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theclash24

More scavenging of the dead And more...

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As I've said repeatedly in other threads of this nature, I don't see an issue with looting.  If it becomes a problem (and only if!) there are plenty of in-game means at hand to reduce it.

 

In most cases, if a party is flush with cash (i.e. not trying to figure out how to buy the next ration pack that they can share to feed the five of them), looting will not be an issue.

 

In my experience, if players are looting everything that's not nailed down and bringing a crowbar for the stuff that is, they're not making enough money to reach their in-game goals in a reasonable period of time.  Consider the timeframe that a player might have to purchase their next piece of gear or cybernetics.

 

If they're not getting at least a couple of hundred credits per player per session, and the entire party has not agreed that they want to be playing a game where they're starving street-urchins without enough gear to be worth rolling, looting will probably become an issue if it isn't already.

 

If the GM wants to run a game like that (and it sounds like a lot of them are in this thread) then they need to find players who want to play in that kind of a game (and it sounds like a lot of them are in this thread).  Just make sure that the expected wealth levels of the party are well understood before the game begins and everyone should have fun, with or without looting!

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Looting can be an issue if the narrative you set permits it with no drawbacks, If I can earn 500 dollars for touching my toes after getting home from work every night you bet your ass i'm touching my toes nightly.  if you want to discourage looting find narrative ways to discourage it, the easiest means is frankly having time sensitive story lines, and not rewarding the behavior, so your players come to think of it as a waste of their valuable time.  I respectfully disagree with the notion that a metagamer is going to stop looting if you make him flush with credits, when looting with no consequences can get him even more free.

Edited by Greymere

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Coming from a players perspective... We just finished a small scenario and got a stash of money we split up. We all have starter equipment and are looking to buy our first bit of goods... but we are finding that moving into our next scenario, everything is prohibitively expensive. Hiring slicers, buying information, etc.. At this pace, we are going to spend everything we made on our last job to succeed at this one.

I don't see an issue with looting, sure you want your players hungry, but you don't want them starving.

 

rom a GM perspective... If they want to sell every blaster they find, fine... if you want to discourage it, maybe the blasters worth next to nothing. If they are imperial blasters, make it so they have to deal with a weapons smuggler. Now, smugglers don't buy piecemeal... so make it into a mission. If they want to sell all those imperial blasters, they need to find a smuggler who wants to buy 3 crates. Lets say 30 blaster rifles or something. Give them full cost on the rifles, but they have to collect them all, make the deal, and not get caught. Easy side missions right there...

 

Maybe they repeatedly do this and gain a valuable friend in doing so... maybe the guy ends up being undercover... so many ways to run with it.

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Combat is usually a means to an end, not and end unto itself.  In the movies, cartoons, etc - the PCs are typically 'holding them off' as they try to achieve their actual objective.  I can't remember a single scene in any of the movies/Clone Wars/Rebels where the PCs mow down a squad of Storm Troopers and have the time to leisurely loot the bodies.  I personally believe it's a fundamental difference between EotE and D&D - it's why EotE has a narrative system, doesn't encourage miniatures or a battle mat, uses very abstract ranges rather than combat squares, etc.  

 

Most combats are very free flowing - the party is on the move, running from A to B in their attempt to achieve some goal.  The situation where the PCs simply kill all the enemies and have the time to 'loot bodies' shouldn't happen from a scenario design perspective.  There should always be something moving them along (another wave of storm troopers, the impending destruction of the station, their escape route closing, local security coming, etc.)

 

My own group has a long (20+ year) D&D history and while we haven't had the loot problem per se, we HAVE had a 'kill everybody' problem.  I blame myself for lack of preparation and insufficient scene development.  Very rarely is the objective 'kill everyone on the field'.

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The characters in a game have a degree of control over the pacing too. It's not entirely in the hands of the GM. If the players are intentionally taking time to set up hits so that they'll have time to loot the dead, that's not all that different from setting up cons or heists except in the skill set used. The end result is still success = material gain.

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I can't remember a single scene in any of the movies/Clone Wars/Rebels where the PCs mow down a squad of Storm Troopers and have the time to leisurely loot the bodies.

 

Well, it's a movie. That would be wasted time on screen to watch. I assume that:

 

  • Luke might have pocketed Ponda Baba's blaster after Ben cut his arm off.
  • Han and Luke did loot some Stormtroopers (even armor and utility belts!) on the Death Star I.
  • The Rebel fleet might have picked up some Death Star I scrap before leaving Yavin.
  • Luke, Han, and Leia did loot a skiff after wiping out Jabba's crew.
  • Luke probably couldn't resist pocketing Yoda's saber after he became one with the Force (kidding, kinda).
  • Ewoks did loot some Stormtrooper armor on Endor.
  • Rebel commandos probably looted armor, weapons, vehicles, and high tech electronics from the surface of Endor after they finished celebrating.
  • Luke looted an Imperial Shuttle from Death Star II.

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  • Luke might have pocketed Ponda Baba's blaster after Ben cut his arm off.
  • Han and Luke did loot some Stormtroopers (even armor and utility belts!) on the Death Star I.
  • The Rebel fleet might have picked up some Death Star I scrap before leaving Yavin.
  • Luke, Han, and Leia did loot a skiff after wiping out Jabba's crew.
  • Luke probably couldn't resist pocketing Yoda's saber after he became one with the Force (kidding, kinda).
  • Ewoks did loot some Stormtrooper armor on Endor.
  • Rebel commandos probably looted armor, weapons, vehicles, and high tech electronics from the surface of Endor after they finished celebrating.
  • Luke looted an Imperial Shuttle from Death Star II.

 

You provided some excellent counter examples.  I guess I didn't really consider some of these 'looting' examples.

 

My guess would be

 

1) Luke and Co left quickly after that exchange in the cantina, as the Stormtroopers were onsite investigating the reports of a lightsaber and the guy who was attacked (which echoes my point of having something to move the PCs along)

2) Han and Luke wore that armor, I don't think they kept it (if they had, I'm not sure they would have tried to sell it, which is the issue many of these GMs have)

3) I doubt the Ewoks tried to take the Stormtrooper armor to the local pawn shop

 

You have correctly pointed out some concrete examples where 'looting' (if we call it that) plays into the plots - stealing the shuttle used in RotJ, the TIE fighter used in the season finale of Rebels, etc.

 

I try to not tell people 'how' to play - if they enjoy a shooting gallery, having the PCs pull around a repulsor sled solely for the purpose of piling up bodies to pilfer them later, etc - have at it.  I mainly make my comments because people are staring these threads because there are GMs that are having these issues and feel they are an issue.  Were it MY group, I would design the scenarios to make it very difficult for them to have the time to do this looting.  

 

To respond to the comments from HappyDaze - If the PCs are essentially playing a group of pirates, I think that has it's own inherent problems.  You can't  'set up hits' in civilized areas for example (unless local security and/or local criminal factions are ignoring these hits).  So either it's in deep space, in secluded areas, or the like.  If these planned hits are interfering with Imperial trade, powerful criminal factions, etc - those powerful entities are going to eventually setup traps - before long the 'planned hit' is much more than the PCs had hoped for - and then find themselves imprisoned, in front of the injured crime lord, etc.

 

All of these things are great plot hooks and an easy way to deal with this 'problem' for the creative GM.  As a GM, I can't imagine my players trying to loot a squad of stormtroopers and then taking Imperial gear to the local fence.

Edited by blaked

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Well, it's a movie. That would be wasted time on screen to watch. I assume that:

 

  • Luke might have pocketed Ponda Baba's blaster after Ben cut his arm off.
  • Han and Luke did loot some Stormtroopers (even armor and utility belts!) on the Death Star I.
  • The Rebel fleet might have picked up some Death Star I scrap before leaving Yavin.
  • Luke, Han, and Leia did loot a skiff after wiping out Jabba's crew.
  • Luke probably couldn't resist pocketing Yoda's saber after he became one with the Force (kidding, kinda).
  • Ewoks did loot some Stormtrooper armor on Endor.
  • Rebel commandos probably looted armor, weapons, vehicles, and high tech electronics from the surface of Endor after they finished celebrating.
  • Luke looted an Imperial Shuttle from Death Star II.

 

These are some weird assumptions you're making, basically "the movie didn't show this happening so I assume it did." What kind of logic is that?

 

And I am not going to refer to "taking something for temporary use" as looting in the traditional sense. They're largely putting things to use and then no longer have them later. There's clearly no intent to sell in a lot of those cases.

 

Note that Han doesn't keep the stormtrooper armor he wears on the Death Star. Back at Yavin IV, he's in his normal clothes with his normal blaster when he's about to depart. He's not looking for a place to sell that stuff.

 

The team take s skiff to get back to their ships after defeating Jabba. I don't think you can claim they "looted it" with like intent to sell it to someone once they got back to Mos Eisley or something. There's simply no proof.

 

The Ewoks appeared to take stormy gear as trophies of battle. Which is a pretty common thing. If anything they wouldn't want to sell these things ever - they're proof of winning that particular battle and have sentimental value to warriors and their families. 

 

Luke uses the Lambda to escape the exploding Death Star

 

These are some really hardcore mental gymnastics and a really poor definition of "looting." None of these are remotely similar to "we mow down the group of stormtroopers then strip the bodies of armor and blasters to sell at the next stop."

Edited by Kshatriya

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What's to say any junk vendors are even interested in buying the PCs' loot? Have the guy who owns the nearest emporium be terminally uninterested in the PCs' wares and then suggest what he/she would like to see from them instead. That could give them an incentive to be more selective about what they try to peddle while also establishing a contact.

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What's to say any junk vendors are even interested in buying the PCs' loot? Have the guy who owns the nearest emporium be terminally uninterested in the PCs' wares and then suggest what he/she would like to see from them instead. That could give them an incentive to be more selective about what they try to peddle while also establishing a contact.

I agree.

 

No sane NPC should be buying obviously-stormtrooper armor with scorch marks on it or obviously-imperial-issue blaster rifles. Just possessing that is a death sentence.

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What's to say any junk vendors are even interested in buying the PCs' loot? Have the guy who owns the nearest emporium be terminally uninterested in the PCs' wares and then suggest what he/she would like to see from them instead. That could give them an incentive to be more selective about what they try to peddle while also establishing a contact.

 

 

What's to say any junk vendors are even interested in buying the PCs' loot? Have the guy who owns the nearest emporium be terminally uninterested in the PCs' wares and then suggest what he/she would like to see from them instead. That could give them an incentive to be more selective about what they try to peddle while also establishing a contact.

I agree.

 

No sane NPC should be buying obviously-stormtrooper armor with scorch marks on it or obviously-imperial-issue blaster rifles. Just possessing that is a death sentence.

 

 

That really is the easiest 'in game' solution for the GM to manage this sort of thing.  The 'fence' simply contacts Imperial Security when the PCs try to sell the laminate armor and the Imperial carbines.  The 'fence' contacts another (richer) client when the PCs try to sell a particular blaster that they took off a scoundrel in yesterdays firefight, and you end up with an Inigo Montoya situation tomorrow

 

'You killed my father - prepare to die'.

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These are some weird assumptions you're making, basically "the movie didn't show this happening so I assume it did." What kind of logic is that?

 

I suppose I could also assume you missed my use of, "might", "might", "probably", and "probably" in my speculation above.

 

 

The team take s skiff to get back to their ships after defeating Jabba. I don't think you can claim they "looted it" with like intent to sell it to someone once they got back to Mos Eisley or something. There's simply no proof.

 

But you just assumed they didn't quickly sell it but left it someplace. There's simply no proof they didn't make a buck off of it either. There is proof they looted it. We saw them drive off with the thing.

 

Luke uses the Lambda to escape the exploding Death Star.

 

Then turned it back over to the closest Imperials? You don't think the Alliance kept it?

 

 

Note that Han doesn't keep the stormtrooper armor he wears on the Death Star. Back at Yavin IV, he's in his normal clothes with his normal blaster when he's about to depart. He's not looking for a place to sell that stuff.

 

We don't see him walking around with them in his arms later so that proves he didn't store the stolen blasters and utility belts he fled onto the Falcon with? He's a smuggler with a large debt to pay.

 

I think you are going on the assumption that picking up something and taking it away isn't looting unless you later make a buck from it. I'm not. I'm also not assuming they didn't sell it later. They "might" have and thus my use of that exact word, twice, in my speculation. I will try to put SPECULATION FOLLOWS warnings in the future if that helps your offended logic?

 

Twas just making a point that "looting" by whatever definition "might" not be against the spirit of the movies.

Edited by Sturn

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I'm saying in pretty much all of those cases (aside from the Ewoks taking trophies), items were stolen to accomplish a specific narrative task. I am absolutely fine with that, but I call BS when Luke appropriates a Lambda to escape the Death Star and the next thing we see is him re-selling it to Watto for 300k credits or whatever. 

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When people argue that nobody would buy stolen goods, I have to refer them back the rules for finding buyers and selling such goods with Streetwise. There is no such thing that cannot be sold, but some buyers are harder to find than others. If you have a player with a high Cunning, several ranks in Streetwise, and a few ranks of Street Smarts, don't be surprised if they have little trouble finding someone that's willing to buy hot E-11s and Stormtrooper Armor.

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When people argue that nobody would buy stolen goods, I have to refer them back the rules for finding buyers and selling such goods with Streetwise. There is no such thing that cannot be sold, but some buyers are harder to find than others. If you have a player with a high Cunning, several ranks in Streetwise, and a few ranks of Street Smarts, don't be surprised if they have little trouble finding someone that's willing to buy hot E-11s and Stormtrooper Armor.

I guess what I'm saying is I don't consider these rules to be particularly good. If anything it encourages looting.

Edited by Kshatriya

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When people argue that nobody would buy stolen goods, I have to refer them back the rules for finding buyers and selling such goods with Streetwise. There is no such thing that cannot be sold, but some buyers are harder to find than others. If you have a player with a high Cunning, several ranks in Streetwise, and a few ranks of Street Smarts, don't be surprised if they have little trouble finding someone that's willing to buy hot E-11s and Stormtrooper Armor.

 

That's letting the narrative serve the dice instead of making the dice serve the narrative.

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Perhaps the rules are intended to encourage looting, just as they are intended to make it hard for PCs to die. Sure, you can fight the rules, but that doesn't mean that you should.

My complaint with that is it sounds like it would make it harder for the GM to actively push a couple of the themes of the game: if you're living on the fringe of society, you should be (1) scrambling for money and never complacent about it; and (2) you should be hungry.

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Living through looting doesn't fight either of those themes. It provides a source of income, but it doesn't stop expenses. Damaged gear and ships, landing fees, other fees, food, shelter, everything else that makes up a lifestyle has costs. If you're looting to keep up (or hoping to get ahead) then you're pretty **** hungry.

Edited by HappyDaze

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Sure, there are rules for selling in the books, you can make time feel limited on looting, you can also make the dealer a tight wad, or someone see them selling or that same tight wad tell them no and call the authorities...but don't forget obligation. Obligation can be added for all of these listed above. Is it supposed to be a punishment? No, but it makes for story arcs and if you are seen doing it, you can bet the authorities are going to hunt you down which by default means obligation. You are now a wanted for questioning and are labeled a criminal, have a bounty put on your head, or you start feeling bad you murdered and stole from the dead causing nightmares.

 

Am I saying you should use obligation in this way? Nope, I am just saying that it COULD be part of it.

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