Monday, February 20, 2012

One Other Thing I learned While Obsessing Over Hommlet:

The real bad guys of Dungeon Module T1 The Village of Hommlet are not Lareth and his band of Scary Men or even the evil traders back in town.  No, the true villains of Homlet are the two captive merchants in Lubash the Ogre's pantry.  "How do you figure, D-Chuckles?" you ask? Here's how: these two dudes promise their rescuers
"large rewards for their release, vowing to send monies to Hommlet as soon as they return to Dyvers."
Four weeks after their rescue, a passing caravan will deliver to the PCs a sack laden with--wait for it--one hundred silver pieces. Are you kidding me?? That's only 5 freakin' gold pieces at AD&D exchange rates, just barely enough cash for the entire party to split a half gill of Ulek Elixir at the Welcome Wench.*

A hundred platinum would have been a worthy reward, sealing a bond of mutual goodwill between merchants and party; 100 gold would have been a respectable gesture--at least fueling a nice post-dungeon bender.  A friggin' thank you note would have been appreciated--it's always nice to know that your good deeds are remembered.  But 100 silver?!  That's just an insult.  If I were a PC I would be all "Screw the Temple, let's hunt down those cheap-ass merchants!"

* According to the handy conversion tables at the back of my notebook that I have not bothered to ever use in a hundred years there are 4 gills to a pint, so a half gill is [avert your gaze--mathifying taking place] ... 2 ounces or approximately 66 mL if your feeling metric-dependent.


  1. Quite humorous...but sadly resembling an epilogue. Is the project over? Can nothing else be gleaned from T1?

  2. @Scott: You're right on, it was intended to be an epilog; though I doubt I'm done with Hommlet for good. Several years ago, T1 single-handedly brought me back into the D&D fold after a 17 year hiatus.

    Anyway, I've updated the tags for this post so that you can click on 'em and pore over all the Hommlet-related content I've retched onto the blogosphere over the last 6 months or more. If you make it through it all, please find it in your heart to forgive me.

  3. I just happened across this post on Hommlet, and totally agree with your sentiment towards those insufficiently grateful businessguys. However, I noticed one *small* error regarding the merchants' 'large reward': *each* person sends back 100 SPs to the PCs. 200 Pieces of Silver in total. So the Mighty Heroes receive all of *10* GPs for their valorous deed!

    But perhaps the merchants' apparent slight was *meant* to inspire roleplaying possibilities, like a trip to Dyvers(mentioned as where the caravan that bore the PCs' reward hails from) to 'follow up' with those guys! Think about how fun that could be... Side trip!

    Of course, it's more likely the reward is simply a typo that was overlooked in all 7 printings of Homlett and the Temple of Elemental Evil's(which contained a slightly revised version of T1) own 7 runs.(I'm thinking the reward was probably supposed to be *Gold* Pieces.) But hey, it's a fun notion that these guys are just cheap and worth leaving in the adventure as written, imo! :-)

  4. Nice catch Velaran; it is indeed 100 SP per merchant.

    In my gut I agree with you; it was prob'ly supposed to be 100gp, but 100sp is a lot more interesting.

  5. Notice in the original module it reads "drop off 100 S.P. ..." The three periods at the end (to me at least) imply that the rescued arrived safely back home and then cheaped out sending large rewards to their rescuers, thinking that virtue is its own reward. My take anyway.