I'm GMing a 5e game in a mythic ancient greek setting (loosely inspired by Xena). I've been giving the party loot slower than the rate suggested in the DMG (they only had 4 rolls on the challenge 0-4 table rather than the 7 suggested for that bracket on pg 133), but other than buying horses and some ritual components they've not really ended up spending more than a tiny amount of it. What sort of things should I be offering them to allow them to spend stuff?

The party are level 5, soon to be level 6, and include a druid, a rogue, and a warlock.


Well, what do they want?

5e is a big step "back" from 4e, and even 3/3.5, in that wealth is not meant for combat effectiveness. Find out what your players have in mind as endgames for their characters, and start letting them work towards that-- for example, do you have a cleric in the party? Build a church or other holy place. Wizard? Arcane laboratory! (That one in particular opens up a lot of new material by way of reagent-gathering.)

If it comes down to it, you can just scatter about a few NPCs with minor magic items for sale, but this shouldn't be necessary.

  • \$\begingroup\$ That makes sense - I've mentioned to them the option of saving towards a town house, and will let them do some shopping for minor items like potions. \$\endgroup\$ – Beornwulf Mar 30 '16 at 18:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ Potions are definitely a good option-- just make sure to limit which ones they have available. You wouldn't want them suddenly being able to buy potions that will provide what amounts to a full heal in a Whatever-drinking-a-potion-is-in-this-edition Action, after all! Maybe if they're in a huge city, but in your typical town you won't find much more than a few Potions of Cure Light Wounds, if that. \$\endgroup\$ – Passage Mar 30 '16 at 19:07

It sounds like they need more money sinks.

You can give them all sorts of opportunities to spend money in so many different ways - the important thing is to make them feel like they've gotten something from their expense. Maybe they could get a bonus to charisma with a certain group of NPC's cause they bought them a huge round of drinks, or if they're a higher level you could let them buy the deed to a ruined castle (Which they would then have to spend more money to rebuild and refit).

If you're feeling nasty and need a plot hook you could have a particular thief steal from their coin purses. Most likely they'll hunt him down at which point you can give them some other non gold reward for their troubles - maybe a magic item or a new NPC connection to help them with whatever they're working on.

But maybe that's all too much, and you're only trying to get rid of a little gold. In that case, just make sure they pay for the little things you'd have to pay for in real life. Eating out at a tavern? Maybe there's a plague or flu and the price of meat has sky-rocketed, or the ale shipment was hijacked. The price doesn't have to be the same as it says in the DMG. It's your game, and things like this will slowly whittle away at the party wallets while adding to the immersion and helping your world feel even more real.


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