Re: Enchanting weapons

From: Tim Ellis <tim_at_...>
Date: Mon, 27 Aug 2001 23:28:01 -0000

>> The rules for enchanting weapons are somewhat ambiguous, and I
>>wanted to see what others think about this.
>I *think* the answer may be that you create a "Truesword Stroke 12"
>sword (HW:RiG p.233, Effects of Enchantment), which works much as a
>skill spirit would (cf. HW:RiG p.210 and examples on the next page):

This seems about right to me. To do this you first need to use an appropriate "Enchant" feat vs the standard resistance (14) plus any bonus from the material to be enchanted (eg Iron +40) in an extended contest to get a complete defeat (-31 AP or less). You may be able to augment with a suitable craft skill ("Forge Iron" or "Make Sword"), Mythology of Humakt (or of appropriate weaponsmith) or by performing the feat as a ritual ("Beat the sword on the anvil of truth(+1) with the hammer of rightuousness(+1), and quench the blade in a silver bucket(+3) filled with dragon's blood(Dragonewt scout +1, Dinosaur +3, dragonnewt warrior +5, Dragonewt warrior +7, Dream Dragon +10, True Dragon +20) ...")

Then you need to defeat the same resistance with the feat you wish to enchant into the sword. Again you may be able to augment the feat in a variety of ways, although, for balance purposes I'd look for them to be different (it's a bit of a cheat if the ritual for enchanting "Truesword Stroke" uses all the same ritual items as that for "Enchant Iron" - especially as they are in the same affinity!) - One idea might be to make different days more auspicious for different feats, but since you must "Strike while the iron is hot" so to speak, you can't claim the maximum benefit for both rituals.

You also need to spend a HP to cement the enchantment - Enchanting could get very expensive if the rolls aren't going your way!

>A character without the feat can use it at the sword's ability

And increase it as normal by the expenditure of Hero Points, just as if his original character description had included "...And wields the Iron sword "Broobane" which always strikes true..."

(interesting side question. If I have "Magic Item 1W" as one of my starting abilities, and during the adventure, lend it to another PC,what rating does he use it at? What if I spend HP on it and raise it to 5W2 over the course of play? What if I die, and another PC (my new character? someone elses PC) takes the item (and, if appropriate spends a HP to cement it))  

>A character with the feat can augment using the sword's ability
>rating as a bonus (i.e. the sword gives +12 to Truesword Stroke
>augmentation attempts).

This makes sense, although I didn't see this explicitly in the rules for Enchanting items. It certainly works as a extrapolation from skill spirits.

>It *can't* be the case that the sword gives a straight +12 to Close
>Combat, or that this ability rating of 12 can just be changed into a
>24-point offensive edge -- that'd be daftly powerful for the
>"default" magic item.

Absolutely. My reading of "giving it a straight augmentation bonus" would be that having twice driven it to -31 AP you can now try a "standard" augmentation with your ability (so to get that +12 you'd be rolling against a resistance of 20W2 (or 10W and hope for a Major victory+ (about 27% if you have 10W2)) - Although at the sort of scores you need to perform this sort of enchantment that might lead to ridiculously high scores anyway. The Advantage of doing it this way is that the bonus is fixed, the disadvantages are that you can't get more than this bonus, and the sword has already been augmented with (in this example) "Truesword Stroke". Depending on exactly how you treat the augmentation, it may also be an advantage in being "always on" rather than requiring an action ot "power up"

> My *guess* is that you could work out a fixed bonus using the normal
> conversion rates (resistance 5 = +1 target number bonus or ^2
> offensive or defensive edge), so that for a bog-standard magic sword
> you'd say 12/5 = +2 to hit, or +5 damage, and take it from there for
> more powerful items. Which sounds fair to me.

or extrapolate from the passion spirit rules, and give a bonus of 1/10th the rating - 12/10 = +1 to hit (or, by further extrapolation, +2 damage). I'd go for this as the "default". Anyone who picks up the sword will get a +1 augmentation automatically. If they wish to spend an action they can use the sword to perform a "truesword stroke" feat (even if they don't know it, or posess the requisite affinity) - the results of which will *replace* the default augmentation. IF they know the "Truesword Stroke" feat already, then using the sword will give them a +12 bonus, and again the resukt will replace the swords +1 (since you can augment with multiple feats, but not one feat multiple times).

What if you want to put multiple enchantments in the same item?

It should be easier to do all at the same time rather than going back later to add a second enchantment over the first.

How about

To add a second enchantment to an item in a single ritual:-

  1. Perform the "Enchant" as normal
  2. Perform the first feat vs the standard reistance (14 + bonus)
  3. spend 1 HP
  4. Perform the second feat vs the standard resistance + the value of existing enchantments (so to add "Shield Destroyer" to an Iron Broadsword currently enchanted with "Truesword Stroke (12) you would need to defeat a resistance of 14 + 40 (iron) + 12 = 6w3)
  5. spend 1HP + 1 per existing Enchantment (so in this case 2HP)
    • You can see why those Humakti Lottery swords are created by groups of Humakti rather than individuals can't you! -

To add a second enchantment to an item that has been enchanted previously:-

As above, but the "Enchant" is also against the increased resistance.  If the "Enchant" fails, then the original enchantment is also lost.

I'd also apply a further penalty for enchantments that cross types of magic. If a sword has been blessed with "Sword of St Worlath" then further enchanting it with the "Swordhelp" feat will be harder than if it had previously been enchanted with the "Flickering Blade" feat. I think I'd say a standard +20, but be prepared to reduce that where circumstances might dictate otherwise.

Multiple instances of the same enchantment.

If you have a sword enchanted with "Truesword Stroke 12" can you increase it's rating by a further application of the same feat?

I don't think so. I think your only route is to spend HP to increase the rating (of course you could perform the enchantment ritual and spend the HP "in game" to justify a game related raise...)

How about starting at a rating > 12.

Thinking of the "lottery sword" again, What if a group of Powerful Humakti want to work together to create a powerful sword enchanted with "Truesword Stroke?" One answer is the same as above - the first  enchants it to 12, then each subsequent one spends a HP to boost the score by 1 -so 6 humakti working together would get a sword starting at a rating of 17 (12 +5x1)

An alternate answer is to increase the resistance to the feat in order to allow the creation of a more powerful sword. Extrapolation from the Augment rules suggests +5 for every +1 to the rating (so to enchant an Iron sword to 17 would be vs a resistance of 14 + 40 (Iron) + 25 (5x5) = 19w3

Comments or Countersuggestions anyone  

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