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4.31
13 Votes

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Comments: 21
Ideas: 0
Rating: 4.3077
Condition: Normal
ID: 2272

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Updated:
January 30, 2006, 4:09 pm

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Sextant of the Soul

By:

The Sextant of the Soul is a potent magical artifact that can only be found within the dreamscape.

Location:
According to the old journals of the dreamer cult, “it can be found fifteen dream leagues to the north of the Golden City of Dreams”. Only those of true inner strength will be able to travel across the “Beast Plains” which surround the “Falling Mountains”. In these mountains the Gardens of Serenity can be found, from which the Tower of Ylkhuun rise. At the very topmost floor of the tower, the Secret Chamber of the Soul can be found.

The Beast Plains are nightmarish fields of mud and mire. Visibility is limited by torrential rain, reed and mists. Unimaginable nightmare horrors* crawl through these plains, their bodies black and scaly, sometimes with shadowy heads and appendages erupting from their torso.

The Falling Mountains are similarly nightmarish. Avalanches and rockslides occur here with alarming frequency and more than one dreamer has found himself free falling after stepping down the wrong path. The Mountains are the home of a race of unique dragons that only lair within dreams and here in particular. These are the majestic seven headed Phyraeon Hydras; great winged wyrms whose glittering golden scales herald their coming long before they actually land. The Phyraeon Hydras are potentially dangerous in that their icy cold breath might cause a heart attack in any dreamer they attack. Luckily these dragons aren’t aggressive, preferring to challenge trespassers with cryptic riddles and obscure bits of wisdom instead.

The Gardens of Serenity is the name of the huge valley that nests between the ring of mountains known as the Falling Mountains. These are lush lands, where wondrous beasts graze on green pastures, where the forests are filled with strange and colourful insects and where fruit grows on every tree. Anyone descending from the mountains will instantly notice the thin tower which soars above the valley, and even above the mountains, reaching into the skies above.

This is the Tower of Ylkhuun, a dreamer cultist of old. Some say Ylkhuun was the first worshipper of dreams and the first to ascend from mere mortal life. According to the chronicles of the first dreamer of the Golden City Temple, Ylkhuun still inhabits his tower, but he has changed; he is now an ancient ghost drifting about in the tower, dreaming of ages bygone, lost in the memories of the past. No one knows how many floors can be found within the tower, but according to the myths, the Secret Chambers of the Soul can be found on the very top. This is the temple of the Sextant of the Soul. This is a location the owner of the sextant can reach from anywhere at anytime. Even when awake.

History:
The origin of the Sextant is unclear. According to the dreamer cult it might have been created by the comatose mages of the dream cult in their Golden City temple. Other sources say that it has always existed and that it is merely a dream representation of the soul and inner strength. A popular legend claims that Ylkhuun built his tower as a representation of the human soul and the power of the will. According to that legend he was visited by an avatar of the Dreamer** and that avatar gave a boon unto Ylkhuun: He would never die, and he would never fade from the world of dreams, even though his mortal coil would surely perish. Additionally his tower would become a monument of the triumphing will and the power of dreams. Thus he created the secret chambers of the soul, and placed within these chambers the Sextant of the Soul: A nondescript, even rusty, sextant, resting on an old wooden stool.

Magical abilities:
The Sextant of the Soul can only be found within dreams. It helps the owner make good decisions, giving a small boost to any wisdom and intelligence related attributes. The owner is simply more able to discern what is the right thing to do.

The sextant also helps ward against mental domination and spiritual imprisonment: If the owner becomes subject to magical control, he will find himself within the secret chambers of the soul, from which he can do a number of things.

1. The owner could perform magical rituals, if he has the know how, and trace the magic to the person responsible or even kill the opponent while he is controlling the waking body of the owner.

2. He can also conjure a spectral image of the dominator to the secret chambers, and then physically do battle with him. This is a power given by the sextant and all owners may do this. If the owner of the Sextant is killed in this way, the sextant has a new owner and the old owner is irredeemably killed, his soul forever lost and unable to find it’s way to the Gods.

Unbeknownst to anyone, this is what happened to Ylkhuun and a number of other owners. They did indeed become immortal, but once defeated they became the spectral slaves of the tower, maintaining and guarding it from intruders and hostiles. This is the price to pay for the services of the tower and once you own the Sextant, there is no going back. If the owner dies in any other location, he does not become enslaved, for that specific power of the tower does not extend outside the chamber of the soul. Fortunately, the previous owners of the sextant makes good guardians and seldomly does anyone brave the plains and mountains and then survive the tower.

If anyone endures the dangers of the tower and is able to find the secret chambers with the intention to gain the sextant, the owner’s spiritual image is conjured and must fight for it’s ownership.

3. If the owner becomes spiritually imprisoned he could reconnect with his physical body by opening a spiritual back door. It is the way of things that there is always another way, and with the guidance of the sextant, the owner can stake out a path through the dreamscape that will eventually lead to the spectral representation of his comatose body. The mystical bond that connects the body and the dreamer will then be re-established and the dreamer will awaken from his coma.

The chambers can be reached from anywhere, even while awake, though the owner would then apparently faint and drop to the ground. While in the chamber the owner will be aware of every sound close to his sleeping body and may awaken at the blink of an eye.

Notes:
* These are called Nightmare Fiends in Coldforged.
**A Dreaming God of the Coldforged setting.



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Comments ( 21 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted Cheka Man
January 29, 2006, 15:17
0xp
Interesting-a way for people put in a magical coma to get out of it.I'm not entirely show how it works,which is why I gave it a 4 instead of a 5.
Ancient Gamer
January 29, 2006, 15:22
0xp
Ancient Gamer 10:18 pm: Well, it gives the owner a certain number of abilities
Cheka Man 10:18 pm: Can he/she use them when awake?

Ancient Gamer 10:18 pm: Yes

Ancient Gamer 10:18 pm: He does not have to hold it or anything, he just needs to find the chamber, defeat the previous owner and claim it

Ancient Gamer 10:19 pm: He can use it while awake. It is always "on" and boosts the intelligence and wisdom

Cheka Man 10:20 pm: It's main use seems to be preventing possession and magical comas

Ancient Gamer 10:20 pm: Yes

Ancient Gamer 10:20 pm: It is a willpower strengthening item

Cheka Man 10:20 pm: A good item

Ancient Gamer 10:21 pm: Besides: The little side effect of noticing what happens where your body sleeps is tremendous to escape assassinations and such
Voted Chaosmark
January 29, 2006, 16:08
0xp
Well, I like it. It's alot shorter than your normal posts, but still gets the item fleshed out quite decently. I myself think the Dream Battle sounds awesome if it was done properly, and though each of the abilities might seem fairly strong, each would also open many many avenues of roleplaying.

Oh, and why is it under Shards of the Storm quest? Was that unintentional? If it WAS intentional, how does the shard fit into the Sextant?
Ancient Gamer
January 29, 2006, 16:09
0xp
Not intentional at all. I am afraid that is just a citadel bug. I hope Strolen fixes it soon ;)
Ancient Gamer
January 29, 2006, 16:49
0xp
Update: Added the section about what happens to those owners who die in combat in the chambers.
Voted Maggot
January 30, 2006, 4:43
0xp
I loved it. Just reading this, made me feel like I was drifting off, gaining an insight into another world. It's hard to describe the feeling,but it had a soothing and enchanting effect on me.
Voted Mourngrymn
January 30, 2006, 16:15
0xp
Weird... wouldn't let me comment.

Anyway. I hope my 4 isn't looked down on as I really like this, to a point.

First thing I would ask for is to describe the sextant as some may not know what it is and if they do it may have special features that make it seem more than what it really is.

I realize some of my comments below don't really pertain to the item itself so please bear with me.

I like the location some. The surounding area seemed teeming with nasties that would cause anyone willing to travel there great pause. Although my question would be why? Why is it near such a bad place? Did it grow up around the tower, or was the tower built between the mountains and the swampland for a purpose? The Serentiy Gardens, if they are so lush and perfect why does no one life there? Are there any beast of a predetory nature there?

The creatures that inhabit the surrounding area, why are they like that? Were they drawn to the tower or are they the nightmares of the dead? Possibly those who failed in their task to gain the sextant were forced to live a new life as the beast with shadow heads and torso.

Why would this item be sought after? If someone knows of it then they must know it houses the ghosts of its previous owners. Being that it is so isolated only those who survive would know of it and only information they give out would be relavant. So they would either keep it al lto themself and no one would find it or they would tell people and they would not want to go there for fear of being trapped.

It has its good ideas in it which is why I gave a 4... but I want to give it higher but am finding it is lacking something for me.
Ancient Gamer
January 30, 2006, 19:21
0xp
>>>I hope my 4 isn't looked down on as I really like this, to a point.

No way! I respect your opinion. If I cannot take the heat, I have no right to be here. That is my opinion at least. I would rather have your honest opinion, than a fake 5.


>>>First thing I would ask for is to describe the sextant as some may not know what it is and if they do it may have special features that make it seem more than what it really is.

Will do. I will update the text with a physical description. But it will have to wait for a couple of days. Right now I am outta time.

>>>I like the location some. The surounding area seemed teeming with nasties that would cause anyone willing to travel there great pause. Although my question would be why? Why is it near such a bad place? Did it grow up around the tower, or was the tower built between the mountains and the swampland for a purpose? The Serentiy Gardens, if they are so lush and perfect why does no one life there? Are there any beast of a predetory nature there?

The tower is a dreamscape entity. It is not a real world edifice. Thus it is that the surroundings represent the harsh problems and temptations that the will must sometimes weather. See, the dreamscape is a metaphysical place and not a logical one like our real world. So the dreamscape is sculpted to represent mental difficulties, hence the tower of the will is surrounded by dangers and traps of all kind, but around the actual tower one can find solace and serenity. All is calm within the gardens of the soul (when the gardens are protected by the tower).

>>>>The creatures that inhabit the surrounding area, why are they like that? Were they drawn to the tower or are they the nightmares of the dead? Possibly those who failed in their task to gain the sextant were forced to live a new life as the beast with shadow heads and torso.

Good ideas. There is no one, true answer. The dreamscape is spawned by the dreaming, which even numbers the Gods. As for the presence of the region, it is a mental representation of subconscious hazards of the will, like I already mentioned. It is a dreamscape and to reach the gardens of serenity (inner peace), the characters must travel through some pretty rough regions (face his inner demons).

>>>>Why would this item be sought after? If someone knows of it then they must know it houses the ghosts of its previous owners. Being that it is so isolated only those who survive would know of it and only information they give out would be relavant. So they would either keep it al lto themself and no one would find it or they would tell people and they would not want to go there for fear of being trapped.

How would anyone know it houses the ghosts of the previous owners? Either they survive and gain the sextant, or they perish at the hands of the ghosts or some other beast. The ghosts do not reveal much and the only way to discover what these ghosts are, is to become one, and that is hardly desireable. Besides, who would remember a ghost within a dream? These are truly lost creatures. The only way people hear about the sextant, is from the mouth of its current owner. Thus are the rumours created, and in this way there will always be new challengers trying to attain the sextant, for it promises eternal life (within dreams, but that is the small text), wisdom and a tremendous power of will. Who would not want that?

Of course the owners became more careful as they realized they had a sought after item in their possession, but by then it had become like the rumour of Shangri-La: A die hard myth.

>>>>It has its good ideas in it which is why I gave a 4... but I want to give it higher but am finding it is lacking something for me.

That is alright. I had a terrible headache when I wrote it, so I am glad it turned out as good as it did. I love the item myself, but then I have some weird preferences ;)
Voted Arowyn
January 30, 2006, 19:32
0xp
Spiffy, AG. I like it alot. (you need to spell and grammar check though) I know you were sick, I was just letting you know.
Ancient Gamer
January 30, 2006, 19:45
0xp
Hmmm... The Word spell checker was broken. I ran it through the PHP spell checker, but it only reacted on words to which google's define function responded affirmatively. I know Coldforged should be in two words, but they are not. I like Coldforged better than Cold Forged.

As for paragraphing and sentence structure... I know I got a little capitalization crazy. I often do that ;) You sure you aren't reacting to my english, like colourful instead of colorful? English is such a beautiful language you "knouwe" (know) :p
Voted Pariah
January 30, 2006, 19:57
0xp
I like it. Don't know about the horrible spelling though. I'm sleep deprived and on Nyquil so I couldn't find any mistakes.
Voted CaptainPenguin
January 30, 2006, 20:23
0xp
Good.

4/5.
Voted Nobody
January 31, 2006, 14:47
0xp
First AG, I really like the descriptive text of the dreamscape itself. I was really drawn in and it was like going into a fantasy world for the first time, or maybe looking at a really intriguing video game. I don't know, but it hooked me well.

The rest is alright. I definately think that the metaphors here should be explained in text. This is one of the great thing about this post, you have free liscense to introduce all sorts of interesting ideas as backround. Again, i think that the dreamscape was really good to read. If you can emulate that in a more consistant manner throughout the submission, then that would definately be disirable.

I don't know, I really want to know more, so that means that there is a lot of potential good here, but at the same time, somewhere in there the ball seemed to drop, I don't know where.

I wish I could tell you more. Sorry

-Nobody
Ancient Gamer
January 31, 2006, 16:37
0xp
I know what is wrong: I presented the tower and the sextant in a dry, technical matter of fact tone of voice. The cinematic sequences I have pre-planned for my players when it comes to this item, and the secret chambers especially, is not dry at all. It is too late now, but I think I will add them anyhow. (The Music Box of Mordalin was similarily dry to begin with... I may want to wait before I submit stuff ;))
Voted Murometz
February 14, 2006, 0:08
0xp
If this was written with a major headache I can't wait to read some of your stuff that you wrote while you were feeling swell!!

I agree with previous postings. Location, Location, Location...terrrific!
Chaosmark
March 10, 2006, 21:05
0xp
As an idle curiousity, when did this get used in a campaign? Or has it? If it hasn't, what are you planning on using it in?
Ancient Gamer
March 11, 2006, 16:03
0xp
I am planning on using it during the "Prophecies of Hope" campaign. At some stage the PCs will be facing an Eternal, a Coldforged Race of supreme beings, and they will in all likelihood end up comatose. This item is an alternative option for their release from that magically induced coma.
Voted MoonHunter
August 11, 2006, 16:48
0xp
I missed this one somewhere along the way. I am glad I stumbled over it.
Voted Elbin
May 30, 2013, 4:29
0xp
I really like the magic of this dream item! But maybe it's not so extraordinary in the dream setting?
Voted Moonlake
June 22, 2013, 19:33
0xp
A sub that easily fits into my 4+ score range and plus I like the otherworldly feel of the Dream Realm so bonus marks.
Voted axlerowes
April 13, 2014, 12:18
0xp
I like this, a lot of the ideas can be used in part and the item has a nice surreal quality for games that lean that way.

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