[RPG] Are there price lists for magic items, such as the Bag of Holding


We are playing Hoard of the Dragon Queen. My PC's are only at level 3. They stumbled into a magic shop and asked for a Bag of Holding. I made the asker roll to beat a 15 and if he did I said that he could buy one. (He rolled a 17.) So then I proceeded to look for for how much one costs in the DMG, PHB & HotDQ. Magic item creation and endless tables were all I found. Someone found a D&D Wiki and said it was 2500 GP. I ended the game (about 15 minutes early) to do my homework. Am I missing something?

My question is:

Why is the Bag of Holding not listed in the Index of any book?

Where do I get price lists for magic items? Or if the answer is "It's at my discretion", what should I use as a guide?

Best Answer

1. None of the named magic items are found in the index...

... annoying, but it seems only the categories of magic item (rings, rods, staffs, wondrous items etc.) are in the index, not the specifics. Instead of using the core books to search for specific items, I recommend using one of the SRD websites - I use 5thsrd.org to quickly search for individual rules.

2. By default, you can't buy most magic items

Default 5e assumes that "magic shops" pretty much won't exist, and even goes on to suggest that potions and the like be bought at alchemist's shops instead.

From the DMG, page 135:

Unless you decide your campaign works otherwise, most magic items are so rare that they aren't available for purchase.

and further:

If your campaign allows for trade in magic items, rarity can also help you set prices for them. As the DM, you determine the value of an individual magic item based on its rarity. Suggested values are provided in the Magic Item Rarity table.

The Bag of Holding is an uncommon item, therefore in the 101 - 500GP range. At this point, it is at your discretion.

Magic items in 5e

Unlike previous editions (particularly the 3/3.5/4 era) 5e is designed to depend much less on magic items. Together, the:

  • attuning rules (which limit the number of powerful items any individual character can have),
  • the expressly "lower magic" setting (which generally restricts the purchase - and sale! - of magic items),
  • and their "bounded accuracy" (lower difficulty, ACs and progression gradients)

...ensure that high level 5e characters are powerful because of their raw skill and ability, not the plethora of magic items they happen to be decked out in. This was a specific design decision going back to the very first D&D Next playtests. (As a side note, having your party find that Bag of Holding in some dusty and forgotten attic is also more rewarding than just stopping by the local Bags of Holding R Us and grabbing a few!)

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