Page 946 - Everything Might Go

12th Aug 2017, 6:00 AM
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Everything Might Go
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 12th Aug 2017, 6:00 AM edit delete
Newbiespud
Up until this point, Applejack's business had been abstracted by the DM into a basic income every session, so that's how the nitty-gritty of the item prices can catch her off guard. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

38 Comments:

Draxynnic 12th Aug 2017, 6:21 AM edit delete reply
Truth is, 2 gold is actually ridiculously expensive for a pie in most economies, both D&D and historical. One thing that D&D campaigns often fail to demonstrate is how fabulously and ridiculously wealthy a typical midlevel band of adventurers is compared to the general population.
Mykin 12th Aug 2017, 6:30 AM edit delete reply
Mykin
Probably because most games use gold as a catch all for money and tend to neglect the existence of copper and silver for pretty much everything except for the basic mundane stuff. Stuff that is usually not dealt with because most GMs and groups tend to have an unspoken agreement that buying basic necessities, like sleeping bags and food, are always automatically done off-screen unless it serves a noticeable purpose in the game (like buying everyone a round at a tavern or running out of rations in a more realistic/grim-dark campaign). So more often than not, people tend to treat gold like coins you find in a laundromat instead of the hard currency that it actually is.

At least, that's my take on it.
Anvildude 12th Aug 2017, 8:28 AM edit delete reply
I've always wanted to play in a 'full rules' campaign, where the DM utilizes everything in the rulebook. Tracking all of your expenses, full encumbrance (especially this!), things like sleeping, camping, armour equip times, temperature, outfits... All that stuff, you know? I figure it might be cool to have some "Man vs Nature" adventuring going on.

I especially think that would be a good way to spice up non-dungeon settings. Open plains are more interesting if it's literally weeks between major locations, and you have to have enough food and wagons or whatnot to travel it. Boreal forests would be fascinating places to explore if you were in danger of freezing to death without the right clothes, and were trackless and large enough you could easily get lost.

It would also give the Ranger something more important to do.
Evilbob 12th Aug 2017, 12:50 PM edit delete reply
Evilbob
A "full rules" campaign is a lot more trouble than it's worth. Like, seriously.

It *might* not be so bad if you're doing a hybrid roleplaying game where computers, macros, and programs figure in prominently, but even then, it's a pretty big bother for the GM and players. It starts getting to the point where there's too much for GM, or players, to keep track of.
Jannard 12th Aug 2017, 7:59 PM edit delete reply
Man vs Nature campaigns can be very interesting things to run if your party is willing, but there's a couple things to take into account:

First, many spells cheapen the whole "man-vs-nature" narrative pretty easily, so low magic is usually the best way to go.

Stemming from the previous statement, encounters shouldn't be extremely taxing, but if they are, players should be on the same page as the DM on the fact that sometimes the best course of action could be to NOT engage, or to try other methods than straight-up combat to solve situations.

Lastly, there likely exists a system other than D&D that is far better suited to the task. D&D may try to be catch-all, but it's still mostly a derivation of its original dungeon crawling formula.
Wulfraed 13th Aug 2017, 7:41 AM edit delete reply
The old RuneQuest system might qualify for the "other than D&D..." (take into account I've not played any system for some 20 years: and back then it was RuneQuest [Chaosium and Avalon Hill releases], AD&D [1st and 2nd editions], and tinkered with Traveller [black books, Mega, and New E/r/r/o/r/ Era])

Granted, a lot of folks may not care for the details in the RQ combat system -- but I much preferred it over the AD&D blunt success/failure. One had to roll against their skill level with the weapon to score a hit, opponent got to roll to parry, on a hit one rolled for location (R/L leg, R/L arm, belly, chest, head), at which point the armor in the hit location is subtracted from the rolled weapon damage before any hit point damage occurs... And if a limb took sufficient damage, one gets to bleed to death unless a cauterization level healing spell is applied soon.
Winged Cat 13th Aug 2017, 11:47 AM edit delete reply
Winged Cat
If you want Man Vs. Nature, with combat not the primary (or practically only) way to get XP, Ryuutama works quite well - although there are a few spells (especially a rations-generating one available at first level) that can nerf the difficulty (though a PC does have to invest somewhat to get that spell, so it balances out a bit).
Robin Bobcat 12th Aug 2017, 11:33 PM edit delete reply
Just don't do it with GURPS. While I love the system, it'd take days to get through it all.
Digo Dragon 14th Aug 2017, 9:17 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Friends don't let friends Full-Rules GURPS. :3
Crunchbite the Mighty 14th Aug 2017, 4:10 AM edit delete reply
I think what you may find is how easily D&D trivializes these things. Even at low levels. Going out into the desert? I cast Endure Elements and Create Water. Heading across the wilderness tracking down the villains? It's okay, I can feed everyone with my amazing survival checks. Once you add magic items and mid level spells into the mix how you survive in the wilderness is pretty trivial.

Compared to how much money a group of adventurers have, something like a wagon and mules are ridiculously cheap. So the question of "How are you hauling this all around?" is easily answered. Yes, you could attack the wagon when the PCs aren't around but that may come off as "Petty DM" rather than "The wilds are dangerous". And your players may assume that the people they left with the wagon train were capable of defending themselves.

Now, this isn't to say that the environment cannot play a role in your campaign. As a DM I've done it a couple times. Usually it winds up being a small gold or spell tax for the group. But I did wind up killing a sorcerer because he leaped through a magical portal by himself and wound up in the Land of Winter. He had no utility magic; no survival or wilderness skills and no useful mundane gear. He started burning spells to travel around the Taiga looking for shelter. Unfortunately the cold and snow quickly took their toll. The rest of the party never found his body....
APersonAmI 14th Aug 2017, 12:08 PM edit delete reply
I've played in a few "Full rules" campaigns in DnD, with a few intentional exceptions.

One obscue rule is that technically, the -4 penalty for "firing at an enemy that is in a meleé" and the -4 penalty for "firing at an enemy with another unit in the way" are seperate penalties that stack, the latter of which cannot be removed until level 11 at the cost of a valuable feat. Every GM I have ever played has ignored this, essentially removing either one or both of htese rules for the sake of not giving ranged characters -40% chance to hit compared to melee characters.

However, even in those campaigns, it didn't feel particularly grity. For example, I've made a first level half orc who only needed to eat a single set of the cheapest kind of ration once every 20 days. Her starting equipment had enough food to keep her going several years without needing to stock up. In addition, she was basically immune to inconvenience from any naturally occuring temperatures.
And she had enough points left over to have the party's best defenses.
And the best damage.
And she was the best healer, with an avarage quality single target heal that healed for twice her own hit max hit points, which was the highest in the party.
While being a Wizard, a class that starts skimpy but is one of the classes that gain the most power for higher levels.

In short, "full rules" is not the same as having a sense of danger or respect for nature. And most of those GM's ended up houseruling in harsher rules for almost everything.
DungeonMiner 12th Aug 2017, 11:49 AM edit delete reply
The best way to explain the whole gold thing is to actually say that a gold coin is a day's wages (which it relatively is). If you can bring it up and show your players that seven gold coins are worth more than three hundred dollars it'll put things in perspective.
Thor 12th Aug 2017, 3:27 PM edit delete reply
Looking at labor prices in pathfinder and 3rd ed unskilled labor goes for between 5cp and 1sp for a days work. That makes 1sp the labor equivalent of $50-$100 depending on how long a days work and the value of unskilled labor. 1gp is $500-$1000 and a longsword between $7500 - $10000.

Also that +1 weapon is worth upwards of 20,000 days labor for a commoner. That's more than 5 years. It's why I assume that adventurers are all mostly killed by monsters before 3rd level. Otherwise the economic incentive is just too good to stop farming and start hunting goblins.
remial 12th Aug 2017, 1:07 PM edit delete reply
that is one of the reasons I like Earthdawn so much, Silver is the base currency, so when you get a gold coin it is like "holy $#!t".
Dragonflight 12th Aug 2017, 2:26 PM edit delete reply
The Calandia campaign I'm into the second generation with has always has a silver standard economy. Which is generally why when I tell someone that they've found something worth 400 gold, they usually do a double take and ask for clarification. Then they all start grinning and figuring out what they can afford to buy now.

It's a totally different environment when 400 gold makes such a profound impact on the party's finances. I compare it to a RAW (Rules as Written) game I'm in, where the party, a band of only moderately successful people with maybe six magic items, two magic weapons, and a handful of ad-hoc spells by 8th level, is also regularly trucking around over 10,000 gold. Money just doesn't seem to mean anything aside from the next super-expensive magic item we'll have to splurge for. Other than expensive magic, it has no actual cash value, and it isn't used for anything else.
Desperado99 13th Aug 2017, 9:16 AM edit delete reply
When it comes to understanding what gold is worth, the principle I've found useful in the past is that the buying power of gold has remained (very) roughly constant throughout history. If X amount of gold will get you Y amount of stuff today, it would still get you Y amount of stuff back then.

For example, in the old west, one troy ounce of gold was worth $20, which would buy you an expensive new gun or a really nice set of dress clothes. Today, one troy ounce of gold is worth between $1200 and $1300, which will still buy you an expensive new gun or a really nice set of dress clothes. Helps put those GP into perspective, doesn't it?
Desperado99 13th Aug 2017, 9:16 AM edit delete reply
When it comes to understanding what gold is worth, the principle I've found useful in the past is that the buying power of gold has remained (very) roughly constant throughout history. If X amount of gold will get you Y amount of stuff today, it would still get you Y amount of stuff back then.

For example, in the old west, one troy ounce of gold was worth $20, which would buy you an expensive new gun or a really nice set of dress clothes. Today, one troy ounce of gold is worth between $1200 and $1300, which will still buy you an expensive new gun or a really nice set of dress clothes. Helps put those GP into perspective, doesn't it?
Digo Dragon 14th Aug 2017, 9:23 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
In one campaign I ran, the party happened to find themselves in a place called Adventure City. It was founded by retiring adventurers, and the economy was ridiculously screwed up because of it. A basic meal runs around 5 gold, Ten times that for a night's stay at an average Inn, prices of everything inflated to levels that would make baby PunPun cry.

One player remarked that it felt like the economy of nearly every MMO there. At least they got the point. Still, it was the city where you could find and buy ALMOST EVERYTHING if you had the money. Stores change ownership every other month as retired adventurers buy them off each other.

The downside was that the only people who could live there were adventurers, so when the rogue tried to hit on the barmaids, he learned the hard way that they had 7-8 class levels which could easily keep toe-to-toe with him in a straight fight.
ArchimediesMD 12th Aug 2017, 6:23 AM edit delete reply
Welp I've been reading this comic since either 2014 or 2015
I&be forgotten about it and now here I am finally posting a comment........and I have nothing to say.
ANW 12th Aug 2017, 6:23 AM edit delete reply
How would you finish this?
"Me and my team can handle almost anything.
But we get kinda scared when we face.....
Registered 12th Aug 2017, 6:48 AM edit delete reply
... a d20 roll against a major villain."

The DM in our current campaign is LUCKY. He's got ridiculously good luck. Three twenties in a row are something we encounter on a regular basis with him- And he isn't cheating: He rolls openly because he KNOWS his luck is that good. If it weren't for the fact that we all share the d20, I'd call the game rigged, because the amount of 20s he rolls and the amount of 1s I roll are pretty insane. Since he has a tendency of being extra punishing of 1s (god forbid he chooses to be "pun"-ishing instead), our party is often just as endangered by themselves as they'd be by any boss.

I play a Wilder-style homebrew, pretty powerful because it synergizes well (the amount of combinatoric marginal mechanics that make it work is pretty stupid), but even with the power a frankly overleveled psionic character can bring to the table, the rolls destroy any plan or strategy immediately.

I fear the moment we are high enough level to fight against enemies with Vorpal, our wipe is guaranteed.
Skorzah 12th Aug 2017, 8:05 AM edit delete reply
…The other players. Seriously, we keep getting so in character that one will kill another over random crap the others say.
terrycloth 14th Aug 2017, 10:35 AM edit delete reply
Shadows. Freaking shadows.
Peliaosfiendline 12th Aug 2017, 7:08 AM edit delete reply
How do I figure this? Quiet simple really. The spell detect thoughts (or, as it was called back in the days of AD&D, ESP). Ever since 1st edition AD&D, all the way through 5e (but not counting fourth because they got rid of material components) the material component for the spell has been 1 copper piece. A copper piece you give up to know what they're thinking.

A penny for their thoughts.

There's 100 copper in 1 gold, and 100 pennies in 1 dollar. Transitive property! 1 copper=1 US penny, and 1 gold=1 US dollar.
Peliaosfiendline 12th Aug 2017, 7:09 AM edit delete reply
Dammit, didn't post the title I put on this (or at least mobile isn't showing it)

"Fun fact. 1 gold=1 dollar
Evilbob 12th Aug 2017, 1:01 PM edit delete reply
Evilbob
1 copper doesn't necessarily equal a penny tho...
Especially when you consider that a penny is 97.5% zinc...

Moreover, if you really want to things a bit more empirically, that is, when you consider a quarter has about 5.670 grams, then ONE gold coin of that same weight using US dollar prices as of 8/11/2017 is approximately $234.96 (24K@$41.44/g) or, if the gold coin isn't pure, say only 14karats would be $137.04 (14K@$24.17/g).

TL;DR Transitive property does not apply because 1 fantasy D&D copper coin does not equal 1 real-world US penny. Therefore 1 fantasy D&D gold coin does not equal 1 real-world US dollar.
Khyrin 13th Aug 2017, 12:30 AM edit delete reply
A better method would be comparing a known good between the two settings (RL and Game).

For example, a day's rations is roughly one pound of food. For the purposes of this discussion, let's say that your trail rations are about as nutrient-dense as backpacking "just add water" chicken casserole. 2175 calories worth of said product is about 2.5 packages, which weighs out at about .992 pounds, and would run you about 25 dollars. trail rations cost 5 silver, therefore 5 silver to the USD.
khyrin 13th Aug 2017, 12:31 AM edit delete reply
I should maybe register...
5 dollars to the silver piece, not 5 silver to the dollar.
Peliaosfiendline 13th Aug 2017, 7:20 AM edit delete reply
Did you guys not read before the last paragraph, because the transitive property part is at most 5% of how I came to the conclusion. The rest is how since 1st edition the material component of the spell that lets you know what someone is thinking is 1 copper. 1 penny for their thoughts. Have you just never heard that idiom before?

https://en.m.wiktionary.org/wiki/penny_for_your_thoughts
Peliaosfiendline 13th Aug 2017, 7:20 AM edit delete reply
Did you guys not read before the last paragraph, because the transitive property part is at most 5% of how I came to the conclusion. The rest is how since 1st edition the material component of the spell that lets you know what someone is thinking is 1 copper. 1 penny for their thoughts. Have you just never heard that idiom before?

https://en.m.wiktionary.org/wiki/penny_for_your_thoughts
Godzfirefly 17th Aug 2017, 10:27 AM edit delete reply
I think people understood the penny for your thoughts concept. I just don't think most people took it as literally as you are.

Also, 1 USD when? 1 USD today is worth way less than 1 USD 200 years ago.

And, you should also keep in mind that the 'penny for your thoughts' phrase didn't refer to a US penny anyway. It was an English penny. (Note how your link quotes The History of Tom Jones to establish etymology, which was published before the American Revolution.) So, gold pieces aren't worth a dollar at all, even by your logic. They're worth a pound sterling, which dropped to about 1.3 dollars each after Brexit. (It was closer to 1.6-1.7 dollars each before Brexit.)

Anyway, probably the best way to measure the value of a gold piece is to measure its actual weight in gold. After all, the weight of a standard gold piece in D&D (assuming it hasn't been shaved or minted in an unusual manner) is 1/50th of a pound. (50gp weigh a pound, there are 14.5833 troy ounces in a pound, so each gp weighs .29167 troy ounces.) At today's gold price, that is worth $375.42.
dice? 12th Aug 2017, 1:45 PM edit delete reply
Well, this is rolling and D&D, should Applejack not use the dice to attract customers? If it's a good number customers come, if it's a bad numbers, Customers leave or is forced to return the money.
Digo Dragon 14th Aug 2017, 9:26 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
If she has my kind of luck with dice, I'd avoid rolling. ;)
CocoaNut 12th Aug 2017, 2:52 PM edit delete reply
1 gold piece is .025 lb, which means that 2 is almost an ounce.

That's over $1000 for one pie.
Depend 13th Aug 2017, 3:19 PM edit delete reply
That depend of the value of gold and jewels, if you remember in that world, they have too much and jewels, that is the reason why the price is low. Is the offer and demand, if there is much the value drops, if there is less the value increase
TheStevest 12th Aug 2017, 5:45 PM edit delete reply
TheStevest
I am comparing the income of an average adventurer (PC) with an average baker (NPC).
How are so many NPCs still alive?
How is economy in RPGs still working?
AProcrastinatingWriter 14th Aug 2017, 10:07 AM edit delete reply
It's not like super-rich people don't exist in real life, too. It just so happens that D&D's super-rich people often steal their money from the mouths of dying gods
HopeFox 13th Aug 2017, 12:03 AM edit delete reply
It's difficult to handle a D&D economy in modern real-world terms because the typical D&D setting isn't like a modern economy, it's like a medieval economy. The difference between peasant and professional income in the middle ages was much larger than the difference between minimum wages and white-collar professionals in modern developed nations. Adventurers earn way more money than peasants, but part of that is because peasants earn almost nothing.

That being said, I ran a Regency-era D&D campaign heavily inspired by Jane Austen, and setting a conversion of 1 platinum piece to 1 pound sterling seemed to work well.