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Good & Cheap II: Going Beyond the Core Rule Book

The Adventurer's Armory, as I've brought up before, is a great little book crammed with lots of very useful mundane and alchemical equipment.  I wanted to do look at it the way I looked at the Core
Book in terms of inexpensive and light weight equipment that really everyone ought to have on them.  So grab a copy of the AA and stock up on a diverse set of tools that anyone can carry and use...


Here is a solid package of weightless items that costs a mere 30 gp:

  • Earplugs 3cp (Harpies driving you crazy?  Get some earplugs to get a +2 to saves)
  • False-Bottomed cup 1gp (want to poison someone, or just send a message to your fellow faction member?)
  • Paper (sheet) 4sp (better quality paper that can be used for scrolls)
  • Perfume/Cologne 5gp (+1 circumstance bonus sometimes on Charisma based skill checks, distract animals with the smell, etc.)
  • Rice Paper (2 sheets) 10cp (scrap paper)
  • Stationary 1gp (Need to convince a Noble?  Invite them down a dark alley with this stationary)
  • Wandermeal (12 meals) 12cp (cheap and weightless food.  Just don't eat it alone for more than a week, mix in 1 regular meal per week and drastically cut down on food weight)
  • Weapon Cord 1sp (helpful to avoid disarms)
  • Whistle 5cp (half mile signal can be easily be pulled off)
  • Whistle, Silent 2sp (animals and keen hearing can only hear this whistle, use it with a pet or animal companion in special circumstances, particularly with animal companions with a 3 Intelligence)
  • Firework, Desnan candle 5gp (ranged touch attack at -4 to blind for 1 round)
  • Firework, Paper candle 1gp (dazzle for 1d4 rounds)
  • Glowing Ink, (vial) 5gp (tagging creatures so it is easy to to find them even in the dark, writing down notes to each other in darkness when you have to silent, writing notes on walls, plenty of uses here)
  • Invisible ink, simple 2gp (want to be really sneaky?  It's cheap and will get past your clueless guard)
  • Keros Oil 5gp (Regular oil weights a pound for each flask, this has no weight, has 10 doses per 5gp, and does the same damage as regular oil.  The only wrinkle is that you have to put it in your mouth and spit it out.  Still, when you need to burn things, you need to burn them, so having a flask on hand might save your life)
  • Vermin Repellent 5gp (swarms of vermin can be a nightmare, shoo them away with this cheap smelly stuff)
Grand Total: 30 gp and 0 pounds.


Can you handle 3 pounds?  Most characters can pull this off and here are some cheap items that you'll be able to find uses for in the most odd of places:

  • String/Twine 50' 1cp 0.5lb (use it in all manner of ways to get the job done!)
  • Grappling Arrow 1gp, 0.5lb. (a regular grappling hook weighs 4lbs. This weighs half a pound. Shoot or toss it where needed.  However it only works with silk rope out of the core rules)
  • Magnet 5sp, 0.5lb. (can grab up to 3 pounds of ferrous metal, think of the possibilities!)
  • Powder 1cp, 0.5lb. (useful to toss at invisible creatures, or spread on the floor to look for their tracks).
  • Compass 1gp, 0.5lb. (Above or below ground, when you need it you're glad you have it).
Grand Total: 2gp, 5sp, 2cp and 2.5 pounds in weight.


  • Sawback Sword +5gp (make your bladed weapon into a big Swiss army pocket knife.  One side will let you saw down some trees or wooden beams or planks quickly to make all manner of traps, barricades or whatever else is needed at the time).
  • Hollowed Pommel +5gp (if you want to be super secret, or just have a potion of cure-light wounds where ever your weapon happens to be then this will help).
  • Whetstone 2cp, 1lb. (Do you want to simulate OCD in a fantasy world?  This bit of stone will do the trick.  Each time the blade is worked over with the whetstone the next attack that hits delivers +1 damage!).
  • Throwing Shield +50gp  (want to be Captain America?  Well, this little upgrade makes you shield into a throwing weapon, and it's a free action to get it ready.  No extra weight, but another option in desperate moments).


Because this article is all about getting the most out of very little weight, I felt it important to highlight one particular item that isn't that cheap, but still very good:

  • Backpack, Masterwork 50gp, 4lbs. - This backpack weighs 2lbs more than a regular one, however it is made in such a way as to give you +1 to your Strength when calculating your carrying capacity.  That +1 might not seem like a lot, but that can mean a net increase of anywhere from +1 to +18 extra pounds of encumbrance in the light load category for the typical adventurer.

That's it folks!  There really is a whole lot more in AA to make use of, but these little tweaks are cheap, easy and light!  Something any character can handle.

If you have the tools, you have the talent!

- Neil Carr