Locklar looked down at the rotting body at his feet. “What the hades just happened?”

Emma poked at the putrid flesh with her spear. “One second he was trying to get rid of those skeletons, the next, he…he looked like…that.”

“I didn’t want to attack him,” Locklar said. “But I had no choice. You all saw.”

“Yeah, we saw,” Emma said, putting a hand on his arm. “But we don’t know what it was.”

Scepter of Turning Undead

In the hands of a cleric or paladin, this scepter carved from bone grants a +2 bonus to attempts to turn undead. When used by others, it grants the ability to turn undead as a cleric four levels lower than the user’s current level. In addition, holding the scepter grants immunity to the special attacks of undead, such as a mummy’s rotting touch, a vampire’s charm, a ghoul’s paralyzing touch, or the feared level drain. It does not, however, protect from physical damage from melee attacks or from standard magic such as that used by spell-casting undead like vampires and liches.

These benefits do not come without risk, however. If an attempt to turn undead fails, the character must immediately roll again on the turning table and turn into the form of undead their roll specifies. (Example: if they normally need a 7 to turn a zombie and a 10 to turn a wight, a roll of 7 indicates that they have turned into a zombie and a roll of 9 indicates that they have turned into a wight.) This effect lasts for 2d6 turns. Those who turn into intelligent undead retain their mental capabilities but may be overcome by the undead’s instincts.

A roll higher than the highest required turning number indicates that the character has saved against turning into undead (Example: if the most powerful type of undead a cleric can turn is a mummy with a roll of 11 or better and the character rolls a 12, he avoids turning into undead.)

“Turning undead” has a whole new meaning if you find this item. Inspired by this thread at OD&D Discussion.

3 Comments to “Scepter of Turning Undead
–Tuesday Treasure”

  1. Timeshadows says:

    I’m glad you came up with this, Kilgore. 😀
    –Very good work.

  2. Kilgore says:

    Glad you like it. I’m always for magic items with significant side effects.

    I did change the description so that anyone failing at a turn attempt with the scepter might turn undead in a very literal sense. The original write-up said “cleric,” which was not what I meant.

  3. Timeshadows says:

    I figured as much. 🙂