Harpers pin 5e

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Posted - 12 Jun 2015 :  10:05:38  Show ProfileSend Riley37 a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
If a PC joins the Harpers, at what point do the Harpers issue that PC a Harper Pin? The Lesser Pin works as a Ring of Mind Shielding; the Greater Pin has further enchantments.

I am also asking in the general forum, as lore, but curious how you would rule if the PC lost their Pin:

What happens if someone takes a Harper Pin from the Harper to whom it was issued?

Does the Harper Pin have an enchantment which causes it to self-destruct if the owner dies?

What happens if the Pin is physically separated from its still-living owner, eg, the owner takes a bath, and then someone steals all the bather's clothing and bags, including the pin?

Self-destruct on separation would be ideal for security, but dang, that's expensive to replace, or inconvenient if the Harper was on a mission and far from anyone who would recognize them personally and confirm that they're authorized for a replacement pin.

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Posted - 12 Jun 2015 :  14:56:41  Show Profile  Visit Hoondatha's HomepageSend Hoondatha a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Do you have the Code of the Harpers sourcebook? It has an entire chapter on joining the Harpers. Though that chapter deals more with the more organized Berdusk chapter. Anecdotally, from novels, the Shadowdale chapter (and more free-wheeling Harpers in general) will give their pins to someone they're sponsoring to join.

As for the pins themselves, they are never attuned to a specific person. So yes, this does open the door to them being lost, stolen, and otherwise appropriated by foes of the Harpers.

On the other hand, considering some of the powerful wizards, and the fact that half a dozen gods are personally interested in the group, carrying a stolen pin around may not be the safest thing for one to do...

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Xnella Moonblade-Thann
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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 16 Jun 2015 :  05:13:19  Show ProfileSend Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Xnella Moonblade-Thann

Some agents of the Harpers work for them for YEARS before being offered to formally join the ranks and given a Harper Pin...for example, Arilyn Moonblade and Danilo Thann both worked for the Harpers for quite some time (I'd imagine Danilo had less then a decade of Harper-sponsored tasks, while Arilyn had been doing such tasks for a couple of decades, at least).

I'm not sure that either of those is the best example... Danilo was Khelben's agent, and Khelben has been shown to be willing to play his own games. Even though the Harper Schism was years away when Elfshadow was written, it was already clear then that Khelben was more than happy to use non-Harpers to accomplish Harper goals.

So I'm honestly not sure Danilo was actually being groomed for the Harpers.

As for Arilyn, she was working for Kymil Nimesin, in kind of a black ops role for the Harpers. It's even explicitly stated in Elfshadow that the Harpers were uncomfortable with her reputation. They were comfortable with letting her accomplish certain tasks, but they were also happy to keep their own hands clean, in the process.

It was only their finding and unmasking of the Harper Assassin that put Arilyn enough in the Harpers' good graces for them to admit her (after Master Harper Bran Skorlson went and made it a fait accompli), and Danilo proved himself at the same time. Plus, he had the whole thing of being Khelben's likely successor going for him.

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Posted - 22 Jun 2015 :  16:22:35  Show ProfileSend Cyrinishad a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In an attempt to get this topic back on track, and away from the "Edition Wars"...

It's important to remember that regardless of edition or game mechanics, the old adage "Nothing is Free" is especially true when it comes to dealing with Organizations in the Realms.

Regarding the original post questions... It's one of those things that is up to the discretion of the DM. My frame of reference on these things would be like an electronic Employee ID card. If an employee of company loses their ID they would be expected to report it to the organization immediately, otherwise the employee would have some level of culpability if their lost ID was misused to gain access to a building/resources/information or whatever else. Some companies require employees to pay for a replacement ID. Since the Harper Pin isn't cheap to replace, it wouldn't be unreasonable for the Harpers to require agents to pay for replacement Pins.

Also, the Harpers are a type of Secret Society... and even if there isn't any specific Lore on this, I think it would be entirely reasonable to have additonal verbal/physical/aesthetic ways of communicating to people that someone is truly a Harper beyond possession of a Harper Pin.

Finally, the "Magic Mouth" spell could be cast upon the Harper Pin when it is provided to an Agent. The spell could operate like a Car Alarm and literally trigger any time someone other than the specific Harper Agent that Pin is given to touches it, and/or if the Pin is moved some distance away from the Agent... Or it could be set to trigger anytime someone tries to impersonate a Harper Agent. It's a cheap 2nd level spell, and can last forever.

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Harpers Faction

The Harpers



Common Descriptors: Benevolent, knowledgeable, secretive
Primary Classes: Bards, wizards
Alignments: CG (primary), NG, LG, LN, N, CN


Waterdeep, Everlund (Moongleam Tower), Berdusk


Apprentice Harper:Rank 1. You are an apprentice to a Harper, learning the ropes as you assist them in their missions.

Harper:Rank 3. You are an agent of the Harp, taking missions and tasks to accomplish their aims. You are in contact with a Brightcandle of the faction. You are a long-term agent, tasked with responsibilities that range from long-term assignments to immediate missions.
Senior Harper:Rank 10. You are a senior agent, and given a great deal of autonomy in deciding your missions. You are known to at least one Wise Owl, who may contact you for help with particularly difficult missions, or in emergencies that threaten local cells.
• Master Harper:Rank 25. Your experience is laudable, and your sacrifices well-known to other Harpers. The leadership of the Harpers are drawn from those with this degree of renown.

“Down with tyranny. Fairness and equality for all.”
A scattered network of spellcasters and spies, the Harpers advocate equality and covertly oppose the abuse of power, magical or otherwise.


The Harpers are an old organization that has risen, been shattered, and risen again more than once. Its longevity and resilience are the result of its decentralized and secretive nature, and the near-autonomy of its members. The organization consist of cells and lone operatives throughout Faerûn, interacting and sharing information with one another only as needs warrant. The Harpers’ ideology is noble, and members of the order pride themselves on their integrity and incorruptibility. Harpers do not seek power or glory— only fair and equal treatment for all.

Goals and Philosophy

Harpers gather information across Faerûn, discerning the political dynamics within each region or realm, and promoting fairness and equality by covert means. Members of the order oppose tyranny—as well as any leader, government, or group that grows powerful enough to threaten tyranny. They aid the weak, the poor, and the oppressed while maintaining the order’s legendary secrecy, acting openly only as a last resort.

Harper agents adhere to a strict Code of the Harpers, focusing on a number of tenets as they pursue their goals:

  • One can never have too much information or arcane knowledge.
  • Too much power leads to corruption. In particular, the abuse of magic must be closely monitored.
  • No one should ever be powerless.

The Harper Code

Becoming a Harper involves taking an oath to uphold the Harper Code to the best of one's ability. This includes:

  • Harpers work against villainy and wickedness wherever they find it, but they work ever mindful of the consequences of what they do.
  • All beings should walk free of fear, with the right to live their lives as they wish.
  • The rule of law aids peace and fosters freedom, so long as the laws are just and those who enforce them lenient and understanding.
  • No extreme is good. For freedom to flourish, all must be in balance: the powers of realms, the reaches of the cities and the wilderlands into each other, and the influence of one being over another.
  • Whatever it takes, a Harper will do. Pride never rules the deeds of a true Harper.
  • Freedom is a multiversal right, though Harpers can spare themselves less freedom than those they work to protect when the need presents itself.
  • Harpers police their own. A Harper who hears the call of personal power can no longer hear the sweet song of the harp. A Harper who seizes power, and holds it above all else, is a traitor to the harp. Traitors must die for freedom to live.
  • Without a past, no being can appreciate what they have, and where they may be going.


Harper agents are trained to act alone and rely on their own resources. When they get into scrapes, they don’t count on their fellow Harpers to rescue them. Nevertheless, Harpers are dedicated to helping one another in times of need, and friendships between Harpers are nigh unbreakable. Masterful spies and infiltrators, they use various guises and secret identities to form relationships, cultivate their information networks, and manipulate others into doing what needs to be done. Most Harpers prefer to operate in the shadows, though a few members of the order become well known. Quests undertaken by agents of the Harpers might include the following:

  • Secure an artifact that could upset the balance of power in a region.
  • Gather intelligence on a powerful individual or organization.
  • Determine the true intentions of a powerful political figure or spellcaster.

Faction Ranks

Harper Pins

Wondrous Item, rare (attunement)


Wrought by certain finesmiths and enchanted by Harper magicians, the Harper pin provides a number of benefits to the attuned wearer based on their standing within the Harpers as a faction. Pins manifest power based on their attunement to Harper bearers. An un-attuned pin is referred to as being dormant.

  • Basic Abilities:No rank. Harper pins, even those which are dormant, are themselves immune to divination magics. They never register as magical to spells or spell-like abilities.
  • Rank 1. The Harper attuned to the pin may, as a bonus action and mere act of will requiring neither speech nor gesture, command the pin to change its shape into another piece of jewelry. It never appears to be worth more than 5gp, although this value can be for a piece that is obviously costume jewelry. If the wearer is in any way targeted by a dispel magic, even if the pin is not the target of that spell, it automatically reverts to its normal harp-and-moon shape.
  • Rank 2. In addition to the above abilities, the pin functions as a ring of mind shielding, without the soul-retention property of that ring. Harpers with some experience can learn to invest their pins with a fragment of personality. Instead of causing mind-reading to simply fail (which is suspicious), they can cause the pin to "loop" a set of thoughts of their choice, usually setting a cycle of thoughts appropriate to their current cover story. A pin's thought loop can be reset during a short rest.
    • Renown 5. The pin is capable of playing a counter-tune when the attuned Harper encounters spells that would charm them, granting the bearer advantage on all saves against such spells and abilities. The pin also drinks in the power behind magic missiles, rendering the bearer immune to them. Either of these effects cause a shapechanged pin to revert to its normal, harp-and-moon shape.
    • Renown 6. The pin protects the bearer from electrical attacks, granting resistance to lightning damage. This effect causes a shapechanged pin to revert to its normal, harp-and-moon shape.
  • Rank 3. A shapechanged pin is now immune from reverting to its normal shape by any means.

Harpers in good standing might receive the following benefits:

Apprentice (Rank 1)

Prerequisite: Harper renown 1+

  • Sponsor: You have a senior Harper who has not only brought you into the Harpers, but helps to train you. The time it takes to learn one of the mentor's proficiencies by the Training downtime activity is reduced in half. Any given mentor usually knows 1d6 languages and 1d6 tool proficiencies. They can also arrange training with other Harpers for proficiencies outside of their own baliwick. This benefit applies until the Harper achieves Rank 2.
  • Signs at Twilight: All Harpers learn the methods for contacting and getting information to the Harpers. The use of certain songs, signs to look for, identifying phrases - all the techniques that Harpers use to find one another in a cold and dangerous world. Harpers also learn the meaning, placement, and discovery of the specific Harper sigils.
  • Magic Access: Harpers can get access to Common potions and scrolls at the cost it takes to create those items, and have them within 1d4 days.

Harper (Rank 2)

Prerequisite: Rank 1 and Harper renown 3+

  • Song Training: By the time a Harper has spent some time as part of the organization, training in music is an inevitability. Harpers use music for a great many things - to subtly identify themselves to one another, to pass coded messages back and forth, and even the use of musical metaphor in their interactions. The Harper of this Rank may choose proficiency in a musical instrument or the Performance Skill for singing. A proficient Harper may play music that communicates something to other Harpers who hear it in a coded fashion, as well.
  • Harper's Pin: Fully acknowledged agents of the Harpers receive a Harpers pin magic item (see sidebar).
  • Harper Cell: Harper agents are frequently put into a cell structure, giving them the support of allies without endangering the entire organization should they be compromised.
  • Harper Lore: Harpers gain access to repositories of arcane lore - spells known only to Harpers. These are taught by mentors or provided as spell-scrolls. These spells may be considered to be added to the spell-list of the character.
  • Harper Trainers: Harpers make a point of providing access to training for its newer operatives. This includes tool proficiencies, languages, and Exploits; Harpers of this rank pay only half the normal cost for that training.
  • Magic Access: Harpers can get access to Common potions and scrolls at half the cost it takes to create those items, and have them within one day. They can get access to Uncommon potions and scrolls at the cost it takes to create those items, and have them within 1d6 days.
  • Mentor: Full Harpers can bring others into the Harpers by acting as their sponsors. They are considered entirely responsible for their apprentices until such time as those apprentices are considered full Harpers themselves.
  • Continuing Training:Renown 6+. Harpers of this degree of experience within the group have continued their training in music, choosing another musical instrument to be proficient in. They may also choose proficiency in a disguise kit, herbalism kit, or poisoner's kit.

Senior Harper (Rank 3)

Prerequisite: Rank 2 and Harper renown 10+

  • Harper's Adroitness: By this point, a harper's career has put them into a variety of situations where they needed to talk their way out of things. The characters gains one of the following Skill Feats: Empathic, Diplomat, Menacing, Performer, or Silver-Tongued
  • Harper Intelligence: Harpers of this ranking receive all manner of intelligence regarding their local area. It is given to them to act upon as much or as little as they see fit, but all of it is expected to be passed to their superiors in the organization.
  • Harper Charm: Harpers of a certain rank inherit small magics that they are invested with. On the first day of a solstice or equinox, if a Harper has exhausted their Charm, they automatically gain another.
  • Lifestyle: You are supported at a Modest lifestyle for free, courtesy of the Harpers. This is most often granted not as coin, but as space in a Harper holding or household.

Master Harper (Rank 4)

Prerequisite: Rank 3 and Harper renown 25+

  • Harper Charm: Master Harpers may have up to two Harper Charms at a time. On the first day of a solstice or equinox, if a Harper has exhausted their Charms, they automatically gain a replacement for one or both.
  • Blessing of the Dancing Place: Long ago, when certain gods met at the Dancing Place and affirmed their approval of the Harpers, they worked together to craft a boon for those who worked close to Harper ideals. All Master Harpers who are in accord with the Harper Code and have not blasphemed against one of those gods (Deneir, Eldath, Lliira, Mielikki, Milil, Mystra, Oghma, Selûne, Silvanus, and Tymora), they benefit from the Blessing of the Dancing Place. At the end of a long rest, the Master Harper chooses one of these effects to remain active, until such time as they choose to change it.
  • Lifestyle: You are supported at a Comfortable lifestyle for free, courtesy of the Harpers. This is most often granted not as coin, but as a Harper holding or household for you to run.

High Harper (Rank 5)

Prerequisite: Rank 4, Harper renown 50+, and nomination by another High Harper

  • Blessings of the Dancing Place: Those who embody the highest ideals of the gods of the Dancing Place, who have sacrificed much for the Harpers, and who have the faith of their fellows receive a mighty boon: at all times, High Harpers are considered to have all of the Blessings of the Dancing Place active on them.

Faction Roles

Not all Harpers do the same tasks. Harpers tend to receive training that fits well with their best talents, aiding their fellows to the best of their respective abilities. Apprentice Harpers are in training to assume one of these roles, generally speaking; Harpers may not choose one of these Roles until they achieve Rank 2.

It is possible to switch Roles, however this takes a number of downtime months of re-training equal to the Harper's current Rank. At the end of that time, they lose the benefits of their previous Role, and gain the benefits of their new one.


Warriors and tacticians, harpblades are front-line fighters ready to come to the defense of Those Who Harp. Despite the name, anyone who is ready to defend their own - whether they use sword or spell - can operate as a harpblade.

  • Harpblade (Rank 2): A newly-made harpblade is expected to focus on their fighting skills, for you will be expected to put your life on the line for Harper goals almost immediately. Choose one Exploit from among the following 1st rank Exploits: Battlefront Shift or Heroic Effort.
  • Senior Harpblade (Rank 3): As a senior harpblade, you are expected to be a leader among the defenders of the Harpers within your operational area, training new harpblades or even acting as the head of a cell focused on forward and decisive action. You may also be expected to act as a recruiter for the local Harpers, usually recruiting those with skill in battle.
    • Trainer Access: You know all of the Exploit Trainers associated with the Harpers in the area, and they will train you for free, though you must still spend the time involved.
    • Training Others (Downtime): Harpblades are tasked with the training of their fellow Harpers in combat, tactics, and other techniques. Gain a +1 Harpers renown when you spend a number of tendays equal to your current renown on this downtime activity. Additionally, your cell gains a +1 Connections investment for every 30 days you spend on this activity, as training a variety of one's fellow Harpers is a slow but reliable way to build interconnections.
  • Master Harpblade (Rank 4): The master harpblade is among the finest warriors to be had among the Harpers in a given area. Master harpblades frequently spent time training others, or acting as last ditch intervention when violence and quick action is called for.
    • Quick Mastery: You learn best while teaching others. When you take the Training Others downtime action (above), you may count half of those downtime days as being spent training to learn a new Exploit.
    • Master's Emblem: You gain a Rare magic item from among the items favored by Harpers, a gift from the High Harpers for your service.
  • High Harpblade (Rank 5): xxx


Spies and sneaks, rogues and shady sorts, harpshadows are well-versed in some aspect of covert operation or criminal enterprise. Harpers often operate outside of the law, and harpshadows are those who facilitate that when necessary. The criminal contacts a Harper develops are often put to the use of the faction as a whole.

  • Harpshadow (Rank 2): You are expected to be cunning and subtle, right out of the gate, as the responsibilities the Harpers need you for are both quick and demanding. Choose one Exploit from among the following 1st rank Exploits: Invigorating Stride or Lurker's Cloak.
    • Infiltrator (Downtime): Harpshadows often volunteer to use their skills as infiltrators to gather needed information for the Harpers. By spending time taking the Skulduggery downtime action on behalf of the Harpers, they gain both renown and information. Harpers gather intelligence about a wide and vast body of information, and are willing to share that with their fellows who go out of their way to increase that lore. To use this, the harpshadow must be given a specific target. When they "donate" one question from their Skulduggery downtime action against that target, the Harpers will answer one question about known topics in return. Additionally, gain a +1 Harpers renown when you spend a number of tendays equal to your current renown on this downtime activity.
  • Senior Harpshadow (Rank 3): xxx
  • Master Harpshadow (Rank 4): xxx
  • High Harpshadow (Rank 5): xxx


Often considered the quintessential Harper, harpsingers are social butterflies, adroit and charming. They develop allies, recruit watchers, establish spy networks, and manipulate the enemy into betraying itself. Above all, the song of the Harp is a sweet one.

  • Harpsinger (Rank 2): Even as a brand-new harpsinger, you are expected to sway strangers and inspire your fellow Harpers. Choose one Exploit from among the following 1st rank Exploits: Inspiring Word or Shake It Off.
    • Mingling (Downtime): Harpsingers make friends not just on their own behalf, but on behalf of the Harpers as whole. They may "donate" Contacts and Favors acquired from other downtime actions and
  • Senior Harpsinger (Rank 3): xxx
  • Master Harpsinger (Rank 4): xxx
  • High Harpsinger (Rank 5): xxx


Harpsages are vital to Harper efforts, for they specialize in the possession of knowledge and its use and dissemination to those Harpers who may benefit from it. Harpsages are often thought of as arcane loremasters or theologans, but they are more than that: keepers of gathered intelligence, crafts-people, scholars of history and the natural world, and even those who specialize in old riddles or songs.

  • Harpsage (Rank 2): Even though your studies have only just begun, the Harpers need you to apply all of your wits and learning to the goals of Those Who Harp. Choose one Exploit from among the following 1st rank Utility Exploits: Adaptive Strategem or Crucial Advice.
    • Lore Library: The Harpsage has access to the lore library maintained by the local Harpers, or to other such libraries in other locales (if introductions are made). They may use this library to perform Research actions for half the normal cost.
    • Wonderwright (Downtime): The Harpers need magicians willing and able to devote efforts to creating magic items of use to their agents. By spending time taking the Crafting an Item downtime actions on behalf of the Harpers, they may gain both renown and magical lore or resources. By spending an amount of downtime days equal to that necessary to create a magic item (permanent or consumable) of a given rarity, the Harpsage is given either the schema for an item of that rarity or the magical resource necessary to create one of that rarity. These times are (consumable first, then permanent): Common (5 days or 10 days), Uncommon (10 days or 20 days), Rare (50 days or 100 days), Very Rare (125 days or 250 days), Legendary (250 days or 500 days). Additionally, gain a +1 Harpers renown when you spend a number of tendays equal to your current renown on this downtime activity.
  • Senior Harpsage (Rank 3): xxx
  • Master Harpsage (Rank 4): xxx
  • High Harpsage (Rank 5): xxx

Faction Titles

Not everyone who qualifies for one of these titles receives them. They are specific jobs, with responsibilities and benefits for those chosen to fulfill them.


Prerequisite: Rank 2+
Brightharps have one job: to make the Harpers shine in the tales of the people. Their job is to inspire. As such, they are most often the Harpers who are public (or as close as any Harper gets) with their Harper affiliation, and who work to build good relations between the faction and those who might be inspired to help.

  • Lifestyle: The Harpers cover a Modest lifestyle for their brightharps.
  • Contacts: You may add your Harper renown to the maximum number of Contacts and Favors that you may accumulate from downtime actions and story rewards.
  • Inspiring (Downtime): You may take the special Harper Inspiring downtime action, spending time being a public face for the good Harpers do and making allies among those helped or inspired by their work. Once you accumulate a number of tendsays equal to your current Harper renown, you gain another point of renown. Complications involve being targeted by enemies of the Harpers, or being harassed by power structures who do not appreciate the Harper ethos.
  • Allies: When taking the Build Allies, Ally Influence, or Ally Funding cell actions, Brightharps add their Harpers Rank as a bonus to those checks.


Prerequisite: Rank 2+
Mentors are assigned apprentice Harpers (Rank 1) and help guide them into becoming full Harpers. Mentors train their apprentice diligently and even occasionally take them out on missions, to give them field experience under a careful eye.

  • Lifestyle: The Harpers cover a Modest lifestyle for their mentors.
  • Apprentice: You are assigned an apprentice Harper who is learning the Code and operations from you. You may be asked to mentor multiple apprentices.
  • Mentoring (Downtime): You may take the special Harper Mentoring downtime action, during which time you spend training your apprentice(s). Once you accumulate a number of tendsays equal to your current Harper renown, you gain another point of renown.
  • Connections: When taking the Build Connections, or Connections Assistance actions, Mentors add their Harpers Rank as a bonus to those checks.


Prerequisite: Rank 2+
Recruiters take responsibility for the Watcher network. They tend to be charismatic, and are skilled at selling the good the Harpers do to those in positions to deliver useful information to Those Who Harp.

  • Lifestyle: The Harpers cover a Modest lifestyle for their recruiters.
  • Contacts: You may add your Harper renown to the maximum number of Contacts and Favors that you may accumulate from downtime actions and story rewards.
  • Recruiting (Downtime): You may take the special Harper Recruiting downtime action, during which time you assist established Watcher and expand their ranks for the Harpers in general (rather than for your cell specifically). Once you accumulate a number of tendays equal to your current Harper renown, you gain another point of renown.
  • Watchers: When taking the Build Watchers or Watcher Reports actions, Recruiters add their Harpers Rank as a bonus to those checks.


Prerequisite: Rank 2+
Ultimately, the work of the Harpers is done in secret and seclusion. Someone must work to make sure that the efforts of Those Who Harp can be carried through as safely and clandestinely as possible: this person is a Harper Warden. Wardens tend to the security of not just their own cell, but that of the local operating area, usually coordinated by a Master Warden (or a High Warden, if one is local).

  • Lifestyle: The Harpers cover a Modest lifestyle for their recruiters.
  • Warden Ties: You work closely with other Wardens in your area. You can call upon one of them to assist you in some Harper capacity should you need it without refusal, payment needed, or debts incurred, as long as that Warden is not currently involved in something.
  • Defense (Downtime): You may take the special Harper Defense downtime action, during which time you check the security and secrecy measures of the Harpers outside of your immediate cell, testing for weaknesses and helping them shore up defenses. Once you accumulate a number of tendays equal to your current Harper renown, you gain another point of renown.
  • Security: When taking the Build Security, Wardens add their Harpers Rank as a bonus to those checks. Additionally, add your Harpers Rank to the number of safehouses available to your cell.
  • Harpshadow:Rank 3+. Harpshadows are Harper agents who are put in a single place, with an identity created by the Harpers for them, to watch and be ready. They are expected to perform the Work downtime activity at least one week per month. In return, the Harpers cover their lifestyle expenses at a Modest level for free.
  • Harpsinger:Rank 3+. Some Harpers spend their time out among those who are drunk and mixing freely, using a party atmosphere to uncover secrets and acquire information. They are expected to perform the Carousing downtime activity at least one week per month. The Harpers cover the cost of the downtime activity, and return, the Harpers also cover their lifestyle expenses at the Modest level for free.
  • Harpwright:Rank 3+. Harper finesmiths who focus on the creation of magical items for Harper agents and magic item caches.
  • Harpsage:Rank 3+. Harper loremasters and sages record and gather information of use to Harper missions. In exchange for performing one week of the Research downtime activity per month, the Harper is then given general access to the libraries used by local Harpers, to perform their own research when they wish.
  • Brightcandle:Rank 10+ Brightcandles are the heads of cells of Harper agents in their area. Each Brightcandle manages a single cell, for whom they are the sole operational superiors. Brightcandles often know other Brightcandles (but not their cells), and are in contact with a Wise Owl. In exchange for two workweeks of activity a month, Brightcandles have their lifestyles covered at the Comfortable level by the Harpers. They also have access to a variety of Harper agents and other resources, such as caches and libraries. Each Brightcandle is also in contact with the local Herald, working together.
  • Wise Owl:Rank 25+ Wise Owls see far and wide, acting as regional coordinators for Harper activities. Wise Owls have a number of Brightcandles assigned under them, and spend a great deal of their time in facilitating their efforts, collating the information they bring in, and then putting it to good use. They are in contact with the council of High Harpers. In exchange for two workweeks of activity per month, Wise Owls are kept at the Comfortable lifestyle level by the Harpers. They also receive a small collection of magic items that help them accomplish their missions.
  • High Harper:Rank 40. A small council of figures whose job it is to run the Harpers, the High Harpers are always powerful individuals. They are kept at the Comfortable lifestyle by the Harpers, but nearly all of their time is taken up by their duties. High Harpers have the whole organization of the Harpers at their disposal, but are required to remain transparent to their fellow High Harpers.

Harpers in the North

The following locations have a discernible Harper presence capable of providing assistance and support to Harper agents. Other places may have a few agents or Watchers, but these are places Harpers can go when they need aid or sanctuary.

Delimbiyr Vale

  • Daggerford: Though Those Who Harp do not have a strong presence in Daggerford, Filarion Filverdonson (Rank 3) is a local trader who also wears the pin. He makes his home open to his fellow Harpers in need of aid or simply a friend.
  • Loudwater: Harpers in need of sanctuary or support know to seek out the Smiling Satyr, and to ask for Gharwin Umbryl.

Dessarin Valley

  • Triboar: The Lord Protector of Triboar, Darathra Shendrel (Rank 3), is a Harper, although she is not an active agent at current. She does offer a welcome to Those Who Harp, however, as well as santuary and what aid she can.
  • Yartar: The Harpers of Yartar operate sub-rosa as much as they can. Most folk in town know that the raucous festhall called the Bared Maid (otherwise known as "the Chilly Wench" for its featured naked musicians) is said to hold Harpers or those who can contact them with the right pass-phrases.

The Frozenfar

  • Mirabar: A Harper safehouse operates out of a sage's stone tower in this city.
    • Emeryldyn Weskyr (Rank 4): A dwarven sage who specializes in the history of metallury, and is the head of the local Harpers.

Neverwinter Wood

  • Neverwinter: A creaky old three-story rowhouse acts as a meeting place and safehouse for Harpers in Neverwinter. A candle in the window gives permission to those watching nearby to come in by the back alley entrance.

The Silver Marches

  • Everlund: Moongleam Tower is a keep of black stone, which serves as an open Harper stronghold and the center of its operations in the North. Several senior Harpers remain in residence here.
    • Meriánde Moonsilver (Rank 4): A descendant of the famous Harper bard Mintiper Moonsilver, Meriánde has carried on the tradition of her ancestor's bardic skills. Though she is known to be based out of Everlund, she does not have any permanent home or hosting known to anyone, even the upper echelon of Harpers. Common Harper lore suggests that she is often among the Harpers hosting at Moongleam Tower in Everlund, albeit in disguise.
    • Moonlord Daviana Yalrannis (Rank 5): The master of Moongleam Tower and one of the two High Harpers in the North, Yalrannis' title "Moonlord" denotes his command of Moongleam Tower. He is considered an important political figure in Everlund's local politics, and he sits on the Council of Elders in the city.
  • Silverymoon: Many Harpers operate openly in Silverymoon, including the court harpist. For those who are not operating openly, there is a more subtle welcome awaiting them at the temples of any of the Harper gods: Mielikki, Mystra, Oghma, Selûne, or Tymora. These temples maintain connections to the Harpers, and can offer them secret sanctuary and quick exits via hidden passages.
    • Emerdale Silverharp (Rank 4): A companion of the High Mage and the court harpist of Silverymoon, the half-elven Silverharp deliberately places himself in a high position out in the open as part of the Harpers, in order to give folk access to him. Though this endangers him, he considers the risk worth it – to say nothing of the skills of the shadowy bodyguards who defend him.

Sword Mountains

  • Waterdeep: The Harpers of Waterdeep have perhaps a greater presence than any other site in the North, save only Everlund. Lady Remalia Haventree is a public member of the Harpers, and agents in need of contact or succor from the Waterdhavian Harpers need only come to the gate of Ulbrinter House, in the North Ward.
    • Lady Remallia Haventree (Rank 4): An elven highborn currently in a position of power in Waterdeep's House Ulbrinter, Lady Remallia is the Harpers' public face in Waterdeep, speaking on behalf of the organization in public affairs.
    • The Spymaster (Rank 4): The lieutenant of the Shepherd who oversees the training and day-to-day administration of Harper spies, the real name of the Spymaster in Waterdeep is unknown.
    • The Shepherd (Rank 5): The shadowy High Harper known as the Shepherd operates out of the Deep, running a highly-efficient and secretive network of agents, spies and informants, including several cells of Harper agents ready and willing to do his bidding.

Previous Eras

Sours: http://www.oakthorne.net/wiki/index.php/Harpers_Faction
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D&D 5E Harper's Pin

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Given harpers in the stories seem to insanely wear their pins or Harper signs semi openly and often get spotted as a result, I thought it would be a good idea to give them some advantage for doing this, maybe a small piece of magic somewhat similar to how the pins work in 4th edition. Possibly have the magic only start at a given renown level and maybe getting better at higher levels.

What do you think of this idea and any suggestions for small bonuses I might give out? My player is a 2nd level bard with one renown at the moment.

Currently she is very paranoid of the harper pin she has and it is dissembled into hard to recognise pieces in her pack.

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Erin M Evans, in the Brimstone Angels series, got rid of Harper pins, and instead replaced them with magical tattoos that only appeared with a spoken command word. This way, only those the Harper wanted to see would get a chance to. Maybe something like that would be something your paranoid bard character might like?

Maybe harper pins are tuned to vibrate to a specific ultrasonic tone. The bard could work that tone into her music so that other harpers would be clued in that the music was from a fellow harper.

Harper Pins: The Forgotten Realms' poorly developed answer to Blue Tooth. All they can transmit is your allegiance, and the "reception" they get may not be ... user-friendly.

Still, I've always liked the Harpers, and Mephista's reminder about Evans' magic-tattoo work-around in the Brimstone Angels series is one of those little ideas that shines with pragmatic brilliance.

muppetmuppet, your player ain't paranoid, she's rational and sensible. Send her to her local Harper tattoo-artist, which, come to think of it, should be added to the careers in the Guild Artisan background.

And darjr (I now dub thee the "artful darjr"), combining your idea about a tonal resonance with the magic-tattoo would be simply delightful.
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Sours: https://www.enworld.org/threads/harpers-pin.474605/
The Harpers: A D\u0026D Faction of Subtle Intrigue


The Harpers are a scattered network of spellcasters and spies who advocate equality and covertly oppose the abuse of power, magical or otherwise. They seek to tip the scales in favor of the innocent, the weak, and the poor within the Realms. Agents operate in secret and emphasize stealth and subtlety, or at the very least discretion. Bards and wizards are their most prominent members. Harper agents pride themselves on being incorruptible defenders of good, and they never hesitate to aid the oppressed. Because they prefer to work behind the scenes, they are rarely noticed as they thwart tyrants, depose rulers, and head off any growing force that is rumored to have evil intent. The Harpers has its finger on the pulse of power in the Realms and works tirelessly to even the odds for the downtrodden.

Individual Harper agents often operate alone, relying on their wits and extensive information networks to gain an advantage over their enemies. They know that knowledge is power, so gathering intelligence beforehand is paramount to their success. They are well-informed and always have access to aid, magical and otherwise. Veteran members have access to secret caches of knowledge stashed all over Faerûn, along with trusted sources stationed in every major town and city.

“A Harper is first and foremost self-reliant, for once you are autonomous then no one can tempt you into using power as a crutch. You are sovereign unto yourself.”
“Therefore, a Harper’s soul must be incorruptible. Many believe themselves to be so, but power comes in many guises, and it will surely find your weakness. Of this you may be certain. Only a true Harper can pass this test and transform weakness into strength. That is why we are the hand that stops the tyrant, feeds the oppressed, and asks for nothing in return.”
“We are the song for those who have no voice.”
—Remallia “Remi” Haventree

The organization is always on the lookout for powerful items, expressly to keep them out of the hands of evildoers. To this end its agents use various guises and identities to gain access to carefully guarded secrets such as ancestral maps, buried cities, and mages’ keeps.

The bond between Harpers is strong, and their friendships are nigh unbreakable. Rarely do they operate in the open, but on rare occasions they must, because there is no other choice. When that happens, you can be sure that a fellow Harper is watching closely, ready to emerge from the shadows and help a comrade at a moment’s notice.

Harpers operate in small cells throughout the North. One is based in Triboar: Darathra Shendrel, the Lord Protector, belongs to the faction, and Harper agents can find welcome at the Home of the Boars.

Another cell in the prosperous trade center of Yartar monitors traffic in the Dessarin Valley and the actions and policies of the city’s Waterbaron. The Harpers work to maintain the balance of power between the various groups competing to influence the city.

In the Sumber Hills, the Harpers warn travelers and adventurers to stay clear of Rundreth Manor and the Dark Lady who dwells there. Harpers also watch the ruined Halls of the Hunting Axe.


The organization has risen, been shattered, and risen again several times. Its longevity and resilience are largely due to its decentralized, grassroots, secretive nature, and the autonomy of its various members. The Harpers have small cells and lone operatives throughout the Forgotten Realms, although they interact and share information with one another from time to time as needs warrant. The Harpers’ ideology is noble, and its members pride themselves on their ingenuity and incorruptibility. Harpers don’t seek power or glory, only fair and equal treatment for all.

"Down with tyranny. Fairness and equality for all."
The Harpers’ beliefs can be summarized as follows:
  • One can never have too much information or arcane knowledge.
  • Too much power leads to corruption, and the abuse of magic in particular must be closely monitored.
  • No one should be powerless.
Gather information throughout Faerûn, discern the political dynamics within each region, and promote fairness and equality by covert means. Act openly as a last resort. Thwart tyrants and any leader, government, or group that grows too powerful. Aid the weak, the poor, and the oppressed.
Typical Quests
Typical Harper quests include securing an artifact that would upset the balance of power in a region, gathering information on a powerful individual or organization, and determining the true intentions of an ambitious political figure or evil spellcaster.

Destinations of pilgrimage

Magic of Faerûn (p. 50) by Sean K. Reynolds, et al.

Miracles, the death or birth of a hero, and other fantastic events create landmarks to which believers travel for blessings and inspiration. These places vary greatly. Some churches have earned the fame. Some tie directly to holidays related to the event that made the location special. If they believe strongly enough, people pilgrimage to nearly anywhere, even risking their own deaths to do so.

Variations on the Theme: A famous battlefield, the spot where a hero had a vision, the place where an evil was conquered, a hero’s grave, the location of a miracle, or the last place a hero or other beloved person was seen.

The Dancing Place

In the Year of the Dawn Rose (720 DR), the gods summoned many elven clergy to a beautiful, moss-covered hill in the High Dale. At that gathering, Elminster proposed the founding of the Harpers. As those present discussed it, numerous deities made appearances to support the idea. To this day, the clergy present at that event, as well as many others seeking peace, make an annual pilgrimage to the Dancing Place. The folk of the High Dale provide covered encampments along the northern trail for those who have come to worship in the holy valley. The list of gods associated with the Dancing Place includes the human gods Deneir, Eldath, Lliira, Mielikki, Milil, Mystra, Oghma, Selûne, Silvanus, and Tymora, and the elven gods Corellon Larethian, Sehanine Moonbow, Hanali Celanil, Labelas Enoreth, and Solonor Thelandira.



Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, p.54

Silverymoon has nonetheless long been known as a safe haven for Harpers in the North, because the city doesn’t see the aims of the Alliance as conflicting with Those Who Harp. Where other cities’ rulers might see the presence of the Harpers as a threat to their authority, Silverymoon desires an end to tyranny as fervently as the Harpers do, and thus the greater good is served. At the same time, some Silvaeren believe that the city’s tolerance of certain other members of the Alliance (some mention Mirabar, others Baldur’s Gate) is somewhat naive.


Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, p.123

Bards in the North and the Dalelands benefit from the existence of the Harpers, that legendary society recruiting bards and other independent agents to struggle against the forces of evil. Even though most bards in the region aren’t Harpers (and many who are don’t advertise that fact), common folk in the North often behave as if all bards are legendary wandering heroes, and are as likely to ask a bard for the solution to a problem troubling their community as they are a wandering fighter or wizard. This reputation cuts both ways, however, as some enemies of the Harpers suspiciously assume any humble minstrel might secretly be a Harper agent.

College of Fochlucan

Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, p.123

The original College of Fochlucan once stood on the northeastern edge of Silverymoon. Many years after it closed its doors, the site was reopened as Ultrumm’s Music Conservatory. The conservatory later moved to Southbank, and the House of the Harp occupied the college’s original location under the guidance of Master Bard Fore!! "Flamebeard" Luekuan, who sought to revive the ancient traditions and teachings of Fochlucan. Years of cultivation and support from Silverymoon, as well as the Harpers, yielded a faculty able to revive the college, and the House of the Harp adopted the Fochlucan name once again. Most of its bards study and practice the methods of the College of Lore, as described in the Bard College class feature in the Player’s Handbook.

The College of Fochlucan is naturally allied with the Harpers, although its master bards are careful to stress that its mission is separate from that of the Harpers.

College of the Herald

Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, p.124

Based at the great lore-house of Herald’s Holdfast, northwest of Silverymoon, the College of the Herald is dedicated to the preservation of ancient history and legends. The Heralds are charged with collecting and organizing bodies of lore, which they make available to all of good and peaceful intent. Established by the Harper Aliost Oskrunnar in 922 DR, the Heralds are allies of the Harpers but remain neutral in most conflicts, dedicated to preserving knowledge above all else.

The College of the Herald is less concerned with musical performance (although it contains a considerable library of songs) and more with history, heraldry, and folklore, making it a key center of learning for bards of the College of Lore, as described in the Bard College class feature in the Player’s Handbook.

The Circle of Eight

Greyhawk (POA-247)

The closest equivalent to the Harpers is the Circle of Eight. Although membership in the circle itself is restricted to the most powerful wizards, the group employs many agents and spies to look after its interests. The Circle of Eight is much less benevolent than the Harpers: its wizards are not particularly concerned about tyranny and are more interested in preserving a balance of power throughout the Flanaess. However, major magical threats (such as the rise of Elemental Evil) are very much within the circle’s purview.

The Moonstars

Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, p.124

Over a century ago, the Harpers endured a schism. Khelben "Blackstaff" Arunsun was denounced by other Harper leaders for empowering Fzoul Chembryl, then the evil leader of the Zhentarim, with a powerful artifact. That Khelben did so in order that Fzoul destroy a dangerous lich mattered little. Khelben and Laeral Silverhand, his wife, left the Harpers then, taking with them certain agents and folding them into to a different organization, which Khelben had been secretly working to create for some time due to an old prophecy of the elves of Cormanthor. This group was the Moonstars, called Tel’Teukiira in Elvish. Although the Moonstars worked in concert at times with the Harpers, they also worked at cross purposes, and the Moonstars membership included many whom the Harpers considered too evil, such as a vampire. The Moonstars performed many good deeds, but their methods were often more brutal and pragmatic than the Harpers’ lofty ideals allowed. When Khelben died, the Moonstars seemed to collapse, and for many years the organization was assumed defunct. Yet during the Sundering, Moonstar sleeper agents reactivated the organization on a surprisingly massive scale, with members active in Candlekeep, Waterdeep, and Myth Drannor. The organization has since gone underground again. Their relationship to the present-day Harpers, Laeral Silverhand, and the current Blackstaff ofWaterdeep, Vajra, remains unclear.


Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, p.127

Druid circles in the North are often allied with the Harpers, as they have common purpose, with bards and rangers serving as go-betweens. Individual Harpers can usually expect a circle to at least grant them food and shelter, and an opportunity to attend a gathering and speak, if they wish.

Still, the Harpers aren’t a druidic organization and, despite what some common folk might believe, not every druid or druid circle is allied with, or even friendly toward, the Harpers and their cause. Indeed, some druids consider the Harpers busybodies who threaten the natural balance almost as much as the evils that they fight against.

D&D 5th Edition


Faction Agent

Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, p.147–48

Magic items

lessor Harper pin

Wondrous item, rare(DMG-191)

While wearing this pin, you are immune to magic that allows other creatures to read your thoughts, determine whether you are lying, know your alignment, or know your creature type. Creatures can telepathically communicate with you only if you allow it.

You can use an action to cause the pin to become invisible until you use another action to make it visible, until you remove the pin, or until you die.

If you die while wearing the pin, your soul enters it, unless it already houses a soul. You can remain in the pin or depart for the afterlife. As long as your soul is in the pin, you can telepathically communicate with any creature wearing it. A wearer can't prevent this telepathic communication.

greater Harper pin

“Fashioned of mithril and given to notable Harpers.

Wondrous item, very rare(DMG-191)

The following constant effects protect the wearer:

Magic Immunity
Divination, Know alignment, Know creature type, Lie detection, Scrying, Thought reading.
Mind Shielding
Creatures can telepathically communicate with you only if you allow it.
Damage Immunity
magic missile.
Damage Resistance
Saving Throws
You have advantage on saving throws against mind-affecting effects.

You can use an action to cause the pin to become invisible until you use another action to make it visible, until you remove the pin, or until you die.

If you die while wearing the pin, your soul enters it, unless it already houses a soul. You can remain in the pin or depart for the afterlife. As long as your soul is in the pin, you can telepathically communicate with any creature wearing it. A wearer can't prevent this telepathic communication.

When worn by an evil being, a greater Harper pin turns black and makes discordant jangling sounds (disadvantage on Moving Silently).

Harper tattoo

Instead of carrying a greater Harper pin, some Harper agents have the same magical protections imbued in a magical tattoo. The Harper can make the tattoo invisible to others at will.

D&D 3rd Edition

Prestige classes
Harper Scout, Harper Mage, Harper Priest(2001)
Master Harper, Harper Agent, Harper Paragon(’03,’04)

Magic items


Magic of Faerûn (pp. 159) by Sean K. Reynolds, et al.

These small harps are very popular among the Harpers, and not just because of the name. A handharp is a crescent-shaped wooden instrument, about the size of a human hand, with metal strings. Anyone who can play a tune on a stringed instrument can use the harp. Various tunes and chords produce the following sonic effects. (A musician can discover all the powers in about 10 minutes of playing.) The user can generate only one effect each round. The effects are sonic effects.

  • Dancing lights as the spell.
  • Undead creatures within 10 feet† suffer a −2 luck penalty on their attack and damage rolls.
  • All creatures within 10 feet† receive a +2 luck bonus on saving throws against necromantic and compulsion effects for 1 round.
  • Creatures within 10 feet† are not subject to new charm effects. Charmed creatures become dazed when within 10 feet. Both effects last for 1 round.
  • Once a day, the user can use dimension door.

Effects marked with a dagger† increase their range to 20 feet when a character with bardic music plays the harp.

Caster Level: 9th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, dancing lights, magic circle against evil, dimension door; Market Price: 25,000 gp; Weight: 1 lb.

Harper pin

Magic of Faerûn (pp. 159–160) by Sean K. Reynolds, et al.

Two kinds of Harper pins exist, the lesser pin and the greater pin. These pins act as brooches for the purposes of limitations on wearing multiple items of the same type.

lesser Harper pin

Normally fashioned of silver and given to new members of the Harpers. It functions identically to a ring of mind shielding.

  • The wearer is continually immune to detect thoughts, discern lies, and any attempt to magically discern their alignment.

Caster Level: 3rd; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item or Forge Ring, nondetection; Market Price: 8,000 gp; Cost to Create: 4,000 gp; Weight: —.

greater Harper pin

Fashioned from silver magically treated to give it the hardness of steel (see Creating Magic Items, below). The following constant effects protect the wearer:

  • immune to magic missile.
  • nondetection.
  • resist elements (electricity).
  • undetectable alignment.
  • +5 resistance bonus on saves against mind-affecting effects

When worn by an evil being, a greater Harper pin turns black and makes discordant jangling sounds (a −10 penalty on Move Silently checks).

Caster Level: 5th; Prerequisites: Craft Wondrous Item, detect evil, ghost sound, nondetection, protection from elements, resistance, shield, undetectable alignment; Market Price: 79,000 gp; Cost to Create: 39,625 gp + 3,150 XP; Weight: —.

singing sword

Magic of Faerûn (p. 144) by Sean K. Reynolds, et al.

These silver +1 greatswords were created for use by the Harpers. When drawn, they sing loudly and constantly. As long as the bearer can hear the sword’s song, they gain a +2 morale bonus on attack and damage rolls with the singing sword. Furthermore, they gain a +3 morale bonus on saves against mind-affecting spells and effects. The song is a sonic, mind-affecting effect.

Caster Level: 9th; Prerequisites: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, bless, emotion, creator must have 3 ranks of Perform (melody); Market Price: 24,450 gp; Cost to Create: 12,450 gp + 960 XP.

AD&D 2nd Edition

Magic items

Harper pin [greater]

the Code of the Harpers, p.104 (AD&D 2nd Ed.) by Ed Greenwood

Value: 5,000 XP; 40,000 GP

A Harper pin gives its wearer a +5 bonus to saving throws vs. all enchantment/charm spells (and equivalent psionic powers). It also confers absolute immunity to all detection, mind- and alignment-reading magic and psionics; the wearer simply “isn’t there”. (It does not prevent magical detection linked to specific objects carried by a Harper, however, except itself; a locate object spell used to find “a Harper pin” would fail, but one used to find a specific item that a Harper is known to be carrying—a particular crown, for instance—would find that item, but still not reveal the Harper carrying it.)

A Harper pin also absorbs all magic missile and lightning/electricity attacks into itself, protecting a bearer from all damage.

Harper pins are made by certain skilled (and) secretive) smiths in Evermeet, Mintarn, Waterdeep, Neverwinter, Everlund, Silverymoon, Evereska, High Horn, Shadowdale, Deepingdale, Lyrabar, and Starmantle. The smiths make and give pins only to specific senior Harpers known to them—not just to anyone who shows up on their doorstep asking for one.

Harper pins are never attuned to a specific being or wearer. They are of silver treated to be everbright (never tarnish) and as hard as adamantine. They are AC −2, have 9 hit points, and suffer no damage from magical attacks. They gain a +5 bonus to all item saving throws.

Some Harper pins turn black in one round when worn by an evil-aligned being, and thereafter utter discordant jangling sounds, as if a metal-stringed harp was being savagely struck.


  • D&D Basic Rules: The Five Factions
  • Dungeon Master’s Guide (5th Ed.), p. 21
  • Princes of the Apocalypse, p. 15
Sours: http://silvesti.wiki/wiki/Harper

Pin 5e harpers


The Harpers: A D\u0026D Faction of Subtle Intrigue


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