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Thread: DM problem....

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Default DM problem....

    Ok I just died & my dm saw fit to change spots and I was all for it. I look into it a bit and found out he keept us horiblely under paid and we had little magical items. In my hast to kill my self and every enemy with in my area(trying for 2 bosses), well I destroyed what little we had. My group (That will get hard for me to start saying) is level 7 per player, 3 some times but all ways 2 at lest. Befor I died I spent what I had on gems for my spells wasting all my money and only geting a 2 good spells out of it. My friend had 1.2k gold.

    So what IS the right amount(gold) for players level 7 and the right amount of magical booty they carry?

    Sorry for spelling and grammer for I dont have firefox

    Any help of hints?

    edited: some spelling
    Last edited by Demons_eye; 2008-03-12 at 06:06 PM.
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    The DMG lists Average Wealth for a 7th level character as 19,000 gp. That's combined gold and equipment.
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    yes yes thats what the book says but I am here to find out what DM like to have there groups at and how in gods name to rasie the loot score from 0 to that much with out over loading them?
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Hmmmm no idea? no idea how I can give them 19,000 gold each?
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    I think the players ought to strike gold in their basement. Letsee... 19,000 gold.

    50 gp One pound of gold according to the SRD. So... 380 pounds of gold. Yeah, better just a huge treasure chest conviently mailed to them by...

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Give the warrior a +1 Holy longsword of kickassery and other nifty enchantments, give the skillmonkey boots of striding and springing, a handy haversack, and other assorted utility items plus a +1 weapon of choice, give the arcanist a pearl of power or two and assorted wondrous items (A figurine to summon a pseudodragon for 10 minutes per day is a favorite of mine), and give the divine char beads, incense, etc.

    Oh, and most DM's like to keep their players in the WBL, because that's what the encounters assume you have. In keeping you so underlooted, your DM is being a bitch, plain 'n simple.

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Tell them they now have 19,000 gold to spend on gear each. Or, if you want an ingame method, they run across a random treasure chest that conveniently has a number of sealed bags equal to the number of party members, each bag holding exactly 19,000 GP>

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    @ shadow
    Maybe they dont have a house?


    @ everyone else
    Thanks I was going to give them some items but should I roll them or pick em out?
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Pick them. Nothing is more irritating than getting 4 of those owl figurines that disintegrate after a few uses. Rolling is when you REALLY don't have time, or, in the classic sense of the word, for n00bs.

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    It's that much in combined gold, items, and whatnot. If they want gold they should have to sell junk for it.

    Send them up against a few lower level parties with the right amount of equipment for their levels. Once they kill said parties, they can loot their corpses.

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    @ Demon

    What sort of self respecting player doesn't have a batcave?
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Don't give it to them for free.

    Make them work for it.

    Increase loot by 3 times what it should be.

    Have the party's cleric get orders from his church to explore tomb, and clean out the Undead. In the tomb, find a spellbook. The cleric's superiors reward the cleric with a magical tool. In the spellbook there are directions to a magical sword, or maybe directions on how to make a magical sword from particular materials (and location where to get the materials).

    The route there crosses a pass, which has been closed by giants. (Going up the pass leads to increasing numbers of encounters with giants. At some point the party should figure out "run"). An alternative route under the mountain is found (possibly a guide offers to bring them along the route).

    Under the mountain, they take a detour. They find an sick and dieing dragon, who nevertheless attacks them. When the dragon is killed, blood splashes out onto the party rogue's cloak, which is imbued with magic.

    They get out of the caves and enter the forest, where the starmetal is rumored to be found. The forest is under a shadow -- many battles ensue as they attempt to make their way to the impact location.

    Etc etc.

    Each of the "kick ass" magical items gotten is tailored to the party -- much more fun than buying it in a shop. Each comes from an interesting encounter.

    If you are concerned about combat power balance, try to have the weaker party members get a magical item that suits them first. Ie, the magical sword has runes on it that describe the hidden location of a tome of power, instead of the tome of power having a description of where the sword is.

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    if i get it right, you also wish to integrate getting the items/ loot into the game, and preferably now. how about this then- the party are approached by some organization/ group of people/ and so on (lets say a temple as an example). hearing of the party's deeds, they come seeking their help- some disaster/ dangerous quest requires their heroic skills.
    in order to prove the temple's seriousness, he will grant the party some itesm from it's hoard/ donations from clergy/ other source. or they could have some custom made items made for them (and so both you and the players can decide the items. you can decide how much influence each side has).
    the benefit from this, is that when the character's suddenly get this hefty boost, it is tied to a serious occasion, and undertaking, instead of "suddenly" finding far more loot than they were used too. then, when going on this "dangerous quest", make it feel importent enough, so the increased loot would make sense. this way the sudden change in "treasure portions" wouldn't seem to sharp.

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Have the playrs meet a wealthy NPC who will pay them heavily for helping him with his quests.

    Alternatively, if the fight a lot of foes that are lower leveled but rely on their magic items in combat, than they'll get a variety of interesting items.

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    I've found as a DM the best way to boost up loot in the party is to send them on a side-quest to do some dragon hunting. Dragons have loot-piles, it's what they do. Have a dragon eating all the sheep in a village and the party gets hired to slay it/the party decides to slay it/any other reason. I mean it's a freakin' dragon, they're in the title of the game! Players want to slay dragons.

    As a player, when my character is low on cash, I purposefully have them LOOK for dragons. Best form of money-making available.
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Quote Originally Posted by Kol Korran View Post
    if i get it right, you also wish to integrate getting the items/ loot into the game, and preferably now. how about this then- the party are approached by some organization/ group of people/ and so on (lets say a temple as an example). hearing of the party's deeds, they come seeking their help- some disaster/ dangerous quest requires their heroic skills.
    in order to prove the temple's seriousness, he will grant the party some itesm from it's hoard/ donations from clergy/ other source. or they could have some custom made items made for them (and so both you and the players can decide the items. you can decide how much influence each side has).
    the benefit from this, is that when the character's suddenly get this hefty boost, it is tied to a serious occasion, and undertaking, instead of "suddenly" finding far more loot than they were used too. then, when going on this "dangerous quest", make it feel importent enough, so the increased loot would make sense. this way the sudden change in "treasure portions" wouldn't seem to sharp.
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Personally, I have always been a fan of the "wise old seer who knows too much but aids the party" cliche. Yup, its trite and cliche, but it works. You can even play it out all creepy and have a lot of fun with it. I would only use it to beef the party up all at once. For more subtle (which is my usual route) just make the gold awards higher for a while, until it levels out. But its a great way to do it. Sure, you can't just "make" magic items out of the party's existing items by RAW, but that's why you are the DM, right?

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    Character C: "How do you know these things? Who are you?"
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    *There is a flash of light, and you are overcome with a sense of vertigo... when your dazzled eyes clear, the man is gone. Bjorn, the blade in your hand feels lighter, and its edge ripples with energy as you look down at it...*
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyger View Post
    but go well prepared. For there you shall find your true destiny.
    Sorry, but any Dm who actually uses the phrase "there you shall find your true destiny" deserves to be kicked in the pants.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Demons_eye View Post
    yes yes thats what the book says but I am here to find out what DM like to have there groups at and how in gods name to rasie the loot score from 0 to that much with out over loading them?
    I go with the tables. I usually design adventures to miraculously give out just the right amount of gold per level (see the DMG table for average treasure gp value per encounter level), and so on.

    This because D&D 3.5 is very much fine-tuned so that challenges are balanced if the PCs have the right amount of gold in equipment. If they have less, it's too hard; if they have more, it's too easy. (More has always, always been worse than less, though.)

    In some games - like my Dark Sun campaign and my Dragonlance campaign - I chuck the treasure tables out the window, because I want the PCs to be strapped for magic items and equipment, and want the game to be more challenging. The incidence of PC deaths rises about 50 - 200%, which is just what Dark Sun needs.

    (I really prefer d20 games that do away with this reliance on equipment, like d20 Modern and Conan d20.)


    Edit:

    Do some hoards. They find an ancient treasure guarded by deadly traps, or something like that. It's not hard.
    Last edited by Tsotha-lanti; 2008-03-13 at 02:27 PM.

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    There's always the age old fix my group uses.

    Die.

    Then the party gets to loot your corpse, you reroll with WBL, and continue on down the line until you are properly outfitted.

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    WBL also assumes that most of the wealth is found in items worth no more than 1/3 of the WBL, meaning that, at lvl 7, a +2 Sword or that +1 Keen shortsword are absolutely top of the line. Iīd start of by having the party fight through a gauntlet of encounters before reaching a magical cache of some sort, that has some kinds of weapons and armor, a few potions and such, or looting another kind of old treasure, and then letting them be enlisted by some powerful or rich individual, which also provides them with gold.
    Thus, you have both some "random" and some custom loot. But donīt hand out too much money - the characters will buy items which might unbalance encounters at that level (one could buy a cape of the mountebank at lvl 6, before someone could cast the spell, if one had all oneīs WBL in coin).

    Oh, and I always like custom loot: Anybody can buy a +2 sword or a headband of intellect, but a "charm of mercy (3/day CLW at Caster lvl 1)" or the "Reinforced Sarashi (+2 Con, +1 Enhancement to natural armor, vest slot)" can only be found - or crafted.
    Such loot is special, and people tend to remember it or desire it above other equally useful items.
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    So to sum up:
    1> Don't just give it to them. Make the players do something for it. People value things they work for more than windfalls.

    2> Have it ramp up medium-quickly. You do want to bring them up to WBL.

    3> Include interesting items. Cheat, and custom-tailor them by character. The custom magic item rules are good for this.

    4> Don't dump all of the value into one item. 1/3 to 1/2 of WBL in one item, and less on other items, is a good plan.

    Things to avoid:
    Don't give them gold and send them into ye olde magic items shoppe. Do try to understand what each character needs.

    Needs of a character:
    +Stat item in their important stats.
    Primary tool, enchanted (weapon, bow, spells, etc).
    Defensive Items (Magic armor, shields, bracers of armor, etc).
    Fun toys.
    Supply of charged items (scrolls/wands/potions)

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    So, you're taking over a pre-existing group, and you've checked the DMG and they're well behind Wealth By Level...

    First thing I'd do is ask the old DM (who presumably is now a player) if he minds you dumping a massive amount of gold and items on the group (this is basically asking if he still sees it as his game or not).

    Then tell the group that you've found they're low on wealth, and ask them if they want you to redress the balance, or if they're having fun with the current style. This is the most important thing (satisfying your players) and it's perfectly ok to play a less Monty Haul style game than WBL suggests.

    If you/they decide to keep it low wealth, you'll probably to give them encounters a bit below their level and remember to look out for unusual attacks and defenses they can't deal with when chosing monsters.

    If you decide to increase wealth, I'd get little lists from people of the sort of magic items they're interested in (I've just done this for my game), then construct a construct a dungeon with a nice treasure trove at the end. Put 1 or 2 reasonable items off each players list in and a decent pile of gold, and some standard potions, wands and things. Next session tell the players that as their characters are interested in aquiring more wealth they've found out about this abandoned whatever that is believed to contain lost treasure :) After that you can let their wealth grow at more or less standard rate.

    Another way to give the players a big haul would be to have them follow a villian to some lost ruins or somesuch. The villian is going there to fullfil some evil plot which the PCs stop, but while there the group can explore the ruins and find a treasure that no one ever knew about.

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Casting my votes in for things that have already been said... :)

    1) Make sure it's okay for you to radically alter the wealth of the characters in the campaign. In particular, be sure to ask the last DM.
    2) (Optionally) inform the players that they're way behind the game's intended WBL, ask them if they'd like to change that, and make sure they understand the consequences (i.e. their character's abilities being more dependent on gear).
    3) Customize the loot for the characters, so they find "just what they needed," and maybe a few useful things they'd never think of. (I gave a gnome cleric PC a Hand of the Mage, in the form of a gnome glove that could lift things ala the gravity gun in Half-Life 2. She loved it.)
    4) Make the encounter epic in feel (but not necessarily in challenge). Raiding the lair of a young dragon that recently set up camp nearby sounds like fun to me, assuming your crew doesn't encounter one often. It's a good reason to have a lot of unique loot nearby, and won't give them bad impressions of the creature standing in the way (they'll suspect that older, entrenched dragons are a much greater threat). The dragon may even flee, rather than die for a recently-acquired horde, presenting a new ongoing foe for the PCs.

    Hope that helps!

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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Quote Originally Posted by Yakk View Post
    Don't give it to them for free.

    Make them work for it.
    Give them some easier encounters. Maybe a few monsters or dungeon with a CR less than the party to make sure they succeed and get some good money/stuff.

    However, just because a book says they deserve 19000 gp does not mean that they should get it. A good DM balances an encounter by the equipment, level of PCs, and experience of the players. I would suggest having them slowly work up to the money they "should have"
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    As the aforementioned former DM, I'd like to say my point of view.

    1. The party was handling level appropriate (or higher) encounters just fine without any significant loot.
    2. As I am now a player, I have no problem with instantly being showered with wealth.
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    Default Re: DM problem....

    Have them clear some mines of a few Kobolds. I mean of course a thirteen level iron complex complete with falling ceilings and pit fall floors, and thousands upon thousands of Kobolds.

    Then have the 'quest giver' A noble ideally, offer them: A voucher for a magical item from the shop/armory, or cash. If they cash out, drop the full weight on that particular party member. 380 pounds should keep splatter anyone who can't treat it as a light load.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Azerian Kelimon View Post
    Pick them. Nothing is more irritating than getting 4 of those owl figurines that disintegrate after a few uses. Rolling is when you REALLY don't have time, or, in the classic sense of the word, for n00bs.
    Rolling takes forever. There are so many tables.
    It's more fun though. I tend to give out more rolled loot, since it's often less useful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cuddly View Post
    Rolling takes forever. There are so many tables.
    It's more fun though. I tend to give out more rolled loot, since it's often less useful.
    Actually, one can use many treasure generators found on the net. This can make rolling treasure much quicker.

    I am personally against not rolling and letting the DM choose the treasure. It is my experience that DMs will often maximize certain characters and not others. Allowing players to sell the useless magical items for half price and purchase other items allows everyone to progress at roughly the same rate. Additionally, rolling ensure that players find items and use them that they might otherwise not know about or find useful enough to purchase (i.e., folding boat).
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