31 Votes


Hits: 22037
Comments: 45
Ideas: 0
Rating: 4.6935
Condition: Normal
ID: 364


November 17, 2005, 11:30 am

Vote Hall of Honour
Cheka Man
Michael Jotne Slayer (3x)
Ancient Gamer (2x)
Mourngrymn (3x)

You must be a member to use HoH votes.
Author Status


The Box That Cannot Be Opened


A strange, mystical box, with many rumours attached, that does not want to reveal its secret…

This cube is about 1 feet large, dark red in colour, with veins of both light and still darker red. It feels like wood, gives off no scent. A fine line indicates it is really openable, and a keyhole suggests in what way. No hinges are visible. If shaken, something can be felt to hit on the inside, but no sound is heard. If magic is detected for, it is there, but it cannot be made certain of what kind, and in what amount.

The box can be found anywhere, it can be given as a gift, it could be sold, stolen, whatever.

The box can not be opened. No usual or unusual way works. A key is not present, and no other will not work. Picking the lock is a nightmare for the thief, and some have really gone crazy trying to achieve this. No tool can force the lock, nor can any force even scratch the box at all. Indeed, it is likely the frustrated owner will throw it from a very high place one day, to find the damned box be in perfect condition. Its colour cannot be changed, nor its surface.

Just right, it cannot be opened.

Throughout the centuries, the box had countless owners, and many rumours and almost myths have arisen around it.

- It comes from the Devil (or substitute with other evil deity/demon/whatever). If you buy it, you must sell it for a smaller price, or you are horribly cursed/your soul belongs to him/you will die in a month/etc.

- It is a prison for a horrible demon/a pure being/powerful wizard/... Or it will simply end the world if it is ever opened. That’s why it came into that dungeon…

- It is a godly gift, and the gods themselves will grant one wish to the mortal that manages to open it.

- A great heap of gold/the secret of immortality/the greatest diamond ever/the cure for all diseases is locked inside, awaiting the lucky one.

- A terrible disease is hidden in it, waiting to be released.

- The true king shall open the box, and find some royal insignia to confirm his claim on the throne.

Magical Properties:

The truth?

...and thus spoke the godly———- and the common ******* for a long time. But in time the mighty god was greatly annoyed by this low creature, and as found no other (non-violent…) way to get rid of him, he presented the box as a gift and puzzle, so he finds out how to open it, and then enjoys the gift. But they shall not speak again, until it happens.

(Or any prankster god will do.)

The Box is a godly artifact, indestructible and unopenable, unless you are a god yourself. It is empty.

Additional Ideas (0)

Please register to add an idea. It only takes a moment.

Join Now!!

Gain the ability to:
Vote and add your ideas to submissions.
Upvote and give XP to useful comments.
Work on submissions in private or flag them for assistance.
Earn XP and gain levels that give you more site abilities.
Join a Guild in the forums or complete a Quest and level-up your experience.
Comments ( 45 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

November 4, 2003, 12:08
That is soooooo evil it's wonderful. What a great torment to unleash upon your players. I love this "mess with their heads" things. Great job.
November 4, 2003, 17:58
*Gives Manfred a high-five.*
November 5, 2003, 3:05
Great item manfred! Us vetrans showing how it should be done! Yhea!

Even if the player gives up on opening the box, they still have a one foot cube of unbreakable stuff. That could be put to use in remakable ways. They can't work it into anything more useful, mind you, but it has a purpose.

Some unintended uses could be:
Battering Ram head.
Jam the mechanism of a crushing trap.
Trebuche stone - if it's heavy enough.
Chopping block.
Maul head. -mauls are big mallets
November 5, 2003, 22:41
I love it!

This is the kinda thing i love to see. An item that will have the PCs confused as a duck in an airplane for hours and even days after the game stops. It also has uses as a adventure hook (Ex. This common man comes to the PCs asking for help). Good job you truly deserve a cookie.
December 3, 2003, 8:24
Oh wow this item is great, it could be an excellent way to screw with the heads of any Player. Good job

*High five*
Barbarian Horde
January 11, 2004, 18:47
Great! Now to convince my dm to put in our campaign...
January 12, 2004, 6:15
I must agree: this item is class!

Its sheer uselessness coupled with its mythological significance is a beautiful touch of irony.

Barbarian Horde
August 19, 2004, 5:58
One of my players has been using this as a very interesting combonation of shield (by puting a clamp and leather handles on it)/ knock out device
March 19, 2005, 15:25
I had a good time using this item. My players carried it around for a long time after recieving it as a divine gift, they actually encountered a god at one point and handed him the box to see if he could open it. He did, looked inside, chuckled a little, then closed it and handed it back. They never found out it was empty (in game). So much fun, many thanks.
March 22, 2005, 6:02
And that's the proper way to use this item. I am glad you have fun with it.
Lord Necronal Of Antioch
September 30, 2005, 2:16
you sicko......I love you
Voted Ancient Gamer
November 12, 2005, 5:58
One of Manfred's old old jewels. Items such as these are priceless! *mumbles* ...If only I had more Hall of Honour nominations *mumbles*
November 17, 2005, 13:13
Why is it that I seem to forget posting on all of these submissions. I read them often yet don't realize I forgot to post in them after the third time I read them.

A good bit of wonder there manfred. I like it and always have.
November 17, 2005, 14:33
I've just given this to my party. Last session, the ranger spent the whole of a 3 day sea voyage trying to pick the lock (and kept "almost feeling as if she was about to pick the lock, but then realised it was more complex than she had at first thought) and, now that they are back on land, has decided to try and find a mage who she hopes can magically unlock it.
Voted Michael Jotne Slayer
January 7, 2006, 18:21
Only voted
Voted Nobody
February 28, 2006, 15:45
Yeah, I love this thing.
Barbarian Horde
October 14, 2007, 1:45
I'll probably use this in a game, but instead of it being empty, it'll have an orange inside it.
October 14, 2007, 7:09
That's a nice idea, too, but I don't want to think what the PCs/players will do to find any unusual powers in it. ;)
Voted Cheka Man
October 14, 2007, 11:50
I like this Box.
Voted mrcelophane
October 14, 2007, 16:49
This is a totally evil GM tool. I like it.
Voted Wulfhere
October 14, 2007, 18:07
Only the true heir to the Throne of the Lost Emperor can reveal the Gift of the Gods...

An inspired piece of madness.

I was always fond of this epic red herring, but I hadn't voted.

Until now.
Voted Chaosmark
October 14, 2007, 22:25
Voted Kinslayer
January 24, 2008, 17:30
Evil. I love it. I must use this in my game.
January 24, 2008, 19:05
Three short sentences, and they brought unexpected pleasure to my heart. :)

Thanks, Kinslayer!
January 24, 2008, 19:54
You are quite welcome.
Voted Murometz
January 24, 2008, 21:19
Kinslayer sums it up nicely. Behold! The King of Herrings!

(Also, hehe, BH, an orange!) :)
Michael Jotne Slayer
April 10, 2008, 14:07
Good one, this can even be the focus of a campaign. Or something that is thrown away/sold after a few sessions. The options are endless. Good un.
April 10, 2008, 15:04
Ah, the joy of pointless futility! :)

Thanks for waking up this monster.
Voted Misanpilgrim
April 10, 2008, 16:00
April 10, 2008, 17:44
Making great posts of the past resurface again is one of the function of spotlighting/ HoHing.

I still view this box, in my mind, as the Hellblazer box.
Voted Pieh
May 20, 2008, 21:09
Wow, I gave this a HoH but it seems I never voted... anyway, I came back here because this gave me an idea:
The Box That Can Never Be Closed!

Once, long ago, there was a God of Mages known as Tehfayl. He was the God of the young bumbling adepts. He was quite powerful, untill banished from the Godly Realms for causing too much chaos and upsetting the natural balance of things. He was petty and lazy, and liked to use magic for everything.

Once he created this artifact, and possibly The Box That Can Not Be Opened as well, Tehfayl did not mean to create this box. He didn't even create the box itself, it was a gift from one of his worshippers. The worshipper placed the box at his feet. Tehfayl cast a simple Open/Close Object type spell, but... he kinda over did it... The Box sprung open, launching its contents (Rare spell ingredients and such) everywhere!

He was so embarrassed that he blasted the Box from his Godly Realm towards the unsuspecting world below. He has since departed out world, but his magic is still with us. This Box is a cursed artifact. It looks like a normal wooden box, put can not be kept closed, it will spring open at the worst of times. And, even worse, it infects other containers (such as backpacks and potion vials) that it comes close to.

Let your imaginations run wild!
May 21, 2008, 8:12
Nice one! There is also the Silly Items scroll, if you want to find it another home.

And I like the nasty little effect of your box, too!
Voted Silveressa
May 20, 2008, 22:48
Fun and twisted. Combined with a pc that has the curiosity flaw (or better yet a player with it) you have every excuse to send the pc running across the world in search of know-it-all sages, magic keys, and anything else they think may open it. (Of course once they *do* manage to get a deity to open it or find out there's nothing inside they may well try and fit the gm in any conveniently nearby box, depending on their sense of humor.)

Oh and Pieh, do me a little favor and put your idea up as a sub linking back to this one so I can give it a proper vote and comment (+1 is too little for the idea). It's good enough it it's own right to stand alone.


Edit: One little question, Why isn't this a golden submission yet? It certainly deserves to be one.
Voted MoonHunter
May 21, 2008, 17:10
I realized I had never voted on this piece. Then I realized I had voted when it was on v1.0 But I can do it again.

I like it. It is well done. Yet, I hate it. I have never seen the point of frustrating players. It makes them grumpy (well other words are applicable). They begin to think that you, as the GM, are personally out to get them. That route simply leads to difficulties.
March 10, 2009, 18:39
I'm there with you... although, the lesson this item imparts is not frustration - it is that not everything may be possible or reachable (though there are a few extreme theories on how to open it *cough*). If you learn to accept that, you can use that indestructible box to achieve other impressive feats - and still have the fun with the occasional attempt. ;)
Voted Stephie
June 7, 2008, 17:57
This item is great! The poor, poor players :)
October 7, 2008, 12:35
Bump for the newcomers who never saw this excellent piece.
Voted Dozus
March 9, 2009, 18:48
Whenever offered the choice of a thousand wonders or a mysterious closed box, always go with the box.
Voted PoisonAlchemist
August 15, 2011, 5:12

A fun idea. Not sure it's a great one, but certainly a good one.

Voted valadaar
May 12, 2013, 23:21
Yes. It is a great one. Bump for awesomeness:)
Voted Kassy
May 13, 2013, 8:26

Deserving of HoH as well.

I can see PC's frustration. *Grins with manic intent*
May 13, 2013, 8:27
Tried to HoH. Am out of HoH. Did not use HoH.

Voted Mourngrymn
May 14, 2013, 0:16
I don't remember if I voted on this all those years ago but I thought about it the other day and threw it at my players. It was an item left in an alchemical lab of a deceased sage. They found him dead along with a few other notable people in the city together.

The were searching his tower for information regarding a particular issue they were having when they came across his lab. Pocketing a few items, the thief of the group tossed the box in his satchel hoping it contained riches or items of magic. He has broken four of his lock picking tool kits and is attempting to find more. He swears that the fact I am not letting him, open it means there is something in it I don't want him to have. It's fun.

Thank you for creating this pleasurable tool of torture.
Voted Stork
February 4, 2014, 22:07
Love it. Perfect to stall players after they do something you did not expect and need a little time.
Voted Woofer295
November 20, 2017, 16:39

Link Backs


  • Associated ideas.
  • Box

Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

       By: Scrasamax

Duck-Billed Bird-Dog. This creature has the hindquarters of a hunting dog such as a Labrador Retriever, and the forequarters of a duck, including webbed feet and a wide beak. It also has the wings of a duck.

Ideas  ( Lifeforms ) | January 30, 2005 | View | UpVote 1xp

Creative Commons License
Individual submissions, unless otherwise noted by the author, are licensed under the
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License
and requires a link back to the original.

We would love it if you left a comment when you use an idea!
Powered by Lockmor 4.1 with Codeigniter | Copyright © 2013 Strolen's Citadel
A Role Player's Creative Workshop.
Read. Post. Play.
Optimized for anything except IE.