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6th Level Barbarian: Furious or Vicious Greataxe?


Advice


Hello all. I'm a long time lurker, first time poster.

So, my current gaming group is making the leap from 4th ed to Pathfinder. We remaking our campaign and I'm going barbarian this time around. I get to start at 6th level and am probably going to choose the Invulnerable Rager archetype. The GM is gifting me with either a Furious Greataxe +1 or a Vicious Greataxe +1, my choice.

Since I'll have a DR of 3 to start out that will only increase, I'm leaning toward the extra damage of the Vicious weapon and take my chances with the hit.

Am I correct in my thinking or should I go for the Furious one?

Thanks for any responses.


I'd go for furious unless you are sure you will have a constant amount of healing as the damage from vicious ignores dr since it is untyped energy damage similar to vampiric touch.

Furious also gives a to hit bonus which is probably more valuable to a power attacking barbarian than 2d6 damage.

Finally d6 doesn't seem like much but hasted at level 6 you could be dealing 10 damage every round to yourself, thats a cure light wounds per turn and probably about 10% of your hp.

Qadira

Overall, the Furious will be better for you. Between not hurting you, and bumping up your to-hit, it's more likely to help, again, unless you're going to have a constant influx of healing. Average 3.5 damage/hit to yourself doesn't seem like a lot, but once it starts adding up, and with enemy damage, no less, it's going to hurt very badly.


Another vote for Furious. Even though I'm accustomed to infinite out of combat healing from wands of CLW due to my group's playstyle, I'd still take Furious.

Qadira

Out of combat healing will be fine, it's the in-combat part that's gonna hurt.


Yeah, that was what I was implying. 3.5 per hit isn't that bad necessarily, most of the time. But in a very long combat or one with many enemies, it could get real ugly. Not sure you can "turn off" the property, but I doubt it. Even if you can, that's a wasted combat round.

Qadira

I don't think you can.

Vicious Weapon Quality

Vicious doesn't have the qualifier "Upon command..." as is found in other weapon qualities, such as Flaming.


While the Invulnerable Rager archetype might* mitigate the own-damage caused by the vicious weapon you are still better off in a DPR sense with the furious weapon since +2AT/+2DAM will net better DPR than +0AT/+7DAM even disregarding the damage you take to yourself.

* If the DR3/- from Invulnerable Rager works against the energy damage from vicious attack. If the DR doesn't apply then the vicious weapon isn't even in the running.

Qadira

DR3/- doesn't affect any energy damage, including the untyped damage from vicious. DR3/- will affect physical damage, as in Bludgeoning, Slashing, or Piercing, be it from actual weapon or spell.


Furious

It helps overcome DR of monster's too, as it would make the weapon +3 and thus counts for Silver/Cold Iron. Assuming you level the blade, it gets you to +4 and 5 DR stuff that much faster as well. There is a lot of stuff with DR 10, even at the mid-range. (Heck, you could be fighting were's as CR 2-4 fairly easy and if they are true blood they have DR 10)

Barbarians, minus a few totems, have no real 'get around resistances/DR save by doing stupid amounts of damage.'


Humphey Boggard wrote:

While the Invulnerable Rager archetype might* mitigate the own-damage caused by the vicious weapon you are still better off in a DPR sense with the furious weapon since +2AT/+2DAM will net better DPR than +0AT/+7DAM even disregarding the damage you take to yourself.

* If the DR3/- from Invulnerable Rager works against the energy damage from vicious attack. If the DR doesn't apply then the vicious weapon isn't even in the running.

As edgar correctly points out the damage described in the vicious weapon quality is untyped energy and not subject to damage reduction or resistances similar to the vampiric touch spell.

The only way around it was a 3.5 magic item from dragon which activated clw each time you took damage, i think it was called a vest of healing or something similar, priced like a wand.


Thanks again for all the responses. I wasn't aware that DR didn't work on energy damage or the untyped self-damage from the Vicious weapon.

Given that, and that while raging, I could blow through cold iron/silver DR, I'm definitely going with the Furious greataxe.

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