The Master Key of Thievery
|( The Master Key of Thievery|
|Base item||skeleton key|
|Base price||3500 zm|
When carried, the Key confers warning, teleport control and half physical damage. Using the Master Key of Thievery for unlocking always succeeds. It also speaks to you: it gives a random rumor, true if the Key is blessed, false if cursed and either if uncursed. Invoking it removes all traps in the door or container. Also, a Rogue carrying the Key has improved chances to disarm a trap.
In 3.6.1 the Key has additional effects, all of which only take place if it's blessed (non-cursed for Rogues). Firstly, locking or unlocking a trapped door or container with the Key automatically detects and offers to remove the trap (this is guaranteed to succeed). In the inventory of a monster, the Key will also untrap any door the monster is trying to open. Secondly, untrapping doors and chests manually always succeeds as well. Finally, wielding the Key without gloves will give you clues about adjacent traps of any kind (it will feel "warm" or "hot").
This skeleton key was fashioned in ages past and imbued with
a powerful magic which allows it to open any lock. When
carried, it grants its owner warning, teleport control, and
reduces all physical damage by half. Finally, when invoked,
it has the ability to disarm any trap.
Half physical damage is a rare property and is very useful, which makes the Master Key a good wish for a chaotic character, particularly considering its low weight. It should be wished for early, because artifact wishing depends on the number of artifacts in existence already (specifically you can only be certain of getting it if there are less than 2 artifacts in existence)—in fact, a chaotic character may want to hold back on sacrificing before their first wish because of this. Also be sure to be able to withstand the blasting damage: you need at least 41 HP or 21 with magic resistance. Once the Key is in your inventory you should avoid dropping it, since picking it up again will blast you another time. Keep a normal skeleton key or lockpick for mundane unlocking purposes, since applying the Master Key will also blast you.
As with all quest artifacts, cross-aligned characters can only pick up the Master Key via appropriate use of a helm of opposite alignment (or permanent conversion at an altar). This is usually not worth the trouble, since non-chaotic adventurers are better off with an artifact that grants magic resistance, and neutrals can obtain half physical damage from the Orb of Fate.