Post by The Bard Darkharp on Oct 6, 2007 17:22:33 GMT -5
The enchanted instruments found throughout Faerun are many, and diverse. From the antique instruments of the Fallen Seven Bardic Colleges, to the remaining harps of Myth Drannor; City of Songs, this thread will detail those instruments and bard themed magic items. Not only will I cover Forgotten Realms Source, but other official sources as well.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Oct 6, 2007 19:22:57 GMT -5
[glow=blue,2,300]The Instruments of the Fallen Seven[/glow]
Instruments of the Bards: A wise and powerful bard in the Moonshaes named Falataer created the first of these instruments, using them to test and reward the students of his bardic college (which was divided into seven levels of skill). Others have since copied the designs, keeping the names Falataer gave them to honor him. Each instrument has its own set of unique powers that can be activated by anyone with sufficient ranks in the Perform skill without making a check. Some of the instruments bestow one negative level on a character lacking the proper number of ranks in the Perform skill. The negative level remains as long as the harp is carried and disappears when it is no longer carried. This negative level never results in actual level loss, but it cannot be overcome in any way (including restoration spells) while the instrument is carried.
Fochluchan Bandore: This 3-stringed masterwork lute (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [lute] checks) can be played by anyone to produce light once per day. A character with 2 ranks in Perform (lute) can use the bandore to cast flare, mending, and message each once per day. It gives a +1 competence bonus on a bard’s bardic music checks for countersong, fascinate, and suggestion. Caster Level: 3rd; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, flare, light, mending, message, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 1,900 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Mac-Fuirmidh Cithern: This pear-shaped masterwork lute (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [lute] checks) can be played by a person with 4 ranks in Perform (lute) to cast cure light wounds, mage armor, and sleep each once per day. It gives a +2 competence bonus on a bard’s bardic music checks for countersong, fascinate, and suggestion. Caster Level: 3rd; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, cure light wounds, mage armor, sleep, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 2,900 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Doss Lute: This masterwork lute (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [lute] checks) bestows one negative level on any character who does not have at least 6 ranks in Perform (lute). A character with 6 ranks in Perform (lute) can use the instrument to cast delay poison, hold person, and mirror image once per day. It gives a +3 competence bonus on a bard’s bardic music checks for countersong, fascinate, and suggestion. Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, delay poison, hold person, mirror image, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 9,800 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Canaith Mandolin: This eight-stringed masterwork mandolin (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [mandolin] checks) bestows one negative level on any character who does not have at least 8 ranks in Perform (mandolin). A character with 8 ranks in Perform (mandolin) can use the instrument to cast cure serious wounds, dispel magic, or summon monster III once per day. It gives a +4 competence bonus on a bard’s bardic music checks for countersong, fascinate, and suggestion. Caster Level: 8th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, cure serious wounds, dispel magic, summon monster III, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 23,400 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Cli Lyre: This masterwork lyre (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [lyre] checks) bestows one negative level on any character who does not have at least 10 ranks in Perform (lyre). A character with 10 ranks in Perform (lyre) can use the instrument to cast break enchantment, dimension door, and shout once per day. It gives a +5 competence bonus on a bard’s bardic music checks for countersong, fascinate, and suggestion. Caster Level: 11th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, break enchantment, dimension door, shout, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 37,600 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Anstruth Harp: This masterwork harp (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [harp] checks) bestows one negative level on any character who does not have at least 12 ranks in Perform (harp). A character with 12 ranks in Perform (harp) can use the instrument to cast control water, healing circle, and mind fog once per day. It gives a +6 competence bonus on a bard’s bardic music checks for countersong, fascinate, and suggestion. Caster Level: 14th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, control water, healing circle, mind fog, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 60,000 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Ollamh Harp: This masterwork harp (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [harp] checks) bestows one negative level on any character who does not have at least 14 ranks in Perform (harp). A character with 14 ranks in Perform (harp) can use the instrument to cast control weather, eyebite, and repulsion once per day. It gives a +7 competence bonus on a bard’s bardic music checks for countersong, fascinate, and suggestion. Caster Level: 17th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, control weather, eyebite, repulsion, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 83,600 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
From Magic of Faerun Sidebar from Complete Adventurer
[glow=yellow,2,300]The Harps of Myth Drannor[/glow]
Janthra’s Harp: By playing this masterwork harp (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [harp] checks) for a full round, the harpist can envelop all creatures within 10 feet of the harp in an invisibility sphere that also allows them to pass without trace. Unlike the spell, creatures made invisible by the harp can see each other. The harpist must continue playing to maintain the effect, but the music seems distant and does not aid foes in detecting the location of the harpist. If one of the invisible creatures attacks, the magic is ended for all participants. If one creature leaves the area of the invisibility sphere, the harpist must end the song and play again for a full round to hide that creature again. The harp may be used in this manner for up to 1 hour per day. Use of this item requires at least 1 rank in Perform (harp). Caster Level: 6th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, invisibility sphere, pass without trace; Market Price: 12,000 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Methild’s Harp: When played by a character with at least 1 rank in Perform (harp) for 1 full round, this masterwork harp (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [harp] checks) sends forth magical vibrations that cause locks, lids, doors, valves, and portals to open. The device functions against normal bars, shackles, chains, bolts, and so on. Methild’s harp also automatically dispels a hold portal spell or even an arcane lock spell cast by a wizard of less than 15th level. It also unties knots and bindings and frees targets from entanglement of any kind (including web spells). Each round of playing opens only one form of locking or tying or frees a single target from its bonds or entanglement. The harp doesn’t function in an area of silence, nor can it affect a target in such an area. Methild’s harp has a range of 100 feet and may be played a maximum of 3 rounds per day. Caster Level: 7th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, knock; Market Price: 4,100 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Nithanalor’s Harp: This masterwork harp (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [harp] checks) is inlaid with several glassy gray gemstones of various types. Once per day a character with at least 1 rank in Perform can play the harp to gain the benefits of a stoneskin spell. Caster Level: 7th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, stoneskin; Market Price: 22,300 gp; Cost to Create: 17,400 gp + 392 XP; Weight: 3 lb.
Rhingalade’s Harp: This masterwork harp (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [harp] checks) is carved with images of a multitude of harpists playing in a chorus. Once per day it can be played to invoke simultaneous blink and mirror image spells upon its wielder (both effects end after 6 rounds). Use of this item requires at least 1 rank in Perform (harp). Caster Level: 6th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, blink, mirror image; Market Price: 5,400 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Valarde’s Harp: This masterwork harp (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [harp] checks) is often carved of driftwood and engraved with images of ships and clouds. Three times per day it can be played for a full round to produce a gust of wind or a wind wall effect. Use of this item requires at least 1 rank in Perform (harp). Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, gust of wind, wind wall; Market Price: 8,500 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
**From: The Magister 2nd ed. AD&D**
Zunzalor's Harp: While played, the harp creates a light spell centered on the harpist which dispels illusions, dispels invisibility and reveals glyphs or symbols. 25,000gp
Azlaer’s Harp: When played, the harp acts as a calm emotions spell on all creatures within 100 feet. Any charm effects upon creatures within this area are suppressed while the harp is played, and no new charm effects can be used on creatures in the area during the playing. The strings of the harp glow with light equal to a light spell when played. Use of this item requires at least 1 rank in Perform (harp). Caster Level: 3rd; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, calm emotions, light, protection from evil; Market Price: 16,000 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Dove’s Harp: This type of item’s original name has been lost, and its current name derives from Dove Falconhand, who owns such a harp. This harp is a masterwork harp (grants a +2 circumstance bonus on Perform checks) that is triangular in shape and has from twenty to thirty-six strings. When it is played, all within a 20-foot spread are temporarily cured of any insanity (as if a greater restoration were in effect) and are protected by a calm emotions spell. Those who listen to it for 2 rounds or more receive a cure light wounds spell, although this power can only affect a being once per tenday. While its magic is being in- voked, the harp and harpist radiate light. Use of the harp requires at least 1 rank of the Perform (harp) skill. Caster Level: 9th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, calm emotions, greater restoration, healing circle, light; Market Price: 45,100 gp; Cost to Create: 22,600 gp + 2,300 XP; Weight: 3 lb.
Esheen’s Harp: This masterwork harp (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform checks) can be played so that it causes all glass and metal items within 30 feet to resonate with the harp’s tones. This does not harm the items but provides an interesting accompaniment to the harp itself. Anyone attempting to locate a creature in the area gets a +5 circumstance bonus on Listen checks against targets carrying metal or glass items. Three times per day, anyone playing the harp may cast a shatter spell. Use of this item requires at least 1 rank in Perform (harp). Caster Level: 3rd; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, ghost sound, shatter; Market Price: 6,800 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Handharp: These small harps are very popular among the Harpers, and not just because of the name. A handharp is a crescent-shaped wooden instrument, about the size of a human hand, with metal strings. Anyone who can play a tune on a stringed instrument can use the harp. Various tunes and chords produce the following sonic effects. (A musician can discover all the powers in about 10 minutes of playing.) The user can generate only one effect each round. The effects are sonic effects. • Dancing lights as the spell. • Undead creatures within 10 feet* suffer a –2 luck penalty on their attack and damage rolls. • All creatures within 10 feet* receive a +2 luck bonus on saving throws against necromantic and compulsion effects for 1 round. • Creatures within 10 feet* are not subject to new charm effects. Charmed creatures become dazed when within 10 feet. Both effects last for 1 round. • Once a day, the user can use dimension door. Effects marked with an asterisk increase their range to 20 feet when a character with bardic music plays the harp. Caster Level: 9th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, dancing lights, magic circle against evil, dimension door; Market Price: 25,000 gp; Weight: 1 lb.
Harper Pin: Two kinds of Harper pins exist, the lesser pin and the greater pin. These pins act as brooches for the purposes of limitations on wearing multiple items of the same type. The lesser Harper pin is normally fashioned of silver and given to new members of the Harpers. It functions identically to a ring of mind shielding. Greater Harper pins are fashioned from silver magically treated to give it the hardness of steel (see Creating Magic Items, below). The following constant effects protect the wearer: • immune to magic missile • nondetection • resist elements (electricity) • undetectable alignment • +5 resistance bonus on saves against mind-affecting effects When worn by an evil being, a greater Harper pin turns black and makes discordant jangling sounds (a –10 penalty on Move Silently checks). Caster Level: 3rd (lesser), 5th (greater); Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, nondetection (lesser), Craft Wondrous Item, detect evil, ghost sound, nondetection, protection from elements, resistance, shield, undetectable alignment (greater); Market Price: 8,000 gp (lesser), 79,000 gp (greater); Cost to Create: Standard (lesser), 39,625 gp + 3,150 XP (greater); Weight: —.
Headband of the Binder: This circlet of blue-green metal is stamped with the blank-scroll symbol of Oghma. In addition to allowing the wearer to use read magic three times per day, a bard who wears the headband gains a +4 sacred bonus on his bardic knowledge rolls. Caster Level: 3rd; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, read magic, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 2,600 gp; Weight: —.
Mithral Bells: This item is a series of eleven small mithral bells on a bracelet-sized chain of mithral. The wearer can detach a bell and throw it up to 40 feet. When it reaches the end of its trajectory, it explodes in a sound burst spell. As long as there are at least three bells on the chain, it provides a +2 circumstance bonus on all Perform checks. Caster Level: 3rd; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, sound burst, creator must be a bard; Market Price: 3,700 gp; Weight: 1 lb.
Sunite Sash: This scarlet sash is woven of fine red thread and delicate gold wire. It adds a +2 enhancement bonus to Charisma and a +2 deflection bonus to AC, and allows the wearer to create handfire once per day. Caster Level: 6th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, enthrall, handfire, shield of faith; Market Price: 19,600 gp; Weight: 1 lb.
Instrument of the Winds: When the proper tune is played (which requires a DC 15 Perform [lute] check), this masterwork lute (+2 circumstance bonus on Perform [lute] checks) summons a large air elemental as with the summon monster VI spell. Caster Level: 11th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, summon monster VI; Market Price: 11,000 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Oct 16, 2007 19:08:30 GMT -5
Ruehar's Flute: This finely crafted silver flute resembles a rolled-up spell scroll, with holes lining the edge of the "parchment." It has seldom been seen outside the possesion of the descendants of Ruehar, a green elf wizard, who lived during the days of Myth Drannor. When two short notes in any key are played on the flute, it emanates light as the spell, and automatically dispels any of the following effects within the light effects radius: acid fog, cloudkill, fog cloud, obscuring mist, solid fog, and stinking cloud. The flute's second ability is activated by a command word known only to Ruehar's decendants. When this word is spoken, the flute unrolls like a scroll, revealing a spellbook capable of holding twenty spell levels. The original Ruehar's flute contains the following spells: 1st- color spray, magic missile, Tensor's floating disk, ventriloquism; 2nd- daze monster, glitterdust, lively step; 3rd- Leomund's tuny hut, phantom steed; 4th- polymorph. Ruehar's decendants may however, have manufactured more flutes since his death, and those spellbooks may contain different spells or simply remain blank. Any wizard who has desciphered the spellbook within Ruehar's flute(see pages 178 - 179 of the Player's Handbook) may study and prepare these spells normally. Faint transmutation; CL 3rd; Craft Wonderous Item, gust of wind, light; Price 15,000gp.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 23, 2008 13:34:11 GMT -5
A Fochlucan Lyricist
This section presents a variety of musical instruments particularly appropriate for adventuring bards. Each entry offers a brief description of an instrument and notes on what races or creatures favor it. This information is not meant as an exhaustive treatment of all such instruments, or even of the wide variations possible within these few. Because each instrument is handcrafted, no two are exactly alike—thus, the size, the number of holes or strings, and other features can vary even between two examples of the same instrument. Each of these instruments provides a special adjustment to bardic music when a masterwork instrument of that kind is played by a character with a certain bardic music ability. A musician who does not have the bardic music ability, or a bard who plays a nonmasterwork version of one of these instruments, cannot benefit from these bonuses.
Drum: A typical drum consists of skin, parchment, or some similar material stretched tightly over the opening of a hollow wooden cylinder or pot. This covered opening is called the drumhead. Striking the drumhead with sticks, mallets, or even hands produces the sound. Some drums have only one drumhead; others have two or more. Drums exist in large varieties (such as kettle drums) as well as smaller varieties (such as bongo drums or the double-ended tabor). Drums are popular with almost every race and culture for their ability to stir the emotions, establish a background beat for dancing, and provide counterpoint for a melody produced by some other instrument. Dwarves, orcs, and other races that favor underground living particularly enjoy the echoing power of drums. Smaller races, such as goblins and halflings, like bongo drums for their portability. The rare creatures that do not appreciate drum-playing include celestials, who consider drum rhythms primitive, and elves, who find them vaguely disturbing and annoying (a prejudice reinforced, perhaps, by the enthusiasm with which many of their enemies embrace them).
Bardic Music: When a bard uses a drum to inspire courage, the morale bonus on weapon damage rolls increases by 1, but the morale bonus on saves against charm and fear is reduced by 1.
Fiddle: An ancestor of the modern violin, the fiddle is a small, portable stringed instrument with a body shaped rather like an hourglass. Four or five strings made of gut or sinew stretch across the body, anchored by pegs at the end of a long, thin neck. The strings are played with a separate piece called the bow—a long, thin piece of wood strung with fine strands of animal hair. Fiddles vary in length between 2 feet (for Medium fiddlers) and 18 inches (for halfling and kobold fiddlers). To play a fiddle, the musician holds it horizontally, typically with the base tucked under his chin, and draws the bow back and forth across the strings. The fiddle is popular among bards who prefer lively dance music (reels or jigs) over serene but detached “pure” music. Though welcome almost anywhere, the fiddle is the favorite instrument of kobolds, whose clever hands mastered its fingerings ages ago. (They insist that they invented the fiddle, but other races find that claim dubious.) Kobold minstrels and halfling bards typically caper about while playing, setting their audience an example of the lively dancing their music encourages. Musicians of other races usually sit or stand to play the instrument.
Bardic Music: When used by a bard to inspire courage, a fiddle increases the morale bonus on saves against charm and fear by 1. In the hands of a bard with 5 or more ranks in Perform (dance), the morale bonus instead increases by 2. A bard who uses a fiddle for bardic music can cast spells while performing, but only if those spells have no somatic, material, or focus components.
Flute: The flute is the highest-pitched of all the woodwinds. This broad category includes instruments ranging from the primitive recorder-flute—a simple, hollow tube that produces music when air is blown straight through it—to the traditional flute, which is held at a right angle to the musician’s mouth. Flutes range in length from 8 inches to about 2 feet. The instrument has six holes (typically), plus a thumbhole that, when covered, lowers each of the other notes by an octave. Flutes have a reputation for producing gentle, idyllic music, but they can also create more martial effects or distorted wailing sounds. Abyssal flutes always have an odd number of finger holes, and they conform to no scale or key used by humanoid bards. Particularly in the hands of demon pipers, they produce “music” that sounds to mortal ears like a disharmonious combination of sharps, flats, and bizarre, minor-key effects.
Bardic Music: A bard playing a flute gains a +2 bonus on Perform checks made to use the countersong ability.
Harp: A harp typically has seventeen strings but can come with as few as twelve on a smaller instrument or as many as forty-seven on a larger one. Silver wires are the most common choice for strings, but other materials are occasionally used. Harps are usually made of wood, though some artisans carve them from bone or ivory. Whatever their material, most harps are highly polished and elaborately decorated with carvings. The finest rank as works of art in their own right, quite apart from their status as instruments. Though harps can stand up to 6 feet tall, smaller versions (sometimes called lap-harps) are much smaller—about 2 feet high—and more portable. The harp is especially favored by elf bards for its light, soothing sound and gentle, rippling notes. Harps are often handed down from generation to generation among the elves, and many eventually acquire names and legends of their own. Any character with the bardic knowledge ability who examines an elven harp automatically gains a +5 bonus on his or her bardic knowledge check to identify the instrument and its bearer.
Bardic Music: A bard playing a harp can target one more creature than normal with her fascinate and inspire greatness abilities. A bard who uses a harp for bardic music can cast spells while performing, but only if those spells have no somatic, material, or focus components.
Horn: Originally horns were, as their name indicates, actual horns taken from bulls or more exotic beasts. At its simplest, a horn consists of a narrow tip connected to a wider, circular orifice by a hollow, often curved shaft. A musician plays a horn by simply blowing into the small end. Other forms of horns exist, from the conch shell horn employed by merfolk to the herald’s trumpet, but all these instruments function more or less identically. Horns are popular in primitive societies of all kinds. They come in all sizes; those used by Medium creatures are typically 1 to 2 feet in length. Hobgoblins and orcs in particular enjoy these instruments for their loud, stirring, martial sound. Larger humanoids and giants favor horns made from dire creatures. Legend holds that minotaurs use instruments made from the severed horns of other minotaurs that suffered defeat in one-on-one contests of honor. A horn makes an excellent signal device particularly when used underwater, since sound travels much farther in water than in air. Some aquatic races such as merfolk and kuo-toa collect a variety of horn-shaped shells in different sizes and play them in harmony, in sequence, or both. The music of these seashell orchestras can achieve a deep, haunting grandeur.
Bardic Music: When a bard plays a horn to inspire courage, it raises the morale bonus on weapon damage rolls and saves against fear by 1, but the effect lasts for only 1 round after the ally stops hearing the bard perform.
Lute: This ancestor of the guitar has a pear-shaped bowl and a distinctive bent neck with frets for fingering. Between four and eight strings stretch between the base of the bowl and the top of the neck. Lutes vary between 30 and 36 inches in length, with the bowl taking up some two-thirds of that total. The musician either strums or plucks the strings to produce music. A highly versatile instrument because of its wide range of notes and inflection, the lute is accessible to the beginner but capable of great subtlety in the hands of a master. The deep bowl gives it a rich, full sound unlike that of any other stringed instrument. It is by far the most popular instrument with bards, especially half-elf and human ones.
Bardic Music: A bard playing a lute is treated as one level higher for the purpose of adjudicating the power of his bardic music effects. For example, a 3rd-level bard using a lute could fascinate two creatures instead of one, a 6th-level bard using a lute to make a suggestion would calculate the save DC as if he were 7th level, and a 7th-level bard using a lute to inspire courage would grant a +2 morale bonus on the appropriate rolls. A bard who uses a lute for bardic music can cast spells while performing, but only if those spells have no somatic, material, or focus components.
Lyre: A simpler ancestor of the lap-harp, a lyre typically has a body made out of a turtle shell, plus two curved arms and a crossbar to hold its four to six (or, more rarely, eight) gut or sinew strings taut. To play a lyre, the musician holds it in one hand while strumming or plucking the strings with the other. The very simplicity of a lyre is its charm, since even a novice can strum one to credible effect. Because of this accessibility and the fact that they’re easy to make, lyres are popular among the sylvan fey (especially satyrs) and country folk in general. On occasion, however, a true master adopts it as a signature instrument, producing astonishing effects.
Bardic Music: A bard playing a lyre can target one more creature than normal with her fascinate ability and inspire heroics abilities. A bard who uses a lyre for bardic music can cast spells while performing, but only if those spells have no somatic, material, or focus components.
Mandolin: Essentially a smaller version of the lute, a mandolin is usually between 20 inches and 2 feet long. It has a straighter neck than the lute—the end at which the pegs secure the strings tilts back only slightly, if at all. The mandolin is unusual for the number of strings it holds—from four to six pairs (eight to twelve strings total) or even more. A mandolin is typically played with a pick, both to protect the musician’s fingers and because the strings are too close together to pluck accurately by hand. The mandolin has a sweeter sound than the lute and, because of its shorter strings, a higher pitch as well. Its great range of tone and expression have made it a favorite of gnomes and halflings, who champion it as superior even to the lute.
Bardic Music: When a bard uses a mandolin to inspire courage, the morale bonus on attack rolls increases by 1, but the morale bonus on weapon damage rolls and on saves against charm and fear is reduced by 1. A bard who uses a mandolin for bardic music can cast spells while performing, but only if those spells have no somatic, material, or focus components.
Pan Pipes: In essence, a set of pan pipes is a series of hollow reeds or wooden tubes of varying lengths bound together in a row, from smallest to largest. To play them, the musician blows across the tops of the tubes, producing a sound much like that of several tiny wooden flutes. By moving the pipes from side to side, the piper can play different notes. Switching rapidly among notes creates the sweet, rippling effect for which the instrument is known. Simple yet evocative, pan pipes are favorites of satyrs and other sylvan fey. Humans and some elves also find their music pleasing.
Bardic Music: A bard using pan pipes gains a +1 bonus on Perform checks made to fascinate creatures, and also adds 1 to the save DC against the bard’s suggestion bardic music ability.
Songblade: Every move made with this +1 rapier fi lls the air with sweet sounds. While holding a songblade unsheathed, the sword’s wielder gains a +2 enhancement bonus on Perform checks. A bard wielding a songblade can use her bardic music abilities one additional time per day. The blade is scored in a beautiful, intricate pattern, and air moving across this magical etching generates the music of a songblade. The blade’s musical qualities do not function underwater, in a vacuum, or in other environments where air cannot freely pass over the blade. Moderate transmutation; CL 8th; Craft Magic Arms and Armor, sculpt sound, creator must have bardic music class feature; Price 6,400 gp; Cost 3,360 gp + 243 XP.
Choker of Eloquence: Coveted by bards, singers, and public speakers, this beautiful necklace is carved from ivory and jade. There are two versions of these chokers. A lesser choker of eloquence grants a +5 competence bonus on Diplomacy, Bluff, and Perform (sing) checks. A greater choker of eloquence increases the bonus to +10. Moderate transmutaion; CL 6th; Craft Wondrous Item, creator must be a spellcaster of at least 6th level; Price 6,000 gp (lesser), 24,000 gp (greater).
Flute of the Snake: The music of this flute has the power to charm snakes of all kinds. By playing this flute and making a DC 15 Perform (wind instruments) check, the musician can produce a charm animal effect that affects only snakes. This power can be used three times per day. Once per day, by playing a droning sequence of notes for 1 full round and succeeding on a DC 20 Perform (wind instruments) check, a musician can summon 1d4+1 Medium vipers. These snakes appear wherever the flutist designates within 30 feet of her location. They fight on the musician’s behalf, attacking on her turn, and remain for 7 rounds or until killed. Moderate conjuration and enchantment; CL 7th; Craft Wondrous Item, charm animal, summon nature’s ally IV; Price 15,400 gp.
Harp of the Immortal Maestro: This pinnacle of instrument design functions as a masterwork harp with minor magical effects in the hands of someone with 1 or more ranks in Perform (string instruments). By speaking the correct command words, such a musician can use levitate and magic circle against evil once per day each. A harp of the immortal maestro functions best in the hands of a musician with at least 15 ranks in Perform (string instruments). Such a user can, simply by strumming the harp, generate the following effects once per day each: cure critical wounds, displacement, and summon monster V. Moderate abjuration, conjuration, illusion, and transmutation; CL 9th; Craft Wondrous Item, cure critical wounds, displacement, levitate, magic circle against evil, summon monster V, creator must have 15 ranks in Perform (string instruments); Price 51,000 gp; Weight 3 lb.
Lute of the Wandering Minstrel: This finely wrought instrument functions as a masterwork lute with minor magical effects in the hands of someone with 1 or more ranks in Perform (string instruments). By speaking the correct command words, such a musician can use levitate and magic circle against evil once per day each. A musician with 5 or more ranks in Perform (string instruments) can coax additional magical effects from this instrument. By playing a single chord on the lute, such a performer can generate an expeditious retreat, haste, or phantom steed effect. Each of these abilities is usable once per day. Faint abjuration, conjuration, and transmutation; CL 5th; Craft Wondrous Item, expeditious retreat, haste, levitate, magic circle against evil, phantom steed, creator must have 5 ranks in Perform (string instruments); Price 29,500 gp; Weight 3 lb.
Mandolin of the Inspiring Muse: Bards and other musicians prize this carefully crafted mandolin, which functions as a masterwork mandolin with minor magical effects in the hands of someone with 1 or more ranks in Perform (string instruments). By speaking the correct command words, such a musician can utilize levitate and magic circle against evil once per day each. In addition, an owner with at least 15 ranks in Perform (string instruments) can use the mandolin to generate the effects of crushing despair, dominate person, and good hope each once per day each by playing the correct notes. Moderate abjuration, enchantment, and transmutation; CL 9th; Craft Wondrous Item, crushing despair, dominate person, good hope, levitate, magic circle against evil, creator must have 10 ranks in Perform (string instruments); Price 42,000 gp; Weight 3 lb.
Strings of Spell Storing: This set of catgut strings for a lute, mandolin, or other string instrument can store up to five levels of spells. By making a DC 15 Perform (string instruments) check while employing a masterwork instrument equipped with these strings, a musician can unleash the desired spell. Each spell has a caster level equal to the minimum level needed to cast the spell. The user need not provide any material components or focus, or pay an XP cost to cast the spell, and there is no arcane spell failure chance for any armor the user is wearing. The activation time for the strings is the same as the casting time for the relevant spell, with a minimum of 1 standard action. Treat a randomly generated set of strings of spell storing as a scroll for determining what spells are stored within it (see pages 238–243 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide). If you roll a spell that would put the set over its five-level limit, ignore that roll; those strings have no more spells in them. (Not every newly discovered set of strings is fully charged.) The strings magically impart to the user the names of all spells currently stored within them. Casting spells into the strings functions identically to casting spells into a ring of spell storing (see page 233 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide), except that the caster must have at least 1 rank of Perform (string instruments) and must make a successful Perform (string instruments) check (DC 10 + spell level). Failure causes the spell to be lost to no effect. Moderate evocation; CL 9th; Craft Wondrous Item, imbue with spell ability, creator must have 5 ranks in Perform (string instruments); Price 45,000 gp.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 23, 2008 15:39:15 GMT -5
The Harpers have many friends and allies, and sometimes they reward people who have done them a service. They also like to mark their friends and loved ones so that other Harpers know to look out for them. A Harper token is a minor magic item that gives the bearer a small benefi t and lets the Harpers identify him. Such items are often carried by the adventuring sons and daughters of Harpers.
Description: This small brooch is made of silver. Its head is a flat disk embossed with a handharp. Some Harper tokens are made of gold or other materials, have different embossed symbols such as a musical note or a tree, and come in other shapes such as belt buckles, bracelets, or rings.
When its power is used, a Harper token glows slightly, becomes warm, buzzes softly, or gives some other small signal that it is functioning. This signal is never contrary to the purpose of the item; for example, a token that gives a bonus on Hide checks would never glow, and one that helps Move Silently checks would not make noise.
Activation: A Harper token requires a command word to activate it once it is worn, but once activated it continues to function as long as it is worn; removing it ends its benefi t until it is donned and the command word spoken once again. The command words are phrases made up of words that would never be spoken together, such as “blessed Zhentarim,” “friendly phaerimm,” or “drunken golem.” Harper tokens do not work for evil creatures.
Effect: A Harper token provides a +2 competence bonus on a single skill, such as Climb, Diplomacy, Hide, Knowledge (arcana), or Perform (sing). The particular skill of each Harper token is usually chosen based on the needs of the person wearing it. For example, a Harper whose son was prone to blunt speech might give him a token that adds +2 to his Diplomacy checks. If a Harper token and a Harper pin (see page 159 of Magic of Faerûn) of any kind touch, the token glows momentarily. This property allows Harpers to verify if a token is actually a Harper item or just something that looks like one. Aura/Caster Level: Faint transmutation. CL 5th. Construction: Craft Wondrous Item, creator must have 2 ranks in the token’s skill, 150 gp, 12 XP, 1 day. Weight: —. Price: 300 gp.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 23, 2008 16:41:40 GMT -5
Chime of Interruption: This instrument can be struck once every 10 minutes, and its resonant tone lasts for 3 full minutes. While the chime is resonating, no spell requiring a verbal component can be cast within a 30-foot radius of it unless the caster can make a Concentration check (DC 15 + the spell’s level). Moderate evocation; CL 7th; Craft Wondrous Item, shout; Price 16,800 gp;Weight 1 lb.
Chime of Opening: A chime of opening is a hollow mithral tube about 1 foot long. When struck, it sends forth magical vibrations that cause locks, lids, doors, valves, and portals to open. The device functions against normal bars, shackles, chains, bolts, and so on. A chime of opening also automatically dispels a hold portal spell or even an arcane lock cast by a wizard of lower than 15th level. The chime must be pointed at the item or gate to be loosed or opened (which must be visible and known to the user). The chime is then struck, a clear tone rings forth, and in 1 round the target lock is unlocked, the shackle is loosed, the secret door is opened, or the lid of the chest is lifted. Each sounding only opens one form of locking, so if a chest is chained, padlocked, locked, and arcane locked, it takes four uses of a chime of opening to get it open. A silence spell negates the power of the device. A brand-new chime can be used a total of ten times before it cracks and becomes useless. Moderate transmutation; CL 11th; Craft Wondrous Item, knock; Price 3,000 gp; Weight 1 lb.
Cloak of Charisma: This lightweight and fashionable cloak has a highly decorative silver trim. When in a character’s possession, it adds a +2, +4, or +6 enhancement bonus to her Charisma score. Moderate transmutation; CL 8th; Craft Wondrous Item, eagle’s splendor; Price 4,000 gp (+2), 16,000 gp (+4), 36,000 gp (+6); Weight 2 lb.
Drums of Panic: These drums are kettle drums (hemispheres about 1-1/2 feet in diameter on stands). They come in pairs and are unremarkable in appearance. If both of the pair are sounded, all creatures within 120 feet (with the exception of those within a 20-foot-radius safe zone around the drums) are affected as by a fear spell (Will DC 16 partial). Drums of panic can be used once per day. Moderate necromancy; CL 7th; Craft Wondrous Item, fear; Price 30,000 gp;Weight 10 lb. for the pair.
Harp of Charming: This instrument is a golden, intricately carved harp. When played, it enables the performer to work one suggestion (as the spell, Will DC 14 negates) into the music for each 10 minutes of playing if he can succeed on a DC 14 Perform (string instruments) check. If the check fails, the audience cannot be affected by any further performances from the harpist for 24 hours. Faint enchantment; CL 5th; Craft Wondrous Item, suggestion; Price 7,500 gp;Weight 5 lb.
Horn of Blasting: This horn appears to be a normal trumpet. It can be sounded as a normal horn, but if the command word is spoken and the instrument is then played, it deals 5d6 points of sonic damage to creatures within a 40-foot cone and causes them to be deafened for 2d6 rounds (a DC 16 Fortitude save reduces the damage by half and negates the deafening). Crystalline objects and creatures take 7d6 points of sonic damage, with no save unless they’re held, worn, or carried by creatures (Will DC 16 negates). If a horn of blasting is used magically more than once in a given day, there is a 20% cumulative chance with each extra use that it explodes and deals 10d6 points of damage to the person sounding it. Moderate evocation; CL 7th; Craft Wondrous Item, shout; Price 20,000 gp; Weight 1 lb.
Horn of Blasting, Greater: This horn functions as a horn of blasting, except that it deals 10d6 points of sonic damage, stuns creatures for 1 round, and deafens them for 4d6 rounds (a DC 19 Fortitude reduces the damage by half and negates the stunning and deafening). Crystalline objects take 16d6 points of sonic damage as described for the horn of blasting. A greater horn of blasting also has a 20% cumulative chance of exploding. Strong evocation; CL 16th; Craft Wondrous Item, greater shout; Price 70,000 gp;Weight 1 lb.
Horn of Fog: This small bugle allows its possessor to blow forth a thick cloud of heavy fog similar to that of an obscuring mist spell. The fog covers a 10-foot square next to the horn blower each round that the user continues to blow the horn; fog clouds travel 10 feet each round in a straight line from the emanation point unless blocked by something substantial such as a wall. The device makes a deep, foghornlike noise, with the note dropping abruptly to a lower register at the end of each blast. The fog dissipates after 3 minutes. A moderate wind (11+ mph) disperses the fog in 4 rounds; a strong wind (21+ mph) disperses the fog in 1 round. Faint conjuration; CL 3rd; Craft Wondrous Item, obscuring mist; Price 2,000 gp;Weight 1 lb.
Horn of Goodness/Evil: This trumpet adapts itself to its owner, so it produces either a good or an evil effect depending on the owner’s alignment. If the owner is neither good nor evil, the horn has no power whatsoever. If he is good, then blowing the horn has the effect of a magic circle against evil. If he is evil, then blowing the horn has the effect of a magic circle against good. In either case, this ward lasts for 1 hour. The horn can be blown once per day. Faint abjuration; CL 6th; Craft Wondrous Item, magic circle against good, magic circle against evil; Price 6,500 gp; Weight 1lb.
Horn of the Tritons: This device is a conch shell that can be blown once per day except by a triton (see page 245 of the Monster Manual), which can sound it three times per day. A horn of the tritons can perform any one of the following functions when blown. • Calm rough waters in a 1-mile radius. This effect dispels a summoned water elemental if it fails a DC 16 Will save. • Attract 5d4 Large sharks (01–30 on d%), 5d6 Medium sharks (31–80), or 1d10 sea lions (81–100) if the character is in a body of water in which such creatures dwell. The creatures are friendly and obey, to the best of their ability, the one who sounded the horn. • Causes aquatic creatures with Intelligence scores of 1 or 2 within 500 feet to become panicked as if they had been targeted by a fear spell (Will DC 16 partial). Those who successfully save are shaken for 3d6 rounds. Any sounding of a horn of the tritons can be heard by all tritons within a 3-mile radius. Moderate conjuration and transmutation; CL 8th; Craft Wondrous Item, fear, summon monster V, control water, creator must be a triton or get construction aid from a triton; Price 15,100 gp; Weight 2 lb.
Horn of Valhalla: This magic instrument comes in four varieties. Each appears to be normal until someone speaks its command word and blows the horn. Then the horn summons a number of human barbarians to fight for the character who summoned them. Each horn can be blown just once every seven days. Roll d% and refer to the table below to see what type of horn is found. The horn’s type determines what barbarians are summoned and what prerequisite is needed to use the horn. Any character who uses a horn of Valhalla but doesn’t have the prerequisite is attacked by the barbarians she herself summoned.
Summoned barbarians are constructs, not actual people (though they seem to be); they arrive with the starting equipment for barbarians given on page 26 of the Player’s Handbook. They attack anyone the possessor of the horn commands them to fight until they or their opponents are slain or until 1 hour has elapsed, whichever comes first. Strong conjuration; CL 13th; Craft Wondrous Item, summon monster VI; Price 50,000 gp;Weight 2 lb.
Pipes of Haunting: This magic item appears to be a small set of pan pipes. When played by a person who succeeds on a DC 15 Perform (wind instruments) check, the pipes create an eerie, spellbinding tune. Those within 30 feet who hear the tune must succeed on a DC 13 Will save or become frightened for 4 rounds. Creatures with 6 or more Hit Dice are unaffected. Pipes of haunting can be sounded twice a day. Faint necromancy; CL 4th; Craft Wondrous Item, scare; Price 6,000 gp;Weight 3 lb.
Pipes of Pain: These appear to be like any other standard set of pipes with nothing to reveal their true nature. When played by someone who succeeds on a DC 15 Perform (wind instruments) check, the pipes create a wondrous melody. All within 30 feet must make a DC 14 Will save or be fascinated by the sound. (This is a mind-affecting sonic compulsion.) As soon as the piping stops, all those affected are stricken by intense pain at even the slightest noise. Unless a character is in a totally silent area, she takes 1d4 points of damage per round for 2d4 rounds. During this time, damage from sonic attacks, such as sound burst, is doubled. Thereafter, the least noise causes an affected character to become shaken (except when she is in a totally silent area). This hypersensitivity is a curse and therefore hard to remove (see the bestow curse spell). Faint enchantment and evocation; CL 6th; Craft Wondrous Item, creator must have the bardic music class feature, sound burst; Price 12,000 gp;Weight 3 lb.
Pipes of the Sewers: These wooden pipes appear ordinary, but if the possessor learns the proper tune, he can attract 1d3 rat swarms (see page 239 of the Monster Manual) if rats are within 400 feet. For each 50-foot distance the rats have to travel, there is a 1-round delay. The piper must continue playing until the rats appear, and when they do so, the piper must make a DC 10 Perform (wind instruments) check. Success means that they obey the piper’s telepathic commands so long as he continues to play. Failure indicates that they turn on the piper. If for any reason the piper ceases playing, the rats leave immediately. If they are called again within a day, the Perform check DC is 15. If the rats are under the control of another creature, add the HD of the controller to the Perform check DC. Once control is assumed, another check is required each round to maintain it if the other creature is actively seeking to reassert its control. Faint conjuration; CL 2nd; Craft Wondrous Item, charm animal, summon nature’s ally I, wild empathy ability; Price 1,150 gp;Weight 3 lb.
Pipes of Sounding: When played by a character who has the Perform (wind instruments) skill, these pipes create a variety of sounds. The figment sounds are the equivalent of ghost sound (caster level 2nd). Faint illusion; CL 2nd; Craft Wondrous Item, ghost sound; Price 1,800 gp;Weight 3 lb.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 23, 2008 17:16:57 GMT -5
Choker of Eloquence: Coveted by bards, singers, and public speakers, this beautiful piece of jewelry is carved from ivory and jade. There are two versions of these chokers. The lesser choker of eloquence grants a +5 competence bonus on Diplomacy, Innuendo, Bluff, and Perform (vocal only) checks. The greater choker of eloquence increases the bonus to +10. Caster Level: 6th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, creator must be a spellcaster of 6th level; Market Price: 1,500 gp (lesser), 6,000 gp (greater); Weight: —.
Trumpeter’s Gift: This shiny mouthpiece fits any brass instrument such as trumpets and horns. It grants a +5 competence bonus on Performance checks using the instrument. Once per day, the trumpeter can use the horn to cast a shout spell. Unless the horn is at least masterwork quality, however, it is destroyed once the spell is complete. Caster Level: 7th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, shout; Market Price: 12,200 gp; Weight: —
From Arms and Equipment Guide
Sometimes you've got to toss the dice, and of that come what may. If seven is your number, there are seven shades of grey.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 23, 2008 17:26:01 GMT -5
Trumpet of Doom: This small brass trumpet is engraved with interwoven patterns of feathers and flames. The trumpet emits a haunting blare that fills evil enemies with a terrible sense of dread. All evil creatures within 100 feet that can hear the trumpet’s blare are shaken for 1 minute (DC 14 Will save negates). The trumpet can be blown up to three times per day. Moderate necromancy; CL 6th; Craft Wondrous Item, doom; Price 7,185 gp; Weight 1 lb.
Trumpet of Healing: This finely wrought trumpet plays beautifully in the hands of any talented trumpeter. Invoking any of its magic, however, requires playing the horn uninterrupted for a full round and making a DC 15 Perform (wind instruments) check. The trumpeteer can employ the trumpet three times per day, selecting from the following powers for each use: remove blindness/deafness, remove disease, cure serious wounds, or neutralize poison. These powers affect all creatures within 360 feet of the horn. In addition, the trumpet can heal a single creature within hearing range of the uplifting song once per day. Evil creatures cannot benefit from these effects; in fact, they hear nothing at all when the horn plays. The trumpeter cannot personally benefit from the trumpet’s healing powers. Strong conjuration; CL 13th; Craft Wondrous Item, cure serious wounds, heal, neutralize poison, remove blindness/deafness, remove disease, creator must be good; Price 115,440 gp; Weight 2 lb.
Hwyrr, the Clarion Harp: Harp of charming; AL CG; Int 18, Wis 10, Cha 18; Speech, telepathy, 120 ft. darkvision, blindsense, and hearing; Ego score 14. Languages: Celestial, Common, Draconic, Elven, Gnome. Lesser Powers: elation 3/day, Faerinaal’s hymn (see below), 10 ranks in Knowledge (history) (total modifier +14). Greater Powers: Dismissal 1/day, fear 3/day (against foes only). Personality: The frame of this golden harp is fashioned into a handsome likeness of Faerinaal, Queen Morwel’s eladrin consort (see Chapter 7: Celestial Paragons). Crafted by a firre eladrin bard in Queen Morwel’s court, Hwyrr serves Faerinaal as a chronicler of events on the Material Plane. As it finds its way into the hands of different adventuring bards, Hwyrr learns new tales of heroism that it will someday recount to Faerinaal when it finally returns to Queen Morwel’s court. When it senses battle occurring within 60 feet, Hwyrr automatically begins playing Faerinaal’s hymn and continues to do so until one of its other powers is employed. Hwyrr takes great pride in its appearance and constantly insinuates itself into conversations, recounting tales of its past owners’ exploits to help its current owner deal with immediate or similar problems. Strong enchantment; CL 15th; Craft Magic Arms and Armor, dismissal, elation, Faerinaal’s hymn, fear, suggestion; Price 84,000 gp.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 24, 2008 0:40:15 GMT -5
Bagpipes of the Damned: When played, these bagpipes help bolster undead against turning. The piper must make a DC 15 Perform (wind instruments) check. If successful, all undead within 60 feet gain a +4 bonus on turn resistance for 10 rounds. Moderate necromancy; CL 10th; Craft Wondrous Item, able to rebuke undead as a 10th-level cleric; Price 3,000 gp; Weight 4 lb.
Lyre of the Restful Soul: When played, this lyre weakens the ability of undead creatures to resist turning or rebuking. The drummer makes a DC 15 Perform (string instruments) check. If successful, all undead within 60 feet take a –4 penalty to turn resistance (which can lower their effective HD for turning to below their normal HD, but not lower than 1) for 10 rounds. Moderate necromancy; CL 10th; Craft Wondrous Item, able to turn or rebuke undead as a 10th-level cleric; Price 3,000 gp; Weight 5 lb.
Night Caller: This whistle is transparent but weighty as if forged of iron, not glass. The whistle resembles a small dragon curled up like a snail. When blown over a grave containing a body in darkness or at night, one corpse below animates and claws its way to the surface. The zombie serves the whistler faithfully until it is destroyed, as if it were created with animate dead. The whistle can be used once per week; however, the whistler can acquire no more than two zombie followers at any one time using night caller. Faint necromancy; CL 5th; Craft Wondrous Item, animate dead; Price 7,000 gp.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 24, 2008 14:50:03 GMT -5
Yeth Horn: This strangely shaped device is a musical instrument concocted of twisted tubes and miniature bellows. When sounded properly (requiring a DC 15 Perform [wind instruments] check), it replicates a yeth hound’s bay. All creatures except evil outsiders within a 60-foot spread must succeed on a DC 16 Will save or become panicked for 2d6 rounds. This is a sonic, mind-affecting fear effect. Whether or not the save is successful, an affected creature cannot be affected by the same yeth horn’s sound for 24 hours. Moderate enchantment; CL 7th; Craft Wondrous Item, fear, creator must have 5 ranks in Perform (wind instruments); Price 10,000 gp; Weight 1 lb.
From Planar Handbook
Sometimes you've got to toss the dice, and of that come what may. If seven is your number, there are seven shades of grey.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 24, 2008 17:34:56 GMT -5
[glow=yellow,2,300]Bardic Items From Dragon Magazine[/glow]
Autonomous Harp: An autonomous harp is usually made of wood plated with gold and stands on four clawed legs. The masterwork harp is a construct capable of movement and has statistics identical to a Medium animated object made of wood. Like a golem, it follows the commands of its creator or those its creator designates. In addition to the normal actions an animated object can take, the autonomous harp can be commanded to play itself as a free action (playing itself is also a free action for the harp), providing a +2 circumstance bonus on Perform checks made within 20 feet that would benefit from musical accompaniment. Moderate transmutation; CL nth; Craft Wondrous Item, Perform (strings) 5 ranks, animate objects; Price 6,250 gp; Weight 40 lb. Author: S. Deniz Bucak. Source: #317.
Bardic Cup: A bardic cup, sometimes known as a goblet of song, is a finely crafted and valuable silver drinking vessel. The bowl of each cup is adorned with small gems, and the stem is molded into the form of four figures— one cloaked figure carrying a dagger, one holding a staff, one holding a skull, and one bearing a harp. Whenever liquid is poured into a bardic cup, one or more of the figures might sing. If the liquid is poisonous, diseased, or foul, the skull face softly sings a mournful dirge. If the liquid has healing properties, the figure with a harp plays a bright ballad. If a magic liquid is placed in the chalice, the figure with the staff sings a deep rhythmic chant. If the liquid is cursed or inherently evil, the figure with cloak and dagger whispers a lament. If a liquid qualifies as more than one of these, all appropriate figures sing in harmony. Thus a magic healing potion poured into the cup causes both the staff-bearing and harp-carrying figures to sing. Bardic cups are often used by adventuring minstrels to partially identify potions and fresh water or to test drinks for poison without offending a host. Faint divination; CL 3rd; Brew Potion, Craft Wondrous Item, detect evil, detect magic, detect poison, purify food and drink; Price 6,500 gp; Weight 1 lb. Author: Owen K.C. Stephens. Source: #289.
Chromatic Flute: For some people, music just isn't enough. They need something to look at or a performance doesn't hold their attention. To reach these people, a bard can hire a troupe of dancers or she can find a chromatic flute. These masterwork flutes are usually crafted from a precious metal, such as gold or platinum, and inscribed with arcane runes. When played, illusory abstract images form behind the bard, flowing from shape to shape and changing color in response to a performance. The visual accompaniment provides a +2 circumstance bonus on Perform checks made with the flute. Additionally, as a standard action, the player of the flute can attempt to use it to cast illusion spells. The instrument's player must make a Perform check to make the flute cast the spell, DC 10 for a silent image, DC 15 for a minor image, and DC 20 for a major image. The Perform check to make the flute create an illusion does not benefit from the +2 circumstance bonus on Perform checks. Moderate illusion; CL 7th; Craft Wondrous Item, major image, minor image, silent image; Price 46,500 gp; Weight 1 lb. Author: S. Deniz Bucak. Source: #317.
Horn of the Planes: The music of the horn of the planes resonates with the planes of the multiverse. A performer with the horn of the planes and the correct melody can open a portal to another plane. The masterwork horn is a platinum trumpet with inscription on the outside that depicts the arrangement of the planes. Once per day, a performer playing the horn can attempt to use it to open a gate (as per the spell). The bard must know the proper melody to play for a particular plane. Learning the proper melody requires that the performer have 5 ranks in Perform and successfully make a DC 30 Knowledge (the planes) or bardic knowledge check. Any player may open a gate to a random plane as a standard action with a successful DC 25 Perform check. If the performer knows the tune for a specific plane, she can open a gate on that plane at a random location (on the plane) as a standard action with a successful DC 25 Perform check and to a specific location as a standard action with a successful DC 30 Perform check. Because there is a consequence of failure (getting a result of 25 or greater but less than 30 on the Perform check), a character cannot take 20 on the Perform check to play a horn of the planes. If a performer plays the horn without attempting to open a gate, there is a cumulative 1% chance for each continuous round of playing that the horn opens a gate to a random plane as long as the horn has not already been used to open a gate. The horn of the planes can open a gate only once per day. Strong conjuration; CL 17th; Craft Wondrous Item, gate; Price 55,000 gp; Weight 5 lb. Author: S. Deniz Bucak. Source: #317.
Shell of Amplification: This is a 7-inch-long conch shell with a hole at the point. When the command word is spoken, sounds made near the hole become audible and clear to all creatures who can hear (not deaf or within the area of a silence spell) within a 200-foot-radius spread. This negates any negative circumstance modifiers to Perform checks due to noise or poor acoustics and allows a speaker or singer to be heard clearly even in the midst of calamity. In addition, when a bard uses the fascinate ability through the shell, it increases the range of that ability to a 200-foot-radius spread and negates the need for the creature to see the bard or the bard to see the creature. Allies the bard sees and designates can be considered immune to his use of the fascinate ability. Moderate transmutation; CL 7th; Craft Wondrous Item, message; Price 7,000 gp; Weight 1 lb. Author: S. Deniz Bucak. Source: #317.
Snake Charmer: The original snake charmer instruments were double-reed talimbas from a distant land. As knowledge of the instruments spread, the enchantment was applied to other instruments, and now snake charmers come in a variety of instruments. A snake charmer adds a +10 bonus on Perform checks when the bard using it tries to fascinate reptilian creatures (including creatures of the dragon type). This stacks with the +2 bonus for playing a masterwork instrument. Faint enchantment; CL 3rd; Craft Wondrous Item, enthrall; Price 1,100 gp; Weight by instrument type. Author: S. Deniz Bucak. Source: #317.
Thespian's Mask: Sometimes called a "performer's face" or "actor's visage," each of these fascinating masks is a unique and intricate work of art. Fashioned by the greatest elven artists of the modern age, no two thespian's masks are alike. A thespian's mask is carved from the finest ivory and then painted to resemble the face of a humanoid creature. Depending on the whim of the artisan creating it, a thespian's mask might, for example, bear a fearsome orc warrior's visage, the fair skin of an elven maiden, or the face of an old human sage. When worn, the mask merges with its owner's face, changing his features to match those of the humanoid creature depicted upon it. The change affects the wearer as the spell disguise self, but it only changes the wearer's appearance to match that of the face the mask was crafted to depict. For example, a thespian mask in the form of a fair-skinned elven maiden would disguise its wearer—including clothing and equipment—as an elven maiden and nothing else. This ability remains in effect for as long as the mask is worn. Faint illusion; CL5th; Craft Wondrous Item, disguise self, Craft (sculpting) 10 ranks; Price 3,000 gp; Weight —. Author: Richard Farrese. Source: #328.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 25, 2008 18:14:33 GMT -5
Singing Sword: This intelligent +2 dancing longsword is a unique weapon that has been passed from bard to bard over the centuries. It loves two things to the exclusion of all others: singing and fighting. If its owner doesn’t display a passion for both of those activities, a personality confl ict occurs (see the Items Against Characters section in Chapter 8 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide). Should that occur, the sword demands that its owner either actively share its interests (by gaining ranks in Perform and perhaps even taking up the bard class) or turn it over to a more suitable owner. In the hands of a bard who enjoys battle, however, the singing sword truly shines. Not only is it a formidable weapon in combat, but it can also harmonize with its owner, granting him a +6 enhancement bonus on any Perform checks that involve singing. For the first few weeks after acquiring a suitable new owner, the singing sword is content and eager to please. Over time, however, personality conflicts can occur if other characters (especially lawful ones) prevent the bard from singing or fighting. The singing sword always urges its owner forward into combat and up onto the stage at every opportunity. The singing sword has 10 ranks in Sense Motive, which, combined with its Wisdom modifier, give it a total bonus of +14 on Sense Motive checks. In addition, the sword can detect law, and it grants its wielder free use of the Blind- Fight feat. Finally, it can cast haste (duration 10 rounds) on its wielder once per day. The singing sword is chaotic neutral, with Int 11, Wis 19, Cha 15, and Ego 19. It speaks Common and can communicate telepathically with any creature that has a language. Caster Level: 12th; Prerequisites: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, animate objects, detect law, haste; Market Price: 127,855 gp; Weight: 4 lb.
Horn of Triumph: This silver trumpet is prized on the battlefield, for its music can significantly improve soldiers’ combat prowess. When a character with the bardic music ability plays the horn of triumph, each willing ally within 15 feet receives a +2 morale bonus on all saving throws, attack rolls, ability and skill checks, and weapon damage rolls. Furthermore, every affected creature gains a +2 morale bonus to both Strength and Constitution (which improves attack bonuses and Fortitude saves accordingly) but suffers a -1 morale penalty to AC. The instrument compels all affected creatures to fight, heedless of danger. The effects of the horn last as long as the musician continues to play and the affected creatures remain within 15 feet. Moving out of range ends the effect for the creature that did so, but others still within the radius retain the benefi ts. The horn can produce this magical fanfare twice a day. It functions as a normal trumpet if its user does not have the bardic music ability. Caster Level: 7th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, emotion; Market Price: 35,380 gp; Weight: 3 lb
[glow=purple,2,300]Bards and Their Instruments[/glow]
An instrument provides a focus for the bard’s art and helps distinguish him from a mere street minstrel. It’s also an important part of his self-image. The choice of an unusual signature instrument marks a bard as someone out of the ordinary—different even from other members of his profession.
When choosing an instrument, consider the following points. • If the instrument isn’t portable, you can’t carry it alongýon your adventures. A pipe organ may be quite impressive, but a lute or harp is likely to do you far more good in the long run. • Your instrument should be durable enough to weather rough handling. After all, you never know when you’re going to run into a music critic intent on reducing your beloved instrument to so much kindling. It may be a good idea to have the mending spell in your repertoire—or at the very least, to keep a scroll with that spell on it tucked in among your sheet music. Besides, mending is always good for maintaining the immaculate appearance that helps you captivate an audience. • Your instrument can’t be one of a kind. In addition to the normal wear and tear that adventuring inflicts on items, you might well lose your favorite pipes through a dimensional vortex or in a close call with a disintegrate spell. Loss of a signature instrument is a sad event forýany bard, just as it would be for a fighter who lost a favorite sword. But if you don’t want it to cripple you from that day forward, you had better be able to replace your instrument. Common instruments (lutes, lap-harps, and the like) are much easier to replace than more exotic instruments are. • Finally, your instrument is a reflectionýon you. It should have a sense of style and convey something about your personality. A halfling bard who carries a fine old mandolin sends a very different message than does one who sports a jaunty banjolele. Find an instrument that matches the image you have of yourself; popular entertainer, artiste, passionate performer/composer, or carefree wanderer—and use it to convey that image to others.
Instrument Descriptions Part One
Each of the following entries offers a brief description of an instrument and notes on what races or creature types favor it. Because of their easy availability and wide range of notes, the three prime bardic instruments are the fiddle, the lapharp, and the lute. Player character bards can, of course, choose any instruments they are capable of playing. NPC bards and musicians, however, usually choose the types their races favor. A few races have physical limitations that prevent them from playing certain instruments. Lizardfolk, for example, lack the necessary lips and tongue shape for woodwinds and pipes, and their fingers are neither delicate nor dexterous enough to pluck strings. Dragons have similar limitations, so they rarely play instruments other than water-pipes except in shapechanged form. Dragons in humanoid form tend to prefer complicated, subtle instruments such as pipe organs, lutes, or harps, though they are capable of playing anything they wish.
Each of these instruments also provides a special enhancement to bardic music in the hands of anyone with that ability. Some of these enhancements alter particular bardic music effects; others affect the listeners in new ways. If the enhancement alters an existing bardic music effect, only the stated aspects change; all else pertaining to that effect remains the same. For new effects, unless otherwise stated, the listeners are all those who can hear the music, and the effect lasts as long as the performance does. Musicians without the bardic music ability cannot achieve these special effects at all, and even bards get the bardic music benefit only with masterwork versions of the instruments. For each performance with such an instrument, a bard can choose either the special benefit or the +2 bonus on Perform checks that a masterwork instrument ordinarily grants.
Alphorn: A favorite of the more sophisticated giant races, the alphorn (or white horn) is a long, straight, wooden pipe with an upturned bell at the very end. The pipe is typically 12-20 feet long and wound with birch bark, which gives the instrument its pale color and distinctive hollow tone. To play an alphorn, the musician rests the bend of the instrument on the ground and blows into the mouthpiece. Since alphorns have no fingerholes for altering the pitch, each can produce only one note. An alphorn’s sound carries for great distances, so some isolated giants use it to communicate with their distant neighbors. An unfriendly critic once compared the result to wolves baying at the moon, but his heirs issued a lavish posthumous apology after the offended giants showed him the error of his ways. Bardic Music: The alphorn’s deep pitch carries its sound to a distance of 1d10 miles. This allows the use of inspire greatness, countersong, and inspire courage effects even when great distances separate the musician from his or her listeners.
Bagpipes: A set of bagpipes consists of a cloth or skin bag fitted with three reeded pipes (drones), plus a blowpipe and a chanter (melody pipe). The piper inflates the bag through the blowpipe, then squeezes the air out through the other four pipes to produce the sound. Fingerholes in the chanter allow it to produce a wide range of notes. Meanwhile, each of the drones emits a single, low-pitched, buzzing tone. Together, these provide harmony for the chanter’s tune. A few societies prize bagpipes for their distinctive qualities, though their music is defi nitely an acquired taste. The instrument is very strenuous to play because the piper must keep the bag supplied with enough air to fi ll all four pipes at once. Therefore, a musician who can play long pieces on it wins the grudging respect of his or her fellows, whatever their feelings toward bagpipes in the abstract. Bardic Music: The musician can produce an unearthly wail that imposes a -1 morale penalty on the listeners’ saving throws against fear effects. This is a supernatural, mind-affecting ability.
Banjolele: This instrument has a tambourinelike, circular body with vellum stretched tightly across it to act as a sounding board. Five metal strings span the body of the instrument, secured by pegs at the end of the long, straight neck. A typical banjolele is about 18 inches in length. A favorite of halfling bards, this instrument is otherwise rare. Some find its music jaunty and uplifting; others maintain that it combines all the worst characteristics of a banjo and a ukulele. Bardic Music: When played to inspire courage, this cheerful instrument increases the morale bonus on saving throws against fear effects from +2 to +3 for listeners allied with the musician.
Bell, Hanging: A hanging bell is a larger-scale version of a handbell (see below). Hanging bells are usually made of bronze or some other metal, though stone versions are also known. They have no handles; instead, they hang from pivots mounted on frames. Hanging bells are quite large (up to several feet high) and often weigh more than a ton each. The typical hanging bell has a metal rod called a clapper suspended within it. The performer usually plays a hanging bell by swinging or tugging on a rope attached to the clapper rather than by moving the bell itself. The rare hanging bell that has no clapper can be played by striking the outside with a mallet. Each of these instruments produces only one note—the larger the bell, the lower its pitch. The sound of a hanging bell can carry for miles, especially when it is mounted high in a bell tower. Thus, this instrument can be used to raise an alarm, pass along signals, mark special occasions, denote specific time periods (the hours of the day, the changing of the guard, the time to pray, and so forth), or simply make a joyous noise. Bardic Music: When played to inspire courage, a hanging bell weighing at least 1 ton increases the morale bonus on allies’ saves against fear and charm effects fromý+2 to +3. The music also imposes a -1 morale penalty on foes’ saves against those same effects.
Bones: Despite their name, these percussion instruments are actually small wooden blocks, typically darkcolored and highly polished. A complete set consists of twelve to thirty pieces, all different lengths. Each is tapered in the middle for easy insertion between the fingers. When struck, each “bone” gives off a hollow, reverberating sound at a particular pitch. The bones are played by striking pairs of pieces together in succession, thus creating combinations of tones. A dexterous performer can achieve a wide range of effects by varying which pieces connect and how long each vibrates, as well as how hard and how often they hit. Kobolds in particular love this form of percussion. In fact, it is not uncommon for a kobold minstrel to manipulate two or more pieces in each hand, switching them off with the remaining pieces at dazzling speed—almost as if he were juggling as well as playing. Audiences often admire the speed of the performer’s hand gestures as much as the music itself. Bardic Music: The hollow, eerie, rattling of the bones imposes a -2 morale penalty on listeners’ saving throws against fear effects. Creating this effect is a supernatural, mind-affecting ability.
Clavichord: The clavichord, an ancestor of the modern piano, borrows the pipe organ’s keyboard but substitutes horizontal strings for its pipes. Pressing a key causes an attached metal piece to strike a string or pair of strings inside the instrument, sounding the note. A clavichord looks like a flat, rectangular or oblong box about 1 foot wide and a bit more than 3 feet long. The musician typically places it on a table or similar flat surface for a performance. Soft and silvery in tone, the clavichord allows great variety of expression. The volume varies slightly according to the force with which the keys are struck, but the instrument is never particularly loud. Clavichords are particularly popular in orchestral arrangements and as showpieces in the homes of well-to-do merchants. Bardic Music: A musician using a clavichord can maintainýonly a single bardic music or virtuoso performance effect at a time. Because of its soft tone, the clavichord imposes a -1 circumstance penalty on Perform checks for countersong attempts, but it grants a +2 circumstance bonus on Perform checks for fascinate or suggestion. It also grants a +1 circumstance bonus on the musician’s Diplomacy and Gather Information checks made against audience members for 1d6 hours after the performance ends.
Crumhorn: The true crumhorn is a triple-reed instrument created by and favored by treant musicians, but quite unplayable by most humanoids. A true crumhorn is a straight tube about 6 feet long with six to eight fingerholes and a slightly flared bell. A small wooden cup containing the reeds serves as the mouthpiece. The human version, about 3 feet long, produces a reedy, nasal sound quite unlike the majestic timbre of the true crumhorn. Though treants are the primary players of crumhorns, dryads are also exceptionally fond of their music. Most other forest denizens fi nd the crumhorn melodic but melancholy. Bardic Music: A crumhorn of any type grants the musician a +1 circumstance bonus on all Perform checks when the listeners are sylvan folk other than dryads. Every such listener also incurs a -4 circumstance penalty on saving throws made to resist the performer’s fascinate or suggestion effects. These modifiers double for dryad listeners. Producing the saving throw penalty is a supernatural, mind affecting ability.
Drum: Possibly the oldest of all instruments, the drum exists in types without number. Drums range from simple hollow trees pounded with sticks to a celebrated magic lake named Irontick, which a musician can “play” by jumping up and down on its rigid surface. A typical drum consists of skin, parchment, or some similar material stretched tightly over the opening of a hollow wooden cylinder or pot. This covered opening is called the drumhead. Some drums have only one drumhead; others have two or more. Striking the drumhead with sticks, mallets, or even the hands produces the sound. Drums are popular with almost every race and culture for their ability to stir the emotions, establish a background beat for dancing, and provide counterpoint for a melody produced by some other instrument. The rare exceptions include celestials, who consider drum rhythms primitive, and elves, who find them vaguely disturbing and extremely annoying (a prejudice reinforced, perhaps, by the enthusiasm with which many of their enemies embrace them). Half-orcs, lizardfolk, troglodytes, trolls, ogres, and the more dimwitted giants are the races most likely to enjoy simple drum music. Demons, of course, love an unholy din, so they not only enjoy drums but also prefer to play several different kinds at once. Bardic Music: When played to inspire courage, drums boost the morale bonus on saves against fear effects from +2 to +4, but decrease the morale bonus on saves against charm effects from +2 to +0.
Drums, Bongo: These small drums always come in sets of two. One drum of each pair is about 5 inches in diameter; the other is about 7 inches. The bongo player can either set the drums down to play them or carry them on a strap. Bongos are played by rapidly tapping the drumheads with the fingertips, and a skilled drummer can create very complex rhythms by rapidly switching between the two drums. Goblins are quite fond of the bongos, which they play for entertainment, to call together war parties, and to transmit messages through complex rhythms. All these applications tend to sound the same to members of other races. Bardic Music: See drum.
Drums, Kettle: Also called timpani, kettle drums are large, heavy, metal pots 2-3 feet high with skin or parchment drumheads. The drummer plays them by pounding on the drumheads with special mallets swathed in cloth. Kettle drums come in sets of at least two and sometimes up to fi ve individual drums, each a different size and pitch (the larger the drum, the deeper its tone). Because of their weight, kettle drums are not portable. By striking multiple drums in rapid succession, the drummer can produce a rapid, multitone sound that reverberates for several moments. This effect combined with a mounting crescendo provides a rousing finale for any musical performance. Kettle drums are quite popular among gnolls, who have developed highly sophisticated rhythms with them. Most gnoll timpani concerts end with the audience rushing to attack any convenient targets. Bardic Music: See drum.
Dulcimer, Hammered: This instrument has a flat, trapezoidal soundbox with several pairs of strings stretched horizontally across it. Because of its size (about 30 inches by 18 inches), it is usually set on a stand at an angle rather than held on the lap. The musician plays this unusual instrument by striking the strings in rapid succession with tiny hammers, one held in each hand. Bardic Music: See zither, below.
Fiddle: An ancestor of the modern violin, the fiddle is a small, portable, stringed instrument with a body shaped rather like an hourglass. Four or five strings made of gut or sinew stretch across the body, anchored by pegs at the end of a long, thin neck. A separate piece, called the bow, is a long, thin piece of wood strung with fine strands of animal hair. Fiddles vary in length between 2 feet (for Medium-size fiddlers) and 18 inches (for Small fiddlers). To play the fiddle, the musician holds it horizontally, typically with the base tucked under his or her chin, and draws the bow back and forth across the strings. The fiddle is popular among bards who prefer lively dance music (reels or jigs) over serene but detached “pure” music. Though it is welcome almost anywhere, the fiddle is the favorite instrument of kobolds, whose clever hands mastered its fingerings ages ago. (They insist that they invented the fiddle, but other races find that claim dubious.) Kobold minstrels and halfling bards typically caper about while playing, showing their audience an example of the lively dancing their music encourages. Musicians of other races usually sit or stand to play the fiddle. Bardic Music: Like the other two prime bardic instruments, the lute and the lap-harp, the fiddle enables the performer to maintain one bardic music or virtuoso performance effect while initiating another. Thus, a bard could maintain a countersong effect on one listener while inspiring courage in others.
Flute: The flute is the highest pitched of all the woodwinds. Unlike the recorder-flute, from which it derives, the flute is held at a right angle to the musician’s mouth, so that air blown into it bends to the side. Flutes range from 8 inches to about 2 feet long. The shortest type is often called a piccolo. Each flute has six holes (or, more rarely, eight), plus a thumbhole that, when covered, lowers each of the other notes by an octave. Flutes have a reputation for producing gentle, idyllic music, but they can also create more martial effects or distorted wailing sounds. Abyssal fl utes always have an odd number of fi ngerholes, and they conform to no scale or key used by humanoid bards. Particularly in the hands of demon pipers, they produce “music” that sounds to mortal ears like a disharmonic combination of sharps, flats, and bizarre, minor-key effects. Bardic Music: See recorder-flute, below.
Gong: A gong is a large, gently curved plate, rather like a single, huge cymbal. The typical version is made of bronze and has a distinct, curved-in rim and a boss, or slightly raised knob, in the center. Gongs usually hang suspended from wooden frames to ensure that they can reverberate freely. Both the frames and the gongs themselves can be as simple or as highly decorated as desired. The sound of a gong never fails to get attention. To play it, the musician simply strikes the boss with a large mallet, which is usually covered with either felt or cloth. Each gong can produce only a single note, but it is audible to a considerable distance and reverberates for 5 rounds after each strike. So impressive is the sound that enthusiasts claim no other instrument can match it. Stationary gongs usually weigh several hundred pounds each, so they are not suitable for adventuring. However, they are quite popular for ceremonial music and as warning signal devices. Primitive races often hang circular metal shields on their walls to serve as makeshift alarm gongs Bardic Music: While it reverberates, the gong adds +5 to the DC for each Concentration check made by a listener (including the performer). Creating this effect is a supernatural, sonic ability. When played as part of a countersong attempt, the gong gives the user a +5 circumstance bonus on the Perform check required for that effect.
Handbell: The handbell is a hollow, beehiveshaped instrument with a clapper inside and a handle at the top. Handbells are usually cast from bronze or some other sturdy metal. A handbell is small enough (typically 2-12 inches long) to be used in one hand. To play one, the performer need only swing it back and forth, causing the clapper to strike the sides repeatedly. Each handbell produces a single, ringing note—the larger the bell, the deeper its tone. Handbells are usually grouped together for musical performances. When played in specific sequences by experts, they can produce highly complex chords and melodies. Humans, elves, and celestials are especially fond of handbell music. A magic handbell can be played only if it has the correct clapper, which may or may not be present upon its discovery. Bardic Music: A handbell grants the performer a +1 circumstance bonus on Perform checks made for countersong attempts. Additional handbells do not increase this bonus.
Harmonica: A later refinement on pan pipes (see below), the harmonica substitutes metal tubes for the reeds and encloses them in a small, rectangular casing. The musician simply blows into the top of the harmonica at various points to produce a range of notes. This instrument’s high, buzzing sound is popular among some halflings and gnomes. Bardic Music: Harmonica music warms the hearts of commoners and other folk of humble station. Thus, a successful Perform check in such company grants the musician a +4 circumstance bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, Disguise, and Gather Information checks involving any of those listeners for 1d6 hours after the performance ends. In addition, it shifts the attitude of the listeners by one category in the performer’s favor (for example, from friendly to helpful—see the NPC Attitudes section in Chapter 5 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide). However, it also imposes a -4 circumstance penalty on Intimidate checks made against such listeners for the same period. Producing these effects is a supernatural, mind-affecting ability.
Harp: Far less portable than its smaller cousin the lapharp, a standing harp is often 5 or even 6 feet in height. Its forty-six strings give it an astonishing range of more than five octaves. An optional pedal attachment allows the musician to raise (sharpen) or lower (flatten) the notes, thus generating an even wider range. Despite their size, harps are rather delicate and easily damaged. This tends to restrict harp performances to indoor settings, typically theaters or residences of aristocrats rich enough to own these instruments. Connoisseurs of harp music maintain that it is even more ethereal and elegant than the music of a lap-harp, although champions of the latter hold their instruments to be richer in tone. Harps are particularly popular among celestials and elves, but humans also find their music pleasing. Bardic Music: By playing the harp, the musician can impose a -2 morale penalty on the listeners’ saves against charm effects. This is a supernatural, mindaffecting ability.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 25, 2008 19:27:28 GMT -5
Instrument Descriptions Part Two
Harpsichord: Though it features one or more keyboards, the harpsichord is essentially an enclosed harp. Pressing the keys causes the instrument’s internal mechanism to pluck the strings rather than strike them, as the clavichord does. The harpsichord’s music is louder than that of a clavichord, but the musician cannot control the volume. The harpsichord has a delicate sound esteemed by some as waterlike and derided by others as tinkly. Like the pipe organ, it is a stationary, indoor instrument. Thus, it is usually found only in great cities or in the homes of music-loving nobles. Bardic Music: A performer using the harpsichord can maintain only a single bardic music or virtuoso performance effect at a time. In lieu of a standard bardic music effect, however, the musician can impose a -1 circumstance penalty on saves against charm effects and a - 2 circumstance penalty on saves to resist the sleep spell for nonallied listeners. This is a supernatural, mind-affecting ability.
Hautbois: A softer-toned variant of the shawm (see below), the hautbois has extra fi ngerholes (a total of ten or more), keys, and sometimes a cupped bell at the end. The keys increase the number of possible fi ngering combinations, and the bell-shaped end gives the instrument a softer, more resonant sound than its cousin the shawm. A hautbois uses narrower reeds than does a shawm. Bardic Music: See shawm, below.
Horn, Natural: Originally these horns were, as the name indicates, actual horns taken from bulls or more exotic beasts. A natural horn consists of a narrow tip connected to a wider, circular orifi ce by a hollow, often curved shaft. The musician plays a natural horn by simply blowing into the small end. Unless the instrument has fi ngerholes in the shaft, however, it can produce only a single note. Natural horns come in all sizes, but those used by Medium-size creatures are typically 1-2 feet in length. Larger humanoids favor dire horns, which are made from the horns of dire creatures. Legend holds that minotaurs use horns made from the severed horns of their own kind who suffered defeat in one-on-one contests of honor. Most magic horns of this type are made from the horns of unnatural creatures, such as demons or devils. An old legend relates that several members of a noted bardic college once sought to make a magic horn out of one shed by the dreaded tarrasque. Though they succeeded, they quickly discovered that playing it attracted the attention of the creature itself, which promptly destroyed horn and bards alike. Natural horns are popular in primitive societies of all kinds. Hobgoblins and orcs in particular enjoy these instruments for their loud, stirring, martial sound. Bardic Music: When played to inspire courage, a natural horn raises the morale bonus on attacks and weapon damage from +1 to +2. The morale bonus on saves against charm effects, however, drops from +2 to +0.
Horn, Shell: This instrument is typically made from a conch shell. When winded, it gives off a distinctive groan that can vary only in volume, not in pitch. A shell horn makes an excellent signal device— particularly underwater, since sound travels much faster in water than in air. Some aquatic races such as merfolk and kuo-toa collect a variety of such shells in different sizes and play them in harmony, in sequence, or both. The music of these seashell orchestras can achieve a deep, haunting grandeur. Bardic Music: Shell horns produce the same effects as natural horns do (see above), but only when the listeners are aquatic or marine creatures.
Lap-Harp: A lap-harp typically has seventeen strings; there can be as few as twelve on a smaller instrument or as many as twenty-four on a larger one. Silver wires are the most common choice for strings, and other materials are occasionally used. Lap-harps are usually made of wood, though some artisans carve them from bone or ivory. Whatever their material, most lap-harps are highly polished and elaborately decorated with carvings. The finest rank as works of art in their own right, quite apart from their status as instruments. Most are between 2 and 3 feet in height and half as wide as they are tall. Second only to the lute in popularity, the lap-harp is especially favored by elven bards for its light, soothing sound and gentle, rippling notes. Elven lap-harps are often handed down from generation to generation, and many eventually acquire names and legends of their own. Any character with the bardic knowledge ability who examines an elven lap-harp automatically gains a +5 bonus on his or her bardic knowledge check to identify the instrument and its bearers. Bardic Music: One of the three prime bardic instruments, along with the lute and the fi ddle, the lap-harp enables a performer to maintain one bardic music or virtuoso’s performance effect while initiating another. Thus, a bard could maintain a fascinate effect on one listener while inspiring courage in another.
Lur: This large horn is about 8 feet long and weighs approximately 50 pounds. It is curved rather like a mammoth’s tusk and culminates in a flat, bronze disk some 3 feet across. An engraving of a monstrous face usually adorns this disk. Lurs come in pairs, each pair consisting of one right-handed and one left-handed instrument. The lur is a favorite instrument of those few giants who take music seriously—primarily cloud giants and storm giants. Since lurs produce music that is at once solemn, grand, and melancholy, they are often played on ceremonial occasions. Bardic Music: When played to inspire courage, the lur raises the morale bonuses on attack and weapon damage from +1 to +2 for all giant listeners allied with the performer.
Lute: This ancestor of the guitar has a pear-shaped bowl and a distinctive bent neck with frets for fingering. Between four and eight strings stretch between the base of the bowl and the top of the neck. Lutes vary between 30 and 36 inches in length, with the bowl taking up some two-thirds of that total. The musician either strums or plucks the strings to produce music. A highly versatile instrument because of its wide range of notes and inflection, the lute is accessible to the beginner but capable of great subtlety in the hands of a master. The deep bowl gives it a rich, full sound unlike that of any other stringed instrument. It is by far the most popular instrument with bards, especially half-elf and human ones. Bardic Music: The most popular of the three prime bardic instruments, the lute enables a performer to maintain one bardic music or virtuoso performance effect while initiating another. Thus, a bard could maintain inspire competence on one listener while using suggestion on another.
Lyre: A simpler ancestor of the lap-harp, a lyre typically has a body made out of a turtle shell, plus two curved arms and a crossbar to hold its four to six (or more rarely, eight) gut or sinew strings taut. To play the lyre, the musician holds it in one hand while strumming or plucking the strings with the other. The very simplicity of a lyre is its charm, since even a novice can strum one to credible effect. Because of this and the fact that they’re easy to make, lyres are popular among the sylvan fey (especially satyrs) and countryfolk in general. On occasion, however, a true master (such as the legendary Orpheus) adopts it as a signature instrument, producing astonishing effects. Bardic Music: While playing a lyre, the musician gains a +2 circumstance bonus on Perform checks for countersong, fascinate, or suggestion attempts when the listeners are fey.
Mandolin: Essentially a smaller version of the lute, a mandolin is usually between 20 inches and 2 feet long. It has a straighter neck than does the lute—the end at which the pegs secure the strings tilts back only slightly, if at all. The mandolin is unusual for the number of strings it holds—from four to six pairs (eight to twelve strings total) or even more. A mandolin is typically played with a pick, both to protect the musician’s fingers and because the strings are too close together to pluck accurately by hand. The mandolin has a sweeter sound than the lute and, because of its shorter strings, a higher pitch as well. Its great range of tone and expression have made it a favorite of Small bards, especially gnomes and halflings, who champion it as superior even to the lute. Bardic Music: See lute, above.
Organ, Pipe: Huge, heavy, and always stationary, the pipe organ is the most complex of all musical instruments. Each has hundreds of pipes, ranging from as short as 1 inch to as long as 32 feet. Most of these pipes are vertical metal tubes, but a few upright wooden shafts (typically square rather than circular) provide additional tonal depth. A great bellows pushes air through the pipes to produce the sound. A typical organ has two to five keyboards (one for the feet and one or more for the hands), each of which can be set to sound like a different instrument or combination of instruments. A panel of knobs (called stops) controls which pipes sound—pulling a knob into the “open” position allows the forced air from the bellows to enter a particular pipe or set of pipes when the correct key is depressed. To play a pipe organ, the performer sets the stops to direct air into the desired pipes, then depresses combinations of keys to generate the sound. The pipes must be continuously supplied with air throughout the performance. A musician playing a small pipe organ can ‘’feed” the instrument personally by working the bellows with a foot pump. Playing a large organ, however, usually requires at least one assistant to pump the bellows. The volume depends solely on the amount of air entering the pipes, so all notes sound equally loud or soft. The pipe organ represents the pinnacle of instrument- crafting technology. Its huge array of differentsized pipes gives it a truly incredible range of sound. The smaller the pipe, the higher-pitched the sound it produces and, conversely, the larger the pipe, the lower its pitch. Occasionally, an organ’s complement of pipes includes a few so large that their notes are beyond the lower limit of human hearing (although they can still help to create subsonic effects) or so tiny that only animals can hear their sounds. The keyboards permit the musician to create full, multinote chords by striking two or more keys simultaneously. Human societies in particular prize the sound of the pipe organ and its relatives, the clavichord and the harpsichord (see above). Because of their size, expense, and immobility, pipe organs are typically found only in cathedrals and palaces. Bardic Music: Because of its multiple keyboards, a pipe organ enables the musician to maintain up to three bardic music or virtuoso’s performance effects at once. For example, a performing bard could begin by inspiring courage. Then, with a successful Concentration check (DC 20 – musician’s Perform modifier), he could start a countersong while maintaining the inspire courage effect. Finally, with another successful Concentration check (DC 25 – musician’s Perform modifier), he could attempt to fascinate a character while still maintaining both of the other two effects. Failure at either Concentration check ends one earlier effect (the one that has been operating the longest) because of the performer’s distraction.
Pipes, Pan: A set of pan pipes is a series of hollow reeds or wooden tubes of varying lengths bound together in a row, from smallest to largest. To play them, the musician blows into the tops of the tubes, producing a sound much like that of several tiny wooden flutes. By moving the pipes from side to side, the piper can play different notes. Switching rapidly among notes creates the sweet, rippling effect for which the instrument is known. Simple yet evocative, pan pipes are favorites of satyrs and other sylvan fey. Humans and some elves also find their music pleasing. Bardic Music: Pan pipes grant the musician a +1 circumstance bonus on all Perform checks when the listeners are animals or fey.
Psaltery: The psaltery looks like a zither (see below) without its fretted fingerboard. It has only one set of strings, and its music is similar to that of a harp. A psaltery is played by plucking the strings with fingers, quills, or tiny hooks. Celestials are particularly fond of psaltery music. Humans and some elves also find it spiritually uplifting. Bardic Music: See zither, below.
Recorder-Flute: This ancient instrument originated as a simple, hollow tube that produced a single resonant note when air was blown through it. The addition of six to eight fingerholes enabled the musician to vary the tone, and an optional thumbhole near the upper opening made it possible to lower the notes by an octave. These alterations resulted in the instrument called the recorder-flute. Recorder-flutes come in many sizes, but the most common lengths are 12 inches (for Small musicians) and 18 inches (for Medium- size musicians). The fact that recorder-flutes are very simple to play and relatively easy to construct makes them popular among those who cannot afford or master more complex instruments. Some bards have found this very simplicity a benefit—they claim that recorder-flutes soothe an audience and enhance the performer’s ability to cast enchantment spells such as sleep, charm person, and the like successfully. Bardic Music: By playing a recorder-flute, the musician can impose a -1 circumstance penalty on listeners’ saving throws against charm and compulsion effects, including the bardic music effects fascinate and suggestion. This is a supernatural, mind-affecting ability.
Shawm: This double-reed precursor to the oboe looks a bit like an inverted scepter. Some shawms are highly decorated, which increases their resemblance to scepters even more. The typical shawm measures about 26-28 inches in length and has seven or eight fingerholes. Shawms were developed for open-air performances; thus their music tends to be very loud. Many aristocratic amateur musicians have adopted the shawm as their instrument of choice, since it is not only attractive to the eye, but also quite distinctive in sound. Treants adore the sound of any sort of shawm, though they are most partial to the crumhorn (see above) Bardic Music: A shawm bestows a certain prestige on anyone who can play it properly. Thus, a successful Perform check made in an aristocratic setting grants the performer a +4 circumstance bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, Disguise, and Gather Information checks made against listeners for 1d6 hours after the performance ends. It also shifts the attitude of such listeners by one category in the performer’s favor (for example, from indifferent to friendly—see the NPC Attitudes section in Chapter 5 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide). However, it also imposes a -4 circumstance penalty on Intimidate checks against those listeners for the same period. Creating the above effects is a supernatural, mindaffecting ability.
Tabor: This small instrument has a diameter of about 1 foot, a thickness of up to 2 feet, and a drumhead on each end. The tabor is light enough to wear on a bandoleer, belt, or sash draped around the drummers neck. Perfect for martial music and for setting marching rhythms, this instrument gets its distinctive rattle from the bands of gut strung along its lower head, which vibrate when the upper head is struck. Dwarves in particular enjoy the music of the tabor, with its strong martial sound. Not only do they play it for entertainment, they also use it to keep cadence while marching to war. Bardic Music: See drum, above.
Trumpet, Herald’s: In time, natural horns gave way to metal horns made of gold, silver, bronze, brass, and occasionally even more exotic metals. These metal trumpets quickly became popular in human and a few humanoid societies, primarily because they could be made to specific sizes and shapes. A herald’s trumpet looks like a straight tube made of brass or bronze that flares out into a bell shape at the end. It is among the loudest instruments available because its volume is limited only by the windpower of the performer. The typical herald’s trumpet is 3-5 feet long and depends on the musician’s tongue and breath to produce variations in tone. A more complex version has three or more fingerholes on the shaft. By covering these in different combinations, the musician can play different notes on the same horn. Since herald’s trumpets produce very clear, very loud notes, they are popular among humans and humanoid races for sending signals, raising alarms, and motivating troops. Musicians who play complex versions with fingerholes can produce exceptionally beautiful melodies. Devils are also very fond of trumpets—the louder and more discordant the sound, the better. Bardic Music: See horn, natural (above).
Water-Pipe: The water-pipe, or hookah, is widely known among some human cultures, but its properties as a musical instrument were developed at the behest of a bronze dragon who wanted an instrument he could play without assuming anthropomorphic form. Many other dragons have since adopted this unusual instrument as their own. Like a smoking hookah, the musical water-pipe works by filtering smoke through water held in a large, vaselike vessel. Instead of cooling the smoke for inhalation, however, the instrument version uses various special additions to enhance the sound of the bubbling water. Some water-pipes contain tiny crystal beads that tinkle against the sides of the vessel each time a puff of smoke stirs the water. Others have chimes or even tiny cymbals hung inside, which strike one another and ring softly whenever air moves within the vessel. Dragons have seemingly boundless enthusiasm for the water-pipe and its music. In fact, dragon musicians sometimes spend years contemplating possible improvements and refinements. Most humanoids find water-pipe music soothing, but not particularly interesting. Occasionally, however, a humanoid sorcerer or a kobold takes up the water-pipe to stress his or her affinity with dragons. Bardic Music: When played to inspire courage, the water-pipe raises the morale bonus on saving throws against fear effects from +2 to +4 for the performer’s allies. However, it also reduces the bonus on saving throws against charm effects from +2 to +0 for all such listeners. Because the music of this instrument is so soft, it affects only targets within 30 feet.
Whistle-Pipe: Neither a horn nor a flute, the whistlepipe is made of metal but played like a woodwind. It consists of a straight metal tube studded with fingerholes. The musician plays it by blowing directly through the length of the pipe while covering combinations of holes to produce different notes. A whistle-pipe is a small instrument, typically about 1 foot in length and only an inch in diameter. The whistle-pipe produces a high-pitched sound that some consider quite piercing. Gnomes particularly enjoy its music, however, and many gnome bards adopt it as their instrument of choice. Bardic Music: A whistle-pipe grants the musician a +5 circumstance bonus on Perform checks for countersong attempts.
Zither: A zither looks like a flattened lute with its neck snapped off and glued into a new position along the left side of the instrument. It has a flat soundbox—usually rectangular, though other shapes are known. The zither has two sets of gut or metal strings—one stretched across the soundbox and the other along the fretted fi ngerboard at the side. A zither is usually either held on the lap or laid flat on a table. To play it, the musician uses a pick mounted on a thumb ring to pluck a melody on the fingerboard strings while strumming the other set of strings (often with a quill or small stick) to provide background harmony. The zither is popular with humans and gnomes. Its light, lilting tones and the intricacy of melodies that its two sets of strings can produce make it a favorite of some bards as well. Bardic Music: When played to inspire courage, a zither boosts the morale bonus on saves to resist charm and fear effects from +2 to +3. However, it also reduces the morale bonus on weapon damage rolls from +1 to +0.
Once set in place, self-played instruments need no further intervention—they simply make music whenever the conditions are right. This makes them very good triggers for certain magical effects. When the condition that causes the instrument to play occurs, the music activates the spell effect. Magical versions of the preceding instruments might also have the ability to play themselves. These, however, are magically enhanced normal instruments, not classes of instruments specifi cally created for that purpose.
Chimes, Wind: Wind chimes can be made of wood, metal, or crystal. The simplest type consists of strips of the chosen material, all the same length, hanging parallel to one another from a support. A more complex type uses strips of different lengths, but they still hang parallel about one-half inch apart. The most sophisticated of all wind chimes, the chromatic chime, consists of actual tubular bells, each tuned to a different note and carefully arranged to create a harmonious scale. Individual chimes of any type can be as short as a few inches or as long as 8 feet. Wind chimes are hung in a place where the wind can easily reach them. When a strong enough breeze blows, the pieces knock together and chime. If all the pieces are the same length, the instrument can sound only one note, though its rhythm is random. Wind chimes with pieces of different lengths produce different notes, depending upon exactly which pairs of chimes come into contact. The most common type of magic wind chimes grants a +1 morale bonus on listeners’ saving throws against charm and fear effects for as long as it sounds.
Harp, Aeolian: Although it looks more like a dulcimer than a harp, the aeolian harp (sometimes called a wind harp) sounds very similar to a true harp. A typical Aeolian harp is 3 feet long but only about 5 inches wide and 2 inches thick. Its ten to twelve strings are all the same length, though they vary in thickness. An aeolian harp is usually hung outdoors. When the wind blows over it, the changing air pressure causes one or more of the strings to quiver, starting with the thinnest and lightest. This produces a tone just as though a musician had plucked the string. The more notes sound. The music of the harp continues for as long as the wind does. Some find the music of an aeolian harp eerie; others consider it ethereal. It is popular among elves and humans. Many a bard has created a magic aeolian harp that produces a countersong effect, which lasts for as long as the music does. Such an instrument functions as a bard with the same bard level and the same Perform skill modifier as its creator had when he made it.
Stones, Wind: Naturally occurring stones sometimes have holes, grooves, or ridges through which the wind whistles or moans when it blows strongly enough from the right direction. It was only a matter of time before intelligent creatures decided to imitate and, if possible, improve upon nature. “Wind stone” is a general term for the result of such experimentation—a rock outcropping that has been bored, altered, or placed in such a way as to create music when the wind blows. Each wind stone has a single distinctive whisper, wail, or groan that lasts from a few seconds to several minutes. The sound of a wind stone is often disquieting to human or halfilng listeners, though dwarves and gnomes fi nd it pleasant enough. Other races tend to either ignore these sounds altogether or imagine them to be the voices of invisible creatures that must be appeased with periodic sacrifices. Occasionally, a bard creates a magic wind stone that imposes a -4 morale penalty on listeners’ saving throws against fear effects while it sounds and for 1d6 minutes thereafter. The creator is immune to this effect.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 26, 2008 13:23:47 GMT -5
Babbling Wheel: An elaborately carved wooden drum set at one end of a intricately engraved rod made of the same material, the babbling wheel activates when the wielder spins the drum around the handle. The irregular noise emitted is a sonic, mind-affecting compulsion similar to an allip’s babble. All sane creatures within 30 feet of the babbling wheel must succeed on a Will save (DC 11) or be affected as though by a hypnotism spell for 2d4 rounds. Opponents who successfully save cannot be affected by the same babbling wheel for one day. Caster Level: 1st; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, hypnotism; Market Price: 2,000 gp.
Cloaker Flute: This woodwind instrument is crafted to resemble the throat of a living creature. Rumor has it that a cloaker taught an evil bard how to make the first one. When played by a creature who has the Perform (flute) skill, a cloaker flute produces one of four effects (the user chooses the effect each time). Cloakers are immune to these sonic, mind-affecting attacks. Unless noted otherwise, creatures that successfully save against these effects cannot be affected by the same cloaker flute for one day. All saving throw DCs are equal to 10 + the user’s ranks in Perform. Fear: All those within a 30-foot spread must succeed on a Will save or flee in terror for 2 rounds. Nausea: Everyone in a 30-foot cone must succeed on a Fortitude save or be overcome by nausea and weakness. Affected characters fall to the ground and are unable to take any actions, including defending themselves, for 1d4+1 rounds. Stupor: A single creature within 30 feet of the cloaker flute must succeed on a Fortitude save or be affected as though by a hold person spell for 5 rounds. Even after a successful save, the creature remains vulnerable if the cloaker flute produces this effect again. Unnerve: All within an 80-foot spread automatically take a –2 morale penalty on attack and damage rolls. Those forced to hear the sound for more than 6 consecutive rounds must succeed on a Will save or enter a trance, unable to attack or defend themselves until the sound stops. Even after a successful save, they must repeat the save in each round thereafter that the sound continues. Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, cause fear, hold person, stinking cloud; Market Price: 27,225 gp. Weight: 3 lb.
Grig Fiddle: Grigs are sprites known for lively fiddle music. When playing their fiddles, grigs force any nonsprite within 30 feet of the instrument to succeed on a Will save (DC 15) or be affected as though by Otto’s irresistible dance as long as the playing continues. This is a sonic effect. Anyone capable of playing the instrument (which is of Diminutive size) can produce the effect. Caster Level: 3rd; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, Otto’s irresistible dance, creator must be a grig; Market Price: 14,400 gp. Weight: —.
Master Fiddle: Sized for a Tiny creature, this exceptional fiddle produces beautiful music when played. In the hands of a grig, however, it replaces the normal effects of a grig fiddle with the bardic music abilities inspire courage, countersong, fascinate, suggestion, or inspire greatness as if it were being played by a 9th-level bard. See the bard class features in Chapter 3 of the Player’s Handbook for descriptions of bardic music. Caster Level: 9th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, creator must be a bard or a grig; Market Price: 18,000 gp. Weight: —.
Satyr Pipes: Any creature with the appropriate Perform (pan pipes) skill can play these beautiful pan pipes. In the hands of a satyr, however, the pipes can produce the performer’s choice of three magical effects. When the pipes are played, all creatures within a 60-foot spread (except satyrs) must succeed on a Will save (DC 14) or be affected by charm person, sleep, or fear, as the spells cast by a 10th-level sorcerer (the satyr chooses the tune and its effect). A creature that successfully saves against any of the pipes’ effects cannot be affected by the same set of pipes again for one day. A satyr often uses its pipes to charm and seduce especially comely women or to put a party of adventurers to sleep and then steal their valuables. Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, creator must be a satyr; Market Price: 3,000 gp. Weight: 3 lb.
From Savage Species
Sometimes you've got to toss the dice, and of that come what may. If seven is your number, there are seven shades of grey.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 26, 2008 18:39:49 GMT -5
Dragonspectre Flute The half-shadow dragon members of the Jaezred Chaulssin created these flutes to aid them in tapping into their inner reserves of shadow magic. The flutes allow them to summon forth the essence of their dragon ancestors in the form of a dragon-shaped shadow mass. Lore: Characters can gain the following pieces of information about dragonspectre flutes by making Knowledge (arcana) checks. DC 25: The Jaezred Chaulssin created these flutes to summon their inner dragon. Shadow creatures and casters who use the Shadow Weave can be found in possession of these instruments. DC 30: Those who play the flute must use some of their own life force to channel its powers. Description: This elegant yet simple flute is carved from a single piece of ebony wood. Activation: The user must spend 1 full round playing the flute. At the end of that round, she must sacrifice 6 hit points. These hit points cannot be healed magically; only time will repair the damage to the wielder’s spirit. The wielder can use the flute up to three times per day— though this can prove draining on her life force, since each time the instrument is used, there is a 5% chance that the hit point loss is permanent. Effect: After the flute is played, it summons a spectral dragon (as the spell; see page 118). The player of the flute can concentrate on the dragon for up to 13 rounds. Only shadow creatures and Shadow Weave casters can use dragonspectre flutes. Strong necromancy; CL 13th; Craft Wondrous Item, spectral dragon; Price 75,000 gp; Cost 37,500 gp + 3,000 XP; Weight 2 lb.
From Dragons of Faerun
Horn of Dragons This horn bears intricate carvings of dragons in flight. When blown (a full-round action), the horn summons an adult dragon 1 round later, to a location up to 100 feet away. The dragon remains for 1 hour and serves the user of the horn to the best of its ability. At the end of the duration, or if the dragon is slain or dispelled, the dragon disappears. The type of dragon depends on the user’s alignment (see the table below). The horn may be blown once per month. Strong conjuration; CL: 17th; Craft Wondrous Item, summon monster IX; Price 75,000 gp.
Caveharp: This small harp is a masterwork instrument that grants the user a +2 circumstance bonus on Perform checks made while playing it. Its sound carries for 1d6 miles down unobstructed tunnel passages, so it can both entertain and serve as a long-distance communication device.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 26, 2008 19:01:01 GMT -5
Drums of Marching This pair of drums includes a harness that allows them to be strapped to the front of a humanoid creature. A character who plays these drums during overland movement and succeeds on a DC 15 Perform (percussion instruments) check grants those within 120 feet a +4 bonus on the Constitution check to avoid nonlethal damage from a forced march (see page 164 of the Player’s Handbook). Using the drums doesn’t affect the performer’s speed. Faint transmutation; CL 1st; Craft Wondrous Item, longstrider; Price 1,000 gp.
Horn of Plenty This horn can be blown once per week to create a heroes’ feast, as the spell, for twelve participants. Strong conjuration; CL 12th; Craft Wondrous Item, heroes’ feast; Price 12,960 gp.
Horn, Rallying Twice per day, this horn can be sounded in an attempt to rally troops (see page 73). Anyone wielding one of these horns gets a +10 bonus on any rally check he attempts. Moderate enchantment; CL 10th; Craft Wondrous Item, remove fear; Price 3,600 gp.
Horn of the Rider This curved horn bears engravings of armed men on horseback, charging into battle. Three times per day, the user can attempt a DC 15 Perform (wind instruments) check to create one or more riders made of force energy. If the check fails, no riders are created, but it still counts as one of the horn’s daily uses. A lesser horn of the rider summons a single rider of force (as the spiritual charger spell; see page 128). Each rider has a +5 attack bonus and deals 2d8+2 points of damage. A greater horn of the rider summons three horsemen (as the spiritual cavalry spell; see page 127). Each rider has a +11 attack bonus and deals 2d8+4 points of damage. Moderate evocation (lesser) or strong evocation (greater); CL 6th (lesser) or 12th (greater); Craft Wondrous Item, spiritual cavalry (greater) or spiritual charger (lesser); Price 18,000 gp (lesser) or 60,000 gp (greater).
From Heroes of Battle
Horn of Volume This horn lets the user be heard up to twice as far as she normally would be when speaking, singing, or using an ability that affects creatures that can hear the user. When using the skirmish or mass battle rules, the bearer can command creatures not in line of sight up to 12 squares away, instead of the normal 6. This benefit does not increase the range of Commander Effects. Faint illusion; CL 3rd; Craft Wondrous Item, ghost sound; Price 1,000 gp.
From Miniatures Handbook
Biwa of Calm The biwa is a stringed instrument similar to a lute. When played, the clear and dulcet tones of the instrument produce an air of dignified calm if the performer can succeed at a Perform check (DC 15). This has the effect of a calm emotions spell within a 30-foot radius. The effect lasts as long as the player continues playing: He must make one Perform check each minute. On a die roll of a natural 1, the music is exceptionally poor and unharmonious, and the calming effect is immediately broken for the remainder of the encounter. The instrument cannot be used effectively as long as hostile creatures are present who previously heard the musician’s musical butchery. Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, calm emotions, Perform skill; Market Price: 7,500 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Biwa of Kakita This fine plucked lute confers a +2 enhancement bonus on its player’s Perform checks, in addition to the +2 circumstance bonus conveyed by a masterwork musical instrument. Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, creator must have 5 ranks of the Perform skill; Market Price: 4,000 gp; Weight: 3 lb.
Drums of Thunder This magic item is a small pair of drums, adorned with tassels and a harness to fasten it to the waist. The drums have several uses requiring different numbers of charges. Only one use of the drums can be called on per round. When beat upon, they can cause the wearer to fly (one charge), summon a cloud chariot (two charges), create fear (2 charges), control weather (1 charge), or cast a lightning bolt (2 charges). The save DC for the fear and lightning bolt effects is 16. The drums have 20 charges when created. Caster Level: 20th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, cloud chariot, control weather, fear, fly, lightning bolt; Market Price: 36,750 gp; Weight: 5 lb.
Gong of Dispelling This magic item is a large gong, 3 feet in diameter. When hung from a frame and struck, the gong has the effects of dispel evil and dispel magic within a 30-foot radius. Each time the gong is sounded, 1 charge is used. The gong has 50 charges when created. Caster Level: 15th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, dispel evil, dispel magic; Market Price: 84,375 gp; Weight: 10 lb.
From Oriental Adventures
Chime of Suppression A chime of suppression helps you gain control of an unruly vestige. Lore: During the time of Syfal. binders created and used these items to conceal the vestiges they bound while they were hunted by the Seropaeneans. (Knowledge [religion] DC 25). Description: This triangular brass instrument is inscribed with strange runes and feels unusually light. One end features a hinged handle made of rosewood and a chain, also brass, that ends in a metal striker. The runes are the confounding seals of the vestiges, reinforced with additional markings that suggest control and power. When struck, the instrument produces an unsettling, echoing chime that can be heard only by the wielder. Prerequisite: This item functions only if the wielder is bound to a vestige. Activation: As a standard action, you touch the striker to the chime. You can use a chime three times per day, and its effects last for 1 minute. You can only target a vestige within yourself with a chime of suppression. Effect: A chime of suppression temporarily stifles one of your bound vestiges (chosen by you at the lime of use), forcing its will into the dark corners of your mind. For the duration of the effect, you lose access to all the abilities granted by the spirit, but it has no influence over you, and you do not show its sign. Aura/Caster Level: Moderate abjuration. CL 7th. Construction: Craft Wondrous Item, soul binding ability, dismissal, 1,900 gp, 152 XP, 2 days. Weight: 1/2 lb. Price: 3,800 gp.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 26, 2008 22:53:33 GMT -5
Bow of Songs Made from fine wood by elven hands, this +2 shortbow blends music with every shot to deadly effect. As a move-equivalent action that does not provoke an attack of opportunity, the wielder may give up one daily use of bardic music to add his Charisma bonus to attack and damage rolls on the next single attack made with the bow of songs. Caster Level: 8th; Prerequisites: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, creator must be elven, creator must have bardic music ability, sculpt sound; Market Price: 32,330 gp; Cost to Create: 16,330 gp + 1,280 XP.
Songblade Every move made with this +1 rapier fills the air with sweet sounds. While holding songblade unsheathed, the sword’s wielder gains a +2 enhancement bonus on Perform checks. A bard wielding the songblade may use his bardic music abilities one additional time per day. The blade is scored in a beautiful, intricate pattern, and air moving across this magic etching generates the music of the songblade. Thus, the blade’s musical qualities do not function underwater, in a vacuum, or in other environments where air cannot freely pass over the blade. Caster Level: 8th; Prerequisites: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, creator must have the bardic music ability, sculpt sound; Market Price: 6,400 gp; Cost to Create: 3,360 gp + 243 XP.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 26, 2008 23:15:39 GMT -5
Ring of Research A ring of research is a simple gold or silver ring set with a colored gemstone. When worn, it enables the wearer to quickly and unerringly find the right page in the right book or scroll to answer any question, assuming the wearer has access to a library that actually contains the answer. The practical effect of this power is to double the circumstance bonus on Knowledge checks given by access to a library. (If no such bonus is specified, assume the ring of research gives a +2 bonus). Faint divination; CL 5th; Forge Ring, legend lore; Price 2,500 gp; Weight —.
From Waterdeep: City of Splendors
Ring of Lore A creature wearing this ring can cast legend lore and stone tell each once a tenday with a command word, and may find magical traps created through glyphs, runes, sigils, and symbols with a successful Search check, just as a rogue does. Caster Level: 12th; Prerequisites: Forge Ring, legend lore, stone tell, find traps; Market Price: 23,250 gp; Cost to Create: 14,750 gp + 680 XP.
From Faiths and Pantheons
Ring of Wordtwisting This ring grants a +2 insight bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, and Sense Motive checks. If worn by someone of orc blood, the ring grants a +4 insight bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, and Sense Motive checks, and the wielder acts as if the subject of a tongues spell cast by a 5th-level wizard. Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Forge Ring, tongues; Market Price: 23,508 gp.
From Savage Species
Sometimes you've got to toss the dice, and of that come what may. If seven is your number, there are seven shades of grey.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 27, 2008 21:13:37 GMT -5
Rod of Tuning The rod of tuning is a powerful magic device that serves to ward against outsiders in addition to its mundane function. Bards, clerics of Milil, and others who rely on song value these items for their ability to sound any note desired by the wielder. To do so, the wielder need only strike the rod lightly against any hard surface (or with a hard object) to cause a pure, clear note to sound forth from the rod. This note is audible to anyone within 120 feet (subject to intervening barriers). In addition, the rod functions as a focus for any song-based or sonic spell. No other focus is necessary to cast such spells. The rod’s wielder also has access to more powerful magic as well. Once per day, the rod of tuning can sound forth a single note that is anathema to outsiders. This note acts as a banishment spell against up to 28 HD of creatures. This note affects any outsiders within 30 feet of the wielder. Treat the note as having three aspects the creature hates, fears, or otherwise opposes, granting the wielder a +3 on his level check to overcome the creatures’ spell resistance, if any, and requiring each of the creatures to make a Will save (DC 26). In addition, once per day the rod can sound forth a note that acts as a holy word spell (DC 20). This function affects any creatures of evil alignment within 30 feet of the wielder. These powers are song-based magical effects and may be countered by a bard’s countersong ability or any magic that prevents such effects (silence, for example). Caster Level: 14th; Prerequisites: Craft Rod, banishment, holy word; Market Price: 84,400 gp.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 29, 2008 20:05:39 GMT -5
[glow=red,2,300]Bardic and Bardic Music Feats Part I[/glow]
Words of Creation [Exalted] You have learned a few of the words that were spoken to create the world. Prerequisites: Int 15, Cha 15, base Will save bonus +5. Benefit: You can use the Words of Creation to enhance bardic music, to help cast good spells and create good magic items, and to enhance the process of creation (see Words of Creation in Chapter 2). Normal: A nonevil creature that tries to utter the Words of Creation without learning them properly is affected as by a feeblemind spell, while an evil character is struck dead. Fortunately, it is impossible to make someone speak the Words of Creation against his will, because their pronunciation is so exacting.
From Book of Exalted Deeds
Doomspeak [Bardic] You can demoralize an enemy with horrible condemnations and grim portents of impending doom. Prerequisites: Bardic music class feature, Intimidate 8 ranks, Perform 8 ranks. Benefit: You can spend one of your bardic music uses to utter a string of crass and appalling epithets and curses at one enemy within 120 feet. The intended target must be able to hear and comprehend your damning remarks. A target that fails a Will save (DC 10 + your character level + your Cha modifier) is cursed with a –10 penalty on attack rolls, saves, ability checks, and skill checks for 1 round. This is a supernatural, necromantic effect.
From Champions of Ruin
From Smite to Song You can channel your destructive holy energy into powerful song magic for the glory of Milil. Prerequisites: Perform (any) 3 ranks, member of the Harmonious Order (see page 101). Benefit: You can spend a smite evil attempt to duplicate the effects of the inspire courage bardic music ability (see page 29 of the Player’s Handbook), Your effective bard level (for the purpose of determining the value of the bonuses granted) is equal to your paladin level Add Perform to your list of paladin class skills.
Initiate of Milil [Initiate] You have been initiated into the greatest secrets of Milil’s church. Prerequisites: Cleric or paladin 4th, Perform (any) 3 ranks, patron deity Milil. Benefit: Your bard, cleric, and paladin levels stack for the purpose of determining which kinds of bardic music you can use (but not any other effect related to bardic music). You must still meet the Perform skill rank requirement to use various kinds of bardic music. In addition, you add the following spells to your cleric or paladin spell list. 1st—harmony. 2nd—dispel silence (see page 54). 3rd—reveille.
From Champions of Valor
Jester's Magic You are a skilled master of magical jests, capable of inciting audiences to laughter or lulling them to sleep. Prerequisites: Perform (acting) 8 ranks, ability to cast arcane spells. Benefit: Choose either the bardic jester tradition or the jester mage tradition. You gain +1 caster level when casting a spell from the list below for your tradition. The bardic tradition of jester’s magic includes the following bard spells at the appropriate levels: 0—prestidigitation; 1st—remove fear, hypnotism, Tasha’s hideous laughter; 2nd— calm emotions, enthrall; 3rd—confusion, glibness; 4th—modify memory; 5th—mass suggestion; 6th—Otto’s irresistible dance. The mage tradition of jester’s magic includes the following sorcerer/wizard spells at the appropriate levels: 0— prestidigitation; 1st—grease, hypnotism; 2nd—Tasha’s hideous laughter, rope trick; 3rd—deep slumber, suggestion; 4th— confusion; 5th—seeming; 6th—mass suggestion; 7th—project image; 8th—Otto’s irresistible dance; 9th—weird.
Favored In Guild Fringe Benefit (Church of Oghma) Once per character level you can take 20 on a bardic knowledge check or a Knowledge check (you must have at least 1 rank in the Knowledge skill in question to use this ability). You must spend 1 hour in research or prayer in a temple devoted to Oghma to use this ability.
Favored In Guild Fringe Benefit (New Olamn) You can substitute a Perform check in place of a Diplomacy check or Gather Information check by offering your service for free. In addition, you gain twice the normal income when you use Perform checks to earn money.
From Waterdeep: City of Splendors
Favored Benefits (Performers Guilds) In any city wherein the guild maintains a guildhouse, the member can substitute Perform or Profession check for a Diplomacy or Gather Information check by offering her services for free. In addition, she earns twice the normal income when using her Perform or Profession skill to earn money These uses of Perform or Profession must match those with which the character has earned guild member ship. For example, a character who joined the guild as an actor cannot apply this benefit to Profession (blacksmith) checks.
Devoted Performer You have foregone the pursuit of frivolous musical talents, instead entering religious training in service of honor and justice. Prerequisite: Bardic music, smite evil. Benefit: If you have levels in paladin and bard, those levels stack for the purpose of determining the bonus damage dealt by your smite evil ability and determining the number of times per day that you can use your bardic music. This feat does not allow additional daily uses of smite evil or bardic music abilities beyond what your class levels would normally allow. In addition, you can multiclass freely between the paladin and bard classes and may even gain additional bard levels regardless of your lawful alignment. You must still remain lawful good in order to retain your paladin abilities and take paladin levels. You still face the normal XP penalties for having multiple classes more than one level apart.
Disguise Spell You can cast spells without observers noticing. Prerequisite: Perform (any) 9 ranks, bardic music. Benefit: You can cast spells unobtrusively, mingling verbal and somatic components into your performances. To disguise a spell, make a Perform check as part of the action used to cast the spell. Onlookers must match or exceed your check result with a Spot check to detect that you’re casting a spell (your performance is obvious to everyone in the vicinity, but the fact that you are casting a spell isn’t). Unless the spell visibly emanates from you, or observers have some other means of determining its source, they don’t know where the effect came from. A disguised spell can’t be identified with a Spellcraft check, even by someone who realizes you’re casting a spell. The act of casting still provokes attacks of opportunity as normal.
Extra Music You can use your bardic music more often than you otherwise could. Prerequisite: Bardic music. Benefit: You can use your bardic music four extra times per day. Normal: Bards without the Extra Music feat can use bardic music once per day per bard level. Special: You can gain this feat multiple times. Its effects stack.
Green Ear Your bardic music can affect plant creatures. Prerequisite: Perform (any) 10 ranks, bardic music. Benefit: You can alter any of your mind-affecting bardic music abilities (or similar Perform-based abilities from other classes) so that they influence only plant creatures instead of other creatures. However, plants receive a +5 bonus on Will saves against any of these effects. Normal: Plants are normally immune to all mindaffecting spells and abilities.
Lingering Song Your inspirational bardic music stays with the listeners long after the last note has died away. Prerequisite: Bardic music. Benefit: If you use bardic music to inspire courage, inspire greatness, or inspire heroics, the effect lasts for 1 minute after an inspired ally stops hearing you play. Normal: Inspire courage, inspire greatness, and inspire heroics last as long as an ally hears the bard sing plus an additional 5 rounds thereafter.
Obscure Lore You are a treasure trove of little-known information. Prerequisite: Bardic knowledge or lore class feature. Benefit: You gain a +4 insight bonus on checks using your bardic knowledge or lore class feature.
Subsonics Your music can affect even those who do not consciously hear it. Prerequisite: Perform (any) 10 ranks, bardic music. Benefit: You can produce music or poetics so subtly that opponents do not notice it, yet your allies still gain all the usual benefits from your bardic music. Similarly, you can affect opponents within range with your music, but unless they can see you performing or have some other means of discovering it, they cannot determine the source of the effect.
Versatile Performer You are skilled at many kinds of performances. Prerequisite: Perform (any) 5 ranks. Benefit: Pick a number of Perform categories equal to your Intelligence bonus (minimum 1). For the purpose of making Perform checks, you are treated as having a number of ranks in those skills equal to the highest number of ranks you have in any Perform category. You cannot change these categories once you have picked them, but your score in them automatically increases if you later add additional ranks in your highest-ranked Perform category. You gain new categories of your choice if your Intelligence bonus permanently increases. In addition, you gain a +2 bonus on a combined Perform check when using two or more forms of performance at the same time, such as a bard strumming a lyre while singing. In such cases, add the bonus to the higher of your two Perform skill modifiers.
Chant of Fortitude [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music to sustain your allies, allowing them to function even after receiving wounds that would cause others to falter. Prerequisites: Bardic music, Concentration 9 ranks, Perform 9 ranks. Benefit: You can expend one daily use of your bardic music ability as an immediate action to provide all allies (including yourself) the benefit of the Diehard feat (see page 93 of the Player’s Handbook) until the end of your next turn. You can use this feat multiple times consecutively to keep yourself and your allies conscious. Even while this feat is active, you or your allies die if reduced to –10 hit points or lower. This feat does not function in an area of magical silence.
Ironskin Chant [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music to enable yourself to ignore minor injuries. Prerequisites: Bardic music, Concentration 12 ranks, Perform 12 ranks. Benefit: As a swift action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity, you can expend one daily use of your bardic music ability to provide damage reduction of 5/– to yourself or to one ally within 30 feet who can hear you until the start of your next turn. This feat does not function in an area of magical silence.
Lyric Spell [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music into your magic, allowing you to expend uses of your bardic music ability to cast spells. Prerequisites: Bardic music, Perform 9 ranks, ability to spontaneously cast 2nd-level arcane spells. Benefit: You can expend daily uses of your bardic music to cast any arcane spell that you know and can cast spontaneously. You must still use an action to cast the spell (following the normal rules for casting time), but using the Lyric Spell feat counts as part of the spellcasting action. Casting a spell requires one use of your bardic music ability, plus one additional use per level of the spell. For example, casting a 3rd-level spell requires four daily uses of your bardic music ability. Special: Any spell that you cast using the Lyric Spell feat gains your instrument as an additional arcane focus, if you use one. You cannot use Lyric Spell to cast a spell improved by the Silent Spell metamagic feat.
Group Inspiration [Epic] Your bardic powers can inspire more allies than normal. Prerequisites: Perform 30 ranks, bardic music. Benefit: The number of allies you can affect with your inspire competence, inspire greatness, or inspire heroics ability doubles. When inspiring competence in multiple allies, you can choose different skills to inspire for different allies.
From Complete Adventurer
Captivating Melody You can expend some of your musical abilities to increase the potency of your enchantment or illusion spells. Prerequisites: Bardic music, ability to cast arcane spells. Benefit: As a swift action before casting a spell, you can attempt a Perform check (DC 15 + the level of the spell you intend to cast). If you succeed, you can sacrifice one of your daily uses of bardic music to increase the save DC of the next enchantment or illusion spell you cast in the same round by 2. If the Perform check fails, you still lose one daily use of bardic music but gain no benefit. You can apply Captivating Melody only to spells cast by the same class that grants you your bardic music ability. For instance, if you are a multiclass bard/wizard, you can apply this feat to bard spells, but not to spells you cast as a wizard.
Melodic Casting You can weave your music and magic together into a single perfect voice. Prerequisites: Perform 4 ranks, Spellcraft 4 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: Whenever a Concentration check would be required to cast a spell or use a spell-like ability (such as when you cast defensively or are distracted or injured while casting), you can make a Perform check instead. In addition, you can cast spells and activate magic items by command word or spell completion while using a bardic music ability. Bardic music abilities that require concentration still take a standard action to perform. Normal: A bard can’t cast spells or activate magic items by command word or spell completion while using bardic music.
From Complete Mage
Chant of the Long Road [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music to encourage your allies to pick up the pace on a long walk. Prerequisite: Bardic music, Perform 6 ranks. Benefit: As a standard action, you can expend one daily use of your bardic music ability to allow yourself and all allies within 60 feet to avoid taking nonlethal damage for hustling (PH 164). This requires 1 minute of performance, and the effect lasts for 1 hour.
Chord of Distraction [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music to make a sudden sound or gesture that momentarily distracts an opponent. Prerequisite: Bardic music, Perform 9 ranks. Benefit: As an immediate action, you can expend three daily uses of your bardic music ability to distract an opponent. The target must be within 30 feet of you and able to hear or see you. Make a Perform check, opposed by the target’s Sense Motive check (modified as if you were using Bluff to feint in combat). If you succeed, that opponent is rendered flat-footed against an ally of your choice. The effect lasts until that opponent is attacked or until the start of your next turn, whichever comes first.
Epic of the Lost King [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music to reinvigorate your allies. Prerequisite: Bardic music, Perform 6 ranks. Benefit: As a move action, you can expend one daily use of your bardic music ability to remove fatigue from up to three allies (including yourself) within 30 feet. If you spend three daily uses of bardic music, you can remove exhaustion from your allies instead.
Sound of Silence [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music to deafen your foes. Prerequisite: Bardic music, Perform 9 ranks. Benefit: As a standard action, you can expend two daily uses of your bardic music ability to deafen a single target for 3 rounds. A successful Will save (using your Perform check result as the DC) negates the effect. The target must be within 30 feet of you and be able to hear you.
Warning Shout [Bardic Music] The force of your performance is so potent that it can guide an ally to safety. Prerequisite: Bardic music, Perform 9 ranks, evasion. Benefit: As an immediate action, you can expend two daily uses of your bardic music ability to grant a single ally (other than yourself) a +5 morale bonus on her next Reflex save and evasion (see the monk class feature, PH 41). The ally must be within 30 feet of you and able to see or hear you. The effect lasts until the target rolls a Reflex save or until the start of your turn, whichever comes first.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 29, 2008 20:06:28 GMT -5
[glow=red,2,300]Bardic and Bardic Music Feats Part II[/glow]
Irresistable Performance [Diety] The deity’s performances have power over creatures far beyond what mortal bards can accomplish. Prerequisites: Perform 40 ranks. Benefit: When the deity sings, plays a musical instrument, tells jokes, recites verse, or engages in any other type of performance as a full-round action, the deity has the option to create any of the following effects. The deity can use this ability a number of times per day equal to its divine rank. It affects up to one creature per divine rank within a burst with a radius of 10 feet per divine rank, centered on the deity. • Affected creatures become unable to take actions; instead, they dance, observe the performance with rapt attention, laugh, or applaud at the deity’s option. The affected creatures also suffer a –4 penalty to Armor Class, cannot succeed at Reflex saves (except on a roll of 20), and cannot use shields. Creatures can resist this mind effect with a successful Will save (DC 10 + the deity’s Charisma modifier + the deity’s divine rank). The effects last for as long as the deity performs and for up to 1 round per divine rank thereafter. • Affected creatures become blissfully calm. They are immune to fear and compulsion effects except for those created by deities of higher rank than the performing deity and any such effects already operating on affected creatures are countered and dispelled. This ability also counters and dispels rage effects except for those created by deities of higher rank than the performing deity. Immunity to fear and compulsion last for as long as the deity performs and for up to 1 round per divine rank thereafter. • Affected creatures fall asleep. This works like the sleep spell, except that any living creature can be affected. Creatures can resist this mind effect with Will saves (DC 10 + the deity’s Charisma modifier + the deity’s divine rank). Affected creatures sleep for up to 1 hour per divine rank or until awakened. The deity can end the effect at will. • Affected creatures are so deeply moved that they simply die. Only living creatures with Hit Dice equal to or less than the deity’s divine rank are affected. Creatures can resist the effect with Fortitude saves (DC 10 + the deity’s Charisma modifier + the deity’s divine rank). Once a creature makes a successful save against one of the deity’s performances, the creature cannot be affected again for one day. Note: Not all deities with this ability can create all the mentioned effects, as specified in the deity descriptions. Suggested Portfolio Elements: Art, bards, beauty, dance, love, music, poetry.
From Dieties and Demigods
Dragonsong [General] Your song or poetics echo the power of the dragonsong, an ancient style of vocal performance created by dragons in the distant past. Prerequisites: Cha 13, Knowledge (arcana) 4 ranks, Perform 6 ranks, Speak Language (Draconic). Benefit: You gain a +2 bonus on Perform checks involving song, poetics, or any other verbal or spoken form of performance. In addition, the DC of any saving throw required by mindaffecting effects based on your song or poetics (such as bardic music) is increased by +2.
Apprentice A character with this feat has apprenticed himself to a master in order to speed his learning and bolster his skills. This feat must be taken at 1st level. Once you start gaining experience, your methods of learning are already too ingrained for you to be able to gain the benefits of a mentor-apprentice relationship. Prerequisite: 1st level only. Benefits: When you select this feat, you gain all the benefits described in this section for being an apprentice.
From Dungeon Masters Guide II
Deafening Song [Epic] Your bardic music deafens those nearby. Prerequisites: Perform 24 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: You can use song or poetics to temporarily deafen all enemies within a 30-foot spread from you. A successful Fortitude save (DC 10 + 1/2 your class level + your Charisma modifier) negates the effect. The deafening effect lasts for as long as you continue the deafening song. You can choose to exclude any characters from this effect (usually your allies). You may sing, play, or recite a deafening song while taking other mundane actions, but not magical ones (see the bard’s inspire courage ability for more details). You may keep up the deafening song for a maximum of 10 rounds. Using the deafening song counts as one of your uses of song or poetics for the day.
Epic Inspiration [Epic] Your bardic music provides greater inspiration than normally possible. Prerequisites: Cha 25, Perform 30 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: All bonuses granted by your bardic music inspiration abilities are doubled. For example, your inspire courage ability now grants a +4 morale bonus on saving throws against charm and fear effects and a +2 morale bonus on attack and damage rolls; your inspire competence now grants a +4 competence bonus on skill checks; and your inspire greatness ability now grants +4d10 Hit Dice, a +4 competence bonus on attacks, and a +2 competence bonus on Fortitude saves. Special: A character can gain this feat multiple times. Its effects stack. Remember that two doublings equals a tripling, and so forth.
Epic Reputation [Epic] Your reputation provides great bonuses on interactions with others. Benefit: You gain a +4 bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, Gather Information, Intimidate, and Perform checks.
Hindering Song [Epic] Your bardic music interferes with opposing spellcasters. Prerequisite: Deafening Song, Perform 27 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: You can use song or poetics to hinder enemy spellcasters within a 30-foot spread from you. To successfully cast a spell within this area, a spellcaster must make a Concentration check as if she were casting defensively, and all such checks have a penalty equal to half your level. You can choose to exclude any characters from this effect (usually your allies). You may sing, play, or recite a hindering song while taking other mundane actions, but not magical ones (see the bard’s inspire courage ability for more details). You may keep up the hindering song for a maximum of 10 rounds. Using the hindering song counts as one of your uses of song or poetics for the day.
Inspire Excellence [Epic] You can improve the abilities of your comrades through your performance. Prerequisite: Perform 30 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: You can use song or poetics to grant a bonus to one ability score to your allies. To be affected, an ally must hear the bard sing for 1 full round. The effect lasts as long as the bard sings and for 5 rounds after the bard stops singing (or 5 rounds after the ally can no longer hear the bard). While singing, the bard can fight but cannot cast spells, activate magic items by spell completion (such as scrolls), or activate magic items by command word (such as wands). Each ally to be inspired gains a +4 competence bonus to the same ability score, which you must choose before you begin inspiring. For instance, you could grant all allies a bonus to Strength, or all allies a bonus to Constitution, but you couldn’t grant some allies a bonus to Strength and some a bonus to Constitution with the same performance. Inspire excellence is a supernatural, mind-affecting ability. Using this feat counts as one of your uses of song or poetics for the day. Special: This feat is treated as a bardic music inspiration ability for purposes of feats that affect such abilities.
Lasting Inspiration [Epic] Your songs continue to inspire allies long after your words have faded. Prerequisite: Perform 25 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: The effects of your bardic music inspiration abilities last for ten times as long as normal after you stop singing. This feat has no effect on inspiration abilities that have no duration after you stop singing (such as inspire competence).
Music of the Gods [Epic] You can use your bardic music to influence creatures immune to mind-affecting effects. Prerequisites: Cha 25, Perform 30 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: Your bardic music can affect even those normally immune to mind-affecting effects. However, such creatures gain a +10 bonus on their Will saves to resist such effects.
Ranged Inspiration [Epic] You can use your bardic music at a greater range than normal. Prerequisite: Bardic music class feature, Perform 25 ranks. Benefit: Double the range of any bardic music ability that has a range. For instance, you can use countersong to protect creatures within 60 feet of you (rather than 30 feet); you can fascinate a creature up to 180 feet away; and you can inspire competence or greatness in an ally up to 60 feet away. (If the creature must hear the bard to be affected by the ability, that requirement doesn’t change regardless of any extended range the bard’s ability may have). Special: A character can gain this feat multiple times. Its effects stack. Remember that two doublings equals a tripling, and so forth.
Rapid Inspiration [Epic] You can inspire your allies with bardic music more quickly than normal. Prerequisite: Perform 25 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: You can use any of your bardic music inspiration abilities as a standard action. The inspiration takes effect immediately after you conclude the action.
Reactive Countersong [Epic] You can use countersong as a reaction to a sonic or language-dependent magical attack. Prerequisite: Combat Reflexes, Perform 30 ranks, bardic music class feature. Benefit: You can begin a countersong at any time, even when it isn’t your turn (much like a wizard who has readied a counterspell action), though you don’t have to ready an action to do so. Thus, you could use the countersong as a reaction to a sonic or language-dependent magical attack. You can’t use Reactive Countersong at the same time you are using another bardic music ability (though you could stop the other bardic music ability to begin Reactive Countersong if so desired). Normal: Without this feat, you can only use countersong on your turn.
From Epic Level Handbook
Divine Bard [Diety] Increase the range of your bardic music abilities as listed and double their effects (save bonuses, bonus HD, number of allies affected, and so forth). Use these abilities even against creatures normally immune to mind-affecting effects (though such a creature gains a +10 bonus on its Will save). Use any bardic music inspiration ability as a standard action, with the effect occurring immediately afterward. When inspiring competence in multiple allies, choose different skills to affect for different allies if desired. If a bardic music inspiration ability normally has a duration after the bard stops singing, that portion of the duration is ten times as long as normal. When any effect that is subject to countersong occurs within your hearing, you can attempt a countersong as if you had prepared an action to do so.
Keeper of Forbidden Lore [Abyssal Heritor] A shred of demonic racial memory grants you knowledge of numerous ancient magical secrets. Prerequisite: Int 13. Benefit: You gain a bonus on Knowledge (the planes), Spellcraft, and bardic knowledge checks. The magnitude of this bonus equals the number of Abyssal heritor feats you possess. In addition, Knowledge (the planes) and Spellcraft are always class skills for you, and you can use them untrained. Special: You have trouble acquiring information in more conventional ways, which translates to a –2 penalty on Gather Information checks.
Otherworldly Countenance [Abyssal Heritor] You are either stunningly beautiful or wretchedly hideous. Either way, your appearance can be terribly unsettling to others upon whom you focus your attentions. Prerequisite: Cha 15. Benefit: When you take this feat, you must decide whether you are unusually beautiful or unusually hideous. Once you make this choice, you cannot change it. You gain a bonus on Perform checks (if you chose beauty) or Intimidate checks (if you chose ugliness) equal to the number of Abyssal heritor feats you possess. As a full-round action, you can attempt to distract a target within 30 feet by focusing your attention upon it. The target must be able to see you and can resist your distracting appearance by making a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 your character level + your Cha modifier). Failure indicates that the target is fascinated (if you are beautiful) or sickened (if you are ugly) for as long as you remain in its line of sight. You can affect a specific creature in this manner only once per day. This ability is usable a number of times per day equal to the number of Abyssal heritor feats you possess. Special: Your appearance is so striking that it’s difficult to hide. You take a –2 penalty on Disguise checks.
From Fiendish Codex I
Artist [General] You come from a culture in which the arts, philosophy, and music have a prominent place in society. Region: Chessenta, Evermeet, Waterdeep, rock gnome. Benefit: You gain a +2 bonus on all Perform checks and to one Craft skill that invokes art (your choice) such as calligraphy, painting, sculpture, or weaving.
From Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting
Ice Harmonics [General] You can use your voice to shatter ice. Prerequisite: Bardic music ability, Perform (sing) 6 ranks. Benefit: By expending one of your daily uses of bardic music, you can cause any unattended nonmagical ice object or portion of ice to explode violently. The target must be within 30 feet, and you must be able to sing in order to shatter the ice. Any creature located in the 5-foot square in which you target with this ability takes piercing damage equal to 2d6 + your Charisma modifier. Creatures made of ice that you specifically target with this effect take double damage.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Mar 29, 2008 21:18:25 GMT -5
[glow=red,2,300]Bardic and Bardic Music Feats Part III[/glow]
Courageous Rally You can rally demoralized foes with your bardic music. Prerequisites: Bardic music (inspire courage) class feature. Benefit: When you use bardic music to inspire courage, you can make a free rally check (see page 73) as part of the same action used to activate your bardic music. You add a morale bonus on this rally check equal to the morale bonus granted by your inspire courage class feature.
From Heroes of Battle
Forbidden Lore [Tainted] You gain hideous insights into subjects not meant to be understood by mortal minds. Prerequisites: Bardic knowledge or lore, mild depravity. Benefit: When you make a bardic knowledge or lore check, you add a bonus to the check if the question touches on supernatural, horrific, tainted, or otherwise forbidden subjects (at the DM’s discretion). Add a +2 bonus if you are mildly tainted, a +4 bonus if you are moderately tainted, and a +6 bonus if you are severely tainted.
Master of Knowledge You have spent most of your life in study, and it comes naturally to you now. Benefit: You gain a +1 bonus to all Knowledge skill checks.
Haunting Melody You can use your music to inspire fear. Prerequisites: Bardic music, Perform 9 ranks. Benefit: When you sing or use some other Perform skill, you can inspire fear in enemies within 30 feet of you. Any opponent in range must succeed on a Will saving throw (DC 10 + 1/2 your bard level + your Cha modifier) or become shaken for a number of rounds equal to your ranks in the Perform skill. This is a mind-affecting fear effect. Special: Using this ability counts as one of your daily uses of bardic music.
From Heroes of Horror
Requiem [General] Your bardic music affects undead creatures. Prerequisite: Bardic music class feature, Perform (any) 8 ranks. Benefit: You can extend the effects of your mindaffecting bardic music and virtuoso’s performance abilities so that they influence even the undead. All bardic music effects on undead creatures have only half the duration they normally would against the living. Normal: Undead are usually immune to mindinfluencing effects.
From Libris Mortis
Music of the Outer Spheres You can use your bardic music to create discordant, insane sounds. This music is particularly effective against aberrations, and can sicken them, vitalize them, or fill them with lethargy. Prerequisites: Perform (any) 11 ranks, bard level 9th. Benefit: You can now use the following additional bardic music abilities. Lull Aberration (Sp): You must target a single aberration within 30 feet with this ability. You can target an additional aberration for every three bard levels above 9th that you possess. A targeted aberration must make a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 bard’s level + bard’s Cha modifier) or become lethargic and partially hypnotized by the discordant sounds of your performance. Affected aberrations are slowed, as per the spell. Sicken Aberration (Sp): Any aberration within a 30-foot spread centered on you must make a Fortitude saving throw (DC 10 + 1/2 bard’s level + bard’s Cha modifier) or become sickened for as long as you continue to use this ability. If an aberration makes this saving throw, it does not have to make another saving throw to avoid becoming sickened unless you activate this ability again. Vitalize Aberration (Sp): All aberrations within a 30-foot spread centered on you gain a +2 morale bonus to all special attack and spell-like ability save DCs and a +1 dodge bonus to Armor Class.
From Lords of Madness
Art of Fascination [Ancestor] You claim descent from Kakita Wayozu, the first female Mistress of the Kakita Academy, whose art was so great it is said that she helped create an alternate world. Clan: Crane. Benefit: You can fascinate a single creature with your music or poetics. You make a Perform check, and the target can negate the effect with a Will saving throw equal to or greater than your check result. If the saving throw succeeds, you cannot attempt to fascinate that creature again for 24 hours. If the saving throw fails, the creature sits quietly and listens to the song for up to 1 round per level you possess. While fascinated, the target’s Spot and Listen checks suffer a –4 penalty. Any potential threat allows the fascinated creature a second saving throw against a breaks the effect. You must concentrate, as if casting or maintaining a spell. This is a spell-like, mind-affecting charm ability.
Artist [Ancestor] You claim descent from Doji, the founder of the Crane household, known as a creator of culture and civilization. Clan: Crane. Benefit: You get a +2 bonus on all Perform checks and on checks for one Craft skill that involves art (such as calligraphy, origami, painting, or sculpture).
Powerful Voice [Ancestor] You are karmically linked to Utaku, Shinjo’s most trusted lieutenant and devoted bodyguard. Clan : Unicorn. Benefit: Your powerful speaking voice gives you a +2 bonus on Diplomacy checks and Perform checks when you are speaking or singing.
From Oriental Adventures
Arcane Accompaniment You infuse your performance with magical energy, allowing its effects to continue even as you attend to other tasks. Prerequisites: Perform 4 ranks, Arcane Flourish, arcane caster level 1st, bardic music. Benefit: As a swift action, you can expend a prepared spell or a spell slot to extend the duration of your bardic music ability alter you stop performing. You extend the duration a number of rounds equal to the level of the spell used in this manner. This extension is in addition to the normal duration of the effect after you stop your performance. You can expend only one spell slot to extend the duration of your bardic music. The slot can come from any of your arcane caster classes, nor just bard. This has no effect on bardic music or similar abilities with a duration of instantaneous or permanent.
Arcane Flourish You use your magical abilities to improve your performance talents. By bleeding magical energy into your singing, oratory, or other abilities, you enhance the pitch and sound, project your voice with a more commanding tone, and so forth. Prerequisites: Perform 4 ranks, arcane easier level 1st. Benefit: As a swift action, you can expend a prepared spell or spell slot to grant your next Perform check a competence bonus equal to 1 + the level of the spell or slot. You must make a check within 1 minute of using ibis feat, or the energy you expend dissipates with no effect.
Battle Dancer You strike at your foes in time with the music you sing or in cadence with an oration you deliver. The magical power of your bardic performance drives you forward and improves your fighting ability. Prerequisites: Base attack bonus +2, bardic music. Benefit: During a round in which you grant any ally a bonus on attack rolls, damage rolls, or saves with one of your bardic music abilities, you gain a +2 morale bonus on your attack rolls if you move at least one square before attacking. You lose this benefit for the remaining duration of your current use of bardic music if you do not move or if you do not attack on your turn. If you stand still and attack (or move without attacking), you do not gain this feat’s benefit, but this ability’s duration continues. Special: A fighter can select Battle Dancer as one of his fighter bonus feels.
From Players Handbook II
Shadow Song [General] A dark legacy of the Shadowking’s ambitions is the shadow of sorrow that cloaks many Tethyrian songs and ballads. Some bards have learned to infuse their performances with the sense of loss and suffering that suffuses the Shadow Weave. Prerequisites: Shadow Weave Magic, bardic music. Region: The Western Heartlands. Benefit: You get a +1 bonus to the DC for all saving throws of spells you cast from the school of Enchantment and spells with the sonic descriptor. You get a +1 bonus on caster level checks to overcome spell resistance for these schools and spells. These bonuses stack with bonuses from the Shadow Weave Magic feat.
Talfirian Song [General] You can use the power of your bardic music to enhance your Illusion spells. Prerequisite: Bardic music class feature, Heighten Spell, Tethyrian human. Benefit: By expending uses of your bardic music, you can heighten your illusion spells without using higher-level spell slots. For every daily use of your bardic music you expend during the casting of a spell, you can increase the effective level of that spell by +1. For example, you could cast rainbow pattern and expend four uses of your bardic music to make that rainbow pattern effectively an 8th-level spell (increasing the save DC by +4). You can’t raise a spell above 9th level with this feat.
From Races of Faerun
Enchanting Song [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music to temporarily increase the power of your enchantment spells. Prerequisites: Perform (any one) 5 ranks, Spell Focus (enchantment), bardic music. Benefit: As you cast a spell of the enchantment school, you may spend one daily use of your bardic music ability to increase the caster level and saving throw DC of that spell by 1. These bonuses stack with those provided by other feats, such as Spell Focus.
Inspire Spellpower [Bardic Music] You can use your bardic music to increase the power of your allies’ spells. Prerequisites: Perform (any one) 8 ranks, bardic music. Benefit: You gain an additional bardic music ability called inspire spellpower. Inspire Spellpower (Su): As a standard action, you can use music or poetics to inspire the spellcasting of allied spellcasters, making their spells more powerful. To be affected, an ally must be able to hear you perform. The effect lasts for as long as the ally hears you sing and for 5 rounds thereafter. The affected allies’ effective caster level is increased by 1. You cannot inspire spellpower in yourself. Inspire spellpower is a mind-affecting ability. Special: Inspire spellpower follows all the normal rules of the bardic music ability, including using one of the character’s daily uses of the ability.
Metamagic Song [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music into your magic, allowing you to pay the cost of metamagic feats by spending uses of your bardic music ability. Prerequisites: Any two metamagic feats, bardic music. Benefit: When you spontaneously cast an arcane spell that is enhanced by a metamagic feat, you can spend a number of uses of your bardic music ability equal to the number of extra levels that the metamagic feat imposes on the spell rather than raising the spell’s effective level. Applying metamagic spontaneously using this method increases the casting time of the spell normally. You cannot use the Metamagic Song feat to add metamagic feats that would make the spell’s effective level higher than the highest level of spell that you can cast normally. Special: When applying a metamagic feat to a spell, you must either use Metamagic Song to completely offset the increase in the spell’s effective level or apply the metamagic feat normally and cast the spell at its higher level. You cannot partially increase the level of the spell (or “split” the cost) to reduce the number of uses of bardic music spent when using the Metamagic Song feat. Only one method can be used to pay for metamagic feats that affect a single spell. You cannot use the Metamagic Song feat to improve a spell with the Silent Spell metamagic feat.
Misleading Song [Bardic Music] You can channel the power of your bardic music to temporarily increase the power of your illusion spells. Prerequisites: Perform (any one) 5 ranks, Spell Focus (illusion), bardic music. Benefit: As you cast an illusion spell, you can spend one daily use of your bardic music ability to increase the caster level and the saving throw DC of that spell by 1. These bonuses stack with those provided by other feats, such as Spell Focus.
From Races of Stone
Sunken Song You can project your voice underwater. Prerequisites: Bardic music class feature, Perform (sing) 4 ranks. Benefit: By tremendous effort of will and sheer musical ability, you can use Perform (sing) underwater even though you cannot breathe water. This is more like a forceful humming than singing, and words are not intelligible, but you are able to produce bardic music effects. The maximum distance of such effects (where applicable) is unchanged. This feat does not help with Perform checks involving oratory or wind instruments. Normal: You cannot use any air-dependent Perform skills underwater if you are not able to breathe water.
Windsinger You can use song or a wind instrument to compel the winds to obey you. The bard who possesses this feat is highly favored aboard a sailing vessel; indeed, a bard who demonstrates the ability to control the wind to some degree is usually given an officer’s position aboard ship. Prerequisites: Bardic music class feature, Perform (sing or wind instruments) 5 ranks. Benefit: By expending a daily bardic music use, you can lull the winds around a single ship into well-tamed gusts. They continue to blow into the sails of the ship as normal for their speed, but their effects on the crew are one stage in intensity less (see Table 1–2 on page 23). Thus, a strong wind affected by this ability continues to propel the ship along as normal for a strong wind, but it only affects the crew as though it were a moderate wind. You can also alter the direction of the wind by one compass point (from north to north-west or north-east, from southwest to west or south, etc.). These effects last as long as the bard continues to perform his bardic music, plus 10 rounds after the music has ended.
Song of the White Raven The White Raven discipline shows you how to rouse dedication and fervor within your allies’ hearts. Such teachings can augment and improve your musical ability. Prerequisite: Bardic music (inspire courage), one White Raven maneuver. Benefit: While you are in any White Raven stance, you can activate your bardic music ability to inspire courage as a swift action. Your crusader and warblade levels stack with your bard levels to determine the bonus granted by your inspire courage ability.
Post by The Bard Darkharp on Apr 1, 2008 14:42:54 GMT -5
[glow=blue,2,300]Sounds of Wonder and Delight[/glow]
Musical and magical instruments for the Al-Qadim setting
The Zakharan equivalent of the guitar or lute is the buzuq, an instrument with metallic strings and a long fretted neck. The buzuq is found throughout the southern Land of Fate, and with the ud and the qanun is the instrument of choice of wandering bards.
The jawzah is a spike-fiddle with four strings, played with a bow made of horsehair. The soundbox of the jawzah is a hollowed coconut, and as such the instrument is most common among sailors of the Golden Gulf and their ports of call.
The rababah is the string instrument of choice of the al-Badia, the desert tribesmen. The instrument consists of a rectangular frame covered with horse or goat hide. From this soundbox rises a thin neck, upon which a single string is attached to a moveable post. The post is moved as the string is played with a horsehair bow. The resulting music is the melodious, continuous drone familiar to Arabian music.
The qanun is the zither of the Land of Fate, a trapezoidal box with 24 to 36 courses, each course consisting of three wound strings made of gut, or for the most valuable types, magically strengthened silk. These strings are not strummed; the performer uses a set of hooked rings worn on each thumb and index finger to pluck the strings. The qanun is a large, fairly portable instrument and is used in the bazaars and suqs throughout the Land of Fate.
The santur is a hammer dulcimer, similar in appearance to the qanun. However, the santur uses single strings made of metal instead of triple-stringed courses, and is played with metal hammers as opposed to being plucked. The santur is most popular within the Pearl Cities, and for that reason, if no other, its use is frowned upon within the Pantheon Lands.
The `ud is found throughout the Burning World, characterized by its pear-shaped body and thick, fretless neck. The common `ud has five doubled strings, though those found along the Free Cities have a sixth string located above the normal five. It is played with a pick made of horn or the shaft of an eagle or roc feather. The `ud is similar to the guitar, and as such, is a favorite among wandering bards. Those made in the land of the Crowded Sea have their bodies fashioned from the shells of great turtles, but in general they are made of hard wood giving the instrument a hearty timbre. The `ud is sometimes called amir al-tarab or "the prince of enchantment" for its rich tone.
The nafir is a long metal trumpet, used primarily along the northern coast and the Free Cities as a signalling device. The mamluks of Qudra make extensive use of this device for sending orders into the field. It is less common in the south.
The mijayrah is a simple reed recorder, easily crafted and used by both townsmen and the al-Badia of the desert. It has a limited range but a breathy, ornate tone. The performer often hums while playing the nafir.
The mitbiq is a double-clarinet consisting of two reed tubes, each fitted with a smaller tube slit along its length to vibrate and produce the tone. The mitbiq is played using circular breathing to produce a continuous tone.
The mizwid is the Zakharan equivalent of the bagpipe, a double-reeded clarinet attached to a large hide bag. Its name means "food pouch," and it may have descended from this common item. The mizwid produces a continuous, droning sound against which the main melody is played on the holes of the flute-like tube.
The nay is an arabian flute made of dried and shellacked reed and other thin, tough grasses. The performer blows across the opening, while finger-holes along the length provide a range of two octaves. The nay produces a breathy, expressive tone and is called in the major cities amir al-harab, "the prince of the wild wastes." In reality, it is almost totally an instrument used by the city-dwelling al- Hadhar, though its ghostly, windlike sound does create the feeling of the open desert.
The darbukkah is a vase-shaped drum, wider at the top and base, usually two-feet high. The performer sits or kneels before the drum to use it, but there are great darbukkah used in the Ruined Kingdoms and the Isle of the Elephant which are up to 4' tall and either used by standing drummers or mounted on the side of elephants in the fashion of elephant drums. Darbukkah are usually carved of hard wood such as mahogany, intricately fashioned by master craftsmen, and the drums heads are made of the tanned skins of jungle creatures.
Elephant drums are even larger darbukkah, up to 6' high, which are mounted in pairs on the sides of elephants (or occasionally camels) and struck with large mallets. Used with large military units, the elephant drums are best known for their use in the parades of the Mad Caliph of the Isle of the Elephant.
On a smaller scale, the jahlah is a clay pot played with both hands, or filled with small stones and used as rattle. The jahlah is used by fishermen and pearl divers in the southeastern Land of Fate, as it made with easily obtained materials.
The naqqarah is a small drum worn at the side, held by a thong running over the shoulder. It is made of fired clay with a hide head, and played with sticks. The naqqarah is used by messengers and criers of small businesses.
The qaraqib are a set of metal clackers used by dancers in the same manner as castanets. Two sets are worn on each hand. A scurrilous rumor says that some fellowships of holy slayers can communicate information to their minions by the rhythms of these clackers. Whether it is true or not is unknown, but their use is forbidden within the Pantheon cities.
The qas'ah baladi are large kettle-drums made of fired and glazed clay and covered with resilient hides, and in some cases metal hammered to its ultimate thinness. They are used in the north by the mamluks of the Free Cities, and occasionally in larger cities such as Hiyal and Huzuz to fanfare important announcements. They are not portable.
The riqq is the familiar tambourine adorned with metal plates, sajat (q.v.), or bells to accentuate its use. The riqq is often used by dancers to set their own tempos. A smaller version, know as the daff is used by the tribesmen of the Furrowed Mountains.
The sajat are a set of finger-tambourines used by dancers to accentuate their movements. A dancer using a larger ensemble as accompaniment will use the sajat or riqq to set the tempo.
Storm bells and storm gongs are the largest instruments in the Land of Fate. They are large metal cylinders or plates that are struck with great force by clothbound slabs of wood. The smallest can be carried in a cart drawn by a team of oxen; the largest are permanent fixtures. Storm bells are used as fanfares to gather people for pronouncements in the larger cities, but their true purpose is in the settled oases of the desert. The sound of the bells carries for miles, even in high winds, and can be used for guidance by travelers caught in desert sandstorms. Similar bells and gongs have been positioned along dangerous reefs, to be rung to warn sailors of their peril.
The tabl is a small double-sided drum used throughout the Land of Fate and is played with cloth-covered sticks or with bare hands. Each side is covered with horsehide or goatskin, but the hides of more exotic beasts are sometimes used. Among the pearl fishermen of the Pearl Cities these drums are called mirwas. Large double-sided drums are known as tabl baladi.
How Instruments are Used
The traditional rawun or storyteller favors those instruments that allow her to keep her mouth free to import words of wisdom and stirring tales to the masses. For this reason, the stringed instruments such as the buzuq, the qanun, and the ud are preferred by wandering bards. Among those that come from the desert tribes, the rababah is the most common instrument of choice. More prosperous (and more settled) storytellers may gather together an orchestra as back-up to their tales. This group is known as a takht, meaning "platform, " referring to the raised level the players are seated upon. Usually the `ud, the qanun, the riqq, the nay, and a spike rababah are used in these groups. Dancers and acrobatic performers prefer percussion instruments, and favor the sajat, riqq, or the qaraqib (usually played by the dancer). For more successful dancers, a wind instrument such as the nay would be used, but in these cases the dancer would still set the rhythm using percussion instruments. Lastly, there is much music in the Land of Fate that relies on no instrumentation beyond the human voice and hands. Choral chanting is common throughout the area and is particularly popular in the Pantheon Cities. Song and intricate handclapping can be found throughout the High Desert and enjoys a popular following even in the larger cities. Music is considered a worthy profession throughout the Land of Fate, and musicians are often members of a professional guild, or tawa'if, in their native cities. Note that not all musicians are bards and vice versa, either in the Land of Fate or in the barbarian lands beyond it. In older times, male musicians often played for male audiences, and female musicians for women in the harim, but with the passage of time these lines have blurred. Indeed, the fourth Grand Caliph filled his harim with women judged on the beauty of their voices as well as their courtly manners, and this gathering of enslaved singers, known throughout the land as the Qaynat, is legendary as to its beauty, never achieved since. My companion finished the tale there in the garden in the shadow of the storm bell, and I was made wise in the nature of the music of the Burning World of Zakhara. "But surely," I said, "were there all these wondrous instruments, there must be magical variants of them." My companion nodded in agreement, and said, "Most wondrous magic there is in the Land of Fate. Listen again and be made wise, for these are the instruments of the jann."
Instruments of the Jann
The instruments of the jann are a collection of wondrous items that are said to have been crafted by the various genies of the Inner Planes to commemorate the ascension of the jann chieftain of the High Desert. With each new jann chief, each of the genie peoples sets its craftsmen to work to produce a full takht of magical instruments,`ud, nay, rababah, qanun, and riqq. The genies (or their mortal agents) attempt great quests to gather the needed materials for the instruments. This takht is performed for the chiefs ascension by the finest mortal musicians, recruited (voluntarily or not) from throughout the Land of Fate. The music performed is said to be so wondrous that the mortals who perform it and hear it are rendered deaf for the next 10 years for their troubles (saving throw vs. spells applicable). The genies reward those who perform with great treasures; gems and jewelry worth 10-60,000 gp value, and leave them in the desert to find their own way home. The instruments are kept by the ruling amir of the High Desert until his death. Then the instruments are scattered to the four winds, as custom demands. Though the amirs of the jann rule longer than their mortal counterparts, they have been ruling their people longer, and it is estimated that there are 20-40 sets of these instruments scattered throughout the Land of Fate.
The Nay of the Djinn: The nay provided by the djinn of the plane of elemental Air looks like any other reed flute. However, the reeds are metallic, the perfect specimens of a gold-bearing plant that only survives in the terrible mountains of the Yak-Men. Many brave djinn (and many more of their mortal agents) lost their lives recovering these wondrous metallic plants, called golden wands in the vernacular. The nay of the djinn allows the player to cast an enthrall spell, as the second-level priest spell of the same name. Duration is as long as the nay is played, but the spell ends when the player stops or is interrupted. The nay may be used in this manner once per day, twice per day if the user is a bard (rawun kit or otherwise). A bard also may use the nay to 'whistle up the wind': to summon an air elemental of 8 HD, as the fifth-level spell conjure elemental, once per week. The elemental is under the control of the user for as long as the nay is played, but if the music is interrupted, the elemental will return to its home plane and not attack its former controller.
The Riqq of the Efreet: The riqq of the efreet is a tambourine of unbreakable steel. Its cymbals are made of crushed coins from the ruined empires of Nog and Kadar, and its surface is wrapped with the hide of a white camel. These are forged in the heart of a volcano to produce the reddish riqq, and terrible runes are painted in the inside the tambourines head. The riqq of the efreet allows the player to cast hold person, as the second-level priest spell, by flashing the runes on the inside of the tambourine at the target(s). This may be done once per day, twice per day if it is used by a bard. A bard also may use the riqq to 'fan the flames': to summon a fire elemental of 8 HD, as above, once per week. The elemental is under the control of the user for as long as the riqq is played, and if the music stopped or interrupted, the elemental will return to the plane of elemental Fire and not attack its former controller. A large amount of fire (such as bonfire) is required to use this ability.
The `Ud of the Marids: The `ud of the marids is solid white, its hardwood surfaces covered with thin, ornate carvings of pearl. The soundbox itself is made of a single great pearl, harvested from the largest clam in the deepest part of the Crowded Sea. The marids do not risk their own lives in these endeavors, but instead avail themselves of lesser beings to recover the pearls. The `ud of the marids allows the bard to cast a powerful charm person spell, as the first-level wizard spell, with a -4 penalty on all saving throws against the spell. This spell may be cast once per day, twice per day if the `ud is used by a bard. A bard, regardless of kit or origin, may use the `ud to 'raise the waters': to summon a water elemental of 8 HD, as above, once per week. A suitable amount of water, such as a river or lake, must be available to use this ability. The elemental is under total control of the `ud player, and if the `ud player stops, the elemental will return to its native plane without harming the bard.
The Rababah of the Dao: The rababah of the dao is constructed of the finest materials. Its bow is made of the hair of the fastest horse in the High Desert, and the circular soundbox is made of the skull of a great roc. The rababah of the dao allows its user to cast an entangle spell, as the first-level priest spell of the same name. This operates against any target on sand or soft soil as opposed to those near grass and vines, but the effects of the spell are the same. This spell may be cast once per day, twice per day if the rababah is used by a bard. A bard also may use the rababah of the dao to 'shift the earth': to call into being an earth elemental of 8 HD, as above, once per week. The elemental is under the full control of rababah player, such that if the musician stops or is interrupted, the elemental will return to its native plane without attacking the bard.
The Qanun of the Spirits: The qanun is made of the finest mahogany brought from the Isle of the Elephant. Its strings are said to be made of solidified light, though others, report they are made of spun gold, hardened and tightened to the breaking point. Its picks are carved from a single emerald gem. The qanun of the spirits is the most powerful of the five instruments of the jann. When the qanun is played, the player has the effect of the fire truth, the first level wizard spell. Instead of fire, the truth of the speaker's words is determined by the sweetness of the instrument's tone. Untrue statements create sour notes. The spell may be used once per day, twice if the player is a bard. A bard also may use the qanun to 'call the ancestors': to speak with dead as the third-level priest spell, and to animate dead (as the second-level priest spell), both as if the bard were a 20th- level priest. Each of these abilities may be performed once per week, and the qanun is needed only to cast the spell-like abilities, not to maintain control or contact.
The Takht of the Jann: Each of the instruments of the jann is mildly powerful in its own right, but brought together into a single orchestra, they prove to be an extremely powerful magical combination. If a takht of bards (rawun or otherwise) all wield the instruments of the jann under the direction of a single sha'ir, the takht may summon into this plane an army of genies. There will be four units of genies, one of each of the four elemental genie races, and each under the command of a noble genie of the proper race `marid, dao, efreet, and djinn. Each unit will consist of one hundred members of the respective race. It takes an hour for all the troops to arrive and assemble, and if anything interrupts the summoning players, the spell fails and those that have arrived will not be under any control (and likely will be irritated at the sha'ir as well). If the summoning is successful, these genies will be under the command of the sha'ir directing the takht, and will remain so for an hour and a day (25 hours). During this time they will build, move, and attack at the whim of this sha'ir. They will even fight other genies if so instructed by the sha'ir. After their time of servitude ends, they will return to their own plane, and will not harm or act against that particular sha'ir for the next 101 years. This is an incredible amount of power to place at the disposal of a single individual, and a complete set of instruments is only held in the hands of the living Amir of the High Desert. There are stories that a full set has also been collected and is in the hands of the Grand Caliph, but this is unsubstantiated. The genies are very aware of the potential of mortals who acquire a full set, and as such, all genie servitors (including gen and the like) are continually on the lookout for individuals attempting to assemble a full collection of the instruments. Clever fakes, mysterious robberies, and even disappearances of collectors have been reported in legend and tales of those attempting to recreate the takht of the jann.