Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Loot and exploration

I am writing the first official adventure for my World of Arkara OSRIC campaign setting.

Stop me if you heard this: it's a sewer adventure underneath the city.

Not content to MERELY rip off 25% of all TTRPG adventures, I've added a little old school loot collecting. 17 people have gone missing.

The PCs have been asked to take care of whatever is going on in the sewers, but they've also been asked to return the corpses for burial. The more corpses returned, the greater the reward.

In fact, at least 75% of the monetary return comes from corpse retrieval.

I am wondering if I should TELL my players any of this though.

I have a lot of theories about RPGs which are often disbelieved/disagreed with by folks, and one of them is that the most important elements of RPG design are: character development (and by this I mean mechanical development- stats changing over time), exploration, and loot, ESPECIALLY loot collection.

So as I design this adventure, I am wondering whether I should tell my players "there are 17 corpses, get them all and you get a bigger reward" or if I should just let a thorough search of the dungeon be its own reward.


Larry Clapp said...

Tell them there are "at least 16" corpses. Watch them run all over everywhere searching for #18. Laugh quietly to yourself. ;)

Chuck said...

You are a mean, mean man Mr. Clapp.

What I have in the adventure right now is, at the beginning, a town crier is saying "17 citizens have gone missing".

As the PCs investigate the weirdness, they are approached by a priest from the god of heritage who offers a reward for the return of the bodies to their families.

So no mention is made of an extra reward for getting them all, and the discussion of a number of missing persons is far removed from the reward for finding them.

I'm just wondering if that's a bit too hard, or if I should give players more credit for the diligence they show in wringing every copper out of a dungeon (this has amazed me in the past).

Walt said...

Does the person who hires them for the job at least have the decency to give them an apple cart to carry all of the "loot?"

Vigilance said...

Nope, that's why the PCs get the big bucks!

That said, there are several storage rooms in the first level of the sewers with miscellaneous tools, including wheelbarrows, so if explore the first level, they should have everything they need.

One thing I like to do is include a room, as I did here, with hammers, wrenches, nails, wheelbarrows, 10' poles, because I am always amazed at the uses PCs put crap like that to.

Walt said...

Vigilance said...

That was awesome!

My favorite part was "Sir come over here and lay down" lol.

For some reason that made me laugh. I expected them to haul him straight to the crematorium.

Walt said...

Yep... give a bunch of Joe's a bunch of material and a video camera and you are almost guaranteed to laugh.


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