Here is my attempt to craft a powerful artifact for Heroes & Other Worlds, based on my favourite swords-and-sorcery movie, Hawk The Slayer.
I present an updated version of my take on The Mindsword:
"Forged in the bowels of a crooked mountain by Troll-smiths, long dead, from a metal not of this earth, but from the fused ore of a lightning bolt let fall from the dying hand of a Sky King. Imbued with unearthly power, it needed the greatest magicians and sorcerers of that time to fashion their own thaumaturgical ornaments to control its potency.
"From the secret Land of the Elvenfolk, a hilt that was the golden hand of their noblest suzerain clasped in its metalled fingers the last great elfin Mindstone, a crystalline brain orb whose incredible energy could only be sparked to life by a mind of like convolutions and accord."
- Hawk The Slayer (novel), by Terry Marcel and Harry Robertson
The Mindsword is a powerful, enchanted great sword (base damage: 3d6-1, requires two hands to wield, STRQ: 12).
As long as the brass pommel is grasping the Mindstone, the sword has the following powers:
- +4 to hit/+6 damage
- Offers a defensive bonus (while held and wielder is conscious) to parrying of +2. This counts against missile attacks as well, because the sword is moving of its own accord, in its wielder's hands, with the speed of thought to block or parry incoming weapons.
- The Mindsword will spring into its owner's hand when he wants it. It can travel up to 10ft, but if it is adjacent to his body this is instantaneous (meaning he doesn't need to spend an action drawing or changing weapons, and will have the sword to hand even if surprised, unless surprised from sleep or a similar circumstance).
- The sword can generate a 20ft radius circle of magical light around itself, for up to two-and-a-half hours, once per day. This glow is as bright as a torch.
- If unused - in combat - for a month, the pommel grip will open and the Mindstone drop out so it can stored elsewhere (thus rendering the sword effectively inert). To reactivate the sword, someone must hold the Mindstone in his hand - with the sword within 10ft - and concentrate. He must then make a 3/IQ save (at +2 to IQ if of Lawful/light-side inclination and -2 if aligned to Chaos/dark-side), if he makes the save The Mindstone will then float out of his hand, the fingers of the pommel will open and the stone will be grasped again. Away from the sword, the Mindstone has no other powers.
There are rumours of a weapon, known only as the "Dark Sword", that is thought to be the antithesis of the Mindsword and a force for great evil.
The sword's current location is unknown, but it is almost certainly in the possession of a mighty warrior on the side of Light.