Welcome to the new Mind's Eye web feature! In this series of articles we'll choose a recent D&D sourcebook and bring you a look at what psionic material you can find in that book as well as provide you with tips on how to integrate that material into your campaign. And where the material permits, we'll also bring you some of that "crunchy" content that the Mind's Eye has been known for! So let's get started with a look at Weapons of Legacy.
Weapons of Legacy provides information on magic weapons with rich histories. The book includes many predefined weapons, outlining their names, history, powers, stats, necessary rituals for unlocking their powers, and adventure hooks. How these weapons can gain power is discussed, as well as the feats with which they might be used. Also included are rules and tools for players and DMs to forge new items of legacy for their characters and campaigns, along with new legacy feats, spells, a prestige class, and psionic powers for characters interested in wielding mythic weapons and other items of power.
I'm sure you're wondering what psionic content you can find in Weapons of Legacy, so here's a breakdown by chapter.
Chapter 1: The Legacy
On page 11, under the Legacy against Legacy heading, is a section describing legacy gifts. These "gifts" are awarded to someone who defeats another wielder of a weapon of legacy or an artifact. A gift you might find especially useful to a psionic character is that of psionic energy, which grants you temporary power points equal to the level of the defeated foe for a period of up to 24 hours (or until used).
Also take a look at the sidebar regarding enhancing an item of legacy. While these items cannot be enhanced further using a regular process such as magic or psionic item creation feats, spells or effects that temporarily alter a weapon, such as keen edge or dissolving weapon, work normally on a weapon of legacy.
Chapter 2: Heroes of Legacy
Starting on page 18, under the Legacy Psionic Powers heading, we find three new powers that are comparable to the number of new spells in this book. Also, because of augmentations, Revitalize Legacy does the work of three separate spells.
Revitalize Legacy: Get extra use of chosen legacy ability (psion/wilder 3, psychic warrior 3).
Suppress Legacy: The target temporarily loses all legacy abilities of one item (psion/wilder 5).
Sever Legacy: Target permanently loses all legacy abilities (psion/wilder 8).
Also included in this chapter is a new prestige class known as the Legacy Champion. Although this prestige class isn't specifically psionic, it is written so that any character who wields a weapon of legacy can gain some benefit from it. The legacy champion has a good Will save and allows greater customization of a legacy weapon, plus eight of its ten levels class feature allow you to gain class features and an increase in effective level as if you had also gained a level in a class to which you belonged before adding the prestige class level.
Chapter 3: Items of Legacy
In this chapter we find 49 items of legacy, and while psionic characters can use many of them (or you can convert them to a psionic version easily enough), two of them have been created specifically for psionic characters.
Mau-Jehe, a short sword of extraordinary quality, is on page 114. While Mau-Jehe is most useful in the hands of a psychic warrior or a soul knife, and it might also be an excellent find for a psychic rogue (Mind's Eye, July 2004). Besides becoming a +3 ghost touch keen short sword by 16th level, this weapon also has abilities that provide competence bonuses to Hide and Move Silently, the use of mindlink as the psionic power, an enhancement bonus to base land speed, the ability to retain constant focus on a specified feat, an augmented use of suggestion as the psionic power, and the ability to never be considered flat-footed. And as if that wasn't enough, a complete sidebar details the use of Mau-Jehe as a mind blade.
Found on page 144, the Simple Bow is a wooden longbow of unusual size and asymmetrical shape. As the book states, the typical wielder of the Simple Bow is a psionic character who prefers to rely on ranged attacks -- most often a psychic warrior. Besides becoming a +2 longbow of speed by 17th level, this weapon also allows you to call it to hand from anywhere on the same plane, provides up to a +5 deflection bonus to Armor Class, grants the ability to take 10 on Autohypnosis checks to tolerate poison, provides up to a +6 enhancement bonus to Wisdom, and gives the ability to use true seeing once per day. At 19th level, you can even expend its psionic focus three times per day, and at 20th level (once per day), you can apply a +15 insight bonus on any single attack roll, opposed roll, opposed ability or skill check, or saving throw.
Chapter 4: Founding Legacies
This chapter deals with the creation of your own weapons of legacy. A considerable amount of information is contained within this chapter about cost progressions for various classes including psionics-based ones and it also provides legacy ability menus. These menus contain many abilities that you can select for new weapons of legacy or substitute via the replace legacy ability of the legacy champion prestige class.
The abilities that stand out include metapsionic, which allows you to apply the effect of one metapsionic feat to up to three psionic powers per day that you manifest; Empower Power, which allows you to manifest three powers per day of up to 3rd level that are empowered as though using the Empower Power metapsionic feat; Maximize Power, which allows you to manifest three powers per day of up to 3rd level that are maximized as though using the Maximize Power metapsionic feat; and Quicken Power, which allows you to manifest three powers per day of up to 3rd level that are quickened as though using the Quicken Power metapsionic feat.
Chapter 5: Optional Rules
In the final chapter of this book we find monsters of legacy. As you can read in the book, sometimes creatures undergo experiences so extreme that their very bodies can become imbued with legacy abilities. On page 213 we find one such psionic creature of legacy. Shuluth has (barely) survived an encounter with the famous Band of Lavender, and it also exterminated every member of the group by using a nasty trap. Due to the fame of the adventurers seeking his death, and also because of the cunning trap to which Shuluth subjected the group, this illithid became a monster of legacy.
In addition to a detailed history, each item featured in Weapons of Legacy includes a sample encounter for introducing the weapon into your game. These encounters can serve either as the goal of a quest -- for characters following rumors and stories of one of the fabled legacy weapons -- or as part of an otherwise normal adventure. A character may even come across a legacy weapon without realizing what he has found, though that realization shouldn't be too long in coming.
Adventure Hook: Mau-Jehe
In the adventure seed provided for Mau-Jehe, the current owner of the sword is a contract killer named Vauge, a notoriously dangerous and arrogant soulknife. The book goes on to suggest that a villain who wishes to kill one of the PCs hires Vauge, who then uses tactics to isolate that character for a one-on-one fight. (EL 6)
Although the adventure seed is based on a one-on-one encounter, you can find several other ways in which to introduce Mau-Jehe to the players -- from a seemingly underwhelming +1 short sword in a dragon's horde, to the +3 ghost touch keen short sword wielded by a powerful soulknife against the entire party.
Adventure Hook: Simple Bow
In the adventure seed provided for the Simple Bow, the weapon hangs within the tomb of Furukaze Miyo and is guarded by several terracotta warriors. The PCs are asked to investigate recent attacks by the warriors and venture forth into the ruins of the monastery and the tomb. (EL 6)
You can use this adventure seed pretty much as it is in any campaign by changing the names in the story to fit those of the area in which you wish to set the adventure. Alternatively, the party may stumble across the tomb by happenstance, hear a rumor about the ruins or tomb, or perhaps simply be hunting for treasure among the ruins.
Once the characters have one of these weapons, they will probably want to find out more about it. A bard, loremaster, wizard, sage, or follower of Sardior might well point them in the right direction. Use the information presented on pages 8 and 9 to guide their search for information, doling out bits of the weapon's history as appropriate to the success of their attempts. Depending on the level of the PCs, they may be ready to complete one or more of the legacy rituals required to unlock the powers of their weapon. Each one of these can become a full-fledged adventure, providing many hours of excitement for your PCs.
Other characters in the party may seek out rumors of additional legacy weapons. As a DM, you should welcome such inquiries. Not only are these characters providing you with the opportunity for plenty of adventure hooks, but they also allow you to enrich your players' involvement in and appreciation of your world's history by exploring its myths and legends.
The Wizards of the Coast website is loaded with adventure hooks (see Steal This Hook) that can give you some great ideas.
Weapons of Legacy includes 47 weapons that are nonpsionic in nature. Although we're busy working on a brand new weapon for next month's column, I'll provide you with flavor conversions for two of the existing items.
As the book states, Flay (Weapons of Legacy, pages 90-92) is a long whip fashioned from the skin of a giant constrictor snake. Most wielders of Flay are bards, although anyone with some talents of persuasion and the Exotic Weapon Proficiency (whip) feat can use the weapon.
Adding a little psionic flair to this weapon is fairly straightforward. When describing the whip, simply include a description of light glinting off the surface of the whip as though it were reflecting off crystal. Under the whip's legacy item abilities, replace magic missile with energy missile in the Snake Sting ability.
Scarab of Aradros
The entry for the Scarab of Aradros (pages 139-140) states that it is a golden medallion shaped like a beetle, ringed with ancient arcane runes. Arcane spellcasters derive the most benefit from this scarab.
Adding psionic flavor to this item requires you to change a few things. Let's start with the description: Replace any mention of arcane runes with that of inlaid crystal. Next, we change the wielder requirements to the ability to manifest 2nd-level psionic powers and Knowledge (psionics) 3 ranks. For personal costs, use levels 5 through 16 of Table 4-9 (page 187). Ritual costs should remain as listed. Here are some other changes:
- The first ability we should change is arcane health; this one simply receives a name change to Psionic Health but functions the same.
- Change Winged Range to apply the Extend Power metapsionic feat. If uncertain how to apply this ability, see the Empower Power ability on page 199.
- Change the requirement for keeping the scarab shell ability active from "one arcane spell remaining" to "one power point remaining" and then change the effect from that of the shield spell to the force screen power (this cannot be augmented).
Join us next month when Mind's Eye author Scott Brocius continues this month's theme and brings us a new psionic weapon of legacy perfect for both psions and psychic warriors. This new weapon, tied to the legend of Sardior, is ready to drop into your campaign, complete with history, rituals, requirements, abilities, and an adventure seed.
About the Authors
Mark A. Jindra has been a fan of Dungeons & Dragons for over 25 years. In 1998 he landed his dream job as a web developer for Wizards of the Coast and is currently the developer of the D&D website.