Excerpts 10/01/2004


Shining South
By Thomas M. Reid



In other parts of Faerûn, travelers speak of the wonders they have seen in the Shining South, a wondrous land of ancient cultures and fallen empires. Tales and songs tell of lands scorched by heat, people ruled by drow, traders who could negotiate the name away from an Amnian, and wizards who use magic for tasks mundane to miraculous.

This book gives you everything that you need to explore the Shining South in your own Forgotten Realms campaign. The region makes a great destination for adventure, or a place for your heroes to hail from. Its 14 detailed chapters cover Races of the South, Skills and Feats, Prestige Classes, Magic and Spells, Magic Items, Monsters of the South, Adventuring in the South, Dambrath, Estagund and the Shining Lands, Halruaa, Luiren, The Shaar and the Great Rift, Border Areas, and Adventures. Our sneak peek offers a look at new regional feats, new spells, new monsters, and part of the chapter describing the realm of Halruaa.

Shining South: New Spells

Brittleskin
Transmutation
Level: Drd 3, Rgr 3, Sor/Wiz 3
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Target: One creature
Duration: 1 round/level
Saving Throw: Fortitude negates
Spell Resistance: Yes

You cause a creature's natural armor to crystallize and become brittle. Whenever the affected creature is hit in combat, part of the crystallized hide cracks and shatters, dealing it additional lethal damage equal to its natural armor bonus. Thus, if a creature with +3 natural armor is affected by this spell, it takes 3 extra points of damage each time it is struck in combat. The creature's actual Armor Class does not change.

Darsson's Fiery Furnace
Evocation [Fire]
Level: Sor/Wiz 2
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Area: Up to a 10-ft. cube/level (S)
Duration: 1 hour/level (D)
Saving Throw: See text
Spell Resistance: Yes

You raise the temperature in the affected area to the level of extreme heat (as defined under Heat Dangers, page 303 of the Dungeon Master's Guide). For every minute spent breathing the air in the area, a creature vulnerable to heat takes 1d6 points of lethal damage (no save). In addition, the creature must make a Fortitude save every 5 minutes (DC 15, +1 per previous check) or take 1d4 points of nonlethal damage. Those wearing heavy clothing or any sort of armor take a -4 penalty on their saves. In addition, those wearing metal armor or coming into contact with very hot metal are affected as if by a heat metal spell.

This spell was originally developed as a means of cooking food (cast inside cauldrons, brick ovens, and smoke houses), but wizards quickly determined that it could be used as a deterrent (on long hallways or in treasure vaults, for example) or for creating a comfortable environment for heat-loving pets.

Darsson's fiery furnace can be made permanent with a permanency spell.

Lightning Smoke
Evocation [Electrical]
Level: Sor/Wiz 4
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Effect: Smoke spreads in a 20-ft.-radius, 20 ft. high
Duration: 1 round/level
Saving Throw: Reflex half
Spell Resistance: No

You conjure a smoky cloud that fills the area with small electrical discharges. The smoke obscures all sight as a fog cloud does. In addition, the discharges deal 1d4 points plus 1 point per caster level (maximum +15) of electricity damage to everything within the cloud on your turn each round.

As with a fog cloud spell, wind disperses the smoke, and the spell can't be cast underwater.

Sticks and Stones
Necromancy
Level: Clr 3, Sor/Wiz 3
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 standard action
Range: Close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Target: One Small pile of debris
Duration: 1 round/level
Saving Throw: None

Spell Resistance: No

You animate a pile of rocks, branches, limbs, and other debris into the crude shape of a skeletal creature of Medium size that immediately attacks whatever foe you designate. You can change the animated creature's chosen target as a move action. The creature's combat statistics are those of a 2 HD humanoid skeleton, except that it also has a wight's energy drain supernatural ability (see Skeleton and Wight entries in the Monster Manual for details).

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