Tell me about your Magic Items!

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Majestic
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Majestic » Mon Feb 12, 2018 10:14 pm

It's not just your everyday Orcs that become too easy. My characters have played all the way through Tales and we're almost done with Darknening. They've each received really strong magical weapons and armor.

They now are able to (quite easily) slay Dragons, they just killed the Werewolf of Mirkwood, and then they polished off one of the toughest Nazgul!

Which is fine, as they've earned those things after decades of adventuring. But you're right, it makes it so that it's almost a "ho, hum" when they run into just an 'ordinary' group of Orcs or Spiders! :o
Adventure Summaries for my long-running group (currently playing through The Darkening of Mirkwood/Mirkwood Campaign), and the Tale of Years for a second, lower-level group (in the same campaign).

Butterfingers
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Butterfingers » Fri Mar 09, 2018 9:01 am

Another thing about handing out magic items, especially weapons and armour: how do you decide which one to grant to which companion? I mean, if you have a bow wielding elf (who doesn't?), do you just hand him some magic bow which makes him/her even more proficient with bow, and thus maybe make them very unbalanced companion? I feel this would become boring, since such character already plays in a very predictable way, relying heavily on the bow etc. I imagine they might get bored themselves very quickly too?

Or do maybe you first consider the needs of the campaign, and what weapons they might need to overcome the boss enemies therein?

Or even, do you give them such items which would 'force' them to play in a way which breaks the stereotype, ie. give a sword to the bowmaster, so they'd have to invest in becoming better with it? Nothing completely out of character of course, like a great bow to dwarf. It should still be something that would be culturally appropriate, and something the companion would be able to utlize with good effect?

For example, in my group a Beorning companion agonises with his bad endurance/fatigue ratio, it doesn't take much to make him weary... so he decided to drop his body armour entirely, especially as he has a virtue which would kick in only when he's wounded (and he seldom has received a wound). So should I give him a mithril armour to lessen the burden of protection, or maybe a magic shield to support his choice of dropping armour entirely?

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Falenthal
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Falenthal » Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:19 pm

I try to accomodate the player's wish. Sometimes I've even asked "What would you prefer? A weapon or a defensive gear?". Then I decide the details, so that there's some surprise for them. Some other times, I've seen that a certain character needs something (maybe the elven archer struggles everytime someone manages to engage him in melee), so I create an object that compensates his weaknesses.

Considering that the recommended number of objects are 1 or 2 per campaign/character, a balanced choice is to give them one "wanted" object (a bow for an archer, a mithril coat for a dwarf,etc) and one created by yourself that covers the weakness you've seen in the character during the campaign.

Butterfingers
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Butterfingers » Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:17 am

Makes sense, although in my player's case I think I will give his elf something else than another bow. He's played a bow-wielding elf in TOR, MERP, And WFRP, and I am getting fairly sick of it. :mrgreen:

Time for him to rethink his archetype and get off of the rut, I say. So I am gonna give him a sword or armour/shield, should he manage to roll good on hoard. And he'd better like it... The other companions are less troublesome and boring, so I can give them pretty much anything that suits the campaign.

I read about banes, and it seems 'enemy' or was it 'servants of the enemy' is pretty generic and broad definition. Does it cover anything/anyone whos evil, because ultimately they serve the enemy whether they know it or not?

I also seem to have read mention in the description of dwimmerlaik in Rivendell that there's a 'bane of Mordor' - does this refer to the 'enemy' above?

Corvo
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Corvo » Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:47 am

I'm away from my books, atm, so take this with a pinch of salt, but...
"Bane of Mordor" is mentioned in the rulebook, but it wasn't included among the "normal" banes you are supposed to give to your Heroes.
That because it can mess a lot with the canon, I suppose, with killing the Nazguls and such.

And let us be frank: if the Loremaster gives my character a weapon forged for the bane of Mordor, dammit, I'm morally bound to try to kill a Nazgul.
Hijacking the campaign on a suicide course? Yeah, totally probable, but you can hardly blame the player for thinking his character is bound for some special destiny.
If you feel that this Hero is already "troublesome" as it is, I think it's better not giving him that terrible plot-device weapon.

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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Majestic » Wed Mar 14, 2018 9:55 pm

Butterfingers wrote:
Fri Mar 09, 2018 9:01 am
Another thing about handing out magic items, especially weapons and armour: how do you decide which one to grant to which companion? I mean, if you have a bow wielding elf (who doesn't?)...
Just thought I'd throw out there that my group is made up mostly of Elves (four of the five PCs), and not one of them uses a Bow! :o Well, one started out with one, and still could use it, but it's not his primary weapon.
Adventure Summaries for my long-running group (currently playing through The Darkening of Mirkwood/Mirkwood Campaign), and the Tale of Years for a second, lower-level group (in the same campaign).

Butterfingers
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Butterfingers » Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:26 pm

Corvo wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:47 am
I'm away from my books, atm, so take this with a pinch of salt, but...
"Bane of Mordor" is mentioned in the rulebook, but it wasn't included among the "normal" banes you are supposed to give to your Heroes.
That because it can mess a lot with the canon, I suppose, with killing the Nazguls and such.

And let us be frank: if the Loremaster gives my character a weapon forged for the bane of Mordor, dammit, I'm morally bound to try to kill a Nazgul.
Hijacking the campaign on a suicide course? Yeah, totally probable, but you can hardly blame the player for thinking his character is bound for some special destiny.
If you feel that this Hero is already "troublesome" as it is, I think it's better not giving him that terrible plot-device weapon.
Yeah, I guess you're right, but I think my players would be too scared to fight an actual Nazgul...What about the bane 'undead' - does it affect the Nazgul or the werewolf of MW?

Butterfingers
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Butterfingers » Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:29 pm

Majestic wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 9:55 pm
Butterfingers wrote:
Fri Mar 09, 2018 9:01 am
Another thing about handing out magic items, especially weapons and armour: how do you decide which one to grant to which companion? I mean, if you have a bow wielding elf (who doesn't?)...
Just thought I'd throw out there that my group is made up mostly of Elves (four of the five PCs), and not one of them uses a Bow! :o Well, one started out with one, and still could use it, but it's not his primary weapon.
To be fair, it is their cultural weapon, and I am not against elfs & bows, but this player seems have some sort of Legolas syndrome. But I was glad to notice he's invested in sword skill recently. I guess he realised he needs it for those situations where the opponents outman them, so the bow is no use then.

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Agnot
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Agnot » Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:18 am

This has been a fun thread to read. I always like seeing how others handle things in their games, but I figured it was time that I throw in. I've only given out one magical weapon in my game so far. I use a combination of adventure rewards and random magical hoard rolls to give out magic weapons and Wondrous Items. I want most of the Wondrous Items I give out to be of a personal nature to the player.

My favorite so far is The Amulet of the Once-Scarred Heart. It was built around a personal item that the player created and frequently referenced in game. It was deeply personal to him and made a perfect template for his first Wondrous Item.

Amulet of the Once-Scarred Heart
An amulet made from the circular pendant that Hergar’s youngest daughter, Kelda, carved for him years ago before his family was slaughtered by orcs. A heart has been roughly-hewn from the center of an oaken chip that once bore the signs of the fire that ultimately claimed his daughter’s life. At Rúna’s request, Frár the Beardless took the original pendant, banded it in gold, gave it a silver chain, and encrusted the upper third of the heart’s right side with firestones that were given to him by Rúna. They are inlaid in such a fashion as to give the impression that brilliant orange and red embers are sweeping over the heart and reigniting as they catch the firelight. During the day, the stones glimmer a verdant green, a sign of the new growth that will one day make Hergar’s heart whole again.

The amulet grants Hergar the ability to see into the hearts of men to discern their true motives and intentions.

Wondrous Item: Bestows a Greater Blessing of Insight
A. Double Wisdom bonus to all Insight tests.
B. Spend one Hope to yield a Magical result from the test.

I got carried away with making it a Greater Blessing, but since it magic items will be few and far between, hopefully it'll balance out.

Here is the Sword of Bávlos, granted to a Barding hero during his quest to save his kidnapped bride-to-be.

The Blade of Bávlos
Thousands of years ago, Bávlos the Tormentor was the chieftain of an ancient civilization whose people once occupied the lands that are now known as the Dalelands. He was a righteous pursuer of justice and dedicated his life to hunting down those who were the enemies of peaceful men. Such was his obsession, that upon his death, his spirit would not rest, and he returned as a spectre to haunt his barrow. As Sauron rose in power, he further cursed Bávlos with a withering presence that would kill friend and foe alike.
The Blade of Bávlos is a fierce looking long sword with few ornamentations, but its blade is exquisitely wrought. The folds of the steel shimmer with an unearthly gleam that glimmers when drawn and is said to have emboldened all those who saw it to redouble their efforts when confronted with a terrifying foe.

Blade of Bávlos (Númenórean): Bane: Evil Men & Undead; 1. Keen, 2. Raging, 3. Flame of Hope

1. Keen: Reduces the Edge rating by 1.
2. Raging: Deals an extra loss of Endurance to a Bane creature equal to Valour, even on a miss.
3. Flame of Hope: If you take the Rally Comrades combat task, you add your Valour score to the amount of Endurance that each of your comrades recover on a success. Additionally, if you succeed on your Inspire or Song roll with a “G”, you may immediately make an attack roll.

Corvo
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Re: Tell me about your Magic Items!

Post by Corvo » Thu Mar 15, 2018 2:55 pm

Butterfingers wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:26 pm
Corvo wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:47 am
I'm away from my books, atm, so take this with a pinch of salt, but...
"Bane of Mordor" is mentioned in the rulebook, but it wasn't included among the "normal" banes you are supposed to give to your Heroes.
That because it can mess a lot with the canon, I suppose, with killing the Nazguls and such.

And let us be frank: if the Loremaster gives my character a weapon forged for the bane of Mordor, dammit, I'm morally bound to try to kill a Nazgul.
Hijacking the campaign on a suicide course? Yeah, totally probable, but you can hardly blame the player for thinking his character is bound for some special destiny.
If you feel that this Hero is already "troublesome" as it is, I think it's better not giving him that terrible plot-device weapon.

Yeah, I guess you're right, but I think my players would be too scared to fight an actual Nazgul...What about the bane 'undead' - does it affect the Nazgul or the werewolf of MW?
No. Bane against the Undead don't cover Nazguls and the Werewolf.

But frankly, I don't feel it's needed: Nazguls and the Werewolf aren't supposed to be "brute forced" through.
They can be dealt with, but it's not down to "having the right tool": they are plot devices, in my perception, far more than simple "monstesr", and I think they should be dealt accordingly.
You are facing a legend, and the great monsters of legend aren't simply hacked down by an adventuring party: their demise requires a fitting tale.

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