"Go to the sign of Harvel's Axe, a dubious inn on the edge of the Thieves Quarter, in the City of Greyhawk, and look to your own wrist. If you perceive a bracelet and dangling dice, watch for the next throw in the war between Law and Chaos and be prepared to follow the compelling geas." -Signal

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

JG - Book of Ruins, Cassandra's Vortex of Doom

The Book of Ruins by Judges Guild was initially released in 1981. The book is 32 pages long and it consists of ten encounters of varying length. These were designed so they could be inserted into existing campaigns or run as stand alone sessions. The book has encounters designed for use with AD&D but they could in most cases be easily adapted for other system.

Each of the installments are short enough that they could be run in anywhere from one to four hours. They would be perfect as filler encounters to make an overland session less predictable and yet keep the encounters from having to be larger dungeon sessions. They could be used for purposes of other than filling space in an overland session but they would require beefing up in some cases.

Most of the encounters are designed for six to eight characters and the majority of them are designed for lower level characters though some are intended for characters much higher than third level. The encounters contain in the accessory are below along with the character levels intended for use with.

Hegrash the Bandit Ogre (1-3)
Screaming Sanctuary (1-3)
The Holding Harvest (1-3)
Adobe of Apes (3-4)
Singing Hall (4-5)
Lair of Maylock (2-3)
Out Post of Hell (8-10)
Final Refuge of Allmark (3-5)
Temple of Tarsham (5-7)
Abominable Family (4-6)

The encounters as said earlier vary in length and also in quality. The largest would have to be the "Lair of Maylock" though I am not sure it is the most original of encounters. This again was made back in 1981 long before thing like the One Page Dungeon contest existed. It filled a niche back when written but today there are myriad other options. It is worth picking up if you can get it cheap but nothing to go out of your way to find.

Spell:

Cassandra's Vortex of Doom


Level: Second
Range: 6"
Duration: 1 Round/Level
Ares Effect: One Creature
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 3 Segments
Saving Throw: Negates

This spell when cast engulfs the intended creature in a swirling vortex of high speed winds. These winds will have the effect of exerting force equal to 6"+ 1"/level of the caster (at third level it exerts 9" of force). If the victim makes their save they are not affected and the vortex vanishes.

This force may be used in two ways and the caster may switch once per round. The first use is to force the victim along the surface they are standing on in any direction the caster desires. The victim will be moved one inch per inch of force. This can be countered and resisted by using their own movement on an inch per inch ratio.

The second use of this spell will enabled the caster to have the victim lifted into the air. The vortex will be able to lift the victim into the air a maximum of one inch for every five inches of force it possesses rounded down. This movement may not be resisted by the victim unless they posses the ability to fly or levitate. The victim will rise ten feet per round until the maximum height is reached. If the maximum height is reach the vortex can hold the victim there motionless if desired. The caster can at any point have the vortex let the victim drop and they would suffer the appropriate amount of damage for such a fall. The vortex can then again surround the victim and begin the process again.

Once this spell has been cast it will not require the concentration of the magic user. The caster simply needs to vocalize the intended movement effect for the round at the beginning of the round. If the vortex is not directed otherwise it will continue using the same movement effect from the previous round.

This spell will have the effect of causing any items in the hands of the victim to be ripped out of their hands if they do not make a Bend Bars roll each round. The items will remain within the vortex for the duration of the spell but will be thrown 1d6 inches in a random direction when the spell expires. Spell casters affected by the vortex will not be able to cast spells while affected.

If this spell is cast on or near a person wearing a Ring of Air Elemental Control it will have a different effect. The vortex is actually a non-intelligent force from the Elemental Plane of Air but the vortex can be controlled by the person wearing the ring. The wearer of the ring can if desired assume control of the vortex for the duration of the spell.

The material components of this spell are the wings of a humming bird and a toy top which the caster spins at the start of the spell. The humming bird wings are destroyed with the casting of the spell but the top is not.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

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