Single Creature Treasure
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D&D 5e Treasure Tables
Shut up and take my money!
After months of fighting, dungeon diving, or engaging in multiple forms of espionage, party members will inevitably return to their local watering hole to regain strength, restock supplies, and recount spoils. With the quest completed and the earnings properly divided, adventurers will use their profits and downtime in ways that best serve their unique pursuits. They may try to double their funds through games of chance, seek the comfort of a beautiful companion, or drown themselves in rare and refined spirits. Though, the truly intelligent strategize their spending and look beyond their basic needs.
It is common for those new to tabletop roleplaying games to fall into typical video game behavior. Many slip into redundant cycles of killing, looting, and improving gear without realizing the freedom and possibilities in an open-ended game like Dungeons & Dragons. Veteran players tend to consider less obvious spending options like building a stronghold, hiring minions, or investing in mounts and vehicles.
The adventuring gear listed in the Player's Handbook may feel inconsequential compared to high-end magical items. Still, players should never underestimate the usefulness of basic things like rope or navigation tools. There is always a chance that your spellcaster loses their magic, your tracker falls ill, or some evil-doer kidnaps your guide. In hard times, the certainty of good adventuring gear is invaluable.
Thankfully, standard gear is often inexpensive, which helps players quickly save up for their coveted magical items. While most large cities will have various types of shops that deal in the arcane, it is not the only way for adventurers to barter for magic loot. As players gain more notoriety, they could have increased interactions with nobles, lords, prominent non-player characters (NPCs), and intelligent monsters that may also be open to trading. In addition, game masters (GMs) may choose to have peddlers of unusual and mystic items roaming the lands. These nomadic merchants can provide purchase opportunities in otherwise undeveloped areas and generate unique storytelling possibilities through potential counterfeit or cursed objects.
The threat of phony or blighted items may inspire players to craft arcane wonders conceived and designed by themselves or with the help of their GM. This endeavor not only gives purpose to the unusual monster parts or spell components thrown into the player's handy haversack, it quickly makes use of loose coins. Each GM may handle this process differently, but there is a magic item crafting table within the Dungeon Master's Guide (DMG) that outlines the gold necessary to craft specific objects. Players may also commission an item from an exceptionally skilled NPC, but labor is always an added cost.
Speaking of spell components, magic users will want to reference their spell lists, save up, and be on the lookout for their most expensive elements. Support players may also want to employ the assistance of their party members, who will likely benefit the most from their arcane abilities. Rare diamonds and gemstones may be one of the most difficult to source, as not all creatures understand their value. Locating a reliable and competitively priced seller may be the best action for spellcasters to take.
Wizards may also want to invest beyond their components to fill their indispensable spellbooks. The process of acquiring spell scrolls and transcribing and experimenting with the spells may be costly. However, the more arcane knowledge a wizard can obtain, the more helpful and powerful they become for the party. Like expensive components, other party members may find value in assisting their mage in hopes of staying on their good side and bolstering their group's might.
Once fully outfitted with adventuring gear, magic items, and all they may require for their arcane abilities, players may be looking for other beneficial ways to spend their hard-earned cash. A place to call home, ways to travel the world, and a team to help manage the party's growing empire could be a perfect next step.
Page 126 to 128 of the DMG holds information and tables regarding developing and maintaining a stronghold. This base can be a simple keep, wizard's tower, druidic grove, cleric temple, or even a criminal front. Whatever the party chooses could take years to complete depending on the workforce and design intentions—not to mention a considerable amount of gold. Despite the price tag, a stronghold provides players a consistent location to recuperate and a research facility or workshop to craft independently or with a potential team. It also helps cement them as a part of a specific community, which could potentially aid future political endeavors.
Gathering minions can also help further a player or team's goals. Hirelings come in all shapes, sizes, and skillsets. Players can employ individuals like proteges, sidekicks, disciples, research partners, messengers, builders, crafters, guards, spies, cooks, and housekeepers. If there is something worth doing, chances are, players can hire someone to do it.
A driver or porter may also be a worthwhile investment, though not all will have independently owned transportation. Even without a hireling, mounts and vehicles are an excellent asset. They increase carrying capacity, provide improved mobility, and allow weary travelers to rest their feet. Depending on their size, some can act as mini, mobile strongholds. Although, and perhaps most importantly, they can also hold all that valuable gold burning a hole in the player's pockets.