D&D 5th Edition PCs Making Their Own Magic Items





View Poll Results: Which Magic Item Creation Rules Would You Like to See as Options in Next?

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  • PCs shouldn't be able to make magic items at all

    37 24.18%
  • 3.x style item creation, gold + xp + time = item

    22 14.38%
  • 4e style item creation, costs the same as buying it

    22 14.38%
  • Creating magic items should require special quests

    90 58.82%
  • Other (please specify)

    38 24.84%
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  1. #1

    PCs Making Their Own Magic Items

    One of the things that I liked about both 3rd and 4th edition is that PCs could make their own magic items. Even in 2e, there was the enchant magic item spell. While I didn't like the specific implementations of those rules, I was at least happy that my wizard could create his own signature staff or other items.

    In Next, they seem to be taking a "mother may I" approach to magic items, where the only way players can get them is if the DM decides to hand them out. That approach may be fine for some groups, but I would like to see item creation rules for PCs, even if they are optional rules. After all, if other people in the world know how to make magic items, why shouldn't the PCs ever be able to do it?

    There could even be variations on those rules. You could have a 3rd/4th editon style item creation where the player pays a certain amount of gold and time, and perhaps experience points, and can reliably make the item. In the case of 3.x, the player saved money by making the item himself, but he had to sacrifice some experience points. In 4e, there was no cost of experience points, but making an item yourself cost the same as buying it from a vendor.

    There could also be optional rules that require the PCs to quest for exotic components and perform special rituals that are quests unto themselves, for DMs that want magic items to be more special and difficult to create, and still ultimately under the DM's control.

    What kind of item creation rules (if any) would you like to see?

  2. #2
    I'd like to see optional rules for creation that:

    - Provide something mechanically simple for one use items (scrolls, potions)

    - Provide for simple, multi-use charged items (wands)

    - Provide for recharging items

    - Provide suggestions for in-game stories or quests associated with making permanent items. Collecting adamantite ore, forging it in the fire of an active volcano, and quenching it in the heart of a red dragon to make a flametongue, that sort of thing.

    - Does not rely on metagame resources (e.g. XP) to execute.

    - Is not so simple or lucrative that every wizard worth hos salt becomes a wall of iron-casting magic item factory. See also: optional.
    "The Soul of D&D? It's rolling a natural 20 when you're down to 3 hit points and the cleric's on the floor and you're staring that sunnavabitch bugbear right in his bloodshot eye and holding the line just long enough to let the wizard unleash a fireball at the guards who are on their way, because they're all that stands between you, the Foozle and Glory." - WizarDru

  3. #3
    It should be pretty common to make scrolls, possible to learn to make +1 weapons and armor eventually, and almost impossible to make anything else except through lots of questing.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZombieRoboNinja View Post
    It should be pretty common to make scrolls, possible to learn to make +1 weapons and armor eventually, and almost impossible to make anything else except through lots of questing.
    Exactly that !

  5. #5
    This is an area that I have no real "how to" suggestions at this time. I only have "how not to" suggestions based on dissatisfaction with prior editions.

    So whatever it is I really hope:

    1) XP is not a resource spent in the process.

    2) Expendible items like healing potions, scrolls, and wand charges are within the means of characters between adventures.

    3) Creation of permanent items is cost-prohibitive and requires a serious investment of time and wealth.

    4) No magic item shops, at least not as they came to be in 3e. Maybe its okay for hedge wizards who peddle potions, charms, and might help you idenitfy an item you bring in, but an archwizard that could craft a wondrous item doesn't hang out a shingle. You want his help to get a specific type of item crafted, you gotta know a guy who knows a guy who can tell the wizard you're cool and not to turn you into a pile of ashes when you knock on his door.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by GameDoc View Post
    2) Expendable items like healing potions, scrolls, and wand charges are within the means of characters between adventures.

    Wands and staves recharge over night in this time. Have a closer look at the magic items packet.

    As for the poll; Yes, I'd like there to be crafting.
    No, it should not be easy.
    Last edited by tlantl; Wednesday, 10th October, 2012 at 04:57 PM.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by tlantl View Post
    Wands and staves recharge over night in this time. Have a closer look at the magic.
    D'oh! My bad. That's a nice mechanic. It also creates the possibility of having to sacrifice an item in a crisis by spending the last charge to avert a tragedy. Good grist for the roleplaying mill.

  8. #8
    I voted other but I don't like the poll.

    First of all I would like to have magic creation rules with a huge red OPTIONAL before them, I think that magic creation rules are highly dependant on the individual campaign.

    I would like to see them added in a separate appendix in the DM or better yet in a different book altogether, item creation rules should be the poster child of modularity and having a moving scale to fit them into your own individual campaign.

    I have no problem with DM empowerment in the current edition, generally the DM is the guy busting his ass making sure that everyone is having fun and crafting the advantures so leaving the decision in his hand of the DM is good enough for me.

    On a side note, I really like the fact that there are random tables for generating magic items, I like rolling those with my players when we do sandboxing.

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  9. #9
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    While I don't think this is something that would be high on WotC's list of priorities, I would like to see adventure modules built around the idea of creating a magic item. DMs don't really need much support if they take the approach of "The PCs can't create magic items" or "The PCs just spend money to get a magic item". However, if a DM wants to play through the process of gathering exotic materials, learning the proper techniques and rituals, and performing them, it would be good if there is something he can reference.

  10. #10
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    I favor a combination of 3.x style rules and special quests. Simple magic items should require only time and money; more powerful magic items should require special ingredients/components/materials that can't just be purchased.

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