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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Zombie

    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Gender
    Male

    Default Identify and Sentient Items

    This is for late in a campaign not even started, so I'm asking for ideas many months ahead.

    A powerful, sentient magical weapon (artifact-grade) will come into the party's possession during this campaign. (Not by quest; the artifact will seek them out.) Obviously, the party will attempt to Identify the weapon via the spell. Problem: this weapon has a mind of its own and does not want to be identified. (I'm planning for a side-quest just for the party to finally get that information.)

    Here's my question: what steps can such an item take to resist identification?

    My current thoughts: weird, improbable coincidences keep happening every time the group tries. Wandering monsters. Rats boiling out of a hole in the inn's wall. A Crown messenger knocks and interrupts the spell. The Innkeeper's wife barges in to turn down the beds. An unexpected hailstorm makes casting impossible for a while. The thing is, I think my group is more likely to take that as a challenge to find a casting environment which is completely clear of any prospect for distractions. I'm sort of stuck on ways to convey the idea that they'll need to find another way.

    Ideas?

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Between SEA and PDX.
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Identify and Sentient Items

    Quote Originally Posted by FrancisBean View Post
    This is for late in a campaign not even started, so I'm asking for ideas many months ahead.

    A powerful, sentient magical weapon (artifact-grade) will come into the party's possession during this campaign. (Not by quest; the artifact will seek them out.) Obviously, the party will attempt to Identify the weapon via the spell. Problem: this weapon has a mind of its own and does not want to be identified. (I'm planning for a side-quest just for the party to finally get that information.)

    Here's my question: what steps can such an item take to resist identification?

    My current thoughts: weird, improbable coincidences keep happening every time the group tries. Wandering monsters. Rats boiling out of a hole in the inn's wall. A Crown messenger knocks and interrupts the spell. The Innkeeper's wife barges in to turn down the beds. An unexpected hailstorm makes casting impossible for a while. The thing is, I think my group is more likely to take that as a challenge to find a casting environment which is completely clear of any prospect for distractions. I'm sort of stuck on ways to convey the idea that they'll need to find another way.

    Ideas?
    The weapon casts Nystul's Magic Aura on itself every day to avoid detection. The problem is, it still has to find time to do so every day, and it's still subject to all of the normal requirements (components) of the spell. So it can't cast the spell if it's being observed or guarded, it has to wait until it's alone or people might hear it chant the necessary verbal components.



    Magic Aura can make it so that the wielder is made aware of its magical aura. To avoid having being sold, the weapon makes it appear to have a useless, but slightly magical, effect of...casting Magic Aura on itself at-will. It's the perfect disguise. Now it's useless, valuable, and hidden in plain sight.

    The trick is, Detect Thoughts still works against it.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-05-28 at 05:58 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by KOLE View Post
    MOG, design a darn RPG system. Seriously, the amount of ideas Iíve gleaned from your posts has been valuable. Youíre a gem of the community here.
    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post

    5th Edition Homebrewery

    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes to open a world of new multiclassing.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Feb 2019

    Default Re: Identify and Sentient Items

    Is there any reason one of the powerful effects of this legendary weapon isn't the ability to activate/deactivate nondetection on itself?

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    NinjaGirl

    Join Date
    May 2018

    Default Re: Identify and Sentient Items

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    The weapon casts Nystul's Magic Aura on itself every day to avoid detection. The problem is, it still has to find time to do so every day, and it's still subject to all of the normal requirements (components) of the spell. So it can't cast the spell if it's being observed or guarded, it has to wait until it's alone or people might hear it chant the necessary verbal components.



    Magic Aura can make it so that the wielder is made aware of its magical aura. To avoid having being sold, the weapon makes it appear to have a useless, but slightly magical, effect of...casting Magic Aura on itself at-will. It's the perfect disguise. Now it's useless, valuable, and hidden in plain sight.

    The trick is, Detect Thoughts still works against it.
    If it casts the aura 30 days in a row, it becomes permanent. It is entirely possible for it or the person who created it to have already done so by the time the party gets the item.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Between SEA and PDX.
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Identify and Sentient Items

    Quote Originally Posted by Lunali View Post
    If it casts the aura 30 days in a row, it becomes permanent. It is entirely possible for it or the person who created it to have already done so by the time the party gets the item.
    I'd make that a caveat. Perhaps as a way to limit its constant lying and deception, the creator made it so that it can't permanently change itself. Or, perhaps the creator made it unchangeable, with the creator's personality, as a form of pride.
    Quote Originally Posted by KOLE View Post
    MOG, design a darn RPG system. Seriously, the amount of ideas Iíve gleaned from your posts has been valuable. Youíre a gem of the community here.
    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post

    5th Edition Homebrewery

    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes to open a world of new multiclassing.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Zombie

    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Identify and Sentient Items

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    Perhaps as a way to limit its constant lying and deception, the creator made it so that it can't permanently change itself. Or, perhaps the creator made it unchangeable, with the creator's personality, as a form of pride.
    In this context, the personality of the creator is relevant. She was an abused, mentally broken woman who created this weapon for her protector. It's sentient, and over time it tries to re-make the new, latest wielder as her new, latest protector. That's why it wants to fly under the radar... it wants to sucker the new wielder into becoming dependent on it as quickly as possible.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Brookshw's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2013

    Default Re: Identify and Sentient Items

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    The weapon casts Nystul's Magic Aura on itself every day to avoid detection. The problem is, it still has to find time to do so every day, and it's still subject to all of the normal requirements (components) of the spell. So it can't cast the spell if it's being observed or guarded, it has to wait until it's alone or people might hear it chant the necessary verbal components.
    That aside, given that NMA cast everyday for 30 days becomes permanent until dispelled, and assuming the weapon's been in existence for more than 30 days, it's easy enough to imagine that it's already created the effect permanently upon itself.

    Nevermind, should have read the rest of the thread first.
    Last edited by Brookshw; 2019-05-28 at 07:10 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Vedhin View Post
    As always, the planes prove to be awesomer than I expected.
    Quote Originally Posted by jedipotter View Post
    Logic just does not fit in with the real world. And only the guilty throw fallacy's around.
    Avatar courtesy of Linklele

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