The cost of casting

OSR casting makes no sense to me. I mean, I get the mechanics from the perspective of a gamer, but that’s not the problem. My issue is with the requirements to actually cast spells, specifically, the need for a player’s character to have tons and tons of money.

I understand the need for trying to incorporate a mechanism into the game to accommodate treasure discovered in a TTRPG. The issue I have is, what’s the point? It’s such a meaningless narrative device that it makes using the money worthless. This goes for using gems as well.

Where I diverge from this though, is that I very much like the idea of consumable spell components. I just think necessitating huge sums of gold is a bit silly. Only rich casters can cast spells? A character can use their magic only if they’ve successfully scoured a certain amount of dungeon treasure vaults and/or dragon hoards? The whole idea is nonsensical.

Personally, I much prefer combinations of everyday and obscure herbs. All those fun images of witch’s with jars of random crap, the stuff they keep around just in case, is exactly what I’m thinking of. This also adds in the need for mobility, but in a meaningful way. Not every caster can take every component with, but they need a place to store everything they’re not using. See, I’m not talking money, but this kind of set-up creates interesting logistical issues for a game. No one is penalized, but strategic planning is necessary.

This is one of those issues that tends to fall into that, “you know, if I ever wrote my own game…” category of hiccups in RPGs I’d get rid of. That’s just me though. Everyone’s fun is different.





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