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tesral
02-03-2008, 11:58 PM
Iron Vulture: This wondrous item appears to be a crude sitting vulture made of cast iron. Most are six inches or so high. If the command word is known the iron vulture can be activated once every 24 hours. It will devour up to 5 gallons of organic trash and return to the form of the iron statue. An iron vulture will not attack a living being.

The type or nature of the trash does not matter, food waste, wood chips, fecal matter, dead animals, as long as it is organic and will fit in a five gallon bucket the iron vulture will consume it. The trash does not need to be contained in a literal bucket. The iron vulture will not eat stone or mineral debris.

If the waste presented exceeds five gallons the iron vulture will consume its fill and stop, returning to stature form.

An iron vulture is worth 5,000gp on the open market.

rabkala
02-04-2008, 12:28 AM
Dragon magazine used to have lists of 'useless' magic items also.

Are they just for DMs to tease the players and tell them they do have magic items? Do any players actually get excited about a pot that will keep your gruel warm, a bathrobe that will dry you off, a chair that will conform to your butt, etc. ? You inevitably get players that need to test the limits of the poorly worded nearly useless in 99.9% of situations magic items. Why would anyone create these things when you could hire a lifetime of peasants and beggars to take your trash out for you for less?

Wakey, wakey...

Wondrous... I think not.

tesral
02-04-2008, 12:53 AM
Dragon magazine used to have lists of 'useless' magic items also.

Are they just for DMs to tease the players and tell them they do have magic items? Do any players actually get excited about a pot that will keep your gruel warm, a bathrobe that will dry you off, a chair that will conform to your butt, etc. ? You inevitably get players that need to test the limits of the poorly worded nearly useless in 99.9% of situations magic items. Why would anyone create these things when you could hire a lifetime of peasants and beggars to take your trash out for you for less?

Wakey, wakey...

Wondrous... I think not.

Actually they do. The item has had uses and continues to get used by the characters that have it. It's not so much for the home as the adventuring trail. You leave fewer signs of passage if you pot heats the food so you don't need a fire and you have the iron vulture to clean up with. Sometimes not leaving signs of passage is life and death.

There is no such thing as a truly useless item. I have one player I would rather hand a staff of the magi and gauntlets of ogre power than a "useless" magic item. He is extremely creative with what you might call junk. I gave him a "broken" pair of 3-D glasses once and he made a viable weapon out of the thing.

And yes, I get smiles from the household magic items. I'm not stingy, they don't get this instead of a +2 sword.

TAROT
02-04-2008, 02:54 AM
I'd make it 50 gallons, so that you could, say, get rid of a body with it.

tesral
02-04-2008, 02:44 PM
I'd make it 50 gallons, so that you could, say, get rid of a body with it.

Maybe an advanced and more expensive item. A silver vulture. Why not a series of metal vultures up to the Mithrial Vulture than can clean up after a city. Nothing wrong with expanding on the idea.

Riftwalker
02-04-2008, 02:54 PM
So do helmets qualify as buckets for the purpose of activating the iron vulture? If a head weighs 8-12 lbs, then an iron vulture can probably eat half of it, which is probably enough to kill the victim.

Mwahahahahahhaa - turning wondrous items into weapons is fun...

tesral
02-04-2008, 03:42 PM
So do helmets qualify as buckets for the purpose of activating the iron vulture? If a head weighs 8-12 lbs, then an iron vulture can probably eat half of it, which is probably enough to kill the victim.

Mwahahahahahhaa - turning wondrous items into weapons is fun...

See, there is another one. No it won't attack and a literal bucket is not required. You turn it on and point to the garbage. I need to clarify that.

Is it any wonder that spell and magic item descriptions start to sound like legalese?

Malruhn
02-08-2008, 08:03 PM
It's dumb magical items like this that really made me love D&D. Sure, it sounds useless, but that is entirely up to the PC's.

I know I'd like to recover one of these as a player!!

nijineko
02-11-2008, 11:26 AM
most of the players of my acquaintance make an artform of turning "useless" items into viable objects and weapons. some dm made mistake of giving a pc a bag of infinite ice cubes (instead of caltrops). another pc i know has a decanter of endless wine.

and one friend managed to finagle a ring of unlimited cantrips... he was a wildmage. in the return to the tomb of horrors. and he couldn't resist making a wish when he found that gem down in the great hall.... want to know what he wished for? increased chance of wild surges. fortunately, he didn't name anyone but himself. i've always wondered what would happen if someone named acererak in the wish. instant win of the module? ^^ something to think about.

another thing about that pc... (have to run, will edit that in later)