Weapon Master and heroic Shatter Question

Hi all, quick question - is it possible to buy the heroic skill “shattering blow” even if you don’t have “weapon master” as a character skill, but you have “weapon master” conveyed from a magical item you are bound to?

For example:

Alderman’s Edge “You gain the weapon master skill”

Does this then allow you to spend an XP point (somehow) to add the heroic skill “shattering blow” to your character?

Thanks in advance.

From: profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Skills

Then by the character creation and XP system, it will not allow you to buy Shattering Blow without first having Weapon Master.
Nor do I think PD want people to “cheat” their way through pre-requisites which could end up with unusable skills if items went missing.

I think if you could perhaps use Alderman’s Edge with Woodcutter’s Axe (“You may spend a hero point to call SHATTER with this weapon.”) to effectively have Shattering Blow without having either skills.

Also the flavour text on Woodcutter’s Axe is awesome…

Yeah I know the online creation system won’t let you do it - but its possible that’s just a limitation of programming, ie. the system can’t account for current bonded items that convey skills. Mainly I’m questioning the wording of the alderman’s edge “you gain weaponmaster” - if its not something intended by PD perhaps that wording could be changed to “you can use great weapons similarly to weaponmaster skill” or something. Mainly though just after clarification.

From the Wiki Alderman’s Edge page profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Alderman%27s_Edge:

[quote]Description
These items often take the form of chains of orichalcum and gold, from which hangs an oval medallion inlaid with tempest jade. They are often used by Marcher Aldermen to bolster their defences, allowing traders and artisans to fight alongside trained bill fighters.

In other parts of the Empire they are often called Homefire Guardians and are used to allow civilians to protect their homes from invaders. These items more commonly take the form of simple rings or bracers of orichalcum and gold, inlaid with tempest jade in the form of symbols of vigilance (such as geese in Varushka), or runes such as Ophis, Feresh or Jotra.

Rules
Form: Jewellry (Talisman)
Effect: While wearing this piece of jewellry you gain the weapon master skill.
Materials: Crafting an alderman’s edge requires eight ingots of tempest jade and three ingots of dragonbone. It takes one month to make one of these items.[/quote]

So surely the entire purpose of the Alderman’s Edge item is to give the Weapon Master skill without using XP points?
(says the naive newbie who could be utterly wrong)

Mostly no as the item might be lost/will run out and then you’d have illegal skills.
Woodsman’s Axe/Alderman’s Edge is the combo you want though.

Why would a skill gained temporarily let you have access to a permanent skill?

I can see an Alderman’s Edge and Woodcutter’s Axe being used in concert, but I don’t see why it should let you buy a skill that would then be useless when you lost the skill that you acquired from a magic item.

[quote=“Hellcat”]So surely the entire purpose of the Alderman’s Edge item is to give the Weapon Master skill without using XP points?
(says the naive newbie who could be utterly wrong)[/quote]

Yep, but it is still vastly useful to be able to suddenly use one handed-spears, two-handed weapons, pole-arms and pikes even if you don’t have any heroskills.
(And you could still use Cleaving Blow)

Basically, you spend 99.9% of your time while wielding a special weapon not making heroic calls. So the main benefit of Weapon Master is the simple thing that your hitting-stick is five feet rather than three and a half feet long, or whatever.

[quote=“Illithidbix”]

[quote=“Hellcat”]So surely the entire purpose of the Alderman’s Edge item is to give the Weapon Master skill without using XP points?
(says the naive newbie who could be utterly wrong)[/quote]

Yep, but it is still vastly useful to be able to suddenly use one handed-spears, two-handed weapons, pole-arms and pikes even if you don’t have any heroskills.
(And you could still use Cleaving Blow)[/quote]

I essentially had a moment of stupid and misunderstood the original question, utter brainfail.

[quote=“Mark_Wilkin”]Why would a skill gained temporarily let you have access to a permanent skill?

I can see an Alderman’s Edge and Woodcutter’s Axe being used in concert, but I don’t see why it should let you buy a skill that would then be useless when you lost the skill that you acquired from a magic item.[/quote]

Well that’s the question really isn’t it. Can you do it? And if you can’t perhaps the wording of items that convey skills should be slightly amended to clarify that the skills gained are slightly different/inferior to xp bought skills. Personally I think buying a skill that would be useless if you didn’t have the appropriate item/circumstance would be a player choice and potentially valid one - given the relative ease of making these things certainly. Its not like battlefield circumstances don’t conspire to make your skills useless some of the time … “oh damn, weakness means half my xp points don’t count suddenly!” Or indeed players that take ritual skills that only work if their covens turn up at events!

Really thought it does come down to how the magic works on alderman’s edge, does it actually make a person a weapon-master (great weapon wielder) or does it just let somebody pretend to be one! (without access to heroic options) - I would be interested to see a ruling.

You can’t have Shatter without Weapon Master. That’s what “prerequisite” means. Maybe you could buy the Heroic Shatter skill, and if you ever lost the ability “Weapon Master” you’d lose the Shatter skill as well. That’d be fair. Would mean you’d never be able to take the item off, and when it ran out, you’d lose the skill, because you can’t bind a new Alderman’s Edge until you unbind the old one, and that, there is a gap. So you can spend an XP to be able to use Shatter for, at most, a year, then you have to spend it again.

The above might not actually represent a serious suggestion.

If the skill’s not on your character card it doesn’t count for other-skill-prerequisite purposes. How the expletive deleted can it? I can’t think of any game where it might, except perhaps the most Monty Haul DnD games. Frankly the answer’s so obvious, I can’t understand why the question was asked.

The database knows which items you are bonded to, and can use that to trigger other things. For example, if you are bonded to a Volhov’s Robe, that will be mentioned when you cast a ritual with another coven as the way you’re achieving it.

So it’s not just a coding limitation that you can’t buy Shattering Blow and Mighty Strikedown without the Weapon Master skill - it’s the rules.

I’m not even certain if you can bond to a magic great weapon without the proper skill, but if you can, just pick the free GW of “know shatter” and use that instead. But you can’t use an Alderman’s Edge to learn skills that prereq from Weapon Master.

@ Womble: Well as for the reason it was asked “to better understand the rules” is pretty much the rationale for questions asked in this section.

Okay I understand the argument. You can’t have shatter without weapon-master skill.

Unless you use woodman’s axe + aldermans edge (use hero points to shatter as if you had it) , or alderman’s edge + Landsknecht’s Zweihander (shatter twice a day without hero points) or indeed Reaving Mattock (shatter once a day without hero points) or dual wielding bears claws (1 hero point for shatter) or single wielding sundering axe or more arcanely speaking with sword and rod through Shears of Winter (and spending 2 mana for the shatter) etc etc.

Power wise I think the Alderman’s Edge + Landsknecht’s Zweihander is probably the most impressive combo btw - 30 resources for a years worth of weapon master and 2 shatters a day. Has probably saved 3 character points and potentially 16 hero points (if you attended 1 battle and 1 linear on each event and used it) and most characters in system could fund that their their personal resources.

My point is really the effect is not that difficult to achieve through items some of which are extremely cheap in resources. So I don’t really see there is a game balance / spirit of the game / don’t take the piss … argument against using a conveyed skill to act as a prerequisite for a conditional skill that only works while that pre-requisite is valid. Understand Tea’s point though and if its the rules its the rules!

End of the day, it is mainly about wanting to understand the thinking behind conveyed skills and how they interact with the system and I thank everyone for their responses - its all helpful stuff!

Edit (@ Tea, thanks for the clarification)

Edit 2. @Tea - interesting point about whether you can bond to a magic GW without having an innate (on the character card) weapon master skill. - if it turns out its not possible then it does remove a number of combos and would make actually learning GW considerably more useful.

1 Like

**IC logic: **
If you can’t even use a greatsword competently, there’s no way you can use it to do fancy tricks like SHATTER.
You could train in shattering weapons while using an Alderman’s Edge, but the minute you took off the alderman’s edge, you would forget how to wave your greatsword around.
You then wouldn’t be able to remember which bits of waving around let you SHATTER things.
At which point your PC’s brain throws up an error message and you need to call a Priest in to debug your soul :stuck_out_tongue:.

OC comments:
A lot of Magic Items are temporary passes to skills. The Alderman’s Edge conveniently lets you use a great weapon for the same amount of time it takes you to save up 2 XP and buy Weapon Master. Thing of it as putting a set of stabilisers on the back of your dane-axe, like a kit learning to ride a bike :wink:.

[quote=“Jim”]**IC logic: **
If you can’t even use a greatsword competently, there’s no way you can use it to do fancy tricks like SHATTER.
You could train in shattering weapons while using an Alderman’s Edge, but the minute you took off the alderman’s edge, you would forget how to wave your greatsword around.
You then wouldn’t be able to remember which bits of waving around let you SHATTER things.
At which point your PC’s brain throws up an error message and you need to call a Priest in to debug your soul :stuck_out_tongue:.

OC comments:
A lot of Magic Items are temporary passes to skills. The Alderman’s Edge conveniently lets you use a great weapon for the same amount of time it takes you to save up 2 XP and buy Weapon Master. Thing of it as putting a set of stabilisers on the back of your dane-axe, like a kit learning to ride a bike :wink:.[/quote]

Yep works for me :slight_smile:

You can be bonded to weapons you don’t have the skill to use, and still gain whatever effects the magic item gives you.

Had that clarifed event one, year one, when I (and about five others at the same time) from nowhere acquired a Staff that I could not use.
I don’t see why it’d be any different for Great Weapons etc.

[quote=“Vince”]You can be bonded to weapons you don’t have the skill to use, and still gain whatever effects the magic item gives you.

Had that clarifed event one, year one, when I (and about five others at the same time) from nowhere acquired a Staff that I could not use.
I don’t see why it’d be any different for Great Weapons etc.[/quote]

You can’t. The Ritual Implements (Archmage staves, etc) are a fudge to get round that - they aren’t staff form, they’re in the form of any implement, so any Magician can bond to one.

That’s completely perverse.
So a ritual stave isn’t a staff, despite being five foot long? I must be able to wield a ‘weapon’ in order to bond to it. I’m bonded to the staff of the Archmage, therfore I must be able to wield it as a weapon. It’s safety checked every event - therefore it can be used as a weapon.

So - I’ve just bypassed the need to purchase Battle Mage in order to be able to hit people with it? Because that;'s the chain of logic I’m seeing right now. That’d apply to everyone who has one of the ‘mere’ +1 realm lore staves as well. When is a staff not a staff? When it’s a stave apparently and you don’t need Battle Mage to weild it…

Also… staves aren’t implements. They’re not included in the list of ‘things that deliver spells’ and the maic items page explicitly lists them as not in the implement column. So if a stave really isn’t a staff, then you can’t deliver spells by it either. Well, I guess you could view that as the trade off - but I’m pretty sure it’s not what is intended.

I think that a ritual staff is a both a combat implement and a ritual instrument, and you can bond to it and use its ritual instrument properties even if you don’t have the first clue how to use it as a combat implement. (Meanwhile a nonmage with the Weapon Master skill could also bond to it, being able to wield it and all, but wouldn’t be able to access any of its powers - but would be affected by any Hallowing on it. Right?)

Much like how a 5 foot larpsafe double bassoon is a perfectly good physrep for a magic musical instrument, but wouldn’t allow a priest without Weapon Master to bludgeon people to death with it.

[quote=“Vince”]That’s completely perverse.
So a ritual stave isn’t a staff, despite being five foot long?[/quote]

Ritual implements are not necessarily in the form of a staff. They are Arcane Implements, and can take the form of any implement: Wand, Rod or Staff.

profounddecisions.co.uk/empi … olic_Staff

They’re all the same.

I would imagine that the Archmage implements are of a similar character. Of course, if the fizzrep is a staff, you will, indeed, need to be a Battlemage to be able wield it, and therefore to be bound to it. Unless they’re an exception. They are pretty special and don’t appear to be makeable by the current crop of Empire crafters.

When it’s an Implement and the ribbon has been tied to a wand- or rod-sized fizzrep. The issue only arises when an implement’s fizzrep has been built and fixed as a staff that only a Battlemage can use.

Yes they are.

“Implement” even links to the Implements section of the Magic Overview page.

That the length of the implement is theoretically variable over the lifetime of the item (as the ribbon is moved between fizzreps) is somewhat wonky, perhaps, but it does save having a Melancholic Wand and Melancholic Rod which have identical non-combat bonuses and vary only in their length for combat purposes.

By implication they are, because they can be a Wand, Rod or Staff, and those are listed. And see also my comments above.

The problem only exists for the Archmage Staffs that are fizzrepped by an actual >42" item, and I expect that either they are an exception, and you can be bound to them even if you can’t wield them in combat (but still can’t wield them in combat), or are going to have to become one to avoid having to saw 3/4 of a metre off the end of them.

I believe you need to be a Mage to bond to any of the Implements, according to previous discussion on here, and I think:

profounddecisions.co.uk/empi … s#Magician

supports that. Specifically:

[quote]
Battle Mage…Any character that has purchased the magician skill can use a rod or wand as a mage’s implement to touch a target to cast a spell. This skill allows you to use a staff as a mage’s implement to cast spells.[/quote]