[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Magic Item creation: Notes D thru H. What? What???

>> Rick Smith <rick_ww@lightspeed.ca>
>>  So a +2 Charm if cast on a ring (worth negligible), the charm
>> costs $100,000.  However, if the same +2 charm is cast on
>> some fine armor made out of Mithril, forged in the depths of
>> time by the Dwarven gods, then (since the non-magical armor
>> is worth $1,000,000), casting the charm now costs 
>> $400,000???
>>  It does not make sense to me.

> Jeffrey Vandine wrote:
> Hmm.  I was under the impression that they were intended
> to support calculating the worth of the item in terms of "fair
> market value."  In other words, the whole point was to find
> out how much you were going to be charging someone to
> make it for them.  If you are making it for yourself, you
> wouldn't even bother with the notes.  But now you've got
> me wondering...

Jeffrey is correct.

It is about taking up so much of the wizards time.  He gives a discount if it takes less time; with daily rates being 1/5th their weekly pay, and hourly rates being 1/8th of even that.  But now you want to book the head enchanter for over two months straight?  He's already old.  Has apprentices he can't train, research put on hold, and all the while the Guild is very political and very built on status.

Look up the economic theory called "Final degree of utility determines value," or better yet read Karl Marx's "Law of the economy of time."

When Jeffrey said it was about "fair market value" he is practically quoting Steve Jackson.

> I wonder if Steve Jackson would answer a question on that?
>  Though at this late date, he might not remember either.  It's
> been what?  30+ years?
> Jeff

We already have his answer to that.
Here are Steve's own words from the Errata on Making ITL.

/begin quote from errata

Mid-1979: Correspondence with Draper Kauffman, a gamer in St. Louis, turned up some problems with the economics in TFT. That's my weak point; it seems to be one of the Draper's strong ones. He pointed out some problems and loopholes in the sections on jobs and magic items. He also told me how I could fix them . . . and I did, gratefully. (Thanks again, Draper!)

/ end quote from errata

And the specific mention of Draper Kauffman again in the Advanced Wizard errata.

/begin quote from errata

Page 29. Two clarifications, courtesy of Draper Kauffman. Footnote B: "Furthermore, some items, like Trip, Sleep, Fireproof, etc., affect only one hex in their basic forms. A basic Trip would not trip a giant; you would need either a triple-powered Trip (3 wizards, or one wizard and 6 weeks) or 3 normal Trip items. If you want to fireproof your horse, you could use a double-power Fireproof item, or two basic items. If you wanted to put a 14-hex dragon to sleep, you could do it with a 14-power Sleep item ($14,000!)".

Footnote C: "The basic Drop Weapon item works on figures with ST less than 20; the 2-power version works on any ST."

Page 30. My "cost of magical items" example is misleading. It was a calculation of the price the wizards would have charged for their work. However, it was NOT the "fair market value" of the coronet. Fair market value assumes the wizards worked in the most efficient way - and these did not.

Fair market value would be correctly figured thus: Jeweled coronet: $15,000. Add Telepathy spell: $20,000. Add Iron Flesh, doubled cost $32,000. Subtotal with two spells: $67,000. Add 20% of this, since Control Person is an "E" spell: $13,400. Add Control Person (quadrupled cost): $40,000. Add Reversed Missiles (octupled cost): another $40,000. Total value: $160,400.

Page 31. Apparent pasteup error. If the "Multiply Enchanted Item" rules is read at the beginning of page 30 the rules are more clear.

/ end quote from errata

Which reads to me that Draper was helping Steve by using both the "Law of economy of time" and "economies of scale".

Thanks for reading.

David Michael Grouchy II