Friday, April 22, 2011


S is for Swords in our eighteenth installment of the Deepest Sea, A-Z.

What is a sword?  Is it no more than a pointy bit of metal that causes d6 damage?  To the player perhaps that is all that it is.  To the PC though, well, the sword is more.  It is representative of a rank, when they wear it about town.  It is the artifact handed down by their father from his father that they will use to slay the monsters that threaten the village.  Was Excalibur just a sword?  Or was it a symbol as well?

In the Deepest Sea, there are many sorts of swords.  They are used by all countries and all races in one form or another.

The most common sword type is the human arming sword:

It is a steel sword with a cruciform hilt for one hand, and has a blade suited for cutting and stabbing.  They are fairly long and have a good reach.

Similar swords are also used by Orcs and Elves, although the Elves tend to use a simpler hilt, and are slightly broader over their length. The Franka name for this sort of sword is a Spathé, and it is issued to the infantry as a secondary weapon.  Consequently it turns up frequently in graves, or in the hands of ex-soldiers.

Havlings and Dwarves, being of short stature, tend to use shorter swords.  They are still full swords, but have a thicker blade to allow for close quarter cutting and a supported stab.

The slave armies of the Titans were armed with leaf shaped bronze swords, which are often found in graves, or in ancient armories. Some are still sharp today, and a few adventurers carry one to show that they have "seen the dragon" so to speak.  Bronze swords will not shatter, and of course are immune to rusting magic, such as from a rust monster.

In any case, a sword is not just a pointy bit of metal.  It is a link to a place, and a time, and it is a personal part of the adventurer. Keeping this in mind when describing what the PC carries, or what they find in a grave, or what is for sale at the sword smith's, gives the player a sense of space.

Saturday, more Deepest Sea A-Z with Titans.


Paul´s Bods said...

Probably the weapon that has caused more damage and death throughout human history than any other.
Good post...
PS...The A-Z, only another week to go!!!!! :-D

Lasgunpacker said...

Thanks Paul!

SM. Stirling has a quote that he uses frequently, something like: "The gladius was the most deadly weapon until hiram maxim invented the machine gun"