View Full Version : [Spells] Hey presto!

2006-08-25, 05:52 AM
Card Trick
Level: Brd 0, Sor/Wiz 0
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Close
Target: One object
Duration: 1 round
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No

The magician waved his hand over the deck, then fanned the cards out and plucked one out without a moment's hesitation. 'Is this your card?' The crowd was duly impressed. Nobody knew how he did it, any more than they knew how he picked out the right goblet to poison that evening...

This spell allows you to single out a particular item. You must have touched the item, or observed another creature while it touched the item, within a number of rounds equal to your caster level before you cast the spell.

You must be unable to unambiguously identify the item you wish to single out. For example, recognising a specific card that a character handled is possible, if the character handled only one card, or if you were able to observe that specific card out of several. It would not be possible to pick one card out of a whole deck if the character merely grasped the deck, never specifically handling that card. The spell fails in this case.

A Deck of Many Things cannot be 'marked' by this spell; an attempt to pick out a specific card from such a deck is likely to either fail or end in a false impression.

Coin Trick
Conjuration (Teleportation)
Level: Brd 0, Sor/Wiz 0
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Personal
Target: See text
Duration: 1 round/level
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No

The halfling inspected the diamonds carefully, then slipped them back into the bag. The sharp-eyed merchant thought he saw two less go back than came out, though, and he seized the halfling's wrist -- but found nothing. Smiling pleasantly, the halfling and his associate left the store. Outside, to the amazement of his partner-in-crime, he spat out the lost two diamonds and slipped them into his pocket. 'How did you do that?' she asked. 'I was watching you -- he was watching you -- and I swear your hands never went near your mouth!' He grinned, reached behind her ear, and plucked the diamonds from there. 'Magic!'

While the spell lasts, you can teleport small objects (up to three size categories smaller than yourself) about at will. The teleported objects must start and end on your person (in your hand, a pocket, a backpack, your mouth, etc., but not in any extradimensional space).

Summon Monster 0
Conjuration (Summoning)
Level: Brd 0, Sor/Wiz 0
Components: V, S, F
Casting Time: 1 round
Range: 5 ft.
Effect: One summoned creature
Duration: 1 round
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No

The hopeful bard shook the bag out, then reached into it and plucked out a small white bird. 'Tada!' he exclaimed, releasing it to fly off. 'Charming,' said his prospective employer, 'but can you do anything useful with that trick? Anything useful in a dungeon full of monsters?' 'Well... no... not particularly...' the bard confessed. 'NEXT!'

This spell conjures a single unthreatening magical creature, typically a rabbit or dove. It appears where you designate and acts immediately, on your turn. It does not attack and generally ignores other creatures. It does not take directions from you, and though it may flee if attacked, it has only 1 hit point and rarely gets a chance to do so.

Arcane Focus
A bag, pouch, or hat. This may be a tiny replica, but an actual item of the sort is often used, with the caster pulling the summoned creature from it.

(Edited to clarify Card Trick's limitations.)

2006-08-25, 11:11 AM
Very nice. I particularly appreciate how you offered examples of non-parlor trick applications for these spells.

One caveat, though: shouldn't the Card Trick's duration be instantaneous rather than one round? Once the target item has been singled out in the caster's mind, it shouldn't immediately fade from memory.

2006-08-25, 12:42 PM
I rather envisioned it as being 'marked' to the caster's senses, like it glows or something for one round. After that, if they look away and forget which card it was, it's their own fault. :)

Fax Celestis
2006-08-25, 02:36 PM
Card Trick + Deck of Many Things = Free 10,000 XP.

2006-08-25, 02:41 PM
I would expect the Deck to be above such minor magic. (And I did think about it at least briefly. C'mon, cards + D&D? :P) Let me check... hmm, well, it doesn't say anything about attempts to divine what card you might draw, but (a) I'd still say the spell doesn't help, and (b) somebody still has to get lucky and draw a card that you want to 'mark' and pick out yourself.

Edit: Actually, now that I think about it, my wording just isn't good enough on this point. You can grasp the whole deck in your hand, say that you've now touched the Jester, and cast the spell and draw the Jester for 10,000XP. I need to go back and reword it to specify that you have to be specifically grabbing a particular item. (My original mental image was basically magically dusting for fingerprints: you recognise the object you're after because it glows where you, or the other creature, touched it. So maybe if I phrased it like that, grasping the whole deck wouldn't work...)

Fax Celestis
2006-08-25, 02:46 PM
There's nothing about the Deck of Many Things that says you can't look through it first. You could certainly look through it and mark one that way, and then draw it later.

Perhaps even during a particularly terrifying encounter. "HaHA Mr. BBEG. Suddenly, I am Level 12! Victory shall be MINE!"

Don't get me wrong, I like your spells (especially Summon Monster 0), but I think that it'd be best if you clarified in the spell that the magics of this spell do not function well with Decks of Many Things and provide no effect.

2006-08-25, 02:52 PM
There's nothing about the Deck of Many Things that says you can't look through it first. You could certainly look through it and mark one that way, and then draw it later.
Well... it does say, "As soon as one of these cards is drawn from the pack, its magic is bestowed upon the person who drew it, for better or worse." That kind of implies no peeking... depending on how you define 'drawn'... I would have thought that any attempt to look at the face of a card without actually drawing it would make it leap out or something, just to stop peeking. (You wouldn't even need this spell, really...)

Anyway, I'll update it once I'm sure of how I'd like to phrase it now. (Edit: Done!)

2006-08-25, 03:00 PM
-Very- nice. The verbal requirement should be "Presto!" or "Abracadabra!"
...speaking of, would the coin trick be better without a verbal, since it doesn't last long and would be a giveaway prior to thievery?

2006-08-25, 03:32 PM
Maybe, although that would exclude bards. You could probably get away with pretending it's just sleight of hand if the magic word is something like 'abracadabra!'. If you wanted to use it for serious larceny, Silent Spell would be handy.

2006-08-25, 04:29 PM
For some reason I thought this was going to relate to Presto from the 80s Dungeons & Dragons Cartoon Series. Oh well, interesting nonetheless.

2006-08-26, 01:04 AM
Whoops! That'll teach me to be culturally ignorant... I only know a very little about the series, and that on report from others (never seen a trace of it around here myself).

Can I make amends with another spell, 'Presto's Marginally Useful Conjuration' or something? ;)

2006-08-27, 05:37 PM
It's well worth a watch, especially for anybody who actually plays Dungeons & Dragons, or you can read about it here:


There's a lot of hate out there directed towards the series, but I have fond memories of it from my childhood. Indeed, several elements have made their way into my own homebrewed games (principally the Half Demon / Half Woman from the episode entitled Child of the Star Gazer). I was particularly amused to find the series referenced in Baldur's Gate II. Buy the DVD boxed set for a beloved nephew / neice (or son / daughter etc...) and watch it with them.

I could never understand why Wizards don't just run this cartoon series again when they want to recruit youngsters into the game. It's a perfect entry point.

I always like to see more reasonable 0 Level Spells.

2006-08-27, 06:58 PM
Card trick is still broken. It just requires you to cast the spell until there's only one card that hasn't been highlighted yet, and you know that that's the one, by the process of elimination.

2006-08-27, 07:59 PM
Yes, but in theory that would require you to cast it up to 51 times.

2006-08-27, 08:02 PM
You could make an at-will item of that for 1,000 gp. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/creatingMagicItems.htm#tableEstimatingMagicItemGol dPieceValues) Not bad.

2006-08-28, 12:50 AM
Card trick is still broken. It just requires you to cast the spell until there's only one card that hasn't been highlighted yet, and you know that that's the one, by the process of elimination.
Umm... could you run that by me a bit slower? I don't get what you mean...

Edit: Wait, you mean the bit about using it on a Deck of Many Things giving a false impression? I put that in there to give DMs nasty ideas about, ah, 'dealing with' players who want to use a cantrip to gain 10,000XP. :P I said it may give a false impression; it may just fail. It may give you the right one just to screw you over; basically, there's no guarantee that casting the spell fifty-one times will mark out the fifty-one wrong cards. And even if it did, if you're able to keep track of which cards you've seen marked, without drawing them out, good for you. (That's assuming it doesn't have a 'magic xylophone' effect... the fifth card from the top may have been the Jester at one point, now the Deck's shuffled itself internally and that card is the Tower...)

Finally, there's the fact that someone has to have drawn out the card you want already. Oh, and each time you cast the spell, that drawing gets one round further into the past. I'm sure there are ways and means of casting fifty-one cantrips in less than fifty-one rounds (Quicken Spell comes to mind), but it's still going to be a long time, and it has to be fewer rounds than your caster level or the object you want can no longer be identified by this spell.

You could just remove that whole sentence, and leave it at, 'You can't use this on a Deck of Many Things.' Easy.

2007-06-28, 05:15 PM
I would make I higher level version of coin trick that included extradimensional spaces. Something like Greater Coin Trick.

2007-06-28, 05:43 PM
Why need an extradimensional space? Just hide it in your appendix. By the time someone looks there, you're already screwed.

Also, aren't normal spell components (verbal, somatic) easily seen as being unusual for normal activities? Normal activities possibly including a magic trick which requires very precise sleight of hand... You'd need to make silent&still versions of the spell to pull them off properly.

Perhaps if you defined a custom somatic component....

2007-06-28, 08:14 PM
(I realize this is contribution to Thread Necromancy).

To produce a slight of hand effect, or any sort of coin trick, I believe you'd need a somatic component. It means that someone with Spellcraft can identity what you're doing, and it's also reasonable to presume that if you can't use your hands, you can't exactly be pulling coin tricks. Verbal components may be subtle, but especially with a card trick, if you can't say, "Is this your card?", do you expect it to still work?

2007-06-29, 03:48 PM
One suggestion: You may want to add these spells as Beguiler class list also. They seem to fit very well into that classes paradigm too.