103

The ruling seems very reasonable Originally the goblins were at a reasonable advantage and knew it. Successful intimidation made it so they weren't that sure anymore, probably assuming that the PCs were more dangerous than anticipated, making them (supposedly) no easy victims. In this case, taking a more reasonable price in the negotiation seems very logical....


48

Remove the money obstacle for most situations As stated within some of the questions you cited, the value of money is 5e is dramatically different than it was in other editions. Furthermore, you've indicated that your party is typically helpful and won't try to scam a ruling to stretch it to an unreasonable degree. To that end, I would recommend simplifying ...


46

Natural 20 has no bearing on Ability Checks The rules for Natural 20 state: If the d20 roll for an attack is a 20, the attack hits regardless of any modifiers or the target's AC. This is called a critical hit, which is explained later in this chapter. This is strictly for attacks. There is no such clause under Ability Checks: To make an ability check, ...


44

Resurrection doesn't absolve anyone of a murder already committed I may be getting a little close to real world religion here, but absolution comes from without, from the agency of another, not from one's self. absolution noun: formal release from guilt, obligation, or punishment. While the spell undoes the effects of the crime, the act of harming was not ...


37

A bit of a frame challenge: It's actually not that bad to just give away knowledge that the character would have but the player doesn't, especially due to lack of experience with the system or with the world. The characters are immersed in the world, the players are not. The DM should absolutely note things that the characters would know and just give that ...


33

Have the next several quests not carry significant monetary rewards Your primary concern is that if you give them a full-size dragon hoard that will be more money than they will see again in quite some time, and as such they will not be motivated to engage with the next several quests. That is true only if the next several quests attempt to motivate them ...


30

This is what your player is expecting: This is not how 5e works (and as a matter of fact, not how most RPG systems I am aware work). It seems your player is not familiar with the system (it's comprehensible - it's practically their first time playing), and therefore their expectations are completely off from the actual game design. Talk about these ...


29

Restitution does not mean "not guilty" If I embezzle money, use it to win the lottery, and then pay back all that I took, I'm still an embezzler. If I steal a car, drive to Las Vegas and back, then return it with a full tank of gas, I'm still a thief. If I try to kill someone, but they manage to live, I'm still an attempted murderer. Same rules ...


24

Given this is a school club activity, you most likely have a staff advisor for your club. You should talk to your club advisor about this problem player, specifically about how they're ruining the fun for other players by spoiling the adventure, removing (much of) the challenge from encounters, and plain old cheating (using loaded dice or faking rolls). ...


22

Don't try to use in-game means to fix it. Trying to use the game itself to deal with the problem player (hereafter TPP) is going to run into several problems, foremost among which that TPP is playing a different game than you are. You're (presumably) trying to run Curse of Strahd to give your players a good, if challenging, time; TPP is trying to "beat&...


20

You've written: "I suppose that a valid solution will probably discuss how to shift focus concerning the reward away from the money." So let's first talk about the money, and then talk about non-monetary rewards. About That Money: Dragons will try to make as large a hoard as they can, but some of them aren't very successful at it. In an adventure ...


18

I’ve seen this issue from both sides. As a GM, it’s really easy to say something ambiguous or describe something in a specific manner that the players interpret as “ooh, let’s check that out” instead of as “hmm, interesting, now let’s go”. As a player, I (which may not be the same for your players) find it fun to check out every little side thing even if ...


17

I would address this by considering the following: where did the Dragon's hoard came from, who is giving the party the quest, and the party's/individual character's motivations. The solution to the problem you've presented will almost certainly change depending on context. I'm going to outline a few possibilities that will hopefully spark your imagination ...


16

I have had the same problem before, there are some fairly simple solutions that worked for me: Have the players explain their own character's absence Have players come up with reasons for why their character can't make it or why they have been absent. If someone asks you, say "I don't know, ask them". We had a monk who often wouldn't show up, and ...


16

First measure for group problems: talking If you perceive a problem within you group, the best action you can take is usually talking to your players. In your case, it seems that the player is acknowledging the problem you perceive and is willing help resolve it. However, you should talk to the other players and see if they also perceive a problem. If they ...


16

Let your DM declare the dungeon scouted and then improvise scouting information on demand Just because your characters now know the entire layout of the dungeon doesn't mean that you need to. If your DM is willing to work with you on this, he can just declare "ok, you spent an hour scouting the dungeon", and then going forward, he can give you ...


16

One way to deal with this is to nest a side quest within the encounter where they have overestimated the importance. Rather than making the encounter more significant than you originally intended, keep it the same, but offer them something else—perhaps the chance to help the lord or someone else in the manor with another matter entirely—so that the encounter ...


15

What is the court intended to accomplish? Step away from your initial problem for a moment. What is your judicial system supposed to accomplish? Why do you have courts at all? Some (real world) ideas that may be useful: Retribution: Criminals deserve to be punished. Punishment is not intended to "fix" problems, it is intended to punish people for ...


12

Laws apply differently to rich people in real life We don't have resurrection, but this happens in real life too. Bribing judges, getting lesser sentences because of status, getting a comfier jail cell, having a fine instead of incarceration, etc. Why don't rich people abuse this power constantly? Well, they do. However there are different consequences for ...


12

There are different ways on how to deal with this all of them valid. You will have to choose for yourself what fits right for your group and game. Depending on what your game and preparation allows, adjust the adventure to give players actions more significance. This will reward your players for their effort and I find that it generally improves the quality ...


11

You can have the legal system treat the crime as punishable whether or not they "undo" its effects - in fact, I feel that's more realistic; I'd expect most civilisations to frown on people being assaulted and having their memories forcibly changed, even if the victim is no longer able to object. As a GM, I would have this start to affect other ...


11

Money is not a reward, and some things money can't buy. Money is a means to an end, a resource. Having a hoard of it is only useful in so far as your problems can be made to go away by throwing money at them or if your dreams and aspirations can be bought in a shop. If your characters are mercenaries looking for a big score, they just achieved their life's ...


11

Introduction As I understand it, you and your players are largely okay with the fact that this guy has incredible skills. Your problem is specifically that you want the other players to have a reason to put skill points into something that this guy can already do pretty well. There are some things you can do to encourage this, but if there is a broader ...


9

The group I play with used to have problems that resemble this, and I think a lot of the issue is that you're asking slightly the wrong question. Specifically, it looks to me like your group gets into a situation where you know what the current situation is, but not how you got there; the argument is high stakes because you're having arguments about what ...


8

You've written about "[finding] a narrative reason someone else can come along". I have practical experience with this, and I can tell you that what works the best is not doing that. Instead, I just rewrite reality. Let's suppose that Alice's player is out of town this week. What I say is: "Alice has never existed. There have been three of ...


8

Conflicting descriptions of the recent past shouldn't exist. The GM is (or should be) aware of the game's state, and should be consulted when that state is unclear to players That's a little bit exaggerated, for emphasis, but it's largely true for most tabletop game systems. Players can describe what they do, but until the GM has accepted and processed that ...


8

You write, This question is tagged dnd-5e, since consideration of the value of money or the magic item system might be relevant. I do, however, doubt that an answer based primarily on these would provide a satisfying solution to the problem at hand. Therefore I'll branch off a strict 5E rules perspective and mention what was done in the earliest editions ...


8

There are a few options, depending on how much work you want to give yourself as a DM and your ability to come with things on the fly! The players find nothing other than what you originally planned for them to find. This is an option you already considered. There is no requirement for you to offer up additional rewards just because the players accidentally ...


7

Perspective While there are already many fine answers to this question, they all (currently) give only abstract advice for talking to the player: "Come to an agreement on natural 20s," "Talk about expectations," etc. These are good answers, with good advice, so no disrespect is expressed or implied. But they're not concrete. My ...


7

Talk to the player If there is a problem, you should talk to whoever you think is causing the problem, without being accusatory. You should talk to them alone to not make them feel pointed out in front of everyone. You should be nice but be clear on the problem. Explain how cheating makes you uncomfortable that D&D still has rules, just like a board ...


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