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Saturday, May 16, 2015

AD&D 1e DMG Has a Reference to 2,000 Coppers in a Treasure Hoard - How Did I Miss This!?!

Is that 2,000 coppers in your pocket or are you
just happy to see me?
A tip of the hat to +Greg Christopher for finding this diamond in the rough ;)

From page 92 of the 1st Edition AD&D Dungeon Master's Guide:
Electrum will be most unusual, gold rare, and scarcer still will be a platinum piece or a small gem! Rarest of all, treasure of treasures- the magic item - is detailed hereafter (PLACEMENT OF MAGIC ITEMS). If some group of creatures actually has a treasure of 11 gold pieces, another will have 2,000 coppers and yet a third nothing save a few rusty weapons. Of course, all treasure is not in precious metals or rare or finely made substances. Is not a suit of armor of great value? What of a supply of oil? a vial of holy water? weapons? provisions? animals? The upper levels of a dungeon need not be stuffed like a piggy bank to provide meaningful treasures to the clever player character.
Now if only I could find a reference to nine giant rats in the 1e DMG my quest would be complete...

18 comments:

  1. I don't get it. Why is this special to you?

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    1. http://www.tenkarstavern.com/2012/10/ambition-avarice-session-recap-closing.html

      http://wondrousimaginings.blogspot.com/2012/10/played-dwimmermount-last-night-sucked.html

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  2. Going back even further, in the Holmes Basic rulebook one of the treasures in the very first room (Room A) in the Sample Dungeon is exactly 2000 cp. Knowing JM's love of Holmes Basic I wouldn't be surprised if his use of 2000 cp was intentionally referencing that. Plus almost every treasure in that dungeon is an even 100 or 1000 pieces.

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  3. Doesn't make it good, though...

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  4. Would 1,997 cp make you feel better? I don't know what's worse, the exact number, or the anally-retentive abhorrence of such a number.

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    1. I think what's worst is the assumption of "abhorrence" and anal retension by kneejerk defenders of it.

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    2. Ironic response, as you assume too much. If you like, I can call it an over-emphasis on the exact count of coins instead.

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    3. Clearly you don't know what irony actually means. It's a direct response to what you wrote.

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  5. It's just an old school way of distributing treasure. The OD&D treasure tables are only in 1000's of coins, and keeping the treasure rounded makes it easier to track how much has been found.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Exactly. I understand the over-use of empty rooms being problematic, but the outrage against 2,000 cp just seems overkill to me. If you going to complain about a module, talk about substantive qualities.

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  6. Then again a DM who finds the number unlikely can easily change it.

    Speaking of Dwimmermount: did it ever get finished and whatever happened to Grognardia? I used to enjoy reading that.

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    1. As far as I know Maliszewski dropped off the face of the planet after the Kickstarter for Dwimmermount was successful and he found he couldn't keep up with actually finishing the product to make it publishable. The folks over at Autarch finished it up and got it published for Labyrinth Lord and their in house system ACKS.

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    2. He writes over at Black Gate now.

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  7. I like letting players roll for coin. Not sure what you think of that idea, but it gets me two things.

    First, I dislike round coinage numbers that don't make sense. They're like a modern TV reference made by a character - total believability breaker.

    Second, my players like the chance to do the roll. It's a bit of nice tension - will they roll high or low? And a bit social - "Never let Johnn roll, he's got bad luck." {Johnn snatches the dice and rolls a 2. Everyone groans and renews vows to never let Johnn roll for treasure.}

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  8. When I roll up treasure hoards, I take the numbers rolled and modify them with d10s. For instance, 2000 CP would be redone as 1000 CP plus 1d1000, reading triple 0 as zero, so 1,000 to 1,999; a hoard of 2500 GP would be 2400 plus 1d100. Sometimes the figures will be round, but usually not.

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