What is your favorite "useless" magic item?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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I have to say as much as I want a suit of armor that protects me from elemental attacks or a headband that boosts my stats my favorite magic items are the neat little slice of life magic items that often don't give a mechanical benefit but are still neat flavor items that help flesh out your character and game world.

This is my favorite:

Quote:

Expedition Pavilion

Aura faint evocation; CL 5th

Slot none; Price 6,400 gp; Weight 10 lbs.
Description

This ordinary-looking, windowless tent appears to cover only a 10-foot-by-10-foot area, but, inside, it measures a full 30 feet by 30 feet, with a large central area and three small “bedrooms” (separated by curtains) along the back wall. The interior can be lit on command, and can be adjusted from normal darkness as per the spell light. Occupants inside the tent cannot be seen, heard, or smelled by creatures outside.

The temperature inside the expedition pavilion is 70° F if the exterior temperature is between 0° and 100° F. For every degree the exterior temperature is below 0° or above 100°, the interior temperature decreases or increases, respectively, by 1°. The pavilion also provides protection against the elements, such as rain, dust, and sandstorms. The pavilion withstands any wind of less than hurricane force, but a hurricane (75+ mph wind speed) or greater force destroys it. The pavilion can only be set up once per day, requiring 10 minutes to erect or dismantle. The tent cannot be dismantled while foreign objects are still inside, though if the pavilion is destroyed, any creatures and objects inside immediately spill out.
Construction Requirements

Craft Wondrous Item, hide from animals, tiny hut; Cost 3,200 gp

Its a 4 room 900 square foot apartment with free AC, central heating and lights that fits in your backpack! How cool is that? Granted most DM's don't even care if you carry a bedroll but as soon as my theurge is able to build one it will be one of the first magic items I make myself.

what are yours?


I once made 3 tiny constructs that would wander around the property outside and occasionally firing off a horizontal fan shaped level 1 burning hands. Automated lawn mower.

Magic box that would use prestidigitation to clean anything plased within it twice a day. Automatic clothing and dish washer.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

One of my group mates once had a magical signal whistle that when blown would shout for help in the voice of a small child. It was initially meant as a joke by the dm, but we ended up keeping and even at times using it to trick npcs.


I've had so many unique magic items over the years...

Right now my druid has a "magic tupperware box" which is a magical metal container which doubles the effective duration of any food item, normal or magical. She uses it to keep a supply of goodberries effective for twice as long as normal. It's not that useful now that she's level 8, but when she was level 2, it was a huge help.

All of my wizards have had custom magic items that do meaningless chores like clean dishes, arrange campsites, turn on and off lights, etc. Pretty much anything you think of as a modern convenience, including magical iPods.

We once encountered a town boss who had a magical ice cream maker...


I had a hooded lantern with a tiny fire elemental inside. It could be commanded to 'flare' to increase the light intensity and radius for a short time. When the lantern was opened the elemental could be commanded to light all the light sources in an area, darting from candle to candle or torch sconce and fireplace. The party found it in a wizards library where there were hundreds of candles and a fireplace.
They used it once to light some oil thrown on a troll. Good times.

Sovereign Court

Rod of wonder, the more effects the better, I once went online and took the variant rod of wonder effects and then added them to the rod of wonder in the end I had a rod of wonder with approx. 75 random possibilities, with a roll of 100 being DMs choice. I want to get a rod of wonder for my own character.


I can't believe nobody mentioned the insanity of the Apparatus of Kwalish (sorry, "of the Crab") yet.

I personally always liked the Decanter of Endless Water and Myrlund's Spoon (oops, Sustaining Spoon). I think a lot of people tend to forget about the simple things like eating and drinking when they're off hunting gods. But these items are life changing when you really think about it.


My character currently has a small pin shaped like a hand. It's effectively a permanent unseen servant.


I think my most often purchased and held item by my characters that never gets used with my gaming group, is the pair of +1 merciful saps.

Alot of my characters are 2 weapon fighters, and very rarely have any levels in monk. I also tend to run good alignment, meaning if we get in some bar brawl I'm not gonna whip out the whirling blades of death and make the towns population drop over the course of a few roudns. so I constantly go out of my way and spend some gold to get helpful little backup weapons which at the worst will leave everyone with non alchohol induced headaches, and then never find the opportunity to use them.

Asta
PSY


I put a unique staff into a game. The staff as it's only power could cast light on command. However it had three slots that you could insert three wands or rods into and be able to use them through the staff. I thought having three wands at the ready would be pretty cool.
What made it 'useless' was the wizard who ended up with it never once used it. It ended up at the bottom of a bag of holding. *sigh*


mplindustries wrote:

I can't believe nobody mentioned the insanity of the Apparatus of Kwalish (sorry, "of the Crab") yet.

I personally always liked the Decanter of Endless Water and Myrlund's Spoon (oops, Sustaining Spoon). I think a lot of people tend to forget about the simple things like eating and drinking when they're off hunting gods. But these items are life changing when you really think about it.

Personally I would use the sustaining spoon to feed livestock that I would then eat, probably chickens.

This thread is tempting me to make a thread about people's builds for "useless" magic items.


rat_ bastard wrote:

Personally I would use the sustaining spoon to feed livestock that I would then eat, probably chickens.

This thread is tempting me to make a thread about people's builds for "useless" magic items.

I had a character once who spent all their extra money on Myrlund's Spoons and gave them to orphanages. They're practically pocket change in the teens.

Shadow Lodge

An Ioun Torch is going to be part of my loadout from now own, nevermind the character. Sure, just about everyone has [i]light[/i) as a zero level spell, but the thing is so damn nifty anyway. Never having to carry a torch, always keeping a light source handy. Love it.

A Wind Fan, yet another cool and down-to-earth magic item. Yet it has so many uses: Blow a swarm away, cloak a hallway lined with torches in darkness, debuff an archer, get rid of gases, etc. Only restriction is its
uses per day but, like with all old-school items, the risk only makes it that much cooler.


A cup that produces any liquid inside that you want as long as you can speak a language and clearly state what you want in the cup (no lava or acid). The catch is that whenever it gets turned upside down or tilted it yells "Pee!". The variety of which you can decide for yourself.


From the MIC - portable oasis. Kind of like your tent, but with a pool and dates.


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At the top of my list is the simple dust of dryness, entirely because one of my players, being out classed and seeing no better option, goaded a dragon into biting him then carrying the bite through into a grab. At this point, ALL OF THE DUST was administered to the dragon's mouth/throat.

"*cough* *cough* *hack* *wheeze* These... these humans are making me thirsty!"


Heh, I forgot to mention, my 4e ranger has a custom magic cigar lighter...


Muser wrote:

An Ioun Torch is going to be part of my loadout from now own, nevermind the character. Sure, just about everyone has [i]light[/i) as a zero level spell, but the thing is so damn nifty anyway. Never having to carry a torch, always keeping a light source handy. Love it.

I always have some sort of continual flame spell cast on somethiong mounted on my helmet, something like a miner's helmet.

Liberty's Edge

Instant Fortress

Aura strong conjuration; CL 13th

Slot —; Price 55,000 gp; Weight 1 lb.

Description
This metal cube is small, but when activated by speaking a command word it grows to form a tower 20 feet square and 30 feet high, with arrow slits on all sides and a crenellated battlement atop it. The metal walls extend 10 feet into the ground, rooting it to the spot and preventing it from being tipped over. The fortress has a small door that opens only at the command of the owner of the fortress—even knock spells can't open the door.

The adamantine walls of an instant fortress have 100 hit points and hardness 20. The fortress cannot be repaired except by a wish or a miracle, which restores 50 points of damage taken.

The fortress springs up in just 1 round, with the door facing the device's owner. The door opens and closes instantly at his command. People and creatures nearby (except the owner) must be careful not to be caught by the fortress's sudden growth. Anyone so caught takes 10d10 points of damage (Reflex DC 19 half).

The fortress is deactivated by speaking a command word (different from the one used to activate it). It cannot be deactivated unless it is empty.

"i am roughing it sir. the bed only has my second best silk sheets and out of fashion wardrobe." hehe


There was a "Fill My Dragon's Hoard" thread a while back FULL of all sorts of amusing random magical items.

The Exchange

Daroob wrote:
Muser wrote:

An Ioun Torch is going to be part of my loadout from now own, nevermind the character. Sure, just about everyone has [i]light[/i) as a zero level spell, but the thing is so damn nifty anyway. Never having to carry a torch, always keeping a light source handy. Love it.

I always have some sort of continual flame spell cast on somethiong mounted on my helmet, something like a miner's helmet.

I always poke fun at the ioun torch - I figure the PCs get a little dizzy after a while because the shadows are constantly moving due to the orbit of the stone...

The Exchange

I used to feed the homeless and beggars in Greyhawk from my Field Ration Box. You can make some good friends that way!


Wearing a ioun torch is much appreciated by enemies. Gives a nice bullseye to shoot at.


Mug of Endless Ale. While not useless, Jade Regent's Flask of Endless Sake is also great. :D Now I need a Mug of Endless Coffee!


Personally there's so many items that fill this slot I'd have trouble picking just one my general favorites include . . .

1) Storage containers e.g. bags of holding, handy haversacks, belts of many books, wizards writing desks etc.
2) Living accomadations e.g. expedition pavillion, instant fortress, cloud tent (when shut it rises into the air and imitates a cloud)
3) Travel aids e.g. rings of sustanence or living maps (map out the area around you within a certain distance but can only be used once per day, they even mark the major threats, for the party).
4) Timesavers e.g. the bedroll that halves your sleep time giving you an extra four hours to do things.
5) Unique items e.g. the portable library which is a book linked to a designated library allowing a wizard to just state the spell, or research book they want open it up and there it is. Of course if you want to add something you need to go to the actual library but its still handy.


I've never understood the appeal of magic items that lower the need for sleep. Sleeping is nice, I like to sleep, Sleep is where I am a viking!

Same goes for things that replace food or provide an endless supply of food that can be described as wet cardboard.

This thread has caused me to look over my old 2nd edition magic item encyclopedia books. A lot of weird little items that have no practical use but are fun.


Hand of the Mage.

...It's purely for the sake of "Need a hand?" puns I think.

I'm also a fan of the various Feather Tokens. They're super cheap and good for some out of battle fun.

And though it probably doesn't count as useless, I love the Cubic Gate. Not particularly for practical purposes, I just like plane-hopping.


Feather Token-Tree. I mean...it's a freaking instant tree!
How f~*#ing cool is that?!


rat_ bastard wrote:

I've never understood the appeal of magic items that lower the need for sleep. Sleeping is nice, I like to sleep, Sleep is where I am a viking!

I hate sleep. It is my eternal enemy. I wish I didn't have to sleep. I could get 8 hours of reading/watching movies/cleaning/overtime every day if I didn't have to sleep. Also, I'm a Viking IRL, so there's that.


meatrace wrote:

Feather Token-Tree. I mean...it's a freaking instant tree!

How f&~~ing cool is that?!

That and Fly is the best siege weapon I've ever seen in any game.

Nothing like a full sized oak delivered from half a mile up.

Silver Crusade

mplindustries wrote:

I can't believe nobody mentioned the insanity of the Apparatus of Kwalish (sorry, "of the Crab") yet.

I personally always liked the Decanter of Endless Water and Myrlund's Spoon (oops, Sustaining Spoon). I think a lot of people tend to forget about the simple things like eating and drinking when they're off hunting gods. But these items are life changing when you really think about it.

I thought this was "useless" magic items.... :D

Seriously-- I found the Decanter of Endless Water vitally useful in all too many games, too many different ways, for me to consider mentioning it on a thread like this one (including the basic, got to have water to drink). Similarly, the Traveler's Cloak was a really nifty item (Magic of Faerun was the source, I believe)-- not big game effects, but in terms of character-benefit for staying comfortable, fed, etc.-- in character, priceless.

One of my other favorites, that comes close to really belonging here: Earrings of Prestidigitation (made especially so that non-spell-casters can wear and use them): chill or warm your drinks, spice & flavor your food, keep yourself clean, keep your clothes clean, magic hair dryer after getting dunked or rained on, instant perfume/cologne-- whatever type you desire, instant fashion re-accessorization by temporarily re-coloring your clothes and accoutrements.... the list goes on, with no real (mechanical) game effects, no major adjustments to play, but oh so useful in keeping a character comfortable, fashionable and cool (in the not-literally-referring to temperature sense)-- don't let those mages be the only ones who get to enjoy the wonders of the prestidigitation cantrip!


meatrace wrote:
rat_ bastard wrote:

I've never understood the appeal of magic items that lower the need for sleep. Sleeping is nice, I like to sleep, Sleep is where I am a viking!

I hate sleep. It is my eternal enemy. I wish I didn't have to sleep. I could get 8 hours of reading/watching movies/cleaning/overtime every day if I didn't have to sleep. Also, I'm a Viking IRL, so there's that.

Exactly sleepings nice enough although I prefer the lounging around when your half awake and know you don't have to get up, actual sleep is usually something where you aren't aware enough to enjoy it.

Me I'd far rather immortality (not invulnrability that way you can still die of existence gets too wearying) over little need to sleep that way you can still do all the things you want and you've got millenia to slowly master various skills. Time travel would be good to so you could pop back to famous events or a time where people didn't give you a hard time for spending a decade learning the art of carpentry or pottery and you could legitimately earn a living by doing odd jobs around the village.

The items that reduce/negate the need to sleep are handy because you get a lot of extra time to relax or do things you enjoy painting, drawaing, reading, watching tv, or if your an adventurer just gazing into the sky and watching the stars while the rest of the parties sleeping or on watch.


I really like the folding boat, it's generally useless but freaking awesome to have and when you need it, it's a lifesaver.

I had a ring of water walking once, thought it was crap at first. For whatever reason it turned out to be one of the most useful things the party had. It caused havoc on all kinds of encounters.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
meatrace wrote:

Feather Token-Tree. I mean...it's a freaking instant tree!

How f*&~ing cool is that?!

It's freaking awsome is what it is! My socerer in the Kingmaker campaign I'm in got himself a dryad girlfriend with one of those.

The Exchange

One item the players in my latest campaign are enjoying is, technically, a creature instead: a prototype soulbound doll that's so crude that it's not much more than a starfish-shaped cushion with eyes on one end. Like other soulbound dolls it's self-aware, but it can't do a darn thing in combat (no fingers and a CMB of -5). Its mouth was drawn on in charcoal, so it can't even speak. The doll's willingness to help and total ineffectiveness (it tends to charge fearlessly only to bounce off the enemy) are comedy gold. But it's not as useless as you might think at first glance: the party has found that the doll can carry a sunrod and stand guard through the night watches...


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Doomed Hero wrote:
meatrace wrote:

Feather Token-Tree. I mean...it's a freaking instant tree!

How f&~~ing cool is that?!

That and Fly is the best siege weapon I've ever seen in any game.

Nothing like a full sized oak delivered from half a mile up.

Don't you have to throw a feather token to the ground to activate it? Methinks a feather isn't going to do much damage.

EDIT: Nope. Guess I was wrong about that. :P

zagnabbit wrote:

I really like the folding boat, it's generally useless but freaking awesome to have and when you need it, it's a lifesaver.

I had a ring of water walking once, thought it was crap at first. For whatever reason it turned out to be one of the most useful things the party had. It caused havoc on all kinds of encounters.

A sorcerer in my games has a folding boat. He has won SO MANY encounters by simply dropping it on the enemy leader. He's weaponized it more times than he's sailed it.


Talking of dropping things, there was a game where we dropped a Daewerns (sp?) instant fortress on an underground city from the top of the cavern. It made quite a bang i tell you. (I dont think the stipulations for placing it on the ground were about at the time, but we had access to stone shape and could have made a thin ledge to stand it on that wouldnt hold its weight)


bookmark


Once had a fork, that when you looked at it all you could think about was what you were doing five minutes ago.
We eventually found a large magical area that would drain int. and make you forget what you were doing so that you would stay in it. (with a failed save of course)
Gave the fastest character all the will save buffs we could, then My character had them sit down and think about getting to the other side for awhile, then proceeded to tie the fork to their head and send them across. Made it, even with a few failed saves.


Speaking of dropping things, and yes I know this is getting way OT, but Shrink Item on an entire barrel (50 doses or so) of holy water, then toss at a demon. Heh.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

This isn't an official item, but...

One of my characters got a dictionary that automatically opened up to the word you were looking for.


My group doesn't role play much. I throw things like this at them and they either sell it or leave it where they find it. :( It's almost insulting.

Things like lockets that can create insubstantial animated constructs (aka: 3-D holograms) of whatever memory is tied to them. Toy swords that make metallic sounds and give off harmless sparks when they clash. bracelets that repel light rain (but won't stop you from getting drenched if you dive in the lake).

I love stuff like that.


A few more favorites:

Field Scrivener's Desk

Aura faint evocation; CL 5th
Slot none; Price 5,400 gp; Weight 2 lbs.
DESCRIPTION

Pathfinders are often called upon to take notes during their adventures, but sometimes finding a place where one can write in comfort while on a mission can be rather difficult. The field scrivener’s desk attempts to address this need. This magic desk can be folded up into a 3-inch-wide cube of lacquered wood for easy transport. Once per day, a single command causes this block of wood to unfold in the space of 1 round into an exquisite writing desk sized for a Small or Medium author, complete with four vials of ink, two writing quills, and 50 blank sheets of paper. The desk creates new supplies of ink, quills, and paper each time it is unfolded. Once the desk is unfolded, it creates a 20-foot radius hemisphere centered on the desk’s location—this effect is identical to that created by a tiny hut spell. Once activated, the desk’s tiny hut effect lasts for up to 10 hours or until the desk is folded up or moved more than a few inches. Of course, the effect also works to provide an ideal spot for a campsite, and in most parties a field scrivener’s desk is used solely for this effect.
CONSTRUCTION REQUIREMENTS

Craft Wondrous Item, shrink item, tiny hut; Cost 2,700 gp.

Bead, Campfire

Aura
faint evocation; CL 1st

Slot none; Price 720 gp; Weight
Description

This tiny glass bead transforms itself into a small (2-foot-tall) pile of burning logs whenever its command word is spoken. The fire burns for 8 hours or until extinguished, at which point it turns back into a bead. The owner of the item must wait twice as long as the fire burned before he can order the bead to become a campfire again.
Construction Requirements

Craft Wondrous Item, produce flame; Cost 360 gp

Costume Bureau

Aura moderate conjuration and transmutation; CL 9th
Slot none; Price 7,000 gp; Weight 500 lbs.

Description

This large oaken bureau has a double-door cabinet that sits atop three horizontal drawers. Once per day, you can concentrate on a set of clothing you would like to wear, then open the cabinet or one of the drawers to retrieve a set of magically fabricated clothing matching what you imagined. While worn, the clothing gives you a +2 enhancement bonus to Charisma. The clothes fade to worthless scraps after 24 hours, as do any pieces separated from the whole (such as buttons, gem adornments, or strips torn off as bandages).

Construction Requirements

Craft Wondrous Item, eagle's splendor, fabricate, minor creation, creator must have at least 2 ranks in Craft (tailoring) or Profession (tailor); Cost 3,500 gp


Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Doomed Hero wrote:
meatrace wrote:

Feather Token-Tree. I mean...it's a freaking instant tree!

How f&~~ing cool is that?!

That and Fly is the best siege weapon I've ever seen in any game.

Nothing like a full sized oak delivered from half a mile up.

They're also good for setting off in the mouth of something that's trying to swallow you whole. :)


rat_ bastard wrote:
Sleeping is nice, I like to sleep, Sleep is where I am a viking!

I think this is my next Facebook update.


@rat bastard that last one reminds me of those old british commedy shows, how about we modify it a little . . .

Auto-Closet

Aura moderate Conjuration and Transmutation; CL 9th
Slot none; Price 7,000 gp; Weight 500 lbs.
DESCRIPTION

The orginas of this strange device is uknown as a physical examination reveals merely a short hallway with a door at each end. However anyone walking through this hallway while concentrating on a specific clothing need will find their clothing altered to fit their desire according to the following table . . .

Will Save DC 12: Appropriate Clothing for the purpose e.g. a mens suit.

Failed Will Save DC 12: Innapropriate Appropriate Clothing for the purpose e.g. instead of a mans suit the man in question will find himself attired in a flattering formal gown complete with jewelry and makeup that would make any woman the belle of the ball, a swimsuit 50 years out of date or an outfit obviously belonging to a child. Only clothing and accessories e.g. make up are changed no physical or mental change to the person in question has been observed.

Natural 1: Wildly innapropriate clothing e.g. Viking raiding gear instead of a mans suit, fur clothing, metal helmet, non-magical battle axe etc.

This has been dismissed as a minor side effect since aside from some embarassment all the person needs to do is re-entire the hallway from the opposite side to try again.

When appropriate, the clothing gives you a +2 enhancement bonus to Charisma or disguise checks. The clothes fade to worthless scraps after 24 hours, as do any pieces separated from the whole (such as buttons, gem adornments, or strips torn off as bandages).

CONSTRUCTION REQUIREMENTS

Craft Wondrous Item, eagle's splendor, fabricate, minor creation, creator must have at least 2 ranks in Craft (tailoring) or Profession (tailor); Cost 3,500 gp.


I need to stat out a shrinking bed that I can carry around and put in my pavilion, as well as a bath tub and a self cleaning chamber pot.

That way my expedition pavilion can have a bedroom, a office and a bath room.


Finn K wrote:
Earrings of Prestidigitation (made especially so that non-spell-casters can wear and use them): [snip] instant perfume/cologne-- whatever type you desire, instant fashion re-accessorization by temporarily re-coloring your clothes and accoutrements....

That reminds me of my childhood. It's showtime, Synergy!

In a reference to a much better show, I know a PC who had a box of endless doughnuts and sausages.


I LOVE immovable rods. I rarely have a rogue type without at least two. Need to climb something? Use two like a ladder. Want to balance high above a fight and rain death? Same idea. Also useful for: holding doors, tethering small boats, punching holes in moving objects, saving yourself from a nasty fall, trapping an enemy (or ally) against the ground, and the best one of all.... A makeshift swing.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Elondor wrote:
I LOVE immovable rods. I rarely have a rogue type without at least two. Need to climb something? Use two like a ladder. Want to balance high above a fight and rain death? Same idea. Also useful for: holding doors, tethering small boats, punching holes in moving objects, saving yourself from a nasty fall, trapping an enemy (or ally) against the ground, and the best one of all.... A makeshift swing.

Just as long as you remember it is a DC 15 climb check to pull yourself up by your hands. It's not quite like a ladder after all (as it doesn't have footholds to support your weight).

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