Weapon function is another one of those things you chalk up to the game aspect of D&D. No matter if you are a peasant farmer or an elite guardsman, a weapons damage is pretty much identical.
Hoping to change this, Blackdirge Publishing has decided to put a different take on Synergy weapons in D&D, crafting arsenal that instead of bonding with other objects, as most Synergy Weapon publications do, the weapons bonds with specific characters and abilities.
Once again, Blackdirge manages to do a lot with very little. As with most of their books, this one is short, coming in at 8 pages. Compacted into it, are 12 weapon qualities that improve either a feat or a class ability of a character. Each weapon quality has a primary function that, for the most part, repeats the feat or class ability it enhances if the character does not have it. The enhancements are not overpowering, usually granting in most cases half to twice as much of the numerical bonuses the ability would.
At the end of the book are three weapons using qualities from the book. Each includes a bit of lore and flavor for immediate inclusion in a game.
For the Player
Each ability includes cost and spell necessities for crafting the object. The balanced abilities are not too out of the ordinary, so any reasonable DM should allow it. For those players who really want to center a character’s concept around an ability or skill, having a weapon that insinuates the concept can go a long way in making an impact character. I like the point blank ability when making my fighter based archer classes.
For the Dungeonmaster
Its always nice to Easter-egg a pc specific item on a non-NPC. This allows for the crafting of PC specific items that will not break the game. They are also quite useful for creating the super-smiting paladin NPC or hyping up the speed of a quick NPC with a serpent strike weapon.
The Iron Word
I only wish there were a dozen more of these weapon qualities that filled a niche for every major class. Hopefully we will see more of this series.
[4 of 5 Stars!]