... now with 35% more arrogance!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Thousands of Coins!

I notice the next topic is the "round" numbers for treasure quantities. "You find 2000 silver pieces" is apparently bad form.

Seriously? Has anyone ever objected at the table that the number of coins in a treasure trove is unrealistic?

I know that if I said "you find 2000 silver pieces" and someone said "that's an unbelievable numbers," my reply would be "OK, you find no silver pieces".

If I were really concerned with "realistic" treasure, I wouldn't give a coin count at all; I'd give the number of sacks the treasure could fill. I may do that anyways, for other reasons. When they have an opportunity to cash in, they can get the exact total.


  1. I also cocked an eyebrow at this recent criticism. I don't think, in 20 years of gaming, I've ever had players object to the amount of coins they found because it was a round number. I also have a number of modules on myself- some from the OSR- that use round coin numbers.

    I'm sure that there are some who had their minds made up about the particular product (and author) that I think you're referring to. As my students would say: "haters gon' hate."

    1. I think there's a lot going on in the whole Joe the Lawyer/Dwimmermount/GROGNARDIA debate that is way too complicated to even address, so I've been ignoring the overall discussion and just focusing on individual topics, like handling empty rooms and the roundness of coins. But I figure the complaint about the coins probably only surfaced *because* of other complaints... i suspect Joe the Lawyer wouldn't have even mentioned it if he'd enjoyed Dwimmermount as a whole.

  2. I wonder how many DM's say "you can count it if you want" and then enforce HOW LONG it would take to count to around 2000 coins. At 2 coins per second that is 16 minutes sitting in the dungeon counting coins.

    Multiply that by a few rooms & it becomes interesting.

  3. Two words: significant figures.

  4. Here's a room description I stocked last night (the $ description being a way to bridge gold and silver standards):

    "In the niche are 200$ in scattered copper and silver coins. The walls are covered in tally marks. If they are counted they will be found to be exactly the same as the number of coins."

    I guess that was inspired by the whole round numbers issue.

  5. I find that if I deliver up weird figures, like 1375gp, the players groan and try to figure out exactly how much xp that's worth between them.