Thursday, June 13, 2013

Borrowing from the Past

While it is widely known that I do not run published campaign settings or adventures, I do like to see what other people are doing, and to read through some of the classic material. It can be fun to take a good idea presented in one venue and tweak it for my own use. Even something so innocuous as an interior illustration - or, more specifically, an unimportant object from that illustration.

From the pages of Allen Hammack's classic adventure module, C2 - The Ghost Tower of Inverness, I bring you a few brief notes for the Trump Blades.

Trump Blades: Also known as Wild Blades or Urikaen Blades – after the original creator. Each is a longsword (some say bastard sword) of identical design – except for a hole cut into the blade, near the hilt, and one half with black hilts and scabbards and the other half with red hilts and scabbards. Each hole is of a shape corresponding with a suit found in real-world playing cards. A talisman was made for each sword, designed to fit within the shaped hole in the blade. It is thought the talismans were created by some other artisan – possibly Urika’s apprentice. It is also said that this apprentice completed the forging and enchanting of the fourth blade – after the demise of the master. This fourth blade is not quite as powerful as the others. Each sword has a base magical bonus equal to the corresponding ability score bonus possessed by the wielder – to a maximum of +4.
  • Sword of Clubs: Life. Based on user’s Con. Bonuses against undead and fae.
  • Sword of Diamonds: Desire. Based on user’s Int. Exceptionally hard and sharp. Known to damage other weapons. Rumored to be vorpal.
  • Sword of Hearts: Passion. Based on user’s Cha. Wounding and Charming.
  • Sword of Spades: Death. Based on user’s Dex. Deals superior damage to objects and constructs.

While an illustration of the Sword of Spades is provided above, the graphic below shows the Sword of Hearts.

In closing, I will mention that I know there is no such item in the module. I was inspired purely by the excellent illustration and wondered what the heck that sword could be. Of such stuff are legends made.

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