Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The Horrible Blue Book of Jir Harish the Mad

Jir Harish, once the famed court wizard of Peldivarn, was last seen taking ship for the trackless sands of the Satripin deserts. Though he was never seen or heard from again, a number of his personal effects turned up in the markets of Mythrior, including the Blue Book. The Book details the Seven Pacts of Bhaharash-Ba, an elder elemental lord of Air.

Each Pact made imbues a wizard with a spell-like ability that may be used up to three times per day. The wizard making a pact must have undertaken any pacts below it (ie must have taken Pacts One and Two to make the Third) and must meed a minimum level requirement. Once the pact is taken, the wizard suffers a loss of sanity, the amount of which is detailed below. Thus far, no one has achieved more than four of the seven pacts without succumbing to total madness (Wis3 or lower).

First Pact - The Protecting Arms of Aballish. This pact allows the wizard to use shield up to three times per day (minimum level 3rd, Wisdom loss 1d2 points).

Second Pact - The Shifting Mirage of Kolek. This pact allows the wizard to use invisibility up to three times per day (minimum level 5th, Wisdom loss 1d3 points).

Third Pact - The Rising Winds of Lord Sande. This pact allows the wizard to use fly up to three times per day (minimum level 7th, Wisdom loss 1d3 points).

Fourth Pact - The Chilling Breath of Oltapeshi. This pact allows the wizard to use ice storm up to three times per day (minimum level 9th, Wisdom loss 2d2 points).

Fifth Pact - The Horrible Servants of Iyishi Phyyri. This pact allows the wizard to use conjure elemental (air) up to three times per day (minimum level 11th, Wisdom loss 2d2 points).

Sixth Pact - The Mighty Blessing of Baharash-Ba. This pact allows the wizard to use control weather up to three times per day (minimum level 14th, Wisdom loss 2d3 points).

Seventh Pact - The Baleful Curse of Bohorum. This pact allows the wizard to us power word, kill up to three times per day (minimum level 18th, Wisdom loss 2d4 points).


  1. Very nice. Did you develop your own sanity rules for S&W?

  2. Very nice mechanic: clear progression (amount, spell levels and minimum level) and tasteful "fluffy" stuff :)

    @anthony: sanity loss is represented by wisdom loss here.

  3. @tsojcanth

    (Found those caverns you lost, yet? :) )

    My fault for not being clear: what I was wondering about is if the author had come up with a general sanity mechanic, such as "save vs. [X] or lose [X] Wisdom."

  4. @anthony
    (no, it's annoying, and I've been searching for them in the southern Perrenlandish Yatils since 1975 ;) )

    i just guess there's no save :)

    Anyway, I think that sanity loss doesn't go well with pulp RPGs (except WHFRP, but there the whole setting is slipping into insanity, decay and chaos), but i'd make all the losses xdy-x (ie, 2d3-2, 3d2-3, etc) if it's a mechanic that has to be met frequently. Even Carcosa doesn't have/need a sanity mechanic...

  5. Nope, no save. Its meant to be a temptation, power vs. the risk of madness. With lucky rolls, someone with high wisdom might make it through several pacts. Unlucky rolls, and they're off to the nuthouse fairly quickly :)

  6. Yep. I'll put the mechanic to a good use (possibly) the next session, but with a different "great power" and with different powers (it's "kinda meant but not really" to be for a berserker, but really it's for everyone) and, well, it will be dependant on the kind of offers PCs make to his/her lost temple... :)

  7. re: sanity mechanic, wouldn't work so well for Blue Book but one mechanic I saw for any ability loss (due to posion, in place of level drain, etc) was loose Xd6 points. These recover 1 point per day/week of rest. Except any sixes rolled were permanently lost and unrecoverable.

  8. Cool. I particularly like the names. Nicely evocative.

  9. Sanity rules or not, that book is just plain fabulous! Great ideas!

  10. Al, this is one of the best ideas I've seen for M-U characters since ever. Truly inspired!

  11. My own games regularly took a (at least slight) dark-fantasy angle, so the idea that magic carries a price or risk has always been appealing. It helps make the character something more than just "magic artillery."



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...