Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Great Ak's Great Axe

Another dip into the Rankin-Bass well before the holidays officially commence... This time it falls on me to report on the existence of a powerful Artifact/Relic that escaped the attention of Gary Gygax when he composed the AD&D Dungeon Master's Guide:  the great axe of the Great Ak, from The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus.

The Great Ak is a Lesser God, serving as the Master Woodsman of the World. The Celts worshipped him as the Master of the Wild Hunt (Deities & Demigods, p. 31), but they mistakenly depicted him with a spear instead of his Axe.

The Great Ak's Great Axe was forged by the first Dwarven king, as a near-twin in appearance to the Axe of the Dwarvish Lords, but with different powers. Its blade has the effect of a vorpal sword, +3 to-hit and damage, with additional chances of instant decapitation on modified rolls of 20 or higher. It does double damage against any type of Demon, including especially the toy-stealing Awgwas and their allies the Goozzle-Goblins. Like the Axe of the Dwarvish Lords, it gradually imparts long life and health on its possessor, but instead of converting a human wielder into a dwarf, it converts him or her into a jolly, rotund, red-cheeked, and white-bearded demigod.

Once per day, the Great Axe can also act as a Wand of Lightning and emit a laser-beam-like ray equivalent to the magic-user spell Lightning:

And, of course, ingenious DMs can incorporate a generous degree of gonzo randomness in the usual way as well:
Hat tip to Chris Sims, whose recent post made me aware of the awesomeness of this particular R-B special that I've actually never watched all the way through.  I'd been minorly offended that it departs from the Kringle-centric continuity established in the earlier specials of the 1970s, but I'll definitely have to find it A.S.A.Now!

Final Note: I guess talking about a powerful weapon of war on Christmas Eve is as about as far as you can get from the spirit of Luke chapter 2... but, hey, at least I'm not flooding the web with more posts about Krampus!  :-)

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