How much is a wizard's spellbook worth?

I guess we just have to agree to disagree…

For me the actual value is the price you can sell it for (thats why Mercantile Ventures net XP as well) and not the amount of gold it would cost to have build today.

There’s no official rule on this, so I think both interpretations are equally valid as far as the rules-as-written. However, I would be cautious about giving XP out for giving away unidentified items, for two reasons.

First, earning XP when unidentified could be gamed to determine which items are worth identifying. Consider:

  1. Mid-level PCs with unidentified items travel to a small, but civilized, Class VI hamlet.
  2. They then give one item to the local 0-level merchant. Do they get a big “ka-ching”?
  3. If yes, use high Diplomacy/Charm Person/Thief skills to get item back. If not, give away another item.
    Within a few minutes the PCs can establish which items are most valuable and worth identifying.

Second, earning XP for giveaways could be gamed to avoid the complexities of finding a buyer. Consider:

  1. Item is worth 10,000gp.
  2. Party is a month from a Class III or better town capable of buying the item.
  3. Party just wants the XP, so they give away the item to the mayor of the local Class VI town. Ka-ching.

Personally I might run it as follows:

  1. You get the minimum XP for selling or giving away an unidentified item based on what it might be. For example, if it’s a vorpal sword +3, but you give it away, you get XP as if it’s a sword +1.
  2. If you give an item away in a market too small to be able to buy the item, the difference between the actual value and the max value possible for the market becomes Reserve XP. For example, if you give away a 20,000gp item in a Class VI market (1,000gp purchase capability), you get 1,000 XP and 19,000 Reserve XP.

I can’t say I have seen any of these situations arise in my actual campaigns so this is just untested musing.

I think I may have caused this confusion.

What I meant up thread was you get the xp value for all item/goods touch bring to town…sold or unsold. I wasn’t referring to magic items as the rules specifically cover getting xp from them (namely sold and unused…use it even once and it’s not worth any xp if you sell it). I was talking about a comment Alex made regarding gems abduction art and bolts of silk…that sort of stuff.

Ah, a subtle but important distinction that I overlooked!