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Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?


Ragitsu
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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

I have a character with a 5 point wealth perk justified by a great many other skills that go into defining and paying for his secret Id as a Nobel prize winning physicist. (A Nobel prize has a cash award of 1.5 million dollars, which if well invested easily justifies a wealth perk.) The super ID is a fairly interesting energy projector who really has no need for an Int of 23 and 30 points worth of sciences and related skills/perks, but it makes for a much more interesting character to play than someone who is simply a plumber, or reading novels in their down time by the pool they paid for with an inheritance.

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

I don't think you make so much finding the cure as being the company selling the drug. Now if you're smart enough to both create the cure, and head the company that markets the cure, you might be able to print your own money.

 

My organic chemistry prof at Texas A&M was too lazy to turn some bunsen burners off in his lab one night. He said it was a closed-system experiment, and a standard one at that. Many people had done this experiment/setup, so no worry. Came back the next day and instead of a clear liquid bubbling away, there was brown goo. Spent significant time figuring out how that could happen, because it was completely unexpected. After that, spent time figuring out exactly what it was and what the goo could be used for. Ended up getting the chemistry prize right below the Nobel. Some drug company built a brand new factory in Brazil to mass produce the stuff, and hired him away to run the place. I assume he got pretty good money for all this, but bet the drug company got the majority. As I dimly remember, the goo treated some people with genetic disease that limited digestion of certain proteins.

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

Restaurateur, in the Emeril Lagasse or Paul Prudhomme style

Owns one or more popular theme parks (I may use this one myself)

Blackmailer - has good dirt on a number of people

Magazine publisher (Hef as superhero, heh)

Photographer - could be high-end journalist or artist

Owns the likeness rights for a popular cartoon character

Hacker can have multiple variations

1)Various ways to funnel digital cash into one's bank account, for actual money

2)Print your own credit cards

3)Want something? Break into the manufacturer's computer and order it delivered

4)The ATM trick from T2

5)Alter legal records to grant yourself ownership of land, corporations, etc...

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

Some ides which come to mind are.

 

1 You refined or invented a new process, better widget, or more cost effective design for something that while small and insignificant on its own is actually used extensively in a field or industry. I doesn't give you much fame except in small trade circles but has allowed you to live a comfortable life.

 

2 You created a product that was a complete failure in your country of origin. However due to a smart shift in marketing, your product has seen increased appreciation in another county. You have contracted out production to a company in that foreign company and after taxes and tariffs you manage to pull in a modest income allowing you to enjoy a life of leisure. You occasionally get asked to speak in the foreign country and appear for publicity.

 

3 You built a modest business producing a product that was quite popular in a few markets. However you had rich and powerful competitors. You always worried that they would use their market strength to crush your smaller company. To your surprise though that competitor saw the value of your company, the high value of your company. They offered to buy it out taking over the brand name and production. While losing your company hurt you've found ways to ease the pain a bit. You have a mention on a Wikipedia page when people look up your product on the internet.

 

These ways of becoming rich have basis in reality and happen quite often. Each one allows for a level of anonymity but still has some quirk that can be used for a giggle.

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

2 You created a product that was a complete failure in your country of origin. However due to a smart shift in marketing' date=' your product has seen increased appreciation in another county. You have contracted out production to a company in that foreign company and after taxes and tariffs you manage to pull in a modest income allowing you to enjoy a life of leisure. You occasionally get asked to speak in the foreign country and appear for publicity.[/quote']

 

Very nice.

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

It occurs to me that most of these 'wealth' sources work best for scientific/gadgeteer/power armor types.

 

Mystics...

Predicted the future. Hit the lottery.

Solid Gold Ancient evil artifact demystified. Sold gold.

Exorcised rich man's son.

Leader of mystic cult. Collects 10% tithes.

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

Consider the "accidental origins" favoured by many superhero PCs. The character was given a big lump of hush-money (or out-of-court compensation) by a major corporation after s/he was accidentally zapped with weird rays, doused in chemicals, bitten by a radio-active whatsit and/or genetically altered at their facility.

 

Naturally, this payment requires that the character keeps totally quiet about what happened - and when the character finds out they got superpowers from it, that can complicate everything.

 

Alternatively, either or both of the character's parents had the accident and got the pay-out, and the character simply inherited both the money and something extra.

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

Respond to an email from a Nigerian prince who needs help transferring some money. He does.

 

Patent the mouse click. Microsoft buys your patent.

 

Invent silent Velcro™. (From Garden State)

 

Write a stupid little phone game that becomes an Internet sensation.

 

Bank error in your favor. (Bank, which is not Too Big To Fail, then fails.)

 

Win reality TV show.

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

Develops an operating system built on security principals and sells it several governments and corporations. Information Security is in it's infancy right now (which is why the hackers are beating companies like proverbial red-headed step-children). A tech genius hero could make quite a living (as well as have adventures built around) helping to halt corporate espionage and cyber-terrorism

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

Wrote a best-selling series of young adult fantasy or science fiction novels. Once it caught on it became a license to print money with all the movie, videogame and other subsidiary rights that came with it. The downsides are that you are now a celebrity (gets in the way of crimefighting) and everybody wants to know how you're going to follow it up (or, if you're still working on the series, everybody wants to "help" you finish it).

 

Became the agent for a sports or entertainment megastar, getting a share of their massive income in return for arranging contracts, casting, tour deals, etc. A lot of work, but less work than being the megastar yourself.

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Re: Eccentric but plausible ways a character could be rich?

 

How about just having a public identity and working for a few large corporations under sponsorship? Your costume is covered in advertisements like a nascar driver. You would also have the need to make appearances for the companies and a code of conduct watched by your sponsors.

 

Right now they have a tv show where the guy become rich from security software and uses the backdoor to get information so he can fight crime.

 

How about create a computer AI who is used for national security but on the side, still contacts the hero and helps the hero with diverted funds.

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