Posts Tagged ‘ magic items ’

The Skull of Good King Vaclav

Good King Vaclav was the son of Stanislaus I, the penultimate king of Hemiboa. His grandfather, Boris I of Hemiboa, was converted to the Via Lucis by Saints Cyril and Methodius. Vaclav’s mother, Dragoríma, was the daughter of a pagan tribal chief, but she was baptized into her husband’s faith at the time of her marriage. Vaclav’s paternal grandmother, Dulmila of Hemiboa, oversaw his education, Vaclav excelled as a scholar and at an early age was sent to the college at Weisblud.

When Vaclav was thirteen, Stanislaus, who had become king just a few years before, died and Dulima became regent, a move which enraged Dragoríma so much that she arranged to have Dulima murdered by assassins. Reportedly, these killers strangled Dulima with her veil. After this, Dragoríma assumed the role of regent, and immediately initiated measures against the Via Lucis. When Vaclav came of age, he wrested control of the government from his mother and countermanded the persecution of the Via Lucis. Vaclav had Dragoríma exiled, and then went on to put down a major rebellion led by Duke Mouřik, one of his wicked mother’s paramours.

Eleven years into Vaclav’s reign, a group of nobles allied with Vaclav’s younger brother, Boreslav, plotted to kill Vaclav. Boreslav invited Vaclav to the celebrate a holy day with a feast. Three of Boreslav’s lackeys attacked Vaclav during dinner, stabbing the young king several times before Boreslav ran Vaclav through with a lance. The kingdom fell into civil war shortly after Vaclav’s murder. Even now, Hemiboa remains fractured and unstable.

Vaclav was widely hailed as a martyr saint almost immediately after his death. Although Boreslav tried to dispose of the body in the wilderness, followers loyal to Vaclav retrieved the corpse and hurried into a Weisblud, which has since become the center of Vaclav’s cult. Vaclav’s skull ranks chief among the saint’s relics. For decades, it was kept under guard in Weisblud’s cathedral, but just a few years ago thieves stole it. Vaclav’s skull remains missing to this day.

All manner of stories surround the lost relic. Some claim descendants of Boreslav paid to have the skull taken, and that these evil scions use the relic in profane rituals. Other tales say the thieves were killed crossing into the Recondite Frontier and that the skull was lost in a rain-swollen river. In and around Weisblud, the most common legend holds that the skull vanished when the thieves left the city with it. Angels took the skull up into the mountains above Weisblud, hiding it in a cave. When a time of great evil befalls the city, Vaclav himself will descend from Heaven, take up his skull, and lead an army of the righteous dead to reunify Hemiboa and place a rightful heir on the throne.

In the hands of a faithful cleric of the Via Lucis, the Skull of Good King Vaclav acts as a bronze horn of Valhalla. Evil characters who so much as touch the skull lose 1 full experience level, dropping to the lowest possible number of experience points to hold the level. If the evil character is a cleric, he must also atone in an appropriate manner; until then, he cannot cast cleric spells higher than 1st level. The Skull is rumored to have other powers as well, which may be chosen from Artifacts and Relics Powers/Effects Tables (see pages 162-164, Dungeon Masters Guide). The Skull of Good King Vaclav reportedly has these powers/effects: Minor Benign Powers x2, Major Benign Powers x1, Minor Malevolent Effects x2, Major Malevolent Effects x1, and Prime Powers x1.

April 26th, 2016  in RPG No Comments »

Almost Recovered

Well, my grand writing plans last week got squashed under the heel of an awful head cold that has at last faded to a nuisance. Much of last week is a blur. I even missed OwlCon because I forgot which weekend was which. Yay.

This week, I feebly climb back into the saddle. I just got done updating information for my twice-monthly 1E AD&D campaign. I was going to work on details for Safe Harbor, the player-collaborated starting village, but I can’t find the notes or the hand-drawn map. Fortunately, I do have a scan of the latter. Grr.

Next up, a couple of new entries for Swords & Wizardry.


Jesus took Peter, John, and James and went up the mountain to pray. While he was praying his face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white (Luke 9:28-36).

Spell Level: Cleric, 4th Level
Range: Caster only
Duration: 1 hour

By means of this spell, the Cleric transfigures himself into a semi-transcendent being. His clothing and armor become dazzling white, and his features radiate light and power. Against living bipeds of human size or small, his voice gains the power of Suggestion, but hypnotic suggestions to perform evil actions automatically fail. The Cleric’s ability to “turn” the undead increases. He rolls 2d8+4 instead of 2d10 when attempting to affect the undead, and he affects 3d6 creatures of the targeted type. Those turned will depart and not return for 4d6 rounds.

Thrice-Blessed Wine: A Lawful cleric casts Protection from Evil on a bottle of fine wine (at least 50 gp value). He then stores the wine in a sacred cellar for one year and one day, at which time he casts Protection from Evil on it again. The wine is stored for another year and a day, at which time a third Protection from Evil is cast upon it, thus creating a bottle of Thrice-Blessed Wine.

Up to four cups can be poured from a bottle of Thrice-Blessed Wine. If the wine is consumed, the quaffer is healed 1d6+6 hit points of damage and gains the benefits of Protection from Evil for 4 hours. If the wine is poured or sprinkled in a doorway or window, no evil creature can pass through that portal for 4 hours.

February 22nd, 2016  in RPG No Comments »

The Wheat from the Chaff

For reference, see Luke 3:10-18. First, a new cleric spell:

Azniko’s Prohibitive Winnowing Fork
Spell Level: Cleric, 5th Level
Range: Centered on caster
Duration: 6 melee rounds

A mystical winnowing fork formed from holy fire appears floating in the air within 20 feet of the caster. Once per round for the duration of the spell, the winnowing fork flies to strike an evil creature within a 20-foot radius of the caster, causing 3d10 points of damage and forcing a saving throw to avoid another 3d10 points of fire damage.

Next, a new magic weapon:

Blessed Winnowing Fork: This weapon function like a spear in combat. It has +2 to-hit and damage bonuses against undead and infernal creatures. Once per day, the wielder can use Dispel Evil (as if cast by a 10th-level cleric).

And, lastly, a new remarkable magic item:

Immolating Chaff: This magical dry and scaly plant material, usually found in a pouch holding 3d6 handfuls, possesses a remarkable power. A handful can be tossed up to 10 feet at an evil creature, which must make a saving throw to avoid bursting into flames. This causes 1d6 points of damage per melee round for 2d4 rounds, but the flames can be put out by usual means. Usable By: Clerics.

December 14th, 2015  in RPG No Comments »

Gruß vom Krampus!

What am I doing this weekend? Funny you should ask. I’m statting up Krampus for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Swords & Wizardry, Fate Accelerated Edition, and Dungeon World. I’m formatting each Krampus into separate PDFs, and I’m thinking about bundling them together and putting them up at DriveThruRPG. Ho-ho-hozzah!

And now for another magic item. See Baruch 5:1-9 for more information.

Garment of Sorrow and Affliction: This magical article of clothing appears to be (and duplicates the powers of) a specific type of magic robe. Roll 1d8: Robe of Blending (1-3), Robe of Eyes (4-6), or Robe of Wizardry (7-8). Unfortunately, this garment is cursed. It will function as the determined type of magic robe for 1d6+6 uses before the curse activates.

The curse afflicts the wearer with fits of brooding and melancholy, causing him ignore any given situation (50% chance). Once per day, the wearer must make a saving throw. If he fails, he attempts to destroy himself in a manic fit of hopelessness. This fit of suicidal mania lasts for 2d6 combat rounds. Usable By: All Classes (Robe of Blending), or Magic-User (Robe of Eyes or Robe of Wizardry).

December 6th, 2015  in Product Development No Comments »

Blessed Relics

See 1 Kings 17:10-16 and Mark 12:41-44.

Stories about a wandering prophet tell us that some time ago in a foreign land during a time of famine there lived a widow with only one son. The prophet arrived at the widow’s home one day, and local customs regarding hospitality required the widow to feed the prophet. When she complained that she had only enough food for her and her son to have one final meal. The prophet told her to prepare a meal for him, and that afterward she would never go hungry. The widow did so, and after that her jar of meal never went empty.

Jar of Zarephath This plain earthenware jar, kept in a grand temple in an important city, serves as the city’s protection against famine. The priests regularly distribute meal from the jar to the city’s poor and abandoned, giving each person a day’s worth of meal. No matter how often this is done, the jar is never empty. In times of famine or siege, the jar helps ensure a modest diet for the city’s inhabitants. Usable By: Lawful only.

Later stories of another wandering prophet speak of an impoverished widow who gave all of her money, amounting to only two of the smallest of the coins of the realm, to the city’s temple as an offering. The rich and haughty who witnessed this felt inclined toward scorn at the widow’s pitiful offering, but the wandering prophet defended her, saying she gave all she had rather than only a portion of what she could spare.

The Widow’s Mites These two coins appear to be nothing more than common copper pieces, but they hold a powerful blessing. Their possessor can call upon this blessing in a time of trouble or danger. After doing so, the possessor will succeed at his next attack roll, saving throw, or other action so long as that action is done for the benefit of another, even if this means the possessor puts himself in harm’s way (such as by leaping in front of a Lightning Bolt, et cetera). After the blessing is called upon, the coins vanish, seeking out the next worthy person to benefit. Usable By: Lawful only.

November 9th, 2015  in RPG No Comments »