	1	1	0.125	13
Wa	1	1	0.097	1	1	0.097	10
Or, somewhat more readably:

Code: Select all

code   %
Ag	12
AS	3
Ba	3
De	8
Fl	9
Ga	17
Hi	8
Ic	14
In	4
Lo	17
Na	5
Ni	58
Po	13
Ri	4
Va	13
Wa	10
Notes:

Va is actually computed as the adjusted sum of the probablility of getting a 0 Sz and the Prob of a 0 ATM. realistically, just adding them together produces a good enough result.

Ht & Lt are omitted as I haven't plugged in the TL codes. Op because it isn't MongT AND LL is a third conditional (translation: a pain).
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Postby captainjack23 » Wed Jan 23, 2008 1:57 am

A quick example of the changes a simple +1 can make:

In w/. pop 9+ = 3.6% (MongTrav)
Pop 8+ = 7.3 %
Pop 7+= 12.3 %

Now, assuming a subsector of 40 planets, the chance of NOT getting an In planet is 23% based on the Mon/CT values.

for Pop 8 it is 4.8 %
for Pop 7 it is .5%

Which is to say, there should be a minimum of 3 In worlds per 4 Subsectors
or 40*3.6 = an average of 1.44 in a given subsector - with a variance close to .5. So, usually one, sometimes two.

Now, for pop 8+ we get:
pretty much one or more In worlds per subsector , with an average of 2.92, with the same variance - so VERY likely two /Subsector, with three being not unlikely.


Practically, going from sometimes 1 In world per subsector to very likely 2 to 3 is a BIG change in terms of trade.
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Postby EDG » Wed Jan 23, 2008 2:00 am

captainjack23 wrote:Practically, going from sometimes 1 In world per subsector to very likely 2 to 3 is a BIG change in terms of trade.
I guess the question is: if that's the case, is this necessarily a bad thing? But that's for another thread I think. Let's just keep this for the statistical analysis.
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Postby captainjack23 » Wed Jan 23, 2008 2:09 am

EDG wrote:Erm, what exactly is that first table showing? And why are you subtracting size divided by population?

And I don't get what that 2d6-2 table is supposed to show either. 2d-2 is just 2d shunted down two steps, so the max and min values are 10 and 0, and the average is 5 instead of 7.
Yeah, the first table is a dogs dinner format wise.

Basically its the probabilities of getting a final result using the 2d6-7+code roll.

In other words, how many permutations oof all possible (1296) will result in a final value of (say) 8: in this example 104.

The 2d6-2 table is simply the same for the 2d6-2 roll. How many results out of all possible (36) will equal a given code . a Pop or Size result of 5, forinstance occurs 6 times; for 5+ its the sum off all results above four.(6+5+4+3+2+1) (cap of A on results, obviously).

It's the foundation for calculating the trade code probabilities.....and presented for "truth in advertising" reasons.
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Postby captainjack23 » Wed Jan 23, 2008 2:12 am

EDG wrote:
captainjack23 wrote:Practically, going from sometimes 1 In world per subsector to very likely 2 to 3 is a BIG change in terms of trade.
I guess the question is: if that's the case, is this necessarily a bad thing? But that's for another thread I think. Let's just keep this for the statistical analysis.
I agree. Back to the world gen ? Or maybe "implications of trade code statistics" ?
Captainjack23, KOD
Marquis d'Remulak, Sol 1833
My blog of obsessive rules writing & Design
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