This is one of those Perfect Solution items. Someone comes up with a need, creates an item that solves it perfectly, Nice. Neat. No Drama.
Deletion of drama is not a good thing in my mind, and forcing characters to confront the realities of how to obtain information while being true to their convictions, if any, is far better then simply waving it away.
Lie detector machines can be bested. Truth serums can kill. Tortured people can still lie.
I would, at the very least, have this amulet do damage to the victim's sanity, even if they are innocent, so one must take care using it. The more they resist answering with the truth, the greater the stress upon their mind. Good folk would not be able to use this item without having to balance the pros and cons.
I like the idea of a magic currency, perhaps usable as alternate components that apply modifiers for spells. I remember an old Dragon magazine article which listed various alternate components for the various spells, and their impacts on them.
These fit more in line with the video-gamish approach to spells where consumer-goods exist and there are lot of casters in the world - so very High Fantasy.
With all due respect to my esteemed colleagues, R.A. Blenkinsop, G. Wainwright and L.L.K. Janovsky, I cannot fully agree with their assertions on the topic of the elements, specially their consideration of Spirit, or the 5th Element.
In our studies, we have determined that Spirit indeed is a separate element and moreover, it is only through it's influence that the secondary and tertiary elements can exist at all. This replaces their current 4-tiered system with the three, which harmonizes well with the Trinity.
Before Creation, the universe consisted only of four elements, complete in their purity. Once the Universe came to Divine Attention, it was only then that the elements could combine. The pure elements left little avenue for creation of appropriate mortal coils, though beings were created, which we now know as the Elementals. These early elementals still exist today, but bereft of the element of Spirit, they are inferior beings. To provide proper containers for the Spirit, the elements were allowed to mix through the powers of the Spirit.
Upon Creation, the raw elements were touched by Divine attention and became infused with spirit. This spirit enables the elements to mix, bringing forth the existence of the other two tiers of the elements. Since Spirit is necessary to form any of the bonds, all of them include an equal proportion of spirit.
We do not contest the theory of the tiers of elements, only the view of Spirit being a combination of the four elements.
Now, the addition of the element of Spirit brings rise to additional four second tier elements. We refer to these as Divine Elements. No such material has yet been isolated, but once the Grand Elemental Circle at Cambridge is completed in the next five years, we should be better able to delve into this study, and produce samples of the Divine Elements.
At this point, venturing into the properties of the Divine Elements is a matter of speculation and is the subject of our upcoming paper.
Editor's note: R.H. Gainsworth's experimental results have yet to be confirmed by any officially sanctioned facility, and his opinions do not reflect that of this journal. Go to Comment
The S'krae Lifeforms (Intelligent Species)