You can find the ever-growing list of “Better Than Nothing” items over on the right. Read ‘em, like ‘em, share ‘em, and comment.
Kelvin moved like ink poured over a polished, smooth statue—every turn was almost oily slick and his shape in the half-light was dark and fluid. The Houngang lunged this way and that, trying to wrap their large, powerful hands around an arm or a shoulder or anything, but every time they touched him, they found him slipping this way and that.
Four giants all grasping at a man moving like water, cackling taunts and pissing them off beyond all measure.
And as one guffawed in triumph, wrapping the thief in a bearhug and lifting him six feet off the ground, Kelvin stared up into its elated and somehow still angry-looking face, called him a twat, and fell through his thick and strong arms onto the ground—hitting him in the fruits and slipping between his legs. Cackling wildly.
System: The Silks are a careful combination of sartorial (of and pertaining to the craft of tailors) genius and Transmutational alchemy made during the Rebellion of Bet Kalamar in the First Reign of Malleus Exile. Only a few full suits are known to exist, jealously hoarded by their owners (all of them master thieves or assassins). For those in the know (History DC 15), the outfit marks the wearer as a potential criminal and a dangerous individual.
The silks are leggings, long shirt, gloves, and cloth slippers all in deeply dyed charcoal grey. Attunement requires a morning calisthenic routine after donning them, stretching and twisting methodically to get just the right fit (Acrobatics DC 10). This takes several hours the first time, but can be maintained daily without the check with only 20 minutes of routine. Failure to keep the schedule results in unattuning the item.
Once attuned the silks feel almost frictionless and allow the wearer to escape grapples at Advantage, avoid being shoved at Advantage, squeeze through narrow spaces without movement penalties, and even avoid damage from falling objects (75% they slip past the wearer). Should the wearer slip from an attempted grapple or shove they may use their reaction as though the aggressor had attempted moving out of a space the wearer threatens.
Wearing anything (backpack or armor or belt) over the suit itself negates its benefits so long as the objects is worn (benefit returns the moment it is not).
Vargenheim was a torn and bloody mess, a walking horror. His long hair plastered to his head and neck with clear bloody patches where it had been pulled out… his body a catachism of lacerations, bruises, broken parts.
With great exhaustion and a low growling moan, he swung his axe high over his head and turned a slow walk into a rolling stride into a sprinting ferociousness and raced back towards the Long Strider and his cabal of gibbering golems. There was fire in Vargenheim’s eyes and a certainty that he would kill the abomination and its spawn, and no doubt die in the attempt.
And as they swarmed, biting and clawing him from all angles, his axe ripped their master in two from groin to chest and Vangheim died satisfied that he’d done one last turn in the world properly.
System: Braed is a folkhero of the Western Shores, a figure said to ahve been a giant and a king, who rescued the Dragon Princess and toppled the Old Warlord of Inx. His story is one of mythology, primarily. In truth, Braed lived eight thousand years before Inx was an empire and was a martyr, at best, who died protecting his tribe from a dark monster whose name is lost to time. His Cage, a hammered bronze circlet worn around the neck, wide-rimmed in the old style, is the only piece of his legacy left in the world. Crafted by his own hand in the fires of his village when the darkness first came.
The circlet is attuned when worn and brought down from full to half of one’s HP in battle. It goes from cold metal to an eerily warm band. Once attuned, any time one is struck by a weapon in battle, one may elect to (after the attack roll and damage is resolved) take an additional 1 hp damage (cannot resist) for every damage dice rolled in the attack (example: 1d6 rolled, can take +1; 4d6 rolled, can take +4). Doing so grants the wearer +1 on each of their damage dice on their very next attempted melee attack. At the end of their next turn, this bonus is lost. If the attempted melee attack misses, it is lost.
Harp of Cerwyn Ebonflowerwood
“Stop it!” the rot-toothed thing screamed in a voice made of equal parts whales-humping and whiney old woman.
“But”, Flynn mused as he plucked another string, “I’m not done with the…” he paused for dramatic effect so obviously everyone else in the room—including the otherwise terrifying wights giving his friends a whoopin’—rolled their eyes in consternation.
And still pausing.
And one more beat.
“…accompaniment!” he jabbed with a cocked eyebrow and ruthless bon vivance.
The lichling howled in fury and called down a dark spell woven of deep entropy and the stuff of nightmwares and as the crackling purple and black lightening arced out from its body, Flynn plucked a minor G and the room exploded in light.
System: Cerwyn Ebonflowerwood (of the Renaaria Ebonflowerwoods, half-elf bards and brigands and ne’erdowells of the seas and shanties) was the only progeny of that clan to bother with the proper study of the arcane arts—and that to no great effect. His signature achievements were isolated to helping sailors and ships’ mates with scrolls to mend this or move that. A good business, and it kept him away from his family of ill-repute.
However, he had a secret love for music and a never-fulfilled desire to sea the world as his forebears did. His Harp was his failed chance.
The Harp (or rather, something between a half-harp and a lyre—very small, the size of a serving platter) is wrought ironwood, dark grey and hard, made in the style of the old Free Cities. Attunment requires proper tuning of it (Performance DC 20) and once done (taking at least a short rest of picking and pluking and trial and error), the marvelous thing grants the player a transformative power.
When within 30ft. of a spell being cast (this exempts spell-like abilities some monsters have, like Dragon breath weapons or the natural psychic and magic damage of Mind Flayers, for example), the player may use their Reaction to play a chord of such powerful delight and enormity to change the damage type of that spell as it comes into being. The player must make a Performance Check against the spellcasting Save DC of the caster, and if successful they may change the type of damage (or one of the types if more than one) to another type of damage randomly. If using an Inspiration Point while attempting this, the player may (on a success) pick the type of damage instead of it being random.
For spells without damage types, this ability does nothing to the spell.