Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Prices Template - Part C - Raw Material Cost

The 'Raw Material Cost' tab is the crux of the table, and indeed the crux of the whole trade system.  These is the practical calculations I've been holding back all this time.  As you can see, there are a lot of them.  As I said before, they've been built up one by one over time, until you have what you see here.

in each case, the references from the previous table are used as a ratio to calculate the price of various items, usually per ounce or sometimes per specific object.  Furs, for instance, are calculated per pelt, animals per head, gems per cubic centimeter and so on.  Much of this table uses other parts of this table in order to calculate the total price of things - probably the best example of this is the cow.

If you go to lines 922 and 923, you can see the price of a cow or a calf outlined.  The price of the cow is based upon the basic cost per head (determined on the reference table), then augmented by the cost to feed the cow for a two year period, whereupon it will be at the height of its meat, leather and milk production ... though it may be kept for a longer period.  A calf, you will notice, is fed for only three months, and that is why a calf costs less.

The price of the forage for the cow can be found on line 782, this price being based upon the total 'cereals' shown on the reference table, which is used in calculating the cost of 'preparing' the base cost of general cereals.  You will note there is also a 'inkeeper feed' cost, which is calculated by the number of market references in this particular market city.

The price of milk is then hinged on the price of the cow, and how much milk it is predicted it will produce in a year (all production figures for the reference table are annual, which determines all prices throughout the system).  You can find raw milk costs on line 208, along with the cost of cream & kumiss, butter & ghee, and ordinary cheese.  Other cheeses of course are calculated against these prices.

The price of cowhide can be found on line 370, as opposed to horsehide or sheepskin and so on, which are all determined by the price of those animals as opposed to cows.  The cost of salt is added (from line 591), then the cost of tanning the hide, plus the size of the hide and its cost per ounce.  This is then used to give the cost of cowhide leather craft, found on line 388.  That line shows the cost of leather armor there, along with the costs of gloves, hats and boots, which are considered more expensive to produce than leathercraft.

If you want, you can have your leathercraft embroidered, which would mean my creating a calculation for it using the reference for embroidery found on the 'References' tab, line 493.  You could have it embossed (again, I'd have to make the calculation, but that's actually quite easy), from 'References' line 492 ('artworks').  You could also have it sewn with gems ('References', line 809, 'lapidary') or fitted with fur ('References', line 361).  It is really all up to you, and the prices are all worked out according to the general system.  Obviously, once I create a new calculation for a specific thing, I leave it in the system.

If you want the cost of cow meat, you can find it on the 'Raw Material Cost' tab on line 252.  'On the hoof' means the price paid to the rancher who brings in a live cow.  The 'Stockyard' price is what you pay if you buy the cow unslaughtered.  The 'Abattoir' price is what you pay for a side of slaughtered cow that hasn't been cut into steaks for you.  The 'Butcher' price is the cost for cut up and ready to cook.  'Inn Fare' is the additional cost the inn charges you.  'Smokehouse' is the cost of drying or smoking ready meat.  Sausage is the cost for the meat in that way, where as Pates are more expensive still.  Pates de foie gras is the cost of goose liver pates (which has its own cost track, naturally) made in that particular manner.

So you can see that everything is hinged together.  The number of stockyard references determines the mark-up on cows, the slaughtering references determines the mark-up at the abattoir, and so on and so forth, so that each stage has a specific price and each price is logical for the place and condition for which the meat is sold.  And every part of the table works exactly the same way.

Thus if you think of a combination of things that doesn't at this point exist, you can follow the process of mixing those things together to get the appropriate, logical price.

Now, there is another calculation here that might seem a little unreasonable, but you'll have to believe me that it works.  Part of the problem, as I said yesterday, is not having proper figures for a lot of specific items.  Fruits, for instance, the same thing as yesterday.  I have references for fruits, but I don't have total production for every kind of fruit, not even from the U.N., which tends to skip some items in their annual report or simply mixes them together.

I used to solve this by having a 'fruit' price on the table and telling players it was whatever was local.  But then I reasoned I could assess a price for fruits (or other things) on the number of references I had for that particular fruit measured against all other fruits.  If I then used a log calculation to work out a ratio, I could keep the difference in price from getting out of hand, and get specific prices for specific varieties of things ... like fruits, or cereals, or vegetables or kinds of stone or what have you.

Thus you can see on lines 839 to 871 that each type of fruit has a ratio, and that this ratio is multiplied against the general price for all fruits (line 831).  This gives me a price for things as obscure as whortleberries or citrons, for which I had no world-wide production statistics.

The rest of this is pretty much just familiarizing yourself with the massive number of calculations on this page (there are about 2,200 of them), determining the raw price on a wide variety of goods and services.  I am probably better off answering questions here than attempting to guess what things need to be deciphered.  Good luck!

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