Mutant Future Horror- Artifact Side Effects

Derek Holland


Monster Lures are all too common. Some are pheromones that draw predators or parasites but most emit a location beacon that draws robots. These artifacts are usually found in monster lairs or robotic outposts.

Objects Phase in and out of Existence can include things from one or more other universes. Great for introducing new monsters and artifacts as well as eliminating those that are problematic.

The AI may Trap the wielder and those with them with force fields, shackles or similar implements. Consider implements that cause damage or herd the characters to robots waiting to disect them.

Diseases might be the result of nanites or weird growth fields that make the existing pathogens that everyone has more virulent and destructive.

Slow Suffocation is so subtle that the character may not even realize what is happening. It doesn't completely smother the character, just weakens them enough they gasp like a fish. Lose the artifact, or die sooner or later.

Others suffer Rage or Apathy when they see the PC with artifact in hand. Being ignored may seem like a useful power, but consider that it doesn't work on every species.

Subtle Corrosion destroys the artifact and possibly other technology near it (setting off traps and setting up hazards?). This is the most unfair side effect here but it does have its uses. If an artifact with this is used when exploring ruins, said ruins will become more dangerous and may even collapse soon after (or before) the party leaves.

Drains Power Cells in other Artifacts is evil and the AI may do this on purpose to convince the owner of its supremecy as the most valuable artifact in the world, even if it is a food processor.

Detonates other Artifacts is so bad. This destroys loot! Who in their right mind would keep such an artifact? So what powers could it have that would convince you it is worth keeping?

Deformation affects nearby non-living things and can make them warp to just about anything you can envision. Of course hair, the outer layer of skin, nails and claws, etc. are not actually alive.

Magnetic Field draws or repels certain materials. They don't have to be ferrous or even metal (ala my Ultramagnet mutation). In a horror aspect, consider a character wearing armor with this side effect. If they enter a ruin where the material drawn is above them, they may very well get stuck to a ceiling. Or the artifact could attract bullets or even rays (a penalty to any saving throws).

Reactive Field changes its effect depending on the stimulus (usually energy or a substance). The artifact repels water, turns light into glue and forces the user to speak in ancient Latin when near bass roe (it could be a fishing device with built in database on species and techniques).

Psionic Chains attach the wielder to one or more others nearby. When one is harmed, so is the other. This does not pool their hit points, so if the PC has 15 and the monster has 120, the monster can wound