Eclipse d20 – The Ultimate Weapon

It’s the ultimate weapon. The trouble is, it doesn’t just wipe out your enemies. It wipes out EVERYTHING. It may turn back time, start a new big bang, awaken the elder ones to remold the universe in their image until they take another nap and a new world arises, or do any of a thousand other things – but the details do not matter one tiny bit; everyone and everything you ever knew – and possibly the user – will be gone. Even if the user survives, he, she, or it, will pay a terrible price.

So how do you buy this?

As usual in Eclipse, you need to look at what this actually does in the game. Functionally… an Ultimate Weapon will never come into play until the dark powers have either scored a complete and eternal triumph or are about to, simply because nothing else can possibly justify it’s use or make the threat of using it believable. At that point, with the game ending otherwise, the characters present their plot coupon – and the dark powers either back off or the game does indeed end (albeit possibly with some sort of “new world” epilogue like Wolf’s Rain).

So you can either do a curtain drop on a downer ending (quite likely if the dark powers don’t believe that the heroes would do that) or the dark powers back down and settle for minor incursions and attempts to steal the weapon – and THAT not only kills off most future excitement and heroics but renders most of the earlier ones moot.

Really, the only excitement to be found here is in trying to get the weapon in the first place or in dealing with anti-climactic small-scale incursions that would never be a big enough threat to be worth using the Weapon on.

Secondarily, in Eclipse… if one character can have something, so can others. That means that your ultimate weapon has to independently veto attempts to use it by crackpots and such or the universe would have ended long ago.

  • So take Enormous Favors (The Powers That Be, 12 CP). Specialized and Corrupted for Triple Effect / the user may only actually gets to ask for a favor when all other hope is lost, the user has little to no control over what actually happens but it always essentially ends the game and prevents the user from ever asking for another favor, only works for those who are granted the appropriate magical authority by The Powers That Be.

That should cover dropping the curtain. Even if you want to count it as a spell… a Grandiose Favor will cover a fairly high level one, so tripling that takes us a LONG ways up the chart and possibly beyond it.

So… that’s a 2 CP relic. The only real difficulty in making it is getting the GM’s permission to claim favors from “The Powers That Be”. It isn’t easy to get whatever passes for The Almighty in the setting to intervene on your behalf.

If it rarely gets stolen, or turns up again when it does… buy:

  • Enthusiast, Specialized for Increased Effect and Corrupted for Reduced Cost; the points may only be used in conjunction with Create Relic (2 CP).
  • Create Relic, Specialized and Corrupted/only to make the Ultimate Weapon using points from Enthusiast, may require some adventuring (2 CP).

That combo means that it may require an adventure or two to get it back, but the Ultimate Weapon will always return to the possession of it’s authorized wielder sooner or later.

  • Privilege: Authorized Wielder of the Ultimate Weapon (3 CP). Given that this is “you can commit suicide!” I can’t see it costing too much. Few characters will take it though; it’s just so USELESS.

If you want your Ultimate Weapon to be good for the occasional lesser trick… take:

  • Upgrade Enthusiast to Double Enthusiast with the same limitations (+2 CP, for a total of 9 CP)) and throw in:
  • 2d6 Mana with Reality Editing, Specialized and Corrupted for Increased Effect (Minor/Notable/Major/Grandiose (if allowed) edits cost 1/2/3/4 Mana)/only for Reality Editing, effects produced must fit in with the theme of the weapon and are obviously generated by it, user must have the privilege of using the weapon, mana only recovers at 2 points per day.

And now, at a total cost of 9 CP, you have a four point relic that can generate some major effects – but only a few, and it takes days for it to recover. You can’t use that too often, but it will be fairly impressive when you do.

Honestly… whether it’s Marvels Ultimate Nullifier, DCs Anti-Life Equation, Dr Who’s Moment, Sailor Saturn’s Silence Glaive, the Slaver Amplifier, or the Deplorable Word… This sort of device is interesting when it’s the McGuffin you seek, or accounts for some ancient tragedy – but actually hauling it into the current story is all too often a symptom of having written yourself into a corner.

For most purposes it’s better to simply buy yourself a reputation for having access to an ultimate weapon, or a great big bonus to bluff and an immunity to truth detection.

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4 Responses

  1. I actually thought about how to make an ultimate weapon too. The way I found it possible was to have a Targeting Call of the Assembly, allowing yourself (and only yourself, since no other person counts as appropriate “target”) to arbitrarily change the natural laws… Which will probably result into annihilation no matter what (Set light’s speed to infinity” was an example you gave, right?).

    You probably don’t need favors from the powers that be as so much favors from any sort of being capable of creating such a weapon or annihilating the universe (Favors from Eldritch Horror might work just as well).

    There was an adventure in the Elder Evils book that was about releasing a prisoner that was more or less innocent… Which the PCs had to stop, because said prisoner would probably take revenge.

    • The trouble with Targeting Call the Assembly is that then you are the target – which means that everyone else continues to occupy their universe while you get a privately tailored one of your very own. Hopefully you will indeed be wise enough to come up with a functional set of natural laws, rather than having it blow up in your face. Such a “Solipsism” spell would make a marvelous fallback position if you were sure that you could handle the setup though.

      And I kind of felt that any being capable of creating such a weapon or annihilating the universe pretty much was one of the “Powers That Be” by default.

      • Well, either way, if you have a Universe that statisfies your own desires, and you weaponize it (simply allowing portals on your end to be operated without sentience, for instance), you could probably annihilate different Universes too, just with an extra step in between.

        There actually is a level 7 solipism spell… but it does different things: It makes the target consider everything other than itself an illusion and will thus not defend itself.

        Something annihilating the universe must not necessarily indicate that it’s all-powerful or sentient or even that it is capable of anything but annihilating the universe pretty much for the same reason Gandalf doesn’t have to be a super wizard: As long as Gandalf can do what Gandalf did in the books, the rest of the build doesn’t really matter.

      • Oh, it can certainly be useful – although other universes often have restrictions on what can be brought into them.

        The level seven effect, of course, simply induces a false belief that only you are real and the universe is not. This twenty-second level makes that belief a reality.

        And you’re quite right; a universe-destroying power does not need to be all-powerful or sentient – but whatever empowers this version of “the” Ultimate Weapon does have to capable of doing someone a favor since the weapon works by allowing the user to request a particularly grandiose favor – “Destroy the Universe”.

        You know, there’s a build for Gandalf up on the site, and it provoked quite an argument from someone who was sure that Gandalf had to be much more powerful than THAT. They couldn’t seem to find any actual examples of him doing things that weren’t covered though.

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