Sunday, May 10, 2020

GLOG Fighter Discipline: the Swordwife

Another quick entry into the list of fighter disciplines. This one is fairly straightforward, but leans into the bronze age setting I run. in many settings, the sword is the default weapon, but on the savannah of Holy Selmat or the heath of Mesomergos, it is notable in itself. This discipline also has its own built-in collecting minigame, as players try to gather interesting materials to alloy weapons with at level three. I imagine at that point a character might be carrying several weapons-- a main weapon, a backup, some effective against specific foes, and phosphorus daggers to act as magical torches.
art by Christian Sloan Hall
Dedicated to the study of combat, you take violent work as a means of developing your skill. You seldom have the clarity to realize that your relationship with your sword is more important than your relationship with any other person.

Starting equipment: a khopesh or grip-tongue sword, a mattock, a hemione with a lead (treat as a donkey that can carry 2 less equipment slots)
Starting ken: artifice

A: Desperate dodge, Find the opening
B: Bronze tongue
C: Alloy
D: 'Til death do we part

Desperate dodge: Once per combat, you may drop 1d4 items to negate the damage of an incoming attack. These items are randomly selected from among what you are carrying, other than your held weapon and any armor. If you do not have enough items to drop, you fail to dodge.

Find the opening: When attacking foes who attacked you on their turn, deal +1d6 damage and choose whether to strike against their block or dodge score.

Bronze tongue: you can speak with metal weapons of all types, and have a natural affinity with all blades. 

Alloy: You can freely mix multiple different substances in any weapon you forge or reforge, gaining new abilities with each. For each substance beyond what is typical, your weapon gains a point of brittleness. Upon rolling a 20 to make an attack roll with the weapon, it is shattered. For each further point of brittleness, this range increases by one. If you can collect all of the weapon’s pieces, it can be reforged.

Example alloy substances and effects:
  1. Aluminum: weapon can be folded, taking up half the usual inventory slots.
  2. Antimony: you have this weapon with you in all dreams and visions.
  3. Arsenic: target rolls with a +1 on all injury rolls per arsenic strike.
  4. Bismuth: weapon as reflective as a mirror
  5. Bone: +2 to maneuvers used to sunder.
  6. Gold: +1d6 damage against ordena.
  7. Gigre particulate: +1 to hit while under the effects of drugs
  8. Iron: as iron, but requires 1/3 the usual amount of metal.*
  9. Lead: takes up an extra inventory slot. Target saves or takes 1 fatigue.
  10. Mercury: a day later, target tests their constitution or suffers from madness.
  11. Mithril: as mithril, but requires 1/3 the usual amount of metal.*
  12. Phosphorus: weapon now glows in the dark, as a torch.
  13. Silver: +1d6 damage against werewolves and preskeletons.
  14. Zinc: no longer naturally tarnishes

'Til death do we part: As long as you are holding a sword of your own power, you may ignore fatal wounds.

*Mithril can cut through anything softer than iron, which is somehow remarkably strong. Iron can do likewise, and severs the soul of all it kills.


  1. I really think this fighter discipline idea might take off. Do you know if other people in the GLOG-o-sphere are making them?

  2. The Byzantine of "A Distant Chime" wrote a handful of interesting disciplines: