Magic & Casting > Runed Items
In LOT, just like any setting, items can be enchanted - a processed known as "engraving" because of the inscription of magical runes onto the item. The most common form of enchanted item is the Runestone, a thumb-sized rock inscribed with a single runic character and primed to channel spiritual energy.
The practice of inscribing runes in permanent arrays on larger items has also become common, allowing anyone with the ability to channel magic to activate the item without prior knowledge of the spell in question, or indeed of spellcrafting at all. The more recent innovation of Spirit Gems, crystals capable of holding a magical charge and then releasing it into a runic array has made runed items even more accessible - to those who can afford them.
A character trained in the Craft: Runes skill can make their own runestones. Runecrafting requires a small, round, flat stone to inscribe a rune symbol onto, and an expenditure of CP equal to the Tier of the rune to 'prime' it. The CP must be expended by a character capable of using the runestone to cast a spell. Creating an unprimed runestone takes 1 hour per Tier of the rune to be inscribed, and priming it a ten minute ritual. A character with access to a river can usually find a suitable stone in 1d4 hours. They must otherwise purchase one for 50 shokoi.
Unprimed runestones are counted as trade goods and have a market value of 10 koi.
If the character does not have a set of Runecrafter's Tools, they must use improvised tools and suffer a -2 penalty on the Craft check. A standard set costs 10 koi and weighs 5 lbs. A masterwork set of Runecrafter's Tools costs 110 koi, weighs 5 lbs, and grants a +2 bonus on the Craft: Runes check.
The DC of the Craft : Runes check is as follows;
- Tier 1 Runecraft DC : 17
- Tier 2 Runecraft DC : 19
- Tier 3+ Runecraft DC : 15 plus three times the tier number of the rune.
Crafting a Tier 3 Runestone or above also requires a gemstone worth at least 800Koi. The gemstone becomes part of the Runestone, which also requires a Craft : Gemsmithing check with a DC of 20. Failing by 5 or more destroys the gemstone.
Tier 1 or 2 Runestones can also be Superior. To craft a Superior runestone, the crafter requires a stone made of superior material worth at least 100Koi, most commonly volcanic glass such as obsidian.
- Tier 1 Superior Runecraft DC : 25
- Tier 2 Superior Runecraft DC : 29
Creating a Runed Item
Creating a Runed Item is much the same as actually preparing a magic spell : the crafter needs to define a runic array, with Core, Range and Shape Runes. The spell is "stored" in the item until its activation.
The creation itself requires six hours per rune inscribed, and enough chi points to activate the rune at its desired operating level. It also requires a Craft: Runes check against the DC for creating a runestone (see below) and a Spellcraft check, as if casting the spell. Note that the activation cost of the array as a whole is set when it is created - runic items cannot be overcharged in the same way as runic spells, nor do they function if enough CP are not fed into the array - such CP are wasted.
Only Masterwork gear may have runes inscribed upon it.
A single piece of gear may have a single spell crafted into it, although some complex items, such as suits of armour, may have space for more such runic arrays. A Crafter can only inscribe a runic array for a spell that they themselves could cast.
The Shape Runes that can be used when crafting a Runed Item are :
- Fire (spell appears as a burst under the target)
- Wind (beam appears from the user to the target)
- Water (spell appears around the target)
- Motion (spell appears as a cone originating from the user)
The Range Runes that can be used when crafting a Runed Item are :
- Earth (targets the user of the item)
- Fire (targets an object touched by the user. Targets that can defend themselves require a Touch Attack to be hit)
- Motion (targets an object chosen by the user within 10'+5'/extra CP. Targets that can defend themselves require a Ranged Touch Attack to be hit)
More information on Rune effects here.
Activating & Using a Runed Item
Activating a Runed Item requires a Move action and the expenditure of enough CP to activate the array – the base CP cost of the stored spell. An active Runed Item counts as Magical when determining if it bypasses the damage reduction of creatures resistant to non-magical attacks when used as a weapon.
Maintaining the effect requires a Swift action each turn, but no additional expenditure of Chi nor any spell check.
Because of the nature of Runed Items, there are some limitations on which runes can be inscribed – the rune cannot be customised on the fly as with standard spellcasting. The effect of a rune, where a rune may have multiple effects, must be set when the item is crafted.
Unlike runestones, runed items can handle significant amounts of magical energy. They are not limited by a number of uses before breaking.
If a character has the relevant Runic Focus feat, its effects apply when using a Runed Item as if the character were casting the spell themselves.
The most common form of Runed Item is the Wizard's Bonded Item - most usually, a wand or rod that acts as a casting focus. The Bonded Item is unique to the Wizard class as part of their Arcane Bond class skill.
A piece of ammunition (such as arrows, bullets, etc) can be enchanted with a single runic array. The Range Rune for such an enchantment must be the Fire rune (the effect targets the object the bullet hits, although a second attack roll is not necessary). While the Core and Shape runes can be any available to the creator of the item, the Chaos rune is generally considered to be too unstable to be worth the additional effort - purchasing ammunition inscribed with the Chaos rune in any position costs double the normal unit price, although it may be crafted normally.
Buying and Selling
The cost to make a runed item is equal to the cost of the initial masterwork item plus 200 times the Base Activation Cost of the enchantment.
Runed Items can also be bought for double the creation cost. A runed item can usually be sold for its creation cost.
A Spirit Gem is a crystal that is filled with spiritual energy. This energy gets released when the gem is shattered. Usually, these are used to power runic arrays when a trained chi-user is not available, much like a battery.
Creating a Spirit Gem requires a crystal worth 30 koi per CP the gem is intended to store. The creator must make a Craft: Runes check with a DC equal to 12 + the number of CP they wish to store in the gem.
Creating and charging the gem takes ten minutes per CP stored, and requires the creator to expend that many CP in the process.
Base Item: Katana
Core runes: Growth 1 (Attack), Light 2
Shape rune: Fire 1
Range rune: Earth 1
Description: This is a favoured weapon of the Holy Samurai. When the Samurai channels their Chi into the blade, expending eight Chi points, it becomes a potent weapon against the darkness, granting a +1 Growth bonus to attack rolls and dealing 2d6 bonus Light damage per blow against Undead and Evil Outsiders. The sword is Masterwork, and grants a +1 Enhancement bonus to Attack rolls even when inactive.
Gauntlet of Power
Base Item: Gauntlet
Core runes:Growth 2 (Strength)
Shape rune: Fire 1
Range rune: Earth 1
Description: A favourite of Ogre Hunters, the Gauntlet of Power can imbue its bearer with great physical might. By expending five Chi points into the gauntlet, the bearer gains a +2 bonus to their Strength score until they stop maintaining the effect.