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Old 01-21-2014, 04:50 PM   #13
Join Date: Dec 2010
Default Re: Treasure from the Sheikh of the Grinning Skull Oasis

OK, here's a few more:

Despoiling Bean: These small, dried pods react violently on contact with water, producing enormous quantities of choking algae. Limpid pools instantly become fetid swamps, and even rushing rivers are easily clogged. In temperate climes this is usually temporary, but in drier areas there may not be enough water to flush away the gunk. Aqueducts and wells are especially vulnerable.

Sand Shaper: This array of jagged metal rods is mounted on an arcane system of gears and axles, big enough it has to be moved by ox-cart. When powered (usually by draft animals harnessed to a wheel, but potentially by windmill or some more exotic source of motion) the rods whir to and fro, and crackling arcs of lightning leap across the machine. Loose sand in the vicinity flows into a shape determined by the arrangement of rods - it's currently aligned to produce a small encampment of perhaps 30 huts surrounded by a two meter high wall, with the device in the center. It could probably be rearranged, if anyone could figure out how it works. Once the final shape of the sand has been reached the structures are stable over the short term and the device can be powered down, but moisture weakens the structures substantially - humid air will collapse buildings in minutes, a splash of liquid will disintegrate whole buildings on contact.

Desert Striders: A sand-aspected version of a common sort of enchanted footwear, with a twist. Wearing these boots grants Terrain Adaptation (sand), negates any movement penalties due to unstable footing in the desert and enable the wearer to hike and run on sand as though it were packed earth (for the purposes of calculating miles traveled per day, etc.). In addition, the boots allow the wearer to 'ski' on sand dunes with speed and handling similar to actual skis on snowy hills.

Carrion Maw: An enormous skull, probably giantish, which has been worked into an goblet/cauldron. It has brass fittings and accents, including a drain in the bottom of the cup which leads out the nasal passageways. It is useful in many ritual magics which require a cauldron, and is a superb specimen of such thaumatological gear (for whatever that's worth). It's got a special enchantment on it, too: when blood is poured into the cup, a brief spell recited (several versions of which are helpfully carved into the bowl itself), and the spigots opened, the contents of the cauldron issue forth from the nose-holes at great speed, becoming a swarm of pestilent creatures. Flies and locusts are popular, of course, but with enough blood the cauldron can even produce packs of wild dogs or flocks of crows. All such creatures are, naturally, blood red (often flecked with black or green inclusions), and dissolve into goo when destroyed.

Razorthrift: A light scimitar, matte black everywhere but its gleaming edge (which glints even in perfect darkness). Any attack which would cripple the target instead automatically dismembers the relevant body part - a solid hit to any extremity separates it cleanly. On the plus side (for the diminished victim), such wounds bleed very little. Season with damage and holdout bonuses to taste.

Heart of the Lion: This desiccated heart of a desert lion allows the user to track prey across even the featureless sand. The tracker cuts himself and douses the heart in his blood (1 HP should do), while whispering the name of his prey (either human or animal, the heart works on any living thing). The heart beats in his hand, acting like a dowsing rod - getting faster and louder as it approaches its target. When the target is dead, the heart expels the blood sacrifice with its last beat, becoming dry and lifeless again. If it is possible to give up a hunt before killing the target it's not clear how this would be accomplished - the heart can track one thing at a time. If the user specifies an animal by species name, the heart 'locks on' to the nearest animal that meets the description at the time of the ritual. Sentient beings can only be specified by name. Edit: Of course the heart is already 'attuned' when the PCs find it. Probably to some sultan or someone of import.
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