Thursday, January 24, 2013


The Spinneskelle is a ghastly automaton found atop spherical objects found in both nature and dark rooms deep in the recesses of stone mazes.

It appears immobile at first, but any action within 60' of it (or in the same room) will prompt it to change to one of nineteen ballet-like positions (like those old pulley-robots at Disneyland) and cause its wand to replicate one of the nineteen powers of a Wand of Wonder (see AD&D DMG for full details of powers). The actions and corresponding reactions are as follows:

Creature moves toward Spinneskele: Slow
Creature moves away from Spinneskele: Delusion
Creature directly attacks with weapon or unarmed: Gust of Wind 
Creature casts spell: Stinking Cloud
Creature starts fire or lights an object with an existing fire: Heavy Rain
Creature talks to other creature or self: Summon
Creature talks to Spinneskele: Lightning bolt
Creature sleeps: Butterflies
Creature eats: Enlarge
Creature breaks an object: Darkness
All creatures present do nothing: Grass grows
Creature activates magic item: Vanish
Creature harms Spinneskelle: Diminish
Creature drops item (throwing things at the Spinneskelle counts as an attack, above): Fireball 
Creature picks up item: Invisibility
Creature harms room or environment: Plant growth
Creature harms other creature: 10-40 gems
Creature attempts to steal wand: Shimmering colors
Creature dies: Flesh to stone (on another creature)

The Spinneskelle itself holds the wand with an unbreakable grip until destroyed. It has two or three times boss hit points (it's pretty easy to hit, though).

If the Spinneskelle is destroyed, the wand may be taken and will function as a Wand of Wonder except the given powers key off foes actions as above rather than a die roll. However, remember, it is still a wand, so you'll look like an idiot.

(P.S. To make your players look extra stupid, make the wand only work if you adopt the Spinneskelle's positions.)



Virgil Clemens said...

What happens if someone is doing more than one thing, such as activating a magic item to start a fire beneath Spinneskelle?

Zak Sabbath said...

Heavy Rain And Vanishing

Which sounds like something that would win at Sundance

Brandon said...

So if a creature casts a spell, the Spinneskelle casts Stinking Cloud and Darkness?

Zak Sabbath said...

good call--better fix that

Trent_B said...

It's so horrible.

spike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jonas said...

Should the players or the characters adopt the Spinneskelle's position, there propably should be gesticulating too.

Matt Elser said...

Thank you!!!!!!!!

I wont go through whole of the back story but in my campaign there are these magical floating orbs creating hordes of undead. While the players have yet to encounter these orbs, I had no idea what they would be before reading this.

I made some adjustments to the spells and mine is for D&D 3.5 but if anyone is interested:

If no creatures are within the 60' radius the orb blights the land around it.

Creature moves toward Orb: Slow
Creature moves away from Orb: Cast Deep Slumber on the creature.
Creature directly attacks with weapon or unarmed: Gust of Wind
Creature casts spell: Stinking Cloud
Creature talks to Orb: Lightning bolt
Creature eats drinks a potion: Enlarge a zombie
Creature breaks an object: Darkness
Creature activates magic item: blindness/deafness
Creature harms the Orb: Reduce Person
Creature drops item: Fireball centered on dropped item
Creature picks up item: Invisibility
Creature harms room or environment: Evards Black Tentacles (tentacles protect the orb)
Creature harms other creature: Magic Missile
Creature dies: Animate Dead cast on the dead

Patrick Mallah said...

You have managed to make a Wand of Wonder interesting and not dumb. Kudos!

piles said...

Just to let you know, I ran the spinneskelle in yesterday's session and it was totally awesome!
Funny enough, no magic items were activated, creatures were summoned but not harmed or even slain.
In the end they destroyed the spinneskelle, but only over the back of a couple of well-timed succesful saves vs. wand
The mage had a hard time with a delusional rhino charging for him. It took him 3 rounds to figure out what was going on.
Good fun!

piles said...

I meant: not harmed, let alone slain ... :/