A Handful of Magic Items 14

censers_by_max_kneht_dd8zyyf-fullview
Picture Credit: Max-Kneht

We are now 14 installments deep into A Handful of Magic Items! We have an insanity-inducing fog, a torch that is more than it seems, and some fun with random magical shields. With a focus on off-hand items, we’re excited to hand them off to you. Let’s take a look!

Censer of Madness (requires attunement)
As an action, the wielder can use the Censer of Madness to release a 15 foot radius circle of purple fog centered on the wielder lasting for up to one minute. The circle spreads around corners and is heavily obscured, but only rises two feet off of the ground. The wielder must use a bonus action on each subsequent turn to swing the censer to keep it active. The fog moves with the wielder. Once the Censer of Madness has been used, it cannot be used again until after a long rest.

Any creature, other than the wielder, standing in the fog must make a DC 15 Wisdom check at the start of their turn or be affected by it. An affected creature must roll immediately when affected and then again at the start of each turn on the below table to determine its behavior for that turn. An affected creature also cannot take reactions.

d10
1:    The creature can act and move normally.
2-3: The creature doesn’t move or act this turn.
4-5: The creature selects a randomly chosen creature that it can move next to this turn and uses it’s move and action to make a melee attack against that creature. If there are no valid target, it uses its move and a Dash action to move towards a random creature that it can see.
6-7: The creature selects a randomly chosen creature within range of its longest ranged attack and uses its attack against that creature. If the creature does not have a range attack or no target is in reach, follow the results for 4-5.
8-9: The creature casts a randomly determined spell at its lowest possible spell slot that it has prepared on a random creature within the range for that spell, including itself. If the creature has no spells or cannot target any creature with any of its spells, follow the results for 4-5.
10:  The creature doesn’t move or act this turn and is considered stunned until its next turn.

At the end of each of its turns, an affected creature can made another DC 15 Wisdom Saving throw. It it succeeds, it is no longer affected and can not be affected by this instance of fog again.

 

Additionally, once during the duration of the fog, as an action the wielder can choose one affected creature to be affected as though they were the target of suggestion. That creature can immediately make another DC 15 Wisdom saving throw to end the effects of the fog and ignore the effects of suggestion. If they fall under the effects of suggestion, they are immune to the other effects of the fog until they finish their suggested course of action or until the fog disperses, at which point the effects of suggestion also end.

This censer is made of iron and dyed green, featuring sculpts of faces in contorted expressions with openings in the mouths and eyes for the fog to come out of.


Magician’s Torch (requires attunement)
The Magician’s Torch has 5 charges and regains 1d4+1 each dawn. It can also magically be lit and unlit by saying the command word. As an action the wielder of a lit Magician’s Torch can do one of the following by spending the appropriate charges:

  • 1 Charge – The wielder exhales through the flame, creating a 15 foot cone of fire in front of them. Each creature in the area of the flame must make a DC 13 saving throw or take 2d6 fire damage, or half as much on a successful save.
  • 2 Charges – The flame changes to black and shines magical darkness instead of light for 1 minute or until the wielder spends an action to end this effect.
  • 3 Charges – The wielder inhales part the fire, granting them Fire Resistance for 1 minute.
  • 4 Charges – The wielder touches the flame to a non-magical melee weapon. That weapon spouts magical fire and deals an additional 1d6 fire damage for 1 minute.
  • 5 Charges – The wielder touches the torch to the ground and casts wall of fire so that it includes the point where the torch touched the ground. This lasts for up to 1 minute and uses the wielder’s concentration to maintain.

This torch looks like an unremarkable, wooden torch aside from a single, red gem embedded into the top of it.


Gauntlet of Shields (requires attunement)
The Gauntlet of Shields holds 3 charges and regains all lost charges at dawn. As an action, if the hand that the gauntlet is on is not holding anything, the wearer can activate the gauntlet to summon a random shield. Roll on the table below to determine what type of shield is summoned.

d6
1 – Bladed Buckler. This shield grants +1 AC but leaves the gauntlet hand free to use as normal. Additionally, the wielder can use a bonus action to make an attack with the buckler, dealing 1d6 piercing damage on a hit.
2 – Black Slime Shield. This shield grants +2 AC. Any time a melee attack hits the wielder, the shield makes an immediate attack with +5 to hit. On hit, it deals 1d6 bludgeoning damage plus 1d6 acid damage.
3 – Living Wooden Shield. This shield grants +2 AC and also heals with wielder 1d4 hit points at the start of their turn. Every time an attack misses the wielder, roll a d6. On a roll of 1 the attack hits the shield, which transfers half the damage to the wielder.
4 – Obsidian Shield. This shield grants +3 AC but the wielder can only use either an action or bonus action on each of their turns.
5 – Dragonscale Shield. This shield grants +2 AC, resistance against fire damage, and gives advantage on saving throws against breath weapons.
6 – Iron Tower Shield. This shield grants +2 AC, grants 3/4 cover against ranged attacks, but reduces movement speed by 10 feet.

The wielder can use an action to unsummon any shield, or can use a charge to randomly replace the shield with a new one. Each shield stays for 10 minutes and cannot be dropped or disarmed.

This gauntlet appears as black iron until it summons a shield, at which point it takes on the characteristics of the shield it summoned.


And that’s it! As you can see, I have a thing for random effects as it adds a risk/reward factor. And quite frankly, I find players really enjoy rolling on random tables. It removes a tiny amount of agency but adds tension, and at my table at least tension is king.

Let us know what you think of these items, and how you would improve them or change them to fit into your campaign! Be sure to join in the discussion over on our Discord channel where we talk tabletop!


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