By Thilo Graf
This pdf from The Game Mechanics is 46 pages long, 5 pages are taken up by the SRD, the first page contains both ToC and editorial, leaving 40 pages of content for a very low price.
The first page introduces the concept of magical weapons that level with your character, providing the frame rules. If you have already checked out the predecessor of this book, Legendary Blades, you already know these.
After that, we get the weapons:
- Apocalypse Hammer: A hammer devoted to Armageddon, this one can damage the wielder and summon creatures associated with the end-times. It includes two statblocks for summonable creatures, an advanced riotus [sic!] Dire Wolf (CR 5), the mid-level summon being an elder fire elemental and an advanced crag Linnorm (CR 15). I liked this weapon, it’s dangerous potential and the flair it has. I didn’t like the one typo.
- Gambit: An acrobat’s blade that is the ultimate boon for groups sans rogues, as it enables the wielder to disarm traps and gain trap sense etc.
- Giant Killer: A Glaive for little people, this weapon is the bane of giant creatures and great for small characters.
- Heartwood Staff: A staff fashioned from a Treant’s heartwood, this one didn’t impress me too much. heard that one before. Plus: One ability talks about a “smite” ability that has not been mentioned in the weapon before. We also get stats for an advanced treant fighter 8 (CR 16).
- Hysteria’s Chosen: A Hellraiseresque Morningstar of insanity and pain: What’s not to like? 😉
- Mischief’s Bow: A Bard’s bow/instrument focusing on luck and trick shots.
- Night Axe: A weapon forged against the creatures from beyond the stars, the theme is actually not darkness, but rather the void beyond. The weapon comes with a stat-block a CR 5 lesser from of Star-Spawn (Mi-Go).
- Reaper’s Scythe: Inspired by Poe’s “Masque of the red Death”, this scythe brings pestilence and death. The mechanics for its famine ability are a bit subpar.
- Shadowblade of the Dark Mistress: The blade of the servants of the Succubus Reviewer Queen, this sword has a combination of charm and shadow abilities.
- Spear of the Four Winds: A cool, Asian-flavoured spear that can conjure up damaging winds.
- Spirit Glaive: A Glaive that can grants soul-tokens that can be used in a variety of ways and bind souls. There is a rather awkward sentence explaining the token mechanic that feels like the sentence parts before and after the comma have been jumbled.
- Stargazer: A great staff for mages, this one uses star-associated magic and some divination-abilities. Nice. There is also a little piece of unobtrusive advertisement here.
- Temple Sword: A sword that focuses on light-abilities and summoning cohorts. I liked this one.
- Woodman’s Axe: An axe doubling as a feather token takes focuses on taking out evil plant creatures.
The pdf closes with a ToC.
Layout is quite printer-friendly and minimalistic, Editing has some minor glitches but none that really detract from the enjoyment of the pdf. I really liked that the weapons all come with quite cool computer-generated artworks, making it easier to picture the weapons and providing some nice pieces to show to your players. I could have done without the additional b/w-illustrations, though, as they somehow feel misplaced when compared to the nice weapon artworks. The writing of the prose has improved since the last instalment and is more versatile – while, due to the nature of the book, it is still generic, the prose for the weapons is actually nice and makes you want to implement the weapons. Another improvement over the predecessor is, that some abilities are more complex /far-out, although I would have liked to see more of the rather unusual ones. I also like that we get some weapons that belong to other types than swords, as we had enough of them in the last instalment and I could have managed without the ones herein. Usually I’d rate this book somewhere between 3.5 and 4 stars, but due to the extremely low price and some cool ideas, I’ll settle for a solid 4.5 stars – There is still room for improvement, but this is a great purchase nevertheless.
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