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Aku
Please answer, don't ask why. The answer to that question will be coming in community projects later today hopefully. (check the "weakest part.." thread to get an idea though)

My opinion is that it's the max they get paid.
Critias
I'm not sure what you're talking about. Do you mean at character creation? Upkeep during play? What?
Eyeless Blond
He's probably making a point-based contact-buying scheme, much like SSG has for lifestyles.

But I'm still not sure what the poll is asking, so I'll just abstain.
Slacker
He is talking about Contact cost at chargen. If a system was designed to make contact cost variable, would you say that the current cost at each level (ie 5,000 nuyen.gif for level 1, 10,000 nuyen.gif for level 2, and 200,000 nuyen.gif for level 3) is for the average cost for contact of that level or the maximum cost for a contact at that level.
Aku
yes, i ment at char gen, myself and another player are discussing how the formula's should be built, he felt that the 5K and 10K breaks would represent the "average" amount that level would get a contact, but that would also mean that 200K is an average amount for a level 3 contact, which i disagree with. I think a level 1 contact can make UP to 5K, not 5K on average.
Kagetenshi
No way to answer. IMO 5k is pretty expensive for someone who forgets your name half the time you aren't in the room (not "forgets", legitimately forgets), but I think 200k is too cheap for a friend for life.

~J
hermit
It's always better to solve that through roleplaying, but I find the costs a bit over the top.
Jrayjoker
I voted for average. Hell the cost of doing legitimate business for someone who forgets your name can be writing off $5,000 on a consulting bill to keep it at the quoted amount.
nezumi
I wonder if SR4 will put in Lvl 0 contacts (generic, useless contacts like parents, siblings, etc., who might be willing to wash your socks once in a while, but know and will do nothing useful for you ever ever and are only there for roleplaying purposes).
Aku
Well, I've finished the project, and am having a few people check it out for me to see if it loads and works from ym pathetic host (geocities, i know) It works locally i know, but hopefully i'll have a working link for your pleasure later this evening.

What it allows you to do is input numbers for four categories that your contacts can have, to give you and your GM an idea as to how competant they are in those areas, and then generates the cost that person should be.

I worked on the assumption, for now, that costs listed in the BBB for contact levels are the highest a contact of that level would make, therefore, you can make a level 1 contact, for less than 5K by spending few than 5 points, or a level 2 contact for less than 10K by spending 6-9 points.

Over 10 points gives you a level 3 contact, but again, at variable ratings.

The four ratings are Knowledge, Loyalty,Availability and Merchantry in all cases a higher number is "better" or more advantageous to you. Knowledge represents how well the contact collects or knows the info they're supposed to know. Loyalty is just that, the higher this rating, the less likely the contact will give up your information when the star comes knocking. Availability is a concept of how much free time that have, and thus how available they are when you come knocking. Merchantry was just the best word i could come up with for the contacts ability to come up with the goods in a timely manner, and more of before he starts catching heat for collecting and accquiring this stuff.

By clicking "final cost" you get the price of the contact as well as the total number of points spent. Finally, the archtype is there for future versions where i might be able to save and generate an HTML file from this. Some day.

And since it's working for me, i present the Shadowrun contact generator for your pleasure http://www.geocities.com/daherm3610/contact.html
Jrayjoker
Some of the terminology has me at a loss. Merchantry?
Slacker
QUOTE (Jrayjoker)
Some of the terminology has me at a loss. Merchantry?

You can blame me for that one. I don't know why, but I like it.

So what would you call it? Other ideas batted around were acquisition, connections, commercialism, merchandising...None of which really fit all that well.
Aku
As i said, it was the best word i could think of to describe someone's ability to accquire goods. if you think of something better let me know and i can change it. (also hop over to the projects thread for the program related stuff, i'd like to leave this open for actual polling questions)
Jrayjoker
OK. I guess I got caught up in the moment and didn't break the word down into its components to figure it out.
Edward
I voted average but we hav actually always played them as fixed at char gen and RP only once the game starts)

Edward
Aku
Well, this isn't really ment as a post char gen concept, but perhaps to just give some options, and perhaps reduce the costs for non "aveage" contacts of a given level... I'm going to try and come up with some more solid rules as to what links to what because it seems people are a bit confused as to what it all "does"
Eyeless Blond
QUOTE (Slacker @ Jun 1 2005, 02:05 PM)
QUOTE (Jrayjoker @ Jun 1 2005, 05:00 PM)
Some of the terminology has me at a loss. Merchantry?

You can blame me for that one. I don't know why, but I like it.

So what would you call it? Other ideas batted around were acquisition, connections, commercialism, merchandising...None of which really fit all that well.

Wealth? Posterity? Class (the economic kind)? Solcency?
Eyeless Blond
The problem here is that there's no guidelines for exactly what a particular number means. What does a 2 in Availability mean? A 5 in Loyalty?
Slacker
QUOTE (Eyeless Blond)
The problem here is that there's no guidelines for exactly what a particular number means. What does a 2 in Availability mean? A 5 in Loyalty?

Aku thinks that should be up to the individual GM's based on how they want to contacts handled in their campaign.

WIth the 0-5 scale it is similar to the 1-6 scale of attributes. By allowing an entry of 0 it is too is a 6 point scale. So a rating of 2 should be the average contact which actually is somewhere between Level 1 and Level 2. So if your in your game world contacts are fairly loyal even at low levels that is what the value of 2 would mean.

It is highly subjective, I know. I am actually trying to convince him to come up with some sort of game mechanic for it which would be more useful. Failing that, I may just come up with something of my own and post it.

For now though, it is just a quick simple, tool to add a little bit of variety to contacts if you so desire it.
Slacker
QUOTE (Eyeless Blond)
QUOTE (Slacker @ Jun 1 2005, 02:05 PM)
QUOTE (Jrayjoker @ Jun 1 2005, 05:00 PM)
Some of the terminology has me at a loss. Merchantry?

You can blame me for that one. I don't know why, but I like it.

So what would you call it? Other ideas batted around were acquisition, connections, commercialism, merchandising...None of which really fit all that well.

Wealth? Posterity? Class (the economic kind)? Solcency?

Its not supposed to be a measure of the persons wealth. Its supposed to be a measure of their ability to get you what you need from the black market. There are plenty of people that can get you things on the black market easily without themselves being wealthy or having any class.
Aku
And i am trying to come up with some mechanic for it, however, because of the varried way contacts are handled its a, difficult task to do. I'm tossing around some ideas at the moment with slacker, and internally so we'll see where it comes out, i'll most likely have atleast 2 ideas by sometime tomarrow
Aku
First, i've renamed availability to accessibility, to reduce potentional confusion with the existing game mechanic.

ok, alternative contact rules. This all replaces the current rules for contacts.

Knowledge, Merchantry, and Loyalty all now act as complimentary dice to associated skills at a rate of 1 die per 3 ranks in the trait. The Knowledge trait gives bonus die to getting information from the contact;merchantry adds dice to the contacts ettiquette roll to accquire things for you, and finally, the loyalty trait adds dice to the contacts will or int rolls to avoid spilling the beans on you.

So now, my only problem is with the accessibility trait. I would like to leave this subjective to help the GM to decide how often/when the character can come a'calling on the contact. However, Slacker and I were also discussing the possibility of a new die roll of some sort that it could add dice too to determine if the character can get ahold of the contact, however I'm not sure another die roll is needed in regards to contacts.
Nikoli
Given the subjective usefulness of contacts, I think lvl 1's should be 1000, the lvl 2's should be 5k and the friend for life should be an edge, GM fiat, or roleplaying bonus.
Aku
well Nikoli, hopefully this small program might remove some of the subjectiveness of contacts, but certainitly, i'm not a free lancer, and even if i was, not everyone will want too, or find this useful, but if someone does, i'll be happy. even if someone doesnt, i'll be happy
Aku
Actually, I think i will keep everything as the additional dice mechanic, so i'll be coming up with that roll for accessability, as well. I'm also doing some slight redisgning on it, including adding more documentation to the actual page.

Right now my only stumbling block is getting the dice pool to output as a single interger, but i THINK i have a solution to that.
weblife
With this system, there is no reason to pay for the "friend for life" thing.

You can fit Loyalty 5 (friend for life) and combine it with up to 5 other points, making him an average whatever, but loyal.

Or perhaps a 5 availability, 5 loyalty for a muscle for hire that likes you.

No reason to ever get the 11th point and pay more than 100k more.

You probably shouldn't weigh the various aspects equally. Loyalty should be the main thing you pay for. If 0-1 is a 1, 2-3 is a 2 and 4-5 is a 3, then the price boost should happen whenever a 4 is chosen, not when the total exceeds 10. - Atleast for loyalty.

For skill, its different. You can easily have a professional who spares you only the barest of time, due to his other, more lucrative, dealings. This would not cost you extra, that he's good. Atleast not as much as a loyal friend.
Slacker
By the way, the 0-5 is more of a guideline for average contact ratings. The generator does allow any number you want to use.

I know it doesn't say that yet, but that is one of the things Aku is going to correct soon.
Aku
Not really true, web, as with that 5 loyalty, you only get the one die for the complimenatry dice on his test to see if he spills the beans. Same with the others, really, a value under 3 is "pointless"

Also, i'm changing some of the other documentation, removing the 0-5 input, suggesstion. (for those that played around with it, you'd would have seen that that limitation wasn't really there.
weblife
A buddy for life will do stuff for me, even if its risky for him to do so. It will also mean a cash rebate on everything I ask him to do. - Its not only relevant if someone puts the squeze on him.

I'd take a:

5 Loyalty, 5 Information for my Decker

5 Loyalty, 5 Merchantry for my Fixer

5 Loyalty, 5 Availability for my Ganger (for muscle jobs)

As a 0 avilability must mean that they are hard to get to, but not impossible, I'd take that handicap gladly. Maybe a maildump once a week? - Worse?

If avilability 0 means literally 0 connection, then make them 4, 4, 2's. Still cheap, still powerful.

Your system is broken, in its current form.
Aku
Newest in carnation posted, it's now figuring the bonus dice for you, rounded down. Clarrified the number values, and not restricting it to 0-5 any more (even if it was only a text restriction).

Also, in regards to accessability, it's not necessarily how easy he is to get a hold of in general, it's just how easy it is for YOU to get ahold of him.

I'm not sure which version you've seen (perhaps you're still thinking off of last nights version) so take a look at the new one, see how i have things written, and let me know if you still think it's broken.
wagnern
no one can do everything. Have the contact purchace cost dependent upon the Loyalty stat level. Start the other stats all at the average level. Now you can adjust the seccondary stats (the non loyalty ones) up and down, as long as the total does not change.

my 2 cents worth.
Aku
but that leads to the assumption that everyone's contacts are incrediably loyal to them for their effective level, which i dont think is true
Slacker
The problem with having it all based on loyalty is that the whole concept is that every variable can change.

In other words, you could have a contact who is highly accessible, is a fountain of great knowledge, and can get you anything in you want, no matter its availability, in a single day, but is also disloyal and willing to talk to anybody about you.

Would such a contact be likely? No. But it is possible.
wagnern
Aku, I don't know If you are replying to me, and I am unshure as to what you mean, but, let me try:

ok, all the stats reange from 0 to 5. So what I am saying is charge for the contact by his loyalty level. Then assighn the other stats from 0 to 5, as long as they average out to 2 (if that is your 'average' level) not including Loyalty in the calculation.

So a contact could have the stats:

A 'Friend for life':
L:5, A:2, K:2, M:2 or
L:5, A:1, K:5, M:0 or
L:5, A:0, K:2, M:4
which would all cost the same: Your cost would be for the L:5 stat.

A 'aquaintance':
L:1, A:2, K:2, M:2 or
L:1, A:1, K:5, M:0 or
L:1, A:0, K:2, M:4
which would all cost the same: Your cost would be for the L:1 stat.

Think about it, no one can do it all. Even if someone could get you anything you wanted, and could tell you about anything, It is doughtfull he could be widly accessable, if for no other reason than he is so good everyone wants to get a hold of him. Mr Uber contact (L:5, A:5, K:5, M:5) is just not possable for any amount of money, besides, where does he live? in a Lamp?
Kagetenshi
QUOTE (Aku)
for those that played around with it, you'd would have seen that that limitation wasn't really there.

Indeed. I created a contact with 10 Loyalty, 10 Availability, 3.14159265358979323 Knowledge, and "Eleven" (the word) Merchantry. You may want to consider validating your input.

~J
Aku
QUOTE (Wagnern)
Think about it, no one can do it all. Even if someone could get you anything you wanted, and could tell you about anything, It is doughtfull he could be widly accessable, if for no other reason than he is so good everyone wants to get a hold of him. Mr Uber contact (L:5, A:5, K:5, M:5) is just not possable for any amount of money, besides, where does he live? in a Lamp?


Well, Remember now, i've removed the 5 point limit, but it is my opinion, that that 5 point contact would be the typical setup for a level 3 contact per the BBB. The only diference is that he's only getting 1 die for his willpower test, not two, but thats easily fixed by the user by changing 1 value to 4, and his loyalty to 6.

and Kage, i'm working on improving that right now.

EDIT: actually, Kage, what did you get as a Value when you typed in "eleven" as a value? it should've given you a value of "NaN", standing for "Not a Number".

I've fixed the ability to input a fractional value however., which will be live on the next upload
Kagetenshi
The program accepted it quite happily and did indeed spit NaN back.

~J
Aku
Update for the day:

Changed the 11+ point to a scaling model, so that it isn't a flat price increase.

Locked the dice bonus fields so you can't type into them.

Added the documentation, and the alternate rules set.

Fixed a few graphical inconsitencies.

Still working on getting the fields to only accept valid numbers...
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