Lance silliness


Rules Questions

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One of my player's is planning on playing a cavalier and he asked if he could use the lance with two hands while mounted to get a lot of extra damage out of his power attack feat and strength bonus. Mechanically I can't find any reason why he can't do this, but I have a hard time visualizing it and I think this is more of a power-gamish issue. Maybe there should be a clarification that you have to use the lance one handed to gain the extra damage benefit? This would also go for the spirited charge feat.


Can you visualize them using a longspear two-handed from horseback? What's the difference?

Also, I would suggest not looking to weaken melee characters, this only leads to the "Why Fighters can't have nice things" mentality. Melee folk are already so far behind the spellcasters that any minor advantage such as this is insignificant in the long run.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

A Lance is a Two-Handed weapon, listed under "two-handed weapons" in the equipment section of the Pathfinder book. If a character wielded it one handed they would actually suffer penalties for doing so.

Also the wording for the lance's rules read:

"A lance deals double damage when used from the back of a charging mount. While mounted, you can wield a lance with one hand."

The keyword there is can, not must. If the player chooses to forego the bonus from his shield to get that extra damage in, more power to him.


DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

A Lance is a Two-Handed weapon, listed under "two-handed weapons" in the equipment section of the Pathfinder book. If a character wielded it one handed they would actually suffer penalties for doing so.

Also the wording for the lance's rules read:

"A lance deals double damage when used from the back of a charging mount. While mounted, you can wield a lance with one hand."

The keyword there is can, not must. If the player chooses to forego the bonus from his shield to get that extra damage in, more power to him.

Also if I remember correctly there is an old arguement that states the Lance is a two-handed weapon that can be wielded with one hand. This does not remove the two-handed property, so even while using it with one hand it is still treated as two-handed for feats and other abilities.

Not saying I agree with it but it has been argued in the past.


Mortagon wrote:
One of my player's is planning on playing a cavalier and he asked if he could use the lance with two hands while mounted to get a lot of extra damage out of his power attack feat and strength bonus. Mechanically I can't find any reason why he can't do this, but I have a hard time visualizing it and I think this is more of a power-gamish issue. Maybe there should be a clarification that you have to use the lance one handed to gain the extra damage benefit? This would also go for the spirited charge feat.

Using a lance during a charge has less to do with the strength of the weilder but more to the speed of the charge. All a lancer is doing is holding the lance and pointing it in the right direction. If it was practical don't you think everyone would be doing it. As they are not my guess is that it can't be done.

IMO weilding a lance with both hands would be a no-no during a charge, just visualise it. What you have is someone trying to get 1.5 damage.


Spacelard wrote:
Mortagon wrote:
One of my player's is planning on playing a cavalier and he asked if he could use the lance with two hands while mounted to get a lot of extra damage out of his power attack feat and strength bonus. Mechanically I can't find any reason why he can't do this, but I have a hard time visualizing it and I think this is more of a power-gamish issue. Maybe there should be a clarification that you have to use the lance one handed to gain the extra damage benefit? This would also go for the spirited charge feat.

Using a lance during a charge has less to do with the strength of the weilder but more to the speed of the charge. All a lancer is doing is holding the lance and pointing it in the right direction. If it was practical don't you think everyone would be doing it. As they are not my guess is that it can't be done.

IMO weilding a lance with both hands would be a no-no during a charge, just visualise it. What you have is someone trying to get 1.5 damage.

The lance is two-handed. Optionally, you can use it one-handed mounted. That's the rules. Other opinions here are just that - personal opinions - and are out of line both with RAW and with balance, because the meleer is the last kind of character who needs nerfing.

I mean blimey - powergaming? Get real.


Spacelard wrote:
Mortagon wrote:
One of my player's is planning on playing a cavalier and he asked if he could use the lance with two hands while mounted to get a lot of extra damage out of his power attack feat and strength bonus. Mechanically I can't find any reason why he can't do this, but I have a hard time visualizing it and I think this is more of a power-gamish issue. Maybe there should be a clarification that you have to use the lance one handed to gain the extra damage benefit? This would also go for the spirited charge feat.

Using a lance during a charge has less to do with the strength of the weilder but more to the speed of the charge. All a lancer is doing is holding the lance and pointing it in the right direction. If it was practical don't you think everyone would be doing it. As they are not my guess is that it can't be done.

IMO weilding a lance with both hands would be a no-no during a charge, just visualise it. What you have is someone trying to get 1.5 damage.

Just read a really interesting article about the real world use of lances, and guess what according to this article the wielders strength really is key here's a quote (a link to the full article can be found below)

Quote:

One of the biggest misconceptions about shock combat is that the combined weight of horse and rider is directly translated to the lance - As if somehow the horse, rider, and lance were one rigid mass. In fact, they may move down the field as one, but at the moment of impact, they react as separate units.

In reality the rider's body acts as a shock absorber, or buffer, between the lance and horse. It cannot be stressed enough that the rider's own strength and weight are the key to translating the mass of the horse into the force of impact. Although the size of the medieval warhorse gradually increased over time, the effective size of the lance and horse interface (the rider) did not.

Link to original article

back on topic. I think wielding a lance two handed from a mount is ok as long as you don't move, but to successfully perform a mounted charge you better rest the lance securely under your arm. I also think it's kind of cheezy to use such loopholes to milk every mechanical benefit from a rule. It all falls back on RAW vs. RAI I guess.


Sheesh, you've got it in for this guy, don't you?

You're the DM, rule it as you like. But if you think this is cheese, I hate to see what you do to the classes that can exploit the genuine Full Manchego.

There is nothing whatesoever cheesy about using a lance two-handed, mounted or otherwise. Where are you going to take this next - can he not use the lance unmounted without penalties? Can he not climb in heavy armour (since, let's face it, that's not going to happen in real life either)?

Save the nerfs for the classes that merit them, like the Wizard. The PC brave enough to take the front line needs all the advantages he can get.


Myself I would make them make a ride check, everytime they used it as such or fall off the mount. Your not only highly off balance, but slamming into someone while leaning off the side of your saddle. Keep in mind folks a lance was used with a military style saddle, which held you upright, not leaning toward the side


seekerofshadowlight wrote:
Myself I would make them make a ride check, everytime they used it as such or fall off the mount. Your not only highly off balance, but slamming into someone while leaning off the side of your saddle. Keep in mind folks a lance was used with a military style saddle, which held you upright, not leaning toward the side

In that case, the lance is clearly going to impose penalties used on foot, right?

Better to keep in mind the following:

(1) the melee classes are among the lowest in the tiers of class power;

(2) like 3.5, Pathfinder attempts to balance simulationism with gamism. Take the simulationism too far, and you damage that balance;

(3) realism in weapon difficulty weakens fighter-types, and accentuates their weakness in contrast to spellcasters.

(4) once you've started on this path, there's no logical stopping point. The lance requires a Ride check to use two-handed? Well, what about the composite longbow? What about the 15lb heavy shield - are you seriously going to let the fighter wield one of those mounted without penalty? What about armour spikes - tell you what, why not make the fighter impale himself on his own armour spikes every times he rolls a 1 on an attack with them...that's realistic, yes?


Foot has nothing to do with it.

1. On horseback a lance must be held to the side(see one handed use)
2. to hold it two handed and to the side you will need to lean over(try it in your chair now with a broom]
3. Now you need to be at full gallop, and be able to take the recoil of the hit

This is a case of loophole hunting to the point of being silly. Your looking at the lance wrong. It is not a two-handed weapon that may be used one handed while mounted.It is a one-handed mounted weapon that you need two-hands to use while on foot.

The ride skill there there for stuff like this, if you want to try something silly or off the wall while mounted make use of it. This is silly, and dangerous so yeah a ride check is called for

On a note: realism in weapon went out the window at a 5 pound longsword.


seekerofshadowlight wrote:

Foot has nothing to do with it.

1. On horseback a lance must be held to the side(see one handed use)
2. to hold it two handed and to the side you will need to lean over(try it in your chair now with a broom]
3. Now you need to be at full gallop, and be able to take the recoil of the hit

This is a case of loophole hunting to the point of being silly. Your looking at the lance wrong. It is not a two-handed weapon that may be used one handed while mounted.It is a one-handed mounted weapon that you need two-hands to use while on foot.

The ride skill there there for stuff like this, if you want to try something silly or off the wall while mounted make use of it. This is silly, and dangerous so yeah a ride skill is called for

On a note: realism in weapon went out the window at a 5 pound longsword.

You're missing my point(s), I'm afraid; but I think they're clearly put above, so I'll leave it at that.


You missing the point of the skill system. You want to pull off something out of the norm while at full speed.That's what the ride skill is for

Using a lance two handed on a mount is like using a longsword two-handed while climbing up a rope.


Mr. Fishy agrees with Seekerofshadowlight. If you really want to nerf the lance and throw some "simulationism" on his lance carrying butt point out that str would only apply to attacks using his actually str instead of a moving mount. The lance causes double damage while mounted for a reason. If the best arguement is "tier" and nerfing then power gaming is a viable counter point.

Silver Crusade

Wow, lots of fighter/melee hate abounds here. Rules as written, he can do it without any penalty. So he doesn't want a shield, meh, just give him the extra damage.

Man, I'm glad this isn't my game, as I'm taking TWF on horseback with a feat from the PH2 that allows me both lance attacks on a charge after having taken Mounted Combat. Hello 6x damage on a charge!

Do you have to make a ride check to swing a sword on a horse? Don't punish this guy for not doing things in a standard manner.

The Exchange

seekerofshadowlight wrote:

You missing the point of the skill system. You want to pull off something out of the norm while at full speed.That's what the ride skill is for

Using a lance two handed on a mount is like using a longsword two-handed while climbing up a rope.

If the skill was needed to use a lance 2-handed while mounted a DC would have been listed for it.


N. Jolly wrote:

Wow, lots of fighter/melee hate abounds here. Rules as written, he can do it without any penalty. So he doesn't want a shield, meh, just give him the extra damage.

Man, I'm glad this isn't my game, as I'm taking TWF on horseback with a feat from the PH2 that allows me both lance attacks on a charge after having taken Mounted Combat. Hello 6x damage on a charge!

Do you have to make a ride check to swing a sword on a horse? Don't punish this guy for not doing things in a standard manner.

No fighter hate, I like the class . But yeah I would make them make a ride check, I would not allow two lances on the same target either as your horse would be in the way of the 2nd one.

It has nothing to do with the standard thing, but how a lance is used. To use a lance it must be held to the side stright, you can not have a lance about. Holding it like that two handed means your leaning toward the side, or leaning off your saddle, which calls for a ride check or a str check at the very lest


Fake Healer wrote:


If the skill was needed to use a lance 2-handed while mounted a DC would have been listed for it.

And if they covered every loophole some tried to use the book would be 2'300 pages long


Mr. Fishy is a fan of the loop hole, player hang themselves on loop holes. If Mr. Fishy lets you dual weapon lances then Mr. Fishy can. You don't want to tempt Mr. Fishy because Mr. Fishy is not a nice fish.

In the end make a call and stick to it, or playtest it as a temporary thing if it over balances the game then drop it. \

1 Your game your call.

2 Not matter what you rule someone will whine or cry nerf or call munchkin.

3 See number 1


N. Jolly wrote:

Wow, lots of fighter/melee hate abounds here. Rules as written, he can do it without any penalty. So he doesn't want a shield, meh, just give him the extra damage.

Man, I'm glad this isn't my game, as I'm taking TWF on horseback with a feat from the PH2 that allows me both lance attacks on a charge after having taken Mounted Combat. Hello 6x damage on a charge!

Do you have to make a ride check to swing a sword on a horse? Don't punish this guy for not doing things in a standard manner.

Am I right in thinking that you are planning to attack with two lances during a charge?

Silver Crusade

Spacelard wrote:
N. Jolly wrote:

Wow, lots of fighter/melee hate abounds here. Rules as written, he can do it without any penalty. So he doesn't want a shield, meh, just give him the extra damage.

Man, I'm glad this isn't my game, as I'm taking TWF on horseback with a feat from the PH2 that allows me both lance attacks on a charge after having taken Mounted Combat. Hello 6x damage on a charge!

Do you have to make a ride check to swing a sword on a horse? Don't punish this guy for not doing things in a standard manner.

Am I right in thinking that you are planning to attack with two lances during a charge?

Yes, yes you are. The feat in question (I forgot it's name) is Two Weapon Pounce, which allows you to make an attack with each weapon you're wielding on a charge attack (We're going 3.X for this game, so it's legal)

It's another fun character idea I had involving dual wielding, which includes dual wielding a longsword and a revolver out of the PFCS.


N. Jolly wrote:
Spacelard wrote:


Am I right in thinking that you are planning to attack with two lances during a charge?

Yes, yes you are. The feat in question (I forgot it's name) is Two Weapon Pounce, which allows you to make an attack with each weapon you're wielding on a charge attack (We're going 3.X for this game, so it's legal)

It's another fun character idea I had involving dual wielding, which includes dual wielding a longsword and a revolver out of the PFCS.

Why don't you get Monkey Grip and use a large lance?


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Spacelard wrote:


Why don't you get Monkey Grip and use a large lance?

Yeah, like thats not a bad, bad joke waiting to happen :)


seekerofshadowlight wrote:
Spacelard wrote:


Why don't you get Monkey Grip and use a large lance?

Yeah, like thats not a bad, bad joke waiting to happen :)

My sarcasm skill is very high. I've even got skill focus in it. Obviously the lances should be keen.

If only the Crusaders thought of it...
Edit: I apologise in advance for any offence my post may have caused. Its just sometimes I can't help it, sorry.

Silver Crusade

Spacelard wrote:
N. Jolly wrote:
Spacelard wrote:


Am I right in thinking that you are planning to attack with two lances during a charge?

Yes, yes you are. The feat in question (I forgot it's name) is Two Weapon Pounce, which allows you to make an attack with each weapon you're wielding on a charge attack (We're going 3.X for this game, so it's legal)

It's another fun character idea I had involving dual wielding, which includes dual wielding a longsword and a revolver out of the PFCS.

Why don't you get Monkey Grip and use a large lance?

Because then I'd only be getting one lance at a slightly higher bonus rather than two lances each with the same attack bonus. With this build, I'd also be taking oversized two weapon fighting to avoid taking major penalties, but seeing as I'd have a lance on either side of the horse, I'm pretty sure it'd balance out (and look really sweet!)

Monkey Grip would be fun, but I just like having two lances coming at an an opponent, just like two giant fangs!


Spacelard wrote:
seekerofshadowlight wrote:
Spacelard wrote:


Why don't you get Monkey Grip and use a large lance?

Yeah, like thats not a bad, bad joke waiting to happen :)

My sarcasm skill is very high. I've even got skill focus in it. Obviously the lances should be keen.

If only the Crusaders thought of it...
Edit: I apologise in advance for any offence my post may have caused. Its just sometimes I can't help it, sorry.

Oh no offense, I had to ban ROd's of wonder and Rods of lordly might from the table, just so the puns wouldn't bog the game down

The Exchange

From the Ride skill----"Guide with Knees: You can guide your mount with your knees so you can use both hands in combat. Make your Ride check at the start of your turn. If you fail, you can use only one hand this round because you need to use the other to control your mount. This does not take an action."

So there is already a check in the game to cover this. It's a DC 5 ride check. If he fails he is using his lance one-handed that round. There is a rule for it and there is no loophole exploitation happening. The only thing that could be happening is that some DMs are imposing houserules to nerf this action.

Dark Archive

X3 X2 = x4, not 6. And in 3.5, damage capped at x5. It hasn't come up in pathfinder yet because feat lines for mega-stack do not exist.

And PHB2 let's you do a lot of silly things. I enjoy PFS primarily because there are not yet degenerate splatbooks; we'll see if they can avoid the power creep of 3.5

The Exchange

seekerofshadowlight wrote:


Oh no offense, I had to ban ROd's of wonder and Rods of lordly might from the table, just so the puns wouldn't bog the game down

Rods of wonder, rods of fright, rods of royal lordly might....

makes me feel all holiday-festive-y.


Fake Healer wrote:

From the Ride skill----"Guide with Knees: You can guide your mount with your knees so you can use both hands in combat. Make your Ride check at the start of your turn. If you fail, you can use only one hand this round because you need to use the other to control your mount. This does not take an action."

So there is already a check in the game to cover this. It's a DC 5 ride check. If he fails he is using his lance one-handed that round. There is a rule for it and there is no loophole exploitation happening. The only thing that could be happening is that some DMs are imposing houserules to nerf this action.

I have to disagree, the 5 is for two handed not leaning sideways out of the saddle aT full gallop. The loophole is in the lance descriptive, not the ride check. Doing rodo tricks while in armor holding a 10' role is the issue.

Also we know the two handed bit was so you could use a shield, not so ya could loophole a two handed lance grip.

Anyhow your table if ya want to allow a loophole like that, more power to ya.

Silver Crusade

Thalin wrote:

X3 X2 = x4, not 6. And in 3.5, damage capped at x5. It hasn't come up in pathfinder yet because feat lines for mega-stack do not exist.

And PHB2 let's you do a lot of silly things. I enjoy PFS primarily because there are not yet degenerate splatbooks; we'll see if they can avoid the power creep of 3.5

3x2=6; as in, with two lances each doing 3x damage, that'd be six times normal damage if they both hit.

And as it's written, there's no penalty for what this guy is doing, so if you give him another ride check, it'd be a house rule on your part. Yeah, it's something that's weird and off balance, but in a game with people shooting magic out their hands, it seems okay. If you want to do something, make him buy some weights to hang on the other side of his armor or something to balance the weight.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Honestly, I think it depends on the way he's using both hands.

Follow me a second. Sit yourself down, this is hard to describe via text. Sit down, now hold your right hand next to you like you were holding a lance. Your hand should be curled as if holding a straight rod (which is what you'd be doing) with the thumb pointing toward the ground, and the imaginary 'pole' parallel to your right leg.

Now, take your left hand, and pretend you are pushing down on the pole. Not gripping the pole the same as with the right hand, instead, you are using your left hand to steady it. This is not you leaning far out to the right, you are still sitting with your back perfectly straight. You have a strong grip on the lance with your right hand, and you are gripping the shaft with the left hand. Both thumbs should be pointing toward the ground, in fact, your two hands should be mirror images of each other, almost.

I believe this is the way a lance would be used two-handed on horseback. And it would allow much more strength to be used. The left hand would be adding because the lance is more stable. Remember, it's not your actual str from pushing the lance, it's how much of your str can be applied to keeping the lance firm and on target to allow your mounts strength and mass to be transferred down the shaft.

I would require the DC 5 ride check. This is no more complicated than using a shield and lance, and no more unbalancing on the rider.


I just want to call to attention the rule that someone upthread pointed out.

Technically, even though your wielding the lance in one hand, it is still a two-handed weapon, it's just the technique and form for using it on horseback negates the need for the other hand.

In essence, the rules for damage from 2 handed weapons are still in play, the thing IS a two handed weapon.

Ruling it like that would do several things.

1- avoid all this debate over simulationist issues, there is no two-handing and thus no issue

2- simplify the situation

3- not nerf the poor melee guy trying to actually shine in combat once in a while.

That is all. Back to your regularly scheduled debate.

Shadow Lodge

I'm with mdt there. There is no reason you would be leaning to the side. I've sat here at my desk with this big cardboard plotter paper roll trying it and there is no reason to lean to the side to use it two handed. I do disagree slightly with mdt on how you would hold it. I don't think using your left hand with and overhand grip would be the best way to stabalize it. An underhand grip would be better, but that gets even further from the OPs point.

Sczarni

The ruling Kyrt suggested seemes like the most reazonable, it uses RAW and doesn´t contradict the reality of a lance.
On the other hand of that doesn´t sit well just imagine the person using its second hand as a support for the lance arm instead oof grabbing the lanc eitself. Just picture it as the left arm being positioned across the person´s lap grabbing the lance arm for greater impact.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
mdt wrote:

Honestly, I think it depends on the way he's using both hands.

Follow me a second. Sit yourself down, this is hard to describe via text. Sit down, now hold your right hand next to you like you were holding a lance. Your hand should be curled as if holding a straight rod (which is what you'd be doing) with the thumb pointing toward the ground, and the imaginary 'pole' parallel to your right leg.

Now, take your left hand, and pretend you are pushing down on the pole. Not gripping the pole the same as with the right hand, instead, you are using your left hand to steady it. This is not you leaning far out to the right, you are still sitting with your back perfectly straight. You have a strong grip on the lance with your right hand, and you are gripping the shaft with the left hand. Both thumbs should be pointing toward the ground, in fact, your two hands should be mirror images of each other, almost.

I believe this is the way a lance would be used two-handed on horseback. And it would allow much more strength to be used. The left hand would be adding because the lance is more stable. Remember, it's not your actual str from pushing the lance, it's how much of your str can be applied to keeping the lance firm and on target to allow your mounts strength and mass to be transferred down the shaft.

I would require the DC 5 ride check. This is no more complicated than using a shield and lance, and no more unbalancing on the rider.

As I was reading this thread I was all ready to post something exactly like this. I couldnt agree more.


Mechanically, I see no reason you couldn't use a lance 2-handed while mounted, though it wouldn't be the big, fat tourney lances, just because there wouldn't actually be anywhere to grip it with your other hand.

http://medieval.ucdavis.edu/20C/lance.gif

There are a couple of lances there, particularly the one on the right, I could see 2-handing from horseback. I don't particularly see why that would be especially overpowered (I've seen what an archer with basic archery feats can do at a decent level; first combat that character was in, at 11th level, he did about 80% of an advanced dire bear's health in one round, and in the second combat, he rolled top of the initiative count and 1-rounded a stone golem before anyone else even acted). However, I *do* stand by the fact that if you as a GM think that looks silly, and would clash with the tone you're trying to set for your world, then you are 100% allowed, even obligated, to ban it. I mean, the GM is perfectly justified in banning entire *classes* if they don't fit with the feel he's trying to get for his game, I see this as being exponentially a more minor affair. Just make sure you're doing it for story or tone reasons, and not just altering the existing mechanics (which allow your player to do what he's asking) to shut down what you perceive as power-grubbing (unless it blatantly is, like a spellcaster flat-out asking if you can remove spell resistance from the game because it 'makes him suck' - which I've had happen).

As a handy example, for some games, I can see the above-mentioned dual-lancer build being over-the-top goodness - but for the game I'm currently running, I'd toss a balled up character sheet at a player for even suggesting it; regardless of the physics or mechanics involved, it looks silly (to me, and to most of my players). We just couldn't take that seriously, and this particular game isn't served best by having laughter and eyerolls erupt every time a character uses his signature move (we have banter and bad puns for that sort of thing). Monkey grip's banned in my current game for similar reasons; no matter how you slice it (no pun intended) a 6-foot man wielding a 10-foot long, 2-foot wide sword looks ridiculous(ly AWESOME). If you're going for a super-high-fantasy-borderline-anime tone where anything goes as long as the character's sword-fu is strong enough, there's very little reason to ban almost anything when it comes to fighters. But the Lord of the Rings films would've been an entirely different story if Aragorn was leaping 30 feet through the air and supreme-cleaving orcs with a 10-foot flaming shocking icy corrosive (what would that even *look* like?!) sword of wounding...with the explosive fountains of blood that the wounding property implies. Ban or allow things as your story demands, just make sure your players understand why - you as a DM aren't there to facilitate them having fun, just as they aren't at the table to serve as your punching bags. Everyone at the table is there to work with each other to have a good time.

Liberty's Edge

I'd allow it.

For me, it's just the same as a bastard sword or a dwarven battleaxe. They are two handed weapons that can, under some circumstances, be used one-handed.

Flavor-wise, I see handling a lance with two hands from the saddle not any more unrealistic as handling a greatsword, a scythe, a double-bladed sword or a spiked chain (poor lil horse!), and I see no reason to put more burden on the system with more unnecessary rolls.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Frerezar wrote:

The ruling Kyrt suggested seemes like the most reazonable, it uses RAW and doesn´t contradict the reality of a lance.

On the other hand of that doesn´t sit well just imagine the person using its second hand as a support for the lance arm instead oof grabbing the lanc eitself. Just picture it as the left arm being positioned across the person´s lap grabbing the lance arm for greater impact.

Yep, exactly.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Delthos wrote:
I'm with mdt there. There is no reason you would be leaning to the side. I've sat here at my desk with this big cardboard plotter paper roll trying it and there is no reason to lean to the side to use it two handed. I do disagree slightly with mdt on how you would hold it. I don't think using your left hand with and overhand grip would be the best way to stabalize it. An underhand grip would be better, but that gets even further from the OPs point.

True, an underhand might be better. I used overhand I think because it just felt more natural for me, but that would be learned muscle memory I think. Either way, it's not a hard thing to imagine and should help, certainly enough to justify the two-hand damage without anything more than the standard DC 5 ride check.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Kolokotroni wrote:


As I was reading this thread I was all ready to post something exactly like this. I couldnt agree more.

I've run into this myself. :) It's like a thread has to reach a critical mass of posts and then 3-4 people all at once after reading go 'Eureka!', then it's just a race to see who posts first. :)


Well, after the last few posters I decided to do some research as what they were saying was making some sense, so I went hunting just to see.
While I am still unsure I would allow a lance used two handed I did find some interesting stuff

Lances really can not be effectively used two handed. Now I have found alot of evidence lances where used two handed. Most common being the cataphract and the Chinese Calvary

That being said the "lance" they used by pathfinder or 3.5 terms would be a long spear. The item pathfinder and 3.5 calls a lance is a heavy lance. An item that could not be used two handed effectively. The fact is the weapon was a one-handed weapon and simply had no room for a 2nd hand.

Now you could possibly grip it above the guard, much like some two-handed swords could be gripped as such, or possibly it could not have the counter weight at the end, which I am thinking might make it loose some of the impact.

Anyhow this has no effect on anything just something I found interesting while doing research. Do look up cataphract not only is it an interesting read the images search is very fantasy inspiring.

We often get hung up on English and french knights and forget how many interesting other cultures had knights as well

some inspiring pics
Pic 1
Pic 2
pic 3
pic 4
pic 5
pic 6
pic 7
pic 8
pic 9


midknight wrote:

I'd allow it.

For me, it's just the same as a bastard sword or a dwarven battleaxe. They are two handed weapons that can, under some circumstances, be used one-handed.

Flavor-wise, I see handling a lance with two hands from the saddle not any more unrealistic as handling a greatsword, a scythe, a double-bladed sword or a spiked chain (poor lil horse!), and I see no reason to put more burden on the system with more unnecessary rolls.

Sorry, but they are not the same. Under the Pathfinder SRD, Bastard Swords and Dwarven Waraxes are 1 handed weapons. However without the exotic weapon training they must be used as two handed weapons (assuming martial training).

The Lance is a two-handed weapon that can be used in only 1 hand whilst mounted.


"The Lance is a two-handed weapon that can be used in only 1 hand whilst mounted."

This is misleading: your inclusion of 'only' suggests that two-handed use isn't allowed in the rules, whereas in fact it is the default.

Check the book. This is the wording:

"While mounted, you can wield a lance with one hand."

Big difference (though I'm not sure if you intended it to be).

Honestly, folks, there is nothing about this that suggests 'loopholes' or 'cheese' or 'milking' to me. The default method of handling a lance, in-game, is two-handed; mounted, you have *the option" of wielding it one-handed. That's an advantage of the weapon. You're taking that advantage, making a meal of it, and turning it into a disadvantage. Does the melee combatant need that? Is this such a glaring failure of simulation that it jars worse than mounted spiked chains?

Yes, it's always your own game. If the GM feels that the rules as written don't fit, then he can always rewrite them. If you're doing it to enhance setting flavour and homeworld atmosphere, all power to ya.

If, on the other hand, you're nerfing the lance because it seems like a 'loophole', a 'milking' of the rules for greater damage, then I believe such nerfing is misplaced (because the meleer does not need mechanical nerfing). And since these are the terms being used in the opening posts, that's what I perceive to be the case.


porpentine wrote:

"The Lance is a two-handed weapon that can be used in only 1 hand whilst mounted."

This is misleading: your inclusion of 'only' suggests that two-handed use isn't allowed in the rules, whereas in fact it is the default.

Check the book. This is the wording:

"While mounted, you can wield a lance with one hand."

Big difference (though I'm not sure if you intended it to be).

Honestly, folks, there is nothing about this that suggests 'loopholes' or 'cheese' or 'milking' to me. The default method of handling a lance, in-game, is two-handed; mounted, you have *the option" of wielding it one-handed. That's an advantage of the weapon. You're taking that advantage, making a meal of it, and turning it into a disadvantage. Does the melee combatant need that? Is this such a glaring failure of simulation that it jars worse than mounted spiked chains?

Yes, it's always your own game. If the GM feels that the rules as written don't fit, then he can always rewrite them. If you're doing it to enhance setting flavour and homeworld atmosphere, all power to ya.

If, on the other hand, you're nerfing the lance because it seems like a 'loophole', a 'milking' of the rules for greater damage, then I believe such nerfing is misplaced (because the meleer does not need mechanical nerfing). And since these are the terms being used in the opening posts, that's what I perceive to be the case.

My mistake, you are correct. But what it boils down to is there is no need to use it with two hands while mounted because you still get the bonus from power attack when using it with one hand.

'This bonus to damage is increased by half (+50%) if you are making an attack with a two-handed weapon, a one handed weapon using two hands, or a primary natural weapon that adds 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier on damage rolls.'
from Pathfinder SRD (Copied it directly this time)


Shane - the problem with such a reading is that it allows the PC an unusual and potent combination: two-handed damage with one hand, and a shield (or second weapon) in the other.

With my DM hat on, I'd be unwilling to allow that. The simpler use of the rules (that a lance is a two-handed weapon, with the special property of being usable in one hand while mounted) - that makes the PC choose; two-handed damage or one-handed plus shield/second weapon.

Seems like a loophole where none is needed, really, and not without complications - but if it helps allay worries, sure.


I have to agree, No way in hell anyone riding that loophole. I think my main issue is really imagery, I see lance and think heavy lance, which could not be used two handed there is just not any room. But really the lance in core is a light lance, which is more or less a longspear

I keep thinking of a full lance, known as a heavy lance, But really the lance as written now , the more I think of it is no such animal. It's more or less a 2e light lance, not a heavy knights lance


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
seekerofshadowlight wrote:

I have to agree, No way in hell anyone riding that loophole. I think my main issue is really imagery, I see lance and think heavy lance, which could not be used two handed there is just not any room. But really the lance in core is a light lance, which is more or less a longspear

I keep thinking of a full lance, known as a heavy lance, But really the lance as written now , the more I think of it is no such animal. It's more or less a 2e light lance, not a heavy knights lance

Indeed though the word lance conjures a certain image for many western fantasy fans (a jousting lance). It is really just a spear used by cavalry. The word lance can and has been used interchangable with spear for a whole number of weapons. And given the heavily simplified versions of weapons we have in the game, it is reasonable to assume that "lance" can represent many real world weapons.


DC 5 to steer a mount in the middle of combat in the middle of a charge with nothing but your legs? That seems really low. I'd like to see someone try that in real life and see how easy it is. Besides, aren't all ride checks in combat a minimum of DC 20?

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