Runequest Thursday #157 - Plundered! 1d8 Gloranthan Magic Items!

Clint Staples

Continuing the Big Rubble theme we have going on Runequest Thursday, I thought I would make up some magic items that might be found in and around The Big Rubble and the River of Cradles. Each of these magic Items are related to a cult (or in one case a race) that operates in the River of Cradles and might be found in or near the Big Rubble.

It may be presumed that the cult in question is likely to want to regain an item related to it, should its members hear that someone else has it. This might be accomplished diplomatically, possibly even with an offer of trade (though some cults - like Moonbroth - might have comparatively little to trade with). It might also be done retributively, by attack, theft, assassination, etc. Even if an appropriate cultist PC has an item, she might be challenged for the right to keep it. A Stormbull Khan might decide that Stormbull's Lance would be better used in his hands than those of the PC. Or the Lunar administration in Pavis might determine that A Lunar Moondial (or a Moonbroth Bowl) pose a security risk in the hands of someone not under its direct control.


1. Solar Aspis: This hoplon shield is embossed with the pattern of a sun, the inside of which is a Fire/ Sky rune. As the center point of the rune are the embossed and painted the stern features of Yelmalio. The aspis shines with the light of the sun throughout the hours of darkness. In addition to providing high quality light, this grants its wielder the equivalent of Shimmer 6 against creatures with a connection to the Darkness Rune. Although it has the same Armor Points and Hit Points as a normal shield, if not destroyed, it will regain 1d6 Hit Point per hour of exposure to sunlight.


2. Stormbull’s Lance: This nomad-style lance is hung with skybull feathers and tipped with skybull horn. The spirit of the bull that once owned these parts has been bound into the weapon (INT 5, POW 20). Stormbull’s Lance contains the following Rune Spells, which it will grant to its wielder once it has been attuned in Spirit Combat: Berserk 1, Crash of Thunder 1 (Those with an Air Rune connection are immune). When wielded in Storm Season, Stormbull’s Lance is Unbreakable.


3. Zola Fel Charm: A tiny “model” of a river boat made from dried papyrus, a Zola Fel Token is often made by River Folk and offered to Zola Fel with a prayer as it is sent out into the water. If the prayer is accepted by the River, the one who prayed gains +20% to their Boating and Swimming rolls in the Zola Fel or its tributaries for the rest of the day.


4. Dragon Stone: Although named for the Dragons, these stones are the product of the Empire of the Wyrms Friends, and are sometimes found along the River of Cradles, especially in the region of the Great Marsh. A Dragon Stone is a palm-sized piece of variegated flint shaped like a scale. If it is fitted with a thong and worn around one’s neck, it grants +1 Point of Armor to the Chest and immunity to the Speed Dart spell. It also incurs the ire of any Dragonewt the wearer meets.


5. Moonbroth Bowl: These simple bowls are made from clay taken from the prophetic well at Moonbroth. If they are later filed with water drawn from that well, a Moonbroth Bowl can be used as a scrying device to the Well at Moonbroth or any other Moonbroth Bowl that currently contains water from its well. Originally these bowls were used as a means of communication between priestesses of the temple at Moonbroth. The Scryer must spend 1d4 hours in meditation, staring into the water, casting 1d4 POW into it each hour. At the end of the required time the scryer should her Magic Skill or POW x3%. On a success, she can gain a glimpse of the temple area, or another operating Bowl. She can also communicate with anyone else doing this ritual at the same time, regardless of the distance between them.


6. Pavise of Pavis: These large shields are too unwieldy and heavy to be worn and wielded as a normal shield. Instead they are fitted with loops to be carried on the back of a footman, and then set up as a defensive barrier behind which one may shelter. Each of these pavises are faced with a mosaic of cut stones from the City of Pavis. When set up, it covers the Legs and Abdomen of one person fighting behind it, granting them Shield 4 vs normal or magical ranged attacks that hit one of the shielded locations. If the defender takes complete shelter, he cannot fight, but he gains the above protection to his entire body. The Pavise of Pavis also Increases the POW of the defender by +2 when resisting incoming Battlemagic.  


7. Lunar Moondial: This astrological Instrument allows one to determine the Phase of the Red Moon, as well as its position in relation to other heavenly bodies and any local conditions that affect it or its inhabitants. A POW check may be made to determine the degree of information gained, and the time required to get it. Because the Moondial establishes as connection with the surface of the Red Moon, it also grants its use +2 POW for purposes of attacking with Lunar spells.


8. Flintnail Warphammer: This heavy Warhammer is typically Mostali: fine in workmanship, short-hafted by human standards, and rather heavy. Were it not for its exceptional craftsmanship, these things might prove detrimental, but with a little practice, any wielder finds the Flintnail Warphammer a pleasure to use. Like many Mostali items, the Warphammer is a tool AND a weapon. The Warphammer grants 1 use each of the cult Rune spells: Mold Rock and Shape Metal. If the Warphammer is used as a focus for these spells, they have 20 yards of range and are accomplished via the transformational power of the hammer, rather than the blows of Mostali hands or hammers.  It can be used as a Warhammer (doing +2 Damage, and granting +10% to hit). The +2 damage Destroy Armor Points in the struck location on a Special Hit. This is in addition to any other Special Hit chosen.


I plan to add to these over time, so check back occasionally. Or feel free to suggest items, even work out one or two of your own, and post them in the comments.