Well, in Arkelon Chronicles, we think they do.
We don't like the idea that a player might regret or avoid a certain weapon type because it does less numerical damage. Even if thematically or narratively that weapon makes sense for them. Shouldn’t the damage be more about the performance or effectiveness of the attack? Differentiating weapons by special effects instead of amounts of numerical damage is more interesting to us.
Of course, a two-handed axe will deal more damage than a blowgun, because we wouldn’t want all weapons to deal the same damage. There are also the usual types of damage: slashing, bludgeoning and piercing, who will ultimately make a difference when you, say, battle against an army of evil skeletons. Is a Goblin with a dagger as much of a threat as an Orc with a greatsword? Yes, under the right circumstances, they can be — just in different ways!
In Arkelon Chronicles, we’re all about customization and being able to make your wildest dreams come true. Not even someone with clear aspirations to do something unique and perhaps a bit “outside the mainstream” should be handicapped from the get-go. And more importantly, we want everyone in the party to be able to shine! Which is why we offer a LOT of options and at least 150 different weapons, which all offer something different.
First of all, there are different kinds of weapons: light weapons, one-handed, two-handed, ranged, thrown, energy, flame, cryo, shock, arcane, sonic, ammunition and explosives.
When landing a perfect strike with a weapon (natural 20), weapons have different effects (called perfect strike effects) based on their type of damage, overall appearance and utility: bleed, burn, deafened, impale, mortal shot, sickened, slow, staggered and sunder, to name a few.
“Impale,” for instance, causes grievous wounds, dealing an amount of damage equal to the targeted creature’s bloodied amount, plus twice the character’s damage attribute. And, let’s be honest, you feel pretty badass impaling a big bad monster at the end of a boss fight.
Weapons and ammunition all come in different materials: bone, dragonbone, iron, caderium, silver and sky metal. Why does it matter? For example, a piercing weapon made of bone splinters will explode when colliding with flesh, releasing small fragments inside the body, making the target of such a weapon bleed.
And of course, there is always the possibility to upgrade your weapons. Completing increasingly difficult tasks often require heroes to upgrade their equipment, to stay up to par with their foes. An entire section of our rulebook covers everything from simple upgrades to mods, to magical enhancements.
Let’s say you have a melee weapon, but your quest brings you against formidable foes you’d rather keep at a safe distance. Why not use the revolver mod, where you simply attach a small revolver to your weapon. It has a range of 20 feet, deals some piercing damage and can fire 6 shots before needing to be reloaded. It can also be upgraded on its own!
Now, let’s talk about the other part of the character customization: talents. Talents are special feats that your character can learn while gaining experience. They can make you learn new abilities, improve your proficiency or even upgrade one of your abilities. Talents really allow you to customize your character, make it how you want it to be, and give them the flavor you want them to have.
As an illustration, let’s say your ultimate fantasy is to be a Samurai with a katana. And you’ve seen in some action movies that sweet move where that badass ronin smack their opponent with their sheathed blade. Well, there’s a talent for that — It’s called Swift Strike!
Another example, the “Twin Strike” talent, which is a talent especially made for one-handed axes, and it allows the character to make two attacks against a creature in range. If the first attack misses, they can either attack the same target and gain a +5 bonus to their damage, or attack another adjacent target, and gain a +5 to their accuracy.
Only question left is, does thou want to kick some butts? If the answer is yes, well roll for initiative, and let’s go!