Create a Magic Item Contest!

By January 4, 2013Comms

Two days ago, a box reached my doorstep. It contained a milestone in my career: finished copies of my 2nd published novel.



I am so, so proud of FORTRESS FRONTIER. The book represents a big evolution in my writing, and I feel it does what I most wanted it to do: give the reader a wholly different experience from CONTROL POINT.

It’s always a nervous time when a new book comes out. panic tightens your throat as you wait for reviewers to weigh in on your baby, and your career. It’s early yet, but to my great relief, the reaction thus far has been uniformly positive.

So, anyway, I’ve got this box of books, and you know what that means: time for a giveaway contest.

You all appear to really enjoy creating things in the SHADOW OPS universe, if the amazing entries I got for my Create-a-Coven and Create-a-School contests are anything to go by. So, let’s continue in that vein with a Create-a-Magic-Item Contest.

Without giving any spoilers, I’ll say that FORTRESS FRONTIER introduces the idea/possibility of magic items in the SHADOW OPS universe. I challenge you to come up with one. Tell me what it is, what it does, and how the SOC would use it to accomplish its mission. Give it a name and/or a designator code (we have the M16 assault rifle, what would the magic equivalent be called?) REMEMBER: the SOC is a military organization, so the magic item must be an adapted piece of military hardware, but it can be *any* piece of military hardware (a tank or plane, a gun or missile, a rucksack or tent, a radio, a latrine, a pocket knife, a forklift, anything military). I will give extra credit for those entries that use magic powers already existing/described in CONTROL POINT.

As always, I will give a lot more weight to entries with some kind of visual. Photoshop a humvee to cover it in runes. Draw me a glowing M9. Anything to give me an idea of what your magic item looks like.

I’ll pick three winners to receive signed copies of either (your choice) the US or UK editions of FORTRESS FRONTIER.

Enter as many times as you like. Entries can either be emailed to me at myke(at)mykecole(dot)com, or put in the comments section on this blog post.

Really looking forward to seeing what folks come up with. I know I’ve said it before, but I love writing this stuff, and you all have made it possible for me to keep doing that.

I never, ever thought I would publish a single novel. Now I’m about to have 2 on the shelf, about to turn in a 3rd, and have just inked a deal for 3 more. That would never have happened without your help and support. That’s not blowing sunshine. If you’re reading this, you played a part in that and I am deeply, truly grateful.

Looking forward to seeing what you come up with!

Author Myke Cole

Myke Cole is an American writer of history and fantasy who leverages a lifetime in military, law enforcement and intelligence service to take you to battlefields, real and imagined.

More posts by Myke Cole

Join the discussion 18 Comments

  • I was Thinking simple like a pocket watch that when wound up it stops time but only for 30 seconds. i figure it could be used at the opening of an Op so to get the jump on the opposition. But the watch can only be used once every 24 hrs because it would need to be recharged.

  • How about sunglasses that shade one from reality to where there are just a shadow in the real world. Problem is that for every hour spent in this Shadow form takes a toll on your health and strength. Could Be used to see around corners so to speak.

  • ooh how about a charmed valentines day card which makes the people in a room to focus on romance and lose all interest in everything else. It Could be use to distract Guards so to slip in unnoticed.

  • The most useful one would be a G30. It looks like a military GPS, but it functions as a one time use Portamancer, making extraction safer.

  • Here is a funny thought, how about a popsicle stick that when touched to objects it freezes the item and the length of time held against the object continues to drop its temperature. It could be used to break locks or just to keep the freezer working in case of a power outage(no one likes to lose their Ice cream).
    I think I may be having too much fun with this.

  • Liam Russell says:

    Mine would be a sort of gel that you put over a wound which would close it up, so it could be used to stop the bleeding of gunshot wounds or even close up a severed arm wound (not reattach it). Uses a weaker version of Physiomancer, good for quick healing on the go.

  • When do the audible version come??
    BTW Your book(s) rock!

  • The most useful item I could think of would be a backpack, it should be interwoven with air. Say make the bearer capable of bearing 30 kilograms for one day or 15 kilos for two days etc. That would in my book(and anyother old grunt) be one of the most sought after thing for a soldier, who have to march 40 kilometers a day.

  • Another most appreciated thing IMHO, would be a shovel that bites in to the soil as knife in butter(able to digg a foxhole in frozen ground) probably uses fire along the edge

  • Avri Burger says:


    Based on the M2 and M16 Bounding “Jumping Jack” Mine, the M16-MB (Magic Blast) is an anti-personnel mine. When triggered, a mortar shell is launched into the air to an approximate height of 1.5 meters where it detonates and releases a stored charge of magical energy. With a blast radius of 30 meters, it is particularly effective against ground troops. Pyromancy is the typical school of magic used to charge the device, resulting in napalm-like blasts. When charged with Aeromancy, the device delivers an extremely powerful shock wave. It is most devastating, however, when charged with the forbidden schools of Portamancy and Negramancy—both of which yield maximum carnage and death.

  • Something like a (My all time favorite item, but just always out of my price range so my DM never lets my characters get one)


    Or an MDAB (Multi-Dimensional Assault Bag)

    MDABs weren’t created with the SOC operator in mind. These were designed with the SOC support units in mind. Each bag would be directly linked to the supporting units supply room. With one little difference. Instead of a Supply Sgt/Officer you have a fully automated system.

    Each TL/SL would be issued both bag and an arm mounted computer with a satellite up link to the Supply Room. With a few keys strokes the team leader or squad leader can easily re-supply his men.

    The great thing about this is that a Civilian model can be made. Offsetting any cost issues that might occur.

    With the portal, and the computer the system becomes more like a Handy Haversack.

  • sam baskin says:

    This may be semi unoriginal (considering Oscar’s power) but what about a collection of one shot disks that a soldier could carry that could transport him to a specific location. Each one would be used up once they were used, but it would help with support, supplies, and organized surprise attacks. Soldiers could carry a few of them on their person in a pouch of sorts.

  • sam baskin says:

    Another idea could be based on terramancer ability, a soldier could have a lump of clay, possibly a little bit bigger than a fist, then by pinching off a small pieces of the clay and burying it in ground at the edges of the area intended to terramance, the soldier could then mold the clay into a structure that is needed within the area of the buried terra-clay. This could be used to create fast foxholes, hidden pits, or quick infrastructure.

  • sam baskin says:

    There could also be different types of ammo, such as “render bullets”, which when hit eat away at the body, essentially making even grazes deadly. “Ice bullets” bullets that freeze an oncoming combatant, or even just the part of them that was hit, or “hydro bullets” which when an enemy is hit will decrease their water supply until they are unable to move through dehydration.

  • sam baskin says:

    Of course another idea would be to have a number of pellets that could be carried on a soldier’s person that when dropped into the ground would sprout fresh food (based on terramancing), helping replace MREs.

  • sam baskin says:

    Or to have radios set to a frequency broadcasting wispering. To help scare away wildlife, or bring it in for food.

  • sam baskin says:

    The Shadow Mine, like a landmine it is deployed before hand on the ground, when someone sets it off it uses portomancy to transport them to a military grade holding facility. Or the Terra-Mine, which like a landmine when set off creates a big hole (15 feet x 15 feet x 15 feet) for the enemy to be trapped in.

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