Staves

A staff is a long shaft of wood that stores several spells. Unlike wands, which can contain a wide variety of spells, each staff is of a certain kind and holds specific spells. A staff has 50 charges when created.

Physical Description: A typical staff is 4 feet to 7 feet long and 2 inches to 3 inches thick, weighing 7-10 pounds. Most staves are wood, but a rare few are bone, metal, or even glass. (These are extremely exotic.)Staves often have a gem or some device at their tip or are shod in metal at one or both ends, and are often decorated with carvings or runes. A typical staff is like a walking stick, quarterstaff, or cudgel. It has AC 7, 10 hit points, hardness 5, and a break DC of 24.

Activation: Staves use the spell trigger activation method, so casting a spell from a staff is usually a standard action that doesn't provoke attacks of opportunity. (If the spell being cast, however, has a longer casting time than 1 standard action, it takes that long to cast the spell from a staff.)To activate a staff, a character must hold it forth in at least one hand (or whatever passes for a hand, for nonhumanoid creatures).

Special Qualities: Roll d%. A 01–30 result indicates that something (a design, inscription, or the like)provides some clue to the staff's function, and 31–100 indicates no special qualities.

Table 1: Staves

Staff Market Price
Bones 10,486 gp
Charming 16,500 gp
Swarming insects 21,500 gp
Earth 25,390 gp
Healing 27,750 gp
Fire 30,500 gp
Size alteration 33,750 gp
Illumination 54,000 gp
Spirits 57,378 gp
Defense 58,250 gp
Frost 63,750 gp
Conjuration 70,000 gp
Divination 70,000 gp
Abjuration 74,900 gp
Evocation 75,000 gp
Illusion 75,000 gp
Necromancy 75,000 gp
Transmutation 72,000 gp
Enchantment 80,000 gp
Earth and stone 80,500 gp
Mighty force 81,500 gp
Woodlands 89,250 gp
Passage 175,300 gp
Spheres 184,875 gp
Walls 236,250 gp
Power 266,700 gp
Prism 326,750 gp
Cosmos 372,250 gp
Rapid barrage 375,000 gp
Nature's fury 409,500 gp
Fiery power 449,900 gp
Winter 459,000 gp
The Hierophant 561,900 gp
Necromancy 668,250 gp
Domination 702,000 gp


Staff Descriptions

Staves use the wielder's ability score and relevant feats to set the DC for saves against their spells. Unlike with other sorts of magic items, the wielder can use his caster level when activating the power of a staff if it's higher than the staff's caster level. This means that staves are far more potent in the hands of a powerful spellcaster. Not only are aspects of the spell dependent on caster level (range, duration, and so on)potentially higher, but spells from a staff are harder to dispel and have a better chance of overcoming a target's spell resistance.

Furthermore, a staff can hold a spell of any level, unlike a wand, which is limited to spells of 4th level or lower. The minimum caster level of a staff is 8th. Standard staves are described below.

Abjuration: Usually carved from the heartwood of an ancient oak or other large tree, this staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Shield (1 charge)
  • Resist energy (1 charge)
  • Dispel magic (1 charge)
  • Lesser globe of invulnerability (2 charges)
  • Dismissal (2 charges)
  • Repulsion (3 charges)

Strong abjuration; CL 13th; dismissal, dispel magic, lesser globe of invulnerability, resist energy, repulsion, shield; Price 74,900 gp.

Bones: Made of long bones bound together with blackened silver wire and topped with a skull, this staff allows use of the following spells:

Strong necromancy [evil]; CL 10th; Shara's boneshatter, Shara's iron bones, Shara's wall of bones; Price 10,486 gp.

Charming: Made of twisting wood ornately shaped and carved, this staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Charm person (1 charge);
  • Charm monster (2 charges)

Moderate enchantment; CL 8th; charm person, charm monster; Price 16,500 gp.

Conjuration: This staff is usually made of ash or walnut and bears ornate carvings of many different kinds of creatures. It allows use of the following spells:

  • Unseen servant (1 charge)
  • Summon swarm (1 charge)
  • Stinking cloud (1 charge)
  • Minor creation (2 charges)
  • Cloudkill (2 charges)
  • Summon monster VI (3 charges)

Strong conjuration; CL 13th; cloudkill, stinking cloud, summon monster VI, summon swarm, unseen servant; Price 70,000 gp.

Cosmos: This staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Chain lightning (intensified, 1 charge, DC 32)
  • Meteor swarm (intensified, 3 charges, DC 37)
  • Sunburst (intensified, 2 charges, DC 35)

Overwhelming evocation; CL 33rd; intensified chain lightning, intensified meteor swarm, intensified sunburst; Price 592,500 gp.

Defense: The staff of defense is a simple-looking item that throbs with power when held defensively. It allows use of the following spells:

  • Shield (1 charge)
  • Shield of faith (1 charge)
  • Shield other (1 charge)
  • Shield of law (3 charges)

Strong abjuration; CL 15th; shield, shield of faith, shield of law, shield other, creator must be lawful; Price 58,250 gp.

Divination: Made from a supple length of willow, often with a forked tip, this staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Locate object (1 charge)
  • Tongues (1 charge)
  • Locate creature (2 charges)
  • Prying eyes (2 charges)
  • True seeing (3 charges)

Strong divination; CL 13th; locate creature, locate object, prying eyes, tongues, true seeing; Price 70,000 gp.

Domination: This staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Dominate monster (heightened to 12th level, 1 charge, DC 35)
  • Demand (heightened to 12th level, 1 charge, DC 35)
  • Mass charm monster (heightened to 12th level, 1 charge, DC 35)

Overwhelming enchantment; CL 26th; heightened demand, heightened dominate monster, heightened mass charm monster; Price 702,000 gp.

Earth: This oaken staff is carved to look like stone. It allows use of the following spells:

  • [[[lesser masters:Anaya Stormborn | Earthhands] (2 charges);
  • Earthsphere (2 charges);
  • Summon large earth elemental (3 charges).

Strong transmutation [earth]; CL 13th; earthhands, earthsphere, summon nature's ally VII; Price 25,390 gp.

Earth and Stone: This staff is topped with a fist-sized emerald that gleams with smoldering power. It allows the use of the following spells:

  • Passwall (1 charge)
  • Move earth (1 charge)

Moderate transmutation; CL 11th; move earth, passwall; Price 80,500 gp.

Enchantment: Often made from applewood and topped with a clear crystal, this staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Sleep (1 charge)
  • Hideous laughter (1 charge)
  • Suggestion (1 charge)
  • Crushing despair (2 charges)
  • Mind fog (2 charges)
  • Mass suggestion (3 charges)

Strong enchantment; CL 13th; crushing despair, mass suggestion, mind fog, sleep, suggestion, hideous laughter; Price 80,000 gp.

Evocation: Usually very smooth and carved from hickory, willow, or yew, this staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Magic missile (1 charge)
  • Shatter (1 charge)
  • Fireball (1 charge)
  • Ice storm (2 charges)
  • Wall of force (2 charges)
  • Chain lightning (3 charges)

Strong evocation; CL 13th; chain lightning, fireball, ice storm, magic missile, shatter, wall of force; Price 75,000 gp.

Fiery Power: This +5 flaming quarterstaff grants its wielder fire resistance 30 whenever held. In addition, it allows use of the following spells:

  • Wall of fire (extended, 1 charge, DC 26)
  • Delayed blast fireball (intensified to 240 points of damage, 2 charges, DC 29)
  • Meteor swarm (heightened to 12th, 2 charges, DC 34)
  • Summon monster IX (heightened to 10th, 2 charges, huge fire elemental only)

A staff of fiery power can be broken in a retributive strike. The breaking of the staff must be purposeful and declared by the wielder. All charges currently in the staff are instantly released in a 30-foot-radius sphere. All within 10 feet of the broken staff take points of damage equal to eight times the number of charges in the staff, those between 11 and 20 feet away take six times the number of charges in damage, and those 21 to 30 feet distant take four times the number of charges in damage. Successful Reflex saves (DC 17)reduce the damage sustained by half. The character breaking the staff has a 50% chance of traveling to another plane of existence; if he does not, the explosive release of spell energy destroys him. After all charges are used up from the staff, it remains a +5 quarterstaff with no special abilities. (Once empty of charges, it cannot be broken in a retributive strike.)

Overwhelming conjuration and evocation [fire]; CL 26th; Spell Focus (Evocation), intensified delayed blast fireball, fireball, heightened meteor swarm, protection from energy, heightened summon monster IX, extended wall of fire; Price 449,900 gp.

Fire: Crafted from bronzewood with brass bindings, this staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Burning hands (1 charge)
  • Fireball (1 charge)
  • Wall of fire (2 charges)

Moderate evocation; CL 8th; burning hands, fireball, wall of fire; Price 30,500 gp.

Frost: Tipped on either end with a glistening diamond, this rune-covered staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Ice storm (1 charge)
  • Wall of ice (1 charge)
  • Cone of cold (2 charges)

Moderate evocation; CL 10th; cone of cold, ice storm, wall of ice; Price 63,750 gp.

Healing: This white ash staff, with inlaid silver runes, allows use of the following spells:

  • Lesser restoration (1 charge)
  • Cure serious wounds (1 charge)
  • Remove blindness/deafness (2 charges)
  • Remove disease (3 charges)

Moderate conjuration; CL 8th; cure serious wounds, lesser restoration, remove blindness/deafness, remove disease; Price 27,750 gp.

The Hierophant: This staff allows use of the following spells.

  • Creeping doom (enlarged, extended, 1 charge)
  • Command plants (enlarged, extended, 1 charge, DC 25)
  • Shambler (intensified, 2 charges)
  • [[[lesser masters:Chonash | Overgrowth]] (widened, 2 charges, DC 33)

Overwhelming conjuration and enchantment; CL 27th; enlarged extended creeping doom, enlarged extended command plants, intensified shambler, widened overgrowth; Price 561,900 gp.

Illusion: This staff is made from ebony or other dark wood and carved into an intricately twisted, fluted, or spiral shape. It allows use of the following spells:

  • Disguise self (1 charge)
  • Mirror image (1 charge)
  • Major image (1 charge)
  • Rainbow pattern (2 charges)
  • Persistent image (2 charges)
  • Mislead (3 charges)

Strong illusion; CL 13th; disguise self, major image, mirror image, persistent image, project image, rainbow pattern; Price 75,000 gp.

Illumination: This staff is usually sheathed in silver and decorated with sunbursts. It allows use of the following spells:

  • Dancing lights (1 charge)
  • Flare (1 charge)
  • Daylight (2 charges)
  • Sunburst (3 charges)

Strong evocation; CL 15th; dancing lights, daylight, flare, sunburst; Price 54,000 gp.

Mighty Force: This staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Shield (quickened, 1 charge, can be activated once per round)
  • Forcecage (1 charge)
  • Crushing hand (1 charge)

Overwhelming conjuration and evocation; CL 21st; crushing hand, forcecage, quickened shield; Price 81,500 gp.

Nature's Fury: This +5 aberration bane quarterstaff allows use of the following spells:

  • Earthquake (1 charge)
  • Whirlwind (heightened to 10th level, 1 charge, DC 25)
  • Fire storm (heightened to 10th level, 1 charge, DC 25)

After all charges are used up, it remains a +5 quarterstaff with no special abilities.

Overwhelming evocation [air, earth, fire]; CL 21st; earthquake, heightened fire storm, summon monster I (or summon nature's ally I), heightened whirlwind; Price 409,500 gp.

The Necromancer: This staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Circle of death (intensified, 2 charges, DC 33)
  • Create greater undead (1 charge)
  • Finger of death (heightened to 14th, 2 charges, DC 40)
  • Soul bind (heightened to 14th, 2 charges, DC 40). The soul is trapped in the staff rather than a gem. Only by breaking the staff can the souls be freed. Trapped souls can be used to recharge the staff - 1 Hit Die/level per charge. A soul used in such a manner is consumed and forever lost. The staff cannot gain more than its normal maximum number of charges - if the wielder attempts to use a soul to exceed 50 charges, the attempt fails. The wielder knows instinctively upon grasping the staff how many souls are trapped in it, and the relative power of each; the staff cannot have more than 50 HD/levels of souls trapped in it at any given time.

Overwhelming necromancy; CL 33rd; intensified circle of death, create greater undead, heightened finger of death, heightened soul bind; Price 668,250 gp.

Necromancy: This staff is made from ebony or other dark wood and carved with the images of bones and skulls. It allows use of the following spells:

  • Cause fear (1 charge)
  • Ghoul touch (1 charge)
  • Halt undead (1 charge)
  • Enervation (2 charges)
  • Waves of fatigue (2 charges)
  • Circle of death (3 charges)

Strong necromancy; CL 13th; cause fear, circle of death, enervation, ghoul touch, halt undead, waves of fatigue; Price 75,000 gp.

Passage: This potent item allows use of the following spells:

  • Dimension door (1 charge)
  • Passwall (1 charge)
  • Phase door (2 charges)
  • Greater teleport (2 charges)
  • Astral projection (2 charges)

Strong varied; CL 17th; astral projection, dimension door, greater teleport, passwall, phase door; Price 175,300 gp.

Power: The staff of power is a very potent magic item, with offensive and defensive abilities. It is usually topped with a glistening gem, its shaft straight and smooth. It has the following powers:

  • Magic missile (1 charge)
  • Ray of enfeeblement (heightened to 5th level)// (1 charge)
  • Continual flame (1 charge)
  • Levitate (1 charge)
  • Lightning bolt (heightened to 5th level)// (1 charge)
  • Fireball (heightened to 5th level)// (1 charge)
  • Cone of cold (2 charges)
  • Hold monster (2 charges)
  • Wall of force (in a 10-ft.-diameter hemisphere around the caster only)// (2 charges)
  • Globe of invulnerability (2 charges)

The wielder of a staff of power gains a +2 luck bonus to AC and saving throws. It is also a +2 quarterstaff, and its wielder can use it to smite opponents. If 1 charge is expended (as a free action), the staff causes double damage (x3 on a critical hit)for 1 round.

A staff of power can be used for a retributive strike, requiring it to be broken by its wielder. (If this breaking of the staff is purposeful and declared by the wielder, it can be performed as a standard action that does not require the wielder to make a Strength check.)All charges currently in the staff are instantly released in a 30-foot radius. All within 2 squares of the broken staff take points of damage equal to 8 x the number of charges in the staff, those 3 or 4 squares away take 6 x the number of charges in damage, and those 5 or 6 squares distant take 4 x the number of charges in damage. All those affected can make DC 17 Reflex saves to reduce the damage by half.

The character breaking the staff has a 50% chance of traveling to another plane of existence, but if he does not, the explosive release of spell energy destroys him. Only certain items, including the staff of the magi and the staff of power, are capable of being used for a retributive strike.

After all charges are used up from the staff, it remains a +2 quarterstaff. (Once empty of charges, it cannot be used for a retributive strike.)

Strong varied; CL 15th; magic missile, heightened ray of enfeeblement, continual flame, levitate, heightened fireball, heightened lightning bolt, cone of cold, hold monster, wall of force, globe of invulnerability; Price 266,700 gp.

Prism: This staff allows use of the following spells.

  • Prismatic sphere (extended, 1 charge, DC 29)
  • Prismatic spray (enlarged, 1 charge, DC 27)
  • Prismatic wall (extended, 1 charge, DC 28)

Overwhelming evocation; CL 21st; extended prismatic sphere, enlarged prismatic spray, extended prismatic wall; Price 326,750 gp.

Rapid Barrage: Either of the staff's two powers can be activated as a free action (though the staff can only be activated once per round).

  • Magic missile (intensified, quickened, 1 charge, 5 missiles dealing 10 points of damage each)
  • Fireball (heightened to 6th, enhanced, quickened, 1 charge, 20d6 damage, DC 19)

Overwhelming evocation; CL 25th; Enhance Spell, heightened quickened fireball, intensified quickened magic missile; Price 375,000 gp.

Size Alteration: Stout and sturdy, this staff of dark wood allows use of the following spells:

  • Enlarge person (1 charge)
  • Reduce person (1 charge)
  • Shrink item (1 charge)
  • Enlarge person, mass (1 charge)
  • Reduce person, mass (1 charge)

Faint conjuration; CL 8th; enlarge person, mass enlarge person, reduce person, mass reduce person, shrink item; Price 33,750 gp.

Spheres: This staff allows use of the following spells.

  • Freezing sphere (1 charge, DC 24)
  • Resilient sphere (1 charge, DC 21)
  • Telekinetic sphere (1 charge, DC 26)

Strong evocation; CL 17th; freezing sphere, resilient sphere, telekinetic sphere; Price 184,875 gp.

Spirits: This +2 ghost touch quarterstaff is made from white maple inlaid with silver. It feels cool to the touch, though not painfully so. It allows use of the following spells:

Moderate necromancy; CL 12th; Krevik's ghost light, Krevik's solidify form, Krevik's spirit trap, Krevik's spiritbind, plane shift; Price 57,378 gp.

Swarming Insects: Made of twisted dark wood with dark spots resembling crawling insects (which occasionally seem to move), this staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Summon swarm (1 charge)
  • Insect plague (3 charges)

Moderate conjuration; CL 9th; insect plague, summon swarm; Price 21,500 gp.

Transmutation: This staff is generally carved from or decorated with petrified wood and allows use of the following spells:

  • Expeditious retreat (1 charge)
  • Alter self (1 charge)
  • Blink (1 charge)
  • Polymorph (2 charges)
  • Baleful polymorph (2 charges)
  • Disintegrate (3 charges)

Strong transmutation; CL 13th; alter self, baleful polymorph, blink, disintegrate, expeditious retreat, polymorph; Price 72,000 gp.

Walls: This staff allows use of the following spells.

  • Wall of iron (1 charge)
  • Wall of stone (1 charge)
  • Wall of force (extended, 1 charge)

Strong conjuration and evocation; CL 20th; extended wall of force, wall of iron, wall of stone; Price 236,250 gp.

Winter: This staff allows the use of the following spells.

  • Cone of cold (intensified, 2 charges, DC 32)
  • Ice storm (intensified, 2 charges, DC 31)
  • Freezing sphere (intensified, 2 charges, DC 33)
  • Wall of ice (extended, 1 charge)

Overwhelming evocation [cold]; CL 24th; intensified cone of cold, intensified ice storm, intensified freezing sphere, extended wall of ice; Price 459,000 gp.

Woodlands: Appearing to have grown naturally into its shape, this oak, ash, or yew staff allows use of the following spells:

  • Charm animal (1 charge)
  • Speak with animals (1 charge)
  • Barkskin (2 charges)
  • Wall of thorns (3 charges)
  • Summon nature's ally VI (3 charges)
  • Animate plants (4 charges)

The staff functions as a +2 quarterstaff and allows its wielder to pass without trace at will, with no charge cost. These two attributes continue to function after all the charges are expended.

Moderate varied; CL 13th; animate plants, barkskin, charm animal, pass without trace, speak with animals, summon nature's ally VI, wall of thorns; Price 89,250 gp.

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