Kilgore is trying to dust off the cobwebs here. He has some new content but nothing that is quite ready, so go check out the Toad Cloak iat Ancient Vaults and Eldritch Secrets. Exactly the sort of weird-but-cool item that I like to drop into campaigns. The power is fairly limited but the enjoyment level and stories that it generates are more valuable than plusses on saving throws or bonuses to attack rolls.
Bracelet of Ventriloquism
This object allows the user to “throw” his or her voice up to 60′. Listeners get a 5% per point of INT over 12 to realize the trick.
Rather than wearing the bracelet to use its power, the speaker much hold it up to his or her mouth and speak “through” it.
A standard sort of item with a standard sort of power that requires a non-standard method of use.
This item was in the dungeon I threw together for our 1st edition AD&D last week:
This huge instrument stands ten feet tall, is made of silver with platinum strings, and weighs at least a ton. A low musical hum emanates from the strings and the entire thing radiates strong magic. Anyone sleeping overnight within ten feet of the haphazard harp has his or her healing rate doubled.
Those who dare strum the strings will be affected by the harp’s magic as follows:
1. -1 INT
2. -1 DEX
3. -1 CON
4. 2d6 damage
5. 1d6 damage
6. -1 to STR, WIS, or CHA and +1 to INT, DEX, or CON (player’s choice)
7. 2d6 damage and +1 to one ability score (player’s choice)
8. Heal 2d6
9. +1 STR
10. +1 WIS
11. +1 CHA
12. Gain one level of expereince
The harp can only affect one individual once, though the healing benefit always works. It may have a limited number of charges before it teleports away to another location in this world or another, or perhaps it loses its powers if removed from the place where it is found.
One character raised her WIS to 19 with it, another lost a point of CON and the bonus hit points that came with it.
Exotic Eye Ring
This item of unknown origin gives the wearer a sort of “sixth sense” which confers a +1 AC bonus, a +1 bonus to avoid being surprised, a +1 chance to discover secret or concealed doors, and a +1 chance to see visual illusions for what they are. Loss of DEX bonus to AC due to rear attacks is avoided while wearing this item.
If the wearer closes his or her eyes, he or she can “see” through the eye on the ring. Wearers using the ring in this manner forfeit the normal advantages listed above and may suffer penalties due to the limited nature of this vision. A blinded person wearing the ring can also use this power and gaze attacks are ineffective against this form of sight.
Emma squinted, barely breathing, trying to peer into the darkness. “Are they still out there?” she whispered as quietly as she could.
Arthena was slowly scanning the darkness. She shook her head.
Emma signed. “I didn’t think they’d ever leave.” She looked over at the cleric. “That marble of yours sure is handy. You can see in the dark just as good as ol’ pointy-ears.” She clapped her friend on the back.
Arthena made a gagging sound and her hands flew up to her throat, a look of horror on her face. “Oh, no,” she choked.
When put in the mouth, this marble confers infravision to a distance of 60′. If the user already has natural infravision, their range is doubled.
If the Cat’s Eye is swallowed, the swallower gains 30′ infravision (or a natural infravision range increase of one-half) for a period of 1d4 days. After this passes, the Cat’s Eye may be recovered.
Locklar gripped his sword, watching the as the gigantic monitor lizard stomped toward them. He glanced over at Deever. The elf was taking careful aim with his bow.
“I’m thinking quantity is better than quality with this thing,” Locklar said. “Keep shooting until you’re out of arrows. Then get that curvy knife of yours and start poking it.”
Deever smiled. “I don’t intend to have to get that close.” Then he let his arrow fly.
Locklar was not surprised when the arrow struck the rampaging lizard. He had seen Deever’s archery enough to know that the elf didn’t miss often. What happened next, however, was not at all expected.
The lizard stumbled, crashed to the ground in a cloud of dust, and lay still. Locklar could barely believe his eyes. Or his ears.
“Is that thing…snoring?”
Arrow of Sleeping
This valuable +1 magic arrow has the added ability that is will put any target it hits to sleep (save allowed) for 2d6 turns. A hit with a natural 20 does not allow the target a saving throw.
Jorda picked up the finely-crafted hammer lying on the pedestal. “Nice balance,” the dwarf commented, hefting it in his hand. A lightning bolt was carved into the fine wooden handle.
Locklar glanced up from looting one of the bodies of the berserkers who had been guarding the pedestal. “Don’t screw around with that thing. Tell Mortigan to check for magic.”
The magic-user, who was busy looting another body, looked up and scowled. “I’ll be there in a minute.” He deftly slipped something into his pocket.
“What was that?” Locklar demanded.
“What was what?” Mortigan asked.
Ignoring them, Jorda fingered the hammer. There was a sizable diamond embedded in the handle near the lightning bolt and he tried to pull it loose.
The sharp clap of thunder burst in the room and a blinding flash of light sizzled across it toward the wall opposite the hammer’s head. It passed between the heads of Locklar and Mortigan, each of whom flung themselves backwards in shock.
A smoking chunk of the wall had been blasted away, leaving a smoking cavity in the stone.
“Yes,” said Mortigan, speaking loudly because of the ringing in his ears. “I have detected some magic in that weapon.”
Lightning Blast Hammer
This warhammer provides no melee bonuses, though it can be used to strike opponents only hit by magic weapons. It has the power, three times per day, of firing a lightning bolt at a target up to 120′ away. A normal to-hit roll with a +1 bonus is required.
The Lightning Blast Hammer contains a maximum of 36 charges. The damage the lighting delivers depends upon the number of charges remaining:
Charges Left Damage 25-36 1d12 19-24 1d10 13-18 1d8 7-12 1d6 1-6 1d4
If the hammer reaches zero charges it loses all magical powers. It can be recharged by casting a shocking grasp spell and then holding it. Each spell restores one charge.
Here are some quick samples of the sort of thing I wish I did more often:
This 18″ leg bone strikes as a mace +2 and does double damage vs. undead skeletons.
Ogre Femur of Pounding
This 3′ long, 12 pound leg bone is a two-handed weapon that delivers 1d10 damage. On a natural to-hit roll of 20 it has a 2-in-6 chance of stunning the target for 2 rounds.
This human-sized skull can be hurled (range as per oil flask) for 1d6 damage per hit. It automatically returns to the hand of its owner in 1 round (i.e., it can be hurled every other round.) It is possible to intercept the skull by capturing it with a net or similar tactics.
Rib Cage Shield
This item is fashioned out of the front half of a human-sized rib cage. It serves as a +1 medium shield and can cast a hold person (as per cleric spell) once per day on one target. The bearer of this shield suffers a -2 penalty to charisma in regards to lawful, good, or neutral characters but gains a +2 bonus to charisma in regards to chaotic or evil characters.
This huge leg bone (possibly from a giant?) acts as a +1 staff and gives lawful or good clerics a +2 bonus when turning undead. Chaotic or evil clerics do not get a bonus, but results of ‘T’ or ‘D’ on the turning table give the cleric control of the affected undead for 1 hour or 6 hours, respectively.
Ettin Skull Helmet
This device is fashioned out of one of the skulls of the giant two-headed humanoid minus the jaw. When worn as a helmet (using the eye sockets as eye holes), it provides a +1 bonus to armor class, strength, and all saving throws. Not usable by paladins or lawful clerics.
Donkey Jawbone +1
This toothed weapon delivers damage as per a short sword +1 except in the hands of an assassin-classed character, where it acts as a scimitar +1.
This is a skeletal human-sized hand. When hurled at an opponent (successful to-hit required, range as a dagger) it clamps its fingers around the target’s throat, doing 1d6 points of constriction damage per round. Beginning on the second round, a target may dislodge the clutching hand by making a successful save vs. death.
This human-sized skeletal leg with attached foot strikes for 1d8 damage when wielded as a two-handed weapon. If maximum damage is rolled, the target must save vs. wands or suffer an additional 1d8 damage from an extra “kick” delivered by the leg.