D&D 5E Orichalcum?

simply list all the features in separated lines.
You will then realize that it is too much for a single alloy,
unless you provide an incredible lore which is missing.
 

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Faolyn

(she/her)
In GURPS, they list orichalcum as being three times structurally stronger, so going by that, weapons and armor made of it can be one-third the weight. Meaning heavy armor could be medium or even light, regular weapons could become light or whatever the tag is, and heavy weapons could become regular weapons.

If you want the material to have any additional properties, that is.
 

Shadowdweller00

Adventurer
Another interesting ancient alloy.

Yeah, that was one of the major types of "bronze" in the ancient world. Unfortunately it had a tendency to quickly kill (or permanently debillitate) the metalworker. One of the major reasons behind the transition to iron was that the materials to make iron were everywhere. Ironworking predates the "iron age" by centuries if not millennia. Bronzes at the time actually made superior weapons than early ironworking products; but were rarer and harder to obtain. Rome fought a number of wars to secure access to key components of bronze-making.
 
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Shadowdweller00

Adventurer
In GURPS, they list orichalcum as being three times structurally stronger, so going by that, weapons and armor made of it can be one-third the weight. Meaning heavy armor could be medium or even light, regular weapons could become light or whatever the tag is, and heavy weapons could become regular weapons.

If you want the material to have any additional properties, that is.
Unfortunately in a game context, that would make it mechanically similar or identical to mithral, which would defeat the point
 

the Jester

Legend
So I wanted to introduce a weapon made of an unusual magical metal for an upcoming game. Orichalcum seemed like a suitable legendary type.
I have orichalcum in my game.

I'm kind of thinking something along the lines of: Orichalcum is a magical alloy of bronze and gold that is supernaturally strong and has been infused with radiant energy. Items made from orichalcum gleam with an unearthly luster that always seems brighter than surrounding light sources, though they do not normally illuminate dark areas by themselves. Like florescent pigments. Weapons and Armor made from orichalcum are automatically magical (+1) when fighting most enemies, except for the following: Celestials and Fey are resistant to the energy infusing the metal, and treat strikes from weapons made of Orichalcum as if they were non-magical. (Even those normally associated with darkness). All other creatures who are struck by orchicalcum weapons take normal, magical-weapon damage AND count as having been exposed to bright sunlight (including for purposes of Light Sensitivity) in any round during which they are hit by an orichalcum weapon. Divine, Arcane, or specific spell-focuses made of orichalcum empower light and radiant-based spells, treating them as if they were cast using a spell slot one level higher. Light or Radiant-based cantrips cast using such a focus deal +1 damage. Orichalcum is often used to outfit fey warriors who cannot abide the touch of iron.

What do you all think? Suitable? Too fiddly or complicated? Have other ideas that you think are better?
Too fiddly for my taste. Also, having armor and weapons be automatically +1 seems a bit much- it makes this metal more combat-effective than adamantine. That said, if neither the fiddliness nor the comparison to adamantine bother you, this could work.

In my campaign, orichalcum is a coppery metal. It's a true metal on its own, not an alloy or compound. It's not especially hard; it is useful in that it interferes with scrying, divination, and teleportation.
 

Shadowdweller00

Adventurer
Also, having armor and weapons be automatically +1 seems a bit much- it makes this metal more combat-effective than adamantine. That said, if neither the fiddliness nor the comparison to adamantine bother you, this could work.
I use both mithral and adamantine in my games as well. And items made from those (in my worlds) are almost always magic so that's more of a baseline. In this case, I wanted something from an alien culture on an alien world.... so wanted a different material.
 

Celebrim

Legend
So Orichalcum - or "True Gold" - is a thing in my game. It is excessively rare and valuable - being worth roughly twice that of mithril which is itself worth five times that of platinum (and in my game things are priced in silver pieces not gold pieces, so this translates in standard D&D to about 1000 times as valuable as gold). Pure orichalcum is completely immune to acid and corrosion of all sorts. It is almost as hard as Adamantium, but it's almost never used to make weapons because it does not easily take a sharp edge, and because it is heavy. Adamantium is simply better for swords. You might make a pick or Warhammer or mace out of it, but even that would be rare because the most important thing about Orichalcum is it confers immunity to magic. Armor made out of Orichalcum confers magic resistance on the wearer that scales with the 'plus' of the armor. This is so valuable and orichalcum so rare, that it's almost never used for anything else - though copper alloyed with orichalcum is corrosion resistant and somewhat magic resistant and has applications in alchemy. In my game, the Invulnerable Coat of Arnd is a mail hauberk made of orichalcum.

As for how your version works, that's perfectly fine. The rarity of the material should and can always be used to keep balance, and as a 'magic item' the proposed properties aren't too overpowered.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Supporter
So I wanted to introduce a weapon made of an unusual magical metal for an upcoming game ...



What do you all think? Suitable? Too fiddly or complicated? Have other ideas that you think are better?

5e has largely gotten away from materials intrinsically adding properties to mundane items. Instead, they are ingredients used in the recipes for crafting items of particular properties. You don't hand mithral or adamantine to just any smith and get special armor. You give mithral to a smith who knows the recipe for mithral armor, and they can make you the magic item known as Mithral Armor, using the crafting rules for making the item.

So, instead, you'd have the items
Orichalcum Armor
Orichalcum Sword
Orichalcum Spell Focus

Each with their respective magic item properties, and rarity (and thus cost and time to create) based on how potent they are.
 

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
So I wanted to introduce a weapon made of an unusual magical metal for an upcoming game. Orichalcum seemed like a suitable legendary type. The only problem is - what exactly makes orichalcum special and unique? In the real world it was likely some sort of bronze or brass alloy. I believe Plato wrote about it in reference to Atlantis. In legend and general fantasy lore it has generally been given magical properties.

I'm kind of thinking something along the lines of: Orichalcum is a magical alloy of bronze and gold that is supernaturally strong and has been infused with radiant energy. Items made from orichalcum gleam with an unearthly luster that always seems brighter than surrounding light sources, though they do not normally illuminate dark areas by themselves. Like florescent pigments. Weapons and Armor made from orichalcum are automatically magical (+1) when fighting most enemies, except for the following: Celestials and Fey are resistant to the energy infusing the metal, and treat strikes from weapons made of Orichalcum as if they were non-magical. (Even those normally associated with darkness). All other creatures who are struck by orchicalcum weapons take normal, magical-weapon damage AND count as having been exposed to bright sunlight (including for purposes of Light Sensitivity) in any round during which they are hit by an orichalcum weapon. Divine, Arcane, or specific spell-focuses made of orichalcum empower light and radiant-based spells, treating them as if they were cast using a spell slot one level higher. Light or Radiant-based cantrips cast using such a focus deal +1 damage. Orichalcum is often used to outfit fey warriors who cannot abide the touch of iron.

What do you all think? Suitable? Too fiddly or complicated? Have other ideas that you think are better?
I really like it. Orichalcum isn't used in fantasy gaming nearly enough, and your take is consistent with historical beliefs in its legendary properties.
 

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