A Jolly Rogers Tale: Skull & Shackles
Astrolabe: (100gp, 6 lbs) This device consists of a flat disc upon which two other discs are mounted. The mounted discs can rotate on a central axis, allowing them to spin and move as days pass. The bottom disc represents the latitude of the user; the upper disc represents the sky, and is filled with astronomical features. Anyone can be shown how to use an astrolabe at night to determine the date and time (which takes 1 minute). An astrolabe grants a +2 circumstance bonus on Knowledge (geography) and Survival checks to navigate in the wilderness (and on Profession [sailor] checks to navigate at sea).
Chest, Treasure: (Small: 3gp, 25 lbs; Medium: 7gp, 50 lbs; Large: 15gp, 100 lbs; Huge: 37gp, 250 lbs) A treasure chest begins as a common wooden chest, and is then treated with resin to make the wood water-resistant. Metal bands, usually bronze to prevent rusting, are strapped around the treasure chest for extra reinforcement, and the lock is also made of bronze. A treasure chest uses the statistics of an ordinary wooden chest, but its hit points increase by 25% and its Break DC increases by 2. Treasure chests stand up better to water travel and to being buried than ordinary chests.
Eye Patch: (1sp)An eye patch covers one eye and ties around the head. Pirates usually wear eye patches to cover injured or blind eyes, but some wear eye patches to look more intimidating, or to keep one eye covered and thus retain their night vision when transitioning from the relative darkness belowdecks to the sunlight above.
Flag: (Ensign / Courtesy Small: 2gp; Large: 5gp; Personal Small: 4gp; Large: 10gp) Small nautical flags measure 3 feet by 5 feet, while large ones measure 6 feet by 10 feet. Most ships fly a large national flag (or “ensign”) and a small courtesy flag (the flag of the nation whose waters it’s sailing in) as well as a personal signal, but flag sizes depend on ship size and personal preference.
Flags can be made out of almost any material. Cotton and silk are common, though any type of cloth degrades quickly at sea. Most captains replace their flags every two or three voyages. Ensign and courtesy flags cost less than personal signals, as they can be made in large quantities. Personal signals must be custom ordered.
Grog: (Cup: 1cp, 1 lb; Gallon: 1sp, 8 lbs) Sailors, especially on pirate crews, often demand daily rations of alcohol. To prevent hoarding of alcohol (resulting in drunkenness and subsequent hangovers), most captains mix alcohol with water and a bit of lime or lemon juice to make grog. The water dilutes the alcohol and causes it to spoil more quickly, while the citrus juice masks the taste of spoilage and also prevents scurvy.
Hats: (1sp-50gp, 0.5-2 lbs) Hats of various styles appear in all cultures. Ranging from the turban to the headscarf to the furred cap, a hat can be a simple covering for the head or a sign of rank and status. Particular hats are sometimes mandatory for social or religious sects. Pirates often wear bandanas or tricorn hats, while captains prefer bicornes and may wear them either “fore-and-aft” (with the points in front of and behind them) or “athwart” (sideways).
Nautical Chart: (25gp) Nautical charts can be more valuable than gold to the right buyer. These charts map waterways, showing the depth of water and height (and shape) of coastlines, as well as currents, harbors, navigational hazards, reefs, and tides. A nautical chart grants a +4 circumstance bonus on Profession (sailor) checks made to navigate when in the area detailed by the chart.
Peg Leg: (10gp, 5 lbs.) A peg leg is a wooden stump with a socket built on one end to fit over an individual’s knee. Pirates who lose legs at sea often wear peg legs. A peg leg reduces your base speed by 5 feet and imposes a –4 penalty on Acrobatics, Climb, and Swim checks. You take half damage from caltrops. Pirates often carve hidden compartments into their peg legs—these compartments can hold small items weighing up to 1 or 2 pounds (or a few swigs of grog). If you have two peg legs, your base speed is reduced to half and you take a –10 penalty on Acrobatics, Climb, and Swim checks. You are immune to damage from caltrops. Peg legs presume that the knee joint is intact. If the knee joint is not intact, use the prosthesis statistics instead.
Pirate Clothes: (Basic: 1sp, 2 lbs; Fancy: 30gp, 6 lbs) Pirates can appear in a variety of clothing styles, but most wear a basic outfit consisting of a linen shirt, canvas knee-breeches, cotton stockings, and leather shoes (though some pirates prefer to go barefoot at sea). In addition, well-to-do pirates, particularly pirate captains, often add fancy touches to their outfits, such as colorful jackets of velvet or silk done up with brass buttons, tall leather boots, ruffled collars, and plumed hats. Sailors in warmer climates may instead go shirtless and wear nothing but loose pantaloons.
Prosthesis: (Arm: 10gp, 5 lbs; Foot: 1gp, 2 lbs; Hand: 1gp, 1lb; Leg: 20gp 6 lbs.) People who lose hands, arms, legs, or feet in combat sometimes replace them with prostheses: realistic simulations of their missing limbs. Usually carved of wood and painted to match the wearer’s skin tone, these items have limited functionality, allowing a person missing a leg to walk at half speed, or enabling a person missing an arm to hold a shield in a fixed position, but little more. Clever individuals have been known to create small compartments in their prostheses, just large enough to hold very small objects. A prosthetic hand or foot can hold only an item with negligible weight, while a prosthetic limb can hold up to 1 or 2 pounds.
Sextant: (500gp, 2lbs.) A sextant is used to determine your latitude, and grants a +4 circumstance bonus on Survival checks made to navigate while above ground.
Tar Bomb: (15gp, 2lbs. Craft DC 15) A tar bomb is an easy weapon to make, and devastating in use. A head-sized lump of tar is wrapped around a rope and set on fire. You use the rope to lob the burning tar onto an enemy’s deck, where it sticks and sets the ship alight. In many ways, a tar bomb functions as a less potent version of alchemist’s fire, as it deals less damage and lacks the splash damage of the more expensive substance. Treat this attack as a ranged touch attack with a range increment of 10 feet. Lighting a tar bomb is a move action.
A hit with a tar bomb deals 1d4 points of fire damage and has the potential to set the struck object or creature on fire, causing an additional 1d6 points of fire damage each round unless the target or an adjacent creature makes a DC 15 Reflex save to extinguish the flames as a full-round action. Knocking the tar bomb or the burning creature or object into a body of water or magically extinguishing the flames automatically smothers the fire.
Tattoo: (1cp-20gp) The cost of a tattoo depends on the quality, size, and number of colors used. A coin-sized tattoo in blue ink that will blur over a decade may cost 1 cp, a hand-sized one in black ink that won’t fade costs 1 sp, and a tattoo covering an entire back takes several sessions and costs 10 gp. Each additional color costs as much as a single tattoo of its size.