Level: Sorcerer/Wizard 4
Casting Time: 10 minutes
Components: V, S, M, F (see below)
Target: See below
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No
Casting Portal Ward upon a door, chest, or portal magically locks it and strengthens the portal and surrounding attached material against all but the most dedicated intrusion attempts.
This spell must be cast upon a closed portal and any surrounding material which is integrally attached to the portal. For example, the door to a cottage may receive the spell and the stone or wood casing and surrounding walls would likewise be strengthened by the spell. The total area affected by the spell, including the area encompassing the portal itself, cannot be greater than 5 sq ft per caster level. Thus a 7th level caster can secure 35 sq ft of portal and surrounding attached material. Only one such portal may be secured per casting, even if it is near enough to the target portal to be included in the initial area of effect. For the purposes of this spell, portals that consist of double doors, shutters and other closures which effectively form a single portal with no intervening material may be considered a single portal. The warded area must be contiguous. The warded portal need not have a lock or other latching mechanism, though if one exists, it is not affected by any aspect of the spell and functions normally and in addition to the effects of this spell.
The spell provides a number of security features for the warded area:
- The warded area does not radiate magic
- The warded portal gains a bonus to its Hardness and Break DC equal to one per caster level. Thus a strong wood door with hardness 5, Break DC 23 becomes hardness 12, Break DC 30 when warded by a 7th level caster.
- The warded portal gains HP equal to three times the caster level. Thus a strong wood door with 20 hit points gains 21 hit points for a total of 41 hit points when warded by a 7th level caster.
The area surrounding the warded portal gains a bonus to its Hardness and Hit Points per Inch of Thickness equal to one per caster level. Thus if the portal were set in a stone wall 2 inches thick (normally hardness 8 and 30 hp) the warded stone would have hardness 15 and 42 hp
The portal may only be opened normally by touching the specially attuned item to the warded portal. This item must be prepared in advance of the casting and must be of the finest quality having a value of no less than 200gp per the caster level. A ring, amulet, statuette or any other item is a suitable placeholder for the magic, though something durable and portable is recommended. This item must be on hand when the spell is cast and thereafter serves as the key for this particular portal. Not even the caster can bypass a warded portal without this focus item. The chosen item does not radiate magic and may be a focus for any number of warded portals. When the focus item is touched against the surface of the warded portal, the portal opens and remains open and the entire area effectively unwarded until the portal is next closed.
Short of possessing the focus item or battering the warded area down, there are a few other ways to enter the warded area:
- The warded area may be bypassed via passwall, etherealness, dimension door and other such spells that typically allow one to bypass or ignore physical barriers
- A knock spell cast by a caster at least one level higher than the caster of the portal ward spell will suppress the effects of the ward for 10 minutes per caster level. If the portal is bypassed in this fashion, the warding on the rest of the surrounding material remains in place.
- The magical warding mechanism is treated as a magical trap for bypassing purposes. The magical underpinnings of the spell can be spotted by a skilled rogue or other trapfinder with a perception check equal to 25 + the spell’s effective level (typically 4, but metamagic feats may adjust this spell’s effective level). Once perceived, the ward can be bypassed with a Disable Device check of the same DC. If the portal is bypassed in this fashion, the spell ends just as if it had been dispelled.
- The spell may be dispelled normally and is subject to anti-magic ward and other magic-canceling effects.
When the spell is cast, the caster must sprinkle the area to be warded with diamond dust worth not less than 250gp per 5 sq ft of warded area.