When starting a character, it might itch some players to wonder how much they can spend right out of the gate. Sometimes they want to customize their equipment, and other times, they want to buy a magic item as soon as it becomes available. Or maybe they want to start hoarding like dragons. Whatever the case, starting gold is an excellent way to make sure your players can purchase items and customize their loadout beyond what is ordinarily available.
Before we begin, let’s take a look at what Starting Gold is. When you first roll a character, you may notice that each class and background has items that they give the player. But sometimes, you don’t want the items you’re given, or you want to customize them freely. Starting gold replaces the equipment from your class, though RAW might have you replace background equipment as well. Still, I would argue otherwise as backgrounds don’t have starting gold alternatives to begin with and gives you an amount of gold depending on your class. Additionally, players can find the rules for starting gold on page 143 of the PHB in the Starting Equipment section.
How does Starting Gold work?
With that out of the way, we can see on the very same page that there is a table for starting wealth, which has you rolling d4s and multiplying the result by 10, except for classes such as the monk, which doesn’t multiply the result by anything, as monks can get away with just food, depending on what your DM wants you to have at the very least, such as clothing. Please clothe your characters with something at least. Your character can kick butt with strategically placed ribbons if not even underwear is an option.
Now when you get starting gold, you can immediately spend it on anything offered in the PHB (unless your DM says otherwise of course, but they’re the DM and make all the rules), which the DM may expand to include anything within reasonable limits, such as limiting explosives if those are available. I know it’s fun to blow things up, but try not to blow up every NPC you encounter. They may also let you buy some cheaper potions and a few options for healing.
Starting Gold Ideas and inspiration (take a d12)
Now for suggestions on what to buy… That depends on what class you pick up and how you play them. Daggers are a very common weapon that are cheap, and work with every class, though they don’t deal much damage, clubs and darts are also lovely if you want something that’s even cheaper and aren’t worried about switching up your weapons, or a greatclub if you’re going to smash somebody to bits with a tree, a set of playing cards in case you get bored, NEVER forget clothes, nets can come in handy, vials and bottles are incredibly good for collecting any liquid you find strewn about (buckets are also suitable for this), rope should be one thing you bring at least 50 ft. of, some crampons if you’re venturing in icy terrain, a tent can protect you from wind, rain and sun, a healer’s kit can come in handy in case somebody goes down, an acid vial can help in a pinch though it is a bit more expensive, padded (which needs more love), leather, and hidearmor are all good to have should you need a bit more protection, while ring mail is a good starting choice for a heavy armor specialist, and don’t forget a grappling hook for those really big climbs!
Simplicity and the conclusion
Now that’s a lot of options, and I didn’t even exhaust them! But in general, you want a weapon, armor, and a focus for a spellcaster, plus food and water if your DM wants to be sure you have that. But you can purchase whatever your DM makes available to you, and as always, these are simply suggestions to get you started. Get creative, and your DM might just cut down on some prices, give you a magic item, or even make an entire arc out of looking for the person who created an item of yours! Now go and buy everything your heart desires, and your wallet won’t regret (in DnD, of course)!