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Each type of Horn of Valhalla has a requirement, increasing in complexity in the same way the type increases in rarity: Silver Horns (rare) have no requirement, Brass Horns (rare) require proficiency with all simple weapons, Bronze Horns (very rare) require proficiency in all medium armors, and Iron Horns (legendary) require proficiency in all martial weapons.

What I'm wondering here is whether the requirements are cumulative -- in other words, whether a Bronze Horn also requires proficiency in all simple weapons, and whether an Iron Horn also requires proficiency in all simple weapons and all medium armors.

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The requirements are separate

The table lists requirements separately for each kind of horn and nothing in the wording indicates a cumulative requirement.

If you need further confirmation, note that the wording used for requirements is always singular (emphasis mine):

The horn's type determines how many berserkers answer its summons, as well as the requirement for its use.

If you blow the horn without meeting its requirement, the summoned berserkers attack you. If you meet the requirement, they are friendly to you and your companions and follow your commands.

D&D Beyond also seems to follow this interpretation. Check the page for an individual horn, for example, the Horn of Valhalla (Iron):

If you blow the horn without having proficiency with all martial weapons, the summoned berserkers attack you. If you meet the requirement, they are friendly to you and your companions and follow your commands.

As you can see, only proficiency with all martial weapons appears as a requirement on this page.

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Not as written

A horn of Valhalla has a requirement as listed according to the table.

The horn's type determines how many berserkers answer its summons, as well as the requirement for its use.

If the requirements were cumulative, it would say so. Instead, the Requirement simply appear in their own individual cells. As such, a person proficient with Medium armor, but no weapons, could use a Bronze horn, and a person proficient with martial weapons, but only light armor could use an Iron horn

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  • \$\begingroup\$ A bit silly when you think about it, isn't it ? "I can use the mightiest of Horns !!... but not that simpler one over here." \$\endgroup\$ – Gael L Jun 26 at 13:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ @GaelL Although, to be fair. I'm not sure there is any character with proficiency in martial weapons and not medium armor without multiclassing \$\endgroup\$ – David Coffron Jun 26 at 13:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ However, it is possible to be proficient in all Medium armors but not all simple weapons, such as being a druid. \$\endgroup\$ – Gael L Jun 26 at 14:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ @GaelL True. Or the Moderately Armored feat. Further reading here (I think multiclass Barbarian is the only thing that works) \$\endgroup\$ – David Coffron Jun 26 at 14:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Haha, that’s very derp ! My silly scenario can be true. \$\endgroup\$ – Gael L Jun 26 at 15:15

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