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D&D 3E
Pickpocket's Gloves 
16th-Dec-2008 03:47 am
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Greetings all. I have created a magic item for a campaign and I want some feedback. Here's the item:

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Pickpocket's Gloves
These black gloves are made out of the finest, sheerest silk, so thin they barely feel as if they are on the wearer's hands at all.

Twice per day, the wearer can target one nonmagical, unattended object within sight up to 25 feet away and less than five pounds. This item turns insubstantial, misty, and translucent and as a move action, the wearer can move it up to 15 feet in any direction, though the effect ends if it moves out of the gloves' effective range. It can pass through small holes or narrow openings, even mere cracks. The object is subject to the effects of wind, and it can’t enter water or other liquid. The wearer can grasp the object with the glove as if it were not gaseous. The object will remain gaseous for up to ten minutes or until the wearer wills it to return to substance and the wearer must maintain concentration to use the gloves or the effect ends.

Faint transmutation; CL 6th; Craft Wondrous Item, mage hand, gaseous form; Price 10800 gp.
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I used gaseous form as the nearest relevant spell to accomplish the gaseous concept.

I got to that price via this math:
6 (caster level)
x0.5 (mage hand)
x3 (gaseous form)
x1.5 (multiple abilities)
x2000 (use activated)
/2.5 (twice per day)
= 10800

Did I add that up correctly? Any other thoughts, suggestions, feedback about this item? Thanks! (Note: Edits due to feedback bolded.)

--
Avery
Comments 
16th-Dec-2008 10:36 am (UTC)
How is the object targeted? sight, knowing it's there or something else?
16th-Dec-2008 10:41 am (UTC)
The wearer must have line of sight to the object. (I'll add that to the item description.) One would presume it would make some things way too easy to steal otherwise.
16th-Dec-2008 10:54 am (UTC)
Probably yes; though it does make the pickpocket part of the name less appropriate; pickpockets can't generally see what they're taking from the pocket.
16th-Dec-2008 11:05 am (UTC)
Well, my thought would be, no real need to know what's in a belt pouch if you can just make the whole belt pouch come to you.

More so, that would prevent the party members who receive this trying to "pull" things out of treasure chests and other such scenarios that could make things a bit too easy.
16th-Dec-2008 12:53 pm (UTC)
Fair point yes.
16th-Dec-2008 11:17 am (UTC)
The Arcane Trickster has a "ranged legerdemain" power. It wouldn't be hard at all to adapt that supernatural ability to a pair of gloves.
17th-Dec-2008 12:36 am (UTC)
I'm going to second this suggestion. I think that's going to give you the effect you're looking for with the least amount of weirdness.
16th-Dec-2008 03:32 pm (UTC)
what sort of action activates the gloves? how far in one round can the object move? Does activating the gloves provoke an attack of opportunity?

Slightly Broken ways to use them:

1.Fighter disarms you, you use you gloves to get your dagger back in your hand without provoking.

2.Pluck Ioun stones out from around an enemy spellcasters head. Or indeed any magic item not bolted down will come to you in combat. Do you need to roll a disarm attempt, or do you just take it?

3. Disarm someone with a light weapon, and then use the gloves to shoot their weapon through the floor, disarming them effectively forever.

17th-Dec-2008 12:12 am (UTC)
It works in the same fashion as mage hand, so "As a move action, you can propel the object as far as 15 feet in any direction." And as this effectively is concentrating as per the same spell, the effect ends once the individual stops concentrating. The item has been updated to reflect this.

In terms of the disarm issue, the first and most obvious solution is to make this "Will negates (object)." The problem with this is that the DC would be no higher than 14 (10+1 bonus at minimum +3 spell level). For natural objects (a belt pouch or a dagger), this would indicate that 30% of the time, the gloves would fail to perform. That's a fairly high rate of failure for a magical item costing nearly as much as most ioun stones.
17th-Dec-2008 02:22 pm (UTC)
agreed.

However, maybe the gloves can target object not actively attended to without penalty, however objects held or being attended to get a will save.

Also, does using this magic item provoke an attack of opportunity?
16th-Dec-2008 11:42 pm (UTC)
Items in someone's possession usually get a save against this sort of thing. More so if the items are magical. Otherwise this is pretty ridiculous. Imagine targetting a Fighter's magical armour. And you can then immediatly take his weapon as well. At the very least you're making any and all disarm or sunder abilities useless.

If these existed as they stand in any of my campaigns I can guarantee they would be necessary buying for anyone that could afford them. Probably multiple pairs.
16th-Dec-2008 11:56 pm (UTC)
Well, one of the restrictions is that the object weighs less than 5 pounds (ala mage hand), so that eliminates a great number of objects one could target, including all armor and about 60% of weapons. I could reduce its effective weight target further. A pound of gold pieces is 50, not a bad haul for a standard pickpocketing.

How would this be remedied beyond that? Clearly, one would not want PCs to be able to target the Archmage's Ring of Three Wishes and get away with it. One solution would be that objects held or grasped by another person cannot be targeted. That would leave belt pouches and the like free range.

It does also leave open the possibility of thieving from shops that do not have their objects behind glass. Now that I think about it, it is a rather nerf-able item.

How to fix, how to fix?
17th-Dec-2008 12:19 am (UTC)
Upon re-reading the mage hand spell, the object targeted must be non-magical and unattended, therefore I have updated the item as such.
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