It seems like this is much more likely to happen as a flashback during a score rather than in the “official downtime phase”. Even though there may be a stress cost, the convenience of not having to guess in advance seems like it would be more than worth it.
Any Downtime Action done as the Flashback costs 1 Coin or 1 Rep as usual for extra Downtime Actions- no Stress Cost.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that all Downtime Actions can be done as Flashbacks (at least, not very cleanly and not in the “spirit” of “no time travel flashbacks”- like Vice Indulgence and Recovery).
So, of all the Downtime Actions likely to be done as a Flashback, Acquire Asset would be the top of the list.
However, there are considerations:
- Acquire Asset might be a useful thing to do for anticipated leg work for gathering information. You know that you’re going to need solid cover IDs specific to a given night club in order to case the inside- so you acquire them as part of the requisite fictional positioning
- You decide that it’s time to pay a visit to the Sashes that messed with your gambling den, so you show up to their restaurant front with some acquired thugs to mess the place up to send a message.
- You need a Rare item to Craft something and it’d be reasonable you could get it through Acquiring an Asset
So there are certainly times where you will jump right for Acquire Asset to help your fictional positioning to help you do something you’ve been thinking about doing.
That said, there are times where a Stress Cost (and maybe a Fortune Roll using an Action Rating or a straight up Action Roll) is more sensible than Acquire Asset. If the thing you are trying to get in the Flashback is through typical market channels, bargain hunts, and the like- then it’s probably Acquire Asset.
If what you are trying to get is through more non traditional channels, like demanding Old Man Dink lend you his Stagecoach or perhaps Consorting with your old buddies on the force to lend you some hand-me-down uniforms or perhaps a simple 0-2(ish) Stress Flashback to have Miss Pendlebrook’s favorite brandy- then it’d probably be a more “normal” Flashback that doesn’t require 1 Coin or 1 Rep to perform the Acquire Asset Downtime Action.
Thanks @Sully5443. This is actually a rule I wasn’t aware of. I’ve had the same problem as Michael - assets were often required during flashbacks. By that time the players had already done their two downtime activities, so I made them pay stress. The second problem is that after downtime, my players always do some free play and come up with ideas and do things that could be considered acquiring assets. I don’t want to shoot down their ideas, so I let them try to acquire assets through rolls.
To sum things up: We rarely do the acquiring assets as downtime activity. And I’m currently working on my own FitD game and I think I’m going to drop this activity all together.
Or could this upset the game’s balance too much?
I mean, that’s ultimately up to you. I like having Acquire Asset as a Downtime Action as it exists on an interesting “spectrum” of “ways to get your hands on things.”
Your Load, which- with the aid of Tier to designate Quality and potentially Fortune Rolls if we need to know more (i.e. are the Blueprints owned by the Spider sufficient enough to actually cover high profile places like Bellweather Crematorium?)- is good for “the easy stuff you always can get.”
Flashbacks that exist on a Spectrum of
- Logical to have and Easy to Get: 0 Stress, no Rolls required… basically “Load… and then some”
- Logical to have, but uncertain to get: 0 Stress and Fortune Roll
- Logical to have, but hard to get: 0 Stress and an Action Roll
- Illogical to have, but easy to get: 1-2ish Stress, no roll
- Illogical to have and uncertain to get: 1-2ish stress, Fortune Roll
- Illogical to have and hard to get: 1-2 stress, Action Roll
Very Illogical follows same ideas, but at the >2 Stress level
Then there’s Acquire Asset which sticks right into the realm of uncertainty (hence, it’s a Fortune Roll using Crew Tier as the Dice Pool- modified by Downtime Action bonus Dice like Friend/ Contact, District Modifier, etc.)- but follows a different “Logic” in that it isn’t a matter of Stress, but a matter of Resources (Coin or Rep) that is used as best “method” for describing “getting stuff” that is Uncertain, but through more “normal” channels.
Removing it wouldn’t really “break” anything, but I think it serves as a good mechanical framework to just “hitting the shops” using you money or reputation to get what you want and how you want it.
I think Acquire Asset’s biggest weakness is the dice pool being based off Crew Tier. Technically, that’s fine… once your Tier I. That’s why for any hacks of Blades which includes Crew Tier, I would start the default at Tier I so you always get that 1d to start with. In addition, I’d probably make District bonuses more explicit as well so that extra +1d becomes more apparent.
Anyway, that’s just my 2 Cents… YMMV!
Thanks all for the discussion!