This is the second AI Artifact, a magic item generated by an AI based on randomly generated words. In this case, those words are “hateful”, “changeable”, and “giddy”. If you want to know what this is about, you can find the rules here and the other entries here.
The prompt used
This is what I entered into the image-creating AI Midjourney in order to generate these pictures:
/imagine prompt magic artifact that is hateful, changeable, giddy, in the style of a video game asset
But! I also tried something different, thinking that maybe calling it an artifact and a video game asset would bring with it certain biases that I wanted to figure out.
/imagine prompt magic item that is hateful, changeable, giddy, without background
The Image – hateful, changeable, giddy
And here is what Midjourney came up with:
And this is the result of the alternate prompt. I find it interesting, that the second set is in general brighter, and less box-shaped. Although the difference was not as pronounced, or the bias for the good old boxy artifact was not as great in the first prompt of this set, either.
While I like these designs, especially the bottom right one, I am going with one from the first batch. I might vary the prompt going forward, depending on future results. Although frankly, that witchy-hatted thing bottom right might get a treatment at some point, too.
The hateful Pick
Here’s the one I am going with, upscaled and thus further and slightly differently detailed by the AI. Now the left hand seems to be melted into what might be a hammerhead, but we can always work with that – or ignore that.
So, the question becomes, what is hateful, changeable, and giddy? Glad you asked.
The Grumpy Gnome
Back in the day, before palm-sized Imps took over the market for image taking and portrait painting, it was required for subjects to stand still for extended periods of time. Queen Gwendolyn the Grumpy learned first-hand how nerve-wrecking it can be, standing for coronation portrait with the regalia of her power. After hours of cramped muscles and politely phrased annoyance from the painter, the Queen got frustrated and cursed them with an off-handed remark.
Amplified by the arcane gem she held, the curse took shape and shot towards the artist, but the canvas reflected it back onto the ruler, petrifying her where she stood. After finishing the painting, she was eventually deposed and, to add insult to injury, sold as a garden gnome to the big folk. But inside, she is still awake, plotting and cursing, only growing more powerful over the years.
This is only the second entry in this series, but I think that’s all the more reason to explore more options for what this could be. I want to add a bit of randomness, and thus create a few random tables.
Curses of the Grumpy Gnome
Queen Gwendolyn was not known for being forgiving or kind, and despite her changed physical state, those character traits are still alive and kicking. The Crystal that fused with her form amplifies the mental abuse she is dishing out, and manifests it in a number of different ways that would have delighted Gwendolyn if she was still able to indulge in such feelings.
This curse can hit anyone who gets too close to the Gnome. Roll twice if someone dares to pick up her petrified majesty, and three times if that person has the audacity to verbally claim ownership of the item. As far as rules go, feel free to add checks and balances according to the system you are using to make these curses less intrusive.
|Result (d20)||Curse of the Grumpy Gnome|
|1||The person becomes petrified while they are within 10 feet of the Grumpy Gnome. The effect ends after the cursed item is removed, or after 1d8 hours.|
|2||Unintelligible screams fill the person’s head, distracting them and preventing them from concentrating on anything, for 1d10 minutes.|
|3||The irresistible urge to strike a pose overcomes the person a total of 2d10 times within the next hour.|
|4||The grumpiness of a practiced practitioner of the grumping arts overcomes the person for the next 1d6 hours.|
|5||The urge to seek revenge for some perceived sleight overcomes the person for 1d4 hours, although that urge is limited to verbal abuse.|
|6||For 1d6 hours, the person makes it their mission to critique any kind of art they come across, focusing on portraits, with a few sentences of very harsh criticism.|
|7||The person insists on being addressed as “your highness”, “your majesty” or “your wrinkliness” for 1d6 hours and begins using the royal plural.|
|8||The person becomes possessed by Queen Gwendolyn for 1d4 hours. She will, if she can, try to return to her homeland, now lost to history.|
|9-19||Nothing happens but a mean twinkle in the Gnome’s eyes.|
|20||The Gnome reverts back into Queen Gwendolyn the Grumpy for 1d6 hours. If she can be calmed down long enough to take a deep breath, she might be capable of aiding anyone who promises to help her end her predicament.|
How can her curse be broken? Does she still have followers somewhere? Does the fact that her petrified form can easily be carried by a human that she was small in life, or did the curse also shrink her? These are questions for you to answer in your game!
Do you feel more hateful already? (I hope not!)
I hope you enjoyed this post about an AI-generated artifact. Let me know what you thought about this one, including the inclusion of a random table. More of that, or more story? Help me out by joining my Discord server and give me feedback on this (and all other) post(s)! And if you need more inspiration, check out these posts!
Side note, I started a companion series to this one over on Be Inspired with Dominic. There, I am going into how I would make the artifact in question, which techniques and materials I would use, and how you could further improve the design. The post for the Grumpy Gnome will follow soon, while the Telling Box is already up!
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