Grog’s Painful Math

In our quest to see how much money Vox Machina (i.e. Vex) has saved through haggling, we had to sit down and actually calculate how much money Grog gave away in his negotiation with the snake oil salesman in Episode 22.

We know that dragon’s teeth, while not exceedingly common, aren’t particularly rare, either. In Episode 14, Sherri tells us that each tooth is about 250 gold. With 14 teeth in the trade, that amounts to 3500 for just the teeth.

A vial of dragon’s blood doesn’t really have a “canon” value, but we can estimate how much the essence in a vial is worth by multiplying 50 times the number of hit dice used to calculate the dragon’s HP. In Episode 1, Vox Machina trades a vial of young blue dragon blood for Balgus’s Bloodthistle Wine, which had a price tag of 500 gold. Since the young blue dragon uses 16 hit die (plus some other modifiers), we can estimate that VM overpaid with 800 worth of (gelatinous) blood.

However, Rimefang had at least double the HP of the average ANCIENT white dragon, let alone an adult. For simplicity, let’s double the hit dice of an adult: 16 becomes 32. 32*50=1600 per vial.

Grog traded three vials. Plus 3500 worth of teeth.

Final total: 8300 gold worth of dragon parts for a potion worth about 2000, at best.


However, look what he did with that potion! After defeating Kern, Grog earned back 5492, Percy won 2000, Keyleth won 20, Vex won 2400, and Tiberius won 2448. Minus Scanlan’s loss of 100, that’s a total of 12,260 gold won. Vox Machina lost 2100 total in the first bout. 12260-2100-8300=1860. A net gain. UPDATE: @VeganCritter points out that technically, they only earned 9170 gold, as 12,260 included their bet. With that adjusted value, Vox Machina finds themselves once again in the red at -1230 gold.

Also, that trade sequence was just as amazing as it was mathematically unsound.

UPDATE: @thebigbadboogie pointed out that Team 1 was paid 50 gold for each tooth they redeemed for the contract. The 250 cited above was quoted from Sherri, though with this number, the amount given away is reduced to 5500. With the new totals of 9170-2100-5500, we end up with a net gain of 1570 gold.