"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

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Wilderness Encounters - Catalyst, Mannequin of Control

Wilderness Encounters is a product released by Flying Buffalo under the Catalyst line in 19991. It is another product that features short mini-adventures that can be dropped into a campaign or used as filler for when the GM does not have something ready or the time to get something ready.

As the tile suggests this book deals specifically with encounters that will occur in wilderness areas. I find these more useful than perhaps the urban type of offerings. I would think of using these as perhaps random encounters. There might need to be some modification or minor railroading to make it happen but these are better than the "you are attacked on x watch by, by y number of creature z....roll for initiative" fare.

The book has thirteen distinct encounters of varying size and complexity. Each though has the lair and these could be expanded upon into a dungeon if the GM desired. The book is 74 pages long so there is some depth to the encounters. The list of provided encounters are provided on the back of the book and are copied below.

Brigand's lair
Gigant's Lair
Gihuspid Lair
Goblin Cave
Haunted Pool & Ruins
Hornet's Nest
Lamia's Lair
Maze of the Man Bull
Ogre's Lair
Serpentmen's Lair
Tomb of the Vashkari
Tower of Amkazad
The Troll Hole

These types of products are something that will be useful to almost any GM. Some may hate using premade encounters or adventures by others but rare is it to find a GM who ran short of time and has to just wing it or even worse not be able to run something at all.


Spell:

Mannequin of Control


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

When this spell is cast the magic user is able to exert a level  of control over the physical action of the target creature. This  is done through the use of a small mannequin that they will bend  and manipulate which will make the target perform a similar  action.

The actions will be movement based and they can not be something  that the victims body is not capable of performing. The caster  will also not be able to cause any direct damage through the use  of the spell. The effect is limited to what the mannequin itself  does but an act like throwing it will not cause the victim to be  hurled across the room in a similar fashion. The effect is  limited to the physical motion of the mannequin itself.

The victim is allowed an initial save and if successful then the  spell does not take effect. The caveat to this is if the caster  is in direct contact when the spell is cast then there is no save.

The victim will make any motion the caster makes the mannequin  perform as previously described but the victim can still attempt other action. Each round they want to perform an action the can attempt a save at -4 and if successful then they can perform the action. In combat the victim will have their AC reduced by a  factor of four and any to hit rolls are made at -4 and damage caused is halved.

While the caster is controlling the victim they can perform no  other action. If they do so then the spell is broken. The spell  will also be broken if they lose contact with the mannequin.

The material component of this spell is the mannequin that the  caster uses to simulate the motions of the victim. The spell is  limited to affecting victims in the same general body shaped  (humanoid, four legged etc) as the mannequin. The mannequin can  be reused.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the  write ups last, were all written up or conceived of 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.

2 comments:

seaofstarsrpg said...

I am quite a fan of the Catalyst line by FBI. Lots of good inspiration there.

I like the Mannequin of Control. Could I put the manniquin on a string, throw it at someone and then cast the spell once they caught it? Yanking it back to my hand afterward.

Also, a little confused by paragraph 4 of the spell. Is it trying to say that if you are not being actively commanded to do something, you can try to take an action?

Wymarc said...

@seaofstarsrpg I cleaned up paragraph four a little. They can still attempt to do something but must make a save to do so. I go back and forth on allowing that though.

The timing on putting the mannequin on a string would work if they had it in contact with them while the spell was being cast and then back in your control before the spell was completed.

Thanks for the comments. Appreciate the feedback and know that someone reads the stuff.

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