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     Appendix I
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Appendix Two
Optional Rule: Material Component Units

Most players and DMs of Dungeons & Dragons are split on the issue of material components. Some like them and wish to see their uses enforced. They believe that wizards will not always have the right material components at hand, especially since spellcasters very rarely spend any game time hunting for those components. Others prefer a more "hands-off" method; they don't want to engage in tedious bookkeeping of every blade of grass and eye of newt needed to cast their spells. If the component doesn't have a cost, most such players and DMs simply assume that the spellcaster has the items at hand. The following system is a compromise between those extremes. With this set of optional rules, a balance can be struck, requiring spellcasters to keep track of "units" of material components without resorting to mind-numbing lists of components. Included are rules for gaining more such units, as well as storing them.

The casting of a spell requiring material components uses up one 'material component unit.' Each time a spell with the component 'M' is cast, the player of the spellcaster marks off one unit of material components. This does not apply to those spells that have a listed cost for a material component, unless that spell also uses components that are not priced (identify, for instance).

Storage of Material Components
Components must be stored carefully so that they are not harmed by every day jostling. They must also be stored separate from one another so that their occult essences aren't mixed - a bit of thistle down accidentally stained with berry juice is no longer pure thistle, and is therefore unsuitable for spellcasting. As a result, there are many clever ways of storing these components, the most common of which is the ubiquitous spell component pouch, as described in the Player's Handbook.

Finding Material Components
The above pieces of equipment all hold material components. When they are first purchased, it is assumed (for the ease of play) that they have a full compliment of spell components, especially if they are purchased by a spellcaster. Gaining more of these material components can be done easily in one of two ways - by buying them, or by simply finding them oneself.

Purchasing material component units is cheap: a mere silver piece per unit if they are procured from an apothecary. They are more expensive (2 sp/unit) if they are gotten from an alchemist or herbalist. Keep in mind that these are not simply any components. These are the best materials at hand.

Those who choose to hunt for their own spell components may roll any number of skills in order to do so. Probably the best for this task is Profession (Apothecary) (DC 10). Also viable are Profession (Herbalist) and Spellcraft rolls (both DC 12). Finally, a Wilderness Lore roll might be made (DC 15). Each roll takes one hour of searching and scoring the DC exactly indicates the discovery of a single unit. Every point above the DC results in the discovery of one more unit.


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