Money and Equipment
IN A WORLD WHERE SURVIVAL ALWAYS HANGS in the balance, gear can be crucial. As you make your way across the Athasian wilds, your items help to keep thirst, starvation, sand, salt, and the blazing sun at bay. You need a good weapon and effective armor to fight off predators. A hardy mount can shorten your trip or, if you're desperate, serve as extra provisions. And your traveling gear will make sure you won't get lost, get eaten, or fall prey to the multitude of raiders that roam the deserts.
To understand commerce and the availability of equipment on Athas, one must understand that Athas is a metal-poor world. Nearly bereft of metals, all items - including armor and weapons - are made from substitute materials, such as bone, obsidian, or wood. The scarcity of metal has forced the people to rely on barter and different materials, such as ceramic, to use as currency. It has also hampered industrial and economic development as well; farms, mills, and workshops rarely have quality tools to produce everyday products. This chapter details the mundane and exotic merchandise that adventurers commonly find useful in the face of the threats that the world of Athas presents.
When you create your character, you receive equipment based on a combination of your class and background. If you use the Athasian Social Ranking variant, you start with a number of ceramic pieces based on your social rank and spend them on items from the lists in this chapter. See the Initial Character Funds table to determine how much wealth you have to spend.
You decide how your character came by this starting equipment. It might have been an inheritance, or goods that the character purchased during his or her upbringing. You might have been equipped with a weapon and armor as part of your mercenary service, or scavenged from your raiding tribe's latest loot. You might even have stolen your gear. A weapon could be the key to your freedom, your only means of defense while out in the deserts, or your signature item when fighting in the arenas.
Initial Character Funds
|Merchant House||3d4 x 10 cp|
|Noble||5d4 x 30 cp|
|Free Citizen||2d4 x 10 cp|
Wealth appears in many forms in the world of Athas. Coins, gemstones, trade goods, art objects, animals, and property can reflect your character's financial well-being. Societies on Athas exchange goods and services in three ways: coins, barter, and service. Nomads usually trade in common goods, bartering for what they need. Free citizens, members of the nobility and merchants prefer coinage, though deals in services are not uncommon. Many an adventurer has provided mercenary work at a merchant house's trading caravan, only to be offered food, water, and some shade to rest during the long trip.
Transactions where goods or services are purchased with money is quite common on Athas, despite the lack of metal; after all, Athas is metal-poor, not metal-depleted. Coins are readily accepted means of payment and, considering the increased value of coins, are less bulky to carry than other forms of payment.
Virtually all Athasian city-states issue coins minted in tribute to their sorcerer-kings. Also, some independent dwarf communities and some wealthy merchant families mint their own coins when the precious metals are available to them. Though the currencies vary (a gold coin minted in Tyr might be a bit heavier than square gold coins bearing the Ryharian family crest), they all fall under the standard exchange rates given in the Player's Handbook.
The standard unit of measurement is not the gold piece, however, but the ceramic piece (cp). Ceramic coins can be manufactured from the most common clay available, then glazed in specific colors and kilned to discourage forgery. The molded shape of ceramic pieces allows them to be broken into 10 separate pie-shaped bits. Ceramic pieces and bits make up for most of trades; silver (sp) and gold pieces (gp) are reserved for exceptional items, such as weapons and armor, and the transactions that nobles and wealthy merchants deal with.
With one ceramic piece, a character can buy a set of common clothes complete with shoes, five waterskins, or two days of accommodation in a modest inn. A skilled (but not exceptional) artisan can earn two ceramic pieces a day. A bit can buy a night's rest in a poor inn, a loaf of bread, or the entrance to one of the city-states. An unskilled laborer can earn two bits a day.
Standard Exchange Rate
Barter is the exchange of goods for other goods - no coins change hands. By its very nature, barter is an age-old ceremony of negotiation. Characters who often venture out in the deserts encounter tribes and nomads who usually deal in this type of trade - a herdsman or a hunter would rather own a few waterskins than a handful of coins. Thri-kreen always resort to bartering, since they have little use of coins.
When your character enters a barter, you compare the costs of the items to be exchanged and then match the quantities until they are approximately even. For example, Kyuln's tribe wishes to exchange its crop of rice for barrels of water. On Athas, rice is worth 1 bit per pound, and each barrel of water is worth 2 cp (20 bits). Kyuln's tribe would have to trade 20 pounds worth of rice to the merchant in exchange for one barrel of water.
The services a character renders - from those of unskilled laborers to those of prized engineers - all have an asking price. A character may receive payment for his or her services in other services, goods or coins, depending upon the situation.
Adventurers can pay nonplayer characters to assist them or act on their behalf in a variety of circumstances. Most such hirelings have fairly ordinary skills, while others are masters of a craft or art, and a few are experts with specialized adventuring skills.
Skilled hirelings include anyone hired to perform a service that involves a tool or skill proficiency: a craftsman, a guide, a performer, a driver and so on. The pay shown is a minimum: some expert hirelings can demand higher wages. Untrained hirelings are hired for menial work that requires no particular skill and can include laborers, porters, maids, and similar workers. Slaves comprise the majority of untrained hirelings; their owners actually receive the listed pay.
Militia are usually mercenaries hired within the walls of a city-state. They are lightly-armed and most often have to deal with peddlers, beggars, and thieves. Professional mercenaries are reserved for trips between cities or as caravan guards. They are better-armed and have received better training in combat and survival in the desert wastes. Like skilled hirelings, the pay shown is a minimum.
|Hireling, skilled||2 cp per day|
|Hireling, untrained||2 bits per day|
|Mercenary, militia||2 bits per day|
|Mercenary, professional||2 cp per day|
|Messenger in the city||1 bit per message|
|Messenger (telepathic)||3 bits|
|Overland travel||3 bits per mile|
|Road or gate toll||1 bit|
In the course of a transaction, you might want to haggle prices for a given item; maybe your character is tight on ceramic or you find the elven merchant's prices a bit too high. Apart from role-playing it, you can also determine the outcome of haggling through the roll of a die.
Whenever you try to negotiate a better price, propose a percentage and make a Charisma (Persuasion) check with a DC calculated as follows:
10 + NPC Charisma modifier + 1 per 10% reduction or increase in price proposed
On a successful check, you may reduce or increase the price of the item by an amount equal to the percentage you proposed. You may haggle only once per transaction.
The above table refer to ordinary services. People who are able to cast spells don't fall into the same category. It might be possible to find someone willing to cast a spell in exchance for coin or favors, but it is rarely easy and no established pay rates exist.
Templars in the cities offer spellcasting services to those who abide by their rules; hiring one to cast a relatively common spell of 1st or 2nd level, such as cure wounds or lesser restoration might cost 10 to 50 ceramic pieces (plus the cost of any expensive material). Higher-level spells require finding someone able and willing to cast it, and very rarely templars offer such spellcasting services. Once found, the spellcaster might ask for a service instead of payment - the kind of service that takes the adventurers on a perilous quest.
Opportunities abound to find treasure, equipment, weapons, armor, and more in your adventures. Normally, you can sell your treasures and trinkets when you return to a city or other settlement, provided that you can find buyers, and merchants interested in your loot.
Arms, Armor, and Other Equipment. As a general rule, undamaged weapons, armor, and other equipment fetch half their cost when sold in a market. Weapons and armor used by people and monsters are rarely in good enough condition to sell.
Gems, Jewelry, and Art Objects. These items retain their full value in the marketplace, and you can either trade them in for coin or use them as currency for other transactions. For exceptionally valuable treasures, the DM might require you to find a buyer, per the rules for selling a magic item.
Trade Goods. Outside the city-states, many people conduct transactions through barter. Like gems and art objects, trade goods - bars of iron, bags of rice, livestock and so on - retain their full value in the market and can be used as currency.
Armor and Shields
All forms of armor listed in the Player's Handbook are available to Athasian characters, though the high price of metal and the extreme heat make metal or bulky armor less than desireable on Athas. A suit of plate armor costs 1,500 gp on Athas, the equivalent of 150,000 gp on other D&D campaign worlds. Simply put, a sorcerer-king can either purchase several suits of plate armor or build a substantial addition to his city walls.
Fortunately, however, armorsmiths of Athas have learned to construct all types of armor using more readily available materials. All forms of armor retain the same Armor Class as in the Player's Handbook, with the following notation.
Bulky. If the Armor table shows "Yes" in the Bulky column, the wearer is considered to have at least one level of exhaustion during the day, due to the armor's bulk overheating the wearer.
Shields. A shield is mostly constructed with layers of leather stretched over a wood or bone frame and hardened. Effective shields can also be constructed of chitinous materials scavenged from dead insectoids. Though made of alternate materials, shields on Athas confer the same bonus; wielding one increases your Armor Class by 2. You can benefit from only one shield at a time.
Made from supple and thin materials, light armor favors agile adventurers since it offers some protection without sacrificing mobility. It is also the most common type of armor, being quite affordable and not bulky at all to hindrance its wearer in the scorching heat of Athas.
Padded. Padded armor consists of quilted layers of cloth and batting. Many Athasian warriors don padded armor woven from giant hair.
Carru Leather. Perhaps the most common type of armor used on Athas, leather armor is usually made of carru leather, stiffened in oil.
Studded leather. Made from tough but flexible leather, studded leather is reinforced with close-set rivets or spikes made of bone or chitin.
Medium armor offers more protection than light armor, but it also impairs movement more. Mekillot hide and inix scale are favored by the heaviest of armored warriors, while traveling under the scorching sun of Athas. Anything higher than those becomes bulky and too restrictive to be effective.
Mekillot Hide. This crude-looking armor is usually constructed from mekillot or braxat hide.
Inix scale shirt. Made of overlapping inix scales, a scale shirt is worn between layers of clothing or leather. This armor offers modest protection to the wearer's upper body and the scales are thin enough to be muffled by outer layers.
Erdlu scale. This armor consists of a heavy coat and leggings of carru leather covered with overlapping erdlu scales, much like the scales of the mount itself.
Inix shell. This armor consists of fitted inix shell pieces worn over supple leather. Although it leaves the legs and arms relatively unprotected, this armor provides good protection for the wearer's vital organs while leaving the wearer relatively unencumbered.
Chitin. Chitin armor consists of shaped chitin plates that cover most of the wearer's body. It does not include leg protection beyond simple greaves that are attached with leather straps.
Of all the armor categories, heavy armor offers the best protection. These suits of armor cover the entire body and are designed to stop a wide range of attacks. They also tend to be too bulky to handle well while out in the wastes. Even proficient warriors find them too cumbersome to carry around during the scorching hours of the Athasian day; that only makes them quite rare.
Bone. This armor is simply hardened leather with thick bones sewn onto it. The bones help reinforce the armor against blows from blades. While it looks massive and imposing, it's the most inferior of the heavy armors.
So-ut mail. The scales of a so-ut are attached to a layer of quilted fabric worn underneath to prevent chafing and to cushion the impact of blows. While technically the armor is considered a scale mail, unlike its medium counterparts, the scales are extremely hard and provide a much superior protection.
Mastyrial. The chitinous shell of the mastyrial is valued for its protective qualities and it's frequently used as material in shields and armor. By supplementing it with a backing of leather that is worn over cloth padding, a sort of superior armor can be crafted, equivalent to splint mail.
Braxat plate. Braxat shell make excellent armor plates that are shaped and interlocked to cover the entire body. A suit of braxat plate includes thick layers of padding underneath the armor. Buckles and straps distribute the weight over the body.
|Armor||Cost||Armor Class (AC)||Strength||Stealth||Bulky||Weight|
|Padded||5 cp||11 + Dex||—||Disadvantage||—||8 lb.|
|Carru leather||10 cp||11 + Dex||—||—||—||10 lb.|
|Studded leather||45 cp||12 + Dex||—||—||—||13 lb.|
|Mekillot hide||10 cp||12 + Dex (max. 2)||—||—||—||12 lb.|
|Inix scale shirt||50 cp||13 + Dex (max. 2)||—||—||—||20 lb.|
|Erdlu scale||50 cp||14 + Dex (max. 2)||—||Disadvantage||Yes||25 lb.|
|Inix shell||400 cp||14 + Dex (max. 2)||—||—||Yes||40 lb.|
|Chitin||750 cp||15 + Dex (max. 2)||—||Disadvantage||Yes||45 lb.|
|Bone||30 cp||14||—||Disadvantage||Yes||40 lb.|
|So-ut mail||75 cp||16||Str 13||Disadvantage||Yes||55 lb.|
|Mastyrial||200 cp||17||Str 15||Disadvantage||Yes||60 lb.|
|Braxat plate||1500 cp||18||Str 15||Disadvantage||Yes||65 lb.|
|Shield||10 cp||+2||—||—||—||6 lb.|
The weapons found in the brutal lands of Athas are made of obsidian, bone, and wood; rarely are there weapons of metal. With regard to their costs and characteristics, they are treated the same as their metal equivalents. An obsidian longsword hits like a metal longsword, and a bone carrikal is actually a different battleaxe. Nonmetal weapons are prone to breaking, however, and an adventurer should think twice before venturing out without a few replacements.
The Simple and Martial Weapons tables show the most common weapons found in the world of Athas, their price and weight, the damage they deal when they hit, and any special properties they possess. Of special note are the weapon costs, which reflect an item made of a metal substitute. Due to their rarity, weapons constructed from metal are priced at their listed cost in gold pieces. A metal shortsword, for example, would cost 10 gp, or 1000 cp.
A number of Athasian weapons have special properties related to their use, as shown in the Weapons table.
Double. Wielding a double weapon is like fighting with two weapons. You can use a bonus action to make a second attack, using the weapon's other end.
Special. Some weapons possess unique properties. Refer to their description for more information.
Nonmetal weapons tend to be break more easily than their metal counterparts, due to their inferior material. The following rule simulates their relative fragility, making combat more unpredictable and exciting.
Fumbling Breakage. When you roll a natural 1 on a melee attack roll using a nonmetal weapon, roll a d10. On a roll of 1 or 2, the weapon breaks.
Reckless Breakage. When you score a critical hit on a melee attack roll using a nonmetal weapon, roll a d10. On a roll of 1, the weapon breaks.
A broken item is considered at best an improvised weapon and deals 1d4 damage (your DM assigns a damage type appropriate to the object). If your character has proficiency in improvised weapons, you can add your proficiency bonus when attacking with a broken weapon.
|Simple Melee Weapons|
|Bard's friend||2 cp||1d4 slashing||1 lb.||light, special|
|Club||1 bit||1d4 bludgeoning||2 lb.||light|
|Dagger||2 cp||1d4 piercing||1 lb.||finess, light, thrown (20/60)|
|Datchi club||2 bits||1d8 bludgeoning||10 lb.||two-handed|
|Handaxe||5 cp||1d6 slashing||2 lb.||light, thrown (20/60)|
|Javelin||5 bits||1d6 piercing||2 lb.||thrown (30/120)|
|Light hammer||2 cp||1d4 bludgeoning||2 lb.||light, thrown (20/60)|
|Mace||5 cp||1d6 bludgeoning||4 lb.||─|
|Quarterstaff||2 bits||1d6 bludgeoning||4 lb.||versatile (1d8)|
|Sickle||1 cp||1d6 piercing||2 lb.||light|
|Spear||1 cp||1d6 piercing||3 lb.||thrown (20/60), versatile (1d8)|
|Talid||1 cp||1d4 bludgeoning||1 lb.||─|
|Widow's knife||1 cp||1d4 slashing||1 lb.||light, thrown (10/30)|
|Wrist razor||5 cp||1d6 slashing||2 lb.||finesse, light|
|Simple Ranged Weapons|
|Crossbow, light||25 cp||1d8 piercing||5 lb.||ammunition (80/320), loading, two-handed|
|Dart (pack of four)||2 bits||1d4 piercing||1/4 lb.||finesse, thrown (20/60)|
|Dejada||10 cp||1d6 bludgeoning||2 lb.||ammunition (20/60)|
|Shortbow||25 cp||1d6 piercing||3 lb.||ammunition (80/320), two-handed|
|Sling||1 bit||1d4 bludgeoning||─||ammunition (30/120)|
Athasian Simple Weapons
This section lists all the simple weapons unique to Athas.
Bard's friend. Popularized by the bards of Balic, this weapon sports several blades and prongs, strapped or mounted to a wooden grip which has either finger holes or leather straps for gripping. When used as an off-hand weapon, you may increase your Armor Class by 1.
Datchi club. A 4-foot-long head made of either dried insect hive or dried roots is attached to a 3-foot-long wood or bone handle. Teeth, claws or razors of any type are embedded into the head, which is then swung, inflicting horrible wounds.
Dejada. A long, scooped basket is worn on the arm and used to propel projectiles (pelota) at a very high rate of speed. Pelota are spherical objects approximately 2 inches in diameter, made of ceramic, stone or brambleweed.
Talid. Also known as gladiator's gauntlet, talid is made of stiff leather with plating of any kind on the hand cover and all along the forearm. Spikes protrude from the knuckles and along the back of the hand. Talid replaces your unarmed strikes and can never be broken.
Widow's knife. Named for a similar-looking harvesting tool used in the verdant belts, this weapon has a wide blade on one end of the handle, while a thumb latch releases a pair of prongs on the other end.
Wrist razor. Wrist razors consist of a trio of blades that protrude from a heavy arm band. The blades project out over the back of the hand, and are extremely sharp.
|Martial Melee Weapons|
|Alhulak||10 cp||1d8 bludgeoning||2 lb.||─|
|Cahulaks||15 cp||1d6 bludgeoning||3 lb.||double, thrown (20/60)|
|Carrikal||10 cp||1d8 slashing||4 lb.||versatile (1d10)|
|Crusher||5 cp||1d4 bludgeoning||4 lb.||reach, special|
|Dragon's paw||15 cp||1d6 piercing||3 lb.||double, two-handed|
|Forearm axe||10 cp||1d6 slashing||2 lb.||finesse, light|
|Gouge||10 cp||1d8 piercing||4 lb.||two-handed|
|Greataxe||30 cp||1d12 slashing||7 lb.||heavy, two-handed|
|Greatsword||50 cp||2d6 slashing||6 lb.||heavy, two-handed|
|Gythka||15 cp||1d8 piercing||3 lb.||double, two-handed|
|Impaler||5 cp||1d8 piercing||3 lb.||─|
|Longsword||15 cp||1d8 slashing||3 lb.||versatile (1d10)|
|Lotulis||10 cp||1d10 piercing||4 lb.||two-handed|
|Maul||10 cp||2d6 bludgeoning||10 lb.||heavy, two-handed|
|Morningstar||15 cp||1d8 piercing||4 lb.||─|
|Puchik||5 cp||1d4 slashing||1 lb.||finesse, light, special|
|Quabone||20 cp||1d8 bludgeoning||2 lb.||finesse|
|Scimitar||25 cp||1d6 slashing||3 lb.||finesse, light|
|Shortsword||10 cp||1d6 piercing||2 lb.||finesse, light|
|Singing stick||5 cp||1d6 bludgeoning||1 lb.||finesse, light|
|Spear, double-bladed||15 cp||1d8 piercing||4 lb.||double, two-handed|
|Tortoise blade||20 cp||1d6 piercing||2 lb.||light, special|
|Trident||5 cp||1d6 piercing||4 lb.||thrown (20/60), versatile (1d8)|
|Trikal||15 cp||1d10 slashing||6 lb.||two-handed|
|Warhammer||15 cp||1d8 bludgeoning||2 lb.||versatile (1d10)|
|Weighted pike||5 cp||1d10 piercing||18 lb.||heavy, reach, two-handed|
|Whip||2 cp||1d4 slashing||3 lb.||finesse, reach|
|Martial Ranged Weapons|
|Blowgun||10 cp||1 piercing||1 lb.||ammunition (25/100), loading|
|Chatkcha||10 cp||1d6 piercing||1 lb.||thrown (20/60)|
|Crossbow, heavy||50 cp||1d10 piercing||18 lb.||ammunition (100/400), heavy, loading, two-handed|
|Longbow||50 cp||1d8 piercing||2 lb.||ammunition (150/600), heavy, two-handed|
|Net||1 cp||─||3 lb.||special, thrown (5/15)|
Athasian Martial Weapons
This section lists all the martial weapons unique to Athas.
Alhulak. This weapon acts as an unusual flail. A four-bladed, hafted grappling hook is attached to a handle through a short length of rope.
Cahulaks. A pair of four bladed, hafted grappling hooks held together with a length of rope, cahulaks can be either used in each hand as melee weapon or be thrown in its entirety.
Carrikal. The sharpened hinges of a large jawbone are lashed to a handle, creating an axe with two heads.
Chatkcha. A thri-kreen invention, this throwing wedge returns to its thrower if it misses its target.
Crusher. This weapon consists of a long pole with a spiked end. It takes 1 minute to plant its one end into the ground. Afterwards, the user can spend an action to whip it back and forth to strike one opponent within its reach. If left unattended, the crusher can attack independently for 1 round, before becoming inactive.
Dragon's paw. Popular among the arena masters of Tyr and Urik, this weapon has two blades, at each end of a long shaft. A centrally located curved bar or basket protects the wielder's hand and features a protruding blade that juts perpendicularly to the shaft.
Forearm axe. Worn on the forearm like a buckler, this weapon cosists of a large, double-bladed axe on either end of a bracer with a spike protruding from the upper sheath.
Gouge. The shoulder-strapped gouge was developed by the army of Nibenay for use by its infantry. A wide blade is mounted on a long shaft. A smaller handle protrudes from a forward position on the main shaft, while the rear of the shaft has a wide grip used to drive the weapon home.
Gythka. Each end of this thri-kreen staff has a small, crescent-shaped blade with a centered stabbing tine.
Impaler. This weapon, developed for arena combat, has a single long shaft with a pair of long pointed blades, splitting to each side and forming a deadly war pick.
Lotulis. Crescent blades with barbed spikes near the points and mounted at either end of a long shaft make this a particularly nasty melee weapon.
Puchik. The grip of this weapon is perpendicular to its wide blade, that resembles a dagger. Attacks made to disarm or grapple an opponent gain advantage to the roll.
Quabone. Often used in arena combat, this weapon is constructed from four identical shanks, lashed together to form a radially symmetrical, sword-length rod.
Singing stick. These short sticks are extremely light, and carved so that the ends are wider than the middle. This unusual shape is what gives the sticks its name, for they whistle and moan as they are whirled through the air.
Spear, double-bladed. As the name implies, this weapon is a spear with a blade on each of its ends.
Tortoise blade. A blade is mounted on the underside of a protective shell, and the entire ensemble is worn on the forearm as a shield. While wearing it, you increase your Armor Class by 1, but you can benefit from only one tortoise blade at any time.
Trikal. This polearm projects three blades symmetrically lengthwise from its haft. It is equivalent to a halberd.
Weighted pike. Combining the effectiveness of a pike with the impact damage of a mace, a user can alternate between piercing and bludgeoning damage, depending on which side of the weapon is facing the enemy.
This section describes items that have special rules or require further explanation.
Fire kit. Though flint is readily available, steel is rare on Athas. The standard fire-starting kit therefore uses bow and sticks rather than flint and steel. Using it to light any fire takes 1 minute.
Holy element. This item is not for sale. A ceramic flask contains a pure and blessed version of an element: a palm-sized rock or loose earth; an amount of fire equal to a torch; a pint of water; a puff of breeze. For all game purposes, the holy element is treated as a holy water, as detailed in Player's Handbook.
Only elemental clerics can create such holy elements, by performing a special ritual while close to their element. The ritual takes 1 hour to perform, and requires the caster to expend a 1st-level spell slot. An elemental cleric can only use this ritual once per day.
Lock. Due to rarity of metal on Athas, locks are found only in the wealthiest parts of the cities, or in ancient ruins. A character proficient in thieves' tools can pick such a lock with a successful DC 15 Dexterity check.
Rope, giant hair. Rope from woven giant hair is resiliant enough to withstand 6 points of damage before it can be cut, and bursts with a successful DC 20 Strength check.
Tent, pavilion. Often used by nomads and travelers, this canvas shelter is spacious enough to accommodate furnishing and up to five persons.
Waterskin. In most Athasian cities, water is drawn from a collective cistern maintained by the sorcerer-king and his templars, then distributed in barrels or waterskins. It is not at all uncommon for the price of water to increase dramatically during particularly dry periods or when the templars are trying to extort more money from consumers.
Most people avoid cumbersome equipment packs, due to the scorching weather and the predators that roam the barren wastes of Athas. Still, some items are vital for one's travels to such inhospitable lands. The contents of a few packs are listed here, suited to one's profession.
Dune Trader's pack (8 cp). Includes a backpack, an abacus, a blanket, 3 flasks of water, a lamp, a flask of oil, a pouch, a sack, a merchant's tunic, and 2 ceramic vials.
Noble's pack (37 cp). Includes a chest, 2 cases for maps and scrolls, a set of fine clothes, a vial of ink, an ink pen, a lamp, 2 flasks of oil, 5 sheets of parchment, a vial of perfume, sealing wax, and soap.
Nomad's pack (4 cp). Includes a blanket, a set of desert clothes, a fire kit, a small knife, a signal whistle, a two-person tent, and a waterskin.
Thief's pack (8 cp). Includes a backpack, 10 feet of thread, a bell, 5 candles, a bag of caltrops, a fire kit, a bone grappling hook, 2 flasks of oil, and a waterskin. The pack also has 50 feet of hempen rope strapped to the side of it.
Traveler's pack (10 cp). Includes a backpack, a bedroll, a set of desert clothes, a fire kit, 5 days of ration, 5 torches, and a waterskin. The pack also has 50 feet of hempen rope strapped to the side of it.
|Abacus||2 cp||2 lb.|
|Acid (vial)||25 cp||1 lb.|
|Arrows (20)||1 cp||1 lb.|
|Blowgun needles (50)||1 cp||1 lb.|
|Crossbow bolts (20)||1 cp||1.5 lb.|
|Pelota (20)||4 bits||1.5 lb.|
|Sling bullets (20)||2 bits||1.5 lb.|
|Antitoxin (vial)||5 sp||─|
|Backpack||2 cp||5 lb.|
|Barrel||2 cp||70 lb.|
|Basket||4 bits||2 lb.|
|Bedroll||1 cp||7 lb.|
|Blanket||5 bits||3 lb.|
|Block and tackle||5 cp||5 lb.|
|Bottle, glass||1 sp||2 lb.|
|Brooch, plain||1 sp||─|
|Bucket||5 bits||2 lb.|
|Caltrops (bag of 20)||1 cp||2 lb.|
|Case, crossbow bolt||1 cp||1 lb.|
|Case, map or scroll||1 cp||1 lb.|
|Chain (1 foot)||3 gp||1 lb.|
|Chalk (1 piece)||1 bit||─|
|Chest||5 cp||25 lb.|
|Climber's kit||25 cp||12 lb.|
|Common||5 bits||3 lb.|
|Desert||2 cp||4 lb.|
|Fine||2 sp||6 lb.|
|Rich||6 sp||4 lb.|
|Slave||1 bit||1 lb.|
|Component pouch||25 cp||2 lb.|
|Fire kit||5 bits||1 lb.|
|Flask or tankard||2 bits||1 lb.|
|Grappling hook, bone||2 cp||4 lb.|
|Healer's kit||1 sp||3 lb.|
|Holy element (flask)||─||1 lb.|
|Hourglass||25 cp||1 lb.|
|Ink (1 ounce bottle)||1 cp||─|
|Jug or pitcher||2 bits||4 lb.|
|Ladder (10-foot)||1 bit||25 lb.|
|Lamp||5 bits||1 lb.|
|Lantern, bullseye||10 gp||2 lb.|
|Lantern, hooded||5 gp||2 lb.|
|Lock||10 gp||1 lb.|
|Magnifying glass||1 gp||─|
|Manacles, leather||2 cp||6 lb.|
|Mirror, steel||10 gp||1/2 lb.|
|Mirror, obsidian||3 sp||1/2 lb.|
|Oil (flask)||1 cp||1 lb.|
|Papyrus (one sheet)||8 bits||─|
|Parchment (one sheet)||1 cp||─|
|Perfume (vial)||5 cp||─|
|Pole (10-foot)||5 bits||7 lb.|
|Pot, iron||5 sp||10 lb.|
|Pouch||5 bits||1 lb.|
|Quiver||1 cp||1 lb.|
|Rations (1 day)||5 bits||2 lb.|
|Robes||1 cp||4 lb.|
|Rope, giant hair (50 feet)||1 gp||2 lb.|
|Rope, hempen (50 feet)||1 cp||10 lb.|
|Sack||1 bit||1/2 lb.|
|Scale, merchant's||1 gp||3 lb.|
|Sealing wax||1 cp||─|
|Signal whistle||8 bits||─|
|Signet ring||5 gp||─|
|Spyglass||10 gp||1 lb.|
|Tent, two-person||2 cp||20 lb.|
|Tent, pavilion||5 sp||50 lb.|
|Torch||1 cp||1 lb.|
|Tunic||8 bits||3 lb.|
|Vial, ceramic||1 cp||─|
|Waterskin||2 bits||5 lb. (full)|
A tool helps you do something you couldn't otherwise, such as craft or repair an item, forge a document, or pick a lock. Your race, class, background or social rank, or feats give you proficiency with certain tools. Except in rare circumstances, all tools and supplies make use of nonmetal substitutes. Unless noted here, all tools are detailed in Player's Handbook.
Masseur's supplies. This small bag contains oils and ointments, a few wooden tools and various other instruments that can assist you to apply massage to another creature. Proficiency with this kit allows you to add your proficiency bonus to any ability checks you make to identify or soothe physical pain, and invigorate or relieve someone.
Scribe's supplies. This small box contains a variety of inks and pens, sharpeners, seals, and other instruments necessary to inscribe text on physical documents. Since reading and writing is illegal in the city-states, a scribe's supplies is often reserved only for the nobility and the templars and covers all needs for calligraphy, cartography, or even forgery. Proficiency with this kit allows you to add your proficiency bonus to any ability checks you make for the above-mentioned uses.
Thieves' tools. This set of tools is actually made of bone. While it works as intended, there is a small chance of the tools snapping, rendering the entire set useless. If you roll a natural 1 on an ability check to disarm a trap or pick a lock, you instead break the tools.
Mounts and Vehicles
Typical mounts listed in Player's Handbook are not available on Athas. The harsh conditions and the devastating effects of defiling magic have lead horses, mules, dogs and other mammals into extinction. Instead, people on Athas rely on reptilian or insectoid mounts for their needs. The Mounts and Other Animals table shows each animal's speed and base carrying capacity.
Likewise, due to the absence of large bodies of water in the Tablelands, waterborne vehicles do not exist. While one might unearth the remains of an ancient sailing ship, half-buried on the shores of the Sea of Silt, such vehicles are more often the subject of myths and legends. The only means of transportation between the inhabited lands of Athas is through mount-drawn wagons and chariots.
Crodlu. A crodlu is a large reptilian animal used for transportation or as a beast of burden. It resembles an enormous scaled ostrich whose limbs are tipped by wicked claws. Crodlus can be trained for combat.
Erdlu. Erdlus are herd beasts raised by many different cultures on Athas. These large, flightless birds are essentially smaller versions of crodlus. Their omnivorous diet allows them to graze nearly everywhere, and their hardy nature keeps them alive in harsh terrain.
Inix. An inix is a large lizard that grows to more than 15 feet long. Though herbivorous by nature, inix are vicious combatants. Inix trained for riding are also trained not to fight while mounted, for no rider would manage to remain mounted while the inix lashed its mighty tail. Half-giants use these as individual mounts.
|Alchemist's supplies||5 sp||8 lb.|
|Brewer's supplies||2 sp||9 lb.|
|Carpenter's tools||8 cp||6 lb.|
|Cobbler's tools||5 cp||5 lb.|
|Cook's utensils||1 cp||8 lb.|
|Glassblower's tools||3 sp||5 lb.|
|Jeweler's tools||25 cp||2 lb.|
|Leatherworker's tools||5 cp||5 lb.|
|Mason's tools||1 sp||8 lb.|
|Masseur's supplies||1 sp||3 lb.|
|Painter's supplies||1 sp||5 lb.|
|Potter's tools||1 sp||3 lb.|
|Scribe's supplies||1 sp||5 lb.|
|Smith's tools||2 sp||8 lb.|
|Weaver's tools||1 cp||5 lb.|
|Woodcarver's tools||1 cp||5 lb.|
|Disguise kit||25 cp||3 lb.|
|Dice set||1 bit||─|
|Royal Game of Urik set||1 cp||1/2 lb.|
|Senet set||1 cp||1/2 lb.|
|Wizard Hunt set||5 bits||1/2 lb.|
|Herbalism kit||5 cp||3 lb.|
|Drum||6 cp||3 lb.|
|Flute||2 cp||1 lb.|
|Horn||3 cp||2 lb.|
|Lyre||3 sp||2 lb.|
|Reed Pipe||3 sp||6 lb.|
|Poisoner's kit||5 sp||2 lb.|
|Thieves' tools||25 cp||1 lb.|
|* See the "Mounts and Vehicles" section.|
Kank. Kanks serve as both herd animals and beasts of burden. They are large insectoids, durable and easily tended. Their meat becomes foul-smelling as soon as they die, so they are raised for the nutritious honey globules produced on their bellies. As riding animals, they require harnesses and saddles. They can also be hitched to wagons individually or in teams.
Mekillot. A mekillot is an enormous 6-ton lizard, its head and back covered in thick shells. Often used as beast of burden, pulling massive caravan wagons, they are hard to control and sometimes turn on their handlers.
Mounts and Other Animals
|Crodlu, riding||15 sp||50 ft.||360 lb.|
|Crodlu, war||20 sp||60 ft.||360 lb.|
|Erdlu||10 cp||40 ft.||─|
|Inix||12 sp||40 ft.||2,000 lb.|
|Kank, trained||10 sp||40 ft.||400 lb.|
|Kank, herd||5 sp||40 ft.||─|
|Mekillot||40 sp||30 ft.||8,000 lb.|
Tack, Harness, and Drawn Vehicles
|Inix||40 sp||320 lb.|
|Kank||25 sp||100 lb.|
|Bit and bridle||2 cp||1 lb.|
|Chariot||250 cp||100 lb.|
|Howdah, normal||10 sp||150 lb.|
|Howdah, war||50 sp||600 lb.|
|Kank feed (per day)||5 bits||10 lb.|
|Saddle, pack||5 cp||15 lb.|
|Saddle, riding||10 cp||25 lb.|
|Saddlebags||4 cp||8 lb.|
|armored caravan||10 gp||5,000 lb.|
|enclosed||5 sp||500 lb.|
|open||3 sp||400 lb.|
Barding. A mount's defense can be reinforced by covering it with barding. Consisting of leather pads, bone, and chitin plates, a barding increases a mount's Armor Class by 2.
Chariot. A chariot is a lightly armored vehicle constructed of wood, chitin and hardened leather, designed for riding and combat. Two people can ride a chariot, one being the rider, the other attacking. A creature riding a chariot has half cover against attacks from the front or the sides. Only kanks can be used to pull a chariot.
Howdah. A howdah is a frame with seats designed to be mounted on the back of an inix or mekillot. A normal howdah is made of a light wooden frame while a war howdah is constructed of much sturdier materials and offering half cover against any attacks from outside.
An inix howdah can hold up to four people. A mekillot howdah can be constructed in a more elaborate affair; it often contains two levels and can accommodate up to sixteen people. Anyone riding in a howdah is considered to be at rest and shaded.
Wagon. A wagon is the simplest form of transportation. Crodlus or kanks can be used as beasts of burden for the normal versions. An open wagon is a little more than a wooden box on four wooden wheels while an enclosed ensures its riders are unaffected by weather. Some merchants and nomads convert enclosed wagons into living quarters.
An armored caravan wagon requires two mekillots to pull. The exact design of any particular armored caravan wagon can change from trip to trip but in general, the enclosures can carry a cargo of 15,000 pounds of goods, up to 50 fully armed warriors, 25 slaves in transit, and a handful of merchants, nobles, or other travelers. The defense balconies in an armored caravan wagon provide half cover against any attacks from outside.
Anyone riding an enclosed or armored caravan wagon is considered to be at rest and shaded.
|1 bit||1 lb. of salt or rice|
|2 bits||1 lb. of butter or raisins|
|5 bits||1 gal. of beer or one soap|
|1 cp||1 lb. of common spice or 1 sq. yd. of canvas|
|2 cp||1 lb. of rare spice or cotton|
|3 cp||1 lb. of coal or nuts|
|5 cp||1 sq. yd. of fine cloth or leather|
|1 sp||1 sq. yd. of rich cloth or 1 lb. of glass|
|2 sp||1 lb. of copper or one farmer slave|
|3 sp||one laborer slave or domestic servant|
|5 sp||1 sq. yd. of silk or one artist slave|
|1 gp||1 lb. of iron or one soldier slave|
|3 gp||one live carru or one gladiator slave|
|5 gp||1 lb. of bronze or silver|
When not exploring ruins of ancient civilizations, braving the inhospitable wastelands, or fighting off raiders and predators, adventurers on Athas, like in every other D&D world, face more mundane realities. Basic necessities such as shelter, sustenance, and clothing cost money, although some lifestyles cost more than others.
Lifestyle expenses provide you with a simple way to account for the cost of living in the world of Athas. They cover your accommodations, food and drink, and all your other necessities, provided they are available - the harsh conditions on Athas can lead to some unpredictable situations. Furthermore, expenses cover the cost of maintaining your equipment so you can be ready when adventure next calls.
Between adventures, you can choose a particular quality of life and pay the cost of maintaining that lifestyle, as shown on the Lifestyle Expenses table. Living a particular lifestyle affects the way other individuals and groups react to you. When you lead a wealthy or aristocratic lifestyle, for instance, it might be easier for you to influence the nobles and templars of the city than if you live in poverty. Your social rank may also interfere with your choices of lifestyle. A noble wouldn't accept expenses worse than wealthy, and a hermit would frown upon spending more than modest.
Lifestyle and NPCs
Your lifestyle choice can have consequences. Maintaining a wealthy lifestyle might help you make contacts with the nobility and the templars, though you run the risk of attracting thieves. Likewise, living frugally might help you avoid criminals, but you are unlikely to make powerful connections.
If you wish to involve yourself with a certain individual or group, you might need to use a specific lifestyle. After spending at least five days living in the specified quality of life, you can roll a Charisma check, with a DC set by your DM. On a successful check, you gain audience with this particular person or get affiliated with the specific group you strive for.
|Wealthy||1 sp minimum|
Nomadic. You live outside cities. Unaccustomed to civilization, or being destitute, you choose self-sufficiency, staying out in the wastelands. You can sustain yourself by hunting, foraging, and repairing your own gear.
This lifestyle doesn't require you to spend any coin, but it comes at a cost. For each day you spend away from civilization, you have to succeed on a DC 10 Wisdom (Survival) check, or suffer one level of exhaustion.
Poor. A poor lifestyle links you with the lowest class in civilization. Simple food and lodging, self-made clothing, and unpredictable conditions result in a sufficient, though probably unpleasant, experience. Your accommodation might be a one-room hut in the slums or a bed in the common room above a watering hole. Violence, crime, and disease are a common occurence for you. People at this lifestyle tend to belong to the militia, unskilled laborers, peddlers, thieves, and other disreputable types.
Modest. A modest lifestyle keeps you out of the slums and ensures that you can maintain your equipment. Your living conditions are significantly better than those in the slums, but you still have to contend with the occasional thug or corrupted guard. You probably live in the old parts of a city, or rent a clean, if simple room at a small inn, and your clothing is unadorned, but sturdy and well-maintained. Ordinary people living modest lifestyles include mercenaries, skilled craftsmen, small shopkeeps, low-ranking templars, and most free citizens.
Comfortable. Choosing a comfortable lifestyle means that you can afford nicer clothing and can easily maintain your equipment. You make a good living as a merchant house agent or have collected some valuable treasure to spend on luxuries. You live in a small cottage in a merchant neighborhood or in a private room in a merchant inn. You associate with merchants, highly skilled artisans, and mid-ranking templars.
Wealthy. You live a life of plenty and comfort. You interact with the nobility, the family members of a merchant house, and the most powerful templars. Choosing a wealthy lifestyle while not belonging to the above classes might incur the wrath of the rich, or bring the inquiring templars at your doorstep. This type of lifestyle is reserved for a certain social class on Athas; very few can afford such a life of luxury, and those who do have to contend with the highest levels of deceit and treachery. The wealthier you are, the greater the chance that you will be drawn into political intrigue as a pawn or participant.
Your lodgings are exquisite, perhaps a small estate in the richest part of the city, or a spacious keep in the administrative area. You retain the most skilled and fashionable tailor, have servants attend to your every need, and travel on a sedan chair and in the company of the most skilled mercenaries. You attend social gatherings of the rich and powerful, and spend evenings in the company of other nobles or high-ranking templars.
Consumables and Lodging
The needs for food and drink, and a good night's rest are listed in the Consumables and Lodging table. When you pay for lifestyle expenses, you don't have to keep track of these needs, since they're already included in the quality of life you have picked.
Consumables and Lodging
|Ale, gallon||2 bits|
|Banquet (per person)||10 cp|
|Clean water||4 sp|
|Used water||4 bits|
|Beer, gallon||1 bit|
|Bread, loaf||1 bit|
|Cheese, hunk||4 bits|
|Inn lodging (per day)|
|Meals (per day)|
|Meat, chunk||3 bits|
|Separate latrine (per month)||2 cp|
|Common (pitcher)||2 bits|
|Good (bottle)||1 sp|