The Hand was a desiccated, mummified left hand. In order to use its powers, the wielder needed to cut off his or her own left hand at the wrist and press the Hand of Vecna against the remainder of the arm. The artifact then magically grafted itself onto its wearer and became a functioning limb. Removing the Hand of Vecna invariably killed its wearer.
Once attuned to the Hand of Vecna, a creature changed its worldview towards a neutral evil disposition. The artifact granted supernatural strength to its wearer, as well as a boost of cold energy to spells and attacks dealt with a weapon held by it.
In addition, the Hand of Vecna allowed its wearer to cast the finger of death, sleep, slow, and teleport spells a limited number of times. It progressively regained its magic every dawn. Using the artifact to cast any spells caused it to demand its wearer to commit an evil act shortly thereafter, in a manner similar to the suggestion spell.
If both the Eye and the Hand were to be attuned to the same creature, the wearer enjoyed numerous additional benefits, such as immunity to disease and poison, premonitions of imminent danger, the ability to turn an opponent's skeleton into jelly by touching it with the Hand, regeneration powers, and the ability to cast wish once every 30 days.
The Hand of Vecna and the Eye of Vecna were the only remnants of the powerful lich Vecna, after he was betrayed and killed by his lieutenant Kas. The two appendages were left with a fragment of the lich's will and attempted to work his deeds wherever they went.
It was said that the only way to permanently destroy the Hand of Vecna was if both the Hand and the Eye of Vecna were attached to the same creature, and then that creature was slain by the artifact known as the Sword of Kas. Any other attempt to destroy either artifact merely transported it into a hidden vault in an unknown location.
- Arkhan acquired the Hand of Vecna after a brief visit to the world of Exandria, and attempted to harness its power to free Tiamat from her prison in Avernus. The artifact was slowly corrupting and decomposing the left side of his body.
- Monte Cook, Jonathan Tweet, Skip Williams (July 2003). Dungeon Master's Guide v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 281–282. ISBN 0-7869-2889-1.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the following links do not necessarily represent the views of the editors of this wiki, nor does any lore presented necessarily adhere to established canon.
- Hand of Vecna article at the Critical Role Wiki.
- Hand of Vecna article at the Greyhawk Wiki, a wiki for the Greyhawk campaign setting.
- Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins, James Wyatt (2014). Dungeon Master's Guide 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 224–225. ISBN 978-0786965622.
- Gary Gygax (1979). Dungeon Masters Guide 1st edition. (TSR, Inc.), p. 124. ISBN 0-9356-9602-4.
- slade et al. (February 1995). Encyclopedia Magica Volume II. (TSR, Inc.), p. 563.
- James Wyatt (June 2008). Dungeon Master's Guide 4th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 168–169. ISBN 978-0-7869-4880-2.
- Adam Lee, et al. (September 2019). Baldur's Gate: Descent into Avernus. Edited by Michele Carter, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 113. ISBN 978-0-7869-6687-5.