Finessing a Quarterstaff?


Rules Questions

Grand Lodge

Is there any way (trait, feat, class ability, etc) to finesse a quarterstaff. I have countless builds that revolve around a finesse quarterstaff but to my knowledge it is impossible. Can someone please prove me wrong.


Join the Katana crowd but feel sligthly left out as they can have the candy that you cannot.
In other words, you need your GMs help to make this work.


I don't see any way within the rules. If I were creating my own d20 game I'd use DEX instead of STR for melee attacks as the standard, but that's not the way PF does it.

Grand Lodge

That's sad. I know this next question is in the HB department but would an equipment trait allowing a quarterstaff to be finessed imbalanced?


I think i would make it a feat but i would mostlikely make it a bo staff instead and then include it in the emotiv proffodbold of that one.
But generally i like big weapon finnessed as little as i would like a str to Dodge AC feat.


London Duke wrote:
That's sad. I know this next question is in the HB department but would an equipment trait allowing a quarterstaff to be finessed imbalanced?

If there's a feat that lets you finesse a scimitar and use your Dex to damage, one that makes a quarterstaff finessable is hardly unbalanced, imo.

Grand Lodge

I understand not liking 2handed weapons being finessed but I feel that a quarterstaff is a different animal. All over fantasy and real martial arts, quarterstaff/bostaffs are used by incredibly dexterous individuals with amazing results.


Alternatively, just giving the quarterstaff the finesse quality should make it a martial weapon, if your GM is into home made weapons.

Grand Lodge

The reason I asked about an equipment trait allowing a quarterstaff to be finessed is that it would still require a character to take weapon finesse. I felt that was slightly more balanced.

but that is neither here nor there.

So the fact is that there is no way to have a finessable quarterstaff.

Would magic item creation be a possible solution? The Blade of the Sword-Saint is a katana yet it works with Furry of Blows.

The Exchange

London Duke wrote:
I understand not liking 2handed weapons being finessed but I feel that a quarterstaff is a different animal. All over fantasy and real martial arts, quarterstaff/bostaffs are used by incredibly dexterous individuals with amazing results.

it really isn't a 2 handed weapon in the traditional sense, double weapons can be as fast if not faster than many of the weapons that are finesse-able

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Well, nab Agile Maneuvers, and focus on Combat Maneuvers utilizing the Quarterstaff.

Grand Lodge

blackbloodtroll wrote:
Well, nab Agile Maneuvers, and focus on Combat Maneuvers utilizing the Quarterstaff.

So just forget about attacking at all with it and just do combat maneuvers?


London Duke wrote:
I understand not liking 2handed weapons being finessed but I feel that a quarterstaff is a different animal. All over fantasy and real martial arts, quarterstaff/bostaffs are used by incredibly dexterous individuals with amazing results.

But in this game hitting is also beating the armor and every fast moving figther will tell you that more strength is gonna make there blogs count for more.

If we want dex to hit a new definition of how armor works will be the natural step.
Someone with a mediocre strength can still be a good figther with a staff he just need better skills.
In the Real World the highest str is not nessesarely on the guy most driven to be the best.
But in the game where you can Pick your stats that will often be the case.
If a player came to me with a wish for finessing a staff i would talk with about his wishes and we would make a house rule that helped him get the char he wanted.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
London Duke wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:
Well, nab Agile Maneuvers, and focus on Combat Maneuvers utilizing the Quarterstaff.
So just forget about attacking at all with it and just do combat maneuvers?

If you want to focus on dexterity.

Put a little into strength, for damage, and the penalties you put upon them with maneuvers, will allow you to hit easier.


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I don't think there's anything official in the rules. You're into House Rule territory. That said, I implemented this feat in my own games:

Staff Fighter (Combat)
Your skill with a simple staff allows you to make a flurry of agile strikes.
Prerequisites: Weapon Focus: Quarterstaff
Benefit: You can apply the effects of Weapon Finesse when using a quarterstaff. In addition, when using a quarterstaff as a double-weapon, you can fight as if you possess the Two-Weapon Fighting feat.


blackbloodtroll wrote:
London Duke wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:
Well, nab Agile Maneuvers, and focus on Combat Maneuvers utilizing the Quarterstaff.
So just forget about attacking at all with it and just do combat maneuvers?

If you want to focus on dexterity.

Put a little into strength, for damage, and the penalties you put upon them with maneuvers, will allow you to hit easier.

This would give a good translation of the skill full warrior with his staff.


Cap. Darling wrote:
London Duke wrote:
I understand not liking 2handed weapons being finessed but I feel that a quarterstaff is a different animal. All over fantasy and real martial arts, quarterstaff/bostaffs are used by incredibly dexterous individuals with amazing results.
But in this game hitting is also beating the armor and every fast moving figther will tell you that more strength is gonna make there blogs count for more.

This is mostly an issue with the game combining making contact and dealing damage into one pool (HP).

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Notice something about those Staff fighters?

They are ripped.

Many times, it is lean muscle. Like Bruce Lee.

What represents that?

Strength.


Homebrewed, I know, but I added a trait to the Darkwood and Mithral materials in my games that weapons crafted from them could be finessed. What's the point in halving a weapon's weight otherwise?


Andrew R wrote:
London Duke wrote:
I understand not liking 2handed weapons being finessed but I feel that a quarterstaff is a different animal. All over fantasy and real martial arts, quarterstaff/bostaffs are used by incredibly dexterous individuals with amazing results.
it really isn't a 2 handed weapon in the traditional sense, double weapons can be as fast if not faster than many of the weapons that are finesse-able

The problem here is that double weapons are a different kind of animal BECAUSE they can also be treated as 2 handed weapons.

CRB wrote:
Double Weapons: A character can fight with both ends of a double weapon as if fighting with two weapons, but he incurs all the normal attack penalties associated with two-weapon combat, just as though the character were wielding a one-handed weapon and a light weapon. The character can also choose to use a double weapon two-handed, attacking with only one end of it. A creature wielding a double weapon in one hand can't use it as a double weapon—only one end of the weapon can be used in any given round

So you can go between using it as 2 weapons for TWF and 1 big weapon for standard action attacks. That is a major thing, since it solves one of the core problems of TWF- what to do when you can't full attack. By all rights, this would put it somewhat on par with the Elven Curved Blade (trading in high crits for the ability to TWF)

In comparison, dervish dance is closer to balanced. This is because, no matter what, you are working with 1x your attack stat and 1x your power attack. Outside of the new swashbuckler class, no one really can make a one weapon/one handed style 'optimized'. Sure, you have less stats to worry about, but it is still never the same as a barbarian 2handing that same scimitar. Someone with a TWF build can at least take advantage of a ton of static bonus damage when they full attack.


I agree with blackbloodtroll this time around, I've never seen a dexterous staff fighter that wasn't Ripped as ol hell. They are certainly not lacking in the strength department. They have a union between strength and dex. Perhaps focusing on that would give you a more unique approach.


Talcrion wrote:
I agree with blackbloodtroll this time around, I've never seen a dexterous staff fighter that wasn't Ripped as ol hell. They are certainly not lacking in the strength department. They have a union between strength and dex. Perhaps focusing on that would give you a more unique approach.

16 STR/16 DEX/ 14 CON/ 10 Everything else is not exactly hard to pull off on a 20 point buy using just about any race (this all assumes you are playing a martial class that isn't trying to get much of a casting stat). Raise dex to 17 at level 4 with the ability score increase and you can qualify for all the 'good' TWF feats without any problems. From there, just pump strength like anyone else would.

Not entirely seeing why people are so obsessed with purely dex based TWF. I guess it is just a desire to see 18's and 20's and a mistaken belief that rogues somehow need those extra couple points in stealth and disable device and reflex saves?


It's a 'coolness' thing with my group. We just prefer nimble DEX-characters over hulking smashers.

Grand Lodge

My main attraction was not a rogue but a Card Caster/Staff magus.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
London Duke wrote:
My main attraction was not a rogue but a Card Caster/Staff magus.

Gambit.

Grand Lodge

Yep.


You can do it, but it's expensive. You need Weapon Versatility to treat it as a piercing weapon and Quarterstaff Master to treat the staff as a one-handed weapon. Then a Swashbuckler can do it.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

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Keep in mind, too, that most of the 'quarterstaff' stuff you're seeing in movies is actually "Performance (weapon display)".

Classic quarterstaff work, like any bludgeoning weapon, relies to a major degree on excellent upper-body strength. The whole thing with spin moves and stuff is peacock fluff, showy stuff you wouldn't do in a real fight because it wastes motion and leaves you open.

When you see excellent staff work, in real combat situations, what you're actually seeing is "Higher BAB". You can be of average dexterity, and high BAB is going to make your weapons HUM, because you know how to use them and get them to hit things.

Also, remember that while a staff is a decent dueling weapon on an open field against a single opponent, mainly because of its reach and the fact it has two ends, there's a reason that no army in its right mind took staves onto a battlefield. Against an armored foe, or in constricted conditions, staves SUCK.

Staves are simple weapons, because spears and maces do their job better.

Just my 2p. Finessing a staff just strikes me as very unrealistic from a practical bent.

But Arachnofiend showed you how to do it, if you want to.

==Aelryinth


Arachnofiend wrote:
You can do it, but it's expensive. You need Weapon Versatility to treat it as a piercing weapon and Quarterstaff Master to treat the staff as a one-handed weapon. Then a Swashbuckler can do it.

Good to see a champ at work. Second level spell min/ level a feat and a level dip and you are set:)

But versatile weapon may not be enough since it says "The affected weapon still inflicts damage of its normal type"


Not Versatile Weapon, Weapon Versatility. It's a feat, not a spell.

You'd probably have to tell your GM you sharpened the end of your staff for him to not call BS on the feat but it absolutely works per RAW.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Or, you know, you could just call it a spear and use it like a quarterstaff, which is actually exactly what using a bo staff is preparing you for.

==Aelryinth


Arachnofiend wrote:

Not Versatile Weapon, Weapon Versatility. It's a feat, not a spell.

You'd probably have to tell your GM you sharpened the end of your staff for him to not call BS on the feat but it absolutely works per RAW.

Ohh sorry it was late here. And the cat ate my homework.

That is my story and i am gonna stick to it.
Edit: and what a great feat: if my magus hadent retrained to diviner i would have begged the GM to let me have it.


Isn't the staff magus make it one-handed usable?


Well, Quarterstaff Master does, which is a bonus feat from Staff-Magus.

Actually, this also goes back to another thread that questions if damage type and weapon type are the same.

For example, Slashing Grace lets you consider a one handed slashing weapon as a one handed piercing weapon for class features. But it doesn't actually change the damage type to piercing.

Weapon Versatility changes the damage type you are dealing, but does it change the weapon type?

If damage type = weapon type, then yes, causing it to deal piercing damage makes it a "piercing weapon."

If not, then despite dealing piercing damage, the staff is still not a "piercing weapon."

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

incorrect. The feat is actually superior.

This is because a weapon dealing piercing damage IS a piercing weapon, by definition.
But it can also deal actual piercing damage and bypass, uh, dr x/piercing. Which so many creatures have. The point is that you have to use it to do piercing damage instead of its normal blunt damage to get the benefits.

The scimitar is treated as a piercing weapon, but still does slashing damage. So it can't bypass dr x/piercing. Which so many creatures have.

==Aelryinth


Aelryinth wrote:

incorrect. The feat is actually superior.

This is because a weapon dealing piercing damage IS a piercing weapon, by definition.
But it can also deal actual piercing damage and bypass, uh, dr x/piercing. Which so many creatures have. The point is that you have to use it to do piercing damage instead of its normal blunt damage to get the benefits.

The scimitar is treated as a piercing weapon, but still does slashing damage. So it can't bypass dr x/piercing. Which so many creatures have.

==Aelryinth

You realize you are saying I am incorrect when I didn't take a position, only posed the question and provided both sides.

As for what is correct, the thread linked has extensive arguments for why it would or would not make sense for damage=weapon type.

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