[RPG] What sorts of things in a typical fantasy village would be made of iron


I'd like to run an adventure where the party needs to improvise and find some sources of iron when they're in and around a small village. Cold iron plays a role in a lot of games as the bane of fey and sometimes other supernatural creatures, and I'm going by the wikipedia article definition where "cold iron" really just means "iron". I have no real sense of how common such weapons would actually be, or where someone might find iron in an emergency. Plus, I want the focus to be on improvisation, not running down to the shop and buying a "cold iron greatsword".

I don't really have much of a background in knowing what metals are commonly used, and when iron would be used versus steel or other metals. Without having a sense of which common items might be made out of iron, it will be difficult to carry out my plan.

What types of items made out of iron would probably exist in a typical fantasy village (say, < 1000 people)? Setting equivalent probably wouldn't be far off the technological level of, say, your average Forgotten Realms village.

Best Answer

It will depend on the technology level of the world as well as the logistical connectivity of the village to the rest of the world, if the villagers don't travel or have access to good ore then they're not going to have as many tools unless merchants brave the far reaches of the unprofitable areas of the kingdom/empire/etc.

As technological levels increase then steel will become increasingly prevalent over iron as a tool (replacing other metals as well as wood); a brief history of steel/iron refinement is here

For a generic fantasy world I'd have that the more backward and out-of-the-way the village the more likely they are to use iron (or possibly even wood or bronze for certain applications).

Typical items are going to be hammers, nails, scythes, saws, horseshoes, tongs, chisels, knives, hooks and plows.