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Modrigswerg skillsby John Hare
For the Dark Elven Life-Binding Rituals (kind of interesting name in that there were no Dark Elves, obviously came from Norse mythos :)
I would say that the desired sacrifice would take place at the end or near the end of any enchantment. Should be based on Intelligence, with a successful check making the desired trait into the item/person. A failed check results in the desirable trait being absent and the curse being magnified.
The shapeshifting aspect is kind of harder to grasp. But here is a view on what could happen.
The victim is sacrificed and the essence is caught in a special container and then drunk. Again a successful check is required for the process to succeed. The individual to receive the form/senses & abilities must make an Int or Wis check to retain control (basically the essence has an ego). The senses are available at will, but shapeshifting or using abilities requires skill check from the user (Use Essence? Wis/Int based?)
The shapeshifting takes one round to complete and looks exactly like the victim chosen. The abilities also take one round to use.
Failing the initial check for control means that the drinker will slowly be taken over by the victim over a year long period.
Artificers' Craft: dual based Int/Cha (two checks required)
This skill allows a creature from the Outer/Inner planes to be called forth and bargained with for services. The Int check is used to provide safety (ie the creature can't get out). This is modified by the dwarf's level compared to the summoned creatures' HD. If the dwarf is higher the difference improves his skill in protection, if reverse the it worsens his skill. If the protection check is failed and the initial reaction is not neutral or better then it escapes and runs amok (or is a nuisance depending on personality).
The second check is for the bargain. Again the same modifiers apply, if the dwarf's modifier would give him a modified skill of 30+ then he doesn't have to bargain he can compel the creature to do his bidding. After the HD modifier is done the dwarf will normally try and increase his chances by offering the creature something it desires in exchange... gold, enemy bound & gagged, sheep, virgins, slaves, whatever. If the creature is hostile it will take more to convince than one that is friendly.
How's that? Any obvious loop holes? Of course these should be reserved for NPCs (I shudder to think what a bunch of PCs would come up with)