Rules Index | GM Screen | Player's Guide

Chapter 2: Building Games / Building Items

Concept and Role

Source GM Core pg. 130
First, come up with a concept for the item based on the role the item serves in your game and in the game's world. You might include a new item in an ancient ruin to hint at its history and characterize the people who used to live there. For instance, a Thassilonian ruin might have an item based on rune magic, while a Jistkan ruin might have an item related to the empire's ancient constructs.

A new magic item might be important later in the story, or its role might be as simple as a fun wolf-themed item for the monk that uses Wolf Stance. Keep your concept in mind to guide you through the process. Start thinking about what kind of magic item it will be. Each item type has its own niche, and some are less likely to be as useful to the PCs. For instance, new weapons and armor require the PC to give up the weapon or armor they already have, which might make them more reluctant to use the new items unless they're noticeably better, while consumable items don't have as big an impact on the story as permanent items.

Item Level

Source GM Core pg. 130
A new item is typically going to be within a few levels of the PCs. If it’s too low, it might not be interesting, and if it’s too high, it might be too powerful or too lucrative to sell.


Source GM Core pg. 130
First, look at similar items. For example, if you want a permanent item that lets someone fly, look at the flying broomstick, which moves of its own volition to a location and thus can't be used to gain a huge advantage in combat, and winged sandals, which can. This will give you an idea of the right level range and the specifics and limitations of existing items. You might even be able to just adjust one of those to get what you want with minimal work.