D&D 2E What were the Treasure Types and what did they mean?


A suffusion of yellow
So I managed to find a copy of Birthright campaign King of the Giant Downs, its probably the best of Birthrights modules. Its got 5 or so factions, 8 interconnected adventures but is left open ended with no conclusions to any of the possible paths.

Because its AD&D it makes reference to Treasure Types D etc, can anyone tell me what that means and if theres an easy translation of the Treasure types to actual value?

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H is the richest, representing dragon treasure -- and given that identifier for the word "hoard". Other than that, you're going to need to check the treasure table in the 2e DMG.


There's no easy translation, because each row on the treasure table was completely its own thing. It looked something like this:

So, treasure type D meant there was a 10% chance of 1d8x1000 cp, 15% chance of 1d12x1000 sp, 15% chance of 1d8x1000 ep, and a 50% chance of 1d6x1000 gp. You also had a 30% chance of 1d10 gems (to be rolled separately), 25% for 1d6 pieces of jewelry (ditto), and 15% chance of 1 potion + 2 other magic items.

There's little easily discernible logic to these tables, but I'm sure they made sense to Gygax because they definitely lean in different directions. I found a reference somewhere that type D was meant for dwarves (which is why they have a fairly high chance of gold), for example, but that's not explained anywhere that I know of. But the only systematic thing I remember is that the higher letters were for individual treasure and the lower for the collected treasure of a monster lair. In 2e, this was generally represented with individual treasures in parentheses. For example, goblins had treasure type "C (K)" meaning that a goblin lair/tribe would have treasure type C collectively (usually held by the chief or in a safe place), and each individual goblin would have treasure type K.

I wasn't able to find an authentic source for the treasure tables in full, but as Malmuria mentioned there are automated tools for it online.


B/X and AD&D had a logic to their treasure types but I never saw it explained and could never figure them out to apply to a new monster creation or such. Some favor gems, some favor magic items, some have hoards of coins, some have a dozen or two silver pieces, some are based on the monster gathering stuff, some are based on the incidental loot of dead prior victims of the monster. I rarely used those charts unless I was doing a random encounter in the wilderness or such and it was already listed in the monster entry. For my original monsters I just gave them what felt appropriate in the situation.

Here is the chart from the 2e DMG page 180:


Srt of shows on the table above, but treasure types were also broken down for individual treasures (coins you might find in a coin purse) vs lair treasures, like finding pots of gold and Sting in the troll cave in The Hobbit.

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