DMC Diner, and Currency
I worked on a diner location for the DMC today. Last week, I was able to get the map hooked up such that I could launch an encounter by clicking on a section of the map. So today, I wanted to start fleshing out one of those locations to test out the flow.
The diner should be a sight for sore eyes (and empty stomachs) after traversing the wasteland for a few days. Full plates of food, and pitchers of relatively clean water. And a roof to eat it under! The promise of a hot meal is a worthy goal for a scavenger, so I want that experience to be satisfying.
What's more, the diner is a great place to sprinkle a bit of local culture and color, and start painting a picture of what the city is like as a whole. I used the opportunity to get creative with both the food on offer, and the location itself. There are three combo plates, and I had fun researching local Detroit food when putting them together.
However, as I was hooking it up in the encounter editor, I realized I forgot to look into payment methods. The player currently has money, but encounters don't have any way of knowing how much the player has. So far, I've been able to hide certain options when the player is missing the appropriate skill, item, or condition. But with money, it is neither an item nor skill. And making conditions for all potential prices (e.g. has > $10, has > $22, has > $24, etc.) would be inefficient.
The DMC is going to involve money. That's just the reality of a civilization. So I'll need to solve this one way or the other.
I briefly considered a type of polymer currency. Australia uses one, since it's more durable and harder to counterfeit. However, in an age of nanorobotic medkits, and other microfabrication, I suspect a polymer would be pretty easy to hack.
Another option is smartphone or debit cards. Smartphones are pretty ubiquitous, even today, and could easily interface over DMC wi-fi/4G to conduct a transaction between accounts. Basically, the phone is just access to an account number, and the transaction occurs remotely (like a using/recharging a metro card). This has the rather nifty side-effect of making smartphones a sort of currency, provided one could access the phone's contents.
Wasteland scavengers might have a cheapo smartphone to deposit money from selling scrap, and to use when buying services. And predatory types might return to the DMC with a handful of smartphones to hack and consolidate.
I think that would make for some interesting mechanics to try (including offering another use for hacking and/or electronics).
So I think that's where I'll start tomorrow morning. I'll still need to solve the actual transaction part, and might need to overhaul the junk market transaction method. But for now, I need to switch off my brain. Too much reading about future currencies :)