Magic Item Compendium
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (January 2011)|
||This article may require copy editing for grammar, style, cohesion, tone, or spelling. (April 2014)|
|Author||Andy Collins with Eytan Bernstein, Frank Brunner, Owen K.C. Stephens, and John Snead|
|Publisher||Wizards of the Coast|
|Media type||Print (hardback)|
The Magic Item Compendium contains over 1,000 magic items used in Dungeons & Dragons. Many new items have been introduced in this book, while others are taken from various third edition books, including the Arms and Equipment Guide, Magic of Faerûn, and Complete Divine. The book eschews the old classification of magic items in favor of four broad categories: armor (covered in chapter one), weapons (chapter two), clothing (chapter three), and tools (chapter four). Clothing refers to any item other than armor that can be worn (taking up a body slot); rings fall into this category. Tools are items that do not take up a slot; potions, scrolls, staves, and wands are all considered tools. Chapter five covers item sets, which are collections of items that, individually, have their own powers, but will possess stronger effects if more items in the set are collected. Chapter six is about using magic items and also covers their placement and creation. There are two appendices; a list of all the items in the compendium as well as a Dungeon Masters Guide by price and new random treasure tables.
Each item description starts with a price and item level, what body slot the item takes up, the caster level required, its aura (school of magic), what type of action (standard, free, swift, etc.) is used to activate the item, its weight, a physical description, its effects, and the prerequisites and costs to create the item. There are also items for character classes not in the Player's Handbook.
Runestaffs are special staffs that allow a spellcaster to substitute an uncast spell slot of the appropriate level for a spell on their spell list in the staff. This can be done up to three times per day per spell, depending on the staff. Spontaneous casters can use runestaffs to expand their known spells, while casters who prepare spells can access their more esoteric spells (which they can substitute for more generic spells in their runestaffs).
Augment Crystals are small trinkets that can be attached to a suit of armor, shield or weapon (depending on the crystal). In effect, weapons, armor and shields have an additional "item slot" of their own to allow players to customize their weapons for situational benefits without drastically adding to the cost of the item.
A revised magic item upgrade system is included which separates miscellaneous powers (such as continuous and charge or per-day spell effects) from standard bonuses. These bonuses are now quickly added to any appropriate item without the "additional powers" multiplier. This has a number of benefits. First, players typically get magic items at a fairly low level and then upgrade them with ability bonuses. Any item looted during later levels, even one that is highly desirable, is often discarded because it would be too expensive to reproduce the level-appropriate bonuses on their existing item. Second, it allows players to invest in interesting non-bonus items without losing the bonuses that CR-appropriate encounters assume the players have. Finally, it allows the magic items listed to have more variety and be available at lower levels; dungeon masters can apply upgrade costs quickly to allow an item to appear in higher-level treasure hoards.
Finally, the Magic Item Compendium offers an optional gear-selection system that is vastly simplified while remaining compatible with the existing system. This simplified system makes it easy for Dungeon Masters to quickly design non-player characters with level-appropriate gear and equipment, without the arithmetic required in D&D third edition.
The book was written by Andy Collins with Eytan Bernstein, Frank Brunner, Owen K.C. Stephens, and John Snead. It was released March 2007. Cover art was by Francis Tsai, with interior art by Steven Belledin, Ed Cox, Carl Critchlow, Eric Deschamps, Steve Ellis, Wayne England, Matt Faulkner, Emily Fiegenschuh, Randy Gallegos, David Griffith, Brian Hagan, Ralph Horsley, Heather Hudson, Doug Kovacs, Chuck Lukacs, David Martin, Mark Poole, Steve Prescott, Wayne Reynolds, Ron Spencer, Anne Stokes, Arnie Swekel, Steven Tappin, Joel Thomas, Beth Trott, Franz Vohwinkel, Eva Widermann, and James Zhang.
The Magic Item Compendium was reproduced as a premium reprint, featuring a new cover and including errata, on July 16, 2013.
The reviewer from Pyramid commented that: "If you are the type of gamer who likes to trick-out your character with the best equipment, or the type of GM who likes to give your players lots of quests items and reward the PC's efforts with goodies and gear then you will likely find this book both interesting and useful. The designers of this book have pulled together a vast number of items and introduced new rules to make implementing magic items more systematic, and made it perhaps more fun for players who may have learned their first fantasy gaming from computer rather than table-top experiences."
Tim Janson from mania.com wrote: "It felt like the good, old days again just browsing through page after page of this treasure trove. The art is fantastic as usual. One of the best Supplements to come out in a long time."
- "Magic Item Compendium". Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved June 24, 2013.
- Wizards Team. Magic Item Compendium (Dungeons & Dragons Supplement). Renton, Wash: Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-4345-9.