Legend of Drizzt: Artemis Entreri’s weapons


Artemis Entreri,
is an assassin from the Dungeons & Dragons board game, The Legend of Drizzt.  Among his at-will powers are his Magic Longsword and Saber of Wounding.  Both offer statistical advantages.  Which is better?  With a touch of analysis paralysis, we overthink our choice.

What’s the difference between the two?
The Magic Longsword attacks an adjacent monster with an attack bonus of +10.  It inflicts only 1 hp damage.  The Saber of Wounding, on the other hand,  attacks an adjacent monster with a lower bonus of +6 and inflicts 1 hp damage.  However, if you roll an 18 or higher, you inflict extra +1 hp of damage.

Game play strategy
The D&D board games have two chapters; 1) the last tile  and 2) everything else before it.  Will you prepare for the tough villain at the risk of not making it far into the game?  Or will you choose to stand up to the dungeon’s minions only to be too weak and too unprepared for the villain with its many hit points?  While the game makes you think there’s strategy it comes with a lot of luck.  Making it to the final tile is tough.  Unless I’ve had previous experiences with a specific adventure, I often choose to survive the first chapter hoping I’ve been blessed with enough found treasure and luck to survive the villain stage.

Your luck of the dice
The 20-sided dice can be very cruel.  I’ve made enough back-to-back “1” rolls, it would make Albert Einstein cry.  The Magic Longsword gives a bonus of +4 greater than the Saber.  That’s a 20% advantage.  The Saber offers a 15% chance of being eligible for a bonus.   Meaning, if you roll an 18 for a 1-hp monster, your advantage was wasted.  I’ve discovered that the party needs to make its first 5 or 6 attack rolls to have an even chance to make it to the last tile.  Misses early makes a session quickly over.  This is why I often choose the attack bonus over the damage bonus.  I would consider the Saber if other members of the party have better attack bonuses and place Artemis at the end of the line to clean up the left overs and give the party a chance of finishing tough monsters and villains.

Statistics and theory
Since monsters come in varying armor class, it’s difficult to appreciate the bonus especially if you figured you didn’t need it.  It’s easy to understand the Saber.  Even if you didn’t need the second point of damage, it feels good to deliver it.   Let’s pretend we’re up against a tough monster with an armor class of 20.  With the Magic Longsword, you would hit 11 times out of 20, inflicting 11 hit points of damage.  With the Saber of Wounding, you would hit 7 times out of 20, inflicting no more than 10 hit points of damage.  (1 plus an extra 1 if rolled an 18, 19, or 20)  In addition, we assume we took advantage of the extra hp damage while overcoming a statistical disadvantage.  In this example, the Magic Longsword has a minor, but appreciable, statistical advantage.  What about weaker monsters?  Against a monster with an armor class of 12, the Longsword would hit 19 times out of 20 for 19 hit points of damage.  The Saber would hit 15 times out of 20 for 18 points of damage. Again, the Longsword has a +1 advantage over 20 rolls.  Considering your character is unlikely to make 20 attack rolls in a session the advantage realized is minuscule.

After all that, what’s the difference between the two again?
The Magic Longsword gives you a real statistical bonus that you can immediate employ on every roll.  The Saber of Wounding requires luck, rolling an 18 or better, to enjoy its benefit.  Even then, its conditional.

Thanks to C.B.

 

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12 Responses to Legend of Drizzt: Artemis Entreri’s weapons

  1. Charles Barchuk says:

    Seems like the Magic Longsword is overall the best option though, as you said, the advantage is minuscule. But having that opportunity to do 2 points of the damage is pretty nice especially when Artemis lacks a lot of hard hitting abilities compared to even characters like Ratshadow. I wish Charon’s Claw had a coop version to use. Kind of feels like Artemis is quite a bit weaker than Drizzt when they’re supposed to be about even.

  2. Charles Barchuk says:

    Oh I have another rules question for you that I was hoping you could answer or even write an article on if you felt compelled to do so…

    Can Artemis’ Fast Learner ability be applied to himself? Say he spends his last token of his Duelist Poise daily which results and him turning that card over. Could he then use his Fast Learner ability to recharge his Duelist Poise? Or does this ability have to be used when ANOTHER hero uses a daily? The exact wording suggests he can do this but the spirit of the flavor text suggests otherwise. What do you think?

  3. Charles Barchuk says:

    Yep that’s me. I guess I was hoping there was an ‘official’ answer or at least a general consensus at this point from when I first asked the question. But I haven’t been able to dig up any new information. So I figured I would get your take. Heck, people are still conflicted over the stance tokens.

  4. Charles Barchuk says:

    Hey man I’m still confused on this Fast Learner ability. Ratshadow has an at-will power called rapier that says “If you hit, 1 hero on your hero’s tile gains advantage.” Aleros has a daily called Sweeping Attack that says “1 hero on your hero’s tile gains advantage.” There are others as well. The dwarf cleric (I forget her name) has an at-will power called Blessed Mace that actually does specify “another hero.” Anyways in the first two examples the general consensus is that both of those effects can be applied to the hero using the ability. Fast Learner however uses similar wording but yet it doesn’t apply to Artemis. So my confusion was renewed again when I played a game this past weekend with my wife and she was Artemis. She used his Executioner’s Blade daily and then wanted to use his Fast Learner power to refresh it and I told her she couldn’t do that. I then came across all these other powers with the same type of wording. I know I can house rule whatever I want but it’s still confusing. I wish there was an official ruling on these types of things so I know I’m playing it the way the designers envisioned.

    • admin says:

      There is consensus that you cannot apply Fast Learner to your own Daily Power. Imagine if you were playing with friends and you really want to apply to yourself. I can see you dancing, sweating, and heehawing trying to twist the English language to your favor. The intent of the card is not to refresh one of your powers but to emulate (steal) another that you would not normally experience since its out of your class. i.e. Being a “fast learner”. Of course, you can play it anyway you want.

  5. Charles Barchuk says:

    Well of course, I definitely agree that the spirit of the ability suggests exactly what you’re saying. I’m simply talking about the wording which is the same as other abilities that do allow the effect to apply to the one using the power. That’s my only point. And maybe the word ‘another’ was supposed to be added. I know there are probably other small errors here and there. But I’m sure you would agree that in the other examples Ratshadow and Aleroes CAN apply the effect to themselves even though, thematically, it makes more sense that the effect applies to someone else. Though what’s thematic about Artemis only being able to use Parry and Strike once? Did he all of a sudden forget how to parry? lol. Anyways there are other abilities as well that use the same wording. At the same time there are also some that actually specify ‘another hero’. Anyways no biggie. But myself and some of the folks I play with get hung up on these minor details. Again, thanks for your thoughts. 🙂

  6. Charles Barchuk says:

    Check this out:

    http://www.darkshire.net/jhkim/rpg/dnd/boardgames/faq.html

    Look at the 8th question from Wotc talking about if powers apply to one’s using them.

    “Unless a power specifically says “any other hero” or “any adjacent hero”, an “any hero on the tile” rule includes the same hero casting/using the power.

    Seems to me Wotc is saying that unless the power specifies ‘another’ or ‘any other’ etc…then the power does work on the hero using it.

  7. Charles Barchuk says:

    Good question. I guess this why there are soooo many questions under the rules forums for these games…lol. Still I agree thematically it makes more sense that it’s used to copy another heroes daily power. But the whole idea behind the ability is to immediately get another daily power back into your hand face up; a free recharge so to speak. A recharge ability that allows him to recharge ANY used daily power he wants. My gut tells me that’s why they didn’t use the word ‘another’. Otherwise this ability is completely useless in a solo game which leaves only Cloak of the Bat which is, by far, the most worthless situational ability Artemis has. I know I can ultimately play it how I want. But I just love discussing these types of things. Cheers!

  8. Charles Barchuk says:

    Hey man, who are your favorite heroes out of the whole series? Who are the weakest in your opinion? Who are the strongest? Would love to get your thoughts. Thanks again.

  9. Charles Barchuk says:

    Hey man I recently played two games with Artemis using the Magic Longsword in the 1st game and using the Saber of Wounding in the 2nd game. In the past I’ve always used the Magic Longsword assuming it’s the obviously better choice. But now after these 2 games my position is changing a bit. Since the Saber and the Vampiric dagger have the same attack bonus it’s much easier to choose which one you should use at any given time. If the monster only has 1 HP then the dagger is always the choice to use. If it has 2 HP or more then the Saber becomes an option. It’s great choice to use in particular with Duelist Poise. It still comes down to luck of course. But like you said, when it connects it feels good. With the Magic Longsword I was constantly torn on which I should use. Not sure if any of this makes sense but the Saber just felt better for some reason even statistically, as you’ve shown, it’s a bit behind. Don’t know if much of that made sense. Just ramblings.

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