Saturday, January 25, 2014

Themed Spells: Flightless Birds

More animal-themed spells percolating in the brainpan.  This time, it's flightless birds.

Penguin Suit (level 1)
The wizard sacrifices a smelt, sardine, or other small fish (salted/prepared is fine) in order to conjure a very fashionable tuxedo.  The tuxedo protects from mundane cold and low temperatures, allowing the sorceror to trudge through the tundra in style; it does not, however, protect against frost magic or cold-based attacks.  The penguin suit remains in existence until the wizard takes it off (in which case it melts away into steam), or until the wearer takes damage (in which case the tuxedo becomes tattered and torn in proportion to the damage taken, and continues to fall apart cartoon-style for several rounds, until the wizard is wearing only cuffs and spats).

Ostrich Beak (level 1)
Thankfully, this is not another bizarre minor shapeshift; instead, ostrich beak grants the caster or one subject touched the ability to somehow extract breatheable oxygen from earth, as though they were the eponymous bird with its head stuck in the sand.  The earth-breathing effect lasts for one round plus a round per caster level, and is efficacious with any mineral or earth-heavy blend of components (including sand, dirt, mud, etc).  The target does not lose its ability to breathe normal air during the spell’s effect; in fact, Cloud Rabbit wonderworkers use ostrich beak to avoid the smothering effect of sandstorms.

Kiwi Kavalry  (level 2)
The caster transforms several (up to six) fresh fruits into giant kiwis, which may then be used as riding-animals.  The giant kiwis are the same color as the fruit used to conjure them, and have the abilities and statistics of warhorses.  Sadly, the kiwis transform back into rotten fruit at sundown.

Emu Emulation (level 2)
Upon speaking the ancient syllables of this spell, the caster transforms into an emu - a large, flightless bird.  He doubles his running speed and gains wicked talons (1d6 damage) on the feet (although both feet are clawed, the sorceror does not gain extra attacks per round from emu emulation).  Any clothing and equipment worn transforms along with the wizard, melding into the body.  The transformation lasts for three hours or until the wizard sleeps or falls unconscious.

Cassowary Ossuary (level 1)
By placing the bones of a cassowary or other flightless bird in a wooden box and enchanting the entire preparation with this spell, the wizard creates a minor talisman against fungus-based life-forms.  Whoever carries the cassowary ossuary gains the beneficent part-time slightly-distracted attention of a cassowary spirit; as cassowaries eat fruit and mushrooms, the bearer of the talisman receives a +1 to any saves against fruit-based creatures or attacks, fungal weirdness, spore attacks, and so forth.  The save bonus also applies to saves against fruit- or fungus-based poisons.  While this may not seem a great talisman, note that the cassowary ossuary remains enchanted until it is destroyed or the box is opened.  If a flightless bird is ever slain within twenty feet of the ossuary, it shatters.

Dodo’s Epitaph (level 1)
Many animal species on many worlds have gone extinct, but there are only a handful whose fame - and thus, spiritual power - is, in itself, tied to their extinction.  The dodo, the thylacine, the unobtanium dragon, the passenger pigeon, the variegated screaming clumpadump - these, and species like them throughout the multiverse, are the source of this spell’s power.  The wizard calls upon the power of the extinct species to gain knowledge from the dead via this ritual.  First, the sorceror inserts a tightly-wound narrow scroll in the mouth of the deceased.  Then, clutching evidence of the extinct species (a bone, a fossilized pawprint, etc, which is not consumed in teh casting), the wizard calls upon the long-forgotten kulturgeist of the animal, begging the spirit to appear and act as an intermediary between the caster and the corpse.  The wizard waits for twenty-four hours, then removes the scroll from the corpse’s mouth; they will find it inscribed with a fairly lengthy (several paragraphs) message from the deceased.  The message will be whatever the deceased wishes it to be: a testament, a song, love poetry, a list of regrets, a warning, etc.; the caster has zero control over what information the dodo’s epitaph will produce.

Auk-Auk Gun (level 3)
The spirit of the auk is bitter and morose, bearing an ancient resentment and hatred for birds which can fly.  This magic ritual requires several bones from an auk or other flightless bird, which are tied together in a bundle with crimson string and animated by an auk-spirit  Casting the ritual takes three rounds, but thenceforth the auk-auk gun is awake and ready.  Upon further command by the wizard, the auk-auk gun will fully animate and unleash its wrath.  The construct cannot move, but it can pivot and swivel as necessary; the auk-auk gun can fire bolts of eldritch energy, one per round, at targets in the air.  The bolts have a range of 120 feet, and inflict 2d6 points of damage, but the construct can only aim at flying targets, as its power is fueled by the jealousy of the auk-spirit within.  Once fully animated, the auk-auk gun will defend the area for up to an hour; when the hour ends, the magic fades, and the bird-bones of the construct crumble to dust.

Lek of the Kakapo (level 2)
Ages past, when the owl-kin ruled Wampus Country, great warriors competed in tournaments to impress potential mates - lek of the kakapo draws upon this tradition, which lives on in the spirits of the land.  This enchantment may be cast upon the wizard himself, or any single willing target.  The target is invested with a form of potential magical energy which draws the attention of great spirits; if the recipient wins a combat within the next hour, he will immediately benefit from a +2 Charisma bonus with the desired sex for the following four hours, as the spirits reward him or her for the display of fighting-prowess.  The spirits which power lek of the kakapo can tell the difference between a real fight and one which is staged, and possess the power and mien to punish those who attempt to trick them.

Mens rhea (level 4)
The wizard burns a bundle of feathers taken from any flightless bird, and bids the target to then inhale some of the smoke produced as the spell is intoned.  The target makes a save vs spells at -2; if the save is failed, the target must then confess any crime or wrongdoing of which it has knowledge (this may take some time).  If the save is passed, the target is still compelled to make a confession, but they have a modicum of control and may mix lies and omissions in with some truths.


  1. no ostrich ever seen burying head

    need a moa? or some prehistoric flightless beasts

    big fun

  2. Yeah, I know the ostrich thing is a myth, that's why I used it :)

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