Magic Items Unchained

Thursday, April 16, 2015

We've all been there. We've faced the sad crossroads when we realized that our favorite magic item just wasn't cutting it, and we couldn't justify keeping it instead of equipping the new and shinier item the party just found instead. But what about the blacksmith who becomes a hero fighting with her father's sword? Or the halfling who found a strange item early in his career that turned out to be more than it seemed? That's where the scaling magic items from Pathfinder Unchained come in. These items scale as you level, allowing them to be an important part of your character (these sorts of items are called wonders) or a small and handy tool throughout your career (these are called baubles) or something in between. The math is all worked out to allow GMs to use a few different systems for the advancement, including automatic advancement (in which case, it's recommended to dole out less treasure if you want to keep the party at about the same power level) or advancement using rituals and gold (the easier method for someone running a published adventure). Scaling items have starting and ending levels for scaling, so I've included two of the most wondrous of the wonders: wonders that scale all the way up to 20th level!

Robe of the Faerie Queen

Price 4,800 gp
Slot body; CL 6th; Weight 1 lb.
Aura strong transmutation; Scaling wonder

When donned, this sheer, sleeved cape fades to near invisibility. It grants the wearer a +4 competence bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, and Sense Motive checks against fey. On command, the mantle glows in delicate faerie fire of any color, and a second command word ceases its glow.

8th Level: The mantle magnifies and sharpens the wearer's beauty such that her +4 competence bonus now applies to all Charisma checks, Charisma-based skill checks, and Sense Motive checks against creatures. Against fey, the bonus increases to +6.

10th Level: The mantle's wearer becomes manipulative and eloquent in social situations. Whenever she converses with creatures, she can insert a suggestion (DC 14 Will save negates) for every 10 minutes of conversation by succeeding at a DC 14 Perform (oratory) check. If she ever fails the Perform (oratory) check to use this ability, all creatures who witnessed her misstep are immune to this ability for 24 hours.

12th Level: Once per day, the wearer can release the glow within the mantle in a single coruscating burst of color. This blinds creatures in a 10-foot radius (Reflex DC 19 negates) for 1d4 rounds and completely dispels any darkness spells of 6th level or lower whose source is within its area.

14th Level: The wearer grows a pair of gossamer wings. The wings are delicate and weak, carrying the wearer only with difficulty. She gains a fly speed of 30 feet (poor maneuverability).

16th Level: The wearer's wings grow stronger, more agile, and more beautiful, as iridescent patterns trace along them. Her fly speed increases to 60 feet (good maneuverability), and she gains a +5 competence bonus to Fly checks.

18th Level: The wearer gains a small domain in the fey realm. She can access her domain from any location, creating a silvery gateway. Treat her domain as a mage's magnificent mansion except that its size is equal to 20 10-ft. cubes/level, the domain appears as a natural wilderness instead of a mansion, and the servants are tiny fey instead of nearly-transparent liveried servants.

20th Level: The wearer's type changes to fey, and she gains DR 10/cold iron. If the wearer's type was already fey and she already possessed DR/cold iron, her DR increases by 10 and magic weapons with enhancement bonuses of +3 or greater do not count as cold iron for the purpose of bypassing her DR.

Construction

Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, eagle's splendor, faerie fire, fly, mage's magnificent mansion, sunburst, suggestion, creator must be fey; Cost 132,000 gp

Crystal Tiara

Price 1,000 GP
Slot head; CL 3rd; Weight
Aura moderate conjuration; Scaling wonder

Despite its fragile appearance, this intricate ice crystal tiara has hardness 12 and 10 hp. Its wearer gains the effects of endure elements against cold conditions only.

5th Level: Once per day, the wearer can summon a small ice elemental as summon monster II.

7th Level: As a standard action, the wearer can launch an icicle at a foe within 30 ft. as a ranged attack. On a hit, the icicle deals 1d6 points of piercing damage and 1d6 points of cold damage. The wearer can walk across icy ground without slipping.

10th Level: As part of her move action, the wearer can step into the air, creating crystalline stairs beneath her feat, adding new steps in whichever direction she travels, and melting away behind her. If another tries to climb the steps, they crumble away, leaving only the portions beneath the wearer's feet intact. This otherwise acts as the air walk spell. She can use this ability each day for 10 minutes per level, divided any way she chooses in 10 minute intervals.

12th Level: Once per day, the wearer can call forth an ice storm. When she uses the tiara to summon ice elementals, she can either summon 1d4 small ice elementals or 1 medium ice elemental as summon monster IV.

14th Level: Once per day, the wearer can travel to a safe, very familiar location, as if she had cast ice crystal teleport on herself. When she uses the tiara to summon ice elementals, she can also choose to summon 1d3 medium ice elementals or 1 large ice elemental as summon monster V.

16th Level: The wearer can use the tiara to call up a tower of ice, exactly as an instant fortress except that the tiara does not transform into the tower, the tower takes 1 minute to rise instead of 1 round, the walls of the tower only have 12 hardness, like the tiara, and damage to the tower does not carry over upon multiple uses of this ability.

18th Level: When the wearer calls forth a tower of ice, if there is enough open space, she can also choose to call forth a small palace instead, 100 feet square at the base with 20 foot tall rooms, with a central tower 20 feet square and 100 feet high. At will, she can spend 5 rounds to transform into a flurry of snowflakes that can move at incredible speed. Treat this as wind walk except she gains vulnerability to fire. It normally takes 5 rounds to transform back into her normal shape. However, she can revert to her original form early as a standard action. If she does so, she cannot transform into snowflakes again for 24 hours. When she uses the tiara to summon ice elements, she can also choose to summon 1d4+1 medium ice elementals, 1d3 large ice elementals, or 1 huge ice elemental as summon monster VI.

20th Level: The wearer gains cold resistance 30. When she uses the tiara to summon ice elementals, she can also choose to summon 1d4+1 huge ice elementals, 1d3 greater ice elementals, or 1 elder ice elemental as summon monster VIII. She can create ice stairs without a daily limit, and if she wishes, they last for 1 minute before melting, even if another creature tries to climb them. If she chooses to make them last longer, she can dismiss the stairs behind her as a swift action, potentially causing creatures climbing the stairs to fall.

Construction

Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, air walk, ice crystal teleport, ice storm, summon monster VIII, wind walk; Cost 132,000 gp

The magic chapter has even more surprises, including one of my personal favorite sections in the book, a narrative variant of magic item creation, complete with strange quirks that your item might develop ("My sword is sprouting tentacles!? Aberrant bloodrager, I knew we shouldn't have listened to your gut!" "Hey, the tentacles are helping, man!) Tune in next week for our final preview of Pathfinder Unchained!

Mark Seifter
Designer

Illustrations by Mattias Fahlberg.

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Tags: Magic Items Mattias Fahlberg Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
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Silver Crusade

15 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I know some players who would never let that tiara go.


Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaang, that sounds pretty damn awesome. I'm seriously loving both the robe and the tiara. I'll have to see if I can pick me up some of these next time I'm hitting the magic mart, in high-level campaigns a steal like those two could well be worth taking a ding to WBL.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Nice! I could use both!

Contributor

17 people marked this as a favorite.

Let it goooooooo! Let it gooooooo! Can't chain it back any-more!
Let it goooooooo! Let it gooooooo! Make this joke forevermore!

I don't care if it gets me baaaaaannnnned

I need to make this JOOOOOOOOOOOKE!

[REDACTED]

Grand Lodge

I resubbed for this book.

SHIP IT ALREADY!!

Please.

SM

Paizo Employee Designer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Alexander Augunas wrote:

Let it goooooooo! Let it gooooooo! Can't chain it back any-more!

Let it goooooooo! Let it gooooooo! Make this joke forevermore!

I don't care if it gets me baaaaaannnnned

I need to make this JOOOOOOOOOOOKE!

[REDACTED]

Crowe the Iconic Bloodrager has you beat by like two months.

Contributor

Mark Seifter wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:

Let it goooooooo! Let it gooooooo! Can't chain it back any-more!

Let it goooooooo! Let it gooooooo! Make this joke forevermore!

I don't care if it gets me baaaaaannnnned

I need to make this JOOOOOOOOOOOKE!

[REDACTED]

Crowe the Iconic Bloodrager has you beat by like two months.

I read the song.

Then I sang it aloud, just to make sure it fit well.

When I was satisfied that it did, only a single thought entered my mind: Crow could TOTALLY take Perform (sing) as a background skill and make this happen.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Oh boy...oh boy.


20th level - the cold will never bother you anyway!

Whoever was responsible for making this tiara, I love you. Forever.

Paizo Employee Designer

3 people marked this as a favorite.

I wrote both of these. Does that make me a biased previewer?

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I'm about to get my manly character to wear his fairy princess costume...lets start with the tiara and the robe of the faerie queen.


These are awesome!

Scarab Sages

These look really neat and I look forward to seeing the ritual suggestions and all. Gives a PC a bit more feeling of destiny.

Just to be sure I'm reading these right for the Robe of the Faerie Queen (long day)

Base Form
"+4 competence bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, and Sense Motive checks against fey."

The bonus only works when you use these skills against fey.

Level 8
"+4 competence bonus now applies to all Charisma checks, Charisma-based skill checks, and Sense Motive checks against creatures."

The bonus applies to all CHA checks, all CHA-skill Checks, and when you use sense motive against a creature.

Paizo Employee Designer

Level 8 still scopes the whole thing to "against creatures," just like how before it all scoped to fey.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

Hold on... you're adding magic items that SCALE with the wearer's level?

*angelic choirs*

THANK YOU! Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you :)


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

is there a version of the sword Briar in there? or will that be in a Unchained Origins/Realms?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Interesting ... :)

Liberty's Edge

Items that level are pretty awesome, especially for a character's iconic equipment.
But it doesn't really satisfy the desire for low or no magic campaigns. I want to see something official for that.

Paizo Employee Designer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Jester David wrote:

Items that level are pretty awesome, especially for a character's iconic equipment.

But it doesn't really satisfy the desire for low or no magic campaigns. I want to see something official for that.

You, sir, have posted the best segue possible into next week's blog (at least if current plans stay the same).

Grand Lodge

Jester David wrote:

Items that level are pretty awesome, especially for a character's iconic equipment.

But it doesn't really satisfy the desire for low or no magic campaigns. I want to see something official for that.

Why do you need something official to restrict options?

"There are no full casters in my game world."
"Magic items in my game world are exceedingly rare and cost 10 times the price listed in the books."


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Verrrryy cool. I see RPG SS voter headaches next year :) .

hmmm.... cost is listed but no price. Is this to represent the character's hereditary item gaining abilities as she levels? That is to say you can't actually buy a crystal tiara, you just have this cool thing Mom gave you when you left to become an adventurer?


Damn, these items are basically impossible to craft with that giant raw material cost.


Curaigh wrote:

Verrrryy cool. I see RPG SS voter headaches next year :) .

hmmm.... cost is listed but no price. Is this to represent the character's hereditary item gaining abilities as she levels? That is to say you can't actually buy a crystal tiara, you just have this cool thing Mom gave you when you left to become an adventurer?

Robe of the Faerie Queen wrote:
Price 4,800 gp
Crystal Tiara wrote:
Price 1,000 gp

Prices are listed right under the name (above item slot and CL).

As for the items themselves, scaling items are something I've tried to do before with intelligent items to some frustration -- I'm really excited to see the Unchained examples and (hopefully) some guidelines so GMs can create their own! Awesome preview, Mark.


Mark Seifter wrote:
I wrote both of these. Does that make me a biased previewer?

Sigh... Why do you taunt me so! I'm already throwing money at the computer but I'm not getting a book to come out... :P

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Dat tiara... holy crap.

Shadow Lodge

Scaling magic items without scaling DCs

Still awesome!


Dragonborn3 wrote:

Scaling magic items without scaling DCs

Still awesome!

You could probably adjust the saves by making them 10 + 1/2 Character Level + some ability score.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
graystone wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
I wrote both of these. Does that make me a biased previewer?
Sigh... Why do you taunt me so! I'm already throwing money at the computer but I'm not getting a book to come out... :P

It requires very precise timing and aim. I managed to start a subscription on the day before the shipment authorizations started, and less than a week later I had my PDF. I have no idea whether subscribing now would get you the PDF before the 29th.


While most are thinking of Frozen for that tiara, I must admit that the Ice King and his crown or his gender flipped counterpart came to mind as well.

Also, what about someone who wears both the robe and the tiara?

Is the change to fey only while they are wearing it or can they take it off and remain a fey so long as they retain ownership of it?


Mark Seifter wrote:
Jester David wrote:

Items that level are pretty awesome, especially for a character's iconic equipment.

But it doesn't really satisfy the desire for low or no magic campaigns. I want to see something official for that.
You, sir, have posted the best segue possible into next week's blog (at least if current plans stay the same).

My ears, they perk up.

Shadow Lodge

We're never going back, the past in the past.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Would it be mean of me to put that robe on the boss of kingmaker? +10 DR and no cold iron bypass is nasty.


Mechalibur wrote:
Would it be mean of me to put that robe on the boss of kingmaker? +10 DR and no cold iron bypass is nasty.

Actual cold iron still bypasses it.


It's intententional that they combo up to make the greatest Winter Faerie Queen of the realm?

Anyway, even given that making ice palaces out of nowhere is extremely cool, it doesn't seem worth 264.000 gp out of your WBL. Sorry, i forgot, it also gives the 2d6 cantrip ...

I mean, this items seems awesome thematically, but i would like something that is more usefull to someone who is risking getting shredded by interdimensional aberration or smashed by divine offspring. Those sound more like NPC items.


Both are amazingly awesome!

Though you'd think the robe of the faerie queen would be a bit more, er, exotic in appearance.

Still, it's all awesome. ^_^


The post mentions that you have multiple systems for advancement, which is intriguing.

But I'm wondering if there will be guidelines for designing your own advancing items?

I feel like these are best used as unique treasure or heirlooms that work with a particular character, and so being able to design something to suit your particular party member or NPC would be helpful.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I have been doing this for a few years now, usually with magical weapons. I always hated the image of the fighter tossing aside his +1 sword that he lovingly carried for a year, when he stumbles across a +2 sword.

I usually make the power of the wepaon go up as the character increases in level, as well as add additional powers. They are always designed for a particular PC and become an important story element.

These weapons are always items with their own unique histories and backgrounds, and are not given out lightly. Most have important implications to and tie-ins with the campaign story arc.

As an example, here is the sword found at around 3rd level by the anti-paladin in my Way of the Wicked campaign, which wrapped up at 20th level last year... it was a holy relic of the Asmodean faith lost in religious purges years ago:

1st-5th level: +1 grayflame longsword
6th-10th level: +2 furyborn grayflame longsword
11th-15th level: +3 advancing furyborn grayflame longsword
16th-18th level: +4 advancing furyborn grayflame unholy longsword
19th-20th level: +5 advancing furyborn grayflame unholy vorpal longsword

It will be interesting to see where Paizo goes with this.

Liberty's Edge

This reminds me a lot of the 4E magic items which I really enjoyed!


I would have preferred they just point out the obvious solution of letting players sacrifice gold to directly enchant items without needing feats or skills.

Paizo Employee Designer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Berselius wrote:

Both are amazingly awesome!

Though you'd think the robe of the faerie queen would be a bit more, er, exotic in appearance.

Still, it's all awesome. ^_^

I like how both of them turned out, but it's true that the robe of the faerie queen's original art order was more exotic. What I asked for may well have been impossible to illustrate on a page though!

Paizo Employee Designer

occultism wrote:

The post mentions that you have multiple systems for advancement, which is intriguing.

But I'm wondering if there will be guidelines for designing your own advancing items?

I feel like these are best used as unique treasure or heirlooms that work with a particular character, and so being able to design something to suit your particular party member or NPC would be helpful.

It's Unchained, and our big goal was to spur your imagination and give you all the tools you need to tinker. Of course we have you covered!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

A rework of magic item creation has my interest.


What if you changed these items to actually do something useful?

At any of the levels?

The only useful power of the item I can see is the 8th level robe power, which is good for oracles and people who take noble scion(war).

I laughed at the suggestion power, I sure hope the other person doesn't have spellcraft


I think my GM would object to my morbidly obese diplomat character wearing a robe described with the sentence, "When donned, this sheer, sleeved cape fades to near invisibility."


CWheezy wrote:

What if you changed these items to actually do something useful?

At any of the levels?

The only useful power of the item I can see is the 8th level robe power, which is good for oracles and people who take noble scion(war).

I laughed at the suggestion power, I sure hope the other person doesn't have spellcraft

Have you just never played in a game that involved actual intrigue ever? This is a better circlet of persuasion, already a really good item, that just has a minimum level requirement for only 300 more gp.


I guess you glossed over where I said the 8th level power was good


So we officially have unofficial Weapons of Legacy: Pathfinder Edition, then?

Me likey.

The one question I have is: is there a guideline for how to CREATE these?

When I've created Legacy items for my players in the past, I've always stated out the weapons at ever level to see if they fall within the WBL purview, just to make sure nothing was too overpowered. It seems to have worked well, but was fairly time consuming.

The Exchange

Nice! Reminds me of Earthdawn where some of the items over time would unlock more powers (well, it's more of exp costs invested into the items). Err... something like, last time I played that game was in the 90's so I really can't remember clearly how they did it.


Alex Smith 908 wrote:
CWheezy wrote:

What if you changed these items to actually do something useful?

At any of the levels?

The only useful power of the item I can see is the 8th level robe power, which is good for oracles and people who take noble scion(war).

I laughed at the suggestion power, I sure hope the other person doesn't have spellcraft

Have you just never played in a game that involved actual intrigue ever? This is a better circlet of persuasion, already a really good item, that just has a minimum level requirement for only 300 more gp.

You missed the part where that is only the cost for the first power. each new power is gonna cost you a part of your treasure share. At level 20 the estimated total cost of the item is 264.000 gp (double the crafting cost)


Wait you have to PAY for those advancements???

I thought they were free lol

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