What's Your Weapon?

Friday, April 30, 2018

For many heroes, their choice of weapon says more about their personality and sense of aesthetics than their penchant for mechanical optimization. For others, form follows function, and still others blend the two. But what sort of weapon fits your personality best? Let's take a look at various weapons and figure it out!

Simple, Martial, or Exotic?

All weapons in Pathfinder are simple, martial, or exotic, based on their rough level of power. Unlike in Pathfinder First Edition, exotic weapons are not just a mixture of powerful European weapons and weapons from other cultures that only occasionally had a leg up over their martial kin. In Pathfinder Second Edition, we have a different way of talking about whether a weapon is likely to be found in a particular region, and so a weapon's type instead describes a weapon's mix of power and flexibility. Simple weapons usually have a smaller damage die than similar martial weapons (d6 rather than d8, for instance), and exotic weapons usually use the same damage die as a martial weapon but include additional abilities that make the weapon more complex.

Characters start with proficiency in either groups of weapons or lists of individual weapons, and they can take ancestry or general feats (and, rarely, class feats) to gain more!

Weapon Traits

Whatever your weapon proficiencies, you'll want to choose a weapon with useful traits that match your taste and play style. Even among martial weapons that use two hands, a bo staff, a greatsword, and a glaive all feel very different.

A greatsword deals a lot of damage, perfect for a bruiser character like a worshiper of Gorum: its damage die is d12 and you can seamlessly switch between piercing and slashing damage to avoid enemy resistances and exploit their weaknesses.

A bo staff is all about controlling the fight. Its damage die is only d8, but it has reach (allowing you to Strike enemies up to 10 feet away), parry (allowing you to spend an action to increase your AC much like a light shield), and trip (giving you several benefits to your attempts to trip enemies). Plus, it has the monk trait, which weapon-wielding monks particularly enjoy.

The glaive has a d8 damage die like the bo staff and shares its reach, but that's where the similarities end. The glaive has deadly d8 (dealing additional d8s of damage on a critical hit), and it is forceful (which means once you get it going and build up momentum, your attacks become more and more powerful: 1 extra damage per die on the second attack of your turn, 2 extra damage for any attacks after that). The glaive-user isn't interested in giving up an action for defense like a character with a bo staff; instead, she does best if she artfully sweeps the blade like a brush, focusing on accuracy and multiple attacks to really dish out the damage—particularly fitting for a follower of Shelyn.

We want to give every weapon a different personality like this so that we can better serve the infinite personalities that players bring with their characters!

Some other fun weapon traits I haven't covered yet: Twin weapons like the saw-toothed saber deal more damage if you fight with two of them. Backswing weapons like the greatclub gain a little accuracy after a miss. Backstabber weapons like the dogslicer deal more damage to flat-footed targets. Agile weapons like the shortsword decrease the penalty for making multiple attacks in a single turn. Finesse weapons like the rapier use your Dexterity modifier for attack rolls if you prefer. Two-hand weapons like the bastard sword deal much higher damage if you wield them in two hands instead of one!

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

Critical Specialization and Weapon Groups

Traits give us some really cool ways to distinguish weapons, but we decided to throw one more customization factor into the mix, this time for similar groups of weapons: critical specialization effects.

Characters who unlock their weapon's critical specialization effect gain a special bonus effect on a critical hit that's different for each weapon group. For example, let's compare swords, spears, and axes.

Swords make the target flat-footed on a critical hit, making it easier for you and your allies to hit the target again (and making the group's rogue very happy). This cements swords like the greatsword or a longsword as great choices for dealing damage to challenging foes like bosses, as they have high damage and decrease the boss's AC so your team can hit more often.

Spears pierce the target and weaken its attacks. This makes a spear a good option for someone using a more defensive strategy built around negating enemy attacks.

Axes swing to an adjacent target (if any), damaging that target, too! Combined with the fact that axes usually have the sweep trait, giving you a bonus on attacks when you move on to a new target in the same turn, this makes axes extremely well suited for sweeping up groups of enemies.

These are just a few of the possibilities. For instance, daggers can cause persistent bleed damage, and clubs can knock the target up to 10 feet away (particularly amusing on a well-placed Attack of Opportunity).

Weapon Quality

Weapons, as well as other non-weapon items (but come on, those aren't as cool as weapons, right?), can be poor quality, standard quality, expert quality, master quality, or legendary quality.

Quality grants an item bonus or penalty of the same value as the matching proficiency (so an expert bow grants a +1 item bonus to hit and a legendary axe grants a +3 item bonus to hit). You have to have the matching proficiency to Craft a weapon of that quality though, so you can't make a master sword, for instance, unless you are a master at Crafting.

And now you know the basics about weapons! All there is to do now is choose the weapon that suits you. Until next time!

Mark Seifter
Designer

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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
HWalsh wrote:

One question (which may have been answered in the 10 pages already, apologies if it has) is this:

How do weapon qualities and weapon proficiencies and magical weapon enhancements interact?

IE:
I'm a 13th level Fighter - Legendary Proficiency Longsword (+3)
I have a +5 Strength Bonus (+5)
I'm using a Legendary Quality Longsword (+3)
I've put a +2 Enchantment on that sword (+2, and 2 additional damage dice)

So that mean, when I attack, I'm rolling:

1d20+26 for 3d8+5 damage?

Just +24 on the to hit. Enchantment only adds damage, the to hit bonus of the weapon comes from its quality only.


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Malk_Content wrote:
HWalsh wrote:

One question (which may have been answered in the 10 pages already, apologies if it has) is this:

How do weapon qualities and weapon proficiencies and magical weapon enhancements interact?

IE:
I'm a 13th level Fighter - Legendary Proficiency Longsword (+3)
I have a +5 Strength Bonus (+5)
I'm using a Legendary Quality Longsword (+3)
I've put a +2 Enchantment on that sword (+2, and 2 additional damage dice)

So that mean, when I attack, I'm rolling:

1d20+26 for 3d8+5 damage?

Just +24 on the to hit. Enchantment only adds damage, the to hit bonus of the weapon comes from its quality only.

That is my understanding as well.


I think enchantment bonuses only give bonus dice.

Liberty's Edge

We don't know for a fact that enhancement bonuses from weapons only give damage (though it seems likely and I'm hoping for it). They could give to-hit as well.

What I'd bet good money on is that if they do give a bonus it doesn't stack with the bonus from Weapon Quality.

After all, Masterwork bonuses don't stack with magic weapon bonuses in PF1 and they've said they're reducing bonus stacking, not increasing it.

So, yeah, +24 to hit for 3d8+5. Though I'd expect more like Str 22 and a +3 weapon on a 13th level Fighter (which would make it +25 to hit for 4d8+6).


I love what you guys are doing with Pathfinder 2.0 but i am honestly a bit worried it might be to complex to get into for new players. Mostly cause you are adding alot of complexities to spells and weapons. As a veteran player I find it amazing but seeing as how I bring in alot of new/inexperienced players I'm worried about how hard it will be to bring them up to speed.


Cyclopsw wrote:
I love what you guys are doing with Pathfinder 2.0 but i am honestly a bit worried it might be to complex to get into for new players. Mostly cause you are adding alot of complexities to spells and weapons. As a veteran player I find it amazing but seeing as how I bring in alot of new/inexperienced players I'm worried about how hard it will be to bring them up to speed.

Also looking at it from the DM angle, with the 4 tiers of success, and armour and weapon qualities, it could be a lot to keep track of.


Passive items (armor/weapon qualities) will be absorbed quickly. The 4 tiers of success will take longer to get used to.

Liberty's Edge

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Cyclopsw wrote:
I love what you guys are doing with Pathfinder 2.0 but i am honestly a bit worried it might be to complex to get into for new players. Mostly cause you are adding alot of complexities to spells and weapons. As a veteran player I find it amazing but seeing as how I bring in alot of new/inexperienced players I'm worried about how hard it will be to bring them up to speed.

Spells seem slightly less complex if anything, IMO. And the core system stuff is way simpler (adding level to everything is much simpler than the varying progressions of Saves, BAB, skill points, and all the rest, and the action system is vastly simplified as well) as is the way class terminology is standardized. Even the four levels of success are at least standardized rather than a hodgepodge of different warring subsystems.

Really, I think weapon properties are the only thing we've seen so far that's unambiguously more complicated.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:


Really, I think weapon properties are the only thing we've seen so far that's unambiguously more complicated.

I wouldn't even say that. Weapon qualities were things in PF1, it's just the only ones anyone ever cared about were Reach and that's about it because the rest were essentially garbage for varying reason. In fact, having a nice simple table up front and a codified tag system is probably more helpful than the hodgepodge of qualities and other special abilities lumped in the description for some weapons.


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Scythes are horrible weapons. Most people are not aware of the orientation of the blade for a scythe. The one that is depicted in Paizo art is not oriented correctly for an agricultural scythe as the blade edge is inline with the shaft while the length of the blade is at 90 deg to the shaft. The blade length at 90 degs is correct...however the blade edge should be 45 deg to the length of the shaft. Clear as mud? Regardless that is very unwieldy.

An actual war scythe is another matter entirely.

This video explains it better.

[url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4rzQwzg5_mo[/url]


Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Dracoknight wrote:

@Mark

When can we expect indepth information about combat styles, combat interactions and combat maneuvers?
Personally i am very interested on how Dual-weapons are going to be used in the new system?

Will it be a weird system where you use 2 actions to use both weapons without interative penalties?
Will it be a extra action for attack purposes ( 3 Actions + 1 Action(Attack Offhand) )?
Or will the offhand weapon be a part of your attack as a extra damage modifier?

Math-wise, it works out really to simply allow attacking with each weapon at a -2 per Strike. So -2/-2/-7/-7/-12/-12. Even accounting for Agile weapons it leaves you in a position where a combo like Longsword + shortsword is about just breaking even with just picking up a greatsword. Knowing that there is an a ability 'Double Slice' in the game, it's entirely possible that it will do that. Of course, it's entirely possible they did something else entirely.

Silver Crusade

Check out my new weapon, weapon of choice
Don't be shocked by tone of my voice
Check out my new weapon, weapon of choice yeah


Malk_Content wrote:
HWalsh wrote:

One question (which may have been answered in the 10 pages already, apologies if it has) is this:

How do weapon qualities and weapon proficiencies and magical weapon enhancements interact?

IE:
I'm a 13th level Fighter - Legendary Proficiency Longsword (+3)
I have a +5 Strength Bonus (+5)
I'm using a Legendary Quality Longsword (+3)
I've put a +2 Enchantment on that sword (+2, and 2 additional damage dice)

So that mean, when I attack, I'm rolling:

1d20+26 for 3d8+5 damage?

Just +24 on the to hit. Enchantment only adds damage, the to hit bonus of the weapon comes from its quality only.

Well, now we know that potency rune does add +hit. But we don't know if it stacks with weapon quality +hit. So, probably still 24, but maybe 26.


Malthraz wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
HWalsh wrote:

One question (which may have been answered in the 10 pages already, apologies if it has) is this:

How do weapon qualities and weapon proficiencies and magical weapon enhancements interact?

IE:
I'm a 13th level Fighter - Legendary Proficiency Longsword (+3)
I have a +5 Strength Bonus (+5)
I'm using a Legendary Quality Longsword (+3)
I've put a +2 Enchantment on that sword (+2, and 2 additional damage dice)

So that mean, when I attack, I'm rolling:

1d20+26 for 3d8+5 damage?

Just +24 on the to hit. Enchantment only adds damage, the to hit bonus of the weapon comes from its quality only.
Well, now we know that potency rune does add +hit. But we don't know if it stacks with weapon quality +hit. So, probably still 24, but maybe 26.

Given both are stated to be Item Bonus it's a safe bet they won't stack.


Ugh. It's one thing to have non-magical things provide an item bonus ... but magic also being an item bonus ... ick. antimagic fields could (should?) suppress entire bonus types on KISS principle. Now it looks like we'll have to separate bonuses by source instead of type. Ew.

Sovereign Court

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The enhancement bonus on masterwork weapons didn't stack with a +1 weapon. This just extends the principle to more item quality levels.


KingOfAnything wrote:
The enhancement bonus on masterwork weapons didn't stack with a +1 weapon. This just extends the principle to more item quality levels.

A bonus type has a certain logic to it that explains its specificity. Reading the alchemy blog a little while back it notes the 'item' bonus.

"Cool, alchemical and circumstance bonuses from gear get rolled into an item bonus." This would logically include non-magical enhancement bonuses. A legendary crowbar is always going to be a legendary item at doing what crowbars do.

"Magic gear also provides an item bonus." Uh ... why? Magic can be dispelled, disjoined, suppressed and otherwise manipulated in ways that other things cannot.

A legendary crowbar of skull opening has a non-magical component and a magical component.

Are anti-magic fields, dead magic zones, dispel magic and disjunction being eliminated from the game? If so then not a big deal. If not, then logic suggests that magical bonuses to [stuff] be classified as a different bonus type than "item".

If the aforementioned crowbar of skull opening eats a disjunction that shuts off its magical component for a few days/weeks or what have you, the simplest solution is to remove the "magical bonus" component. The item bonus component that it gets simply from being a crowbar of superlative craftsmanship remains.

Thus, ugh, ick, ew.


I heard magic items might only grant additional damage dice, not + to hit.

Liberty's Edge

Weather Report wrote:
I heard magic items might only grant additional damage dice, not + to hit.

Per the Gear Blog today, this is not correct. Magic Weapons do add to your to-hit, but it doesn't stack with Weapon Quality.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:
Weather Report wrote:
I heard magic items might only grant additional damage dice, not + to hit.
Per the Gear Blog today, this is not correct. Magic Weapons do add to your to-hit, but it doesn't stack with Weapon Quality.

Which is weird. What's the point of crafting higher quality weapons if you can just slap some runes on a regular sword and create a Legendary Piece of S&$* that's just as good?

Liberty's Edge

Arachnofiend wrote:
Which is weird. What's the point of crafting higher quality weapons if you can just slap some runes on a regular sword and create a Legendary Piece of S*!! that's just as good?

I'd guess you need a particular quality of weapon in order to get the enchantments on it.


I think they might be going with the idea that Weapon Quality determines how far you can enhance the blade. Which wouldn't be my preference, but whatever.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
Weather Report wrote:
I heard magic items might only grant additional damage dice, not + to hit.
Per the Gear Blog today, this is not correct. Magic Weapons do add to your to-hit, but it doesn't stack with Weapon Quality.

Ah, right on, I just got up a little while ago, and did not realise there was a new blog on gear yet, I will immediately check it out, thanks.

Though, to be honest, I am not so keen on the the news you just delivered, always seems clunky, the whole masterwork does not stack with magic thing/one displaces the other (I detest it in previous editions of PF/D&D).

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
Which is weird. What's the point of crafting higher quality weapons if you can just slap some runes on a regular sword and create a Legendary Piece of S*!! that's just as good?
I'd guess you need a particular quality of weapon in order to get the enchantments on it.

This was confirmed on the weekly stream. You need Expert quality to enchant at all. And, I think Master quality to get +3 and above.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
KingOfAnything wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
Which is weird. What's the point of crafting higher quality weapons if you can just slap some runes on a regular sword and create a Legendary Piece of S*!! that's just as good?
I'd guess you need a particular quality of weapon in order to get the enchantments on it.

This was confirmed on the weekly stream. You need Expert quality to enchant at all. And, I think Master quality to get +3 and above.

Isn't this somewhat redundant ? Quality gives you item bonus to hit, and so does enchanting them (among other things) but the 2 bonuses do not stack. Why does enchantment give your weapon an item bonus to hit if the mere quality needed for enchantment already provides this ?


The Raven Black wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
Which is weird. What's the point of crafting higher quality weapons if you can just slap some runes on a regular sword and create a Legendary Piece of S*!! that's just as good?
I'd guess you need a particular quality of weapon in order to get the enchantments on it.

This was confirmed on the weekly stream. You need Expert quality to enchant at all. And, I think Master quality to get +3 and above.

Isn't this somewhat redundant ? Quality gives you item bonus to hit, and so does enchanting them (among other things) but the 2 bonuses do not stack. Why does enchantment give your weapon an item bonus to hit if the mere quality needed for enchantment already provides this ?

Yeah, I don't get it either. I guess maybe it is so that +4 or +5 weapons can take you above the +3 Legendary cap? But that doesn't feel like the most elegant solution.


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Yeah, if magic actually does also provide a bonus to hit that's pretty gross. It negates the coolness of, and makes redundant, the actual craft quality of the weapon. It also brings forward the incessant player confusion about bonus stacking and replacement from 3.x that I thought was one of the issues they were trying to simplify.

I'd much rather craft quality and magic potency stayed in their own axis. Craft quality is your hit bonus and rune capacity, magic potency is your damage bonus.


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Captain Morgan wrote:


Yeah, I don't get it either. I guess maybe it is so that +4 or +5 weapons can take you above the +3 Legendary cap? But that doesn't feel like the most elegant solution.

If their math works out that you eventually need items to give you +5 to hit or to AC or to a skill, then having magic override the item bonus seems like a weird rules patch. Wouldn't it be better to just make the item quality and proficiency tiers bigger steps or more granular in that case? So:

Proficiency Ranks (Bigger Steps): Untrained (-2), Trained (+0), Expert (+2), Master (+4), Legendary (+6) [or +1/3/5]

Proficiency Ranks (More Granular): Untrained (-2), Familiar (+0), Trained (+1), Expert (+2), Specialist (+3), Master (+4), Legendary (+5)

Quality Ranks (Bigger Steps): Poor (-2), Average (+0), Good (+2), Great (+4), Incredible (+6) [or +1/3/5]

Quality Ranks (More Granular): Poor (-2), Average (+0), Good (+1), Great (+2), Amazing (+3), Wonderful (+4), Incredible (+5)

[Names off the top of my sleepy head]

With a granularity of "Familiar", granted by racial or class familiarities, you negate the -2 but still make checks "untrained" for what you can accomplish. But anyone could jump from Untrained to Trained with one skill point or whatever even if not familiar from their class.


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Fuzzypaws wrote:

Yeah, if magic actually does also provide a bonus to hit that's pretty gross. It negates the coolness of, and makes redundant, the actual craft quality of the weapon. It also brings forward the incessant player confusion about bonus stacking and replacement from 3.x that I thought was one of the issues they were trying to simplify.

I'd much rather craft quality and magic potency stayed in their own axis. Craft quality is your hit bonus and rune capacity, magic potency is your damage bonus.

Seconding the motion. Really disappointed by the magic weapon granting attack bonus, voting for non-magical only (or having it stack if math allows it). The coolness of legendary crafting just got shot down unceremoniously.


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Shinigami02 wrote:
Nah, sometimes just DR can make a fight nigh unwinnable, depending on party makeup. For instance, DR 5 at low levels when your party has no big single hit characters.

That can be really nasty, or at least punitive to individual characters.

I remember my old Eberron campaign, where I had converted the Unfettered class from Arcana Unearthed to 3.5 (basically a swashbuckler/rogue kind of character - much better at swashbuckling than the Swashbuckler class from Complete Warrior's Handbook). We were playing Shadows of the Last War, an adventure where you first explore a village full of undead (skeletons, zombies, and a cool variant zombie covered in glass that gives DR 5/bludgeoning until they hit half hp, and after that they have the regular zombie DR 5/slashing), and then a Cannith research site that was full of constructs, often with DR 5/adamantine.

So this poor guy had a melee class that primarily dealt piercing damage, and did much of their damage (though not as much as rogues) via sneak attack, and he's fighting things with DR he can't penetrate and that are immune to crits (and thus sneak attack). Other than the selection of enemies, the adventure was really cool, and I hope I learned something from it.


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Fuzzypaws wrote:
Captain Morgan wrote:


Yeah, I don't get it either. I guess maybe it is so that +4 or +5 weapons can take you above the +3 Legendary cap? But that doesn't feel like the most elegant solution.

If their math works out that you eventually need items to give you +5 to hit or to AC or to a skill, then having magic override the item bonus seems like a weird rules patch. Wouldn't it be better to just make the item quality and proficiency tiers bigger steps or more granular in that case? So:

Proficiency Ranks (Bigger Steps): Untrained (-2), Trained (+0), Expert (+2), Master (+4), Legendary (+6) [or +1/3/5]

Proficiency Ranks (More Granular): Untrained (-2), Familiar (+0), Trained (+1), Expert (+2), Specialist (+3), Master (+4), Legendary (+5)

Quality Ranks (Bigger Steps): Poor (-2), Average (+0), Good (+2), Great (+4), Incredible (+6) [or +1/3/5]

Quality Ranks (More Granular): Poor (-2), Average (+0), Good (+1), Great (+2), Amazing (+3), Wonderful (+4), Incredible (+5)

[Names off the top of my sleepy head]

With a granularity of "Familiar", granted by racial or class familiarities, you negate the -2 but still make checks "untrained" for what you can accomplish. But anyone could jump from Untrained to Trained with one skill point or whatever even if not familiar from their class.

That's actually a pretty big overhaul though, if proficiency is balanced every where else as 5 point swing instead of a 7.

What about making it the last +2 based off of material? Is that dumb? Some super rare but potent alloy that results in better weapons than even legendary? Or reserving the +5 to hit bonus for artifacts? I dunno. I'm hoping a good patch does exist, because I was really into the crafting to hit theory. I'm hoping that can change for the final product.


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I hope that this is the edition that fixes a problem that has existed since 3.0, and that is only composite bows being eligible for strength bonus to damage. Especially in a world with many magical materials, it ought to be just as easy to create a strength longbow as it is to create a strength composite longbow.


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Earlier, people were mentioning the possibility of weapons of being better or worse against various types of armor. If you really think that this is a good idea, try and find a 1st edition Player's Handbook. It had tables giving weapons bonuses or penalties based on how likely they were to hurt someone wearing each type of armor in the game. Of course, the tables always had the problem of ambiguity: AC 9, is that a guy with no armor holding a shield, or is it a guy in leather armor with no shield? This problem persisted all the way through the table, right up to plate mail and shield, AC 2, since each number except AC 10 and AC 2 could be made by having a lesser armor and a shield, or just the next best armor.

It was the removal of tables like that that first convinced some of my friends to try the brand new 3rd edition.


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^That reminds me of the nearby table that had Weapon Speeds that also nobody ever used, even though the idea was cool.


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Speed Factor got use a lot more than weapons-vs-armor-adjustments did IME. It was no small part of why longswords were the most popular melee weapon of choice (SF 3 IIRC). A two-handed sword was monstrously slow to swing (SF 7?).

Combine a SF 3 weapon with a -3 speed adjustment from Dex and you have a character launching their first swing on initiative+0.


Pagan priest wrote:
I hope that this is the edition that fixes a problem that has existed since 3.0, and that is only composite bows being eligible for strength bonus to damage. Especially in a world with many magical materials, it ought to be just as easy to create a strength longbow as it is to create a strength composite longbow.

That seems like kind of an odd problem to fix. And I don't just mean by the designers. In fiction, I'm not actually sure why an enchanter would try and create something with magic that is already so easy to replicate without it. Literally the only difference between a composite longbow and the normal longbow is the strength to damage thing.

I was expecting you to say something more in line with giving "X stat to damage" to other ranged weapons too so other weapons can compete with bows.


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Starfinder Charter Superscriber
UnArcaneElection wrote:

^That reminds me of the nearby table that had Weapon Speeds that also nobody ever used, even though the idea was cool.

We always used it. I thought it was great. It added an interesting dimension to your choice of weapons: faster (and usually smaller and less damaging) or slower (and usually bigger and more damaging).


Pagan priest wrote:
I hope that this is the edition that fixes a problem that has existed since 3.0, and that is only composite bows being eligible for strength bonus to damage. Especially in a world with many magical materials, it ought to be just as easy to create a strength longbow as it is to create a strength composite longbow.

It's possible that I'm not understanding what you mean by "eligible for strength bonus to damage", but in Pathfinder 1, slings and thrown weapons where both methods of ranged attacks that got str to damage. The problem I suppose was that the attack roll was made with dex and then str was added to damage, but the same is true for composite bows.

Thrown weapons had problems with action economy, since reloading a bow was easier than drawing another throwing weapon. The cost of magic weapons prohibited throwing weapons too, there where magic items, feats, weapon enchantments (returning) that helped, but it was quite complicated and it's been a long time since I really looked at all of the PF1 throwing weapon options.

Slings probably had fewer obstacles, but they had lower damage dies, and reloading was still too slow compared to bows


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ChaiGuy wrote:
Pagan priest wrote:
I hope that this is the edition that fixes a problem that has existed since 3.0, and that is only composite bows being eligible for strength bonus to damage. Especially in a world with many magical materials, it ought to be just as easy to create a strength longbow as it is to create a strength composite longbow.

It's possible that I'm not understanding what you mean by "eligible for strength bonus to damage", but in Pathfinder 1, slings and thrown weapons where both methods of ranged attacks that got str to damage. The problem I suppose was that the attack roll was made with dex and then str was added to damage, but the same is true for composite bows.

Thrown weapons had problems with action economy, since reloading a bow was easier than drawing another throwing weapon. The cost of magic weapons prohibited throwing weapons too, there where magic items, feats, weapon enchantments (returning) that helped, but it was quite complicated and it's been a long time since I really looked at all of the PF1 throwing weapon options.

Slings probably had fewer obstacles, but they had lower damage dies, and reloading was still too slow compared to bows

It is possible to purchase a non-magic composite longbow that allows you to add your strength bonus to the damage. It is not possible to purchase a regular longbow that allows you to add your strength bonus to damage.

Composite bows, long or short, get their capability by layering various materials together, so that on the inside of the bow, you have materials that resist compression while the outside is made of materials that resist expansion. By selecting different materials and using different thickness of material for each layer, you can make the bow require a greater effort to pull, thus giving your strength bonus to damage.

Self bows, log or short, are made from a single material, usually wood. Their capabilities are based on the wood chosen and the thickness of the wood. English longbows were made from Yew trees, which will act as a natural form of composite bow due to the differences in characteristics of the sapwood and the heartwood. The longbows recovered from the Tudor ship were examined and found to have pulls of 95 to over 100 pounds.

Since this is a fantasy game, there would be many more choices of possible material to make self bows. Darkwood? Mithral alloy? What ever the material, it should be just as possible to make a self bow for strength as it is a composite bow.

It is a flavor thing more than anything else. If I am creating a character around a Robin Hood type theme, using a composite bow is just not right. Then too, a primitive group might be able to harvest the right trees even if they can't manage the layering involved in a composite bow.


I rather expect that in PF2, relevant weapons (bows, slings, etc) will just add your Str modifier to damage without needing to spend extra money specifically building a high Strength weapon. Composite bows will probably just have other advantage, like extended range or the like.


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Pagan priest wrote:
It is a flavor thing more than anything else. If I am creating a character around a Robin Hood type theme, using a composite bow is just not right. Then too, a primitive group might be able to harvest the right trees even if they can't manage the layering involved in a composite bow.

Thank you for the clarification. Since the flavor of these weapons seems very important to you I hope that bows both compound and self, can come with strength to damage as a core choice. For me, I've seen Pathfinder weapons as not really that closely tied to actual historical weapons. Consider the well known (on these boards at least) discussion about the longsword.


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ChaiGuy wrote:
Pagan priest wrote:
It is a flavor thing more than anything else. If I am creating a character around a Robin Hood type theme, using a composite bow is just not right. Then too, a primitive group might be able to harvest the right trees even if they can't manage the layering involved in a composite bow.
Thank you for the clarification. Since the flavor of these weapons seems very important to you I hope that bows both compound and self, can come with strength to damage as a core choice. For me, I've seen Pathfinder weapons as not really that closely tied to actual historical weapons. Consider the well known (on these boards at least) discussion about the longsword.

Unfortunately, I learned the game before I learned about swords, so the nomenclature always seemed normal to me. But, back in the day, there were quite some arguments raging about banded mail and fighters with more hit points than a rhino.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Neriathale wrote:
I know Pathfinder isn't meant to be realistic, but I would love to see some of the stupider weapons purged from the tables. Spiked chains, dire flails and scythes for starters - any 'weapon' where you have a better chance of damaging yourself than the opponent, or it takes a very helpful opponent, standing in just the right spot to be able to hit them.

While I agree with the sentiment, I disagree with the weapons you cite (beside the spiked chain).

Flails with multiple heads where used and most polearms are derivative of the idea of affixing a upright scythe blade at the end of a pole. It was done plenty of times in war to remodel farming implements into weapons. The origin of the war flails where the flails used to thresh the grain.


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If we're still on the topic of dumb weapons, don't forget double-anything, virtually anything with the word "gnomish" in the name, and of course, Starknives, the favored weapon of Desna because you need the backing of a luck goddess to not end up hacking off your own fingers using it.


For my part, I think extremely stupid weapons are a fantasy RPG tradition at this point. I kind of like that that I can Darth Maul it up or use nun chucks even though both of those things are kinda silly. I think it can be really fun, especially in Pathfinder (a game that has characters whose abilities rival superheroes more than historical knights).

To buy myself some ethos:
This is coming from a guy who loves the history of weapons and warfare.

Shadow Lodge

derail:
The more I read about the upcoming edition the more I consider Pathfinder 2.0 an entirely different game. It's not an update or even an upgrade, it's just.. Not. Which seems to be a trend for editions now, but still. I'm not sure if this is a good or a bad thing.

Now on to a bit from the blog. A great sword is now 1d12 instead of 2d6. Will similar changes be made to other weapons that had more than one die, like Falchion?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Dragonborn3 wrote:


derail:
The more I read about the upcoming edition the more I consider Pathfinder 2.0 an entirely different game. It's not an update or even an upgrade, it's just.. Not. Which seems to be a trend for editions now, but still. I'm not sure if this is a good or a bad thing.

I see it as a change of paradigm at least as big as the passage from nd ed. AD&D and 3 ed. D&D.


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Dragonborn3 wrote:

** spoiler omitted **

Now on to a bit from the blog. A great sword is now 1d12 instead of 2d6. Will similar changes be made to other weapons that had more than one die, like Falchion?

Yup, it was confirmed last Friday's twitch stream that base weapons won't have multiple damage dice anymore.


Dragonborn3 wrote:

** spoiler omitted **

Now on to a bit from the blog. A great sword is now 1d12 instead of 2d6. Will similar changes be made to other weapons that had more than one die, like Falchion?

I think that this is almost certainly the case since it lets the rules say things like “additional damage dice” without having to capitulate. Also, all these extra tags means that the damage dice do not need to carry so much of the weight of differentiating weapons.

Edit:
Captain Morgan’s response (15 seconds ago)
My response (9 seconds ago)
Ninja’d by the barest margin!

Dark Archive

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The Mad Comrade wrote:

Speed Factor got use a lot more than weapons-vs-armor-adjustments did IME. It was no small part of why longswords were the most popular melee weapon of choice (SF 3 IIRC). A two-handed sword was monstrously slow to swing (SF 7?).

Combine a SF 3 weapon with a -3 speed adjustment from Dex and you have a character launching their first swing on initiative+0.

Longsword had SF 5 and two-handed sword had SF 10. Daggers (SF 2) and short swords (SF 3) were weapons of choice vs. spellcasters in my group, since you would automatically disrupt their spells if you dealt any damage. :)

And don't forget that your weapon's enchantment bonus also impacted SF, so it was not uncommon to have longsword wielders who also had init +0!

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