Numismatics for plot advantages

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Beginning back here I began a challenge to craft a set of tables that can be used as the basis of the Hoard Project, where random tables build the basis for making loot part of the plot. Where better to begin that journey then with the most common type of loot? Coinage! And who better to turn to find out about coinage, then the Numismatic community! Each collection of coins has a story. Mainly, WHY? Why was it collected? That’s for you the DM to decide, my job is to give you a basis to begin building that story.

1d6 Size Amount of Coins
1 Tiny 1d10
2 Small 1d10x20
3 Medium 1d10x50
4 Big 4d10x100
5 Large Pile 10d10x100
6 Huge Pile 10d10x1000
1d6 Condition 1d6 Age
Read More 1 Ancient
1 Circulated – Heavily 2 Antiquated
2 Circulated – Lightly 3 Old
3 About Uncirculated 4 Outdated
4 Mint State – Slightly Blemished 5 Modern
5 Mint State – Perfect 6 Freshly-Minted
6 Proof – Perfect
1d10 Organization 1d4 Collection Type
1 Piles Read More
2 Scattered 1 Year Collection
3 Bagged up in pouches 2 Mark Collection
4 Stored in Chests 3 Type Collection
5 Stacks 4 Composition
6 Bundled
7 Heaped
8 Pyramid
9 Mound
10 Stored in Barrels
1d4 Mark

1 Rulers Face
2 Animal
3 Memorial
4 Religious

Where do you go from here to make the coins more interesting? Well, I always keep a table of the Nations, and Countries of my world handy. So now I know where it’s from. Then deciding what type of coin it is will help. There are many other things that can make coins interesting: Size, Shape, Color, Miscellaneous Features: Dates, Location, Quotes, Shapes in the Coin.


5 thoughts on “Numismatics for plot advantages

    mundanemonster said:
    October 11, 2011 at 7:05 am

    Definitely a cool way to make a pile of coins more than meets the eye… some of that random intrigue could even spark a new plot line!

      TheRandomDM responded:
      October 12, 2011 at 11:29 am

      That’s the key to the whole Hoard Project this month! Emergent story lines.

    JB Willers said:
    October 12, 2011 at 4:48 am

    I always love the scale of even a small project that you take on. The fact is that even these (seemingly) small events like finding a pile of coins have a lot of meat on the bone.

    For my two cents, I was thinking you could add the exchange rate for the coin. The two headed eagle coin might have been worth a lot from whenst it came but the local money changers might not want to handle it…could be cursed or anyone found in possession of the kings gold will be summarily arrested.

    This also falls in nicely with your suggestions of what happens to the recipients of treasure after the adventure…nice hooks there.

    Also…I think it was in the Dragonlance books where a wealthy family used to “skim” gold (shavings) from the coin which were then metled down, etc. Making the real coin worth less and indirectly stealing from the treasury. These real coin could essentially be worthless.

      TheRandomDM responded:
      October 12, 2011 at 11:28 am

      I think there is room for the ‘miscellaneous aspects’ like you said, cursed, specially marked, shaved, miss stamped, etc. Now I am going to have to go back and fix it up.


      I wanted to stay away from any value assignments to the loot, because value is in the eye of the beholder or, in this case the collector. I also am attempting to stay away from value because the goal of the Hoard Project is not about the reward themselves, but the emergent story of the hoard.

    […] Numismatics for plot advantages […]

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