Saturday, April 2, 2011

A is for Artifact

Artifacts are powerful almost world shattering items that embody grandiose themes. They serve as background elements in the greater campaign that touch all aspics of the world with their shadowy tendrils. That being said the should be seldom encounter but their effects should always lap at the edges of the players deeds. The riddle of the artifact as a mythic element should cause both wonder an awe and force the actions of whole nations but lay just out of reach. The unattainable but persistent goal whispering in the ears of peasant and prince. As a practical matter the artifact should be compelling in it's naming. Be it the "one ring" , "the black cauldron" or "the grail". Or lurid and brazen such as "scourge of time", "ravagers regalia" and "sword of omens". It should be striking in the singleness of it. An artifact is the mythic foundation of the campaign world. Events my be directly tied to it's use or just attributed to it. At least three world changing events are some way tied to it. Such as war, disaster, discoveries, and creations. Clustered around the artifact are secret societies both opposed and supporting the myth of the artifact. Quests for the artifact pervade the land be it false paths or true trails. Compelling the foolish and wish to dabble and search out the dark corners. In effect stirring up heroes and villains alike. Artifacts like all things must meet their end but do so in the most dramatic way and by the strangest of methods. Suitable paths to destruction are convoluted and multiple staged. By wondrous and improbable means with complex rites and esoteric ingredients. Artifacts are not magic items they magic pure and powerful as elements. Desired, feared and above all else coveted.

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