The Ultimate Weapon.
Ok lets be real, level cap is hitting 30, TR is the new end game, so it's time for this to come to life, but an idea like this needs to have dynamic to it, it needs to have prose and purpose, you can't just drop some ultimate weapon into a quest and call it done, no that simply would not do, if you plan to a final weapon for a type, it needs to have a journey behind it, a story, a purpose and a meaning, but above all, it needs to be a painfully laborious grind to obtain, or else, it's simply not fun.
So, allow me to explain my idea in a manner that I know. See I am a collector of dwarf axes, it just was the thing I enjoyed from the game, it's what I used in PnP when I played a dwarf, a dwarf used a dwarf axe, so that was how I played, and how I approached DDO, and it worked well for me. I am sure others have number crushed and picked their preferred ideal weapon that they tended to collect from one life to another to another, building upon a theme. I could be wrong, but that is what I have done, so I wager I can't be the only one who has done this.
So here goes my idea, Kruz knows of another druid of his kind, a Druid of the Eternal Life, and they have finally unlocked the means to fuse a soul of a person to their cherished weapon, literally making a Living Weapon that shares a heart beat with its wielder.
To make this Living Weapon, a player must collect every weapon of the same kind into a collecting "bag" think to necro IV, where you collect tome pages or shield parts into a "bag", this "bag" would get a fancy name, we shall call it the "Schematic of War" for weapon (I have a reason for this)
Each weapon type would get its own Semantic: IE: 1 for Quarterstaffs, 1 for Great Axes, 1 for Great Swords, 1 for Daggers, 1 for Khopeh, 1 for Scimitars, Etc, etc, etc, there would be 1 for each and every weapon type, including Long bows, Throwing axes, etc.
Visual example as follows.
The next part would be that a player would then need to "collect" the parts, for some items it would be simple, for example, with a Great Axe, simply collect all the "special" great axe's in the game, IE: all Named Great Axes, as well as GS and Alchemical.
A point of stipulation, you would only need to collect a single variant of each type, IE: You could use Either The base Antique Great Axe OR the Epic A-Great axe, you would not need both, you would not need to upgrade the GS item or Alchemical, you would not need to upgrade Cleaver, etc, etc, as long as you had a great axe of any variant of the type needed it would be enough.
Now, the next question "what about the easy ones, like Great Crossbow, that has a grand total of 3 items to get?, being the Korthos, GS, and Alchemical."
Ok, well barring the fact that the weapon sucks and no one uses it, and that is why it's not being added to, that is a great question.
The idea would be there would need to a minimum number of "special" items that a player would need to acquire, if the single class of weapons did not have enough, like for example: Great Crossbows, Hand Axes, Darts, Throwing axes, Light Hammers, Throwing Hammers, they would need to fill the gaps with other items from a similar group to balance things out.
I mean lets be real here, it's not fair that someone needs to farm around 25 Long bows to get a Living Longbow, while someone else only needs to acquire 3 throwing axes to get a living throwing axe, beyond you know, the fact that Longbows totally outclass throwing axes, so, to fix that issue other items would be added to the mix to make things a bit more fair, For example, to get any of the Throwing Weapons, you would need to collect ALL the throwing weapons in the game, (IE: All Throwing hammers, axes, Daggers, and Shurikens) and which one you got would be contingent upon the "Bag" you started with.
So in that front, to get a Throwing Weapon, you would need to collect all 19 different throwing items in the game, while still a bit less than the bow, let's be real, throwing weapons are quite a bit less powerful then Longbows anyway, so it really does balance out as far as the game balance goes.
So we get the idea of how things will be balanced, the next question is of course, why do this? What do I get from this "Living Weapon"
Ok, well my motives are quite simple, and I have 3 of them.
1: The idea to put a new kind of grind into the game for players to quest after, something for the player that may already have "everything" this gives them something to work for, but more than that, it spans the whole game, not just one pack that you end up endlessly grinding the same 6 quests, you now span the whole game with your quest to obtain this "Living Weapon"
2: It frees up inventory, the idea is once a players get this Living Weapon, they will no longer need to a full bank tab of stuff to deal with each and every situation.
3: Increase activity along older and more varying content.
Ok, now, the next question:
What do I get for all that, I mean, what is this "Living Weapon"
Ok, it's a weapon that levels with you, it binds to the character, and matches their level. I know the tech is there for weapon to know a characters alignment and class, so it has to be there to know the characters level as well.
In that front, the Living Weapon becomes both a one-time quest weapon, and an ideal TR item, that would serve its soul mate through all levels, but would not level up 1 level at a time, it would have tiers to how it leveled.
It would level at 1, 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, (This ends Heroic) and then 21, 24, 27, and 30th. (Which perfectly Ends Epic)
Now, before people get in on why I split this like this, it's pretty straight forward, the last Heroic Level needs to be 18th, because most (not all) TR's will take 18th and then jump to 20th, this means that 18th level will see the most activity along the hardest content, so the weapon needs to get an update right at that point to keep it top notch and viable.
Also, it would cap perfectly as the proposed end game of 30th, so players who have hit cap, would still have their "trusty friend" right to the end.
The base stats of all "Living Weapon" would be +.5[w], and No matter the type (IE: Axe, Sword, Bow, Dagger) of weapon it would do: Piercing, Slash, and Blunt damage. It would aligned, metalline, and made of Crystal.
Now from there, it would "grow" in power with each "Level" jump it took, that way it never becomes this "over powered" like many older raid items, that are amazing at their level, make astounding twink items, but then burn out. (all data is made up and only to be used as a guideline as to where Living weapons should fall in power levels vs level of toon as they level).
The exact stats would need to be worked out based on each type of weapon, I mean what works for a bow is not really going to work for a great axe, equally so, what works for a dagger is not going to work for a cross bow, so, each weapon type would need to cater to a play style.
But there would be a few "Universal Traits:
1st level: They would all be "Keen" (as well as additional traits signature to their weapon type)
3rd level: they would all be 1 [w] and "Ghost Touch" (as well as additional traits signature to their weapon type)
6th Level: they would all be 1.5[w] (as well as additional traits signature to their weapon type)
12th they would all be at least 2[w] (as well as additional traits signature to their weapon type)
15th they would 2.5 [w] and have improved crit range. (as well as additional traits signature to their weapon type)
18th they would all be 3[w] (as well as additional traits signature to their weapon type)
a few things would be noted,
Melee weapons as the levels up go, would proc heal effects on hits, from lesser vamp at levels 6 to greater vamp by level 12, as well as similar effects to how the axe of famine works, where it proc's a restoration.
I'll leave the floor open to what other classes would want in that regards, because I am sure there would be many things I will overlook, and things I had not thought of, my hope here was to lay a foundation for this idea, and see where it could be improved.
This idea could also open the door for others things to be made, like armor, jewelry, clothing, etc, so that a player could in fact be fully equipped in "Living" gear at some time in the future.
On final stipulation would be, to keep things going, when a new weapon of the type was put into the game, all older Living weapons would deactivate (Like the completionist feat goes away if a new class is added, in this case, I guess the weapon would return to it's "base" state, while still not bad, it would not be viable in the end game) and would not reactivate until it was 'fused' with the new weapon of its type, while I realize that may not be appreciated, it would need to be there to keep the grind up and justify new weapons and items being put into the game.
All "Schematic" bags would be need to be updated to contain the new weapons, so that any future Living weapons would need to be made with the new items as well as all the old ones. I am not sure how much I like this idea, I mean I realize that it might not go over well, it's also kinda needed to keep the replay value ongoing, and justify people running the new stuff when it comes out, you know. The trick at that point would be to limit the amount of new named items per "pack/expansion"but given loot gen is the new "new thing" I am not so sure this would even be a worry.
Such is my idea.