Talk:Magical item

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I've just edited the "Other Items" section to note that holy water is "magical" when it comes to polyfodder. A blessed scroll of blank paper or plain spellbook is as well, in fact I make it a point to prepare for polypiling sessions at the bottom of Vlad's Tower (my favourite place to polypile, second only to the altar in Orcus-town) by blanking and blessing potions and scrolls. I've never experimented with unholy/cursed potions or blank readables, but it might stand to reason that any enchantment--positive or negative--would make something "magical" in the polyfodder sense.

Can someone verify this, or rather, has anyone already tried this before I finish my current game and delve into wizard mode to find out? Thanks! --chilemonkey

No, those items are not magic. Polymorph only checks the immutable properties of the object type (zap.c, line 1222), regardless of BUC status etc. They are defined in objclass.h and set via compiler macros in objects.c. Notably the BITS macro in objects.c, line 41 actually writes to the oc_magic field.
A potion of water is defined in objects.c, line 751. The big zero in the third column tells you it is not magic.
Blanking and blessing potions and scrolls has a different reason: That's the easiest way to mass-bless them, and the blessed status both gets preserved by polymorphs and reduces loss of polyfodder.
If you're hurting for a way to make potions magical, you might want to dip a huge stack of water into something else, and very likely get sickness, which you can alchemize to confusion. --Tjr 15:44, 23 August 2011 (UTC)
Sickness is also non-magical. Although a random alchemical result wouldn't be. -Ion frigate 18:30, 23 August 2011 (UTC)
Those items might seem magical through a bit of confirmation bias: they actually have a comparatively high probability of transforming into something magical, since in the case of scrolls, potions, and spellbooks there are very few non-magical ones. The game rerolls the polymorph twice, I believe, if it gets magical items from non-magical ones, but always keeps the third result. According to the page on polypiling, a spellbook of blank paper has a 95% of becoming magical, and water a 41% chance of becoming magical. Note, though, that some seemingly magical potions, such as sickness, acid, and oil, aren't. Blessing them is a good idea (reduces loss); blanking/diluting them is not. -Ion frigate 18:30, 23 August 2011 (UTC)