D&D 5E Ring of Cold Resistance vs Ring of Warmth

Werebat

Explorer
Per pages 192 and 193 of the DMG, the Ring of Cold Resistance is a Rare magic item that grants resistance to cold damage, while the Ring of Warmth is an Uncommon item that grants resistance to cold damage AND protection against the effects of temperatures up to -50 degrees Fahrenheit.

Why is the Ring of Warmth worth less and easier to craft than the Ring of Cold Resistance? Am I missing something, or is the crafting and item value stuff in the DMG just pants on head stupid?
 

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AaronOfBarbaria

Adventurer
It's the case of cold resistance not being as valuable in a general sense as fire resistance or a few other varieties of damage, so the ring of warmth is just fine.

And cold being an option with the ring of resistance is so that you aren't instead asking "Why isn't cold an option?".

They could have split up the resistance types among a few rarities like how the belt of giant strength varieties are handled, but that would have introduced the problem that each damage resistance is heavily campaign-dependent in how potent it actually turns out to be, since how common a damage type is in the spell list/monster manual doesn't automatically translate to how common that damage type will be in a particular campaign.
 

Lancelot

Adventurer
Taken as a stand-alone game... yes, it's pretty silly.

However, it's worth remembering that 5e was designed for inclusion and some level of backwards portability. There wasn't such a thing as a ring of resistance (electricity) in AD&D or 2e. However, there was a ring of warmth. The ring of warmth appears in a number of old modules, so it's a tradition thing. To be honest, the same is true of a number of other 5e items. The trident of fish command, for example. If you have 8 lines of text available in the DMG, that's the item you're choosing to include?!? ...but it's a nod to previous versions, and I'm okay with that.

At the end of the day, your DM (or you, if you're the DM) chooses the availability and cost of items. If the ring of warmth is deemed pants-on-head stupid, then just nix it. All resistance rings are Rare items; nice and consistent. Just ignore the old men in their rocking chairs who chuckle about seeing THACO listed in the index, or dwarven throwers, or whatever other artifacts of AD&D and 2e are still lying around. I'm one of those old men. Humor me. :)
 

S'mon

Legend
Many of the rarity values only seem to make sense for 'how rare is this item', not 'how valuable in this item'. I think the main thing is to ignore the suggested cost scale and set prices based on actual utility. 1e or 3e/Pathfinder seem like reasonable places to get some sale prices from.
 

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
Similarly, ring of feather fall is rarer than things that grant flight.

Rather tha seeing it as a sacred cow form previous editions, I think these inconsistencies emerge from the play test process -- items introduced earlier were not balanced against ones introduced only in the DMG, and (for whatever reason) there was no attempt made to balance obvious things like these.
 

Per pages 192 and 193 of the DMG, the Ring of Cold Resistance is a Rare magic item that grants resistance to cold damage, while the Ring of Warmth is an Uncommon item that grants resistance to cold damage AND protection against the effects of temperatures up to -50 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you check the rules for enduring inclement weather, you'd notice than any creature with Resistance to Cold damage is immune to the effects of mundane cold weather - normally you would have to make a check, but any creature with Resistance (or wearing appropriate clothing) automatically succeeds.

So there's no mechanical difference between the items, except one is less common. It wouldn't be too hard for the DM to interpret that the Ring of Warmth is the Ring of Cold Resistance by another name, and price them the same. It's not like there are any hard rules for crafting magic items. The DM is expected to tailor that to the game world at hand.
 
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Jeff Carlsen

Adventurer
It is a little silly, but I do enjoy creating explanations for why. Perhaps a Ring of Resistance works on a fundamentally different principle. It weakens an elemental construct directly, granting resistance. But, in the case of cold damage, there is a simpler solution, which is simply to warm the subject.

Or, maybe rings of warmth were commissioned en mass during a little ice age, or to supply an army invading the frozen north. So they are more common, and their construction is well understood.
 

Evenglare

Adventurer
As always the game is not dictated by maths, but also by the creative aspect. It takes into context tons of things like others have mentioned about how often people come into contact with something, references to older editions etc etc. As always look at something and decide how it fits into your game. If you need something to cost more or less, then change it by all means. It's not breaking the rules, if you remember anything is that the rules are suggestions nothing more. The game has waaaaaay to many variables to actually produce any sort of balance for the majority because -everything- needs to be filtered through context.
 

Because 5e has some really wonky classifications for magic items--value and rarity are not predicated on how powerful an item is, and instead seem to have been thrown together without a great deal of thought (possibly a result of multiple hands on the list without thoroughly documenting why they made the changes they did).

As always the game is not dictated by maths, but also by the creative aspect. It takes into context tons of things like others have mentioned about how often people come into contact with something, references to older editions etc etc.

I flatly disagree. It is completely possible, and doable. There is at least one example of a logically-organized price and rarity list floating around on the internet, with explained justifications for any changes from the official rules.

These prices may not be perfect for all campaigns, but they can absolutely be good for most campaigns. And with just a small amount of further effort, you can account for various other kinds of campaigns beyond the "stereotypical" pseudo-medieval, ruins-of-lost-empires style. Simple things, like a page or two for "survival" campaigns (e.g. Dark Sun), "horror" campaigns (e.g. Ravenloft), low-magic (e.g. "sword and sandal"), high-magic (e.g. Eberron), resource-poor (e.g. Dark Sun, or Primeval Thule), and perhaps a others I've failed to think of myself. Armed with such modular advice, a DM will be exceedingly well-equipped for preparing any world he or she might choose. This should not be a dramatically difficult endeavor; it is, in fact, exactly what I expect to be paying a game's designers to do. Particularly when they spent a good year or two lauding the "modular" nature of the rules they were designing.
 

Li Shenron

Legend
Rarity is only secondarily related with price. The most common car models IRL are neither the cheapest nor the most expensive.

In addition, for a variety of reasons, inferior products are sometimes more expensive, like iphones and ipads...

Nobody is ever forced to follow the rarity tags strictly.
 

Rarity is only secondarily related with price. The most common car models IRL are neither the cheapest nor the most expensive.

For something like cars, which are mass-produced and sold with a relatively fast turnover rate, you're absolutely right. The same can be said for food, for example. Magic items are like neither of these things, and are much more like tools (which is, in fact, exactly what they are--magical tools) in a pre-mass-production society. Crappy pots and pans are much more common, and much less expensive, than high-quality ones, which are more common and less expensive than fancy rare-material ones meant for professional chefs.

In addition, for a variety of reasons, inferior products are sometimes more expensive, like iphones and ipads...

Any such goods benefit from the brand-name effect and/or conspicuous consumption--neither of which meaningfully applies. Chefs don't care if their cookware has a designer's mark on it; they care if it will work as ideally as possible (light weight, ease of use, ease of cleaning, durability, etc.)

Nobody is ever forced to follow the rarity tags strictly.

By that standard, there's never anything wrong with any game ever, because nobody's forced to follow anything in the rulebook at all.

But if the book purports to be useful for play, it better doggone well BE useful, and the rarity categories often fail in that task. A modicum of effort could have fixed it, literally just a few hours' time spent by some random person on the internet. A little more, and it could have been a fantastically useful resource for people running any game, not just D&D, by specifically addressing how one can (or even "should") alter the economic and materiel assumptions of a campaign to help support one or more themes.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
It's very simple really.

The ring of warmth's creation process is simpler or cheaper than a ring of resistance.
You have to create a ring of resistance before tuning it to an element and the process of creating the ring of resistance is harder or more expensive than a ring of warmth.

It's like making a red statue make of wood and one made of gold. They are both red statues, but one is cheaper and can be used as firewood.
 


Ristamar

Adventurer
I sometimes wonder if people that rage over this problem ever played a Diablo-like game where you find a super rare item that sucks when compared to the far more common yet nearly identical item you already owned for dozens of hours.

If so, I can only assume they sent some incredibly vitriolic emails to the developers, wrote scathing critiques on the respective forums, or burned a physical copy of the game in a blazing yet cathartic effigy.

I do agree that magic item rarity is occasionally strange at the surface level, but it ranks so low on my concerns about the game, I can't muster any bile to spew over it.
 

schnee

First Post
Forget all this hand-wavey BS trying to make it make sense.

It's a minor problem that slipped through the editorial process.

Make the Ring of Warmth the colloquial name for the ring of Cold Resistance. Then make up similar ones for the other rings.
 

Stalker0

Legend
Forget all this hand-wavey BS trying to make it make sense.

It's a minor problem that slipped through the editorial process.

Make the Ring of Warmth the colloquial name for the ring of Cold Resistance. Then make up similar ones for the other rings.

Got it in one. Its a mistake pure and simple. Accept it or change it, but its not really worth a strong discussion.


Now if you want to talk about underpriced magic items I've got a few. I think its crazy that the items that give you a 19 in a stat are just uncommon. Those are crazy powerful in certain player hands.
 

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