Thursday, October 31, 2013

House Rules - Rare and Restricted Alchemical Items

Rare and Restricted Alchemical Items

Armor Soft50 shillings1 lb.
Blasting Pellets50 shillings2 lbs.
Clearstone10 shillings per poundVaries
Courier's Ink20 shillings¼ lb.
Deepsmoke Stick40 shillings1 lb.
Fire Beetle Paste50 shillings1 lb.
Firestone50 shillings1 lb.
Flash-Bang95 shillings1 lb.
Flash Powder20 shillings1 lb.
Flashball40 shillings1 lb.
Flashstone30 shillings1/10 lb.
Free Foot25 shillings1 lb.
Holdfast50 shillings¼ lb.
Lantern Stars5 shillings1 lb.
Liquid Ice30 shillings½ lb.
Memorybind300 shillings½ lb.
Plantnip Candle300 shillings½ lb.
Red Rager50 shillings1 lb.
Rockburn Oil50 shillings1 lb.
Slippery Oil50 shillings1 lb.
Sneezing Powder60 shillings¼ lb.
Softshoe Powder25 shillings¼ lb.
Stinktar50 shillings1 lb.
Stonecloth100 shillings per square footVaries
Tangle Wire25 shillings2 lbs.
Truth Wine75 shillings1 lb.
Vapors of Sleep50 shillings½ lb.
Vine Oil50 shillings1 lb.
In addition to the standard array of alchemical items that are commonly found in apothecaries and alchemical shops throughout the land, there are a number of other substances and concoctions that are harder for common people to get their hands on. Some alchemical items have obvious military applications, such as blasting pellets, flash powder, and liquid ice, and are restricted for sale in some areas as a result. Some alchemical items require components that are rare or hard to find, such as fire beetle paste and lantern stars, and consequently unless the purchaser can provide the necessary rare components themselves, they may be unavailable. A third group of items, such as free foot and softshoe power, are often restricted because of their somewhat obvious usefulness for criminals, although they are not always banned outright because they are also useful for diplomats, spies, scouts, and soldiers. The common thread that ties all of these items together is that while they all may be acquired by a purchaser under the right circumstances, it will probably take some work and some connections to find a source willing to sell them.

Item Descriptions

Armor Soft: This slippery red oil has a mild corrosive effect on most metals. Although long-term use of armor soft is detrimental to any suit of armor, it provides the short-term benefit of easier movement and less noise. Any suit of metal armor treated with armor soft has its armor check penalty reduced by one. The effects of armor soft last for one hour. Each application of armor soft causes a cumulative 5% chance of the armor failing. The check is made after the duration of the armor soft has expired. Any armor that fails as a result of the corrosive effect is rendered useless. Armor soft does not reduce the armor check penalty of non-metal armor, but the corrosive effects still apply. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Blasting Pellets: Blasting pellets look like ball bearings or stones and come in bags. Used like caltrops, one bag of these alchemical items is enough to cover an area 5 feet square. Each round that a creature moves more than half speed through an area covered in blasting pellets (or spends a round fighting while standing in such an area), it must make a Reflex save (DC 15) to avoid breaking one. Breaking one pellet sets off a chain reaction among the others and they all loudly explode dealing 1d6 points of sonic damage to the creature in the square. Spreading a bag of pellets over a wider area or throwing the bag at a target has no substantial effect. Gnomes use blasting pellets mainly as alarm systems, hiding the pellets under leaves, or among other stones and gravel. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 2 lb.

Clearstone: This alchemical substance has all the properties of glass (such as hardness, hit points, and so on), but it reacts to other substances exactly like stone. This means that a chest made of clearstone can hold green slime, allowing the manufacture of the green slime chest. It also means that clearstone flasks cannot store acid. Cost: 10 shillings per pound; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: Items made from clearstone weigh as much as the same item would if it were made from stone.

Courier’s Ink: Courier’s ink is a special, invisible ink that becomes visible only when dipped into a revealing solution. The efficient formula for the ink produces the revealing solution as a byproduct of the creation process. Courier’s ink is common enough in some regions that blank pages found among captured documents are routinely dipped in revealing solution to look for information. Revealed courier’s ink is always red, so most people with sensitive information to hide write or draw on a page first in different colored ink. Once the revealing solution is applied, messages written in courier’s ink are permanently visible. Courier’s ink cannot be used to record a spell. Until it is dipped in the revealing solution, courier’s ink is invisible, making drawing the precise symbols used in magic spells impossible. Cost: 20 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 20; Weight: ¼ lb.

Deepsmoke Stick: This alchemically treated wooden stick is similar to a smokestick, except that it has also been soaked in a foul-smelling resin that produces an oily some in a 10-foot cube when ignited. The smoke is made up of tarry flecks and reflective crystals, and the resulting miasma is so thick that it blocks scent and even blindsight. The cloud has no effect on creatures with tremorsense. The stick is consumes after 1 round, and the smoke dissipates naturally. Cost: 40 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 20; Weight: 1 lb.

Fire Beetle Paste: This substance is a mixture of chemicals and a concentrated distillation of fire beetle glands, yielding a thick, reddish paste. If spread on a surface it burns fiercely for 1d4 rounds if touched by open flame, doing 3d6 points of damage per round and halving the hardness of the object before damage is applied. It can burn through wood, stone and metal. One container of the stuff is enough to draw a half-inch think line one yard long. A container can be ignited and throw, but the paste does not stick or splatter when used in such a manner and has the same effect as a thrown torch. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Firestone: This small orange stone can be hurled as a grenade like weapon. When it hits a hard surface, it bursts into a puff of flame that does 1d6 points of fire damage and ignites any flammable materials within the five foot square where it strikes. Fires lit by a firestone burn normally. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Flash-Bang: These alchemical devices were first created by gnome illusionists for use in adventuring, but have spread throughout the world as a result of their utility. Each is a 1-inch diameter cylinder of thin wood or tightly wrapped paper about 10 inches in length. At one end is a fuse that can be lit like a torch. Typically, a flash-bang is created with a fuse that burns down in 2 rounds allowing someone o pull it out and light it in one round (provided) there is a nearby source of fire, then throw it on the next round so that it explodes on the round following that. When the fuse has finished burning, the flash-bang emits a loud thunderclap, a bright flash, and a series of smaller, multi-colored flares. It continues to whine loudly and emit gouts of colored, sulfurous smoke for one full round after the initial thunderclap. The thick opaque smoke fills a 10-foot square and dissipates normally. Flash-bangs are thrown as grenade-like weapon with a range increment of 10 feet. Creatures within 10 feet of the flash-bang when it emits its thunderous noise and bright flash must make a Fortitude save (DC 10) to avoid being dazed for 1 round and a reflex save (DC 10) to avoid being dazzled for 1 minute. A dazed creature can take no actions, but defends itself normally. A dazzled creature suffers a -1 penalty to attacks. Deaf creatures are immune to the thunderous noise effect, while blind creatures are immune to the bright flash effect. Creating flash-bangs with longer fuses is possible. This does not appreciably change the cost unless the length of time reaches a minute; each minute of fuse length costs 1 shilling. Cost: 95 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Flash Powder: This silky gray powder is a mild explosive. Flash powder burns too quickly to cause more than minor burns even in large qualities. What the powder lacks in explosive force it makes up for in visual effect. Used occasionally in warfare as a diversionary tool, flash powder is a mainstay for burglars. The blinding light it produces often gives enough of a distraction for a skilled rogue to get out of danger. Even a small quality of the powder burns brightly enough to cause those looking directly at it to suffer a -5 penalty to all Spot checks for the next five rounds. The flash also provides enough of a distraction for someone under observation to make a Hide check. Cost: 20 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 20; Weight: 1 lb.

Flashball: You can throw this fist-sized sphere as a grenade-like weapon (see page 138 in the Player's Handbook). When a flashball strikes a hard surface, it explodes in a flash of brilliant white light. Creatures within a 15-foot radius who suffer penalties in bright light suffer them for 1 round after being exposed to the burst of light. In an area affected by the darkness spell, a flashball does not work. Cost: 40 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Flashstone: The flashstone is a hard, shiny pellet that glistens in light and glows slightly under both normal vision and darkvision. It is the same size and shape as a sling bullet, and it is used in a sling as often as it is thrown. When a flashstone strikes a hard surface, it vaporizes instantly, releasing a blast of light (15-foot diameter circle). Creatures caught in the blast must make Fortitude saves (DC 16) or be blinded for 1 round. Once the 1-round blindness has passed, the creatures suffers a -2 penalty to Spot and Search checks for one hour while its eyes recover. Cost: 30 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 20; Weight: 1/10 lb.

Free Foot: This quick drying oil makes on five foot by five foot area exceptionally slippery. Creatures moving through the affected area must make a Dexterity check (DC 15) to keep on their feet. Trying to stand up requires a similar check, as does moving out of the square once footing has been regained. Large or multi-legged creatures only suffer the effects of free foot if all of their legs are in the covered area. Free foot and tangle wire can make a fearsome improvised trap. If either check to move out of the square is failed, the victim cannot move out and is subjected to the effects of both substances again the following round. Cost: 25 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Holdfast: Holdfast is a small bundle of adhesive attached to the end of a rope. When the rope is thrown with enough force and accuracy, the bundle breaks, creating a temporary means of securing the rope to the surface it was thrown against. Quieter than a grappling hook and easy to transport holdfast is often used by those who have to infiltrate a walled structure or cross a dangerous chasm. To attach the rope to a desired target one must make a ranged attack. A holdfast contained has a range increment of ten feet. Armor Class modifiers for size apply. Any missed attack has a 50% chance of causing the holdfast bundle to break against another surface (use the rules for deviation of grenade like weapons to determine where the holdfast bag strikes on a failed throw). One bag of holdfast can support 200 pounds until the adhesive losses its effectiveness. Holdfast lasts 1d4+3 rounds before becoming too weak to hold the rope in place. Creatures struck by holdfast can pull off the sticky bag with a successful Strength check (DC 27) or cut the attached rope. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: ¼ lb.

Lantern Stars: Cave star does not shed sufficient light for good vision on its own. However, when placed in fist-sized glass globes and soaked with other reagents, the lichen sheds light equal to a torch for a time, after which it burns out. These lanterns, called lantern stars, last for 4 hours before burning out. They do not give off heat or smoke, and the light is constant and unwavering. The lanterns are often used in areas where the fire from torches might light pockets of gas or where flickering light is insufficient. Cost: 5 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 10; Weight: 1 lb.

Liquid Ice: This viscous liquid becomes extremely cold on exposure to air. A vial of liquid ice can freeze the surface of up to a ten-foot by ten-foot area of water or smother a like area of flame. Used as a grenade like weapon a vial of liquid ice inflicts 1d6 points of cold damage on a direct hit or one point of splash damage. Cost: 30 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: ½ lb.

Memorybind: Pixie dust is a crucial ingredient in a red liquid called memorybind. The thin liquid is famous among wizards, clerics, and other spell casters who must prepare their spells. Memorybind increases a spell caster’s mental prowess, allowing him to prepare and additional 1st-level spell on the morning he drinks the liquid. Memorybind disrupts the natural flow of magic, however, reducing the DC of all spells the user casts during that day by 2. Cost: 300 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 30; Weight: ½ lb.

Plantnip Candle: A plantnip candle is a very hard-to-find alchemical creation. When lit, this fast-burning candle gives off colorless glass that smells strongly like cinnamon. One candle can fill a 30 foot radius with gas, and any plant monsters in this area must make a DC 14 Fortitude save or go dormant (treat as "asleep"; bypasses normal rules for plants) for 1d4+1 minutes. Plants must save every round they are in the area of effect, but cannot be affected by the same candle twice. A plantnip candle will burn itself out in three minutes and gives off light like a normal candle. The gas is harmless to non-plants. Cost: 300 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 30; Weight: ½ lb.

Red Rager: This thick red salve must be spread over the entire body to be effective, but once applied its effects are potent. Red rager grants the user a +2 bonus to his effective Strength for the ensuing ten minutes, but a -4 penalty to his Dexterity for the following hour. Anyone using red rager regularly suffers deleterious side effects. Using red rager more than twice in a week forces the user to make a DC 15 Fortitude save or suffer one point of permanent Charisma loss. Each failed save has the physical effect of raising the character’s temper and coloring their skin a slight reddish tone. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Rockburn Oil: This viscid green oil is derived from the corrosive slime secreted by delvers. Rockburn oil can be used as a grenade-like weapon (see page 138 in the Player's Handbook) dealing 1d4 points of damage to organic creatures or objects. Against metallic creatures or objects, rockburn oil deals 2d4 points of damage, and against stony creatures (including earth elementals) or objects it deals 4d4 points of damage. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 30; Weight: 1 lb.

Slippery Oil: This oil provides a +5 bonus on all Escape Artist checks for up to one hour, or until removed with an alcohol based liquid. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Sneezing Powder: This fine powder can be used as a grenade like weapon. On a direct hit, the target must make a Fortitude save (DC 15) or suffer a -2 circumstance penalty to all rolls for 1d4 round because of sneezing and watery eyes. Creatures immune to gases and poisons are immune to sneezing powder. Cost: 60 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: ¼ lb.

Softshoe Powder: Rubbing this powder on feet or footgear makes moving silently easier. An application of softshoe powder provides a +2 competence bonus to Move Silently checks. Unless all of a creature’s feet or footgear are treated, the powder provides no benefit. The effects of the powder last for ten minutes after application. Cost: 25 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: ¼ lb.

Stinktar: Stinktar is a foul substance that is said to be the most successful alchemical accident of all time. The gnome who invented stinktar was trying to perfect a non-magical love potion; instead all he invented was a viscous black, sticky ooze that reeks worse than a diseased ogre's cistern on a hot summer day. Stinktar is typically carried in tiny glass vials sealed with wax; these vials can be hurled as grenade-like missiles. Stinktar has a 10-foot range increment, and deals no damage. Stinktar has no splash effect. A creature struck by stinktar must make a Reflex saving throw (DC 15) or the tar sticks. As long as the reeking tar is stuck to the victim, he exudes a powerful stench, and his eyes constantly tear up from the fumes and make it difficult to concentrate on the task at hand. If the victim has a sense of smell, stinktar imposes a -4 penalty to Concentration, Diplomacy, Search, and Spot checks. Regardless of the victim's own ability to smell, stinktar imposes a -4 penalty to Hide checks made against targets with a sense of smell. Creatures struck by stinktar cannot use the scent ability, and can be detected at four times the normal distance by other creatures with the scent ability. The effects of stinktar last for one hour. It takes one minute to scrape stinktar off of an affected creature or object. Cost: 50 shillings, Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 1 lb.

Stonecloth: A specialty of Hartzstadt craftsmen, this heavy cloth is woven from special mineral fibers. Making it requires both a Craft: Weaving and an Alchemy check. This cloth is fire retardant and will not catch fire unless it is exposed to flame for more than a minute. Someone wearing stonecloth still suffers the initial damage from a fire attack, but does not suffer burning damage and is not forced to take an action to extinguish the fire in later rounds. Cost: 100 shillings per square foot; Craft: Weaving DC: 20; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: Items made from stonecloth weigh twice as much as those made from normal cloth.

Tangle Wire: Tangle wire is a thin barbed wire coated with a less adhesive version of the substance found in tanglefoot bags that comes in ten foot strands. The adhesive makes the wire difficult to transport and handle, but easy to string across a narrow opening, and effective against those who stumble into it. Tangle wire is usually wrapped into a tight bundle, and once unwound it is impossible to rewind and store for later use. To avoid tangle wire an individual must make a Spot check (DC 15). Those who fail the Spot check are caught in the tangle wire and take 1d2 points of damage per round unless they remain completely immobile and they cannot move out of the five foot square containing the wire until they are free of its grip. Those caught in the tangle wire may make a Dexterity or Escape Artist check (DC 20) or a Strength check (DC 15) to free themselves. A victim with a slashing weapon may free themselves as a full round action. The victim may take any action while caught, but will suffer the damaging effects of the wire every round that they do so. Cost: 25 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: 2 lbs.

Truth Wine: This sweet white wine of alvari origin loosens the tongue more effectively than normal spirits. Those who drink truth wine must a Will save (DC 15) in order to tell a lie. The wine’s effects are short in duration, lasting only ten rounds minus one round per point of the drinker’s Constitution bonus. A creature must drink at least one eight ounce glass of truth wine to be affected. Alvari are unaffected by truth wine. Cost: 75 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 30; Weight: 1 lb.

Vapors of Sleep: If applied to a cloth and held over the nose and mouth (or other breathing orifices) of the target, this concoction forces the victim to make a Fortitude save (DC 13) or fall asleep as a sleep spell for 1d4 hours. To use the vapors in this manner, an attacker must first successfully grapple his target. A vial of the liquid can also be used as a grenade like weapon, but it does not cause the target to fall asleep when used this way. Instead, the victim must make a Fortitude save (DC 13) if a direct hit is scored, with failure resulting in a -2 circumstance penalty being applied to all actions for 1d4 rounds due to the drowsiness and disorientation caused by the vapors. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 25; Weight: ½ lb.

Vine Oil: Living sand vines can be cut and their juices squeezed out When combined with more common ingredients, this juice forms a weak local anesthetic called vine oil. When spread on bare skin, vine oil numbs the area, allowing the user to withstand great amounts of pain. While the effects of vine oil last, the user can function normally until reduced below -5 hit points, but when reduced below 0 hit points, he still loses 1 hit point per round. If reduced below -5 hit points, the user falls unconscious. When the user’s hit point total falls below -10, the user dies. Creatures who have used vine oil within the last 34 hours cannot stabilize on their own, and many warriors have died while using this oil, succumbing to their injuries before an ally could staunch their wounds. The effects of vine oil last for 1 hour. Vine oil smells faintly of fish, and those who use it regularly can often be identified by its smell. Cost: 50 shillings; Craft: Alchemy DC: 15; Weight: 1 lb.

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