View Full Version : [4E] The Gambler's Deck (Wondrous Item)

2008-12-23, 03:04 AM
Gambler's Deck: Wondrous Item (Level 21)
”Pick a card, any card...”

Some heroes fight with rather unconventional means. Some heroes place their fate in the hands of chance. Some heroes do both. The Gambler's Deck is a magic item which is held in place of a normal one-handed weapon, and which produces magic card shuriken. You are automatically proficient with these weapons. When you make an attack with the Deck, shuffle a physical deck of cards (modified) and draw the top card. This determines what magical enhancement and effects the card shuriken receives. After the attack is made, the card flies back into the Deck, and the next attack made is determined randomly as before.

The Deck of Cards
There are three suits in the deck: Clubs, Swords, and Blood. (Represented by Clubs, Spades, and Hearts) Within each suit are seven cards (Paladin, Fey, Rogue, Host, Escort, and two Villagers)

Avandra, Deity of Luck
Produces a +5 Gambler's Weapon (Adventurer's Vault, p. 69)
Found once in the deck (may be represented by the Joker)

Produces a +4 Radiant Weapon (Adventurer's Vault, p. 76)
May be represented by the King

Produces a +4 Transposing Weapon (Adventurer's Vault, p. 81)
May be represented by the Queen

Produces a +4 Assassin's Weapon (Adventurer's Vault, p. 63)
May be represented by the Jack

Gives a +4 enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls, increases the damage die by one step
May be represented by the 10

Gives a +4 enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls, and when you hit, you may swap places with an adjacent ally
May be represented by the 5

Gives a +3 enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls, and deals CHA modifier ongoing damage
May be represented by the 2 and 3

If the card drawn is of the Blood suit, all [W] dice for the shuriken gain Brutal 1.

This deck may also be used as an arcane implement, with an enhancement bonus of 2d6-3.

The Game
The cards can also obviously be used to play a game of cards, but not a standard game (there are only 22 cards in the deck). One popular game (played often with mundane cards of the same fashion) is Fool's Gambit. This is a gambling game, which uses this deck of cards and a six-sided die.

Each player starts the game with a number of chips. At the start of each round, each player may place any amount of chips behind a screen; this is their Fool's Gambit. This is a bet on the player to their left. Then, each player places a chip into the Pot (a pool of chips being betted); this is their Ante.

Then, each player is dealt three cards. Then, in turn (as in poker), each player makes a bet. They may either “Call” the current bet, “Raise” the bet to a new amount, or “Burn” their hand, which means that they drop out of betting. They do not return their Fool's Gambit to their chips, but cannot participate in the current round. If the bet is raised, then betting continues. Each player's total bet must match the amount of the current bet.

Once the betting is finished, each player plays a card from their hand. Then, the cards conflict, each player in turn choosing a card for their card to contest against.

The Paladin beats the Fey and loses to the Rogue
The Rogue beats the Paladin and loses to the Fey
The Fey beats the Rogue and loses to the Paladin

The Host beats the Villagers and loses to the Escort
The Escort beats the Host and loses to the Villager
The Villager beats the Escort and loses to the Host
When the Villager faces the Host, the Host may play another card from hand to replace itself; the Host is discarded

If there is a tie, or a card from one triangle faces a card from the other, both players roll the six-sided die; the highest result wins. If one player plays Avandra, they roll the six-sided die twice, and choose either roll.

When one card wins, the other card is discarded. Once there is only one card remaining, the winner draws a card and takes chips from the Pot equal to his cards in hand, and a second round begins as before. Rounds continue until one player attempts to draw, and cannot do so.

The winner of the most recent round takes the pot. The player to his right removes chips equal to his Fool's Gambit, and places all of those chips with his chip stash. Then, all other players place their Fool's Gambits into the Pot, and discard all of their cards. All cards are reshuffled into the deck, and play begins again.


That's what I've got so far, how is it? I'll probably be looking at making a scaled-down version for Paragon tier, as well.

2008-12-23, 09:44 AM
I absolutely love this item. I haven't checked each of the weapons you listed as potential enhancements, but do any of them have Powers? If so, then they're useless, since you can't know whether you have access to a power until you throw the card.

Also, the Implement use seems a lot on the strong side. 2d6-3? This means I can get a +9 enhancement bonus if I double roll 6's. Granted, snake eyes gives me -1, but I still believe its too much variation. Why not have the enhancement bonus depend on which card you draw? If you draw Avandra, +5 Enhancement and your implement attacks also give them bad luck (-2 to saving throws, save ends), if you draw Paladin, +4 enhancement and deal bonus +XdY Radiant damage, if you draw Fey, +4 enhancement, and you are invisible to the target (save ends), if you draw Rogue, +4 enhancement, Sneak Attack on a hit (wizardly sneak attack!), if you draw Host, +4 enhancement, and you slide the target 4 squares, if you draw Escort, +4 enhancement, +1 to all defences until the end of your next turn, if you draw a villager, +3 enhancement, the target grants combat advantage to one ally within sight.


2008-12-23, 09:49 AM
As soon as I get my 4e books, I'm gonna steal this! Two thumbs up.:smallsmile:

2008-12-23, 01:27 PM
This is a fantastic idea, and it looks to me like it would work out fine. I looked over the enhancements you've chosen, and they can all work on the spot well enough.

However, it's worth noting that a +4 enhancement bonus is a bit under par for epic tier. It's usually +1 for low heroic, +2 for high heroic, +3 for low paragon, +4 for high paragon, +5 for low epic, and +6 for high epic. You mentioned making a paragon version, but this seems to me like it would be most suited for players around levels 17-20 already. Perhaps you meant closer to level 11, which would also be understandable. Either way, I look forward to seeing what you make of this! I would definitely consider using it.

2008-12-23, 04:07 PM
The items do have powers, and you've got a point on the timing. It makes sense that you could find out what it is before you make the attack, so as to pick the target of the attack.

Regarding the implement thing, I don't think it's too overpowered, as the +9 bonus only comes in 1/36 times. The average bonus granted is going to be +4.

I'm not 100% sure how the levels scale, but the weapons that I did pick to be replicated by the shuriken were around Level 21, although the lower-end cards might take that down a notch. I could probably bump it down to a Level 20, easily.

And aye, when I said Paragon, I was thinking more 11th Level on.

You know, now that I think of it, I can probably just make up my own enhancements for the top weapons. I like the idea of the Rogue adding sneak attack damage.