Magic item maintaining concentration

Hi all,
If I have the following magic item with 24 uses and it maintains concentration

Fly like a bird
ReCo 35
This device enables a person to fly like a bird. They can move swiftly in any direction, banking to turn.

base 15, +1 Touch, +1 Conc; +5 for 24 uses; +5 item maintains concentration.

Now can I use this to make 24 people fly at the same time, or can it only control 1 at a time, but 24 times?

A variation of this would be to use T: Group, but my question is if the item can maintain multiple concentrations.
A magus would have an increased difficulty concentration roll, but AFAIK items don't make rolls.

The item can maintain concentration.

But, IIRC, to control the spell, one needs to be in range of the item. I believe this was quoted recently in another thread... *
It could thus be argued that this doesn't give the grogs the power to fly, nor can they direct their flight, and that separated from the item, a grog would just follow the last command given to the item or hover in place.

Then, to give them the power of flight, you'd need a MuVi effect like Passing the Reigns of Corpus.

RAW is not really clear on whether an item can maintain concentration for multiple instances of the same effect at once.

Personally, I don't think it should be able to do that. If you want to affect many people at once, then use T:Group.

Multiple uses are good for being able to activate the effect many times a day. But if the effect uses D:Conc, only one such effect works at any given time.

Just MHO.

t doesn't explicitly say the duration can overlap for concentration duration effects in the same way that it doesn't say that duration sun effects can have overlapping durations. I recognize that the description "item maintains concentration" leaves a little room for Arthur's interpretation. But I certainly don't agree with it.

Except that a Sun duration doesn't require ongoing efforts to maintain for a magus, either. And it is already one magnitude higher in power.

An effect with D:Conc combined with "item maintains concentration" (for +5 levels) basically requires the same enchantment level than a D:Sun effect. If you also allow it to maintain concentration on multiple instances at the same time, you are giving it more flexibility as well as the same raw power. You will be able to affect just as many targets (based on the number of uses), for just as long (because maintained D:Conc effects can also last until sunset/sunrise), and on top of be able to stop the effect whenever you like -- something you can't do with a D:Sun effect.

To me, from a balance standpoint, that argues that only one instance of the effect should be maintained at one time. Otherwise, D:Conc becomes more powerful than D:Sun when enchanted into an item.

I am rather of the opinion that D:Conc should be less powerful but more flexible.

But, like I wrote previously, that's just my opinion. A very much YMMV issue to be decided troupe-by-troupe. :smiley:

I've thought about this issue in the past, and in my games duration sun is just rarely if ever is used for enchanted items. There could be a case where someone wants a similar spells bonus in their lab total and they also want to change the effect in some other way so without keeping the duration the same they'd loose their bonus but for the most part no it isn't used because Duration concentration item maintains concentration is strictly better. It isn't perfectly balanced and it hasn't hurt my games yet.

I can see your point, but I don't think it matters much in practice. I'm fine with an item maintaining concentration on multiple instances of an effect at once. Sure, in means that in many circumstances D:Conc is "more powerful", but it's not a game breaker.

Also, D:Sun can still sometimes be more powerful, as it is just about conceivable for something to be able to break the item's "concentration". For example, if the item is broken, then D:Conc effects will expire, but D:Sun effects should still persist for their duration.

I don't have a problem with maintaining multiple instances, where it breaks down is how can your concentration override the item. I believe you need to manipulate the item to control your flight (in this case), for how would you communicate your desire for change to the item.

We already had this conversation, and IIRC I also said that at daybreak only a single instance can be maintained for a similar reason.

Look at this silly case : you touch the item a certain morning and go on a month-long flight leaving the item behind. If this doesn't sound right, you need a point at which you have to touch the item again.

Your example doesn't quite work, as D:Conc effects in enchantments end at sunset and sunrise anyway, even if the item is maintaining concentration.

I allow such items to maintain concentration on multiple instances of the effect. I also require the same restrictions for an enchantment as a caster. In effect, the person who activates the enchantment is the 'caster' of the effect, even though the item actually provides the magic. For concentration effects, the range to the item determines the range over which the activator of the enchantment can alter the parameters of the effect.

So to take the example of the flying device:

  • a magus and a grog both touch the device and the magus activates it twice. They can now both fly, and the magus can determine direction. If the grog lets go of the device, he is out of range of the effect, and can no longer fly. If the magus instead lets go of the device, he can no longer fly either. Further, he cannot control the effect he activated for the grog either even if he survives. The grog carries on in the direction they were heading until he lets go, hits something, or the sun crosses the horizon. Either way it is bad for him!
  • a magus and a grog both touch the device, the magus activates it to make himself fly and the grog does the same. At least this time if the magus lets go, the grog can still control the flight.

If the effect has R:Voice instead, the activator of the effect can change the direction of those affected by the item's magic as long as i) the targets are within R:Voice of the item, AND ii) the activator is within R:Voice of the item.

I'm not sure if this is the only interpretation of the rules, but it works for me.


Thanks Mark, I like that interpretation.

I just don't see any limit to D:Concentration and how to close it using RAW. The only limit seems to be you have to "wield" the item at that time.