15,000,000 Gold a Day

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Another exploit for Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition

Step by step guide[edit]


Level 11 (minimum, will only net 3,000,000) Wizard, with max ranks in Weaponsmithing and the spells Wall of Iron and Fabricate.


1. Cast Wall of Iron, creating a wall 55ft*5ft*2in=45.83cu ft of iron. This step costs 50gp in material components.

2. Cast Fabricate, converting 11 cu ft per cast into masterwork daggers. With 14 ranks in Craft (Weaponsmithing) and a wizard's crazy Int, you can't fail. Repeat until only 1-2 cu ft of iron remains. (4 casts). This consumes your 5th-level slots for the day, and takes 4 and a half minutes. The density of iron is 491lbs/cu ft. Thus 44 cu ft of iron weighs 21604 lbs. A dagger weighs 1 lb. Thus we create 21604 masterwork daggers, which sell for 151 gp each. That's 3,262,204 gp. Over 3 million gp. At level 11.

3. ????

4. Profit!

5. The spell description reads "You convert material of one sort into a product that is of the same material." therefore should any DM give you grief about singularity, connect each dagger by a thin thread of metal that can easily by clipped or removed after creation, thus giving you the countless daggers you were looking for. Folding the line of daggers may help conserve space for the plethora to-be.

Additional details[edit]

Teleportation will solve the economic problems; by selling to the entire world instead of just the local pawnshop, you can possibly find a market. And then spend your money to set up lots of local branch offices, with people capable of casting Sending or whatever to keep you informed of how business is going and what local demands are. Use this to track warfare and sell your weapons wherever they are needed. You probably won't be able to sell the maximum output of a level 20 wizard, but you'll make a very, very good profit, not to mention a lot of friends in high places if you sell at a bit below normal price. This assumes you don't flood the market or somebody casts dispel magic on the daggers.


20th level wizard, without using any slots above 6th level.

  • Volume of Iron = 5*5*20*(5/12)=208.33cu ft.
  • Castings of Fabricate = 10 (use 6th level slots to fill as required)
  • Fabricate time = 20 minutes per day
  • Mass of Iron Fabricated = 200*491=98200 lbs.
  • Number of Mwk Daggers = 98200
  • Payout = 98200*151=14,828,200 gp
  • Profit = 14,827,700 gp. Per day.

No Fun Allowed[edit]

Bitching about how "you shouldn't allow that" or "but that won't work in real life" goes here. This includes "nuh-uh! yuh-huh!" counterarguments.

"If your DM (assuming she or he wasn't sensible enough to put a stop to this before it begins) happens to fumble upon a Wall Street Magazine article in her or his basement toilet, she or he will recognize the law of supply and demand, which states that while the demand for said mwk daggers are roughly unchanged, the supply just sky-rocketed, making said daggers essentially worthless. Congrats."
"Infinite Multiverse == Infinite Demand. Suck on that, Malthus!"
"Infinite Multiverse == Infinite Supply by the same logic."
"Infinite Supply + Infinite Demand means the price is infinitely stable since no matter how many daggers you make it won't make a dent on infinity."
"1. Implying the DM's world is an Infinite Multiverse. 2. Even if it were, implying the PCs have unlimited access to it."
When the market for masterwork daggers is saturated, you move on to slightly less profitable objects like masterwork swords, chainmail, farming implements, dragon-shaped paperweight and so on. By the time the demand for iron goods of any kind has dropped too low to make a profit, you are well into fuck-you money.
"A masterwork dagger would have to be made from steel, not just iron, which requires a significant element of heating, carbon inclusions, and forging. The Fabrication spell wouldn't be able to produce the carbon necessary. You would require a Wall of Steel variant to make this work"
That said, you can still crash the iron market at will."
The spell description reads, "You convert material of one sort into a product that is of the same material." This could be interpreted as meaning you can only create a single item with a single casting. However, as stated earlier, you could create 21604 masterwork daggers bound together into a single piece through a series of easily removed channels. The final object may not be "a masterwork dagger" but it would be "a masterwork collection of daggers joined by channels" and each dagger can be considered a masterwork fragment of the original work even after they are separated. Given the wizard's intelligence and smithing skill, these kind of engineering and planning challenges can be considered trivial.
A DM worth the name should be able to come up with scenarios either preventing this or making the player pay for their arrogance.
If it is allowed to happen, it should only happen once and will shift the world economy drastically. Other NPC wizards can be considered to be just as intelligent as the PC and will quickly figure out what's going on and want to cash in on this. The player may make some money, but will soon find the market saturated ahead of them. This would be followed by masterwork iron goods being commonplace and worth about as much as your common dagger had been.
If the DM wishes to suppress this before it happens, invent a group or groups of wizards who have already discovered or done this and are carefully controlling the market so as to avoid crashing it. They've already put things into motion to detect if some other wizard re-discovers the technique. Once the PC tries to cash in, they'll quickly find out about it and act as necessary to suppress the effort.
The spell description also reads," Material Component: The original material, which costs the same amount as the raw materials required to craft the item to be created." This means that you can't fabricate a number of daggers just because you have the same weight of material. Since they cost about 100 gp in raw materials, you must use 1000 pounds of your wall of iron to make each masterwork dagger. The remaining weight of course goes back into the void, where it came from.
Several million gp's worth of product in four and a half minutes is not the same as several million gp's worth of sales in four and a half minutes. No sentient shopkeeper is going to think they can move an entire store's worth of identical products that they likely already have three or four of sitting un-bought on the shelf; it may take less than five minutes to create the stock but it would take months to sell it. Unless you can make a name for yourself as an arms dealer supplying kings and warlords with armies' worth of equipment, you'd probably be better off just trying to sell the iron to craftsmen.
Nothing in the fabricate spell suggests that it allows smelting or metallurgy. Iron is a sufficient material for making daggers, but it isn't "state of the art" for even normal blades. Compared to the fine steel of a masterwork dagger, iron is softer, more easily broken or bent out of shape without returning to true, and does not hold as fine an edge. Using this method would not yield any number of masterwork daggers, but instead the indicated number of finely shaped daggers of a substandard material. They would be more valuable for the raw metal than as weapons, outside of any town with a crippling dagger shortage. With this method, you would burn all your 5th level slots to turn 21,604 pounds of iron into 21,604 pounds of iron in a different shape without improving at all on its value.
Just Fabricate the wall into 1 lb. iron ingots connected by small channels. According to the SRD 1 lb. of iron is 1sp. Not quite 15 million gp a day, but still enough to crash the market.
Price fixing is also an issue. The value of spellcasters is fixed per the hirelings section. A 6th-level spell cast by an 11th-level wizard with a 50gp material component costs 710 gold. Therefore, the value of any Wall of Iron is set at 710 (slightly more for a higher-level caster), meaning you cannot fabricate more than 710 gold worth of masterwork daggers from a single Wall of Iron as per the description of Fabricate.
Don't try this in Pathfinder either. D&D 3.75 added this wonderful line: 'Iron created by this spell is not suitable for use in the creation of other objects and cannot be sold.' It's magic, they don't have to explain it.
Well, aside from the new questions that the statement raises (Is a 1000-lb section of wall incapable of crushing a man, as that would be a type of use? Has the iron been made magically incapable of being sold? Does a forcefield spring up anytime someone tries to hand you money in exchange for a piece of it? If you hide a lump of the stuff in a bag of apples, then sell the bag and its contents, the bag won't move, a la an immovable rod?), you can still run a grift with fake shoddy daggers, or make a profit in trade instead of currency.

See also[edit]