Natural Weapons and the secondary attack tradeoff


Advice


I know this is probably just a matter of crunching the numbers, but I was wondering what the general thought was about mixing multiple natural attacks with manufactured weapons.

I'm building a mid level Master Chymist Wereboar-kin Skinwalker who is going to have a gore, bite, 2 claws, and 2 hooves to attack with.

What I'm debating on is getting a vestigial arm in the Alchemist levels leading up to 7th to hold a weapon. Is the -5 (-2 if my GM will allow Multiattack) to all the natural attacks worth the extra 2 attacks from the manufactured weapon at lower levels? What about when BAB reaches 16?


I think mixing in manufactured weapons is a bad plan. Note that in addition to taking -5 (or -2 with Multiattack), you are also giving all of your natural attack 1/2 str damage.

Also note that with that many nat attacks an Amulet of Mighty Fists is actually a sweet deal. If you mix in weapon attacks and want them to be useful (especially at high levels), they would need to be heavily enchanted which would also be a big cut into wealth by level. I wouldn't mess with it and just be happy with your 4 primary and 2 secondary nat attacks.


I had forgotten about the 1/2 STR element. That really reduces the DMG output. Thanks for the reminder.


Also the vestigial arm doesn't work that way. They are very explicit about the fact that the arm cannot be used to make additional attacks, so even with one, you would still need to give up one of your natural attacks to use a weapon with it.


Sah wrote:
Also the vestigial arm doesn't work that way. They are very explicit about the fact that the arm cannot be used to make additional attacks, so even with one, you would still need to give up one of your natural attacks to use a weapon with it.

Not quite. Without a vestigial arm, the character could still make all of their natural weapon attacks plus two iterative unarmed strikes. So with the vestigial arm they aren't gaining any additional attacks, they're simply swapping out an attack they could already make for an attack with a different weapon, which is quite explicitly allowed by the FAQ.

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