build point costs in credits by level


Homebrew

Shadow Lodge

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I really hate the build point system presented in the CRB. I like player agency. I do not want space ships that magically improve when you level. Even if you explain it away as the players receiving build points as rewards, it still removes player choice. It also breaks immersion, and just plain doesn't make sense. I want a system where it is up to the players to decide how much they invest in to their spaceship(s). So I decided I want to be able to assign credit costs to BP.

I ran across this thread discussing worth of a bp. Porridge gave a nice breakdown of cost for wealth by level. So I thought I would run with those numbers. Then I gave it a little more thought and realized the way he presented them doesn't work the way I want it to.

Setting the price of a starship to the wealth gained by an encounter with the starship times 10 does seem like a great starting point. This way the PCs can sell a captured starship for the amount of credits they should gain for said starship encounter (going with the normal sell for 1/10th cost). Perfect. Build point costs, however, cannot be set to starship price divided by build points. Build points are used to upgrade starships, so their price needs to be set to the difference in cost between tiers of starship. So running with this math: a tier 1 starship costs 4,600c and has 55 bp. A tier 2 starship costs 7,750c with 75bp. So that means the 20bp to upgrade from tier 1 to 2 must cost 3,150c. So upgrades to a tier 1 ship cost 157.5 credits per build point.

Ok, so this sounds good. I started to write out the math and this is where things get really wonky. The wealth progression in starfinder is not at all linear. It goes up in leaps at different levels. This means that the cost per build point fluctuates considerably per level. I guess I'm OK with this. It just means that certain tiers of ship must have cheaper parts available for them for whatever reasons. It makes more economic sense than there is no bp to cred conversion.

Entries written as follows: tier #- purchase price in credits. Base build points for a ship of that tier. Credit cost per build point to upgrade. Here's how the math turns out:

tier 1/4- 1,100c. 25bp. 80c/bp
tier 1/3- 1,500c. 30bp. 80c/bp
tier 1/2- 2,300c. 40bp. 153.33c/bp
tier 1- 4,600c. 55bp. 157.5c/bp
tier 2- 7,750c. 75bp. 163c/bp
tier 3- 11,000c. 95bp. 150c/bp
tier 4- 14,000c. 115bp. 850c/bp
tier 5- 31,000c. 135bp. 400c/bp
tier 6- 39,000c. 155bp. 280c/bp
tier 7- 46,000c. 180bp. 320c/bp
tier 8- 54,000c. 205bp. 1,840c/bp
tier 9- 100,000c. 230bp. 1,175c/bp
tier 10- 147,000c. 270bp. 2,575c/bp
tier 11- 250,000c. 310bp. 2,250c/bp
tier 12- 340,000c. 350bp. 3,200c/bp
tier 13- 500,000c. 400bp. 5,400c/bp
tier 14- 770,000c. 450bp. 7,200c/bp
tier 15- 1,130,000c. 500bp. 6,500c/bp
tier 16- 1,780,000c. 600bp. 8,200c/bp
tier 17- 2,600,000c. 700bp. 14,500c/bp
tier 18- 4,050,000c. 800bp. 14,500c/bp
tier 19- 5,550,000c. 900bp. 15,000c/bp
tier 20- 7,820,000c. 1,000bp. Maxed

So for example: you decide to purchase a tier 3 starship. You pay 11,000 credits and that gives you 95 build points to make your ship. If you want more than those 95bp you can buy them at 150 credits each, up until your ship reaches 115bp. Now it is a tier 4 ship and you have to spend 850 credits per bp to upgrade further. Once you reach 135bp, then your ship is now tier 5 and the upgrade price drops to 400 c/bp.
If you decide to sell a custom ship, I would give the price based off what tier it is in. So if your ship has 294bp it would be tier 10, with a sale value of 14,700 credits. But if you wanted to be generous, you could do the math to figure out the exact cost.
There are no rules for tier 21 or higher starships in the crb, so I think it's fine to say that 1,000bp is the maximum you can put on a starship; we don't need prices for anything beyond that.

I'm putting this out there in the hopes that other people look and think of things that I missed and how to make it function better. Obviously, you would need to increase the credits the players receive so they can afford their ship. Using these numbers and only credits, the ship would need to receive approx two and a half shares to maintain the appropriate level as the pcs.

Shadow Lodge

a little more math: if wealth per encounter gives the proper amount of money for 4 players, but the starship needs the same amount of money as 2.5 players, then I need to give out enough for 6.5 players.
lets call the wealth per encounter from the crb a
the new wealth per encounter we need will call b
so I need a/4 = b/6.5
6.5a/4=b
so 1.625a=b

So that means I need to increase the amount of credits given per encounter by 1.625 times.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Yeah, when I was working through the numbers in the post you referred to, it occurred to me that the "upgrading" BP cost (the cost per BP to upgrade to the next tier) wouldn't line up with the "construction" BP costs I was providing (the cost per BP to construct a ship of a given tier).

I was thinking of taking this difference into account by requiring ship upgrades to the next tier to first pay to upgrade their current BP to the next tier (paying the difference in construction BP costs) plus the full construction BP cost of the extra BP being added. But that's admittedly a kind of awkward way to go about it. Bundling all of those costs into the price of the new BPs, as you've done, is simpler and more elegant.

Nice!


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The more I see people that want to convert BP to Credits the more I think it's a bad idea. A major part of this is that the val of a BP is not constant even within a tier. Take the Light Laser cannon, a computer security upgrade and Anti-personnel weapons. The light laser Cannon is equal in damage to a level 20 weapon for 2 BP. For the same cost in BP I can get a level 2 anti-personnel weapon or an alarm (normal 10cr) for a tier 4 ships computer.

I have also pointed out elsewhere that salvaging ships is bad for play balance and a good reason for not allowing it. In general a ship is owned by a bank or corporation even if operated by somebody else. This includes pirate ships, most of which are stolen/ captured. At best you could receive a recovery fee, you may however be charged for damages or even gain a powerful enemy. If you want to justify BP gains consider it to be your salvage fees. Even if you have not recovered a ship in several levels it could be funds tied up in court or finding a buyer for a component.

If you insist on making players "earn" their upgrades consider rewarding ship based encounters with BP rather than credits. You may even have some non ship adventures pay in BP. You will need to be careful though, a ship more than a level over/ under APL could cause problems. Under no circumstance allow players to use BP (or extra credits a you have suggested) to purchase other gear as that can seriously unbalance the game.

Shadow Lodge

Lane_S wrote:
The more I see people that want to convert BP to Credits the more I think it's a bad idea.

Reading through the starfinder forums, there are many others like me who want to allow starships to be purchasable by credits. That is why I started this thread in "homebrew," to discuss how best to implement that. If you don't want this, then you have no need for these house rules and can run as written. If you want to discuss the merits of changing the starship purchase rules, feel free to do so, but please do not tell us that we are wrong to want to play differently than you.


If you bothered to read beyond the first line I did make suggestions on how to handle BP not magically appearing. In fact BP as encounter rewards would allow a gradual upgrade rather than "we leveled, time to upgrade the ship".

The reason I feel BP and Credits economies should be separate is that ships are incredibly expensive, to the point where most low level parties would have to lease rather than buy, or have a benefactor loan the ship.

As previously stated BP do not correspond to credits very well. Using a fixed BP to Credit conversion either makes prices too high at low levels or incredibly cheap at high levels. A scaled method like your has serious flaws as well. Please explain how a heavy laser on a tier 1 ship costs so much less than adding a light laser to a tier 10 ship.

Using Credits for ship upgrades also has a huge potential to disrupt play balance. The temptation to siphon off credits from the ship for better personal gear is high. Using your scaled method I would be tempted to upgrade my ship to APL+2 early on then focus on personal gear for several levels. Are you prepared to deal with encounter design where the party personal gear or ship are significantly above or below APL? Will it be fun for the players?

If after reading the above and still insist on using a Credit based ship design I can only suggest one solution. To balance ship design using credits you have to scrap and redesign the entire ship construction system. Base hull costs, drives and expansion bay, weapon costs, everything will have to be converted to credits. Level restrictions will have to be added. Impact on personal scale encounters will have to be considered. In effect you have to take on the role of game designer. You also have to accept the fact that your first attempts will likely be utter crap.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Lane_S wrote:
The reason I feel BP and Credits economies should be separate is that ships are incredibly expensive

I think pretty much everyone would agree that *if* ships are incredibly expensive, it's hard to introduce a credit/BP conversion that preserves game balance. But the kind of WBL-based ship valuation gnoams is employing ditches this assumption. On this approach, ships aren't incredibly expensive; on the contrary, low-tier ships are pretty cheap.

Now, as was noted in the other thread, this might not jibe with the picture of ship costs some are used to, on which ships are incredibly expensive. But since the core rules leave credit/BP questions open, there doesn't seem to be anything about the Starfinder setting that demands starships be incredibly expensive. (And there certainly isn't anything in the rules that requires that they be incredibly expensive in one's home settings.)

Lane_S wrote:
A scaled method like your has serious flaws as well. Please explain how a heavy laser on a tier 1 ship costs so much less than adding a light laser to a tier 10 ship.

There's a little bit of dressing story one needs to tell here to make sense of varying BP costs. But it seems there are plenty of stories one could offer here to make in-game sense of this.

For example, a higher tier ship is generally better in lots of ways than a lower tier ship. And this can make integrating a heavy laser into a higher tier ship might be more expensive in lots of ways: they need to be made tougher than their low-tier equivalents (to live up to the ship's higher HP and AC), they need to be integrated into more complicated arrays of weapons which makes them exponentially more expensive, they need more expensive circuitry to integrate with the much higher power supplies higher tier ships tend to carry, they need more sophisticated (and expensive) software and firmware to integrate with the more sophisticated and complicated AIs running higher tier ships, and so on.

There's a bit of handwaving here, to be sure. But no more than the game employs to (say) explain why different level PCs can buy different levels of gear.

Lane_S wrote:
Using Credits for ship upgrades also has a huge potential to disrupt play balance. The temptation to siphon off credits from the ship for better personal gear is high. Using your scaled method I would be tempted to upgrade my ship to APL+2 early on then focus on personal gear for several levels. Are you prepared to deal with encounter design where the party personal gear or ship are significantly above or below APL? Will it be fun for the players?

Two quick points about this concern.

First, I think if you look at the numbers more carefully, you'll find that this isn't as much of a problem as one might think. For example, a APL+2 level ship will generally be far above what a party of 4 can afford, even if they devote their entire WBL to ship-buying. (E.g., a tier 3 ship costs 11,000 credits, and a party of four starts with 4,000 credits combined. And this general fact holds for higher tiers as well.)

Second, I certainly agree that if players are generally only given credit resources, it could be a little tricky to ensure balance with respect to ship and gear expenditures (though not impossible by any means). But one might want a system that allows ship-to-credit and credit-to-ship conversions even if you allocate credit and ship resources to players separately. And in this case, then I think the problem you're worried about won't arise.

For if you look at the credit costs of ships on this approach, you’ll find that:

Porridge wrote:

(1) These prices allow players to sell ships they capture without wrecking their WBL (since the values are equal to the amount you’d expected an encounter of that CR to get the players).

(2) These prices aren’t so high that players will be constantly tempted to sell off their ship for gear, since the amount you can get for selling your ship is between 1/5-1/2 of the WBL of *one* player -- a relatively paltry sum for a party of 4.
(3) These prices are high enough so that players won’t be able to simply skimp on equipment to buy a better ship, since the cost of a ship of tier X is 2-5 times the total WBL of a character of level X, and the cost of a ship of tier X+1 is generally beyond the resources of party.

So while I certainly understand the source of your concerns, I think that you’ll find that they’re not as nearly as pressing as they might first seem, once you take a closer look at the numbers.


What I did was look at the wealth by level of characters, and compare that to the BP for the ship of a same tier. So tier 1 has 55 BP, and WBL is 1000. Divide the WBL by the BP,and then multiply that by the number of players in your group, minimum 4.

So the cost per BP of a first tier ship comes out to about 73 to 91 credits a piece. That makes an at level starship affordable with a bit of work.

1000 / 55 * 4

I did it this way to represent the fact that Triune made space travel cheap and affordable, and to represent the fluctuating price of the starship economy. A side effect is, it makes your characters have to work together to afford the good stuff.

Salvaging ships could also be used this way. Treat them as trade goods. If you bring in a ship in pristine condition, say again, a tier 1, that'll net your entire party about 4k credits. If it's damaged at all, cut the price by 10 percent for every critical threshold the thing is down to a minimum of 50%.

If it's flat out destroyed, give them 10% of its full value to represent salvageable material.

This system makes starships affordable for the party, and makes salvaging/pirating worth it instead of "Hey, I brought you a starship." "Good job! Can't pay you, but props nonetheless!"


Great thread and effort to get these numbers.

I m also trying to tackle the bp to cr issue myself and I m glad people offer ideas on the subject. Early on most people would handwaving the whole thing as a non-issue.

Thing is the list gnoam provides is hard for me to digest when I think of the world.

I feel like 7.750cr for a tier 2 ship is too little so as to keep world consistency in spell prices and npc work prices [even a group of low level npcs can afford a destroyer! ].

Teleporting somewhere takes 90k cr [round trip for the caster plus resolve points cost]. It is instant and has 0 random encounters.

Still a tier 2 shuttle can afford a Level 5 drift engine and make the trip, not once but hundred of times. Able to carry more people than teleport and approach areas teleport cant.

I 'm not really sure I got any real objections but I m sceptic at the moment.


dot


I have not yet, but I intend to dig out my old Star Frontiers sourcebooks - if I recall, they spent a fair bit of time on the fact that ships are really really expensive, going so far as to devote a good chunk of a chapter of loans and finance.

I think that ships can go ahead and BE really really expensive, if there are other limiting factors on acquiring gear - some RP reason you cannot buy well above your tier. Want to sell that ship you captured for 13 million credits at level 2? Great! You're still not buying yellow star plasma swords for the whole crew...

Anyway, I am just at the beginning of thinking this through, so I'll be keeping an eye on all of there sorts of threads.


I used to play Traveller, where there was a system for calculating starship value but where starships themselves were hugely expensive. Too expensive really, for what they did. A ship for player-characters would typically cost at least 20,000,000 cr, and a character would be lucky to have 100,000 cr at character generation.

They got around this by:

A. Having financing for merchant ships
B. Allowing you to operate a scout ship that doesn't actually belong to you.


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Building off your information I created for my group an excel sheet.

The sheet is quite simple

you put in your APL and number of players
then the total amount of exp the group should have ( a group of level 1 1300xp)

then there are two columns the CR of the encounter and a homebrew thing which is skill checks for furthering the story (not skill checks for someone trying to get a free drink and such).

Once all that is put in it will return with the divided exp for the group and with your, BP breaks down how much BP the ship has gained up to the point it levels up but not to exceed the level of the group.

Feel free to try it out the link below and let me know if you see any errors.

Link


In Star Wars, starships aren't that expensive, the Millennium Falcon for instance costs as much as a new car. Luke sold his land speeder to pay for passage to Alderan and commented that he could almost buy his own ship for that amount of money. I almost wonder why people would even bother to have a land speeder if they could take their starship anywhere they wanted to go. That is also why I designed a Scout/Courier without an air/raft. As you can see, the hangar for it became a tech workshop. I didn't see the use for getting separated from one's starship while traveling in an air/raft. Why not just take the scout/courier anywhere you want to go?


I wouldn't base my Star wars economics on a single comment made by a teenage moisture farmer from a planet in the boonies.

Why have a ground/ hover vehicle? There are a lot of places your space ship can not go. Most likely your ship will only be allowed to land at the spaceport of any mid size or larger city. The thrusters may scorch the ground or start fires. that is likely to make you unwelcome when you land at a farm. It would also leave traces you had been there. I have seen a lot of remote areas where you could park a car but not your 20m x 11m spaceship.


ThomasBowman wrote:
In Star Wars, starships aren't that expensive, the Millennium Falcon for instance costs as much as a new car. Luke sold his land speeder to pay for passage to Alderan and commented that he could almost buy his own ship for that amount of money. I almost wonder why people would even bother to have a land speeder if they could take their starship anywhere they wanted to go. That is also why I designed a Scout/Courier without an air/raft. As you can see, the hangar for it became a tech workshop. I didn't see the use for getting separated from one's starship while traveling in an air/raft. Why not just take the scout/courier anywhere you want to go?

Stop and think about this...

Yes, the cost of the trip is about the same as the cost to buy the ship but not the cost to maintain the ship. If you trip and the ship were about 2m credits but the upkeep of the ship is 250k per week which does not include travel expenses such as travel vouchers and clearance etc.


Hey gnomas, great work, I am a huge fan of the concept! A big thanks to both you and Porridge for crunching the numbers. I was making a couple spread sheets to try and determine the numerical rational for replacing the BP with 2.5 PCs worth of WGE. From the numbers I have seen, PCs gaining experience at a rate of 4-5 players, and gaining standard WGE per at level CR encounter seem to have little relation with the increase in BP per ship tier increase due to the non-linear BP gains per tier.

Here are some examples:
PC's of level 3 require 4000xp to level to 4, they gain experience at a rate of 200/CR3 encounter, and as a result will require 20 encounters to level. In each encounter an individual PC would gain 275c at a standard WGE rate, meaning 275*20= 5500c are collected from level 3-4.

The BP difference between a Tier 3 and 4 ship is 20 (as it is for all ships from 1-5) and with the array you presented, 19 of those bp would cost 150c and the last would cost 850c (I understand that tier 4 is one of the outliers) so (150*19)+850= 3700c. Compared to the WGE a single PCs share would actually be enough to cover the upgrade cost with 1800c left over.

One more example, from level 15-16. 341000XP/12700xp=26.85 encounters to level. 26.85*28250= 758512.5c gained.

100 BP difference between 15-16 with (99*6500)+8250= 651700c. 758512.5-651700= 106812.5c left over for a single PCs level share.

I'm not trying to criticize your system, I am actually a really big fan of what you have here, I would just like a way to link the BP replacement with an easy to scale credit amount for our GM. If there is something I'm missing please let me know, and I'll keep tooling around with the numbers on the sheet to see what I come up with.


So after crunching a few more numbers, and excluding major outliers, WGE of 65% for a single PC (1/4*WGE on page 391 core rule book) fits the closest. Having said that, it is a very rough a dirty method and leveling the ship to tier 2, 4, 8, and 10 will not generate enough credits to level the PCs ship by anywhere from 60%-218% (4-5 is a very large outlier).

The numbers can of course be adjusted to fit your process, and might be a bit more even if someone cared to work on a tiered approach to smooth it out a bit.

If anyone is interested I can upload the spread sheet with all the data.


For your math to make sense, you must be assuming a party size. I didn't reverse engineer your numbers, but it's worth noting that party size scaling is a fundamental disconnect between credits and build points - larger parties have more credits than smaller parties, but all parties have the same BP pool, regardless of size. At either extreme, a 1-person party and a 12-person party are issued identical ship budgets. You can't perform a conversion between BP and credits without addressing this.


I had made the calculations based off of the individual experience of 4-5 players but the Wealth Gains per Encounter is based off of a value for 4 PCs isn't it?

I divided the WGE by 4 and multiplied it by the number of encounters it would take to level a PC at the rate of 4-5 PCs (from the experience point awards table found on page 390) to determine gained wealth at time of leveling.

So I see where you are coming from in regards to party size, and I suppose I could make a sheet that automatically changes for a given party size, but at the moment this seems alright with that assumption of 4 players. Please do let me know if I am missing something though.


So my two cents on this because this is a great thread on a topic that players will naturally question.

Pathfinder uses BPs for a number of things. They are not interchangable with Cr/Gp/XP. Balance is the reason why each of these currencies are kept seperate. Only for the moments when the party needs to sqeeze BP to get money should a GM allow this and even then very sparringly.

So, if you do not make BP = money then they need to track the BPs worth of stuff they have. How I handle it is, sure you can steal a ship..but where are you gonna dismantle it? In starfinder things are made with UMPs each one (in my mind) is registered an any legal port will recognize you have tampered or stolen goods upon scanning your ship as you dock.

So you need a black port..or a pirate base...or your own base...then you gotta bribe people and you gotta hire crew and equipment. When all is said and done the party can come away with a few BPs that should be equivalent to an adventures rewards in CR/GP. But it REMAINS BP...they can then use that to buy upgrades later, or barter with it (we have a partially damaged hyperdrive, will you take that along with some credits for that blaster?)

Thats how I'm going to deal with Kingmaker BP/ Starship BP/ Whatever BP (and they are all seperate...stones for making a building are not the same as starship parts).

IF the party is desperate for cash then it maybe possible to sell a BP or two for credits..and even then demand is poor since its so hard to sell the parts on the open market at face value.

Let the players use their face to make rolls and play up the value to gain more. But without effort comes little return!


The OP's point is fine and reasonable, though I'm not overly concerned with BP vs. Credits, and am fine with gaining more BP with leveling of characters in order to upgrade ships without needing to come up with millions of credits (or whatever the actual BP to credit conversion rate actually is).

I published a Starships, Stations and Salvage Guide for Starfinder as 3PP, written by Edward Moyer, but illustrated and published by me. We do have rules for salvage and earning credits for doing such, but I didn't include any direct BP to credit conversion system. As I didn't want to be the 3PP that made that choice - it wasn't necessary to accomplish what I needed.

Keep trying to figure it though, as it's a worthwhile goal, just that I won't be worried to much whether you find a solution or not.


I'd keep the money and just buy a ticket in a space yacht.


I did some looking into this as well recently due to my players asking about how much a ship would cost and how they can get one.

The best way I can think of is allowing them to purchase a ship with credits, which means they either have to stay at the starting point for a bit to raise the funds or get a loan to purchase one.

Now here is where my math comes in. An unskilled worker earns 1 credit per hour on high end (Core page 235). So with this in mind lets say he works 40 hours a week for 52 weeks he would actually earn 2080 credits before expenses.

Now for basic living expenses he would need food, water, and place to sleep at night. So with that in mind I did a little looking and I found poor food to cost 1 credit per meal (Core page 233). So figuring it would cost about 21 credits a week for food (3 meals a day x 7 days a week). Or 84 credits per month or 1092 credits per year.

Now as for lodging (Core page 235) it cost 1 credit per night to sleep in a pod so for 7 nights it would cost 7 credits, 28 credits per month, or 364 credits per year.

Now remember these are rough estimates. So if you work everything out you would make 2080 credits per year - 1092 credits for food - 364 credits for lodging. That would leave you about 624 credits available to you a year as a unskilled worker to spend as you wish or 12 credits a week.

Now most adventurers do better and we all know that but the unskilled worker would have to spend almost 7.5 years to afford a tier one ship using the table if he didn't spend any of the free credits available to him so he could purchase his ship.

With all of the above calculated and reading the thread I have agreed that we need an easier way to convert BP into Credits. So how about what I propose below?

Tier Build Points Credits BP/Credit
0.25 25 625 25
0.33 30 990 33
0.5 40 2000 50
1 55 5500 100
2 75 15000 200
3 95 28500 300
4 115 46000 400
5 135 67500 500
6 155 93000 600
7 180 126000 700
8 205 164000 800
9 230 207000 900
10 270 270000 1000
11 310 341000 1100
12 350 420000 1200
13 400 520000 1300
14 450 630000 1400
15 500 750000 1500
16 600 960000 1600
17 700 1190000 1700
18 800 1440000 1800
19 900 1710000 1900
20 1000 2000000 2000

This makes the lower tiers a bit more expensive and the higher tiers a bit easier to get but it makes it easy to calculate.

What you do is take the build points x 100 x tier = cost of ship in credits.

Now if you look at cost of equipment, weapons, and armor they don't use BP just credits so that is all arbitrary based of if you think it is worth the price or not. If you don't agree with price try to barter the price down or just pass on it. Some you may find well worth the price so in that case barter or buy it is up to you.

In the end it is up to you as a GM to decide how you want to use the system all the players care about is that you are consistent with your decisions.


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Noteleks wrote:

I did some looking into this as well recently due to my players asking about how much a ship would cost and how they can get one.

The best way I can think of is allowing them to purchase a ship with credits, which means they either have to stay at the starting point for a bit to raise the funds or get a loan to purchase one.

I wonder how much did the rebellion charge Luke for the use of those X-wings...

Page 293

Quote:

While it’s possible to run a Starfinder game that doesn’t

involve starships at all, the Starfinder RPG assumes that PCs
have access to a starship. Whether it was built from scrap,
received from a generous benefactor, or purchased with an
exorbitant loan
, the PCs’ starship serves as a mobile base of
operations, a means of reaching distant stars, and a defense
against hostile alien vessels.

Page 305

Quote:

As the PCs go on adventures and gain experience, they need

an increasingly powerful starship to face tougher challenges.
When the characters’ Average Party Level increases, so does
the tier of their starship [...]

This could represent salvage gathered during their exploits,
an arrangement with a spacedock, or called-in favors from a
wealthy patron.
Some GMs might require PCs to visit a safe,
inhabited world before they can spend these Build Points, but
this shouldn’t be allowed to impact the campaign too much.

Just let them have a friggin' ship.


In thinking about this problem, I don't think a straight "BP to Credit" conversion is appropriate -- not because the designers don't want us to; it's perfectly fine to abstract the cost of this kind of thing if you're running a heroic campaign (e.g. Luke and X-Wings) but if you're on this page, presumably it's a useful reference, but the system has to be consistent and a lot is going to depend on how "your" SF universe works.

The basic problem with BP to CR, even with unique values per tier, is that 1 BP can buy you something very mundane that you could pick up at a hardware store, or it could buy you a weapon sufficient to cause major destruction. Even in games with modern settings, you give your PCs personal-scale weapons or small-scale explosives like grenades. You don't give them high explosive missile launchers unless they're military. But now we have to contend with a level 1 PC having a button on their console to launch destructive ordinance.

The convention changes when the setting goes from "single, civilized world" to "entire universe" since 99% of everything is now untamed frontier and it's less strange to fill your ship with explosive hardware when you might run into a devouring swarm of aliens. This gets into the context of what the PCs are "buying" and where. In civilized space, there's going to be licenses and restrictions for civilians. In uncivilized space (the frontier), it's going to be harder to find facilities capable of building and outfitting high-end systems on your intergalactic space battleship.

The 10cr alarm vs. laser cannon problem manifests all over the place. It's one thing to take the same technology in your item level 1 laser rifle and just build a giant version of it and mount it; it's quite another to get hold of a reactor capable of powering a huge starship. Buying 50 1 BP rows of passenger seating should not resemble the purchase of a capital-class 50 BP gravity cannon.

It seems to me that a serious effort to solve this problem cannot avoid adding a few attributes to most every starship item:

- Availability: Difficulty of procuring and where such an item might be manufactured; also whether you can walk into Frank's Used Starships and walk out with it, or whether you have to take your battleship to drydock and dozens of people are commissioned to install it
- Legality: Whether you can just roll up to city hall in your capital cannon murder boat
- Value: Using the credit tables earlier in this thread combined with the above two attributes, a baseline value

Obviously, this information isn't going to be relevant to every campaign and I think it was the right decision to forego this kind of thing for the base rules. If you're the Rebel Alliance you don't want to be thinking about your starship insurance premiums; it doesn't work for that kind of story. But if you're independent operators and you've got to pay for your life, it does seem appropriate to know which parts of their 150 BP starship can be replaced at Pep Boys and which parts are going to require a favor from a planetary government.


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Or, one could just ask the question "Is this actually a problem in the first place?" One might then realize that this giant mess of confusion is *exactly what the abstracted BP system exists to avoid in the first place.*

A difficulty in replacing damaged hardware on your ship, or a local government giving the hairy eyeball to your onboard armament, is not an equipment list problem, and never was. It is a story premise for the GM, to be used as a story premise.


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Metaphysician wrote:
Or, one could just ask the question "Is this actually a problem in the first place?" One might then realize that this giant mess of confusion is *exactly what the abstracted BP system exists to avoid in the first place.*

Yes, of course. To attempt to address this issue is not a rejection of that design decision. It is, quite clearly, a very large thing to address, and rather than dedicate a clump of pages in an already thick core rulebook to a problem with a level of detail only some people will care about, I don't for a moment think that they should have done anything other than what they did.

Abstraction frees you up from having to worry about this stuff and gives you license to make your game about whatever you want it to be about.

But if you want economic "reality" to be a part of your game, then addressing this system with more specifics -- even a non-exhaustive approach that distinguishes for your players when they're flying around on something that costs a year's pay versus a hundred years' pay -- has its benefits. That is, after all, what homebrew is about. I don't agree with the OP in the sense that I hate the system they have. I just like to draw connections between, say, this particular corporation that the PCs have dealt with and the super-powerful gun mounted on the top of their ship. "Crap, your giga-cannon broke, and the only people who can fix it have a bounty on your heads from that time you stole that thing from them" is much more interesting to me than "welp, best go to Space Wal-Mart and buy Generic Part to fix up your ship."

But if your story is about other things entirely, Space Wal-Mart is a wonderful solution.

Back to how to actually address this:

----

Since I'm working in Fantasy Grounds, the solution that is taking form is a compilation of all the major space-related corporations (using the Organisations extension for FG) along with the locations extension so we can tie organisations to places; and then extending the tables of 'generic parts' with manufacturer-specific versions that have prices (and any alterations one might find appropriate). This will be a lot of work but it has a lot of appeal:

- It doesn't interfere with the "rulebook items" in any way, so it won't mess up your bidness unless you care to use Aquitaine's Extendo-Item List With Credits

- It gives some of the corporations flavor by tying certain types of space parts to one or more specific entities -- this is especially nice IMO for power cores because I cannot keep straight wtf the book names mean so my eyes glaze over the name and I just look at the PCU output. Now I can have three different versions of "Arcus Heavy" with a naming scheme that tells me at a glance how it compares to "Nova Heavy" while also providing variations on BCU/cr efficiency for higher-grade / more expensive / military spec stuff.

- It provides a framework for PCs to hack together or jury rig their own parts, or even invent their own parts, while remaining consistent with upkeep or replacement cost w/r/t off-the-shelf items

What I'd like to do, and this may be months from now, is make an OGL-safe version of a module that has all this stuff, but if it relies on corporations from the core rulebook I'm not sure if that's kosher (even if it provides no detail on what those corporations are). But I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

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