|“Mark of Distinction”|
|Order of the Stick comic|
|Date published||22 February 2016|
|View the comic|
A touching farewell to Wrecan, the character, and the man.
- Panel 1
Roy: Wrecan, thanks for the assist, but I need to run.
Wrecan: I know. Take this.
- Panel 2
Roy: A book? I don't think I'm going to have time for any reading.
Wrecan: You should make time, since you seemed pretty surprised when your sword healed you.
- Panel 3
Roy: Huh. Yeah, it's never powered me up like that before.
Wrecan: Would you say you had a deep personal connection to your sword?
Roy: You mean besides the fact that my family is literally named after it?
- Panel 4
Wrecan: I like to study obscure martial lore, and I think your sword is what's called a Weapon of Legacy.
Wrecan: It's a kind of very powerful magic item that can arise naturally when a warrior has poured his heart and soul in a single cause, as symbolized by a specific blade.
- Panel 5
Roy: So you're saying, what? I just sort of willed that power into existence somehow?
Wrecan: You harnessed magical power through intense mental focus. Isn't that what wizards do every day?
- Panel 6
Wrecan: If I'm right, you should be capable of unlocking additional abilities—if you know the proper rituals and exercises.
Wrecan: That book is a history of past Weapons of Legacy, and it can help you with that.
- Panel 7
Wrecan: Just, uh... ignore the notes I made in the margin where I tally the number of times each legacy bearer is mentioned.
Wrecan: I like counting things.
- Panel 8
Roy: Thank you. I appreciate it.
Wrecan: It's up to all of us to save the world, right? I can't come with you, so this is how I can help.
- Panel 9
Roy: I'm... I wish there had been more time. To get to know you better.
Wrecan: There's never enough time.
- Panel 10
Wrecan: Every day, one after another, until we wake up and it turns out that's the day our world ends.
Wrecan: You have to do what you can, when you can—because who knows if tomorrow is even happening, you know?
- Panel 11
Wrecan: Now get on your flying boat and stop a crazy dwarf vampire from committing election fraud!
Roy: Yes, sir!
- Panel 12
Wrecan waves Roy goodbye as he passes through the ward.
D&D Context Edit
- In panel 4, Wrecan revealed that the Greenhilt Sword is a Weapon of Legacy. Weapons of Legacy, and more generally Items of Legacy, were introduced in the 2005 D&D 3.5 supplement Weapons of Legacy. These magic items have three tiers of additional powers which can be unlocked as the character possessing the item gains levels and performs specific rituals which come with a cost to the player character in the form of reduced hit points and penalties to attacks and saving throws.
- Roy seems to have unlocked at least one tier of the Greenhilt Sword's legacy powers in his fight against "Durkon". It's not clear what was the legacy ritual which allowed him to do this, though many legacy rituals are not rituals per se, but specific events such as defeating a certain type of creature.
- Weapons of Legacy was released after the start of the comics, but before the publication of #298, "The Future is Forged in the Fires of Today", in which the Greenhilt Sword is reforged with starmetal. The legacy nature of the weapon was only revealed here in #1025, but it is possible this was the author's intention at that point ten years prior to the reveal.
- The title, and the whole strip, is a tribute to Mark Monack, who went by the screen name "Wrecan" on the Giant in the Playground forums. Wrecan, amongst other things, carried on for many years the tradition of counting the number of character appearances, which is also referenced in the strip in panel 7. Mark passed away in 2013. The character Wrecan was created as tribute to him.
- This is Wrecan's final appearance. Wrecan appeared in fifteen strips. They were counted.