Rod of Dread:

Enhancement: +6 attack rolls and damage rolls

Critical: (Fear) The target is dazed until the end of your next turn.

Power (Daily * Fear): Free Action. Trigger: You attack with an implement power using this implement. Effect: The attack gains the fear keyword, and each target of the power that you hit or miss grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.

Clearly, the daily adds the fear keyword because it says so explicitly. However, the critical also has the fear keyword. Therefore: does the benefit from the critical mean that all attacks with with the weapon are fear-keyworded, or just those I crit on?


1 Answer 1


In the Player's Handbook volume 3, it says that fear is an effect type:

fear (keywordJ: An effect type . See also page 217

Therefore, I would argue that Fear can only apply when it comes into play as an effect, such as the power, or the crit, but not on normal damage; or some text in the power explicitly states it.

This is different from fire, which is a damage type.

fire (keywordJ : A damage type (page 215).

Also, under the critical explanation of how to read a magic item it says:

Unless noted otherwise, the damage type of this extra damage is the same as the normal damage type for the weapon.

And then under the property explanation it says:

Some magic items have a special property that is constantly active (or active under certain conditions). A property doesn’t normally require any action to use, although some properties allow you to turn them off (or on again)

To me, this indicates that A. The critical tells you its fear, so that is not the normal damage of the weapon. and B. If it made normal attacks have the fear keyword, that would be listed as a property.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Agreed. I haven't seen anything that adds a keyword to all attacks made with a weapon or implement without specifically listing it as a property like a Frost Weapon or Flaming Weapon. \$\endgroup\$
    – dpatchery
    Commented Jun 22, 2011 at 13:04

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