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Old 04-10-2021, 09:59 PM   #1
phiwum
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Boston area
Default Does remove curse fix a staff?

A wizard's staff explodes if anyone picks it up against the wizard's will. Now, I could argue that a dead wizard has no will, so it's safe as soon as he snuffs it, but that's not my question.

On ITL 158, it says that a wizard's staff is "naturally" limited to its maker and in the same paragraph it says that limiting spells may be removed by Remove Curse.

So, can you make a staff safe to pick up by using Remove Curse? Or does "naturally" mean that it's not really a limiting spell at play here?

I don't think this is a terribly important question. I was just thinking about limiting spells because I'm thinking of good treasure (like powerstones) that are more or less useless because of a limiting spell. I presume that "Remove Curse" refers to "Remove Cursed Object", which is an IQ 17 spell and fairly rare in my campaign.

But then I thought of the common trick of embedding a powerstone in a staff, so that it can't even be touched for some long time. That's a pretty good safety measure, but anyone who can remove a limiting spell can't be deterred that way, if I read things right. Again, not too many such folk in my campaign, but some.
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Old 04-10-2021, 10:04 PM   #2
Anthony
 
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

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Originally Posted by phiwum View Post
But then I thought of the common trick of embedding a powerstone in a staff, so that it can't even be touched for some long time. That's a pretty good safety measure, but anyone who can remove a limiting spell can't be deterred that way, if I read things right. Again, not too many such folk in my campaign, but some.
Or you can solve the problem by destroying the staff. You don't need to pick up a staff to break it.
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Old 04-10-2021, 10:21 PM   #3
phiwum
 
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

Huh. I thought that Staff II made a staff unbreakable, but it just makes it immune to Break Weapon and critical failures. I guess you're right. You could hack it to pieces.

I guess that one good thwack destroys it as a physical staff, and then the magic is gone. That's a rather simpler solution to getting the powerstone out. Now, if it has a limiting spell, you're still stuck with Remove Curse(d Object).

Limiting spells cost about $1000 and 2 weeks of work. I don't even buy the insurance on my mobile phone. I wonder how many folks would bother with these spells.

You could make good business selling stickers saying "This item is protected by a Limiting Spell."
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Old 04-11-2021, 09:44 AM   #4
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

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Originally Posted by phiwum View Post

So, can you make a staff safe to pick up by using Remove Curse? Or does "naturally" mean that it's not really a limiting spell at play here?
That seems reasonable, but the staff is described as "eventually" becoming safe after its creator dies, with no mention of Remove Curse expediting, so one could just as reasonably say "No."
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Old 04-11-2021, 10:14 AM   #5
phiwum
 
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

Yes, Shostak, I suppose it's all up to the GM whether Remove Cursed Object works in this way. Could be the staff's natural limitation is different than a limiting spell.

Thinking about Anthony's comment a bit more, it really never struck me that one could disarm a wizard holding a staff, but the literal description of Staff II suggests so. It protects against magic and bad luck, not physical attacks which disarm.

The only ways a character can disarm, magic aside, involve mastery skills (weapon, fencing or UC V) or the quarterstaff, so this won't come up very often I suppose.

I have one nuisance monster who can disarm, but he doesn't care about hunks of wood.
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Old 04-11-2021, 11:04 AM   #6
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

Easiest way to get a wizard to drop his staff is the auto-HTH of UC-III
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Old 04-11-2021, 11:29 AM   #7
phiwum
 
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

I suppose that every means of taking the staff from the wizard requires being adjacent to him.

Oh. Except for the bola, lasso or aimed shots at the hands generally. I forgot all about those. (I searched for "disarm" in ITL, not for dropping weapons.)
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Old 04-11-2021, 11:50 AM   #8
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

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Originally Posted by phiwum View Post
I suppose that every means of taking the staff from the wizard requires being adjacent to him.

Oh. Except for the bola, lasso or aimed shots at the hands generally. I forgot all about those. (I searched for "disarm" in ITL, not for dropping weapons.)
If you want to be flashy you can snag it with a whip, which is like a lasso but from 3 to 5 hexes away.
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Old 04-11-2021, 12:24 PM   #9
phiwum
 
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

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If you want to be flashy you can snag it with a whip, which is like a lasso but from 3 to 5 hexes away.
Thank goodness my players haven't cottoned on to whips and lassos. The lasso especially doesn't fit my picture of fantasy. And I've seen the many complaints about the rules for both them and whips.
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Old 04-11-2021, 02:55 PM   #10
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Default Re: Does remove curse fix a staff?

If you use a lasso or whip to pick up a staff, does it explode, and if it does, where? (not only have I disarmed you, once I pulled it away from you it self-destructed).
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