A number of people have questioned the purpose of pitting the players against each other.
The purpose of the competition is to make the choices meaningful. If you simply require the set collection for the bonus, that just makes treasure annoying. The players will trivially solve for the best outcomes. It's like "Here, you have some treasure, but you don't actually get it yet, heh, heh, heh" and then they have to both track and wait for the outcome.
This way, the players are incentivised to have their characters work against each other to complete sets, which means that the choices are no longer obvious or trival. Yes, everyone wants the wizard to have the treasure power, but do they want to suffer the experience hit? Instead I could take that item and sell it to him and offset that. Or I could work on completing my own set. . .
I play competitive games with my same group that I role-play with. We are still friends even after playing games where we compete! I can't relate to conversations about how players might be mad that other players are working for their own advantage. I acknowledge that might be a thing. But I've played plenty of Ticket to Ride, Small World, Dominion, and more besides and am still friends with everyone who's ever won.
Here are some examples of generic sets
and rewards. the #x is the multiplier to the gold value of the items.
gems, worth over 100 gp each] 1.5x
[Any 5 gems
of the same type and quality] 2x
gems, worth over 1,000 gp each] 1.8x and Jewelcutter contact.
[any 20 gems]
[4 fabric art
items, made from different kinds of fabric] 2.5x
[Any 3 items
using the same type of gem as decoration] 2x
native/primitive art items] 1.5x
ancient empire items] 1.5x
[Any group of 3 utensils] 10x
[Any 3 art objects] 2x
[Any 3 pieces of clothing] 10x
[Any 5 pieces of armor or weapons] 5x
some more specific (yet still somewhat generic) set items. A large part about
how these are created has to do with the specific lore and
"snowflakeness" of your setting. Each set should represent some
entity, power, culture, faction, religion or race either living or dead within
your world. Even the bonuses must remain somewhat generic considering the
preponderance of systems and clones—from
the examples you should be able to trivially convert to whatever system you are
set should be designed to be useful for more than one character type/archetype,
in order to encourage competition over them. Effects listed below stack, for
characters that meet multiple criteria. An elven ranger gets both the ranger
and elf bonuses for vestment of the wild.
The experience point multipliers for the generic sets are usually higher than the multipliers for the specific sets with some outcome. This is to encourage conflict between saving up for a specific set, versus turning it into useable experience right now. That 180 gp cloak might be very useful to the druid once the vestment is completed, but it's worth 1,800 xp to anyone turning in an easier to get clothing set.
themselves radiate faint alteration/transmutation magic. This is a simple way
of telling you that you simply tell the players out loud with your talking
voice what set items are and what (public) sets they belong to before treasure selection begins. Players have to have that knowledge or they won't be making informed choices. That will make the choices random instead of interesting.
Also note that any type of benefit and bonus is possible! This could be anything from allies, to magical castle enchantments, to reaction rolls against certain creatures, to statistic boosts, to psionic powers, to anything you can conceive of. Drawbacks are also possible. Set bonuses and modifiers could come from sellers, a certain merchant could pay more for a certain type of treasure. Bonus areas or sub-levels could be opened up by the players who wish to collect the set items.
A troll doll
stitched from hydra skin, with round black opals for eyes, worth 120 gp.
A troll doll
stitched from leather, with small pearl button eyes, and hair of yarn worth 80
A troll doll
stitched from human skin, with bone nails, and small, hard coals for eyes worth
1.1x, + use baleful eye 1/week.
dirge of death part 1 (140 gp)
sorrow of grief (5 gp)
moment of rebirth (250 gp)
continuation of sin (950 gp)
1.1x, + gain a +2 versus death saves
Performing the symphony (or an arrangement of it) adds a +5 to performance
checks when making money.
Studying the symphony, allows you to gain an additional 4th level spell slot,
useful for preparing/memorizing any Necromantic spell you know* (*Must be able
to cast 4th level spells)
Your caster level is considered 5 higher for the purposes of animating undead.
A black felt
conical hat, with a thin green band. (2 gp)
A set of
black diaphanous silk robes. (8 gp)
broom, scarred by a lightning strike, with tightly leather-bound broomcom
bristles. (22 gp)
5x, Fly on the broom 1/night for an hour.
Gain 2 first level spell slots or if already a spellcaster, an additional slot
of your highest level spell.
Gain the ability to grow to ogre size or shrink to mouse size 1/day
Witches & Warlocks:
One extra spell slot per level, plus an additional use of curse or potion
making abilities per day/week.
the wandering minstrel]
A bent and
battered harmonica made from brass inscribed in common with the phrase "A
rolling stone" (20 gp)
A pair of
elven boots, made from supple deer leather (40 gp)
sash made from grey fine linen and olive green cotton (2 gp)
A beret with
a griffon feather, made of fine green linen (60 gp)
2x, Grants a bonus to performance checks.
grants a bonus to performance checks x2.
grants a bonus to reaction checks.
breastplate of glistening steel, with the symbol of tempus in a circle. (500
A set of
heavy plate mail vambraces and boots, enameled with gold. (80 gp)
helmet of shining steel. (25 gp)
A pair of
hardwood bracers lined in dark steel with steel crossed spears across the wood
silken cloak, trimmed in cloth of gold (8 gp)
1.1x, Armor as full plate, +1 to AC in the rain or bad weather
gain a +2 divine bonus that can be applied to a saving throw after the roll.
gain +1 to hit while wearing this armor.
Tempus: double their level to turn undead and can call lightning 1x day.
They also gain the priest bonus.
of the Wild]
breast plate, stained dark with the blood of dead goblins (600 gp)
green ankle length woolen cloak with a hood, lined in wolf fur (180 gp)
calf-high boots made from wyvern skin. (80 gp)
Effect: 1.1x, provides armor as breastplate
Gain an additional use of Wild shape and an additional spell slot of their
second highest level.
Gain the ability to pass without trace and a +2 to their ability to track.
Gain heightened senses in the wild. +5 to stealth and perception checks in
wilderness (surprised on a 0 in 6)
by definition of being interesting treasure, define your setting. Whatever
items or sets you end up creating, they have to be specific to your world and
setting.. The above serve as basic examples.