Runeswords – Third and Final Time

Looking at the second method of listing the abilities of the Runeswords, I thought of a simple “Affinity Score” method that kept the relationship between the magic sword and the chosen wielder as necessary and ongoing.  With the first method, the sword could become something that filled a slot in the golf bag of magic items, usable by whomever picked it up.  The Affinity Score method encouraged one owner to possess the blade, however there could arise other issues.
I like that the blade gets more powerful as the character gains levels, but now we’re in a situation where a 15th-level rogue just acquiring a runesword would find it less powerful and less useful than 5th-level wizard who’d had it since 1st-level.  So, here’s a third method of outlining powers for the magical runeswords, the  Awakened Abilities method.
(You may have also noticed that the first entry, Flamesinger, was written from a pseudo-3E perspective.  The second, Shadowblade, was a pseudo-3.5 transitioning to 4E at higher levels, and this entry uses some 4E terminology and mechanics.  You can see the my experimenting went on as the editions changed, but the underlying thoughts could still apply regardless of edition or ruleset.)

by Tori Brine (C) Fiery Dragon Productions, Inc

Demonslayer is a runesword created thousands of years ago by specialized smiths on the Island of Sorcery as an ultimate weapon in the bitter wars against their enemies.  Armies of demons had been summoned and bound by rival forces, and Demonslayer was to be used to counter these vile foes.  The powers of the blade are unlocked when a creature of the appropriate type is slain – either dealt the final blow by the blade or immersed in the blood (or black ichor that passes for demon blood) of a freshly slain demon.  The power remains unlocked and available to the user until such time as the blade comes into the possession of a lower-level wielder.  A 10th-level paladin picking the blade up from his fallen 10th-level comrade would have access to all powers currently available to the blade; a 5th-level paladin picking up the same blade would see the magic diminish and have to start questing again to re-energize the enchantments of the weapon.

Demonslayer begins play as a holy longsword, having a +1 enchantment to attack and damage rolls and dealing an extra 1d8 radiant damage on a critical hit.

Slaying a demon of the following type unlocks these associated abilities:

Demon Maw or DretchRadiant Aura – when a creature with the demon subtype takes a standard or move action within 5-feet of the wielder, that creature suffers 1d6 points of radiant damage.  Only affects the demon once per turn (does not double up if they take a move and standard action).

Gnaw Demon or Runespiral DemonRadiant Sight – you can see invisible creatures with the demon subtype as if they were visible.  You ignore attack penalties for concealment or total concealment against demonic creatures when using the blade.

Bloodseep Demon or QuasitSilencing Strike – when you hit a demonic creature, they are silenced (Save ends), and are unable to use any powers or abilities that have a verbal or auditory component.

Barlgura or NeldrazuCounter Resistance – any demon struck by the blade has its resistance score reduced by 5 until the end of the encounter.  For example, a demon with Resist Fire 10 struck by the blade would thereafter have Resist Fire 5 until the end of the encounter.

Needle DemonNo Escape – any demon within a 10-foot radius of the blade cannot use any of their teleport abilities; once they leave affected area, their abilities resume as before.  Additionally, demons are not able to teleport to any area within 10-feet of the blade; they instead appear in the nearest adjacent square outside the 10-foot radius.

Babau or VrockResist Fire – you gain Resist Fire 10 against fire-based attacks from a demonic creature only.  Other fire damage affects you as normal.

ImmolithHinder – any demonic creature struck by the blade becomes slowed (Save ends).

GoristroRecovery – You can make a saving throw against effects that are the result of a demon attack at the beginning and end of your turn.

HezrouAdvantage – you gain combat advantage on your next turn against any demon that you strike this turn.

In addition to the abilities granted by slaying specific types of demons, striking down a cumulative number of demons (of any type) grants the following abilities:

10 demons slain – scoring a critical hit on a demon allows you to regain hit points as if you’d spent a healing surge.

25 demons slain – the attack and damage enchantment is increased to +2

50 demons slain – if you have the Radiant Aura ability, the damage is increased to 2d6.

100 demons slain – the attack and damage enchantment is increased to +3


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