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Money is something a number of superheroes have, but in terms of game play offers little for the number of points it cost.  I was thinking that it could be used as a skill modifier representing the purchasing of equipment or influence.

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As Ron is saying in his Champions Now... none of that is worthy of points spend. It is important as part of the character concept, go for whatever you want, but it isn't part of point spend to define their power set. I personally fall much more in line with that... even with "money" in a heroic level, it is still a GM call whether certain equipment is available. If a play group agrees that certain resources are "generally" available, but drama drives when more or less is used... it is the same thing without trying to codify it all.


Money and resources are elements of the drama, not of the mechanics of the system.


YMMV and probably does, but I find it the path of least resistance.

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And you can now buy minor amounts.  Remember that 1 point gets you $100K per year, and that should be net, i.e. after taxes.  That's allowed to be something completely separate, and it's plenty to live quite nicely.

 

By the same token, I agree that as long as it's not being abused, it's something that can be a freebie.  And, note that there are potential complications;  money inherently draws attention.  Truth be told, I'd prefer this to saying it's a modifier on a roll to access gear.  There should be better ways to handle that;  it's one big reason for Contacts, for example.

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Since the $500,000 a year for Well Off was started in the 1980s, it should be remembered that adjusted for inflation today it would be $1,250,000 a year today.

 

In 1940 it would be $15,000 a year for you World War Two fans.

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For what it is worth,  money in my game is a very useful ability.

 

Yes it does not get your team a superjet...but "Gee, I want to go to Italy (because that is where the investigation is" guess that is a few tickets on the concord

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6 minutes ago, JmOz said:

For what it is worth,  money in my game is a very useful ability.

 

Yes it does not get your team a superjet...but "Gee, I want to go to Italy (because that is where the investigation is" guess that is a few tickets on the concord

 

You don't want to go on the Concord.

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30 minutes ago, JmOz said:

For what it is worth,  money in my game is a very useful ability.

 

Yes it does not get your team a superjet...but "Gee, I want to go to Italy (because that is where the investigation is" guess that is a few tickets on the concord

 

But would you really say, "Huh... none of you bought wealth, so you don't have money for tickets... so I guess we don't play this game because it is happening in Italy."

 

Really?  Getting to Italy is just the scene setting up front at the start of the evening's play session... then you go from there.

 

Are you really making your players role play out how they scrounge together enough money for airfare?

If the story is about the investigation, then the characters are just in Italy... set the scene with cool images of Rome or wherever and go! If the adventure is something far away and it would be out of the dramatic storyline to have the PCs involved... then it isn't the adventure. You do a different story.

 

I will admit I really don't get where you are coming from on this.

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2 minutes ago, JmOz said:

Basically what I am saying is that Filthy Rich is 15 points, thus I try to make it worth 15 points...That might mean being able to put up a classic piece of art for bait or provide transport to a scene, etc...

 

Ok... cool. You are saying that IF a player has invested points in Wealth, you'll be happy to make sure he gets play value for those points. Totally cool.

 

I do know a certain branch of gaming/GMing where a session/scene/plot/scenario is created in a vacuum by the GM, and the players bring characters and if they didn't have the right things on their sheet, the scenario wins and they lose. Old school simulationist type of thing. The adventure and world exist separately from the players who have to create characters to cope with that world. ugh.

 

What you are saying is more understandable. You look at the characters being presented, and the play scenario grows organically out of "who are they?" and thus the rich guy will get to do rich guy things, etc.  That makes sense.

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The current notion of "rich guy things" is...insane.  I enjoy  nice watches, which gives a hook into ultra-rich peoples' toys.  Such as:

 

https://www.hautetime.com/boeings-747-8i-vip-jet-first-class-reimagined/88035/

 

OK, that's more likely corporate, just due to sheer SIZE.  (4500 square feet of cabin space!)  

 

https://www.hautetime.com/gulfstream-g650er-impressive-business-jet-reaching-new-heights/86837/

 

https://www.hautetime.com/oceanco-jubilee/87517/

 

Or news about a car like this:

 

https://www.bugatti.com/chiron-sport/

 

You might have heard about the Rolex Paul Newman Daytona watch that sold for $17M.  Yeah, well, in the high-end art world, that's midrange.  Look through sales at a Philips or Christies and what looks like total junk will go for $2M.  $100M is *not* the province of the classic masterworks by any means...modern pieces will sneak in there.  It's crazy.  

 

Granted, in our games we like the super-duper custom planes that are doing a few Mach, but that's...complicated.  Googling for commerical supersonics...first, there are none.  Some have been worked on, but none finished.  One big reason why?  It's illegal to exceed the speed of sound over the US.  If you want a Quinjet or FantasiCar...you kinda need a Reed Richards or Tony Stark hanging around. :)  And some pretty intense government connections, I'd say.  

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Money in points either is too expensive or cheap depending on how it is used.  I've seen people buy 15 pts in wealth in Champions and then try to buy their way out of problems (ex: Why work for the supervillain when you can work for me with free medical and dental?).

 

Personally, I think it should probably be renamed to Lifestyle.  You can have a destitute(-15), poor(-10), lower class(-5), middle class(0), upper class(5), wealthy(10), or super wealthy(15) lifestyle rather than tying it to an amount of money.

 

 

 

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23 minutes ago, dsatow said:

I've seen people buy 15 pts in wealth in Champions and then try to buy their way out of problems (ex: Why work for the supervillain when you can work for me with free medical and dental?).

 

Personally that is awesome! Doesn't mean it would work every time, or even once, but very cool role playing. Does he have persuasion? Is the mook motivated by money or the chance to stick it to the rich guy? I mean... this is a great character moment that, if dramatically appropriate, totally works. If not dramatically appropriate, totally doesn't. 15 points is 15 points, and in that scene, it might have been the right power. (Wealth is the real world super power, anyway.)

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1 minute ago, RDU Neil said:

 

Personally that is awesome! Doesn't mean it would work every time, or even once, but very cool role playing. Does he have persuasion? Is the mook motivated by money or the chance to stick it to the rich guy? I mean... this is a great character moment that, if dramatically appropriate, totally works. If not dramatically appropriate, totally doesn't. 15 points is 15 points, and in that scene, it might have been the right power. (Wealth is the real world super power, anyway.)

 

Yeah, but even the wealthy know their wealth is finite.  Using 15 points, which means infinite wealth meant that ever encounter, he would try bribing agents with $$$$$$$ amounts of money.  When it would be noted that he may not have enough having bribed the last set of agents, they would note its infinitely wealthy.

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10 minutes ago, dsatow said:

 

Yeah, but even the wealthy know their wealth is finite.  Using 15 points, which means infinite wealth meant that ever encounter, he would try bribing agents with $$$$$$$ amounts of money.  When it would be noted that he may not have enough having bribed the last set of agents, they would note its infinitely wealthy.

 

Sure... he has all the money in the world... and trying to bribe the agents works sometimes... and as noted above, sometimes it doesn't. And when the news gets ahold of the fact that his companies are employing known criminals and murderers (the villains let them know) and some take his money and stab him in the back, etc.

 

Also... infinite wealth does not mean, buy anything he wants without repercussions. Also... this is role playing. Doing it once in a while is dramatic. Min-maxing is not, so it doesn't happen. If players don't know how to control themselves for the betterment of the drama, you shouldn't be playing with them.

 

Edit: Or, if he wants to abuse wealth as a power, hit him with a custom power Drain: Infinite Wealth, and suddenly he's broke!

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Shadowrun used Lifestyle.  It ended up with some indirect benefits, but security was a significant issue and that's where it tended to come into play.  But, you actually had to make the money, on your runs, to maintain it.

 

Something else you could do is tweak the wealth levels, then say that no PC can have more than something like 10 points...because the commitments inherent in a 15 point wealth perk preclude actually being a PC.  And, a 10 point Wealthy is $5M a year.  Again, presumably after taxes.  And with no job commitment that can't be pushed aside easily.  (And this is before reconsidering the levels, as was pointed out.)

 

I'd rather there's SOME cost for this, especially with starting heroes.  Otherwise, it's something most characters are gonna take.  Why do street level when you can do penthouse?  At the very least, there should be a limit to just how high you can go for 0 points...especially for starting characters, who are generally younger.

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2 hours ago, dsatow said:

Money in points either is too expensive or cheap depending on how it is used.  I've seen people buy 15 pts in wealth in Champions and then try to buy their way out of problems (ex: Why work for the supervillain when you can work for me with free medical and dental?).

 

Personally, I think it should probably be renamed to Lifestyle.  You can have a destitute(-15), poor(-10), lower class(-5), middle class(0), upper class(5), wealthy(10), or super wealthy(15) lifestyle rather than tying it to an amount of money.

 

 

 

And just how does one get one's 15 points worth of Wealthy Lifestyle, then?  (Put another way: How is that any different from Money as written, today?)  Asking because unless I misunderstood, all you appear to have done is renamed the perk without addressing any of the perceived problems with it.

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1 hour ago, RDU Neil said:

 

Sure... he has all the money in the world... and trying to bribe the agents works sometimes... and as noted above, sometimes it doesn't. And when the news gets ahold of the fact that his companies are employing known criminals and murderers (the villains let them know) and some take his money and stab him in the back, etc.

 

Also... infinite wealth does not mean, buy anything he wants without repercussions. Also... this is role playing. Doing it once in a while is dramatic. Min-maxing is not, so it doesn't happen. If players don't know how to control themselves for the betterment of the drama, you shouldn't be playing with them.

 

Edit: Or, if he wants to abuse wealth as a power, hit him with a custom power Drain: Infinite Wealth, and suddenly he's broke!

 

Agents would be Followers, although Money might help if you needed to use Bribery to keep them in line.  Of course most villains have Mind Control or an Energy Blast for that.

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11 minutes ago, unclevlad said:

Lifestyle means the money is already out the door, not that you have it to do whatever you want with it.

 

If you have 15 points of "Lifestyle" that means you have near endless disposable income for vacations, booze, dining, etc.  

 

You can't have the lifestyle of a super-rich person, and not have at least a metric @%%load of liquid cash.  15 points, you are talking Tony Stark, Bruce Wayne, that Branson guy, Bill Gates, etc.  

 

It really is just semantics.

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I've only had this come up as a thing once.

 

A new to Champions player decided being super rich was both awesome and in character. He was right on both counts. He then waxed lyrical about all the cool toys, by which he meant powers, that he could buy.

 

I pointed out wealth was not meant to be a "buy any cool power you want" ability. We discussed and decided that it did allow him to buy anything he could reasonably afford and had access to.  Also those things he bought were ordinary consumer goods and not special or protected in any way. And lastly anything he used constantly he would have to pay for in points.

 

So he couldn't buy a fighter jet. Those aren't available to the public. Yes, in a supers world it is possible to buy a fighter jet (thanks Warlord!) but it takes time, contacts, and probably breaking a bunch of laws.  I wouldn't say an out right no to doing that but it would be a big thing and thus require role playing it out and probably have in game consequences. The same for bribing agents.

 

But he could have any number of cool modern gadgets that a consumer could buy. This can come to a lot of points worth of small powers. Night goggles, GPS, fast cars, helicopters. But these are just ordinary gadgets, not foci. Whatever he bought this way would in no way be protected by the rules. The bad guys take out the local cell phone network, your cell phone stops working. Cell phones can also be easily hacked by super powers. Your Lamborghini isn't bullet proof. An EMP will trash all your electronics gadgets. Yes, you can replace them but that takes time that you may not have. You get flashed wearing night goggles, you are gonna take 2x damage.

 

As he was gadgeteer the other thing it gave him was a ready made excuse to buy new-  and modify existing- powers with character points.

 

All up it worked pretty well. There was the time they decided that they would follow a lead to Singapore. (I hasten to add, it was not required for plot advancement, it was just players going in the direction they were going.) So a few first class tickets later and they were all staying in a 5* Hotel in Singapore. Much fun was had.

 

So I'd say $$$$ is cool and very genre appropriate. But handle with care and make sure you and your player are on the same page.

 

 

 

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The point is, saying it's "lifestyle" says it's already allocated, rather than in the bank.  Think of it as the inventory of a store rather than the cash to buy the inventory.

 

No, it's not a big difference, but it is a mindset difference.  

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I've toyed with the idea of a Resource skill, similar to what Fate uses. I haven't had the chance to try it in a game, though. I suspect it might work best in a genre where money is more important (fantasy or cyberpunk, but not superheroes).

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