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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    BlackDragon

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    d20 A (hopefully) Scalable Version of the Infamous Deck of Many Things

    I personally love the Deck of Many Things. The infamy of the artifact and the chance that it could be readily used by the party for (hopefully) their benefit gives it huge story potential in my eyes, but as written, it's a very high level item (as artifacts typically are). This suggests that the PC's who come across it need to be around the mid-teens in level. The Deck's reputation as a campaign killer suggests that it's best suited for one shots. Combined, that equals a high level one shot.

    Which is fine for some people. Personally, I prefer D&D at the low-to-mid-level, and I like the Tolkien-esque feel of a general nobody stumbling across an item of great and terrible power. Hence me attempting to scale down the Deck.

    But enough digression...

    The Deck of Many Things

    Balance - You fall under the effect of a Geas spell, instructing you to obey your next intelligent enemy. The enemy knows this when they encounter you.

    Comet - You can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this boon. Alternately, you can take a Feat of your choice instead. (If you are using the optional Feat rules.)

    Donjon – Your soul is imprisoned by a powerful entity. You instinctively know the name of the entity, and it may contact you to demand a service while it possesses your soul. If you are slain while your soul is still imprisoned, you can only be restored to life by a Wish spell.

    Eurayale – You are cursed. You suffer disadvantage on all Saving Throws until the curse is lifted. The curse may only be lifted by a Greater Restoration or Wish spell.

    The Fates – Avoid any situation you choose… once.

    Flames – A fiend becomes your enemy, dedicating itself to your suffering. The fiend is chosen randomly, but its CR will always be equal to your Character Level.

    Fool – You are cursed. You lose 2 points of Wisdom until the curse is lifted, and you must draw again. The curse may only be lifted by a Greater Restoration or Wish spell.

    Gem – You gain possession of a gem worth 500gp.

    Idiot – You are cursed. You lose 2 points of Intelligence until the curse is lifted, and you may draw again. The curse may only be lifted by a Greater Restoration or Wish spell.

    Jester
    – You learn two cantrips and a 1st level spell from a random class’s spell list. You can cast it at its lowest level. Once you cast it, you must finish a long rest before you can cast it again. Your spellcasting ability for these spells depends on the class you chose. You may draw two more cards.

    1d6 Class Spell List
    1 Bard (Cha)
    2 Cleric (Wis)
    3 Druid (Wis)
    4 Sorcerer (Cha)
    5 Warlock (Cha)
    6 Wizard (Int)

    Key – Your weapon (your choice) becomes magical and gains a bonus to attack and damage rolls equal to half your Proficiency Bonus.

    Knight – You gain the service of a Fighter two levels lower than you. The Fighter is of the same race and gender as you.

    Moon – You are granted one Wish.

    Rogue – An Assassin two levels higher than you stalks you. The Assassin can be of any race, and will not stop until either of you are dead.

    Ruin – All but (1d4 per character level) of your non-magical possessions are lost. You get to choose which possessions you keep.

    Skull – An undead version of you appears and attacks. It has the same abilities and knowledge as you do, is immune to poison damage and the poisoned condition, and cannot be turned. If others try to help, they get undead copies to fight as well. If you or others are slain, you are slain forever and cannot be revived, except by Wish.

    Star – Increase one of your ability scores by 2. The score can exceed 20 with this bonus, but cannot exceed 24.

    Sun – You receive a random uncommon magical item. You are immediately attuned to the new item if possible.

    1d6 Magic Item
    1 Boots of Striding and Springing
    2 Cloak of Protection
    3 Eyes of the Eagle
    4 Gauntlets of Ogre Power
    5 Headband of Intellect
    6 Slippers of Spider Climbing

    Talons – 1d6 magic items in your possession (chosen randomly) lose all magical abilities, and you are no longer attuned to any remaining magic item in your possession.

    Throne – You gain the Inspiring Leader feat, and your Charisma score rises to 13 if it is lower.

    Vizier – You are able to cast one Divination spell of your choice as a ritual. The spell must be of a level that you would be able to cast if you were a caster of the appropriate class of a level equivalent to your character level. (For example, a 5th level character could cast a 3rd level Divination spell with this boon.)

    The Void – A Sphere of Annihilation appears five feet in front of you.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Troll in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Jan 2009

    Default Re: A (hopefully) Scalable Version of the Infamous Deck of Many Things

    Given how unimportant gold can become and how rare magic items are intended to be in 5e, I think the Ruin card is pretty negligible and the Talons card particularly horrifying. I think you can make the negative effects of Ruin better and should lessen how much magic gear is disenchanted via Talons. (Also, probably put a statement about if Potions of Healing and other potions count as magical or not. I hear that's debated sometimes, so better to head it off ahead of time.)

    For Talons, maybe your 'best' magical item is destroyed if level 1-10, and your two best magical items if level 11+. Or 'x' items of your choice, but it must be items attuned to you (or, if none attuned, goes to items in your inventory.) That way it is still a steep penalty, but not crippling.

    Keep in mind that, if a character (via Arcana check?) knows what a Deck of Many Things can do, they might well wait a day to unattune all their magical gear and give it away to another character to avoid the worse fates. I could see wording that the artifact is smart enough to see around loopholes like that.

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    Halfling in the Playground
     
    Daemon

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    Mar 2017

    Default Re: A (hopefully) Scalable Version of the Infamous Deck of Many Things

    I'm curious, do Wild MAges still have the ability to partially control random magic items?

    How did I miss the part in 5E where you attune magic items?

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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: A (hopefully) Scalable Version of the Infamous Deck of Many Things

    Quote Originally Posted by JeenLeen View Post
    Given how unimportant gold can become and how rare magic items are intended to be in 5e, I think the Ruin card is pretty negligible and the Talons card particularly horrifying. I think you can make the negative effects of Ruin better and should lessen how much magic gear is disenchanted via Talons. (Also, probably put a statement about if Potions of Healing and other potions count as magical or not. I hear that's debated sometimes, so better to head it off ahead of time.)

    For Talons, maybe your 'best' magical item is destroyed if level 1-10, and your two best magical items if level 11+. Or 'x' items of your choice, but it must be items attuned to you (or, if none attuned, goes to items in your inventory.) That way it is still a steep penalty, but not crippling.

    Keep in mind that, if a character (via Arcana check?) knows what a Deck of Many Things can do, they might well wait a day to unattune all their magical gear and give it away to another character to avoid the worse fates. I could see wording that the artifact is smart enough to see around loopholes like that.
    I could make the Ruin card harsher by reducing the amount of stuff you get to keep (that way a wizard could still cover his nakedness with his spellbook if he wants), or just going by the original Ruin card, where you just lose all non-magical property.

    As for the Talons, the effect (aside from nullifying the magical properties of some items) was to just shunt off the existing attunements the character has. The intent is that they could re-attune if they wanted at a later time. (Note: The original Talons, which disintegrates all magical equipment you have on you, was one of the harsher cards that I wanted to neuter a bit.) Perhaps the character is stricken with a temporary Antimagic Field (sized down to only apply to them) that just suppresses the magic items would be less harsh, but still in line with the original. Although that would also nullify the character's ability to cast spells, which could be more or less harsh depending on the character. (Considering that it's a "BAD" card, I'd word it to mimic the effects of the Antimagic Field without basically granting magical immunity to the character that drew it.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorgumander View Post
    I'm curious, do Wild MAges still have the ability to partially control random magic items?

    How did I miss the part in 5E where you attune magic items?
    Attunement is described on page 136 in the DMG. Basically, it just allows you to use certain items, and you only get three attuned items at a time. It takes a short rest to attune to an item.

    And I think that Wild Mages can only sort of control their wild magic surges, not other random effects. I'd assume an ability that allows a reroll could apply, but most of the ones I know of in 5E specifically state attack rolls, skill rolls, or saves.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: A (hopefully) Scalable Version of the Infamous Deck of Many Things

    I've edited and updated my variant Deck. (Also, giving it a sexy new coat of formatting!) I addressed the Ruin card by basically reverting it to its published ability, and the Talons card has been changed to only depower one magic item, with artifacts and the Deck itself being immune (I basically see it as the opposite of the Key card).

    Here is the link to the pdf.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Orc in the Playground
     
    Foxydono's Avatar

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    Default Re: A (hopefully) Scalable Version of the Infamous Deck of Many Things

    I like this a lot! Randomness is fun :)

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