Pair of Magic Daggers

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Lobo316
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Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Lobo316 »

So I'm trying to think up a "unique" magic item for my game, and what I'm working on is a pair of enchanted daggers.

So far, I have them being +1 daggers, but when they are dual wielded, they become +2 daggers. Additionally, when weilded together, a successful hit by one, allows an immediate extra attack with the 2nd dagger. This might require a little bookwork on the players part keeping up with which dagger is hitting (maybe two different color d20ies) and "off hand" penalty thing.

On top of that, I'm trying to work up an ability/boon to grant to them that makes them different from one other. Ideas I have...

One of the daggers, upon scoring a natural 20 (critical) increases the bonus dice from a crit from 1d4 to 1d6
(fyi - my crit method is max damage +1d4 and gain "advantage" on your next attack, does not have to be against the same target).

I also thought about one of the dagger being a luck blade?

Looking for any creative input on this, without the daggers getting "to powerful". Thanks!

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Re: Pair of Magic Dagger

Post by jdizzy001 »

Those would be coveted daggers indeed. Here is something I have learned about this game, Lobo. We worry a lot about throwing down stuff that is "too powerful" but in actuality c&c is a pretty hard game. If you throw a monster at your pc's that is of the same hd (assuming hd is a good scale of measuring power level, which I think it is) your pc's are going to need unmodified d20 rolls of 12+ to hit their target. That means they are swinging with ~40% accuracy. I guess this is a long winded way of saying, I wouldn't worry about it. Also, consider the world you're trying to create. How prevalent is magic? Do the other pc's have comparable items? Will they obtain comparable items down the road? Lastly, if you give out the items and it becomes clear they are too good, take them away. Either in game (they are stolen or destroyed in battle) or out of game (pull the player aside and explain how the daggers are unbalancing the game. As a side note, I'd give the pc something to compensate for being willing to yield to your suggestion. If they willingly give up the special daggers throw them something to make up for it. Vanilla expert daggers for example).

All in all, it is your campaign and you are the only one who can really determine what is "too powerful."
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Lobo316
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Re: Pair of Magic Dagger

Post by Lobo316 »

jdizzy001 wrote:Those would be coveted daggers indeed. Here is something I have learned about this game, Lobo. We worry a lot about throwing down stuff that is "too powerful" but in actuality c&c is a pretty hard game. If you throw a monster at your pc's that is of the same hd (assuming hd is a good scale of measuring power level, which I think it is) your pc's are going to need unmodified d20 rolls of 12+ to hit their target. That means they are swinging with ~40% accuracy. I guess this is a long winded way of saying, I wouldn't worry about it. Also, consider the world you're trying to create. How prevalent is magic? Do the other pc's have comparable items? Will they obtain comparable items down the road? Lastly, if you give out the items and it becomes clear they are too good, take them away. Either in game (they are stolen or destroyed in battle) or out of game (pull the player aside and explain how the daggers are unbalancing the game. As a side note, I'd give the pc something to compensate for being willing to yield to your suggestion. If they willingly give up the special daggers throw them something to make up for it. Vanilla expert daggers for example).

All in all, it is your campaign and you are the only one who can really determine what is "too powerful."
Good advice Jdizzy. Well said. But with that in mind, let me ask you this. In C&C, dual wielding is pretty difficult. Is the bonus of having the daggers +2 when dual wielded, enough to compensate for the dual wield penalties? I mean, there's still be penalties, but would they be worth the "risk" so to speak? I don't think I'd want to go as far as a pair of +3 daggers (not yet, heh, heh) and I do play with advantages, and there is an advantage for dual wielding combat.

Hmmm...just had a stray thought, what if, when dual wielded, the daggers grant the bearer the ability to fight as though he had the dual wield advantage....hmmmmm??????

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Lobo316
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Lobo316 »

Hmmm...was just looking at the dual wield description and it says...

The attack with the primary hand is at -3 and the attack with the off hand is at -6. These penalties are affected by the character’s dexterity modifier. The character’s strength modifier only applies to damage inflicted.

So, you don't add your strength bonus to the attacks when dual wielding???

And, if the text above states "These penalties are affected by the character’s dexterity modifier", does that push the penalties into a bonus if you have a high enough Dex and the proper advantages? Like, can the primary go from -3, to +1? Or does the Dex/advantage benefit stop at 0?

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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by jdizzy001 »

That is how I understand it. When rolling for dual wielding the atk is dex based, not str based. Now we know why legolas used 2 hunting knives in the lotr movies ;).

Using the knives to award the two weapon feat sounds like a cool idea. It will encourage the bearer to dual wield. A set of +2 daggers which award the bearer a feat (when using the daggers) and a crit bonus sounds pretty solid.
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mbeacom
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by mbeacom »

Whether or not they are "too powerful" will depend on who gets to use them. If it's a high dex rogue looking for a reason to TWF, then yeah, they may seem too powerful since they're essentially a custom item. If they're used by a PC who normally carries a shield, which he'll have to drop in order to use them, then no, they won't likely be too powerful because much of their power will just be shifting from something else, basically, using them at a cost. Lastly, this is what disenchanters, green slime, gray ooze, etc are made for, correcting your mistakes in what you gave out. :)
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jdizzy001
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by jdizzy001 »

mbeacom wrote:Whether or not they are "too powerful" will depend on who gets to use them. If it's a high dex rogue looking for a reason to TWF, then yeah, they may seem too powerful since they're essentially a custom item. If they're used by a PC who normally carries a shield, which he'll have to drop in order to use them, then no, they won't likely be too powerful because much of their power will just be shifting from something else, basically, using them at a cost. Lastly, this is what disenchanters, green slime, gray ooze, etc are made for, correcting your mistakes in what you gave out. :)
It's comments like that which make me wish we had a "like" button :lol:
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TheMetal1
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by TheMetal1 »

You know when I read this, thought hey pretty cool, but what if there were 3 Daggers and when wielded all at the same time are Artifact Level.

A couple of options with this one:

1. The catch is you need the third Arm of "Insert Name Here". The thing it was made for had 3 Arms and Much like the Hand of Vecna, but you need to create a wound on yourself to attach it.
2. Requires that one finds the lost Ritual of "Insert Name Here" last cast by "Insert Name Here" who was legendary with this 3 wielded daggers. In this case it creates an invisible magic arm.
3. The 3 daggers brought together make it a sentient trio. One, two or all three can become dancing swords (i.e. dancing daggers) but attack on their own with other stuff that comes with Sentient, i.e. will, language, control...
The Sentient Daggers would give you as the CK, an opportunity to put limits as required as it may force a geas or simply say no and require a control check. Plus the rumor, then looking for the daggers, ritual, arm whatever are plot hooks in and of themselves.

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Relaxo
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Relaxo »

That's freaky, Metal!

Lobo, I always understood it like you said for dual wielding, -3, -6. Modify by DEX not Str (it's a finesse thing, not brute force) so a Fighter with 18 Dex would be 0 , -3... not too bad. yes, if you have a +4 dex bonus, the attacks would be +1, -2... it starts to make sense to attack twice vs. carrying a shield. pretty cool.

That said, for a matching set of magical daggers, I'd say it's fine to make them not apply the 2 weapon penalty. That's part of their charm (pun intended). Or maybe if one hits, you get a free attack with no penalty with the other (like, one "activates" or "motivates" the other) so it's all or nothing (and less powerful).

now the fun part... what magic makes them special? Are they a pair of bickering twins magically imprisoned in the blades? if so, is one insane from losing their human body? Do the blades have a Will? together or separately?

You could go with classics, one is a frontbrand, the other a flameblade. one makes light, one darkness...

Maybe one makes wounds that instantly heal, but still hurt... a fine weapon for a torturer. what if they're cool, but get wonky if separated? (like, they each posses the current wielders who will stop at nothing to seek out the other knife and murder they way thru hell or high water to kill the other guy and get both knives, just so they knives are happy to be together again... sucks if you were a paladin at the beginning...)

Off the top of my head, like the idea of them being able to fly, so for thrown attacks, their range is longer than usual. I'm thinking one is a dagger of returning, and maybe they need something, like "once drawn, this blade must taste blood" or somesuch, they must bask in the light of the full moon each month or the wielder ages a year overnight. ... I'm on a magic with a cost kick recently, LOL.

or you might have had that all in mind already.

Short answer, two attacks, not too powerful, IMO.
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Lobo316
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Lobo316 »

jdizzy001 wrote:
mbeacom wrote:Whether or not they are "too powerful" will depend on who gets to use them. If it's a high dex rogue looking for a reason to TWF, then yeah, they may seem too powerful since they're essentially a custom item. If they're used by a PC who normally carries a shield, which he'll have to drop in order to use them, then no, they won't likely be too powerful because much of their power will just be shifting from something else, basically, using them at a cost. Lastly, this is what disenchanters, green slime, gray ooze, etc are made for, correcting your mistakes in what you gave out. :)
It's comments like that which make me wish we had a "like" button :lol:
Agreed, lol!!!!

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Lobo316
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Lobo316 »

Thanks for the feedback all. Some great options to consider as I work through this concept.

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Lobo316
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Lobo316 »

So, just figured I'd share my "finished" results on these daggers. Enjoy! Comments welcome...

Shadow & Stalker
Shadow and Stalker are a pair of +1 daggers. When dual wielded however, they become +2 daggers. If both daggers hit the same target on the same round, the daggers do an extra D4 damage. Additionally...

Shadow grants it's owner a +2 bonus to all stealth related checks (move silent, hide in shadows).
Stalker, when used for back attacks, causes a critical hit on an unmodified roll of 18-20.

Special: Only one of the daggers may be used for back attacks (no two-weapon back attacks). Best to sheath Shadow in these cases, as the owner of the daggers can still benefit from the +2 to stealth checks, but Stalker will only be at a +1 to hit in these cases.

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Dracyian
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Dracyian »

i like it

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Lobo316
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Lobo316 »

Dracyian wrote:i like it
Thanks! I'm still a little concerned about them being "too tough", but I think the conditions for thier use are situational enough to not be over powering. And if the rogue wants to get in close for the back attack, that's fine (that just means he's in the melee ;o) ).

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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by commanderFuron »

Lobo316 wrote:Hmmm...was just looking at the dual wield description and it says...

The attack with the primary hand is at -3 and the attack with the off hand is at -6. These penalties are affected by the character’s dexterity modifier. The character’s strength modifier only applies to damage inflicted.

So, you don't add your strength bonus to the attacks when dual wielding???

And, if the text above states "These penalties are affected by the character’s dexterity modifier", does that push the penalties into a bonus if you have a high enough Dex and the proper advantages? Like, can the primary go from -3, to +1? Or does the Dex/advantage benefit stop at 0?

We play it that the dex bonus stop at zero. It only mitigates the penalties, this makes dual wielding a difficult choice (Although +4 dex bonus is also hard to get). Additionally, it makes fighter types better at it since they get +1 to hit every level.

My suggestion would be to give the daggers an advantage like -3/-3 for dual wielding effectively making them great to use together.

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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Go0gleplex »

Maybe make one a Dagger of Piercing and the other a Dagger of Warding when both are possessed, otherwise they are simple +1 Daggers.
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Relaxo »

I like the idea of if they both strike, the extra damgae comes from some sort of magic bolt that blasts between them. just for flavor.
that said, it's a little like a defibrilator, so that might be silly. :D
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Treebore »

Reminds me of a old pair of daggers one of my old PC's has, named Cobra and Venom, but they were all about killing, and were high powered daggers for a very high level game in 1E AD&D.
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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by NJPDX »

Can someone tell me why these daggers don't require the blood of an innocent or a pint of the wielder's own every fortnight?

It only seems right.

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Re: Pair of Magic Daggers

Post by Go0gleplex »

NJPDX wrote:Can someone tell me why these daggers don't require the blood of an innocent or a pint of the wielder's own every fortnight?

It only seems right.
That made me think of the Morganti blades from Steven Brust's Taltos series (Jhereg, etc) If they hit, they devour the soul of their target. Absolutely no resurrection, raise dead, or what. Not even a wish or miracle from the way the books read.
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