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Monk Weapon Proficiency in Ultimate Combat


Rules Questions

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Silver Crusade

In the APG, the couple of new monk weapons state in their descriptions that all monks are proficient in them (brass knuckles and temple sword).
It is worth noting that the cestus in the APG is listed as a monk weapon, but is not mentioned as being a weapon monks are proficient in.

However, nothing similar has been stated concerning the rather significant number of monk weapons in the new Ultimate Combat sourcebook. Does this mean that most monks do NOT get proficiency in ANY of the martial or exotic monk weapons without taking the Martial Weapon feat (or a dip into Fighter) or taking the Exotic Weapon feat for each exotic monk weapon on the list?

Would like an official ruling on this please (and would this official ruling have force within Pathfinder Society organized play)?

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

Keeping thread alive.

Andoran

I'm commenting more to bump the thread than to add any insight but it is my opinion monks should be proficient with all monk weapons.


obadiah wrote:
I'm commenting more to bump the thread than to add any insight but it is my opinion monks should be proficient with all monk weapons.

Seconded, though I don't think we currently have rules support for this position.

Shadow Lodge

Monks are only proficient in weapons listed in their entry, and that explicitly state that they are proficient (from later sources.) What the monk weapon property does is allow a monk to flurry with it. It doesn't mean the monk is proficient.

Silver Crusade

Alorha wrote:
Monks are only proficient in weapons listed in their entry, and that explicitly state that they are proficient (from later sources.) What the monk weapon property does is allow a monk to flurry with it. It doesn't mean the monk is proficient.

While this is true, all other instances that I've seen so far of monk weapon offerings outside of the Core book have specified that monk are proficient with them. This is the first source book in Pathfinder that *I* know of that didn't include proficiency for the monk weapons. Even a simple explicit statement that proficiency is not assumed would have clarified things.

I guess that currently the RAW leaves out proficiency for these monk weapons. I was just wanting clarification because of the prior established pattern of including proficiency for new monk weapons in the past.


Eric Morris wrote:
Alorha wrote:
Monks are only proficient in weapons listed in their entry, and that explicitly state that they are proficient (from later sources.) What the monk weapon property does is allow a monk to flurry with it. It doesn't mean the monk is proficient.

While this is true, all other instances that I've seen so far of monk weapon offerings outside of the Core book have specified that monk are proficient with them. This is the first source book in Pathfinder that *I* know of that didn't include proficiency for the monk weapons. Even a simple explicit statement that proficiency is not assumed would have clarified things.

I guess that currently the RAW leaves out proficiency for these monk weapons. I was just wanting clarification because of the prior established pattern of including proficiency for new monk weapons in the past.

My thoughts exactly. Was this a case of an intentional decision to not grant monk's proficiency in the weapons (an extremely odd decision, given how many pretty things the monk got in this book to deny her this, or force her to invest her feats in weapon proficiency for weapons designed to be used with her style of fighting), or was it the case of an editing failure (which we know Paizo to be susceptible to).

Not contesting that as written monks don't get proficiency. It just seems odd.


submit2me wrote:


On the same note, though, why would a monk be able to flurry with weapons for which they have no proficiency? I'm not saying you're wrong, I'm just saying it's dumb that they can't automatically use any and all monk weapons since they're monks.

Because they haven't received special training with the weapon (i.e proficiency.)

RAW, they can't use all monks weapons.

RAI, who knows, The Unarmed Fighter Archetype explicitly mentions how the character is able to use all monk weapons even exotic ones, so it's quite possible that they now intend all monks to be proficient in "monk" weapons.

Silver Crusade

Come on Paizo, please respond. Some form of official word would be nice please.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Ok first of all in my book and in the PRD the cestus description grants monks proficiency, so i guess that your book is 1st printing and there was an errata.

Now on the exotic monk weapons in the UC:
Oh yes, i hope it's an editing mistake and not an intentional decision.


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

Hmm...that is odd. Every single weapon with the monk quality is either one they have proficiency with in the original printing, or was stated in the weapon's description that monks are proficient, even with exotic weapons. This applies to every weapon up to Ultimate Combat. It does seem a little odd that the pattern would be broken like that, considering how things have been printed thus far.

Personally, I'm beginning to think it is an editorial oversight. There seem to be several elements within Ultimate Combat where the writers took some things for granted, making for things that seem odd or unclear to players, such as why monk are not proficient with the monk quality weapons listed though they are proficient with every single other monk quality weapon thus far printed.

Qadira

Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I also wish to know this. especially with the three sectioned staff. a double monk weapon with two specials, for the level one monk, and with 1d10 damage. if every monk gets proficiency... Ouch! (for the low level bad guys). if it needs an exotic weapon proficiency... expensive. (for the monk who now has to sacrifice two feats to use it.)

but as to most the other monk weapons in UC, why deny them to the monks? they are nice and designed to make the monk a better Combat maneuver specialist, not a damage machine like fighter/barbarians.

An official ruling or errata page for UC clarifying this would be nice.


Been wondering the same myself.

While it does seem odd that a monk would not be automatically proficient in ANY of the new monk weapons added by UC, I did notice that in the unarmed fighter archetype, it explicitly states that that archetype is proficient in all monk weapons, including exotic ones. If I had to guess, I'd say that a monk is proficient with all the new martial weapons, but not the exotic ones.

Qadira

as far as i know, monks are proficient with everything listed under their class entry in the core book, and if new "monk weapons" come out, the entry states that monks are proficient with it. ( ex. temple sword from APG. )

a lot of the martial and exotic weapons provided in Ultimate Combat have the monk descriptor and can be used to flurry with, if they get proficiency somehow, but are also for the ninja and samurai. since many of the weapons are listed as martial.

this is stupid to me. monks are already given free exotic weapon proficiency in a number of weapons ( kama, nunchaku, etc. ). adding a few more to their list wouldn't be so bad.


raylyynsedai wrote:
if it needs an exotic weapon proficiency... expensive. (for the monk who now has to sacrifice two feats to use it.)

Why two feats? He just needs to take EWP (Sansetsukon), assuming it wasn't intended for him to be proficient in the first place. I'm pretty sure the intent was for monks to gain proficiency with all the new monk weapons, but the RAW is that they aren't.


Why not just let a monk select x number of monk weapons to be proficient with and possibly add another one (at no cost in feats) every four levels after 1st (5th, 9th, etc.)?

Qadira

None of the new weapons are outlandishly powerful. The best one is probably the sansetsukon, which is only somewhat better than the temple sword. So yeah, let's hope for errata.

Qadira

Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Bobson wrote:
raylyynsedai wrote:
if it needs an exotic weapon proficiency... expensive. (for the monk who now has to sacrifice two feats to use it.)
Why two feats? He just needs to take EWP (Sansetsukon), assuming it wasn't intended for him to be proficient in the first place. I'm pretty sure the intent was for monks to gain proficiency with all the new monk weapons, but the RAW is that they aren't.

because the pre req for EWP is a martial weapon proficiency which the Monk does not have. :)


raylyynsedai wrote:
Bobson wrote:
raylyynsedai wrote:
if it needs an exotic weapon proficiency... expensive. (for the monk who now has to sacrifice two feats to use it.)
Why two feats? He just needs to take EWP (Sansetsukon), assuming it wasn't intended for him to be proficient in the first place. I'm pretty sure the intent was for monks to gain proficiency with all the new monk weapons, but the RAW is that they aren't.
because the pre req for EWP is a martial weapon proficiency which the Monk does not have. :)

The only prereq I see for EWP is BAB +1. Link. This might have been a 3.5 -> PF change, because I do kindof remember that too.

Andoran

Bobson wrote:
raylyynsedai wrote:
Bobson wrote:
raylyynsedai wrote:
if it needs an exotic weapon proficiency... expensive. (for the monk who now has to sacrifice two feats to use it.)
Why two feats? He just needs to take EWP (Sansetsukon), assuming it wasn't intended for him to be proficient in the first place. I'm pretty sure the intent was for monks to gain proficiency with all the new monk weapons, but the RAW is that they aren't.
because the pre req for EWP is a martial weapon proficiency which the Monk does not have. :)
The only prereq I see for EWP is BAB +1. Link. This might have been a 3.5 -> PF change, because I do kindof remember that too.

Even if it did still have the requirement the monk is proficient with short sword and handax both of which are martial weapons.

Silver Crusade

STILL waiting for official comment by Paizo...

Qadira

I could have sworn there was an update to the "monk" weapon property description somewhere that would clarify this, but i can't find it in UM, APG or online. grr.

Answer us paizo!


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

I came here hoping for some answers to this topic. Guess we're all looking for that clarity. To me, the fact that the Unarmed Fighter Archetype includes all monk weapons in their proficiencies is only evidence that the same is implied for a Monk.

The weapons in UC are pretty confusing as written overall anyway, and this just makes it worse. Some weapons speak of tripping, blocking or disarming in the writeup, but the specs on the weapons don't include those abilities.

One in particular, the Kyoketsu Shoge has a thrown range of 20', but can also be a reach weapon with 10' of rope. Do you throw rope and all when used as a ranged weapon? It says that the circlet is what's used for the reach weapon too, but there are no stats for that. Confusing.

Also, which of these weapons work with Weapon Finesse? Many of them are similar in structure to a spiked chain or include a light weapon on a chain/cord to attack at range as well. It would only make sense that weapon finesse should apply to them - at least a few. I don't see it mentioned in any.

Andoran

From a real world perspective the meteor hammer and 9 section whip should be weapon finesse weapons. If you try to use strength with those instead of dexterity/training you'll just end up damaging yourself. Of course, real world doesn't always translate to gaming rules well, but it doesn't seem too powerful to make those finesse-able weapons. Giving the appropriate monk weapons the ability to be used with weapon finesse would make a nice option for dex based and str based monks, dependent on the type of weapons you want to use. It'd be a cool option.

And I'd certainly think that any weapon with the monk designation should be one monks have proficiency with. And it seems obvious that the meteor hammer is a monk weapon, so I'm curious why it doesn't get the monk designation. But again, just because it's real world obvious, doesn't mean it translates to the rules, I'd just like to hear why it doesn't translate.

And it sure would be nice to hear from an official source on these questions.


In the ultimate combat faq, this question was addressed:
Monk Weapons: If a weapon is specified as a monk weapon, does that mean that monks are automatically proficient with that weapon?
No. It means that they can use this weapon while using flurry of blows. It does not mean that it is added to the list of weapons that a monk is proficient with, unless the weapon description says otherwise.

—Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Thursday Back to Top

Qadira

Jon Otaguro 428 wrote:

In the ultimate combat faq, this question was addressed:

Monk Weapons: If a weapon is specified as a monk weapon, does that mean that monks are automatically proficient with that weapon?
No. It means that they can use this weapon while using flurry of blows. It does not mean that it is added to the list of weapons that a monk is proficient with, unless the weapon description says otherwise.

—Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Thursday Back to Top

Well that makes sense, and now I feel dumb for having not found that when I was searching around.

I've also been thinking about the extra amount of training many martial arts weapons require and have come to the conclusion that many such as the chain whip and the meteor hammer and the rope dart really do take a lot more training than a broadsword or other simple bladed weapon.

So I guess the only thing I'd ask for is that Meteor Hammers be made monk weapons, they are at least as usable in a flurry as chain whip or rope dart are and those are both listed as Monk weapons.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

It still seems rather silly. You have to spend a feat to learn to use the bo staff (imo the most basic weapon that nearly every martial art teaches) yet the wildly impractical nunchaku comes with the starting proficiencies. I smell a plot hole...


Well this thread is pretty old, but I guess it is better to necro this one then to make a new one right?

Jelle Hoekstra wrote:
It still seems rather silly.

I agree.

Let's just look back to all the monk weapons we have:

1. The weapons from the CRB, typical monk weapons the class is
proficient
with from the start. They are all mentioned in the class description.
Most are exotic and they are pretty much what you'd think a
Eastern/Kung-Fu class would use.
2. The Monk weapons from APG. Three weapons were added with this book.
The brass and the Cestus, both of which fit the classic martial
artist
image of the Monk. Then there was also the Temple Sword, doesn't fit
the classic Monk image as much then most other weapons (IMO) but
nobody ever said that Monks could only use Chinese/Japanese and it's
also the favorite weapon of Sajan.
They all mention the monk being proficient with them in their
descriptions.
3. A whole bunch of Monk weapons was added in UC, all of which can be
found on this list.
http://www.d20pfsrd.com/equipment---final/weapons/eastern-weapons
NONE of them state that the monk automatically knows how to use them.
This seems rather odd considering that they are all classic Kung-Fu
Weapons and none of them are all that different/powerfull which
means getting proficiency would be a total waste of Feats.

This would mean the "Unarmed Figther" can use them all while monks
can't even use the most simple of them, like the Hanbo or Tonfa

Now I would understand if SOME of them would require an extra proficiency, like the Seven-Branched Sword or the Sansetsukon (not that there damage is THAT high) but all of them? really?

Jelle Hoekstra wrote:
You have to spend a feat to learn to use the bo staff (imo the most basic weapon that nearly every martial art teaches) yet the wildly impractical nunchaku comes with the starting proficiencies. I smell a plot hole...

It's pretty silly to have it as an exotic weapon in the first place, especialy when you look at the other weapons on the eastern weapons list. I really don't think a Monk’s Spade is easier to use then a Quaterstaff


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Monks should be proficient with all Monk weapons if you ask me about it.

Unarmed Fighter? He's not a Monk, why give him Monk weapon proficiencies?!


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Icyshadow wrote:

Monks should be proficient with all Monk weapons if you ask me about it.

Unarmed Fighter? He's not a Monk, why give him Monk weapon proficiencies?!

[sarcasm]Because he's better than the monk at fighting unarmed, so why shouldn't he be better than them at all their other weapons as well?[/sarcasm]

Seriously, this is a big bone of contention to monk lovers, that monk's aren't proficient with 'monk' weapons but a fighter archetype is. It would make sense that they needed EWP to use these weapons if they were worth taking EWP to get use out of them. For the most part, they are not.

The other thing that bugs: temple swords. Mechanically identical to a longsword. So why not just call it a variety of longsword, and make the monk proficient with the longsword? Why not just call the butterfly sword a shortsword and let the monk flurry with it?


Dabbler wrote:
The other thing that bugs people: the temple sword. Mechanically identical to a longsword. So why not just call it a variant of the longsword, and make the monk proficient with the longsword? Why not just call the butterfly sword a variant shortsword and let the monk flurry with it?

BECAUSE ANIME, THAT'S F***ING WHY!!


Dabbler wrote:
The other thing that bugs: temple swords. Mechanically identical to a longsword. So why not just call it a variety of longsword, and make the monk proficient with the longsword? Why not just call the butterfly sword a shortsword and let the monk flurry with it?

Well there are some differences in technique and design (at least more then between Quaterstaff and Bo) which I guess would justify to have one count as Monk weapon while the other doesn't. Also it just feels better to have the official Butterfly-/Temple-/Nine Ring-/Seven-Branched Sword from the rules :)

It would also make sense if they where proficient with Longswords, Scimitars and other blade weapons. That doesn't mean they sould be able to Flurry with them but just know how to use them, after all they already know how to use Temple Swords and short swords.

Well both of these options, yours or mine, are quite reasonable and could be hoseruled. I just don't think this would ever be written into the rules since dual-wielding an axe and longsword just wouldn't fit the classic Kung-Fu Monk, the eastern weapons which he can't use would

Evil Finnish Chaos Beast wrote:
BECAUSE ANIME, THAT'S F***ING WHY!!

Hey screw you! How did you even know my campaign would be based on Queen's Blade?!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Quote:
The other thing that bugs: temple swords. Mechanically identical to a longsword. So why not just call it a variety of longsword, and make the monk proficient with the longsword? Why not just call the butterfly sword a shortsword and let the monk flurry with it?

Because a templesword and a longsword (and butterfly sword and a shortsword) are in fact different weapons with different real-world characteristics. Just because they happen to have the same damage die and threat range in the game doesn't mean you should combine them into one weapon.

That said, extending your thought into (what I think is) the right direction: implement ways of granting monks proficiency in weapon groups would make sense to me.


My problem I have with this is that "Longsword" and "Shortsword" already cover a great deal of different historical weapons, we are just used to lumping them all together into this generic category. Whether something is close enough to lump in has changed between books and editions, for example I believe 3.X considered a Katana a masterwork Bastard Sword while Pathfinder considers it a distinct weapon. There are also cases like the Aldori Dueling Sword, where a weapon is folded in unless you have the Exotic proficiency, in which case it receives a bonus.

In the end the line between what counts as a distinct enough weapon will probably always be fuzzy and gray, distinguished by individual philosophy of game design. That said, I think giving Monks the ability to gain proficiency in a group really would be great. While charging a feat for the use of a weapon that is only cosmetically different is a bit much, it would be evened out a bit by allowing it to cover a wider range.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
LoreKeeper wrote:
Because a templesword and a longsword (and butterfly sword and a shortsword) are in fact different weapons with different real-world characteristics. Just because they happen to have the same damage die and threat range in the game doesn't mean you should combine them into one weapon.

A longsword encompass radically different weapons already - from the viking broadsword to the medieval arming sword for the longsword, for example. At the end of the day what they all have in common is that they are a 3' long slashing weapon (which isn't even strictly accurate as the reason longswords were straight was to thrust with them effectively). The same is true of shortswords...

I guess I'm just not fond of the proliferation of different weapons that aren't really all that different, given the dissimilar weapons already rolled into one by the system.


Naw, let's not go into this discussion please. I know I might have started it and I'm sorry if thats the case.

All I'm trying to say is:

Jon Otaguro 428 wrote:

In the ultimate combat faq, this question was addressed:

Monk Weapons: If a weapon is specified as a monk weapon, does that mean that monks are automatically proficient with that weapon?
No. It means that they can use this weapon while using flurry of blows. It does not mean that it is added to the list of weapons that a monk is proficient with, unless the weapon description says otherwise.

—Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Thursday Back to Top

seems kinda odd when you consider that:

A) the "unarmed fighter" CAN use all monk weapons

B) any extra feat would be a total wast for most monk weapons

C) The monk would be far from overpowerd even if he could use all monk
weapons from start.

...and I'm sorry if I sound like some demanding douche


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Oh I am completely in agreement with you. It's a change I would make for monks, definitely.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

There is a trait that allows you to be proficient with one Monk weapon.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Gosh. Forgive me, but that's the level most EWPs should be at. Very few weapons are worth a feat to use, I'd rather see them as groups of weapons.


A common houserule (especially amongst my group) is to allow Monks be proficient with weapons that have the "monk" special quality


blackbloodtroll wrote:
There is a trait that allows you to be proficient with one Monk weapon.

Can you name it?


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Starbuck_II wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:
There is a trait that allows you to be proficient with one Monk weapon.
Can you name it?

See it here:

Weapon Style:
Weapon Style
Source: PFS Guide to Organized Play pg. 16
Requirement(s): Lantern Lodge
You gain proficiency with one weapon that has the monk special weapon quality.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I was just having a discussion with my group about this, so I came to the website to find an answer. I don't want to be too pushy here, I know the designers have their hands full, but can we at least get a comment from them as to why the question hasn't been addressed? This seems fairly important, especially with the addition of all the monk weapons in the Ultimate Equipment. Is there some more direct way we/I can pose this question to the designers? I hate having to dig this discussion up every time we start with a new DM.


dthunder wrote:
I was just having a discussion with my group about this, so I came to the website to find an answer. I don't want to be too pushy here, I know the designers have their hands full, but can we at least get a comment from them as to why the question hasn't been addressed? This seems fairly important, especially with the addition of all the monk weapons in the Ultimate Equipment. Is there some more direct way we/I can pose this question to the designers? I hate having to dig this discussion up every time we start with a new DM.

It was addressed, in the Ultimate Combat FAQ.

LINK

FAQ wrote:

Monk Weapons: If a weapon is specified as a monk weapon, does that mean that monks are automatically proficient with that weapon?

No. It means that they can use this weapon while using flurry of blows. It does not mean that it is added to the list of weapons that a monk is proficient with, unless the weapon description says otherwise.

—Stephen Radney-MacFarland, 10/13/11


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I have no need to make all weapons with the Monk ability, something that the Monk is proficient with.


Any monk weapon that essentially is 1d6 damage with a normal x2 crit and 1 special effect other than monk should be something all monks are proficient in.


I know it was addressed, I even quoted it.
The problem is how it was addressed

Anburaid wrote:
Any monk weapon that essentially is 1d6 damage with a normal x2 crit and 1 special effect other than monk should be something all monks are proficient in.

It would make sense if there where any weapons(^those^ for example) that had "monk is proficient with it" in their description (which every weapon from APG has), but the way it is now every monk weapon from UC needs the character to have an extra Feat, which means the only character that will EVER use the BO is the "unarmed fighter" (and monk of the empty hand, but he doesn't count) and even a Rogue can use the Han-Bo


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

A Cleric or Inquisitor of Kofusachi will use the Bo Staff.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Zarion Blutnagel wrote:
It would make sense if there where any weapons(^those^ for example) that had "monk is proficient with it" in their description (which every weapon from APG has), but the way it is now every monk weapon from UC needs the character to have an extra Feat, which means the only character that will EVER use the BO is the "unarmed fighter" (and monk of the empty hand, but he doesn't count) and even a Rogue can use the Han-Bo

The only thing I can think that doesn't depress me about this is if Unarmed fighters (the archetype) were meant to be proficient with the same weapons monks are rather than "monk" weapons.

It just seems weird that other classes gain weapon proficiencies with each new supplement except the monk (save the temple sword, that is).


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Tarantula wrote:
dthunder wrote:
I was just having a discussion with my group about this, so I came to the website to find an answer. I don't want to be too pushy here, I know the designers have their hands full, but can we at least get a comment from them as to why the question hasn't been addressed? This seems fairly important, especially with the addition of all the monk weapons in the Ultimate Equipment. Is there some more direct way we/I can pose this question to the designers? I hate having to dig this discussion up every time we start with a new DM.

It was addressed, in the Ultimate Combat FAQ.

LINK

FAQ wrote:

Monk Weapons: If a weapon is specified as a monk weapon, does that mean that monks are automatically proficient with that weapon?

No. It means that they can use this weapon while using flurry of blows. It does not mean that it is added to the list of weapons that a monk is proficient with, unless the weapon description says otherwise.

—Stephen Radney-MacFarland, 10/13/11

Epic. Thank-you for your help. It's nice to know that it's been addressed.

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