Legendary/Spontaneous Graded Items, Made Simpler

A-Z 2016 "L"Last night I wrote about 2,400 words on legendary/spontaneous graded items. On my way in to work on the bus this morning, I realized I might have overthought things. As much as I like the ‘quest’ aspect of it, the entire thing can probably be simplified.

Spontaneous Graded Items, Simplified

A character may have signature items. As the character gains experience, each experience point can be applied to a signature item. When the signature item gains enough experience points to gain a level, it gains a grade and a quality may be added. The item must conform to the regular rules for graded items, with regard to maximum quality grade and all grades being assigned.

The item starts at ‘grade 0’, and gains ‘grade 1’ when enough experience has been assigned to make it second level (and grade 2 at third level, grade 3 at fourth level, etc.). The example from yesterday becomes much simpler:

XP Assigned Item Grade Quality Added Item Description Notes
0 0 battleaxe start
2,000 1 durable durable battleaxe
5,000 2 saving up for giantbane
9,000 3 giantbane durable giantbane battleaxe
15,000 4 saving up for +1 bonus
23,000 5 +1 bonus +1 durable giantbane battleaxe
35,000 6 saving up for frost I
51,000 7 frost I +1 durable frost I giantbane battleaxe
75,000 8 saving up for frost II
105,000 9 frost II +1 durable frost II giantbane battleaxe
155,000 10 saving up for frost III
220,000 11 frost III +1 durable frost III giantbane battleaxe
315,000 12 saving up for +2 bonus
445,000 13 +2 bonus +2 durable frost III giantbane battleaxe

I think it would be reasonable to expect that the qualities added be appropriate to the activities taken in the meantime. Rather than tracking on an individual quest-oriented basis, simply rule at the time whether it’s appropriate. For instance, it only makes sense to add giantbane if the character has been facing giants regularly.

In the post-analysis in my previous post I found that the rules as I’d written at that point run into problems with the wealth by level guidelines. This change pushes the item grade down one (you can have a grade 13 spontaneous item at level 14), which helps:

Level Grade Item Value Wealth By Level
1 0 0 0
2 1 500 1,000
3 2 2,000 3,000
4 3 4,500 6,000
5 4 8,000 10,500
6 5 12,500 16,000
7 6 18,000 23,500
8 7 22,500 33,000
9 8 32,000 46,000
10 9 40,500 62,000
11 10 50,000 82,000
12 11 60,500 108,000
13 12 72,000 140,000
14 13 84,500 185,000
15 14 98,000 240,000
16 15 112,500 315,000
17 16 128,000 410,000
18 17 144,500 530,000
19 18 162,000 685,000
20 19 190,500 880,000

This is roughly equivalent, approximately, to having a masterwork weapon at second level, a +1 weapon at third level, and growing a bit from there. The relationship is a bit odd at the lowest level because the percentage of wealth by level increases, but that’s a function of wealth by level, I think. This percentage starts to drop after sixth level.

You could split the experience up between several items. At eighth level you could afford a grade 7 item or three grade 4 items… given the choice between one item with grade 4, grade 2, and grade 1 qualities, and three items each with one grade 2 and two grade 1 qualities, I suspect most would prefer the single item. Allowing the experience points to be split probably isn’t a problem.

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