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Monday, September 28, 2009

Stave of the Woodland Warder

This heavy fighting staff is made from a stout hawthorn sapling and tipped with black iron caps at either end with matching bands of iron spaced at equal intervals along the shaft. A winding pattern of leaf- and blossom-covered vines, which seems to twist and shift of its own accord, winds its way up and down the length of the staff. The artifact is about six and a half feet in total length, and two and a half inches in diameter. If examined for magical properties, the staff radiates Great combat magic and Superb nature magic. A Great test of divination magic will reveal its powers and the means to attune the staff.

To make use of the Stave's powers it must be attuned to both its bearer and a wilderness locale. The attunement process requires the bearer to stand solitary vigil within the heart of a wilderness region, and offer a blood sacrifice at midnight. Once attuned the bearer can use all the Stave's powers, though some can only be used within the attuned area, and they cannot be used against the natural denizens of the area.

The Stave has the following globally available powers:
  • Good bonus to accuracy and damage when used as a weapon.
  • Sense Nature - While outdoors the bearer can concentrate for one round and obtain a general knowledge of the terrain, features and inhabitants of the area within a one mile radius. This power can be invoked thrice per day.
  • Pathfinding - The bearer gains a Good bonus to tracking tests and a Good bonus to any tests involved in losing their way or becoming lost. This ability is passive.
  • Obscuring Way - The bearer can conceal the tracks of themselves and up to six companions, removing all traces of their passage. This provides a Great penalty to anyone attempting to follow the concealed trail. This power can be invoked thrice per day.

The Stave has the following additional powers and abilities within the attuned area:
  • Sense Nature - This power becomes a continuous passive ability, the information is always available to the bearer.
  • Pathfinding - The tracking bonus rises to Superb and the bearer always knows exactly where they are within their chosen territory.
  • Obscuring Way - The penalty to tracking created by this power rises to Superb. The tracks of up to a dozen creatures can be hidden. This power can be invoked an additional three times within the attuned area.
  • Forest Minion - Twice per day the bearer can summon forth a nature spirit from the attuned area. This spirit will take possession of and animate a plant chosen by the bearer of the Stave for 10 rounds. All minions have Good toughness, but Poor resistance to fire damage. Typical minions include:

    • Vines - A patch of clinging vines 30 feet in diameter comes to life, ensnaring foes with Great strength and causing Poor damage each round they are entangled. Vines move 10 feet per round.
    • Thorns - A patch of spiny brambles 30 feet in diameter comes to life, striking foes within range for Fair damage each round. Thorns move 20 feet per round.
    • Tree - A single large tree comes to life, striking up to three targets per round for Great damage. Trees move 60 feet per round.

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