Maw of the Damned (5e Equipment)

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Weapon (greataxe), artifact (requires attunement)

An ancient demonic axe forged from a metal that drains its victim's life energies. The demonic soul of its original creator is trapped within and cursed with unending hunger. As such, the Maw's thirst is unquenchable, for eating is all it knows.
For more than a thousand years, an old and cunning Nalfeshnee has used the axe to butcher uprisings and consume the life force of the demon lords' enemies. Over its long and infamous history, the weapon has made its demonic bearer extraordinarily powerful.
The Maw of the Damned is a magic, sentient greataxe that grants a +3 bonus to attack and damage rolls made with it. It scores a critical hit on a roll of 19 or 20, and has the properties of a sword of life stealing.
If the axe has not "fed" with the life force of a sentient creature within 24 hours, its wielder must make a DC 15 Charisma saving throw. On a successful save, the wielder takes 3d6 psychic damage. On a failed save, the wielder is dominated by the axe, as if by the dominate monster spell, and the axe conveys its desire to kill and feed. The spell effect ends when the axe's demand is met.
Consumption. You can spend your action to swing the Maw of the Damned, creating a wave of life-draining necrotic energy that washes over every creature in front of you in a 15-foot cone. Each affected creature must make a DC 18 Constitution saving throw or take 5d12 necrotic damage. A creature that succeeds on its saving throw takes half as much damage. The wielder regains hit points equal to half the total necrotic damage inflicted.
This feature cannot be used again until the wielder takes a long rest.
Sentience. The Maw of the Damned is a sentient chaotic evil weapon with an Intelligence of 13, a Wisdom of 13, and a Charisma of 18. It has hearing and darkvision out to a range of 120 feet.
The weapon communicates by transmitting its dark emotions and violent impulses to the creature carrying or wielding it.
Personality. The Maw's thirst for blood is unquenchable, for eating is all it knows. The demonic spirit trapped inside the weapon seeks to feed constantly, and delights in the nourishment it gains from mass slaughter, as temporary as it is. Wracked by eternal hunger for sustenance, the Maw compels the wielder into using violence at every opportunity, regardless of the consequences, and to satisfy his or her own wants and needs over all others.
Random Properties. The Maw of the Damned has the following random properties:

  • 2 minor beneficial properties
  • 1 major beneficial property
  • 2 minor detrimental properties
  • 1 major detrimental property



Destroying the Maw of the Damned. Destroying the Maw of the Damned requires that it be taken to the Positive Energy Plane, and have it bath in the overwhelmingly-positive energy held within. This will nullify the negative energies held within the weapon, causing the axe to crack and explode.
Alternatively, if the Maw of the Damned is taken deep into the Infinite Abyss, it can also be unmade within the forge that its original creature used to create it thousands of years ago. This is no small feat, as the Abyss is crawling with demons that would do anything to taste even a glimpse of the legendary artifact's power.
Finally, the Maw of the Damned's magical power can be nullified by casting the wish spell to exorcise the demonic spirit bound within the weapon. A creature must cast the wish spell and make a Charisma check contested by the Charisma check of the axe. The axe must be within 30 feet of the creature, or the spell fails. If the Maw wins the contest, nothing happens, and the wish spell is wasted. If the Maw loses the contest, the demonic spirit of its creator is exorcised from the artifact, and regains its physical form somewhere within the Infinite Abyss.
If the spirit no longer inhabits the Maw of the Damned, the axe loses all of its original properties and abilities, and becomes a +3 weapon with the properties of a vicious weapon.

artifact-maw-1-thumb.jpg
Image from EU Battle.net

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