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128

Reward the PCs with attention A group of level 2 PCs with a staff of the magi will soon find that everyone wants it. Many of these will be bad guys, but a few of them will be good guys. The GM can reward the PCs for their superior play by having the good guys contact the PCs and offer to take the staff off their hands for their own safety (instead of, for ...


87

Gold buys people Without a readily available source of high-end useful items, you can purchase large quantities of low-end things. For example, a hundred swords, a hundred kits of armor, a thousand man-years in soldier's wages and a dozen wagons of supplies can achieve a variety of things that a squad of powerful murderhobos can't. A supply of gold can ...


85

While a lot of the other answers are perfectly valid and good ideas, I'd like to offer an alternative solution that hasn't been mentioned yet which can also work in some situations: deal with the problem out-of-game, not through DM fiat, but rather through admitting you made a mistake. DMs shouldn't be expected to be infallible. If you can explain to your ...


74

This is one of those "Let me tell you a story about how things were pre-third edition" questions. In every D&D edition from the 1970s to the year 2000, you couldn't buy magic items to spec. But you still got gold. We didn't complain about it and found it quite useful. In most of real world history, you couldn't buy magic items. Yet still gold/money is ...


62

There's a two step process needed here. Say to your players what you just said to us Then mind your own business Have they not noticed that imbalanced loot is throwing off their party balance? Or is it that they don't care? If they do not care and are having fun, it is not a problem. If they haven't noticed, then just telling them "Hey gear is ...


49

Make it be cursed. A very powerful item will make many adventuring parties suspicious, but if yours are just happy to go forward using it, they are in for a surprise. I would pick an "interesting" curse that makes them wary of using it but still leaves them (technically) with the option to do so. For example, every charge used could alert some extraplanar ...


47

Take a lesson from real-life windfalls: Investment First - don't panic! This happens all the time: http://www.fudco.com/chip/lessons.html (read from "You can't trust anyone".) Give them something to invest in - let them make a down payment on a keep or an airship - something that will really pay off for them in the future. The Paladin/Cleric should give ...


46

The Brinks Job, The Italian Job, Willow, or Charlie Varrick? the players worked their way through a series of fiendish traps into a high security vault, where they recovered a Staff of the Magi. Your low level PC's broke into a secure storage site and stole something extremely valuable. Hollywood is packed with this trope, a big heist and the ... uh ...


41

"There's no magic item economy" does not equal "Magic items are never bought and sold". It's just that there's no set market for them, they're too rare for that. If a character puts word out that he's looking for a particular item, someone might manage to turn it up for the right price. Barring that, commissioning someone to create the item might be ...


39

They can, sure. But the BD&D rules are quite explicit that they typically have no value. In general, Weapon and armor used by monsters are rarely in good enough condition to sell (BD&D p 42). So they can collect them, they can even use them, but no, merchants won't buy them unless they are particularly pristine.


36

You can have several tricks to get around this, I've used similar methods with fantasy and cyberpunk games. Security Weapons are keycoded, or Palmprinting - this stops anyone but a certain person using it. Yes you can bypass it, but it's either difficult or very pricey. Limited uses Yes, you've got a melta gun - but getting ammo/powerpacks for it is ...


33

Break it up. A gem that large is literally priceless. As in, it's worth so much that no one will be willing to buy it for more than a tiny fraction of its value. Imagine that happened on earth. Its value would be several hundreds of billions of dollars. Who would pay that much? Now think about trying to sell chunks of it. You could much more easily sell a ...


31

As noted, this is a player decision rather than a GM one. However, here is the system that one of my groups used to good effect in the past: Loot is pooled until the end of the night or adventure (although particularly powerful upgrades may be lent out on a temporary basis). Calculate the total sell value of the pool of items (that is, how much the players ...


30

They don't have to be no treasure There's ways to do things like this without inexplicably giving the monsters wealth. Here's a few: Location, Location, Location In the module Ruins of Myth Drannor for 3.0 there's a small dungeon sequence in which almost none of the enemies have treasure. Thankfully, the dungeon itself is full of valuables! Consider ...


27

Introduce NPCs and plotlines/quests to handle redistribution and to bring the "lagging" PCs up to "speed" via personalized rewards (and, if very, very badly needed, punishments.) Examples: If your ranger has barely any items, run a sylvan quest for whose completion he is given a magic bow made / customized especially for him by a dryad. If it's your ...


25

You can make this an "evolving" item, that only reveals its full power over time as the character becomes more attuned to it and puts effort into discovering more of its potential. That means you can stat it up as a regular 2-to-4th level magic item, and mention that the character can sense greater potential that's locked away. As a bonus, you can "evolve" ...


24

I once had a Shadowrun group who hit a truck transporting gold, and they walked away with something like two million nuyen (each) in a campaign where that was more than they had combined through character creation and their careers. It was somewhat of a mess, but it counteracted itself nicely, because I didn't just let them spend it on anything they could ...


24

GM guides have long advocated solutions like bandits, tax collectors, and runaway inflation, but they rarely work out well in practice. Partly that's because those solutions have unintended consequences like vigilanteism, tax evasion, and bookkeeping headaches. The bigger problem is that players are sensitive to loss, and they react very poorly to losses ...


24

The biggest difference between fantasy and sci-fi notions of value is that: ideas have value Therefore, besides the standard stuff players receive, they can also discover what amounts to IP. One of the oddest forms of IP is actually Real Estate, as it's a purely symbolic agreement that X owns area Y, even though X may not sit on Y with guns. (Note how this ...


24

You say: Once you've got the top level mundane gear and a stockpile of potions (which won't take long), doesn't gold become sort of worthless? equally, in a 3rd edition setting: Once you've got the top level wands, magic armor, vorpal swords and a stockpile of wondrous items (which won't take long), doesn't gold become sort of worthless? or to ...


23

I just watched someone buy a painting for $3,500,000. It doesn't come to life, it doesn't tell the future, it doesn't even age while they stay young. They primarily bought it to annoy someone else that wanted it, as far as I could see. What you're having is a failure to roleplay. The players are not imagining what they would do in the characters' place. ...


21

You already let them get the item. Give them the item. Give them the full paragon tier level item. One level 15ish item at +3 (if you are playing DnD 4e) won't significantly destabilize the game. Don't forget to account for the cost of this item in the expected treasure for the party, as well. As Scott points out in the comments above, you should not be ...


20

Choose whatever looks appropriate, plus a few flavourful items for theme, from TreantMonk's Guide, and Bunko's Bargain Basement. Choose flavourful items that will prove to be macguffins for your campaign. He explores all the magic items someone would have. An 18th level wizard will have 3 categories of items. "Junk I collected," "Stuff that's applicable to ...


19

This is clearly something the master has no decision whatsoever. The characters need to find an agreement on that. Let them fight. Don't get involved until you see Coke bottles flying around.


19

First off, since the question is tagged rogue-trader, I'll reiterate that the PCs are already able to get their hands on the best gear out there anyhow. "You're the owners and command staff of a 5km warpship with access to resources in excess of some worlds' annual gross planetary production" will get you pretty far. As in, if you want to buy a melta gun, ...


19

I'm a bit surprised that nobody provided the ways gold can be spent in the players handbook, so maybe I'm missing something however. The biggest expenses after you purchase your armor and weapons in the 5e player handbook is "Downtime Activities" and "Services". There are two major expenses which while it looks like they may not require much gold, ...


19

There's no hard-and-fast set of rules on this. But we've got a few touchstones that can inform a good scheme: 1. PHB5e: skilled laborer. Skilled laborers hire out at 2gp per day. But do not equate the work of even a level 1 adventurer with that of a skilled laborer. The unskilled laborer is told: carry those bricks. The skilled laborer is told: build that ...


18

Most people don't keep piles of gold under their beds, especially when they're as wealthy as a Lvl 18 character. Furthermore, wealth doesn't need to mean gold pieces either, but can be tied up in all kinds of assets. Finally, the wizard is evil. That gives us a lot to work with. Here are a few suggestions: The money is safely tucked away in investments. ...


18

To get a handle on how big this gem could be: quartz, a relatively light semi-precious gemstone, is about 160 lbs per cubic foot. That means your one-ton rock is probably under 12 cubic feet, or under 3x3x3 feet in dimension. So your primary concern is weight, not size. Some options, which may need to be combined depending on what you have available: Hire ...


17

You say this makes designing encounters pretty hard for you. I say you care too much. You seem like this is your problem, though in fact it should be theirs. If you design encounters that take into consideration their self-imposed handicaps, then they won't ever feel there is a problem. You nurse them overmuch. If you tell them the problem, they will not ...



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