20 Things to Decorate a Wizard’s Tower

Wizard’s towers are strange places full of esoteric items of unknowable purpose and artifice. It makes sense that such folk—steeped in arcane arts—would decorate their homes with objects and items that one would be unlikely to find in more normal dwellings.

By Maciej Zagorski (The Forge)

By Maciej Zagorski (The Forge)

 

Use this table, to determine interesting decorations the party discover in the wizard’s tower:

  1. This large black tapestry covers one entire wall; small interwoven silver beads depict the best known constellations. Perceptive PCs note another constellation they don’t recognise; this one is picked out with small red beads.
  2. Wrought iron torch sconces protrude from the walls; the sconces look like the blackened claws of some kind of terrible, mythical beast.
  3. A pentagram covers much of the floor. The design is cut into the floor and its tiny channels are full of glistening mercury.
  4. Thick red curtains hang down from the ceiling around the walls and obscure any doors or other openings. Behind the curtains, several cunningly-cut holes channel the wind from outside; when the wind is strong enough, this causes the curtains to oscillate.
  5. This chamber’s walls are whitewashed. However, perceptive PCs can just make out the shadow of an image below the whitewash.
  6. This door frame is decorated with intricate carvings of a swarm of tiny hands grasping at the door; paranoid PCs may suspect this is a trap.
  7. The floor is of one-foot square alternating yellow and black flagstones. The yellow flagstones look older and more worn than the black.
  8. Soot mars the ceiling, although there doesn’t seem to be any obvious source of fire.
  9. A fan of daggers—all of different craftsmanship and make—decorates one wall. The daggers come from a variety of races and cultures; some are crafted by orcs or goblins while others are of human manufacture. One impossibly slender blade is clearly of elven origin.
  10. A scorched and battered suit of chainmail sits on a stand in a small niche in one wall.
  11. Small niches pierce the walls at roughly knee height. A sconce sized for a candle fills each niche, and dried candle wax of a variety of colours covers the bottom of each niche (and in some cases has dripped down onto the floor).
  12. A portrait of the wizard adorns one wall; he is pictured clad in the finest robes, his fingers and throat heavy with jewellery. Behind him, lies an alien landscape and motes of light cluster about this head.
  13. A cracked and blackened skull of probably human origin lurks in a deep niche in the wall; small black curtains flank the niche.
  14. Esoteric runes—in the ancient magical language—snake around the room at waist height.  PCs able to read the runes realise they are a form of ritualistic protection against scrying.
  15. A picture set into an ornate, gaudy frame depicts a great granite throne standing alone in a deep cavern. The dust of ages is upon the throne and its surroundings. Small letters hidden in the bottom left corner of the picture identify the scene as, “The God-Throne.” The picture is unsigned.
  16. A fabulously detailed blown-glass figurine standing on a side table depicts a rearing unicorn.
  17. Surprisingly life-like carvings of a multitude of stone bats hang from the ceiling.
  18. A crudely painted picture of the wizard dead in his coffin hangs on one wall. The picture is signed by the wizard himself (in a trembling hand).
  19. Protective sigils are etched into the wall above every door and window. The sigils themselves are filled with a mix of lead and silver and are designed to ward against scrying and teleportation magic.
  20. A beautiful rug of exquisite craftsmanship covers a large portion of the floor. The map depicts the surrounding area and shows the location of several hidden tombs, derelict wizard’s towers and other adventure sites.

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20Front_#3_220This article appears in  20 Things #3 Wizard’s Tower, which is available now.

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5 thoughts on “20 Things to Decorate a Wizard’s Tower

  1. For some reason, every wizard’s lair I created when I was a kid included a menagerie of magical creatures. I forget why. Maybe I was thinking that’s where wizards got some of their magical ingredients. However, it always gave players a moral dilemma: do you leave the beasties to starve or do you try to release savage creatures?