Wielding a whip two-handed for 1.5 Str damage?


Rules Questions


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

The whip is a one-handed weapon.
I read the rules on one-handed weapons and it says you can grip them with two hands to get strength and a half for damage.
Nothing in the description of the whip says you can't.
So as strange as it seems, it appears it's legal to do so.
WeIrD!
Am I missing something?


3 people marked this as a favorite.

It is in the description of the weapon. Follow the link and read the last line of the description.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Gisher is correct that Ultimate Equipment says Whips cannot be used two-handed, but PapaZorro is also correct that the Core Rulebook does NOT specify that. This leads to a fairly amusing situation in PFS, where you are only allowed to use rules that you have the books for. Therefore, if you showed up to play at a PFS table that didn't have access to Ultimate Equipment (the GM will almost definitely have it, though, so you're probably out of luck), you could indeed insist on your GM allowing you to use your whip two-handed.


Cuuniyevo wrote:
Gisher is correct that Ultimate Equipment says Whips cannot be used two-handed, but PapaZorro is also correct that the Core Rulebook does NOT specify that. This leads to a fairly amusing situation in PFS, where you are only allowed to use rules that you have the books for. Therefore, if you showed up to play at a PFS table that didn't have access to Ultimate Equipment (the GM will almost definitely have it, though, so you're probably out of luck), you could indeed insist on your GM allowing you to use your whip two-handed.

That is interesting. I just searched the PRD for the weapon description, and that was the one that came up. I didn't search each book separately. Usually new books expand player options, but I guess it is the opposite in this case. So in regular PFS it would most likely not be allowed, but in the new CORE PFS it would. That is weird.

Even if you can't add 1.5 STR by using two-hands, I'm not sure whether or not Power Attack would give you the -1/+3 exchange if you used two hands. Does anyone have an answer to that?


All Power Attack requires in this case is a one-handed weapon wielded with two hands. Case in point: a Monk making a Flurry with a weapon in two hands only gets 1x Str to damage because of Flurry rules, but still gets -1/+3 Power Attack ratio. Arguably, this also applies to the Rapier; you can't two-hand it for added Str to damage, but it doesn't say you can't two-hand it for increased Power Attack.


Cuuniyevo wrote:
Gisher is correct that Ultimate Equipment says Whips cannot be used two-handed, but PapaZorro is also correct that the Core Rulebook does NOT specify that. This leads to a fairly amusing situation in PFS, where you are only allowed to use rules that you have the books for. Therefore, if you showed up to play at a PFS table that didn't have access to Ultimate Equipment (the GM will almost definitely have it, though, so you're probably out of luck), you could indeed insist on your GM allowing you to use your whip two-handed.

So apparently in PFS Core it is acceptable to two-hand a whip!


Kazaan wrote:
All Power Attack requires in this case is a one-handed weapon wielded with two hands. Case in point: a Monk making a Flurry with a weapon in two hands only gets 1x Str to damage because of Flurry rules, but still gets -1/+3 Power Attack ratio. Arguably, this also applies to the Rapier; you can't two-hand it for added Str to damage, but it doesn't say you can't two-hand it for increased Power Attack.

The monk flurry is a great example. Being able to get the full benefit of power attack with a rapier or whip is a nice option.


Flaming Duck wrote:
Cuuniyevo wrote:
Gisher is correct that Ultimate Equipment says Whips cannot be used two-handed, but PapaZorro is also correct that the Core Rulebook does NOT specify that. This leads to a fairly amusing situation in PFS, where you are only allowed to use rules that you have the books for. Therefore, if you showed up to play at a PFS table that didn't have access to Ultimate Equipment (the GM will almost definitely have it, though, so you're probably out of luck), you could indeed insist on your GM allowing you to use your whip two-handed.
So apparently in PFS Core it is acceptable to two-hand a whip!

Yes, but without the Deadly enhancement or the Whip Mastery feats, the whip wouldn't cause any damage to most opponents. Even when it did, all the damage would be non-lethal.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

You can two-hand a Scorpion Whip.

Well, maybe. Nobody knows how it works!


blackbloodtroll wrote:

You can two-hand a Scorpion Whip.

Well, maybe. Nobody knows how it works!

I didn't think light weapons could be used 2-handed.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Is it a light weapon?

Hah! Depends on which source.

Sometimes it is Light, and sometimes it's one-handed.

See here, for the latest of hundreds of threads discussing this weapon.


blackbloodtroll wrote:

Is it a light weapon?

Hah! Depends on which source.

Sometimes it is Light, and sometimes it's one-handed.

See here, for the latest of hundreds of threads discussing this weapon.

Well, that's true. :)

I was using the version from Ultimate Equipment, but I suppose that the whole "use it as a whip" thing could be construed as changing it to a one-handed weapon.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

It is listed as an one-handed weapon in some sources.


intentional mini-necro

Can someone explain to me why the rule says whips can't get x1.5 Str for two-handing, even though they get the normal x1 Str for one-handing? It seems to me that it should get either both or neither.


Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:

intentional mini-necro

Can someone explain to me why the rule says whips can't get x1.5 Str for two-handing, even though they get the normal x1 Str for one-handing? It seems to me that it should get either both or neither.

It doesn't get 1.5x Strength because the Devs don't think it should. There should be no other reasoning besides that.

If you want a thematic reasoning, I'd wager that it's already traveling at maximum velocity with a single hand, and that throwing two hands onto it would not make it go any faster.

But again, the Devs saying no, because it doesn't fit their design values, is all the reason needed. Feel free to houserule it, though.

Dark Archive

Cuuniyevo wrote:
Gisher is correct that Ultimate Equipment says Whips cannot be used two-handed, but PapaZorro is also correct that the Core Rulebook does NOT specify that. This leads to a fairly amusing situation in PFS, where you are only allowed to use rules that you have the books for. Therefore, if you showed up to play at a PFS table that didn't have access to Ultimate Equipment (the GM will almost definitely have it, though, so you're probably out of luck), you could indeed insist on your GM allowing you to use your whip two-handed.

Then there's the corner case of an ectoplasmist spiritualist. They can manifest a 2 handed ectoplasmic lash that deals 2d6 damage and does get 1.5x str bonus.

Now I don't know about anyone else, but my understanding is that a lash is a type of whip. Thus this is a 2 handed whip that gets 1.5x str bonus.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

If you've ever swung a whip, and I have, two handed would be really awkward and darn near impossible to do. I still have the bullwhip my dad used on the farm and I even tried it after reading the OP. It's a handy way to lose an eye.


DungeonmasterCal wrote:
If you've ever swung a whip, and I have, two handed would be really awkward and darn near impossible to do. I still have the bullwhip my dad used on the farm and I even tried it after reading the OP. It's a handy way to lose an eye.

Would two-handing a whip one size category too big for you (so you'd have to two-hand it) be equally problematic? Or would the much bigger handle help?


I doubt it, really. Using a whip properly makes it a DEX based weapon. It doesn't really matter how strong you are as long as you can hit the target.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

For Core PFS, the superseding book still updates the rules for the Whip, so you can not use it Two handed because of the Ultimate Equipment, even if the Core Rulebook has that sentence omitted.

Yeah, you can't take OoA's with it, you take an AoO if you use it adjacent to a foe, and can't go past armor while only doing Non Lethal damage to those you can hurt.

Sigh...

About using an oversized one, using that one Two Handed is the same as the larger creature using it one handed. Taking the penalty and (most likely) not getting the 1.5 str bonus should be enough to effect a way to two handed the overcumbersome larger weapon.

I say not getting 1.5 str because of how the whip is wielded, to snap and sting a target instead of being able to hit outright (The reason for Non Lethal Damage).

Now, if you can get the Whip Feats, by level 20 you should be able to do fantastic things.


Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
DungeonmasterCal wrote:
If you've ever swung a whip, and I have, two handed would be really awkward and darn near impossible to do. I still have the bullwhip my dad used on the farm and I even tried it after reading the OP. It's a handy way to lose an eye.
Would two-handing a whip one size category too big for you (so you'd have to two-hand it) be equally problematic? Or would the much bigger handle help?

It'd be worse. Hope you enjoy that -2 wrong-size penalty. Plus, I'd enforce some kind of 'you look like a doofus' penalty if you're trying to two-hand a whip.

As far as Power Attack? I actually thought it worked based on whether you could get the 1.5 x STR bonus or not. Thus, you can two-hand that rapier, but it's still only getting you a -1/+2 from Power Attack (and you still look like a doofus).


DungeonmasterCal wrote:
I doubt it, really. Using a whip properly makes it a DEX based weapon. It doesn't really matter how strong you are as long as you can hit the target.

See, the problem with that is it implies the whip shouldn't get 1x Str to damage in the first place. And it should need Weapon Finesse to work at all. But it does (the former) and it doesn't (the latter). So....

Given the non-realistic but RAW application of Str to one-handing the whip, why shouldn't it get 1.5x for two-handing like other one-handed weapons do?


Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
DungeonmasterCal wrote:
I doubt it, really. Using a whip properly makes it a DEX based weapon. It doesn't really matter how strong you are as long as you can hit the target.

See, the problem with that is it implies the whip shouldn't get 1x Str to damage in the first place. And it should need Weapon Finesse to work at all. But it does (the former) and it doesn't (the latter). So....

Given the non-realistic but RAW application of Str to one-handing the whip, why shouldn't it get 1.5x for two-handing like other one-handed weapons do?

Well, even when finessing a weapon, damage is based on Strength unless you're doing one of these Dex-to-damage things the kids these days come up with.

As far as a reason why? Well, as UE comes later, it's more recent, and it said:

Ultimate Equipment wrote:
You can't wield a whip in two hands in order to apply 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier to damage rolls.


Qaianna wrote:

As far as a reason why? Well, as UE comes later, it's more recent, and it said:

Ultimate Equipment wrote:
You can't wield a whip in two hands in order to apply 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier to damage rolls.

Yes, of course. But why does it say that? How does this make sense? I don't like to ascribe rules to developer whimsy.


Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
Qaianna wrote:

As far as a reason why? Well, as UE comes later, it's more recent, and it said:

Ultimate Equipment wrote:
You can't wield a whip in two hands in order to apply 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier to damage rolls.
Yes, of course. But why does it say that? How does this make sense? I don't like to ascribe rules to developer whimsy.

That is truly unfortunate for you.


Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
Qaianna wrote:

As far as a reason why? Well, as UE comes later, it's more recent, and it said:

Ultimate Equipment wrote:
You can't wield a whip in two hands in order to apply 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier to damage rolls.
Yes, of course. But why does it say that? How does this make sense? I don't like to ascribe rules to developer whimsy.

I don't like to do it either. Look at the Crane Style feat chain. Look at Two-Handed Weapons with Armor Spikes for TWF. Look at the "new and improved" Scarred Witch Doctor.

These are all fine examples of rules that were perfectly fine the way they were, and became obsolete due to "developer whimsy". And I'm not happy about them.

But that doesn't mean it's not a valid reason. Because it is. And no amount of arguing will assuage that.

If you don't like it for your home games, then houserule it to oblivion. If you don't like it for PFS, then might I suggest another vice to suit your playstyle, because PFS will lead you to a lot of sweaty, bloody tears.

Dark Archive

Whips using Str for damage (at X1) I can see. You either use your agility to finesse the whip so it's traveling fast enough to crack (and on target enough to hit what you're aiming at), or you brute strength it for the same result. Either way, trying to swing a whip with two hands just isn't going to get it moving fast enough for the tip to break the sound barrier. That IS the source of the 'crack' sound after all, and the reason for a whip stinging so much.

For an ectoplasmist, I'd envision the 1 handed forms of the ectoplasmic lash to be very much a whip (or two whips). While the 2 handed form is probably closer to an oversized a riding crop or cat-o-nine tails, with only the last bit actually whip like while the rest is a solid shaft. Which would explain being able to 2 handed wield it.

In fact, I think I'll describe my character's 2 handed manifestation as an oversized cat-o-nine tails. Doesn't use that one much though since he can't use his shield at the same time.


Daniel Myhre wrote:
Whips using Str for damage (at X1) I can see. You either use your agility to finesse the whip so it's traveling fast enough to crack (and on target enough to hit what you're aiming at), or you brute strength it for the same result. Either way, trying to swing a whip with two hands just isn't going to get it moving fast enough for the tip to break the sound barrier. That IS the source of the 'crack' sound after all, and the reason for a whip stinging so much.

Hmm, I think I'll turn that into just "You cannot wield a whip two-handed." Short, simple, clear, makes a certain amount of sense, and renders all related questions moot.

I'm not opposed to houserules, I just like to keep them few and far between, and ideally to understand the underlying problem.

Thanks all.


As someone who MAKES whips... they are not made to be used in two hands.

If anything, using two hands would make them less accurate AND less damaging.

If a new weapon was made, say, a Greatwhip... designed to use two hands, that might be different.

Stupid kangaroo hide... so expensive outside of Australia...


Wouldn't the PRD / Errata be the final source to determine the correct stats for the Whip? ... sigh so much for that logic. It's even got two different descriptions in the PRD. Personally I'd go with the Description from UE, since it was published later. But this probably needs a FAQ, especially for PFS.

PRD Ultimate Equipment wrote:

WHIP

Price 1 gp
Type exotic
A whip deals no damage to any creature with an armor bonus of +1 or higher or a natural armor bonus of +3 or higher. The whip is treated as a melee weapon with a 15-foot reach, though you don't threaten the area into which you can make an attack. In addition, unlike most other weapons with reach, you can use it against foes anywhere within your reach (including adjacent foes).
Using a whip provokes an attack of opportunity, just as if you had used a ranged weapon.

You can use the Weapon Finesse feat to apply your Dexterity modifier instead of your Strength modifier to attack rolls with a whip sized for you, even though it isn't a light weapon. You can't wield a whip in two hands in order to apply 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier to damage rolls.

PRD Core Rule Book wrote:

Whip: A whip deals no damage to any creature with an armor bonus of +1 or higher or a natural armor bonus of +3 or higher. The whip is treated as a melee weapon with 15-foot reach, though you don't threaten the area into which you can make an attack. In addition, unlike most other weapons with reach, you can use it against foes anywhere within your reach (including adjacent foes).

Using a whip provokes an attack of opportunity, just as if you had used a ranged weapon.

You can use the Weapon Finesse feat to apply your Dexterity modifier instead of your Strength modifier to attack rolls with a whip sized for you, even though it isn't a light weapon.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Another way to look at it is that using it like a Ranged Weapon (provoking like one) means that to get STR 1.5 would mean getting a specialized whip that would be used in that way, much like getting a Composite Longbow for Str damage with Ranged Attacks.

Since a specialized whip isn't available (at the moment), there isn't a way currently to get 1.5 str by two handing the weapon.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Rules Questions / Wielding a whip two-handed for 1.5 Str damage? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.