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ZeroGear
2019-07-25, 02:44 PM
Hey, quick question in case anyone had this come up in games:
You know that old trope where the new heroes find the shards of a sacred/legendary weapon then decide to reforge it? How would that work rules wise in something like D&D or Pathfinder?
Similarly, what if they wanted to turn it into a different weapon?
Ex. The party found the shards of a blade that was forged in an earlier age, but since the world has progressed they want to melt down the fragments and use the materials to craft a black powder rifle and bayonet?
How would the enchantments affect the new weapon if they transferred?

Cikomyr
2019-07-25, 06:40 PM
Hey, quick question in case anyone had this come up in games:
You know that old trope where the new heroes find the shards of a sacred/legendary weapon then decide to reforge it? How would that work rules wise in something like D&D or Pathfinder?
Similarly, what if they wanted to turn it into a different weapon?
Ex. The party found the shards of a blade that was forged in an earlier age, but since the world has progressed they want to melt down the fragments and use the materials to craft a black powder rifle and bayonet?
How would the enchantments affect the new weapon if they transferred?

Depends strongly about the original sword, I'd guess. What was the essence of the mythical item? What was its place in the Legend, and that might guide you in giving it it's properties.

gkathellar
2019-07-25, 07:22 PM
I'd avoid making something like that a rules question at all. Big narrative events can afford to run on narrativium.

That said, if one were to ignore that advice, they'd probably want start by consulting the item-creation rules for the game they were playing, and possibly making adjustments to suit.

Xuc Xac
2019-07-25, 10:41 PM
You know that old trope where the new heroes find the shards of a sacred/legendary weapon then decide to reforge it?

Yeah.


How would that work rules wise in something like D&D or Pathfinder?

Craft check.



Similarly, what if they wanted to turn it into a different weapon?

Craft check.



Ex. The party found the shards of a blade that was forged in an earlier age, but since the world has progressed they want to melt down the fragments and use the materials to craft a black powder rifle and bayonet?

Depends on the type and volume of material the blade was made of. A black powder rifle barrel is about 2.5 to 3 pounds of steel. You lose some material every time you reforge it, so you'd need a large blade to have that much to spare. You'd probably need a 4 pound sword (a two-hander) at the very least and you'd still have to be very careful not to waste any of it. If the blade was not made of steel, it might not be doable.



How would the enchantments affect the new weapon if they transferred?

Not enough mana Insufficient data.

Anxe
2019-07-26, 07:25 AM
Definitely a Craft check in 3.5 to reforge a weapon. http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/magicItemBasics.htm#repairingMagicItems

The rest is up to you. In my 4e campaign I have reforging cost 10% of the item's list price. If it's a sword being made into a gun I'd probably add some additional cost on to that. More narrative based as others have said.

Why are you asking? We could probably better help if we knew your specific goals

Mark Hall
2019-07-26, 09:00 AM
I'd avoid making something like that a rules question at all. Big narrative events can afford to run on narrativium.

That said, if one were to ignore that advice, they'd probably want start by consulting the item-creation rules for the game they were playing, and possibly making adjustments to suit.

Pretty much this. Unless you want to make it a relatively common occurrence to find broken magic items and make them new, I would limit the amount of mechanics, except as help with character builds (like, if you've got a character who is really in to making their own stuff and craft checks, letting them make some craft checks to make things cooler is an option).

If you DO want it to be a common occurrence, then I'd go with "enchanting it similarly is cheaper or easier." If the sword WAS flaming, it will be easier to make it flaming again. If it used to be a Vorpal Sword, it should be easier to do that or something related (i.e. Sword of Sharpness) than something unrelated (Frostbrand), unless you have some other event that made that unrelated thing easier (frozen in elemental ice for an age).

ZeroGear
2019-07-27, 12:59 AM
Definitely a Craft check in 3.5 to reforge a weapon. http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/magicItemBasics.htm#repairingMagicItems

The rest is up to you. In my 4e campaign I have reforging cost 10% of the item's list price. If it's a sword being made into a gun I'd probably add some additional cost on to that. More narrative based as others have said.

Why are you asking? We could probably better help if we knew your specific goals

Honestly. two reasons for asking this:
1) Figuring out a system for repairing magic items helps prepare for instances where such items get broken in the first place. Honestly, of all the mechanics I've encountered playing both 3.5 and Pathfinder 1, no one ever uses the rules for Sundering weapons. This is partially due to a lot of systems encouraging the killing of enemies as opposed to bringing them back alive, and few players want to actually break gear they could potentially use. If rules for reforging are in place, the idea that you can use the remnants of broken weapons to forge gear that suits you better creates incentives for breaking weapons if it is tactically beneficial. Plus it makes the DM feel like less of a jerk if NPCs break a player's weapon.

2) It has kinda bothered me that legendary weapons have always been archaic weapons that are practically useless in later periods. I'm a fan of advancing timelines, and when industrial revolutions happen it is inevitable for arsenals to be updated. It just seemed wrong for a group of adventurers armed with muskets and pistols to find an enchanted sword and get practically no use out of it. Given that bayonets follow as a byproduct of guns, forging the shards of a sacred weapon into one just kinda seemed like a cool idea.

erikun
2019-07-27, 08:26 AM
The simplest method is that, if we're talking about a one-time thing, to make it a narrative goal. That is, have the quest be about gathering the fragments of the weapon, or securing the great magic forge of somewhere, and at that point the narrative takes over. Once they've done all that, then the impulse comes over the player in question and they work tirelessly until the weapon is reforged.

Going one step further: Craft check. If broken magic weapons are going to be something rather common, and you want a method in D&D3e to repair them, then a Craft check to reforge the weapon is going to be the most obvious method. How high you want the check largely depends on how easy you want reforging magic weapons to be. If you want it to be easy (translation: possible) then set the Craft check equal to the original value of the equipment involved, adding the Masterwork bonus because all magic weapons are masterwork. I'd require them to have additional material on hand to complete the job (extra mithril for a mithril weapon, extra ironwood for an ironwood weapon) and some appropriate magic components to complete the job - a certain amount of diamond dust, or magic salve, or so on. That way, repairing magic gear involves some sort of expense and it's as easy as just hammering out new daggers.

I would, however, consider how you plan on using these rules. If you expect your players to smash magic weapons and then repair them, then they might still just kill the target and not worry about acquiring 100g of magic dust in the first place. If you are considering having the enemies all smash the PC's magic weapons, though, then I'd say ignore the extra cost and just make sure they have a token amount of magic materials, like how a spell component pouch works. Repairing magic swords and spending the time/money to do so is already an investment; no need to harass players with more when it is the GM who is choosing to do the breaking.

If you want to make reforging magic weapons actually difficult, then just use the magic item creation rules. Perhaps you'd halve the price because you already have the components forged into the original magic weapon, all that is needed is new material to bind it back together again. This would certainly make reforging magic weapons a lot more rare, but it would also mean that most parties wouldn't even bother unless they already have a character who is crafting magic equipment already. So do consider that - there's no sense in implementing this rule if the party doesn't already craft magic items, since they won't change their habits because they still won't want to break magic weapons.


As for transfering enhancements from one weapon to another with this method, it's honestly better to do it yourself. There's just so many enhancements in D&D3e that trying to check each one and write rules for how they would transfer to other weapon types wouldn't be worth the effort. Just try to convert directly when it makes sense, try to convert between similar enhancements (i.e. Impact to Keen), and then perhaps drop the enhancement if you just can't convert it sensibly at all. Reforging an axe head into a gun barrel is going to be imprecise at best; you can't always guarantee that the Throwing or Vorpal enhancements are going to make sense with the new form anyways.

Sorry if I'm too wordy.

ZeroGear
2019-07-27, 10:00 AM
As for transfering enhancements from one weapon to another with this method, it's honestly better to do it yourself. There's just so many enhancements in D&D3e that trying to check each one and write rules for how they would transfer to other weapon types wouldn't be worth the effort. Just try to convert directly when it makes sense, try to convert between similar enhancements (i.e. Impact to Keen), and then perhaps drop the enhancement if you just can't convert it sensibly at all. Reforging an axe head into a gun barrel is going to be imprecise at best; you can't always guarantee that the Throwing or Vorpal enhancements are going to make sense with the new form anyways.


Actually, I've kinda already come up with a bit of a solution for this one:
Tie enchantments to material components.
I'm a big fan of media that require specific components in order for weapons to gain certain properties, usually in the form of crystallizations found within the bodies of specific monsters or minerals mined at specific magic-enriched regions. While the entire weapon won't have to be made out of the material, embedding something like a heat ruby into the hilt to give it the flaming property seems like something that works in the world. The only real question comes from how hard it would be to salvage these materials, because I'd equate this to trying to reforge an adamant dagger, and I have no idea about rules on that.

Squire Doodad
2019-07-28, 05:14 PM
Actually, I've kinda already come up with a bit of a solution for this one:
Tie enchantments to material components.
I'm a big fan of media that require specific components in order for weapons to gain certain properties, usually in the form of crystallizations found within the bodies of specific monsters or minerals mined at specific magic-enriched regions. While the entire weapon won't have to be made out of the material, embedding something like a heat ruby into the hilt to give it the flaming property seems like something that works in the world. The only real question comes from how hard it would be to salvage these materials, because I'd equate this to trying to reforge an adamant dagger, and I have no idea about rules on that.

You could have there be a scholar who informs the party about the relevant smithing techniques involved in purifying things, that way you don't need to worry about players trying to do a complicated set up and screwing up horribly.

Honestly, this sounds like something that shouldn't be based off of rules and instead more based on what works better for the narrative. You could have the relevant player(s) roll some dice with a Craft check and other relevant checks based on magical item use or metalworking to see how strong the enchantments are, but I'd just go with having it work and having the shift in power be predecided.
If you want a rules thing, maybe categorize weapons into three main groups (physical, ranged and other) and say that if you want to reforge a weapon into another weapon, both weapons must be from the same group (a cross bow into a shotgun, or a spear into a bayonet). Many modern weapons are ranged though, which may complicate matters. Perhaps in such a case how the weapon is powered (material vs magical) would be a better division.

Xuc Xac
2019-07-28, 06:26 PM
Whether enchantments can be transferred or not depends on how they work. If the enchantment is placed in the item by engraving it with magical runes and whatnot, then melting it down and reforging it will destroy the magic. It's like ripping the screen off an iPhone, cutting the glass into lenses for a set of goggles, and expecting the lenses to let you still watch cat videos on YouTube.

If the enchantment is just a bundle of magic energy soaked into the material like water in a sponge, then the enchantment might still work as long as you don't lose any pieces.