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Meta-Orbs (3.5e Equipment)

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Date Created: April 20, 2009
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Meta-OrbsEdit

Magic is a fickle thing, it obeys no rules, yet writes them with each moment that passes.
—Ryth Serolin, an Archmage

It is safe to say that there are many places in any given reality that have seen magic a thousand-fold times. The arcane forces that have flown through such places tend to be massive in porportion compared to usual kinds of magic. Within places that have been exposed to such forces, leylines of magic grow robust with latent energy, and the very stepping stones of existance buckle in response to the aura resting within reality in these places. In places such as these, there are anomallies commonly noticed by mages and priests. These anomallies are best described as magic forming into coherent forms of it's own volition. A few examples of this may be a person noticing a ethereal glow filling up the night sky around such a place, or ice forming upon the eves of such a building in the middle of summer.

Over time, in most realities, certain delvers of eldritch lore begin to wonder why these things start to take place, and they begin to examine these free forming spells, as they were. Research into such forces tends to take an immense ammount of effort, and decades worth of intensive study. Though, one who would seek to pick apart such mysteries, find themselves eventually rewarded, and heavily so. For they discover that the source of these anomalies is simply eldritch energies being recycled over and over and over again, to the degree that they begin to refine themselves, and become something new, something sharper than they orginally were. Those who manage to discover this nature of magic soon begin to try and put it to use, and refine the process into a tool.

This is were meta-orbs come into play. A meta-orb is a tool made by wizards, sorcerers, or any other kind of mage, that appears to be simply a 2 cm. wide ball of metal. In truth, these balls of metal have undergone massive reconfiguration in the manner of magical energy, and can pull magic into themselves, just to put it through a massively accelerated form of magic naturally refining itself, and release it in a much more concentrated form. Meta-orbs are objects that are in high demand amongst the magi of the world, and rightfully so, for they can turn even the lowest spell into a mighty force of magic.

UsageEdit

A meta-orb is a rather simple tool to use. A paticular person must merely be in physical contact with one, and cast a spell, the meta-orb then pulls the magic into it's form, recycles it, and releases it in a more powerful form. Though, in order to use a meta-orb, the wielders actual flesh (or whatever the characters body is composed of) must be in contact with the orb. This usually requires the character to hold it in their hand and prohibits the use of a glove. Though, it has been known for a mage to simply make a specially made, mundane strap that holds the orb in place against another piece of their body, such as the forearm, or a thigh. If such a strap is being used, the meta-orb occupies no body slot, though, otherwise, the meta-orb occupies a single hand and prohibits it being covered in any way, shape, or form (For information on how to make such a strap, see below). A meta-orb is commonly sold with a strap pre-made. A paticular character may only be using a single meta-orb at a time, whether or not the orb is occupying a body slot.

Note: In the case a character is using a third tier meta-orb, they must be in contact with the orb for at least 5 minutes as it attunes to them, in order to gain its benifits. Once a third tier meta-orb has attuned to a person, it must first be away from that person for 24 hours before it can be attuned to another person. If a person prepares their spells for the day while using a third tier meta-orb, then the spells still occupy a single slot lower than they normally would, even if the caster is not in contact with the orb when they cast them.

OrbsEdit

Meta-orbs are many and varied, they range from small, brazzen, hollow orbs, to dense, black-tinted balls of metal. Each individual one has unique powers and it's physical traits mirror these powers. Meta-orbs are all categorized into three different tiers, the weakest of all meta-orbs falling under tier one, the moderately powerful ones under tier two, and the most powerful ones falling under tier three. There has been speculation on research into meta-orbs so poweful that they fall under a fourth tier, but that is only speculation. Meta-orbs require a DC 15, Appraise, Spellcraft, or Knowledge (Arcana) check to discern what tier they are from, if they possess trait for multiple tiers, then each individual trait requires a different check.

Tier 1 Meta-OrbsEdit

Meta-orbs of this tier mainly affect spells of a paticular brand, being only capable of drawing in magic forces if they are of this brand. Oddly enough, all meta-orbs of this tier have a physical trait manifested in the appearance of the metal the orb is made of.

Acid: This meta-orb gleams wetly in the light and always looks like tanished sliver, despite what metal is actually used. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the acid descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Air: This meta-orb has a dull shine and looks rather eroded, no matter how old it actually is. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the air descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Chaotic: This meta-orb appears to be made of a redish metal that sparkles sporadically when light is shined directly at it. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the chaotic descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Cold: This meta-orb has a hard shine and seems to be crisscrossed with the beginnings of frost at every temperature. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the cold descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Darkness: This meta-orb doesn't shine in any kind of light and looks as though it's made of a black-tinted metal. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the darkness descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Death: This meta-orb always glints slightly, as though it were reflecting a distant light, no matter how much light shines upon it, and looks as though it's been made out of lead, despite the actual metal used. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the death descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Earth: This meta-orb has a surface that appears to be made out of raw, unrefined iron ore, despite the actual metal used, yet is perfectly smooth and circular. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the earth descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Electricity: This meta-orb is mirror bright, never tarnishes, and looks as though it's made of silver, no matter what metal was used to make it. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the electricity descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Evil: This meta-orb appears severly tarnished and looks as though it's made of a black-tinted metal. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the evil descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Good: This meta-orb appears well kept and polished, no matter how much wear and tear it's been through, and looks as though it's made of a white-tinted metal. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the good descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Fear: This meta-orb appears to be made out of copper and glints slightly, even in the slightest light. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the fear descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Fire: This meta-orb appears to be made out of blackened iron and sparkles sporadically when light is shined directly at it. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the fire descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Force: This meta-orb looks perfectly clean and has a dull shine. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the force descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Language-Dependent: This meta-orb appears to be made of a pinkish-tinted material and is very shiny. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the language-dependent descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Lawful: This meta-orb appears to be made of a blueish metal that shines beautifully when light is shined directly at it. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the lawful descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Light Effect: This meta-orb always appears to be glowing slightly even in the darkest of rooms, though it never is actually glowing, and looks as though it's made of a white-tinted metal. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the light descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Mind-Affecting: This meta-orb looks as though it's made of a green-tinted metal and is flecked with black spots that look as though they should rub off easily. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the mind-affecting descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Sleep: This meta-orb looks like it's made out of bronze and is polished enough to reflect everything, if slightly blurred. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the sleep descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Sonic: This meta-orb appears to be made out of high quality brass and is slightly tarnished, as though it's been struck many times. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the sonic descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Water: This meta-orb looks as though it's always covered in a thin layer of water, though it shines beautifully when light is shined directly at it. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells with the water descriptor that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level.

Tier 2 Meta-OrbsEdit

Meta-orbs of this tier mainly affect spells of a paticular school of magic, being only capable of drawing in magic forces if they are of this school. Oddly enough, all meta-orbs of this tier have a physical trait manifested in the physical qualities of the orb, such as weight or smell.

Abjuration: This meta-orb is extremely dense and hard, feeling as though it was made out of adamantine, no matter it's appearance. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the abjuration school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells of the abjuration school while using this meta-orb.

Conjuration: This meta-orb smells faintly of sweat and heat, as though it had been exposed to each recently, and feels as though it's made out of shell, despite the fact that it is clearly made of metal. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the conjuration school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells of the conjuration school while using this meta-orb.

Divination: This meta-orb is rather maleable feeling and light, as though it could blow away if the wind was strong enough. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the divination school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells of the divination school while using this meta-orb.

Enchantment: This meta-orb smells as though it's been sprinkled with perfume, and feels rather heavy. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the enchantment school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells of the enchantment school while using this meta-orb.

Evocation: This meta-orb feels as rather warm, despite it's actual temperature, and has a rather strong smell of ozone around it. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the evocation school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells of the evocation school while using this meta-orb.

Illusion: This meta-orb feels waxy to the touch and seems rather light and insubstansial. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the illusion school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells of the illusion school while using this meta-orb.

Necromancy: This meta-orb smells sharply of rust and is very heavy feeling, no matter it's actual weight. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the necromancy school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells of the necromancy school while using this meta-orb.

Transmutation: This meta-orb feels slightly soft, maleable, and very heavy. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the transmutation school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells of the transmutation school while using this meta-orb.

Universal: This meta-orb never has a scent, no matter what has happened to it, and it feels strangely hard and heavy. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells of the universal school that the user casts, are cast at +1 caster level. In addition, the user of this meta-orb gets a +2 bonus on all skill checks regarding spells while using this meta-orb.

Tier 3 Meta-OrbsEdit

Meta-orbs of this tier are powerful enough to affect all spells in strange ways. Meta-orbs of this level are so magnificently powerful, that they actually draw in slivers of ambient magic from the world around them, and strengthen them. Due to this, meta-orbs of this tier are marked by the fact that they affect the world around them in some way or another.

Empower: This meta-orb is encased in bright yellow flames that are cool to the touch and perfectly harmless. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the empower spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

Enlarge: This meta-orb bends light around it, making colorful swirls and dancing patterns appear just on the edge of normal vision. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the enlarge spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

Heighten: This meta-orb seems to float in place should it be left alone for very long, and illuminates everything that comes within a few inches of it with a bright white light, yet does not actually glow. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the heighten spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

Maximize: This meta-orb glows a powerful, deep blue color and, the air around it seems to be paticularly thick, as though it were saturated with some kind of force. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the maximize spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

Persistent: This meta-orb glows a faint yet vibrant green, and seems to perserve objects that rest next to it for a paticularly long time. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the persistent spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

Quicken: This meta-orb crackles as harmless bolts of lightning encircle it and fade out of existance, leaving behind afterimages in the sight of anyone who may have been looking at them. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the quicken spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

Silent: This meta-orb seems to be encased in a bubble of perfectly still air, even in the most torrential of gales. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the silent spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

Still: This meta-orb appears as though it sucks in light, always looking as though it's in a dim room, no matter how bright the light that shines on it is. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the still spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

Widen: This meta-orb glimmers with a slightly red light, and appears to be crisscrossed with thin cracks that are barely visible to the naked eye. While this meta-orb is being used, all spells that have been modifed with the widen spell metamagic feat that the user casts, occupy a single spell slot lower than they would after modification.

CraftingEdit

Meta-orbs actually work in a surprisingly simply way: they first draw into themselves fibers of arcane energy via the powers of a limited wish or wish spell (depending on the tier of the meta-orb), and then puts them through a modified antimagic field. This antimagic field is only powerful enough to weaken the arcane energies that are put through it, effectively killing off the weak points in the spell. Then, while the spell is being weakened in this way, the same limited wish or wish spell sets itself in motion, creating duplicates of the threads of arcane energy that are left. This process repeats itself several times within a matter of seconds, until only the most specialized threads of magic are left active, and then releases the focused spell back out, alowing it to be cast.

Crafting Tier 1 Meta-Orbs: All meta-orbs of the first tier have the following requirements to make:

Faint abjuration; CL 10th; Craft Wondrous Item, antimagic field, limited wish, creator must know at least 3 spells with the descriptor that corresponds to the meta-orb; Price 8,000 gp

Crafting Tier 2 Meta-Orbs: All meta-orbs of the second tier have the following requirements to make:

Faint abjuration; CL 13th; Craft Wondrous Item, antimagic field, limited wish, creator must know at least 3 spells of the school that corresponds to the meta-orb; Price 32,000 gp

Crafting Tier 3 Meta-Orbs: All meta-orbs of the third tier have the following requirements to make:

Faint abjuration; CL 16th; Craft Wondrous Item, antimagic field, wish, creator must have the metamagic feat that corresponds to the meta-orb; Price 72,000 gp

Crafting Multi-Tier Meta-Orbs: It is possible to create a meta-orb that has traits from more than one tier. In this way, a single meta-orb can grant the effects of a quicken meta-orb and an acid meta-orb simultaneously. In order to determine the cost of such a meta-orb, use the following system:

(2×(total tier value))2×2,000

In this way, a meta-orb that has a trait from the third tier and a trait from the second tier would have a total value of 200,000 gp ((2+3=5), (5×2=10), (102=100), (100×2,000=200,000)), and a meta-orb that has a trait from the first tier and a trait from the second tier would have a total value of 72,000 gp ((1+2=3), (3×2=6), (62=36), (36×2,000=72,000)). A multi-tier meta-orbs caster level and spell requirements are at the same as the caster level and spell requirements of the highest tier of meta-orb the item has a trait from.

Note: It is impossible to create a meta-orb with multiple traits from the same tier.

Crafting Meta-Orb Straps: Crafting one of the straps mentioned above requires 2 gp worth of cloth and metal scraps, and requires a DC 14 craft check.



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