An Age of Endless Storms
“As you gain levels, the mundane equipment you purchased as a starting character becomes less important; its overshadowed by the magic items you acquire on your adventures. Magic armor that can cloak you in shadow, magic weapons that burst into flame, magic rings that turn you invisible, or Ioun stones that orbit your head to grant you great capabilities – these items enhance and supplement the powers you gain from your class and enhance your attacks and defenses.” – Player’s Handbook
Magic items can be acquired through many different means: as part of treasure, purchases with your own funds, a mysterious gift, or a not-so-mysterious gift from the DM are just some of the means of getting your hands (or claws) on these items.
The PH has some rules for magic items, and they work well. However, my experience with another campaign has led me to an additional rule to be put on: power mixing (for lack of a better name, tbh).
Power mixing occurs like this: you are creating a +2 magic item, in this case, we will say that it is a long sword, or a magic weapon. Say that Lifedrinker weapon (found in the PH) is what you really want, but your party could benefit from the utility of Frost weapon (also from PH). In this situation, what you may do is to combine the two powers.
- Figure out which bonus has the higher level for the total enhancement of your item (in this scenario, the Lifedrinker weapon’s +2 enhancement comes at level 10, vs. Frost weapon’s, which comes at level 8). This level is the level of your weapon, which means that it has that purchase price (our +1 Lifedrinker +1 Frost Longsword costs 5,000 gp).
- The enhancement of each individual component to the item has to equal that total enhancement (+1 and +1 is a +2 enhancement). The components then operate on a single weapon at the enhancement of the part, not the total enhancement (that means that the +1 Lifedrinker +1 Frost Longsword has a +1d6 cold and +1d6 necrotic damage on a critical hit vs. +2d6 cold and +2d6 necrotic. They are written as +1s for a reason)
- These powers can be mixed how you want. If you want a +1 Frost +5 Holy Avenger Greataxe, go ahead. Mix the enhancements how you want, but keep the levels of the items in mind at all times.
More rules/updates coming as I get them.
Fell free to ask for clarification from both me and Josh, as we have experience with this system, and it can get a little confusing.