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I have an ongoing campaign, that started with a vampire-paladin who is now a blackguard — he fallen to the dark side, thanks to Nightbringer. Then he lost the sword: he wanted to control Nightbringer and so she left him. (It did not destroy him because the paladin is a fervent anti-Orcus.)

Anyway, that's just background. On to the question.

Nightbringer is a paragon-tier artifact. It is mighty, but it still is a longsword, and my player has been feeling that it does not deal enough damage. I know as the gamemaster I can change the sword to a fullblade or an execution axe... My question is, would that disrupt the balance?

Should I just not worry about it, and give my player the chance to have a better weapon and enjoy taking souls? To justify it in-game, maybe I could change it with a good "dinner" of souls?

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I gave this a copyedit to be a bit clearer and idiomatic; the only thing I wasn't sure I 100% understood was the part that read "Alternatively, should I give the player a chance..." I wasn't sure if you were thinking about an alternative artefact weapon you could introduce to the game, or if you were expressing an alternative thought about how to feel about changing Nightbringer (since it sounded like you were still talking about the same artefact). I went with the second interpretation, but do fix it or let me know if I got that bit (or any other bit) wrong. –  SevenSidedDie Dec 8 '13 at 22:31
    
thank for correcting me. And yes, the question is well posed this way. 8) –  master micio Dec 8 '13 at 22:36
    
@okeefe Your edit is being discussed here. Might be worth weighing in. –  Jonathan Hobbs Dec 9 '13 at 12:54
    
If you could explain the party makeup (who's damage is he comparing his own to), this could help us out a bit. –  Joshua Aslan Smith Dec 9 '13 at 13:32
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1 Answer

Nope

At the end of the day, changing from a longsword (5.5 average damage because versatile) to a fullblade (6.83 average damage with high crit) at the cost of the exotic weapon proficiency (fullblade) feat seriously isn't that big a deal. Striker damage comes from other sources (usually their static-mod, as is the case of blackguards) and the occasional extra [1W] of damage is basically gravy.

You should feel content to refluff and remap this artefact as you choose.

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This raises a good point; if the motivation for this change was a player unhappy with the damage they deal (or at least their perception of how much damage they should be dealing) then remapping this particular item to a slightly higher damage weapon may not do much to solve the core problem. –  Jonah Dec 9 '13 at 3:55
    
Can you explain better the "refluff" and "remapping" concept? Tnx –  master micio Dec 9 '13 at 8:07
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@mastermicio more info here: What are the commonly accepted definitions of reskinning and refluffing? –  wax eagle Dec 9 '13 at 13:27
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Versatile does not really matter, Blackguards can use Heavy Shields, and +2 AC and Ref is way more useful, than +1 damage. –  András Dec 9 '13 at 14:52
    
Thanks everybody. I will simply give him the possibility to choose. A painfull kill of a good priest (Nightbringer says: you have to slowly spill all the blood out and let me drink it... and then i'll take the soul). And this way the sword can "change" to a bastard or fullblade (player's choice and feat expense too). Maybe with a "second step" like this: ok, the first part is done.. now, the second part.. some slaughter..) I want to give him the chance to have the power he desires but with a cost. Should he goes all the way just for some damage? Nightbringer is encouraging this... –  master micio Dec 9 '13 at 21:48
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