5E High Level Shopping

Coroc

Explorer
Ok, why use a Silver Standard?

(Feel free to point me to an existing discussion.)
It is historically accurate and makes much more sense. If you want to place your campaign in a distinct epoch concerning tech level and realistic pricing and economics - comparable to RL medieval Europe then silver based pricing always is the way to go. Also encumbrance of a fortune is more realistic with gold being worth much more than in raw. A realistic approach is 1g=20s=240c.
Replace all gold in the PHB with silver 1:1
 

Quartz

Explorer
There are some good things there. I like your sets of items. I did spot a couple of issues: you have an Ioun stone give a +1 Proficiency Bonus - that's already in the DMG - and some items (e.g. the magma one) need charges applied.

The leather armour that's the first item looks very cool, but I would suggest Resistance instead of DR 5. KISS applies. DR 5 makes the wearer basically immune to mooks.
 

dave2008

Adventurer
Ok, why use a Silver Standard?

(Feel free to point me to an existing discussion.)
I know [MENTION=12731]CapnZapp[/MENTION] has discussed this is what he uses in other threads, but I don't know if he said why. Maybe he can chime in. Personally I use it for basically the same reason as noted by [MENTION=6895991]Coroc[/MENTION] mentioned.
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
I also use a silver standard more for evoking a feeling than any concern about reality.

With whatever our standard is, we think of it essentially as being like dollars. They are our baseline. If you use gold standard, the gp is like having a dollar and all costs are based off of it. But doing that means all silver pieces are like dimes and all copper pieces are essentially pennies. And in terms of giving out treasure, finding a giant sack of pennies in some treasure hoard kinda blows. Who is going to actually want to bother picking them up? I mean if you were to break into someone's house and see a giant water cooler bottle that was filled with nothing but pennies... yeah, it might seem kinda(?) worth taking... maybe(?)... but based upon how unwieldy it would be to lug that thing around, all for an undetermined amount that you'd have to spend a long time counting... it probably isn't worth it. Spend a couple hours counting out 2000 pennies for what is essentially 20 bucks.

And on top of that... the next (and only) coin up from the gold standard is the platinum piece, and that's worth... $10. Again, it just doesn't seem all that exciting if you find pp, especially considering many old school DMs I don't think tend to drop platinum pieces into hoards in any great amount. So yeah, okay, you end up finding a couple tenners in a satchel. That's... fine.

But... if you drop down to the silver standard, the appearances are reversed. Copper pieces now have a seeming worth of 10 cents each. They still have a bit of function in your economy and feel okay to grab because a mere ten of them get you to your baseline. And then on top of that, gold pieces are now worth $10 bucks each, and DMs are more conditioned to drop sacks of them around... so you'll usually find larger piles of gold than you would piles of platinum in a gp standard economy. So for gold we're talking a really good haul! And finally, platinum? One platinum piece is worth $100! Think about how you feel when you have a one hundred dollar bill in your pocket? That's how it feels to have a platinum piece. At this point now, even finding a half-dozen lone coins is a windfall. It makes every platinum coin special.

Now of course... not every table will necessarily get that evocation of feeling that strongly even if you switch over, because it really comes down a lot to how the DM runs their economy at the table. But even at the barest minimum... having two larger coins over your standard and only one under just gives the appearance of more worth than one over and two under. No matter how your DM runs it... any coin worth 1/100th of your standard is just gonna feel kinda lame.
 
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77IM

Explorer!!!
Looking at the prices of "goods and services" and the daily wages of hirelings, it seems to me that a gold piece is worth around $100, making a silver piece about $10, and a copper piece roughly $1. The prices don't quite line up with modern day currency, because the relative values were slightly different back in pseudo-medieval times, but it's usually close enough to get a good feel for how much a coin is worth. For example, if the mayor is offering the group 150 gp to clear out a den of kobolds, that's roughly $15,000 -- a pretty hefty sum for a day's work, offset by the risks involved. A guild fee of 1 gp is like a $100 fee, which is kinda steep, but not absurd. Bribing a guard 10 gp is like slipping them $1,000, which is enough to make many people look the other way. Etc. Also, it conforms to the PHB description of how common coins are -- gold coins are themselves rare, but silver and copper are common, which is like real life ($100 bills are much less common than $10 and $1; actually I think the $20 is more common than the $10, but it's close enough).
 
Have a look at Terry Pratchett's discworld:
Gold is very special and no everyday currency,
and if some gold appears, everyone's after it. :D
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
Ok, why use a Silver Standard?

(Feel free to point me to an existing discussion.)
It basically boils down to personal preference.

There is nothing wrong with a gold based game world economy. There just isn't anything particularly right about it either :)

This is not a big issue - Dungeons & Dragons is pretty far removed from real history, no matter what color your coins are.

But since switching to silver is so exceedingly simple (just replace the "g" with "s" in "gp" ;), it is a small and easy nod towards verisimilitude!
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
There are some good things there. I like your sets of items. I did spot a couple of issues: you have an Ioun stone give a +1 Proficiency Bonus - that's already in the DMG - and some items (e.g. the magma one) need charges applied.

The leather armour that's the first item looks very cool, but I would suggest Resistance instead of DR 5. KISS applies. DR 5 makes the wearer basically immune to mooks.
Thank for your reply - wow, actual mechanical feedback! :)

The Ioun Stone is the DMG item. I realize I wasn't clear - this is an actual handout to my players. It contains a mix of items from pure RAW via tweaked RAW to complete homebrew.

I would like to know more about what charges you think the Magma Robe need? (It already contains one set of charges so I don't understand what kind of charges are missing)

KISS is a worthy principle, but in this case there is a precedent in the PHB. The Heavy Armor feat (don't remember exact name) that provides DR 3 (to use your d20-inspired terminology).

The reason I used this (beside wanting to) is that it makes the armor more valuable, which is what I want for a high-level shopping list. That is, "DR" (if we can call it that) can be combined with resistance. It stacks. That is, you still benefit from something like the stoneskin spell. If the armore provided "stoneskin" against blunt and slashing, it would simply be less desirable, less rare, less high level. :)

Cheers, Z
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
I also use a silver standard more for evoking a feeling than any concern about reality.
This.

While I could argue "silver is more realistic than gold" I won't, because D&D is not even close to "real" anyway. I honestly don't think the "realism" argument is particularly fruitful. D&D is not HarnMaster or even Warhammer FRP. In the default game of D&D there will be wild amounts of treasure, and quickly too.

I think the most honest and best argument is "I like a silver-based economy better" :)

It means that the mundane purchases you do at the very lowest levels is in "mundane" silver, and that the very first goblins or bandits you defeat might have a bit of cash, but that would be silver (or copper) coins.

It simply becomes something of a deal when you find your first pot of real gold, and bring it back to the tavern in your starter town. :)
 

Quartz

Explorer
Thank for your reply - wow, actual mechanical feedback! :)
:)

DR 5 is far too much for Karajah's Life & Death; even Heavy Armour Master provides only 3 points. So the wearer is all but immune to being attacked by all non-piercing 1d4 weapons and all but immune to 1d6 weapons. Absent stat bonuses, of course, which mooks are not likely to have. I see your point about DR vs resistance, though.

With regard to the Robes of Magma, on re-reading I missed the paragraph about charges. Sorry about that, but the text is rather buried. Given the nature of the item, should it not give immunity - or at least resistance - to fire damage? You might also allow attunement by a cleric worshipping a fire or earth deity.

While I'm here... :)

The Animated Shield - it's simply a must-have for any fighter who uses a 2H weapon or two weapons. I'm not a fan of animated shields anyway - they destroy the shtick of sword-and-board fighters. You might want some text about what happens if someone tries to grab it, stomp it, or otherwise targets it. And how about a more definitive side-effect? Like it teleports away? Or it only works for those not in heavy armour? (On the real-life basis that shields were discarded on the battlefield after the introduction of plate armour.)
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
The armor is good, yeah. But I don't think it will be picked - the competition is pretty fierce!

(In isolation it's pretty good, but still it's effectively only +2 armor. Heavy Armor Master is a feat you can take at much lower level, so +2 DR doesn't feel particularly overpowered at high level. And it only protects against non-magical attacks. Which is increasingly uncommon at this level, at least in my games. And finally, Rogues need all the help in combat heavy campaigns like me... If you want to reduce its DR in a campaign with less magic, though, I understand.)

The Robes: check out the Investure of Flames spell!

The Animated Shield is pretty standard - if the DMG didn't go into details, so be it.
 
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CapnZapp

Adventurer
Whoah....and here I thought Forgotten Realms (and other settings) were made up out of thin air.

Man, the things they don't teach in school.
This is exactly why I made a reply saying "the best argument is that I like silver-based better". It avoids the snark, and keeps the focus on what I started the thread for: to discuss the high level items I offer for your inspiration
 

Horwath

Explorer
Ok, why use a Silver Standard?

(Feel free to point me to an existing discussion.)
Silver standard is great and it values gold more, so you do not need to carry much around.

I did it like this:

If we look at today prices of copper,silver,gold and platinum and make a coin of same size(volume) and start with copper, then

silver is almost exactly 100 copper
gold is 145 silver, this can be minted in smaller coins to get ×100 value
but platinum is only 0,75 gold.

We can say that in middle ages or and d20 realm platinum is worth a lot more, but best solution would be:

1. Silver standard

2. One silver is 100 copper

3. One gold is 100 silver or 10.000 copper coins.

4. Gold coin is about 70% volume of silver/copper

5. If we take 9g for silver(50 coins per lb) as standard we have:

Copper coin 7,7g
Silver coin 9,0g
Gold coin 11,6g(70% volume of other 2 coins)

or if we want same weight coins for calculating bulk, then we go with standard 9g per coin and we get

Silver(standard): 9g, 1× volume, or if we go with 2 euro coin that is 2,2mm thick as standard we get diameter about of 2,2cm

Silver: 9g, 22*2,2mm
Copper: 9g, 24*2,2mm
Gold: 9g, 16*2,2mm
 

Coroc

Explorer
Silver standard is great and it values gold more, so you do not need to carry much around.

I did it like this:

If we look at today prices of copper,silver,gold and platinum and make a coin of same size(volume) and start with copper, then

silver is almost exactly 100 copper
gold is 145 silver, this can be minted in smaller coins to get ×100 value
but platinum is only 0,75 gold.

We can say that in middle ages or and d20 realm platinum is worth a lot more, but best solution would be:

1. Silver standard

2. One silver is 100 copper

3. One gold is 100 silver or 10.000 copper coins.

4. Gold coin is about 70% volume of silver/copper

5. If we take 9g for silver(50 coins per lb) as standard we have:

Copper coin 7,7g
Silver coin 9,0g
Gold coin 11,6g(70% volume of other 2 coins)

or if we want same weight coins for calculating bulk, then we go with standard 9g per coin and we get

Silver(standard): 9g, 1× volume, or if we go with 2 euro coin that is 2,2mm thick as standard we get diameter about of 2,2cm

Silver: 9g, 22*2,2mm
Copper: 9g, 24*2,2mm
Gold: 9g, 16*2,2mm
Your approach is cool for rp also iprefer the mediaeval value ratios of gold and silver and copper which were 1:20:240
That was still visible with former British currency 1£ being 20 shillings and a shilling 12 pence.
Realism or not, it sounds plain stupid that every day tools and weapons should cost 100 gold this makes gold almost worthless and the lesser coins almost junk.
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
this makes gold almost worthless and the lesser coins almost junk.
No, the actual value of having "junk" copper is that it is the only way to present a "real" dragon hoard or similar.

If you want your characters to find an actual heap of gold, the only way to implement it well up in the levels is to have it be a heap of copper, with a thin layer of gold pieces on top. (A small mountain of actual gold is what you find at tier IV if at all, even in the most Monty Hallian of campaigns. That is, of course, assuming the DM knows anything about density and volume... ;)

Also: if you want your characters to find more wealth than they can carry.

I actually had this problem (the first one). In a silver-based economy, hoards will either have to be physically smaller or you need to invent a new "junk" coin valued at 1/100th of the baseline. (Tin pieces or some such).
 

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