Eclipse – Sample Relics Part VII, Overview

   For today it’s part seven of the series on Relics in Eclipse: The Codex Persona. This time around it’s a few more Relics, including one item of legend and some devices for spellcasters, some notes on the general setting and feel that this series of relics was designed for, and a look – with some crosslinks – at a variety of relics designed for other settings.

   The series so far:

  • Part I: General information on how to build and use relics and on the role of other magic items in the game, the Hat of the Demon Pirate Ferret, the Chessboard of the Invisible Hand (a device of political manipulation), the Cloak of Zorro (for dashing heroes who do not wish to be indentified), the Kether Scrolls, The Malachite Bindings (a tome of dark magics), the Skull of Scykanthos (a tool of lycanthropic ritual magic), and Arnwen’s Sacred Sunstone.
  • Part II: The Gossamer Shroud of Death, The Clasp of the Mandarin (a social device), and Grimfang the Oath-Blade of Heroes.
  • Part II: The Seals of Seigrun – devices which provide limited spellcasting in any one field at a time – and Lawgiver, a paladin’s blade of atrocious power.
  • Part IV: Weapons of Legend, Stormbreaker, the Bracer of the Archmagi, and the Lion Bracer.
  • Part V: A Quill which forges Scrolls, a Sigil which commands Undead Thieves, the Philosopher’s Stone, and the Dragon Crowns – superheroic power devices.
  • Part VI: A Demonslayer’s Helm, Parrying Dagger, Metamagical Rings, and Skill Enhancing Relics.

   As a special bonus, here we have The Silmarils of the Manifold – a look at converting Tolkien’s Silmarils into something playable – and a collection of Minor Relics suitable for almost any game. Gandalf and the Balrog for Eclipse d20 also has a relic or two, but that discussion is complicated enough that I’ll leave it all in context, rather than simply adding the relic(s) to these lists.

   Next on the list is todays selection of Relics:

   The Coronet of Command:

   Employing the magic of Absolute Command – the triumph of will over the material universe, the word made manifest – is often seen as hubris, the imitation of deity. At it’s heart, however, it is merely magic worked without the aid of props and gestures, power given form by pure will and unleashed with a single word of power. It is the stuff of legend.

   It’s also pretty uncommon. Most mortal will-workers settle for props and gestures and all the rest because it’s so much easier – and makes it possible to build up complex long-term effects rather than settling for the quick-and-simple spell-constructs that you can forge from raw magic on the fly with raw willpower.

   If they want to use Absolute Command at all, most people are going to need a little help. That, of course, is where a Relic comes in…

   The Coronet of Command is a simple circlet, inscribed with design of four overlapping squares making up a twelve-pointed star inside a hexagon, the whole centered on a single small gem – the color of which varies with the nature of the wearer.

   It was created by Lineaus Ulm, a relatively minor mage and border lordling with a considerable fear of assassins (apparently he’d severely offended some groups during his mis-spent youth and/or time as an adventurer). As far as is recorded, his fear turned out to be unjustified – his diary does not speak of any attacks, and Lineaus Ulm died a prosperous old man, surrounded by his children and grandchildren – but the Coronet he’d created was passed down with the holding until the area was overrun some generations later. Tieron Ulm carried the Coronet into exile with him and the remainder of his forces, dependents, and chattels, but it was lost with his eldest son Haiden when he became an adventurer in an attempt to reinvigorate the family fortunes.

  • All powers Corrupted/the user must invest his or her own character points in the Coronet to activate it’s powers.
  • Inherent Spells: 7x L3 (using +6 Bonus Uses), Specialized/ only usable to power Theurgy, caster level = user’s hit dice (5 CP).
  • Reflex Training/Extra Actions variant with +4 Bonus Uses (total seven per day), Specialized in Theurgy (4 CP)
  • +1 to all eighteen Theurgy skills, Specialized/immediate commands only (6 CP).
    • “Immediate Commands Only” restricts this to simple, immediate, and singular effects, with a maximum duration of one round per level – the time it takes the unbound magic to dissipate. Typical “Absolute Commands” include things like “Stop!”, “Burn!”, “Begone!”, “Open!”, “Shatter!”, and “Heal!”. While designating the target is free, if the description takes more than ten words or so (such as: “Burn!” “Burn What?” “I’m setting my sword ablaze with holy fire!”), multiple targets outside a simple area effect, or anything which would require ongoing control, it’s not an Absolute Command and won’t work. Still, Absolute Commands are very fast, making them an excellent defensive technique and very useful to adventurers.
  • Augmented Bonus/add Wis Mod to all Theurgy skills as a base, Specialized/immediate commands only, corrupted for 1.5x Effect (3 CP).
    • The net result here is that the casting check is a roll of 1d20 + (3x Wis Mod) + 2 versus a DC of 10 for the first-level effects, 15 for the second-level effects, and 20 for the third-level effects. A user with a good Wisdom score should have very little trouble with the first and second level effects.
  • Resist/+6 to all saves versus Mental Control (6 CP).
  • With a total cost of 24 CP, the Coronet of Command is a 4 CP relic.

   The Sheathe of Excalibur:

   In legend, Excalibur’s sheathe was esteemed above the blade itself. Excalibur was unbreakable, a symbol of kingship and (according to the source you consult) variously either capable of blinding or severely hindering opponents with it’s glow, better in battle than any ordinary blade, able to inspire followers, or able to shatter opposing weapons with a blow – although it rarely had more than one of those secondary attributes in any given version.

   Any or all of those attributes were useful, and would certainly qualify Excalibur as at least a minor Legendary Weapon – but they hardly guaranteed victory and were only useful in battle. The Sheathe, however, prevented the loss of blood, infection, and many injuries – allowing the bearer to almost certainly survive both a battle and all the vicissitudes of daily life in a primitive environment in good health. It’s power was not absolute, but it was extremely helpful (and probably much in demand by women giving birth).

   It’s also very easy to buy:

  • Grant of Aid, with +4 Bonus Uses (12 CP).
  • If you want to force the user to attune the Sheathe before using it, then it’s power is Corrupted – either reducing the cost to 8 CP or adding another +4 Bonus Uses for the same 12 CP.
  • With a net cost of 8 CP, the Sheathe is a mere 1 CP Relic. If you use the 12 CP base cost, it’s a 2 CP Relic.

   The Staff of Rassilon:

   This comic-book style magicians staff allows the user to absorb incoming magic and to release it (or his or her own spells) as blasts of raw destructive force, to use that energy to recharge other items, to channel it into shields, or to use it to power his or her own spells. While the user can be overloaded, and can only store a limited amount of raw power, he or she will still be virtually impossible to defeat in any quick battle of magic.

   Rassilon was an immigrant from another world, and brought his staff with him. While he never explained it’s origins, it appears to be made of metal and some sort of crystal which flickers with tiny internal lights (these grow brighter as the staff accumulates more and more power).

  • All powers Corrupted/the user must invest his or her own character points in the Staff to activate it’s powers.
  • Path of the Dragon, Shaping, Dragonfire, Eye of the Dragon x2 with the Spell Powering Option. Normally 36 CP, only 24 CP after being Corrupted – making this a 4 CP relic.

   Sortilege Staff:

   There are quite a few of these general items about, since they’re a common tool for the more powerful spellcasters. They simply contain seven spells – generally the ones that the creator used the most often – each useable three times per day. Unfortunately, even after such staves are attuned, their user must have the capacity to cast a spell normally (although he or she need not actually know it) before he or she will be able to call it forth from the staff. Nevertheless, many a low-level spellcaster has found six or nine extra spells per day extremely useful – and the fact that higher-level spells became available as his or her own powers increased even better.

  • All powers Specialized/the user must invest his or her own character points in the Staff to activate it’s powers and may only use the Spells within it which he or she would be capable of casting without the staff.
  • Inherent Spells: 2x L1 Spells with +1 Bonus Use (for a total of 3 daily uses each) (4 CP).
  • Inherent Spell: 1x L2 with +1 Bonus Use for a total of three daily uses (4 CP).
  • Inherent Spells with +2 Bonus Uses Each; one each of L3, L4, L5, and L6 (18 CP).
  • With a total cost of 26 CP, a Magician’s Staff is a 4 CP Relic.

 The Relics listed in the past several entries have been designed for a game with a couple of fairly specific parameters. In this setting:

  • Major magic items are limited to relics. Charms and talismans – items of very very limited power, as found in The Practical Enchanter – are fairly common, and those with the right connections or contacts can purchase potions and scolls, but enchanted armor, weapons, staves, and so on, are only found as relics.
  • Characters may normally only “attune” a limited number of relics. In fact, they can normally only have a total of 4 CP worth of relics at a time unless they find some (usually the creations of gods or ancient dragons or other mighty powers – and thus the province of the game master) that don’t need to be attuned.
  • The ability to use Charms and Talismans, as well as the 4 CP relic allowance, is provided by Specialized versions of Shaping and Enthusiast which come with the world template. (The writeup is in the first article in this series, found HERE).
  • Due to this, items which must be attuned count as being Corrupted, and thus cost less to attune – but not to make. Creating relics is thus expensive, and doesn’t get you out of having to attune them. A mortal with the “Create Relic” ability may make customized toys instead of settling for the ones the game master makes available, but it will cost him or her a fair number of character points. For everything there is a price…

   Now, that does mean that a 2 CP relic made with the “must be attuned” modifier costs 3 CP to make and is equivalent to a 3 CP relic for most games. Given the innate x6 multiplier for a relic, that means that the effective multiplier is x9 – making even one-point relics quite powerful. It also means that if one of these relics costs 4 CP, it will be the ONLY major magical item that the character will be able to use while he or she has it attuned – and so it had better be the only one that he or she is going to need.

   There are quite a few other relics on the site, so here’s a quick list of them and some links to the character’s they’re associated with. The writeup formats vary a bit, but that shouldn’t present any real difficulty.

   Cadmel: The Codex Obscura (4 CP):

  • +2 Caster Levels (Specialized: only for the user’s primary magical field, 6 CP).
  • Action Hero (Specialized, in Magic, Double Effect) with Stunts (6 CP).
  • Action Hero (Specialized in Magic, Double Effect) with Crafting (6 CP).
  • Double Enthusiast: Specialized in Magic (Double Effect) and Corrupted (requires a complex [DC 18 spellcraft] ritual and offering a “favor” to some magical being to change, x1.5 effect). This grants 6 “floating” CP to spend on magical talents.
  • The book provides (2xLevel+4) AP in each field per level and lets the user accumulate up to (4xLevel+20).

   Raven: The Elerus Sigil (4 CP):

  • Clever Fingers/Advanced Augmented Bonus: Adds his Dex Mod to his Int Mod for skill gaining purposes and vice-versa for Dex based skills (since the other way makes no sense. This can be viewed as two specialized augmented bonuses. 18 CP).
  • Warcraft I: +1 BAB (6 CP)

   Raven: The Albertius Log (2 CP):

  • This slim, ancient, volume has two notable properties; It’s indestructible and, despite it’s slim size, the book contains as many pages as you wish to write on – without any noticeable weight. It’s been around for thousands of years. It’s pages hold crayon scribbles, engineering diagrams, bad poems (and good ones), sketches of rare creatures, spells of many different types, personal diaries, bits of occult speculation and research, shopping lists, a collection of pressed flowers (perhaps several collections), maps and notes, some unfinished novels, spelljammer logs, and various journals. It’s written in a hundred different languages in ten thousand hands. It hasn’t got an index.
  • Unique Returning: Specialized and Corrupted: only for the item, not for the user. Since the Book isn’t alive in the first place, this simply makes it indestructible (6 CP).
  • Double Enthusiast with Adaption (9 CP). Specialized: The book only contains information as approved by the GM (double effect) and Corrupted (the user must make an Int check at a GM-set DC to locate new information, x1.5 effect). Bestows 6 floating CP (9 CP).
  • Disadvantage: Valuable. The Log is a magnet for lunatic magi, adventurer’s, and other annoyances (-3 CP).
  • Net Cost: 2 CP. Effective cost as a GM plot hook: 0 CP

   Inaro Montban: The Sigil of Lugh (3 CP):

  • Mana/Power Option (+3d6/11 points, 6 CP)
  • Fast Learner (specialized in Witchcraft, for +2 CP/Level, 6 CP)
  • Double Enthusiast (Specialized/Only for Witchcraft, Corrupted/Only changes when you learn the power it’s currently bestowing, provides +6 CP for a Witchcraft ability, 6 CP).

   Felix Moreau: The Ring of Speed (3 CP):

  • Celerity with Stunt Double (+10′ ground movement, may briefly run over water, up walls, etcetera, 12 CP),
  • Create Item (specialized, only as a prerequisite, 3 CP), Harvest of Artifice (specialized, only to provide XP to pay for his Innate Enchantments, 3 CP).

   Thrall, Lesser Dark Lord: The Eye of Arithur (4 CP):

  • This amulet provides
  • Immunity/Dispel Magic (Common/Minor/Major, 6 CP)
  • Self-Development/+2 Intelligence (12 CP) (note that Thrall is from a world where the costs of improving attributes is halved).
  • Spell Turning (6 CP): May reflect a spell back on its caster with a successful counterspell

   Xaliotl: The Eye of Flames (4 CP):

  • This amulet provides:
  • Immunity to Elemental Damage (Very Common, Major, Minor, for 12 points of protection, 10 CP).
  • Augmented Magic/+1 damage per die when casting fire magic (3 CP),
  • Ability Focus/+2 to the DC of resisting the user’s fire magic (6 CP).
  • Deep Sleep (6 CP).

   Flowing River: Medicine Bundle (4 CP):

  • Occasional children among the Ankorath tribes are fortunate enough to be given, or to win in competition, Medicine Bundles – sets of minor relics created so as to imbue their bearer with the strengths of various beasts. Their effects are fairly minor, but a well-chosen set of minor enhancements can still be very useful. In River’s case his minor relics provide +1 each to Strength (Tiger), Dexterity (Monkey), Intelligence (Spider), and Wisdom (Elephant).
  • Note that this setting allows characters to purchase attribute upgrades for half the standard cost.

   Sem the Sin-Eater: The Litany of Illumination (3 CP):

  • The thin and worn pages of this modest tome contain the daily sacred litanies of the Ancient Gods, the catechism of the church, and a broad selection of other religious information (+15 bonus to looking up the litanies and such; this is not a relic function, it’s just that it’s THE major nook on the subject). While he bears it, Sem enjoys the benefit of:
  • Enhanced Channeling Intensity IV (+4d6 Magnitude, 12 CP) and
  • Innate Enchantment (6 CP/5000 GP Value): This provides him with free use of:
    • Lens of Rey: Converts a Turn attempt into a positive energy ray which has +4 Intensity and does [magnitude + 1d6] points of healing.
    • Sunfury: Expends two turn attempts at a time, providing a +3 bonus on the Intensity and doubling the magnitude), and
    • Unlimited Automatic Personal Use of Immortal Vigor I, providing 12 + 2x Con Mod bonus HP.

   Fauve: The Eye of Stars (4 CP):

  • This rune-inscribed stone pendant has been in Fauve’s possession since early childhood. It grants it’s wearer +2 Int (12 CP) and
  • Improved Power Words (Specialized in Rune Magic, may store up to [Con] levels of spells to be released as move-equivalent actions, 12 CP).
  • Note that this setting allows characters to purchase attribute upgrades for half the standard cost.

   Ragnar: The Eye of Wrath (4 CP):

  • This ring is designed to enhance spirit weapons, providing Improved Superior Imbuement (specialized in spirit weapons/provides +[level] points of enhancements, 18 CP) with the Focused and Versatile upgrades (specialized in spirit weapons for half cost, 6 CP).

   Amber: The Eye of Odin (4 CP):

  • Augmented Bonus/Adds average Con Mod to Dweomer Checks (12 CP).
  • Berserker/Odinmight: +8 to Caster Level, +8 to Dweomer Checks, +4 to saves versus Magic, and -2 AC. This may be invoked [1 + Level/3] times per day, lasts for [3 + average Con Mod – currently 10] rounds each time, and leaves the user Fatigued (12 CP).

   Edward Elric: The Philosopher’s Stone [4 CP]:

  • All powers Specialized in amplifying Innate Spells (half cost).
  • Provides access to the Amplify, Area, Lacing, and Persistent Metamagics (12 CP), with Improved Glory (Spontaneously add [+Con Mod] levels of metamagic up to [Con Mod] times per day], 9 CP), and +4 Bonus Uses of Improved Glory (3 CP).

   Kristin Stanwell: Stalking Death, The Hunter’s Wheel (4 CP):

  • This curiously engraved hammered copper disk augments firearms, and only firearms (Corrupted, 2/3’rds cost), providing
  • Enhanced Strike (Crushing, Hammer, and Shattering), as well as
  • Imbuement (Improved and Focused, providing Ghost Touch and Darkbane [+2 and +2d6 damage versus creatures of the dark]).

   Shadow of Dark Wings: The Ring of Ebon Bindings (4 CP):

  • Chain of Ki (15′ Reach), Varying Grasp (No penalty when working within reach), with Entangle (May grapple at range), Focused Imbuement (Weapon has Ghost Touch), Whirlwind (May attack everyone within reach 1/minute or by spending 1 Mana), and Innate Enchantment (Shield, +1d6 Electrical Damage on contact on command, sheds light on command). All Corrupted: Only with Kusuri-Gama.

   Marty Tabard (Unlinked, since several different character-sheet upgrades have been posted): The Determined Emissary’s Amulet (3 CP Relic):

  • Adaptation to Hostile Audiences (6 CP)
  • Berserk (+4 Wisdom, +4 Charisma, +2 Will, -2 AC) (6 CP)
  • Melding (6 CP)

   Marty Tabard: The Blademaster’s Ring (3 CP Relic):

  • Immunity/Dispelling and Antimagic (Common/Minor/Epic, Specialized in protecting the user’s Innate Enchantments only, 9 CP).
  • Innate Enchantment. All spells level one, caster level one, personal-only (x.7 cost) where applicable.
    • Rogue’s Sure Eye (+2D6 Sneak Attack for three rounds, 1400 GP)
    • Inspiring Word (+1 Morale Bonus to Damage, Saves, Checks, and Attacks, 1400 GP)
    • Light Foot (Transmutation. The user becomes extremely light on his or her feet,gaining a +30 circumstance bonus on his or her ground movement speed a +10 circumstance bonus on jump checks, as well as DR 10 versus Falling Damage [only], for 1d6+2 rounds, 1400 GP).
    • Personal Haste (+1 Attack when making a full attack, +30 Enhancement bonus to movement rates, 2000 GP).
    • Blade Mastery (+4 Competence Bonus to BAB with Blades [swords and knives], 1400 GP).
    • Ranged Strike (Allows the user to “fire” melee attacks with a 100′ range increment for the next 3 rounds, using the same statistics, 1400 GP).
    • Shield (+4 Shield bonus to AC, negates Magic Missiles. 2000 GP)

Kysen Nial, three minor relics:

  • Dirge (1 CP Relic): This black longsword shows a faint tracery of twisted runes along the lower portion of the blade. Once it’s activated, the runes flare with red light, and the blade is wreathed in dark fire which trails in the air where it passes. Blood will mute the runes, but – if it does not wound another once activated – it will twist in it’s user’s hands and wound him or her if it does not feed itself on another’s blood before the runes start to fade on their own. Berserker with Odinpower and Enduring (+6 BAB, +6 AC, +3 to Reflex Saves, -2 to Will Saves for [3 + User’s Con Mod] rounds once per day per three levels of the user or part thereof with no fatigue afterwards) and Imbuement (gains an Enhancement Bonus of +[User’s Level/4]). Both powers are Specialized and Corrupted; the blade is obviously unholy when active, the user must whisper the blade’s true name in the ancient tongue to activate it, once activated the blade must taste blood – inflicting normal base damage – at least once or the user will suffer that damage when the “berserker” effect ends, and it must be attuned to the user’s personal power to use, rather than being a truly independent relic (6 CP). Dirge may have higher powers, but those would require investing more points in it to discover – and most bearers are sensible reluctant to do so. Given the bloodthirst the blade exhibits when barely awakened, who knows what the price of such things would be?
  • Sigil of Dark Fortune (1 CP Relic): This bloodstone ring glitters with an crimson sparks when called upon, although the stone becomes duller and duller as fewer “charges” remain to it. +12 Bonus Uses of Luck, Specialized and Corrupted/the user is blatantly being aided by evil supernatural forces, the user must offer prayers, small sacrifices, and at least a few drops of blood from someone the user has personally ritually tortured or murdered to restore the ring’s “charges” after they’ve been fully or partially depleted, must be attuned to the user’s personal power to use, rather than being a truly independent relic (6 CP).
  • Umbral Torc (2 CP Relic): This tarnished silver neckpiece imbues the wearer’s tongue with the arcane forces, allowing him or her to hold spells on the edge of manifestation, to be released with a simple word. Power Words, Improved, Specialized in storing personally-cast spells; may store [4xCon/3] total spell levels (10 CP), allows the user to speak the Celestial, Infernal, and Draconic languages (2 CP). Corrupted/must be attuned to the user’s personal power to use, rather than being a truly independent relic. The Umbral Torc can have another two character points invested in it, which will activate it’s powers of Harbringers, Spellforms, and Sendings – the entire rest of the Power Words list.

   There may be a few more relics up at the moment that I’ve forgotten. If there are, and I happen to remember them, I’ll append them to this list.


4 Responses

  1. Also as a note, Marty’s getting away with treating “knives and swords” as a specific weapon type with his Blademaster’s Ring because, in the Federation-Apocalypse setting, Starship Weapons and Guns are usually far more important.

  2. […] Magic Items and Sample Relics: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI, and Part VII (with Index and Summary). The Tongues of Heaven: Combined enchantment-relics and quest objects. […]

  3. […] Tricks Huntsman: Shaping/allows use of various tokens as Charms and Talismans, Shaping/Specialized in Illusions and Transformations (allows use of freeform Transformation and/or […]

  4. […] Eclipse will let you do that. Dump conventional magic items in favor of Literary Relics (Samples HERE), Charms and Talismans and (possibly) the Wealth Levels from The Practical Enchanter, and just […]

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