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    Default D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Just read through the magic item section. I like some things, I dislike others. As a general rule, I like most of the magic items. I like that they are moving to make magic items more unique and less about combining bonuses and abilities. I really like the changes to magic items with charges, though I do wish wands and staffs worked differently(I'd make it so staves use your spell slots as charges, and wands just have charges, but whatever).

    I also like the idea that magic items are rare, difficult to buy, and even more difficult to sell. I even like the general rarity table, though I'd like to go into more depth into what each rarity means, and the kinds of bonuses one would expect. I like the idea of attunement, but I don't think it is fully realized.

    Now for what I don't like as much. I don't like the magic item random rewards table, they are designed for a monty haul campaign, and they should take character level into account(a level 1 character should never get better than common drops, and artifacts should never appear on a random table ever). I HATE the suggested prices. Yes I know, magic items, hard to buy, ect, ect, but remember that Plate Mail costs 5,000gp, a +1 sword should cost at least as much as a suit of Plate Mail.

    I'm not sure I like magic items replacing your stats. Whats the point of using your racial bonus to boost a stat if an item replaces it? I'm unsure if I like removing magic item slots. IMO, attunement should be much much more common, but instead of a 3 item limit, have it so you can only attune 1 item per slot(2 items for some slots, like rings). The only items that shouldn't require attunement are smaller items that take some action to use. I think this would help balance the game a little, and prevent the now coming argument about how I could manager to fit that bracelet over that pair of bracers, or counting how many necklaces Mr. T wears as a baseline.

    So, for example, a ring of protection would have attune(ring), and bracers of archery would have attune(wrist). I could also see powerful magical weapons and magic staffs having attune(weapon)(though most weapons wouldn't).
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Has there been a new article on the subject?
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    My initial impression is that the magic item rules are currently very overcomplicated. And possibly contradictory.

    I'm all for complexity where it adds depth, I'm just not sure that magic items are where I'd be putting it.

    Edit: On second thought, looks like most of the sillier stuff is optional and mostly for personalizing items, so I guess it's not so bad.

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    I've gone through the updated bestiary and like what I see. In general, the tweaks made are minor, but from my experience of the previous iterations, will likely have a positive impact. Example: the kobolds in "Caves of Chaos" were generally pushovers, especially if the caster had sleep or some other AoE spell left. However, if the group did not, the fact that they gained advantage as long as they were outnumbering the invaders, meant the kobolds were very likely to score hits. The tweaked kobolds gain a bonus to the attack roll in relation to the number of kobolds threatening the same target. Much better system, and more elegant mechanics.

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    They make that claim, but in the packet there are magic item prices (which are ludicrously cheap relative to power levels involved) and a table for random magic item generation which results in an average of more than 1 magic item per encounter. They also got rid of magic item slots, so if you want to wear 10 amulets and 4 rings on each finger, you can. This is supposedly balanced by attunement, except the vast majority of items don't require attuning.
    Yeah, after reading a little more that line of fluff was quickly revealed as nonsense.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    So basically no useful guidelines at all, let the DM figure out how to balance it. Man it must be nice to be Mike Mearls, designing a game where a contingent of the customer base actually supports you not bothering to write rules so they can do it themselves.
    And for a DM to really balance things well, they have to be a better game designer than Mearls, in which case why aren't they working for WotC instead? So far I've seen very little reason for this guy's employment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Menteith View Post
    Wasn't that pretty much the Fighter's initial design? Don't actually design or implement a mechanic, sort of just let everyone do their own thing?

    It's the first pass, but they really didn't implement their stated goal very well. I'm all for limited magic items, making them feel more epic and exciting - but if that's the plan, actually institute mechanics to support that.
    If I wanted to do my own thing, I'd just do my own thing, not spend money.
    Hey, WotC, you might want to give players and incentive to purchase your products, not tell them in advance that your rules are vague and require the DM to fix everything.

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Lampert View Post
    It's better than that. He's not only supporting not writing rules so the DM can do it himself. The rules they have given us work DIRECTLY agaist their stated goals! You have to FIRST ignore their rules and sugestions and THEN design your own system!

    The adventures they've ALREADY given us FAIL COMPLETELY to match the one item per adventure DrBurr keeps CLAIMING will fix the problem "IF" they hold to it (what "if", we already KNOW they won't and we have almost 40 years of experience to indicate that they won't even if they hadn't already explicitely shown us they won't in 2 out of 2 example adventures).

    But don't worry, REAL SOON NOW they'll be out with these low magic item adventures. And also, it's not only fine that you need to make up your own rules to ballance their items, it's fine that the rules THEY GIVE US are completely unballanced because they've put the magic words "module" and "DM" in the document!

    Neat. I can give you a BETTER system for free in this very post! See below:




    There! No rules that you need to ACTIVELY IGNORE to get a good game. No adventures that DIRECTLY CONTRADICT what I tell you adventures will be like rather than going 0 for 2 out of my first 2 tries!

    Send me $100 (plus shipping, handling, and sales tax) for this vastly superior system and I'll send you many pages full of suplemenatary material of equally superior quality. Or you could go by Office Depot and buy a ream of blank paper for yourself, either way. It's still better than rules that you have to actively ignore to get a decent game.
    Hey, that system looks pretty cool. Have you copyrighted it yet? If not, hope you don't mind if I run over to the library, steal a ream of paper, and market it myself...
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Gwendol View Post
    I've gone through the updated bestiary and like what I see.
    Oh, third playtest package. Would have been nice for anyone to mention that.

    And I do need to make a new account again?
    Which happens to not work again, because of an unspecified error.

    **** you, WotC! **** you!
    Last edited by Yora; 2012-10-09 at 08:24 AM.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    Oh, third playtest package. Would have been nice for anyone to mention that.
    Would have been nice if a certain someone had actually checked the last 2 pages of the previous thread...
    Last edited by Eldebryn; 2012-10-09 at 08:28 AM.

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    I didn't realize monsters had been updated as well, I thought this was just a magic item packet, and we were waiting until the level 10 packet was done to see any other changes.
    If my text is blue, I'm being sarcastic.But you already knew that, right?


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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    The current update has updated monsters, magic items and some magic items rules. And an updated Caves of Chaos (for those wanting to go through that again).

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    To recap:

    Hey look, there's an update to the playtest package, which most notably contains magical items now.

    It is full of contradictions. The fluff text says that magic items are not an entitlement, but the rules say the average encounter should have 0-8 magical items in it (determined by a % roll). The fluff says that there is no market for magic items, but also that this nonexistent market is easier to find in big cities, and the rules give each item a gp value between 50 and 10,000. The fluff says that 'rare' items should be given to characters of level 5 and up, but they have a 4% chance of showing up for every average encounter, regardless of character level.

    And yes, the rarity levels from 4E are back, ranging from 'common' to 'artifact' (which are unique, but have a 1% chance of showing up every hard encounter). There is no clear correlation between an item's rarity and its power level, and there little or no 'common' items in the book except for healing potions. WOTC says they'll rectify this later.

    Magic items no longer auto-identify (like in 4E) but a variety of trial-and-error methods are suggested, plus the classic Identify spell. While there are still a few 'item slots' left, you can now wear as many necklaces as the DM allows. However, a few rare or very rare items only work if you "attune" them to you, and there's a strict limit to how many items you can attune (plus attuning costs time). Which is odd considering how unlikely you are to find enough for this limit to matter.

    Then there's a long table for randomly deciding who created the item and for what purpose. And a bunch of sample items which are reminiscent of 3E's items, except that they don't get pluses. They're pretty much all +1, and you use them for the special abilities. 1E's mixing potions table is also back as an optional rule.

    Well, I expect this to change substantially after feedback, because right now the rules are all over the place.

    -=-=-

    Quote Originally Posted by DrBurr View Post
    Nothing is inherently wrong with the rules, the rules present you with what to do to add a magical item to an encounter to progress the story.
    The rules tell you that the average encounter should, by default, contain a randomly determined amount of 0-8 magical items, that requires several consecutive dice rolls to generate. In my view, there are two things inherently wrong with these rules, i.e. (1) that this default leads to the Christmas Tree effect, and (2) that it's overly complex to require so many rolls.

    That the rules tell you that you can deviate from the default is not the point. RPG rules always tell you that. It just so happens that in practice, the vast majority of people will end up using the default, or something closely resembling the default.

    And, of course, the default is the design intent. So this tells me that either WOTC intends for campaigns to go monty haul, or they haven't done the math on how many items an average party will accumulate over a few levels.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    And, of course, the default is the design intent. So this tells me that either WOTC intends for campaigns to go monty haul, or they haven't done the math on how many items an average party will accumulate over a few levels.
    How could a professional game design team release a packet with random numbers slapped down? Presumably they did the math. It's their judgment I question, so I'm not quite ready to assume they want characters drowning in magic items; maybe they just didn't evaluate their numbers sober.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by PairO'Dice Lost
    I'm not sure if you're being sarcastic or are just unfamiliar with pre-4e mechanics and items, but in case it's the latter, none of those are new, and neither are any jokes about them.
    Yes, I am aware of their previous existence, but no I am not being sarcastic. For the Ring of Mind Shielding, what I liked about it was the "secret" it comes with. I don't notice that in the SRD you link to, but maybe it existed in the sourcebook. Either way, it is still a fun idea that can make for a good game.

    On the other hand, even though the Identify spell has existed probably for the entire life of the game, that doesn't mean it should stay, at least in its current incarnation. I like the way my 4e game handled it: when you found an item, you could make an Arcana/Religion/Nature check (depending on the power source of the item's magic), and if you succeeded (DC dependent on the rarity of the item), you learned the item's properties and powers, but if you failed then you had to learn by trial and error. Fun stuff ensued:

    Spoiler
    Show
    Once I gave a player a Lesser Cloaked Weapon but the party failed their Arcana checks to realize what it was. The party then came across a problem that could not be solved through combat. The fighter, who was ready to go with her weapon drawn, was upset that her particular skills could not be put to use at the moment, and so sheathed her sword and swore at the same time. The sword then vanishes, causing the fighter to become even more upset, especially when they fail the skill challenge and combat begins. However, in a moment of epiphany, the fighter's player realizes the connection between what she said and her weapon, and from then on always swears loudly in order to draw her magic sword.


    The Rod of Lordly Might, though...they just kept it for the purpose of those jokes. There is no way anyone at Wizards could publish this item without snickering to themselves.

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by noparlpf View Post
    How could a professional game design team release a packet with random numbers slapped down?
    They've got a track record for doing this. Most infamously, 4E contained several clear and obvious math errors when the game was released.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    To recap:

    Hey look, there's an update to the playtest package, which most notably contains magical items now.

    It is full of contradictions. The fluff text says that magic items are not an entitlement, but the rules say the average encounter should have 0-8 magical items in it (determined by a % roll). The fluff says that there is no market for magic items, but also that this nonexistent market is easier to find in big cities, and the rules give each item a gp value between 50 and 10,000. The fluff says that 'rare' items should be given to characters of level 5 and up, but they have a 4% chance of showing up for every average encounter, regardless of character level.

    And yes, the rarity levels from 4E are back, ranging from 'common' to 'artifact' (which are unique, but have a 1% chance of showing up every hard encounter). There is no clear correlation between an item's rarity and its power level, and there little or no 'common' items in the book except for healing potions. WOTC says they'll rectify this later.

    Magic items no longer auto-identify (like in 4E) but a variety of trial-and-error methods are suggested, plus the classic Identify spell. While there are still a few 'item slots' left, you can now wear as many necklaces as the DM allows. However, a few rare or very rare items only work if you "attune" them to you, and there's a strict limit to how many items you can attune (plus attuning costs time). Which is odd considering how unlikely you are to find enough for this limit to matter.

    Then there's a long table for randomly deciding who created the item and for what purpose. And a bunch of sample items which are reminiscent of 3E's items, except that they don't get pluses. They're pretty much all +1, and you use them for the special abilities. 1E's mixing potions table is also back as an optional rule.

    Well, I expect this to change substantially after feedback, because right now the rules are all over the place.

    -=-=-


    The rules tell you that the average encounter should, by default, contain a randomly determined amount of 0-8 magical items, that requires several consecutive dice rolls to generate. In my view, there are two things inherently wrong with these rules, i.e. (1) that this default leads to the Christmas Tree effect, and (2) that it's overly complex to require so many rolls.

    That the rules tell you that you can deviate from the default is not the point. RPG rules always tell you that. It just so happens that in practice, the vast majority of people will end up using the default, or something closely resembling the default.

    And, of course, the default is the design intent. So this tells me that either WOTC intends for campaigns to go monty haul, or they haven't done the math on how many items an average party will accumulate over a few levels.
    No read the packet, it explicitly says these tables are for generating Magic Items based off encounter difficulty and that its up to the DM to determine whether or not an encounter will have an item, no where does it say each encounter should provide the following

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    They've got a track record for doing this. Most infamously, 4E contained several clear and obvious math errors when the game was released.
    Hey, I'm trying to repress those memories. I can't live in a world where pro game designers don't bother to do the basic math required to publish the game.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by DrBurr View Post
    No read the packet, it explicitly says these tables are for generating Magic Items based off encounter difficulty and that its up to the DM to determine whether or not an encounter will have an item, no where does it say each encounter should provide the following
    Sure, it spells out that if you don't put the items in an encounter, you should put them in a later encounter in the same adventure (e.g. the dragon's hoard at the end).
    And as stated above, many people will ignore the fluff text and go straight to the rules. Guess what? The rules tell you to roll 1d100 for each encounter and then put in as many items as that roll specifies. Even if the fluff tells you that you don't need to do it that way, that's what the rules say. We pay WOTC to make good rules. We don't pay anyone to write disclaimers that say you don't need to use rules you dislike.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    Sure, it spells out that if you don't put the items in an encounter, you should put them in a later encounter in the same adventure (e.g. the dragon's hoard at the end).
    And as stated above, many people will ignore the fluff text and go straight to the rules. Guess what? The rules tell you to roll 1d100 for each encounter and then put in as many items as that roll specifies. Even if the fluff tells you that you don't need to do it that way, that's what the rules say. We pay WOTC to make good rules. We don't pay anyone to write disclaimers that say you don't need to use rules you dislike.
    Its not fluff text its instructions, stop flipping to the tables and just assuming that's how it works read the pdf it says right there that's not the intended way to operate.

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by noparlpf View Post
    How could a professional game design team release a packet with random numbers slapped down? Presumably they did the math. It's their judgment I question, so I'm not quite ready to assume they want characters drowning in magic items; maybe they just didn't evaluate their numbers sober.
    I'm going with haven't done the math.

    Look at "Average Encounter"
    91–96
    1d2 common
    1d2 uncommon
    1d2–1* rare

    97–99
    1d2 common
    1d2 uncommon

    100
    1d2 common
    1d2 uncommon
    1d2 rare
    1 very rare
    1d2–1* legendary

    This is on a table where higher is good. If the pattern established on this and the other two tables were followed it would be:
    97–99
    1d2 common
    1d2 uncommon
    1d2 rare
    1d2-1 very rare

    They dropped two entries and never noticed.

    Similarly, you simply CAN NOT actually playtest their adventures with a group with someone who wants to tank and not notice that the monster attack bonuses are about 7 points too low! Seriously, not a single monster in the playtest has a hit bonus as higher than +4, you can get AC 26 without a single magic item and with the very limited options we have in an early playtest. But the orcs do 1d12+7 if there's a leader boosting them and the medusa has a save or die.

    Or have you looked at their Pre-gen characters? Finesse weapons with attacks based on strength from dex based characters. Abilities not added into damage. The human fighter gets both her attacks wrong. It's not like a fighter might want to use a weapon attack. And they didn't bother to update the pre-gens, does anyone really believe that no one reported this in the last two months?

    They are not seriously thinking about or applying their own rules, they're throwing stuff at the wall and seeing what sticks.

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by DrBurr View Post
    Its not fluff text its instructions, stop flipping to the tables and just assuming that's how it works read the pdf it says right there that's not the intended way to operate.
    What do you think is the purpose of those tables? Serious question.

    It would NEVER be a good idea to use them. They will NEVER produce the results you claim they want to produce, why do you think they have them at all.

    What do you think is the purpose of the playtest adventures? Serious question.

    Is it to test how the game is expected to work? Because the playtest adventures give out magic items FAR faster than is claimed to be intended in fluff.

    Where do you see instructions to SYSTEMATICALLY give less than the tables? Because I've read the instructions, and they say:
    Pl

    "These tables are designed to help you award magic
    items based on the difficulty of a given encounter.
    You can determine the available items at the start
    of each encounter for a taste of unpredictability, or
    roll for all the encounters in a given adventure area
    ahead of time and parcel them out as you see fit."

    Those INSTRUCTIONS have you rolling for every encounter and placing every rolled item in the adventure. How do you determine that the FLUFF that says you can use the tables or not takes prescendence over the part that says to use the tables and why do you think the tables are included if you never expect them to be used?

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Anyone else just groaning at items that have, for example, a 1% chance per month of saying something interesting?

    I mean, really, folks. (1) I am not tracking that. (2) If you want me to track it, giving a 1% chance is not the way to do it.

    Now, putting it entirely in the DM's hands? I can get behind that. But random 1% chances per month is just silly. It's a new, weird little subsystem that likely will never, ever matter over the course of an entire campaign.

    -O

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Gwendol View Post
    I've gone through the updated bestiary and like what I see. In general, the tweaks made are minor, but from my experience of the previous iterations, will likely have a positive impact. Example: the kobolds in "Caves of Chaos" were generally pushovers, especially if the caster had sleep or some other AoE spell left. However, if the group did not, the fact that they gained advantage as long as they were outnumbering the invaders, meant the kobolds were very likely to score hits. The tweaked kobolds gain a bonus to the attack roll in relation to the number of kobolds threatening the same target. Much better system, and more elegant mechanics.
    I'm also liking the bestiary. There were some real oddities earlier, particularly concerning experience (the Kobold example is a good one, with that pitiful Dragonshield being worth far more experience than the actually dangerous Trapmaster last packet), and most of them have been resolved. There is still room for new problems to develop, and I'm a little concerned about the 10xp monsters, simply because having 7-1 odds at level 1 for a normal encounter seems excessive, but that could work out better than anticipated.

    Sadly, encounter design is now bogged down by the magic item rules, which involve a ridiculous amount of rolling, and quite a bit of assigning and then tracking magic items, many of which are absurdly powerful at the low levels of the playtest packet, and probably indefinitely. Granted, they also have the Holy Avenger, a weapon that can only be attuned by a class they haven't actually released yet, so I'd expect the magic item system to get an overhaul.

    On the other hand, equipment has been a mess in general from day one, from the absurd weights to the odd pricing to the clutter, so there is a real possibility that magic items will suffer the same fate.
    Last edited by Knaight; 2012-10-09 at 01:00 PM.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    I've run some math on the "Caves of Chaos" adventure that's included. The adventure gives its own "treasure", but I thought it would be a good thought exercise to see how much treasure would "generate" assuming all of the encounters occurred in an original adventure. In other words, all of the encounters in the Caves of Chaos, run relatively back to back, without the framework of the adventure. How much loot would the PCs gain (on average)?

    Assumption 1: The PCs started at level 1, and made their way through each cave in order of easiest difficulty first (i.e. kobolds before orcs). They became level 2 after clearing the Kobold, Golbin, and Hobgoblin Lairs (Areas A, D, and F) and level 3 after clearing both Orc lairs, The Shunned Cavern, and the Ogre Lair (Areas B, C, E and G). After that, they were considered to be level 3 for the rest of the adventure, although the experience gains were enough to bring them to level 4 about halfway through the last area, the Shrine of Evil Chaos (Area K).

    Since XP is supposed to be divided equally amongst four PCs, the follow XP totals were calculated as being the "break points"

    level 1: 0 xp
    level 2: 2600 xp
    level 3: 7300xp
    level 4: 14100xp

    Assumption 2: Treasure was generated based on the XP total of a particular encounter against the GM guidelines for an Easy/Average/Tough encounter. For reference:

    Level: Easy / Average / Tough
    1: 160 / 260 / 400xp
    2: 280 / 480 / 720xp
    3: 520 / 920 / 1380xp

    Calculating an experience "budget" is a simple matter of multiplying the values on page 11 of the recent DM Guidelines document by the number of players: 4.

    An "encounter" total between 0 and half the "easy" value -1xp was considered to be trivial; no magic items found.
    An "encounter" total between half the "easy" value and the easy value was considered to qualify for an "easy" magic item reward.
    An "encounter" total between the "easy" value +1 xp and the "average" value was considered to qualify for an "average" magic item reward.
    An "encounter" total equal to or greater than the "average" value +1xp was considered to qualify for a "tough" magic item reward.

    Note that there are no suggestion that a "trivial" encounter (i.e. the Giant Centipedes in Room 13) should not reward an equal chance as a standard "easy" encounter; this is a judgement call I'm making; the math is below if you want to award treasure for "trivial" encounters.

    Thus, for level 1, fights worth between 80 and 160xp qualified for "easy" loot; fights between 161xp and 260xp qualified for "average" loot; fights 261xp and above qualified for "tough" loot.

    For level 2, fights worth between 140 and 280xp qualified for "easy" loot; fights between 281xp and 480xp qualified for "average" loot; fights 481xp and above qualified for "tough" loot.

    For level 3, fights worth between 260 and 520xp qualified for "easy" loot; fights between 521xp and 920xp qualified for "average" loot; fights 921xp and above qualified for "tough" loot.

    While the PCs would level to level 4 by about halfway into the final area, the PCs are assumed to gain treasure as if they were level 3, for simplicity sake. The data is below if you want to correct for this.

    Assumption 3: All fights are trivial. The PCs all roll critical hits, and the monsters roll natural ones, so there is never a reason to stop. Reinforcements never have a chance to be called, nor to groups "mingle" with each other. The PCs are so quick, that they don't encounter wandering monsters. They enter each room like a SWAT team, clear it out, and continue.

    Note, because don't try and tackle the "hard" challenges first, they're technically "reducing" the amount of treasure they get (as they encounter more "easy" encounters rather than "tough" encounters. Still, some assumptions must be made, and this would be the most pragmatic one if survival (not "phat loot") was the number priority (despite the PCs ridiculous luck).

    The encounters are as follows, based off the ones encountered in the Caves of Chaos module, spoilered for room:

    Spoiler
    Show
    Level: Easy / Average / Tough
    1: 160 / 260 / 400xp

    A. Kobold Lair
    Kobold outside: 9 x 10xp (90xp) = easy encounter
    1. Guard area: 6x 10xp (60xp) = trivial encounter
    2. Garbage heap: 15 x 10xp, + 20xp (170xp) = average encounter
    4. Elite Guard Room: 4x 20xp (80xp) = easy encounter
    5. Kobold Lord's Room: 5 x 10xp + 70xp (120xp) = easy encounter
    6. Kobold Common Chamber: 8 x 10xp (80xp) = easy encounter
    = 600xp (600xp total)

    D. Goblin Lair
    Wandering goblins: 4x 10xp (40xp) = trivial encounter
    17. Guard Chamber: 7x 10xp (70xp) = trivial encounter
    18. Guard Chamber: 7x 10xp (70xp) = trivial encounter
    19. Goblin Quarters: 15 x 10 xp (150xp) = easy encounter
    20. Goblin Chieftan's room: 7 x 10 xp + 80xp (150xp) = easy encounter
    21. Storage Chamber: 4x 10xp (40xp) = trivial encounter
    = 520xp (1120xp total)

    F. Hobgoblin Lair
    23. Hobgoblin Quarters: 13x 40xp (520xp) = tough encounter
    24. Prison: 2x 40xp + 60xp (140xp) = easy encounter
    25. Common Hall: 5x 40xp (200xp) = average encounter
    26. Guard Room: 4x 40xp (160xp) = easy encounter
    27. Armory: 3x 40xp (120xp) = easy encounter
    29. Guard Room: 3x 40xp (120xp) = easy encounter
    30. Hobgoblin Warlord's Quarters: 4x 40xp +170xp (330xp) = tough encounter
    31. Guard Room: 3x 40xp (120xp) = easy encounter
    =1710xp (2830xp total, level up to 2)

    Level: Easy / Average / Tough
    2: 280 / 480 / 720

    B. Orc Lair
    7. Guard Room: 4x 60xp (240xp) = easy encounter
    8. Guard Room: 3x 60xp (180xp) = easy encounter
    10. Orc Common Room: 12x 60xp (720xp) = tough encounter
    12. Orc Leader's Room: 4x 60xp + 290 xp (530xp) = tough encounter
    = 1670xp (4500xp total)

    C. Orc Lair
    13. Secret Room: 2 x 10xp (20xp) = trival encounter
    14. Sleeping Chamber: 7x60 xp (520 xp) = tough enconter
    15. Orc Common Hall: 12 x 60 xp (720xp) = tough encounter
    16. Orc Leader's Room: 2x 160xp + 290xp (610xp) = tough encounter
    = 1870xp (6370xp total)

    G. Shunned Cavern
    33. Murky Pool: 3x150xp (450xp) = average encounter
    34. Owlbear Den: 1x 370xp (370xp) = average encounter
    = 820xp (7190xp)

    E. Ogre Lair
    22. Ogre Cave 1x240xp (240xp) = easy encounter
    = 240xp (7430xp, level up to 3)

    Level: / Easy / Average / Tough
    3: 520 / 920 / 1380

    H. Bugbear Lair
    35. Guard Room: 3x 140xp (420xp) = easy encounter
    36. Bugbear Leader's Quarters: 2x140xp (280xp) = easy encounter
    38. Bugbear Common Room: 10 x 140 xp (1400xp) = tough encounter
    39. Guard Room: 5x 140xp (700xp) = average encounter
    40. Prison: 3x 40xp, 1x60xp, 1x140xp, 1x40xp (360xp) = easy encounter
    =3160xp (10590xp total)

    I. Minotaur Caves
    42. Stirge Nest: 13x 20xp (260xp) = easy encounter
    43. Fire Beetles: 8x 10xp (80xp) = trivial encounter
    44. More Fire beetles: 7x 10xp (70xp) = trivial encounter
    45. The Minotaur: 1x 490xp (490xp) = easy encounter
    = 900xp (11490xp total)

    J. Gnoll Lair
    46. Guard Room: 3x 60xp (180xp) = trivial encounter
    47. Guard Room: 5x 60xp (300xp) = easy encounter
    49. Common Area: 6x 60xp (360xp) = easy encounter
    50. Gnoll Leader's Quarters: 5x 60xp + 170xp (470xp) = easy encounter
    = 1310xp (12800xp total)

    K. Shrine of Evil Chaos
    52. Hall of Skeletons: 12x 30xp (360xp) = easy encounter
    53. Guard Room: 8x 20xp (160xp) = trivial encounter
    54. Acolytes' Chamber: 5x 90xp (450xp) = easy encounter
    56. Evil Chapel: Adept's Chamber: 4x 170xp (680xp) = average encounter
    57. Hall of Undead Warriors: 10x 30xp, 10x 20xp (500xp) = easy encounter
    59. High Priest's Chamber/Anteroom: 3x 20xp, 240xp (300xp) = easy encounter
    61. Torture Chamber: 2x 170xp (340xp) = easy encounter
    62. Crypt: 1x 300xp (300xp) = easy encounter
    63. Storage Chamber: 1x 220xp (220xp) = trivial encounter
    64. Cell: 1x 200xp (200xp) = trivial encounter
    = 3510xp (16310, level 4 ahoy!)


    Total easy encounters: 28
    Total average encounters: 6
    total tough encounters: 8

    Treasure can therefore be calculated as follows (using the tables on page 2 of the Magic Items playtest document); note that the tables probably have errors on it (why do you not get and rare treasure for rolling 97-99 on the "average" table?). This also assumes that all rolls are equally likely, and the GM lets the "dice fall where they may". Spoilered for length, hopefully the calculations make sense, although there has been a lot of simplification.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Easy Encounters:
    Common items gained: (28 * 0.2) + (28 * 0.3 * 1.5) = 18.2 items
    Uncommon items gained: (28 * 0.06 * 0.5) + (28 * 0.03) + (28 * 0.01 * 1.5) = 2.1 items
    Rare items gained: (28 * 0.03 * 0.5) + (28 * 0.01) = 0.7 items
    Very Rare items gained: (28 * 0.01 * 0.5) = 0.14 items

    Average Encounters:
    Common items gained: (6 * 0.25) + (6 * 0.5 * 1.5) = 6 items
    Uncommon items gained: (6 * 0.2 * 0.5) + (6 * 0.1 * 1.5) = 1.5 items
    Rare items gained: (6 * 0.06 * 0.5) + (6 * 0.01 * 1.5) = 0.27 items
    Very Rare items gained: (6 * 0.01) = 0.06 items
    Legendary items gained: (6 * 0.01 * 0.5) = 0.03 items

    Tough Encounters:
    Common items gained: (8 * 0.25) + (8 * 0.75 * 1.5) = 11 items
    Uncommon items gained: (8 * 0.2 * 0.5) + (8 * 0.3 * 1.5) = 4.4 items
    Rare items gained: (8 * 0.2 * 0.5) + (8 * 0.1) = 1.6 items
    Very Rare items gained: (8 * 0.06 * 0.5) + (8 * 0.03) + (8 * 0.01 * 1.5) = 0.6 items
    Legendary items gained: (8 * 0.04 * 0.5) = 0.16 items
    Artifact items gained: (8 * 0.01) = 0.08 items


    Grand totals:

    Common items gained: 35.2 items
    Uncommon items gained: 8 items
    Rare items gained: 1.94 items
    Very Rare items gained: 0.8 items
    Legendary items gained: 0.19 items
    Artifact items gained: 0.08 items

    Total = 46.21 magical items

    Discussion: that's a lot of magic items being thrown around, despite the relatively "easy" time tackling the Caves presents. However, a deeper analysis is required; magical weapons and shields are not found at the common slot (only Uncommon and above); the only common items currently in the game are Potions of Climbing and Potions of Healing. thus the actual breakdown looks like this:

    Potions of Healing (with a few potions of Climbing) gained: 35.2
    Traditional magical items: 11.01

    Things could change if new "common" magic items were introduced that bump up their relative value, i.e. magic daggers +1 and level 1 wizard scrolls.

    Are ~11 uncommon (or greater) magical items cause to call the table made for "Monty Hall" games? Maybe! The 4e DMG recommends that four level 4 characters will gain about 10 items between level 1 and partway through level 4. Your feelings on the amount of treasure that 4e gives away will therefore influence how you feel about these tables.

    Of course, another way to look at it is whether or not the "trivial"/"easy"/"average"/"tough" encounter "building" system is worth anything; note that the amount of "easy" encounters assumed that the party above fights vastly outweighs the amount of average/tough encounters. If we were to assume a more "even" encounter split (i.e. 20% easy, 60% average, 20% hard), a lot more treasure would be generated. This might be especially true if optimization causes only "tough" encounters to actually be a challenge.

    I think it's also important to recognize how "luck based" such a table is; the party that wins the tough encounter and rolls 100 on the "tough" treasure table will get an average of 6 uncommon of greater items, more than half the amount one would typically see generated above. There are certainly logistical problems as well; if the party does get lucky and claims a Holy Avenger from a tough encounter, it could be a long while before the party Wizard gets his own "legendary" item.

    TL/DR: It works for the Caves of Chaos adventure (sort of), but I shudder to think about the amount of treasure it would generate in an actual game where DMs don't have the party facing a lot of "easy" encounters.

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    I don't see the problem. It is clearly spelled out that the party is not expected to have any magic items at all. As a DM, just use whatever you like.

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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Actually, historically speaking, TSR modules had a metric ton of treasure and magic goodies in them because they were expected to be there to make up the expected XP value haul. An adventure generated by the DM would result in significantly less such treasures in practice (with a few ouliers obviously).

    If I had to guess, I think some of the designers might have looked at the treasure payout of the modules, and then wrote rules to get the desired results and missed why the treasure output of some modules was so high in the first place.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashdate View Post
    Common items gained: 35.2 items
    Uncommon items gained: 8 items
    Rare items gained: 1.94 items
    Very Rare items gained: 0.8 items
    Legendary items gained: 0.19 items
    Artifact items gained: 0.08 items

    Total = 46.21 magical items
    Very interesting.

    A couple of points. First, it seems workable as long as all common items are one-shot consumables (that may be the intent but we don't know that yet). Second, oddly enough the amount of treasure received doesn't depend on party size. Third, it bothers me how utterly random this is; while the average is 11 items here, a party might just as easily end up with only 5, or might end up finding a major artifact in the first encounter. Fourth, from my experience with 4E, nobody is at all interested in easy encounters, so I'd expect more encounters to be average or hard, which skews the numbers.

    Note also that the 4E numbers are distorted by LFR (where you'll find one item per character level) and 4.4 (where you roll randomly for everything, including item level).

    I recall that 2E also had random tables for which item you got; I wonder if they'll be doing that again.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    However, didn't the playtest mention the minimum level at which PCs should get magic items?
    Something like 3rd level for uncommon, 5th level for rare, and so on.

    Though I've seen people complain that the rules make no sense and contradict each other at several points. This might be one of them.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    However, didn't the playtest mention the minimum level at which PCs should get magic items?
    Yes, but the random table you roll on per encounter isn't dependent on your level, so the chances of getting a 'rare' are just as high at level 1 as they are at level 10.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    Yes, but the random table you roll on per encounter isn't dependent on your level, so the chances of getting a 'rare' are just as high at level 1 as they are at level 10.
    Still those expectations for when characters "should" get magic items give us an idea of what they're looking at for balance. So they've set a goal for balance that their own rules completely failed to attain.
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    Default Re: D&D 5th Edition: Thread #7

    Quote Originally Posted by noparlpf View Post
    Still those expectations for when characters "should" get magic items give us an idea of what they're looking at for balance. So they've set a goal for balance that their own rules completely failed to attain.
    Verifying this (Math is currently partly done, I'll get to it later):
    Assume a 1/3 distribution of easy encounters, medium encounters, and hard encounters. That produces these totals:
    {table]Total Encounters of Each Type|Encounters During Previous Level|Level
    9.5|9.5|2
    19|9.5|3
    26.1|7.1|4
    37|10.9|5[/table]

    So. We have 37 encounters of each type to reach level 5, meaning 9.25 encounters of each type per level on average. Now, lets look at what this says regarding the probability of having items of the type given, knowing this:
    {table]Level|Type|Encounters of Each Type By Average
    2+|Common|18.5
    3+|Uncommon|27.75
    5+|Rare|46.25
    7+|Very Rare|64.75
    9+|Legendary|83.25
    11+|Artifact|101.75[/table]
    Now, this brings us to the expected items per encounter of each type calculations. These are:
    {table]Difficulty|Common|Uncommon|Rare|Very Rare|Legendary|Artifact
    Easy|.41|.024|.0058|.0013|0|0|
    Average|
    Tough|
    Total|[/table]

    Now, we need to know the how many encounters it takes for there to be a 50% chance to have each type of item, so we can evaluate the expected level by which the first item of each type to show up. So, that gives us:
    .5=probability^number of encounters.
    -1/[13.4 ln(probability)]=expected level

    I still need to work out the probabilities, which is all sorts of tedious, but once that is done it should be pretty easy to see whether the expected levels actually mirror when the 50% chance of having an item shows up.
    Last edited by Knaight; 2012-10-09 at 07:59 PM.
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