d20 – Hedge Magic Heroes

   d20 magic is very strong on the big, flashy, stuff – combat, transport, healing terrible wounds, and so on. Of course, d20 is mostly about mighty heroes.

   On the other hand, it can be a good deal of fun to keep the characters low-level for awhile. They can deal with small-time thugs, rescue local individuals instead of rulers and kingdoms, and keep the game personal.

   That’s pretty easy with warriors and rogues and such.

   The Charms and Talismans from the Practical Enchanter will serve nicely as magic items in such settings as well.

   For spellcasters, it often won’t leave them with much to do. What they need for this kind of play is a versatile supply of little magics, so that they can come up with clever ways to use lesser spells and do practical, useful, and only semi-adventurous things in the local community. That way they can keep busy without much raw power.

   That’s one of the things the “Hedge Magic” feat in The Practical Enchanter can be used for. It grants it’s users access to a wide variety of small, practical, spells. Now, in most campaigns, the details of those spells are generally unimportant, and the list given in the Feat is simply a sampling.

   In a low-powered campaign, the details may be important, so I’m going to start filling in the details on those small spells, and put together some other information on low-level magic and alternative spell selections for a supplemental PDF. If those spells are going to play a major role in a setting, we’ll still want each spellcaster to look different.

   Ergo, here are the first few. The next list segment should be a good deal longer…

Level Zero Spells:

   Unless otherwise noted:

  • Level: Zero
  • Components: V, S
  • Casting Time: One Standard Action
  • Saving Throw: Will Negates
  • Spell Resistance: Yes (Harmless)


   Clean Clothing

  • Range: Touch, Target: one large basket of clothing or the equivalent, Duration: Instantaneous.
  • Clean Clothing cleans, presses (if necessary), folds (if desired), and makes minor repairs on one large basket of clothing or some equivalent – a tarp or sail, a tent, or an object or objects of similar volume. Despite the name, leather goods, furs, and jewelry are treated similarly. It will work on clothing that’s currently being worn, and is a good way to keep looking sharp – avoiding any penalties for being a mess.


  • Range: Close, Targets: One creature or item of up so size large or up to thirty pounds of unliving organic material, Duration: Instantaneous.
  • Dry removes water from the surface of living creatures or inorganic objects or can effectively dehydrate up to thirty pounds of meat, herbs, or similar materials without subjecting them to damaging heat or processing. This can be quite important when gathering medicinal herbs or magical components, ofering a +5 circumstance bonus on any rolls made using them.


  • Range: Close, Area of Effect: Creatures and objects in a five-foot radius burst, Duration: three hours plus one hour per level of the caster (D).
  • Umbrella makes the creatures and items affected weakly water-repellant – enough to remain dry in a downpour or in a pond, to keep water from leaking into their boots, and to push back fog several feet. If the user is attacked by water or acid-based attacks during the duration, the spell will absorb three points of the damage before dissipating. Of course, it also keeps bowstring, scrolls, and bandages dry – which may sometimes be of vital necessity.


   Air Mattress

  • Range: Touch, Area: up to thirty-six square feet, Duration: 12 Hours (D).
  • Air Mattress thickens and binds the air to a depth of about four inches – creating a dry, well-insulated, and extremely comfortable mattress. This is easy to sleep on, offers a +1 bonus to recovery checks made against diseases and to any checks related to sleeping well, and – if placed under a falling individual – will convert one die of falling damage to stun damage.

   Create Element:

  • Range: Close, Effect: up to ten pounds or one gallon (whichever is less) of material per level, Duration: Instantaneous, Spell Resistance: No, Saving Throw: No.
  • Create Element generates a loose mass of basic elemental material – air, water, earth (whether dirt, sand, or crumbled clay), or even fire. The element can either be created in a lump, or scattered over an area up to three feet across. Unfortunately for the aggressively-minded, even several “gallons of flame” is just a wash of hot gas; it will burn painfully – but such burns are superficial at best, amounting to a mere 2d4 points of damage.


  • Range: Close, Area: up to a 100 square feet, Duration: 12 Hours.
  • Blanket inhibits heat transfer, whether in or out of the area it’s applied to. It will keep you warm on a cold night – or it can be cast around hot food to keep it that way, spread over an area of hot coals to allow a quick passage, wrapped around a fragile creature or object that you need to carry out of a burning building, or used to keep a small tree or garden plot from getting nipped by a late frost. If it’s used in situations of serious danger – such as to try and keep a the hut you’re hiding in from catching when a brushfire sweeps thorough – it reduces the first die of heat or cold damage to stun damage (which won’t affect inanimate objects of course).

2 Responses

  1. […] The spells are listed by name only, but you can find fuller write-ups over on the author's blog: Hedge Magic Heroes I Hedge Magic Heroes II Hedge Magic Heroes III Hedge Magic Heroes IV Hedge Magic Heroes V Hedge […]

  2. […] or more Hit Dice, etc.). But then what's a good source for non-combat spells? Well, here's a few: Hedge Magic Heroes (Part I). A seven-part series of low-level (0, 1st, and 2nd) level spells dedicated to non-adventuring […]

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