D&D Metal

D&D Metal – Fantasy and Mythical Materials in Dungeons & Dragons

There is a long tradition of fantastical metals and materials in fantasy and science fiction. Mithril and adamantine go back as far as I can remember. Which lead us to do a video on D&D Metal and other materials.

D&D Metal – Fantasy and Mythical Materials in Dungeons & Dragons Video

D&D Metal – Fantasy and Mythical Materials in Dungeons & Dragons Video Transcription

Ted: “So Dave, what do you think about doing a video on metals.”

Dave: “SLAYER, Yeah.”

Ted: “no, no, no. Dave metals. In D&D.”

Dave: “Yeah Metal Megadeth, Anthrax, Pantera, I’m all about it Ted.”

Ted: “Dave, pull it together man, we’re talking about mythical metals, D&D Mitheral adamant

Dave: “Oh yeah, I like that stuff, metal and D&D, sure.”

Dave: “Welcome to Nerdarchy, for nerds by nerds, I’m Nerdarchist Dave. And today I’m hanging out with this nerd, Nerdarchist Ted.”

Ted: “And today as I said, we’re going to talk about and mythical metals and D&D.”

Dave: “Do want practical d&d content. You can drop right in your game? “

Ted: “And if the answer is yes, then don’t forget to crit Hit that subscribe button and a tune to that notification bell so you don’t miss a single video.”

Dave: “All right, so we’re talking about metals and dungeons and dragons, particularly mythical metals like Mithril,adamantine, sometimes referred to adamant as well. Uh, you have cold iron, you have silvered weapons and you have byeshk that was added later for Eberron.”


Ted: “Yeah. And I know some people, you know, they wind up adding, you know, stuff that’s home brew. I mean if you look at, you know, some of the stuff online, I know we’ve, we used some resources, you know, looking this up and there is a whole list of you know, a special property material, especially if you move away from the metals that are now you can find.”

Dave: “Yeah, especially the, a lot of these were introduced in third edition. I was actually surprised there weren’t more to be honest. I thought there was going to be a lot more, especially ones that are like more well known and I that maybe I forgot but I was like no really it’s like a half a dozen ish, you know and that’s it. And they all kind of did like the a similar thing in the earlier editions of the game and that was to bypass or get past specific resistances. I mean it’s still does that as well, but they’re, we don’t have DR the way we did in third edition and there was definitely a lot more, I think like gradation would be a way to define it there.”

Ted: “Do you use to earlier additions You either have this or it didn’t, uh, didn’t do any damage whatsoever. Uh, you had some where it was like, all right, you know, it, if you didn’t have it, they just subtracted some amount. Fifth edition does make it a lot easier. You’re either immune to everything by it or you’re resistant to anything that’s not x. So it, it makes it a lot more interesting. But I think that, you know, a lot can be said about having, you know, these different materials, these different properties. And when you really look at them, they can act, they can add so much more to your game. You know, if Mithril, you know, winds up being the super precious metal that is just loved by the elves, you know, sought after by the dwarves, you know, you, you can do a lot with it. “

Dave: “We’re talking about all these different metals and they’re mythical properties in nature, but speaking of things that are mythical, let’s talk about the humble wood.”

Ted: “All right, so the, the humble wood is a, uh, a new product that’s coming to Kickstarter. Uh, it was put out by the wonderful people over at the Deck of Many and they’ve got some great stuff that is coming out. If you happen to be familiar with them from our earlier videos, we talked about the free pdf that you could actually get on their website and it was over 70 pages that you could download from that you were getting, you know, things like new races, new spells, new magic items, new feets, new backgrounds, and a lot of, a lot of great stuff that was all for free. The responses on that was so great that they decided that they weren’t going to build it up, blow it up and make it easy, make it even better. Make it be a product that you could put out there if you want to go check it out that Kickstarter is going to offer great things like reference reference cards. You know, in in deck form you can even get a miniature uh, related to some of stuff there. They’re going to do a plush. So there’s a lot of great things that are going to go out there. If you want to explore this great setting, you know, with uh, adventure material and campaign setting material, go check out the Kickstarter. It’s going to be awesome. ”

Dave: “There is going to be tons of player options, DM options and also it’s only fair to mention that this is, this video has been sponsored by humble would Kickstarter, the deck of many. They’ve great products over there. You’re going to want to go check them out, go show the sponsors some love.”

Ted: “All right, so let’s dive back into our, our metals. “

Dave: “All right, so I wouldn’t say with 5E, they really have kind of simplified, you know, our mythical metals, you know, they don’t do, they don’t do quite as much because it’s 5E is much more of an all or nothing type of system. If we look at 5E and we look at Mithril, it’s great for medium and heavy armor. It’s going to remove a strength requirements, it’s going to remove any disadvantage for your stealth checks. And as far as the metal itself, it’s, it looks, it looks nice and shiny and bright, almost like some polish silver. “

Ted: “So if, you know from a lower perspective, you know, going throughout the ages are of D&D, I mean even so much in the Lord of the Rings, you know, movie where they were calling it me thrill. It is almost a stand out recognizable by anyone who knows anything about working metals because as Dave says, it has that polished silver, that gleam, that almost glow to it. Uh, just based on the metal itself, it typically has always weighed half as much as any other metal. So like you could wear a chain shirt made of Mithril underneath clothes and I do not recommend wearing any kind of chain armor against your skin. It’s not actually pleasant, especially if you’ve got, you know, hair on your chest. ”

Dave: “Well that’s because you haven’t, worn Mithril Ted. “


Ted: “Well, I have not worn a shirt of mithril armor. That is true. Um, but it, that’s what it says, supple. So light that you could wear it underneath clothes and not have someone not even realize it.”

Dave: “So adamant or adamantine not to be confused with Adamantium from Wolverine’s skeleton and claws and the Marvel Universe, uh, is great for medium and heavy armor. It’s going to negate critical hits against you. Now the lore part of it is, you know, it falls from the sky in meteorites and that’s what deposits can be found. But in the forgotten realms, setting deep beneath the, the world beneath the earth in the underdark, it is, it’s mind by dwarves and drow. “

Ted: “And because Dave’s not going to try and say Menzoberranzan”

Dave: “Menzoberranzan”

Ted: “and at that place, uh, but you know what Wealthy drow, all the high nobles in Menzoberranzan and you know, typically, you know, we use this black metal, you know, as a, you know, status of fact that if they’re wearing the armor and using the weapons and maintain weapons”

Dave: “they’re useful because there is a slew of monsters that are immune or resistant to damage from not magical weapons that are adamantine.”

Ted: “So there are 16 of them that you know, have this, three of which are completely immune to damage that aren’t adamantine. Uh, so that, that definitely helps you out. Specifically, there are two that are not constructs and that’s your gargoyle and your four arm gargoyle. Uh, so those, those, those guys, you know, definitely going to be helpful if you’re a swinging some adamantine weapons.”

Dave: “Next we have silvered weapons, which isn’t actually the metal per se, that you’re making the weapons out of it. It’s more of a treatment and it goes on other weapons that already exists where you’re coating them with silver, but it’s not any silver usually. It’s like a very pure and blessed silver.”

Ted: “So in earlier editions of D&D there were literally you would make weapons out of silver. They were completely inferior to weapons and you would wind up doing less damage. You can only use so many, so many strikes with it before it would need to get, you know, retold or reforged a and I guess the players have kind of rebelled against the system enough. They’re like, well what, how can we do this and still have the ability to affect it. So, uh, in the later additions it was wound up changing to like your weapons were edged in this blessed silver and this was used to overcome damage reduction on your, your were-creatures, you’re were-critters, you’re lycanthropes. “

Dave: “There’s also some, I believe some demons and devils that fall into this category as well. But yeah, mostly it was the way are creatures. Next we have cold iron, which surprisingly doesn’t really come up in 5E, D&D, but existed in previous additions as well as myth and folklore.”

Ted: “So cold iron is, is really interesting. Um, you know, and actually having studied a little bit of, you know, a blacksmithing “

Dave: “theology”

D&D Metal
Dwarf miner. Art by Angus Yi

Ted: “So cold iron is, is really interesting. Um, you know, and actually having studied a little bit of, you know, a blacksmithing. When you hear Smith talking about beating on cold iron and how hard it is to make cold iron move, it was pretty interesting to do the research. So the idea was that when you heat metal up, you know so much it winds up, you know, losing some of the aspect of the metal itself. So when you work metal at a colder temperature, yeah it takes longer, but that natural elements remains in the metal and is used against creatures of a fey origin. And therefore like throughout mythology, when you talk about, you know, fey touching metal, it’s that concept of cold iron that they’re really having an anathema to. ”

Dave: “Right. Everything Ted said, except for not so much in 5E, “

Ted: “well in 5E correct. But if you wanted to add that back into your world, you could have, you know, a whole new type of, of material or forging process. Add that into anything that’s already Fey and you can then enrich your world with these properties.”

Dave: “Yeah, absolutely. So finally we have one of the mythical metals that were, was added later to D&D and third edition. The on campaign said was byeshk, byeshk was a a purpleish huge metal that was very effective for fighting and combating creatures from the plane of Zarya, which are basically like aberrations type monsters”

Ted: “creatures native to, you know, the, the prime material plane. And you know, it was really cool. It’s really interesting and I really like when they start, you know, when, when you add these extra things because it really seems to make a world stand out. So like that was one of the things that I really liked about Eberron is that the things that they, they pulled in every aspect that you’d want out of a game or out of a culture was there.”

Dave: “And again, we kind of circle back to 5E it’s really hard to add these metals. And mechanically, I mean, role play, story elements ease. It’s easy, no problem. But when, when really the only mechanics you have the work with is it magic Is it not magic, you know, and pluses and minuses that way. Well not minuses pluses that way or advantage or disadvantage. It makes it really hard to be like, oh, this is just a story made out of Admantium or, and adamantine, I should say, uh, don’t sue us. Marvel, you know, and, but it doesn’t actually do anything right, unless you, you look at the resistances. Um, now in previous editions of the game, we actually created our own metal that we used in Ulthgania. We still do, we, and we’re still working out the kinks and the bugs on what exactly does it do when you use it. And we made shark steel sharpens steel, is harvested from the plates, have a bullae and then have of bonding that and an hour blowing it with other metals that they can then work. But it kind of makes us like electric blue, almost like an oil slick kind of launching sheen to the, to the metal. So armors and weapons will be made of and it’s only made in one place in our world. Now we have to kind of figure out, well what exactly does that mean now that we’re using fifth edition rolls.”

Ted: “Sometimes you, when you look at what these things are, you know, regardless of whether the item is, you know, we want to use some of the earlier, uh, you know, connotations or you know, phrasology you know, you’ve got a master work or you know, someone is really great. Sometimes warriors just wanted to present better, you know, you draw their weapon. It’s like, ah, you know, that looks cool. What is that And when you as a DM, you know, or even as a player, you draw something that stands out, that’s going to be cool. So sometimes you could have a, a weapon look better or an armor look better by having one of these, these properties or one of these materials made of it. And it’s going to make the the players question like, oh, what is that So shark steel could absolutely be, you know, one of those things. And in our campaign world we have stone home and you know, the, the grounds surrounding, you know, this, this mountain range is loose soil that is littered with lots and lots of blaze. You know, it is a rite of passage for the dwarves to go out and you know, try and slay one and bring it back. And if there’s, you know, the, the carcass has enough material, you know, they can actually get to make something to shark steel out of it, which is cool. “


Dave: “Maybe we bring back masterwork items and the difference between a plus one master work, long sword and a magic plus one long story. It is the simple fact. One of them will penetrate resistance and immunity and one will not. Uh, it has a, that might be an area where we can look at what the question is. What are you folks doing in your games? How are you using mythical metals for D&D or whatever game you’re playing. We’ve got a place where we can discuss that as down in the comments below. While your at it. Don’t forget to like share and subscribe”

Ted:  “on  your way  down there.  Don’t forget to  check out the link  to the Kickstarter for  humble wood, so until next  time”

Both: “Stay Nerdy”

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My name is Dave Friant I've been gaming off and on for over 27 years. But here is the thing it's always been a part of my life I've kept secret and hidden away. I've always been ashamed of the stigma that gaming and my other nerdy and geeky pursuits summon forth. Recently I decided screw it! This is who I am the world be damned. From now on I'm gonna be a geek, nerd, or however folks want to judge me and just enjoy life. Currently one of my greatest joys is introducing my 13 yr old son to table top RPG's.

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