Atlas Rules Resources Adventures Stories FAQ Search Links
An addendum to the Glittering Empire material, I present the Glittering Empire's Dwarven Illusionist class:
Thorn's Chronicle: Dwarven Illusionist (Bahrthron) [lit.(Light-bender)]by Robert J. Nuttman, Jr.
A bahrthron’s Prime Requisite is Charisma. A bahrthron with a Charisma of 13 or higher gains a bonus to Experience Points earned on each adventure.
A bahrthron character must have an Intelligence of 9 or greater.
A six-sied die is used to determine the bahrthron’s hit points.
Bahrthrons may not wear any kind of armor, though they may use magical rings, bracers or cloaks.
The dwarven illusionist may only use the hand axe, dagger, staff, or sling.
Like all dwarves, the bahrthron has infravision, allowing him to see up to 60’ in total darkness. Bahrthrons can detect traps, sliding walls, sloping corridors and new constructions as other dwarves, succeeding on a 1-2 in 6 chance.
Spells: Glittering Empire Illusionists are unique among the dwarven clan living beneath the Black Peaks. They advance as would the dwarf-cleric (from Gaz6) but their spell list is as follows:
Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Level 5 Level 6 Light Detect invisible Blindness Charm Monster Feeblemind Animate object Faerie Fire Know Alignment Clairvoyance Confusion Hold Monster Pass Rock Obscure Hold Person Dispel Magic Hallucinatory Terrain Polymorph Other Projected Image Detect Magic Invisibility Invisibility 10’r Massmorph Polymorph Self Stone to Flesh Charm Person Knock Rock Door Transmute Rock to Lava Read Magic Mirror Image True Sight Shield Wizard Lock Sticks to Snakes Ventriloquism Phantasmal Force Wizard Eye
In order for the bahrthron’s spells to function, he must wear three golden rings of at least 100 gold piece value each. Each time the bahrthron casts a spell, 1d6x10 gold piece value per level of the spell is leeched from one of the rings, causing it to tarnish. When a given ring loses its total equivalent value, it crumbles to ash. Any excess “value” is inflicted on the bahrthron in hit point loss at a rate of 1 hp per 10 gpv. Thus, if Hyurgon casts a third level spell, leeching 40 gpv from a ring having only 10 gpv remaining, he takes 3 hit points of damage and the ring burns away to ash.
The bahrthron cannot cast any further magic until any damage is healed and the ring is replaced.
The bahrthron's spells are inscribed upon sheets of gold leaf, and must be studied as per "baseline" D&D magic user rules.
The bahrthron of Thorn's Mystara is able to stave off the demonic corruption through the use of the golden rings. However, accruing any hit point damage from "spill over" from a disintegrating ring inflicts a like amount of Corruption on the bahrthron's spirit. While hit point damage heals normally, the spiritual corruption dealt by the demonic taint accumulates and cannot be "healed." Thus, they are not completely immune to the demonic influence upon Mystara's magical fields, but somewhat hardened against it. As with feylings fallen to the Corruption, a demon-touched dwarven illusionist can be a terrible foe, able to infuse a semblance of reality into his shadowed magics....
The bahrthron is primarily intended as an NPC class, with some further tinkering probably required to make them playable as characters.
The limitations to casting were mainly flavoring. However, limiting the leeching to a per-ring basis keeps the illusionist from casting willy-nilly. They are not meant to be front line wizards, but operating from the shadows, with plenty of forethought put into the casting of most of their spells. Not that they cannot cast on the fly or when things go south (as they always do....) They just would prefer not to. The 100 gpv of the ring is the lower end of the price range. Most wear heavy, ornate bands worth quite a bit more.
I'm toying with the idea of certain gemstones crafted into the rings enabling or granting bonuses to spells cast: a ring with a black diamond in it, for example, would make the illusionist's spells more difficult to resist, inflicting a -3 to Saving Throws.
A bahrthron wounded in combat and later healed -- but not up to full hit points -- could cast another spell, provided he readied a new ring and he was healed of however many points of damage the spillover had incurred. For example: Hyurgon's ring crumbles to ash and a goblin stabs him with a spear for 3 points of damage (atop the 3 already inflicted by the spillover (over-burn? Not sure what to call it)). He later drinks a healing potion that restores four hit points. Provided Hyurgon has another ring prepared (and what self-respecting bahrthron doesn't have another half dozen rings secreted about his person?*) he can resume his spell casting.
Does casting arcane magic somehow injure dwarves, given their resistance to magic? Perhaps they have discovered a way to channel most of those damaging effects into the gold rings, but once those buffers fail, their antimagical natures kick in.
*("Oh, aye, that's me... er... 'backup' ring. Keep it nice an' safe for just such an occasion as this." "But Hyurgon, they stripped us and then searched us before throwing us into this cell..." "Well, lad, they dinnae search everywhere, now, did they?")