AI art of an arcane laboratory, vials, beakers, tubes, neon spell components

2d20 High-Level Spell Components

The highest levels of casting are strange and sometimes unfathomable to ordinary folk when it comes to components. Even adventurers, if unfamiliar with the eclectic and esoteric nature of arcane pursuits, can be baffled by what they find on an elderly robed corpse.

Many spell components have a significant intrinsic value even when their arcane importance is unclear, while several of them based on plans and books can lead to either a new adventure or notable events if sold to someone who can use them. As GM, it is worth having a valuable gem or unexpected variant of, say, iron filings lead to more than, “You have another 5,000 gp.”

So, for a relatively flat random result from this table, use the standard 2d20 to get an item from across the entire selection. Alternatively, to make the Level 9 components rarer and therefore more intriguing when they appear, roll one of the following combinations:

3d10+1d12 (generating a result between 4 and 42) and subtract 2 from the result;

4d6+2d10 (generating a result between 6 and 44) and subtract 4 from the result;

3d4+3d6+2d8 (generating a result between 8 and 46) and subtract 6 from the result;

6d4+4d6 (generating a result between 10 and 48) and subtract 8 from the result.

On average these will move the result toward the middle of the table where components for Level 8 spells are located, and then the extremes where Level 9 components are, when a mage is searched. Remember, the more dice you roll, the more likely a result from the middle of the list will come up, which stops too many expensive items falling into the hands of the party too easily or quickly.

  1. A wooden cube made of eucalyptus, five inches per side, contains a titanium jar of thick, syrupy gum arabic and a small ladle made of amber that provides a decent dollop of whatever it scoops up.
  2. A jade circlet, modelled on several forms that waves take, is wrapped protectively in bear fur, and stored within a bag of lizardskin. Careful inspection reveals several things: the circlet is worth at least 1,500 gp, the fur is from a werebear, and the bag is made from chameleon skin.
  3. A small mithral orb, about two inches in diameter, sits snugly in an ebony and jet box. The orb appears flawless, but inspection with something that enhances vision reveals it is decorated with hundreds of intertwined Underworld passages. The work is exquisite, the orb worth around 15,000 gp.
  4. An extremely fine platinum chain of exemplary crafting that is worth about 15,000 gp. Despite its light weight and the seeming fragility of the links, it is incredibly strong, resisting every ordinary attempt to break it.
  5. An exceedingly beautiful gold chain, formed of links that are figures-of-eight and worth in the region of 10,000 gp, nestled between layers of iridescent silk inside a small, flat tray made of dark sard. The chain is resilient if tested.
  6. A stunning chain proves to be a single length of electrum that is tooled to look like scores of links. It is clearly expensive, worth as much as 5,000 gp, and the bag it is in, made of mixed chimera hide, adds to its worth.
  7. A mahogany scroll tube lined with a remarkably thin layer of waterproof reindeer hide holds a dozen sheets of rare, thick vellum. Each sheet has the outline of a powerful creature on it, ready to be either cut out or more details added in, both of which will make the image more obvious.
  8. A stunning oval diamond, some three inches by two inches, perfectly flat on one side, and slightly concave on the other, is worth at least 5,000 gp. There are signs of wear and tear on the concave face as if something has pushed into, or even through, the diamond.
  9. A meticulously crafted palladium, emerald and teak case has twelve internal sections. Each holds a superlative hummingbird feather of a separate color: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet, black, white, gray, brown, and scale-like. They all have a jewel-like glow.
  10. A simple white oak casket holds nine silver bars, each worth at least 100 gp as metal. However, the carving on each one is astonishing, with a life-like image of an adventurer seeming to almost move as the silver is turned in and out of light.
  11. An ironwood box inlaid with red coral holds an expensive looking but robust tinderbox made of red gold and decorated with slivers of ruby. There is also a wheel of braded fine-quality cotton and a reservoir of high-grade oil.
  12. Three soft racoon skin bags contain a handful of perfectly spherical clay beads about half-an-inch in diameter. The third bag is empty save for a small amount of clay dust.
  13. Two small coffers made of rubber tree wood are each divided in half. Three of these four sections hold a handful of flawlessly-shaped glass orbs, all about a third-of-an-inch across. The last section has just one remaining orb in it.
  14. An inconspicuous holdall stitched from diverse types of leather contains a dozen pieces of wood. Despite seeming worthless, close inspection reveals they are all the same length, shape, and volume, but from different forests that are spread out over an area approximately five hundred miles in radius from this place.
  15. A small chromium case with lepidolite enhancement has four two-inch-by-a-half-inch-square blocks of incense in it. The incense is clearly expensive; dense, heavy, and aromatic. Someone knowledgeable would ascertain they would each burn for at least ten minutes.
  16. A stingray skin tube holds two large sheets of parchment that have detailed plans for crystal boxes that are large enough to contain at least a medium-sized creature. The boxes look like they are going to be filled with brine at some point as a method to produce the liquid is also listed on the documents. An individual crystal box costs 2,000 gp.
  17. A pigskin satchel has several large pages of heavy rag paper in it. Two show meticulous designs for fleshy cysts that are sufficiently spacious to house at least a medium-sized creature. It looks like the cysts will be filled with nutritious mud as well, as a recipe for this is written on the pages. A single cyst costs 2,000 gp.
  18. Half-a-dozen exceedingly small diamonds, cut and polished into humanoid forms and worth at least 1,000 gp each, sit in separate spaces in a palm-sized zirconium and tourmaline case. One of the diamonds looks vaguely like the mage on whom the case has been found.
  19. A heavy, misshapen lump of astringent salt is stuffed in an oilskin bag. If researched, it proves to be aluminum mixed with some potassium. The lump has been soaked in strong vinegar, and its look, feel, smell–and taste if someone is brave enough–is sufficient to dissuade anyone from handling it.
  20. A thumb-sized box of cherry wood contains the finest powdered iron anyone has ever seen. It is so delicate it even manages to float on a breeze. There is enough material for seven or eight reasonable pinches.
  21. An index finger-shaped case made of crab shell is full of iron filings, enough to produce a dozen good pinches. If looked at with enhanced vision, every filing is the same size.
  22. A glazed clay jar decorated with amber contains half-a-pound of thick honey made from the nectar of the manuka tree. It is utterly delicious, and anyone who gives someone else a taste of it finds they have made a friend for life!
  23. A four-inch-square, one-and-a-half-inch-deep box, constructed from Arctic larch and spruce and cool to the touch, is divided into nine sections one-inch per side. Six of them hold a cube of flesh from a variety of humanoids. There is a one-inch-square scar on the back of the right thigh of the mage the box is found on.
  24. A box of hemlock wood protects eight small pages of papyrus within it. Combined, they present exhaustive schematics for a pair of elaborate coffins that are adequately sized to hold at least a medium-sized creature. The papyrus also states specific instructions on how to bury the coffins. A coffin costs 2,000 gp.
  25. A sizeable cork coffer contains a thick, folded block of pellicle from a huge mushroom cap that opens to be the area and thickness of a double blanket. A comprehensive blueprint drawn on it demonstrates how to produce a huge urn that easily accommodates at least a Medium creature. The process to create a long-lasting seal is explained in the instructions. The urn costs 2,000 gp.
  26. A non-descript box assembled from assorted types of wood has a half-dozen ostrich hide pouches of earth in it. While they appear quite ordinary, studying them shows they are all the exact same weight volume, but from different plains that are spread out over an area approximately three hundred miles in radius from this place.
  27. A sealskin bandolier decorated with aquamarine studs has pockets for eight flasks. At present, two are missing, three are empty, and three contain a pint of clear liquid. A druid or someone well-versed in the lore of nature would know the liquid is exceptionally clean and pure rainwater.
  28. A medium-sized mink skin sack has a couple of hundred faultlessly crafted crystal rondures, each less than a quarter-of-an-inch in diameter. A humanoid could draw three or four handfuls from the sack.
  29. A spider silk pouch protects three artfully designed packets formed from eagle feathers, the contents of which prove to be a handful of exquisitely-made mineral pellets. Every pellet is almost perfectly round.
  30. A small, multi-hued casket formed from wood of several eucalyptus species cradles a fist-sized marble of sunstone feldspar. A thumbnail-shaped flake of black stone is positioned on one side, looking like the pupil of an eye.
  31. An aspen box, three inches square and half-an-inch deep, holds nine jacinths in individual compartments. Each is worth at least 1,000 gp, but more interestingly, there are two letters scored into each gem. Initials maybe?
  32. A rough magnolia box, a foot long and shaped like a coffin, has ten carved creatures in it. The forms are basic but can be identified as powerful creatures. Each one is made from an assortment of materials but no two have the exact same components.
  33. A thumb-sized transparent corundum, which an expert might value at 5,000 gp, rests in a white velvet bag with a silver thread drawstring. If looked at in flickering light, the gem becomes almost hypnotic, holding the observer in place.
  34. An egg-sized pellucid ruby, undoubtedly worth around 10,000 gp, is carefully protected by crimson satin in a redwood box. If inspected by firelight or candle, the ruby appears to transport the flames into it and keep them there, such is the imaginative nature of the way its facets have been skillfully worked.
  35. A spherical diamond, some three inches in circumference and worth in the region of 15,000 gp, sits in a horn box that investigation proves to be from a gold dragon claw. If inspected with enhanced vision, the diamond is found to be carved with a representation of a map of the planes.
  36. A two-inch cube of jade that is carved perfectly into a model of a prison cell rests in a bag made of minotaur hide stitched with titanium thread. As the cube is viewed from different sides it somehow always has an obvious floor and ceiling, even when turned upside down. The quality of works values the item at about 15,000 gp.
  37. A bag formed from swanskin contains a heady fusion of sweet-smelling herbs with undertones of exotic spices. If looked at closely, the contents are extremely rare, some originating from thousands of miles away, and the one pound contents are worth almost 1,000 gp per ounce. The aroma is so pleasurable it is difficult to stop taking it in.
  38. A ‘box-within-a-box’ set-up–the outer is one-inch-per-side and platinum, the inner a half-inch-per-side and adamantine–has space in its core for three drops of mercury. If touched, a drop of the silvery liquid momentarily rises in a rough form of the handler before falling back to the remaining mercury.
  39. A quarter-inch-square, five-inch-long stiff card box laced with slivers of sapphire and threads of antimony holds a dozen exceptionally fine yet terrifically strong walnut tindersticks. If one is struck, a tinderstick produces a wisp of smoke that curls languidly into the form of the striker before dissipating.

Be sure to check out the previous spell component tables here and here. Get in the comments and let us know if you use them!
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