The Back Shelves (Vol 3): Belts from Origins & Awakening


Welcome to the Wonders of Thedas. We carry items crafted by the Circle, as well a variety of antiquities. Is there anything you’d like to see?

Welcome to our item conversion articles, where we check the stock for pieces from across Thedas to enhance your game! This time we are looking at belts, girdles, and wraps collected from the adventures of the Hero of Ferelden and the Warden Commander!

Note that items that are restricted to specific companions are not included, as they are one-of-a-kind for that person.

Belts can do much more than holding your pants up! Some belts can have some impressive effects on their wearers, and members of all classes can find some real gems to boost their abilities in all types of encounters. Enchantments on belts also tend to be a bit more subtle, with no flashy lights like magical staves or the eye-catching gemstones of magic rings. Their wearer just happens to be a bit fast or stronger, and who can say where that last burst of adrenaline came from?

We hope these will not only secure your breeches, but save a life or two!

Andruil’s Blessing (Belt, Level 15)

These belts are potent gifts from Keepers of past ages, said to be given to those who earned the respect of the Dalish clans. Though the belts may look faded and their designs withered, the enchantments have not faded in strength. The wearer treats their Constitution as 2 higher while this belt is worn, and gains a bonus on attack and damage rolls with weapons from the Bow group for each degree in Archery Style they possess.

Archivist’s Sash (Belt, Level 5)

Ancient Tevene is embroidered, scribbled, and painted across this satin sash in many handwriting styles. The bearer can feel the knowledge they seek strike them when it seems lost. If the wearer fails a Cunning test, whose focus includes the word “Lore”, they may re-roll it, but must keep the results of the second roll. This may be done once per day.

Battlemage’s Cinch (Belt, Level 15)

These wildly colorful cinches are embroidered with lyrium threads by masters of the Formari. These items are only made in times of war when mages are needed to combat things like darkspawn or the Qunari, and are usually destroyed by Templars when conflict has ended. Nevertheless, some survive, and they are truly a prize for any mage. The wearer of this belt treats their Magic as 2 higher, and may re-roll a failed Magic test to cast a spell once per day, keeping the results of the second roll.

Belt of the Magister Lords (Belt, Level 10)

This leather belt is linked with several golden discs that all bear a symbol for each school of magic. This is a common gift from proud Tevinter Magisters who wish to reward pupils (or place items on them for magical spying). The wearer may perform the Puissant Casting stunt for 1 SP less (paying 0 SP for a +1 to Spellpower, 1 SP for +2, and 2 SP for +3).

Buckle of the Winds (Belt, Level 10)

This leather belt’s buckle is carved in the shape of a bird’s head, and is cool to the touch. The type of bird’s head varies by region, but is usually a bird of prey. The wearer always moves 2 extra yards when performing the Skirmish stunt, and gains a +1 to Defense until their next turn when they do so.

Cinch of Skillful Maneuvering (Belt, Level 15)

The Shaper Assistant who wore this belt supposedly had an uncanny ability to dodge falling rocks, flying household objects, and even accidental magical outbursts. They also supposedly drowned in their bath one day, and the belt has been circulating through the hands of great adventurers ever since. The wearer treats their Dexterity as 2 higher, and may re-roll a failed Dexterity (Acrobatics) test once per day, keeping the second result.

Cord of Shattered Dreams (Belt, Level 10)

This ominously-named brass wire is meant to be twisted about the waist to wear as a belt. The cord feels like it squeezes once donned, and the wearer feels that something wishes to protect them from sharing a fate most dire. The wearer gains a +2 bonus on the Willpower (Self-Discipline) tests to resist triggering Magical Mishaps. If the wearer trigger the Harrowing Mishap, the cord snaps in half and negates the mishap. The cord then loses all of its magic.

Dalish Hunter’s Belt (Belt, Level 5)

Made of halla or bear leather, this belt is lightly enchanted to provide swiftness to hunters and allies of a dalish clan. The wearer’s Speed increases by 2, and they may re-roll a failed Perception (Tracking) test once per day, keeping the results of the second roll.
Note: This belt has been combined with the Dalish Leather Belt, which has the exact same statistics in the video game.

Destructionist’s Belt (Belt, Level 15)

Raw lyirum has been inlaid in the fractal patterns of this belt. Tevinter Magisters are very found of these belts, which increase the destructive powers of Primal spells. As such, crafters of these belts are in high demand throughout the Imperium and command a surprising amount of respect even if they are not mages. The wearer may double the cost of a Primal spell they are casting to add their Magic as a bonus to the damage of the spell, even if the spell already adds the caster’s Magic to the damage, or even triple the cost of a Primal spell to add twice their Magic as a bonus to the damage.

Doge’s Dodger (Belt, Level 15)

This leather belt has been dyed golden, and some subtle enchantment makes it sparkle when in direct light. This belt was originally crafted for an Antivan prince who dodge the arrows of twelve assassins before he was killed at swordpoint by the thirteenth. The wearer of this belt treats their Defense as 3 higher against ranged attacks, and also treats their Dexterity and Strength as 1 higher.

Dwarven Smith’s Belt (Belt, Level 5)

This belt is made of bronto-hide, and contains pockets for storing tools and other objects. The wearer gains a +2 bonus on Strength (Smithing) tests from the fine tool included with the belt, and a +1 social bonus when speaking to members of Orzammar’s Smith caste.

Dwarven Warrior’s Belt (Belt, Level 5)

This bronto-hide leather belt has steel rivets driven through it, almost appearing to be armored itself. These belts are marks of service for some Warrior caste families, and as such they usually have a family crest inscribed on the buckle, granting a +2 bonus on tests to speak to Warrior caste families who have a favorable opinion of the family on the buckle. The wearer also gains a +1 bonus to Armor Rating, as the wide belt seems to shield vital areas.

Dwarven Merchant’s Belt (Belt, Level 5)

These belts are stylish, and contain pockets on the inside that are perfect for holding money close and out of the hands of cut-purses. The wearer gains a +2 social bonus when speaking to dwarves of Orzammar’s Merchant caste, and a +1 social bonus to members of the Merchant’s Guild on the surface. Finally, the wearer gains a +1 on Dexterity (Legerdemain) tests to conceal items on their person.

Earthen Cinch (Belt, Level 10)

This cloth cinch seems to be permanently caked with mud, and smells of it too. The wearer feels comfortable when standing on earth or stone, even unusually so. If the wearer casts the spell Rock Armor while standing on dirt, sand, stone, or even metal, they increase the Armor Rating gained from the spell by 3. This bonus also applies to the Armor Rating you receive when you are petrified by the Petrify spell. Additionally, the bearer may cast Rock Armor on their companions, but the spell only lasts half as long as normal, and this belt grants no bonus to the companion’s resulting Armor Rating.
Note: Keep in mind that if an ally is already wearing armor, Rock Armor grants no benefit.

Elfrope (Belt, Level 5)

This tough rope, on close inspection, is crafted from several materials like wood fiber, spider silk, and dandelion fluff, to name a few. This belt can be used as a 20 yard rope that grants a +2 bonus to Strength (Climbing) checks that are aided by the rope. Wearing the belt grants the wearer a +3 bonus to Strength (Climbing) tests.

Embri’s Many Pockets (Belt, Level 10)

Embri was an elven Tranquil mage from Gwaren, with a reputation as both a talented enchanter and a forgetful one. She crafted herself a belt with pockets that held many magical materials for enchanting, the powers of which seeped into the belt. Embri passed from lyrium poisoning, but some circles have begun to reproduce the belt as best they can to aid the Formari in funding the Circles, and even some dwarven enchanters have purchased copies. The wearer of this belt gains a bonus on Cunning (Enchantment) tests equal to the number of degrees they have in the Runecrafting talent, and takes half the time to craft Runes (determined after the Dragon Die result reduces the time first).

Emphemeralist’s Belt (Belt, Level 5)

This simple leather belt has a buckle that hides the mark of the Formari behind it. These belts are usually gifted to Circle apprentices to keep them from running out of mana before their lessons are over. Usually the belts are returned, but some have been smuggled out by unknown parties. The wearer of this humble belt can perform the Skillful Casting stunt for 1 SP instead of the usual 2.

Enduring Faith (Belt, Level 15)

There is a little known proverb about a Chantry priest who sought Andraste’s ashes in the mountains of Tevinter. The story, mostly shared in Tevinter, speaks of a man who, armed only with warm clothes, a staff, and his piety, talked down a powerful rage demon from its anger. The demon then joined him in his quest to find the ashes of Andraste, warming him until he expired of thirst. They say that the demon became a spirit of sacrifice in kinder tellings of the tale, but the higher in society one goes the more the man is reported to be a mage who bound the demon to his service. Regardless, this cinch was found in the Hundred Pillars mountain range and found to be quite a potent magic item, defending the wearer in times of need. When the wearer uses the Defensive stance or Mana Shield stunts, the bonus to defense increases to +5 as a fiery aura springs from the cinch. While this ability is active, the wearer also becomes immune to damage from fire effects. This fire immunity may be activated on its own for 5 minutes but then the belt goes inert for an hour.

Fencer’s Cinch (Belt, Level 5)

These leather belts are a specialty of Antivan Circles, where a popular leather is died blue and then enchanted by the Formari. The leather is colorfully highlighted with steel rivets and the buckles are most commonly in the shape of wolves. Often purchased by Antivan merchants for their protection, they have been found as far south as the Waking Sea on the hips of raiders. The wearer of this belt gains a +1 bonus on attack rolls with a specific weapon group, determined when the belt is created. So a Fencer’s Light Blade Cinch grants a +1 bonus on attacks with daggers, shortswords, and throwing knives, but no other weapons.

Girdle of Kal’ Hirol (Belt, Level 15)

This girdle, with bits of stone cleverly worked into the leather like armor plates, was once worn by Paragon Hirol himself. The skilled and endlessly curious Hirol originally belonged to the Warrior caste, but his restless desire to learn pushed him to master arms, strategy, smithing, and rulership all in the same lifetime. While some more crude members of society pointed to the number of head trauma’s caused by the Provings as the cause of his curious nature, none could deny that when the Assembly voted to name him a Paragon there was no dispute. He established the thaig that was named after him and assisted the Smith caste in many innovations in golem-crafting before the art was lost. The Hirol Noble family still exists today, holding a seat in the Assembly. The wearer of his belt treats their Cunning as 2 higher, and may re-roll a failed Cunning (Engineering) test once per day, keeping the results of the second roll.

Gladiator’s Belt (Belt, Level 15)

This brown belt has a red buckle in the shape of a horned creature’s head. Whether the buckle is red steel or stained with impressive amounts of blood is anyone’s guess, but it was found in the middle of a ritual circle near a tear in the Veil by brave knights who decided to lock the belt away after they could not destroy it. A restless spirit reportedly stole the belt from the vault and it was found later in the possession of an accomplished warrior in Minrathous’ Proving Grounds. Wherever the belt is now, the belt craves combat. The wearer of this belt treats their Strength as 2 higher and my re-roll a failed Strength (Intimidation) test once per day, keeping the results of the second roll.

Guildmaster’s Belt (Belt, Level 15)

These inscribed leather belts were commissioned by a collective of guildmasters as a “symbol of unity among the craftspeople of Denerim.” What they neglected to mention was that the belts were then sent to the Circle to work enchantments to help them ensure their profit’s rising. The wearer of this belt treats their Communication as 2 higher, and may re-roll a failed Communication (Bargaining) test once per day, keeping the result of the second roll.

Longbowman’s Belt (Belt, Level 10)

A Waking Sea crafthall’s maker’s mark is emblazoned on the buckle of this supple leather belt. Often employed by raiders who specialize in ranged combat over the sea, similar designs are used by prominent scouts and military vanguards across Thedas. The wearer of this belt treats the short and long range values for any ranged weapons they wield as being 50% greater. For example: a long bow would have a short range of 39 yards and a long range of 78 yards (originally 26 and 52 yards, respectively).

Lucrosian’s Silken Cord (Belt, Level 15)

Named for the Circle fraternity of those who would see mages use magic to accrue power, it is not surprising that this white and lyirum-threaded belt was found locked in a Chantry far from any Circle of Magi. The wearer of this belt treats their Constitution and Magic as 1 higher, but take a -2 social penalty when speaking to Templars.

Magister’s Cinch (Belt, Level 10)

These belts are made of several strips of a dark leathery material braided together. Each braid seems to have a vastly different temperature, and some strips even seem to have a pulse. These belts do not originate from the Imperium’s Circles, but rather an apostate whose design was copied. The name was given later. When the wearer would gain Health or Mana from an item or spell like a potion or spells like Death Magic or Heal, the wearer gains an additional amount of Health or Mana equal to half their character level.

Ornate Leather Belt (Belt, Level 5)

This leathter belt is embossed with images of howling wolves, and the buckle is a magnificent silver-like metal often mistaken for silverite. Most buckles are carved like swirling mists or hands clenched into fists, but many designs exist. The wearer of this belt gains a +1 bonus on Strength (Might) and Willpower (Courage) tests.

Panacea (Belt, Level 15)

The previous owner sought to create a belt that would protect him from poisons. Though he recruited the help of a Tranquil to make a fine belt, he died from drop of Adder’s Kiss in his morning tea and the belt was stolen. The belt has found its was through many thieves’ guilds and has saved a life or two, but sadly never from poisons. When the wearer of this belt receives Health from a spell or potion, they gain bonus Health equal to their character level.

Sash of Forbidden Secrets (Belt, Level 15)

Ancient Tevinter symbols of constellations in the night sky mingle with occult imagery on this strong belt. The belt buckle, the symbol on which seems to have been beaten out of shape, has ancient blood stains on it almost in warning. The wearer of this belt treats their Willpower as 2 higher and may re-roll a failed Willpower (Self-Discipline) test once per day, keeping the results of the second roll.

Sash of Power (Belt, Level 20)

The markings of the old gods show this belt’s age. The dark leather has not aged, and the enchantments can be felt from even a distance. Some whisper that one of the Magisters who opened the Fade and stepped onto the Golden City wore this belt, and it was thrown from their body when they were cast out by the Maker himself. The marking of Zazikel seems to be more pronounced than the others. The wearer of this belt may perform the Fast Casting spell stunt for 3 SP instead of the usual 4, and may use the stunt as many times as they have stunt points to spend. A mage may use 6 SP to cast two extra spells and  9 SP to cast three extra spells (if they are capable of generating that many).

Shadow Belt (Belt, Level 10)

This dark leather belt is a treasure among thieves’ guilds, and more than one has been found on the body of a would-be assassin or vault-robber, who even the belt’s magic could not save. These belts are known to provide “second chances”, and the wearer of this belt gains a +2 bonus on tests made as a re-roll, such as the talent powers of the Thievery and Observation talents or the Smith’s Targe magic item.

Sword Belt (Belt, Level 5)

These curious and fairly common belts are simple items sold by Orzammar’s Artisan caste to surfacers and members of the Warrrior caste. They are studded with iron and bronze rivets in various patterned that are a kind of maker’s mark. The wearer of this belt gains a +1 bonus on damage rolls with a specific weapon group that is chosen when the belt is made. For example: a Sword Belt of Axes gives a +1 bonus to damage rolls when using battle axes, throwing axes, or two-handed axes.

Swordsman’s Girdle (Belt, Level 10)

These ornate belts of riveted metals and tough leather strips are prized among weapon masters of Thedas. The Silent Sisters have made the most notable use of them, but theirs are just one variety of these belts. Some claim that rare “spirits of mastery” are bound into these girdles, but enough are commissioned by the Templars that most of those rumors die quickly. The wearer of this belt gains a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls with weapons a specific weapon group. For example: a Swordsman’s Girdle of Brawling grants a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls with fists, guantlets, and improvised weapons.

Wasp Sting (Belt, Level 10)

This belt once belonged to peculiar assassin known as the Wasp. She earned her nickname by perfecting a jab that was so quick that not only did the target not feel the blow, but was struck dead in a heartbeat. The wearer of this belt may add their Dexterity to damage rolls with weapons from the Brawling weapon group, as the belt seems to guide them to the weakest points on their targets.

We hope these help make your time in Thedas a bit more wondrous! Thank you for reading!

Author: Portal-Crafter Reyn

I'm an amateur sound designer, gamer, and game-master, and I love to bring people grand worlds and rich stories through several mediums.

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