[May Community Vote] Blades of the Old Worlds - The Selection

Poll: Which Blade do you want to see implemented in Solasta?
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Tactical Myzzrym
Level 14
Tactical Adventures Dev
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3 years ago (edited)

Contest is over, results are here: https://www.solasta-game.com/news/78-the-elven-thinblade-joins-the-armory

When humans fled to Solasta it was not a matter of country or culture, it was a matter of survival. Centuries passed and much was lost, but more remains - if not among the living, then among the dead. Every ruin tells a story, but to the untrained eye of a looter, every blade is a sword. Most adventurers know better: a heritage, a legacy, many a thing can be found in a scavenger's bag. 

Hello and welcome to May Community Vote everyone! 

This time we have prepared a very special topic for our martial-loving friends: Exotic Weapons... And more specifically, Exotic Blades. Most of those who are familiar with Tabletop RPGs know that popular settings are often based on western culture - fairly logical considering most writers and players are American & European. I think it's safe to assume that it's much easier to introduce most players to a game where they can choose between a sword or a mace and run at the enemy, rather than have to explain the difference between a shamshir and a takoba (don't ask me, I'm not a specialist). 

Now, 5e has streamlined quite a few rules to the benefit of game's flow, removing a lot of obscure and very specific rules. However, there are some of us who miss the large variety of weapons offered in 3.5... which led us to think "hey, why not add an exotic weapon to our game?". And here we are, with a selection of five blades from different cultures! Of course we'd love to implement all of them, but as usual we have to be careful not to overburden our development plans - so you'll have to choose which one makes it in! Note that I am by no mean an expert in ancient weaponry, so I apologize in advance if some of my descriptions aren't completely accurate (and if so, please feel free to mention it in the comments so that I can fix it!).

You have until May 25th, 11:59pm PST to vote!

Our first contender is the Khopesh (ḫpš). A one-handed Egyptian sickle-sword which apparently evolved from battle axes, the Khopesh is truly an ancient weapon - with the earliest known appearance dating from 2,500 BC. Sharpened on the outside portion of the curved end, the inside curve of the weapon could be used to trap an opponent's arm or pull their shield out of the way. Sadly, this fascinating weapon fell out of use around 1,300 BC. 

Our second contender is the only non-human weapon in the list. The Elven Thinblade is a one-handed weapon that can be found in ruins of the old, now defunct elven empire - more often than not imbued with powerful magic. Very light and expertly crafted, many would kill to get their hands on such a weapon (and sometimes quite literally). On Tabletop, the Elven Thinblade first appeared in the Races of the Wild sourcebook (2005), and was quite ahead of the power curve when you consider that it was a weapon that dealt 1d8 dmg (like a longsword), had a 18-20 crit range (like a rapier), was versatile (could be wielded 2-handed for more damage) AND allowed weapon finesse (to swap strength for dexterity for damage). Now before you rogues and rangers start drooling, it will most likely not be as powerful in Solasta. Consider yourself warned!

Our third contender is the 2-handed Katana (刀) from Japan. Amongst all the foreign weapons, Katanas are probably the most well-known: a curved, slender, singled-edged blade with a long grip protected by a guard to accommodate two hands. With that said, the oldest Katanas from the 12th century may have been quite different from the popular image we have of it, as its design evolved multiple times over the centuries. They are rumoured to be among the finest cutting weapons in history, although many contest that statement.

Our fourth contender is another two-handed blade from Asia, the Chinese Da Dao (大刀)... which literally means "Big Blade" (大 = Big, 刀 = Single-edged blade, although nowadays it's mostly used for "Knife"). For those who are curious, it is indeed the 刀 from Katana - there are quite a large amount of words in Japanese and Chinese that are visually the same, although the pronunciation (and even the meaning) can differ. This large broadsword is characterized by the rings on the back of the blade (note that not all Da Dao have those), their purpose left to speculation. Some believe the noise helped intimidating opponents, others that it is a symbol of honour as the noise would prevent the wielder from attacking enemies in the back.

Last but not least is the 2-handed Falchion. There are many different type of falchions - cleaver falchions, cusped falchions... We decided to go with the blade illustrated in the 13th century Maciejowski Bible as we loved its design - although we swapped the handle for a more standard one (the original has a hooked hilt, which most likely would have caused clipping issues with character models). In 3.5e, Falchions were like the 2-handed version of scimitars - slashing, 18-20 crit range... however they only dealt a measly 2d4 damage, compared to the 2d6 (19-20 crit range) greatsword. Not to mention they were also more expensive (75 gp vs 50 gp) and weighted the same (8 lbs)! A cool weapons that definitely deserved a bit more spotlight. 

So, which one tickled your fancy? Make sure to vote now!

Level 1
3 years ago

I voted falchion just because I love the design!

The one thing I hope is not to see another katana in another game... I'm personally fed up with katanas xD

Level 2
3 years ago

Kitana's would be both weird, out of place, and straight up boring. Not that it isn't a cool weapon... but we've seen several.
And I totally agree! The falchion deserves a bigger spotlight.


Level 4
3 years ago

wow, this is a tough one to vote in, I like all except the katana. 

3 years ago

Personally I voted for the Khopesh, a weapon that has long deserved a chance in the spotlight

Level 2
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3 years ago

Khopesh looks like an actually unique weapon and not just a slightly different sword.

Level 4
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3 years ago

 I voted Khopesh as well. But does mean if it wins Solasta will have somekind of Fantasy Egypt? Even if its just in the background lore?

Level 6
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3 years ago

Make that one more vote for the Kopesh ^^

I'm a roleplaying and worldbuilding enthusiast who appreciates the weird and wonderful.

3 years ago

Da Dao!! Big Sword... Says it all! 

kNight | Turn-based Youtuber / Streamer www.youtube.com/GamekNightPlays www.twitch.tv/GamekNightPlays

Level 13
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3 years ago

One more vote for The Elven Thinblade :-)

Quoi que tu dises, quoi que tu fasses... I speak bad English... so what?

Level 4
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3 years ago

I posted this on Discord already, but want to include it here as well to better allow for discussion:

Would those also be the names they have in-game? Because having an Egyptian or Asian name for a blade seems strange to me in a universe that has no Earth. Although I’d love to be convinced that my feeling on that is not justified, since there are things like rapiers, which is not an English name, but would not bother me. The same is probably true for falchion, although I hadn’t heard of it before, and I’m not sure yet if it would feel strange to me. With those names derived from Old or Middle French, though, it feels more natural since the English tongue has borrowed a lot from French origins.

3 years ago

I vote for the Da Dao (大刀).

Embrace the exotic!!!

Me:  Orge rogue with enough strength to wield the Da Dao in one hand as a finesse weapon.  In order to make a successsful sneak attack I first cast silence in the area so the blade's rings will not give me away...  Now that is exotic!

Level 8
Kickstarter Backer Mayor's Ring (Bronze) Weaponsmith (Bronze) Armorsmith (Diamond)
3 years ago

I also voted for khopesh as it seems to be both the least frequent and the most uniquely looking.

Deleted user
3 years ago

Voted for Falchion

Level 1
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3 years ago

Vote for the Elven Thinblade  

Level 1
3 years ago

The Khepesh was used against Egyptians by Hyksos and other people of the sea, and only later adopted by the Egyptians.

It's not only a cool weapon, but it's also a mysterious one. We don't know exactly who were the people who created it.

I think it's a great choice for a weapon in a D&D setting, as it evokes a mysterious past.