Fire and Frost Brand
|) Fire/Frost Brand|
|Base item||long sword|
|Damage vs. small||1d8 ×2|
|Damage vs. large||1d12 ×2|
|Bonus versus||not fire/cold resistant|
|Weapon skill||long sword|
|Base price||3000 zm|
Fire Brand and Frost Brand are two very similar artifacts. They are both unaligned long swords that give double damage and +1d5 to-hit against monsters not resistant to fire and cold respectively. When the bonus is applied, Frost Brand gives the message "The ice-cold blade freezes the <monster>!" and Fire Brand gives "The fiery blade burns the <monster>!"
Frost Brand is vastly more popular than Fire Brand, because many monsters in Gehennom are fire-resistant. However, most of the Astral Plane's monsters are cold-resistant and not fire-resistant. Both can destroy potions carried by their target; Fire Brand can also destroy scrolls and spellbooks. Some players dislike using them for this reason, but they are likely to kill their targets before the monster can use its item or the item is destroyed.
Frost and Fire Brand do slightly more damage than Grayswandir against large monsters who are neither resistant nor silver-hating. For that reason, they make excellent weapons once you have the resources to enchant them, and Frost Brand is probably your best weapon choice for Gehennom if you have it (unless you also have Grayswandir).
Average damage calculation
The average damage calculations in the following table do not include bonuses from weapon skills, strength, or from using a blessed weapon against undead or demons. The same calculations apply to Frost Brand with respect to cold-resistant monsters.
|Small monster||Large monster||Small monster||Large monster|
|+0 Fire Brand|
|+7 Fire Brand|
In xNetHack, Fire Brand and Frost Brand are short swords instead of long swords, reducing their damage. However, they each do not resist being held second to the other when twoweaponing, allowing you to wield both at the same time. Additionally, Fire Brand instantly kills flammable golems and green slimes.
Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I've tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.