Friday, 23 December 2011

[To Coin a World] Magic Weapons of the Friendly Sea

What follows are descriptions of the ten magic weapons known to be in use by various adventurers, both active and retired, around the Friendly sea.


Believed to be one of the many malfuctioning magic items left over from the Mage Wars, this sword seems to possess a rudimentary, animalistic personality, and a burning hatred of wizards of all stripes, seeking their deaths above all other things.

The Revenant Dirk
The origins of the Dirk are unclear, but the work of a Necromancer would not be far-fetched as an assumption. So long as the blade remains lodged in a dead body, that body will be animated and attempt to kill all living beings nearby.

Bitter Frost
Forged by the frost giants as a peace offering to the dwarven king in ages past, Bitter Frost bears the numbing cold of the wastes where it was forged, freezing any water that it contacts. It is also said to speak, and lament its own existence as a weapon of war.

The Twin Flails of Chastity
Quenched in the blood of a rabid unicorn, these two light flails are specially effective against those who could be considered loose with their affections.

Found in the dungeons under the ruins of Xylarthen's Tower, this greenish hilt-less sword is said to be able to speak directly to the mind of the wielder, and sense the hostile intent of those nearby. It seeks new experiences, and if bored, may sabotage the current wielder so that it may be looted by somebody more interesting.

The Four Orcish Pirate Axes:
given as a gift by some dark and unpleasant god to the (now deceased) mutant leader of the orcish pirates known as the Bloody Axes of Powerful Killing, they appear similar in design, but each bears a different power.

The Axe of Power
This axe is able to strike with incredible force, quite out of proportion to the strength of the wielder, but is draining to use.

The Axe of Blood
Victims of this axe find their wounds bleed more freely than would be expected, and are difficult to heal.

The Axe of Killing
This axe can sense when a being is near death, and unerringly seeks to deal the final blow.

The Axe of Axes
When swung, this axe creates duplicates of itself, allowing it to be tossed at enemies as many times as the wielder wishes. The duplicates vanish after a short time.

Friday, 9 December 2011

[To Coin a World] Our Dragons are... diffferent?

Inspired by the wonderful series over at Lurking Rythmically, I thought I'd type out a few words about dragons on the Coin. They're not hugely different from "standard" D&D style dragons, except where they are...

Dragons breath fire.

Of course, there's quite a bit of variation as to how they do it. Some create a high-pressure gout of flame a hundred meters long, some spit fireballs that explode, some squirt flaming liquid, and some exhale clouds of smog that they then ignite with an electrical discharge. So, while fireproof armour will be invaluable against any dragon, the fire delivery method it has can change other tactical decisions.

Occasionally something will go wrong with the internal furnace of a dragon, usually while it's growing up, causing it to exhale toxic sludge or blasts of lightning. Other dragons consider such creatures hideous degenerates and try to kill them wherever possible.

Dragons are NOT immune to fire.
Dragonhide is very tough, turning aside most weapons, and it is also magic-resistant, turning away a fair number of spells. But, while it is quite resistant to heat, it is not totally fireproof, so a dragon can wade through a burning building, but will still be hurt by the breath of a fellow dragon. Or a large pile of explosives.

Most Dragons LOATH water.
Possibly this might have something to do with the fact they're creatures of fire. Or possibly they just don't like getting water under their scales. Either way, they avoid getting wet whenever they can. This is, in fact, why most dragons have their lairs in caves or dungeons rather than places open to the sky - while being able to fly straight up would be a huge tactical advantage, no dragon is going to sleep somewhere he might get rained on.

Having said that, they're not allergic to it or anything. In fact, if a dragon can overcome it's dislike of the substance, their sleek shape, huge lungs, and vast strength make them excellent swimmers.

Their life-cycle is very uneven.
It takes a dragon only a month or two to grow from a two-foot-long hatchling to a small-house-sized monstrosity, a period during which they are constantly hungry, and will eat literally anything in their immediate vicinity that they can chew (which, considering how hard their teeth are, is basically anything at all). However, once they reach that size, they grow very slowly. As they age, they get bigger, smarter, and lazier. Thankfully for the people of the Coin, once they reach a certain size, the dragon's internal systems seem to become self-sustaining, and they refuse to actually wake up for anything less than a direct attack on their person.

They're Magical, but can't do magic
Dragons are very magical. That's why they can fly despite their weight, can breath fire, can grow scales as hard as steel, and so on. It's also why they have such a huge variation in physical construction within the one species. But, like most inherently magical species, they can't actually cast spells like a human wizard (in fact, it might actually be humanity's lack of inherent magic that lets them do that, but that's a theory for another day). They certainly cannot change shape at will.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Arrows of Dragonslaying

Dragons are hard to kill. This really shouldn't surprise anybody. I mean, they're giant armoured flying lizards. Clearly any prospective dragon-slayer, or for that matter, any king with a large treasury and a smidgeon of healthy paranoia, will want something to use as an equalizer in a prospective battle.

Setting aside converted siege weapons, asbestos-coated armour and the rare wizard both powerful enough to battle a dragon and crazy enough to try, the best equalizer are magically prepared arrows of dragonslaying.

Admittedly, the name is a bit of a misnomer, as they can't actually kill a dragon except by a truly lucky shot, but unlike normal arrows they entirely ignore the dragon's ridiculously tough hide, and cause debilitating pain quite out of proportion to the amount of damage they inflict. These features are what they're sought for. Being able to hit a dragon's armour and still cause it to fall out of the sky from sheer shock is a big help.

Perhaps ironically, they're quite rare due to the fact they're made out of dragon parts.

Before the magic spell that imbues the arrows with their power can be cast, the heads of the arrows have to be made from dragon claws (in case you were wondering, a given dragon has from six to twenty-two claws, depending on its physical layout).

The next stage, once the heads have been made and affixed to a suitable shaft is to soak the arrows in the still-warm blood of a recently killed dragon.

Because the claws are even harder than the dragon's hide and filing them down to the proper shape can take days, and the blood cannot be more than half an hour old, for every quiver of arrows, two dragons have to slain.

Which explains why they're so amazingly expensive.