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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2017

    Default Parasitic Skin-Changer ( Magic Jar ponderings )

    I've published some tricks with the Magic Jar spell before, and generally it is one of the spells which most fascinate me due to it's uniqueness, so imagine my surprise when I re-read it briefly and realized I've missed something very interesting, which I think that others might've too. You know those spells which have the clause of "If you cast this spell again, the spell ends" in order to prevent a bunch of tricks? Well, Magic Jar isn't one of those spells. It's also a spell without concentration, which lasts until dispelled.

    To give you the short version of what occurred to me, while you carefully read through "Magic Jar"'s description upon it's entire wording, is that upon possessing a creature, thereby controlling it and having it's game statistics ( Except for INT, WIS, CHA ) while retaining you class features, there is nothing stopping you, at least after resting, from casting Magic Jar with a new container from within your possessed body and possessing another humanoid, upon which the body of "Vessel A" whom you inhabited, controlled as a creature and cast the spell through becomes catatonic much like your original one, while his soul is still imprisoned in "Container A", and your soul transfers to "Vessel B" while that new guy's soul gets transferred into the container you just used, "Container B". This chain can continue indefinitely, leaving a trail of catatonic bodies and imprisoned souls in it's path.


    I haven't really considered all of the implications of this, I've only just validated ( word for word ) that this is perfectly legitimate via RAW. For once, it can mean thousands of permanently ( until destroyed, if you didn't hide them well ) imprisoned humanoid souls for whatever need it may be. Perhaps someone intending to hold the world hostage against the deities, preventing them from even receiving petitioners in the planes. If you can use an action to return to a container ( Last container? All? either way, doesn't matter right now ) and from there to "your" ( Which one though now? ) living body, you might do something like arrange containers/ low charisma ( for the saving throw ) poles of chained goblins at 100 feet intervals and create a little "soul highway" for yourself.

    All of these would actually make some pretty fascinating methods for a villain or a character. Although as noted above, reading the wording of the spell with terms like "When the spell ends" ( Which one ) and "back to your living body" ( In case you jump to say that surely the original must always be considered your living body, keep in mind, per spell description, your body can become dead, it could even be disintegrated while you possess a humanoid. Nothing will happen, unless you attempt to return to it, in which case you die. As long as you possess a creature, you control it, you have it's game stats save for some, etc.. and as the spell description says, it's your body. So if you cast Magic Jar from within it, that was the living body that the current iteration of the spell was cast from, and the body which falls catatonic ).

    Anyway, the interpretation with multiple iterations becomes somewhat complex, but it's something that needs to be done because creating that loop in the first place is absolutely possible. No concentration, lasts until dispelled ( Which much as with other spells of that nature, is no longer even dependent on you once cast, and only ends by conditions specified ), conditions which do not include casting it repeatedly with new containers, which is done from the new possessed body that has your class features. So there you have it. Let me know if you have any insights, since this only just dawned at me. I haven't even investigated all the possible venues of how to use it.
    Last edited by Renduaz; 2017-12-07 at 07:59 PM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2016

    Default Re: Parasitic Skin-Changer ( Magic Jar ponderings )

    Quote Originally Posted by Renduaz View Post
    I've published some tricks with the Magic Jar spell before, and generally it is one of the spells which most fascinate me due to it's uniqueness, so imagine my surprise when I re-read it briefly and realized I've missed something very interesting, which I think that others might've too. You know those spells which have the clause of "If you cast this spell again, the spell ends" in order to prevent a bunch of tricks? Well, Magic Jar isn't one of those spells. It's also a spell without concentration, which lasts until dispelled.

    To give you the short version of what occurred to me, while you carefully read through "Magic Jar"'s description upon it's entire wording, is that upon possessing a creature, thereby controlling it and having it's game statistics ( Except for INT, WIS, CHA ) while retaining you class features, there is nothing stopping you, at least after resting, from casting Magic Jar with a new container from within your possessed body and possessing another humanoid, upon which the body of "Vessel A" whom you inhabited, controlled as a creature and cast the spell through becomes catatonic much like your original one, while his soul is still imprisoned in "Container A", and your soul transfers to "Vessel B" while that new guy's soul gets transferred into the container you just used, "Container B". This chain can continue indefinitely, leaving a trail of catatonic bodies and imprisoned souls in it's path.


    I haven't really considered all of the implications of this, I've only just validated ( word for word ) that this is perfectly legitimate via RAW. For once, it can mean thousands of permanently ( until destroyed, if you didn't hide them well ) imprisoned humanoid souls for whatever need it may be. Perhaps someone intending to hold the world hostage against the deities, preventing them from even receiving petitioners in the planes. If you can use an action to return to a container ( Last container? All? either way, doesn't matter right now ) and from there to "your" ( Which one though now? ) living body, you might do something like arrange containers/ low charisma ( for the saving throw ) poles of chained goblins at 100 feet intervals and create a little "soul highway" for yourself.

    All of these would actually make some pretty fascinating methods for a villain or a character. Although as noted above, reading the wording of the spell with terms like "When the spell ends" ( Which one ) and "back to your living body" ( In case you jump to say that surely the original must always be considered your living body, keep in mind, per spell description, your body can become dead, it could even be disintegrated while you possess a humanoid. Nothing will happen, unless you attempt to return to it, in which case you die. As long as you possess a creature, you control it, you have it's game stats save for some, etc.. and as the spell description says, it's your body. So if you cast Magic Jar from within it, that was the living body that the current iteration of the spell was cast from, and the body which falls catatonic ).

    Anyway, the interpretation with multiple iterations becomes somewhat complex, but it's something that needs to be done because creating that loop in the first place is absolutely possible. No concentration, lasts until dispelled ( Which much as with other spells of that nature, is no longer even dependent on you once cast, and only ends by conditions specified ), conditions which do not include casting it repeatedly with new containers, which is done from the new possessed body that has your class features. So there you have it. Let me know if you have any insights, since this only just dawned at me. I haven't even investigated all the possible venues of how to use it.
    Now while this would make for an interesting PC...it will make for a GRAND Villain! Oh yes...next campaign I run (current one has elite squad of Kobolds rezzing Shendu) this will be my villain. The Plot hook is perfect too. Around the country, people have been falling into comas, and no magic seems to awake them. Rumors are that the person acts strangely for a time before succumbing to this sickness. Many have come to call it the Sleep Plague. I think Ravenloft would be a better setting, but this works in anything still.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NinjaGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2013

    Default Re: Parasitic Skin-Changer ( Magic Jar ponderings )

    I like the concept.

    It reminds me of the Dresden Files villain Corpsetaker and the 3.X Stranger with the Burning Eyes.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Northern Colorado
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Parasitic Skin-Changer ( Magic Jar ponderings )

    This is a fantastic plot hook. It reminds me of the 2nd Edition Suel Lich. I think you could even keep your soul in the container for thousands of years before attempting to posess another body.

    One huge drawback: a DC 16 Dispel Magic would end the spell and bring death. Better have layers of Contingency and Glyphs of Warding with Counterspells at the ready.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    iTreeby's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Parasitic Skin-Changer ( Magic Jar ponderings )

    Yeah, it's good to have a backup clone when using this spell. If you are a gnome it helps you not die sometimes maybe. Casting magic jar with bard casting make the spell a flat DC 8 save to not die, which is good, might help to be lucky. Bonus points if you can figure out how attunement works with magic jar.
    avatar by Elrond

    "You should just homebrew the world's tiniest violin for your bard."

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