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Comments: 13
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Rating: 3.7222
Condition: Normal
ID: 469


December 24, 2005, 2:19 pm

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Made of dark steel by those of an age gone by, this is the last of the giant war golems. Taller than elder dragon is long, this clanking behemoth plods across the land, obliveous to all works of men, elves, or dwarves.

DarkSteel is the name those of this age have given it.  It is a weapon from a previous age that has long outlived its makers.  It is a giant war golem, made of thick dark steel. It looks like a old style knight, with all the flanges, and covered joints.  Giant is not a term thrown about casually. It be 100 long strides tall (100 meters), if the height can be reckoned correctly.  It is heavier than anything known. It’s foot prints easily compress the earth at least an Elf’s height. 

DarkSteel is still patrolling, “looking” for its last opponent. It has done so for several Elven lifespans, and will likely continue into forever. 

Every few decades, DarkSteel lumbers back to this part of the world.  Never quite on the same path, he strides through fields, villages, keeps, and cities, as well as any terrain.  Like a great storm or earthquake, little stands in its wake. People often rebuild in its wake. It is obvious their memories of it fade and they become confident that DarkSteel will not be exactly here ever again. 

Magical Properties:

Other than a massive resistance to magic and alchemical preparations, DarkSteel is simply an armored form, with armor as thick as a man’s arm.  No one can enter it to see the golem wonders there.

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Comments ( 13 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

May 14, 2004, 3:14
Wow. No comments. Not even things reposted from the thread. Oy.
Did I do something wrong?
May 14, 2004, 8:28
I think it's just that we've all already commented in the thread. You are getting votes though (4/5).
May 14, 2004, 9:34
Yeah. Its a nice item, but theres not much more to say :D I could add a link to the thread for my comment? :D

For comments/expansions on this idea, see the following thread:

There ya go ;)
May 14, 2004, 14:38
It's like Godzilla.
Or it's like a big, rampaging mech.
It really doesn't seem that interesting to me, and it would be purposeless, to boot, since only the most ridiculously powerful of characters would be able to even dent it's foot or what-have-you.

May 15, 2004, 2:53
Captain, it is not about players being able to tackle it. Very munchkin of you to think about taking it out. If your players try, they will just expend charges or get themselves squashed flat if they are stupid enough to stand in its way. This creature also allows the GM to remind the players of how very insignificant they can be in the scheme of things.

That is why it should not have stats. (Old gamer addage, give something stats only if you want the players to fight it.) It is like fighting the weather or attacking the planet.

This is a force of nature, hurricane, a Godzilla. It is something to drive a number of plots and world events along... Evacuating the city before it gets there, hanging out in a city to prevent looters, scouting out where it might be, the reason why there is a new capital for a really old empire (it crushed the previous one), its presence might catalyze a war, it breaks down a mountain... flooding mud down the lowlands, and any number of things.

This is just a mechanism to foreshadow the power of the ancient peoples, a warning about disturbing things from that time, and a unique bit of chrome for a game world.
May 15, 2004, 17:58
I don't think I would use it for my worlds, but to each his own.

And don't you dare accuse me of being munchkin!
May 16, 2004, 7:14
A non-munchkin way to take out DarkSteel (or at least to prevent it damaging your city) would be to dig a big hole. This could actually be used as an interesting setting for a roleplay adventure. Note, I am basing the following on your statement that:

"I could see a city have a few weeks if not more to prepare for an upcoming visit by DarkSteel" as well as the fact that you can predict the course of DarkSteel to some extent (i.e. it roughly goes in a straight line).

Suppose that in a certain year, a report comes in from the distant edges of the kingdom that DarkSteel has once again been sighted in the neighbouring country and appears to be heading this way. After a week or so it becomes clear that he is heading to the kingdom; furthermore, it appears that there is quite a high chance (30-40%) that he will go through the capital. Let's say this is about two or three weeks before he would reach the capital.

The young king is idealistic, and decides that instead of evacuating he will try and defend his glorious city. Maybe he is partly motivated by the fact that a major city in the kingdom was totally ruined by DarkSteel a couple of centuries ago. He makes plan to dig a huge trench, 50m deep, 70m wide and a mile or two long in front of the capital (Note that it only has to have a vertical side on one side - the other side can slope down (making it easier to dig): DarkSteel would then walk down, not be able to get up the 50m high barrier and then probably turn 90 degrees, walk along the trench and then comes out, but now heading in a direction that won't make him intersect the city.

The king calls in the army (5000-10000 people at least) and presses in to service much of the labour of the city (probably not too hard if he pays them - one sort of labour is as good as any other). Remember, he's idealistic so he's not going to stint at spending money: he pays to get in expert diggers and anything else he needs. He should be able to get a force of 30 000 men or so working on it or more, which would easily be enough to dig the trench (even assuming zero magical aid). It also presumes the city isn't built on hard bed-rock.

Anyway, give your PCs a role in organising this: huge numbers of people, coordinating labour, dealing with the inevitable panicking people (as some will) and dealing with the problems of people abandoning houses (which might cause crime) as you suggested.
May 16, 2004, 17:44
That is a damn big trench. I don't known if you could dig that much with just 30,000 men, could you?
May 16, 2004, 18:52
Assuming the hole is roughly triangular, each man would need to dig about 350 cubic feet a day, or about 35 cubic feet an hour. 35 cubic feet is just over 1 cubic metre. I'm pretty sure I could dig that out in an hour just with a spade. Remember too, they might have a) more than two weeks (Moonhunter said several), b)more than 30 000 men (Rome had a population in the hundreds of thousands) and c) magical aid. Of course, it will be a mammoth undertaking (and one that may not work), but I think it is definitely possible, just difficult.
May 17, 2004, 1:55
Of course, he could just climb down one side... and climb up the other... so you would have to make a dead fall trap.

It would have to be over 100 meters deep, by 50 meters across. That would be the same as making a pit 190cms for a human being, 100 cms wide.

I mean this thing walks along the floor of the ocean, so it would have to be pretty deep.

So if he falls in he will slowly dig or climb his way out.

Of course it is somewhat intelligent, so it might simply walk around the trap. This may or may not alter its final course.
Voted PoisonAlchemist
March 25, 2013, 0:26
It's a non-sleeping version of the terrasque with a bit better flavor. I'm surprised he doesn't have more explanation other than "He was built eons ago and is looking for his last foe". What foe could be so colossal and so powerful that such a monster would need to be constructed? Surely that entity would have left a mark or legend.
Voted valadaar
June 2, 2014, 8:47
PoisonAlchemists comment is on the mark. Sure we have a walking disaster (Real world has Tornadoes, which can be just as destructive or more) - what _was_ it built to fight?

June 30, 2014, 0:10
Other Kaiju sized golems that were the weapons of that age. This is the last one. The weapons destroyed their civilization (so much so that it does not recognize anyting currently around as a foe). So how much do most being knows about a society of rubble 2000 years ago. We know about Romans/ Greeks but thtat is because our society is built on their foundations. Tell me about the Jawa Dwipa or Aksum or other non-origin cultures.


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