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Monday, October 26, 2009

Ocarina of the Transmuter

This ceramic instrument is about ten inches long, shaped like a slightly curved yam. It's smooth, polished surface is glazed in delicate shades of green, yellow and red in an abstract pattern. It is pierced by eight finger holes arranged in two groups of four, and, of course, a mouthpiece. The Ocarina radiates Great alteration magic, and a Superb test of divination magic will reveal its basic powers, but actual use and practice is required to master the device.

The Ocarina can be used to alter the nature of a specific group of objects or creatures within hearing distance. The exact target of the alteration is determined by the the skill of the musician playing the instrument. The two chambers within the instrument allow playing a pair of notes, one controlling the target of the alteration, the other controlling the alteration itself. The basic target notes are Animal, Vegetable, Mineral, and Supernatural. The basic alteration notes are Size, Motion, Shape and Energy.

Basic success with the Ocarina is a Fair test of musical ability, which allows the musician to play a simple target plus alteration tone. This level of mastery causes the alteration to affect an entire class of targets within hearing range. For example Animal plus Size might cause all mundane living creatures within range to double in size. Each note can be tuned to a specific subset of the main effect, allowing finer control. Each refinement increases the basic difficulty of using the Ocarina by one rank. Multiple target and alteration notes can be combined to achieve even greater control. For example targeting a group of undead might require both the Animal and Supernatural notes be played. Each additional note required increases the difficulty one rank.

The effects achieved by the Ocarina affect anything within audible range of the player, even if the target has no sense of hearing. The difficulty of any resistance test is equal to the difficulty of the note being played. The effects of the Ocarina persist so long as the musician plays, and for 1d4 rounds after they stop.

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