Spiked Chain vs Bladed Scarf


Lost Omens Campaign Setting General Discussion

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Sean K Reynolds wrote:

So in organized play there are not any GMs who *have* common sense?

I'd much rather assume an average GM has common sense than assume an average GM is a moron.

Notice the word I bolded in your comments. That word indicates that the "sense" being discussed is likely to be the same between different DMs. Do you believe that most DMs have exactly the same opinions on various things? If not, then how "common" is this "common sense".

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Ahh, you caught me, it's a martial weapon rather than a simple weapon. Which means it's a little harder to use than a spear... probably because you have the orientation of the tines, and that you can use it as a brace weapon. Though personally, I'd let you use a trident as a simple weapon without brace.

So could I now go to organized play and say, "Hey Sean said I could use it as a simple weapon?" Common sense? How common is it really?

Sean K Reynolds wrote:

More so than nunchaku, two-bladed swords, and nets, yes?

(I don't know why you called out swords specifically when I also mentioned maces, axes, and spears. It doesn't prove your point, nor does it disprove mine.)

Well in the cases of axes and spears they have uses outside of combat. Swords on the other hand do not really, that is why addressed the swords issue. Most of your peasant soldiers did not run around with steel balled maces or swords.

And the issue with nunchakus, well much like your pencil analogy many of the asian "exotic" weapons were used because the peasants in that society were not allowed to use swords and other official military gear. They made do with the weapons that were available to them. Rice thrashers (nunchakus) and sickles (kama) and other items that were available. It is interesting that the sickle is a simple weapon but the kama, the same weapon is an exotic because monks can flurry with it. [rant]Seriously it is the same damn weapon, the quarterstaff doesn't become exotic when a monk flurries with it, why does the sickle become a "kama"?[/rant]

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
There are martial weapons that are inferior to other martial weapons. Likewise for simple weapons. Should someone who takes MWP to learn an inferior martial weapon get some sort of advantage? Or should they not have to spend a feat on MWP to learn an inferior martial weapon?

I believe a lot of various weapons are "balanced" with one another in the same category. The warhammer's 1d8/x3 is balanced with the longswords 1d8/19-20x2. The scimitar's 1d6/18-20x2 and the heavy pick's 1d6/x4 is balanced with each other. Now the warhammer and the longsword are slightly better out of the gate than the scimitar and heavy pick, but if enough additional damage is factored in they switch places. Other weapons may have a lower damage thresh hold but they have other features that counterbalance the damage. There are a few weapons that are worse than others by a bit, something like the greatclub, and many discussions have been had on various sites during the life span of 3.x about these and how they should be improved or reclassified (it is a fairly common opinion for example that the greatclub should be a simple weapon).

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Do you let characters be the best cook, horse-tamer, artist, or singer? All of those have mechanical requirements. If you trained every day for 8 years to be a master cook, it makes sense that you're not as good at Stealth or Perception or Sense Motive or Disable Device. As soon as you say "that's just fluff, it doesn't matter," then (1) there's no consequence to saying your character is the best at anything that isn't directly related to combat, and (2) you're penalizing the character who's actually following the game rules to build a character.

I have no idea where you are going with this. If you want to make an analogy to the discussion, it would be more like saying if someone wanted to claim to be the worst cook in the world, they would have to ranks in Profession (Crappiest Cook in the World). If something gives a mechanical benefit, then surely it makes sense to require a mechanical cost. But if something gives no benefit and in fact may be a hinderous, why would you require an additional mechanical cost?

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Some choices are sub-optimal choices. You can play a dwarf sorcerer, even though that –2 Cha penalty hurts you. You can play a gnome or halfling fighter, even though that –2 Strength hurts you.

I think you are getting a bit off topic here. But yes, there are less than optimal choices, but your dwarf sorcerer is sitting on a nice Con bonus that is giving him more hit points than your typical sorcerer of most other races. So while he is doing a sub-optimal choice he isn't taking all penalty and no benefit. Similar issues with those other races.

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
*comments drifting off topic even more*

I am certainly not claiming that damage is the only consideration. But compare the PF spiked chain to the heavy flail. The PF SC fails just about every single way in that comparison. The only thing it has going for it is finesse, but that is a trap, most two-handed fighters want str not dex. If you are cranking up your dex, then you aren't doing as much damage, which is a poor trade off for most THF.


Auspician wrote:
pres man wrote:
Yet now that it is inferior to the heavy flail, should it still be classified as an exotic weapon?
Can you use weapon finesse with the heavy flail? The spiked chain is *still* unique, in that it is the only two handed weapon you can use weapon finesse with. Be happy and move on.

Elven Curve Blade.

Contributor

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pres man wrote:
Notice the word I bolded in your comments. That word indicates that the "sense" being discussed is likely to be the same between different DMs. Do you believe that most DMs have exactly the same opinions on various things? If not, then how "common" is this "common sense".

Common enough that I expect a GM to know that you can easily disguise a bladed scarf as a scarf, whereas you can't disguise a spiked chain as a scarf. At all. That's just common sense.

Common sense may be uncommon (ha ha), but I'm not going to write a column of text on every single item in the game to explain the ins and outs and what-should-be-common-sense aspects of that item. "A warhammer can be used to pound in nails, iron spikes, pitons, or other spiky items." "You can use a dagger to cut pieces of meat from a roasting pig, lamb, or cow." "You can use a battleaxe to chop wood or chop down trees." "You can use a whip as a short rope." "You can use a trident to bale hay." "Metal items conduct electricity." "Water puts out fire." "You can use a shield to cover a small hole in the ground, like an arrow trap." "Candles only shed light if they are on fire." "Grappling hooks won't help you climb over a wall unless they're tied to a rope when you throw them." "Spyglasses don't work if you look through them backwards." "Hourglasses don't work where there is no gravity, such as on the Ethereal Plane." "Cleric's vestments vary from religion to religion, and using vestments of Rovagug cannot help you disguise yourself as a priest of Asmodeus." "Boats do not work on land." "Animals purchased from the Mounts and Related Gear section are alive when purchased but will die without daily food, water, and sleep."

Not. Going. To. Do. It.

pres man wrote:
So could I now go to organized play and say, "Hey Sean said I could use it as a simple weapon?" Common sense? How common is it really?

I don't make rulings for PFS, so no. But if your character knows how to use a spear, and you're in a scenario where you've been captured by sahuagin and you're making your escape and the only weapon you can find is a trident, I'd let you use the trident as if it were a spear, using the spear damage and threat range (basically, I'd let you treat an appropriate weapon as a worse similar weapon). Because I'm not a robot. And because the point of playing an RPG is to have fun, and if your GM is presenting a scenario where you've been captured and disarmed, preventing you from using a similar weapon is a jerk move and is anti-fun.

pres man wrote:
I am certainly not claiming that damage is the only consideration.But compare the PF spiked chain to the heavy flail. The PF SC fails just about every single way in that comparison. The only thing it has going for it is finesse, but that is a trap, most two-handed fighters want str not dex. If you are cranking up your dex, then you aren't doing as much damage, which is a poor trade off for most THF.

I bolded that word for you: most.

That's the sum of my argument. It's a viable choice for some characters. Just because it doesn't do what you want it to do (deal the best damage) doesn't mean it's not a viable choice for someone.

I think we've reached the point where you're just arguing for the sake of arguing and we're not going to get anywhere because you won't acknowledge that there are certain expectations for being a player or GM, one of which is that you can read, have a general awareness of what words mean (so when I say "boat" you understand that means "device for traveling on water, not the desert"), how things work in the real world (such as "fire is hot" and "metal is heavier than water"), and can make logical inferences based on that basic knowledge.


Sean K Reynolds wrote:

I bolded that word for you: most.

That's the sum of my argument. It's a viable choice for some characters. Just because it doesn't do what you want it to do (deal the best damage) doesn't mean it's not a viable choice for someone.

Indeed. But as I pointed out on the very first page, finesse by itself is not enough to make a weapon exotic (see rapier vs scimitar). The spiked chain as a martial weapon on "even" level with the heavy flail, similar to the rapier/scimitar relationship makes a lot more sense than making a clearly inferior weapon have an extra cost.

Dark Archive Bella Sara Charter Superscriber

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
I'll quote Bulmahn quoting Monte: "The game allows you to eat rocks if you want to. It's not a good idea, and it doesn't taste good, but the game lets you do it if that's what you want to do. I'm not going to force you to play the way that I think is best."

Hey Sean, out of curiosity, was the phrase "you can drive with your feet, but that doesn't make it a good idea" used during the development of 3e? My gaming group picked it up when we playtested Forgotten Realms and thought it had come from inside WotC. It always did a nice job for us summarizing the fact that 3e had so many options, but not all of them were good choices.

Contributor

Sebastian wrote:
Hey Sean, out of curiosity, was the phrase "you can drive with your feet, but that doesn't make it a good idea" used during the development of 3e? My gaming group picked it up when we playtested Forgotten Realms and thought it had come from inside WotC. It always did a nice job for us summarizing the fact that 3e had so many options, but not all of them were good choices.

I don't remember hearing that phrase, but I am getting old....


Thanks for all your time Sean. Can't say I agree with all of it, but you certainly have valid reasons for everything you do. Most people would probably love to be a developer without realizing that its not quite as simple and fun as it seems.

I suppose I'd like to see a video of someone using a spiked chain in real life. You tube has to have something right?. (checking) Only as a 5 foot weapon, like Pazio rules. I do see a reach weapon similar in idea in the meteor hammer/ rope dart. I think there are some rules for those, right? (coulnd't find in SRD) With the dexterity needed for those weapons, and the fact that those weapons are controlled by the elbows shoulders and neck as much as anything else, one would think an armor check penalty would apply?

In any case, the great thing about Pen and Papers over mmorpg's like WoW or whatever is that if you don't like something the dev's decide on, you can change it! If your group likes the 3.5 Spiked chain better, use it!

But if your are using it to be a munchkin, you suck. :P


meter hammer has 2 mods in 3.5. In was in the legacy of fire players guide. and is in PF now. Rules seem the same

"This weapon is one or two spherical weights attached by a 10-foot chain. You whirl the weights and wrap them around an opponent’s body. If you succeed at a trip attempt with a meteor hammer, you can drag your opponent 5 feet closer rather than knocking her prone. You may use this weapon in two different ways: in meteor mode you use it as a double weapon but do not gain reach, and in fortress mode you cannot use it as a double weapon but gain a +1 shield bonus to AC and reach. Switching between these two modes is a free action decided at the start of your turn."

so with reach no double weapon or without reach as a double weapon


Anyone saying category isn't impacted by balance is being facetious. If balance isn't a factor in weapon categories, why bother having them be tied to feats at all or class? If a spiked chain isn't better than a quarterstaff who cares if a wizard uses one?

If I can use a longsword and a greatsword, why would I need an EWP to use a bastard sword? Because it's better, mechanically, than a longsword. Kama, really? Falcata? Shuriken? Hand-freaking-crossbow? These are not weapons that require extra training over martial or even simple weapons. And some of them aren't mechanically better either... Why are they exotic?

Who sat at the design table and said, "You know what? This weapon isn't better than any other, but it's weird. We should make players spend a scarce resource to use it." It's fine to say, "Oh you wanna use an inferior choice? Ok, don't expect us to make it not suck just so you can be awesome." Fine, but you don't then add MORE restrictions, "Oh you wanna use an inferior choice? You gotta spend more resources than the guy making the better choice just to not be as good." You can make the spiked chain do less but cost the same or cost more and do more, but how can you rationalize making it cost more and do less?

Quote:
It's a viable choice for some characters. Just because it doesn't do what you want it to do (deal the best damage) doesn't mean it's not a viable choice for someone.

It's not a viable choice for them though, it's merely a desirable choice. It's not viable because a dex fighter already has to invest a lot of resources just to keep up, why pile on the crap? Look at that dex fighter and say, "I know you sacrificed your armor and your damage to play a character you find cool, and you could just do dervish dance or just use a greatsword, but you want to use an inferior weapon because you have an interesting character idea, and you're totally ok with that inferior choice? You're gonna have to spend an extra feat."

Not cool man, not cool. And the argument that historically people used swords because they were better so most people in pathfinder should use swords is lame. If I wanted to run a historical military simulator, I would. I instead chose the game with dragons and wizards. For. A. Reason.

Is a #2 pencil as good as a dagger? No. Does a character have to spend EWP on pencils? No. If a player wants to use a dagger that looks like a #2 pencil, why say no? /rant

PS: Raise 4 year old Thread.

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