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Two-Weapon Rend and Weapon Swap (pg 39)


Skills & Feats

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm not entirely certain about the idea behind Weapon Swap to begin with, but that's not what this post is about. I'll be blunt: these two feats don't work together. The reason is simple: in order for Weapon Swap to be worthwhile, your primary-hand weapon has to be significantly better than your off-hand weapon. If this is the case, though, givig up the option to perform a Weapon Swap in order to get a Rend off makes no sense - you lose too much in the process. Conversely, if your character is properly built to exploit Two-Weapon Rend, by maximizing the chance that you will hit with both weapons, Weapon Swap becomes pointless - you really don't get anything from the exchange.

For example, consider Valeros at 15th level. As written, he has heavily focused on his longsword over his shortsword, a trend we can assume would continue with respect to his Weapon Training choices. If we give him Weapon Swap, his full attack statline looks like this:

Melee +4 frost cold iron longsword +28/+23/+18 (1d8+17, 17-20/x2, plus 1d6 cold) and +4 frost cold iron longsword +26/+21/+16 (1d8+14, 17-20/x2, plus 1d6 cold) or
+4 frost cold iron longsword +28/+23/+18 (1d8+17, 17-20/x2, plus 1d6 cold) and +2 shortsword +22/+17/+12 (1d6+7, 19-20/x2)

Thanks to his specialization in longsword, he gets a huge bonus for using Weapon Swap. Is taking a -4 to hit and -7 to damage on all his off-hand attacks (not to mention the decreased chance of crits) worth it for a total of 1d10+9 rend damage?

On the other hand, let's assume he became a twin shortsword wielder, so all his feat and Weapon Training choices reflect that focus instead. Similarly, we can assume he has more carefully balanced the enchantments on his weapons, so he has a +3 frost cold iron shortsword and a +2 shocking adamantine shortsword. Now his full attack statline looks like this:

Melee +3 frost cold iron shortsword +27/+22/+17 (1d6+16, 17-20/x2, plus 1d6 cold) and +2 shock adamantine shortsword +26/+21/+16 (1d6+12, 17-20/x2, plus 1d6 electricity) or
+3 frost cold iron shortsword +27/+22/+17 (1d6+16, 17-20/x2, plus 1d6 cold) and +3 frost cold iron shortsword +27/+22/+17 (1d6+13, 17-20/x2, plus 1d6 cold)

So now the difference is a +1 to hit and +1 to damage (solely the result of the slightly better enhancement bonus of the primary weapon) on the off-hand attacks in exchange for not getting 1d10+9 damage off. I don't know if that's a good idea or not.

Regardless, the point is, I'm far more likely to just to to use one or the other than both, particularly if I've gone for a more traditional big sword/little sword approach to two-weapon wielding. The relative benefits of the two are simply too imbalanced for most characters to want both.


With the chaining removed (which I am happy for) Weapon Swap becomes even more useless. In effect, the PC is punished by wasting a feat on something he'll probably never use.

In short, Weapon Swap is one of the most useless feats ever.

Dark Archive

I'm playing a rogue in a PFRPG game where we're allowed to use the playtest rules. The character uses two short swords and I came up with the exact same problem as the OP. However, my main problem *is* with Weapon Swap, because it strikes me as silly.

When dual-wielding, I don't think that necessarily all the main hand attacks go off, followed by all the off-hand attacks, as implied in Weapon Swap. The attacks may be *resolved* that way for convenience, but to assume that they actually occur that way in the fight that the rules are simulating seems unrealistic to me. It seems far more likely that the hands will alternate as opportunities allow.

I think perhaps Weapon Swap was dreamt up to act as a prerequisite for Rend, since Rend can be quite powerful. For this purpose, though, I think that making Double-Slice the pre-requisite would be more appropriate, since Double-Slice represents better training at using both weapons in harmony (although I have an issue with Double-Slice that I'll bring up in another thread...).

Chris


Christopher Hammock wrote:

I'm playing a rogue in a PFRPG game where we're allowed to use the playtest rules. The character uses two short swords and I came up with the exact same problem as the OP. However, my main problem *is* with Weapon Swap, because it strikes me as silly.

When dual-wielding, I don't think that necessarily all the main hand attacks go off, followed by all the off-hand attacks, as implied in Weapon Swap. The attacks may be *resolved* that way for convenience, but to assume that they actually occur that way in the fight that the rules are simulating seems unrealistic to me. It seems far more likely that the hands will alternate as opportunities allow.

I think perhaps Weapon Swap was dreamt up to act as a prerequisite for Rend, since Rend can be quite powerful. For this purpose, though, I think that making Double-Slice the pre-requisite would be more appropriate, since Double-Slice represents better training at using both weapons in harmony (although I have an issue with Double-Slice that I'll bring up in another thread...).

Chris

Double slice does make a nice lead in to Two Weapon Rend, and I like Two Weapon Rend as a feat to help make two weapon fighting more effective. I see no problem with allowing this if someone wants to spend the feat on it, but I also agree that there has to be something "in between" two weapon fighting and two weapon rend.

Weapon swap just continues to baffle me. It just seems to me that in the time you would juggle two weapons to switch hands, you should be able to get in three or four attacks if you are that agile. I know, D&D combat shouldn't be seen as too realistic, but for some reason I can't warm up to this one.

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