Name:Â MoreÂ commonlyÂ referredÂ to as either Blood-drinker, Life Taker, or Death's 'lil helper, their proper name isÂ Animus CapereÂ (Which is Latin for 'To take a soul'), causing the modern tongue's speaker to call them 'Soul-taker.'
Appearance:Â Though they can be any type of sword, they tend to be straight, and double-sided. They also have a twisting, abstract line design down the center of the blade, white on the gray, which some swear changes slightly each time they sheath it. It's pommel is a diamond. The sheath (and it will never lack a sheath) has the same type of design the blade does- twisting strands of white lines going down to the point. The sheath's inside, if inspected, will be a blood-red.
Benefit:Â Each time the sword is used to combat and does damage, the amount of damage it did is added to the amount of damage done next round. So if the sword delivers 6 damage to a giant the first round, and the next it rolls for 3 damage, then the second round it will do 9 damage. This extra damage will be assumed to come from increased strength. In fact, theÂ wielderÂ will feel a great deal stronger after damage is done than before, or after the combat. Also in combat, the sword absorbs its victim's blood.
Drawback:Â This sword starts off with a severely negative intelligence. (enough time for the wielder to grow used to it, and for the DM to know theyÂ aren'tÂ going to sell it). Whenever it is used to kill something, then its intelligence will be increased by 1-4 points. When the sword gets a positive intelligence of 1 or over, it starts to influence the wielder. Note that effects areÂ cumulativeÂ (each previous ability is still in play) With an intelligence of 1-4, the wielder will want to keep the sword, and resist throwing it away. 5-8=the wielder is more bloodthirsty, and seek combat more than peace, though will still run away when beaten. 9-12=the wielder seeks out a fight, and will go into taverns to start a bar fight. 13-16=the Wielder Â will kill his friends if they try to either take the sword, restrain him from fighting, or attempt to convince him not to fight. 17+=the sword has complete control over the wielder, and will use the wielder as a means to keep the sword's intelligence high. If combat does not happen for 12 hours, than the sword's intelligence will drop by one point.
Lore:Â On a dark and stormy night in the year 345 PT, a young man, called H'sar, knocked on the Archmage's tower's door. He sought anÂ apprenticeship. After being tested by the Archmage, by the name of Raet the Powerful, Raet accepted his H'sar, and taught him many things. H'sar eventually got to be powerful enough at magic to become Raet's assistant. At that time, Raet wasÂ experimentingÂ with creating artificial intelligence (and had hired a couple of fighters to keep out complaining clerics). Raet found a spell that did something like what he sought out to do. The spell, instead of creating and putting life into an object, drew out the life from within it. And the life that came out of theÂ objectÂ would reflect the object is was. If the spell was cast on a mirror, the mirror would know all about the person in front. The mirror would know all of your secrets, all of your fears, and all your hopes and dreams, too. H'sar, however, fell underÂ religiousÂ persuasionÂ from a group againstÂ ArtificialÂ Life, believing the creation of life to be the province of the gods. H'sar wanted to destroy these new lives, and his master, too, and knew he could never hope to beat Raet in a duel. So he made one more life, in the form of a guard's sword. The sword took possession of the guard, and went on a rampage throughout the tower. The floors were stained red. But Raet proved to be the match of the sword. And, being a pacifist and against violence, cursed the sword to not be able to be able to influence a human being. Raet missed a crucial detail in his spell, however, and the sword lived out its days able to deliver extra damage, to lure people into continued use, and gain intelligence to beat the curse with each droplet of blood drunk, until it is smart enough to overcome the curse.
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? Responses (9)
An interesting weapon, the better it gets, the more controlling it gets.
Interesting sword with a neat mechanic. I think as an NPC cursed item, it would work really good as is. If I were to give it to the PCs, I'd want to slow that intelligence gain. It's still cursed and dangerous, but giving the PCs a bit more time for the curse to 'build up', would make for better role playing. Out of curiosity, who's soul does it suck? Under normal circumstances I'd say it's the guy who gets hit with the business end of the sword and not the user.
Yes, its the guy who gets sliced who's soul gets drained and thrown back at them. Of course, though, once it gets smart enough, the wielder's soul's in trouble...
I like the combination of the vampiric weapon with the growing sentient weapon. Well done.
I took like the idea, but it seems to ramp up far too fast. I've seem some 1st level characters in 1st ed AD&D manage to do 19+ hp on one hit _without_ magic enhancement (Longsword, high strength, large target).
The progression will be a sort of accelerated Fibonacci series and unless PCs miss a lot, they are going to be fighting off a high intelligence sword very quickly, making this more a booby trap then anything subtle.
Since you have called it Soul drinker, I would think a better mechanic would be only killing strikes count towards increasing the blade's intelligence, and perhaps only +1 point accumulative per kill.
I don't do AD&D, so I wasn't sure how much damage a single strike would deal (nor am i familiar with other combat systems). Though the only killing blows up the intelligence is a good idea.
Update: Slowed intelligence gain.
Sorry - your terminology was very similar to that typically used by AD&D - especially earlier variants - that I assumed it was your intent.
If a more general approach is intended then avoiding specific numbers and 'game' terms may be better.
Most subs here are light on actual mechanics for this reason. The germ of the idea - that the weapon becomes more intelligent and harder to control is really what is good here.