Saturday 11 May 2013

Vivimancer -- Scent Spells

In my Ix / Dying Sun campaign, there are two types of magic-user: defilers and preservers. Anyone who's familiar with Dark Sun knows the score, although I have altered the exact effects of defiling magic in my setting (as obliquely mentioned here).

Initially when conceiving the campaign, I had the idea that it'd be great to use completely non-standard spell lists, in order to further increase the originality (as compared to "standard D&D") of the setting. My mind immediately jumped to Theorems & Thaumaturgy, and the idea that defilers are necromancers and preservers are vivimancers. Further development led me gradually away from this idea -- now shamans (a class of cleric) possess some necromantic abilities, and magic-users of both types are vivimancers, unearthing the ancient genetic magic of the long-dead sorcerer kings.

Inevitably, I decided that there also needs to be some setting-specific spells added to the standard vivimancer list. I'm doing these in the "tomes" tradition of Theorems & Thaumaturgy, on the basis of sets of spells created by high-level sorcerers over the course of their careers.

The PC magic-users' master is a character called Ohl Deezu, whom I have determined is a specialist in magic involving scent. Here are a few low level spells in his repertoire, which are open to PCs.

Level: 1
Range: Touch
Duration: 1 turn per level

The target's senses of smell and taste are enhanced by an order of magnitude, enabling the detection of subtle scents beyond the normal human range of perception. While under the spell's effects, the target is able to perform various feats of perception similar to those which highly trained dogs are capable of in the real world:
  • The target can follow fresh scent tracks unfailingly. Tracks which are older than an hour require a successful WIS roll on 1d20, with a -1 penalty per hour since the tracks were made.
  • If the target is familiar with the scent of an individual, its presence in rooms or on objects can be identified unmistakably. Scents older than one hour require a WIS roll, as above.
  • If the target has knowledge of poisons, botanical extracts or the like, his chance to identify the presence of unusual compounds is doubled.
The spell has a single downside: the target's sense of smell is so enhanced that he automatically fails any saving throws against scent-based attacks (such as a troglodyte's stench).

Pheromone Surge
Level: 1
Range: 30'
Duration: 1d6 hours + 1 per level

Targeted against a single creature within range, this spell causes a wave of magically produced pheromones to assail the target, provoking an overwhelming sexual attraction. The target may make a saving throw versus poison to avoid the effects. If the save fails, the attraction lasts for the duration of the spell. Essentially, for this period, the caster becomes irresistibly attractive in the eyes of the target, who will do anything they can to get up close and intimate with the caster.

The spell is ineffective against targets who would not normally regard the caster as a potential mate. It thus has no effect on creatures of inappropriate species or sexual orientation.

Level: 1
Range: Touch
Duration: 1 turn per level

The target's body and all items on its person are shielded by a magical anti-scent mask, making the target completely undetectable to the olfactory senses of others. As the target is rendered completely scentless, even creatures with incredibly powerful olfactory capability (such as those under the effects of hyperolfaction) cannot detect the target.

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