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1001 Awkward Art Objects
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1001 Awkward Art Objects

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With 1001 Awkward Art Objects, getting the treasure back to town can be harder than winning it! These objects are sometimes heavy, sometimes delicate, and sometimes just immense, but all of them are more inconvenient than a sack of gold coins and a pocket full of gems. And all of them, of course, are therefore much more interesting than coins and gems that are little more than abstract numbers.

1001 Awkward Art Objects

The would-be ogre king, leader of the marauding ogres that have been plaguing the local merchant caravans, has finally been slain. The characters are patching up their many wounds, checking their weapons for damage, and, most important, gathering the loot.

GM: Besides the ogre king's head, which you remember Kironas the merchant wanted as proof of his death, you have found treasure worth 5,000 gold.

Warrior: Is that all in gold coins, or is some of it gems?

Cleric: Gems? If two of them match, I'd like them for eyes in the statue in the new shrine.

Thief (in note passed to the GM): I'll palm two or three of the gems when nobody's looking.

GM: Hold on, guys, you're getting ahead of yourselves. Only about 500 gold worth of the treasure is actually in coins, and most of that is silver. Mostly, it's things the ogres looted from merchant caravans over the past two years and haven't broken yet. There's a very nice silver figurine of a dancing maiden, two tapestries that have seen better days (partly due to that fireball, Phryd), a rather large red-and-blue carpet that was draped over the ogre king's "throne" that, well, has had an ogre sitting on it, but it was worth a lot new, and maybe it'll clean up, then there's a nice crystal bowl, such a shame it's chipped, then a brass candlestick decorated with onyx....

Players, collectively: *groan*

Welcome to the "1001 Things" collections!

This is a list of 1001 objects of value which are not only not the conventional coins and jewels, but are often rather impractical to lug back to town or somewhere else where they can be sold. Some of them are heavy, some delicate, some just immense, but all of them are more inconvenient than a sack of gold coins and a pocket full of gems. And all of them, of course, are therefore much more interesting than coins and gems that are little more than abstract numbers.

Aside from being less practical than gold and gems to carry around (sometimes even too big to get through the opening of something like a Bag of Holding) which may require the players to make some hard choices, they can have other interesting aspects. Is that table a valuable antique which can sell to the right person for more than its apparent value? Is that a painting of a traitor to the kingdom, which will likely get the party jailed (or worse) if they're caught trying to sell it? Is that just an abstract decoration on that little table, or is it really a secret map?

The GP values given here are, at best, relative. Every campaign is different, so it's really up to each individual GM to assign values as he or she sees fit. Furthermore, if you happen to need something worth more or less than its listed GP (whether absolute or relative), just factor that into your description. Something can always be more or less elaborately decorated, for example, without changing the printed description at all. Shabby things can become plain, plain things can become elaborate, or the other way around. If an item is set with stones of some sort they can be particularly nice or large examples of their types, or they can be small, flawed, or simply of poor quality.

To use this list, you can either start at the top of the list and use them in order, roll three different colors of d10 (treating 10 as 0), or just pick something that fits your needs or strikes your fancy.

So spice up your game a bit, and have fun!

Look for more things in the 1001 Things series, with convenient, ready-to-use items for your roleplaying games.

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File Last Updated:
December 27, 2017
This title was added to our catalog on December 27, 2017.