Weird/ Oddball Magic Items and Weapons

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I'm taking up the DM mantle soon, and I want to have some fun toys to leave lying around in the crypts and dragon hoards.  The kind of stuff that players hang onto on the off chance that they'll find a way to make it awesome. Johnny items, if you play Magic. The only thing I can think of right now is an axe made out of an immovable rod. What weird items have you run across before?
2e's Wand of Wonder.  Or Deck of Many Things.  So many hilarious opportunities.
Well in one of our old games it was a continuation from our 3.5 game where the group got the Rod of Wonder so we kept the 3.5 Rod of Wonder in our 4e game and that was fun.

Outside of that there's an item from a dragon article called the treeform box which lets you change into a tree, the deck of many things as kedcoleman mentioned, eternal chalk can be fun.  I had a couple amusing moments where I played a goofy character who wrote funny things on buildings with the chalk.

Otherwise make items that maybe fit in the area the players find them.  In my only game I've DM'ed I had the group enter an magical forest where they had to succeed in three puzzles related to the See, Hear, and Speak no evil monkeys.  After that they came to a village populated by people who had been trapped in the forest(or well their descendants), as well as monkey people.  They also had to complete one last challenge against the monkey for Do no evil.  But anyway in the village I decided I wanted to have fun and give the players just some fun stuff.  So I gave one guy a banana axe.  It actually looked like a normal banana but when he began to peel it an axe grew from it so the banana was part of the handle.  I gave another player, a psion, a banana peel that she could toss on the ground and cause creatures who stepped on that square(actually I think I made it a burst of banana peels...can't remember) it would cause them to slip and fall prone.  I also gave the warden in the group a figurine of power which was a modded amber monkeys.  Modded because it was only one monkey and that monkey had the ability to throw crap and it counted as the warden marking that person so he could mark from range.  Oh and the healer got a replenishing banana that when eaten allowed the person to spend a healing surge.

So maybe look at the areas of the game the group are going to go to and make items around that.  Oh, actually another one was the unbreakable bell.  In our old 3.5 game for some reason one of the players got a bell and I can't remember how(wasn't a part of the game then) but I think through jokingly talking to the DM, it became unbreakable.  So at one point my friend attached it to the neck of another player's character and the bell couldn't be removed so it was stuck to him.  Just an amusing gag.     
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The dynamic weapon is fun, if you trust you player. Mine makes it turn into all sorts of esoteric and implausible weapons, but I figure that if the world is ancient and there are all sorts of crazy alternate planes that some whacky stuff has been used as a weapon. He does fun and funny stuff with this, and doesn't abuse it, so I'm happy to accommodate him, encourage him, give him suggestions, and even overlook the once-per-encounter limit on the weapon power.

[N]o difference is less easily overcome than the difference of opinion about semi-abstract questions. - L. Tolstoy

I remember a game of 1e I was playing back when it was the latest version.   We were all experienced players playing brand new characters, with zero experience points.

Someone bugged and bugged the DM to give us a magic item despite our greenhornness, and he finally relented and gave us a Wand of Turning Things Green.   It did no damage whatsoever, but had unlimited charges, and could be used by any class.

Suffice it to say it wasn't long before every member of the party, including every piece of gear was lime green.

The HeroQuest board-game was where I usually put all of my weirdest stuff - I DM'd that as a sort of an eccentric half-parody of fantasy gaming, and pretty much made all sorts of wacky stuff up on the spot for it.

One of the objects the party found in that game was something I invented - all I told them was that it was a "magic ring", and I never explained entirely what it did.  In truth, I didn't know - I figured I'd just make something up on the spot when they did use it.

The first time they decided to try it out, I noticed a pirate miniature in my box of stuff, and decided in an instant that it was "The Magic Ring of Summon Stinky Pete, the Pirate".  Stinky Pete, I figured, would be a sort of henchman or ally who could help the party out when fighting, and I had him figured right away as a cranky and eccentric type that would usually do whatever he was told, but complain about it a lot, and make wise-cracks a lot.

Unfortunately, the players, upon summoning a cranky pirate with a magic ring, decided the logical thing to do would be to kill him before he finished the sentence "dad-nabbit, why'd you land-lubbers summon me?"

Curses!  I thought.  Now what?  I didn't want the "Magic Ring of Summon Stinky Pete, the Pirate" to go to waste!  So, I decided that it was now the "Magic Ring of Summon Stinky Pete, the Undead Pirate".

The next time they used the ring, Zombie Stinky Pete appeared, and before he could moan, "dad-nabbit, not you guys again", they promptly killed him again.

So, from time to time after that, they'd just summon and insta-kill poor Zombie Stinky Pete... I finally explained about a year later what the ring was and what I'd intended to do with it, but it seemed they had more fun with the running gag of using the ring to see what happens, and killing that weird zombie pirate that turned up out of nowhere for no reason.
[spoiler New DM Tips]
  • Trying to solve out-of-game problems (like cheating, bad attitudes, or poor sportsmanship) with in-game solutions will almost always result in failure, and will probably make matters worse.
  • Gun Safety Rule #5: Never point the gun at anything you don't intend to destroy. (Never introduce a character, PC, NPC, Villain, or fate of the world into even the possibility of a deadly combat or other dangerous situation, unless you are prepared to destroy it instantly and completely forever.)
  • Know your group's character sheets, and check them over carefully. You don't want surprises, but, more importantly, they are a gold mine of ideas!
  • "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." It's a problem if the players aren't having fun and it interferes with a DM's ability to run the game effectively; if it's not a problem, 'fixing' at best does little to help, and at worst causes problems that didn't exist before.
  • "Hulk Smash" characters are a bad match for open-ended exploration in crowds of civilians; get them out of civilization where they can break things and kill monsters in peace.
  • Success is not necessarily the same thing as killing an opponent. Failure is not necessarily the same thing as dying.
  • Failure is always an option. And it's a fine option, too, as long as failure is interesting, entertaining, and fun!
[/spoiler] The New DM's Group Horror in RPGs "This is exactly what the Leprechauns want you to believe!" - Merb101 "Broken or not, unbalanced or not, if something seems to be preventing the game from being enjoyable, something has to give: either that thing, or other aspects of the game, or your idea of what's enjoyable." - Centauri
Granted probably not exactly what you are looking for but...

Something I have houseruled over the years is "legendary magic".  The way I describe it to my players is that exordinary events sometimes have extraordinary results.

this was introduced to me by another DM years ago.  An example of what happened to one of my charcaters while playing with this DM was...

I was playing a cleric of war god and wielded a halberd.  In order to get the attention of PCs and NPCs alike I would thump the butt of that halberd onto the floor making a loud banging noise.  Well one time in a crowded bar that my party needed to find someone, I walked in and did my halberd thump.  A couple of dice rolls and wide eyes on the part of the DM later, the DM says (paraphrasing), "you manage to thump your halberd on a particularly hollow point in the floor and the sound is about ten times normal.  Further, the entire bar goes dead silent and stares directly at you."  We finish the encounter and the DM passes me a note saying that my halberd is now a halberd of command - silence.  So when I do my thump everyone must make a save or fall slient for one round, but it can only be used in a non-combat situation.

One where I was DM is a little more amusing.  In a combat situation, one of my players, playing a 3.5 Knight, double crit fumbled (rolled two 1s in a row; I also use crit tables).  the result of that crit fumble was that he fell down on his posterior (not too bad considering).  The orc that tried to take advantage of this also double crit fumbled.  As a result, I informed him that his boots were now boots of fumble tripping - whenever he rolls a 1 on an attack he falls on his rear and so does one of any enemies he is directly engaging in melee.  While it is a mild curse, it's funny to watch players actually hope for a 1 on a d20 (I even gave the player the opportunity to get rid of those boots and he chose not to).

On the flipside though, players who try to "game the system" always has it backfire...

In the same game where my cleric got the halberd of command, another player decided that he wanted something special to happen to him.  So in combat he started attacking side-by-side targets in hopes of getting a free cleave feat.  He got the cleave feat, only problem was that in order for him to be able to attack at all with his highly specialized (through feats and magic) longsword, he had to have at least two targets side-by-side.  So in a single target encounter he had to put his favored long sword away and use another weapon instead.

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/19.jpg)

RedSiegfried wrote:
The cool thing is, you don't even NEED a reason to say yes.  Just stop looking for a reason to say no.
A longstanding favorite of mine was the "Eternal Wand of Summon (Dead) Animal". It's amusing to see what the players are willing to eat, or watching them cleverly use a dead horse to block a door. I've got a random table for it and everything. 
Hey diddle diddle, the cat and the fiddle, the cow jumped over the moon. The little dog laughed to see such sport, And the Dish ran away with the Spoon. He ran from conviction, and fed his addiction as the Dish heated the Spoon... The Spoon begged to go, but the Dish shouted : "NO!!" "The heroin will be ready soon!" "Any time doing the right thing is funny as hell, it's probably Chaotic Good." IMAGE(http://i46.tinypic.com/2jcu9fs.png)
One thing I love to do in my games is give almost useless magical items as loot. I feel it gives the players unique tools to use in campaign and makes them think outside the box with how to use them.

Some random things I have given:
1. Mirror of scrying, opposite reality (shows the opposite of the truth)
2. Everclean bowel (Clay bowel that never gets dirty)
3. Cracked amulet of teleportation (Teleports user to range of 20 ft, 3 uses per day. Each use has a 1/3 chance of teleporting to random location)
4. Staff of aging (target is aged one year, unlimited uses. User takes 1 pt temporary constiutuin dmg per use)
5. Locket of anscesters (can commune with anscesters, living or dead)
6. Ray of Burny (Hobgoblin spear that can fire a ray of heat from the tip)
7. Glasses of spectral vision (user can see, but not interact with, the spirit world)

I also recently threw them a portable hole, intending it as a trap. They picked it up after the battle. As it happens, however, they got themselves trapped on the Abyss for 24 hours. The glacial layer. The next session should be interesting, as they have plans to use it as a shelter. This may be a problem for them, as most of them have bags of holding. I don't think anyone knows what happens when you combine the two items. This should be a fun session.