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  #51  
Old 11-06-2013
Torgar Torgar is offline
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Originally Posted by [DM] Grinning Death View Post
Seeing as you need the grain to make ale, I'm guessing that you import it. But if you can find a more probable solution, by all means let me know

Huh, if only there was some rich group, maybe a family, of farmers who specialized in exporting that sort of thing around the valley. Maybe a noble family. But that'd be ridiculous. Where would you be able to find one of those, at this hour?

"What do you think, Quintin Ulsteris of House Ulsteris, which specializes in farming and exporting said produce?" Said the random reporter.

"That sounds like something a farmer could help with. Shame no one knows any, or knows how to talk to them. If only there was a way..." Said Quintin ULsteris, of House Ulsteris. He looked away in thought. "If only there was a way to contact people via some kind of paper medium. Perhaps with some kind of staining utensil to convey an idea, thought, or question. But, alas, no such thing exists. For if it did, I would think someone would have done it already."
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  #52  
Old 11-06-2013
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You're right, it is. A shame they all retired back to their wooden swings and rockingchairs.
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  #53  
Old 11-06-2013
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*sighs*

My query assumed Whurest needed to import the stuff that ferments. My query was whether or not the dwarves can ferment the IMPORTED fermentable organic matter themselves, or whether or not they need to import their beverages pre-fermented.

As ale weighs a lot more than the barley used to make it (mostly water by volume and weight), I assume even extra-strong dwarven ale weighs more than brewstuff.

However, dwarves are finicky and may want only the best stuff, dammit, even if they have to import from Sundabar, or Avanthyr.

I can see either situation being plausible, given Whurest is a small mining/smithing hold. So in my opinion we should stick with the DM's gut response. We import Ale.
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  #54  
Old 11-06-2013
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But you have the mountain fresh water to brew with! And if you keep the trub from a brew you can keep yeast going a long, long time! All you need is the grains and the hops, and you're golden. Besides, I thought the only textbook dwarves ever read was:
http://www.howtobrew.com/
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  #55  
Old 11-07-2013
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The Underdark has a vibrant ecosystem all of its own which includes plants and fungi that you can't get on the surface. Since we know that some of the dwarven faiths actually consider the brewing of beer to be a sacrid act and use it for holy water, and we also know that some dwarves never see the surface, its a safe bet to be assume that dwarves have access to ingrediants that never see the light of day.

I imagine there is a fungus or some sort of subteranian grain that makes dwarven beer the famous brew that is admired the world around.

Also, dwarves cannot even get drunk on ale because of their outrageous constitutions (12+2 vs toxins = the AVERAGE dwarf has a 14 con vs. beer). I would think they treat ale probably more like a fine traditional cigar than something to get drunk and say 8 charisma stuff on. For that kind of stuff, they need "dwarf spirits" which are so potent that its border-line fatal to most humans.

That said, I don't think all dwarves are beer swilling, filthy scottish alcoholics, and I think a dwarven city doesn't depend on beer as its primary export. A dwarven economy should be based around masterwork metal works (and not just weapons and armor), jewelry, limited and expensive ingot exports (they keep most stuff for their own smiths) and as an exotic market place for rare and expensive goods coming up from the underdark that humans otherwise couldn't get.

I do like to see the tolkien-esk dwarf well represented. Cautious and reserved, but shrewed merchants with a healthy streak of greed and distrust for non-dwarves.
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  #56  
Old 11-07-2013
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Agreed on all points Laurk.

Here's the post I wrote a short while ago on my thoughts on Dwarven Diet, for Doubtful's Dwarves-vs-Elves face-off. My thoughts on what dwarves quaff/ferment/distill are largely similar.

http://www.sundren.org/forum/showthr...247#post145247

For growing caverns, Thorbadin in the Dragonlance mythos has some of the best-described, but that's a different setting altogether.

For Whurest in particular, it's clear we have a heavy metal focus. The closest major dwarven holding is Sundabar to the east, and they share with humanfolk so might also rely on surface food. We have been given no hint of a closer dwarven trade partner that might have growing caverns.

In the north, the deep holds of Delzoun were the first to fall, although it's been implied that some may have sealed themselves away. As such, there aren't the same number of really deep holds in the North as you might find elsewhere, such as around the Rift.

As such, I've always assumed that in Whurest we eat mainly or almost entirely surface food (damn). I do note that there are signs of mushroom cultivation in the Duergar-occupied ruins, which I think is a very nice touch.

I would also make the point that ale wasn't just a luxury item back in medieval/renaissance times. When brewed, it was water that was clean, and didn't spoil quickly when transported. This was a big deal back in those days. Although I also imagine that there might have been other ways of keeping water non-infectious that were less popular, probably due to lack of flavor. Water quality may be less of an issue in an imaginary magical world, but where magicks are limited water quantity/quality can still be an issue, such as in Cheapside.

As you say, with regards dwarven nature/motivations/optional accent, I have always believed that there is room for all flavors of dwarf (and dwarven ale, naturally). Us "frontier" types are likely a bit more varied and rough-around-the-edges than our more staid kinsfolk from the major cities to the East (and South, and South-east). Dwarves do whatever they damned well please.
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  #57  
Old 11-07-2013
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The underdark is FULL of wierd alcoholic drinks.

Svirfneblin, for example, ferment fish guts to make their drinks and some of them literally have gem dust sprinkled in.

Don't assume every drink you get from somewhere else comes from grain.

As for the wealth discussion on PP and GP, Stags and Eagles, Etc etc...

Most trade is not done in coins in the realms, there is actually less coin to be picked up than monetary value had. While people may HAVE coins, Generally only lords and wealthy individuals will have a healthy stash of coins.

What you end up with is a bartering system that has a value on objects being traded. Farmers come in with produce, lifestock, grain, eggs, etc, and they walk away with wagons, tools, wood, furs, metals, etc.

Trade companies are likely to swap the import for the export and maybe have some coin supplement the differences.

"We'll trade you a ton of smelted bars of steel for two tons of your rice."

"The port authority is taxing a % of that rice and steel to arm their soldiers and feed them too."

I'm just throwing the value out there, but when working in economics, you have to work in the coin value of goods.

Also, it is a common practice to carry gemstones instead of coins themselves when trading. Diamonds are easier to carry about than masses of coins.

Still, we have to keep silver in the mix because it's fun to hear devils call them "Stingers" lol.
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  #58  
Old 11-07-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Torgar View Post
Huh, if only there was some rich group, maybe a family, of farmers who specialized in exporting that sort of thing around the valley. Maybe a noble family. But that'd be ridiculous. Where would you be able to find one of those, at this hour?

"What do you think, Quintin Ulsteris of House Ulsteris, which specializes in farming and exporting said produce?" Said the random reporter.

"That sounds like something a farmer could help with. Shame no one knows any, or knows how to talk to them. If only there was a way..." Said Quintin ULsteris, of House Ulsteris. He looked away in thought. "If only there was a way to contact people via some kind of paper medium. Perhaps with some kind of staining utensil to convey an idea, thought, or question. But, alas, no such thing exists. For if it did, I would think someone would have done it already."
I thought you were gone for awhile due to lack of a response from Byrun's last letter. If you are still around, then yes, Byrun has been trying to help the dwarves get food.
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  #59  
Old 11-12-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurk View Post
And what a great plot it would make if someone discovered the temple of Waukeen was issuing more trade notes than they actually had gold to cover those IOUs with?
Bah now you are just making sport of good capitalism :P
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