Why would anyone craft a Tome or Manual for profit?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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Volkard Abendroth wrote:
Even a potion of Cure Light Wounds would be beyond the means of the majority, who would likely receive any magical healing from their local priest or hedge witch.

I mean, just in terms of "trying to take the economics of this seriously" it's hard to beat the dedicated Kinetic Chirugeon. At 7th level you can cure 600 people of their diseases in a single hour at no cost to yourself (have the patient take the burn and tell them to sleep it off.) If people with this archetype are at all common, they run the most profitable health care system on Golarion even if all they charge for is their time (At 13th level you can restore 2400 amputated limbs in an 8 hour period.)

So the only money in portable cures is in selling them to adventurers, I figure.


There are new adventurers to sell your stuff to all the time, they do tend to die alot and require replacing by someone new who still needs that magic *fill in the blank*.


taks wrote:
Omnius wrote:

Tough to balance?

The CR system assumes the PCs have these things. AC in particular.

HP and AB scale inherently with level. Damage and especially AC don't really. Appropriately leveled magic items are what's supposed to get your damage output and AC where the CR system expects it to be. At a level where you're expected to have a +2 to hit from your magic sword, you're also expected to have at least three out of a +2 ring of deflection, +2 armor, +2 shield, and +2 natural armor.

I know this.

APs are a different beast. In general, the APs aren't balanced based on you buying whatever you want, and the majority of encounters are APL or below as well. Besides the fact that your wealth is likely 50% greater than WBL in the first place, the party is carrying around a large chunk of it in the form of gold or gems because they have nothing to buy other than what exists in the regional stores in the first place. There aren't typically any +6 gizmos (occasionally there's a +4/+4), and the economy rules prevent them as a standard purchasable item because the base values are never as high as 36,000 GP. If they're in a remote area, base values under 10,000 GP are pretty normal.

That is, if you follow the economy rules. I do, which makes it a tough balance. Do I let them buy whatever they want, and walk all over the AP, or do I limit them? Just beginning my 3rd and 4th APs, I'm still not sure how I want to proceed. Admittedly, Ironfang Invasion will be easier because they have no one to trade with.

Standard creation rules trump store bought items any way you look at it. In every AP that I've seen they encourage you to give the players downtime between each module. I think very specifically so they can create magic items. Allowing players to purchase items at market price means less gold to create magic items.

In the campaign I'm running now the AP is located around Magnamar. As a metropolis there really isn't any excuse not to have some magic items be purchasable. However, I just feel its unreasonable for shops to go from "I've got 6 weak items for sale, and 2 good ones" to "I can get you anything if you got the gold and deliver it tommorow." Shops in my campaign have contacts among enchanting groups. They have wait lists and orders and if you are famous or well connected they can have you're order made ahead of other people. They can take any order, but you'll have to wait for the item to be made.

And there are a few merchants that have some rather ancient and powerful items in certain hidden vaults. They do not advertise, but they might offer certain items if you can find something they want. Its called a role playing opportunity.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
I mean, just in terms of "trying to take the economics of this seriously" it's hard to beat the dedicated Kinetic Chirugeon. At 7th level you can cure 600 people of their diseases in a single hour at no cost to yourself (have the patient take the burn and tell them to sleep it off.) If people with this archetype are at all common, they run the most profitable health care system on Golarion even if all they charge for is their time

My health care system is an auto-resetting trap that casts Heal on anyone who triggers it. Works 24 hours a day, no upkeep costs, and cures ability damage, blindness, disease, fatigue, hit point damage, insanity and poison.


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Meirril wrote:
Standard creation rules trump store bought items any way you look at it. In every AP that I've seen they encourage you to give the players downtime between each module. I think very specifically so they can create magic items. Allowing players to purchase items at market price means less gold to create magic items.

Not true, at least, not true for Paizo APs. There are numerous developer posts regarding the amount of loot the put into APs. Of the APs I've read (every one since Giantslayer plus CoCT and Mummy's Mask), only a few explicitly say anything about crafting, and they all mention that you should control it to prevent unbalancing.

Ironfang Invasion and Ruins of Azlant, for example, are specifically built around a lack of availability. You can't even craft if you can't buy the supplies necessary to do so. Also, developers can't predict whether a party will have the ability to craft, or the GM will even allow it (it is the GM's call, after all).

Meirril wrote:
In the campaign I'm running now the AP is located around Magnamar. As a metropolis there really isn't any excuse not to have some magic items be...

Is this a Paizo AP?

I never said that stores don't have items, either. I SPECIFICALLY cited "economy rules" in the post you quoted. This means I follow the stat blocks and the base value, max value, and available items lists. Any item below base value has a 75% chance of being available. If it's not, the player gets to check again in a week. They can also commission higher level items, but it may take longer. I adjust the available items to match my party (somewhat) as well. Available items go above base value, too.


taks wrote:


Is this a Paizo AP?

It is the Rise of the Runelords AP. As far as I know there are 2 other APs from Piazo that heavily involve Magnamar as well.

Also just to point out that by the time players are worrying about not being able to spend 36k they should be able to teleport to a substantially large city. Unless the entire AP is set up to mess with teleportation?

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Meirril wrote:
taks wrote:


Is this a Paizo AP?

It is the Rise of the Runelords AP. As far as I know there are 2 other APs from Piazo that heavily involve Magnamar as well.

Also just to point out that by the time players are worrying about not being able to spend 36k they should be able to teleport to a substantially large city. Unless the entire AP is set up to mess with teleportation?

Even the biggest cities in the world which have all the best settlement qualities for shopping get up to 33600 gp base value. (16k base for metropolis, plus magically attuned, notorious, prosperous, strategic location, and tourist attraction) There is nowhere in the multiverse to routinely buy any specific 36k gp magic item.

Teleportation magic will certainly let you get more rolls on the random medium/major items for sale list. I use an online rolling tool for this so I can generate a city's shopping list in seconds.


Hey guys, you need to remember that those items were converted from 3.5, that means XP costs was converted to five times the gold, so back then the profit in money was a lot bigger at the cost of XP.

Here are the costs for 3.5:
Cost 1,250 gp + 5,100 XP (+1), 2,500 gp + 10,200 XP (+2), 3,750 gp + 15,300 XP (+3), 5,000 gp + 20,400 XP (+4), 6,250 gp + 25,500 XP (+5); the selling price is the same as Pathfinder.


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Meirril wrote:
It is the Rise of the Runelords AP. As far as I know there are 2 other APs from Piazo that heavily involve Magnamar as well.

Just 1 other, Shattered Star, which is the sequel to RotR. But that's irrelevant to my point.

So is this:

Quote:
Also just to point out that by the time players are worrying about not being able to spend 36k they should be able to teleport to a substantially large city. Unless the entire AP is set up to mess with teleportation?

It doesn't matter if you have 36,000 GP to spend, or 36,000,000 GP to spend. Please read my posts and take note of all the times I've mentioned "economy rules" and base value. I've only mentioned them a half a dozen times, and clearly you don't know what that means. No city in Golarion has a base value that high, which means no city in Golarion has +6 stat items in stock as a rule. Magnimar's base value is only 12,800 GP, so even +4 items are unavailable there.


Pathfinder Companion, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Note that each city has a list of minor, medium, and sometimes, major items available. If the GM (me in this case) stats them all out - some already come fully populated, then you have better odds as ryric points out, but that's a pain to do, and I generally only allow travelling to locations that are nearby unless the PCs are from far away anyway.


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taks wrote:
Note that each city has a list of minor, medium, and sometimes, major items available. If the GM (me in this case) stats them all out - some already come fully populated, then you have better odds as ryric points out, but that's a pain to do, and I generally only allow travelling to locations that are nearby unless the PCs are from far away anyway.

In short, that kind of attempt at limiting what is available for purchase is a huge pain in the butt.


.


Omnius wrote:

Never try and apply real world logic to D&D economics.

They are made first and foremost to be game mechanics, not realistic economic models.

Never try and apply real-world logic to real-world economic predictions, either. It only ends in tears.


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Coidzor wrote:
taks wrote:
Note that each city has a list of minor, medium, and sometimes, major items available. If the GM (me in this case) stats them all out - some already come fully populated, then you have better odds as ryric points out, but that's a pain to do, and I generally only allow travelling to locations that are nearby unless the PCs are from far away anyway.
In short, that kind of attempt at limiting what is available for purchase is a huge pain in the butt.

Um, no. Have you even bothered to read the economy rules? Seriously, it's getting silly.


ryric wrote:
I use an online rolling tool for this so I can generate a city's shopping list in seconds.

Hmm, interesting. Is it the Donjon one?

And taks is right, by RAW settlements are quite limited when it comes to available items. Depends on GM and players whether you want to stick with that - fewer buyable items means more incentive to go adventuring, at least.


Shinigami02 wrote:
Dr Styx wrote:

I know I must be missing something...

Craft Wondrous Item wrote:
If spells are involved in the prerequisites for making the item, the creator must have prepared the spells to be cast (or must know the spells, in the case of a sorcerer or bard) but need not provide any material components or focuses the spells require.
So the 25,000gp cost of the wish spell for a Manual to increase a Attribute is not needed to make the item.
Magic Item Creation wrote:
In addition, some items cast or replicate spells with costly material components. For these items, the market price equals the base price plus an extra price for the spell component costs. The cost to create these items is the magic supplies cost plus the costs for the components. Descriptions of these items include an entry that gives the total cost of creating the item.

In the case of the Tomes, they're Replicating the effects of a Wish (or multiple Wishes as appropriate.)

ETA: And to support this:

Tome of Clear Thoughts wrote:

CONSTRUCTION REQUIREMENTS

Craft Wondrous Item, miracle or wish; Cost 26,250 gp (+1), 52,500 gp (+2), 78,750 gp (+3), 105,000 gp (+4), 131,250 gp (+5)

Was always told that the specific rule over wrote the general rule.

Magic Item Creation (the general rule), says you include material cost of spells for all Magic Items.
Craft Wondrous Item (the specific rule), says you need not supply the material cost of spells for Wondrous Items.

Can someone explain to me what the Craft Wondrous Item rule is meant to mean if not to over rule the the General Rule?


Is anyone actually claiming that you need to spend an extra 25,000gp on top of the construction requirements?

Just to clarify: the 25,000gp is built into the construction costs of the tome.

+1 Tome: 27,500 gp to buy, 26,250 gp to craft.

Normally the crafting cost is 50%, but here it isn't, because the 25,000gp for casting Wish cannot be reduced. The remaining 2,500gp cost is halved if you craft it.

(A reasonable house rule would be that it only takes a few days to craft, because the 25,000gp Wish component doesn't take 25 days, it takes one standard action. This would fix the 'Why would anyone spend four months making an object with virtually no profit margin?' problem.)

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Matthew Downie wrote:

Is anyone actually claiming that you need to spend an extra 25,000gp on top of the construction requirements?

Just to clarify: the 25,000gp is built into the construction costs of the tome.

+1 Tome: 27,500 gp to buy, 26,250 gp to craft.

Normally the crafting cost is 50%, but here it isn't, because the 25,000gp for casting Wish cannot be reduced. The remaining 2,500gp cost is halved if you craft it.

(A reasonable house rule would be that it only takes a few days to craft, because the 25,000gp Wish component doesn't take 25 days, it takes one standard action. This would fix the 'Why would anyone spend four months making an object with virtually no profit margin?' problem.)

That's not a house rule; see my post above for the relevant PRD quote. Expensive material costs don't count towards crafting times.

SheepishEidolon, I use the generator at the Archives of Nethys. There used to be a more robust one that I used that allowed you to adjust the base value, but it's disappeared from the web.


ryric wrote:
SheepishEidolon, I use the generator at the Archives of Nethys. There used to be a more robust one that I used that allowed you to adjust the base value, but it's disappeared from the web.

This one is already quite good, especially since it contains links within the Archive. Thanks.


SheepishEidolon wrote:
ryric wrote:
I use an online rolling tool for this so I can generate a city's shopping list in seconds.

Hmm, interesting. Is it the Donjon one?

And taks is right, by RAW settlements are quite limited when it comes to available items. Depends on GM and players whether you want to stick with that - fewer buyable items means more incentive to go adventuring, at least.

Except if you're going oldschool, you're adventuring anyway, even if there's not a specific piece of shiny loot you're looking for and if you're going with more modern sensibilities you're also adventuring anyway and sidequesting for a specific sort of item risks being viewed as a colossal waste of everyone's time in and out of game.


Matthew Downie wrote:

Is anyone actually claiming that you need to spend an extra 25,000gp on top of the construction requirements?

Just to clarify: the 25,000gp is built into the construction costs of the tome.

Magic Item Creation wrote:
In addition, some items cast or replicate spells with costly material components. For these items, the market price equals the base price plus an extra price for the spell component costs. The cost to create these items is the magic supplies cost plus the costs for the components. Descriptions of these items include an entry that gives the total cost of creating the item.

Yes the Creation Cost includes material component cost in the Total cost of creation.

Matthew Downie wrote:

+1 Tome: 27,500 gp to buy, 26,250 gp to craft.

Normally the crafting cost is 50%, but here it isn't, because the 25,000gp for casting Wish cannot be reduced. The remaining 2,500gp cost is halved if you craft it.

If the 2500gp for casting cannot be reduced, what does this rule mean?

Wondrous Items wrote:
If spells are involved in the prerequisites for making the item, the creator must have prepared the spells to be cast (or must know the spells, in the case of a sorcerer or bard) but need not provide any material components or focuses the spells require.


Gallant Armor wrote:
Omnius wrote:

Never try and apply real world logic to D&D economics.

They are made first and foremost to be game mechanics, not realistic economic models.

That's a good point. Having no difference in price of new and used goods is another good example of this.

By the time we are talking about magic items I don't think new vs used is going to be an issue. It's pretty low level magic to recondition an item to being as good as new. The only reason for new is to get exactly what you want.


Dr Styx wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:

Is anyone actually claiming that you need to spend an extra 25,000gp on top of the construction requirements?

Just to clarify: the 25,000gp is built into the construction costs of the tome.

Magic Item Creation wrote:
In addition, some items cast or replicate spells with costly material components. For these items, the market price equals the base price plus an extra price for the spell component costs. The cost to create these items is the magic supplies cost plus the costs for the components. Descriptions of these items include an entry that gives the total cost of creating the item.

Yes the Creation Cost includes material component cost in the Total cost of creation.

Matthew Downie wrote:

+1 Tome: 27,500 gp to buy, 26,250 gp to craft.

Normally the crafting cost is 50%, but here it isn't, because the 25,000gp for casting Wish cannot be reduced. The remaining 2,500gp cost is halved if you craft it.

If the 2500gp for casting cannot be reduced, what does this rule mean?

Wondrous Items wrote:
If spells are involved in the prerequisites for making the item, the creator must have prepared the spells to be cast (or must know the spells, in the case of a sorcerer or bard) but need not provide any material components or focuses the spells require.

What the rule is saying is that while you must have the spell available every day while crafting you don't actually cast it and pay it's material cost. Instead, you pay the cost once for each copy of the spell in the item.


Loren Pechtel wrote:
Gallant Armor wrote:
Omnius wrote:

Never try and apply real world logic to D&D economics.

They are made first and foremost to be game mechanics, not realistic economic models.

That's a good point. Having no difference in price of new and used goods is another good example of this.
By the time we are talking about magic items I don't think new vs used is going to be an issue. It's pretty low level magic to recondition an item to being as good as new. The only reason for new is to get exactly what you want.

Right, but in the real world even if a used version is mechanically identical to a new version you will not get as much for it. Take a DVD for example. Properly cared for a used version is identical to a brand new version, but you will get far less for it.


Dr Styx wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:

+1 Tome: 27,500 gp to buy, 26,250 gp to craft.

Normally the crafting cost is 50%, but here it isn't, because the 25,000gp for casting Wish cannot be reduced. The remaining 2,500gp cost is halved if you craft it.

If the 25(,0)00gp for casting cannot be reduced, what does this rule mean?

Wondrous Items wrote:
If spells are involved in the prerequisites for making the item, the creator must have prepared the spells to be cast (or must know the spells, in the case of a sorcerer or bard) but need not provide any material components or focuses the spells require.

You to use a spell slot with Wish in it once a day while crafting the item.

This rule means you don't have to pay the material components for casting Wish daily as part of the crafting on top of the stated crafting costs.

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