A small sect of magi go further than mastering blade and spell: they marry the two into a sentient weapon. These blackblades assist their masters with their goals but may not be the mere tools they seem.
At 3rd level, the blade of legend gains a powerful sentient weapon called a black blade, whose weapon type is chosen by the magus (see sidebar). A legendary magus with this class feature cannot take the familiar magus arcana, and cannot have a familiar of any kind, even from another class.
A blade of legend does not gain arcane potential from the lingering potential ability.
This ability alters the arcane potential class feature and replaces the magus arcana gained at 3rd level.
Black Blade Basics
A black blade is bonded to a particular legendary magus, much like a familiar, but in more of a partnership than a master-servant relationship.
Intelligence: This is the intelligence score of the black blade. It starts at 10 and increases by 1 for every two levels of the bladebound magus (at 3rd level, 5th level, and so on).
Ego: A black blade starts with an ego of 5, and that ego increases as the blade becomes more powerful, as per Table: Black Blade Progression below. In cases where a wielder and the black blade come into conflict, like any intelligent item, a black blade can attempt to exert its dominance (see Intelligent Items). Due to its flexible and powerful nature, a black blade has a nonstandard ego progression.
Languages and Skills: A black blade starts with Common as a language. As the black blade increases in Intelligence, it manifests knowledge of languages and arcane lore. Upon reaching an Intelligence of 12, it gains a bonus language of the GM’s choice, and gains 1 rank in Knowledge (arcana). Each time the sword gains a bonus to Intelligence, it gains another language and another rank in Knowledge (arcana).
Senses: A black blade is aware of everything around it like a creature that can see and hear. It can be blinded and deafened as if it were a creature. It uses the saving throws of its magus, even if the magus is not currently wielding the black blade.
Black Blade Arcane Potential: A black blade has a pool of arcane potential, with a maximum equal to 1 + its Intelligence bonus. It gains a single point of potential each round at the beginning of its wielder’s turn while in combat. If the black blade spends 1 minute outside of combat, it loses all potential it has stored.
Black Blade Ability Descriptions
A black blade has special abilities (or imparts abilities to its wielder) depending on the wielder’s legendary magus level. The abilities are cumulative. A black blade normally refuses to use any of its abilities when wielded by anyone other than its legendary magus, and acts as a masterwork weapon of its type.
While a legendary magus is wielding her black blade, she gains the Alertness feat.
Black Blade Strike (Sp)
As a swift action, the magus can spend 1 point of the black blade’s arcane potential to grant the black blade a +1 bonus on damage rolls for 1 round. For every four levels beyond 1st, this bonus increases by +1, to a maximum of +5 at 17th level.
Bonded Blade (Ex)
A black blade can be enhanced as though its owner possessed the Craft Magic Arms and Armor feat.
For the purposes of enhancement, the black blade does not follow the normal rules for weapon enhancement. A black blade can only be enhanced with special abilities, and its enhancement bonus to attack and damage is determined by its owners level. Special abilities can be applied to a black blade without first applying a +1 enhancement bonus. It can be enhanced to a maximum modified bonus of +5, and enhancements made to the black blade cost twice as much as a normal weapon. For example, enhancing the black blade with the bane and corrosive abilities would cost 16,000 gp, the cost of a +2 weapon doubled.
While a legendary magus is wielding or carrying her black blade, she can communicate telepathically with the blade in a language that the legendary magus and the black blade share.
A black blade is immune to the broken condition. If destroyed, the black blade can be reforged 1 week later through a special ritual that costs 200 gp per legendary magus level. The ritual takes 24 hours to complete.
Energy Attunement (Su)
At 5th level, as a free action, a legendary magus can spend 1 point of the black blade’s arcane potential to have it deal one of the following types of damage instead of weapon damage: cold, electricity, or fire. She can spend 2 points from of the black blade’s arcane potential to deal sonic or force damage instead of weapon damage. This effect lasts until the start of the legendary magus’s next turn.
Teleport Blade (Sp)
Alternatively, he can do so as a swift action by spending one point of potential, or by spending one point of the black blade’s arcane potential.
Transfer Arcana (Su)
At 13th level, a legendary magus can attempt to siphon points from her black blade’s arcane potential into her own. Doing so takes a move action and the legendary magus must succeed at a Will saving throw with a DC equal to the black blade’s ego. If the legendary magus succeeds, she regains 1 point to her arcane potential pool for every 2 points she saps from his black blade. If she fails the saving throw, the legendary magus becomes fatigued for 1 minute(but can try again). If she is fatigued, she becomes exhausted for 1 minute instead. She cannot use this ability if she is exhausted.
Spell Defense (Sp)
A legendary magus of 17th level or higher can expend 1 point of the black blade’s arcane potential as a free action; she then gains SR equal to his black blade’s ego until the start of her next turn.
Life Drinker (Su)
At 19th level, each time the legendary magus kills a living creature with the black blade, she can pick one of the following effects: the black blade gains 3 points of arcane potential; the legendary magus gains 1 point of arcane potential; the legendary magus gains a number of temporary hit points equal to the black blade’s ego (these temporary hit points last until spent or 1 minute, whichever is shorter). The creature killed must have a number of Hit Dice equal to half the legendary magus’s character level for this to occur.
The legendary magus chooses the weapon’s type upon gaining the blade, and once chosen, it can’t be changed. Though these weapons are named black blades, they can be a weapon of any type. As a blade of legend increases in level, her black blade gains power.
A black blade is independently conscious but features some personality traits reflecting its wielder. A black blade always has the same alignment as its wielder and even changes its alignment if its wielder does. The blade typically works toward its wielder’s goals, but not always without argument or backlash. Each black blade has a mission, and while sometimes two or more black blades will work in concert, each mission is singular in purpose (the black blade’s mission is usually up to the GM and the needs of the campaign or the adventure, or a GM can determine the weapon’s purpose randomly using Table: Intelligent Item Purpose). Some black blades are very open about their missions, but most are secretive. Certain sages have speculated that an invisible hand or arcane purpose moves these weapons.
Legendary Magus, © 2018, Legendary Games. Authors: Dave Nelson and Hal Kennette.