Would having a warrior lose/break their signature weapon be fun for the campaign?

Would having a warrior lose/break their signature weapon be fun for the campaign?

Would having a warrior lose/break their signature weapon be fun for the campaign?

I want to break his weapon via a hard move at some point. He has mentioned a few times that he wishes he could change one of the options he picked, now that he’s leveled a couple times. So I thought it might be cool to break his weapon, then he can go on a mini quest to forge a new weapon.

But I don’t know how long the mini quest will be (at least 2 or 3 sessions if they B line for it) and the signature weapon is what makes the warrior the warrior.

Would like some other opinions on this.

28 thoughts on “Would having a warrior lose/break their signature weapon be fun for the campaign?”

  1. I’d say it could… but it depends on the implementation. Say… why not him break his weapon on a sufficiently epic moment like dealing the fatal damage to a demon lord or something.

    Maybe, just maybe, there is other way around. Say… he awoke and his sword is already broken and siphons off some dread aura.

    a)that wan’t just some random guy that drunk with him last night.

    b)there were something trapped inside the sword… and now it’s free.

    I don’t think I could say something about the quest to reforge but it could be as epic as you want. Just… if all of warrior abilities depends on the weapon should he be so nerfed even for a time being? Maybe he could use the sword even in its broken version? Maybe he even gains a paladin-like ability whereas he’s protected from something but only while actively working towards reforging?

    Also, there are questions of materials, time, personel, etc…

  2. The best situation, which has happened in my games, is where they are given a choice. “Sure you can do that crazy feat but you risk the weapon being broken or damaged.” Then, if they do it, they knew it was coming and they can only really blame themselves. At least in this case, they don’t mind as much because they still had control over the outcome. Just make sure the choice is given when they actually are trying to do something with it.

    And in terms of the Sig Weapon, it’s just one of the warrior’s many abilities. In my eyes, the player makes the warrior who he is, not the weapon.

  3. I would do it on the condition that he knows that it’s something he can replace if he is fictionally positioned to do it. The paladin might not be able to get a sword forged by the Iron God in the flames of a ogre corpse fire, but the fighter can!

  4. “Offer an opportunity, with or without cost.” On a missed hack and slash: “you can hit and kill him, but only if you are willing to break your signature weapon”.

  5. Patrick Schenk I think you can safely interpret everyone’s responses as “yeah, it’s cool, but you should be careful how you do it.”

    Having it break out of the blue on a miss while they’re fighting Goblin #32 is pretty lame.

    Having it shatter on the Dread Golem of Hlakith, when you foreshadowed that this could happen and they went for it anyway, or as part of a hard bargain… that’s totally legit and pretty bad ass.

  6. Patrick Schenk I wrote a pretty elaborate response to your above remark but I decided to delete it and just remember to simply not respond to anymore of your posts.

    Why share my thoughts with someone that knows it all already? That would be silly.

  7. I’ll take the opposite side and say you could, and if it’s their choice it could work, but I probably wouldn’t. I’d say just let him change it when he has downtime in a suitable steading, possibly having him pay for a few materials. Even better, ask him what would be needed to change his weapon to the desired option. You might be surprised by how elaborate they go. If they say a week in a forge, go with that. If they say killing an ogre and using its blood to quench it, go for that. Basically ask them how long they should be without the signature weapon. Since DW doesn’t link damage to weapons, I suspect they’ll go for story over power, since they’d still do 1d10 or so regardless.

  8. Eric Lochstampfor It had to have been made in the first place. It didn’t just magic into existence (unless it did), if something was forged once, it can be forged again.

    Signature weapon doesn’t mean even mean it’s the only one in the world. It just means it’s a weapon your renown for using. Likely it’ll be a weapon that not everyone will be able to use it to its full potential.

  9. Like the Ranger’s Animal Companion, I think the Fighter’s signature weapon is off limits. In fact, the Signature Weapon moves says “Your weapon, without you, is useless. Without your weapon, you are useless.” IMO if you break or destroy the Fighter’s signature weapon, then he is no longer The Fighter.

  10. IF the player is OK with losing his signature weapon (and I’d have a convo with him before I broke it and would only do it with his full buy-in), IMO while without his signature weapon, he wouldn’t be The Fighter anymore. No Fighter moves. Just a regular dude. “Without your weapon, you are useless.” Without his sig weapon, he can’t do anything. For sure he wouldn’t have access to any moves from the Fighter playbook, and I’d argue he wouldn’t have access to any of the Basic Moves.

    Now, I agree that makes a VERY interesting story of how this hero becomes a normal person and then on a quest to forge another special weapon and regain that which makes him heroic, but if a player no longer has access to a playbook, then it’s hard to play DW. It feels like a different game. IMO you’d have to house rule and hack the game to make it work. The SigWeap and AnimalComp are sacred cows to their playbooks. It’s the very things that make the playbook the playbook, and the intention of the Core Rules is that those items are immutable. Obviously just my opinion, and probably not the feedback you were looking for.

  11. The Signature Weapon in Dungeon World is mainly a fictional cornerstone. Mechanically, what does it add? Maybe a +1 damage, and tag or two? Without the deep fictional cornerstone of it, the Fighter could just pick up any other weapon and do basically the same kind of damage. But the fiction of the move says — without it you are useless — which means to me if the fighter is without his sig weapon and picks up another weapon, he just doesn’t do any damage with it… otherwise what’s the point of the signature weapon. It’s not just special — it IS THE VERY THING that makes him the FIGHTER.

  12. I wouldn’t do it.

    The signature weapon is what defines the fighter. If it’s gone the fighter can’t fight and a quest to get a new one, specially when played out in more than one session, is likely to fail.

  13. I think that you should discuss the pros and cons with the player and let him make the choice. Don’t tell him how but discuss with the player and make it a good story together.

  14. Patrick Schenk It sounds like you’ve already decided to break his weapon and had the discussion with the player and they are cool with it because they want to change some things. Seems like it all makes sense in the fiction, IMHO.

    What exactly are you looking for in terms of advice?

    Yes, 2-3 sessions to replace it sounds about right. Just give the other characters stuff to do so it’s not 100% one player focused.

  15. Why does it have to break to be changed? Seems like you could come up with a way for it to be changed without crippling the player for 3 sessions. I think 2-3 sessions sounds like too long unless it’s part of some larger quest. I mean, why should the wizard care about hiking to the Hidden Mountain in the Valley of the Unseen just so that Fighter can change his weapon from precise to messy?

  16. Unless he is OK with it, I wouldn’t break it. If he has the blacksmith move I would let him change things about it himself with enough time and access to a forge. If he wanted something that wasn’t a physical change done to it, he could seek out a mage. If you and the fighter have a great idea for a side quest that sounds really fun, go for it!

  17. Damian Jankowski Or you could just, answer what the question is. I know how I would do it if I were to, so saying “you can do it this way” is pointless.

    I know how I’d do it. I was asking if I should.

    If someone is asking if they should buy a chocolate cake or vanilla, and you say “This brand of flour is better for cakes.” That doesn’t answer the question.

  18. In response, if it isn’t clear from my other post.  Yes, I think you should do it, but only IF you provide some options and if the player is ok with it (either by asking him or if you just know he will be).  And lastly, provide a good story with it.  Keep in mind, this is much like stopping a Wizard from casting spells for 3 sessions, so I would make it a short 1 session thing, either a 1 on 1 or a short quest that can include stuff for the other characters.  Or at the best option, metagame it.  Handle it outside of a normal session.  Go back and forth with the player on how it happens or how to get the weapon back but with new options.  I am in favor of allowing some re-writing of a character for a good story and to make the player enjoy his character more.  It’s all about the Fun and the Fiction after all.

  19. Actually you asked “would” not “should” since we’re gonna be picky about questions. I think it’s a little disrespectful of you to give people a hard time for answering the “wrong” question.

    Seemed to me eveyone was trying to help.

    Would it be fun? Sure, under the right circumstances. What are those circumstances? Re-read the first few posts.

  20. I think you should ask your player what they think. They’re the ones who’ll have to play it out, after all. The approbation of some random chumps on the internet is cold comfort when dealing with a bitter player. “Surprise! I broke your weapon”, out of nowhere, is likely to go over about as well as “surprise! I burned your spellbook”.

    Also I’m pretty sure the Rifleman’s Creed is not to be taken literally, or there are a whole lot of useless veterans out there.

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