It has come to my attention that 100 charges (or rather 80 + 1d20 - 1 charges) is insane.
What was the chain of logic for wand and staff charges. 200 charges for a staff in OD&D? 1d10 charges in basic, 2d10 charges in expert, and then Advanced comes along and wands have 100 charges? I'm curious about how the thought processes behind charges evolved; anyone have any insight into how these choices were made.
Obviously we can solve the problem, and wands should have the charges we think they should have -- numerous options are in the articles linked above. I'm interested in a bit of history into how this happened -- who though 100 or 200 charges was a good idea?
That said, here are some more interesting quirks of wands:
- The wand has a counter that counts down the number of charges left in the wand, but the counter is wrong.
- The wand has no spell of its own, but if a certain spell is cast through the wand, the wand alters the spell to have a different effect.
- Wand of Shooting Stars, when magic missile is cast through this wand, it fires one missile of the damage total of the number of missiles available. After striking the first target for this damage, the missile streaks to a second target doing one die less damage. A wizard with 3 missiles hits one target for 3d4+3 damage, a second target for 2d4+2 and a third target for 1d4+1.
- Trapped wands often have keywords on them that disintegrate the wand or even cause it to detonate harming the wielder.
- The wand has a random effect, each time it is used. The effect isn't truly random, but is based on some variable that the players might become aware of (Day/Night, Aboveground/Belowground, N/S/E/W, etc.)
- The wand is unusual in some way, made from living insects, solid light, coherent sound, The wand is actually a sword or a shield. etc.
- The wand is represented in some fashion that communicates it's charges. Every time it is used a piece falls of, a strip is peeled away, it becomes shorter like a pencil in a sharpener.
Hack & Slash
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