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Retired Military Officers


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Among the Perks, rank in a military organization has a cost due to the benefits it provides. Would a retired officer still retain some of those benefits and thus pay for a lower cost Perk?

 

It seems that a retired Admiral or General might still retain some benefits worth a few points. Just not as good as still being in active service.

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1 hour ago, Steve said:

Among the Perks, rank in a military organization has a cost due to the benefits it provides. Would a retired officer still retain some of those benefits and thus pay for a lower cost Perk?

 

It seems that a retired Admiral or General might still retain some benefits worth a few points. Just not as good as still being in active service.

 

It'd be a social perk.  A general can say Jump!!! and a captain will go, How High?  Command staff officers in particular have a great deal of power, and quite often discretion.  The Navy's been trying to weed out its abusive captains...I remember not that long ago stories about certain ships where morale was horrendous because the captain was similar to Queeg.  And they've got lots of discretion in spending, for the unit they oversee. 

 

The fringe benefit for rank loosely relates to Followers, Contacts, and Money...altho the costing isn't even remotely related, and activating any of em has limitations and consequences.  It also comes with some complications.  Once they retire, tho...*POOF*.  All that's gone.  

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I'd say  lot of that would go into Contacts and Favors more than actual ability to do anything.

 

"Well I know a guy from this post I was at who can help us get a flight to Germany..."

"Well I'll make a call and see what's going on..."

 

Super-Hero I know but look at The Incredibles? Helen knows that guy who can get her a plane, they know that guy who can help them clean up some of the stuff, though it's a heavy price.

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In the USA, all military retirees (honorable service, 20 or more years or equivalent medical discharge) have some perks such as exchange / commissary base access, VA benefits, a pension, some burial privileges possibly including burial rights in Arlington (recipients of certain medals), a pension based upon highest rank attained, preference for hiring for federal jobs, and so forth. In particular, General and Flag officers generally continue to enjoy additional deference or consideration beyond what is strictly defined (particularly "famous" ones who played a prominent role in a conflict).

 

There are also less significant unofficial benefits, like some places will extend military discounts to retirees. Prior service (retired or not) might help get you out of a speeding ticket (allegedly, cough cough), or get you some deference in some situations...but again not something you can count on or insist on...sometimes it provides a bit of social greasing and sometimes it doesn't. 

 

This is probably worth a Perk in HERO terms for a gritty or realistic modern setting depending upon context. For instance, if your campaign is set specifically in Oceanside or San Clemente California access to Pendleton might be a narratively useful Perk, and so on for some other campaign explicitly near a military base you as the GM intend to make relevant to your campaign...

 

 

In addition to the obvious and legally protected benefits, and the less quantified but non-zero influence of social credit and "in-ness" from being prior military (whether you did 20+ and retired, or not) in an official context, a similar and in many cases more relevant benny is the social ties of useful contacts whom you once served with (some of whom may still be in service and others may have moved on to some other useful position in life), as well as civilian counterparts (who may still be in some position of authority within the government or a defense contracting firm). This will vary from individual to individual, but is certainly fodder for one or more Contacts in HERO terms. 

 

This is particularly true of General / Flag officers, many of whom continue to have some influence with former subordinates who are still in service; some also sit on policy or advisory boards, speak at various political action groups, act as a sort of Greek chorus on current military matters in the form of "expert opinion" provided to various new outlets, and so on. And, of course, some go on to a second act in politics, such as a political appointee to one of the intelligence agencies or the state department, or as an elected official...where their military background may or may not be relevant but at a minimum is a factor in selection or part of their election campaign narrative.

 

Hopefully some of that is helpful...

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But the Perk is 5 points, so how much can that really cover?  (And that's before we even consider reducing it due to being retired.)  What you're saying is, it makes a great justification for Contacts, Money, Reputation, etc.  

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Military rank especially high rank gives you a lot of things.  For one it gives you the right to give orders to those under your command and to some extent to those of lesser rank.   It also allows you access to restricted areas like military installations.  You also get some security clearances.   In the game it is a bundle of different perks grouped together for sake of convenience and to give you a break in the price. When you retire many of those are lost or at least severely reduced.  You can no longer give orders, and some of your clearances and access are reduced.

 

The way I would probably handle it is have a perk retired military costing 1 point.  This gets you basic access to military installations and services like medical care.  Any security clearance the character retains would be purchased normally.  A retired sergeant will probably not have much if any security clearance, but a retired general might still have fairly good security clearance.       
 

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In the Traveller Hero game I’m starting, for the first character I converted over I set a retired Brigadier General perk as 3 points (half what the Perk is in HD for an active member of the service and much less than other sourcebooks had it at), thinking this would still allow the character some access to Imperium military bases and additional other uses where being a former officer might be of benefit. To simplify things, I’m treating it as a form of limited security clearance with other small benefits thrown in.

 

The retired, scarred, arguably slightly embittered sergeant in the group may be charged a point for having a retiree military pass, so he can at least get on to bases without fuss. He won’t be invited to tea with the base commander and swap war stories like the general will though.

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49 minutes ago, Scott Ruggels said:

 "....Next on Newspoint, we invite our regular Guest, Retired General Alexander McQuarry, to comment on the situation."   Those News Appearances pay, and get one contacts within a major News Organization. 

 

IOW, it's excellent justification for a point or two of Money.  I like Steve's point...the rank comes with some specific benefits, and security clearance is strongly connected.  

 

Most retired staff officers are gonna be NPCs, so heck, maybe just toss in 20 points for contacts, money, reputation, whatever else you can think of, and don't worry too much about it.

 

 

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