Magnus Burnsides

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I'll be having my body back, you undead fuck.

—Magnus, to Edward and Lydia

Magnus Hyphen Terry "The Hammer" Burnsides is a player character in The Balance Arc campaign controlled by Travis McElroy. He is a human fighter who was trained in rogue skills by Carey Fangbattle during the third Lunar Interlude. He has a lawful good alignment with a history of carpentry. He once made a pretty awesome chair, impressing the entire town and becoming a folk hero. Helping with this are his roots as "common folk" and his rustic charm. Magnus is a "man of action" who believes that "thinking is for other people."

History edit | hide all | hide | edit source

Early Life edit | hide | edit source

Magnus's introduction to being a 'protector' was defending a mongrel dog from three bullies and being beaten up to protect the dog, allowing it to escape. This solidified his need to defend those that are weaker than him.

The Eleventh Hour edit | hide | edit source

When going through his past memories with June, he encounters a long stretch of static in his memories. This is the time period of Magnus being part of the Red Robes.

Raven's Roostedit | hide | edit source

Five years before his adventure with Merle and Taako began, Magnus leads a revolt against Mad Governor Kalen. When the city of Raven's Roost had been founded, people stood behind Kalen, but Kalen saw his power as endless and had become corrupt. In retaliation, Magnus gathered people together and defeated Kalen and his soldiers in battle. Unfortunately, Kalen managed to escape and was subsequently forgotten about in the months to pass.

After the rebellion, Magnus worked in Hammer and Tongs, the pride of the Craftsman Corridor in Raven's Roost. His mentor and blacksmith/general craftsman, Steven Waxmen, had taken Magnus in after a promising apprenticeship. Magnus worked on a black oak rocking chair with a lavender polish imbued into it, that he would submit to the Continental Craftsmen Showcase that took place in Neverwinter, a ten days drive from Raven's Roost. Julia, Steven's daughter, and Magnus's new bride entered the shop, talked as they usually did, and brought Magnus out to the cart that she had prepared for him. Magnus left with his rocking chair for the showcase, after shaking Steven's hand and kissing Julia and telling her he loved her.

Two days into his travel to Neverwinter, Kalen returned to Raven's Roost, with an "If I can't have this city, no one can" mentality, and bombed the support column for the Craftsmen Corridor. 76 people were killed, including Julia and Steven. Hammer and Tongs were destroyed, and in the time it took Magnus to return to Raven's Roost, the town had evacuated, due to fear of a repeat attack.

As a result of his past he has no fear of death and looks forward to meeting Julia again in the afterlife.[1]

Here There Be Gerblins edit | hide | edit source

After Taako is knocked out by Magic Brian during a magical wizard duel in Wave Echo Cave, Magnus saves Taako's life with a healing potion, and in the process unknowingly imparts upon Taako the knowledge of the word "cheese."

Epilogueedit | hide | edit source

After defeating The Hunger, Magnus moves back to the remains of Raven's Roost and starts a school/company known as Hammer and Tails, where he trains people to protect others and does dog training (specializing in service dogs and Scottish deerhounds). He adopts a Scottish deerhound which he names Johann.

Magnus eventually dies peacefully of old age, surrounded by his friends from the IPRE, Carey, Killian, and Angus while holding his wife's wedding ring. He is guided to the Astral Plane by Kravitz where he meets Julia again; they stay together on an island in a cottage that she built for them.

Powers and Abilitiesedit | hide | edit source

  • Rustic Hospitality: Magnus is beloved by the common people, who will shield him from his enemies and give him food and shelter when needed.
  • Master Carpenter: His test to become a Master Carpenter involved building a really good chair, which he named SitBoy 1 (unless his numbering system began prior to becoming a Master Carpenter).[2]

Class Featuresedit | hide | edit source

Fighteredit | hide | edit source

  • Fighting Style
    • Protection Fighter: While wielding a shield, Magnus can impose disadvantage on attack rolls against characters within 5 feet.
  • Second Wind: Magnus has a limited well of stamina that he can draw on to protect himself from harm. On Magnus' turn, he can use a bonus action to regain hit points equal to 1d10 + his fighter level. Once he uses this feature, Magnus must finish a short or long rest before he can use it again.
  • Action Surge: Magnus can push himself beyond his normal limits for a moment. On Magnus' turn, he can take one additional action on top of his regular action and a possible bonus action.
  • Martial Archetype: Battle Master
    • Maneuvers
      • Commander's Strike - When Magnus takes the Attack action on his turn, he can forgo one of his attacks and use a bonus action to direct one of his companions to strike.
      • Disarming Attack - When Magnus hits a creature with a weapon attack, he can expend one superiority die to attempt to disarm the target, forcing it to drop one item of his choice that it’s holding.
      • Goading Attack - When Magnus hits a creature with a weapon attack, he can expend one superiority die to attempt to goad the target into attacking him.
      • Parry - When another creature damages Magnus with a melee attack, he can use his reaction and expend one superiority die to reduce the damage by the number he rolls on his superiority die + his Dexterity modifier.
      • Riposte - When a creature misses Magnus with a melee attack, he can use his reaction and expend one superiority die to make a melee weapon attack against the creature.
      • Precision Strike - When Magnus makes a weapon attack roll against a creature, he can expend one superiority die to add it to the roll.
    • Know Your Enemy: If Magnus spends at least one minute observing or interacting with a creature outside combat, he can learn certain information about its capabilities compared to his own.
  • Extra Attack: Magnus can attack three times instead of once, whenever he takes the Attack action on his turn.
  • Indomitable: Magnus can reroll a saving throw that he fails. If he does so, he must use the new roll, and he can't use this feature again until he finishes a long rest.
  • Expertise: Magnus chooses two of their skill proficiencies or one of his skill proficiencies and his proficiency with thieves’ tools. Magnus' proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check he makes that uses either of the chosen proficiencies.
  • Stealth Attack: When attacking with advantage while using a finesse weapon or a ranged weapon, Magnus adds 1d6 damage on the attack.
  • Thieves' Cant: During Magnus' rogue training, he learned thieves’ cant, a secret mix of dialect, jargon, and code that allows him to hide messages in seemingly normal conversation. Only another creature that knows thieves cant understands such messages.
  • Cunning Action: Once per turn, Magnus can take a bonus action and either dash, disengage or hide.

Featsedit | hide | edit source

  • Dual Wielder: Magnus mastered fighting with two weapons, gaining the following benefits:
    • He gains a +1 bonus to AC while he is wielding a separate melee weapon in each hand.
    • He can use two-weapon fighting even when the one-handed melee weapons he is wielding aren’t light.
    • He can draw or stow two one-handed weapons when he would normally be able to draw or stow only one.

Proficienciesedit | hide | edit source

  • Vehicle Proficiency
  • Animal Proficiency
  • Lever Proficiency
  • Severing Arms Proficiency: Those poor robots.
  • Everything

Otheredit | hide | edit source

Itemsedit | hide | edit source

Items both currently owned and lost by Magnus throughout the show.[3]

Current Itemsedit | hide | edit source

These are items currently within Magnus's possession as of the most recent episode.

Item Episode Acquired Item Type Notes
Adventurer's Kit 1 Standard
Short Bow 1 Weapon Ranged attacks
Heavy chains 4 Tool Gathered by Magnus in the crusher room
Loafers of Striding and Springing 3 Armor/Clothing; Enchanted/Haunted Item Stolen from the dead Tharden Rockseeker; gifted to Magnus by Taako
Nude drawings of women from homeland[4] 4 Trinket Hmmmmmm...
Bracer of Balance 9 Magical Artifact On Magnus's left arm
Railsplitter 9 Weapon From Gachapon machine; can cut down any tree with a single swipe (+1 battle axe)
Phantom Fist 9 Magical Artifact Purchased for 400GP from Fantasy Costco; knocks back enemies during unarmed attacks
(Infinite) Heavy Bean 15 Magical Artifact; Food and Drink Given to Magnus by Graham, a.k.a. "Juicy Wizard."
Fletcher's Mitt 17 Magical Artifact; Armor/Clothing Green cloth glove; catch arrows out of the air or avoid projectile (+1 AC against ranged non-magical attacks)[5]
Lens of Straight Creepin' 17 Tool; Magical artifact Purchased at Fantasy Costco; tracks the paths of enemies/quarry
Tankard of Potent Drink 17 Tool; Enchanted/Haunted Item Purchased at Fantasy Costco; allows user to drink a lot or sober up; Given to Paloma in "Eleventh Hour" but jumps back into Magnus' bag when the loop resets.
Steven the Fish 17 Pet and Best Friend A normal goldfish in a magical, spherical tank
Bear Mask 23 Armor/Clothing From Hurley for the Battle Wagon Race
Capt. Captain Bane's badge 27 Trinket Badge stolen from dead body
Defender's Dial 28 Armor/Clothing; Defensive item A belt with a dial in the middle containing three images: a flame, an ice cube, and a lightning bolt. Once a day, the belt will grant the wearer resistance against a certain type for 5 minutes depending on what it is set to: fire, ice, lightning.
Shield of Heroic Memories 28 Defensive Item; Enchanted/Haunted Item Remembers battles and adds +1 to AC on any subsequent battle with creatures of that type; can be lied to
The Glutton's Fork 28 Tool; Food and Drink Basically, eat any non-magical item that can fit in your mouth. Used to eat a grand relic...sort of.
Music Box 29 Gift Johann's mixtape.
Whetstone 29 Gift From Killian; personalized and shaped like a duck
Airplane Bottles of Booze 29 Gift Gift from Avi
"Caleb Cleveland, Kid Cop" Book 29 Gift Gift from Angus
Iron-on badge 29 Gift Dark blue circles, iron on; twelve circles around the outside; unreadable language in the center; comes with note that reads "For Your Eyes Only"
Cockroach Mandible 33 Weapon Taken from giant cockroach
Black Opal Mirror 35 Magical Artifact Small, perfectly circular black gemstone disk with flecks of red and green and blue color. Fell out of trash bin in the Cosmoscope room in Lucas Miller's laboratory. Resonates with The Hunger plane. Lucas let Magnus take it, saying it didn't resonate with any of the planes.
Thieves' Tools 40 Tool Given to Magnus by Carey Fangbattle after they completed their rogue training montage together
Champion's Belt 40 Defensive Item; Armor/Clothing This ornate belt is given to someone who has bested all opponents in a test of strength. Once per day, the wearer may substitute their Strength score for their Wisdom or Charisma score when making a skill check.
Featherweight Curiass 40 Weapon; Defensive Item Dark, gray feathers made of super-light, studded leather; chest armor; +3 to acrobatics, same AC as previous armor
Magnetic Charge 40 Weapon; Defensive Item Fist-sized ball that produces magnetic field that repels metal objects
Tarantula Bracelet 40 Magical Artifact Gives silent climbing action
Rapier 40 Weapon A light fencing sword available to Rogues
Health Potion x2 40 Purchased with extra pool money
Chance Lance 47 Weapon; Magical Artifact Gift of Istus; pops time bubbles, comes back when you call it
Ring of the Giant-Slayer 50 Jewelry; Enchanted/Haunted Item Copper ring; gives +1 AC and +1 attack against huge shit.
Pocket Workshop 50 Enchanted/Haunted Item A pocket Woodworking shop
Grappling Hook 50 Tool Good for 1 use per day to climb something like Batman
Marionette Arm 55 Arm The first step to rebuilding the collection that was lost to the Purple Worm
Flaming Poisoning Raging Sword Of Doom 59 Weapon Summoned back to Magnus using the Sapphire Taako left for him.
Bear Face 66 Armor/Clothing A football helmet that has ram horns on the top and bear fangs where the faceplate would be; Created by Magnus himself; Imbued with Retribution, which means that if he takes damage during combat, he'll have +2 on his next turn.
2-th Necklace 66 Jewelry A tooth necklace made up of bear teeth; Created by Magnus himself; Imbued with Gambler's Luck, which allows him to reroll anytime he rolls a 1.

Former Itemsedit | hide | edit source

These are items which were lost or given away.

Item Episode Acquired Episode Lost Item Type Notes
Battle Axe 1 9 Weapon Sold to Fantasy Costco after acquiring Railsplitter
Shield 1 28 Defensive Item Sold to Fantasy Costco after purchase of Shield of Heroic Memories
Healing Potion 3 ? Magical Artifact Used to heal Taako
Deck of Cheating Cards 5 ? Trinket Acquired after freeing Kurtze; sold to Fantasy Costco
Stone of Far Speech 9 57 Tool Purchased for $200 from Fantasy Costco; fantasy walkie talkie. Two given to Taako and Merle. Destroyed by Barry Bluejeans.
Super Fuck-Up Potion 10 10 Magical Item Given by Robbie; drunk by Magnus on the way to Rockport
Hammerhead Uniform 22 22 Armor/Clothing Disguises stolen from sleeping Hammerhead gang members
Safety Harness 23 25ish Armor/Clothing From Hurley to Magnus
Carved figure of Johann 29 29 Gift Given to Johann, carved from Rosewood
Carved wooden duck 29 29 Gift Given to Killian
Coupon, One Free Backrub 29 29 Gift Given to Lucretia
Potty Chairs 29 29 Gift Given to Merle and Taako
Wooden Ring 40 40 Gift Given to Carey to give to Killian
Headlamp 44 44 Tool Mineshaft-only item; Ep. 44
Robot Arms Various 49 Arms Magnus's careful collection of robot arms lost to the Purple Worm
Grandfather's Knife Unknown amount of time 68 Weapon Given to Angus.

(Magnus takes care of his things.)

Official Outfitsedit | hide | edit source

Usually, Magnus is dressed as a typical human fighter.

Outfit Name Description Arc Used
The Bear In Ep. 23, Magnus takes on the racing persona The Bear, complete with bear mask. Petals to the Metal
Safety First Everyone, even Steven, gets a null suit to counteract the crystallization of Lucas's lab. Crystal Kingdom
A Cool Look for A Hot Summer Day In Ep. 41, the gang visits Fantasy Costco to prepare for a hot mission. Magnus picks up camouflage-print cargo shorts, but he also would like them to be enchanted so he doesn’t have to worry about sand getting all up in there, if you know what he means. At his request Garfield the Deals Warlock enchants his shorts. The Eleventh Hour
The Return of... i' Morko! (it's Elvish for Bear) In Balance – Live Episode: The Live Boston Stunt Spectacular, Magnus becomes Jess the Beheader's wrestling partner. His outfit includes his bear mask from the Battle Wagon Race, and a half furry suit with a breast plate. The breast plate has eleven nipples (not where you'd expect). Chaos Stadium
IPRE uniforms In Ep. 60, Magnus opts for the jacket instead of the robe. The uniforms are "crisp and bright red" with the IPRE logo on the left breast pocket. Magnus wears his with no shirt underneath. Just jacket. The Stolen Century
Santa's Little Helper Magnus is given the role and appearance of one of Santa's elves after the boys accidentally murder the original Santa Claus. Candlenights in Tacoma

Known Physical Traitsedit | hide | edit source

Disclaimer: The McElroys do not consider their versions of their characters any more "canon" than anyone else's - there is no obligation to stick to these in fanart, so please do not be rude to people for ignoring these traits.

Trait Episode Mentioned / Introduced
Muscular, VERY buff Frequently referred to
MAGNIFICENT sideburns Episode 1
A beard Episode 1
Has a penis Episode 20
Skin has green undertones Episode 29
Scar over eye Episode 40, possibly earlier
Auburn hair (before) / greying auburn hair (after) Episode 54
32 years old (before) / 42 (after) Episode 54
Forget all that stuff, he's a featureless mannequin now Episode 56
Nevermind, he's a pre-Wonderland human again Episode 59

Deaths and Major Injuriesedit | hide | edit source

Unconscious Countedit | hide | edit source

Magnus has only been knocked unconscious 2 times.

  1. Knocked unconscious after jumping off a moving train in episode 16. (Yet still managed to have normal conversations with other characters afterwards, even before being healed; most likely just because Travis wasn't paying attention.)
  2. Knocked unconscious by Final John in Ep. 69, before being revived by Pan.

Death Countedit | hide | edit source

Magnus has died a total of 33 times.

  1. While traveling through other planes as a Red Robe, Magnus died 19 times without crossing over to the Astral Plane. Here are some known ways he has died:
    1. Killed on The Animal Kingdom by The Hunger.
    2. Killed on The Mushroom Kingdom by deadly spores.
    3. Killed by the Justices in the 65th cycle.
  2. Magnus died a total of 11 times during the events of The Eleventh Hour.
  3. Magnus temporarily had his soul knocked out of his body by the Animus Bell during the events of The Suffering Game. He got better.
  4. Magnus was killed in his Mannequin body by The Hunger in Ep. 59. He got better from that too.
  5. Some time after defeating The Hunger, he dies of old age. This time it sticks.

Triviaedit | hide | edit source

  • The posters Magnus hangs in his room in the Bureau of Balance are "a Jess the Beheader poster and a tour poster for Fantasy Dave Matthews Band."[6]
  • During the Live in Austin show, Travis made it clear that Magnus is a big Barenaked Ladies fan.
  • Magnus carries with him a knife once owned by his grandfather that he uses to carve a duck in Episode 64 and to blind a rhinoceros in Episode 67. He also gave it to Angus McDonald during the battle with The Hunger. Episode 68.
  • Magnus is an only child. He is glad to have found Merle and Taako,[7] and considers Angus to be a little brother.[8]
  • Magnus does not have anxiety.[9]
  • Magnus is afraid of spiders, has "no" weaknesses (except to said spiders), and is allergic to sulfa-based medications.[10]
  • Magnus is completely uninterested in romance after the death of his wife.[11]
  • Magnus' favorite candy is Turkish Delights.
  • Magnus has 8 homemade "Big Dog" tee shirts.[12]
  • Magnus is a mead guy.[13]
  • Magnus was approx. 20 years old when the IPRE began their mission.
  • Magnus was approx. 20 years old when he saw his homeworld consumed by the hunger.
  • Beauty and the Beast is the Disney movie that made Magnus cry the most.[14] Fantasy Seinfeld is his favorite sitcom.[15] He would love everything HGTV, including Property Brothers.[16] He would probably be a big Green Lantern fan.[17] His favorite podcast would be Can I Pet Your Dog.[18]
  • He would see getting bitten by a fantasy werewolf as a net positive.[19] Magnus thinks the Gelatinous Cube is cute and "so squishy."[20]
  • Magnus would take a fantasy bullet for Taako or Merle "in a heartbeat."[21]
  • Magnus is 1000% #TeamBigDog[22]
  • Magnus can lift 3 other members of the Bureau of Balance on a good day.[23] Despite this, he doesn't really train, he's a naturally burly boy.[24] That said, if Magnus were in the Olympics, he'd be best at "shotput, javelin, [and] weightlifting."[25]
  • Magnus names all the chairs he makes like so: "SitBoy 1, SitBoy 2, SitBoy 3," etc.[26]
  • Magnus took a potion so he would never have to maintain his facial hair. It tasted like licorice.[27]
  • Magnus gets jealous of Merle and Taako's magic "ALL THE TIME," but he's able to channel his anger into flexing, which calms him down.[28] If he could steal a magical spell, it would probably be something that would let him fly.[29]
  • Response to question "Magnus fuck, marry, kill between Taako, Merle, and Upsy?": "He'd Marry Taako and Merle. He'd kill Upsy. He wouldn't 'F' anyone. Not his style."[30]
  • Magnus would never get rid of Rail Splitter.[31]
  • Magnus doesn't have tattoos, just scars.[32]
  • If Magnus had a theme song, it would be this.[33]
  • Magnus does not comfortably give up merchandising.[34]
  • According to himself, Magnus has a "beautiful, large-dicked body." On the contrary, Clint McElroy claimed that "it looks like I've [Magnus had] been swimming" while the Trés Horny Boys had their bodies switched. Travis stated that claims that Magnus has a small penis are "uncanonical."[35]
  • In a Periscope livestream on 2/11/17, Travis stated that Magnus has taken baking lessons from Taako.[36]
  • Magnus has phantasthma, or "fantasy asthma". [37]
  • Magnus coaches the Tesseralia Losers, a pee-wee league for a sport called rebound (a sport that is a combination of football and basketball). He gets the Losers to state, changes their name to the Tesseralia Winners, and crushes their opponents the Magic Town Bullies in the big game (Ep. 63).
TRAVIS: Listen. Respect above all else, I protect those who can't protect themselves, I respect Justice. That's Magnus's deal.
CLINT: Okay, Ken doll. That's okay.
TRAVIS: Magnus has a penis!

- Ep. 20, after some vines allegedly ate Magnus's penis off

Refrencesedit | hide | edit source

  3. JimmyMarks
  4. Ep. 4
  5. See this fan art for the first time it was used in Ep. 17.
  6. Twitter FAQ:
  22. "Magnus is 1000% #TeamBigDog, but I want him to end up with a tiny bearded terrier like Buttercup." Travis in twitter chat:
  34. As stated in The Live Boston Stunt Spectacular.
  35. During the Balance – Live Episode: MaxFunCon East Live! show.
  37. In the last episode of The Crystal Kingdom arc.

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