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Old April 28, 2012, 18:28   #1
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I wonder...

"I wonder..." that was always the oral component of activation for the wand of wonder in my D&D experiences. If we turn to AD&D for insight, I recall there being quite a few good, as well as harmless and harmful effects to draw inspiration form as far as the wand of wonder goes.

Before I get ahead of myself, let me clearly state that I doubt that anything found in this thread will be useful of V or even v4. It's mostly just a note to myself, as many of my threads are, should I ever embark on my own variant. Also a chance to flesh out or discard, with the help of others here at oook, what I think is a interesting idea at the moment. Variant maintainers should feel free to snatch any or all of anything useful that comes of it.

What if... a pool of wondrous effects were assembled, lets say 50 or 100, a mixture of absurdly good, ungodly bad, and everything in between. These effects would be, if possible, scaled to "the level of the wand". Some would be obvious, like a magic missile, some more subtle, like summon invisible monsters, and some all together unnoticable, ahem "nothing happens?", such as create (hidden) traps or destroy (hidden) traps.

Then, each unique item/wand of wonder, they would each be unique (thus unstackable), would have a subset of maybe 5 of these effects chosen at random, and those 5 effects were the only* ones it could produce.

* Of course, since one could get insanely lucky with such an item I'm also inclined to throw in about a 5% chance of it exploding on any given use, not that exploding in a dramatic fashion couldn't be one of the standard effects as well.

In this way a player could somewhat quickly discern if a wand, or other item that activates for a wonder-like effect is worth keeping, or if it would be better to just ditch it. I can also envision cursed items producing a wonder-like effect occasionally (as part of their curse).

Since items found at depth would be more powerful, they wouldn't immediately fall into the squelch pile.
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