Originating in the conquered lands of a powermad archmage (and aren't they all?), this yellowish metal is identical to normal gold according to every possible test. However, this is a cursed substance. It brings a slow and inevitable sickness, and eventually death, to all who possess it. Within a few days (for a handful of coins) to a few hours (for a lifesize statue) cursed Vridian gold causes first fatigue, then nausea leading to vomiting, headache, and diarrhoea. Next the hair falls out, followed by the teeth. With continued exposure, the curse causes lifetime sterility, hemorrhaging, and eventually death.
The curse is viral, it infects other gold. It is suspected that any gold in contact with cursed Vridian gold picks up its curse, and this has resulted in entire chests full of coins & jewellery to be burried or cast into the sea. It is certain that any gold mixed and reforged with Vridian gold definately takes on the curse, regardless of the proportions of the mix. Several thousand Bizzannite coins were minted with the cursed gold, and these were believed to be all completely accounted for, but some cursed gold coins could have made it to the open market...
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? Responses (12)
A handy way to inflict change upon your world. The infectious gold and the greed plague it will bring. After all, soon everyone will begin to think that gold is the source of the plague... and they will be right. Unfortunately as the tale spreads, it will be ALL gold seen as dangerous.
I always used radiation poisoning for the effects of Vridian gold.
I like the evil radiation poisoning.
People will fear gold. Paper money would begin or other scripts. Gold would eventually be locked in vaults, with really thick walls, to keep it away from people.
Jewelry and Symbols of nobility (crowns and such) that predate the gold plague would eventually be traded over to silver. However, some might be kept as symbols of longevity for their countries.
Reminds me of Aachim gold from the View From The Mirror series.
A new twist in buried treasure. Gold would perhaps be buried with the dead for them to spend in the afterlife.
Me too. Gold will be feared by the people until it will be forbidden for any man to come near it.
This is a solid idea. I have seen radioactive gold used on an episode of "The Highwayman" and there was an episode of Farscape with a similar premise. In game a GM dropped this on us, we discovered a barge full of money. At any rate, he had a NPC warn us about it, which sort of takes the bite out of the situation, but he was afraid he would have to kill us if we didn't became aware quickly that the money was dangerous. Long story short we didn't let the money go, we instead dedicated a great deal of efforts trying to "cure" the money. His explainaition of the problem was not as clean as the one above. I think dropping the money into a game without additional unpacking or context is not a sufficient plot. But isn't that true for any cool item.
Some plot ideas:
I like Cheka Man's idea as this being money for the dead, and the PCs may have to try and handle some of this money quickly and carefully for a burial rite. The hot potato plot.
As Moon suggested this could take Gold out of the economy, but what if the PCs encounter a way to cure gold. The powers invested in the silver economy may not like it, or the economy may not value it anymore. The plot could be that PCs have to either protect or destroy the "gold cure" or if you want your PCs to yuk it up they can become gold salesmen to a populace that is either ignorant or fearful of gold.
I like the follow up plot. Follow the money has a whole new meaning, as the change between gold and silver (and silver back to gold) wealth will change the balance of power in the world.
I think this has been spammed.It is a great idea for a game btw-deadly gold.
Radioactive gold, nice. I concur with Cheka's idea, the gold being buried with the dead as funeral offerings.
I think at some point, people would find some creature that is exceptionally sensitive to the curse, and use it to screen coinage. I expect gold brought into a city would need to go through 'processing' to check it before it was allowed. 'Clean' gold would be more valuable and closely-held.
An interesting way to change how gold is perceived.