Magic items are gleaned from the hoards of conquered monsters or discovered in long-lost vaults. Such items grant capabilities a character could rarely have otherwise, or they complement their owner's capabilities in wondrous ways.
Each magic item has a rarity: common, uncommon, rare, very rare, or legendary. Three other traits are known but much harder to come across.

Artifacts
An artifact is a unique magic item of tremendous power, with its own origin and history. An artifact might have been created by gods or mortals of awesome power. It could have been created in the midst of a crisis that threatened a kingdom, a world, or the entire multiverse, and carry the weight of that pivotal moment in history.
Some artifacts appear when they are needed most. For others, the reverse is true; when discovered, the world trembles at the ramifications of the find. In either case, introducing an artifact into a campaign requires forethought. The artifact could be an item that opposing sides are hoping to claim, or it might be something the adventurers need to overcome their greatest challenge.
Characters don't typically find artifacts in the normal course of adventuring. In fact, artifacts only appear when you want them to, for they are as much plot devices as magic items. Tracking down and recovering an artifact is often the main goal of an adventure.

Sentient
Some magic items possess sentience and personality. Such an item might be possessed, haunted by the spirt of a previous owner, or self-aware thanks to the magic used to create it. In any case, the item behaves like a character, complete with personality quirks, ideals, bonds, and sometimes flaws. A sentient item might be a cherished ally to its wielder or a continual thorn in the side.
Most sentient items are weapons. Other kinds of items can manifest sentience, but consumable items such as potions and scrolls are never sentient.
Sentient magic items function as NPCs under the DM's control. Any activated property of the item is under the item's control, not its wielder's. As long as the wielder maintains a good relationship with the item, the wielder can access those properties normally. If the relationship is strained, the item can suppress its activated properties or even turn them against the wielder.

Cursed Items
Some magic items bear curses that bedevil their users, sometimes long after a user has stopped using an item. A magic item's description specifies whether the item is cursed. Most methods of identifying items, including the identify spell, fail to reveal such a curse, although lore might hint at it. A curse should be a surprise to the item's user when the curse's effects are revealed.
Attunement to a cursed item can't be ended voluntarily unless the curse is broken first, such as with the remove curse spell.

For artifacts and unique items see The Compendium.

  • item/start.txt
  • Last modified: 13 days ago
  • by Cinder