A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
You can get A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2 now at Gumroad
Results 1 to 11 of 11

Thread: Loot mechanics

  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio
    Gender
    Male

    Default Loot mechanics

    As a summer diversion, I've been running an old-style dungeon crawl in Discord using GURPS. The biggest issue I've run into is loot - not generating it, or assigning it, or dividing it, but processing it. The last set of loot the party got (which, admittedly, was a "boss" cache and a couple of combats' worth) took two entire sessions (3 hours each) to process. I'm looking for ideas on how to streamline it.

    I suppose the ideal solution would be some sort of web-based tool to keep the items in, where I can easily change names/descriptions/prices as the party experiments and identifies things, but any other feedback is useful.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Titan in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2013

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    1) Which parts of processing does the group enjoy and which parts do they not enjoy? That will help figure out which parts to skip and which parts are okay if they take time (even if they take a full session).

    2) I assume part of the processing was identifying all the magic items. Is identification something the PCs can do trivially? If so then maybe you can time skip to after the identification.
    3) Do you use multiple types of currency (X copper, Y silver, Z gold) in the loot? Or have you prepared it all in one currency (gold)
    4) Can you create duplicate lists so everyone can look over the loot list at the same time? If in person, this would be multiple sheets of paper. If online this would be a single post/document.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Telok's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    61.2° N, 149.9° W
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    You want a spreadsheet with a locked page the players can't access and locked equations on the page they can access. The dm page just has a yes/no column the player page checks before displaying the id or no-id values.
    "And this, too, shall pass away."

    DtD40k7e rewrite complete.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    Quote Originally Posted by OldTrees1 View Post
    1) Which parts of processing does the group enjoy and which parts do they not enjoy? That will help figure out which parts to skip and which parts are okay if they take time (even if they take a full session).

    2) I assume part of the processing was identifying all the magic items. Is identification something the PCs can do trivially? If so then maybe you can time skip to after the identification.
    3) Do you use multiple types of currency (X copper, Y silver, Z gold) in the loot? Or have you prepared it all in one currency (gold)
    4) Can you create duplicate lists so everyone can look over the loot list at the same time? If in person, this would be multiple sheets of paper. If online this would be a single post/document.
    Identification is something the PCs can do, but involves skill checks.
    GURPS uses a base currency of Dollars, which I've converted into varied coin options in-universe. All loot and OOC stuff is in Dollars.
    I have my private spreadsheets that have actual values and identity of the items, and a dedicated Discord channel with obfuscated info for the players to read. I'm pretty sure I've made significant progress in streamlining the latter.


    Quote Originally Posted by Telok View Post
    You want a spreadsheet with a locked page the players can't access and locked equations on the page they can access. The dm page just has a yes/no column the player page checks before displaying the id or no-id values.
    I'm not quite sure how to set up something like that in Google Sheets or other online-sharable spreadsheets (could probably kludge it in Excel), but doing a lot of the work in such a sheet has some obvious appeal.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Banned
     
    GreenSorcererElf

    Join Date
    Jul 2016

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    Looting mechanics is a good idea. They usually have the most useful toolsets in post apocalyptic scenarios.

    Best way is to set it out yourself. "What do I want the party to have?" Another way is "what is realistic without getting too crazy?" They off a drug dealer and he's got a few hundred cash, a small amount of product and maybe a pistol. They off an archer and he's got a few gold, a bow and some arrows, a short sword and a quiver with leather armor. They off Cerberus and they get the gear from the last 3 people who have attempted to invade hades.

    Working out treasure yourself is going to result in superior results.
    Last edited by Calthropstu; 2021-09-08 at 05:56 PM.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Flumph

    Join Date
    Oct 2007

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    Six hours of "processing" seems like a lot. Besides identification, what does this processing involve, and which parts of it take the longest?

    If it's primarily identification, one way to streamline that would be to pre-roll those skills for each item when initially generating the loot. You can probably streamline this with a spreadsheet.

    So for example, instead of a back-and-forth for each item, you can just say:
    "Here are the items you were able to identify" *document with info already listed*
    "And there were some you couldn't: a silver dagger with draconic inscriptions, a clay bowl which glows faintly, and a large rusted helmet."

    Also, this is assuming that item-identification and having sometimes-unknown items is fun for you and the group. If not, then just skip the entire thing and give people the full info.
    Last edited by icefractal; 2021-09-08 at 06:33 PM.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Banned
     
    GreenSorcererElf

    Join Date
    Jul 2016

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    Quote Originally Posted by icefractal View Post
    Six hours of "processing" seems like a lot. Besides identification, what does this processing involve, and which parts of it take the longest?

    If it's primarily identification, one way to streamline that would be to pre-roll those skills for each item when initially generating the loot. You can probably streamline this with a spreadsheet.

    So for example, instead of a back-and-forth for each item, you can just say:
    "Here are the items you were able to identify" *document with info already listed*
    "And there were some you couldn't: a silver dagger with draconic inscriptions, a clay bowl which glows faintly, and a large rusted helmet."

    Also, this is assuming that item-identification and having sometimes-unknown items is fun for you and the group. If not, then just skip the entire thing and give people the full info.
    Oh wow. I misread this. I was thinking it was taking him 6 hours to run though treasure processing for his creatures using loot generators. As in "what they get here, and when they shoild get blah."

    If it's "you get x." and they spend a bunch of time looking up x, arguing about who x shpuld go to etc, that's a whole different beast.

    I would say, if it REALLY becomes an issue, just give it all in monetary value.
    Last edited by Calthropstu; 2021-09-08 at 07:23 PM.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2016

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    For large hoards, instead of generating every item, you could generate the major items individually, then say “you also find 10 minor magic items worth [x] gold”. Then ask each player if they are looking for a specific minor magic item, then roll a dice and give them a yes/no if it is in the hoard, then deduct the monetary value of the item from the hoard. You tell the players that they will convert the remaining minor items to gold automatically at the next opportunity then just put gold into their inventories not items.

    If the player asks for magic boots, you could assign a 50% chance of their being a random pair of magic boots in the hoard.
    However, if the player wants a pair of boots of water walking you might assign a 10% chance of there being that specific item in the hoard.
    Feel free to adjust the percentages as you see fit.

    At the end of the day most minor magic items that a player acquires end up sitting at the bottom of their backpack and the player forgetting that they have it in their inventory in the rare chances they get to use it. I think it’s better to let them pick items they want than to spend time sifting through random cool stuff they’ll probably never use.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Titan in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2013

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    Quote Originally Posted by Gnoman View Post
    Identification is something the PCs can do, but involves skill checks.
    GURPS uses a base currency of Dollars, which I've converted into varied coin options in-universe. All loot and OOC stuff is in Dollars.
    I have my private spreadsheets that have actual values and identity of the items, and a dedicated Discord channel with obfuscated info for the players to read. I'm pretty sure I've made significant progress in streamlining the latter.
    What part takes the most time then? I assume the Identification is the biggest block of time. (I am struggling to understand 6 hours) It sounds like currency or mundane appraisal is automatic and takes mere seconds IRL. Is there another form of processing involved (for example was logistics responsible for the 6 hours)?

    With Identification in Gurps, since it is a skill check, isn't there the option to take longer in game to make the check automatic? In D&D there is often a take 10 or take 20 option. In Gurps I heard spending more time gives a bonus and eventually the GM says "don't bother rolling, you succeed". Perhaps you could houserule, "For large loot identification, you can do 1 roll per item, if you fail then we assume it took extra time. I know your modifiers so I know the time it would take to automatically pass."

    Of course, since it took 6 hours, we need to know 2 details:
    1) What part did the players enjoy.
    2) What caused the process to take 6 hours.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    That's kind of against the spirit of this campaign, which is very much a "You're going to want backup characters, and you get what you happen to get" sort of old-school malicious setup. That's what the players signed up for.

    A fair bit of the time it took was just the raw updating - me going through the list and reposting what had now been identified. There was a fair bit of RP, poking at things, and discussion on if the items were worth keeping or not, but that's all fine.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Spamalot in the Playground
     
    Psyren's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Loot mechanics

    We play 3.P so my advice skews towards that.

    - Loot is generally ID'ed and divided between sessions, via discord. Identifying items in PF is pretty easy even at low levels, so there's no real drama to doing so that would necessitate it happening during table time.
    - We have players of varying skill levels, ranging from myself and the GM (veterans) to first-timers and some in-between. The more experienced players usually help the less decide on the best pieces for their build.
    - All items not being kept are slated to be sold off. The proceeds are then divided evenly among the party.
    - 10% of all currency is kept in a communal stash we call "party loot." Party loot is used for a variety of purposes, such as "I'm only 1k short of this big upgrade!" or "we need diamonds to raise/restore Thorgar" or "we need a new communal wand for out of combat healing."
    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
    Plague Doctor by Crimmy
    Ext. Sig (Handbooks/Creations)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •