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What could a gun in a high-fantasy setting...
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What could a gun in a high-fantasy setting use instead of gunpowder?
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magicpowder

now fuck off
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Literally anything. I had a session with giant moths as an enemy that ended up having the players postulate that their moth dust was an analogue for gunpowder.
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Just... magic? Load a metal projectile in, the trigger completes runes that draw magic from the wielder. Special projectiles, special guns, and skilled wielders can give shots different properties, make them more accurate, or deal more damage with them.
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>>44633846

If you're using magic, then a fireball-pebble. A single-use pebble that has a (minor) fireball enchantment on it, when struck hard enough releases the enchantment. Can also be used as thrown weapons, though the damage would be minimal.
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>>44633846
>>44633910
>Just... magic? Load a metal projectile in, the trigger completes runes that draw magic from the wielder. Special projectiles, special guns, and skilled wielders can give shots different properties, make them more accurate, or deal more damage with them.
Hell, you could just have a magical liner accelerator that you drop normal bolts into.
BAM, Magic Railguns!
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>>44633846

some of these.
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Prayer.

Each gun houses an itty-bitty shrine to [insert appropriate deity here]. When you pull the trigger, it rings a tiny bell or turns a prayer wheel or whatever, which in turn releases a burst of divine energy. It's up to you whether you want it to propel a projectile or if it just comes out of the barrel like a magical lazer beam. (God Rays?)
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>>44633846
Off the top of my head some ideas:

Magic/mana
chi
Demon's blood/angel feathers/bits of outsiders
Fire flower extract
dragon bits, such as scales, organs, or other things
bark from specific trees brewed in a special means
rare crystals that have been powdered

Really there is a fuckton of things you could use instead.
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>>44633846
I assume guns are some powerful, useful alternative to magic, right? So what actually makes them just as good as magic? Are the projectiles iron? Silver? Do they negate magic?

Are they everyman's access to magic-level power? Then some kind of hard to make alchemical powder, however the materials are plentiful.
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If we're talking DnD here, how could I make a Caster a unique implement in the world?

The idea I have is that, for normies who can't cast spells, there are specialized shells that let them fire cantrips in a line where as an actual magic user could expend spell slots to in place of shells but have more varied effects.

How can I make this a thing but keep it balanced?
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>>44634005
>>44634029
>>44634064


>Castermind
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>>44634024
This is some good shit, it's nuts. I love it.

I'm imagining lovingly, slavishly engraved and carved bullets with images of battles and deities and heroes in them that sing and chant as they travel through the air.
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>>44634024

Isn't that some kind of weapon in Exalted?
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Depends on how the world works in the setting.

If you've got something with a basis in the classical elements, perhaps an elemental concoction of Earth and Fire? In more conceptual magical settings it'd be force and motion, or such things.
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>>44634064
all the shells are extraordinarily hard to make, requiring significant time (a month), resources (rare catalysts from different parts of the globe) and energy (multi-day rituals that drain spell power) with every single shell.
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>>44634083
Outlaw Star gave us many good things. Spell guns, Aisha, awesome mechs, Aisha, some pretty good space fantasy shenanigans, Aisha.
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>>44633846
Whatever you want.
To suggest something not mentioned here before, what about compressed air? Pic related is a Girandoni Air Rifle, invented in 1779. It had a ton of issues, but it was the first repeating rifle that saw military use in the Austrian army from 1780 to 1815.
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>>44633846
It's a gate to the plane of high velocity projectiles.
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>>44634083
hey, it was a great magic gun. can't help it if everyone else thinks so too.
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>>44634102
Is it? Fuck.

Well, steal that shit anyway. It's a bonkers idea that works.
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>>44633846
Memories.
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What factor in the setting precludes the development of ordinary gunpowder? Keep in mind it is presumed to have been invented around AD 900 in China.
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>>44634331

As with all things it should be an accident that then becomes a toy that then becomes a weapon of war.

An alchemist who accidently drops some salt peter and nitrate into a fire and it poofs. Figures out that in certain ratios you get a nice bang and some smoke. Because a toy for nobles and a neat party trick. Figure out you get a bunch of this stuff and make really big booms.

1+2= I can make things go boom with this and so on and so forth. Nothing ever has to be deliberate.
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A silver/iron sphere full of tiny, bound demons which are released with every shot fired.

You have to go out and bound more demons or hire a priest to bind them, or commission a sorcerer to conjure and bind the demons.
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Spells can be stored in gems and released when the gems are crushed. Each cartridge has a vial of poison and a gem to teleport the poison into the target.
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>>44633846
Bullets are actually small magical crystals charged with energy, engraved with an incomplete sigil of whatever spell your weapon is firing (dumbfire magic missile probably, or Fireball for a fantasy grenade launcher).

When you pull the trigger, the hammer of the firearm impacts the crystal and engraves the last part of the sigil. This activates the spell which is released out of the gun barrel.

The crystal could either be annihilated completely after the shot, or it could be 'spent' - to reuse it, you could file off the rear end with the complete sigil, apply the partial sigil again, and recharge it with energy. In the latter case, the accuracy and power of the shot will probably suffer, due to the fact that you filed off a part of the crystal. Second-hand ammo could be cheap though.

If you're really into the gunsmithing thing, you could have your barrel lined with magic repelling material to stabilise the shot inside the barrel, buddhist mantra revolvers that use prayer wheel technology (look up 'prayer wheel' on Wikipedia), and so on.
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>>44633846
Magic missiles. Done.

*Drops mic
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>>44634993
>*Drops mic
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>>44633846
Magic-lightning-powered electromagnetism, for crude coilguns or railguns.
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Special Airguns
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>>44634024
>I'll take a 32 Caliber Smite & Wesson
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>>44633846
Imps that have been reduced into powder.
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Whale oil, my man.
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>>44633846
Human fingers.
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>>44635088
Sorry typo

*drops Mike
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>>44633846
Jeweler's Polish?
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>>44633973
See, that's a constructive addition to a thread. So why the namefagging, you dingus?
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>>44636453
Because it's how I do, and it took you two and a half hours to even notice...
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>>44633846
SOULS
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The blood of magic users, the urine of virgin girls, the amniotic fluid of ten wholesome women and ten unwholesome women. Then, mix with the saliva of a wyvern, and the blood of a matriarch dragon. Bless for three nights straight with water from a mountain spring and sap from a tree that "awakens" only during a fire. Mix with the grounded bones of ten criminals who died at lease decade ago. Stir using the left hand of a condemned criminal, but you must harvest the hand during midnight, and the condemned corpse must not be looked upon save for the hand.
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>>44633846
Elder Scrolls fans have this weird "no guns allowed" rule for it.

So I once commented on RL pneumatic guns and dynamite cannons.

And also that, since dwemer metal is people + a magibabble I can't remember about reactions between imprisioned souls, one could create a "railbow" (really a railgun) which fired dwemer bolts, powered by soul gems.
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I've used a "black powder" that came from a special kind of crystal, which gunslingers would shave and mash to make into ammunition.

The material itself is explosively reactive to magic- My way of working around wizards with guns. The powdered form is much more easily contained, and the flintlock merely has a small magic-infused rune to activate it.
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I've always loved the idea of sentient, non-sapient creatures held in containment cells. The trigger mechanism acts as an agitator of the creature, to spark a defends response which is then funnelled down the barrel towards the target. So like a fantasy napalm thrower uses a fire spirit. It agitates it, thing let's of its natural defends response which is then fired down the barrel of the "gun"
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>>44635220
I want a Smite and Wesson now
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>>44634133
You forgot to mention Aisha.
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>>44639786
The Dwemer are the only ones who would think of making guns, and who had anything resembling explosives. They have all disappeared.

Do you really see the Nords knocking together a working firearm? The Bosmer, maybe? Probably only the Bretons or the Imperials could come up with the idea for a cannon, but they won't. And in a setting where people can learn to fling fireballs and stuff, the incentive to develop personal firearms is particularly low. Especially given that all the civs in TES seem to have plenty of people who know how to use a bow.
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Dehydrated Naphta-oil powder
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>>44633846
Fire ants. The name is much more literal in the setting.
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>>44640557
I never mentioned any firearm or explosive, just air and magic.

And one sees people messing with dwemer tech, mentions of redguard ship cannons and there's people mixing magic into their wepaons everywhere. I don't think it would be either mass-produced or widely adopted, just something someone comes up with.

The nords are the most feasible race for this, because they distrust magic itself but I never saw anything against magical weapons. Even if ones goes by their "primitive" stereotype (bleh), all it takes is one rare, weird nord to invent something that others can reproduce.
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>>44641181
It's all a dream anyway, that's why the tech level never changes.
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>>44633846

Tiny magical crystals. A gun is basically a magic wand. If you bury the crystal in a high-mana area, it eventually recharges.
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if you want a nonmagical alternative for bigger guns, then I'd suggest a steamcannon or very powerful airguns. alternatively gas/fuel: litterally anything that is possible to carry around and expands fast when lit/activated
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>>44633910
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>>44633846
Whatever it is, they would just call it gunpowder anyway. gun-powder : powder for guns. Trying to change that word would be silly.

However!

The recipe for "gunpowder" is the bait here.

So instead of the IRL potassium nitrate mix, the lore recipe behind "gunpowder" could be more m├Ągical.

Life essence of orphans and cute pandas trapped into crystals that explode on impact - the escaping soul pushing the projectile.. idk.
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>>44641230

I just want some vertibirds with Frank Horrigan and his power armored friends to show up in Tamriel.
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It could use powder extracted from the remains of a specific monster. It would be rarer and impossible to manufacture in a lab from scratch. Attempts to use real-world recipes for gunpowder would simply not produce a substance with the known properties.
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>>44641230
That's not true, in both regards. Firstly, TES is the Godhead's "Dream" in the sense that it's all internally taking place within the Godhead. The term Dream is just used to illustrate the concept, it isn't actually the dream of some sleeping dude.
And technology does change, it just doesn't do it in the same sense it does here. In Reman's time, things were much more advanced, and they become advanced again in the 5th era.
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>>44641308
Assuming it would be powder. No point in calling it gunpowder if it's, say, a crytal containing magical power that explodes to propel the bullet (that'd be a gun crystal or something).

Personally, I like the "magic rail/coilgun" idea, where magic is used to accelerate the projectile.
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>>44641451
Other than the dwarves turning into roboskin, what were the other reasons for the tech downgrade before the fifth era rolled around? aside from elder scrolls games being marketed as sword and sorcery games
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>>44634197
Didn't one of the ghosts in Dresden Files basically do that?
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>>44639786
Cannons actually do exist in TES, as they are occasionally mentioned, primarily as a shipboard armament. Nobody seem to have invented handheld firearms, though, likely because magic is commonplace enough to make them redundant (cannons are still useful because you need a pretty powerful wizard to do as much damage as a fireball, but a pretty weak wizard or a guy with an enchanted bow will probably do a better job than a musket).
Trainwiz's Wheels of Lull has harquebuses, which are mentioned to be magical gun originally developed during the First Era and mostly forgotten since then, which is probably entirely his own invention but given the stuff they had during the First Era it wouldn't surprise me if something like that existed.
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>>44633846

Concentrated Magically Active Tanks of Whale Oil.
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>>44633846
A magic gel that rapidly expands when resonating to a certain tone?
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>>44633846
A small exploding rune on the ass of the bullet that's broken by the hammer, propelling it forward.
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>>44633910
>the trigger completes runes

I like the idea of the hammer acting as a metal punch to inscribe the last bit of the rune for "go really fast" onto the projectile.

If one was feeling creative, one could have assorted projectiles with different runes on them, all completed by the same few lines on the hammer, allowing customized projectiles that curved left, went so far and stopped, or even boomeranged, as a trap for those who stole your gun.
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>>44633846
>What could a gun in a high-fantasy setting use instead of gunpowder?

Why assume chemistry does not work in your setting?

Also, pulling trigger opens. just behind the bullet, a very small magic portal to a place where the density and pressure is very high.

You might also Google "Gyro Jet pistols," as the advantages and limitations of a rocket-pistol might be fun to play with. You'd still need a magical propellant, if you are dead set against chemistry working, but the behavior of the weapon is different and might make for some differences in game play.
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Sentient bullets that have a natural antipathy for the gun, and flee it at extreme velocity when released. Give them some of the attitude of the Luftmorders and missiles in Varley's Gaia books.
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>>44633846
Spit, blood, whatever.

Something from the user to siphon power maybe?
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>>44642326
>gun jams
>have to spend a couple of minutes dangling meat in front of the barrel until the bullet comes out
>distracted by things other than unjamming the gun
>when you're not looking the bullet crawls out of the barrel just enough to grab the meat out of your hand before scurrying back into the gun
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>>44634102
Yep. A Prayer Piece is basically a gun with a thousand tiny shrines built into the barrel. When the weapon is fired, the shrines channel their prayer to the Small God of the bullet, which is then flung out the barrel.
There's also the Flame Piece, which uses explosive firedust packed into the barrel. When ignited the firedust towards the front is flung out before it can detonate, lobbing a blob of flaming smutze a short distance.

Sadly, the two can't be combined into a real combustion-powered slug thrower because during the Primordial War, the Titan who embodies all concepts got maimed and in the process broke the idea of "Gun".
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>>44634064
I think you want to work on re-working the Arcane Archer prestige class into a gun-mage class.
I suggest making it essentially a bard, who loses his musical skills but gains access to the arcane archers special shit.
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>>44642793
Fucking Exalted, man.
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>>44633846
Salt
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>>44633846
Dried and powdered incubus semen
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>>44643578

incubuses don't produce semen, they turn into succubuses and store up semen from guys they fuck, so you'd effectively just be using regular semen, and then you might as well fill squirtguns with semen.

Unless the succubus/incubus is refining the semen to make it magical somehow. Of course, a setting with guns powered like that would have a strong need for rape factories.
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>>44641298
mah outlaw nigga
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>>44643890
"Sorry John, we're gonna need at least six more rape factories before you can start using that gun with any kind of frequency."
"Alright, let's raid those beach villages, they've got enough girls to keep us supplied."
"Nah, we'd better try a city, I want that gatling gun for my Paladin."
"...guys, are you sure we're the good guys?"
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You could use something like caster's from outlaw star.
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>>44635897
can dishonored be considered Whalepunk?
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>>44633846
I always made it a thing in my games that Plants from land tainted by Dragon or Wyvern or Drake blood was terribly poisonous but if ground down into a find Alchemical powder could be used for a variety of purposes.

The idea is that Dragons and dragon like creatures horded gold as a way to keep warm, the metal reacted with their blood making heat up and thus keep the cold blooded creatures warm while in Cold or Temperate climates as well as that the Humors released from the blood when it heated up was what allowed them to breath fire.

So different metals caused ground down blood powder to react differently, Copper creates a bright slow burning effect and its effective as a light source.

Silver causes the Powder to burn slowly with a great heat allowing it to be used as a source of Warmth

Gold causes a more gunpowder like effect, more advanced guns load a paper cartidge down the tube then gold tooth(replacing the hammer on a regular flintlock) hits straight into the barrel igniting the shot in an explosion, in game effect for my game guns do more damage take about just as long to reload as a crossbow but are Loud, and while the shot isn't too expensive Replacing the Golden pick every couple of shots does become somewhat expensive.

The different breed of dragon gets a different quality (with actual dragons being the best but good luck getting that sort of powder or if you have Moral qualms about bleeding sentient creatures to make gunpowder)

In short we call them Drakelocks
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Did you ever watch this series, OP
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>>44633846
Magic, magic crystals or any other kind of magic-powered object.
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>>44647761
oh man, I forgot about this series
fuck yes, shoot monsters at your problems
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>>44633846
Gunpowder.
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>>44641649
The fall of the Second Empire, and the following centuries of destructive civil wars and upheaval effectively destroyed the Second Empire's intellectual culture, and there were no longer any states affluent enough or even willing to take on the legacy.
The technological progress was dependent on the full support of the Reman dynasty.
As a comparison, though it's naturally not completely accurate, imagine that the US right now erupted into a violent civil war lasting more than four centuries. Reman Era technological progress was very centralized and specific, so let's compare it with NASA.
Don't you think that, once some warlord finally unites the US again, space technology would probably be further back than it was in 2016?
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Arcanite powder, when it comes in contact with a certein crystal it creates a small explosion, like the flint of a flintlock gun. If you want something real simple. The gun then shoots a magic missile instead of bullets.
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>>44647737

I like this idea although I would have it that anything infused with materials from dragon (i.e. fossilized bones, blood, etc) would be some kind of catalyst or reactant that super charges anything it's put in so when you do your normal black powder making you throw in a pinch of ground up drakes bone and suddenly the explosive power is greater then before.

Throw in the ground up bones of a True Dragon and the power doubles
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>>44636099
very underrated post.
just has to be from the right shadow.
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>>44634133
You seem like a man who is already familiar with Zone's Aisha flash game, but I thought I would mention it just in case.
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Gunpowder.

Don't worry about changing the mechanics of a gun - you have magic for that already. Instead, make guns things of Mysticism. The pistol is your wand, its gunsmoke your ritual incense, the engravings your runes. Take the charcoal from the remains of ancient treants, brimstone from each of the nine hells, and saltpeter from the Underdark.
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>>44633846
Ki.
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>>44636099
fuckin loved that series

Also, what about binding souls to bullets, using their energy as a propellant, thus requiring some sort of necromantic ritual. This would make guns less common simply because they would be "tainted" in the view of most people
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>>44647978
It really bounced between awful and awesome, but I liked it.
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>>44642793

Actually that isn't the reason for gyns not working. They were left out as the creator didn't want arms race involving guns that happened IRL. It wasn't until the last book of 2.Xe that we had guns actually statted.
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