Saturday, 2 March 2013

Qualities of Shamanic Fetishes

In my work-in-progress Dying Sun campaign, I have plans for two alternative cleric classes. Firstly there are the Templars, servants of the God-Emperor -- these will most likely be an NPC-only class. Secondly there are Shamans -- those who can contact and appease spirits of ancestors and the land.

Shamanic magic will work slightly differently to normal clerical spell-casting (although they'll have access to all the same spells, plus a few extras). One of the major differences is going to be in the realm of magic item creation. I plan for Shamans to be able to create magic items from 1st level, and for this to be a process of summoning a spirit and binding it into a specially prepared fetish object, imbuing it with magical power.

To reinforce this flavour of magic items being inhabited by spirits, I thought I'd come up with some additional qualities which such objects will possess. Here's a d20's worth for starters.
  1. Vibrates and rattles when held.
  2. Very cold to the touch.
  3. Each character must save vs paralysis when first encountering the item. Failure indicates a strong antipathy for the object – will refuse to touch or use it.
  4. Projects strange dreams to owner.
  5. Causes anyone who touches it to change alignment. Save versus spells to resist.
  6. Subtly changes colour each day.
  7. Becomes semi-incorporeal (shadow, dust, vapour) and unusable at night or in the day time.
  8. Covered in script in an undecipherable language which creeps slowly across the object's surface.
  9. Moans at night.
  10. Attracts one of: spiders, ants, scorpions, moths, flies, maggots.
  11. Glows an eerie green.
  12. Can only be seen by those of a certain alignment.
  13. Aggravates a certain mood in the owner, one of: violence, mistrust, courage, lust, fancifulness.
  14. Decorated with human figures. The face of one of these figures comes to resemble the owner.
  15. Grows insectoid legs and creeps around at night (up to 60' in a random direction).
  16. Covered in a cold slime.
  17. Cannot be taken more than a mile away from where it was discovered – simply teleports back if taken further.
  18. Exudes liquid (tears, blood, milk, sweat).
  19. Has several eye-like protrusions, which appear to move around and observe events.
  20. Causes one of the owner's ability scores to be reduced by 2. (Points are recovered if item is discarded.)

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