Gold Value of the Shower of Gifts

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Hearing that next season will start at level 3, most of my players decided to continue with their current characters. That choice posed one small problem, however. At the end of Against the Cult of Chaos, the citizens of Hommel Lane "celebrate as the adventurers are showered with gratitude and gifts."


Since they are continuing on with the same characters, I need to convert those gifts to an appropriate amount of gold they can spend during Storm Over Neverwinter. Since I only run D&D at Encounters and my wife only at Lair Assault and most Game Days, we don't have a remotely thorough enough understanding of the game's economy (especially in Encounters) to even begin to guess about a gold value for all those gifts.

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One of the DMs at my store also had their group decide to continue with the same characters built using the new playtest packet. While you're doing it in 4E, the problem remains - what to do with the stuff they got in Against the Cult of Chaos.

The way I recommended, and that seemed to work for my DM, was to say that the players had spent most of their reward already making their way to Neverwinter and staying there several weeks. Adventurers are not generally known for frugality when they're in the money, and the merchants of Neverwinter will be sure to raise prices for these "rich tourists," at least until they stop doing touristy stuff.

I would start all of the PCs off as "Champions of Neverwinter" per the blurb in the Session 0 Character Generation guidelines, to represent the good feelings the merchants have toward these adventurers who have filled their pockets.

The guidelines have them starting with one magic item of 2nd level or lower, one magic item of 3rd level or lower, and one magic item of 4th level or lower, and 680 gp to spend on other items, only two of which can be consumable. These magic items represent the stuff they've spent their reward on; perhaps the artifacts powered by Miska the Wolf-Spider have lost their mojo with the resealing of his prison, and the PCs must make do with these replacements. Obviously, they came to Neverwinter to buy them, since there's nobody selling that kind of thing in Hommel Lane.

I would place Hommel Lane to the north of Neverwinter; that way, there's no reason the PCs would have gone anywhere near Helm's Hold.

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I ran into the same problem in my HackMaster campaign a couple of years ago. The party befriended an orphaned baby dragon (smart move since their average parth level was 2!) and he gave them his parents' hoard. Among the hoard were strange floating gemstones, which the local artificer said he could use to build an airship.


That was just as 5e released so we took a break to try out the new edition, that gave me time to figure out how much money they'd have left after building the airship. I fell in love with the new edition to the point where I will no longer run 4e although I'm perfectly happy to play it (which is great 'cause my wife is thinking of running a game), especially considering how much we've spent on the game since we have nearly every book.


Converting to the new edition meant I now had an additional problem: 4e's economy was a pretty standard gold-based fantasy rpg economy, while 5e's was silver-based and a bit closer to reality.


I ultimately solved both problems in much the way you suggest here. (The campaign is also an experiment in cooperative world-building, so a lot of this was decided democratically and not by GM fiat – although some of it was.) Being good guys, the party gave a large chunk of the treasure to the local kobold nation who gave the dragon a new home. They gave another large chunk to the survivors of those to whom the treasure originally belonged (thus making them even more beloved). Most of the rest went to building, provisioning, and crewing the ship. The remainder was the tricky part.


With the little that remained each character could get two +1 items of choice, or swap either or both of them for minor magic items or new spells. They also got 100 silver pieces each. (For perspective sake: PCs start the game with 35+2d12 sp each, but I started them at level 5 since that's roughly where they were in 4e (each level in 5e is about half a level in 4e or D&D 2e).)


So naturally, I'd been leaning towards ruling that they spent their treasure buying their complement of magic items, but that was a bit boring since every character got to do that. Your suggestion of giving them the effect of being champions of Neverwinter is just the kind of thing I was looking for.


Having Neverwinter be the nearest place to spend the loot they got in Hommel Lane is also inspired. I only wish I'd thought of it first. 8o) Thanks.

About.me

Drive like you love your children

Through faith you have been saved by grace and not by works. -Ep 2:8-9

Grammar Made Easy – now there's no excuse for sounding like an idiot online.
Games From the Mind of fewilcox – my blog about writing; games, including, character sheets and other roleplaying accessories; and game design.

You're welcome! Sounds like you've got a good group!

I might mention that, with the (slightly) more reality-based economy of 5E, you can use the ship to justify a lot of other expenses. I have a friend who owned a boat for a time, and he described it as "a big hole in the water that you shovel money into." Seems to me an airship is only going to compound the problem:


  • your airship floats into a barn; pay the farmer for the damages

  • barnacles throw off the balance of the hull and have to be scraped off using alchemist's acid

  • flying jellyfish gum up the sails; spend money on new lines


and so on.

Not happy with the look of the new forums? Check out the Skin Your Forums thread for a solution.

D&D Next: VALOREIGN Home Game Development, Grifford's Protection cleric domain, gojirra's (Un)Death cleric domain.

General Campaign Stuff: Bawylie's Budget Dungeons