Balancing a Budget


I like to plan ahead when it comes to characters. Unfortunately smart spending seems to be in demand in Starfinder.

Currently level 2, my major character wealth is as follows.
Second Skin: 250c
Jump Jets: 1000c
Semi-Automatic Pistol: 260c
Laser Pistol, Azimuth: 350c
Noqual Dueling Sword: 975c
Arc Pistol, Static: 750c
Personal Upgrade Mk1: 1400c
Adaptive Biochains, Voice Amplifier: 137c

Total: 5122c

Now we're really close to level 3 (about 300 exp off), but as it stands I'm pretty above the curve, in a party with 6 players so loot gets spread thin. Anything in italics is recovered loot, anything else is bought or crafted. From what I understand of the AP we're playing it'll only go to about level 13 so I only wanna plan gear that far. My spending habits look to be going to catch up with me since I calculated over 850,000 of spending to get there, so I need some help. Going to list purchases based on item level, and the following rule applied for armor already. "Armor must have at least 1 upgrade slot to keep Jump Jets, and must have an armor penalty of 0 to qualify as an upgrade. When available, must have at least 3 slots to support a Force Field and Jump Jets. No Freebooter Armor cause it's ugly." With that said, where can I cut some stuff to be around that 225,000 mark at level 13, or the estimated 349,000 spending limit of credits by that level?

3 - Nothing, got it all already.

4 - Total: 6315c
Lashunta Tempweave, Basic: 1950c-(25c)=1925c
Adaptive Biochains, Speed Suspension, Minimal: 2090c
Sonic Pistol, Thunderstrike: 2300c

5 - Total: 6387c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk1: 3327c
Zero Pistol, Frostbite Class: 3060c

6 - Total: 8160c
Ysoki Refractor Suit: 4120c-(195c)=3925
Laser Pistol, Corona: 4270c-(35c)=4235c

7 - Total: 19619c
Personal Upgrade Mk2: 6500c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk2: 7645c
Semi-Automatic Pistol, Advanced: 5500c-(26c)=5474c

8 - Total: 40471c
Noqual Dueling Sword, Buzzblade: 9500c+500c-(97c)=9903c
Interposing Fusion: 2300c
Lashunta Tempweave, Advanced: 8500c-(412c)=8088c
Force Field, Black: 10500c
Adaptive Biochains, Speed Suspension, Standard: 9680c

9 - Total: 34165c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk3: 19772c
Laser Pistol, Aphelion: 14820c-(427c)=14393c

10 - Total: 53194c
Zero Pistol, Hailstorm Class: 16900c-(306c)=16594c
Semi-Automatic Pistol, Elite: 18200c-(550c)=17650c
Force Field, White: 20000c-(1050c)=18950c

11 - Total: 58520c
Noqual Dueling Sword, Ultrathin: 26000c+500c-(1000c)=25500c
Interposing Fusion Trasfer: 2440c
Flaming Fusion: 4880c
Sonic Pistol, LFD: 26200c-(230c)=25700c

12 - Megacelebrity* Total: 176156c
Laser Pistol, Perihelion: 40200c-(4020c)-(1482c)=34398c
Hardlight Series, Squad: 30750c-(3075c)-(850c)=26825c
Force Field, Grey: 40000c-(4000c)-(2000c)=34000c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk4: 53735c-(5373c)=48362c
Adaptive Biochains, Speed Suspension, Complete: 36190c-(3619c)=32571c

13 - Total: 79915c
Semi-Automatic Pistol, Paragon: 45200c-(4520c)-(1820c)=38860c
Arc Pistol, Aurora: 45700c-(4570c)-(75c)=41055c

14 - Total: 363580c
Laser Pistol, Parallax: 82000c-(8200c)-(4020c)=69780c
Sonic Pistol, HFD: 71300c-(7130c)-(2620c)=61550c
Force Field, Green: 72000c-(7200c)-(4000c)=60800c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk5: 115500c-(11550c)=103950c
Personal Upgrade Mk3: 75000c-(7500c)=67500c

So that's all of it. Staying up with multiple damage type pistols is more for tge idea of collecting guns as we go, but they are supposed to count against player wealth so... In addition, we do have a Biotechnician Technomancer so if I was willing to give up buying augments the level early she could craft them and recover 10% of the prior one's value (maybe, not sure how the rules work. Cybernetics would for sure be some level of salvageable, Bioware who knows). With both those though the numbers are still pretty high. Where can we cut some corners?

Why not just buy weapon fusions rather than carrying 5 different pistols? Take that Parallax Laser Pistol and HFD Sonic pistol for example. You're spending over 60,000 for each. Slap on Shock and Flame fusions to the Sonic pistol and now you've got the options of Sonic,Flame, Electric for only 25,000 credits instead of 60,000 twice. Also, transfer costs are less, so it might only cost about 12,000 for the fusions. Or similar things with just a laser pistol as it has a better damage/range profile. Carrying around 5 weapons which basically do the same thing other than damage type might be excessive.

Generally, I think a slug thrower and a single energy type is sufficient. I know of no enemies immune to bullets (DR yes, immune, no), plus the slug throwers have larger dice which are better for punching through DR/resistance.

I'd talk with the GM and see if picking up every spare pistol you see does in fact count against you at full value, and if it does, don't use them and just sell them. At some point, there's some significant diminishing returns. Carrying the 4th Parallax Laser Pistol for example is not nearly as useful as the very first one.

Alternatively, only update a different pistol type every 3 levels, and let the others fall behind. I. Laser at 3rd, Sonic at 6th, Electric at 9th, etc.

I see that you're an Icon. Did you mention what race/class you are?

Dracomicron wrote:
I see that you're an Icon. Did you mention what race/class you are?

No, but there's not a lot that either give me to diminish costs. Human Envoy Skyfire Centurion Archtype, so most of my usefulness comes from teamwork and being in the right place with our Vesk Soldier (he and I are the only two melee characters, hint the focus on DR and Speed for aungments).

You're spending a whole lot of your WBL on pistols for a guy who says that he's a melee character. Granted you can Clever Attack/Feint and shoot in melee, but overall I'm not sure you really need to stay up to date on all those pistols if you're mostly just going to be flanking with your sword.

Envoys are great, but we don't expect them to be prime damage dealers; you just being there lets everyone else do MUCH better. Quite frankly, if I'm in your position, I'd want to Clever Feint/Get Em! every round and not bother attacking, because you're still netting every one of your friends a +3 to hit, which is way better than the 1d6+1 damage you'll be doing on the off chance that you hit.

The added bonus of this is that the opponent next to you isn't worried about you, as you're not doing damage, but they are worried about the furious vesk that you're flanking with. Might save you some cash on defensive augmentations.

Also, dermal plating is kinda a scam if you can get the Enhanced Resistance feat. That feat gets you DR equal to your BAB. No matter how much DR you have from another source, if you have dermal plating you get +1 DR. So you could just stick with Mk. 1 plating forever and still have a better DR than your current build.

True. Again, most of pistols is bypassing DR/ER.

While you're right, as an Envoy and melee character my options are better than just damage (due to Archtype I'm only going to wind up with Quick Dispiriting Taunt, and Get 'Em), my Skyfire Centurion gives a) +4 for Covering and Harrying Fire with my bonded ally, a better boost than otherwise which stacks with other things I give (for 4-6 bonus on attack rolls depending 4 for Harrying, 2 for Flank but would provoke AoO, or 4-6 on defense with covering and taunt) b) Concentrated Fire allows me to bum my bonded ally's attack boosts and add my damage to theirs for bypassing DR/ER. So there is decent benefit for me to keep up varieties of damage to help crack with either our weaker damage dealers, or with the soldier if it's something with massive DR.

I have a lot of different options depending on the situation I'm in.

Unfortunately, my options like provoking AoOs. Something even without them I've been sponging in order to help our Technomancer get out of combat after a Jolt, or our Mystic after healing. That's the reason for going Dermal Plating, since I can't really squeeze in Enhanced Resistance with how I want to build the character (and being limited to level 13 before the AP is over).

One thing you may want to do is chill for a minute for the Armory to come out. There's going to be energy melee weapons to fill in a lot of the current gaps.

That doesn't help with the Covering/Harrying Fire bit, but you don't need a fancy energy weapon to cover/harry, just a level 1 auto pistol.

1 person marked this as a favorite.

True. Armory may have additional options to fill gaps, or just options that are better for the build. I imagine we'll be near level 4 by the time it comes out, and our table gets our hands on it.

Until then, I am taking some of the advice. Cutting all the small arms out of purchases. If I find them they do count towards my wealth, but I'm not going to actively upgrade them. That cuts out most of the senseless purchasing, and so far Small Arms seem pretty common in treasure. So if my luck continues I should have at least one semi-current small arm for my needs, and it turns the venture pretty much pure positive when I'm mulching my prior small arms into UPBs.

I also cut the Ysoki armor out, so armor upgrades fall on 4, 8, and 12. This will make a few levels have no upgrades at all in them, and free me up to save or catch up on them.

Next I put purchases into priority from most important to least, as follows.

1 Personal Upgrades
2 Armor*
3 Force Field*
4 Sword**
5 Speed
6 Plating

* Item where the prior one can be sold, slightly lowering cost
** Crafting it, as it's first iteration was, however this means it cannot be purchased early as I require ranks equal to level

The Force Field may get pushed down on that list, as it and Dermal Plating both upgrade every other level, which for the later is a big money sink and why it's last. Everything else is every 4 levels, which gives plenty of saving time. Sword could also be delayed since my character has Improved Unarmed Strike (it was my first choice, the sword we made due to having the materials and the creatures we were fighting being immune to nonlethal attacks. It also allows for the Interposing fusion which can't be put on fists, and that +1 to ally AC against things I'm in melee with is useful and has synergy with some of my other abilities) so my melee damage dice will be pretty much the same with or without the sword.

With all that said, things now look like so.

3 - Nothing

4 - Total: 4015c
Lashunta Tempweave, Basic: 1950c-25c=1925c
Adaptive Biochains, Speed Suspension, Minimal: 2090c

5 - Total: 3327c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk1: 3327c

6 - Nothing

7 - Total: 14,145c
Personal Upgrade Mk2: 6500c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk2: 7645c*

8 - Total: 40,688c
Lashunta Tempweave, Advanced: 8500c-195c=8305c
Force Field, Black: 10,500c
Noqual Dueling Sword, Buzzblade: 9500c+500c-97c=9903c
- Interposing Fusion: 2300c
Adaptive Biochains, Speed Suspension, Standard: 9680c*

9 - Total: 19,772c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk3: 19,772c*

10 - Total: 18,950c
Force Field, White: 20,000c-1050c=18,950c

11 - Total: 32,820c
Noqual Dueling Sword, Ultrathin: 26,000c+500c-1000c=25,500c
- Fusion Transfer Interposing: 2440c
- Flaming Fusion: 4880c

12 - Megacelebrity Applies Total: 141,758c
Hardlight Series, Squad: 30,750c-3075c-850c=26,825c
Force Field, Grey: 40,000c-4000c-2000c=34,000c
Adaptive Biochains, Speed Suspension, Complete: 36,190c-3619c=32,571c*
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk4: 53,735c-5373c=48,362c*

13 - Nothing

14 - Total: 232,250c
Personal Upgrade Mk3: 75,000c-7500c=67,500c
Force Field, Green: 72,000c-7200c-4000c=60800c
Adaptive Biochains, Dermal Plating Mk5: 115,500c-11,550=103,950c*

* Bioware/Cyberware cannot be sold, however it may be possible to salvage 10% of a current mod when you upgrade if crafting it yourself. Could purchase the UPBs for 10% off with Megacelebrity and get our Technomancer to build it to save quite a significant chunk of change.

Thus total credits compared to the estimated 349,000 you'd earn up to level 13 is now 507,725c (275,475c without the level 14 gear which is purchasable in most ports at level 13 but not guaranteed). A little above the bar, but more than manageable. Plus variables like found gear, delaying purchases until after Megacelebrity, and not having enough at the time so skipping Dermal Plating and Force Field upgrades.

So I think it works out, delaying armor a little and just relying on what Small Arms I find, cause yeah. For the abilities I absolutely need them for I don't need anything more than a basic pistol, and we should hopefully find enough to supplement for DR and ER enemies with Concentrated Fire.

Community / Forums / Starfinder / Advice / Balancing a Budget All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.