Monday, September 14, 2020

Bootleg Spell Market

(This contains repeated material from previous posts.)

Found within the secret tunnels of the Pyramid of Providence within Wizard City Hexcrawl. The Bootleg Spell Market operates on an instituted honor system. Merchants won’t show you the really potent goods until you’ve proved yourself by either:

1. Being a frequent customer.
2. Doing odd jobs for black market merchants
3. Dropping some serious cash.

By Carlos-MP

Typical prices of bootleg spells will be 30% + (1d4 x 10%) the cost of the original it's replicating.

Merchants of the market are capable of handing out Club Cards, Levels 1-3. There is also a secret Level 4 Card, which can only be obtained by those with three black market merchant sponsors and who undergo the Initiation Ritual of Unsanctioning.

As a general rule, merchants typically name their bootleg spells after themselves. So, Marvin’s Moderately Collateral Projectiles will naturally be sold by Marvin the Moderately Collateral.

Red Cards are given for free to anyone who can convince the door guards that they’re not patent police.

Level 1 - The Red Card

Spell Name
What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Magic Missile
Marvin’s Moderately Collateral Projectiles
Every third missile veers off into semi-random target. Makes loud fireworks noises. Veering missiles prioritize innocent bystanders.
Cure Wounds
Dr. Flasnaw’s Fantastic Medicinal Cure-All!
1 in 6 chance of: 1) Temporary blindness. 2) Grow identical tumor twin-head out of neck. 3) Head turning 180-degrees. 4) Passing a snake. 5) Skin turning neon yellow 6) 
50% chance that hands catch on fire. Actual fire, not illusory.
Color Spray
Ginny’s Glitterbomb
Doesn’t spray color, just explodes a metric ton of glitter at targets. Same spell effect. Not even magical dry cleaning can remove all of the glitter.
Comprehend Languages
Percival’s Personal Polyglot
Summons magical kindergartener to translate for you. They understand what’s being said but just don’t have a very sophisticated vocabulary yet.
Hideous Laughter
Harry’s Horrible Har-de-har
Everyone affected, in addition to laughing uncontrollably, also begins vomiting and shitting their pants uncontrollably. Also affects caster.
Pearson’s Pole Vault
Summons magical spring-pole to vault upon. 10% chance of hilariously listing to the left or right. 5% chance of catapulting backwards.
Roald’s Reverse Psychology
60% chance that the target will do the exact opposite of what you told them to.
Weber’s Web
Same spell, but it smells… musky. Gross.
Magic Mouth
Sally’s Sassy Mouth
Mouth only delivers message once, then it will loudly complain about everything and anything, particularly the caster.
Detect Thoughts
Kelvin’s Kink Shame
50% chance while using that you’re going to find out a lot more about this person than you wanted.
Feather Fall
Falala’s Feather Bed
Instead summons a bed of feathers to fall upon. Hope you aren’t wearing anything sticky...

Level 2 - The Yellow Card

Spell Name
What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Private Sanctum
Mark’s Man-Box
It’s private, for sure! It just smells like a damn men’s locker room in there. There are loads of crushed beer cans around, and anyone entering must save to avoid gagging.
Hallucinatory Terrain
Feeb’s Far-Out Experience
Doesn’t craft illusion so much as get everyone involved really really high, who then actually hallucinate alien landscapes
Stone Shape
Dick’s Dimorphic Stone Shape
Perfectly functional, though a bit awkward, as every stone you shape must be composed of stone-dicks. One big one, many small ones, doesn’t matter as long as it’s got dicks in it.
Cicero’s Chickenmorph
Only functions if the target is being turned into some kind of chicken: small chicken, big chicken, fried chicken, etc.
Toshley’s Time Dilation
10% chance that caster will freeze time, provoking the Time Police to have to show up and fix everything. Penalties range from “Getting Off Easy” to “Time Jail”.
Timur’s Time Bomb
Fireball detonates 1d4 rounds after cast, add 5ft to radius for every round delayed. This roll is made secretly by GM.
Phantom Steed
Nani’s Noble Steed
Takes the form of an old donkey, speed is 20ft slower.
Gyges’s Great Devisualization
1 in 3 chance that the caster is not actually invisible, but cannot be convinced that they aren’t.
Gentle Repose
Pat’s Preservation
It just dumps about 10 gallons of formalin on the body. Does nothing beyond that.
Martha’s Master Key
Loudly explodes thing open, 50% chance of damaging caster.

Level 3 - The Blue Card

Spell Name
What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Reverse Gravity
Velma’s Variable Vector
No control over the direction of the gravity shift. Completely random. Direction changes once during spell’s duration.
Magnificent Mansion
Cob’s Crackhouse
Summons extradimensional crackhouse for you and your friends to romp around in! Even comes with its own crackheads, oh boy!
Stone to Flesh
Stephanie’s Stone to Bleh
Oh, it’ll unpetrify someone, but it also turns them into a (figurative) bag of goo. Target becomes lethargic, depressed, and won’t want to be moved around at all.
Legend Lore
Bueller’s Bargain Bin Book
Summons an outdated school textbook from which you can learn about the chosen subject. 50% chance of being outdated, historically unfactual, and politically incorrect.
Desmond’s Dream… With a Guy Named Larry In It.
Largely works as intended, although every instance will produce an appearance of Larry in the dream. Larry is just your average office worker, who loudly eats potato chips in his striped shirt and khakis while watching the dream with interest. He insists upon being ignored and to “go on and continue the show”.
Dimension Door
Reginald’s Rematerialization
Creates exact copies of persons at target location, murders originals. 25% chance that original will have incompletely disintegrated, and will emerge along with copy, painfully burning and screaming as they turn to ash before your eyes.
Cone of Cold
Connie’s Cone of Cold
Due to translation error, has a 20% chance of giving all in target area a minor cold instead of freezing them to death.
Faithful Hound
Voltairn’s Very Good Boy
Rather than summoning an invisible hunter-killer phantom hound, it just summons a normal domesticated phantom dog. You can pet it, it borks at things, and loves belly rubs. Doubtful how great it’ll be for biting stuff, though.
True Seeing
Neville’s Near-Hit
Incapable of visualizing clothes, except underwear.
Gunny’s “Get Me A Beer”
25% chance that the target, instead of intended compulsion, goes to get the caster a beer.

Level 4 - The Black Card

Spell Name
What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Circle of Death
Cobok’s Circle of Slow And Painful Death
Takes a rather long time with killing someone. Instead of insta-death, it causes a very slow, painful, drawn-out death. Requires 1d10 minutes to kill someone with this spell, during which they’ll be impatiently dying but totally in control of their faculties. Requires target to remain in circle the entire duration.
Magic Jar
Mogrom’s Mason Jar
Causes target to shrink down and be trapped inside a mason jar. They do not need sustenance. They are helpless and cannot cast magic. They may, however, make loud commentary that can be heard well outside the jar.
Raggathar’s Replication
The Clone must grow as a tumorous conjoined twin during the gestation process. Eventually separates but must be connected by umbilical cord until used. Also the Clone probably wants to kill you and absorb your nutrients.
Wilhelm’s Wish
Same as original, except that the only Wish you can wish for is to be erotically pummeled by several dominatrixes dressed as clowns.
Finger of Death
Stubb’s Stink Eye
Summons grisly, dirty old man to give target the Stink Eye of Death. 1 in 6 chance he’ll wheel around and give it to the caster.
Contact Other Plane
Grandma Phoebe’s Phone The Pharmacist
Summons ancient rotary phone for which you can attempt to call your destination, inevitably fail, then call the operator’s number, have to talk to the chatty operator for 10 minutes, who will finally, maybe, connect you to the wrong number.


  1. Really cool stuff! I've been stewing on a post about spells with distinct personalities, and attaching different inventors/brand names to them seems like a perfect solution.

    Wilhelm's Wish seems like a steal-your-gold trap more than anything else. Perhaps between 2 and 200 (depending on the scale) clown-dominatrices appear and *attempt* to fulfill your wish, with the caveat that they refuse to act submissively i.e. they won't build a bridge over a river, but they'll whip you and the local wildlife into building it for them.

  2. Loving the potential downsides here. Honestly, your version of Magic Jar is better than the original!

  3. A few of them are hilarious, thanks for this !