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Moritz
02-26-2011, 09:39 PM
Continual Flame is a spell that allows the caster to cast a persistent illumination equal to that of a torch (without the heat) on any item.

Tonight's game found this spell disrupting. And I'm curious what anyone thinks.

Ok, here's what the player wanted to do:

The player wanted to get some cheap necklace with amulet and have continual flame cast upon the item. Then wear the item and gain the benefit of the illumination without having to hold a torch.

To me, this is a fine use of the spell.

However, the question came up as to whether or not the necklace then occupied the same slot as an amulet slot and therefore would prevent wearing of another necklace. Half the group, including myself, believed it should occupy the slot and a true magical amulet (say Wisdom +2) could not exist in the same slot at the same time. Whereas the other half of the group believed it could co-exist with the other magical item. This argument extended to the question of a broach, bracelet, held in hand, etc.

Additionally, another question was brought up: What if a magical item (IE: Sword +1) were to have continual flame cast upon it. Essentially giving the sword an additional ability (illumination).

First, is it possible to just cast Continual Flame on a magical item without having to pay the normal imbue costs (XP/Gold/Time)? And second, if if doesn't cost, does it actually add to the maximum qualities (+'s, attributes, etc) that any magical item can have?

Anyone have any thoughts or maybe know where it may stipulate this in the 3.5 rules?

Dolanar
02-26-2011, 10:20 PM
ok a question popped to mind about this

A. is this intended to be a permanent enchantment? If so I believe magical item limitations should apply to it.

I believe if this is just casting a spell as needed, it can be cast on any item, held or otherwise, as it has a duration, much like you can still add magical bonuses to magical weapons by using spells. However if you intend to make it a permanent magical effect, it should follow all magical item restrictions. So Ultimately, it would depend on the desired effect the player has.

Chaucer
02-26-2011, 11:49 PM
Well, technically no, you cant have two neck items at the same time. Though of course in reality you could, but in the rules of the game you cant. But since one of the amulets technically isnt powerful enough to gain any bonuses on the character other than having a tied on flashlight, I dont see why you couldnt let them wear it. Just up to you as the DM.

Dolanar
02-27-2011, 08:26 AM
personally I like something from Pathfinder, they took an Ioun stone that had nothing in it, but still retained its orbital flight & just imbued it with either Light or Continual Flame, & it floated around the character...seems a good fit for this situation.

Moritz
02-27-2011, 01:20 PM
I like the idea of adding it to a blank Ioun Stone.

Which brings back the question, what if a person wanted to add Continual Flame to an item that was already imbued with magical benefits. According to the rules:

Adding New Abilities

A creator can add new magical abilities to a magic item with no restrictions. The cost to do this is the same as if the item was not magical. Thus, a +1 longsword can be made into a +2 vorpal longsword, with the cost to create it being equal to that of a +2 vorpal sword minus the cost of a +1 sword.
If the item is one that occupies a specific place on a character’s body the cost of adding any additional ability to that item increases by 50%. For example, if a character adds the power to confer invisibility (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/specialAbilities.htm#invisibility) to her ring of protection +2, the cost of adding this ability is the same as for creating a ring of invisibility multiplied by 1.5.



Would it cost the additional 1.5 and take all the feats/skills/xp/gold required to normally imbue a magic item with additional abilities?

Chaucer
02-27-2011, 07:10 PM
Hrm... okay well on table 7-33 of the DMG on page 285, it shows the base prices of items. A 'use activated or continuous' spell effect would cost (Spell level x caster level x 2,000 GP). Though it states for something can last for more than 24 hours, in the subtext of that table, you would divide the costs in half. So an item that had a continual flame on it would cost somewhere in the neighborhood of 10,000 gold base price to create.

You would require something along the lines of this if Im correct:
5th level Wizard (Since you need 3rd level magic in order to get the Create Wondrous Item feat)
Create Wondrous Items Feat
400 xp
10,000 gold

But honestly, Continual Flame does not appear to have any rules about placing it on an already magical object. The spell effect is permanent. So if you wanted my opinion, if the player has access to the spell he/she could just cast it and be done with it rather than attempting to just create an item with the effect already in place. Worst case scenario is that someone casts darkness and it gets smothered out or dispelled. Then the player can just cast it again whenever.

Thats the way I see it anyway.

rabkala
02-27-2011, 09:31 PM
Continual flame is a spell not an enhancement. Dispel magic will permanently end the continual flame spell, but at best only suppress a magic item for a short time. Continual flame does not add value. Continual flame does not occupy a body slot or have a body slot affinity. You are not creating an item, you are just casting a spell with an unusually long duration. You can cast many spells upon a magical item (like bless weapon), but the spells do not change the item. Illumination is a very different effect than continual flame.

---------- Post added at 09:31 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:36 PM ----------

So if I wasn't clear...


Well, technically no, you cant have two neck items at the same time. Though of course in reality you could, but in the rules of the game you cant. But since one of the amulets technically isnt powerful enough to gain any bonuses on the character other than having a tied on flashlight, I dont see why you couldnt let them wear it. Just up to you as the DM.
You can wear as many rings, necklaces, etc. that you want like a medieval Mr T. Only one magical item takes precedence. You could wear two sets of bracers of armor. The effects do not stack, but the more powerful item takes precedence. If the one set is destroyed by disjunction or an epic fail, the other would become primary. Of course, weight restrictions and encumbrance will come into play with such scenarios.


Adding New Abilities

A creator can add new magical abilities to a magic item with no restrictions. The cost to do this is the same as if the item was not magical. Thus, a +1 longsword can be made into a +2 vorpal longsword, with the cost to create it being equal to that of a +2 vorpal sword minus the cost of a +1 sword.
If the item is one that occupies a specific place on a character’s body the cost of adding any additional ability to that item increases by 50%. For example, if a character adds the power to confer invisibility (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/specialAbilities.htm#invisibility) to her ring of protection +2, the cost of adding this ability is the same as for creating a ring of invisibility multiplied by 1.5.



Would it cost the additional 1.5 and take all the feats/skills/xp/gold required to normally imbue a magic item with additional abilities?

No, you are just casting a spell. You are not creating an item or imbuing an item with new abilities. When you craft an item you must use quality
items that are extraordinarily well-made (masterwork), fresh and unused ingredients, choice materials, etc. but you could cast a spell like continual flame on a half eaten pile of unusually poor quality horse manure!

Dolanar
02-27-2011, 09:53 PM
Continual Flame is a spell that makes things different...normally for a permanent effect, you would need to imbue it into an item, however due to the spells nature of already being a permanent effect it changes, though it would still be the size of a normal Torch, despite the item it was used on, so if you are just casting the spell, then no it would not take up a magical item slot, as its not a magical item, however you may as well just cast the spell onto a magical item you always have handy anyway.

Chaucer
02-28-2011, 08:40 AM
Hrm... well I'd have to agree with rabkala on this. I was looking at it too hard I think for some damn reason. It is a magical effect that does make the item different. But it doesnt go through item creation to make one. As rabkala essentially said, you could cast it on horse dung... though I dont see how that is logical... though I suppose it would be a funny trick to play on neighbors... continual flame on a bag of dog crap or something. Heh, you're trying to put out a fire with your foot, but it just wont go away... priceless.

But honestly, yeah its permanent and it does say its magical, but it isnt necessary to create an item with it when you can just cast it willy nilly on anything you want. Its not like the thing gives an enhancement bonus, so its not even remotely a huge deal.

However, it would be entertaining to see random NPC's trying to put the player out since it would appear that they are on fire because of the continual flame. There's a thought.

rabkala
02-28-2011, 12:50 PM
Gold piece cost for continual flame: 0
Experience point cost: 0

Casting it on a bag of dog doo on the front step of your cranky neighbor's house: Priceless!

:lol:

Dolanar
02-28-2011, 01:58 PM
agreed, a flame that never gets put out lol, though they could just cover it.

nijineko
03-06-2011, 05:27 PM
Gold piece cost for continual flame: 50 gp worth of ruby dust
Experience point cost: 0

Casting it on a bag of dog doo on the front step of your cranky neighbor's house: Priceless!

:lol:

fixed that for you. ^^

which raises the question. does the spell continue if the item it is cast on destroyed? assuming that stomping on the baggie would destroy said baggie and/or contents.

rabkala
03-06-2011, 09:38 PM
Good catch, you get a :pizza:...

:nono: Hey, wha happened to cookies?

Off the top of my head, I would say the flame would be gone once what it was cast on is gone. Interesting...

Dolanar
03-07-2011, 01:36 AM
I would have to agree, though in most cases it may take extreme cases, however I would argue that if only a small piece of the item still remained the spell may still continue, but that one would differ from GM to GM I think

nijineko
03-11-2011, 12:38 AM
it would be creepy (if cool) if the item perished but the flame remained. a continual flame in a temple long destroyed and now overgrown still floats amidst the trees that dominate what used to be the courtyard or sanctuary. faded with time and only visible on fog-less nights....

i wonder if in a tomb or crypt, the air being still, even if the torch crumbled to dust, the very non-moving air was seeped with the magic, thus becoming part of the material upon which it was cast over the years... might be able to pull it off. then as the party enters and disturbs the lair, the lights all go out.... ^^ make them all super paranoid.

having said all that, rules-wise, i too think that it would go out if the item was destroyed.

Anarkitty
03-14-2011, 05:01 PM
I have seen this spell used in numerous creative ways. I had a player cast it on his own hair. When he needed to be stalthy he put a hat on. I have seen it cast on weapons, tools, gloves, and numerous prank items. I have even seen it used to mark the party's path in a maze (much harder to mess with than a chalk arrow). I've seen it used to scam naive shopkeepers and scare town guards.
It is one of the most amazingly useful and versatile spells in the game.
And I agree, it can be cast on a magic item without any additional cost, and can be stacked in a location without causing problems, because it is a spell using the item as a focal point, rather than an enhancement to the item itself.
As for destroying the item it is cast on, that is atricky subject. Technically matter is neither created or destroyed. The atoms remain in existance, they just change configuration. That said, magic is based on perception, so I would rule that a significant change of state (melting, burning, shattering, disintigration, etc) would qualify as "destruction" and would cause the spell to dissipate because it no longer has its focal point.

nijineko
03-14-2011, 08:43 PM
Technically matter is neither created or destroyed. The atoms remain in existance, they just change configuration. That said, magic is based on perception, so I would rule that a significant change of state (melting, burning, shattering, disintigration, etc) would qualify as "destruction" and would cause the spell to dissipate because it no longer has its focal point.

Your un-suspended belief side is showing.... besides, you might be out of date. Stephen Hawking is on record for claiming that the destruction of matter might actually be happening in our universe... much to the extreme antagonism of some other scientists. A careful review of his comments, however, reveals that there is room for the possibility that the energy/matter is simply 'leaving' our universe, but then, where is it going? ^^

Anarkitty
03-16-2011, 03:48 PM
And in a system with Magic and alternate Planes it becomes very possible.
My point was that under the circumstances, the science has to be set aside because Magic largely ignores it anyway.

It could be interesting to redesign the magic system around quantum physics, or perhaps create a prestiege class that specializes based on the physics of magic instead of the school.

Malruhn
03-16-2011, 07:56 PM
I have a small pond (about 30' in diameter) that was once a favored location for wandering adventurers. Over the years of stopping and some drunken parties, numerous (a dozen or so) continual light torches were thrown into the water, where the wood rotted away.

Players today are amazed at a tiny pond that faintly glows at night and some have attempted to find out why. They'll never know that the origin was so... simple... or so base.

d-_-b
03-21-2011, 01:48 AM
We have a player with the exact same item in a game I am DM'ing. Personally I really do not see the problem if a player is willing to shell out 100GP (he just bought a rock with a hole in it on which continual light has been cast, and put it on a string) for a torch, I'll let him have that. As it does not actually confer bonuses onto the player it does not take up at slot.

Second, when you create a magic weapon the creator has to decide if it gives of light (as a torch). This is a bi-effect of it being magical and does not affect the price of item creation. It is in the book somewhere...

Malruhn
03-21-2011, 10:04 PM
Just this past weekend, I had a PC in my campaign grab a handful of sand and cast light on it - and he attempted to throw it on some supposed undead that had attacked. He missed, but I arbitrarily ruled that the entire underside of the wagon (where he had been sleeping prior to the attack) was glowing like a dozen candles had been lit. What was more amazing was that it put out the same light as a regular torch!

After an hour, it went out.

Soft Serve
03-23-2011, 12:31 AM
Interesting theories and usage. I'm leaning twards' the liberal side and saying it leaves a slot open. Considering darkness is easy enough to overcome in D&D, and it won't (or shouldn't) make or break the session. Unless of course it's a special element in an encounter, but even then, easy enough to overcome.

nijineko
03-27-2011, 04:15 PM
an enspelled item is not the same as an enchanted item. so it should not take up a slot.