D&D 5E Best way to deal with greedy players and magic items in a fun game.

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
yours has a HUGE flaw though...

lets say 5 players find a +2 longsword worth 8,000gp and a ring of prot worth 2,000 gp and 4 scrolls/potions each worth 100gp and 6 gems worth 25gp each and 400gp in coins... grand total 10,950gp... divide by 5 and that is 2,190gp each... BUT one item alone is worth 8,000. So nobody gets the +2 longsword.
if you sell it for half value (4,000 gp) you just lowered EVERYONE's share from 2190gp to 1,390gp... but now that ring of prot is too much for anyone to take by 650gp (maybe someone has 650gp but if not) that means got to sell that for 1,000gp and that brings each share down to 1,190 gp.

Your way just cost the party 5,000gp of value... but MORE important the use of the fighter having the +2 long sword hitting more often for more damage (aka improving odds of every fight) and the cleric can't have the +1 AC and Saves that again would improve odds of fight

in order to make it seem fair your party is making every adventure harder on themselves
I don't know how he does it but I've done similar to what he described & what tends to happen is that players sometimes run a deficit or surplus where they get more or less gold than others because they got better/worse items one or more sessions back
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Were those other methods game-able by a greedy player? Every time we've tried any other method it's ended in disaster, mostly because someone* a) looked for, b) found, and c) used some means of gaming the system.
Sorry, the idea that there are no acceptable ways to distribute magic items except by book value isn't a valid one. Regardless if it's the only one you have found.

The lack of book prices is not the root cause of greedy players.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Sorry, the idea that there are no acceptable ways to distribute magic items except by book value isn't a valid one. Regardless if it's the only one you have found.

The lack of book prices is not the root cause of greedy players.
Why does "x didn't create greedy players" keep coming up to distract from how x disarms the group of options for dealing with greedy players? The lack of prices and lack of required need might not be the "root cause" of greedy players, but those kinds design choices sure do make it harder for the rest of the group to restrain their greed.
 


Egon Spengler

"We eat gods for breakfast!"
Every group has one of those.
They are normally called Dave.
Ours is.

Oof. I've got one of those in my regular group. Always lays first claim to every single magic item the party finds. Always tries to justify it with the old, "I was brave enough to pick it up / swing it around / put it on / say the command word and risk a curse before casting identify, so of course I should get to keep it!" And if the rest of the group "gangs up on him" and points out that he took the last five magic items for himself? He gets all "fine, whatever" sulky and stops paying attention to the game.

Rational conversation with myself and the other players has never managed to make a dent in curbing this tendency. So now I just avoid playing with him to the extent possible.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Why does "x didn't create greedy players" keep coming up to distract from how x disarms the group of options for dealing with greedy players? The lack of prices and lack of required need might not be the "root cause" of greedy players, but those kinds design choices sure do make it harder for the rest of the group to restrain their greed.
@Lanfane said that the cause of this was lack of prices. I don't accept that premise. I see that method of distributing items as one option, and a decent one, but among many useful ones. So it may be a minor contributor, but it is definitely not the cause.
 

Sorry, the idea that there are no acceptable ways to distribute magic items except by book value isn't a valid one.

@Lanfane said that the cause of this was lack of prices. I don't accept that premise. I see that method of distributing items as one option, and a decent one, but among many useful ones. So it may be a minor contributor, but it is definitely not the cause.
yeah, I have found that 1st best way to deal with items is to just all be fair and act like adults...talk it out.

We treat gold and items as 2 diffrent groups.... we split gold even. We then split items to 1st who can use it best and 2nd to who has the most need 3rd to who has the least items
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
@Lanfane said that the cause of this was lack of prices. I don't accept that premise. I see that method of distributing items as one option, and a decent one, but among many useful ones. So it may be a minor contributor, but it is definitely not the cause.
I don't believe that he did in this or his other posts. In that post "this" could be the broader problem of not having good ways of dealing with treasure distribution & given how the rest of that post is about exactly that it would be an exceedingly odd reading to assume that "this" was simply "greedy players"
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
I don't believe that he did in this or his other posts. In that post "this" could be the broader problem of not having good ways of dealing with treasure distribution & given how the rest of that post is about exactly that it would be an exceedingly odd reading to assume that "this" was simply "greedy players"
Please go read the first sentence again. They said: "IMO this is a natural outgrowth of 5e not having magic item pricing."

That really is saying that this is caused by not having magic item pricing. And when talking about other methods they shot them down.

I've been going back and forth with them and they aren't saying I misunderstood their point which would have cleared things up - earlier in this thread I have an email where someone clarified, I apologized and agreed with them. If there was a misunderstanding between Lanfane and I on their point it had every opportunity have come up, leaving that you thinking it's a misunderstanding is the true misunderstanding.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
yeah, I have found that 1st best way to deal with items is to just all be fair and act like adults...talk it out.

We treat gold and items as 2 diffrent groups.... we split gold even. We then split items to 1st who can use it best and 2nd to who has the most need 3rd to who has the least items
This is very similar to one group I'm in. Gold and things convertible to gold we split into N+1 shares - everyone gets a share, and a share to party funds for things we do together. Items go to whomever needs them most, and often whomever gets it, often giving up a lesser item if they have more than others.

Other groups have different splits, including one where the players didn't want a meta game split and want to call dibs and argue things out because that group enjoys it (and the players aren't actually greedy so it works out).
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Please go read the first sentence again. They said: "IMO this is a natural outgrowth of 5e not having magic item pricing."

That really is saying that this is caused by not having magic item pricing. And when talking about other methods they shot them down.
Lack of item pricing simply means a value-based division isn't possible.

Were our crew using a system without item pricing odds are high there would quickly become a real disparity between amounts of magic held by different PCs, mainly due to there being no constraint on how much any one PC could claim (theft being a different and separate issue).

Therefore it seems reasonable to say, given my experience, that 5e's lack of item pricing is at least paertially to blame for this group's woes.

(I'm not a "them", by the way - there's only one of me, despite my being a Gemini :) )
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Lack of item pricing simply means a value-based division isn't possible.

Were our crew using a system without item pricing odds are high there would quickly become a real disparity between amounts of magic held by different PCs, mainly due to there being no constraint on how much any one PC could claim (theft being a different and separate issue).

Therefore it seems reasonable to say, given my experience, that 5e's lack of item pricing is at least paertially to blame for this group's woes.

(I'm not a "them", by the way - there's only one of me, despite my being a Gemini :) )
I agree, when my group switched to levelup & actually had to explain the split to the group & then help the player who volunteered to be lootkeeper a couple times till things clicked in a way where he understood that things like bob's badass magic doodad should absolutely impact bob's share for a bit until things are evened out. Once he realized that the xxxgp pewter cup & yyygp jade frog statue were tools to obfuscate that a little things went easier for the greedier players
 

billd91

Hobbit on Quest (he/him)
Were our crew using a system without item pricing odds are high there would quickly become a real disparity between amounts of magic held by different PCs, mainly due to there being no constraint on how much any one PC could claim (theft being a different and separate issue).
No constraint? Other than the other players/PCs, I’d guess, which is pretty much all that’s constraining you now. Pricing just gives you a metric to use as a mechanism to maintain a consensus on those constraints. But there’s nothing sacred about it and you could choose to go with some other estimation of value such as relative utility among the PCs. The constraint is that everyone agrees to the methodology.
 

Nod_Hero

Explorer
This is very similar to one group I'm in. Gold and things convertible to gold we split into N+1 shares - everyone gets a share, and a share to party funds for things we do together. Items go to whomever needs them most, and often whomever gets it, often giving up a lesser item if they have more than others.
Mostly the same at our table:
Spell components like Rez diamonds get taken out and given to the casters. Monetary wealth is an even split afterwards.
Items go to those that can and will use them. Otherwise it's speak up and roll off. We'll trade something away that we don't use any more to someone who will.
Stuff that won't get used by anyone goes into the "sell & split" pile.
 

Stormonu

Legend
Lack of item pricing simply means a value-based division isn't possible.

Were our crew using a system without item pricing odds are high there would quickly become a real disparity between amounts of magic held by different PCs, mainly due to there being no constraint on how much any one PC could claim (theft being a different and separate issue).

Therefore it seems reasonable to say, given my experience, that 5e's lack of item pricing is at least paertially to blame for this group's woes.

(I'm not a "them", by the way - there's only one of me, despite my being a Gemini :) )
Just a shout-out, I found this not too long ago for magic item pricing for 5E, though it doesn't include items from supplemental books. May be helpful to those who want to use it for loot division moreso than buying/selling.

 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Just a shout-out, I found this not too long ago for magic item pricing for 5E, though it doesn't include items from supplemental books. May be helpful to those who want to use it for loot division moreso than buying/selling.

Brilliant.

I'd quibble with some (as in, quite a few) of the actual prices given, but the idea is excellent.
 

jgsugden

Legend
D&D is a role playing game. Characters play a role in a story. Up and until character decisions make things bad for the players, it is best to think in character.

The PCs kill a dragon (yeah) and find the treasure pile. In it is a magic longsword, a magic ring, 4 magic scrolls, 6 nonmagical gems and 500 gp worth of coins.

Nothing has a price tag on it. These characters in your RPG story do not usually have a quick way to tell what they are worth. Heck, the DMG doesn't even have a specific price guide. So, in a real world situation, how would this be handled?

It depends on the group.

You might have one person be tasked with making 5 separate piles and then letting people select a pile, with them selecting last.

You might have them split the funds and then auction off the items (and allow for IOUs).

You might have one of them appraise the items using their proficiencies or magic and then allow PCs to distribute it fairly, with PCs offering up items they already have for some value.

You might see the group just take turns selecting magic items and giving someone a chance to delay their turn if there isn't something they ;lik in the pile.

You might have one guy that thinks they can steal one of the items before anyone else notices it is there. In this instance, you'd need to know if the group is ok with this type of activity as players. If not, the DM (supported by other players) should tell the player that the people do not want that in the game, even if the characters should be able to get away with it.

In the end, dealing with it all in story gives you more immersion and a better chance to enjoy the game world. Reducing it to video game style monitization and silliness just keeps it from reaching full potential.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
yeah, I have found that 1st best way to deal with items is to just all be fair and act like adults...talk it out.

We treat gold and items as 2 diffrent groups.... we split gold even. We then split items to 1st who can use it best and 2nd to who has the most need 3rd to who has the least items
We do the same, with the addition that you probably have as well that unusable/unwanted items are sold and the gold divided up.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
D&D is a role playing game. Characters play a role in a story. Up and until character decisions make things bad for the players, it is best to think in character.

The PCs kill a dragon (yeah) and find the treasure pile. In it is a magic longsword, a magic ring, 4 magic scrolls, 6 nonmagical gems and 500 gp worth of coins.

Nothing has a price tag on it. These characters in your RPG story do not usually have a quick way to tell what they are worth. Heck, the DMG doesn't even have a specific price guide. So, in a real world situation, how would this be handled?

It depends on the group.

You might have one person be tasked with making 5 separate piles and then letting people select a pile, with them selecting last.

You might have them split the funds and then auction off the items (and allow for IOUs).

You might have one of them appraise the items using their proficiencies or magic and then allow PCs to distribute it fairly, with PCs offering up items they already have for some value.

You might see the group just take turns selecting magic items and giving someone a chance to delay their turn if there isn't something they ;lik in the pile.

You might have one guy that thinks they can steal one of the items before anyone else notices it is there. In this instance, you'd need to know if the group is ok with this type of activity as players. If not, the DM (supported by other players) should tell the player that the people do not want that in the game, even if the characters should be able to get away with it.

In the end, dealing with it all in story gives you more immersion and a better chance to enjoy the game world. Reducing it to video game style monitization and silliness just keeps it from reaching full potential.
Yes, but you don't finalize the division then and there - you divide it on the fly for utility while you're still int he field then sort it out for real once you're back in town and have time to evaluate and-or identify things.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Yes, but you don't finalize the division then and there - you divide it on the fly for utility while you're still int he field then sort it out for real once you're back in town and have time to evaluate and-or identify things.
Sure, but if the item is too expensive and the others won't give the PC a loan, the item that would be very, very useful in keeping the group alive and allowing more and better treasure to be found gets sold. The group is gimping itself.
 

Dungeon Delver's Guide

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top