Today: the final installment of Supplement III! Commence fanfare!
MIGHTY SERVANT OF LEUK-O: The first thing to note here is that this item is a relic of a race of space travelers. This ties in very well with the space-faring people that appear in the Temple of the Frog module, and is further proof that the World of Greyhawk exists in a galaxy with some highly developed planets.
The Mighty Servant itself is a huge automaton (9 feet tall and 6 wide), that can be used as a fighting machine, mode of transportation, or magical attack device. Such is its size that it causes intelligent creatures to save vs. fear. This is inconsistent with a lot of D&D monsters that are much larger and require no save, but I can chalk this up to the alien construction of the thing making it scary to look at. Anyway, the Mighty Servant is very hard to hit, completely immune to magic and has a whole bunch of other resistances. It's slow to move and attack, and it has a very small chance to hit, but if it does it deals 10-100 damage. Like Baba Yaga's Hut from the last post, this artifact is given a flat % chance to hit rather than using the standard method. I suppose it's fair enough that such a powerful machine would ignore armor, and it does take Dexterity into account, so everything works. But when people praise the unified mechanic of 3e for streamlining the game, this is the kind of thing they're thinking of.
Suggested powers: levitation, light, sleep, user becomes permanently chaotic, and the user is compelled to undertake a holy quest.
This last bit makes me think that the aforementioned star-faring race must have been a bunch of religious zealots.
Oh, and as usual with these artifacts we have the requisite NPC: Leuk-O. There's no indication here of who he is or what he's done.
THE JACINTH OF INESTIMABLE BEAUTY: This is a big glowing gem that charms anyone who looks at it. It is rumoured to have once been the property of 'the fabled Shah Cham'Ponee', but as usual we learn nothing else about him. The gem has some other suggested powers as well: acts as +1 armor, detects traps and secret doors, 20-die lightning bolt, death spell, paralization, wielder has a 25% chance to permanently lose a hit point whenever the gem is used, the gem causes extreme greed in any viewer and may cause him to try to kill the wielder, and the user becomes permanently Lawful.
THE CRYSTAL OF THE EBON FLAME: This is a crystal, smaller than a human skull, that constantly emits rays that induce fear in any viewer. Inside the crystal is a darting flame, and if it is focused on the other powers of the crystal may be used.
Suggested powers: Detect invisible, acts as +1 armor, 10-die cold ray, wielder has a 25% chance to permanently lose 1 point from an ability score every time the item is used, user cannot touch or be touched by metal, time stop.
Despite the evocative and cool name, this artifact is disappointingly devoid of any background info.
HEWARD'S MYSTICAL ORGAN: This is an enormous pipe organ, that is purported to have an air elemental trapped in the bellows to power the thing. The organ can create any number of magical effects, but if it is incorrectly played it will be detrimental to the user. There are no specific powers listed, so this one is really up to the DM.
(And, in my PDF this item is listed as "Reward's Mystical Organ". I've listed it as Heward, as it is in later versions, but I'm not sure if this is an OCR error or if it is in the actual text. Plus, new NPC - Heward. He is still a mystery.)
HORN OF CHANGE: Heh heh heh. When this horn is blown three times, it produces a random effect from the artifact tables. Man, I love randomised items like this one.
THE RING OF GAX: This platinum ring has an eight-sided gem on it, each facet of which contains a specific power. The gem can be twisted to use each facet, but it has a habit of turning at random by itself, so the PCs won't know which facet is which until they use a bit of trial and error. It's impossible to mark the ring, so they'll be going through this process every time they want to use it. Again, it's another semi-randomised item, to my joy.
Suggested powers: Fly, wizard eye, detect traps and secret doors, conjure elemental/djinn/efreet/invisible stalker, power word stun, user attacks anyone within 20 feet, item consumes 50-100% of the user's treasure, user cannot touch or be touched by metal, finger of death
And, Gax! Another as yet undeveloped NPC to add to the ranks.
THE CROWNS, ORBS AND SCEPTRES: There are several sets of these, one for each alignment. This raises a question right away - are we talking about the original three-alignment system, or the expanded system that includes Good and Evil? In the interests of keeping things simple, I will probably go with the original system of Law, Neutrality and Chaos.
There's another thing to think of as well - what of the Crown/Orb/Sceptre sets of the Fighter, Cleric and Magic-User that were posited in the OD&D boxed set? Are they connected, or a separate thing altogether? Again, to keep things simple, I will go with the former. The Crown, Orb and Sceptre of Law will be the same one said to be for Clerics, the set for Neutrality will be said to belong to Fighters, and the Chaotic set to Magic-Users. I've theorised before that they were once owned by the respective guilds of each class, but it's obvious from this that they will predate the guilds by a long way, and will have purposes of their own separate from the guilds as well.
Anyway, these items are scattered around and lost, and can only be used by someone who shares their alignment (as usual, punishment is visited upon anyone else who picks one up, and there's no use of detect good/evil to get out of it). Each item has a number of powers, and more powers become available if you complete the set.
Suggested Power for the Orbs: Light, fly, double-strength slow spell
Suggested Power for the Sceptres: Acts as +1 armor, telekinesis, conjure elemental/djinn/efreet/invisible stalker
Suggested Power for the Crowns: ESP, detect magic, shape change
Extra powers if two items owned: user immune to magic but cannot use magic himself, Legend Lore, Commune
Extra powers if three items owned: items cause extreme greed in all viewers, summon a demon once a day
THRONE OF THE GODS: A massive gold-inlayed throne crafted by an ancient race in honour of their gods (oh so lovely and vague, I can cram that in anywhere!). It's carved right into the heart of a mountain, and so it can't be moved. That makes me think Dwarves at the moment, but I suspect I might be swayed towards one of the Underdark races if I'm feeling nasty. Anyone who sits on the throne gets a random magic item, but can only do so once. Also, he can use any of the throne's powers, but is subject to the drawbacks as well.
Suggested powers: Clairvoyance, telekinesis, speak with dead, teleport, charm monster, death spell, locate treasure, gem of seeing, raise dead fully, throne releases gas which puts all nearby to sleep
Woah. If the suggested powers are anything to go by, there aren't a lot of drawbacks to using this thing. Luckily it can't be moved. Given the general benevolence of the thing, I'm likely to stick with ancient Dwarves as the builders.
THE ORBS OF DRAGONKIND: Hey, shades of Dragonlance! These five orbs are about as big as a human head, and each contains the imprisoned essence of a dragon.
The Orb of the Hatchling: The user of this orb has the suggested power of ESP, and does not need to eat or drink. This orb is pretty weak, and will obey any person who can speak the language of dragons.
The Orb of the Dragonette: This is like the one above, but with different powers: detect evil, wizard eye, 10-die cold ray, user becomes fantastically strong but really clumsy.
The Orb of the Dragon: Again as above, but with different powers: Telekinesis, death spell, locate treasure. The drawback? The user is instantly killed. Hey, hope your buddies enjoy that treasure you just located!
The Great Firedrake's Orb: This orb is much more wilfull than the previous three, and can try to possess the user like a magic sword. It's extremely evil, so if the user is possessed he'll try to control or destroy those nearby. The orb's powers are: move at double speed, fire resistance, dispel magic, user loses 1 hit point permanently with each use, disintegrate
The Orb of the Eldest Worm: This one can possess you like the previous, but it's even more likely to succeed. It's powers are: speak with dead, adds`1-3 to an ability score, charm monster, finger of death, user has a chance a body part will rot and fall off, power word kill
That's it for artifacts, and for the rest of the book effectively, as the remainder is a revision to the Wilderness Wandering Monster tables. I'll be quietly incorporating that at the same time as the rest of this book. Since that wraps up Supplement III, my next post will be a round-up of the various elements that have been incorporated into the campaign so far. That might take me a while, so my usual Friday update may not appear.