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Sargogen, Lord of Coils

Darksol the Painbringer's page

2,665 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.


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Devilkiller wrote:

Metamagic rods can be quite inconvenient for folks who rely on weapons and shields. If you're really determined to use a rod without dropping your weapon you could try the widely despised and previously nerfed weapon cord. That way you can hold the rod in one hand while the weapon dangles from the other. At least per PFS you should be able to cast spells with the hand the weapon dangles from.

You could also try holding the rod in the hand the weapon dangles from, but that might lead to questions about whether the rod in question is a weapon since some rods are. Making sure your rod is a weapon would probably let you benefit from Quick Draw even if the phrase "your rod is a weapon" makes me think of Hanzo the Razor.

If only it worked on Metamagic Rods...

So we were fighting an enemy and I was surprised that the enemy did not have this feat, so I showed it to the GM and he used it. Although we found a medium of which to how the feat worked for the scenario in question and we moved on from it, I'm not convinced it was RAW/RAI.

Here's the relevant RAW:

Body Shield wrote:
As an immediate action while you are grappling an adjacent creature, you can make a grapple combat maneuver check against that creature to gain cover against a single attack. If you are successful and the attack misses you, that attack targets the creature you used as cover, using the same attack roll. You cannot use this feat against a creature grappling you, and the cover you gain ends after the attack you gained cover against is resolved.

The way we ruled it was that the creature makes a grapple check against the grappled target's CMD. If he is successful, he gets cover from a single attack (which the creature designates). If he makes the check, the next attack that misses him would instead be checked against the grappled one's AC and HP. It seems mostly on point.

But the hangup I have with this is whether 'cover' is being used as a game term or is described as a sort of flavor text. My instincts tell me the former, since it says you 'gain cover,' which implies use of a game term but I can also see it being the latter, since it then goes on to specifically describe the ramifications of the creature being used as 'cover,' which means it would otherwise overrule the general game term.

Has anyone seen this feat used in the likes of PFS scenarios? How did they run this feat in that situation?

James Risner wrote:
Call it formatting inconsistency.

I will have to agree with this. The general purpose of parentheses in terms of written sentences is to section off parts of a sentence that either grammatically separate meanings in the event one is incorrect, or to conclude a section of the sentence does not have to be there, but it is for extra clarification (and this excerpt right here is an example of what many would call proper usage of parentheses).

In regards to Oppressive Boredom, the parenthetical see text would imply that only certain creatures are affected, certain conditions must be met, additional information about the saving throw(s), etc. Or that whatever is in the However, since it is as cut and dry as the likes of Hold Person, the parentheses (and probably the see text included in the parenthetical area) are, sentence-structurally speaking, pointless to include, and only suggests that the writer did not use the parentheses in the usual manner.

Lost Ohioian wrote:
I've seen several thread about what is a regular move and what isn't but now official answer on it. Is a Regular move your character actually moving from on square to another or is the act of say standing-up a regular move?

This was clarified in the 3.X rules set with a worded example using copyright characters, stating that (random character) could stand up as a move action, 5 foot, and then attack. Although that example had to be taken out for the Pathfinder publication because of copyright, the rest of the rules set is copied over, word-for-word, which suggests (at the very least) that the example in the 3.X rules set would still hold value in the Pathfinder rules set.

Lost Ohioian wrote:

Few interesting and seemingly harmless things happened into tonight's gaming session.

Can you Sheath a weapon and draw a weapon while stepping up 5' as one movement? The thought being sheathing and drawing are both parts of a move action while the 5' is the actual movement? (Yes the character had at least a BAB+1).

Normally, you cannot. To sheathe a weapon is a move action. A 5' step is not a regular move; a regular move is taking a move action to have your character travel through squares up to his listed movement speed, something which is commonly listed as a "Movement Action" here on the boards (and for ease of reference). Since a 5' step A. does not take a move action to execute, and B. is limited in its mobility, and C. does not provoke attacks of opportunity, it's wholly separate from a given Movement Action.

This would then mean that the Standard Action the PC had left would have to go to drawing the weapon since the PC does not have the Quick Draw feat.

Of course, this could be accomplished by simply having the PC expend his Movement Action to move the 5', drawing the weapon as a free action in conjunction with that, and the sheathing would still remain the same, though if the PC had 0 BAB, that would not have been a viable tactic.

Lost Ohioian wrote:
The second interesting fact is paladin wanted to hold his 2-handed sword in one hand and draw a mace in the other, using the mace to fight without having to sheath the weapon or drop to avoid AoO in future rounds. There aren't any rules saying this legal but there aren't rules that say it isn't legal either. I know there is a FAQ about multiple attacks but senses its a greatsword being held in the off-hand used or not, I'd personally think some minuses would have to happen holding that massive weapon in hand unbalancing the player some.

You should read this FAQ regarding shifting handiness on weapons, as it covers both the RAW and RAI regarding such activities, as well as a clear, concise example relatable to your situation. If you note, the FAQ does not mention any penalty related to making attacks while holding two-handed weapons in one hand. (They just can't make attacks with it like they're supposed to.)

In addition, if the Paladin were to use the Greatsword properly, he would have to sheathe/drop the mace. The other alternative would be to use the Greatsword as an improvised 1-handed weapon in addition to his mace, but that would come with its own penalties (-4), as well as two-weapon fighting penalties (-6 main-hand/-10 off-hand).

BigP4nda wrote:
I was readibg further into it. The default pricing doesnt work for this since the hunter's starknife has a special ability. So would u use the 50% increase or the "multiple different abilities" rule?

That rule only applies to Wondrous Items, or more accurately, items that take up a slot on the character's body (and it gives Rings as an example of that). Weapons do not take up a slot, and Armor/Shields, while they technically do, have their own specific rules that are more similar to that of Weapons than Wondrous Items, so these subjects follow their own specific cost chain, which is the total enhancement bonus^2 X 1,000 gold. (2,000 gold for weapons.)

Additionally, Gauss' claim is correct for trying to calculate the total value of a specific weapon's extra abilities. For example, the Frost Brand is an effective +4 Greatsword with the special abilities. The price of a random +4 Greatsword is a total of 32,350 gold. The total price of the Frost Brand is 54,475 gold. Subtraction would leave you with those extra abilities priced at 24,125 gold, and you would halve all of those numbers to determine how much it would cost if it were to be crafted for yourself. As for how much each ability costs or prices separately, it is difficult to estimate, but that is something you would need to corrugate with the GM about.

As much as I like Arcane Duelist Bard, I find the Bard class itself, even with all of its buffs and archetypes, is still a support role. You take all of its buffs and put it on himself, he'll only be as effective as an unbuffed Full BAB character, at best. You take those same buffs and throw them on a Full BAB martial, and you got yourself a powerhouse who will basically 1-round everybody, even Balors and such.

I did a numbers comparison a long while ago, and by the endgame, it would take you 4 rounds, on average, to kill a CR Equivalent enemy; at the level you're at now, it would actually take 6 rounds. Whereas the fully-buffed martial would most likely kill 4 CR Equivalent enemies in a single round. You will also be feat starved, even with the benefits of the Arcane Duelist, and you'll be MAD, since you have to increase both Strength and Dexterity to maintain your damage and to-hit, respectively, on top of your other subjects.

It ultimately depends on what you want your role to accomplish. Since I presume you want to be a more self-reliant martial-type with access to spells, a Divine Hunter Paladin would fit the bill, as it gives you extra ranged feats, access to spells (and with a certain feat, gain access to some of the most powerful buff spells from the Bard), and you're a much more competent ranged attacker, especially against evil characters, which will be about 75-80% of what you fight. Unless you want to be a Neutral, Chaotic, and/or Evil character, the Lawful Good and Code of Conduct restrictions aren't that horrible, and if they are something you don't want to deal with, then Inquisitor is the other alternative, though it's also not as good in my opinion. But if you are absolutely set on Arcane Duelist, then you better be ready for offensive disappointment.

Bandw2 wrote:
so slight question, when choosing arcane bond, how exactly does it interact with composite longbows? do i get any possible +# i want for free?

It functions no different than any other arcane bond, other than you can use that hand that's holding the weapon to fulfill somatic components. You are treated as having the relevant craft feat required to enhance it but nothing else, and you can upgrade it at cost using Spellcraft or whatever relevant Craft feat you have. The other benefit is that it starts off as Masterwork, so you do get a +1 to hit with it to start.

10 Infiltrator Witchguard (Ranger)/10 Invulnerable Urban Rager (Barbarian) that is Dexterity-based and TWFs.

This wouldn't seem that unusual, except for the fact that he's TWFing with Two Light Quickdraw Shields. Oh, and he can cast Haste.

Cyrus Lanthier wrote:

Darksol, what do you think happens when you charge with a lance? What gets doubled? Only the dice? Because...

Lance wrote:

Benefit: A lance deals double damage when used from the back of a charging mount.
So, yea... A weapon dealing double damage seems to mean attacks with that weapon do double damage - at least that's always how I've seen it played. That's why things like vital strike call out doing twice as many dice, as opposed to "double damage."

Honestly, that just tells me the RAW regarding the Lance is grammatically incorrect, especially since it fundamentally follows the same wording as the Sun Blade. If the intent is that it doubles all damage regarding a given attack, the RAW would need to be worded to something like this:

Lance wrote:
Benefit: Attacks made with a lance while on a charging mount deal double damage.

The Sun Blade would need similar revisions, like so:

Sun Blade wrote:
Attacks made against undead or creatures from a Negative Energy Plane deal double damage (and have a x3 critical multiplier instead of the usual x2).

With that being said, I understand the intent behind it, and since a Lance, a mundane weapon, has the intent of doubling all damage associated with charging, it's not a stretch to assume that same intent is followed with a high-end magical sword. But again, the RAW does not reflect that sort of intent.

The Sun Blade text says the sword deals the increased damage. This seems to be inclusive language, meaning that is relevant to the sword (and only the sword), more specifically the weapon damage dice listed, and is supported by the factor the critical multiplier of the sword itself increases (and not just the wielder's multiplier). If it said the wielder deals double damage, you would be correct about Smite Damage and the such being multiplied.

That being said, if there was Vital Strike involved, the enhanced damage dice from the Sun Blade would apply to the multiplying of that (to 4D10, 6D10, etc.)

Secret Wizard wrote:





Aelryinth wrote:

Darksol, the entire argument here is about the Klar not having two weapons to enhance. It's one item, one weapon, and nowhere is it called out that you can enhance the klar's blade separately.

Secondly, for Defender's ability does not allow you to use a weapon's armor enhancement bonus for defense, and Shield Master does not say that you use it as a Weapon Enhancement bonus for all use it that way ONLY for Th/DMG rolls. So no go on Defender.

Otherwise, you could, for instance, throw FLaming onto a +1 AC shield if you had Shield Master, because it's treated as a '+1 Weapon', and then the next guy without shield master picks it up and it doesn't work.

Stretching the klar to be a second weapon is just that...a stretch. It's no more a second weapon then the hammer backing an axe or pick is. It's just a choice of changing damage type...and a poor choice if you do, for the most part. It'd be better if it weren't Spiked...blunt is at least useful against skellies!


So then any enhancements made to the shield (as a weapon) would confer to the Klar Blade, if applicable, and vice-versa, since they are in-fact one weapon?

And you're repeating what I said regarding the Defending towards Devilkiller, and I gave concise examples as to how that is.

If it's really a stretch, then like Melkiador says, if you enhance one, you inadvertantly enhance both.

Devilkiller wrote:

Regarding the Defending Shield and Shield Master combo, it is a small enough corner case that we might never see a developer comment on it, but I'd expect them to rule it down since there was a previous FAQ demanding that you must attack with a Defending weapon to gain the AC benefit. Attacking with the weapon but not using the lower bonus doesn't seem in line with the spirit of the Defending enchantment to me, and besides that I'm not sure if you really get two separate enhancement bonuses which can be given up or kept separately.

I've got a PC who plans to take Shield Master in a few levels and has a pretty low Will save, so I'd kind of like to be proven wrong and get the Guardian enchantment on his shield. If I tried it I'd live in fear of getting FAQ'd though.

How is that FAQ relevant to stacking bonuses? All it does it clarify the conditions for Defending to be applicable, which is in rounds that you make attacks with the given weapon, a mechanic completely separate from determining how much you can sacrifice on your shield.

I also suggest you re-read the Shield Master feat carefully, and compare to the rules listed for Defending:

Shield Master wrote:
Add your shield’s enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls made with the shield as if it were a weapon enhancement bonus.
Defending wrote:
A defending weapon allows the wielder to transfer some or all of the weapon's enhancement bonus to his AC as a bonus that stacks with all others.

So let's say I have a +5 Bashing/+1 Defending shield, for example, and I have that feat. When I make an attack, I have two sources of weapon enhancement bonuses, one is a +5 (from the Shield Enhancement Bonus via Shield Master, which is treated as a weapon enhancement bonus), the other is a +1 (from the weapon itself). If I choose to activate the Defending property, I would only be able to take off the +1, as the +5 I get from Shield Master applies to attack and damage rolls, and is derived from the Shield Enhancement Bonus; it's not an actual weapon enhancement bonus like the +1 is, and is not applicable as such 24/7, because it's only added to attack and damage rolls, not for other benefits.

A more loose interpretation would allow me to treat the +5 and +1 as the same enhancement bonus type, and I could squeeze out a +6 benefit from Defending, but I'm not supporting something like that to be applicable from the rules.

If we change the example shield to a +5 Bashing/+5 Defending, I would get the +5 benefit from Defending while still maintaining a +5 enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls via Shield Master. Tack on the Furious enchant, this would increase to a +7 benefit from Defending (though not a +7 benefit to attack and damage rolls from Shield Master, obviously).

@ Aelryinth: I always thought the armor spikes represented it being a 1-handed weapon from the table, since it has identical damage cells and everything, but I forgot the damage type changes.

I would also point out that you mean it's only one item, not one weapon, since you could have 2 (technically 3 if we're loose with the description interpretation) weapons enhanced on that item (the shield as if it were a weapon, and the blade itself).

Aelryinth wrote:

If you're not announcing it as a shield bash, it's not a shield bash. It's no different then announcing you're setting a spear, or stabbing with a sword instead of hacking with it.

So no, it's not going to count as a shield bash. Kindly note it counts as a light spiked shield, which does piercing damage, and the blade does slashing. they are obviously different aspects of the same weapon, like a hammer-backed axe.


Show me where it says in the PRD that a Klar is a Light Spiked Shield. The quoted part I got was from the PRD of Ultimate Equipment. Here's what it says in the Weapon section:

Klar wrote:
The traditional form of this tribal weapon is a short metal blade bound to the skull of a large horned lizard, but a skilled smith can craft one entirely out of metal. A traditional klar counts as a light wooden shield with armor spikes; a metal klar counts as a light steel shield with armor spikes.

The armor section RAW is mirrored. So according to hardcover, which would override the Adventurer's Armory entry, it's a light shield that has armor spikes. Unless you're saying Armor Spikes would constitute as Shield Spikes (something that is a stretch to say the least), it's a light shield, so 1D3 damage.

Aelryinth wrote:

And some of us don't see it as a pseudo double weapon, any more then the hammer backing an axe or pick, or three different heads on a flail.

There's nothing in the weapon description that treats the shield as a seperate 'end' of the klar. 'Also counts as' is inclusive, not exclusive. It's all part of the same weapon.

All the description comes down to is that it's a d6 slashing weapon, or a d4 piercing weapon if you shield bash. You simply choose what aspect you're using it in, but unlike a double weapon, which specifically calls out seperate heads and seperate enchantments, there is NONE of that language here.

Ergo, it doesn't apply. It's just wishful thinking to think it does. You're conjuring an extra weapon out of thin air.

If it was meant to be enchanted seperately, the language would be there instructing us to do so. The language is not there, it doesn't apply.

It's really that simple.

But being able to TWF with a single klar IS an amusing thought.

The klar blade is used when you want to slash. When you want to shield bash, it's treated as light spiked shield. That's a clear divisor. You can't apply Bashing to the slashing attack, it's not a shield bash. Likewise, if you have Shield Master, the enhancement on the shield won't apply to the slashing blade, because that's not a shield very strictly is treated as a light spiked shield when Bashing.

Conceptually, its no different then saying you want to poke with your sword instead of slash with your sword. As a weapon, the two are exactly the same thing. But shield effects don't carry over to the non-shield when bashing.


It's actually only 1D3. The shield itself is not a spiked light shield. It has Armor Spikes, sure, and the 1D6 damage dice reflects that form of usage, but it otherwise bashes as a regular light shield.

To clarify my point, I'm not talking about the crafter sending some group of mooks out to steal his weapons back to recreate his profit scheme. I'm talking more about how generic adventuring groups end up fighting bandits or thieves or some other goofs, etc. not related to the crafter. If their items get stolen and they need to go buy new ones, they'll go back to that same crafter, and he gets the same price. (It certainly would make a good low-level subquest if it was what people originally thought I said, but that's not what I meant.)

We're also ignoring what would be the case if the opposite repercussion is also true; let's say the BBEG has items crafted in the same fashion as the PCs, in that it's an item that only he can use. So PCs, with their current gear, defeat the BBEG, and get his loot. As it turns out, they can't use it, so they try to sell it. As they go to sell it, the merchants look at it and say "Nope, I can't resell this, there's no market to be made on it. Sorry, but you're gonna have to destroy it with the Fires of Mt. Doom in order to get rid of it."

If you make magic items function when only in the hands of a specific person or whatnot, it makes their resale value equate to 0. The good thing is that once you make your item, it's basically guaranteed to be with you for your entire career, and when you acquire more gold, you can keep on making it better. (Weapons of Legacy is the closest thing to stuff being like this.) The bad thing is that if you find other enemies with valuable stuff like that, if they're enemies who aren't complete idiots, they'll take the same precautions as the PCs, perhaps even with specific plot devices (such as a device that can open and shut a portal to one of the other planes of doom and sadness), meaning if the PCs manage to beat the BBEG, he can still win in the end, resulting in "Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies." A dick move? Sure, but when we're talking endgame, with BBEG wizards of 45+ Intelligence, when you aren't having them take precautions like that with all the scrying and his super-high intelligence, you're playing them like a certain guy whose IQ is at levels almost unheard of, but still gets beaten by anthropomorphous animals of speeds that make Lightning Bolts feel like snails.

Natan Linggod 327 wrote:

So you're saying that crafters make things in the hope that someone steals from their customers so they get repeat custom? Maybe if they were all selfish.

Then all it takes is one guy to start advertising "Secure" magic items and almost all the customers would go to him.

Remember, it's cheaper for the crafter to make BUT there's nothing that stops them from selling the item at whatever price they want. Other than market forces.

Making magic items personalised wouldn't hurt a magic crafters business at all. It would actually HELP it.

The point is that it hurts the economy as a whole, especially the crafter, to make things personalized like that. You greatly reduce the return factor of customers, as well as the ability to actually be able to sell equipment back to other crafters because of it. In other words, once it's bought, good luck selling it back for any cash, assuming someone would actually want to buy it. But why buy something that's not useful for them?

Although I understand this is homebrew, and if you think it will work for your games, go for it, but I'm telling you that this sort of pathway leads to cheese of all sorts if put at the wrong table. (I would've said right table, but that is to garner the interest of something that can be good.)

Natan Linggod 327 wrote:

I mean, there's a 30% cost reduction for limiting something to an alignment or class.

Given how expensive and time consuming magic item creation is, and how its limited to actual craftsmen and can't be mass produced, surely the majority of magic item creators tailor their items to a specific customer?

It's cheaper to produce and safer for the customer too. If your shiny new magic sword can only be used by members of your particular knightly order, why would anyone try to steal it?
If that Magnifying Glass of Searing Light can only be used by Good aligned beings, surely that alleviates some of the worry that it could be stolen and used by your enemies?

Weapons and armour especially, if I was commissioning some for my round table knights, I would make sure they couldn't be used by my opponents.

Thinking I may introduce this as a thing in my games. And introduce a ritual spell or something that lets someone transfer "ownership" of an item over to them. For a cost, like identify or something.

Un-rechargeable consumable items will be exempt I think. Potions end the such.


Because it's something players can use to cheese the crafting cost of the system to get items made cheaper. Granted, there are certain abilities from items and such that, if crafted sensibly, would net a legitimate cost drop, since it requires certain class features to work, and those would be precise, so an item crafted for an order of holy paladins are examples of such things that would be exempt of cheese since it affects, for example, their Detect Evil class feature.

Even so, why would a crafter that, if it weren't for somebody personal, such as a family member, friend, etc. actually hurt their business by crafting for what is essentially a cheaper price? If they did, they certainly wouldn't be selling it for cheaper, especially by RAW. On top of that, the crafter would rather not have stuff be personalized to a person so that the thieves of the world stealing the items of the things that he crafted would actually give him return customers.

NikolaiJuno wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Melkiador wrote:

First, there is no cheese on my part. Indeed I could say the cheese is trying to get one set of enchantments to apply to two different weapons.

And second you couldn't dual wield an enlarged klar because it doesn't have the double tag. Think of it as a pseudo-double weapon. And of course you explicitly can't dual wield a double weapon that is one handed. To dual wield a double weapon it has to be two handed for you.

Edit: I never nocticed, but you could dual wield a one handed double weapon of your own size. You would just have to use it two handed.

I still don't see why not. If they are in fact a Light Shield with Armor Spikes at the same time, why wouldn't you be able to TWF with them?
For the same reason you can't TWF with a Cestus and a dagger in the same hand.

And that reason is...?

Melkiador wrote:

First, the klar doesn't have the double tag for the reason that you aren't supposed to dual wield it, despite it being two different weapons.

But that said, if you did declare the klar to be a double weapon, it still wouldn't be "cheese" as it would be as balanced as any other double weapon. It would still have separate enchantment costs, but rely on the same proficiencies.

Even if you aren't 'supposed' to dual-wield it, by RAW (and RAI gathered from the FAQs regarding TWF with Armor Spikes), you can. Highly inoptimal, sure, but certainly doable.

All Double Weapons are Exotic weapons. The Klar, if it were a Double weapon, would also have to be Exotic, otherwise it breaks the precedent set for Double Weapons. Calling it a Double Weapon while it still being Martial Proficiency (with no other Double Weapons being Martial Proficiency) certainly still constitutes cheese, especially when it's not something officially written from the Devs.

@Tacticslion: He's trying to say that you can enhance a Klar (that is, the Light Shield as a weapon, and the Armor Spikes that are on the item as well) as if it were a single weapon. In other words, by applying say, a +5 to either the Light Shield (as a weapon) or the Armor Spikes, he's saying it would apply to the opposite subject. I believe this claim was dropped.

He's then trying to say you can't dual-wield a single Klar as it counts as a single item, even though it has two weapons (a light shield and armor spikes) attached to it, which makes no sense since the only restriction regarding TWF is that you designate a main hand and an off-hand, and neither of those require two or more hands to use. Since a Klar is two weapons, I don't see why he couldn't TWF with a single Klar.

Tacticslion wrote:

Oooooooooookay, but what are you looking at that seems like "Cheese" to you? Or are you just using the word for something that seems odd?

What I'm saying is: I don't see how a weirdly powerful combination could arise out of a +10/+10/+10 item - an excessively expensive combination, yes, and a bad idea (considering how much of your wealth it represents all focused into a singular item), but not a weirdly powerful combination.

Considering people call fighting with two shields to be "cheese," that is, to game the system in a certain way, I don't see how trying to TWF with one, single weapon without a specific exception stating otherwise (presented in the Monk's IUS, and the many FAQs regarding it), wouldn't fall under the same label.

Especially when he claims that he can enhance both the shield and the armor spikes on it as the same weapon.

Melkiador wrote:

First, there is no cheese on my part. Indeed I could say the cheese is trying to get one set of enchantments to apply to two different weapons.

And second you couldn't dual wield an enlarged klar because it doesn't have the double tag. Think of it as a pseudo-double weapon. And of course you explicitly can't dual wield a double weapon that is one handed. To dual wield a double weapon it has to be two handed for you.

Edit: I never nocticed, but you could dual wield a one handed double weapon of your own size. You would just have to use it two handed.

I still don't see why not. If they are in fact a Light Shield with Armor Spikes at the same time, why wouldn't you be able to TWF with them? The only reason why you can't TWF with a two-handed weapon and armor spikes is because you can't treat a weapon that's two-handed for you as either a main-hand or off-hand attack, according to the FAQ regarding that. I could still use a one-handed weapon and then TWF with my armor spikes that way, which is precisely what you're doing here.

Even if you were to try and get them enhanced as the same weapon, since the Klar says it uses Armor Spikes, that therefore means it follows the Armor Spike rules, so here's that:

Armor Spikes wrote:
An enhancement bonus to a suit of armor does not improve the spikes' effectiveness, but the spikes can be made into magic weapons in their own right.

Combined with the rules here:

Light Shield wrote:
An enhancement bonus on a shield does not improve the effectiveness of a shield bash made with it, but the shield can be made into a magic weapon in its own right.

Definitively proves that you can't enhance both the shield (as a weapon) and the armor spikes attached to said shield, with the same enhancements.

Aelryinth wrote:
Melkiador wrote:

First, there is no rule saying that only weapons carrying the double descriptor can be enchanted as two separate weapons. Second, if you made the assumption that a klar is enchantable as 3 seperately things, it still wouldn't carry the double descriptor, because that would falsely describe how it can be used independently of how it could be enchanted.

So throwing around arguments of double weapons is worthless. Double weapons have nothing to do with whether or not the klar can be enchanted 3 different ways.

In counterpoint: There's no rule that says a weapon without the double descriptor can be enchanted as two weapons. In other words, you can't do it because it is not permitted.

You're making the classic justification of "Since it didn't tell me I can't, then I can!" Which can be used for the dead condition not saying I can't get up, walk around and talk while dead.

Secondly: The double descriptor is indeed generally attached to weapons that have two heads and can both be used at the same time with TWF, true. This actually further damns your argument, because now you have to justify that you have two weapons in one, and you can't point to the descriptor to justify it.

Here's a more obvious counter example - flails often have three heads. Each of these heads is a weapon in its own right. One could be blunt. one could be spiked. One could be dotted with razors.

Yet they are all enchanted at the same time and with the same magic, and are not a 'triple weapon'. It's just a Flail.

Your Klar is exactly the same. The shield is a part of the primary weapon, nothing more, nothing less, and the whole thing is one weapon, not two.

So, no, no triple 10's.


I hate to say it Aelryinth, but he has a case here. Look at the description closely:

Klar wrote:
The traditional form of this tribal weapon is a short metal blade bound to the skull of a large horned lizard, but a skilled smith can craft one entirely out of metal. A traditional klar counts as a light wooden shield with armor spikes;

The description specifically calls out that the Klar is considered a light shield (which means it uses light shield damage) combined with Armor Spikes.

As far as his argument that it's "two separate entries," it isn't, technically speaking. The Klar has its own entry, but since it is still a light shield on top of the armor spike damage the table has it listed as (which is identical to the actual Armor Spikes entry on the table), it technically is a two-in-one without really being a two-in-one.

With that being said, by RAW he is correct in his 'cheese.' Of course, if his RAW were absolutely true, by rights I could TWF with that one single Klar, since according to him, they are separate entities, and therefore I can designate one as being a Main Hand, the other being the Off Hand, and just having a free hand to give my middle finger to any rules sensibility that remains.

How about we bring up the relevant RAW before we outright dismiss his claim:

Magic Armor wrote:

In general, magic armor protects the wearer to a greater extent than non-magical armor. Magic Armor bonuses are enhancement bonuses, never rise above +5, and stack with regular armor bonuses (and with shield and magic shield enhancement bonuses). All magic armor is also masterwork armor, reducing armor check penalties by 1.

In addition to an enhancement bonus, armor may have special abilities. Special abilities usually count as additional bonuses for determining the market value of an item, but do not improve AC. A suit of armor cannot have an effective bonus (enhancement plus special ability bonus equivalents, including those from character abilities and spells) higher than +10. A suit of armor with a special ability must also have at least a +1 enhancement bonus.

In truth, the book is abstract as to whether or not the enhancement bonus on a piece of armor is tied to the actual armor bonus, and since the bonuses are treated as separate entities (even if tied to the same item), they would be considered as such for the AC calculation. He could wear that Haramaki and get an effective +7 bonus to AC according to the RAW presented. (Or lack thereof.)

With that being said, I can guarantee you it goes against the RAI of Armor Enhancement Bonuses. Something to support that is the Bracers of Armor:

Bracers of Armor wrote:
If a creature receives a larger armor bonus from another source, the bracers of armor cease functioning and do not grant their armor bonus or their armor special abilities. If the bracers of armor grant a larger armor bonus, the other source of armor ceases functioning.

Although Bracers of Armor is a wondrous item and doesn't exactly follow the rules of armor enhancing, it still presents that an item comprised entirely of an armor bonus (and maybe some special abilities), similar to any generic piece of armor like a Full Plate, would not stack with a piece of armor whose armor and enhancement bonuses would be either inferior or superior to those presented from the Bracers of Armor.

A quick bump for some telling evidence. From the PRD:

Magic Armor wrote:
Armor is always created so that if the type of armor comes with a pair of boots, a helm, or a set of gauntlets, these pieces can be switched for other magic boots, helms, or gauntlets.

So any 'slots' that say, a Full Plate takes up, can be exchanged and the armor would still function as intended.

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Devilkiller wrote:

I thought the term "splatbook" for D&D originated from the fact that a lot of the books shared similar titles like Complete Warrior, Complete Mage, Complete Adventurer, etc. If you were using regular expressions those books as a group could be referred to as as "Complete *", and the * might look kind of like a rotten tomato which got splatted (possibly by a +10/+10 shield).

I can't vouch for the veracity of that explanation, but that's what I've heard, and it makes sense to me. I guess that would make Ultimate Combat, Ultimate Magic, etc the "splatbooks" of Pathfinder (and maybe Advanced * could be called splatbooks too)

I think that if you use the Defensive enchantment with Shield Master you should take the penalties to attack and damage just as you would without Shield Master. I'd say that whether or not you can sacrifice bonuses gained from the shield's AC boosting enchantment might be a grey area. If you can sacrifice enhancement bonuses gained from Greater Magic Weapon to boost AC then I'd probably allow this too.

Although splatbooks are the reason this Dexterity build is allowed (Agile enhancement is in one of the Pathfinder Companion books), without splatbooks, Dex Builds aren't even viable unless you play a Swashbuckler. Which is silly, since Paizo is afraid of the Dexterity meta, even though by-the-by, it's merely a different approach to the game in comparison to Strength. But apparently Wizards being able to one-round the strongest encounters that are 4-5 CRs above their own CR is okay.

I do agree a lot of splatbooks are junk, but some of them, even the 3PP products, do open doors that can and should be opened, because leaving them closed only shuts out character concepts, which isn't exactly okay.

If you read the Shield Master feat carefully, it says this:

Shield Master wrote:
Add your shield’s enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls made with the shield as if it were a weapon enhancement bonus.

If you are going to say that the Bashing property does not count as a +1 weapon for cost-enhancing purposes, then by rights the Shield Master benefit, in that you simply add the shield's enhancement bonus to your attack and damage rolls (as an enhancement bonus), wouldn't be superseded by Defending and Guardian properties. It is not the cost-added enhancement that you paid on the shield to get.

So here is the build I originally planned for the PC in question:

Taldrek the Timeless:
Race: Human
Alignment: True Neutral
Racial Traits: Bonus Feat, Heart of the Fields, +2 to One Ability Score
Character Traits: Magical Knack (Ranger), Reactionary
Class: Infiltrator Witchguard Ranger 10/Invulnerable Urban Rager 10
Favored Class Bonus: Ranger (1 Skill Point)
Progression: Ranger for the first 10 levels, Barbarian for the remaining 10.
20 Point Buy
Strength: 8 (-2 points)
Dexterity: 20 [18 + 2] (17 points)
Constitution: 12 (2 points)
Intelligence: 12 (2 point)
Wisdom: 14 (5 points)
Charisma: 7 (-4 points)

Feats (* = Bonus Feat)

1*: Weapon Finesse
1: Improved Shield Bash
2*: Two-Weapon Fighting
3: Piranha Strike
3*: Bodyguard
5: Quick Draw
6*: Shield Master
7: Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
7*: In Harm's Way
9: Double Slice
10*: Bashing Finish
11: Greater Two-Weapon Fighting
13: Improved Critical (Quickdraw Spiked Light Shield)
15: Combat Reflexes
17: Hammer the Gap
19: ???

Skills Points: Ranger = 6 + 3 = 9 X 10 = 90. Barbarian = 4 + 2 = 6 X 10 = 60.
Total, 150 ranks, 7.5 average per level.

Skills: Perception (MAX), Survival (MAX), Acrobatics (MAX), Knowledge [Nature] (MAX), Climb (5), Swim (5), ??? (60 skill points remaining)

The key things are:

-It's a tank-ish build that includes Shields, TWF, and is Dexterity-based. This heavily restricts the character's ability to actually carry things, but since you'll be using Mithril by the endgame, it's not an issue to carry around the items that you will be using. Additionally, this makes any Reflex-based attack a joke (as you get Evasion by 9th level), armor doesn't become an absolute necessity until the late game for special enhancements, and you won't be a complete gimp when it comes to Touch Attacks. All nice benefits for a tank-like character.

-I do get access to some spells, but they are limited in casting power, since I am only a 10th level Ranger caster. The biggest thing is that I can actually cast Haste on myself when I hit 10th level, and it lasts for 9 rounds, though it's only 1/day; the fact it affects everyone in range is actually a nice 'rally' sort of thing I could do as a tank, and it'd free the casters up to do what they do best.

-Later down the road I become an Invulnerable Urban Rager as well, which means my Rage doesn't give me penalties to AC (but also no Will Save Bonus, but that's what the Adaptions from Infiltrator do, thanks Iron Will for free when I need it!), and I can configure it to Dexterity, which means my AC, Reflex Saves, to-hit, and damage will increase accordingly, and I can swap it to hit points if I really need to. Combined with Rage Powers enabling me to essentially get a Pounce capstone, I don't give up BAB for this, making this a very solid class choice.

Some other questions/concerns:

-The stats, although well-rounded, aren't exactly appropriate for early-level gameplay, since it will be a while until I can get Agile shields to appropriate my damage. I'm debating on cutting the Human Bonus Feat and the Heart of the Fields to just bring my Strength back to 10 (no penalties at the beginning) and cut back on my Intelligence to bring my Wisdom to 16, but I'm not sure if losing that bonus feat will be worth it, since it delays the rest of my feat progression. The Heart of the Fields I could do without, though.

-The feat progression seems a little out of place, but it's difficult to balance with the core feats of the build to be effective along with the feats that are a 'must-have' for any class. I'm trying to find ways to optimize it (such as delay Improved Shield Bash until 2nd level for the bonus, and take TWF for 3rd level), but it's not easy, given the ramifications. The alternative is that I go into Fighter instead of Barbarian to help make the feat progression more cohesive and come online sooner, but I lose a lot of neat class features, as well as the ability to pump my Dexterity to crazy levels (By 11th level, I can be chilling at a 28 Dexterity, increasing to 32 with Rage).

-Skills are a difficult thing to find that would work well with a Ranger/Barbarian-type class. Being able to max out 7 different skills as a TWF Shield tank type really brings some out-of-combat utility to the character. I've found quite a few that would be helpful, as well as the hybrid that I will split my remaining points up with (because you need to be prepared for those anti-magic defenses somehow). The ideas I came up with are Disable Device, Stealth, and Knowledge [Geography]. Are they good enough, or should I select other things?

Melkiador wrote:
Keep in mind that there is only one shield item slot on a character. So one shield always has to be declared as a weapon. And you can only get shieldy goodness out of one shield.

With how Aelryinth explained what it entails, I'm fine with it. Since I can get away with having +5 enhancement to my attacks while stacking Defending/Guardian to the brim, and some of the other good stuff, the build doesn't absolutely fall apart. Obviously, I only get one Shield Bonus source, but enhancing the AC on the other shield is still a much cheaper alternative to increase attack and damage rolls, since I'm essentially only paying half price.

Since I will be taking the Witchguard and Infiltrator for the first 10 levels (Ranger archetypes) followed by 10 levels of Invulnerable Urban Barbarian, I will be getting the Shield Master at 6th level as expected. I'll be posting the relevant build here soon enough.

Arctic Sphinx wrote:

There is actually a feat that allows you to treat the enhancement bonus of your shield as a weapon enhancement bonus when shield bashing. I believe it was called Shield Master.

Given all the feats necessary to get the feat, I would imagine that making a shield that can use its defensive bonus as an offensive one should be pretty expensive.

If you really want a character to be able to do that, why not just advise the player to take that feat, if you don't mind my asking? Not trying to criticize the idea. Just curious.

I am taking that feat, but 6th level is the absolute earliest you can get it. The reason why you want +5 AC/+5 hit and damage shields is because you can slap Defending on one, and Guardian on the other, and use both of those to increase saves and AC. Tacking on Furious (yes, I will get rage with this build, but not until 11th level), you're giving yourself up to a +7 untyped bonus to AC and Saves whenever you are TWF with the shields in question, and you are still making attacks as a +5 weapon due to the Shield Master feat.

@ Aelryinth: Well, you learn something new every day. It seems a little silly, but what do I know? Not much these days.

In either case, Darkwood shields are the cheapest way to go to accomplish what needs to be done, and Quickdraw Light Shields are needed since I will be able to cast some spells (most notably, Haste will be among that list), but Mithril would have the longest survivability, since I'm sure a lot of GMs would play the whole "Your shields are on fire" card against me.

Additionally, ACP penalty increases only apply to if the shield is Heavy instead of Light. Unless I can cheese my way to apply Agile to Heavy Shields via the enchanter having the Gorum trait (with me having it as well to use it as light weapons), I'll be stuck with Light Shields.

CountofUndolpho wrote:

Dual wield shields? There are people actually arguing for that? You're going to dual wield, as weapons, something that gives you a penalty to all dex(and Strength) based skill rolls?

If you have Martial Weapon Proficiency Shield but not Shield Proficiency would you get the Armour Check Penalty knocked off your attack rolls?

Just curious I mean after all if shields are just weapons like any other ...

Considering not being proficient in shields as a weapon incurs a flat -4 penalty to attacks rolls only is mechanically and significantly different from getting a -1/-2 penalty to attack rolls, skills checks, ability checks, etc. for not being proficient in using them as a form of protection, if you are missing one, you take the respective penalties. For the build I am constructing, I am a Witchguard Infiltrator (Ranger) 10/Invulnerable Urban Barbarian 10, so the concern about getting proficiency in shields as both a piece of armor and a weapon is irrelevant, since this is solved by level 1.

I am also unsure as to how armor check penalty would apply to attacks made via Weapon Finesse. Armor Check Penalty for proficiency only applies to Dexterity and Strength based Skill Checks. Non-proficiency applies it to attack rolls as well as the same for Ability Checks.

@ Imbicatus: To be honest, I thought about that trait, but it would not work with the Dexterity build I am constructing because of how it would interact with the Agile property placed on the shields: Although they are light weapons to me, they are not light weapons by default, so unless I enhanced the shields myself, or by someone who also has that trait, I cannot make Heavy Shields viable weapons. (I could only wish, though...)

Aelryinth wrote:

Keep in mind that Dex-based does not contribute well to damage, and shields are not inherently finessable. Given you're going to have a fine AC anyways (you're using a shield you're going to push to max enhancement, after all) AC isn't going to be a problem for you. I suggest you stay strength-based.

If you think you'll have the rage rounds, Furious and Courageous are indeed good choices. But remember that Furious increases your Weapon enhancement bonus, not your SHIELD enhancement bonus. Thus, using it with Defender grants you extra AC, not more th/dmg, unless you are NOT using Shield Master.

Enhancement bonuses from different sources don't stack unless they say so. Thus, enhancement from weapon and enhancement from armor are different sources, and don't stack, unless your DM house-rules otherwise. Allowing them to stack for purposes of weapon toughness/hit points really won't make much difference except come sunder time, and would fit thematically, but no, not by RAW.

Courageous on both shields is a waste. It increases morale bonuses you have...two Courageous shields will overlap, not stack, in their effect.

Furious won't stack with your Shield's Armor bonus being used by Shield Master. Unless you want it to boost defender, it'll also be wasted. You are better off with Defiant vs something...+2 to Shield AC, +2 TH/Dmg!

One of your better options might be Ghost Touch since it'll give you a Ghost Touch weapon AND defense. Combine with your other shield getting Ray Deflection or something, and you can start getting a really thorough defense.

But I'll reiterate that you probably don't need a Dex build to make this work. A 13 Starting Dex and a +6 booster at some point will get you all the Dex you need.

I'll also note the Guardian Weapon enhancement...same as defender, but SAVING THROWS. Also perfect for an Uber Shield, esp if your DM rules that Defender AC bonuses do not stack with themselves.


It doesn't contribute as well as Strength since Strength gets 1.5x damage on two-handed weapons, but since I'm using two light shields, I wouldn't get that increased Strength scale anyway, so it's not a horrid idea to go Dexterity-based since I can get Agile shields without too much problem, especially since I can get the Dexterity-equivalent of Power Attack, Piranha Strike.

I'll be taking 10 levels of Barbarian (though it won't come until 11th level), so getting rage rounds shouldn't be too difficult, though I'll be hurting for them in those early levels. I'll also be getting access to Natural Armor and the like through the Beast Totem chain, so that's always nice.

I was honestly thinking of putting them on both simply so I could get double-bonuses to my Rage, since it's just increased by an untyped amount equal to half the weapon's enhancement bonus. Obviously I won't get Courageous right away, but when I take my Barbarian levels, getting the ability to increase my Dexterity by an additional +4 is double+good. But I suppose I could do without one because of the whole "doesn't stack with themselves" rule.

Adding an extra +2 AC for Defending and Guardian sounds like a damn good +1 enhancement investment to me. Since the build is meant to be more of a TWF Tank, I don't see why that would be a silly idea. As much as I would like Defiant, I don't think I'd have the enhancement space to allow as a selective benefit; I already have Favored Enemy for that sort of thing, and that's just to counteract the increased difficulty of fighting things like Dragons, Constructs, and Undead.

I'm not sure the Ghost Touch would apply to both like that. Remember that if I can't enhance a +1 (AC) Bashing Shield with a weapon property off the bat, then you can't treat a Ghost Touch Weapon as a Ghost Touch armor as well. Since incorporeals target Touch AC, and my Dexterity will be through the roof, it's not really necessary to get as an armor property as well.

Yeah, I'll probably put Defending on one, and Guardian on the other, since I'm sure they won't stack because of the same source, as they're both untyped bonuses.

Aelryinth wrote:

Spikes on a shield is not a weapon category. You have shield bashing, with a normal shield, or a spiked shield.

The Spikes are an addition to the shield that changes the damage. They don't have HP, hardness, material or ANYTHING. All they do in the game is change the damage.

You can enchant a shield as a +10 Shield/Armor, and as a +10 Weapon. The enhancement bonuses overlap, they do not stack, for purposes of making a tougher shield.

If you have Shield Master, then your +5 Shield Enhancement bonus can also serve as a Weapon Bonus. This is a wonderful feat for shield users.

Your goal as a shield user is a +5 Spiked Bashing Shield, +5 Defender. With SHield Master, you can devote the Weapon Enhancement bonus completely to AC while suffering no damage penalty. Bashing increases the size and is worth taking. The combination of +6 Shield and +6 Weapon is 108,000 gp, just a little more then a +7 Weapon.

And note that if you do use two of things, the Defender bonuses stack. Yes, you can get a really sick amount of AC off this combo, although the shield bonuses themselves don't stack.

If you have Augment Gems from 3.5, slap a missile deflection on for 1 missile deflect a round and +4 AC vs ranged attacks, to boot.

An Uber Large Shield is potentially +7 Shield AC, a +5 2-12 x/20 dmg weapon, with +5 Defender AC on top of it. For what it does, it's the best weapon/defense combo item in the game.


Thanks for clarifying the point I was making with the shield spikes being unified with a given shield; a lot of people were saying that the spikes are a separate item from the shield, something which RAW only dictates Armor Spikes to be a separate enhancing option from the Armor itself.

I actually questioned how that would be ran in terms of calculating hit points and hardness, because the table only went up to +10 armor/shields/weapons/whatever; so the increased hardness and hit points would be treated as enhancement bonuses then?

Shield Master would be available by 6th level at the earliest thanks to Ranger feats, and yes, I would be taking Ranger levels for this build. I completely forgot about Defending, that would make my AC skyrocket! Tack on the factor that I'd be Dexterity-based, and you're looking at the most effective TWF Tank in the game! I would also be hybriding into Barbarian, so would it be worthwhile to apply Furious and Courageous on both shields to make my rage much more powerful?

Matthew Downie wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
So you're of the camp that a shield and its spikes are different entities as far as determining items are concerned, and that you can actually choose to attack with the spikes or the bludgeoning part of a shield? Since when could I do that in the rules?

There are already long tedious debates on the subject. I don't really care whether you can or not (the fact that the weapon rules refer to 'spiked shield' rather than 'shield spike' suggests you probably can't). But if a shield spike was considered a separate object, and you could enchant it separately, it still doesn't sound like a good purchase for anyone with finite cash resources.

I've been reading these forums for a while, and 'guy with a shield' gets way fewer 'this is overpowered' complaints than full casters, summoners, archers, and two-handed weapon specialists.

Which you would be correct, but it's all theoretic work here. If people are saying I can have +10/+10 Shields, then by all means I'll be using that by the endgame.

As for the OP claims, it's probably because nobody builds two-shield martials due to all the confusing rules associated with them, nor can they just 1-round encounters because "reasons".

Chemlak wrote:
Just remember that Shield is an item slot capped at one shield.

So if I tried to enhance two shields with bonuses to AC so that I can effectively have 2 +5 weapons for a total of 50,000 gold in costs, what exactly would happen?

Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:


Price +1 bonus; Aura moderate transmutation; CL 8th; Weight —
A shield with this special ability is designed to perform a shield bash. A bashing shield deals damage as if it were a weapon of two size categories larger (a Medium light shield thus deals 1d6 points of damage and a Medium heavy shield deals 1d8 points of damage). The shield acts as a +1 weapon when used to bash. Only light and heavy shields can have this ability.

I suppose I'm putting a little too much stock into the Bashing property, in that it only "acts as" a +1 weapon, it doesn't actually become a +1 weapon, meaning it isn't actually a magic weapon. A fair enough point, one I've overlooked many times it seems, but then it just leads to another question:

What does acting like a +1 weapon actually do mechanically; does it only mean I bypass DR/Magic? Does it mean I get increased hardness and hit points relevant to a +1 weapon? Does it actually increase attack and damage rolls as a +1 weapon and nothing else?

Skylancer4 wrote:

I guess the old line... If you have to ask, you'll never know?

Your question isn't worth FAQ'ing and hopefully someone else has the patience to explain it to you. The only shaky thing at this point would be your understanding of the rules, unfortunately, I'd say.

Apparently double weapons are OP and broken in that case. If you are going to be willfully ignorant I suppose I shouldn't be surprised you left out a very common SINGLE item that carries multiple enhancements that go up to +10/+10.

Double Weapons aren't OP, because each head is enhanced separately, and you can only use one head for a given attack. So each weapon attack has, at best, a +10 enhancement. Since that takes up 2 hands to do, it's in-line with a character using 2 +10 one-handed/light weapons to attack. You also can't enhance Double Weapons as a piece of armor in addition to the other prevalent benefits, and not many characters get the ability to use Double Weapons right off the bat, as almost each one of them is an Exotic Weapon.

By comparison, you can enhance a Shield as both, it only takes up one hand, and it amounts to (effectively) a +20 weapon. (+30 if you want to treat the shield spikes as a separate entity, which it appears everyone does. So +30.) Not only would I have more defensive capability with two shields enhanced in that manner, since 10 of those 20 bonuses would be armor enhancements, but the offensive capability would be equal, if not superior since I can have two sets of weapon enhancements enabled simultaneously.

NikolaiJuano wrote:

This is saying that the shield enchantments don't enhance the shield base, but in addition you can enchant it as a weapon.

If you add spikes to a shield that is already enchanted as a weapon you do not get the effects of both an enchanted shield weapon and the enchanted spike weapon, because when using the spike you are not attacking with the enchanted bludgeoning part.
It's possible that it just transfers the weapon enchantments it has to the spikes instead, but you wont ever get a +20 weapon out of it.

For starters, when I say +20 weapon, I refer to it being a +10 armor/+10 weapon enhancement shield, since Shields are the only items that are counted as both a weapon and a piece of armor at the same time.

If you treat the spikes as being separate from a shield, it becomes its own item, and therefore it is enhanced differently from the shield. If it's that, then +20 Shield weapons are applicable, and several posters in this thread are stating that spikes are separate (when the RAW dictates otherwise). This can lead to a player claiming he can ready both his shield and the spikes on it in the same hand, meaning he gets the benefits of a +20 weapon.

If you treat the spikes as being a part of the shield's enhancements, then enhancing the shield as a weapon would enhance the spikes as well, since the spikes are a part of the shield, and the benefits of the shield (as a weapon) apply to the spikes.

My point here, is the above is a catch-22. They can't be both a part of the shield and separate at the same time, it's only one or the other. Claiming otherwise would reek of cheese to say the least, and I'm trying to narrow down which of those 2 interpretations the rules are.

@ Matthew Downie: So you're of the camp that a shield and its spikes are different entities as far as determining items are concerned, and that you can actually choose to attack with the spikes or the bludgeoning part of a shield? Since when could I do that in the rules? By using it as an improvised weapon? Maybe, but that's not what I'm looking to do with the shield.

So a Bashing weapon only counts as a +1 weapon under certain circumstances? What circumstances does a +1 sword count as a +1 weapon that a Bashing Shield doesn't? Granted, there are some aspects that a Bashing Shield emulates that a +1 weapon doesn't, but mechanically speaking the Bashing Shield emulates everything a +1 weapon does.

@blackbloodtroll: How am I complicating things on purpose? I'm trying to configure what the rules are so that I can finalize my TWF Shield character build, and the rules for shields are shaky to say the least.

Skylancer4 wrote:

Its only a "debacle" if you choose to make it one though. Nothing written anywhere supports or points to how you are choosing to twist it up to make it an issue.

Nothing in the game to date has ever "shared" enhancement bonus in such a way as you are trying to suggest. Like absolutely nothing. We do have the rules saying that they are distinct entities. If a shield has a shield spike that can be the focal point of the "offensive" enhancement and the shield is focal point of the "defensive" enhancement. Each item is separate.

Now take away the shield spike, the exact same thing happens. The only difference is the shield does less damage sans shield spike. Two entities, "defensive" with armor (shield) enhancements and "offensive" with weapon enhancements. Separate entities.

As for the bashing quality, it would decrease the "defensive" capabilities of the shield by sucking up a +1 from that +10 total. Leaving you with only +9 to play with on the armor side. If you were to add to the "offensive" side the first +1 enhancement would be "wasted" as enhancement bonuses don't stack (the same way you lose the enhancement to hit from a masterwork weapon made magical). The +1 from bashing and the +1 from enhancement you added. Once the "offensive" enhancement was bumped to +2 you'd see the improvement on offensive stats.

This is what we have so far, "mixing" enhancements has never occured in the game so I'm not sure where you are getting the idea to do that from, besides trying to over complicate things.

So by RAW, it's possible to have +10/+10 shields (assuming you have the gold to purchase it)? I always assumed that an item, whether it's a piece of armor, a weapon, or both, could never hit past +10 for any circumstance (barring Artifacts), but if you're saying the rules allow me to do that, then shields are probably the most overpowered weapons in the game for just that reason, and it probably solves the biggest issue I would have with the combination, is not getting enough enhancements to work for the build I was trying to construct.

Being able to enhance the spikes on a shield separate from the shield itself also seems to make no sense in accordance to how the RAW is worded in the Armor section:

Shield Spikes wrote:
An enhancement bonus on a spiked shield does not improve the effectiveness of a shield bash made with it, but a spiked shield can be made into a magic weapon in its own right.

From how it's worded, logic dictates that once you put spikes on a shield, they merge into one item, and don't become separate articles like you claim they would. This is implied in not one, but two instances, something which, if even one of them was different, would call for a FAQ, since they would result in contradictory definitions of the item. This makes sense with how it's set on the weapon table, so I'm not sure where you're getting the idea that a shield and its spikes are treated separately, other than Armor Spikes, but those are separate rules:

Armor Spikes wrote:
An enhancement bonus to a suit of armor does not improve the spikes' effectiveness, but the spikes can be made into magic weapons in their own right.

Back to shields...

If they were in-fact separate, your rules would allow me to make a +10/+10 shield, with +10 shield spikes on top of it. Is there another FAQ I'm missing somewhere that you're drawing this conclusion from?

You're going to have to further explain why I have to sacrifice a +1 bonus from the weapon part of the shield when the Bashing property, mechanically speaking, fulfills all aspects of what a +1 weapon entails, bonuses to attack/damage, hardness/hit points, etc. Is it because the enhancement has to be a weapon-based enhancement? Because adding special abilities to a weapon doesn't specify that the enhancement bonus has to be a weapon enhancement bonus, merely that it's an enhancement bonus.

dragonhunterq wrote:

Treat them entirely separately. The rules specifically state that you calculate them separately and add them together.

PRD wrote:

Shields: Shield enhancement bonuses stack with armor enhancement bonuses. Shield enhancement bonuses do not act as attack or damage bonuses when the shield is used in a shield bash. The bashing special ability, however, does grant a +1 bonus on attack and damage rolls (see the special ability description).

A shield could be built that also acted as a magic weapon, but the cost of the enhancement bonus on attack rolls would need to be added into the cost of the shield and its enhancement bonus to AC.

Using your example (+4 shield)+(+2 weapon)= 24K

Shield is limited to +10 on the armour/shield table.
weapon is limited to +10 on the weapon table.
They do not interact rules wise. There is no reason not to treat them separately.

You can carry two magical shields, one as a shield and one as a weapon. Much as it pains me, shields appear on the weapons table and they can be used to attack as any other weapon so it's a little hard to argue that you can't treat them as weapons. Note that not only will the enhancement bonuses not stack, neither will the base shield bonuses.

Bashing I am on shakier ground rules wise, and I can see the counter argument has some merit, but I am of the view that it will not count towards counting the weapon side of the shield as magical it only counts as magical when bashing, so cannot count when enchanting. This does mean that if you enchant the shield as a weapon then bashing only gives you the bonus damage as the enhancement bonuses won't stack.

Which I figured it would be 24K to enhance as such.

But that's about where the similarities end. I tend to think that any item like that, even if you calculate its enhancement bonuses separately, still equate to an item enhanced in such a manner to never surpass a +10 bonus. So if I had a +5/+5 Shield as far as enhancement bonus equivalents are concerned, I couldn't adjust either of those past +6 because the item itself (which is both a piece of armor and a weapon) cannot surpass the +10 bonus.

The key thing behind that understanding is that the descriptions to enhancement limits aren't specific as to whether each rule only affects the item type, only that if it is X, it can only receive X enhancements, and if it's Y, it can only receive Y enhancements, but they are both still enhancements, and still lead to increasing the item's effective enhancement bonus. Since a Shield is, and can be, both X and Y, it leads me to believe that a Shield, no matter how it's enhanced, whether it's +8/+2, +3/+7, whatever, it cannot be enhanced past that level. What also supports this is that the item's hardness and hit point calculation table does not go past +10, something which would be addressed if a shield were to be enhanced in such a manner.

As far as Bashing is concerned, it really boils down to what the actual definition of a Magical Weapon is. Let's look at the mechanical ramifications of a Magical +1 Weapon. A Magical +1 Weapon grants the following:

-+1 Enhancement Bonus to Attack and Damage Rolls (and won't stack with Masterwork benefits).
-Increased Hardness and Hit Points as a result of the +1 Bonus.

There is also a part that says Special Abilities (such as Bashing) do not count as enhancement bonuses to AC/Attack Rolls/Damage unless they specify that they do; Bashing is one of those special abilities that says it makes bashes (AKA attacks) as a +1 Weapon. Since the Bashing property already increases Hardness and Hit Points as a +1 Weapon does, due to its inherent benefits as an Enhancement property, and it increases attack and damage rolls as a +1 Weapon, mechanically speaking it is no different than a +1 Weapon. Even if I enhanced it as a +5 Medium Fortification Bashing Shield, it still mechanically functions as a +1 Weapon that has increased Hardness and Hit Points as a +9 Shield.

So unless there is some other by-the-book reasoning behind it, I'm fulfilling the mechanical definition of what a +1 Weapon is, which is what is needed to apply Weapon Special Abilities. One last thing to note:

Weapons wrote:
A weapon with a special ability must also have at least a +1 enhancement bonus.

It does not specify whether the enhancement bonus the item has must apply to attacks made with the weapon or not. Although it's assumed that the item will be a weapon, and only a weapon, it's not the case when it comes to making Shields into magic weapons, because a Shield is still a piece of armor, even after you enhance it as a weapon.

Ugh, this really is a debacle and could use a rewrite...

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If a player has to question why "Save or Suck" abilities are a pain, then all I have to say to them is this: Get affected by one or two, and everything will fall into place.

Save or Suck doesn't have to be about instakills. It's also about gimping a fight to no longer be challenging. Imagine your frontline fighter being turned into either another, brutal enemy to fight. Or a sheep. So now instead of there being 0 lambs to the slaughter, that now becomes 2-4 (because that essentially makes you the next lamb to be chopped up).

Or better yet, imagine your awesome wizard casting a spell, and then you notice it doesn't work, and you're powerless because a Dragon with Anti-Magic Field walked up to you and said " 'Sup bro, watcha' doin' over here?" Ironically enough, it's not even a Save or Suck, it's just a Suck thing.

2 people marked this as FAQ candidate.

I'm making this thread in regards to shield enhancements, making shields both armor and weapons, and the ramifications of what it all entails, as there are many differing viewpoints (on the boards, anyway) of what the rules tell us, and I'm looking to get to the bottom of it, once and for all. Even my viewpoint of the matter is far-fetched to say the least, but it certainly follows what the RAW gives, despite it being a 'loose' interpretation, but whether that's RAI and follows the rules 100% is debatable.

So to start, I'll list the important factors of my question and elaborate a little bit on what I'm looking for in each. From what I gather, there are 3 things that should be addressed about this concept: Cost Calculations, Hybridizing Requirements, and Enhancement Limitations. The first seems simple enough, but the other 2 are significantly more difficult, but I'll tackle them all anyway.

How exactly does one calculate the cost of, say, a +4 armor/+2 weapon shield, according to the book? Do you calculate them separately and add them up, treat all enhancement bonuses as one type or the other, depending on what the majority is, or...?

If I had a +5 (AC) Bashing shield, would that fulfill the requirements of it being a magic weapon and I could then apply the likes of Ghost Touch, Furious, and Courageous on a given shield, or do I actually have to spend a +1 slot to enhance it when it already attacks as a +1 weapon?

Do you calculate the modifiers of each shield simultaneously when determining what you're at for the +10 limit, or would it be separate, and each enhancement type has its own +10 limit (so you can have a +10 armor/+10 weapon shield equipped)?

Additionally, can you have two of these multi-enhanced shields worn simultaneously (and the enhancement bonuses to AC won't stack, for example), or can you only have one?

...Oh boy, I had a feeling this thread was made in relation to...that.

All I'll say is, the bonds of an Eidolon to a Summoner is a magical, supernatural thing. I imagine the creation of Eidolons in regards to a Summoner fall under the same paradigm, similar to how Zanpakutou are in the Bleach anime.

Killua the Bard wrote:
Minah wrote:

Heavy steel shield 20gp

Masterwork 150gp

+1 on shield, animate shield +2 and arrow catcher +1 for a total of +4 cost (note yo have to have at least a +1 to add special abilities and all of the bonuses are added together to find final cost) 16000gp

total 16170


+1 = 1000

Arrow Catcher= 1000

+2= 4000

Animated = 4000

All in all that would bring me to 10 000..I may sound stupid here but what am i missing?

You calculate them totally.

+1 Arrow Catching Animated = +4 Enhancement equivalent. Calculating enhancement costs on armor and shields is taking the bonus (4), square it (16), multiplying that by 1,000, equating to 16,000 enhancement costs.

Tack on masterwork costs (150 for shields), and base cost (20 gold), equals the 16,170 gold cost.

I will also ask that you be careful with your phrasing of "Dual Enchanted," as I originally thought this thread was about the cost of enchanting a Shield as both a piece of armor and a weapon. (A subject that a lot of people get confused on, and I'm surprised as to how silent Paizo is on such a matter.)

Well, it certainly makes Barkskin a more attractive spell to take as a Druid, instead of it being overridden by Amulets of Natural Armor most of the time.

Would PC natural armor (from racial bonuses, feats, etc.) still scale the same, or would those be taken out as well?

I don't think a Wizard's ability to attack gets better as they level; I find they lag behind significantly (as they should), even when it comes to Touch AC. The other problem is, outside of Dexterity and other miscellaneous bonii, there isn't much of a stable way to make Touch AC scale, whereas the more conventional ways to increase AC commonly apply to Flat-Footed AC.

Here, I think you should read this.

And this.

Oh, and this for good measure.

Basically, if you cannot cast the spell needed for whatever reason (not high enough level to cast it, not on your spell list, etc.), it adds +5 to the DC to be met in order to successfully create the magic item.

Remember that this rule does not apply for potions, spell-trigger, and spell-completion items (examples of those are scrolls and wands). For them, if you can't cast it for whatever reason, you can't make it, period.

Renegadeshepherd wrote:
title says it. ive heard some say that racial heritage feat will do this but honestly ive seen enough GMs dispute it to have doubts. anything is welcome

Racial Heritage is the most common way, though only available to Humans, and since you can take feats that actually require you to be a specific race to take them, it's safe to say that it applies to FCB options as well, according to the FAQ.

If you acquire a creature's sub-type through reincarnation or some other spell/ability, you would count as being that race for FCBs, if any are there.

gourry187 wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Gauntlets do not take up an Item Slot. By that same notion, Full Plate takes up the Body, Chest, Head, and Feet slots.

Gauntlets do take up the hand slot (as there are magic gauntlets in the "Hand" section in UE. Gauntlets that come with armor (med or heavy) however can be replaced without changing the integrity (=armor value)of the armor ... as can boots.

If full plate takes up all those spots, why is there an "Armor" slot?

The Gauntlet is a weapon, first and foremost, not a Wondrous Item. Those "magic gauntlets" you see in the Wondrous Item section do not count as actual gauntlets as far as the rules are concerned, as those "magic gauntlets" don't grant you the ability to deal lethal damage with your unarmed strike by default. The cost for those magical gauntlets, if you would be correct in that they are actual Gauntlet weapons, would be incorrectly calculated in the book, as it does not include Masterwork/Special Material (which is required to make them magical), or base item cost (2 gold, or 4 if they are a pair).

If you're going to make Gauntlets, which are defined in the weapon table, take up Wondrous Item slots, then by that same token Swords, Axes, and all manner of weapons would also take up the Hands slot (if not more), and armor would take up other slots, depending upon what the armor consists of according to its description. It also brings to light other shenanigans, in that you couldn't wield Swords and Axes and other weapons in the same hands that would be wearing Gauntlets. You'd also have to separate the Hand slots into Left Hand and Right Hand in order to keep each item that otherwise requires hands to use, in check.

So it brings us back to the bolded part; why should there be an Armor slot if you want to throw those random rules which, by the way, aren't even cited in the rulebook? I mean, the book says Armor is defined as having its own slot according to the Magic Item diagram, leaving the whole "It has a helm and boots and gloves listed in the description, so it takes up those slots" argument invalid. Additionally, there are weapons (specific inappropriately-sized weapons, but weapons nonetheless) in the Wondrous Item section that are listed as Slotless (meaning they don't take up a slot defined in the diagram). I imagine magic gauntlets, should they be enhanced as weapons, would fall under that same category.

Warhawx wrote:

I think if someone goes with an 18-20 weapon, they are quite obviously making a crit build...

According to the build you suggested, why scrap the skill focus though? It's a big boost and humans can get 3 of them for free instead of the free level 1 feat.

Because of space and relevance in accordance to what the rest of your build calls for. Crit fishing with the debuffs is very feat intensive; it's actually one of the only things a Fighter is most viable for in comparison to other classes. The problems you will run into with trying to fit it in is by subbing them in the earlier levels, where the benefits are most valuable, versus delaying the other core benefits of your build. It will also require you to cut out a feat, since you will be subtracting the open feat for 3, skill-specific ones.

Additionally, Intimidation builds are prime to work because the Intimidation skill scale versus the DC you need to make for it (which is HD + Wisdom, if I remember correctly), so having a Skill Focus for that and the others aren't that valuable, especially when a Fighter isn't designed to be a decent skill-monkey.

But if you absolutely require those skill foci, then I'll make slight revisions to accomodate them.

1: Weapon Focus (Falchion)
1*: Power Attack
2*: Dazzling Display
3: Intimidating Prowess
4*: Weapon Specialization (Falchion)
5: Hurtful
6*: Cornugon Smash
7: Iron Will
8*: Shatter Defenses
9: Improved Iron Will
10*: Greater Weapon Focus
11: Critical Focus
12*: Penetrating Strike
13: Greater Weapon Specialization (Falchion)
14*: Tiring
15: Sickening Critical
16*: Greater Penetrating Strike
17: Critical Mastery
18*: Staggering Critical
19: Critical Versatility
20*: Hammer the Gap

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Chengar Qordath wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Warhwx wrote:
I think the 30% chance to double your damage is much better than increasing your damage ceiling by 4 points.
I think I'd rather respect your decision on this matter than press my own position, but if you'd like me to argue my case further, then let's crunch the numbers. I need to know what are the enchantments on your Falchion, and what other things do you have going on that increase your damage? I know about weapon Focus and Specialization already.

The short version of all the math is that it depends on how much static damage your character has. At around +20 static damage (assuming keen/improved critical) the falchion starts to pull ahead.

Of course, that's assuming there are no other factors that might be influencing the math: some buffs like Enlarge Person and Lead Blades would help out the greatsword fighter (as would facing crit-immune enemies) while the falchion fighter can get more mileage out of any abilities/enchantments that trigger on a critical hit.

Personally, I would say the difference between the two is only going to be significant if you're using a build that heavily favors one or the other. Unless you're running a size increase stacking vital striker or a crit-fisher the overall difference in damage is pretty minor.

I think, Chengar, the shorter version of the math is that the OP has not revealed enough information about his character to ascertain whether it is worthwhile to retrain his 2 feats from Falchion to Greatsword.

While it's a balanced weapon overall (decent critical multiplier, decent weapon damage), lacking the 18-20 multiplier really hurts a crit-fisher build, like the one the OP is attempting to do, on top of intimidation. Additionally, the scaling for the Greatsword falls under the same faulty paradigm as the Falchion, in that it's a lower-end scale.

The most optimal crit-fishing weapon for fighters is the Nodachi. Having a 1D10 dice not only makes it optimal for maximizing damage (Falchion has a 6.25% chance to roll maximum damage compared to 10% chance to roll maximum damage that the Nodachi has), but if you try to increase the size, an Impact Nodachi from an Enlarged Fighter is sitting at an increased 3D8, mathematically equivalent to an Impact Greatsword from an Enlarged Fighter, which is 4D6; both maximums are 24.

But the critical hit chance the Nodachi has is vastly superior, it has two types of damage (Slashing and Piercing), and it has the Brace property to top it all off. The Greatsword, even playing by your rules, only matches one level of power that the Nodachi has; the Nodachi is otherwise superior in each other respect.

Even if we take off one of the two cited benefits, the Greatsword edges out by 2 points of damage at best per hit going by maximum calculations, something I can assure you the critical hit chance of the Nodachi would easily make up for.

Warhawx wrote:
This might just be a personal preference thing, but I think I would prefer the +15% chance to hit on one attack over +6 damage in a single round. Besides, it doesn't have to be one or the other as Furious focus and WF/GWF stack

I'll agree with Chess Pwn on the Furious Focus thing; it's a great feat for low levels simply because you can essentially cancel out all PA penalties until ~7th level, when your second attack starts to come online. Furious Focus is a great feat when you're only ever getting one attack in a round, and is common for those with just a single natural weapon. It suffers the same diminishing returns as Crane Wing did/does, in that its usefulness in comparison to the number of attacks thrown at you dwindles. Another flaw with Furious Focus is that it works on the first attack you make in your turn, meaning you can't apply it to your low-end BAB iteratives, the attacks that will have the most trouble hitting, in comparison to your first iterative, which should practically be guaranteed.

With that being said, I understand you're wanting to build a crit-fisher, so here's how I suggest you follow through with the feat progression, with * being marked for bonus feats:

Human: Power Attack
1: Weapon Focus (Falchion)
1*: Furious Focus
2*: Dazzling Display
3: Intimidating Prowess
4*: Weapon Specialization (Falchion)
5: Hurtful
6*: Cornugon Smash
7: Iron Will
8*: Shatter Defenses [replace Furious Focus with Greater Weapon Focus (Falchion)]
9: Improved Iron Will
10*: Critical Focus
11: Critical Versatility
12*: Penetrating Strike
13: Greater Weapon Specialization (Falchion)
14*: Tiring Critical
15: Sickening Critical
16*: Greater Penetrating Strike
17: Critical Mastery
18*: Staggering Critical
19: Improved Initiative
20*: Hammer the Gap

The big thing I forgot to mention is that for several of the critical feats, the greater forms still provide the lesser penalties on a successful save, meaning even if the DC scale is bad, a successful save still provides powerful debuffs. Throw on Critical Versatility to get you the powerful debuff of your choice (Stunning Critical is crazygood by the endgame), combined with Critical Versatility nets you a powerful debuff tacked on with another of your base debuffs.

Hammer the Gap, while not ideal, is really only a good feat for Two-Handed Martials by the endgame, where you should have absolutely 0 trouble hitting enemies, meaning you'll be getting a guaranteed +10 to your DPR. I debated applying Improved Initiative earlier, but even with the ability to go first, that turn would end up being spent either waiting, buffing (which you probably don't have anyway), or doing an inoptimal choice that leads to you getting killed. Besides that point, rocket-tagging only takes place in the endgame, so your initiative bonus isn't that important.

If you don't want to scrap a feat, one other feat I can recommend is Strong Comeback, as it synergizes well with Improved Iron Will, and if you get a Defiant weapon, applies its benefits multiple times in an adventuring day (up to 6, to be exact), meaning getting dominated would be a thing of the past.

It's still a ranged attack, so the arrow would still be treated as if shot from a medium creature, not a large creature, so no, it wouldn't scale up.

Warhawx wrote:
I think the 30% chance to double your damage is much better than increasing your damage ceiling by 4 points. Right now I'm thinking Iron Will for 9th and possibly improved initiative for 10th and Critical Versatility or something? Do you think cleave and great cleave would be worth the 9th and 10th slot over +2 willsave for fighter and +4 initiative?

The cleave feats require enemies be adjacent to each other and in your attack range, something that, without further feat investment from Dwarves (yup, dwarf-specific cleave feats negate some of these restrictions), makes this a very circumstantial usage.

Not only are they feat taxes like the Vital Strike feat chain(s) to keep effective amongst the later levels of play, it's an awful lot of set-up when you're already pumping your to-hit exponentially high, meaning your chances of missing on your iteratives equate to the same level of if you simply used Cleave.

Remember that the Deadly Stroke feat is a standard action. This means you do not get any of your other attacks, and any things that are contingent upon the attack action do not apply (such as using combat maneuvers in place of them). It's also situational in that the bleed isn't particularly effective compared to your static bonuses from the other iterative attacks you possess, and that most creatures you fight will have DR and fast healing or regeneration or healing spells to counteract the big benefit of the feat.

You don't want to sacrifice going first (giving opportunity to set up full attacks and buffing up), nor do you want to sacrifice the ability to negate being mind controlled, for circumstantial feats like the Cleave feat chain. (Or the Vital Strike feat chain for that matter.)

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