I need a really good weapon for a hero to wield, and not just a regular sword, something really cool, that'll be noticed by all, like a huge flail, or a creepy scythe.

Here's how magic works: Magic is in your blood. When you use magic you lose some of the power that's in your blood. If you run out, you die. Words are linked with the flow of magic but not necessarily, if you have enough concentration and focus you can just think what you want, but the words make it safer.

There are runes that power's imbued on but I don't just want a sword covered in those. To sum up my question, What's the best weapon that's unusual and awesome to bring into battle and trust your life with.

Sorry if you didn't understand this, the weapon is for fighting those with some plate armor, a helm, chest-plate, vambraces, grieves, but no armor around the belly and groin. The enemies also wear a chainmail hauberk.

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    $\begingroup$ Who are we fighting? Effectiveness is hugely dependent on enemy armor for example. $\endgroup$ – Mormacil Mar 19 '17 at 13:00
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    $\begingroup$ I'd have to agree with @Mormacil and then make things worse. Best by what standards? Best cutting, best chopping, best bludgeoning? Or just the coolest? Cool is too subjective to offer a measuring stick to, because I have a friend that loves all things scythes. And another that thinks maces are the ultimate sign of being a badass. You need to narrow this down. $\endgroup$ – Fayth85 Mar 19 '17 at 13:19
  • $\begingroup$ Wait. So by the way your magic works, you don't want to use it ever because any spell cast brings you closer to death. $\endgroup$ – M i ech Mar 19 '17 at 13:27
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    $\begingroup$ VTC since this question in its current state is very broad and there is no good way to measure what meets the questions criteria of a really good weapon, since many weapons are optimized to perform a specific function. $\endgroup$ – Anketam Mar 19 '17 at 15:01
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    $\begingroup$ Lame and cliched, but the traditional solution is simply to use a two handed sword, axe, or mace and then make it larger so that it is obvious that you must be excessively strong for wielding it to be practical. Knowing that the enemy is two or three times your strength and could toss you around with a single hand before he is within range for long bows is quite intimidating. And it actually works if you really are that strong and it does help with armor. Downside is that you'll look like a muscle bound show off, rather than cool, but... Brute strength does matter when fighting with armor. $\endgroup$ – Ville Niemi Mar 19 '17 at 19:31

The criterion here is "really cool and noticed by all." You want the shock and awe. Efficacy is not given as a criterion.

You want a demon. Coal black spikes, toothy maw, flames, poison, the works. A dude with something in his hand is, at the end of the day, a dude with something in his hand. But if monsters do your bidding who knows where that stops?

The demon might show up on command. It might truck along behind him. Maybe the hero turns into the demon. Maybe it rides on his back? If you want to get talked about, that last one would definitely buy you some more unusual at the cost of some cool but you have cool to spare if you have a demon.

At additional risk of being silly (is that a risk here?) I will point out that things generally are more noticeable the larger they are. Unless you live in Angel Grove.

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The best? It depends. That's really the answer, it depends. Things like swords are dominant because they worked. Why do all pistols nowadays look like a colt 1911 and not a luger? Because the colt design works better and is cheaper.

So what we could do is look at unusual melee weapons. Thing is, melee weapons are partially shaped against their targets. Also note that weapons have downsides. Huge flails are hard to control and impossible to stop mid swing. No feinting with those for example.

Also different weapons require different amounts of training to be effective. A spear for example, is very quick to take up the basics, unlike a sword which requires one to align the edge on the target.

Beyond that we got the difference of civilian, sidearms, versus battlefield weapons. Pikes, greatswords and halberds are battlefield weapons. They're a pain to carry around. Swords and daggers on the other hands are perfect sidearms, easy to carry. That's why they also saw extensive use by civilians. So does your hero travel a lot or is he more of a soldier? That should be a consideration I think.

So what are some weird weapons?

  • Urumi, flexible whip like swords with almost all the downsides of a flail.
  • Macauhuitl, wooden club with obsidian blades. Obsidian fractures against metal armor but super sharp.
  • Falx, curved sword with the cutting edge on the inside of the curve.
  • Bill(hook)/fauchard, tool modified for war, inside cutting edge. Similar to a sickle on a stick. useful against armored opponents, hook to trip them.
  • Kopesh, bronze are sickle sword. Somewhat similar to an axe in usage.
  • Falcata, Iberian sword, curves forward instead of backwards.
  • Katzbalger, signature sidearm of the Landsknecht. Elaborate guard and rounded tip. Relatively useless for stabbing.
  • Balisword, butterfly knife scaled up to a sword. Unique? Yes, not sure about the why though.
  • Shotel, abyssinian sword. Extremely curved scimitar with cutting edges on both side. Useful to get around shields.
  • Gunstock club, european named wooden club. Widens and curves at the end much like the stock of a musket. Like any club really except the other side has a spike mounted muhc like the tip of a spear.
  • Totokia, battlehammer from Fiji. Large spike in the front to puncture skulls.

As for runes I'd go with either unusual permanent sharpness of the blade, some life stealing effect or fatigue reducing.

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  • $\begingroup$ So what kind of armor is your hero encountering? $\endgroup$ – Mormacil Mar 19 '17 at 17:58

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