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View Full Version : [4E] mundane items in the adventuring kit that aren't there.



Kol Korran
2009-06-25, 01:47 AM
a few sessions ago one of my players wanted to burn up a room. so he took out two pints of oil, doused the room, then lit it.
later on when i was going through the PHB i noticed there weren't any oil pints in it. hhmmm... i just assumed they were part of the adventuring kit.

on another event, the same guy needed to hastily copy a map, so he took out his ink and paper, sketched the map, and was done with it. later i noticed there weren't any ink or papewr either...

now, don't get me wrong- i'm quite ok with just assuming an adventuring kit has whatever can reasonably be assumed a character carries. i prefer it far more than the 3.5 system when you had to buy and note on the sheet all kinds of minor items such as chalk, fishing hooks and so on.

but... i can see that at times there might be a disagreement between DM and player at what does the adventurer's kit contain. got me thinking. what would you say the kit contains, what doesn't it contain. thoughts?

Colmarr
2009-06-25, 01:56 AM
I would generally assume that it contains only the things that the PHB specifically says it contains.

Having said that, consumables are an issue for each individual playgroup. It's really just a question of whether you value mundane resource management such as food, oil and ammunition as a part of D&D.

If not, feel free to hand-wave that the PCs always restock their food/oil/whatever whenever they have the chance and are running low.

If you do want that aspect of resource management in the game, then make them think about it ahead of time and keep records.

Either way, my personal inclination would be to not include paper and ink in a standard adventuring kit. It's not exactly the sort of equipment you're going to need in the wilderness or underground.

Gralamin
2009-06-25, 02:06 AM
By RAW, at level 2 and higher, you can get any mundane item free of charge when you make your character. So Honestly, Assuming you just have them won't be game breaking at all.

Fishy
2009-06-25, 02:06 AM
Depends what kind of adventurer you are, really.

I think it'd be totally fair to rule that Professor Foxburn's adventuring kit contains pens and paper, and Grok Skullcrusher's kit doesn't.

Unless they freshly picked it up from the store, the kit contains everything that your character feels like they'll need, right?

toasty
2009-06-25, 02:07 AM
Either way, my personal inclination would be to not include paper and ink in a standard adventuring kit. It's not exactly the sort of equipment you're going to need in the wilderness or underground.

I would agree with this... to a point. If one of our PCs is known for his collection of maps or a well known tracker/hunter whatever it might be prudent for him to always have on hand mapmaking tools in case he should need to scribe a new one.

That being said, this is DnD, a game where heroes smash monsters, not where they make sure they have enough food and oil to keep themselves alive before the fight. Yes, it can be fun to have your party nearly starve to death and what-not, but its not something I see every DnD party wanting to have to deal with.

Colmarr
2009-06-25, 02:11 AM
I would agree with this... to a point. If one of our PCs is known for his collection of maps or a well known tracker/hunter whatever it might be prudent for him to always have on hand mapmaking tools in case he should need to scribe a new one.

I see this as a difference in view.

Kol asked about the contents of an "adventurer's kit", which is a defined generic item in 4e.

My answer was directed at what that generic item might reasonably contain.

To put it another way, I think Jim's adventurer's kit will always be the same as Toby's adventurer's kit. Jim may have paper and ink and Toby not have it, but it won't be because of a difference between their "adventurer's kits". It will be because of their personal choice about what else to carry.

Mnymosene
2009-06-25, 02:17 AM
We've always assumed that the adventurer's kit contains the items listed under it in the PHB, but minor items can be bought in most towns for minimal cost. If one has a back story which helps justify having another item, we can add it in, otherwise we wait until our first "shopping trip".

Kurald Galain
2009-06-25, 03:24 AM
but... i can see that at times there might be a disagreement between DM and player at what does the adventurer's kit contain. got me thinking. what would you say the kit contains, what doesn't it contain. thoughts?

I'm kind of surprised how few of this list (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/equipment/goodsAndServices.htm#adventuringGear) ended up in the 4E manual.

Still, I don't see a problem in having characters have a bit of a schrodingers equipment list. It shouldn't be important how many minor things you carry. In a modern day RPG it is reasonable for every character to state they have pens, cellphones, and so forth; same thing.

shadzar
2009-06-25, 04:27 AM
a few sessions ago one of my players wanted to burn up a room. so he took out two pints of oil, doused the room, then lit it.
later on when i was going through the PHB i noticed there weren't any oil pints in it. hhmmm... i just assumed they were part of the adventuring kit.

WotC screwed up....but that goes without saying right?

Pints of oil are mentioned in the PHB on the first page of that chapter about buying stuf and given as an example, but was omitted.

It took a few people on the WotC forums trying to figure it out price-wise, and find it was the same as 3.5.

Then it took a couple months to get WotC to include oil in the errata, and it does now reside there.

http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/updates

http://www.wizards.com/dnd/files/UpdatePH.pdf to be precise.

Page 8 of the PHB Update has the oil you are looking for.

Allegedly the deluxe PHB includes that errata, but future printings of the PHB outside of the deluxe will not.

So oil is mentioned in Chapter 7 as adventuring gear, but given no price until the errata was issued.

Kol Korran
2009-06-25, 06:41 AM
hhhmmmm, i also handwave these issues, letting the players have whatever mundane item they want that makes sense. i guess i misled Colmarr a bit, i wasn't strictly refering to the adventurer's kit, but rather at all kind of small mundane items that might be out there.

i was just curious, that's all. the adventurer's kit for me implied all the general equipment a character takes (since most take just the kit, implements, ritual book (if appropriate), armor and weapons, (other than magical stuff). oh yeah, one or two usually takes climber's kit, oh well.

i must say i much prefer this simplification over the 3.5 method. piles of useless equipment "in case you need it".

thanks for the responses, just wanted to know if others felt the same. felt like an oddity to me, that's all.

BigPapaSmurf
2009-06-25, 07:47 AM
I really think they should have to list everything they have, the "Bat-Shark Repellant" method is lame and really is just another way to dumb down the game into what it was never supposed to be, a hack and slash video game primer.

Stuff is heavy and lots of stuff is bulky and awkward(and loud). That said they don't need to nitpick every detail every time they leave but if they never added the oil vials to their kit, they should not have them. Make your PCs determine what is in their standard kit and after that, too bad, so sad.

If they were carrying an oil lantern I would naturally assume they had some oil with it, torches? no oil, why because liquids are heavy and bulky. Paper however should be expensive, be creative and make PCs be creative, they can make a clay tablet or tear up their shirt etc.

Oracle_Hunter
2009-06-25, 12:26 PM
By RAW, at level 2 and higher, you can get any mundane item free of charge when you make your character. So Honestly, Assuming you just have them won't be game breaking at all.
I'm pretty sure that comes under the "starting a game at higher than first level" rules; merely gaining LV 2 doesn't give you an endless bag of useful things :smalltongue:

Anyhoo, pints of oil are listed in the Errata at 1 SP per flask. Writing materials and such aren't included - but I guess we're past the time when adventurers drew up their own maps. I'd be willing to add "miscellaneous" items that cost little and take up little space (like chalk); I would probably bundle writing materials with either the Ritual Book or the Spellbook and Hammer & Pitons with the Climbing Gear.

ninja_penguin
2009-06-25, 12:32 PM
Given that 4e isn't the 'every item must have a mechanic' system, I really think that it's okay to handwave generic mundane things, within reason. I mean, if they want to copy something down, or package something in parchment, no problem. Soak three room fulls of oil to burn a place down? unless they found some nearby, I'd probably call them on that.

Edit- you could always just do how our group handles crossbow and bow ammunition. The player's character paid X amount of the ammunition, and was always considered to have ammunition available to fire the weapon. Likewise, you could just say 'buy X amount of [stuff], and you're considered to have a reasonable amount automatically'

SSGoW
2009-06-25, 12:42 PM
make a list and check it twice and have those be things that you are sure every adventurer would have thats not actually int he kit call it soemthing like the mundane adventurer's kit

BigPapaSmurf
2009-06-25, 01:04 PM
Given that 4e isn't the 'every item must have a mechanic' system, I really think that it's okay to handwave generic mundane things, within reason. I mean, if they want to copy something down, or package something in parchment, no problem. Soak three room fulls of oil to burn a place down? unless they found some nearby, I'd probably call them on that.

Edit- you could always just do how our group handles crossbow and bow ammunition. The player's character paid X amount of the ammunition, and was always considered to have ammunition available to fire the weapon. Likewise, you could just say 'buy X amount of [stuff], and you're considered to have a reasonable amount automatically'


Selective rule use has a tendency to backfire eventually and it will piss them off as soon as you deny them what they consider mundane.

You could always say that you left it with the horses outside the dungeon:)

Gralamin
2009-06-25, 01:32 PM
I'm pretty sure that comes under the "starting a game at higher than first level" rules; merely gaining LV 2 doesn't give you an endless bag of useful things :smalltongue:


Quite interesting, what did I say?


By RAW, at level 2 and higher, you can get any mundane item free of charge when you make your character

Oh right, I said during character creation.

---

But having a reasonable amount of generic equipment isn't going to unbalance the game any, and will probably only increase the options in the game.

Oracle_Hunter
2009-06-25, 02:43 PM
Oh right, I said during character creation.

---

But having a reasonable amount of generic equipment isn't going to unbalance the game any, and will probably only increase the options in the game.
Then I have to question your conclusion.

The reason why you can be given any amount of mundane equipment when starting above Level 1 is that it simplifies character creation. Once play begins, you have to buy equipment as normal; mundane equipment is no longer treated as trivial - nor is it.

Basically, you're equating a simplification for character generation with the system treating mundane equipment as irrelevant. Since it is obviously relevant whether or not you have a rope when you're at the bottom of a pit, I'll have to call false equivalency.

I do apologize for misreading your post though :smallsmile:

Gralamin
2009-06-25, 02:47 PM
Then I have to question your conclusion.

The reason why you can be given any amount of mundane equipment when starting above Level 1 is that it simplifies character creation. Once play begins, you have to buy equipment as normal; mundane equipment is no longer treated as trivial - nor is it.

Basically, you're equating a simplification for character generation with the system treating mundane equipment as irrelevant. Since it is obviously relevant whether or not you have a rope when you're at the bottom of a pit, I'll have to call false equivalency.

I do apologize for misreading your post though :smallsmile:

See, but if something might as well have no price, then whats the harm in assuming you have it? If the cost of an item is irrelevant to character wealth, Then why wouldn't you assume everyone has rope (In the adventurer's kit), as well as a single cask of oil, etc. Basically, if For 29 levels of the game, the cost of mundane equipment is ignored, then should it really have a cost in the first place?

Oracle_Hunter
2009-06-25, 03:01 PM
See, but if something might as well have no price, then whats the harm in assuming you have it? If the cost of an item is irrelevant to character wealth, Then why wouldn't you assume everyone has rope (In the adventurer's kit), as well as a single cask of oil, etc. Basically, if For 29 levels of the game, the cost of mundane equipment is ignored, then should it really have a cost in the first place?
Because there is a distinction between "buying something you might need" and "buying something only when you need it."

When you're sitting in a general store and thinking about buying 50' of rope, you don't know whether or not you'll need it. If you buy it, you'll have to lug it around (although encumbrance is now irrelevant, actually fitting the stuff on your person still is) and the money you spent on it cannot be spent on something later. However, when you are at the bottom of a pit, you know that you do need that rope, and if you can "buy" it then, you will. Treating an "Adventurer's Pack" as a Bag of Useful Things removes that choice from you; it also removes the necessity of possessing foresight in such matters.

Remember also that mundane expenses are still counted once the game begins. You still have to pay for food, inns, and whores while you adventure - unless your group does not pay attention to those expenses. The fact that you don't have to "spend" gold during character creation at levels 2+ is irrelevant to whether or not you spend it in-game.

DSCrankshaw
2009-06-25, 03:07 PM
If I remember correctly, some d20 systems have a method for determining if you have something on hand. For example, d20 Modern lets you make a roll to determine if you have something about the house somewhere. Basically, it's purchase DC+5 I think (Modern uses an abstracted Wealth system, where you make a wealth check vs. purchase DC to see if you can afford something). You could do the same for mundane equipement, I suppose, as long as you have consistent rules for it. For example, DC 10 + cost in silver Wisdom check to see if your character thought to stock up on an item the last time you were in town. For simple items, like writing materials or a pint of oil, it'd be a simple check, but for expensive items (more than a couple of gp), it'd be impossible to make the check. You'll have to decide as a DM if such a complicated system is worth it.

Thajocoth
2009-06-25, 03:08 PM
A pint of oil was errattaed into the book later, but not into the standard kit.

I generally assume players can find something to write on/with. It's not in the gear list (except for spellbooks & ritualbooks). If I rule that something not in the list of gear should cost money, I'll let them retroactively buy it too, as it's unfair that it's exclusion from the book's list hurts them later.

Ninetail
2009-06-26, 09:01 PM
I allow reasonable amounts of stuff that would be cheap. Chalk? Sure. Candles? Go ahead. Oil? A flask, yes. A barrel, no.

Stuff that would be more expensive depends on the character's background. Writing materials and good paper? The guy with the scholarly background probably has them. The younger son of a minor nobleman might. The barbarian prince probably doesn't.

If it's something directly relevant and game-changing, like the rope at the bottom of the pit... then I use an Intelligence or Wisdom check. Did you remember to buy it? Were you prepared enough to think of it?

If it's completely unreasonable, like 1000' of rope because the party is stuck at the bottom of the huge gaping chasm... then no. Unless you bought that specifically, in advance, you haven't got it. Come up with a clever plan.

I don't really care for detailed inventory management in my games. Winging it works for me.

Archpaladin Zousha
2009-06-26, 09:11 PM
What if you wanted cheap consumables that have no benefit other than as a "pick-me-up." I've been thinking of making a character who carries a small sack of candies that he likes to share with friends or give to well-behaved children he encounters.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-26, 09:29 PM
Why not homebrew up a magic item? Call it "Schroedinger's Box". Make it whatever level is reasonable(I'm not great with 4.x). It has every mundane item of under a certain cost and weight. Seems like it wouldn't be unbalancing, probably available early(mid-heroic IMHO), and as long as one member of the group has it, there's no issues. Assume it for higher-level parties, don't make it need to be part of the 3-item starting set.

Mando Knight
2009-06-26, 09:33 PM
Why not homebrew up a magic item? Call it "Schroedinger's Box". Make it whatever level is reasonable(I'm not great with 4.x). It has every mundane item of under a certain cost and weight. Seems like it wouldn't be unbalancing, probably available early(mid-heroic IMHO), and as long as one member of the group has it, there's no issues. Assume it for higher-level parties, don't make it need to be part of the 3-item starting set.

*YOINK!*

This item actually kinda fits with my current campaign...

Thajocoth
2009-06-26, 11:58 PM
What if you wanted cheap consumables that have no benefit other than as a "pick-me-up." I've been thinking of making a character who carries a small sack of candies that he likes to share with friends or give to well-behaved children he encounters.


Perhaps your character carries a deck of cards that he shuff les when hes bored or nervous, or maybe she crouches to the ground and creates little sculptures out of rubble while shes waiting for her companions to decide where to go next

They essentially tell you to just have flavor stuff like that... So long as it's not effecting mechanics, why not?

Ninetail
2009-06-27, 11:01 PM
What if you wanted cheap consumables that have no benefit other than as a "pick-me-up." I've been thinking of making a character who carries a small sack of candies that he likes to share with friends or give to well-behaved children he encounters.

Yeah, sure. You don't need rules for that sort of thing. "Sack of candies (1 sp)" would be a horrible waste of space on an equipment list.

If you get shipwrecked and lose everything, then, okay, no candies until you reach a town. Otherwise, what's it matter? If you want to conjure up enough candies to bury a small village, then we'll hash out a price and worry about logistics. Handing out a couple of pieces now and then is color. Accounting for every piece would just be a way to suck all the joy out of that particular character trait.