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Folk Magic: Magic Items for Wilderness Dwellers

Folk Magic: Magic Items for Wilderness Dwellers

In a world suffused with magic, what kind of magic do common folk use in their day-to-day lives? What so-called hedge magic is used by the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker—all to make their lives a little more manageable, productive, and safe?

Vault of Magic has scores of options for adventurers, but here are some items used by more common folk who live in the wilderness.

Animal Charm

Wondrous Item, Uncommon (Attunement Required)

This small magical pouch contains bits of fur, teeth, and claws from various Beasts, and is tied shut with enchanted twine. If the knot is ever cut or untied, the magic of the charm is destroyed. While the owner possesses the charm and is attuned to it, they have advantage on Wisdom (Animal Handling) checks.

Arcane Cache

Wondrous Item, Uncommon (Attunement Required)

This tin and lead 1-foot cube has the runes for “safe and secure” etched in the lid. If the closed and latched box is placed on or next to at least one cubic foot of stone or dirt, and the runes pronounced aloud, the box sinks into the ground or wall and disappears entirely from sight. The box and its content, cannot be located by an ability check, or even a locate object spell. To be located by anyone other than its owner (who can always sense the box within 1,000 feet), requires magic equivalent to at least a 5th-level spell, such as scrying or true seeing.

Arcane Tent Pole

Wondrous Item, Uncommon

This item is popular with those who spend long periods living in the wilderness. It appears as a mundane one-foot-long wooden dowel or rod, with the rune for “safety” burned in the side. When the rod is staked in the earth (at least one inch deep) and the rune pronounced, the pole grows to a 10-foot length, and a canvas tent unfurls from around it and stakes itself into the ground securely. The tent can sleep six Medium creatures comfortably. The temperature inside the tent is always around 68 degrees F, so long as the outside temperature is between 0 and 100 F (each degree above or below that range increases or decreases the temperature inside accordingly). The tent stays staked securely in winds up to 75 miles per hour.

Arrow of Mercy

Wondrous Item, Common

These arrows are used by hunters who don’t want their small prey to suffer, by killing them instantly. Any creature less than CR 1/8 struck by one of these arrows is instantly and painlessly killed. Any CR 1/8 creature may make a Constitution saving throw with advantage to avoid the instant death effect. On a success, a creature takes only normal piercing damage from the arrow. Creatures of CR 1/4 and higher take only piercing damage from this arrow.

Cap of Shielding

Wondrous Item, Common

This cotton cap creates a faint field of force energy in a 2-foot radius above the wearer’s head. It shields the wearer from downpours and excessive sunlight. It does not affect the wearer’s AC and Wisdom (Perception) checks made by or against the wearer.

Hunter’s Stone

Wondrous Item, Common

When placed on a flat surface, this arrowhead-shaped stone spins thrice widdershins, then points in the direction of the nearest game animal (Beast only) within 1 mile. It only indicates the direction by pointing; it does not indicate distance, type, or number of Beast. If no game animal is present or if a creature’s designation as a game animal is unclear, the stone spins slowly back clockwise once.

Lens of Natural Poisons

Wondrous Item, Common

This small lens made of a flat, greenish, translucent crystal can be held up to the eye when viewing plants in the wild. If the plant is edible, it appears normal when viewed through the lens. If the plant would be poisonous to eat, it has a pulsing red aura when viewed through the lens.

Potion of Purification

Potion, Common

This lime-green potion can be poured into any container of potable liquid (water, milk, wine, beer) of up to one gallon in volume. It removes any naturally occurring rot, corruption, or disease from the liquid and makes it safe to drink. It has no effect on crafted poisons.

Stone of Direction

Wondrous Item, Common

When gripped tightly in one hand, this small lodestone tugs gently in the direction of true north.

Water Crystal

Wondrous Item, Uncommon

This small, translucent crystal contains a single drop of water. When the crystal is broken open, water gushes out and can be poured into a jug, waterskin, canteen, or other watertight container. The crystal spills out enough clean, clear water to hydrate three Medium creatures for 1 day (or the equivalent, i.e., one Medium creature for 3 days, etc.).


about Adam W. Roy

Adam has been playing TTRPGs for almost forty years, and has been a freelance game writer and editor for decades. He has written for Kobold Press, Paizo, White Wolf, and others. He is also a full-time father, husband, and e-commerce guru…. He manages all of this by avoiding sleep altogether.

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