Far Corners of the World04/20/2003

Toxic Paradise: Spells of the Rainforest

Viewed from the deck of a ship anchored well offshore, the tropical jungle may appear to be an inviting paradise -- a realm of hidden grottos of crystal clear lakes, verdant undergrowth soft enough to sleep on, and tree branches alive with the singing of countless beautiful birds. But those who have had to travel through these deceptive paradises know better. The lakes are more often than not infested with horrible parasites like leeches or voracious packs of carnivorous fish. The undergrowth is home to swarms of spiny insects and bloated spiders that carry enough venom to drop an ogre. The constant cacophony of birds above is more a source of madness than a source of relaxation.

Yet despite these uncomfortable and often dangerous features, they are really only inconveniences when compared to the true dangers of the rainforest. More than anywhere else, the traveler in the rainforest is aware of the constant oppression of life around him. It presses in like a green, leafy, buzzing, furry blizzard, constantly threatening attack from all directions. Explorers with spellcasting ability have naturally developed numerous specialized incantations and magic to aid them in their forays into the jungle, but they often return with tales of even more powerful spells wielded by those who call the rainforest home.

Breath of the Jungle
Level: Clr 2, Drd 1
Components: V, S, DF
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Effect: Mist spreads in a 20-ft. radius, 20 ft. high
Duration: 1 minute/level
Saving Throw: Fortitude negates (see text)
Spell Resistance: No

With this spell, you enhance and bolster any toxins (poisons or diseases) in the area of effect. The DC for any poison or disease increases by +2 for as long as the poison or disease remains in the mist. This applies equally to natural toxins, such as a snake's poison or the disease spread by a dire rat, and to magical toxins, such as those created by spells like poison or contagion.

If this spell takes effect in a region dominated by rainforests, its effects are much greater. The spell actually draws forth miniscule amounts of venom and disease from the countless vermin and poisonous plants that infest these regions and then manifests these toxins as a thin green mist. This mist does not provide any level of concealment, but any creature that breathes in these noxious vapors must make a Fortitude saving throw or take 2 points of temporary Intelligence damage since the toxins cause dizziness and hallucinations. A new Fortitude saving throw must be made once per minute spent within the spell's mist to avoid further Intelligence damage. Animals, plants, and vermin, as well as creatures that are immune to disease or poison, are immune to this toxin.

Green Oath
Level: Drd 7
Components: V, S, F/DF
Casting Time: 10 minutes
Range: Personal
Target: You
Duration: 1 hour/level
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No

Casting the green oath requires a 10-minute ritual while you chant invocations to the surrounding plant life, beseeching the vegetation to accept you as a sibling and friend. When the casting is complete, your flesh turns a lush shade of green and your hair grows tangled and sprouts leaves or even flowers. You exude an earthy scent for the duration of the green oath. This gives you a +10 circumstance bonus on your Disguise check if you are masquerading as a plant or plant creature and the observer is using only the Scent ability to observe you. It also raises the DC to successfully track you through natural environments by +10. You can now move through natural, magic, or enchanted thorns, briars, and overgrown areas and similar terrain at your normal speed and without taking damage or other impairment. Plant creatures take a -4 circumstance penalty on attack rolls against you; this penalty increases to -8 for grapple checks.

You also gain one of the following benefits of the plant type when you cast the spell. The benefit granted does not change for the duration of the casting, and you can choose a new benefit the next time you cast the green oath. If you wish, you can cast this spell on yourself multiple times; the majority of the benefits provided by the spell do not stack with themselves, but you can select a different benefit from the following list each time you cast the spell.

  • Immunity to all poisons
  • Immunity to sleep and paralysis
  • Immunity to stunning and polymorphing
  • Immunity to critical hits
  • Immunity to one of the following mind-affecting effects: charms, compulsions, phantasms, patterns, or morale effects
  • Low-light vision

The effects of this spell are temporarily suppressed if you enter a region with little or no natural plant life (such as a barren desert or city). The spell's duration continues to run down while in an area of little vegetation, and if you re-enter a verdant region before it expires, the effects instantly return.

Focus: A natural region with abundant plant life. Traditionally, this spell is cast in a region dominated by rainforest, but it functions in any wilderness region except for underground, barren deserts, glaciers, deep underwater, or in any civilized region such as a town or city.

Level: Sor/Wiz 4
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Short (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Area: 5-ft.-wide path starting at you and extending to maximum spell range
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: Reflex half
Spell Resistance: Yes

A path of destructive energy springs forth from you, instantly destroying all natural plant life in the area and leaving in its wake a neat path sprinkled with a fine layer of ash on the ground. Druids, fey, vermin, plants creatures, and animals caught in the path are horribly blackened and burnt as if by invisible fire and take 1d6 points of damage per caster level (maximum 15d6). Although the effects of this damage look like burns, the damage is caused by invisible and silent waves of negative energy.

Material Component: A pinch of ash from a burnt plant.

Jungle's Rapture
Level: Drd 5
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Short (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Target: One living nonplant creature
Duration: Permanent (D)
Saving Throw: Will negates
Spell Resistance: Yes

This terrible curse causes the targeted creature (excluding plant creatures) to slowly transform into a normal healthy plant. The creature targeted by this spell immediately takes 1d6 points of permanent Dexterity drain and loses the ability to digest food. This drain manifests as a hardening of the limbs and skin as the victim's flesh slowly turns to wood. Each day that passes, the victim takes an additional 1d6 points of permanent Dexterity drain. Any Dexterity points drained by this spell cannot be restored by anything less than a greater restoration spell, and even this potent spell cannot prevent further drain that may occur in following days. If the victim survives long enough, it eventually begins to starve to death. Rules for starvation appear in Chapter 3 of the Dungeon Master's Guide.

Once a victim of jungle's rapture is drained to 0 Dexterity, it immediately transforms into a normal plant of the same size as its original body. Aside from radiating an aura of Transmutation magic, the plant is a normal plant (with no Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma score) until it dies a natural plant death.

Jungle's rapture is a curse, and as such it cannot be dispelled. It can be removed with a break enchantment, limited wish, miracle, or wish spell. Remove curse works only if the caster is of an equal or higher caster level than your caster level at the time you cast jungle's rapture. The spell can be dismissed by the caster as a free action.

Illusion (Glamer)
Level: Drd 1, Rgr 1, Sor/Wiz 1
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Touch
Target: Creature or object touched
Duration: 10 minutes/level
Saving Throw: Will negates (see text)
Spell Resistance: No

This spell generates a false and powerfully wretched taste on the target. The target gives off no noticeable odor, but anyone who tastes the target must make a Will save or be nauseated for 1 round. This includes any creature that makes a successful bite attack against the target; the bite attack does not need to damage the target to force the attacker to make a Will save. A creature that swallows something affected by rankletaste must make the Will save each round for the spell's duration or become nauseated for 1d4 rounds. Once the creature becomes nauseated, it vomits the swallowed creature or object up and need not make further Will saves unless it again tastes the target.

Material Component: A tiny chunk of rotten meat that has been marinated in skunk's musk.

Vortex of Teeth
Evocation [Force]
Level: Sor/Wiz 4
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Area: Hollow cylinder (40 ft. radius, 20 ft. high with a 5-ft.-radius safe zone at the center)
Duration: 1 round/level (D)
Saving Throw: Reflex half
Spell Resistance: Yes

A vortex of teeth manifests as a swirling, spiraling storm of magically created incorporeal piranha that swim through the surrounding region. Unfortunately for creatures in the area of effect, the ravenous teeth of the magic piranha solidify upon contact with flesh. All creatures in the area of effect of a vortex of teeth take 2d6 points of damage per round. A successful Reflex save halves this damage. The damage caused is a force effect, and thus bypasses damage reduction and can harm incorporeal creatures. Objects cannot be damaged by a vortex of teeth.

Material Component: A piranha's tooth.

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