"Death" is an Item Power imbued through Death Magic. At a moderate casting cost, it may be added to Weapons created for Heroes via Create Artifact, and offers a chance to slay a figure in a unit with each attack. Some of the 250 premade Items possess this power, and these can be found mainly as Treasure during the campaign.
|The "Death Touch" ability (never displayed)|
Death is automatically used whenever the Hero makes an attack affected by their weapon ( Melee Attack with a Sword or Mace; Melee or Thrown Attack with an Axe; Ranged Missile Attack with a Bow; or Ranged Magical Attack with a Wand or Staff).
When used, it forces the target unit to make one Resistance roll per figure in the source unit. To resolve this effect, the game rolls a random number between 1 and 10. This is then compared to the target's current Resistance -3. If the rolled number is higher than the modified Resistance score, the target unit is struck for Damage Points equal to the full Hit Points of one of its Figures, slaying one figure instantly and possibly inflicting further Damage to the next figure in line.
Timing within the Melee Attack Edit
- Death takes effect at the same time the weapon's normal damage is resolved. For Bows, Staves, or Wands, it does not apply during Melee combat at all. For Axes, Maces, and Swords, it functions as a Melee Touch Attack. For Axes, if the Hero possesses a Thrown Attack, it is also added to this attack (allowing the Hero to effectively use the ability twice on each voluntary attack).
- As a Melee Touch Attack, Death is executed simultaneously with the unit's Melee Damage; thus, figures destroyed by a Thrown, Breath, Gaze Attacks or First Strike will not deliver Death, and figures destroyed by Death will still deliver damage unless the unit is attacking and has First Strike (or a Thrown Attack, in case of Axes).
- Units with Death Immunity and/or Magic Immunity are impervious to Death. They do not need to make any Resistance rolls, instead completely ignoring the attack.
- Also, any unit with 10 remaining after all factors have been computed, as well as any Charmed hero, is rendered effectively invulnerable to Death by virtue of its resistance score.
- To illustrate, say B'Shan aims a "Bow of Death" at a unit of 4 Gargoyles from the opposite end of a battlefield. At this distance, his 4 has about a 3% chance of doing more than 0 against the Gargoyles' 8. Meanwhile the "Death" power attached to the bow has a 60% chance of beating this opponent's resistance, given by d10 versus (7 − 3), and dealing exactly 4 in this attack. It involves no To Hit component or range penalties, checks Resistance rather than defense, and its magnitude is always the max Health of 1 Figure.
There are a number of Item Powers that inflict a resist or suffer effect on the Hero's target. Among these, Death, save at -3 or die is both cheap to cast and difficult to resist. It can pose a threat where other mechanics will fail, as in the example above.
Still, in the scheme of things these powers all have serious shortcomings, rooted in their being Touch Attacks:
- Victims of a Touch Attack make one resistance roll per attacking figure, and Heroes are Single-Figure.
- Touch Attacks are designed to scale up with Multi-Figure Units, so individually their effects are paltry.
- Dangerous enemies frequently either have 10, or something close, remaining after Death's resist penalty, or could be immune to death.
In essence, "Death" only gets one chance to succeed per attack, only kills one Figure if it does so, and might not be of much use at all against particularly tough creatures. Unlike a straight defense or damage boost, this power requires some reflection about what sort of opponents you expect your Heroes to be facing.
Other Item Powers that inflict a resist or suffer effect on the Hero's target:
|Destruction||5||Resist or suffer ×|
|Vampiric||5||Suffer d10 −|
|Death||3||-3||Resist or suffer ×|
|Holy Avenger||3||-4||Resist or suffer ×|
|Stoning||2||-1||Resist or suffer ×|
Create Artifact Edit
- Main article: Item Crafting
With 3, "Death" may be added to a Weapon of your own design through Create Artifact. Making strong Items through this spell is an incredibly expensive and time-consuming process, though more reasonable with the Artificer and Runemaster Retorts.
- Main article: Magical Items in Treasure
The game data files contain 250 pre-defined Items. Of these, eight possess the "Death" power. This power causes a premade Item to demand that the Wizard have particular Spellbooks in order to appear in Treasure, and the requirements are irregular. Note how in the case of this power, none of the pre-defined items require a Death Spellbook in order to find.
There are three different ways by which you can acquire one of these pre-defined Items:
- By winning a difficult Encounter.
- By purchasing it from a Merchant, a random petitioner.
- As result of a Random Event called "The Gift".
It is often better to acquire items in this way, as it means you do not need to spend any time or Mana to create them. Still, Items found through these means are in no way guaranteed to exactly suit your needs.
The table below lists the pre-defined Items with this power.
|Premade Items with "Death"|
|Item||Attributes||Realm Powers||Required Ranks|
|500||Deathbringer|| Death|| ||3|
|1100||Kraken Wand||2||10|| Death|| ||3|
|1500||The Undertaker||2||5|| Death|| ||3|
|2150||Purple Rain of Death||5||2||2|| Death|| ||3|
|1000||Tree Tamer||3|| Death|| Giant Strength||3||3|
|1550||Fist of Destruction||1|| Destruction|| Death||5||3|
|3050||Axe of Chaotic Death||5|| Chaos|| Death||6||3|
|Item||Attributes||Realm Powers||Required Ranks|
|3800||Wand of Doom|| Destruction|