Revisiting Two-Handed Weapons and Armor Spikes


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Shadow Lodge

5 people marked this as FAQ candidate.

So this question was raised recently in a game that I'm running. A new character is coming in, and the player is fairly certain that if a character is using a two-handed reach polearm (such as a glaive) and has armor spikes or a spike gauntlet, he threatens both at reach and adjacent for purposes of Attacks of Opportunity. At present, given what I know of the Two-Hander/Armor Spike ruling, I'm inclined to say no, he has to choose which he threatens with at the end of each turn. Am I wrong on this one, or is my interpretation correct given the present rulings with regards to two-handers and armor spikes?


I would say it is pretty simple:

You can't two-weapon fight with a two-handed weapon and armor spikes.
Fighting with two different weapons, even if you use one on your turn and one on other character's turns, is called two-weapon fighting.

I mean, you wouldn't allow someone with a valid two-weapon fighting combo (example: longsword & short sword) to use the longsword without two-weapon fighting penalties on his turn and then make an Attack of Opportunity with the shortsword without apply the two-weapon fighting penalties... so why would an invalid two-weapon fighting combo get to?


thenobledrake wrote:

I would say it is pretty simple:

You can't two-weapon fight with a two-handed weapon and armor spikes.
Fighting with two different weapons, even if you use one on your turn and one on other character's turns, is called two-weapon fighting.

I mean, you wouldn't allow someone with a valid two-weapon fighting combo (example: longsword & short sword) to use the longsword without two-weapon fighting penalties on his turn and then make an Attack of Opportunity with the shortsword without apply the two-weapon fighting penalties... so why would an invalid two-weapon fighting combo get to?

Wait, what?! Source please.


BigDTBone wrote:
Wait, what?! Source please.

Not being able to two-weapon fight with a two-handed weapon and armor spikes is in the FAQ...

The rest, I am going to amend as follows:

Two-weapon fighting (the special attack action, not the feat of the same name) says "If you wield a second weapon in your off hand, you can get one extra attack per round with that weapon. You suffer a –6 penalty with your regular attack or attacks with your primary hand and a –10 penalty to the attack with your off hand when you fight this way. You can reduce these penalties in two ways. First, if your off-hand weapon is light, the penalties are reduced by 2 each. An unarmed strike is always considered light. Second, the Two-Weapon Fighting feat lessens the primary hand penalty by 2, and the off-hand penalty by 6."

The bold portion makes me now think it is unclear if you are allowed to make attacks of opportunity with your off-hand weapon in the first place.

If you can do so, however, the rest of the text makes it very clear that the only situation in which you can benefit from a 2nd weapon (manufactured weapon, anyways) is when taking the two-weapon fighting penalties associated with doing so - which means no combo of two-handed weapon plus armor spikes for extra threatened spaces because you can't two-weapon fight with that pairing of weapons.

On the other hand, if you use a two-handed weapon and have a natural attack you can definitely use the natural attack (as a secondary attack) to make attacks of opportunity (assuming the natural attack doesn't use your already occupied hands).


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thenobledrake wrote:
I mean, you wouldn't allow someone with a valid two-weapon fighting combo (example: longsword & short sword) to use the longsword without two-weapon fighting penalties on his turn and then make an Attack of Opportunity with the shortsword without apply the two-weapon fighting penalties... so why would an invalid two-weapon fighting combo get to?

If I remember correctly, a character decides what hand is their "off-hand" only when using two-weapon fighting, which is a special combat action and typically only occurs during a full-attack. Furthermore, if they use two-weapon fighting, the penalties end at the end of their turn. It's possible to be armed with a weapon in each hand, attack with either weapon interchangeably in a full-attack, and never actually use two-weapon fighting.

TWF FAQ I
TWF FAQ II

As to the original question, I would say that yes, you can threaten both within 5' and 10' if armed with both a reach weapon and armor spikes. The FAQ ruled that you can't use two-weapon fighting with a two-handed weapon and armor spikes, but didn't clarify why. As such, I'd just assume everything else works as normal.


Yea, that's all fine. Where does it say that AoO's share any rules with Two-weapon fighting. Where is it even suggested that because you make a valid single attack with a legal weapon on your turn that you cannot use a second legal weapon as part of an AoO (penalty or otherwise?)

Liberty's Edge

He's not TWF. Just because two different weapons are used in the same round, that does not mean you are TWF.

Besides, the question isn't about TWF, it's about whether he threatens with both the reach weapon and the armor spikes for AoO, which he can.


Rhatahema wrote:
thenobledrake wrote:
I mean, you wouldn't allow someone with a valid two-weapon fighting combo (example: longsword & short sword) to use the longsword without two-weapon fighting penalties on his turn and then make an Attack of Opportunity with the shortsword without apply the two-weapon fighting penalties... so why would an invalid two-weapon fighting combo get to?

If I remember correctly, a character decides what hand is their "off-hand" only when using two-weapon fighting, which is a special combat action and typically only occurs during a full-attack. Furthermore, if they use two-weapon fighting, the penalties end at the end of their turn. It's possible to be armed with a weapon in each hand, attack with either weapon interchangeably in a full-attack, and never actually use two-weapon fighting.

TWF FAQ

As to the original question, I would say that yes, you can threaten both within 5' and 10' if armed with both a reach weapon and armor spikes. The FAQ ruled that you can't use two-weapon fighting with a two-handed weapon and armor spikes, but didn't clarify why. As such, I'd just assume everything else works as normal.

I completely agree.


thenobledrake wrote:


Fighting with two different weapons, even if you use one on your turn and one on other character's turns, is called two-weapon fighting.

Not, it is not, TWF ends when the turn ends. Fore example, there is not penalty to an AoO afther TWF.

To the Op. Once a dev said that the intention was to rules as you think. But that comment on this forum never become a rule for PF.

Just by looking the rules, your players is right.

Shadow Lodge

thenobledrake wrote:
If you can do so, however, the rest of the text makes it very clear that the only situation in which you can benefit from a 2nd weapon (manufactured weapon, anyways) is when taking the two-weapon fighting penalties associated with doing so - which means no combo of two-handed weapon plus armor spikes for extra threatened spaces because you can't two-weapon fight with that pairing of weapons.

There is also the issue, though, on the TWF FAQ, that if you have iterative attacks, you can switch between weapons without any TWF penalty. Fighter 6 has BAB +6/+1. He can, without the TWF feat, wield a longsword/shortsword combo using 1 weapon on each of his iteratives without two-weapon fighting penalties. Citations provided by Rhatahema.

I do disagree with that ruling, though, and house-rule it in my games to the more realistic "penalties apply when fighting with two weapons simultaneously." Having done it in real life, it's bloody difficult coordinating both.


HangarFlying wrote:

He's not TWF. Just because two different weapons are used in the same round, that does not mean you are TWF.

Besides, the question isn't about TWF, it's about whether he threatens with both the reach weapon and the armor spikes for AoO, which he can.

...so counter-intuitive...

Alright though, I was wrong according to the design team's rulings - apparently "extra" is the important part of the rule, not "off-hand."

Scarab Sages

You can weild two weapons, choosing which to attack with, without taking two-weapon fighting penalties. The penalties only kick in when you try to gain extra attacks.

Shadow Lodge

Back to the original issue, though, about threatening with a weapon one isn't, technically, "wielding." If one is wielding a two-handed polearm such as a glaive, one threatens at Reach. Does one also threaten adjacent with armor spikes or a spiked gauntlet?

Scarab Sages

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As you can let go of a weapon as a free action to make a spiked gauntlet attack, and a free action can only be taken on your turn ... I believe the answer is no. The character has to decide what his hands will be weilding on his turn for AoO when it is not his turn.

Can't Armor Spikes only be used in a grapple?

Shadow Lodge

Citation for the free actions only being taken on your turn except for speech? I've seen references to that, but no quotes or links to the actual Dev ruling/opinion.

Scarab Sages

CRB p.181 wrote:
Free Action: Free actions consume a very small amount of time and effort. You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally.

This limits taking free actions when it is not your turn to when you also take an immediate action.

Free actions (except for Speak) as listed in the CRB can all be viewed as ceasing an activity.
Drop prone - fall over due to not maintaining balance.
Drop an item - failing to maintain one's grip on an item.
Cease concentrating on a spell - cease concent... ooh, is that a copper?

Other free actions can be viewed as part of a larger activity.
Quickdraw - part of an attack action
Rapid Reload - part of an attack action

Speech being taken outside of a character's turn ... like any written rule would stop that!!!

Scarab Sages

That was the best citation on Free Actions I could find in the CRB. You bring up a valid point - is this rules assumptions, possibly from previous editions, being carried unwittingly into Pathfinder?

Shadow Lodge

Except there is nothing that specifically says that you can only take free actions on your turn. Example: By your interpretation, if you're casting a spell with a 1 round casting time, you can take any free actions you want at any point during the round between the beginning of the turn you start casting and the beginning of your next turn. That seems a silly interpretation, although it is strictly accurate by what you say.

No, what I've been hearing is more that there's a Dev ruling or statement to the effect of free actions only happening on your turn, excepting speech. I just haven't seen the relevant quotation/link. Have you seen it?

And speech is also ceasing an activity: ceasing to remain silent. :P

Sczarni

Quote:

Threatened Squares: You threaten all squares into which you can make a melee attack, even when it is not your turn. Generally, that means everything in all squares adjacent to your space (including diagonally). An enemy that takes certain actions while in a threatened square provokes an attack of opportunity from you. If you're unarmed, you don't normally threaten any squares and thus can't make attacks of opportunity.

Reach Weapons: Most creatures of Medium or smaller size have a reach of only 5 feet. This means that they can make melee attacks only against creatures up to 5 feet (1 square) away. However, Small and Medium creatures wielding reach weapons threaten more squares than a typical creature. In addition, most creatures larger than Medium have a natural reach of 10 feet or more.

You could chose to attack adjacent with your armor spikes, or attack 10ft away with your glaive etc...

There's no reason to infer from the TWF ruling that being able to use one of two different weapons at different times is somehow the same as that ruling (which was to say you can't TWF while two handing a sword...)

Quote:

Armor Spikes: Can I use two-weapon fighting to make an "off-hand" attack with my armor spikes in the same round I use a two-handed weapon?

No.
Likewise, you couldn't use an armored gauntlet to do so, as you are using both of your hands to wield your two-handed weapon, therefore your off-hand is unavailable to make any attacks.

the keyword is same round.... Once you're done with your two hand fighting and you're waiting on them to go, you are threatening with all your wielded weapons.

So as example, say I attacked with armor spikes rather than my 2handed weapon I am wielding, would you say I don't threaten in that increased reach of the 2hander? The answer is clearly no, of course you threaten, you're wielding it.

The answer is simple then, are you able to make attacks with it or not, if yes you threaten and provoke with it baring exceptions like ranged weapons (without certain feats) and whips (without certain feats)


Free Actions wrote:
Free Action: Free actions consume a very small amount of time and effort. You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally. However, there are reasonable limits on what you can really do for free, as decided by the GM.

I reposted to add that last line, because I think it's important.

In total, what do we have:

-A free action is an action that takes very little time and\or effort to perform
-You can perform multiple free actions
-Generally, free actions are taken at the same time as another action, but that is not always the case (indicated by the word 'normally'
-The limitations on what you can do for free are up to the GM

The only thing that really implies that free actions are restricted to your own turn is the statement about taking them while also taking another action - but the word 'normally' indicates that there can be exceptions; since those exceptions are not detailed, seems to me like this is currently squarely in the realm of Rule 0.

Shadow Lodge

lantzkev wrote:
Quote:

Threatened Squares: You threaten all squares into which you can make a melee attack, even when it is not your turn. Generally, that means everything in all squares adjacent to your space (including diagonally). An enemy that takes certain actions while in a threatened square provokes an attack of opportunity from you. If you're unarmed, you don't normally threaten any squares and thus can't make attacks of opportunity.

Reach Weapons: Most creatures of Medium or smaller size have a reach of only 5 feet. This means that they can make melee attacks only against creatures up to 5 feet (1 square) away. However, Small and Medium creatures wielding reach weapons threaten more squares than a typical creature. In addition, most creatures larger than Medium have a natural reach of 10 feet or more.

You could chose to attack adjacent with your armor spikes, or attack 10ft away with your glaive etc...

There's no reason to infer from the TWF ruling that being able to use one of two different weapons at different times is somehow the same as that ruling (which was to say you can't TWF while two handing a sword...)

Quote:

Armor Spikes: Can I use two-weapon fighting to make an "off-hand" attack with my armor spikes in the same round I use a two-handed weapon?

No.
Likewise, you couldn't use an armored gauntlet to do so, as you are using both of your hands to wield your two-handed weapon, therefore your off-hand is unavailable to make any attacks.

the keyword is same round.... Once you're done with your two hand fighting and you're waiting on them to go, you are threatening with all your wielded weapons.

So as example, say I attacked with armor spikes rather than my 2handed weapon I am wielding, would you say I don't threaten in that increased reach of the 2hander? The answer is clearly no, of course you threaten, you're wielding it.

The answer is simple then, are you able to make attacks with it or not, if yes you threaten and provoke with it baring exceptions like ranged weapons...

Except according to your keyword, your interpretation is incorrect. Same Round means the full round, not just your turn. And you can't wield both a spiked gauntlet and a two-handed polearm. You need two hands to wield one, and one hand to wield the other. If you are wielding one, you are by definition not wielding the other unless you have more than two hands. Armor spikes have been interpreted to work the same way. Since you can't attack with either one and satisfy the necessary conditions to attack with the other, you can't attack with both, thus you can't threaten with both. At least, using your keyword.

Scarab Sages

My gaming group has always played under the assumption you can only take free actions on your turn (since the inception of free actions in 3rd ed.). I don't know where my 3rd ed. rulebooks have got to otherwise I'd look to see if there was any reference of interest in it.

Sczarni

sigh...

Quote:
Armor Spikes: You can have spikes added to your armor, which allow you to deal extra piercing damage (see “spiked armor” on Table: Weapons) on a successful grapple attack. The spikes count as a martial weapon. If you are not proficient with them, you take a –4 penalty on grapple checks when you try to use them. You can also make a regular melee attack (or off-hand attack) with the spikes, and they count as a light weapon in this case. (You can't also make an attack with armor spikes if you have already made an attack with another off-hand weapon, and vice versa.) An enhancement bonus to a suit of armor does not improve the spikes' effectiveness, but the spikes can be made into magic weapons in their own right.

Wielding is not defined in the book, as they take certain liberties in assuming they don't also need to include an english dictionary with each book.

Quote:

Full Definition of WIELD

1
chiefly dialect : to deal successfully with : manage
2
: to handle (as a tool) especially effectively <wield a broom>
3
a : to exert one's authority by means of <wield influence>
b : have at one's command or disposal <did not wield appropriate credentials — G. W. Bonham>

So how do you wield a armor spike, it's clear you can't hold it in your hands without taking your armor off, which seems illogical.

So by virtue of wearing it, you are wielding it.

By virtue of wielding it you are threatening with it.

My keying in on the word round perhaps wasn't best, but neither was it's use in this question (I had also assumed you'd of read the above FAQ 1 and II links above that also clearly establish that when you twf or have any sort of attack mode, that mode ends the second you complete it unless it states otherwise (like combat expertise etc)

Please go back and read FAQ I and FAQ II link Rhatathema posted above and consider the situation, it should resolve its self plainly with the above FAQ you're trying to use to support this unofficial stance.


The Combat Round wrote:
When a character's turn comes up in the initiative sequence, that character performs his entire round's worth of actions. (For exceptions, see Attacks of Opportunity and Special Initiative Actions.)

The rule is essentially that you can't take any actions when it's not your turn, unless stated otherwise.

Attacks of Opportunity wrote:
Threatened Squares: You threaten all squares into which you can make a melee attack, even when it is not your turn.

I don't see the relevance of whether or not you're "wielding" armor spikes. I agree with Lantzkey; If you can attack into a square with armor spikes, you threaten that area. Holding a weapon in two hands doesn't prohibit you from attacking with armor spikes, you just can't use armor spikes when two-weapon fighting with a two-handed weapon (which is a special combat action that normally has nothing to do with attacks of opportunity).

Sczarni

the keyword of round also is not a concrete term, it's a term used to mean several things. In the book it's fairly well used, but in the FAQ and on the boards turn and round are often interchanged with themselves, (and in the cast of this FAQ question, they were indeed interchanged inappropriatly)

Shadow Lodge

Lantzkev, you are correct in that wield is never defined in the book. But you are wrong in assuming that my point is incorrect. Here's my point illustrated in a different way.

Spiked Gauntlet: To use this as a weapon, your hand would need to be free of other obstructions, such as being used to hold a shield or a pack. If it's being used to hold the haft of a weapon, it is currently occupied, and so unavailable for use as a weapon.

Two-handed Polearm: To use this as a weapon, you need to have both hands on it in order to use it in any kind of effective manner, and you need to be in a stance that can use it. You can't attack with a glaive one-handed any more effectively than you can if you have it in both hands and are hogtied.

Spiked Armor: To use this, you need to be able to use a hand (spike on gauntlet), foot (spike boot), elbow (spiked arm piece), knee (spiked leg plate), head (spiked helmet), etc. But you can't make an armor spike attack with just your stomach or your buttocks.

Going off the assumption that you can only take free actions (excepting speech) on your own turn, you have to set your stance (for lack of better phrasing) at the end of your turn. That means that if you are choosing to threaten with your polearm, your hands are occupied and do not threaten independently. If you choose to take a hand off your polearm, you can't wield it effectively and thus can't threaten with it. I did read both FAQs, in fact. The former has no bearing on the question, and the second only applies to actions taken during the character's turn, and means nothing if free actions can't be taken during an opponent's turn.

Edit: My question is really more along the lines of: can you make an attack with armor spikes and a two-handed reach weapon at the same time? I'm inclined to say no, for the same reason that you cannot two-weapon fight with them. Rhatahema, I'm not questioning that if you can make an attack, you threaten. I'm questioning if you can make the attack at all. I don't think that you can make the attack with both of them, and so I don't think that you threaten with both of them.


jlighter wrote:
thenobledrake wrote:
If you can do so, however, the rest of the text makes it very clear that the only situation in which you can benefit from a 2nd weapon (manufactured weapon, anyways) is when taking the two-weapon fighting penalties associated with doing so - which means no combo of two-handed weapon plus armor spikes for extra threatened spaces because you can't two-weapon fight with that pairing of weapons.

There is also the issue, though, on the TWF FAQ, that if you have iterative attacks, you can switch between weapons without any TWF penalty. Fighter 6 has BAB +6/+1. He can, without the TWF feat, wield a longsword/shortsword combo using 1 weapon on each of his iteratives without two-weapon fighting penalties. Citations provided by Rhatahema.

I do disagree with that ruling, though, and house-rule it in my games to the more realistic "penalties apply when fighting with two weapons simultaneously." Having done it in real life, it's bloody difficult coordinating both.

The reason and the rule behind TWF is not to be able to attack with an extra weapon. The penalty is for the extra attack. You can attack with 4 weapons if you can find a way to do it, and it is not intended to give you a penalty.


jlighter wrote:

Except there is nothing that specifically says that you can only take free actions on your turn. Example: By your interpretation, if you're casting a spell with a 1 round casting time, you can take any free actions you want at any point during the round between the beginning of the turn you start casting and the beginning of your next turn. That seems a silly interpretation, although it is strictly accurate by what you say.

No, what I've been hearing is more that there's a Dev ruling or statement to the effect of free actions only happening on your turn, excepting speech. I just haven't seen the relevant quotation/link. Have you seen it?

And speech is also ceasing an activity: ceasing to remain silent. :P

By the rules you can not take actions when it is on your go. Speech is a written exception and so are immediate actions which are specifically called out to be taken when it is not your turn. Without such a clause free actions do not get a pass.

Speak

In general, speaking is a free action that you can perform even when it isn't your turn. Speaking more than a few sentences is generally beyond the limit of a free action.

Also

Immediate Action: An immediate action is very similar to a swift action, but can be performed at any time—even if it's not your turn.

Not that free actions as a whole are not allowed to be done when it is not your turn.


As for the question at hand the rules are silent so it would require an FAQ to give an answer. Other than that we can just debate all day with no definite answer unless a dev has spoken on it already.

Shadow Lodge

wraithstrike wrote:
jlighter wrote:
thenobledrake wrote:
If you can do so, however, the rest of the text makes it very clear that the only situation in which you can benefit from a 2nd weapon (manufactured weapon, anyways) is when taking the two-weapon fighting penalties associated with doing so - which means no combo of two-handed weapon plus armor spikes for extra threatened spaces because you can't two-weapon fight with that pairing of weapons.

There is also the issue, though, on the TWF FAQ, that if you have iterative attacks, you can switch between weapons without any TWF penalty. Fighter 6 has BAB +6/+1. He can, without the TWF feat, wield a longsword/shortsword combo using 1 weapon on each of his iteratives without two-weapon fighting penalties. Citations provided by Rhatahema.

I do disagree with that ruling, though, and house-rule it in my games to the more realistic "penalties apply when fighting with two weapons simultaneously." Having done it in real life, it's bloody difficult coordinating both.

The reason and the rule behind TWF is not to be able to attack with an extra weapon. The penalty is for the extra attack. You can attack with 4 weapons if you can find a way to do it, and it is not intended to give you a penalty.

True. I'm not disagreeing that a Fighter 16 with Quickdraw can, by current RAIBD (Rules As Interpreted By Developers ™), draw a different weapon to use with each iterative attack. By RAIBD, they could use a magic greatsword on the first iterative, a silver one on the second, adamantine on the third, and cold iron on the fourth.

I personally disagree with when that ruling in the first place, and so house-rule it in my own games back to the 3.X interpretation. That isn't the purpose of this thread, though.

The purpose of this thread is to determine if one can threaten with both a two-handed reach weapon and a light/unarmed weapon such as armor spikes or a spiked/gauntlet. My gut says no, because you can't make attacks with one and simultaneously satisfy conditions necessary to make attacks with the other.

I'd like to request that this be the topic discussed, since I don't actually care about the TWF stuff right now.


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jlighter wrote:
Edit: My question is really more along the lines of: can you make an attack with armor spikes and a two-handed reach weapon at the same time? I'm inclined to say no, for the same reason that you cannot two-weapon fight with them. Rhatahema, I'm not questioning that if you can make an attack, you threaten. I'm questioning if you can make the attack at all. I don't think...

The truth (as I see it) is that the Paizo Development Team decided that two-weapon fighting with a two-handed weapon and armor spikes was an overpowered combination, and so they said "No." You can't do that. From all the rules that I'm familiar with, there is no reason you can't except that the FAQ says you can't. So I think the implications you've read into this are going much further than the developers intended. I would instead consider the FAQ ruling an exception to that one specific rule, not something which has a ripple effect on attacks of opportunity.

Shadow Lodge

wraithstrike wrote:
jlighter wrote:

Except there is nothing that specifically says that you can only take free actions on your turn. Example: By your interpretation, if you're casting a spell with a 1 round casting time, you can take any free actions you want at any point during the round between the beginning of the turn you start casting and the beginning of your next turn. That seems a silly interpretation, although it is strictly accurate by what you say.

No, what I've been hearing is more that there's a Dev ruling or statement to the effect of free actions only happening on your turn, excepting speech. I just haven't seen the relevant quotation/link. Have you seen it?

And speech is also ceasing an activity: ceasing to remain silent. :P

By the rules you can not take actions when it is on your go. Speech is a written exception and so are immediate actions which are specifically called out to be taken when it is not your turn. Without such a clause free actions do not get a pass.

Speak

In general, speaking is a free action that you can perform even when it isn't your turn. Speaking more than a few sentences is generally beyond the limit of a free action.

Also

Immediate Action: An immediate action is very similar to a swift action, but can be performed at any time—even if it's not your turn.

Not that free actions as a whole are not allowed to be done when it is not your turn.

Okay. Since this is where we're all going for that data, we'll use this as premise. You can only take free actions on your own turn, excepting speech. Thus, when it is not your turn, you can't take a hand off or put a hand on a weapon. Thus, if both your hands are on your glaive, you can't threaten with your spiked gauntlet because that hand is occupied. Likewise, if you currently have one hand off your glaive because you just punched out the enemy wizard's familiar, you can't threaten with your glaive because you don't have an action to put your hand back on your glaive.

Those are the assumptions I'm working with until I see something that actually convinces me otherwise. Armor spikes have already been ruled to work like spiked gauntlets for this purpose via the Two-Hander TWF debate. If the hand is unavailable, it is unavailable. See Here

I don't see why you would have the hands available not on your turn if you don't have them available during your turn, unless you're spending a specific action (free action) to effectively change stances.


this is a rehashing of the same thread going around before. After all the bitter arguing was over, I'm pretty sure the powers that be defined what you could or couldn't do.

It's a reach weapon. you cannot effectively use it and have your 'convenient' melee weapon ready to attack at the same time. You cannot release it to have a magical extra attack appear out of nowhere.

Personally I only see people trying to cheese the rules here (in this situation presented). They continue arguing because they cannot accept the rejection of those attempts to bend the rules. I wouldn't allow it in PFS, and I wouldn't allow it in a home game because it negates the risk/reward factor that players have to chose in their actions wielding a polearm in combat. If we're just going to flaunt the ties that bind us, why not just prevaricate outright and say you can 'choke up' on the shaft and use it as an axe. better yet, greataxe.

Shadow Lodge

shadowmage75 wrote:

this is a rehashing of the same thread going around before. After all the bitter arguing was over, I'm pretty sure the powers that be defined what you could or couldn't do.

It's a reach weapon. you cannot effectively use it and have your 'convenient' melee weapon ready to attack at the same time. You cannot release it to have a magical extra attack appear out of nowhere.

Pardon me for asking, but would you happen to know where this was stated? I agree with the position, I'd just love to have a citation to show my players.


shadowmage75 wrote:
Personally I only see people trying to cheese the rules here (in this situation presented). They continue arguing because they cannot accept the rejection of those attempts to bend the rules.
Armor Spikes wrote:
The spikes count as a martial weapon... You can also make a regular melee attack (or off-hand attack) with the spikes, and they count as a light weapon in this case. (You can't also make an attack with armor spikes if you have already made an attack with another off-hand weapon, and vice versa.)...

Emphasis mine. It isn't bending the rules to use armor spikes as an off-hand weapon; It's a part of the rules for that weapon. I think it would be an acceptable house-rule that holding a weapon in both hands occupied your "off-hand", but under the current rules I don't believe it does.

Shadow Lodge

Rhatahema wrote:
shadowmage75 wrote:
Personally I only see people trying to cheese the rules here (in this situation presented). They continue arguing because they cannot accept the rejection of those attempts to bend the rules.
Armor Spikes wrote:
The spikes count as a martial weapon... You can also make a regular melee attack (or off-hand attack) with the spikes, and they count as a light weapon in this case. (You can't also make an attack with armor spikes if you have already made an attack with another off-hand weapon, and vice versa.)...
Emphasis mine. It isn't bending the rules to use armor spikes as an off-hand weapon; It's a part of the rules for that weapon.

Never said it was bending the rules. I'm not denying that they are a weapon, or useable as such. The "cheesing" of the rules shadowmage75 refers to is the threatening of reach range and adjacent range, unless I miss my mark.

Rhatahema wrote:
I think it would be an acceptable house-rule that holding a weapon in both hands occupied your "off-hand", but under the current rules I don't believe it does.

Under the current rules for TWF, it does. That's the only place where off hands are actually part of the rules. Link


The term Off-hand attack/weapon is exclusively within the Two Weapon Fighting rules, which don't come into play for this. You are not Two Weapon Fighting. You are using a single weapon at two different points. As said earlier, with a +6/+1 BAB, you can attack with a longsword with the first attack and then attack with a dagger with your second attack. This is essentially the same thing.

The real question is, are you by virtue of wearing armor spikes always considered to be wielding them?

I can't imagine its that difficult to just shoulder into them.


shadowmage75 wrote:
this is a rehashing of the same thread going around before. After all the bitter arguing was over, I'm pretty sure the powers that be defined what you could or couldn't do.

If you're talking about the TWF - no, it isn't really a rehashing at all. The basis behind the ruling on 2H and TWF was the 'metarule' that you weren't intended to get more than 1.5 times your STR bonus on a single 'BAB' attack during your normal turn. AoOs didn't really factor into that discussion, because they don't occur on your 'turn' and so can't violate that metarule.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
jlighter wrote:
So this question was raised recently in a game that I'm running. A new character is coming in, and the player is fairly certain that if a character is using a two-handed reach polearm (such as a glaive) and has armor spikes or a spike gauntlet, he threatens both at reach and adjacent for purposes of Attacks of Opportunity. At present, given what I know of the Two-Hander/Armor Spike ruling, I'm inclined to say no, he has to choose which he threatens with at the end of each turn. Am I wrong on this one, or is my interpretation correct given the present rulings with regards to two-handers and armor spikes?
FAQ wrote:

Two-Handed Weapons: What kind of action is it to remove your hand from a two-handed weapon or re-grab it with both hands?

Both are free actions. For example, a wizard wielding a quarterstaff can let go of the weapon with one hand as a free action, cast a spell as a standard action, and grasp the weapon again with that hand as a free action; this means the wizard is still able to make attacks of opportunity with the weapon (which requires using two hands).

As with any free action, the GM may decide a reasonable limit to how many times per round you can release and re-grasp the weapon (one release and re-grasp per round is fair).

—Pathfinder Design Team, 03/01/13 Back to Top

FAQ wrote:

Armor Spikes: Can I use two-weapon fighting to make an "off-hand" attack with my armor spikes in the same round I use a two-handed weapon?

No.
Likewise, you couldn't use an armored gauntlet to do so, as you are using both of your hands to wield your two-handed weapon, therefore your off-hand is unavailable to make any attacks.

—Pathfinder Design Team, 07/26/13

Unless he can wield his polearm with one hand, he can't use a spiked gauntlet, as his hands are busy wielding the glaive.

Off turn he can't use a free action to let go of the glaive and make an AoO. Free actions can be taken only during your turn (with the exception of speaking). Add that he is not threatening with the spiked gauntlet, so he can't get the AoO even if he is somewhat capable to take the free action off turn.

- * -

The armor spikes part of the question is more tricky. Personally I dislike armor spikes, as they are something that is born from modern fantasy illustrations, not something that was really used in combat.
They are essentially a defensive measure against grappling or natural/unarmed attacks, where the attacker risk to damage himself when attacking.

That said, I think that they can be used for a AoO even if the hands are busy, as you use a different body part.
So armor spikes allow the character to threaten the adjacent squares, while the glaive allow him to threaten at range.

Sczarni

Exactly the point I was making, you're always wielding armor spikes if you are wearing your armor.

Your hands being free or not makes no difference.

It's already been established that when you're attacking you can use any weapon you are wielding. And that you are wielding both armor spikes and your two handed weapon.

When you attack you can choose to attack with any valid attack option. spikes if they are too close for reach, and reach if too far for spikes.

SKR explaining BAB:
Quote:

Multiple Weapons, Extra Attacks, and Two-Weapon Fighting: If I have extra attacks from a high BAB, can I make attacks with different weapons and not incur a two-weapon fighting penalty?

Yes. Basically, you only incur TWF penalties if you are trying to get an extra attack per round.
Let's assume you're a 6th-level fighter (BAB +6/+1) holding a longsword in one hand and a light mace in the other. Your possible full attack combinations without using two-weapon fighting are:
(A) longsword at +6, longsword +1
(B) mace +6, mace +1
(C) longsword +6, mace +1
(D) mace +6, longsword +1
All of these combinations result in you making exactly two attacks, one at +6 and one at +1. You're not getting any extra attacks, therefore you're not using the two-weapon fighting rule, and therefore you're not taking any two-weapon fighting penalties.
If you have Quick Draw, you could even start the round wielding only one weapon, make your main attack with it, draw the second weapon as a free action after your first attack, and use that second weapon to make your iterative attack (an "iterative attack" is an informal term meaning "extra attacks you get from having a high BAB"). As long as you're properly using the BAB values for your iterative attacks, and as long as you're not exceeding the number of attacks per round granted by your BAB, you are not considered to be using two-weapon fighting, and therefore do not take any of the penalties for two-weapon fighting.
The two-weapon fighting option in the Core Rulebook specifically refers to getting an extra attack for using a second weapon in your offhand. In the above four examples, there is no extra attack, therefore you're not using two-weapon fighting.
Using the longsword/mace example, if you use two-weapon fighting you actually have fewer options than if you aren't. Your options are (ignoring the primary/off hand penalties):
(A') primary longsword at +6, primary longsword at +1, off hand mace at +6
(B') primary mace at +6, primary mace at +1, off hand longsword at +6
In other words, once you decide you're using two-weapon fighting to get that extra attack on your turn (which you have to decide before you take any attacks on your turn), that decision locks you in to the format of "my primary weapon gets my main attack and my iterative attack, and my off hand weapon only gets the extra attack, and I apply two-weapon fighting penalties."

—Sean K Reynolds, 11/04/11

OK so lets keep the above in mind and the fact that you can attack as many targets as you have attack and reach for.

Say I've got a dwarf holding a reach weapon and armor spikes and he's lvl 6.

He spends his +6 attack attacking a kobold 10ft infront and spends his +1 attack hitting with his armor spikes the guy to his left.

Are you going to say he cannot AoO with spikes and his polearm?

combat targets:
You do not need to specify the targets of your attacks ahead of time. You can see how the earlier attacks turn out before assigning the later ones.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
jlighter wrote:

Except there is nothing that specifically says that you can only take free actions on your turn. Example: By your interpretation, if you're casting a spell with a 1 round casting time, you can take any free actions you want at any point during the round between the beginning of the turn you start casting and the beginning of your next turn. That seems a silly interpretation, although it is strictly accurate by what you say.

No, what I've been hearing is more that there's a Dev ruling or statement to the effect of free actions only happening on your turn, excepting speech. I just haven't seen the relevant quotation/link. Have you seen it?

And speech is also ceasing an activity: ceasing to remain silent. :P

PRD wrote:

Action Types

...
In a normal round, you can perform a standard action and a move action, or you can perform a full-round action. You can also perform one swift action and one or more free actions. You can always take a move action in place of a standard action.

You can perform actions only during your round.

You need a specific exception to be able to perform actions outside your turn.
Those exceptions are:
- speaking free action
- immediate actions.

Edit:

Xaratherus wrote:


So it's safer to say that the rules indicate you can only take free actions on your turn unless you have an ability, feat, or rule that explicitly states otherwise.

Yes, I should have specified that, but I was lazy. (and was punished as the forum ate my first edit).

So, here we are:
- a specific feat, ability or other specific rule allow you to take a free action outside your turn.

Sczarni

you mean turn right? round is a reference to a full initative pass =D (poking fun because of other people nitpicking over round or turn)


Diego Rossi wrote:
jlighter wrote:

Except there is nothing that specifically says that you can only take free actions on your turn. Example: By your interpretation, if you're casting a spell with a 1 round casting time, you can take any free actions you want at any point during the round between the beginning of the turn you start casting and the beginning of your next turn. That seems a silly interpretation, although it is strictly accurate by what you say.

No, what I've been hearing is more that there's a Dev ruling or statement to the effect of free actions only happening on your turn, excepting speech. I just haven't seen the relevant quotation/link. Have you seen it?

And speech is also ceasing an activity: ceasing to remain silent. :P

PRD wrote:

Action Types

...
In a normal round, you can perform a standard action and a move action, or you can perform a full-round action. You can also perform one swift action and one or more free actions. You can always take a move action in place of a standard action.

You can perform actions only during your round.

You need a specific exception to be able to perform actions outside your turn.
Those exceptions are:
- speaking free action
- immediate actions.

Erm... or drawing ammunition to take an AoO, assuming that you have Snap Shot. Which, despite the design team's wish to eventually not be a free action at all (drawing ammo, I mean) is still currently a free action by RAW.

So it's safer to say that the rules indicate you can only take free actions on your turn unless you have an ability, feat, or rule that explicitly states otherwise.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
lantzkev wrote:
you mean turn right? round is a reference to a full initative pass =D (poking fun because of other people nitpicking over round or turn)

I commented before reading that nitpicking, but here we are:

PRD wrote:
Each round's activity begins with the character with the highest initiative result and then proceeds in order. When a character's turn comes up in the initiative sequence, that character performs his entire round's worth of actions. (For exceptions, see Attacks of Opportunity and Special Initiative Actions.)

Squished the nitpickers.

Sczarni

Diego Rossi wrote:
lantzkev wrote:
you mean turn right? round is a reference to a full initative pass =D (poking fun because of other people nitpicking over round or turn)

I commented before reading that nitpicking, but here we are:

PRD wrote:
Each round's activity begins with the character with the highest initiative result and then proceeds in order. When a character's turn comes up in the initiative sequence, that character performs his entire round's worth of actions. (For exceptions, see Attacks of Opportunity and Special Initiative Actions.)
Squished the nitpickers.

and now you see the problem...

not squished!:

In getting started we have some terms defined for us
Quote:
Round: Combat is measured in rounds. During an individual round, all creatures have a chance to take a turn to act, in order of initiative. A round represents 6 seconds in the game world.
Quote:
Turn: In a round, a creature receives one turn, during which it can perform a wide variety of actions. Generally in the course of one turn, a character can perform one standard action, one move action, one swift action, and a number of free actions. Less-common combinations of actions are permissible as well, see Combat for more details.

Lol, and this is a perfect example of why we can't have nice things.... or why you can't use language precisely in this game and must look at intent of what is written often.

Sczarni

and now you see the problem...

not squished!:

In getting started we have some terms defined for us
Quote:
Round: Combat is measured in rounds. During an individual round, all creatures have a chance to take a turn to act, in order of initiative. A round represents 6 seconds in the game world.
Quote:
Turn: In a round, a creature receives one turn, during which it can perform a wide variety of actions. Generally in the course of one turn, a character can perform one standard action, one move action, one swift action, and a number of free actions. Less-common combinations of actions are permissible as well, see Combat for more details.

Lol, and this is a perfect example of why we can't have nice things.... or why you can't use language precisely in this game and must look at intent of what is written often.


I'm no expert, but...

Melee attack is listed as a standard action in the "Actions in Combat" table.

PRD wrote:
An attack of opportunity is a single melee attack...
PRD wrote:
Free actions consume a very small amount of time and effort. You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally. However, there are reasonable limits on what you can really do for free, as decided by the GM.

That would lead me to believe that you can use a free action as part of your attack of opportunity to adjust your grip and stance because an attack of opportunity is an action.

That with the fact that spiked armor is always being "wielded" and you can easily shoulder check someone moving past you, kick at a spell casters shin, etc. I would allow it if I was the DM.


PoisonToast wrote:

I'm no expert, but...

Melee attack is listed as a standard action in the "Actions in Combat" table.

PRD wrote:
An attack of opportunity is a single melee attack...
PRD wrote:
Free actions consume a very small amount of time and effort. You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally. However, there are reasonable limits on what you can really do for free, as decided by the GM.

That would lead me to believe that you can use a free action as part of your attack of opportunity to adjust your grip and stance because an attack of opportunity is an action.

That with the fact that spiked armor is always being "wielded" and you can easily shoulder check someone moving past you, kick at a spell casters shin, etc. I would allow it if I was the DM.

Melee Attack is one of the many choices you have for Standard Actions - that does not make all melee attacks Standard Actions.

Similar to how some, but not all, rectangles are squares - an attack of opportunity is a melee attack (rectangle), but it is not a Melee Attack Standard Action (square).


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

You can take a free action at any time you can take any other kind of action. Including AoO. If not, then a Zen Archer could not make Attacks of Opportunity with a bow, which they can (once they get that ability). So the free action is moot if you're taking an AoO.

The only time the armor spikes/two-handed weapon comes into play is when you are two-weapon fighting. Done. End of discussion. Anything else is a house rule. At all other times, you threaten with any weapon you can make a legal attack with if you were taking a single attack action.

Polearm, Spiked Gauntlet, Armor Spikes -> You can take an AoO with the polearm because you threaten with it. You can't with the spiked gauntlet because you are threatening with the polearm (meaning they are not valid for attacks at this time due to already being used to hold the polearm). Note that while you can take a free action anytime you can have an action, this must be done as part of the action, not to qualify you for the action. The armor spikes, however, do not require a free action to 'ready' for an attack, and are therefore valid for AoO.

The same would apply to a monk, or anyone with Improved Unarmed Strike, and a reach weapon.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
PoisonToast wrote:

I'm no expert, but...

Melee attack is listed as a standard action in the "Actions in Combat" table.

PRD wrote:
An attack of opportunity is a single melee attack...
PRD wrote:
Free actions consume a very small amount of time and effort. You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally. However, there are reasonable limits on what you can really do for free, as decided by the GM.

That would lead me to believe that you can use a free action as part of your attack of opportunity to adjust your grip and stance because an attack of opportunity is an action.

That with the fact that spiked armor is always being "wielded" and you can easily shoulder check someone moving past you, kick at a spell casters shin, etc. I would allow it if I was the DM.

No, you have to threaten with the weapon to take the AoO. If you don't threaten with the weapon (spiked gauntlet while wielding a two-handed weapon for example), you don't threaten, and you don't get an AoO, and you don't get to take free actions to qualify for the AoO.

On the other hand, armor spikes work fine for this. They are available to attack despite the arms being taken up.

In other words, on your action, with a BAB of +6, you could make a polearm attack followed by an armor spike attack legally, with your two iterative attacks, and not requiring a free action. This means you can AoO with both weapons.

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