Stumbling Block with Magical Treasure & XP


Long time listener, first time caller here. Some friends and I are running the Sinister Stone of Sakkara over VTT and loving it. However, I think that I may have misinterpreted some of the rules. Due to blind luck, they managed to find the pretty good +2 sword that the bandit captain has just a few rooms in, and only one of them died!

We had a little sidebar about magic items in ACKS, and once they heard that they could sell it for full XP, or keep it and forgo any XP award, they promptly left the dungeon! At some expense, and moderate time, they managed to make it to a larger city and eventually sell the blade - each ended up getting around 1500xp by my calculation. They were obviously very happy with this, but it left a sour taste in my mouth.

Did this go as intended? Are people supposed to sell most items for huge XP awards? They’ve said that in the future that they’d rather just sell most of their magical treasure for huge XP instead of keeping said items. I countered that sometimes they might need a magic sword or arrow and they agreed. One of them said something like “if the choice was between +1 chain mail for one of us, and all of us get 700XP or more, the choice is obvious.” I can’t find fault in that reasoning.

What are everyone elses experiences with magic items & XP?

That’s going to be part and parcel of their learning and play experience - sure, they can sell the items, but they’ll find they need at least some, and if they don’t have them any more…

Implementing ACKS market classes also makes it hard to dispose of them - it’s a real adventure in it’s self to find a buyer, and takes time and effort. And quite possibly lets you slip them into Capital of the Borderlands/Nethercity on the way :wink:

But tl, dr - yes, that’s fine. So is not selling it. Tbh at first level the XP is probably a very welcome boost!

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Toxicpixie has the right of it. The tradeoff is built into the game and they chose a fair line of play. If you want to explore the risks for that reward to help them see the time cost of waiting to sell things at market, you can simulate some of the world progressing during the time and point it out via rumors or observations when they make it back.

That could mean tightening the grip of factions in the dungeon, rival adventuring groups making some progress and bringing back rumors, wandering monster checks for the hub city nearest the delve (per Wandering into War, Axioms 3), or advancement toward a winter which limits adventuring for a time.

They may luck out and see no consequences, though, which would also be fine. Windfall is a part of the game.

I’ll add that I, as a player, would have argued very hard for keeping the sword. +2 is rare, hitting things immune to mundane damage is crucial, and a fighter with that can punch several levels above-weight to the general benefit of the party. However, several of the players at my table would have made the same judgment as your party, and rushing 2HD really is a strong choice too.

I hope you guys enjoy the rest of the module!