New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

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New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Sine Finem Belli » Wed Jun 12, 2019 4:14 pm

I propose, instead of every new character providing a list of gear/items they want, EU instead provides a selection of items that the player then selects from. This would help in several ways. One, since the items are predetermined, there will already be a properly formatted version on EU. Two, no more headaches for Augur trying to decided what is appropriate, feasible, etc for the character to start with. Three, this will keep things more uniform for starting characters, ie- they will all have a fairly equal standing when it comes to starting equipment. Four, this will make it feasible for players to roll up character classes previously avoided, such as Combat Cyborgs.

Now, this system would employ the original main categories that are available to ALL O.C.C.s; Transportation, Armor, Primary Weapon, & Secondary Weapon. Each the will have 2 or more sub-tables.

    Transportation includes: Automobile, Motorcycle, Jetpack, Power Armor, Robot Combat Vehicle, Hovercycle, & Hovercraft. (other Pilot Skill types can be made available, more on that later.). There will be 3 vehicles for each of these Pilot Skills. Power Armor will be split into 2 of it's own sub categories; ground power armor and flying power armor.

    Armor includes: Mage-Based Armors, Prowl-Based Armors, & Soldier-Based Armors. Again, there will be 3 suits of armor for each of those sub categories.

    Primary Weapon includes: Energy Rifle, Rifle, Shotgun & Archery. This category and this category only may be sacrificed in order to get an additional Secondary Weapon if desired.

    Secondary Weapon includes: Melee or Sidearm, Melee includes all Ancient W.P.s except Archery, Sidearm includes Handgun, Energy Pistol, & Sub-Machinegun.

In each case, there will be 3 specific items made available and they will be the same for everyone. These items will be commonly available to North America, and most likely would be Nothern Gun, Wilk's, Wellington Industry or Black Market manufactured items. They will not be Black Market stolen type items, Naruni, CS/Triax gear exclusive to the military, or magic items etc. The idea is these items are as common as a cold. I should also point out that a character must have the appropriate skill in order to select gear, ie- must have Pilot: Robots & Power Armor in order to select from Power Armor. If a player wants some kind of exotic, bad-ass weapon for their character then let them get it the hard way, ie – in game!

Now, onto Techo-Wizardry items. I think these should be made available to Psychic and Practitioner of Magic O.C.C.s only. And in this case, alternate TW versions of the above 4 tables would be made as well. By Psychic, I mean actual Psyhic character classes, not R.C.C.s that happen to get psionics or the lucky human who roles for it randomly.

Now, on to Special Categories. The following will be made available to only certain, specific O.C.C.s. For instance, Full Conversion Cyborg is only available to the Combat Cyborg, Cyborg Soldier, Cyborg Strike Trooper, and other similar O.C.C.s. Note that anyone selecting from the Full Conversion Cyborg table gives up both their Primary Weapon and Armor categories. Why? Because all Cyborg bodies start off with quite a few weapons and all cyborg bodies include cyborg armor of one kind or another.

    Full Conversion Cyborg includes: Light Espionage Body or Heavy Combat Body. You will be given a choice of 3 different cyborg bodies and it will be fully loaded with it's full compliment of standard built-in weapons. If there are optional selections for the body, the character will not start with these, they must be purchased in game later on.

    Bionics & Cybernetics: For starting characters you may select Cybernetics/Bionics only from the RUE, if your O.C.C. says you start with Cybernetics you may select 3 implants of any kind from the RUE. If your O.C.C. says you start with a Bionic limb you may select 1 limb to be replaced. Said limb starts off with minimum stats & M.D.C. and you may add 1 bionic add-on of choice. If you choose a forearm blaster, this will replace your Primary Weapon. Meaning you will not be allowed to choose a Primary Weapon at all. If you choose a weapon rod or melee weapon add-on this will replace your Secondary Weapon. Note that this is only if your O.C.C. says you start with Cybernetics/Bionics. If it says GMs discretion forget it.

    Automatons: select from 1 of 3 Automatons, this category is only available to the Controller O.C.C..
    Mage's Familiar or Scout's Animal Companion category: Only certain O.C.C.s are eligible for this category. Pick from 1 of 3 animals. I might need help/suggestions on this one, I have no idea what it involves.

I was also thinking that we might add to the EP purchase table the ability to purchase a particular item, within reason, that is not on the lists. This would first require that the player get GM approval for that particular item before making a post to the Marketplace and spending EP. Once the player has GM approval, they can then make the Marketplace purchase. I was thinking 3 EP, but that can be sorted out later. Note, that this should not be looked at as a pay-to-win kind of thing. The item in question should be comparable to the 3 items already available in that category. GM's, use your best judgment, taking into account the damage/M.D.C. of the item, cost, rarity, etc. If the item is a Black Market stolen type item, Naruni, CS/Triax gear exclusive to the military, magic, rare, or not available in North America directly it is to be turned down. The idea is to allow a bit more flexibility without braking the system.

Lastly, I would suggest that all groups in MercTown create a standard issue equipment list for new members who join. If you look in the Mercenaries book, you can see that all of the NPC groups in that book have standard issue gear for their troops. This ought to help bolster the basic gear that will be made available on the above lists. This is only a suggestion, unless folks think we should institute this as mandatory.

Alright, that is my idea overall. Let me know what you all think folks.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Fox » Wed Jun 12, 2019 4:35 pm

While the idea of having a list of common items so that both the player and GM do not have to go combing through books is not bad, not everyone is going to want all items. For example: an American Indian Traditionalist would not want tech items. If this is done, the list would need to have more than 3 items for each category, including at least 2 choices that are low-tech as well as at least 2 tech items.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Captain Marks » Wed Jun 12, 2019 5:04 pm

Item selection is a minor process compared to getting people to follow the damn instructions. It's part of the carrot to do it right that players might see the overseeing GM on character creation spend a little more time considering good choices for that player. Some players will be using the same items for a long, long time.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Sine Finem Belli » Wed Jun 12, 2019 5:22 pm

Fox wrote:While the idea of having a list of common items so that both the player and GM do not have to go combing through books is not bad, not everyone is going to want all items. For example: an American Indian Traditionalist would not want tech items. If this is done, the list would need to have more than 3 items for each category, including at least 2 choices that are low-tech as well as at least 2 tech items.


Yes, the idea is to have category versions for the various types of characters. What I have listed is the basic start.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Brute » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:02 pm

Not a bad idea, but I like that Lloyd makes our gear distinct. He thinks about background, OCC, and other variables when determining gear, and I appreciate that.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Augur » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:18 am

Brute wrote:Not a bad idea, but I like that Lloyd makes our gear distinct. He thinks about background, OCC, and other variables when determining gear, and I appreciate that.

Appreciated.

I really could use a better approach to Borg characters & the like though. The wish list system doesn't really cover them in a consistent and intelligible manner.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Sine Finem Belli » Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:24 pm

Something else to keep in mind folks. Augur has been the only one doing gear for characters for, pft, I don't know how long now. And I am sure that it has gotten old. This system would make it so pretty much any GM can handle gear for new players.

Also, this was not something I came up with arbitrarily. I spent quite a bit of time combing through the character archives looking at characters that flaked pretty much after character submission. There is a significant number of those by the way. And in all likelihood it has to do with the way gear was issued to them. What I am getting at is, I think we have scared/run off a number of new players because they felt shafted by what gear they ended up with. They were new, so they did not know what to expect. The current population of EU have all been around for a year or more, with a majority being old Veterans of the site. So we all know exactly what to expect.

With the way we do the Wish List now, a player is supposed to list gear they want with a variety ranging from crap to something awesome. So, they expect to get a mix of what they listed. However, a majority of the time what the end up with is mostly gear they did not even list. I have had this happen myself several times and quite frankly it sucks. Now, I'm not saying that every one of those players made reasonable requests. But for those that did and then got stuck with gear because it was easier to use pre-formatted equipment rather then have to make something from scratch...well, I can see why they just up and left.

Yes, this new system means that they have an even smaller range of gear then the current system. But, something else to look at is the current groups and what they have already stockpiled. Again, I spent a lot of time going through the group armory's and individual character's gear. This was MercTown groups only and did not include the CS 40-4th because they throw things off with having the CS as a backer and having effectively 2 sets of gear per character, plus Augur does not handle their gear selection anyways. Anyways, as far as groups go, every one of them has a bunch of extra gear ranging from moderate to ridiculous on the power scale or that group has a crap ton of credits laying around or both! Whether it's weapons, armor, or vehicles. None of the current groups is what I would call poor by a long shot. The only group that does not have a major amount of excess gear and money is GIRLS, but I have to point out that the twin leaders of said group have over 6 million credits combine and quite a bit of gear of their own.

Oh, someone mentioned Augur puts thought and effort into gear for a character based on background/concept. I somehow doubt this. I know he checks for accuracy in formatting, background content, spelling, etc. And then bases what he gives characters on that. I am pretty sure he goes to the EU armory and picks what is already formatted most of the time. I am not saying this to call him out, far from it. He doesn't have time to sit down and come up with a newly formatted piece of gear every time a player asks for something not in the EU armory! So I don't blame him. This system would make it so no one has to do that.

So what am I getting at? There is no reason to keep going with the current system where Augur has to do all the work. Once a character joins a group they typically get a sign on bonus and/or access to the groups armory. Then again, this new system is also intended to give them decent gear across the board, not scraps. Making it a fair and balanced system across the board.

As for how to make it so people strive to make a properly formatted character, that is easy. Offer EP incentives. Either we can make a preset scale or just make it arbitrary. But let the players know that the closer they stick to and utilize the EU formatting system and the more thought they put into their character background the more EP they are likely to garner from it. I saw somewhere on EU someone mentioned that not enough EP was being handed out. Well, there is one way to increase it right there. Also, this way totally new players can earn something other then the 1 EP for registering an account. Plus, they have a chance at having some EP to use to buff of their character once it is complete.

What it comes down to people is this. The current system is not working for us as a community. I am not saying this is anyone's fault, it has worked up until now sure. But we desperately need to change it I think.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby CPR Krueger » Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:45 pm

Pretty sure Augur DOES factor in things like occ/race and other factors when assigning gear. If a character is deemed on the higher end of the power scale, for example, they won't get starting gear as nice as your average Rogue Scholar, etc.

Generally, the armory is a good resource for that pre-formatted stuff. But that doesn't mean it's solely based on "ok, formatting was fine, time to pick some stuff out of the armory!" I suspect there's more to it than that.




Personally, I like DL's method of dealing with wish lists. It's more...freeform than the Merctown version:

Dark Lord wrote:You also post a wishlist. For your wishlist to be considered complete, it will at a minimum list one weapon, one suit of armor, and one vehicle (unless your OCC starts with a spaceship, in which case we'll work something out). Each of the above will have three alternatives- 'wet dream', 'good', and 'good enough', or some such. Give me a range of options and it will work in your favor. Deviate from the above instructions and your starting equipment will be slightly crappier.

Please note, though, that PW wish lists can be much more free form than those for the main EU game. I'll consider anything, so put it on. Want a familiar? Some extra spells? Maybe a couple different weapons. It's all on the table, so don't get afraid to get a little greedy.





I'm generally not seeing a big "value-add" in making this change, so far.

And this comes from someone who plays some rather non-standard characters who either cannot or will not use many of the "standard" categories in wish lists.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Brute » Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:57 pm

This:

Sine Finem Belli wrote:I spent quite a bit of time combing through the character archives looking at characters that flaked pretty much after character submission. There is a significant number of those by the way. And in all likelihood it has to do with the way gear was issued to them.


Is conjecture.

This:
Sine Finem Belli wrote:Oh, someone mentioned Augur puts thought and effort into gear for a character based on background/concept. I somehow doubt this.


Was me. My name is next to my post, and I stand by what I wrote, based on my experiences with Lloyd during chargen. You can "doubt" that all you like. A little civility would go a long way here.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Augur » Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:26 pm

Sine Finem Belli wrote:I spent quite a bit of time combing through the character archives looking at characters that flaked pretty much after character submission. There is a significant number of those by the way. And in all likelihood it has to do with the way gear was issued to them.

This is definitely not the case. I've been doing this for over 12 years now. Most players who flake shortly after (or during) creation do so because they've shitty attention spans or IRL kicks them in the ass without notice--this is the overwhelming majority of such "flakeage," and we see it happen all the time while the player's active on site as well; it's just easier to attribute to a single factor like "disappointing gear" because there's a dearth of evidence due to absence (flakeage). The evidence that exists is what we see from active players: IRL kicks people's asses all the time; when you're an experienced player who's involved in the community you know that's not a big deal: you just post to the tracker & come back when able, but if you're a newb...you likely don't know this, and you've not developed any attachments. Add to that the HUGE number of (incomplete) character sheets you can't see because they were deleted from being abandoned (flakeage) and you have a near certainty that your theory is wrong.

Sine Finem Belli wrote:Oh, someone mentioned Augur puts thought and effort into gear for a character based on background/concept. I somehow doubt this.

I tend to do so, yes. The recent gunfighter, for example, I tailored her starting gear to her character's aesthetics. Same for Saffron--though Saffron's player contacted me to state she actually doesn't like the "western" aesthetic, so I gave her something comparable but more modern-looking.

This isn't always the case though. Some characters are rather boiler-plate, so there's some truth to this.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Armstrong » Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:28 pm

I agree Lloyd does. Pretty sure the first time he formatted a UAR-1 Enforcer was on one of my characters because when the armoury was getting redone, he nabbed a copy from my sheet.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Sine Finem Belli » Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:31 pm

Brute wrote:This:

Sine Finem Belli wrote:I spent quite a bit of time combing through the character archives looking at characters that flaked pretty much after character submission. There is a significant number of those by the way. And in all likelihood it has to do with the way gear was issued to them.


Is conjecture.


That may be, but I think it is very likely.

This:
Sine Finem Belli wrote:Oh, someone mentioned Augur puts thought and effort into gear for a character based on background/concept. I somehow doubt this.


Brute wrote:Was me. My name is next to my post, and I stand by what I wrote, based on my experiences with Lloyd during chargen. You can "doubt" that all you like. A little civility would go a long way here.


Ok, read the entire paragraph, I was not be uncivil.
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Re: New Idea for New Character Gear Selection

Postby Spiderweb » Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:49 pm

Sine Finem Belli wrote:
Fox wrote:While the idea of having a list of common items so that both the player and GM do not have to go combing through books is not bad, not everyone is going to want all items. For example: an American Indian Traditionalist would not want tech items. If this is done, the list would need to have more than 3 items for each category, including at least 2 choices that are low-tech as well as at least 2 tech items.


Yes, the idea is to have category versions for the various types of characters. What I have listed is the basic start.


A list for each general type of character, such as "Atlantis Escapees", "American Indian Traditionalists", "Dinosaur Swamp Native classes", "Merctown Residents" or "Madhaven Mutants" would make some sense. At least that way you would have choices provided that are likely to be found where you come from.
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