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Cost Of Admission

Jan 09, 14 Cost Of Admission

Playing table-top role-playing games can be an expensive hobby. How expensive? Well, let’s do a basic breakdown.

First off you have your game books. These can run anywhere from twenty to sixty dollars, with most of the higher quality ones running around fifty dollars. Now supplemental books are usually a bit cheaper than the core rulebooks, but even these average between thirty and forty dollars. Fortunately, not every player needs their copy of every single book, but it does help if everyone at least has a main book. Fortunately, with many games it is much cheaper to buy digital copies, which is fast becoming a norm at the game table. However, for many Gamemasters, having all of the books (and having physical copies of them) feels like a very high priority. Depending on the game, this means that you are likely going to spend a few hundred dollars on books alone.

Next, you have your gaming dice. Oh, the appeal of gaming dice. I love dice. Every player I know loves dice. There is just something about them. Depending on the game you play, you will need different dice. Many games require six-sided dice, which are fairly easy to come by for a few bucks, but most require a full set of gaming dice with four-sided, six-sided, eight-sided, ten-sided, percentile, twelve-sided, and twenty-sided dice. These can cost anywhere from five to ten dollars on average, though there are some even more expensive ones out there. Other games require their own unique dice, which you can often ignore in favor of standard ones using a conversion method, but most players want to play the game with the right dice. Then there is the problem of not being able to have just one set. Oh no, we are gamers after all. Nothing tempts us more than a shiny set of new dice. Just looking at my own dice bags (yes, I said bags), I can count at least five sets in here, not including my FUDGE dice for the Dresden Files RPG, my various World of Darkness dice, and my two blocks of 36 small six-sided dice for games like Shadowrun.

<Let’s not forget miniatures. Few games actually require them, but these can be a great gaming aid. These vary in price greatly, based on quality, and many require you to paint them yourself, which can be a lot of fun, but that is another expense to consider.

Then you have your basic gaming necessities. These include things like pencils, paper, erasers, note cards, dice-cups, clip-boards, dry-erase boards and markers, and various other odds and ends. All of these things can add to the game either as a whole or for a single player, so their use varies but they are still something to keep in mind when looking at your gaming expenses.

Finally, you have your food and transportation. Some of us are fortunately enough to game in the comforts of our own home, but this is not always the case. There are always players who have to travel, and just like when any group of friends gets together, food becomes an issue. After all, what is a game without snacks. This can vary in expense, but again is something you have to keep in mind in terms of budgeting.

Sometimes I think that drugs would be cheaper.

As always, thanks for reading and I wish everyone good gaming.

Image Credit: Thinkstock

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About 

Joshua is a freelance writer, aspiring novelist, and avid table-top gamer who has been in love with the hobby ever since it was first introduced to him by a friend in 1996. Currently he acts as the Gamemaster in three separate games and is also a player in a fourth. When he is not busy rolling dice to save the world or destroying the hopes and dreams of his players, he is usually found either with his nose in a book or working on his own. He has degrees in English, Creative Writing, and Economics.

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