Technological Mythos Items
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Sandy Petersen's Cthulhu Mythos - Pathfinder
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Table: Technological Mythos Items
Item Price Weight
Brain cylinder, faulty 4,000 gp 20 lbs.
Clithni 10,000 gp 1/2 lbs.
Digestive replacement 350 gp
Gate 75,000 gp 2,500 lbs.
Mist projector 12,000 gp 8 lbs.
Pigments from Yuggoth 1,800 gp
Plutonian drug 3,000 gp 1/2 lbs.
Selenine 5,000 gp
Sensory machine, basic 3,000 gp 3 lbs.
Sensory machine, extradimensional 125,000 gp 3 lbs.
Sensory machine, extraordinary blindsense 60,000 gp 3 lbs.
Sensory machine, extraordinary blindsight 100,000 gp 3 lbs.
Sensory machine, extraordinary darkvision 8,000 gp 3 lbs.
Sensory machine, extraordinary scent 12,000 gp 3 lbs.
Sensory machine, extraordinary tremorsense 40,000 gp 3 lbs.
Sensory machine, speech 1,000 gp 3 lbs.
Yithian lightning gun 10,000 gp 15 lbs.

Some of the technological wonders presented here require energy to function. These items each have a capacity score, which indicates the maximum number of charges the item can store at any one time. The number of charges an item consumes when it is used varies from item to item.

Compatibility: Most races have their own distinctive means of recharging their devices, which are not compatible with the technology of other species.

Understanding an Item: Deducing how to activate an item without watching it being used by another generally requires a successful DC 20 Profession (Yog-Sothothery philosopher) or a successful DC 30 Knowledge (engineering) check, although some might be more or less intuitive at the GM's discretion.

Construction: Most alien technology can be manufactured by specific types of aliens with supplies costing half the price, but terrestrial mortals generally cannot replicate it.

Brain Cylinder, Faulty

Price 4,000 gp; Weight 20 lbs.; Capacity 1 charge; Usage 1 charge per 24 hours

Able to briefly preserve a living brain, a faulty brain cylinder is less effective than the fully-functional migo design because it lacks the mi-go’s unique multidimensional fluid. This bizarre and grisly cylinder of glass and metal allows the removal of the brain of a creature, which can then be housed within.

First, the empty cylinder must be attached to the head of a helpless living creature. It automatically begins the process of removing the creature’s brain, which takes 1 minute, after which the brain is extracted and the body dies. A successful Fortitude save against DC 20 at the end of the minute causes the process to fail, dealing 10d6 damage due to harm to the victim’s skull, but unless removed, the cylinder begins the process again on the following round.

Once the brain is extracted, the device permits communication with the brain. Because of the trauma in removing the brain, the wielder of the cylinder may ask up to 1d6 questions per brain before the victim becomes too distressed to communicate coherently. A brain expires 24 hours after removal from its body unless the cylinder's energy is resupplied. The cylinder can hold only one brain at a time. The living brain's body can be restored if the brain is removed and the body is immediately targeted with regenerate. The body can't be revived with resurrection magic while the brain lives; such effects work only if the dead brain and body are reunited. With a successful Profession (Yog-Sothothery philosopher) check against DC 20 or a Knowledge (nature) check against DC 30 as a standard action, a user can restore 1 charge by accepting 1 temporary negative level (Fortitude DC 15 to remove). It can be recharged only once per day.

Clithni

Price 10,000 gp; Weight 1/2 lb.; Capacity —; Usage consumable

This clear, emerald liquid, when ingested, causes the drinker to live several years longer. It makes the drinker more youthful by subtracting 1d10 years off the character's current age. Penalties from aging can be reversed by this effect, but bonuses are not lost.

Digestive Replacement

Sometimes mi-go find it useful to change the diet of their human allies/slaves. This is accomplished through complete surgical removal of the humanoid’s gastrointestinal tract and support organs (i.e., pancreas, liver, etc.), which the mi-go then replace with a whole new set of organs designed to handle whatever the fungi desire that human to be able to subsist upon. These replacements can take a variety of forms.

For example, if the humans are going to be visiting an area with many heavy metals or other toxins, they may be given filtration mechanisms to handle the load, or even to break down likely chemical poisons into carbohydrates and vitamins. A group of humans who need to live in the deep forest or mountains for a while may be given the ability to digest cellulose, allowing them to survive by eating wood chips and leaves.

Humans who are sent to a deserted island may be given the power to drink sea water and excrete the salt safely, or perhaps the capacity to digest sand or rock.

Cost

The surgery is lengthy and painful, and recovery takes at least a week (the process may be that short due to the fungi’s amazing skill). The materials and surgical supplies cost 350 gp.

After-Effects

Humanoids who have undergone digestive replacement look slightly different. Their body shape may be slightly distorted, or their skin may become a different color. A person who has been modified to be able to digest and use toxins may take on a cyanotic tint to his skin, a person who eats heavy metals may take on a sort of dull leaden sheen, and so forth.

The fungi normally do not change the user’s mouth or teeth, as humans often need to be able to speak to be useful. This often means the users need special instruments to pre-process their new food before they can digest it. For instance, people who are given the power to digest wood still can’t “chew” a solid lump of wood. They need to grind it down to sawdust before they can swallow it. The fungi’s digestive changes also don’t affect the taste of the new food. As a result, victims often try to spice up or modify the food to make it more palatable, with varying degrees of success.

Finally, the worst effect of this digestive replacement is that the subject typically loses some or all ability to process normal food and will henceforth be poisoned by what was once a staple. In the end, many people who undergo digestive replacement come to lament their condition, considering themselves monstrous rather than the super-beings they were promised they’d become.

Gate

Price 75,000 gp; Slot none; Weight 2,500 lbs.; Capacity 100 charges; Usage 10 charges

A gate is a physical item that sits in one place and cannot be moved. When a creature passes through the gate, it instantly teleports to a specific other gate that can be anywhere or at any time. 10 charges are expended for each creature thus transported, even if they go through at the same instant. A gate can be anything from rocks to golden pillars to a house with very precise angles built into its walls and doors. Most gates recharge 1d10 charges each day, but a cosmic alignment can recharge it completely.

Mist Projector

One-handed Medium ranged weapon
Price 12,000 gp; Proficiency exotic (firearm); Damage 8d6 cold; Critical —; Range 30 ft.; Weight 8 lbs.; Capacity 2 charges; Usage 1 charge

This device of the mi-go expels freezing mist in a cone when fired (a full-round action). Anything within a 30-foot cone is frozen over. Creatures within take 8d6 points of cold damage and are staggered for 1 round unless they succeed at a DC 16 Fortitude save. If the creature wielding the projector is not proficient with the weapon, reduce the save DC by 2. All surfaces in the area become icy difficult terrain. With a successful Profession (Yog-Sothothery philosopher) check against DC 20 or Knowledge (nature) check against DC 30 as a standard action, the creature wielding the projector can restore 1 charge by accepting a temporary negative level (Fortitude DC 16 to remove). The mist projector can be recharged only once per day.

Pigments from Yuggoth

Price 1,800 gp per pint; Weight —; Capacity —; Usage expendable

When these pigments are used to illustrate or write something, they are always visible, even in the darkness. Also, they are indelible, even with magical removal. For example, if the pigments are used to write the name of an inn, then it will be visible even in on a moonless night. Additionally, once the name of the inn is painted, it can never be removed. Even trying to paint over it doesn’t work—the paint above dissolves.

Plutonian Drug

Price 3,000 gp; Weight 1/2 lbs.; Capacity —; Usage consumable

This drug's subject gains a vision of another time. This works as the spell divination with an 80% chance of success, except that the subject can ask a question about the past or the future.

Selenine

Price 5,000 gp; Weight —; Capacity —; Usage consumable

This compound cures the recipient of any and all forms of disease, cancer, arthritis, and other disorders related to the body attacking itself. In addition, it removes supernatural and alchemical mutations, negative levels, ability damage, and ability drain.

Sensory Machines

Mi-go create devices which mimic any sense. They can also make devices for senses which are not possessed by humanoids, but are unique to alien races, such as the ability to sense gamma rays or life-force, or perceive concepts impossible for humans to understand.

One use of these machines is to plug them into brain cylinders, allowing captured entities to view the world outside their cylinder. But the migo can also perform a surgical operation on a living being, in effect creating a permanent “socket” on that person, where they can insert their machine’s cords. This operation requires materials worth 125 gp and 1 hour of effort for the mi-go.

The sockets are typically metal-rimmed holes in the recipient's body. The fungi recommend that these holes be filled with wooden or ceramic plugs when not in use to avoid gathering dust or lint.

Any sensory machine can be plugged into any socket. Plugging a sensory machine into a character’s socket is a standard action that requires either a willing or helpless target or a successful attack roll. Unplugging a sensory machine is a move action. Characters receiving input from more sensory organs than they are accustomed to risk being sickened by the sensation for 1d10 rounds whenever they perceive a new strong stimulus (anything with a Perception check DC of –5 or lower to notice). A successful DC 10 Wisdom check negates this condition. A natural 1 on the Wisdom check gives the nauseated condition for 1 round as well.

A sensory machine typically weighs 3 pounds and must be held in hand, placed on a stable surface, or built into a brain cylinder's apparatus to be useful. Added senses fall into three broad categories:

Basic

Price 3,000 gp

This machine grants one sense of human quality: vision, hearing, smell, touch, taste, temperature sense and pain, or possibly more obscure senses. For example, a blind person could plug in a vision machine and then be able to see through the machine (which they may have to carry around). A sighted person could plug in a vision machine to effectively see through two sets of eyes. The second machine could even be placed some distance from the subject (with a long cord) to grant a sort of closed-circuit camera system.

Extraordinary

Price 100,000 gp (blindsight 40 ft.), 60,000 gp (blindsense 40 ft.), 40,000 gp (tremorsense 40 ft.), 12,000 gp (scent), 8,000 gp (darkvision)

Some senses are extensions beyond the normal, such as the ability to hear subsonic or ultrasonic sound or the power to see ultraviolet light or heat. One useful option is the ability to sense pressure waves in the air with keen awareness, much like a fish’s lateral line sense. While it may take a period of adjustment, any human mind can generally adapt to understanding an expanded sense in 1 day with a successful DC 20 Wisdom check.

Extradimensional

Price 125,000 gp
Some aliens have senses that no earthly being is able to process. When input from these senses is sent to a humanoid brain, the result is severe shock to the system. In a game using dread and sanity (page 89), this generally functions as a disturbing discovery that shakes a person’s sense of self to the core (–10 penalty on the Will save against dread). The more alien the sense, the more horrifying and brutal the psychotic break the victim suffers (and the higher the Will save DC).

The only way a human or similarly limited being can eventually manage to handle a completely alien sense is to gain an insanity. At that point, the character is able to manage the alien sense (though madness may limit its utility). Madness is no obstacle to the mi-go's use for such humans, and the fungi may well set them up as special sentries or guardians for their human contact “cult.” Extradimensional senses effectively grant the benefits of true seeing and also allow seemingly random glimpses into coterminous planes of existence such as the Astral Plane or the Shadow Plane.

Speech

Price 1,000 gp
This machine lets the user speak directly from it as if from a mouth.

Yithian Lightning Gun

One-handed Large ranged weapon
Price 10,000 gp; Proficiency exotic (firearm); Damage 1d8 per point of wielder's Intelligence bonus; Critical 19-20/x2; Range 150 ft.; Weight 15 lbs.; Capacity 20 charges; Usage 1 charge per point of wielder's Intelligence bonus

Although designed as a one-handed weapon for the Large yithians, a yithian lightning gun can be wielded in two hands by a Medium creature. A Medium creature suffers a –2 penalty on attack rolls with the lightning gun due to the weapon's oversized design. Firing the gun is a full-round action. The effect of the weapon is related to the wielder's Intelligence. A small lightning bolt shoots from the gun when fired, hitting one target up to 150 feet away. The wielder must make a ranged attack roll to hit the target; this is instead a ranged touch attack if the target is wearing metal armor. The yithian lightning gun deals 1d8 points of electricity damage per point of the wielder's Intelligence bonus. This weapon recharges 1d20 charges per day.


Technological Artifacts

In the case of technological items, “artifact” refers to an item that is beyond the means of anyone within the campaign setting to create or replicate, as well as beyond conventional measures of value. Unlike magical artifacts, technological artifacts can be destroyed just as other items can.

The Ultra-Violet Resonator

Weight 25 lbs.; Capacity 7 charges; Usage 1 charge

The Ultra-Violet Resonator summons 1d4 random entities from other planes (as a summon monster IX spell, but they can also be any creatures from the Mythos Bestiary) into its plane of existence, allowing the user to see them, touch them, and communicate with them. The entities remain for only 1d6 rounds, then return to their proper plane of existence. The resonator recharges 1 charge per month.


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