We are fighting an Ice Devil and my Duskblade's weapon has an align weapon (good) cast on it. I know a channeled shocking grasp will have to beat his SR; if it does, is the damage considered good damage? Will his regeneration heal the electric damage? Would vampiric touch damage bypass regeneration delivered by a good weapon?


1 Answer 1


Is the spell damage channeled through a good-aligned sword considered good damage?


Specifically, Arcane Channeling explicitly separates the weapon's effect from the spell's effect: "the attack deals damage normally; then the effect of the spell is resolved". The weapon part of the attack would (of course) have the good descriptor, but the spell is still a separate thing: the ice devil would still get SR and a ref save to avoid/halve the damage.

From the other direction, the "holy" ability (which align weapon appears to imitate weakly) states that:

This power makes the weapon good-aligned and thus bypasses the corresponding damage reduction.

Holy says nothing about other abilities that may be placed on the weapon (eg., flaming or shocking), merely that being holy can bypass DR X/holy.

And, of course, align weapon only talks about DR.

None of the abilities at play (arcane channeling, holy, or align weapon) say anything about changing the descriptors of spells; were that intended one of the three (probably arcane channeling) would definitely have said something about it.

Since nothing is changing the descriptor on the spell being channeled through the weapon, shocking grasp and vampiric touch have their descriptors unchanged. Thus, the ice devil would regenerate damage from either spell when channeled through an aligned weapon.

Citations and quotes:

Ice Devils have DR (Damage Reduction) 10/good. Their regeneration is limited such that:

An ice devil takes normal damage from good-aligned weapons and from spells or effects with the good descriptor.

Duskblades gain Arcane Channeling (PHB2, p20):

Beginning at 3rd level, you can use a standard action to cast any touch spell you know and deliver the spell through your weapon with a melee attack. ... If the melee attack is successful, the attack deals damage normally; then the effect of the spell is resolved.

At 13th level, you can cast any touch spell you know as part of a full attack action, and the spell affects each target you hit in melee combat that round. ...

Align Weapon

"makes a weapon good.... A weapon that is aligned can bypass the damage reduction of certain creatures."

... and, I mentioned holy, too.

A quick aside, because this is a common point of misunderstanding: DR and energy resistance are to wholly different things. DR doesn't affect the damage done by spells unless the spell specifies that it does bludgeoning, piercing, and/or slashing damage (or some other ability is in play, because this is 3.5 where absolutes are always wrong). Critically for this question, DR doesn't apply to Shocking Grasp or Vampiric Touch.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ As forms of value-add here, it may be worth discussing this as a possible houserule (imo it looks like a great one), and/or mentioning the various metamagic feats from Book of Exalted Deeds that can make a spell [Good] (Consecrate Spell and Purify Spell if I recall correctly). \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Sep 6, 2021 at 13:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ No reflex save for half damage on either spell,otherwise thank you for your research on this. Nathtfm \$\endgroup\$
    – Nathtfm
    Commented Sep 8, 2021 at 19:37

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .