Katana and Wakisashi should be Samurai weapons only


Ninja Discussion: Round 1

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Scarab Sages

DeathQuaker wrote:

I'm going to be crazy and respond to the original post.

Woot, thanks ;)

DeathQuaker wrote:


While samurai historically used katana and wakizashi as a matter of station, I disagree with the proposal that only samurai should be proficient, for the following reasons:

Anybody can be proficient, provided they spend the exotic proficiency feat, but only a Samurai should be expected to know how to use one from the get go.

I agree it's mostly a cultural restriction, but then there are not many classes named after actual historical figures.

DeathQuaker wrote:


- Ninja should be proficient because I imagine mechanically speaking, in the abstraction of Pathfinder, wakizashi stats could also be used to represent a ninjato or similar blades often associated with ninjas in popular narratives.

I agree that mechanically speaking they will be very similar, but a Ninjato has a straight blade while a Wakisashi has a curved one.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16

Real katanas can't exist in Pathfinder. PFRPG doesn't have Mega-Damage.

Senior Designer

Gene 95 wrote:

My faith in Paizo has been destroyed after reading the stats for the katana as presented. Why is the weapon no longer automatically masterwork! This is dumb; katanas were the most difficult weapon for any swordsmith to make and often took years (and thousands of hours) of expert craftsmanship to complete!

I'm taking my business elsewhere.

** spoiler omitted **

LOL. I love the spoiler. Good one!

Scarab Sages

KnightErrantJR wrote:
I have to admit, I'm a child of 80s ninja movies

I remember one vaguely, but those memories stick with me.

There was a ninja in a desert area surrounded by cops. He got shot up pretty bad but threw a smoke bomb and in the confusion did this spinning drill thing where he was able to dig down into, and hide in, the sand.

Later this ninja's spirit dominated a woman. A cop I think. And she began to act weird and carry out the ninja's mission.

That's about all I remember.

Tam


@ Tam: that would be Ninja 3: The Domination

As much as I have enjoyed the humor in this thread and hope others have I will give my OPINION on why its not restricted to samurai only

1) Ninja as infitration specialist prolly came from the warrior caste to begin with, and as a cover identity could well be a samuarai in a rivals camp knowing how to use the tools of the trade and your caste are appropriate.

2) A cultural prohibition does not necessiarrtly mean that other folks would be unable to use said item if they got thier hands on one. after talking to stage combat folks who read sword fighting text for a living (TY Origins game con)the strategies and techniques in spanish manuals and japanese ones are pretty similar.

3) Assuming they go with bastard sword short sword stats (I dont see why they wouldn't from #2) then they arent some special thing. The culture surrounding them (more Foucouldian accuratelty: Our interpretation of the events/culture of the past shaped by our goals) is what gives them special status


Ninja's didn't use Katanas, they used Ningato which was developed many years after after the Katana. The Katana was too big and slow to be used to effectively for the Ninja. At least that's what I've read.

As for stats on Katanas, you'll never get that right as there isn't enough room for that kind of difference in weapons. The combat system isn't that fine grained to highlight the differences with weapons. You have light, one handed, two handed and exotic. Not much to play with there.

Liberty's Edge

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
LOL. I love the spoiler. Good one!

At least you noticed it! :D

I kinda feel bad for folks who thought I was serious...

Okay, not really. :p

Liberty's Edge

LazarX wrote:

Because this isn't midieval Japan. The main reason that katanas took so long to make back them was the extremely poor quality of Japanese steel, the method of manufacture was designed to counteract the swords' tendency to shatter at the first solid blow. Since samurai exist in the same world that produces long swords that don't break the problem that necessitated the design factor isn't an issue.

This also allows for the fact that rhonin or disgraced samurai may have to resort to cheap knockoffs.

If the Japanese had had access to Damascus steel on the other hand... things would have been different.

You, eh, may want to have a gander at the spoiler in the post you quoted; I wasn't being serious.


I'd say that Ninja could, as part of their disguise, carry and use katanas when impersonating Samurai, but I'd also say they had to take it as a separate feat.

And, btw, this thread has triggered my memory of a favorite exchange in a *badly dubbed* martial arts film:

"What is this 'ninja'?"

"Ninja? It's a Samurai skill."

We missed the next five minutes of the film.


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DragonBelow wrote:


I agree that mechanically speaking they will be very similar, but a Ninjato has a straight blade while a Wakisashi has a curved one.

The straight bladed aspect of the weapon was, if I recall random fluff correctly, exploited in a number of ways: The corresponding straight scabbard could be used as a breathing pipe when forced to hide under water, a blow pipe etc and the weapon itself could be used as a step by jamming the thing into.. something susceptible to jamming.

Using the curve bladed Wakisashi and it's curved scabbard would seem make such tricks less likely.

Also, apparently, some guy (with a beard, fer sure) on tEh IntRAweBz said that a Wakisashi was a stabbing weapon.

Who are we to argue?

REVEAL YOURSELF!

*shakes fist*

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

DragonBelow wrote:


Anybody can be proficient, provided they spend the exotic proficiency feat, but only a Samurai should be expected to know how to use one from the get go.

I agree it's mostly a cultural restriction, but then there are not many classes named after actual historical figures.

You might not want to tell that to the Bard, Druid, or Paladin. "Samurai" is no more special or individual than these terms. (And I would argue that scholars of the druidic tradition have a lot more to complain about in the fantasy treatment of druids than those of the samurai.)

Even "Cavalier" comes from a particular class/caste of warrior, and "oracle" a very particular type of priest.

Quote:


I agree that mechanically speaking they will be very similar, but a Ninjato has a straight blade while a Wakisashi has a curved one.

I know. But a gladius and a smallsword also have different blades, but they would both be considered "short swords." (Also, there is some speculation that the ninjato didn't even really exist, so isn't achieving "accuracy" regarding the weapon is kind of pointless?) Hence the focus on mechanics. :)

Liberty's Edge

Personally, I don't see what the fuss is all about - the Ninja writeup doesn't mention the required head-to-toe single-colored ninja outfit that is mandatory for ninjas to ninja, so arguing about weapon proficiencies seems rather pointless.

Way to fail, katana thread. Way. To. Fail.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
BobChuck wrote:
Way to fail, katana thread. Way. To. Fail.

Such a thread is destined to do nothing but fail.


DragonBelow wrote:
DeathQuaker wrote:

I'm going to be crazy and respond to the original post.

Woot, thanks ;)

DeathQuaker wrote:


While samurai historically used katana and wakizashi as a matter of station, I disagree with the proposal that only samurai should be proficient, for the following reasons:

Anybody can be proficient, provided they spend the exotic proficiency feat, but only a Samurai should be expected to know how to use one from the get go.

I agree it's mostly a cultural restriction, but then there are not many classes named after actual historical figures.

DeathQuaker wrote:


- Ninja should be proficient because I imagine mechanically speaking, in the abstraction of Pathfinder, wakizashi stats could also be used to represent a ninjato or similar blades often associated with ninjas in popular narratives.
I agree that mechanically speaking they will be very similar, but a Ninjato has a straight blade while a Wakisashi has a curved one.

To be honest, I agree with the feeling that a katana should just be a thematic bastard sword/great sword; if new rules get developed for every cultural weapon, instead of a "Great Sword" we'll have Claymores, Zweihanders, No-dachi, etc. all minor variations on the same thing, weapon rules should be general, not so specific.

Historically though, Ninja did not use katana, they were too expensive, required access to specific blacksmiths, were easily traceable, etc. The Ninja-to idea may be a myth, but it seems likely to academics that Ninja used whatever weapons they could conceal easily. Why would a ninja use a two-handed weapon when he may need his free hand?

Scarab Sages

Dragonsong wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
I'm actually hoping for a honest death of the katana flamewar, but I'm afraid SOMEBODY will run in here and demand 2d8/x4/17-20 with sixty wikipedia links to back it up.

Ohh ohh in that case I can post all my wiki/ articles of the Gurkha campaign with British soldiers being aggressively field amputated/ beheaded by a single kukri strike.

Here's hoping anyway Gorbacz.

Don't forget British-allied Gurkhas kicking Japanese ass in the (Tragically doomed) rearguard action in several instances, to give British and Dutch medical personnel a chance to escape the rather ruthless Japanese. BTW, the Katana-armed Japanese were terrified of the Gurkhas and their Kukris...

Oh, I am very Pro-Kukri, if it wasn't obvious. Mine is pretty damned awesome (Gurkha House). Also, Katanas bore me... I'll tak a Samurai with a sweet Tetsubo, however. Hey, can my Tetsubo be 2D12/18-20/X4!?! I mean..it IS Japanese... the Katana will vouch for it.

-Uriel


Yeah it is a bit silly that in a system that has so few ways to make weapons different that something needs new stats based off culture or look when it does the very same thing as a weapon you already have. I mean we did not get 3 versions of the two handed sword for different regions and cultures did we?

You have bastard sword and short sword already. Why do we need better more cool stats for them because these are Asian versions?

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Uriel393 wrote:

Hey, can my Tetsubo be 2D8/18-20/X4!?! I mean..it IS Japanese... the Katana will vouch for it.

-Uriel

Thank you, that made me laugh out loud.

Wayyyyyyy off topic, does anyone know of a company that makes an Asian weapon pack like Reaper's western ones? I recently got an Archer Battlemech out of storage, only to find the tetsubo I'd attached had broken free at some point?

Scarab Sages

seekerofshadowlight wrote:

Yeah it is a bit silly that in a system that has so few ways to make weapons different that something needs new stats based off culture or look when it does the very same thing as a weapon you already have. I mean we did not get 3 versions of the two handed sword for different regions and cultures did we?

You have bastard sword and short sword already. Why do we need better more cool stats for them because these are Asian versions?

Looks into can of worms...

Besides, we have the Curved Blade stats already ...though you have to be an Elf. Everybody that I play with laughs and calls it a No-Dachi.

-Uriel

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

seekerofshadowlight wrote:

Yeah it is a bit silly that in a system that has so few ways to make weapons different that something needs new stats based off culture or look when it does the very same thing as a weapon you already have. I mean we did not get 3 versions of the two handed sword for different regions and cultures did we?

You have bastard sword and short sword already. Why do we need better more cool stats for them because these are Asian versions?

Seeker, did you see my proposed stats here? I wasn't trying to post 'better' stats, but making them different (and worth an EWP feat to use one handed).

I do think that while we don't need different stats, I think I put them in the 'niche' tree.

Scarab Sages

Matthew Morris wrote:
Uriel393 wrote:

Hey, can my Tetsubo be 2D8/18-20/X4!?! I mean..it IS Japanese... the Katana will vouch for it.

-Uriel

Thank you, that made me laugh out loud.

Wayyyyyyy off topic, does anyone know of a company that makes an Asian weapon pack like Reaper's western ones? I recently got an Archer Battlemech out of storage, only to find the tetsubo I'd attached had broken free at some point?

Oh man, you posted the version before I edited it. Took another look at the Tetsubo...changed it to 2D12. I mean... (Runs for the hills) It IS Japanese...

-Uriel


DragonBelow wrote:
As the subject reads :P

Then do what the Japanese did. Make it illegal for anyone to own them except samurai - though most nobles were required to carry a wakizashi.


While we are discussing this I would like to request rules for making every sword in the game unique. After all every sword handles differently. Every sword has a slightly different point of balance and different weak and strong points. The game needs the ability to define the difference between every blade to accurately represent how dangerous the weapon really is. I mean why treat every longsword the same. Arguably a longsword made by one smith will have different characteristics than a longsword made by another smith.

The game will really only be complete when every weapon has it's own character sheet that details every little trait and penalty that the weapon has. Actually now that I think of it we should break the core rulebook down and expand on each section. Each chapter should be a book unto itself and each class should receive it's own book as well. No single book should be less than 256 pages so that we can claim that each subject was given comprehensive coverage. Then we could explain the differences between a character who uses a bastard sword or a katana and we could also explain how having one foot a slight bit larger than the other affected his ability to use each weapon. We could detail how when his left foot was forward at a 45 degree angle he would be able to make a reverse cut with a longsword at a +1 bonus to hit and +2 to damage while striking the left collar bone of his opponent within a small target that is no more than 3 inches from the shoulder but not closer than 1 inch from the shoulder. ;)

Spoiler:
I am just kidding about this. Personally I am cool with whatever stats they come up with since the game is an abstract version of reality as it is. Too much realism is crazy.


On the serious side of things... Weapon restrictions should be a cultural phenomenon. It makes no sense for there to be actual mechanical reasons for a weapon to be unusable outside of a certain class.

And cultural restrictions should be used sparingly. If it interferes with players being able to adventure then the restriction is probably a bad idea.


::Strolls through the thread singing, "Chop Suey"::


-We often see arguments about EWP being only situationally useful, because the enhancements aren't that great. Bastard sword and dwarven axe are two of the most common offenders, since they only as a net 1 point of damage over their martial counterparts (longsword and battleaxe). Given this, and the d20's fetish for making curved slashing weapons (kukuri, falchion, scimitar) the lower die/18-20 weapons, I'd love to see the katana be martial two handed, exotic one handed, 1d8 18-20/x2 and the wakazashi be martial two handed, exotic one handed 1d6 18-20/x2. Exotic weapon proficiency would also grant the finessable trait. (Maybe not 'historically accurate' but thematically accurate, and would make the EWP more worth it, espeically for the wakazashi)

Oh, and neither being automatically masterwork. -

I agree :)

And those mass produced Katanas the Japanese had during WWII are cheep knock offs of the real thing, much like the millitary cutlasses and sabres they had in the west at the same time.


I believe the sword typically associated with the ninja was the ninjato, though I guess there is some debate about this weapons actual historical existence.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16

Rzach wrote:

While we are discussing this I would like to request rules for making every sword in the game unique. After all every sword handles differently. Every sword has a slightly different point of balance and different weak and strong points. The game needs the ability to define the difference between every blade to accurately represent how dangerous the weapon really is. I mean why treat every longsword the same. Arguably a longsword made by one smith will have different characteristics than a longsword made by another smith.

The game will really only be complete when every weapon has it's own character sheet that details every little trait and penalty that the weapon has. Actually now that I think of it we should break the core rulebook down and expand on each section. Each chapter should be a book unto itself and each class should receive it's own book as well. No single book should be less than 256 pages so that we can claim that each subject was given comprehensive coverage. Then we could explain the differences between a character who uses a bastard sword or a katana and we could also explain how having one foot a slight bit larger than the other affected his ability to use each weapon. We could detail how when his left foot was forward at a 45 degree angle he would be able to make a reverse cut with a longsword at a +1 bonus to hit and +2 to damage while striking the left collar bone of his opponent within a small target that is no more than 3 inches from the shoulder but not closer than 1 inch from the shoulder. ;)

** spoiler omitted **

GURPS Martial Arts. :)

The Exchange

Charlie Bell wrote:


GURPS Martial Arts. :)

That way will lead to madness...

Ok, I'm convinced, let's keep it abstract. It's a longsword or broadsword. Done, simple. phew.


The whole 'katana is the soul of the samurai' idea came about during the Edo Period (Tokugawa Era 1600 to 1868) after the warring period was over, when samurai became less a warrior and more an aristocrat, as a mark of station. Still even then, Yakuza were legally allowed to bear a katana openly, as they were considered 'town managers' a somewhat aristocratic position.

However, before the Edo Period, katana was just a sword, commonly wielded by Commoner farmers just as often as samurai. There was no historical connection to katana as only for samurai until after 1600. In fact any sword was a secondary weapon to yumi/daikyu longbow, the primary weapon for this mounted archer, the samurai. Katana in fact is a design borrowed from the Emishi barbarians who wielded similar weapons from the Heian period - pre 1100 AD.

In my Kaidan: a Japanese Ghost Story setting, katana is equivalent to the Curved Blade and is not considered an exotic weapon. Use the variant you prefer if you play my game setting.


gamer-printer wrote:

The whole 'katana is the soul of the samurai' idea came about during the Edo Period (Tokugawa Era 1600 to 1868) after the warring period was over, when samurai became less a warrior and more an aristocrat, as a mark of station. Still even then, Yakuza were legally allowed to bear a katana openly, as they were considered 'town managers' a somewhat aristocratic position.

However, before the Edo Period, katana was just a sword, commonly wielded by Commoner farmers just as often as samurai. There was no historical connection to katana as only for samurai until after 1600. In fact any sword was a secondary weapon to yumi/daikyu longbow, the primary weapon for this mounted archer, the samurai. Katana in fact is a design borrowed from the Emishi barbarians who wielded similar weapons from the Heian period - pre 1100 AD.

In my Kaidan: a Japanese Ghost Story setting, katana is equivalent to the Curved Blade and is not considered an exotic weapon. Use the variant you prefer if you play my game setting.

there were no 'common' farmers with katana, they were too expensive. In no culture did 'common' soldiers even carry swords. Metal was too precious and pricey.

No one was 'allowed' to carry katana openly, it was outlawed after 1868 as a sign of open threat to the Emperor.


I don't know how the commoner caste paid for such swords, but especially during the Sengoku Period, many commoners were trained as ashigaru infantry, some became naginata specialists, massed bowman, and katana wielders - it really did happen. At the end of the Sengoku period some commoners were elevated to samurai status, many were not. An attempt at that time to collect swords possessed by commoner farmers was made by the Shogunate - this is known to have happened. Even to this day, many farmer homes that are having their rooves rethatched, have been discovered swords hidden in the thatch to avoid capture by the authorities.

It really did happen, and its been thus proven even today.

Sword were in the hands of all who could wield them and became relics handed down through the families.

My ancestors were physicians who served the noble houses in Matsue region of Japan. They wore katana openly as a mark of station officially recognized by the state - they weren't of the samurai caste pe se.

I don't know your historic resources, but mine say different then what you say. And I'm using that knowledge in my soon to be released setting.


::Hugs Gamer-printer::


gamer-printer wrote:

I don't know how the commoner caste paid for such swords, but especially during the Sengoku Period, many commoners were trained as ashigaru infantry, some became naginata specialists, massed bowman, and katana wielders - it really did happen. At the end of the Sengoku period some commoners were elevated to samurai status, many were not. An attempt at that time to collect swords possessed by commoner farmers was made by the Shogunate - this is known to have happened. Even to this day, many farmer homes that are having their rooves rethatched, have been discovered swords hidden in the thatch to avoid capture by the authorities.

It really did happen, and its been thus proven even today.

Sword were in the hands of all who could wield them and became relics handed down through the families.

My ancestors were physicians who served the noble houses in Matsue region of Japan. They wore katana openly as a mark of station officially recognized by the state - they weren't of the samurai caste pe se.

I don't know your historic resources, but mine say different then what you say. And I'm using that knowledge in my soon to be released setting.

well its possible the military supplied the weapons to the commoners.

After all our government gives weapons to our soldiers. We expect them back too. I doubt many common people today could afford an m249 machine gun.

what era did you ancestors carry the katana? It wouldnt have been 1868 or shortly there after, it would have had to been with the following emperor/emperors due to the fact the army was still hunting down/destroying the samurai and outlawing the use and open carry of the katana.

Katana were disguised is scabbards to look like walking sticks and such and private photgraphs of those wearing katana during that time isn't proof they wore them in public.

see anyone wearing katana in public today? I guarantee you that practice was outlawed just like americans cant wader the streets wearing open pistols like gun fighters.


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I don't think simple/martial/exotic is enough. We should have simple/martial/exotic/geektastic instead. Then the katana could be a geektastic weapon. It would have the same stats as a club, but require Exotic Weapon and Geektastic Weapon feats, which the Samurai class would of course get for free.

What?! It works perfectly well for monk weapons!


My family sword is from circa 1500.

After 1868 which was the Meiji Era, the Shogunate was abolished, the Emperor reinstated as ruler of Japan - swords and samurai were made illegal out of hand, at this point Japan was moving to the modern age. This occurred only after Commodore Perry's black ships opened the closed state. So nobody carried a sword after 1868, that's a well known fact.

I stated that katana was worn as a mark of station for samurai and other non-samurai who qualified for a mark of station. This occurred during the Tokugawa Era/Edo Period which ended in 1868.

Katana are notably curved blades so to disguise one as a walking stick doesn't sound very practical, a curved walking stick is not very disguising.

Which is funny, I dressed up in a home made "ninja turtle costume" at a bar in my hometown about 15 years ago, and I wore my family katana as part of that costume... nobody arrested me, but then I'm sure they may not have realized I was carrying a real blade at the time.

I am sure the blades were originally issued them by the government, at least by their local provincial lord, if not the empire or shogunate itself. But my family's sword was issued as a gift, not a loan. My family served the daimyo at Matsue as private physicians for almost 1000 years - my relatives in Japan are doctors still.


gamer-printer wrote:

My family sword is from circa 1500.

After 1868 which was the Meiji Era, the Shogunate was abolished, the Emperor reinstated as ruler of Japan - swords and samurai were made illegal out of hand, at this point Japan was moving to the modern age. This occurred only after Commodore Perry's black ships opened the closed state. So nobody carried a sword after 1868, that's a well known fact.

Katana are notably curved blades so to disguise one as a walking stick doesn't sound very practical, a curved walking stick is not very disguising.

Which is funny, I dressed up in a home made "ninja turtle costume" at a bar in my hometown about 15 years ago, and I wore my family katana as part of that costume... nobody arrested me, but then I'm sure they may not have realized I was carrying a real blade at the time.

I am sure the blades were originally issued them by the government, at least by their local provincial lord, if not the empire or shogunate itself. But this was issued as a gift, not a loan. My family served the daimyo at Matsue as private physicians for almost 1000 years - my relatives in Japan are doctors still.

so #1 you just confirmed what ive been saying. The weapon was illegal and no one wore it in public.

#2 I've seen the specially made "walking stick" katanas.
http://www.thewebcollection.com/stick-swords.html
while this is a site for replicas, replicas are always copies of something original, that existed. (hence the term replica)

#3 runnin about town with a real sword COULD have gotten you in a lot of trouble,
and seriously? you brought a 500 year old sword out where it could have been stolen or damaged for a halloween costume?
that sounds like a tall tale to me.


I usually just stat a katana as a bastard sword version of a scimitar. I had read somewhere once that the design is supposed to be an evolution of a scimitar style blade.

1d8 dmg 18-20/x2

On a silly note, I am disappointed that this thread hasn't devolved into something completely off-topic, which most ninja/samurai/katana threads do. We should be talking about the awesome power of bacon by now. :P


After 1868 it was nolonger Old Japan, it became a modern state. I don't think anyone is disagreeing that such weapons weren't worn after 1868.

Feudal Japan is from 1185 to 1868. Japan did not close its borders from the outside world until about 1520 and kept it closed. That's why Commodore Perry was ordered by the US government to open Japan. Once that happened, and the shogunate could no longer protect Japan, it was abolished, and much of the old traditions including the wearing of swords was abolished at the same time.


Pendagast wrote:
#3 runnin about town with a real sword COULD have gotten you in a lot of trouble,
and seriously? you brought a 500 year old sword out where it could have been stolen or damaged for a halloween costume?
that sounds like a tall tale to me.

I have a Chinese Jian sword dated to between 300-400 years old, and I have worn it as a costume prop during halloween before, and "I pity ad fool" that would have tried to take it from me.

Also, it is not illegal in many states of the USA to walk around carrying a gun, as long as it is not concealed. On the other hand, i believe pretty much every town and city has local laws that prevent you from carrying a gun around without a license.


Izkrael wrote:

Pendagast wrote:

#3 runnin about town with a real sword COULD have gotten you in a lot of trouble,
and seriously? you brought a 500 year old sword out where it could have been stolen or damaged for a halloween costume?
that sounds like a tall tale to me.

I have a Chinese Jian sword dated to between 300-400 years old, and I have worn it as a costume prop during halloween before, and "I pity ad fool" that would have tried to take it from me.

Also, it is not illegal in many states of the USA to walk around carrying a gun, as long as it is not concealed. On the other hand, i believe pretty much every town and city has local laws that prevent you from carrying a gun around without a license.

the CWP (concealed weapons permit) allows a citizen to carry the firearm concealed, and only concealed.

In some states (alaska and texas come to mind easily) you do not need a CWP to carry a firearm openly, according to state law, but you will find local city ordinances (98% of them) prevent the open carry, so effectively this only allows you to carry the weapon open, at ranges, hunting, or "in the wild" and such, it is STILL illegal to carry the weapon in public.


The KAtana is the world's sharpest and deadliest sword.

that said, its more fitting to be a longsword with a +3 crit modifier than a bastard sword.

that said I had something else to post but being the king of the hill just came on and I was to busy giving the it the finger, I forgot what I was going to say.


This thread needs robots in the front row.

::sings badly:: MASTER NINJA THEME SONG!


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I am fairly certain that bacon was outlawed in Japan in the 4th century bc by the tsar of france. Or maybe it was the president, but either way, the point is moot. Also, the aforementioned cake is a lie.


Ironicdisaster wrote:
Also, the aforementioned cake is a lie.

Are you kidding? It's so delicious and moist.

I'm being so sincere right now.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Ironicdisaster wrote:
I am fairly certain that bacon was outlawed in Japan in the 4th century bc by the tsar of france.

This axe was a gift to me from the tsarina of Tokyo.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Shisumo wrote:
Ironicdisaster wrote:
I am fairly certain that bacon was outlawed in Japan in the 4th century bc by the tsar of france.
This axe was a gift to me from the tsarina of Tokyo.

And this sash was a gift from the queen of America herself!

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Pendagast wrote:
Shisumo wrote:
Ironicdisaster wrote:
I am fairly certain that bacon was outlawed in Japan in the 4th century bc by the tsar of france.
This axe was a gift to me from the tsarina of Tokyo.
And this sash was a gift from the queen of America herself!

There's no queen of America!


Misery wrote:

We've always houserules the katana ourselves as not liking it back in the day. These days since pathfinder, we've use the small sized Elven Curveblood and I'd like to suggest this to be true. Basically, a medium exotic weapoin doing 1d8 damage, 18-20 crit, and usable with weapon finesse, even used two handed.

Just throwing that out there.

Skimming through this thread, this was made the most sense out of all I've read.

For anyone wanting real info on katanas, join a respectable sword art and you'll learn the real truth behind katanas.

Anyone wanting to find a bit of truth online, try here:
http://forums.swordforum.com/

For anyone claiming japanese swords can do insane things, like this joker

vuron wrote:

Because someone needs to say it here goes:

That’s it. I’m sick of all this “Masterwork Bastard Sword” baloney that’s going on in the d20 system right now. Katanas deserve much better than that. Much, much better than that.

I should know what I’m talking about. I myself commissioned a genuine katana in Japan for 2,400,000 Yen (that’s about $20,000) and have been practicing with it for almost 2 years now. I can even cut slabs of solid steel with my katana.

Japanese smiths spend years working on a single katana and fold it up to a million times to produce the finest blades known to mankind.
Katanas are thrice as sharp as European swords and thrice as hard for that matter too. Anything a longsword can cut through, a katana can cut through better. I’m pretty sure a katana could easily bisect a knight wearing full plate with a simple vertical slash.

Ever wonder why medieval Europe never bothered conquering Japan? That’s right, they were too scared to fight the disciplined Samurai and their katanas of destruction. Even in World War II, American soldiers targeted the men with the katanas first because their killing power was feared and respected.

So what am I saying? Katanas are simply the best sword that the world has ever seen, and thus, require better stats in the d20 system. Here is the stat block I propose for Katanas:

(One-Handed Exotic Weapon) 1d12 Damage 19-20 x4 Crit +2 to hit and damage Counts as Masterwork

(Two-Handed Exotic Weapon) 2d10 Damage 17-20 x4 Crit +5 to hit and damage Counts as Masterwork

Now that seems a lot more representative of the cutting power of Katanas in real life, don’t you think?

tl;dr = Katanas need to do more damage in d20, see my new stat block.

:D

Let's just pick that apart.

Genuine katanas can cost around $20,000 (or as low as $6,000, or more than $80,000), but the price is because you are buying an art sword hand-made by a renowned smith, not because you are buying a enchanted magical weapon. Anyone claiming katanas cut any metal at all is spouting pure BS. Katanas were developed in an area where metal was rare, and are designed to cut unarmored opponents. Samurai facing each other, instead of attacking with katanas, would drop them (or not draw them, as the SPEAR was their primary weapon) and use tantos to try and stab through the weak spots of their armor.

The masterwork? Japanese smiths developed an outstanding method of forging metal, out of necessity because their starting material was a very poor grade of iron that was unsuitable for weapons steel, and they had to make it better. They were never folded a million times, anyone who states that has absolutely no idea what they are talking about. Just think about how long it would take to fold a piece of steel in on itself and then forge it flat, even if that only takes 1 hour, a million hours would mean it takes 273 years to forge a blade (10 hours a day, 365 days a year). The truth is in the layers, not the folds.. 1 fold 2 layers, 2 folds 4 layers, 3 folds 8 layers, 4=16, 5=32, 6=64, 7=128, 8=256 etc, such that at 15 folds (which was rare, and rarely exceeded) you had 32,768 layers of steel. Take better grade steel and you can make a better cutting katana (assuming same design etc) without having to fold at all, or differentially tempering a katana (another aspect which improved the poor steel, and made katana forging a true art form).

A longsword is better suited for cleaving through harder targets, the katana's curved shape enabled it to slice with a draw cut which is meant for softer targets. The sport of cutting with katanas, practiced by martial artists, is known as tameshigiri and ruining a katana is quite easy if you don't know what you are doing, easier than with a western blade.

In terms of using the weapons, katanas are more a finesse weapon than a brute force weapon. Each cut is designed to slice, never to chop. If the katana has one major difference over western (straight) blades, (as any practitioner of Iaido can tell you), it is the ability to quickdraw: the shape allows drawing the blade to be part of an effective 1-handed slice or even a block. Cuts require precision and control and much of that comes from the wrist. Even in 2-handed grips there is a lot of wrist and finger movement; there is no straight chop (i.e. swinging it like a baseball bat).

If the americans went for katana wielding japanese first, it was because katanas were issued to officers as badges of rank, and gave americans a way to identify who they needed to kill first.

If the above poster truly cuts metal with a $20,000 art sword, he is an idiot with a notched and/or broken blade.

For Pathfinder, beyond finessability, any major deviation from something similar to a bastard sword or (smaller), elven curved blade or scimitar is pure nonsense made up by someone who knows absolutely nothing about how katanas are really made. In fact I've seen more than one direct comparison of katanas to scimitars in terms of design equivalency and performance (generally made by reputable martial artists who have handled a large variety of blades and/or studied historical blades).


Lythe you get 42 points for that or something around those lines.

The Katana is a execellent weapon made from inferior materials but it is not magical which is what most people seem to want here.

The Katana - still required to obey the physical laws of the universe since 4.8 billion BCE.

Scarab Sages

DragonBelow wrote:
Katana and Wakisashi should be Samurai weapons only

I disagree.

If only because I want to make Scorpion Clan ninjas from L5R and they are totally proficient with katanas.

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