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    Default Shield of Wonder

    The comic Goblins (link), has in it a Shield of Wonder - which is a custom piece of equipment with a whole host of magical affects. Part of its functionality can be seen here, sadly its currently incomplete - however I want to add it to my current game.

    So, does anyone have any resources/ideas for similar random affects that would fit this item that I can extend the items random chart with? We need about 70 different outcomes, which is quite a bit really, but hopefully I can get something to fill it in. I'll point out that this is system independent as the shields effects are going to be converted into another system than the original one was designed for anyway and its the raw concepts that are important rather than the specifics of a +1 here or a -1 there.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    I've made a couple of items that have random effects, but always based on a school of magic. I took the number of spells in that school, assigned a number to each one going from 1 on up, then rolled a die on an emulator equal to the number of spells. That is the simplest way to do it, IMO.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    The Shield of Wonder, like a lot of the stuff in Goblins, seems to be really poorly thought out on the part of the imaginary designers of whatever fictional elfgame Herbert is running. I would recommend never making an item like this.

    That said, it seems pretty self explanatory; make a table with anywhere from two to 99 effects, have 00 be "roll twice and add" and have the PCs use a d100 every time someone someone fails to hit your AC by the Shield Modifer or less.

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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by Water_Bear View Post
    The Shield of Wonder, like a lot of the stuff in Goblins, seems to be really poorly thought out on the part of the imaginary designers of whatever fictional elfgame Herbert is running. I would recommend never making an item like this.

    That said, it seems pretty self explanatory; make a table with anywhere from two to 99 effects, have 00 be "roll twice and add" and have the PCs use a d100 every time someone someone fails to hit your AC by the Shield Modifer or less.
    Why not? Any reasons besides taking your life in the hands of the RNG?
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by SowZ View Post
    That is the simplest way to do it, IMO.
    Although this will serve in a pinch, it doesn't quite produce the shear chaos through truly random (and self destructive/bizarre) outcomes from it being activated. Few spells turn a foes weapon into powerful magical armour, which also may or may not crush/cut them to death as it happens/whilst they're wearing it. Well, at least not ones I've seen.

    Quote Originally Posted by Water_Bear View Post
    The Shield of Wonder, like a lot of the stuff in Goblins, seems to be really poorly thought out on the part of the imaginary designers of whatever fictional elfgame Herbert is running. I would recommend never making an item like this.
    I'm aware that this item will create a maelstrom of destruction and disruption around it, and that is part of the point - I do not intend (or predict) that the PCs will ever choose to use this, except in a "no other option, our lives are already forfeit" situation.

    The goal is to put it into the hands of a reoccurring villain, where the PCs are well informed of the potential devastation striking this shield will cause - and as such seek to avoid hitting it at all costs. As such said villain acts as if they're immortal - as everyone is too scared to attack them for fear of the results. However I want to know what happens just encase the PCs do choose to hit them and have the attack blocked - which will range from pretty to pretty deadly depending on the roll...

    That said, it seems pretty self explanatory; make a table with anywhere from two to 99 effects
    Yep, its the "make 99 different effects" bit that I want help with... well 71 as we already have the first 29 outcomes. I want to basically finish the item so it can be used, but the outcomes should be appropriately bizarre (but powerful) in their effects so that the PCs have reason to fear striking its bearer.
    Last edited by Reaper_Monkey; 2012-11-16 at 04:05 AM. Reason: Bad [/QUOTE] bracket, no biscuit!
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by Doorhandle View Post
    Why not? Any reasons besides taking your life in the hands of the RNG?
    Probably the fact that it's basically a deck of many things, except in shield form, and with the capacity to accidentally summon horrific creatures from various planes, and pretty much no capacity for controlling when the effect is unleashed.

    Anyway, Water_Bear's suggestion for statting it out is pretty much the best way to go. Writing out the table of possible effects is all on you, and the comic has already taken care of several possibilities.

    Although effects like 'character that struck the shield is encased in armour than then proceeds to squeeze him like an overripe tomato with no save' are kind of off.

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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalmarvho View Post
    Probably the fact that it's basically a deck of many things, except in shield form, and with the capacity to accidentally summon horrific creatures from various planes, and pretty much no capacity for controlling when the effect is unleashed.
    Yeah, see in with my group if they can't control a magical device like that, they'll put it away so it doesn't blow them up. Adventurers can be pretty paranoid at times. So if you want PCs to actually have the desire to use such things, make the effect happen through concious effort, like the Rod of Wonder.
    That way it still does weird random stuff, but only on command.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalmarvho View Post
    Probably the fact that it's basically a deck of many things, except in shield form
    This is actually a pretty good comparison, and perhaps a source for additional affects for the shield. It also actually captures the exact response that I want from the shield (as the group is well aware of the deck, and most of them are too scared to go near it - the more reckless ones have also already had negative experiences with that artifact in their gaming history) - the villain using the shield is basically both weaponising the deck, and literally armouring themselves in it. As a result the players should be fearful of the item, and by association the person, I'm not just adding it because "hey that looks like fun, nothing could possible go wrong with using that".

    Anyway, Water_Bear's suggestion for statting it out is pretty much the best way to go. Writing out the table of possible effects is all on you, and the comic has already taken care of several possibilities.

    Although effects like 'character that struck the shield is encased in armour than then proceeds to squeeze him like an overripe tomato with no save' are kind of off.
    I think there's been some miscommunication here, what I want is for people to help me write out the table of possible effects. I also linked to the incomplete table in my original post, the third page of which actually provides the mechanical functionality of the "getting encased in armour" effect (which is actually not as dangerous as what you see occurring in the comic, as its about an 8% chance for it being the "okay its only a matter of time before you're dead now" outcome - and only a 10% chance of it getting to the point of damager per round so that you pretty much have to remove it there and then).

    Quote Originally Posted by DigoDragon View Post
    Yeah, see in with my group if they can't control a magical device like that, they'll put it away so it doesn't blow them up. Adventurers can be pretty paranoid at times. So if you want PCs to actually have the desire to use such things, make the effect happen through concious effort, like the Rod of Wonder.
    That way it still does weird random stuff, but only on command.
    I very much expect the group to attempt to destroy or hide this item if they can ever get it off of the villain who's using it currently - if one of them is stupid enough to try and use it I'm sure the rest of the group will either leave them or kill them in their sleep as so not to get hit with any of the "splash damage" of its use. So that's fine really, I don't really want it to be a functionally balanced or sane item to use.

    So, other than the Deck of Many Things and the Rod of Wonder, does anyone have any other sources of inspiration (or just straight up ideas) for the remaining table slots?
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Well, as for writing effects, I've got a few ideas but there's a choice which has to be made; do we want this thing to be as unusably crazy as the Goblins one or a more predictable game-breaking madness?

    The predictable method, you can just look at the Rod of Wonder and use that kind of weirdness, but for utter insanity you need a different M.O.

    Example: Utter Insanity
    50: Roll 1d20 and then 2d100 and turn to pages 80-81 in the DMG. Use the d20 result for encounter level, the first d100 result to select the random monsters, and the second d100 result to determine their starting attitude towards you (1-20 Friendly, 21-90 Hostile, 91-99 Indifferent, ). The creatures appear 1d6x10ft away from the shield in a random direction; roll 1d8 to determine (x,y) and 1d5 to determine (y,z).
    51: Roll 1d20 and then 1d6 and then 1d100 and turn to page 266 in the Magic Item Compendium. Use the d20 result for CR, the 1d100 result for the row within the table and the 1d6 to determine column (1 Coins, 2-3 Goods, 4-5 Magic Items, 6 Pick Any Two). The weapon which strikes the shield is turned into an appropriate item (DM's choice) as if by Polymorph Any Object, including creatures striking with natural weapons. The DC for this effect is equal to 19+1d6.
    52: Roll 1d10 with the result determining which Summon Monster spell is cast by the shield (10 roll twice and combine). The Wielder of the Shield picks the creatures to be summoned, and the spells use their CL or the Shields, whichever is higher. Unlike the normal summon monster spell, these creatures do not automatically obey the Wielder but rather the character in 150ft with the highest Leadership score. In case of a tie, roll opposed Charisma checks until one succeeds; for each tie on these rolls, roll 1d10 again and add another Summon Monster effect.
    53: Roll 2d6 and then find the Deck of Many Things table. Draw 2d6 Cards, applying their effects to all characters in line of sight of the shield in order of Initiative.
    Last edited by Water_Bear; 2012-11-16 at 10:04 AM. Reason: Spelling.

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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by Reynard View Post
    This is awesome, I'll definitely raid that for ideas.

    Quote Originally Posted by Water_Bear View Post
    Well, as for writing effects, I've got a few ideas but there's a choice which has to be made; do we want this thing to be as unusably crazy as the Goblins one or a more predictable game-breaking madness?

    The predictable method, you can just look at the Rod of Wonder and use that kind of weirdness, but for utter insanity you need a different M.O.
    Can I vote for something in-between the two? I don't want too many affects which are easily reproduced by other means (so its not just producing standard spell-like effect) but I'm not really wanting 15 rolls in a row in order to just spew additional creatures across the battle-map.

    My main goal is to have a bunch of unique or hard to normally produce effects, with a mix of good and bad outcomes (with a few mixed blessings and "it could go either way" effects). I guess I want more of a 'surreal' and 'chaotic' source of power rather than an unusable one, where the disincentive from playing with it is the impracticability of having such random and mixed results that may occur. Overall though it should be flashy and have a number of memorable and lasting conditions that would quickly be determined as the result of the shield.

    Of cause the villain who uses it spreads enough propaganda about what fate awaits those who do battle against the bearer of the shield that he doesn't need to worry about the negative consequences of wearing it as he's actively discouraging people from tempting fate by attacking him (more so as they still have to worry about said bearer attacking them with weapons etc). Even though one lucky shot from a peasant could trigger an effect that could pretty much kill him outright, so its in his best interest to show off some of the more major outcomes and keep people fearing what might happen rather than actually making use of the shield directly.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    53: Roll 2d6 and then find the Deck of Many Things table. Draw 2d6 Cards, applying their effects to all characters in line of sight of the shield in order of Initiative.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    It's obviously a parody of the Wand Rod of Wonder.

    For a tame version just assume it's a Wand Rod of Wonder enchantment in Shield form, with an unusual trigger condition.

    For more input fun: create a thread, in the appropriate sub-forum for your preferred game system, and ask for suggestions. Its traditional to request 1001. Then just edit the best ideas from the thread into your table.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by nedz View Post
    It's obviously a parody of the Wand Rod of Wonder.

    For a tame version just assume it's a Wand Rod of Wonder enchantment in Shield form, with an unusual trigger condition.

    For more input fun: create a thread, in the appropriate sub-forum for your preferred game system, and ask for suggestions. Its traditional to request 1001. Then just edit the best ideas from the thread into your table.
    The tame version is too tame, but I'll be heavily borrowing from it anyway. As for creating a thread - I thought that's what I did here, I want system independent ideas because it either shouldn't matter about the details of if its 1d6 or 2d5 damage, and I am more than able to convert if needs be if it does.

    Starting a thread in a sub-forum, or tagging it with specific gaming system, pretty much excludes a whole number of forum goers who either are not interested, or are not overly well versed in that system system. I just want cool ideas for new random stuff that can happen that's in the same theme as the rod of wonder or deck of many things - but with the knowledge that it will be triggered from hitting a shield and that it should be able to affect both the wielder and the striker. With affects that range from great to dire with some "it really depends on the situation" stuff thrown in for good measure.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Well my point about systems specifics is that there are things which work in any system, but there are some which don't.

    E.g. you could have an option which Bullrushed the striker and pushed them back. This would work in 3.5 and PF, but not AD&D or at least not in the same way.

    You would also get more responses on a more active sub-forum.
    Last edited by nedz; 2012-11-17 at 04:16 PM.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by nedz View Post
    Well my point about systems specifics is that there are things which work in any system, but there are some which don't.

    E.g. you could have an option which Bullrushed the striker and pushed them back. This would work in 3.5 and PF, but not AD&D or at least not in the same way.

    You would also get more responses on a more active sub-forum.
    I understand your point - but half of the stuff in the list are things that the standard rules just don't cover anyway. You may not have rules for bullrushing in AD&D, but you do have the ability to override the basic rules as just say "you are thrown 10 feet backwards as if slammed into" and be done with it.

    Although you might be right about posting on a more active sub-forum - more responses is more responses at the end of the day.
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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by Reaper_Monkey View Post
    I understand your point - but half of the stuff in the list are things that the standard rules just don't cover anyway. You may not have rules for bullrushing in AD&D, but you do have the ability to override the basic rules as just say "you are thrown 10 feet backwards as if slammed into" and be done with it.
    You always have the ability to override the rules, no matter the system, but what you don't have and desperately need is a way to keep it from seeming arbitrary. If the PCs are getting thrown around by DM Fiat knock-back they'll be justifiably pissed, and if it's the enemies getting kicked around the PCs will feel like you turned on Easy Mode to get them through the fight. Without a predictable way to know when someone will or won't get knocked back, there's no way it can seem impartial, and thus it detracts from the fun.

    Hence, rules.

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    Default Re: Shield of Wonder

    Quote Originally Posted by Water_Bear View Post
    You always have the ability to override the rules, no matter the system, but what you don't have and desperately need is a way to keep it from seeming arbitrary. If the PCs are getting thrown around by DM Fiat knock-back they'll be justifiably pissed, and if it's the enemies getting kicked around the PCs will feel like you turned on Easy Mode to get them through the fight. Without a predictable way to know when someone will or won't get knocked back, there's no way it can seem impartial, and thus it detracts from the fun.

    Hence, rules.
    The shield already has the ability to turn someone into an ice statue (which then thaws out) - its not like its not got precedence to do things that are beyond the scope of the normal rules.

    Also, there's a difference between saying "no, this NPC is just able to throw you around, because I say so" and saying "this is a magical sword of knockback, if you are struck by it you are pushed back 10 feet" - even when there are no rules for 'knockbacks'. Magical items frequently do things that the core rules don't account for, just because there are no rules to cover the mechanical handling of a situation doesn't stop an item from making them up for that specific case.

    The predictability of rule application is preserved through only allowing some things to break them, and for those things to be telegraphed as being able to (magical items which are named as such or are detailed as having a number of unique functions are covered by this). The fact that the shield of wonder may only produce that result once in one hundred activations is besides the point - as the other 99 results are just as unaccounted for by the general rules of any system.

    Anyway, I'll follow nedz suggestion of starting a 1001 thread in a sub-forum. As what I want is ideas for more potential outcomes, which for some reason isn't what I'm getting here. EDIT: (It's here if anyone cares to jump over to it and add some results.)
    Last edited by Reaper_Monkey; 2012-11-18 at 05:54 AM.
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