Friday, September 30, 2016

Magitech of Blackmoor: Nacelle Weapons of the First Crusade

Magic items were expensive and consumed entirely too much time to be of use in times of war. There were too few in the Empire of sufficient power or knowledge to create more than a handful of such items, and getting them to do so in peacetime was difficult enough. Most (okay, all of them) wanted nothing to do with dealingwith the Ministry of Defense or the Regent’s Council in times of war.

So it was to Blackmoor University that the Empire turned its eyes, and coffers, and a solution to the overly costly manufacture of items of magical power was found with the discovery of latent powers in mysterious stones acquired from the dwarves of the Wyrmsteeth. These ‘dragonstones’ looked to be gems, like any other, but on closer inspection they were found to house curious qualities. Qualities that Men quickly unraveled and put to use in the war efforts against the Afridhi and later Beastman hordes.
While proper and precise cutting was required to attain the most stable and desirable magical effects from a dragonstone, the cast-off fragments and improperly cut stones could also be put to use, with a little help from stasis technology that was being reverse-engineered from the City of the Gods.

The result were so-called dragonstone nacelles: small, self-contained batteries of magical essences that could be channeled through properly configured arms and armor. It might not last the war, but it was enough for a battle or two, and mass produced, they were enough to eventually win.

 Danson's Edge originally belonged to a lowly footman in Blackmoor Town's fifth ward garrison.  It is rumored that it was not so much the Prime Minister's impassioned speech, but a strong desire to impress the Golden General's twin that led Emmet Danson to join the fight in the warfront. His family's blade, fashioned to look similar to the Great Seventy's Maroon was the second generation to be outfitted for use with dragonstone nacelle magitech. Danson's Edge was usually seen socketed with a multitude of red dragonstone nacelles. 
Danson's Edge: Nacelle-empowered longsword: damage 1d8+2d4 fire; grants fire resistance to wielder

Archer's holdout: These long knives were commonly issued to the boltmen and archers of the Imperial Army. They were usually equipped with specially-ensorcelled red dragonstone nacelles tuned to store 2d4 uses of magic missile. Those of the Medico corps carried holdouts laden with white dragonstone-powered nacelles. Deaths due to icefire toxin fell to nearly zero with the discovery of tuning necessary to bring about the remedy function. 
Perhaps the nastiest weapon was the lightning blade, fashioned to make exclusive use of black dragonstone nacelles. The hilt and haft-grip were bound with specially-treated eelskin, to protect their wielders from the wild electrical arcs that usually surrounded the blades once their nacelles were activated. The trigger on the hilt was used for a sudden cut in the capacitor's output, which then allowed the lightning bolt to be channeled down the blade and hurled to devastating effect into enemy lines.

DM's Workshop: Dragonstone Nacelle powers

Gnomish lapidaries categorize the fragments used to create dragonstone nacelles into five general categories: inferior, minor, middle-grade, major, and near-perfect. This very rough grading determines how much magical output a given nacelle is capable of, and ultimately, just how re-usable it is.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Nuwmont 13, 998 AC: Merchant's Warren, Kor Karrest

For all the concealment afforded the broad, deep hoods, they did no favors for our vision.
“Only first-timers wag their noses back and forth,” Grellk said.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Magitech of Blackmoor: Dragonstone Nacelles, part 2

The magewrights of the Glittering Empire have fashioned a host of devices capable of interfacing with a dragonstone nacelle in order to take advantage of the stones’ magic, despite their users not having inherent magical ability or blood. Helms, torcs, gloves, bracers, boots and greaves are the most commonly seen, though it is said that the Eternal Emperor owns a suit of plate mail festooned with nacelle sockets. Arms as well as armor have been socketed. In most cases, they are usually situated at the weapon’s base or pommel.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Faerealms of the World That Was

The fey have always been a part of Thorn's World That Was, just as they are a part of the world as it is, and as it has yet to be.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Magitech of Blackmoor: Dragonstone Nacelles, part 1

 Though the decorations on the housings may differ slightly depending on the gnomish metal crafting, dragonstone nacelles all consist of an oblong canister-like enclosure of blown glass enclosed in a brass housing, containing either one imperfectly-cut dragonstone or one to three dragonstone fragments amidst a tangle of thin wires of various precious metals. One end is usually domed, or conical, or tapered in some other fashion, while the other ends in either a toothed or grooved socket, depending on its estimated usage expectancy.
The nacelle is a crude extrapolation of the ancient Blackmoor magitech used to power, maintain, and operate a warforged and soulbound construct’s body shell. While the originals used a delicate tuning and harmonization process to regulate and enhance the enclosed dragonstones’ abilities fore use by the shell, the Eternal Emperors researchers found that their larger versions could stabilize a dragonstone otherwise made useless by imperfect cutting during harvesting or damage on the battlefield. That this was a result of stripping the safety and limiting functions found in the originals’ designs was of little consequence to the Emperor and his ministers of defense. The fact that this made the magitech suitable for weaponization in addition to its being used for physical enhancement only increased the funding for the ministry to eke out every means of use of the magitech of the enemies of the Glittering Empire.

Friday, May 27, 2016

From the Netbook: The Gravewall

The Gravewall

This long curtain wall of gray marbled stone stretches across the nearly 10-mile length of the Grand Cavern, from Rak Kuldrest to Rak Surest. The exterior of the wall, facing Karhr-Syharwehrf and its surrounding Blasted lands, is etched with intricate, interlocking runes and glyphs which radiate a skin-tingling potency, even to those who lack the gift of magical senses. Along the interior, the stones are bordered with similar runes, the center of each bearing glyphics — a dwarven family name, followed by the epitaph “Defender of the Empire, even in death.” Originally a soldier’s monument, after the Glittering Empire began to crumble, it became compulsory for all citizens to be interred within the monument.

When any of the twelve horns at the watchpoints along the top of the wall are blown three times, the sorceries laid on the wall activate, animating the corpses — mostly as skeletons, but occasionally as zombies, for the freshly-interred. Those of high nobility, who could afford the special rites associated with the passing of the head of a noble family — animate as wraiths, or in the case of those of the highest class, specters.

While engaged in battle within five miles of the wall, the animated undead reduced to 0 hit points will re-form within 1d6 rounds, taking up arms to fight again(and again, and again….). 

When the all-clear is sounded from the horns atop the wall, the undead turn, and march back to their graves, to sleep again until needed by the Empire.

Humanoid remains not removed from this five-mile expanse will likewise be claimed by the wall after nine days (the traditional length of a Dwarven mourning), rising up and marching to find rest in the catacombs beneath the Wall, where the dwarves interred criminals and those who could not afford burial within the wall itself.