I need help to think of a really cool complicated way to turn an evil sword good again.


Advice


I'm running a campaign and the main boss of the campaign is an insanely powerful intelligent weapon. I've created two ways the group can deal with it, either fight it and destroy it that way, or turn it good again. I can't think of anything cool enough (and time consuming enough) to make the sword good again. Obviously you can't do this with normal intelligent weapons (I think) but it seems like a really cool idea and i want to try that.


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Submerge it in the Pool of Martyr's Tears on the Plane of Elysium. This will quench its evil. However, the azata will not tolerate bringing such maleficience to their realm and will try to stop the party by any means necessary. A more level-headed group of agathions and angels will aid them, but skeptically--the party must pass Seven Trials of Virtue before being granted access to the pool...


What are the specifics of this weapon's intelligence? If it shares the strong bond with a wielder like my close brethren, Redeeming the weapon is a simple and as complicated as redeeming its ambulatory partner. Otherwise, you may need to investigate how the creator installed the intelligence. I would recommend against tinkering with souls and soul substitutes before thoroughly examining the particulars.


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How did the sword change from good to evil in the first place?


Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
How did the sword change from good to evil in the first place?

It was used wrongfully by the wielder. They murdered many innocent people and used its powers for wrong doings. It absorbed all the blood of the fallen and became the way it is. (obviously intelligent weapons wont allow that (i think) but i've decided that is what happened.)


Possible ideas:
- Use it to kill a number or evil outsiders (and maybe trade some of its enchants for Holy or Bane (evil outsiders) )
- Use it to deal X total nonlethal damage to nongood creatures (and maybe trade some of its enchants for Merciful)
- Wield it while repeatedly casting [good] or healing spells, to expose it to the upper planes energies slowly cleansing it (maybe trade some of its enchants for Conductive?)

Better yet, your players could choose for themselves which task to undertake (probably more than one of those is needed) and tailor their new sentient sword powers upon their tastes.

You could even divide the tasks in "tiers" so that they need to complete some low tier task/power before trying for a difficult one (like killing evil outsiders).


Investigate the absorptive properties. It seems curious that a rigidly-designed intelligence would be changed by a wielder forcing its movement against its will. I would not recommend attempts to inject more Good into it at present, since our previous experience in this particular weapon absorbing innocence has left it worse off. Verify if it forms deep bonds with its wielder, in which case it may be redeemed by association with a virtuous partner. One could attempt to slay great Evil with the weapon, since slaying Good turned it away. You would have to mentally overpower it in its current state, but presumably your group of adventurers would have been capable of handling it paired with its corruptive wielder by the time they are in position to redeem the weapon.


Clearly having it absorb the blood of incredibly good beings should fill it with goodness and light. So... run it through the hearts of some angels and planetars, coating it in their hearts' blood. Seems perfectly logical.
Obviously those innocents slain weren't entirely good or pure, just innocent... completely different things.


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Surround it with intelligent redeemed weapons and let peer pressure do the rest.

Silver Crusade

The Atonement spell, treating the intelligent sword as a creature.


luckily it lacks a helm slot, making it immune to helm of opposite alignment spam ;)
I'd suggest taking it to the original weilder/creator who whether through design or happenstance infused the blade with it's devotion to good in the first place, and then maybe undergoing a quest he specifies to help purify it again as a possibility?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Reforge the blade and quench it in blood from 12 willing angels.


You mentioned destruction as another option. How would they destroy it? Just apply damage until its hp reach 0, or do some special conditions have to be met?


Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
You mentioned destruction as another option. How would they destroy it? Just apply damage until its hp reach 0, or do some special conditions have to be met?

Special conditions would have to be met. Even with the broken condition it cannot be destroyed by normal means. The players would have to fight the sword in a battle of the mind and of combat. They would first have to manage to not be controlled by the sword (It controls whoever tries to wield it (high dc)This effect bypasses normal immunities but not resistances) and then someone would have to sunder the weapon. Each round someone holds the sword it's influence grows stronger and stronger and it steals life to repair itself. So obviously this process would take a large amount of effort. Once broken it must be taken and *bla bla bla something i haven't entirely figured out yet because the players would most likely decide how it will work and depending on what they say is if it will work or not* Each day it is broken it slowly fixes a few hit points of itself from it's reservoir of blood


There exists a partial mitigation for the combat scenario described. Logically, it would be impossible to extract life energy from a wielder devoid of that energy. Using mindless undead or constructs may help with three issues simultaneously. You are not potentially risking permanent loss of an intelligent being to the corrupted weapon, the host will be unable to donate life energy, and specific override spells (that is, control undead/construct respectively) provide a failsafe in the event the weapon takes control. A possible tangential bonus is the possibility of less aptitude for avoiding Sunder attempts than your mercenaries.


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I'm thinking if the players want to redeem it they first jump through all the hoops you have defined for the destruction process, getting it down to 1 hp, and then have it reforged under special conditions. Those conditions shouldn't be much worse than the *bla bla bla* of the destruction process.

To (re)forge a blade you need a smith, an anvil, a hammer, a fire, and quenching fluid. Those should each be special but not (IMHO) incredibly so individually; it's getting them all together in advance that's hard.

Not all of them need to be alignment-focused. Maybe the smith must be a paladin or maybe someone with umpteen ranks in Craft(blacksmith). The fire might have to be a powerful fire elemental. The hammer should definitely be a holy weapon, because that exists. Anvil... a meteorite? And quench in the blood of willing angels as previously suggested---maybe magically preserved is ok, maybe it has to be fresh.

I have no idea how long it takes to (re)forge a blade, but I'm sure someone here does. If it's around an hour, someone should be casting atonement throughout (casting time one hour) and the climax comes when they lay hand on the newly reforged (and quenched) sword so the spell can take effect. The idea being that the other ingredients get it to want to be good and atonement fulfills that wish. If reforging only takes ten minutes, just drop this part, it's not worth rearranging things to cram it in somehow.


This sword’s backstory sounds strangely like Soul Edge from the Soul Calibur franchise. Maybe have a piece of it that broke off before it turned evil being the key to turning it good. If they merge the broken good piece with the weapon, it’ll purify it.


Don't tell the players how. Let them come up with all the hoops to jump through themselves. Just see how long you can string them along with promises that "it's possible", or "it's having an effect". An alignment change on what sounds more like an artifact than an enchanted weapon should take time and be gradual. Like having it develop a bond with a player then have that player sacrifice (or near as makes no difference) himself in order to save it. There should be no procedural way to do it since it is intelligent.


Reksew_Trebla wrote:
This sword’s backstory sounds strangely like Soul Edge from the Soul Calibur franchise. Maybe have a piece of it that broke off before it turned evil being the key to turning it good. If they merge the broken good piece with the weapon, it’ll purify it.

I've never actually watched that at all funny enough. That could be a good idea.


Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:

I'm thinking if the players want to redeem it they first jump through all the hoops you have defined for the destruction process, getting it down to 1 hp, and then have it reforged under special conditions. Those conditions shouldn't be much worse than the *bla bla bla* of the destruction process.

To (re)forge a blade you need a smith, an anvil, a hammer, a fire, and quenching fluid. Those should each be special but not (IMHO) incredibly so individually; it's getting them all together in advance that's hard.

Not all of them need to be alignment-focused. Maybe the smith must be a paladin or maybe someone with umpteen ranks in Craft(blacksmith). The fire might have to be a powerful fire elemental. The hammer should definitely be a holy weapon, because that exists. Anvil... a meteorite? And quench in the blood of willing angels as previously suggested---maybe magically preserved is ok, maybe it has to be fresh.

I have no idea how long it takes to (re)forge a blade, but I'm sure someone here does. If it's around an hour, someone should be casting atonement throughout (casting time one hour) and the climax comes when they lay hand on the newly reforged (and quenched) sword so the spell can take effect. The idea being that the other ingredients get it to want to be good and atonement fulfills that wish. If reforging only takes ten minutes, just drop this part, it's not worth rearranging things to cram it in somehow.

I really like this idea actually. I'll most likely use that. Thanks


LG black blade wrote:
There exists a partial mitigation for the combat scenario described. Logically, it would be impossible to extract life energy from a wielder devoid of that energy. Using mindless undead or constructs may help with three issues simultaneously. You are not potentially risking permanent loss of an intelligent being to the corrupted weapon, the host will be unable to donate life energy, and specific override spells (that is, control undead/construct respectively) provide a failsafe in the event the weapon takes control. A possible tangential bonus is the possibility of less aptitude for avoiding Sunder attempts than your mercenaries.

There are a lot of things about this that just flat out can't work. It's a problem that i understand but my players aren't that hardcore about all of the rules so it isn't a big issue. I really do appreciate the feedback. It's really good to know for the future so i can make my story more accurate and realistic. Thanks for the feedback.


Guinness530 wrote:
Don't tell the players how. Let them come up with all the hoops to jump through themselves. Just see how long you can string them along with promises that "it's possible", or "it's having an effect". An alignment change on what sounds more like an artifact than an enchanted weapon should take time and be gradual. Like having it develop a bond with a player then have that player sacrifice (or near as makes no difference) himself in order to save it. There should be no procedural way to do it since it is intelligent.

It is an artifact actually. Just something i came up with (obviously many rules had to be broken and bent.)


If blood made it evil, maybe a series of "blood-letting" adventures would remove that evil from it. Just a few ideas here:

-The Atonement spell could remove some of the corrupting blood.
-The sword absorbed souls with the blood, and you need to free those souls by returning the sword to the place the souls were acquired, thereby emptying the sword of any taint
-The sword has it's own mind, find a wizard or mystic who can send the player's into the sword's mind, freeing it's enslaved goodness

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:

I'm thinking if the players want to redeem it they first jump through all the hoops you have defined for the destruction process, getting it down to 1 hp, and then have it reforged under special conditions. Those conditions shouldn't be much worse than the *bla bla bla* of the destruction process.

To (re)forge a blade you need a smith, an anvil, a hammer, a fire, and quenching fluid. Those should each be special but not (IMHO) incredibly so individually; it's getting them all together in advance that's hard.

Not all of them need to be alignment-focused. Maybe the smith must be a paladin or maybe someone with umpteen ranks in Craft(blacksmith). The fire might have to be a powerful fire elemental. The hammer should definitely be a holy weapon, because that exists. Anvil... a meteorite? And quench in the blood of willing angels as previously suggested---maybe magically preserved is ok, maybe it has to be fresh.

I have no idea how long it takes to (re)forge a blade, but I'm sure someone here does. If it's around an hour, someone should be casting atonement throughout (casting time one hour) and the climax comes when they lay hand on the newly reforged (and quenched) sword so the spell can take effect. The idea being that the other ingredients get it to want to be good and atonement fulfills that wish. If reforging only takes ten minutes, just drop this part, it's not worth rearranging things to cram it in somehow.

Games I enjoyed the most had combat taking place as a means to an end. To stall the opponents and gain precious minutes needed to actually do the real important thing, like a ritual being cast or people escaping. It turns a combat encounter from something you must win and survive to something you merely must not lose too fast. Which allows for far more freedom and creativity

Some dark powers might get an inkling about what the PCs intend and send agents to prevent them from reforging / redeeming the sword. And the PCs will have to stall those long enough for the smith to finish reforging it. When it rises from the quenching pool, the sword will use its powers to end any threat that the PCs could not end on their own


Intelligent Items count as constructs.

For the alignment, you can use Consecrate within an area that is under the effect of a Hallow spell. Adjust save DC vs. saving throw to desired difficulty, as well as requiring multiple uses of these spells. Atonement is also a great spell to use also.

Hit it with Feeblemind to lower its ego and lower its saving throw ability, and make it easier to handle. Cure later after alignment fixed.

/cevah

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