Do all thrown weapons need the returning rune at higher levels?


Advice


My question is what is says on the tin. Is there a way to play a character that uses thrown weapons that does not require the use of returning runes? I feel like throwing a returning shuriken or javelin is kind of dumb but that seems to be the only way to play a character specializing in these kinds of weapons.

Am I missing something?


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Yes you'd want the returning rune or spend a lot of money getting multiple magical weapons.


Vlorax wrote:

Yes you'd want the returning rune or spend a lot of money getting multiple magical weapons.

That seems to be the case. Do you figure that is a bug or a feature?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Excaliburproxy wrote:
Vlorax wrote:

Yes you'd want the returning rune or spend a lot of money getting multiple magical weapons.

That seems to be the case. Do you figure that is a bug or a feature?

I don't know, but it seems intended.

I could also see a relatively simple way around it by creating a magic item like gloves that grant X weapon properties to thrown weapons and overwrites any inherent magic properties of the weapon. That way you could sling javelins etc as long as you had ammo.


Vlorax wrote:
Excaliburproxy wrote:
Vlorax wrote:

Yes you'd want the returning rune or spend a lot of money getting multiple magical weapons.

That seems to be the case. Do you figure that is a bug or a feature?

I don't know, but it seems intended.

I could also see a relatively simple way around it by creating a magic item like gloves that grant X weapon properties to thrown weapons and overwrites any inherent magic properties of the weapon. That way you could sling javelins etc as long as you had ammo.

Yeah, I hope something like that gets published. I have some house rules like that which I offer when I GM but that doesn't really help me when I am actually playing the game rather than GMing.

I was hoping that there was some work-around that I missed.


Well, lets think of it as a comparison to ammunition based weapons.

If you throw a weapon, it's definitely easiest if you have the returning rune.

But let's assume you don't want to.

Instead you just buy multiple weapons with attack bonus runes at max, and damage dice bonus runes at one less than max for your level. It's expensive, but the damage dice bonus is the more expensive of the two runes.

However, your thrown weapon gets to add strength (something even propulsive weapons only get half of) and you get to use your main attack attribute rather than switch to dex.

In terms of damage, it probably works out as a wash even without the extra damage dice because of the strength damage (though it will depend on dice size, and I haven't run the math).

Certainly the easiest way is just buying a weapon with the returning rune.

Unlike older version of returning, at least this one returns your weapon to you as soon as the strike is resolved so you don't have to worry about multiple returning weapons.


Perhaps they will create a "sharding" property like the PF1 enchant that basically just says "As you make an attack with this weapon instead of actually letting go a copy breaks off to complete the attack and disappears once the attack is resolved."


Claxon wrote:
Perhaps they will create a "sharding" property like the PF1 enchant that basically just says "As you make an attack with this weapon instead of actually letting go a copy breaks off to complete the attack and disappears once the attack is resolved."

I maybe like that more flavor-wise.

Discussing your earlier post: I do not think buying 3+ full level enchanted shuriken is a valid use of money. You would just fall too far behind in all the other things you need to buy. It is a non-option.


I think whether or not buying several +3 potency runes for multiple throwing weapons is viable depends on viewpoint. At 16th level when they become available it's about 10% of your wealth. As you continue to level up that percentage goes down. The real problem is that it doesn't including the striking runes, which are equally important and more costly.


There is something cool about throwing a dagger at a guy, then closing the distance and taking the dagger from the guys chest as his dead body falls to the ground and stabbing another guy with it (which nicely fits into the 3 action economy).

Another idea is having multiple magic daggers, and having the multiple daggers being a positive as they can all be different, giving you some versatility. Maybe against a werewolf you throw the magic dagger made out of silver first, while against a golem it is the adamantium one first. The guy with just one returning dagger can't have it be ideal for every situation, but with multiple daggers your first shot can be.


IIRC, we also had a pair of gloves in PF1 that basically gave enhancement bonus to weapons thrown, but i can't recall the name of it.

We might get something like that too.

I'd be okay with a system wherein I have 10 daggers for throwing, I pay to put runes on one with potency & striking and the rest end up with the same bonus somehow. And then I proceed to throw and use them all up.

Generally speaking this is worse than just having returning on that one dagger, so the cost should honestly end up at about the same.

I wish they just let the doubling rings work on thrown weapons.


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I've always really wanted like, a magic bandolier or quiver that is enchanted like a weapon and temporarily imparts those enchantments to thrown weapons, so you could have a quiver of javelins or pouch full of shurikens that all get the magic buffs when you throw them.

Returning works great in PF2 mechanically and has good flavor for weapons you use as both melee and ranged weapons like hammers or whatever, but it is really goofy when instead of throwing a volley of shurikens you're just throwing the same shuriken over and over really fast.


Tender Tendrils wrote:

There is something cool about throwing a dagger at a guy, then closing the distance and taking the dagger from the guys chest as his dead body falls to the ground and stabbing another guy with it (which nicely fits into the 3 action economy).

Another idea is having multiple magic daggers, and having the multiple daggers being a positive as they can all be different, giving you some versatility. Maybe against a werewolf you throw the magic dagger made out of silver first, while against a golem it is the adamantium one first. The guy with just one returning dagger can't have it be ideal for every situation, but with multiple daggers your first shot can be.

I do like the idea of burying a knife in a guy's chest and then going to retrieve it. It would be cool to have a feat or enchantment to formalize how that kind of thing could work. Maybe removing dagger could be some kind of specialized attack that can cause damage? I have also been toying with the idea of creating an alternative to the returning rune that requires an extra action to call back (ala the axe in the latest God of War game) that could let you attack an enemy in between you and where the weapon landed/stuck. That is more tangentially related though.

I agree that having multiple enchanted daggers of varying material types is useful, but I still think you would want to have returning on those +whatever daggers if only to stop those weapons from being taken by an opponent or accidentally losing it in the ocean or off a cliff or whatever on a miss.

Even beyond that point, I don't mind returning daggers so much as I am bothered by returning shurikens and darts and stuff. If your dagger or light hammer is your main weapon, I think having the returning property is kinda neat. I really like how specialized throwing weapons play at lower levels (where you generally have to draw the weapon with a free hand and chuck 'em). I like using hand-and-a-half weapons like bastards swords and the katana and backing that up with javelins, shurikens, or even throwing hammers. However, when your throwing weapons are all valuable artifacts in-and-of-themselves, throwing them at dudes is suddenly a real issue without the returning property. Also, you suddenly have the problem of having stow your throwing weapons rather than freeing up your hand each time you attack.


Claxon wrote:

IIRC, we also had a pair of gloves in PF1 that basically gave enhancement bonus to weapons thrown, but i can't recall the name of it.

We might get something like that too.

I'd be okay with a system wherein I have 10 daggers for throwing, I pay to put runes on one with potency & striking and the rest end up with the same bonus somehow. And then I proceed to throw and use them all up.

Generally speaking this is worse than just having returning on that one dagger, so the cost should honestly end up at about the same.

I wish they just let the doubling rings work on thrown weapons.

I also wish doubling rings worked with thrown weapons.

Squiggit wrote:

I've always really wanted like, a magic bandolier or quiver that is enchanted like a weapon and temporarily imparts those enchantments to thrown weapons, so you could have a quiver of javelins or pouch full of shurikens that all get the magic buffs when you throw them.

Returning works great in PF2 mechanically and has good flavor for weapons you use as both melee and ranged weapons like hammers or whatever, but it is really goofy when instead of throwing a volley of shurikens you're just throwing the same shuriken over and over really fast.

The "magical bandoleer" is more or less my houserule, actually. I just price the bandoleer like a magical weapon and weapons drawn from the bandoleer stay magical until the end of your turn.

I also have a house rule that players can have all their weapons gain the necessary striking/whatever runes but I generally like to make my house rules well balanced against existing options and rules and I still have some tweaking to do with that w.r.t. specific interaction rulings and pricing/item level regimes. I kind of went into that in someone else's homebrew thread, but I have already changed my mind about some things there. My current version is an item that costs about 1.5x the cost of a base weapon and then the price goes up for each category of weapon that you want the items to apply to. I don't know how to handle the item level itself yet though.

Liberty's Edge

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Is there a reason this is in the Third Party rules questions forum?


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Excaliburproxy wrote:
Claxon wrote:

IIRC, we also had a pair of gloves in PF1 that basically gave enhancement bonus to weapons thrown, but i can't recall the name of it.

We might get something like that too.

I'd be okay with a system wherein I have 10 daggers for throwing, I pay to put runes on one with potency & striking and the rest end up with the same bonus somehow. And then I proceed to throw and use them all up.

Generally speaking this is worse than just having returning on that one dagger, so the cost should honestly end up at about the same.

I wish they just let the doubling rings work on thrown weapons.

I also wish doubling rings worked with thrown weapons.

Well actually by raw they can. Doubling Rings only work on melee weapons true, but the thrown trait makes no mention on changing weapon type, so as long as you are throwing melee weapons that happen to have the thrown trait (hand ax for example) instead of ranged weapons with the thrown trait it is technically legal.


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Malk_Content wrote:


Well actually by raw they can. Doubling Rings only work on melee weapons true, but the thrown trait makes no mention on changing weapon type, so as long as you are throwing melee weapons that happen to have the thrown trait (hand ax for example) instead of ranged weapons with the thrown trait it is technically legal.

That's not the problem. The problem is that any weapon augmented by doubling rings stops working the moment you stop wielding it. The rules for the rings themselves even specifically call out that you can't throw them.


Yeah, the way the rings are written it's pretty clear they don't allow you to throw weapons.

Which was very disappointing for my rogue. I built him with the doubling rings thinking I would have thrown daggers as backup ranged weapon, but no.


They should be for free, I agree.

Consider take a champion dedication for an extra rune on your main hand.


I don't know of any way to get potency or enchantments on shuriken (Sadly). but quicksilver mutagens can keep you "up to date" with the item bonus to hit at least. Which sucks.

Alchemist bombers friggin adore shurikens. Its my favorite one. It works so well with the hand issues and it has the same range as bombs. I'm intending to basically use them until lv 10+ where I can get a starknife with wounding and returning on it... mainly because I can't do it to shurikens.

well I can do returning and such on a shurien. But at that point it doesn't help the handedness.

Something I've toyed with the idea with is Hand of the Apprenteice though. Since I think if you multiclass wizard and don't choose the feat that lets you have a school. You're a universalist.. but I'm not sure if that works techincally due to the arcane school class feature.. but with that it was some fun moments for 'throwing' but not really worth it (makes an absolutely wonderful opening poisoned wounding knife to the face though)

Paizo Employee Customer Service & Community Manager

Moved this to the PF2 forums advice section. If there was a reason it specifically went into the compatible publisher's subforum, let me know.


Sara Marie wrote:
Moved this to the PF2 forums advice section. If there was a reason it specifically went into the compatible publisher's subforum, let me know.

That was actually a mistake on my part, but I decided to keep it there since I figured, "well, if there is a 3PP solution somewhere, I guess I'd like to know."

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