Sunday, January 6, 2013

New D&D Chaos and Charm Spells

My husband (the wonderful and talented Dungeon Master) and I finally had a chance to finish some priest spells that I (and a few helpful friends) had been working on for ... geez, a few years at this point. My priest follows Hermes, that world's god of Messages and Mischief, so I've always been kind of irked that very few of the spells in the 2nd edition Player's Handbook actually fit his priesthood- he doesn't heal or fight or do anything particularly "useful"; instead he tends to function as a delivery boy with a side of druid and a bit of bard/rogue thrown in for good measure. A few of the animal spells work for the "Message" side (since animals can carry messages or give information), and the priests of Hermes do specialize in Charm magic (mind control? You betcha!), but otherwise there really wasn't much that fit the "Mischief" side of his duties. Not all priesthoods are boring, despite what you might think from reading through the yawn-inducing selection of priest spells.

So I decided to get creative. My goal was to create an entirely new sphere (a sphere is a branch of spells that all fit a theme) and call it Mischief, but one of the DMs on my DM's forum pointed out that in one of the extra D&D books there's a sphere called Chaos. Now THAT is what I'd been looking for! (This book also contained a sphere called Thought; this fills in the gaps for the "Message" side of my priest's order by giving him Telepathy and communication magic.) Now the new spells that I had been creating had a category!

So far we've come up with four new ones; three of which fit into the Chaos sphere and one that's a new, more general Charm spell.

Transmuting Tincture - Level 1
-Sphere: Chaos
-Range: 0
-Components: Material, Somatic
-Duration: 6 hours
-Casting Time: 1 round
-Area of Effect: caster
-Saving Throw: None

This spell enables the priest to change his or her appearance slightly, altering hair color, eye color, skin tone, or any combination of the three for the duration of the spell. Nothing else is changed other than coloration and it cannot be dispelled; it must wear off on its own.

When this spell is in effect, it stacks with a Disguise proficiency (required of this priesthood), improving that by 3. Since this spell cannot voluntarily be removed, if the priest should need to look like himself in that time frame, a Disguise check would have to be made. There is no saving throw for the spell itself, but if used with a disguise, then a roll must be made.

The somatic and material components of this spell are combined; the priest must draw a fake mustache on his finger in charcoal and bring it to his lip. Once the spell goes into effect, the charcoal drawing is erased.


Snakes in the Backpack - Level 1
Sphere: Animal, Chaos, Summoning
Range: 30 yards
Components: Verbal, Material, Somatic
Duration: Special
Casting time: 1 round
Area of effect: 1 closeable object
Saving throw: None

The version of the spell depends on the words spoken by the priest at the time the spell is cast and the material used. The number of snakes and kind depend on level and/or alignment. The target for the spell is any type of closeable container (backpack, chest, basket with lid, etc).

If fake snakes are selected, for every 2 levels of the priest, 1d4 springy fake snakes leap out of the pouch, backpack or closeable container; these vanish after 1 round. If the priest chooses real snakes, this summons the same number of snakes of a chosen variety. These also pop out of the bag and have a chance of attacking the target (depending on the species of the snake summoned) before slithering away.

Summoning venomous snakes should be carefully considered by good-aligned priests. The snakes, live or fake, remain inert and immobile until the container is actually opened, at which point the real snakes spring to life.

For the real snakes option, the material component is a piece of snakeskin (of the type of snake being summoned) coiled up while casting the spell. For the fake snakes, a coiled spring is the material needed. These are expended when the spell is cast.


Bogey Bombardier - Level 2
-Sphere: Plant, Chaos
-Range: 40ft
-Components: Material, Somatic
-Duration: 3d4 rounds
-Casting Time: 4
-Area of Effect: 1 creature/level
-Saving Throw: Negate

When this spell goes off, the priest is able to effect a number of creatures equal to his level. Creatures affected are entitled to a saving throw vs Spell; if they fail, they are coated in a sticky ooze that lasts for 3d4 rounds. This ooze slows them down, adding 5 to their initiative in battle. This also causes the creatures to become adhesive and any item in their hands at the time of the spell cannot be dropped for the duration. Once the spell expires, the ooze vanishes. (The ooze is like tree sap in composition.)

The material component for this spell is a red rubber nose that the priest puts on and honks once. This is not expended by use.


Aura Mask - Level 3
-Sphere: Charm
-Range: touch
-Components: M, V, S
-Duration: 1 day/level
-Casting Time: 1 round
-Area of Effect: 1 cubic foot/level
-saving throw: Neg.

Unlike a somewhat similar wizard version of this spell, this one doesn't change the aura of an object, but instead influences the mind of the person focusing on the item. When a detection spell is cast, the Charm spell on the object causes the spellcaster testing it to believe the object is unmagical. Any person attempting to use magical means to determine if the object is magical must save vs Spell; success negates the spell's effect on that individual and they see the object as being the magical thing that it is.

The material component is a piece of wool passed over the object; this is expended when the spell is cast.


I'll be working on more spells in the future; it's a lot of fun having ones that are actually relevant to this priesthood!


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