A brilliant Alliance engineer invented these devices recently; they remain one of the Alliance Assembly's greatest secrets. Intricate gearwork inside the bronze-sided trunk allows the user to transform a message into a series of random letters. The holes in a wooden "key," which is custom-carved for each message, record the internal settings of the substitution engine; differently carved keys result in messages that are scrambled differently. Only with the key, the scrambled message, and another substitution engine can the message be reconstructed.
Operation: A high elf tinker designed substitution engines. Thus, using one of the few devices currently in operation requires the operator to understand Thalassian. It also requires the operator to make a DC 15 Use Technological Device check to successfully make the wooden key that records the engine's internal settings. Though it is plain that a scrambled message is written in the Thalassian alphabet, the message is considered to be written in a language spokeN only by the substitution engineer with the key that created it; comprehend languages and other, similar spell effects are not effective against the substitution engine's encryption.
To properly use the substitution engine takes 10 minutes and a DC 20 Use Technological Device check.
HR 5; 10 hp; Size Small; Weight 200 lb.; MR 1; TS 11; Craft DC 28; Price 6,600 gp.
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