Tuesday, June 19, 2018

d60 The One Thing about this Spell is...

Learning a spell is not a predictable, orderly process. The good news is that if you manage to get past the strange protections and curses of a magical libram, you do stand a good chance of grokking the spell with diligent research and lots of demon-bribing. The bad news is there is always one catch about a spell. 

Roll a d60 on this list. If there are any variables on your result, determine those now; they won't change. If you don't like the spell, quest for another version of it. 

This list is inspired by the mercurial magic rules of DCCRPG, this Anxiety Wizard post, and this Tower of the Mad GM post. They are metal!
  1. It manifests in a random manner each time it is cast. Sometimes as a flaming sword, sometimes as a screaming skull, sometimes as your tsking mother... The effect is probably the same regardless.
  2. It can be cast only by someone of a specific gender (determine male, female, neuter, or campaign equivalent to hijra). One can present as another gender, but everyone around them must have used the spell's preferred pronoun to refer to the caster since dawn.
  3. Your studies show you that final syllables must be taught to you by a monster (Judges choice what it is and where, but you do know what and where it is supposed to be, roughly).
  4. Roll a percentile die whenever you cast this and assign everyone present a number by counting them. If the percentile rolls a number equal to the number of present souls, one of them turns to dust. Otherwise, someone you know that is not present dies (Judge picks).
  5. You must store (memorize) this spell in the skull of a dead wizard. The skull hates you, and talks telepathically to anyone within two ells.
  6. Roll a d2. This spell either can only be cast by 1) truth-speakers or by 2) liars. Respectively, no lies or truths allowed since the last time you cast or memorized this.
  7. This spell requires a hype man to rile up the magic as you rap out a ditty about it. Beat boxing optional. Judge might give +1d for smooth flow.
  8. Thank you, Mario, but your spell is in another quest.
  9. This spell just doesn't work without spellburn.
  10. This spell's results only work under certain lighting conditions. Anything outside the rays of the designated light source doesn't work. For instance, a magic missile that would leave the light fizzles. Roll a d5: 1) moonlight; 2) the light of a corpse-candle; 3) lamplight; 4) the light of a torch held by a cannibal; 5) the light of a candle that has seventeen drops of blood mixed into the wax. This spell is 1d harder to save against than most though.
  11. This spell can only be cast by those missing body parts. Luckily (?), you can spellburn off a body part as you cast this spell and it will count. You also get +1d to cast it per missing member.
  12. The gods hate this spell! Ask me how! If you have this spell memorized, you cannot be healed by an idolater, and entering any sort of sacred place, even evil gods' fanes, for more than a few moments explodes your brains. 
  13. Learning this spell has transformed you. Your presence curdles milk, gives grannies draught-chills, and makes animals afeared.
  14. The spell cannot be cast unless you are wearing a conical hat.
  15. The spell requires a wand, and the wand demands to help cast all your spells. It slumps wanly if ignored or if it fumbles.
  16. The spell cannot be cast by those who do not have some sort of corruption--a warping of the flesh by eldritch energies. The spell can be transcribed onto scrolls as normal though.
  17. This spell needs to be played out by an grind-organ. A monkey starts to follow you around if you use this spell enough.
  18. This spell can only be cast by twins, but is very effective. +3d to cast together. If your backstory is unknown, you can roll Luck to see if you have a twin somewhere, and then try to convince them to join the party.
  19. This spell costs an arm and a leg to learn. Literally. You can back out of that bargain at the last second before learning this one completely.
  20. This spell requires you to make a magic circle. Drawing it out with a stick in the dirt will do. Roll Luck if there is ever any question if dirt is available, or carry your own. The game Judge may give you ad hoc bonuses based on how fancy the materials in your circle are...
  21. This spell can only be cast while nude. Even a backpack counts, but oddly enough, it will still work with any hat on your head if the hat has stars on it.
  22. This spell needs a proxy to deliver it. You touch someone else, they touch some third target to affect that thing. You don't know how effective a given instance of the spell will be until the proxy delivers it. 
  23. Learning this spell has transformed you. Roll on a corruption or mutation chart.
  24. This spell refuses to be cast when a certain thing is present (roll a d12): 1) Hobbits; 2) fountains; 3) fungal bio-luminescence; 4) children; 5) androids; 6) tears; 7) the undead; 8) swords; 9) men; 10) doors; 11) violence 12) an even numbers of arms.
  25. Learning this spell has transformed you. You can no longer stand either (roll a d5) 1) choral singing, 2) moss, 3) bones, 4) sunlight, or 5) moonlight. Such stuff burnses you.
  26. This spell has imprinted upon an item you cherish. Name it. You must hold it to cast the spell. If you should lose or break the item, the spell goes with it.
  27. Learning this spell has transformed you. If someone asks you a question while holding your hair, you are compelled to tell the truth. If anyone asks you three questions this way, you may never tell them the truth again.
  28. This spell only works if you have eaten nothing but raw meat since dawn (canned rations don't count as raw). It gets +1d to be cast if you still have the juices dripping down your chin. Roll for scurvy. Oddly, this spell feels pity for players (not PCs) who are vegetarians, and adjusts accordingly.
  29. Learning this spell has transformed you. You are now part something, and you use your new found traits to protect your spell secrets all the more zealously. If you happen to cast a spell related to your new identity, you get +1d to the roll. Roll a d5: 1) you are part spider, ugly, and can make cobwebs; 2) you have beetle-wings under a new carapace; 3)You are part sea-sponge; 4) you are part mammal (choose); 5) you are partly undead.
  30. Learning this spell has brought you to the attention of the shaggai-loff, a group of inter-dimensional bug-men. Depending on what the Judge wants, the shaggai-loff may try to possess you, dissect you, initiate you, learn at your feet, send assassins for your head, seduce you, etc.
  31. Learning this spell has transformed you. Your head detaches and flies away from your body at night, trailing your lungs and guts. You must feed...
  32. This spell requires you to be holding a fiery light source in one hand or on your helm. 
  33. This spell requires you to invoke the name of a place while holding a sword aloft.
  34. Learning this spell has transformed you. You need a magical talisman. As long as you have the talisman, it "memorizes" the spell for you, but should you lose it, you take 1d5 Con damage a turn until you are paralyzed. If so, you will last as long as Karz in this state, waiting for the time when your talisman is returned to you.
  35. You must have eaten the brains of one sapient since the last time you cast this spell to cast it again.
  36. This spell can affect one extra target as long as you have very nice robes and no backpack. A fanny pack and scabbard is allowed.
  37. The spell is cast at +1d if you have forgotten all other spells (or didn't bother to memorized them today). Boggarts lie in wait to assassinate wizards that have few defenses, so be careful about using this to cast a long ritual.
  38. Learning this spell has transformed you. You turn into a beastial, brutish form if angered or damaged for one 10 minute turn. Casting spells is -1d in this form, but your melee attacks are at -1d.
  39. This spell requires all allies to take a ginyu force pose. I'm talking about the players in the real world.
  40. Learning this spell has transformed you. You now must house your soul in your magical tome. Magical effects that require touching you only work if the caster touches your tome (this includes clerical laying on of hands). If you should lose it, anyone who holds it may command you to do their bidding. When you die, the tome will start speaking with your voice. It can teach those who find it, should they meet your standards. 
  41. You must be drunk to cast this spell. Each time you cast it, roll a d60 under your Con. If you fail, take 4 Con damage to the liver.
  42. This spell may and must be stored in your beard instead of your mind. If you shave it off, your beard will manifest the spell effects explosively 10 minutes later.
  43. This spell refuses to work unless you are infertile. Know a patron that wants to eat your shwanzshtuker? 
  44. To finalize the binding of this spell, you must ritually tattoo yourself. Describe where. The tattoo glows if a tribal tramp-stamp, animates if an animal, etc.
  45. The final secrets of this spell will only be revealed to you if you bury yourself alive for seven days. This is not a process you are guaranteed to survive.
  46. Casting this spell usually works fine, but if it fails, you turn into a wolf, raven, or ferret until dawn's light touches your flesh again.
  47. This spell can only be memorized by the gestating flesh of your own get. You must touch the belly of the womb-bearer (which can be you) as you cast or memorize it. The child, when born, will not be quite of this world. 
  48. Learning this spell has transformed you. You have cloven hooves, horns, goat eyes, or the like. You have +1d to traffic with demons.
  49. On a fumble, this spell turns some possession of the party to crumbly lead. On a crit, this spell turns something to gold. Players who try to game the system will eventually find their body parts changing into metal.
  50. This spell teaches you some minor magics too! You learn 1d3 of them and use them once each a day. Ask the Judge for them or roll on this list.
  51. As long as you have this spell memorized, your ceremonial dagger can cut through anything.
  52. This spell longs to inhabit flesh. If anyone has a bit of their body (excepting blood) severed while you have this spell in your spell-book or memory, the spell leaps into it, and grows it into a mad hybrid of what its two parts are. Woe betide the wizard who accidentally creates the polyglottal toe by knowing a spell about languages while the warrior happens to crit a monster's food. Slay the beast to get your spell back. Quick! Before it undergoes mitosis!
  53. This spell may be cast at +1d if you, the player, use a funny wizard voice and intone a little four-line stanza whenever you cast it. Break out of your shell!
  54. Learning the spell changes your fate. Re-roll your Luck score and star sign! (If using Q Ferret, you end up with a die as close to 3d6s sum in sides as possible).
  55. As long as you have memorized but have not cast the spell since dawn, your flesh cannot be penetrated. Mind that you can still be hurt, but bladed weapons will be blunted and your enemies will probably have to find interesting ways to kill you.
  56. Learning or casting this spell makes one gender go insane. If wizards are jealous of their spell secrets, it would be pretty boring to not have it be the gender the wizard happens to be...
  57. This spell is chimerically reactive; if two mundane, non-sapient vertebrates are present, they must save or be melded into one supernatural being with parts of both beasts. This process counters the spell as well; fumbled spells make monsters with special powers and successfully cast ones make the beast intelligent.
  58. With this spell came knowledge for a ritual to cheat death. Roll on this table until the game Judge deems it game-able. You then have to perform the ritual to gain the benefits of it.
  59. You don't know how to cast this spell in a non-crazy manner. You can cast this spell at its maximum result at any time you choose, but it will rack your body with strange energies, necessitating a cheat death roll.
  60. This spell is bound by a 6th dimensional helical-schism to two other spells (determined secretly by the game Judge); whenever you roll to cast it, there is a sixty six percent chance you cast one of the other two (determined randomly which it is with each casting) instead. The other two spells will have the same casting time as this one, or faster ones, but not longer. The spells will whisper their effect to you moments before you need to make any decisions, such as targets for them. Any special costs for these extra spells will be ignored.

Friday, June 8, 2018

d60 Ways the Wizard Has Found to Cheat Death


This post is just me copy-pasta-ing people's ideas from g+ way back in September, 2015. I added numbers, fixed what I assumed were typos, and removed hard to game stuff where necessary. Obviously very little credit goes to me.
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1: Must be beheaded.


2: Vulnerable only to water.


3: Heart must be fed to an adder.
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4: Has hidden her soul in the heart of a child - the next King.  That soul will pass to the heir of the crown in time, and so it goes.  The wizard will defend the King's line, and in turn the King will not raise a force to kill her. So long as the soul lives, she lives. She is dark heart of the land, a splinter that can not be pulled. 
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5: Soul placed into large, burly body made of gold plated animate bronze and covered in spell reflecting runes.
 
6: Aquatic, goes to battle inside enslaved water elemental of largest size.

7: Also a dracula.
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8: She possesses many bodies, all grown from skin and hair and blood of her own now crone-like original form.  Her conscience moves freely among these bodies, which possess their own intelligence, but no spark of life or creativity or magic.   As long as one lives, she will persist, and she lives by the sea, near a port that regularly hosts foreign ships. 
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9: She is married to the Dragon of the Sea, and partakes of the Dragon's formlessness and eternity.  You can not kill the sea.  You can not cut it.  You can not force it to remain still.  She is restless, changing, temperamental, but so long as her marriage remains, she does as well. 
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10: The mirror image has all the hit points, the body you target is the illusion.
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12: She is preserved in the last moment of her life, which is extended into infinity by juice of the Colorless Lotus, and projects illusions of startling reality into the world when she must act. 

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13: Is actually a colony creature and keeps backup parts of self in jars throughout the world.
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14: She sacrificed her body for greater understanding of strange realms, dream, and the land beyond the threshold of sanity, where the Hungry Hunters and the Laughing Boys dwell.

    Her consciousness and her soul live in her Name now, inhabiting it like they once did her body, her Name a living thing in the abstract realms she explores.
     When you speak her name, she sees what you see, hears what you hear.  When you say it while looking in the mirror, she comes to possess you for a time, until you next sleep.
     To kill her, you must eradicate her Name from all common knowledge. 
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15: Mathmagican that twists Zeno's paradox to stalemate heroes that would draw near or shoot arrows.
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16: Made of paper-mache. Real wizard is sipping cappuccinos in Paris.

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17: He exists now as a legend. The only way to destroy him is to destroy everyone who knows of the legends. But you too must know the legends or you wouldn't be after him...

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18: Soul bound to the the body of an owl. Hijacks familiar-calling rituals before they are complete, kills the nascent familiar and takes its place. Gradually takes over the mind of the young wizard, uses him or her until no longer useful, finds another.
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19: She was consecrated as a Sacrifice to the Old Goat, the Midnight Man still worshiped in secret out in the pagan countryside.  So long as she maintains her ritual purification, none but the sacrificial blade of the Goat's priest can slay her, for the Goat is a jealous god, unwilling to give up what it was promised.
     This is complicated by her murder of the Goat's whole priesthood, and purge of its worshipers.  There is no living hand which can wield the knife now.
     So she lives, so long as she maintains her purity.
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20: You must find their secret name, write it on rice-paper, pin the paper to an effigy, and burn it.
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21: Has a deal with a demon so that he can instantaneously switch places with it.
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22: An accident during her apprenticeship turned her into a small white mouse, a condition her master refused (or was unable) to reverse.
     She rallied, and overcame her disadvantages, and is as capable a wizard as any human practitioner now.  Due to a peculiarity of the magic, she maintained her human intelligence and wisdom, and as well as resilience and constitution.   So she is a very strong and very tough mouse indeed.
     She has built for herself (and commissioned from cunning gnomes) a arcanomechanical psuedomoculus resembling her own youthful human form.  Within the armored head, she sits a her ease - the space within the hollow cranium, a comfortable sitting room for a mouse wizard.  her apartments in the psuedomoculus's chest are luxurious, and well-appointed with mouse-sized magical apparatus.
     Killing her involves cracking this walking fortress, catching her, and then doing enough harm to her mouse-sized form to kill a seasoned adventuring wizard.  
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23: She can only be harmed by the creations of her daughters. It has been foretold!
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24: Wizard's beard is actually an alien parasite that regenerates and controls the body to do its terrible, unfathomable objectives (treat as Geas).  
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25: She dissolved herself in a solution of hemlock and acid and plague puss.  She is a Miasma now, a disease which lives within a victim.  She possess those infected, and though the fever of her magic kills them eventually, she has plenty of opportunity to spread.  Some do not become possessed by her, and instead host her miasma without succumbing to it.  She is unconscious within such hosts, but they are still contagious. 
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Why are you milking my puss, lady?
I'm gonna be immortal!
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26: The wizard/witch only exists in the past, in a time stopped moment. The being you're fighting is just a mystical projection.
     Not only do you need to find a way to travel back in time to kill them, you need to know the exact moment that their living self is suspended in and figure out how to get near them without getting caught in the time stop.
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27: The wizard has infused the polar ice cap with their very essence and will always find a way to come back so long as the ice cap remains safe. (See: Witch Of The North and Al Gore.)
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28: This wizard has betrayed and escaped the ancient Worm Kings, stealing the secret of their great power of regeneration. To truly kill this traitor, you must bury the wizard alive and let the worms reclaim him/her.
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29: The Sorcerer-King's true body, bloated to four times its original size, floats in a tank of greenish-yellow fluid in a tower without door or stairs somewhere in a trackless desert.  The ministers and generals of his growing empire receive orders telepathically.  Occasionally he'll conjure a simulacrum and take more direct action, although after about thirteen days each simulacrum dissolves into greenish goo.
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30: She stole the Gorgon's eyes, and placed them in her own empty sockets.  She wears a mask that is lined within with a warped inverting mirror with vectors defined by sacred geometry and the magic of transmogrification.  The stoning gaze is reflected back upon the organs which created the effect, creating a loop, an anchor.  While she wears the mask, she is blind and weeps gritty tears eternally as the stoned then renewed orbs inflame her sockets, but while the mask remains in place, she is immortal and invulnerable.
     Removing the mask is a deadly proposition, however, as it frees her stolen gorgon gaze.   
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31: Has a hidden painting ala Dorian Gray.
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32: She exists across multiple universes and timelines. By breaking time, she shares knowledge and memories (though not spells, levels, skills, etc). You might kill her 18th level self, but in a parallel universe her 1st level counterpart knows what you did. Someday, she will no longer be 1st level...
By this method she will also travel to other universes to ensure some version of herself is born and follows the same path to awakening to her manifold mirrored self.
     However, there are not infinite versions of her, and though they share memories they do not all agree with each other. Also, once one awakens, only one of her can exist in a universe at a time.
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33: Her head was severed by the Surgeons of Rith called the Thousand-Handed Healers and grafted to the Golden Scarab, a crablike armature of beautiful and horrifying craftsmanship.
     The Golden Scarab maintains her life, and allows her head to move and leap and climb faster than a dart spider.  The Scarab can also neatly sever the head from a victim, and insinuate its finer feelers and leg-parts into the neck stump, giving the wizard control over the body until it starves to death.
     While riding a body, the Scarab curls up around her head like an ornate collar.
     She will only die when her head is surgically removed from the Scarab, a process that demands at least the tools, if not the expertise, of the Thousand-Handed Healers. 
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34: Just going by the book, my archmage spent all his time magic jarred into a clone of a near perfect human specimen. If the body's killed, his soul goes into a ring on his companion and can attempt to possess those nearby. Only by destroying the ring and killing his body can you kill him.
     Except he also has several clones of himself growing in secluded locations. When each clone is half grown, he kills it and starts a new one. If he's not around to kill it, it matures and becomes the new him.
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35: [wizard name] is actually part of a pyramid scheme. Thousands are recruited and provided a ritual that gives them access to the original wizard's knowledge and form. The first one died millennia ago.
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36: The sorceress has learned to control quantum forces, moving her frame of reference from one universe to the adjacent one with casual ease. As such, when you fire an arrow, swing a sword or attempt to poison her lamb, she simply shifts her frame to a universe in which you miss or fail. For the universe to continue working, it forces you along in her wake and so it is perceived as if she were merely the luckiest person in history.
 
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37: She has stolen the deepest mystery of the Trickster's cult - she is master of the Lie You Must Believe. When any come to kill her, she tells them that their weapons are useless, that they are powerless against her, and that only the chosen one can end her reign, and so compelled, they leave dejected. She has lied to Death itself, the last time the Ferryman came for her.  She has lied to the Goddess of youth, to gain herself a renewed body. She must be careful never to directly contradict her own lies, for that will break the spell entirely. And she must fend off the flirtatious advances of the Trickster God, because it turns out he's kind of a creeper. 
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38: Promised soul to several competing hellish factions. Keeps getting rejected to avoid an all out Blood War. Hell wants to keep the cold war going.
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39: Anyone who thinks they've killed the Arch Wizard Ruin will find they've merely killed a Ruin-golem.
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40: Robot
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41: Has a hierarchy of henchmen that impersonate the wizard ala Ra'as al Ghul from Batman Begins.
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42: When Wizard dies, takes over nearest PC and continues the fight.
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43: When the archmage dies, his soul returns to his spellbook. When another wizard reads the spellbook, his soul is sent to Hell and replaced by that of the archmage.
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44: Has the local clergy on his payroll. They will seek out his remains and resurrect him. Gives new meaning to the term "life insurance"..
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45: She has just spread a LOT of rumors to her longevity and not being able to be killed. lots of these rumors have to do with things like killing a succubus while in the throws of passion with her, or crafting a weapon from the spine of a dragon while living for a month inside of it. It's all total bullshit, but she has really good PR agents spreading these lies.
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46: Her name is actually a title, her magic and regalia worn by different people through the ages.  There is always another Wizard, trained, waiting to assume the role, to take on the power and the panoply.  Occult probate law sees to the timely transfer of the mantle. 
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47: Narrative causality keeps the Wizard from lasting harm.  He is a central character in a highly successful series of novels, now being ghostwritten by three younger authors.  The publisher simply will not let the Wizard die.
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48: The villain has made Death fall in love with him. For him to truly die, Death must be convinced to let the villain's life pass away.
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49: May only be slain by someone born with the wizard's birth name. Upon the wizard's earthly death, the slayer inherits the wizard's supernatural debts (deals with devils, etc.).
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50:To slay the wizard, you must slay yourself
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51: To destroy the lich, you must destroy her phylactery. Unfortunately, it holds an evil far worse than the lich herself, perhaps the Tarrasque, Tharizidun, or even.. shivers... the old dancing guy that used to be in those 6 Flags ads.

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52: The wizard is sealed and preserved within a block of eldritch crystal, and although appearing solid in fact acts in the world only through manifestation via a kind of Astral Projection - the wizard is thus able to "blink" from locale to locale at will, and is untouched by most physical attacks. Certain kinds of arcane attacks can force the manifestation to dissolve, and the wizard will be so shaken that manifestation is impossible for hours or days afterwards. The crystal is hidden somewhere unknown, and the wizard can only be killed by breaking it open and defeating the physical body.
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53: Wizard has wrested control of a plane of Hell or the Abyss from the Demon Prince/Duke of Hell that ordinarily rules there (perhaps by becoming a trusted advisor and manipulating the creature from behind the throne?). Evil forces associated with that plane act in accordance to the wizards wishes - not only following direct instructions but instinctively acting to further the wizard's goals. Cultists and other devotees are instinctively hostile to those who have earned the wizard's enmity, and while the wizard may be defeatable on the Material Plane despite the advantages of being an extra-planar being, the result is simply for the wizard's spirit to be banished back to the home plane where a new body will form in time. (And during which period, worshipers will be particularly hostile to those who caused the wizard harm...)
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54: Mind jars into a sentient fungi, which happens to be a faerie ring 20km in diameter.
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55: The wizard doesn't actually exist. The superstitious locals simply blame everything on the wizard they believe lives in a long abandoned tower.
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56: She's a colony of snakes. (Thanks, Doctor Who!)
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57: Mortal soul replaced with Multitronic-6 computer housed in hyperspace.

 Claytonian JP's profile photo
58-60: Roll again until you don't get this result and put a twist on what the entry is. I didn't write this one in 2015, BTW. I'm magic!
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