IG Publication: Standard Methods of Dividing Treasure

Alavatar

Baron
Standard Methods for Dividing Treasure
by Alavatar Peece et al

Greetings to any who reads this document! Know that by reading this document and utilizing the methods outlined herein makes both I and your adventuring companions breath easier. These standard methods being defined is an effort to make dividing recently acquired assets less dramatizing and breed less ill will among the your fellow adventurers.

It is important that whenever an adventure is about to take place with colleagues that are not your normal traveling companions that one of the below methods is defined before embarking.

History has shown that more often than not the subject of wealth distribution not being defined beforehand has lead to squabbling, infighting, distrust, and resentment. These are not good traits to foster in people who you are trusting with your life or who are trusting you with theirs. These feelings are often created when distribution methods were not agreed upon in the first place and, at the time of dividing loot, there is the perception, real or not, of favoritism or unfair advantages. Peoples perceptions are often skewed on this subject especially when the method for dividing the loot isn't decided until after the treasure is found.

By designating the distribution method beforehand everyone will know upfront what to expect when the chore of dividing treasure is conducted. There may still be hard feelings, but the impact of these feelings will be lessened by the initial expectations being set.

I offer the below Standard Methods, numbered and labeled for easy collaboration, for adventurers to utilize. I make no claim on any copyright or license of these methods. As such, copying this document is permitted.


Method 1: The Default (Loot Your Kill)
  • Loot your own kill
  • Treasure on the ground is free to grab
  • Treasure in a container is divided randomly after the adventure, should it be remembered
"The Default" method is extremely simple. It is the method which is most often employed by adventurers that do not trust one another when it comes to loot, especially when the method for distribution was not defined in the first place. This method seems to be the literal default method in most lands the author of this document has traveled to, except when Ritual Scrolls are involved. That is not to say that this method cannot be utilized with Ritual Scrolls found in containers, because it certainly can, but it is not recommended.

If items of "significant value" are found it is the author's recommendation to at least use one of the following methods.



Method 2: Random Distribution
  • Designate a person to be in charge of loot
  • All loot is collected into a central container
  • Coin and valuable objects are divided evenly
  • Production items are randomly distributed before identification, drawing one or two at a time from the central container
  • Ritual reagents are divided randomly
  • Ritual scrolls are divided randomly before identification, often by die roll
  • Magic Items are divided randomly before identification, often by die roll
The "Random Distribution" method is considered by many to be the most "fair" distribution method since it is based on luck rather than math skill or resources at your disposal. But, an extremely lucky individuals may be scorned. This method is recommended for small groups (less than 11) comprised of individuals with significantly different loot method paradigms.



Method 3: The Town Battle
  • Designate a person to be in charge of loot
  • All loot is collected into a central container
  • The person in charge of loot does the following:
    • Production items are identified and their values logged
      • Illegal substances are not logged and either immediately handed over to the authorities or destroyed
    • Coin is counted and noted
    • Valuable objects are assessed and noted
    • Assign a value to Ritual Reagents; record the number of Ritual Reagents and their value
    • Magic Items are identified
    • Ritual Scrolls are identified
    • Buyers for the Magic Items and Ritual Scrolls are found, the items are sold, and the resulting profit is noted and put into the central container
      • It is recommended to ask everyone that participated if they have interest and how much they are willing to pay before looking outside the participation group
      • It is recommended to have a notebook to record who bid on what as well as validate who payed how much for what
      • A central "auction" is a quick an efficient way of processing this task
    • Tally the total value of the loot in the central container and divide it by the number of folks that participated in the adventure
    • Distribute the resulting value to each person, generally trying to keep the coin to production ratio even
The "Town Battle" method is the most exhausting method due to the trust required to designate a person in charge of the loot and the effort required of the person in charge of the loot. There is a lot of foot-work, collaboration, trust, and a small bit of computation required of the person in charge of the loot. While the method requires a lot of energy it is considered to be the most fair for a large crowd of adventurers (20+) especially if a majority of those adventurers are not members of a "group" or "house".



Method 4a: Group Shares - Random Distribution version
  • Designate a person to be in charge of loot
  • All loot is collected into a central container
  • Define the "groups", generally either by groups of friends, guilds, or official House
  • Distribute the treasure per Method 2, except by defined group instead of by individual
    • Bias the group distribution based on participation (i.e. if 7 people participated, 3 are of one group and 4 of another, the loot is divided (3/7) to the first group and (4/7) to the second group)

Method 4b: Group Shares - Town Battle version
  • Designate a person to be in charge of loot
  • All loot is collected into a central container
  • Define the "groups", generally either by groups of friends, guilds, or official House
  • Distribute the treasure per Method 3, except by defined group instead of by individual
    • Bias the group distribution based on participation (i.e. if 7 people participated, 3 are of one group and 4 of another, the loot is divided (3/7) to the first group and (4/7) to the second group)
The Group Shares methods are often used when most, if not all, folks involved are members of groups. This method is generally used when enough people from different groups who's primary method of internal group wealth is communal are involved, or when there is politics amongst the groups working together.



Method 5: Need before Greed
  • Designate a person to be in charge of loot
  • All loot is collected into a central container
  • The person in charge of loot does the following:
    • Production items are identified and their values logged
      • Illegal substances are not logged and either immediately handed over to the authorities or destroyed
    • Coin is counted and noted
    • Valuable objects are assessed and noted
    • Assign a value to Ritual Reagents; record the number of Ritual Reagents and their value
    • Magic Items are identified
    • Ritual Scrolls are identified
  • The loot is then divided
    • The party then gathers and discusses who could use what was found
    • Items are distributed to those folks with the greatest "need"
This method is often reserved for adventurers that are more concerned with improving the strength of their brothers in arms and filling holes in weakness of their teammates. The "Need before Greed" method is used mostly by either the more benevolent adventurers or those that feel they have acquired enough; it is not meant for those who would take advantage of others. It is recommended to use this method if everyone involved trusts each other, such as an adventuring party is all part of a House or guild. This allows those folks involved to grow their relationships with each other without fear of greed, or learn the true natures of who they adventure with.



Method 6: The Auction (for items of "significant" value)
  • Magic Items are identified
  • Ritual Scrolls are identified
  • The party decides on the method of auction:
    • Auction immediately within the group; use only coin and valuables on hand
    • Auction immediately within the group; use coin and valuables immediately available (i.e. at your house/cabin)
    • Auction to the community at an announced time
  • Add the profits to the central container for the loot
  • Divide coin and production based valuables (including the profit from the auction) per one of the above listed methods

Method 6 is more of a sub-method than one that stands on it's own; Method 6 is the best way to maximize your profits especially if the community auction option is selected, but relies on the adventurers to choose one of the previous methods as the basis of loot distribution. This method is recommended for use with Method 1, 2, and 3. Method 4 can use this, but it is up to the groups to see if they would rather have more coin or come to an agreement on the ritual scroll / magic item division. Method 5 should not need to use an auction since the premise behind Method 5 is rooted in need and not personal wealth.
 
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