Money in the Adventure Path


Dead Suns


So. According to the rules there is supposed to be a certain amount of money dropped from every encounter. Problem is: i played the first two adventures of the campaign now, and the money outcome is nowhere near what is suggested in the rules. In fact, the money my players get is barely enough to buy basic commodities. Looking at the basic prices of equipment there is no chance for y whole team of players to keep up with equipment and buy updates. Heck, our Soldier still uses her first weapon cause there simply is not enough loot in the whole two adventures to afford better. The 10% rule when it comes to selling loot also doesnt help.
How did you solve this? Did you just drop more money? Or do you keep your players hopelessly underequipped?


By default, there is no where near enough money to match WBL or income for the AP.

That said, until level 7 or so, there's not much to buy with money anyway.

I tended to make sure bosses and mini-bosses had armor of item level = APL +1-2. That kept their armor mostly relevant. Then I also made sure to seed useful weapons of weapon types the players actually used, as well as the occasional useful armor upgrade. All that ensured that their baseline 'necessary' equipment was always near their level, and sometimes above it. All the rest of the income and sold loot could then be spent on augmentations and consumables once basic needs were met. It seems to have worked out.

In book 4, there's an old armory that I filled with enough loot for my PCs to get level 11 WBL overall after a trip to absalom station. I knew there wasn't going to be a chance after that to gear up, so I made sure they had more than enough going into the endgame.

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
NoobLord wrote:

So. According to the rules there is supposed to be a certain amount of money dropped from every encounter. Problem is: i played the first two adventures of the campaign now, and the money outcome is nowhere near what is suggested in the rules. In fact, the money my players get is barely enough to buy basic commodities. Looking at the basic prices of equipment there is no chance for y whole team of players to keep up with equipment and buy updates. Heck, our Soldier still uses her first weapon cause there simply is not enough loot in the whole two adventures to afford better. The 10% rule when it comes to selling loot also doesnt help.

How did you solve this? Did you just drop more money? Or do you keep your players hopelessly underequipped?

How many players are there? There is a decent amount of loot, especially if your party is diverse in equipment needs.

Sovereign Court

NoobLord wrote:

So. According to the rules there is supposed to be a certain amount of money dropped from every encounter. Problem is: i played the first two adventures of the campaign now, and the money outcome is nowhere near what is suggested in the rules. In fact, the money my players get is barely enough to buy basic commodities. Looking at the basic prices of equipment there is no chance for y whole team of players to keep up with equipment and buy updates. Heck, our Soldier still uses her first weapon cause there simply is not enough loot in the whole two adventures to afford better. The 10% rule when it comes to selling loot also doesnt help.

How did you solve this? Did you just drop more money? Or do you keep your players hopelessly underequipped?

I did accounting for loot for the first two books and with a four-player party, I think we earned about the WBL in money, not counting odds and ends sold for 10%. It was really starting to look like all the trashy L1 weapons and armor were meant to be just ignored.

However, if you look at the back of the CRB and do the math, roughly the following picture emerges:

* It takes about 13 CR=APL encounters for a four-player party to level up.

* 13 CR=APL encounters for a four-player party with the recommended value of loot gets you about the same amount of loot as you'd get in SFS in the three scenarios you need to level up. (Big surprise: SFS actually implements the CRB's wealth plan pretty close to spec!)

* If you earn the amount of money the book tells you to earn, you end up above WBL, somewhere around 20-50% higher. You're expected to "waste" money buying equipment that you later sell for 10% and to buy healing serums, spell gems and grenades.

* Every two levels you can replace about half the stuff you got during the previous two levels and stay on WBL. So don't count on having on-level armor and weapons all the time, but you don't have to be completely L1-geared either.

---

The design intent as I infer it was:

* Finding on/above-level items as loot should be cool.
* In the short time, losing money should be bad and making money should be good. In the long term, how much money you made a couple of levels ago (quite a few game sessions ago) shouldn't matter that much.
* If you get some above level item, it shouldn't put you ahead of WBL forever. After a while when you level up it becomes less amazing. So if the GM is too generous, it's a problem that goes away by itself.

These are all great goals to strive for. Unfortunately, AP writers seem to struggle with them.

* A lot depends on putting in relevant loot. A sniper rifle is only worth its full value as loot if any PC wants to use sniper rifles. Fighting a dozen Azlanti stormtroopers in heavy armor with longarms is no good for an operative. AP writers need to balance "what makes sense in my story to find" with "what do the PCs need".

* Good equipment buying strategies for players are hard to figure out. Knowing how often you should replace armor is hard in this game.

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