Currency Exchange (5e Variant Rule)
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The most common units of currency in the D&D world are pieces. These can be used in transactions with most people, from simple shopkeepers to powerful barons. However, there are many faraway places that developed on their own, with their own economic systems and mediums of exchange. Luckily, when traveling across international borders, there are often centers for exchanging currency. The following is a guide for different coinage values to real-life, fictional, and homebrew currencies from the standard Dungeons and Dragons currency.
The following page can be added onto by other members of the wiki who have created their own monetary systems for use in D&D gaming. When contributing to this article, include an exchange rate between D&D pieces and your currency, a description of the coinage (such as its appearance or the shorthand for the currency), and in what locales it is used. If you are adding to this page, and your currency is meant for use in a specific homebrew environment or setting, please include a link to and a brief description of it. If the currency is based on those in real life or an existing fictional monetary system, please explain how you arrived at this exchange rate (if it's fictional, also include one of those copyright disclaimer sticker things). Finally, if you can, a picture of your money would be nice.
U.S. Dollars by Gold Price
|Each of the different kinds of dollar bills.|
The dollar ($) is the official currency of the United States of America. The currency itself comes in bills, which are in denominations of $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100. For practical purposes, the dollar can be divided into 100 smaller units, known as cents (¢). When exchanging in cents, people use coins, known as pennies (1¢), nickels (5¢), dimes (10¢), and quarters (25¢).
|D&D Pieces||$ per Piece||¢ per Piece|
|Copper Piece (cp)||3.11||311|
|Silver Piece (sp)||31.1||3,110|
|Electrum Piece (ep)||155.5||15,550|
|Gold Piece (gp)||311||31,100|
|Platinum Piece (pp)||3,110||311,000|
The exchange rate can be found by looking at the price of gold in D&D per pound and the price of gold in real life per ounce. It should be noted that the weight of gold is taken using different units from the pounds we are accustomed to; when measuring the weight of gold, we use Troy units of measurement, which have 12 Troy ounces per Troy pound, so even though a Troy ounce weighs more than a regular ounce, a Troy pound weighs less than a regular pound. For the sake of continuity, we will assume that the price of gold per pound in the Player's Handbook is taken in Troy units, seeing as those are the universal units of weight for gold pricing. The price of gold in D&D is 50 gp per lb, or 4.1666... gp per ounce. The price of gold in U.S. dollars is $1,295.60 per ounce, meaning that the conversion rate from gold pieces to dollars is 1,295.6 ÷ 4.1667 $/gp, or about 311 $/gp.
I should note that the price of gold in America can change somewhat. For the most part, I will be leaving this the same regardless of the changes in gold price, but you can update if you want to.
Inflation Adjusted Dollar
These values are based on the inflation of the current dollar since 1920, back during the gold standard and before the Great Depression. 1cp is equivalent to $0.01 in 1920 as this was the lowest denomination that people would carry in their pockets for exchange. Present day we barely consider dimes as worthy of carrying around, rather carrying quarters as the lowest denomination we would consider carrying.
These values should be more accurate on pricing objects in the D&D universe because according to current gold price a hammer would be $311.
|D&D Pieces||$ per Piece (2018)||$ Per Piece (1920)|
|Copper Piece (cp)||0.13||0.01|
|Silver Piece (sp)||1.26||0.10|
|Electrum Piece (ep)||6.30||0.50|
|Gold Piece (gp)||12.60||1.00|
|Platinum Piece (pp)||126.00||10.00|