Friday, March 17, 2017

Spells for Crossbow Lovers



A slim volume of spells, with notations in gnomish, the slate front cover is etched with a picture of a weasel throwing itself at a goblin, while the rear cover depicts a badger launching its own feces at an orc. The spells purport to be the work of Fobor Cainfort, gnomish fighter/illusionist, who was rather fond of the crossbow as a weapon. Not possessing the skill to properly, permanently, enchant a crossbow, he instead created a handful of spells to aid in his use of it, making it a more versatile weapon, and himself a more able defender of his clanhome on Mount Kevypar-Urtha.


Fobor's Ready Cock
Apprentice Spell
Base SP Cost: 30
Components: V, S, C
Casting Time: 1 second
Range: Self
Duration: Instant
Saving Throw: None
Additional Spell Point schedule:
Heavy Crossbow: 10 SP

This spell is simple enough, allowing the caster to instantly bring a light crossbow to full cock. In the course of casting the spell, the caster simply draws the weapon to full cock, reducing the cranking time to the 1 second casting time. With spell fatigue, this does not greatly reduce the time for a light crossbow for the average wielder. Fobor, and many fighter/mages and fighter/illusionists, possessed the talent of Diminished Spell Fatigue, and so it was less of a problem. Someone wielding a heavy crossbow may also draw their bow, though it requires more spell points to enable such a feat.

One caveat: as the caster draws the bow by hand, rather than by spinning the crank, doing so unprotected by gloves will inflict 1d3-2 points of damage (2d3-2 for heavy crossbows). The gloves worn must be sufficiently thick and protective, at least the equivalent of the gauntlets that accompany leather armor. This is no great hindrance to a fighter/mage, but can prove more vexing for less martial mages.

The spell catalyst is the crossbow to be cocked.


Fobor’s Pummeling Projectile
Journeyman spell
Base SP Cost: 40
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 second
Range: Touch
Volume of Effect: 5 projectiles
Duration: 1 minute
Saving Throw: Special
Additional Spell Point schedule:
Additional bolts, arrows, or bullets: 5 SP/Each (no limit)
Additional duration: 10 SP/Minute
Increase effective Knock-back: 10/+3 damage

This spell, like many of Fobor’s spells, enchants a crossbow bolt (or arrow or sling bullet) to hit like a giant’s slung stone. While the projectile does no more damage than usual, any successful hit or cover save will calculate knock-backs as if it did an additional 3 points of damage. Thus, if the attack hits a shield, it will do only 1 point of damage (absorbed by the shield's DR), but be considered a 4 point hit for knock-backs.


Fobor’s Mechanical Maintenance

1st Level Spell
Base SP Cost: 50
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 20 minutes
Range: Touch
Volume of Effect: 1 crossbow or 10 crossbow bolts or arrows
Duration: Permanent
Saving Throw: None
Additional Spell Point schedule:
Additional crossbow: 10 SP
Additional bolts or arrows: 1 SP/Each (no limit)

Fobor’s Mechanical Maintenance is a “field service” tool for the discerning arbalist. In the hands of the relatively unskilled, it will improve the quality of crossbows, bolts, or arrows by one level, up to Average quality… Worthless items become merely Poor, and Poor quality items become Average quality. This will only repair damage due to use or abuse; it will not cover for substandard workmanship, such as produces intentionally Worthless or Shoddy items.

If the caster is a skilled atilliator (crafter of crossbows), this spell can also apply to superior quality goods. With Average Mastery in Atilliation (or Novice Mastery and the General Repair and Maintenance proficiency), the caster may likewise repair Pro quality items. With Expert mastery (or Advanced and the maintenance proficiency), the caster may repair Extraordinary items. With Master level Atilliation and the General Repair proficiency, the caster may repair Superlative quality items.

The material component of this spell is wax, oil, and a bit of glue. If the oil is arugula oil, and the wax is beeswax, then casting this spell counts as preparation for Fobor’s Ever-Ready Cock (q.v.). Otherwise, casting this spell voids preparation for the spells Fobor’s Ever-Ready Cock, Fobor’s Trouser Weasel, and Fobor’s Giant Trouser Weasel; items so prepared will need to be prepared again.

Fobor's Malodorous Missile
2nd level spell
Base SP Cost: 60
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 3 seconds
Range: touch
Area of Effect: 1 projectile
Duration: 1 minute
Saving Throw: None
Additional Spell Point schedule:
Enchant additional missiles: 10 SP/projectile

Fobor's Malodorous Missile enchants a single arrow or crossbow bolt so that, after it strikes, it turns into a spray of malodorous feces. If the missile strikes, it causes its normal damage, as well as the loss of a point of Honor, and 2d10p points of fractional Looks damage (which is completely healed by a good bath). If the attack does damage to the target that is not absorbed by DR, it may also carry with it the Devil Sweats; the target should immediately check for exposure to the disease, per page 339 of the GMG; regardless of other factors, the sanitary conditions for the spell are always "Filthy" (since you DID just have a wound that got smeared in stinky weasel poop). If exposed, the target must make a Constitution check against the disease's d20p+2 Communicability.

The material component is the wood in the missile, and a pinch of dried mustelid (badger, weasel, wolverine, etc.) dung. The caster may hand the missile to another to fire.

Fobor’s Trouser Weasel
2nd level spell
Base SP Cost: 60
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 1 second
Range: Touch
Area of Effect: One Missile
Duration: 11 Seconds
Saving Throw: Special
Additional Spell Point Schedule:
Increase Duration: 2 SP/second

Fobor’s Trouser Weasel enchants a prepared missile so, upon striking a foe (even a shield hit or successful cover save), it does its normal damage, then turns into an angry weasel, which begins to attack its target. The weasel has all the statistics of a standard weasel (HOB, page 334), and will urinate furiously while attacking, making this an especially effective weapon against cockatrices and basilisks. Humanoids so struck, who fail a Dodge saving throw, will acquire the Strange Body Odor flaw (PH, p. 141) until they bathe thoroughly.

The material component is the missile itself, which must be anointed with weasel urine (common or giant weasel) before the spell is cast (though it may be done days or even weeks in advance). An enchanted missile will remain so for one minute, and may be handed to another for firing. The weasel will remain for 11 seconds... just enough time for it to attack twice.

Fobor's Ever-ready Cock
Third-level Spell
Base SP Cost: 70
Components: V, S, C
Casting Time: 2 seconds
Range: Touch
Duration: 2 minutes
Saving Throw: None
Additional Spell Point schedule:
Increase Duration: 35 SP/2 minutes

Fobor's Ever-ready Cock temporarily enchants a crossbow (light or heavy) so that it cocks itself 1 second after firing, completely removing the time to crank the weapon. A vast improvement on Fobor's Ready Cock, the Ever-ready Cock is a more mature spell, lasting far longer, and protecting its user from damage. The crossbow so enchanted must be prepared in advance, its rail lubricated with arugula oil, and its string waxed with beeswax. Beeswax is commonly available, and arugula oil is relatively simple to make, requiring only a Very Easy Cooking/Baking check, with arugula itself being common both wild and in gardens. This preparation needs only be done once, but it must be done by the caster. Once the spell is cast, the caster can hand the enchanted bow to anyone to use, though the caster must hold the bow in order to cast the spell again.

The catalyst is the crossbow itself.

Fobor’s Giant Trouser Weasel
4th level spell
Base SP Cost: 80
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 1 second
Range: Touch
Area of Effect: One Missile
Duration: 15 seconds
Saving Throw: Special
Additional Spell Point Schedule:
Increase Duration: 3 SP/second

An iteration of Fobor’s Trouser Weasel, Fobor’s Giant Trouser Weasel enchants a prepared missile so, upon striking a foe (even a shield hit or successful cover save), it does its normal damage, then turns into an angry giant weasel, which begins to attack its target. The weasel has all the statistics of a giant weasel (HOB, page 334), and will urinate furiously while attacking, making this an especially effective weapon against cockatrices and basilisk. Humanoids so struck, who fail a Dodge saving throw, will acquire the Strange Body Odor flaw (PH, p. 141) until they bathe thoroughly.

The material component is the missile itself, which must be anointed with giant weasel urine before the spell is cast (though it may be done days or even weeks in advance). An enchanted missile will remain so for one minute, and may be handed to another for firing. The weasel will remain for 15 seconds, just enough time to attack three times.