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In the OTU In the Official Traveller Universe. Any milieux that's been published in any edition. Not for discussion of rules except in reference to how they reflect the OTU

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  #201  
Old Yesterday, 04:23 PM
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Then why does the example say you need three tickets?

By the way I do agree with you, the correct interpretation of LBB2 77 and 81 is that passage is paid per jump.

I think your deconstructed explanation of the 81 example is elegant and correct.

The example can be misinterpreted because of that silly "requires three separate tickets" add in that is not in the original.

The example in LBB2 '81 edition should have that bit taken out and everything would make perfect sense.

I can understand Straybow and others over the years coming to a per parsec model because of those four words that contradict the weight of other evidence.

To my mind if every other bit of evidence is per jump and only those four words can infer per parsec then those four words are misguided and the per parsec model is incorrect.
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  #202  
Old Yesterday, 04:46 PM
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[You just edited your post... I'm not going to change everything... but I'm going to add something.]

Wow... we are really just missing each other on this. Like a fundamental, completely-different-universes-reading of the same text.

Because my first question back would be "How can it not?"

So, I'll continue. But I need you to know I'm not trying to convince you of anything. I'm simply trying to express my view on this as best I can. Here is what I've got.
  • Every passage is one jump, and one jump alone. (I don't see how anyone can read the text and come away with a different conclusion. If you want to debate that conclusion, awesome, but know that is one of my first principles that leads me to the answer to your question.)
  • Every passage (jump) must be paid for separately, per the passage prices we all have committed to memory. Distance does not matter, only the jump. (Again, per the text littering the book.)
  • Every destination is one jump from whatever world you are sitting on. We know this from the instruction about determining destinations about cargo.
  • Distance of a jump does not affect passage price. (Again, we know this from the rules.)

So, by definition, every time you get on a ship to travel to another world (a destination) you need to buy a passage.

If your final destination is three jumps away (given the points above) you need to buy a new ticket for each jump. Because you will be traveling to three destinations. Two "intermediate destinations" and the final destination world. (I suppose you could pay Cr30,000 up front if the captain guaranteed he'd be taking you to that world three jumps away... but it would still be based on jumps.)

Again, the ticket prices for that J1 are not per parsec. The phrase "per parsec" is never mentioned in the text. The tickets are for a passage per jump. Three jumps, three tickets. In my reading the three jumps are not scooped up into one trip. They are three distinct jumps, with three distinct destinations (per the text "additional destinations"), with one passage for each of the three jumps.

***

I offered an example of this in play earlier, and out of desperation (not rudeness or presumption) I'll post it again because it walks us through my view on the matter step by step. This, to me, is why there are three ticket purchases and it still remains a per jump model.

So -- a PC X needs to travel to a world three parsecs away. There are no J3 ships that service this world so he is going to have to work his way toward it with a J1 ship to the next closest world. The Beowulf is heading to that next world over and he pays his fare and boards it.

The Beowulf arrives in this next system over and unloads cargo and passengers -- including PC X. The Beowulf crew check for cargo and sets a destination. It turns out this destination is in fact the next leg on the journey PC X needs to travel. He pays his passage for this jump and travels a second parsec closer to the world he wants to get to.

Again, the crew unloads cargo and passengers and checks for cargo lots with its range of jump capability. It chooses to go to the world PC X is trying to reach. He buys a final ticket for the passage type of his choosing.

The ship arrives in system and PC X has arrived at his destination with "three separate jumps (through two intermediate destinations)."
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  #203  
Old Yesterday, 08:04 PM
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The following quote comes from the 1981 Edition of Book 2: Starships, page 7.

Quote:
In addition, the bank will insist that the purchaser submit an economic plan detailing the projected activity which will guarantee that monthly payments are made.
Emphasis added.

That bottom line, that payments, including ship expenses, MUST be paid should govern how the rules are interpreted. If it is not possible for a commercial ship to cover monthly purchase payment cost, along with all ship's expenses, and turn a small profit, then that ship is not going to operate for any length of time. That does include subsidized ships as well, as a government is only going to support a loosing proposition for so long before dropping the subsidy. The only exception would be if a planet's survival was dependent upon regular shipping arrivals.

A Free Trader, basically operating as a Tramp cargo liner, has a bit more leeway, as forgoing the standard personnel salary and accepting working passage are options for the crew expenses. I am using "Tramp" in the Real World sense of the term, that being a cargo ship that does not have a fixed route of travel, but goes where the cargo and passengers are.

Remember as well that one major expense for Real World shipping is not listed, that being insurance on the ship itself, which would be a fairly large cost, while the maintenance set-aside is extremely low at one-tenth of one percent. A much more reasonable set-aside would be 5% of the ships initial cost every year, or at least 5% of the cost of the ship's drives every year.
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  #204  
Old Yesterday, 09:12 PM
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If I may.... no.

(And timerover, I know you have strong ethical standards, and so it brings me no pleasure to bring this up to contradict you.)

Here is another quote from the text of the rules. This quote begins on page 5 of the 1981 edition of Book 2 and the rule is included in every edition of the Basic Traveller rules:

Quote:
Skipping: Most starships are purchased against a mortgage or loan, and the monthly payments required against the multi-million credit debt are staggering. The owner or captain may decide to steal the ship himself instead of remaining under that load. Passengers have no way themselves of determining if a specific ship is in such a status. The referee should throw 12 exactly to determine that a commercial ship is of this type.

Ships which have skipped are subject to repossession attempts if they are detected by the authorities or by collection agencies. Such attempts may range from the formal service of papers through legal injunctions to armed boarding parties. A repossession attempt will occur under the following conditions: On each world landing, throw 12+ to avoid such an attempt, apply a DM of +1 per 5 hexes distance from the ship’s home planet, to a maximum of +9. If the ship has called on the same world twice within the last two months, apply a DM of –2. This procedure also applies to
ships owned by player characters who have skipped.
In other words the rules assume ship payments will not be made. The rules take the time to make the point bank loans on ships will fail. The rules make it clear that there's a good chance ships will, in fact, not turn a profit. The rules assume a ship's crew (even a crew of player characters) might sail off with a ship beyond its normal shipping lanes in an attempt to not make the guaranteed monthly payments.

The thing is... there is no comfort to be had in the Basic Traveller rules as written.

The underlying assumption of the Basic Traveller rules is that things go wrong. There are rules imagine an implied setting that dwells on combat, animal encounters, run-ins with the law, hijackings pirates, skipping, hostile encounters in space in on planets, ship holds that don't fill up, misjumps can occur because refined fuel is not easily available, jump drives can fail because refined fuel is not easily available, many worlds lack the parts or technology to repair anything from firearms to starships.

This doesn't mean that any given setting has to be like this. Everyone should make the setting they want. And certainly even in a particular setting there might be stretches of civilized space where refined fuel is freely available and trade is plentiful enough that merchants aren't always sweating every jump.

But the implied setting of RPG play -- based on the rules alone -- assumes things fail, things go bad, things are always on the cusp of turning into the next disaster.

The trade rules are only part of this. But they are part of it.

The implied setting of play is that travellers deal with trouble. They put themselves in harms way, go to extraordinary places, live lives most people would not risk. The rules make this clear.

This means that in the patch of space that the rules assume play will take place in (the patch defined by the World Generation System with depressed population levels on many planets and sub-starship technology on many planets) trade will be difficult. Profit margins will not be met. Making payments might be a problem. This is by design.

So, yes... the crew of a ship should be making their mortgage payments, and if they can great. It will be one less source of trouble if they don't have people after them to repossess the ship. On the other hand, the rules take the time to explain how one bolts from that responsibility in case one decides not to make payments. The rules then explain how one can get into trouble and avoid trouble by doing this.

The soil of the Basic Traveller rules is science-fiction adventure fiction. The rules of the game are designed to create stress, conflict, trouble -- the kinds of things one finds in rousing science-fiction adventure fiction.

Putting the screws to crews of ships -- which includes tough times in a tough market -- is part and parcel of this. It helps drive the player characters to bold choices. It might drive them to skip, become pirates, or lead them to encounter pirates or end up on a skipped ship. This is all part and parcel of the implied environment of the game and the kind of adventure driven encounters, situations, and play that underlies the rules.

No interpretation of the rules demands that trade in the implied section of space created by the rules works efficiently. In fact, if one looks at the expectations of the rules one finds the opposite.
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  #205  
Old Today, 12:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by creativehum View Post
If I may.... no.

(And timerover, I know you have strong ethical standards, and so it brings me no pleasure to bring this up to contradict you.)

Here is another quote from the text of the rules. This quote begins on page 5 of the 1981 edition of Book 2 and the rule is included in every edition of the Basic Traveller rules:



In other words the rules assume ship payments will not be made. The rules take the time to make the point bank loans on ships will fail. The rules make it clear that there's a good chance ships will, in fact, not turn a profit. The rules assume a ship's crew (even a crew of player characters) might sail off with a ship beyond its normal shipping lanes in an attempt to not make the guaranteed monthly payments.

The thing is... there is no comfort to be had in the Basic Traveller rules as written.

The underlying assumption of the Basic Traveller rules is that things go wrong. There are rules imagine an implied setting that dwells on combat, animal encounters, run-ins with the law, hijackings pirates, skipping, hostile encounters in space in on planets, ship holds that don't fill up, misjumps can occur because refined fuel is not easily available, jump drives can fail because refined fuel is not easily available, many worlds lack the parts or technology to repair anything from firearms to starships.

This doesn't mean that any given setting has to be like this. Everyone should make the setting they want. And certainly even in a particular setting there might be stretches of civilized space where refined fuel is freely available and trade is plentiful enough that merchants aren't always sweating every jump.

But the implied setting of RPG play -- based on the rules alone -- assumes things fail, things go bad, things are always on the cusp of turning into the next disaster.

The trade rules are only part of this. But they are part of it.

The implied setting of play is that travellers deal with trouble. They put themselves in harms way, go to extraordinary places, live lives most people would not risk. The rules make this clear.

This means that in the patch of space that the rules assume play will take place in (the patch defined by the World Generation System with depressed population levels on many planets and sub-starship technology on many planets) trade will be difficult. Profit margins will not be met. Making payments might be a problem. This is by design.

So, yes... the crew of a ship should be making their mortgage payments, and if they can great. It will be one less source of trouble if they don't have people after them to repossess the ship. On the other hand, the rules take the time to explain how one bolts from that responsibility in case one decides not to make payments. The rules then explain how one can get into trouble and avoid trouble by doing this.

The soil of the Basic Traveller rules is science-fiction adventure fiction. The rules of the game are designed to create stress, conflict, trouble -- the kinds of things one finds in rousing science-fiction adventure fiction.

Putting the screws to crews of ships -- which includes tough times in a tough market -- is part and parcel of this. It helps drive the player characters to bold choices. It might drive them to skip, become pirates, or lead them to encounter pirates or end up on a skipped ship. This is all part and parcel of the implied environment of the game and the kind of adventure driven encounters, situations, and play that underlies the rules.

No interpretation of the rules demands that trade in the implied section of space created by the rules works efficiently. In fact, if one looks at the expectations of the rules one finds the opposite.
I am well aware of the rules governing ships skipping. I view trying to skip with a ship with Jump-1 capability as somewhat of a limited exercise. More likely would be the case of finding an asteroid belt with limited law enforcement, stripping the ship of drives and equipment, and then selling the pieces. Or the possibility that one of the skipping ships crewman will be more than happy to sell his or her colleagues down the road to collect the likely very lucrative reward for alerting the Imperium authorities to the illegal action. As ship skipping damages the economy of the Imperium, I assume that the Imperium is going to take a very dim view of it. Besides that, I am discussing the issue of getting the money to buy the ship in the first place.

What I am thinking of is the larger companies, not individuals seeking to acquire their own ship. Multi-ship companies like Tukera or Oberlindea Lines where their ships are highly unlikely to skip, but have to be able to show the loaning banks that the vessel is going to generate positive revenue. Those companies have lots of nice assets that can be seized and sold for non-payment of debt, including other ships.

I repeat, unless your interpretation of the rules allows the standard ships to generate positive revenue in the form of a profit on a yearly basis, your interstellar economy is going to break down very quickly.
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  #206  
Old Today, 12:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timerover51 View Post
I am well aware of the rules governing ships skipping. I view trying to skip with a ship with Jump-1 capability as somewhat of a limited exercise. More likely would be the case of finding an asteroid belt with limited law enforcement, stripping the ship of drives and equipment, and then selling the pieces. Or the possibility that one of the skipping ships crewman will be more than happy to sell his or her colleagues down the road to collect the likely very lucrative reward for alerting the Imperium authorities to the illegal action. As ship skipping damages the economy of the Imperium, I assume that the Imperium is going to take a very dim view of it. Besides that, I am discussing the issue of getting the money to buy the ship in the first place.

What I am thinking of is the larger companies, not individuals seeking to acquire their own ship. Multi-ship companies like Tukera or Oberlindea Lines where their ships are highly unlikely to skip, but have to be able to show the loaning banks that the vessel is going to generate positive revenue. Those companies have lots of nice assets that can be seized and sold for non-payment of debt, including other ships.

I repeat, unless your interpretation of the rules allows the standard ships to generate positive revenue in the form of a profit on a yearly basis, your interstellar economy is going to break down very quickly.
I, uh... sure.
I keep thinking of the game in terms of RPG play.
The rules on mortgages are there for the Player Characters.
The concerns for skipping are there for the Player Characters.
The rules for trade -- and the difficulty of trade -- are for areas serviced not by large corporations but subsidized merchants and tramps.
The setting of the Basic Traveller rules are not about "the interstellar community" but about fringe locations where the risk is high, populations often low, and trade is often limited.

You are talking about things that are outside of the scope and concerns of the actual rules of Basic Traveller.

Not that's not a problem if that's what you want to do. You should make rules for that setting and make that setting happen. But the rules, as written in Basic Traveller, are not there to support that. So the rules, as written, have no obligation to serve these particular concerns and definitely do not.
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  #207  
Old Today, 12:33 AM
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Originally Posted by timerover51 View Post
I repeat, unless your interpretation of the rules allows the standard ships to generate positive revenue in the form of a profit on a yearly basis, your interstellar economy is going to break down very quickly.
Might be the business model is get the cream for as long as the loanee can service it, repo, and loan it again.

Even with say a 10% per year loss rate of unrecoverable ships out of those repoed, banks could be getting a nice income always making loans for ships that never get clear title.

BTW, I figure the ship insurance is baked into the purchase price and the banks put out the insurance policy, with no provision for paying equity or improvement compensation, just making sure the loan and/or ship loss is covered for the bank.
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  #208  
Old Today, 01:07 AM
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Might be the business model is get the cream for as long as the loanee can service it, repo, and loan it again.
The essence of a "Buy Here. Pay Here" car lot.
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