Crown of Shadows
Charms are small tokens that provide a minor magical effect for a limited amount of time and then become inert. Their power comes from the natural weave of magic and spirit that is found throughout Aryth, and as such is considered innate magic. Some charms mimic very low-level spells, while others provide small bonuses to specific actions. The main benefit of a charm is that it uses innate magic rather than channeled magic, so it can be safely carried without fear of detection by the forces of the Shadow. In addition, charms look just like everyday objects, so basic inspection does not reveal the power held in such items. A charm may appear to be a sprig of holly, a smooth river stone, or any other everyday object. In fact, the best charm weavers select objects so ordinary that no one would even look twice at them, much less consider them sources of power. A charm can be identified by a knowledgeable observer, however. Identifying a charm requires a successful DC 15 Knowledge (arcana) or Knowledge (nature) check.
True charms are an exception to the rule that such items only provide benefits for a limited time. These powerful charms are the closest thing to a magic item that a non-spellcaster can ever hope to create. They grant specific benefits to their bearers and some are quite potent.
All charms are powered by innate magic, and only produce detectable magic effects (such as when viewed by detect magic) when in use. Charm effects all detect as Transmutation magic, with caster levels as follows:
|Charm Type||Caster Level|
Anyone with knowledge of ancient rituals and a close connection with natural energies can create charms. It does not require any spellcasting ability or knowledge of arcane magical formulas, nor does it require expensive components or the expenditure of one’s personal energy. There are, however, prerequisite levels of knowledge of the ways of magic and nature, and a character must have a Craft skill appropriate to the medium in which he works. Rather than making an appropriate Craft check representing one week of work as per the core rules, most charms should be made with checks representing one day of work.
In order to create a charm, the character must master both his awareness of the world of Aryth and its inherent energies as well as his understanding of how the fall of Izrador has affected the world over the years. Awareness is represented by the Knowledge (arcana) and Knowledge (nature) skills, while understanding is represented by Knowledge (history) and Knowledge (Spirits). When creating a charm, the character’s total ranks in the awareness skills must equal or exceed the prerequisite for the type of charm he is creating. The same applies to his understanding skills. So, a character with four ranks in Knowledge (arcana) and two ranks in Knowledge (nature) meets the awareness prerequisite to create minor and lesser charms, but not greater or true charms.
All charms other than true charms are single-use items, meaning that after they have been used they hold no further power. A true charm’s ability is always active. Activating a charm is a free action and can take the form of anything from snapping a twig of holly to rubbing a stone to crushing a flower. Charms are often worn on necklaces or other jewelry to make them easily accessible to characters in need of their powers. A character may only benefit from one charm effect and one true charm effect at any given time.
Charm Creation Prerequisites
The four types of charms and the prerequisites for them are described below, as are example powers granted by them.
Craft DC 15
Prerequisites: awareness 1 rank, understanding 1 rank.
Example Benefits: +2 luck bonus to any single skill check, attack roll, or saving throw made within one round of activation.
Value: 5 vp.
Craft DC 20
Prerequisites: awareness 4 ranks, understanding 6 ranks.
Example Benefits: +1 luck bonus for one minute to a single skill, all attack rolls, AC, or a single saving throw; mimics a 0-level abjuration spell effect at Caster Level 1.
Value: 25 vp.
Craft DC 25
Prerequisites: awareness 12 ranks, understanding 8 ranks.
Example Benefits: +4 luck bonus to any single skill check, attack roll, or saving throw; +2 luck bonus for one minute to a single skill, all attack rolls, AC, or a single saving throw; +1 luck bonus to all checks modified by a single ability score for one minute; mimics a 1st-level abjuration spell effect for at Caster Level 1.
Value: 100 vp.
Craft DC 30
Prerequisites: awareness 18 ranks, understanding 12 ranks.
Example Benefits: +4 luck bonus to a specific type of saving throw (compulsion spells and effects, fear effects, poison, disease, etc.); immunity to a specific type of disease or poison (lycanthropy, monstrous spider venom, etc.); grants energy resistance 3 against one energy type; other effects at DM’s discretion.
Value: 2,500 vp.