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The Complete History of Runic Arms
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The Complete History of Runic Arms



Dragons and orcs and goblins and fiends. Swords and shields and wands and magic. We've seen it all, in fantasy setting after fantasy setting. Some like to spice up their settings by adding black powder weapons, advancing the timeline from "ambiguous medieval period" to "ambiguous Renaissance period" with the introduction of cannons and flintlock weaponry. The way of the gun can become a mythic art in these worlds, treated with the kind of romantic reverence usually afforded to knights in shining armor.

But not all players are interested in mixing firearms and fantasy. The introduction of black powder weaponry in the real world led to numerous changes to society and warfare, and not everyone is interested in the ramifications that black powder has for a fantasy setting. This supplement presents a hypothetical progression of magical arms, from an advanced staff called a runelance all the way to muskets and grenades that might look more familiar and accessible to a modern reader, all without delving into the complications or tonal dissonance brought by black powder.

This book is broken up into five chapters.

Chapter One outlines a fictional history of a fantasy world that developed magical weapons which are commonly called runearms or firearms. This history is broken up into four distinct periods.

Chapter Two introduces the actual mechanics and descriptions of runearms, spanning the different periods of their technological development.

Chapter Three offers seven new character archetypes for a world of runearms and other magical technologies, as well as one variant class: the Support Rogue, who focuses less on damage-dealing and focuses on supporting allies and hindering enemies.

Chapter Four offers suggestions and themes for five campaign concepts suited to a game of gunslinging and swashbuckling. Another section is included that contains variant rules suggestions for things like hit point progression, armor class, making called shots, handling critical hits, and changing the feeling and presence of magic in the world.

Chapter Five is a one-page appendix. It is a short glossary that looks at the origins of real-world terminology for weapons and firearms in order to help you better apply these terms to your fantasy world.

A downloadable preview of this book is available here, and contains an excerpt from Chapter 1, as well as proto-runearm and grenade technologies from Chapter 2. 

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File Last Updated:
September 10, 2019
This title was added to our catalog on September 10, 2019.