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Machinations of Magludias Fynch: Criminal Contraptions

Machinations of Magludias Fynch: Criminal Contraptions

Magludias Fynch’s Wandering Clockwork Workshop, Miniature Carnival, and Artisan Trade Show is known to a select, secretive few to provide several far less-frivolous, amenities. Amenities only found behind the flashy, noisy, overpriced games, gadgets, and repair services.

Read up on previous machinations of Magludias Fynch!

These singular services are made available only to trusted entities among the sundry underworld organizations and criminal figures comprising Fynch’s transnational clientele. A-list-services might include sales, repairs, and modifications of assassin snakes, clockwork kestrels, (see Tome of Heroes) or rental clockroach services.

Access to Fynch’s newest inventions, spell research, and exotic contrabands can also be procured. Caravan schedules, building layouts, new heist opportunities, and backdoor deals, can all be had before, or in lieu of, “the competition.”

Many lesser, but proper (illicit) connections, or respectable (underworld) figures make use of selections from Mister Fynch’s tool and gadget repertoire. To a growing list of clockwork devices, credited to Magludias Fynch, including clockwork shuriken, scarionette, shocking graspers, and the clockatrice, we now add . . .

A Catalog of Criminal Contraptions

These wondrous items aid Fynch in his larcenous pursuits.


Wondrous Item (Clockwork), Very Rare (Requires Attunement)

This tiny (4” x 4”) clockwork spider, mounts an artificial eyeball on top. When you attune and equip the accompanying monocular headpiece, you can direct it to move with one-word verbal commands (“stop,” “proceed,” “left,” “up,” etc.) up to 300 yards away. You can see through its eye as an action.

It has a walk speed of 15 feet, AC 13, and 2 hit points. It can climb walls and cling to upside down surfaces as though under the effects of a spider climb spell. The eye-robot has advantage on stealth rolls to avoid detection, and its eye hasdarkvision to60 feet.

Once per recharge, you can command it to produce the effect of a magic-mouth spell for up to 1 minute in your voice.

If the eye-robot is destroyed while you wear the headpiece, you are blinded for 1d6 rounds. For every 6 hours of accumulated use, the eye-robot requires 24 hours of downtime to recharge.


Wondrous Item (Clockwork), Uncommon

This clockwork cube is intricately constructed and outfitted with a symphony of tiny gearworks, pistons, and mechanisms. The cube fits in the palm of your hand and weighs 1 pound. When you use an action to activate the micro-mechanisms, the cube unfolds into a 10-foot-long, 30-inch-wide, closed hull, one-passenger canoe.

The clockwork kayak is self-propelled and has a base water speed of 5 mph. It obeys your verbal navigational commands, and requires no vehicle proficiency.

The kayak weighs 25 pounds unloaded and can carry 5 cubic feet or 400 pounds of weight. A second manipulation of the concealed switches causes it to refold. Objects stored inside are deposited outside the kayak as it refolds.

This kayak can also traverse snow fields, frozen lakes, or sand dunes in addition to water.


Wondrous Item (Clockwork), Common

This hefty brass disc is 1-inch thick, weighs a quarter of a pound, and fits in the palm of your hand. When you trigger the activation switch, a single-poled tree ladder capable of supporting up to 400 pounds extends to a length of 25 feet. Creatures using the ladder can climb it at their normal speed.

Activation switches remain at the ladder’s base and its top rung. Either can be used to re-collapse the clockwork ladder back into disc form. Fully extended, the ladder weighs 10 pounds.


Wondrous Item, Very Rare (Requires Attunement)

These strangely textured gloves are fashioned with filigree-like exoskeletons of electro-magical circuits, sensors, and wiring. Minute gearwork spring rods, pressure pads, and low-voltage electrode networks line the insides that guide finger muscles and elevate mental and manual dexterity to pinpoint precision.

Lockwork gloves serve as thieves’ tools for an attuned wearer and provide proficiencywith thieves’ tools for their attuned wearer. Tiny metal tumbler-hooks, files, and probes, extend from fingertips as needed.

As an action, and using one charge, the wearer may pick any lock (including magical locks) with a successful Intelligence check against the lock’s DC. Lockwork gloves require concentration and 1d4 + 2 rounds (modified by the wearer’s Intelligence modifier) to bypass a lock.

During use, the gloves whir, click, and occasionally spark. This causes disadvantage to any Dexterity (Stealth) checks made by anyone within 10 feet of lockwork gloves while in use. The gloves hold 3 charges, after which they require 6 hours of sunlight to recharge.

New Clockwork Spells

Fynch has a handful of spells he has created available for (un)reasonable prices to those who inquire.


3rd-Level Evocation | Wizard

Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 50 feet
Components: S,M (a steel ball-bearing)
Duration: Concentration up to 1 minute

You hurl a pelting stream of magnetized steel ball bearings at a target you can see within range. Make a ranged spell attack. On a hit, the target takes 13 (3d8) bludgeoning damage.

If the target is a metal Construct or a creature wearing or carrying 10 pounds or more of ferrous metals, its speed is reduced by 10 feet. Additionally, the target suffers disadvantage on Strength and Dexterity saving throws and ability checks as accumulating metal pellets magnetically assail every susceptible surface.

At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 4th level or higher, the bludgeoning damage increases by 1d8 for every level over 3rd. The target’s Speed reduction increases by 5 feet for each slot level above 3rd.

Scratch-n-Dent Zone

4th-Level Abjuration | Wizard

Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Self (30-foot-radius)
Components: V, S, M (a rusty nail)
Duration: Concentration up to 10-minutes

You cause a magical dampening-field of ghostly, electromagnetic shrapnel to extend out from you in a swirling 30-foot radius. The shimmering field moves with you. All Medium or smaller sized clockwork or mechanical Constructs selected by you, and starting their turn inside the field, begin to crimp, dent, chip, and corrode.

Affected targets (and occupants) suffer disadvantage on Dexterity saving throws and ability checks. Targets also incur a −1 penalty to armor class. The AC penalty increases by an additional −1, for each 10-foot-increment the Construct approaches you: (−1/30 ft., −2/20 ft., −3/10 ft.). Exiting the dampening-field ends any effects.

At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a 6th-level slot, the field’s radius increases to 40 feet, and can target Large Constructs or smaller. When you use an 8th-level slot, the radius becomes 60 feet, and can target Huge Constructs or smaller.

about Robert Fairbanks

Robert Fairbanks, first plunged into the unknown in 1976, with ye olde boxed, blue-book basics. He has yet to return.

Robert’s been fortunate to be a long-time contributor to Kobold Press, with whom he broke into game design in 2014. His other publisher contributions include Inner Ham Productions, Storm Bunny Studios, and TOR books.

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