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Unread 31st of March, 2006, 08:50
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Revised Wealth System

Revised Wealth and Occupation System

Occupation
You have 1d4 Occupation Points (OP). These can be spent as follows:
  • Bonus feat from this list: Aircraft Operation, Archaic Weapons Proficiency, Armor Proficiency (light), Brawl, Combat Martial Arts, Personal Firearms Proficiency, Planetary Adaptation, Spacer, Toughness, Vehicle Expert, Zero-G Training, feats that give a +2 bonus to two skills: 3 OP. Maximum 1 feat.
  • Permanent class skill/+1 competence bonus to one or more skills (except Profession): 1 OP per skill. Minimum 1 skill, maximum 3 skills.
  • Bonus or penalty to Profession: 1 OP per point of bonus/-1 OP per point of penalty. Minimum -3, maximum +2.
  • +1 Reputation: 1 OP. Maximum +1.
The Wealth Bonus
A Wealth Bonus (WB) represents a certain amount of liquid assets. You can have one or more WBs. When you gain an "additional" WB, you recieve a new, seperate WB. This is not the same as an "increase" to a WB, which increases an existing WB. Also, see Folding and Splitting Wealth Bonuses, below.

Finding an Item for Sale: The Wealth Check
To find a item you wish to buy, make a Wealth check against the Purchase DC (PDC) of the item. To do so, roll 1d20 and add one of your WBs. If the result is at least the PDC of the item you wish to buy, you have found such an item for sale. For uncommon items, each Wealth check takes a number of hours equal to the PDC. You can take 10 or take 20 on a Wealth check. If you fail, you can try again.

After you find an item for sale, you can pay for it and purchase it.

Losing Wealth
To pay for an item, you must give up a WB of at least the item's PDC - 20.

Alternately, you may decrease the WB used to make the Wealth check:
Code:
Purchase       Decrease in
DC             Wealth Bonus
WB or less     0
WB +1 to +7    1*
WB +8 to +13   1
WB +14 to +16  2
WB +17         3
WB +18         5
WB +19         7
WB +20         20
*If you make few purchases, the GM may waive this decrease.
A WB can fall below 0.

You may choose to split a WB between making a Wealth check and paying for the item. See Folding and Splitting Wealth Bonuses, below.

Selling Items
When you seek out a buyer and sell an item, you gain an additional WB equal to the item's PDC - 23, assuming the item is in working condition. Selling an item in this way takes a number of hours equal to the PDC of the item.
Example: You find a buyer for a PDC 36 item. When you sell it, you gain an additional WB of +13.

On the other hand, when a buyer seeks you out and buys an item from you, you gain an additional WB equal to the item's PDC - 20.

Selling an unlicensed or stolen item reduces the WB gained by the item's restriction rating if you are seeking out a buyer, or increases it if a buyer is seeking you out.

In general, the one seeking out the transaction has the disadvantage.

Gaining Wealth From Profession
At each level, including 1st level, you gain an additional WB equal to your new Profession check bonus. (This is calculated after any new ranks in Profession, feats, class abilities, and so on have been added.)

This means that if you create a character above 1st level, the character has one WB per level, corresponding to their Profession check bonus at that level.

Wealth Awards
From time to time, you may earn a Wealth award. This translates into an additional WB.

Wealth Bonuses and Purchase DCs: A Logarithmic Scale
Wealth bonuses (WBs) and Purchase DCs (PDCs) are logarithmic scales. A difference of 10 in WB or PDC represents a factor of 10 in absolute dollar amount.

A PDC of 10 represents a cost of about $100. Likewise, a PDC of 0 is equal to about $10, a PDC of 20 is about $1,000, a PDC of 30 is about $10,000, and so on.

A WB represents an amount of money equal to the cost of an item with a PDC 20 greater. In other words, a WB represents 100 times as much money as an equal PDC. A character with a WB of 10 thus has liquid assets of about $10,000.

Conversion formulae:
$$$ = 10^(0.1 x (PDC + 10)) = 10^(0.1 x (WB + 30))
PDC = WB + 20 = 10 x log($$$) - 10
WB = 10 x log($$$) - 30 = PDC - 20

Conversion to a dollar amount is always the most exact method; however, simplifications are provided below if the log button on your calculator frightens you. The GM can force characters to follow dollar-amount conversions to avoid abuses of these simplifications.

Folding and Splitting Wealth Bonuses
A WB can be folded into an equal or higher WB, creating a single, higher WB:

To increase a WB by 1, fold into it another WB of no more than 6 points lower.
To increase a WB by 2, fold into it another WB of no more than 2 points lower.
Alternately, fold into it another two WBs of no more than 3 and 11 points lower.
To increase a WB by 3, fold into it another WB of equal value.
Example: You have a WB of +14. If you want to increase it to +15, you need to fold into it another WB of at least +8. If you want to increase it to +16, you need to fold into it another WB of at least +12. If you want to increase it to +17, you need to fold into it another WB of +14.

This principle can be applied to increasing the PDC of items (such as through upgrades) as well. For example, the PDC to upgrade a desktop computer (+1 PDC) is its current PDC - 6, and for a notebook computer (+2 PDC), the PDC is its current PDC - 2. The PDC to upgrade an item by one mastercraft level (+3 PDC) is its current PDC.

Likewise, a WB can be split into more than one part:
Original WB -1 and -7.
Original WB -2, -5, and -13.
Original WB -3 and -3.
Example: A WB of +17 can be split into WBs of +16 and +10; +15, +12, and +4; or +14 and +14. Each of those can be further split, if desired.

Pooling Money
If two or more characters wish to purchase an item together, fold their WBs together, then make a Wealth check and purchase the item. After the item is purchased, split the remaining WB among the characters.

Varying Prices
Certain items may have higher or lower PDCs depending on the area. Enterprising characters could buy items in one area and sell them in others for a higher price.

PROFESSION [WIS]
Use this skill to work at a job and earn money.
Check: Profession can be used to deal with work- or career- related situations. Also, at 1st level and every time you gain a level, you gain an additional Wealth bonus equal to your Profession check bonus.
Synergy: If you have 5 or more ranks in Knowledge (business), you gain a +2 bonus on Profession checks.

WINDFALL [GENERAL]
You just got a lot richer.
Benefit: You gain a +3 bonus to Profession checks. Furthermore, you gain an additional Wealth bonus equal to your new Profession check bonus.
Special: You may take this feat multiple times. Its effects stack.
Attached Files
File Type: zip Revised Wealth Helper.zip (4.3 KB, 1 views)
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Last edited by The Hive Custodian; 7th of April, 2007 at 15:41.
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Unread 31st of March, 2006, 11:50
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So, what do Purchase DCs and Wealth bonuses equate to in real life?

The current global GDP is about $56 trillion.
This is equivalent to a Wealth bonus of 107.

At the time of writing, the United States national debt is $8.37 trillion.
This is equivalent to a Purchase DC of 119.

Depending on who you ask, Bill Gates's net worth is $50-65 billion.
WB: 77-78.

The B-2 stealth bomber's cost is estimated at $1.12-2.2 billion.
PDC: 80-83.

The Iraq war costs about $180 million per day.
PDC: 72-73.

Closer to home, the 2005-2006 budget for the Fremont Union High School District is $81 million.
WB: 49.

The median home price in Santa Clara County is $0.5-0.6 million.
PDC: 47-48.

A Jaguar XK costs $75,500.
PDC: 39.

The tuition for Stanford University is about $19,000 a year.
PDC: 32.

On the other hand, tuition at De Anza is about $5,000 a year.
PDC: 27.

My current liquid assets in a joint account: Less than $1,000.
WB: 0.

The amount of cash I have on hand: $20-40.
WB: -17 - -14.
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Last edited by The Hive Custodian; 8th of April, 2006 at 13:05.
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Unread 3rd of April, 2006, 06:01
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The standard Wealth system is also logarithmic, though it uses a different scale. There, +8 PDC = x10 dollar value.

$$$ = 10^((PDC + 6.5) / 8)
PDC = 8 log($$$) - 6.5

According to the reward tables, a +4 Wealth bonus award is appropriate for a EL 1 encounter, and a +23 is appropriate for a EL 20 encounter. Apparently, they consider a 216% increase in net worth an appropriate award for a 1st-level encounter, and a 74889% increase in net worth for a 20th-level encounter.

They also expect the average 20th level character to have a Wealth bonus of +16.

I'm going to polish up the revised system some more before seeking official approval from y'all.
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Unread 3rd of April, 2006, 14:50
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The Revised Wealth System: A Primer
So, how is the revised Wealth system different from the standard system? I'll try to explain it in different words here.

1. Gaining Wealth
First off, I've simplified Profession greatly. At every level (including 1st, i.e., starting money) you gain a new Wealth bonus equal to your new Profession check bonus. If you have a Profession bonus of +6, you get a new Wealth bonus of +6. If you have a Profession bonus of +13, you get a new Wealth bonus of +13. And so on. No rolls, no tables... hell, not even addition. Don't worry--your old Wealth bonus is still there. It's probably as high as your new one, but it's still there if you need it later. Yes, you can have more than one Wealth bonus. No, you can't simply add them together. (However, you can fold them: see the last point.) Most things that used to increase your Wealth now give you bonuses to Profession instead, including occupations.

2. Buying Stuff
Buying stuff still works the same way, except for four things:
1. Use only one of your Wealth bonuses to make a Wealth check.
2. I've changed the amount by which your Wealth (the one you used for the Wealth check) goes down. There's no more "lose one extra Wealth for PDCs above 15" either.
3. Instead of reducing the Wealth bonus, you can choose to give up one of your Wealth bonuses. I actually prefer this way, but those of you who are used to the standard system might not like it. Oh well, just use the old way then.
4. Aid another is out. (No longer can a dozen people with a Wealth bonus of +9 each buy an Abrams MBT off the black market together for the loss of 1 Wealth each, except for one who is now broke.) However, you can pool money now, assuming you know how to fold Wealth bonuses.

3. Selling Stuff
When you sell something, you get a new Wealth bonus equal to the PDC - 23. Done.

4. Wealth Awards
When you get a monetary reward, you get a new Wealth bonus.

5. Folding and Splitting Wealth Bonuses
This is the more complex part; read the actual text of the revised rules for the specifics. You don't actually need to know how this works to be able to buy and sell stuff. In fact, unless you plan on spending more than 20% of your net worth on a single item, you probably don't need to worry about it.

Splitting a Wealth bonus means you take a Wealth bonus and divide it into smaller Wealth bonuses. For example, if you have a Wealth bonus of +20, you can split it into two Wealth bonuses of +17. (Of course, there's more ways of splitting a Wealth bonus: you could split that +20 into +19 and +14; or +18, +15, and +7.)

Folding Wealth bonuses means you take two Wealth bonuses and mash 'em together, creating a higher Wealth bonus. This lets you put those two +17s back together again, among other things.
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Last edited by The Hive Custodian; 3rd of April, 2006 at 14:53.
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Unread 4th of April, 2006, 13:47
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Miscellaneous Information
All figures are approximate. This is intended to be an aid to GMs.

Dollar Equivalencies
Code:
PDC   WB  Dollar Value
 0   -20           $10
 1   -19           $13
 2   -18           $16
 3   -17           $20
 4   -16           $25
 5   -15           $30
 6   -14           $40
 7   -13           $50
 8   -12           $60
 9   -11           $80
10   -10          $100
11    -9          $130
12    -8          $160
13    -7          $200
14    -6          $250
15    -5          $300
16    -4          $400
17    -3          $500
18    -2          $600
19    -1          $800
20     0        $1,000
21     1        $1,300
22     2        $1,600
23     3        $2,000
24     4        $2,500
25     5        $3,000
26     6        $4,000
27     7        $5,000
28     8        $6,000
29     9        $8,000
30    10       $10,000
31    11       $13,000
32    12       $16,000
33    13       $20,000
34    14       $25,000
35    15       $30,000
36    16       $40,000
37    17       $50,000
38    18       $60,000
39    19       $80,000
40    20      $100,000
41    21      $130,000
42    22      $160,000
43    23      $200,000
44    24      $250,000
45    25      $300,000
46    26      $400,000
47    27      $500,000
48    28      $600,000
49    29      $800,000
50    30    $1,000,000
+10   +10           x10
Wealth by Level from Profession
A character's approximate total Wealth bonus from Profession (before buying equipment) is given by the following table:
Code:
Level   Wealth Bonus
1       Current Profession bonus
2-4     Current Profession bonus + level
5-7     Current Profession bonus + 5
8+      Current Profession bonus + 6
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Unread 7th of April, 2006, 09:53
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How about we use the idea we use in my IRL D20 future game:

Use the table in the Modern or Future book that convert PDCs into cash. Sub out all PDC and WB for cash. Simple as that.
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Unread 7th of April, 2006, 10:04
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I feel so alone now in liking the wealth system. I think it's kinda' cool...
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Unread 7th of April, 2006, 12:34
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Originally Posted by Takkaryx How about we use the idea we use in my IRL D20 future game:

Use the table in the Modern or Future book that convert PDCs into cash. Sub out all PDC and WB for cash. Simple as that.
Unfortunately, PDC/WB is quite embedded in the system. While converting makes it easy to see if you can afford something, shopping time, gaining Wealth from Profession, and other things depend on having a PDC/WB rather than having a dollar amount.
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Unread 7th of April, 2006, 12:48
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Originally Posted by Doomsmile I feel so alone now in liking the wealth system. I think it's kinda' cool...
It's got certain advantages. It's just that the designers just tried to apply linear operations to a logarithmic scale. It's like the Richter scale for earthquakes: a magnitude 8.0 quake isn't twice as powerful as a 4.0 quake--it's 10,000 times as powerful. My revision just supplies the appropriate operations for a logarithmic scale, instead of the mismatched operations that the designers gave it.
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Unread 7th of April, 2006, 12:52
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I was thinking, I need rules for "breaking the bank." Expecially for Walk Jockeys.
The concept is that the character is spending every cent to their name if neccesary, so can buy something above a nat 20, but probably would end up losing most of their wealth bonus. Any help?

Oh, and, on an unrelated note, anyone know what standard starting wealth is for a 2nd- or 3rd-level character?
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Unread 7th of April, 2006, 13:02
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By my interpretation, a natural 20 is pretty close to all your money (99% or so). Since Wealth is a logarithmic scale, 90% of your wealth is concentrated in the last 10 points of Wealth bonus (or 8 points, if you're using standard). 99% of your wealth is contained in the last 20 points of Wealth bonus.

As for starting Wealth for a 2nd-3rd level character, the official answer is somewhere between +4-+6 (I forget exactly, but I know it was within that range), which is pretty much a load of crap. Unfortunately, it takes damn near forever to figure out the Wealth bonus manually using Profession under the standard system. Plus, if a character is created at higher level, they don't have to spend any money in the critical low levels, meaning that they end up richer than a character who actually lived through those levels. Unless you count Wealth awards outside of Profession, but that's even more daft under the standard system. A 20th level character is expected to have a WB of +16... yet 20th level encounters are supposed to give +23 Wealth?
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Unread 8th of April, 2006, 12:30
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You can take 20 on your PDC rolls. It assumes that you take alot of time, but you only loose 2d6+1 of your wealth, and get something 20 higher than your WB. Really kinda stupid.
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Unread 8th of April, 2006, 12:55
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Flaws in the Standard Wealth System
The d20 Wealth system was designed using a logarithmic scale, with 8 PDC or WB being equal to a factor of 10 in dollar amount. Unfortunately, the designers failed to make rules that were consistent with this type of scale. This leads to such flaws in the system as the following:

1. Aid Another
Any person with a WB of +9 can automatically make the Wealth check to aid another. Thus, given a week or so, 17 people with a WB of +9 each can purchase a Abrams tank off the black market, losing only 1 WB each, except for the first person. The first one takes 10, getting a result of 19; this is boosted to 51 by the other 16 people. Each person's share is over $250,000. However, the most expensive item any of them could purchase normally without losing more than 1 WB is PDC 15, or about $500.

2. Losing Wealth
  • To a very rich person, a private jet costs about the same as a camera. Buying either results in the loss of 1 WB.
  • The average middle-class citizen (WB +8) cannot buy ten small tents. They can, however, buy a Ford Crown Victoria and/or an arbitrary number of coats.

3. Regaining Wealth
If a character has 1-5 ranks in Profession, their liquid assets increase by 33% every level.
With 6-10 ranks, this rises to 78%.
With 11-15 ranks, this rises to 137%.
With 14-20 ranks, this rises to 316%.
With 29-23 ranks, this rises to 422%.
I'd like to meet the stock broker who can post such gains, or anything remotely close.

To make a character above 1st level, you need to make a Profession check for every level that character has, which is a huge pain.

4. Selling Stuff
  • Given two people with a WB of at least +10 and +6, infinite money can be generated. The richer person buys a PDC 20 item, losing 2 WB, and gives it to the poorer person, who sells it for 1d6 + 1 WB. The poorer person then buys one or more PDC 18 items, returning their WB to +3, and gives one to the richer person, who sells it and returns their WB to the original. The pair can then end up with an arbitrary number of PDC 18 items, which can each be sold for an automatic +1 WB each. This is easily possible at 1st level.
  • Even if you have a Wealth bonus of +0, selling six computers usually gives you enough money to buy a mansion and a car.

5. Wealth Awards
The standard rules consider +4 WB an appropriate reward for a EL 1 enemy. This corresponds to a 316% increase in liquid assets.
By EL 20, the recommended award rises to +23 WB. This corresponds to a 74889% increase in liquid assets. This means if you have $10,000 of liquid assets, and you defeat an EL 20 encounter, an appropriate award is seven million dollars. On the other hand, if you're a millionaire, an appropriate award for the same encounter is seven hundred million dollars.

6. Expected Wealth by Level
Of course, despite all this, the standard rules only expect you to have a WB of +16 by 20th level.
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Last edited by The Hive Custodian; 8th of April, 2006 at 13:12.
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Unread 8th of April, 2006, 18:26
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I didn't say it isn't flawed (what isn't?), but I still like not having to keep track of 1) how many individual dollars and cents my character has to their name, 2) their ability to obtain small ammounts of credit, 3) every idividual posession on my character's person and in my character's home, 4) currancy conversions.
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Unread 9th of April, 2006, 04:43
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Yes, there are some benefits to using a Wealth bonus system instead of a dollar-value system. But those benefits do not have to come with the drawbacks I mentioned.
  1. My system does not force anybody to convert anything to dollar values. It just introduces the capability to do so and adjusts the system so that you get pretty much the same result whether you stay within Wealth bonuses or you convert them to dollar values. Under the standard system, if you convert things to dollar values, you get vastly different results than if you stayed with Wealth bonuses.
  2. I assume you're talking about buying/having on hand cheap items (such as batteries) without losing Wealth bonus. I did not change those sections. The reasoning is that anything that makes up 1% or less of your liquid assets is negligible in cost.
  3. Again, I did not change the section dealing with having items on-hand.
  4. You do not have to do any conversions using my system. The conversion formulae are provided if you want to know exactly how much money you have. Nor do you have to know how to fold and split Wealth bonuses, which, in my estimation, is simpler than the mess that is standard Profession. They are helpful, yes, but you can play a perfectly functional character without knowing how to do either. In fact, it probably won't matter at all unless you want to spend more than a quarter or so of your liquid assets on a single item.
If the revised system is really that hard to understand, I can provide a more graphical explanation.
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Unread 11th of April, 2006, 08:20
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Cash is fun, but Wealth is thought-provoking.

Even more so when the concept of an economic system in any form is fundamentally flawed.
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Unread 14th of April, 2006, 10:10
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And which is more fun to say: A PDC 40 reward or 2 MILLION DOLLARS (buwha).
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  #18  
Unread 14th of April, 2006, 10:15
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PDC 40. People won't think you're using a hyperbole.
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  #19  
Unread 15th of April, 2006, 15:15
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40 sounds a little high to me, as a roleplayer...

"DC 40!? You've got to be joking!"
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  #20  
Unread 15th of April, 2006, 17:28
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Exactly. It's high, but not hyperbole high. From my experience, hyperbole in DCs usually are 50 and above. For instance "That'd be, like, DC 50 or something."
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Unread 15th of April, 2006, 17:31
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Swimming up waterfall DC.
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  #22  
Unread 16th of April, 2006, 02:04
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This is why we don't play Epic.
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  #23  
Unread 16th of April, 2006, 05:36
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I thouht it was because mages were broken enough at level 15, not to mention level 25.
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Unread 16th of April, 2006, 05:37
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Either reason is sufficient.
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  #25  
Unread 16th of April, 2006, 06:38
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Epic is fun, but I'd have to give people three months to make a character, and control the game tightly. This means, of course, even fewer prestige classes, all new (read: better balanced) epic spells and a much longer time to develop the campaign.
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