Friday, 29 March 2013

Ix: Vivimantic Lenses

In my forthcoming Ix campaign, the only type of magic-user is the vivimancer from Theorems & Thaumaturgy. They are characters who are attempting to piece together the lost arts of the ancient sorcerer kings, who were masters of biological magic and genetic science.

In this setting, all enchanted items created by magic-users are of biological origin, typically being crafted from specially bred plants or animals. (As I previously discussed, all clerical magic items will be created by a process of spirit binding... I hope magic items in this setting will be unusual and flavourful!)

For a bit of flavour, here are some example items.

Vivimantic Lenses
Optic lenses harvested from the eyes of vat-crafted chimera, these items are found in wide variety, from marble-sized to cyclopean. Looking through these lenses, or allowing light to pass through them, activates arcane powers. Lenses may occasionally be found set in rings, crowns or pieces of jewellery.

Like all vivimantic items, the magic imbued in lenses allows them to retain some of the features of living organisms.

Lens of Sublime Refraction
Fist-sized lenses of a milky hue, covered in a warm oily liquid, these lenses gather and refract light from atypical angles. Looking through the lens, and aligning it correctly, the viewer is able to see around corners and through small holes. The maximum range of vision using this lens is 60'.

Lens of Transparent Revelation
These clear, 1' diameter lenses scintillate with rainbow hues which ripple across the surface. They are extracted from octopoid monstrosities which can only be grown in large vat-pools. Looking through this lens, the internals of solid objects are revealed, allowing their form to be studied. Objects larger than 2' cannot be fully penetrated by this lens' sight.

Lens of Subtle Sight
This lens redirects any light which hits its surface into the optic nerve of one who holds it. The lens must be in direct contact with the user's flesh in order to function. Lenses of subtle sight are typically palm-sized and of an azure hue, flecked with brown. Every time a lens of subtle sight is used, there is a 1 in 6 chance of it permanently embedding itself in the flesh of the user.

Lens of Biological Detection
Always found in pairs, these small green lenses must be placed over the eyes. They reveal the world wreathed in a green mist, with biological organisms haloed in yellow. The capability of the lenses is such that the outlines of organisms are visible even through inorganic matter up to 1' thick.

If looking through one lens only, with the second eye uncovered, the viewer's brain is bombarded with strobing energies – a save versus spells is required to prevent insanity lasting 1d4 days.

Lens of the Sub-World
A tiny black lens no larger than a fingernail, this object has the power to reveal biological matter on the smallest scale. Vivimancers trained in its use are thus able to study samples of living tissue in order to identify species or to diagnose disease.

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