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Boden Blagden
Here for a while
(4/5/03 1:43 pm)
A few questions.
I have little funny thing that happened this week. The 20 by 20 stone that falls on people that try to enter the door in the dwarven mine hit three of the characters and squashed the wizards pseudo-dragon familiar. I just thought that was funny.

Now to the questions.

I have a player that is playing a sorceror that is constantly roling spellcraft checks to see what everything in the mines that has magical properties type of magic is. The player is new to the group and noone else in the group has ever done this, so I have never had to deal with it. He did it on the big emerald in the dwarven mines, on the orb and obelisks in the fire temple. He tried to lift the orb with mage hand. And the wizard of the group tried to lift the emeralds in the temple of Moradin. He kept on getting chased out of the room by the golem though.
Anyway, I was wondering how the rest of y'all handle these types of questions from the characters. Where do I find the info on how I can figure out wha type of magic each little magic item holds, because I know he is going to keep asking these questions.

Cordo Crowfoot
Here to stay
(4/5/03 4:52 pm)
Re: A few questions.
For mage hand just remember it only effects non-magical objects.

For reading the auras of magic items you need to figure out what spell the item is based on. Look up in the DMG what spells are needed to create it, and then the item should have aura types of that spell. Remember though they need to have line of sight to be able to read auras, and need to make a spellcraft check.

For things that aren't statted out, like the emerald, just think about their powers and what is most appropriate. Since the emerald fills a Dwarf with knowledge of their ancestry, I would guess Divination.

"They were immediately and absolutely recognizable as adventurers. They were hardy and dangerous, lawless, stripped of allegiance or morality, living off their wits, stealing and killing, hiring themselves out to whoever and whatever came... They were scum who died violent deaths, hanging on to a certain cachet among the impressionable through their undeniable bravery and their occasionally impressive exploits" China Mieville, Perdido Street Station

Edited by: Cordo Crowfoot at: 4/6/03 3:24:08 am
Here quite a while
(4/6/03 5:40 am)
Re: A few questions.
He did it on the big emerald in the dwarven mines

You mean the magic relic of Moradin, containing the essence of dwarvenkind! If there's any treasure in the CRM that's in need of being described as having an "overwhelming" aura its that thing.

My group of PCs included a dwarven priest of Moradin and the dwarf charcter asked for a Knowleged (religion) check when they uncovered it. He rolled really well (a 30 total, IIRC) and I ended up calling it the "Tear of Moradin" purportedly one of many shed during the Hateful Wars fought in the Lortmil Mountains. I must have really impressed on them its holiness as no one, not even the dwarven cleric, dared disturb it.

Anway, back to the subject ... Cordo is correct. For most magic items you just look up what spell is used in its creation in the PHB. If there's more then one then detect magic indicates the stronger of the two. However, there'll be those unique items like the Tear of Moradin. What's the nature of its aura? I agree with Cordo. The most powerful of the auras I'd guess is the "Dwarves touching the stone are filled with the knowledge of their own lineage and varous random facts about their ancestors" power which seems like a powerful Diviniation spell (like an "improved" Legend Lore spell).

BTW, did I make that up name for the gem (The Tear of Moradin) or is it in the module? I can't remember or find it in the text.

Still here? Wow.
(4/6/03 6:52 am)
Re: A few questions.
Trithereon, you must have made it up because I don't remember seeing it either. It's a great idea for it though, and I'm sure the dwarven cleric of Moradin in my party will love it! What DC knowledge religion check would it need? 20? Maybe a +4 circumstance bonus for being a dwarf and worshipping Moradin?

Here quite a while
(4/6/03 7:53 am)
Re: A few questions.
Funny you should ask. I have a simple system to help me determine the occasional knowledge DC. I base it on rank "benchmarks" which represent sort of quantum levels knowledge

The benchmarks are 0/5/10/15/20/25 and correlate to what I expect a non-exceptional (exceptional = Intelligence of 12 or better) trained PC to know. The benchmark of "everybody knows that" level is 0 followed by common (5), uncommon (10), obscure (15), nearly forgotten (20), privilaged few (25).

The question then becomes: How likely do I expect someone trained to actually know the question? If I suspect that little over half of the non-exeptional trained people would recall or have learned the knowledge then I give it a base DC of 10. The DC is then is scaled up or down depending on if I think significantly less then half would know (DC 15) or significantly more then half would know (DC 5).

For example: If I suspect that little over 50% (base DC 10) of the privilaged few (25 ranks) would know the question then I'd set the DC at 35. In the case of "Moradin's Tear" I figured that about half of people with "obscure" Knowlege (religion) would recognize the gem ... or DC 25.

At least I think its an easy system.

I like your idea of giving a +2 racial bonus to a Knowlege (religion) check regarding a racial god (+2) and even a +2 "clerical" bonus regarding a quesiton about a cleric's god. Even a human cleric of Pelor should perhaps get that +4 bonus for questions specifically regarding his patron god? It might be too much, but maybe not.

Thanks for the idea.

Here quite a while
(4/6/03 8:10 am)
The Tear of Moradin
In case your curious ...

The tale I made up was that the Tear was shed by an avatar of Moradin during the Hateful Wars when after a pitched battle to retake a captured dwarfhold a enlarged (spell) avatar discovered the mutilated and tortured remains of the entire warren. His tear fell among the debris of the battle, crystallizing into the emerald gem. It was not found until much later when dwarf clans repopulated the lost hold.

IMC it is worth much more then 5,000 gp ... to the right buyer.

Edited by: Trithereon at: 4/6/03 8:14:45 am
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