As a GM, I would like to introduce a "trapped" magic item in one of my next adventures. The idea is that interacting with the item (detect magic, most probably, or touching it for a moment) would trigger the trap, a magically induced unconsciousness.
Is this reproducible using the rules? Would this be a Curse or a Magic Trap? I'm thinking of the Sleep spell for the kind of effect, but I'm unsure which direction to take.
Admittedly, I initially thought of simply forcing this effect and giving a Hero Point for the trouble (think Fate compels or Mutants & Masterminds complications), but now I realize it wouldn't break the story if the targeted PC had a chance of noticing the trap and avoiding it. Having rules to know the DCs would thus be helpful.
I'd also like this trap to go off once only so the (genuinely magical) item remains as a possible reward.
Adding a few details of the scene as I envision it:
- We are still a low level (4th) and the baddies should probably be limited in what they can do here. I'm thinking level 6 stuff is still fair, but beyond it strains believability
- Limitations on the effect may justify a lower level. To take an answer as an example, a "Lesser Symbol of Sleep" could be a thing with limitations that fit my needs such as "single target, 5ft range or touch".
- I envision the limitations forcing this trap to be delivered in person and making sure the target interacts with it. The target being a magic user, I thought the guise of needing the item magically identified would be the trick. Use Detect Magic, and if you don't beat the regular DC +10 (ala Curse), boom, you don't notice the magic trap and it affects you. Alternatively, a touch-trigger with a Will save to resist the effects sounds good too.
- Mostly, this is to fit my vision of the scene, but also to avoid total paranoia from then on. I don't want the party to think everything around them can explode at any moment, without any way to track down the culprits, for example :)