Money

LordRahvin

Mongoose
I don't understand money in this game. This is one of the very few games where I have a clear idea of how much money is supposed to affect gameplay and how it's used. Unfortunately, I don't know if I can use those ideas.

PCs start with 25 million (dollars?), right? There are harldy any WarMeks that a PC can afford at that price. And even if each PC find a WarMek they like within budget, there aren't many equally priced WarMeks to set them against. I'll need to go through some $50M and $80M WarMeks at them just to keep a little variety in the game. (To help compensate for this I'm setting my first game in Mexico where I plan to use mostly cheap WarMeks and conventional vehicles.)

It's not like players are going to buy new WarMeks either, near as I can tell. Am I wrong about this? At about 80,000 (dollars?) for each massive assault mission, and 50,000 for each "safer" mission (less repairs, etc.), that still means a WarMek mercenary company has to go on about 500 missions before the PCs can each get a $14M mech (assuming they trade in their old ones okay).

This suggests that either my roleplaying campaign would have to last at least 10 years in real time before we could get to this point, or that it's assumed most of the "money" will be handed out in salvage and DM awards. In the former case, this would represent about 12-20 years of game time (assuming one mission a week, consistently) which sounds about right story-wise, but is a little too real for my tastes. In the latter case, what's the point in having guidelines for mission pay at all, or rules for negotiation, or even the option to purchase merc benefits if it's all gonna be dealt with by DM awards anyway?

Am I just completely wrong? I hope so.
How do you guys picture your games progressing?


-Lord Rahvin
 

Purkle-chan

Mongoose
LordRahvin said:
PCs start with 25 million (dollars?), right? There are harldy any WarMeks that a PC can afford at that price. And even if each PC find a WarMek they like within budget, there aren't many equally priced WarMeks to set them against. I'll need to go through some $50M and $80M WarMeks at them just to keep a little variety in the game.
It's 20 million actually, the first 25 is a typo, everything else, including the example, lists 20mil. Yes, it is in dollars. As far as affordable meks go, there are 13/14 listed in the main book alone that are less than $10mil. Yes, some of them are more expensive than others, but a comms mek will usually cost more because of all the extra gear.

If you're having problems with fitting enough Meks into the bidget, you always have the option of giving your players a slightly larger starting sum. An extra 5/10/whatever million. I think an extra $5mil for every squad member over the first four sounds reasonable. Don't forget that you, as the GM, also have the option of custom Meks, where as starting Player's are encouraged to use the off the shelf units.

LordRahvin said:
This suggests that either my roleplaying campaign would have to last at least 10 years in real time before we could get to this point, or that it's assumed most of the "money" will be handed out in salvage and DM awards. In the former case, this would represent about 12-20 years of game time (assuming one mission a week, consistently) which sounds about right story-wise, but is a little too real for my tastes. In the latter case, what's the point in having guidelines for mission pay at all, or rules for negotiation, or even the option to purchase merc benefits if it's all gonna be dealt with by DM awards anyway?

Am I just completely wrong? I hope so.
How do you guys picture your games progressing?

-Lord Rahvin

It is assumed that players will take all the chances they have to salvage gear, but its not always possible to do that in the middle of a mission. A few GM hand outs, in the forms of bonus payments, could be used. However, it seems a lot of people have issues with the misson payments, and it could really benefit from an article in S&P, or even just a freebie on the website.
 

Void Hawk

Mongoose
Personally, I just intend to add one or two 0's to the ends of all those "Suggested" Mission Costs. That balances things nicely. That $80.000 mission turns into $800.000 easily, and most of that money is going to disappear way before the Characters will get their grubby hands on it. I'd be tempted to double Base Figures then add a Zero.

Mission Price = Base Cost x 20.

OR

You could say that that is the Mission Cost PER MEK, so that $80.000 mission for 4 Meks is actually $320.000 in Total for the Squad.
 

Purkle-chan

Mongoose
Void Hawk said:
You could say that that is the Mission Cost PER MEK, so that $80.000 mission for 4 Meks is actually $320.000 in Total for the Squad.

That does actually, looking at it, sound like a good thing. As the book doesn't actually state that the prices listed re for the team as a whole, which I think many of us just assumed was the way things were done. Things do look a little more reasonable if you take the numbers to be on a mek by mek basis.
 

Lane Shutt

Mongoose
Purkle-chan said:
That does actually, looking at it, sound like a good thing. As the book doesn't actually state that the prices listed re for the team as a whole

I agree as well. Did some calculations using medium Mechs and ten round combats, ammo ate most of the mission budget. Fire a single Lancer SSM and you blow a two week assault mission budget.

IMHO salvage is the quickest way to get rich, however it is also much riskier.

One interesting thing my group found in playtesting was that most fights were over in 6-10 rounds. In that time one side had suffered enough damage to force withdrawal or risk the loss of a mech. Most people would rather not have their Mech salvaged by the enemy.

Unlike a Fantasy campaign the bad guys will not fight to the last man. They will withdraw when someone is at risk of being disabled. If the players team also has severely damaged mechs they may attempt an ambush later targeting the weakest mech. This will either disable the entire team, as they stay to repair, or they will leave making the mech available for salvage. Most bad guys will also try to escape before they run out of ammo, saving a few rounds in case of an attack on the way to resupply, though Laser weapons are good backup.
 

Lane Shutt

Mongoose
LordRahvin said:
PCs start with 25 million (dollars?), right? There are harldy any WarMeks that a PC can afford at that price. And even if each PC find a WarMek they like within budget, there aren't many equally priced WarMeks to set them against. I'll need to go through some $50M and $80M WarMeks at them just to keep a little variety in the game.

It would be quite reasonable for them to encounter one or two more capable mechs or even a group that is low on ammo and prior damage.

As far as selection goes - there are about a dozen mechs under $5 million. The players should not even worry about mechs over small size at first level.

As an option I would base starting money at $5 mil per team member rather than a fixed $20 mil. I would also allow characters to increase this with diplomacy checks, representing them attracting more investors or impressing them with skill. Allow each character to make a single skill check DC 15 on gunnery, scanning, spot (or search), piloting (DC 20) with no two using the same skill. Any successful checks add +1 to the diplomacy check. In addition they may make a single roll on Computer Access, Bluff and Forgery at DC 20. Each of these gain a +2 bonus but a forgery check less than 10 grants a -5 penalty. The Diplomacy check is at DC 20, no penalty for failure, The team gains a bonus of (result-20)% to their starting money.


LordRahvin said:
It's not like players are going to buy new WarMeks either, near as I can tell. Am I wrong about this? At about 80,000 (dollars?) for each massive assault mission, and 50,000 for each "safer" mission (less repairs, etc.), that still means a WarMek mercenary company has to go on about 500 missions before the PCs can each get a $14M mech (assuming they trade in their old ones okay).

The example on p47 gives an expected income of $1,000,000 for the first mission. Although multiplying the given cost by 10 would meet this goal I think the "per member" method id better.

LordRahvin said:
This suggests that either my roleplaying campaign would have to last at least 10 years in real time before we could get to this point, or that it's assumed most of the "money" will be handed out in salvage and DM awards. In the former case, this would represent about 12-20 years of game time


The same example as above mentions something like six years to pay off the $20 mil loan. Your estimate is not far off.

As the team gains experience, contacts and reputation I would allow them to borrow more money. As long as they are able to make payments on their existing loan balance I would allow them an existing debt of $5 + level million dollars. These additional loans when a level is gained may only be taken and no more than once a year. Diplomacy checks may increase this amount.
 

Void Hawk

Mongoose
For starting money, I'm tempted to just let the Characters Borrow as much money as they like (Up to maybe $100.000.000), but they have to remember that they HAVE to pay back 20% per year. If a Team wants to borrow $100.000.000, they have a repayment of Interest of $20.000.000 per year before they even start paing off the rest of the Core Sum.
 

Lane Shutt

Mongoose
Void Hawk said:
For starting money, I'm tempted to just let the Characters Borrow as much money as they like

Bad idea. You will create all sorts of problems by allowing characters to buy whatever they want.

Just discovered another edit/ print error that affects character starting equipment.

The Warmech Combat chapter p92 in the Size section mentions that each size mech has a min pilot skill and pilots have a penalty if they do not meet the requirement. The table on that page should list the skill requirement. Either the min skill requirement was removed and text left in or we are missing data. I know from play testing that a 1st level character can barely meet the requirement for a tiny mech and would ineffective piloting a medium mech.
 

LordRahvin

Mongoose
The chart is in there that lists the requirement for each mech size. I don't know where because I don't have my book now, but I assure you that it's in there somewhere. I'll post a page number tomorrow if no one beats me to it.

I think it was 3 ranks for a tiny mech, 4 for a small mech, and 6 for a medium mech. I don't remember the others.
 

Lane Shutt

Mongoose
LordRahvin said:
The chart is in there that lists the requirement for each mech size.

Odd, it was there on p92 just not where I expected it. I guess since I looked at the playtest rules first I was expecting to see things in the same order.
 

Purkle-chan

Mongoose
LordRahvin said:
The chart is in there that lists the requirement for each mech size. I don't know where because I don't have my book now, but I assure you that it's in there somewhere. I'll post a page number tomorrow if no one beats me to it.

I think it was 3 ranks for a tiny mech, 4 for a small mech, and 6 for a medium mech. I don't remember the others.

Its on page 92 of the core book, right at the start of the Mek Combat chapter, the one that also lists hide size penalties for each of the sizes.
 

malechi

Mongoose
Has there been an official ruling on this yet from Mongoose?

Its been a while and all. I'm leaning on the "per player" mission price but will have to go through the examples in the main book and the Kazakhstan book to check..

M
 

LordRahvin

Mongoose
Mongoose August said in the TTC thread that the final price was meant to be multiplied by the number of WarMeks involved in the mission.

Personally, I despise this method. It's convinient from a game-mechanics point, I guess, but it really doesn't make any sense. No one I know would do business that way (not that I know many people in the WarMek Contracts department of my company).

It makes more sense to hire a set pay for the whole team based on whether or not they can do the mission better/easier whatever. It could be theoretically implied that a mission with more WarMeks might be better equipped for a mission and thus deserve better pay, but that doesn't really work practically.

It makes more sense to hire the WarMeks as a team based on the requirements of the mission. I like the current method, just not the numbers. It's tough... because you need players to have more money that a mercenary company actually should realistically earn (so that there's a sort of "leveling up" process).

My solution (in the TTC thread) was to have mission lengths measured in months using the same numbers, so that a full campaign makes a lot of money and lasts a couple years. I just have to sort out some of the salvage options. (Extra cash for non-salvage, etc.)

-Lord Rahvin
 

Edge

Mongoose
I don't really have a problem with multiplying the mission fee by the number of war mek pilots. Regardless of which system you use, as a mek pilot you will always carefully consider firing those lancer missles.
Mission fees of around $500k a mission are alot better than what we were using initially. At $50k a mission we could replace ammo let alone put any money away for loan repayments.

In our game we negotiated with the bank (or shady underworld figure :) )
for how much money we wanted to start off with. It worked out at about $25 mil for 4 players.

We were all fairly happy with the meks we could buy. We used $2 mil meks and an $8 mil for the assault.

we knew that we would have competition that would be bigger and badder than we were so used suitable tactics including infiltration on foot and bribing of local officals.

It all works out in the long run and if your characters have less money initially it makes you value getting it later on.

Thats my little rant :)
 

LordRahvin

Mongoose
Thanks, Edge. I enjoy hearing how other people setup and play their games. Any chance you could include descriptions of your adventures/missions/characters (perhaps in another thread)?
 

Edge

Mongoose
Yeah no probs. I'll start up a new thread probably tomorrow. It would be good to see what other people have done as well.
 
Top