What is the point of putting coins in stash?
My group have quickly realized that there is no point, and the logical thing to do is to altruistically help the crew by spending the Payoff coin as fast as possible (downtime activities, fines, tiers, etc) or keep the crew vault topped up. They don’t care if a character has no coins for retirement (“I’ve lost him to trauma already - who cares if he’s poor?”).
And Downtime (when this decision is made) is a very mechanical non-role-playing time, so they aren’t even in the RP mindset where one could make the RP argument to “save for retirement”.
What is the point of putting coins in stash?
Simply put, without stashing their coins, the characters are mechanically considered impoverished and living job to job, stuck with poor resources, unless they put extra money and effort into it, and generally unsuitable for moving in higher society. If that’s not something the characters care about, then yeah, stash isn’t necessary, but it’s not like there’s no point to it.
While the game indeed puts forward more meta-play than other games, the stash is mechanics that impacts the fiction (story). When I play a character, I always have a goal in mind that is not related to getting the best stats or abilities and power leveling or munchkin something out of the system.
A good story starts and ends with the characters and if your campaign ends and the characters are like hobos or worse in the end… then everything they suffered through has been for nothing. Yes, the journey matters, but in the cruel reality of Doskvol, you should have put something aside.
This is a totally legitimate way to play. Spend now, who cares about later. I’d say if you want to make this feel like a significant decision that the players are making - rather than “what’s the point of doing anything else?” - have their Lifestyle come up often. Have bouncers stop them getting into fancy bars because they don’t look the part have the Bluecoats stop them on the street for vagrancy, have the upper crust look down their noses at them.
Yes, you can treat Downtime as a mechanical non-role playing time and if that’s what the the players want to do it is legit. However, you can also role play during downtime. One of our players role played during Indulging Vice and made it so rich fictionaly that they made an attune roll before the vice roll. A complication occured and it led to one of the best scenes we have had. The entire table really enjoyed it.
It is up to the players if they want to bang through downtime but also let them know there are role playing opportunities. Who do they get healing from…is there a back story there? Acquiring and asset…what does that look like fictionaly? Reducing heat…who are you talking to and how do they react? Are more die rolls needed? The Characters, NPCs and world can develop and grow during downtime.
Doing Downtime mechanically is fine (though if you’re not enjoying it, it’s worth bringing up to the group!). That said, yeah, what others have said about Stash/Lifestyle seems fair; the more you have stashed, the better your Lifestyle, and mechanically/fictionally you can bring that in whenever there’s questions about what they’d have handy for clothing or other related things.
There are ways to put this stash mechanics into play. From narrative perspective, having certain stash levels and lifestyle might be required to enter into certain circles or be taken seriously from NPCs. Having reduced effects on the Sway/Consort/Other checks that depend on your those things is example of consequences of not saving up or improving your lifestyle.
I would say that this is more important for Slide/Spider characters, who have a lot of social abilities and focus on such attributes, rather than cutters or lurks. Still up for the GM to set the tone and not follow rules as a computer game.
There’s some good responses here already.
I’d add that Stash is actually a big part of the narrative endgame for each character. Was their life of crime worth it? Did they do all that shooting, bleeding, and plain old work for nothing? Do they die in a ditch, with only their traumas for company, or do they have a cozy vice den of their own to run when they retire? Are they ashamed of that? Or, was the adrenaline rush and the life free from the shackles of oppression reward enough?
It’s also about image/social status. You get Stash when you get a crew advancement, as a reflection of the fact that you’re more stable, better off.
If the crew/characters choose to look/live like scum, and that’s a fine choice in the game, the world should react to them that way. Well-heeled (high stash) Hawkers will likely have a very different relationship with high-class clientele than a bunch of ratty-assed (low stash) Hawkers, even if they’re selling the same high tier drug. On the other hand, a low stash Tier III gang of street thug Bravos might be doubly terrifying because they look like they’re in desperate poverty while they’re carrying high end weapons around.
Figuring this stuff out and acting on it (even arguing about it) is a great way to drive those “beliefs, drives, and internal conflict/essential nature” XP triggers.
All these replies are very good, thank you all, and has given me much to think on.
My players are definitely a “journey not the destination” kind of group, so that when the journey is over, the destination matters not.
BitD implies this kind of thinking anyway because it specifically allows characters to be put on ice (like over-indulged vice Lost, or a character injured, etc) and the player thus plays a different character, on her own journey through the next score.
But I do like some of your ideas to give Stash more tangible game-effects:
- the low stash = hobo scum, higher stash = more style and panache
- direct effects on the social Actions
- effects on vice peddlers’ or experts’ interactions
Lots of good answers here.
Page 43 has two examples of how to use a Fortune roll with Lifestyle in play.
I’ve also used Lifestyle level this way:
Without Lifestyle level equal to or better than the Wealth level of the district you’re in, you’re immediately followed everywhere by the Bluecoats.
The crew playbooks mention that “Upon crew advance, each PC gets stash = Tier+2.” but what happens if you lose that tier? Are the assets you already had stashed “frozen” until you get that tier back?
No, Stash is just Coin tucked away. Once Coin is yours, it’s yours. The amount of Stash earned upon crew advance is just about income flow. If you drop in Tier, that income flow drops. But otherwise there’s no change to the Coins you’ve already stashed or what you can do with them.
This reminds me, when the crew advances and each PC earns stash, is it the previous Tier+2 or the Tier their advancing to +2. For example, Crew is Tier 0, they advance to Tier 1. Do they receive 2 COIN or 3 COIN?
Crew advancing is when the crew’s XP track fills. That’s different to when the crew rep fills and they increase their hold or Tier.
So there is no profit from developing the crew from Tier 0 to Tier 1, so there is no correct answer to your example. Instead, you must actually spend 8 coin to do that.
I meant when Crew advances in TIER… but to be more cortar: when the Crew TIER goes from I to II, how much stash does every crew member earns?
As I said they don’t profit from going up Tier. You’re confusing crew advancing with crew developing.
You are quite correct, I misread the whole thing.
I’ll raise up @Hugo_Barbosa 's question, because we’ve got a convergence of issues at my table that I’ll need to solve.
Basically : XP track filled + Rep track filled during the same session, and they’re at war - Normally Tier 1 W, right nowTier 0 S.
(I usually do the payoff offline to begin the sessions with the good news)
Do I give them bonus stash according to their Current tier or New Tier ?
Do I include the War malus into account to decide the bonus stash?
Do I make them pay to rise in Tier ? from (War) 0 Strong to (War) 1 Weak ? Or just count it as going from (Normal) 1 Weak to (Normal) 1 Strong without paying coin, then adjust back to (War) 1 Weak ?
I think I’ll go with Current tier including war malus (so +1 Stash), and let them rise in Tier as if they weren’t at war (1W to 1S for free).
It’s rough stash-wise, but they’ve lost their hunting grounds a while ago and their crews have trouble getting cash flowing with the war, so it makes sense.
How would you handle that ? Did you ever have to rise in Tier while at war ?
[EDIT: This post has incorrect information, see further down] Crew XP has notheing to do with the stash question, nor does the rep (weak -> strong hold). Only when the crew increases in crew rank (strong hold + full rep + 4 x next rank in coin), which makes the crew fictionally larger and better equiped, that’s when the players get stash = new rank x 2.
Nope. @Zanchito, you’re also confusing crew advancing with crew developing.