Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Starting Funds

It's my general belief that far too many RPGs start the PCs out with too much in starting funds. Where is the hunger to drive oneself into treasure seeking if an adventurer starts with several years pay in his pocket before the game even starts?

One has a fair chance of starting most old school RPGs with 90-120 gp to acquire equipment and folks often bemoan this as "not enough". It's actually too much, It does little to cause one to carefully ponder a characters initial gear and the play opportunities that each thing carried into the wilderness or underworld can represent.

I've been playing Swords and Wizardy on and off as a fill in non campaign game and have been limiting starting characters funds to 3d6+12 gp, that's it 15-30 gp. There's been wailing and gnashing of teeth and then folks calm down and carefully consider their purchases from the equipment list. And then they get to the underworld and discover how effective their limited choices may have been and so far they've been realizing it's actually fun not having the right tool for every job immediately at hand and a sack of 200 sp is a thrilling find, not to mention the wealth that the ruby ring on the strangers hand in the tavern really represents.

I'm not encouraging adventures where characters can only hope to upgrade their clothing by looting the high hard leather boots from fallen opponents but they should start a little lean and be able to see their early success as that, a success.

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