Tuesday, 17 March 2020

Magic Items for Troika

Some of these items are from recent twitter threads, others have been sitting in my draft folder for ages. Once I have enough of them (thirty-six?), I'll release them as a CC-BY pdf, probably with an alternate version statted for Knave.

EDIT: I've released the first 18 items as an itch page, available to read for free/PWYW. PDF forthcoming.

If you haven't checked out Troika! yet, its itch product page links to a google-doc SRD you can read for free. If you want to convert them to other systems, the main things you need to know are:

  • Luck is a character's "fortune and intuition", functioning much like saving throws in other games. To Test your Luck, roll 2d6 equal-or-below your current Luck score. Regardless of success or failure, you then decrease your Luck by 1. Roll 1d6+6 for starting Luck, this never improves. You heal 2d6 Luck with an 8-hour rest (but never go over starting Luck).
  • To make a Skill Test, roll 2d6 equal-or-below your relevant Skill Total, which for beginning characters will be a number ranging between 4 and 9. For opposed Skill Tests, each character rolls 2d6 + their relevant Skill Total, highest wins.
  • Encountered monsters and other NPCs have a 1d6 Mien table. This works similarly to an old-school reaction roll, except that Mien results often can't be ranked from best to worst. Would you rather encounter a Suspicious troll or a Spiteful troll?
  1. Bootstrapping Boots
  2. Cuckoo Spell
  3. Edible Brooch
  4. Minimus Egg
  5. Orpheus Mirror
  6. Remembrance Shard
  7. Seaglass Ring
  8. Seasoning Orb
  9. Starsnuff
  10. Zinn's Annulus

Bootstrapping Boots

Knee-high boots that walk around of their own volition. Each sunrise, they walk next to their last wearer and nudge them awake. They will do this multiple times a day on worlds with multiple suns. If the last wearer refuses to get up, the boots deploy bootstraps to hoist them upright.

Cuckoo Spell

A grapefruit-sized gelatinous orb of roiling energy, that slowly shuffles around on little cilia. Roll on the Random Spell chart to determine which spell it contains.

Harmless to someone who doesn't know any Spells. Such a person can handle and throw the orb, which has a 4-in-6 chance of rupturing on impact, releasing the spell.

If handled by a spellcaster, the Cuckoo Spell will fuse with them, stealing the skill ranks of whichever Spell the person knows that has the fewest ranks (break ties at random). The old Spell withers and is forgotten. The Cuckoo Spell ignores spellcasters who already know the contained spell.

The spellcaster can Test their Luck to avoid this. If they succeed, they fling the Cuckoo Spell off them before it successfully fuses. The same 4-in-6 chance of rupture applies.

Edible Brooch

This cloak pin is set with delicious-looking gummy jewels. Pluck one out and eat it, or toss it at a creature. Depending on their Mien, the creature might eat the gummy (e.g. if they are Hungry or Curious) or ignore it (e.g. Suspicious). If Mien gives little indication, the creature must Test their Luck or eat the gummy.

Each time you pluck out a jewel, cross out one of the boxes next to its colour.

Red ❏❏

You hiccup fire. This is a a melee weapon dealing damage as a Beastly Weapon appropriate to your size (Most characters will use Modest Beast). Test Your Luck whenever you want to do an action in combat other than hiccup fire, or whenever you attempt something involving flammable objects. Lasts 1 hour.

Blue ❏❏

You melt into a quasi-liquid. Must make a Climb Test to ascend even the gentlest slopes. Can flow through small holes and crevices. Lasts 1 hour.

Green ❏❏

You become a plant. Lose any ranks you have in Acrobatics. For each rank lost, roll a d3 and gain a rank in the corresponding Advanced Skill:

  1. Climb
  2. Healing
  3. Poison

You can subsist on just water and light in the short term, and in the long term only require a source of minerals. This is permanent.

White ❏❏❏

You become so preoccupied with the finality of death, of utterly ceasing to be, that you will do anything to avoid dying or killing. You are a total pacifist and will not fight unless completely cornered. Lasts 1 hour.

Minimus Egg

This egg is porcelain-white. If you handle it, you feel a strong parental instinct — you must Test your Luck to act on any desire to abandon or destroy it.

Incubate the egg, and its shell will slowly turn the colour of your skin. It hatches into a tiny clone of you in 6 days. The clone is helpless when newly-hatched. In another 6 days, the fledgling clone is mature, but never grows taller than your handspan.

Roll Skill, Stamina and Luck for the clone, as normal for a new character. The GM decides which aspects (if any) of your Background are genetically heritable. Due to their size, they take no damage from falls.

You have no special control or influence over the new being. They may accompany you or strike out on their own (particularly if mistreated). Write a Mien table for it, with the GM's approval.

Orpheus Mirror

This mirror's reflection reveals the presence of ghosts and other incorporeal undead, even invisible ones. It also reveals if a creature is possessed by such a spirit.

If a loved one (this love need not be romantic) dies, you can hold the mirror, declare why you care about this person, and it will show you one of the countless hidden ways to the Underworld. This allows you a single attempt to retrieve your love. Your love must not have been dead for longer than a year. You do not require their remains.

You must go alone. This journey to the Underworld does not obey the normal rules of time. For the mortal world, the journey takes an hour. For you, it could be days, or months. You do not need to eat or drink during this time.

The journey is resolved with a single roll. Test your Luck, and note whether the die results match. Then pick the appropriate number of outcomes from the list below.

Success and Doubles. Choose one.
Success. Choose two.
Fail. Choose four.
Failure and Doubles. All outcomes.

  • The mirror is destroyed in the attempt.
  • You must give away something of great value. Gold has no value in the Underworld.
  • Your love is unwilling to leave. You can force them to do so.
  • Despite your efforts, your love must stay behind.
  • You must stay behind.

Remembrance Shard

A pottery fragment, edges razor-sharp, inscribed with "Emrick". At night, smear it with a drop of your blood and speak the word to conjure the spectre of a friendly dog. Invisible, warm, heavy, he fades at the next sunrise. Has a 1-in-6 chance of knowing any given one-word trick (keep a record of tricks he knows).

Seaglass Ring

While you wear this ring, your flesh look a bit more translucent than normal. Immersing body parts in water turns them completely transparent; only a faint green tint and the refractive index of glass visually betrays their presence. Clothing and equipment is unaffected.

While underwater (and naked), you roll Sneak Tests with a Skill Total of 3 + your Skill. If you already have at least 3 ranks in Sneak, you instead add +1 to your normal Skill Total.

Seasoning Orb

A basketball-sized wooden sphere with a single groove around its equator. If dropped, it will land on an angle matching the world's axial tilt, assuming a spheroidal world (see below).

The two hemispheres can spin around the groove like a pepper grinder. Present the Orb to a plant and grind it through 90 degrees, and the plant will advance one season. This happens over 10 minutes, causing blossoming, fruiting, shedding leaves etc as appropriate for its species. This will not cause a plant to mature faster or grow taller.

Overuse of an Orb can kill a plant. Any given plant may be advanced one season safely. Roll a d6 for each season beyond the first; on a 1, the plant dies.

Lesser Orbs don't function on nonspheroidal worlds, while the rare True Orbs will contort to match even the most exotic topology. A True Orb can be used as a navigational aid on such worlds with a successful Mathmology Test.


Snort it for a taste of the numinous.

You connect to one of the many domains of the divine, and can siphon some of its power for a one-time magical effect. Most starsnuff connects to a random domain (roll below); only the most skilled of alchemists can refine starsnuff that connects to a specific desired domain.

Describe what magical effect you want to accomplish and the GM will tell you whether it falls under that divine sphere and how much Stamina it will cost. Then you can cast it following all the normal rules for Spells, except you must Test your Luck instead of your Skill.

The effects of starsnuff wear off once you successfully cast a Spell with it, or after an hour.

If you're lucky, you might be able to learn the Spell you cast, though the universe has an odd way of requiring a different amount of Stamina for the mortal version than was needed for the starsnuff version.

Starsnuff is a dangerous commodity illegal in many spheres. Repeated use risks the ire of the gods whose power you hijack, or the attention of the starry sea's many theurgotrophic life forms. Side-effects include dizziness, nosebleeds, delusions of godhood, and spiritual metamorphosis.

d66 Domain d66 Domain d66 Domain
11 Death 31 Terror 51 Desire
12 Ember 32 Ship 52 Mercy
13 Seed 33 Oath 53 Balance
14 Writing 34 Despair 54 Silver
15 Sun 35 Joy 55 Cat
16 Memory 36 Door 56 Medicine
21 Destruction 41 Skill 61 Dream
22 Time 42 Cave 62 Hearth
23 Ocean 43 Wine 63 Stone
24 Judgement 44 Luck 64 Destiny
25 Moon 45 Sphere 65 Alloy
26 Stamina 46 Tree 66 Delirium

Zinn's Annulus

This band of fibrous muscle was Zinn's final creation, before the vivimancer's accidental (?) demise.

The wearer's fingertip swells into a functioning eye, with the same size, visual acuity, and fragility of a typical human eye.

The ring is intelligent and can telepathically communicate with the wearer. If the wearer is asleep or comatose, the ring can seize control of their body. Whether the ring then acts in accordance with the wielder's goals depends on the ring's current Mien and any agreement or friendship between them.

The ring can also take control of animals, plants, or anything with fingerlike structures. Animals can only be possessed if their minds are sedated.


  1. Devious
  2. Curious
  3. Grouchy
  4. Condescending
  5. Thoughtful
  6. Hedonistic

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