Deadly Sphere, also called “Blackballs” by some, are the result of a failed attempt for a wizard to create a Sphere of Annihilation. It is simply a featureless black globe, 5 feet in diameter. It levitates about slowly and silently, in apparently random patterns, disintegrating everything in its path. Blackballs are destructive forces, disruptive to the environment but fortunately too rare to cause more than a local disturbance. Observers report that objects and creatures touched by the blackball vanish suddenly, as if simply wiped out of existence. Wizards have said that it seems most like the results of a disintegration spell. However, nothing remains – not even dust or residual essences.
The blackball has no recognizable mind or intelligence, however it does seem be alive. It moves on its own, and seems to focus on people and things that are colorful, the brighter the better. When encountered, the blackball moves toward the nearest “colorful” creature or object within 60 feet. The deadly sphere’s ability to sense color extends in three dimensions, so underground adventurers may be surprised by the sudden appearance of a blackball from above or below. It especially seems to be attracted by Dancing Lights and Faerie Fire.
The blackball’s advance is relentless, moving in a straight line toward its target, regardless of the physical or magical barriers in its way. Running away is the only way to deal with a Deadly Sphere, though that may not be possible in a labyrinth or other such situation. If all intelligent life flees beyond its 60-foot detection range, the blackball will resume its seemingly random movement until another attractive and colorful target is detected.
Whatever solid or liquid matter the blackball touches simply disintegrates to ash; the deadly sphere moves freely through anything. This ability makes it immune to all weapons or attacks; even the most magical swords are destroyed immediately by contact with the blackball.
If characters close to melee combat range with the Deadly Sphere, it moves toward whichever one is most colorful. Because of the blackball’s slowness, its target can evade the blackball with a successful (DC 10) Dexterity check, regardless of initiative and other actions; this check, and not an attack roll, determines the blackball’s success. If the Dexterity check fails, the blackball touches and disintegrates the opponent. If characters try to fight the blackball, everything that touches it disintegrates. It’s Armor Class is 10.