Lay on Hands, free hand?


Rules Questions


So as it is written this ability seems pretty weak.

Any Palidin worth his/her salt is going to either wield a 2H weapon, sword and shield, or two weapons. No Paladin that I have ever heard of is going to walk around with a free hand.

This means that to use the ability while wielding a sword and shield a paladin must drop her sword and use it and then draw her sword. This kind of defeats the purpose of using LoH on herself as a swift action. Even with Quick Draw it seems kind of clunky. I have heard of Paladins who will use light shields to keep a hand "free," but my archetypical paladin carries a big ass shield.

What is the consensus on shield-wielding Paladins? Can you use LoH with a heavy shield or do you need an extra feat to make the concept work?


Pathfinder Maps Subscriber

The general consensus is that you can use a light shield, so you can carry your sword in that hand briefly as a free action, while you use Lay On Hands. Then switch the sword back as another free action.

This will ultimately bring about the debate on how many Free Actions you can get in your turn. We have plenty of threads on that topic, so please Forums, can we not jack this thread for that debate?

EDIT: The other option is a weapon cord, but that is two Swift actions in a turn. So that might not meet your needs.


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.


Sammy123 wrote:
Can a paladin do LoH with during combat when holding a sword and light shield?
I believe so. A light shield allows spellcasters to use their hand to cast, and lets you carry an object; the only thing it actually prevents is wielding a weapon. Since lay on hands only requires you to touch someone, you could indeed use this ability while wearing a light shield.
if you're wielding a 2H weapon, you can let go of the weapon with one of your hands (free action). You're now only carrying the 2H weapon, not wielding it, but your free hand is now free to attack or help cast spells or whatever. And at the end of your turn if your free hand remains free you'd be able to return it to grip your 2H weapon so you can still threaten foes and take attacks of opportunity if you want.

Since a heavy shield cannot hold an item, you would have to unstrap and drop the shield, or drop/sheathe your weapon in order to have a hand free.

-edit-
My house rule is that, since a Paladin is never not touching herself, she doesn't need a hand free to use LoH on herself as a swift action.

Also, I would probably allow a LoH via Kiss for a Paladin (and target) who were into that sort of thing.


Phazzle wrote:

So as it is written this ability seems pretty weak.

Any Palidin worth his/her salt is going to either wield a 2H weapon, sword and shield, or two weapons. No Paladin that I have ever heard of is going to walk around with a free hand.

This means that to use the ability while wielding a sword and shield a paladin must drop her sword and use it and then draw her sword. This kind of defeats the purpose of using LoH on herself as a swift action. Even with Quick Draw it seems kind of clunky. I have heard of Paladins who will use light shields to keep a hand "free," but my archetypical paladin carries a big ass shield.

What is the consensus on shield-wielding Paladins? Can you use LoH with a heavy shield or do you need an extra feat to make the concept work?

Yeah, and most paladins I know don't go around healing anything until the combat is over. If desperation calls for healing while in combat, then take the risk and Lay on Hands, Channel Energy or cast a Healing spell. Its not so weak if you or an ally is dying and the fight is not over. Paladins aren't supposed to be combat medics, it's fighting first, then heal.


I am primarily using it to heal myself during combat. So, if you were to take quick draw could you drop your weapon as a free action, use LoH as a swift action, retrieve your weapon as a free action, and then commence with your attacks?


This is totally how I play and not an offical rule but:

If you are going to hold something for less than a full round, you can just do it. For instance, when I was swordfighting in real life, all of us would hold a sword pressed between our bicep and torso if we needed a hand for a second. This would NOT be done while actively engaging (threatning/blocking) a target. It was used most often to get something out of our pockets.

This would work fine if you are not threatened. If you are, it could easily open up for an AoO with no shield benefit.

Again, not a real rule, just what works at my table where most of us were VERY active combat LARPers.


Phazzle wrote:
I am primarily using it to heal myself during combat. So, if you were to take quick draw could you drop your weapon as a free action, use LoH as a swift action, retrieve your weapon as a free action, and then commence with your attacks?

Sadly, no.

Quick Draw lets you draw weapons as a free action. Once you've dropped your weapon, you need to pick it up, which uses Manipulate an Item which is a move action.

Sheathing the weapon, instead of dropping it, is a move action. So you could attack (standard), move (sheathe), swift (LoH Self), draw (free).


Phazzle wrote:
I am primarily using it to heal myself during combat. So, if you were to take quick draw could you drop your weapon as a free action, use LoH as a swift action, retrieve your weapon as a free action, and then commence with your attacks?

No, you have to quickdraw a weapon that is sheathed, or readied (like a bow) and it does not work for a weapon lying on the ground.


I have no problem with a Paladin pausing and dropping his sword to heal a companion, but I think it's a bit silly to have a paladin drop his sword or shield to heal himself. I would imagine that he could just smack his shielded hand against his chest as a swift action. But, oh well, whadda ya gonna do?


For sword and board, you can use a weapon cord + quick draw. At higher levels, you can use a glove of storing.

Could a paladin hold a weapon in their teeth?


Knight Magenta wrote:
For sword and board, you can use a weapon cord + quick draw.

Recovering a weapon on a weapon cord is a swift action, the same as using LoH on yourself. This would work only when using LoH as a standard action, which is worse than using a move action to sheathe the weapon.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Rules Questions / Lay on Hands, free hand? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.