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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Got on a roll, and figured this is really a new thread.

    The question is how to limit permanent magic item creation.

    The most common answer is up the price so that the XP becomes higher, then more people would not be making them.

    There have also been suggestions on spending blood points. If that is a viable option then we need to get a scale that is progressive. A 1 point loss to someone with a minor blood of 14 is not that same as a true blood of 30. Then there is also the factor of how much does 1 point get you. A +1 sword? Or can you make that +5 keen holy scimitar for the same amount?

    A third option is to make an additional cost in RP on top of the XP to make the item. This is a direct cost, so high and low bloods pay the same. Of course those with big realms and blood collect more, so there are flaws.

    A fourth option is to make permanent magic items need a holding equal to 1/3 the caster level. This makes those items that need a 15th level caster also need a level 5 holding to create it. But just about anyone could make +1 weapons with minor holdings. If we go to 1/2, then arcane magic items would tap out at 14th caster level, maybe 18th for some of the fey. Larger cities would be more important for temple holders, so that would lead to more competition for those levels. (I see an espionage event, where a rival temple contests when the item is just about finished. Lowering the level, and wasting all that work.)

    Does anyone care to expand, support, or shoot down the list?

  2. #2
    1st: i agree with as its the easiest and best way really to limit magic item creation.

    2nd: there was a variant in the BRCS what talks about using Bloodpoints and RP in lieu of exp. I believe it was something like 10 or 100 exp per RP when you burn a bloodpoint.

    3rd: I just posted about that one on the original thread, basically, its a very bad idea especially with the new RP reserve limits being only at x2 instead of the x5.

    4th: I think that is an interesting take on it, however, it does put more of a limit on the arcane magic items than the divine magic items. Hence, if you were trying to limit the number of magic items, you are only really cutting out 1/2 of the producers, so not really that effective. However, you could use it to determine if there would be someone able to make/enhance an item for the PCs at the temple.

    Overall, raising the Exp costs seems like the best method to ensure a low magic item setting. Nothing really can compare to that.
    "Who was the first that forged the deadly blade? Of rugged steel his savage soul was made." --Tibullus

    "Qui desiderat pacem praeparet bellum." --Vegetius

    "Men grow tired of sleep, love, singing and dancing sooner than war." --Homer

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    aberdeen, scotland
    I think that the eaisiest way is just to increase the amount of time required to make an item. This still leaves the elves as a more magical group with their great lifespans but telling a human spend 3 years building an item and they will balk pretty quickly wizard or preist. Its simple its easy and it should work the only problem is that it devalues the feats.

    If you don't want to increase the time increasing the xp would work too.

  4. #4
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    California, USA
    Though touted as a "low magic" setting, there really were more characters

    in the BR setting that were able to create permanent magic items in the

    original materials than is at first obvious. Most of those characters were

    human priests, but there were also a lot of non-human priests--most notable

    are probably dwarven priests of Moradin--and elven wizards who had the

    ability (read: access to the Permanency spell) to create such

    items. Probably the smallest population of potential permanent magic item

    creators were amongst blooded wizards who represent a fraction of a

    fraction of a fraction of the population. That is, only a small fraction

    of the population is blooded, while only a fraction of those are wizards,

    while only a fraction of those are high enough level to cast the Permanency


    Probably the biggest barrier to permanent magic item creation in 2e was

    character level. There were plenty of spellcasters in the BR materials,

    but since the setting was low level the number of them who could cast

    Permanency (an 8th level arcane spell in 2e) or use the clerical method of

    prayer and supplication to create permanent magic items which was limited

    to 11th+ level priests not a lot of characters qualified. In 3e those

    spellcaster levels are often quite a bit lower. Personally, I don`t mind

    that since 3e is in most respects a more sensible system for portraying

    magic item creation and has its own little trade off of gp and XP.

    One could simply change the numbers involved in magic item creation (gp

    cost or XP cost) as has been suggested by a couple of folks in order to

    keep BR "low magic." I`m loathe to change the basics of that system

    overmuch for several reasons, not the least of which is that the CR system

    assumes a certain inventory value by character level and shifting about

    with the value of magic items throws that off. BR gp values are a little

    hazy, of course, but on the whole I don`t know if a magic item`s value need

    really be any different in BR than it is in D&D simply because BR

    characters tend not to run into the same piles of loose coin laying about

    in the troves of defeated monsters as is the D&D standard. At least,

    that`s been my experience. Since there is less cash about and the value of

    a GB is so low the setting is "cash poor" compared to others. Even BR

    regents with access to a domain`s treasury have money that is comparable to

    the value of the inventory of a moderately levelled (say, 10th to 12th) D&D

    character. Pricing magic items higher is, therefore, redundant in addition

    to making for some weirdness in computing the value of a character`s

    inventory by level.

    Using RP as a requirement to create permanent magic items makes the process

    exclusive to regents; excluding the categories of blooded wizards, elves

    and non-regent clerics, any of whom could create permanent magic items in

    the original system if they were of high enough level. (Admittedly, it was

    very time consuming for clerics.) That`s actually even more stringent than

    it was in the original Birthright rules by quite a margin. It reduces the

    number of magic item creators to probably something in the neighborhood of

    a few dozen. It also means there were no permanent magic items created by

    elves before Deismaar. Unless one is going to surmise some other,

    pre-Deismaar equivalent to RP that allowed them to be made, that is.

    That said, from what I can tell, if one wants to portray permanent magic

    item creation in a way that reflects the characters who were able to create

    such items in the original Birthright materials probably the most effective

    and accurate means of doing so is by putting a prereq on the appropriate

    feats requiring divine spellcasting levels and/or the ability to cast true

    magic. It also is IMO more closely related to the themes of the setting

    since it connects up permanent magic items to the land through those

    characters whose magical abilities come from the connection to the land

    gained by a bloodline, or the connection to the land gained by dedication

    to a deity who is, in turn, an embodiment of that bloodline system.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Am i the only one who thinks the secrets of magic item creation should NOT be common knowledge? What happened to digging thoruogh ancient elven ruin for magical knowledge? I won't let the players create an item unless they locate the knowledge or painstakingly research it(considering the time frame elves make more sense for arcane). Otherwise i won't limit them to much.

    Edit : Irdeggman I see your point. I was using elves as an example as they are the primary Arcane sourse of ancient magic (other then dragons)

  6. #6
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Originally posted by Ksaturn@Sep 9 2004, 01:41 PM
    Am i the only one who thinks the secrets of magic item creation should NOT be common knowledge? What happened to digging thoruogh ancient elven ruin for magical knowledge? I won't let the players create an item unless they locate the knowledge or painstakingly research it(considering the time frame elves make more sense for arcane). Otherwise i won't limit them to much.
    Your call in your game.

    But there were many magic items in the 3nd ed BR material that were created by dwarves and not elves.

    The 3.5 game-mechanic method of reducing the amount of magical items in a setting is to flat out eliminate them (not really an option here) or to increase the market value of the items hence increasing the cost to create them (both in gp and in exp). The Complete Warrior gives an example of this mechanic.
    Duane Eggert

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