Making Sense of Adamantine Weapon Prices


Homebrew and House Rules


So, I had a player, not too long ago, who had given himself some ranks in Craft (weapons) and wanted to re-forge an adamantine greatsword he'd gotten into many adamantine daggers in order to sell them, making a hefty profit. And I, for the life of me, wasn't able to come up with an actual good reason why he couldn't do such a thing.

The reason for this, of course, is that adamantine prices are based on game balance, not on logic. So, I was wondering if I could come up with a system to compromise between the two somewhat, to use in my games in the future.

Here's what I've come up with; grateful for any input.

Light Weapons costs +1000 worth of adamantine, but only reduce DR/adamantine by 5, and only ignore hardness less than 10 (most non-metal things). In other words, if attacking someone with DR 10/adamantine, a light adamantine weapon would still have its damage reduced by 5.

One-Handed Weapons cost +2000 worth of adamantine, reduce DR/adamantine by 10, and ignore hardness less than 15 (steel + non-metal things).

Two-Handed Weapons cost +3000 worth of adamantine, bypass DR/adamantine, and ignore hardness less than 20.

This also resolves issues of having an adamantine hand-drill and such.

Armor prices are, I think, much more consistent, and don't need an overhaul.

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The cost isn't just materials, but also the cost of the process involved in forging the material into a usable weapon. Quality blades are much more than pointy hunks of metal.


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I always rule that adamantine weapons are forged from adamantine ore (or more likely an alloy with adamantine ore in it.) You can't just reforge an already forged item, you need to start with the raw ore.

This also allowed me to have adamantine doors in dungeons without blowing WBL.


Dave Justus wrote:
I always rule that adamantine weapons are forged from adamantine ore (or more likely an alloy with adamantine ore in it.) You can't just reforge an already forged item, you need to start with the raw ore.

How do you repair an adamantine weapon in this scenario?


Draco18s wrote:
Dave Justus wrote:
I always rule that adamantine weapons are forged from adamantine ore (or more likely an alloy with adamantine ore in it.) You can't just reforge an already forged item, you need to start with the raw ore.
How do you repair an adamantine weapon in this scenario?

Find a caster with Make Whole :)


I would sit down and do the math to see how long it would take him to do it based on the Craft skill... it is an unreasonably long time for mundane things, let alone items with a heftier cost from special materials. Look it up and do the math and still see if it is a great money making scheme and then go from there.


Rudy2 wrote:

Here's what I've come up with; grateful for any input.

Light Weapons costs +1000 worth of adamantine, but only reduce DR/adamantine by 5, and only ignore hardness less than 10 (most non-metal things). In other words, if attacking someone with DR 10/adamantine, a light adamantine weapon would still have its damage reduced by 5.

One-Handed Weapons cost +2000 worth of adamantine, reduce DR/adamantine by 10, and ignore hardness less than 15 (steel + non-metal things).

Two-Handed Weapons cost +3000 worth of adamantine, bypass DR/adamantine, and ignore hardness less than 20.

This also resolves issues of having an adamantine hand-drill and such.

Armor prices are, I think, much more consistent, and don't need an overhaul.

I kinda like it. I might go more along the lines of 2000/3000/4000 for the prices, though. I'd hesitate to make adamantine weapons too much cheaper, since much of the reason people seem to get them is for the "I tunnel through everything in my way" usage. For similar reasons, I might change it to having light weapons bypass hardness 5 or lower, and one-handed bypass hardness 10 or lower. Still, not a bad house-rule, as-is.


Ok, so the cost of a MWK Greatsword is 350 gold and the price of an Adamantine Greatsword is 3050. The weapon is 8 lb in both cases. Iron is 1 sp/lb while adamantine is 300 gp/lb (3000 sp/lb). So, while raw Adamantine is 3,000 times as valuable as raw Iron, a sword made out of it is less than 9 times as much as the same sword made out of Steel (derived from Iron) so you can't just say, straight lb for lb, that an 8lb Greatsword contains 8lbs of Adamantine from which you can make 8lbs of Daggers.

So, how much Adamantine is contained in an 8lb Greatsword? We can presume that the non-Adamantine raw materials are identical and we'll guestimate that a 1 lb ingot of Steel, taking into consideration both raw Iron as well as smelting, is 3 sp/lb

x (steel) + y (other materials) = 500/3 silver worth of raw materials
x (steel) + y (other materials) + 1000 (mwk crafting) = 3500/3
z (adam) + y + 1000 = 30500/3

y = 500/3 - x

z (adam) - x (steel) + 500/3 = 30500/3
z (s) - x (s) = 10,000s

Adamantite is 3000 silver/lb and we determined that Steel is about 3 silver/lb and we know the weights of metal in each weapon is equal so since Adamantite is 1000x the silver value of Steel, we can determine that there is 3.33 lb worth of metal in a Greatsword, leaving 4.66 lb worth of "other materials". If melted back down, that's worth 300 gold/lb or 999gp worth of raw adamantite. If about 40% of a bladed weapon like a sword or dagger is metal, that means you need 0.4 lb of metal for each 1 lb dagger, giving you enough raw adamantite for about 8 daggers with a little bit left over. You still need that other 0.6 lb of "other materials" though.

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