Dancing Ranged Weapons


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

The Exchange

Dancing weapon property doesn't state "only melee weapons"

Dancing wrote:
As a standard action, a dancing weapon can be loosed to attack on its own. It fights for 4 rounds using the base attack bonus of the one who loosed it and then drops. While dancing, it cannot make attacks of opportunity, and the person who activated it is not considered armed with the weapon. The weapon is considered wielded or attended by the creature for all maneuvers and effects that target items. While dancing, the weapon shares the same space as the activating character and can attack adjacent foes (weapons with reach can attack opponents up to 10 feet away). The dancing weapon accompanies the person who activated it everywhere, whether she moves by physical or magical means. If the wielder who loosed it has an unoccupied hand, she can grasp it while it is attacking on its own as a free action; when so retrieved, the weapon can't dance (attack on its own) again for 4 rounds.

Put this property on a normal ranged weapon, or even better put it on a gun.

Discuss.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

It however doesn't appear on the ranged weapon upgrade chart. So I wouldn't expect most GMs to allow it.


Covert Operator wrote:
Dancing weapon property doesn't state "only melee weapons"

It doesn't have to. It's not on the Ranged Weapon Special Abilities table, so it can't be applied to ranged weapons.


I'm not sure that being on the Ranged Weapon Special Abilities table is mandatory for applying any ability to a ranged weapon. Sure, I cannot seem to randomly roll a ranged weapon with this property, but that doesn't mean I cannot custom make one.

In fact, ALL custom items, by definition, are NOT found on their appropriate tables. They're custom so they must not be on the official tables, but that doesn't stop many GMs and players from making custom items.

So, why can't this be made as a custom ranged weapon? Of course, it would be fairly ineffective, but it might at least fire off one shot. Or if it's a repeating crossbow, for example, it might work, given that it would probably provoke sunder attempts with every shot.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

If you want to pitch the item as a truly custom item then by all means go ahead and do so. But don't try to couch it as valid because the rules don't state something. As I said, I expect most GMs not to allow it because its not on the ranged weapons table.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

And it certainly doesn't work well as written.

It can only attack things adjacent to the wielder as it lacks reach, that's pretty awkward for a ranged weapon.

And then it shares the space with activator, that makes its really difficult for any thrown ranged weapon to function as it cannot leave its square.

And there is no mechanic for the weapon to reload itself, a fairly severe handicap for projectile weapons if they want to take advantage of a full BABs worth of attacks.

Its not intended for ranged weapons. If its a concept of something you want, rewrite it and present as something new, but the dancing property, as written, on a ranged weapon would be pretty terrible.

The Exchange

There is no penalty for non-proficiency to load a gun, correct?


  • Eldritch Guardian.
  • Do your normal Fighter stuff.
  • Buy a Dancing weapon for your Familiar.
  • Familiar loads gun every round.

It wouldn't be too powerful but targeting Touch AC is good nonetheless.

Sovereign Court

Covert Operator wrote:
It wouldn't be too powerful but targeting Touch AC is good nonetheless.

It's not hard for something to be good when you break the rules to do it.

The Exchange

What rules am I breaking?
It doesn't specify "can only be placed on a ranged weapon," like Distance does.
It just imposes restrictions on where it can attack (which is written assuming a melee weapon).


"It doesn't say I can't " is never a good argument.


Covert Operator wrote:

What rules am I breaking?

It doesn't specify "can only be placed on a ranged weapon," like Distance does.
It just imposes restrictions on where it can attack (which is written assuming a melee weapon).

There is a table that says "ranged weapon abilities", and another that says "melee weapon abilities". That table is to let you know which abilities go to each weapon type. That is why flaming is on both list, but defending, which does not say "melee weapons only" in the description is only on one.


As said before, the lack of inclusion under the Ranged table kinda defeats that idea. Besides, what about ammunition? Your shortbow may be dancing, but your arrows aren't.

Here's a possible exception though: What about melee weapons that can be thrown, like Starknives or Light Hammers? As a GM, would you be comfortable allowing them to dance up to their first range increment?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

No problem. Okay your bow does the FoxTrot. Too bad it can't load arrows and shoot them by itself.


SAMAS wrote:

As said before, the lack of inclusion under the Ranged table kinda defeats that idea. Besides, what about ammunition? Your shortbow may be dancing, but your arrows aren't.

Here's a possible exception though: What about melee weapons that can be thrown, like Starknives or Light Hammers? As a GM, would you be comfortable allowing them to dance up to their first range increment?

It would be a house rule as the ability clearly states the weapon remains in your square.


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Your argument for a dancing ranged weapon is gonna sound like this to your DM.

Proceed how you see fit.

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