Crossbow Ace - What is a "simple crossbow"?


Rules Discussion


As the title.

For the purposes of Crossbow Ace, does a hand crossbow, crossbow, and heavy crossbow - all "simple weapons" - count for the damage increase?

Or just the "regular" (not hand, not heavy) crossbow?

Cheers.


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All current Crossbows in the CRB are Simple Weapons. It's presumably future proofing in the case that a Martial or Advanced Crossbow is added.


Indeed.

But my question is: Are hand crossbows and heavy crossbows considered "simple crossbows" (per the language of Crossbow Ace)?


Maybe it means that only a crossbow is elegible for that part.

So hand and heavy are not.

The simple is not meant for simple weapon but to say "basic model" to directly point at Crossbow, and not heavy or hand.

Seems neat.


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Hand crossbows and heavy crossbows are simple weapons, and they are crossbows. Therefore, I can only conclude that they are simple crossbows.

The Exchange

HumbleGamer wrote:

Maybe it means that only a crossbow is elegible for that part.

So hand and heavy are not.

The simple is not meant for simple weapon but to say "basic model" to directly point at Crossbow, and not heavy or hand.

Seems neat.

This is a good candidate for errata since two answers possible

1) Since the only place a weapon is defined as simple is when you differentiate it from Martial and Exotic weapons, the strictest reading of Crossbow Ace should reference all crossbows in the Simple weapon portion of the table (otherwise the word simple has no justification). Also someone previously mentioned that they may also being trying to future proof (e.g. repeating crossbows and double crossbows)

2) If we assume that they meant to say regular crossbow instead of simple, that would require us to assume that they miswrote the rule or it was written with old language.

I would go with the regular crossbow being the only one that is applicable to both crossbow ace and running reload (since there have been many instances of using old language)

Also, problematic appears to be running reload. This says that you can reload with a single interact while striding etc. If this applies to a Heavy crossbow, that is very nice. It has no value for bows


I'd assume "simple xbows" are the 1d8, reload 1 ones. I don't know that future proofing is enough to justify the language otherwise.

Although, really, there's no crossbow weapon group clearly defined in 2E, so who knows.
Short of specifics in the description, I'd go with anything with crossbow in the name is usable with the feat, and a simple crossbow is... the bland, basic one ? Maybe ?
If it's just simple-weapon-crossbows, that's all of them (so far), Alchemical included.

For what it's worth, said Alchemical Crossbow kind of has the same issue : it uses "crossbow proficiency" and "functions as a crossbow".
Whatever that means.
Any crossbow ? Only the "Simple" ones ?
Not the clearest way to phrase all of those crossbow things. One word should not mean that many things in rules matters.


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Simple has a precise rules definition (requires simple weapon proficiency). Had they meant "only the weapon named 'crossbow' and not other crossbows" they would have chosen another word. The weapon was, after all, named "light crossbow" in the previous edition.

They're well aware of the "we have to go up a level so we can do down a level" problem in this hobby, so I don't think they'd use a rules word in the common language sense casually.


I'm with Cabbage and Vlorax. Simple has a specific meaning in the game and with nothing else to suggest that the feat is limited (either in terms of the wording or from a mechanics perspective), there's no reason to think it won't work with heavy or hand crossbows.

I don't know why future proofing wouldn't be 'enough'. PF1 had exotic crossbows, so leaving the door open to PF2 getting Martial/Advanced crossbows and restricting the language here seems reasonable.


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Laran wrote:
Also, problematic appears to be running reload. This says that you can reload with a single interact while striding etc.

This isn't an issue: Running reload says "You Stride, Step, or Sneak, then Interact to reload." Reload says "This entry indicates how many Interact actions it takes to reload such weapons."

So combining the 2 means that you "Stride, Step, or Sneak" then spend one action to reload [interact]. The only questionable thing is if you can running reload two times in a row as it says "If an item takes 2 or more actions to reload, the GM determines whether they must be performed together as an activity, or you can spend some of those actions during one turn and the rest during your next turn." Since the move comes before the reload it'l be up to the DM to ok it. Even if the Dm doesn't ok, you can still use a second interact to finish the reload by itself.

As for the core question, I'm going with all crossbows [PossibleCabbage makes good points] but I have to wonder if they don't have 'complicated' crossbows in the works, like repeating ones, and this was their future-proofing. Either way, I can't help but think it could have been worded better.


Pathfinder Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I agree that it means all crossbows that are simple weapons. Compare it to the cleric Deadly Simplicity feat (one step increase to damage die for a simple favored weapon) or the champion deific weapon class ability (same). As with those, the idea seems to be to make a suboptimal weapon choice competitive.


I mean, the point of excluding martial weapons here is that martial (and advanced) weapons are supposed to be strictly superior to simple weapons. So if you were to print a hypothetical martial or advanced crossbow you wouldn't want to give the die size increase to make an already strong weapon stronger. The point here is to make a normally weak weapon viable.

Plus, on a crossbow ranger the heavy and hand crossbows are almost certainly weaker choices than the plain ol' crossbow anyway, since it hits harder and has more range than the hand crossbow and it doesn't have the 2 action reload of the heavy crossbow (since you're going to want to spend actions on things that are't reloading, like hunt target.)


I am not convinced.

A simple crossbow seems a way to underline a specific crossbow, which is the base one.

By saying that a crossbow is simple, you are not stating it is a simple weapon. This is just an absumption given the fact weapons are under 3 categories.

Let us consider the feat backwards.

If they had said just crossbow, without mentioning simple, it would had been applied to all crossbows.

But what about a specific crossbow?
How would had they stated it?

By marking the name.

Also given 2 sentences

That crossbow is simple

That crossbow is a simple weapon

They mean different stuff, and on the first one is the player who wants to interpretate it the way it wants.


Perhaps the question boils down to this:

Is the word "simple" in the phrase "simple crossbow" intended to be keyworded or colloquial?


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

there is that crossbow in fall of plaguestone that shoots bombs...


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Even if Heavy and Hand crossbow should not be "simple" crossbows due to their names, why would the 1d8 crossbow be the "simple crossbow". Nowhere has it the word simple in its name.

I think if you exclude Heavy and Hand crossbow, you also have to exclude the crossbow. Then the Crossbow Ace referes to a non-existant "Simple Crossbow".

There is only one instance of something called "simple" in the rules relevant to this feat and thats the "Simple Weapons" category.

Edit: Plus there are other instances of feats and features that increase the weapon die specifically when (and because) the used weapon is a simple weapon. But there are no instances that increase the weapon die for just one weapon.
PF2 is totally built around traits and groups of thing... that interpretation goes a bit against that design. The only instance of feats specifically for one weapon is the Aldori Duelist and that is because it's its thing.

Edit: I know, there are some other things that require specific weapons, like Shillelagh. Doesn't change much.


masda_gib wrote:

Even if Heavy and Hand crossbow should not be "simple" crossbows due to their names, why would the 1d8 crossbow be the "simple crossbow". Nowhere has it the word simple in its name.

I think if you exclude Heavy and Hand crossbow, you also have to exclude the crossbow. Then the Crossbow Ace referes to a non-existant "Simple Crossbow".

Because if you had said crossbow you would had meant the whole category, since the regular one is called crossbow.

On the other hand, they could have replaced weapon with crossbow.

The point is that shorten a line by 2 or 3 words in this way was not the best idea.

I am not saying one of the interpretations is better than the other, but that I can't rule out neither the first nor the second.

Saying something like

"If you are using a simple weapon"

"If the crossbow you are using is a simple weapon"

Or

"If you are using the crossbow ( not the heavy or hand one )"

would have been better.


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HumbleGamer wrote:
masda_gib wrote:

Even if Heavy and Hand crossbow should not be "simple" crossbows due to their names, why would the 1d8 crossbow be the "simple crossbow". Nowhere has it the word simple in its name.

I think if you exclude Heavy and Hand crossbow, you also have to exclude the crossbow. Then the Crossbow Ace referes to a non-existant "Simple Crossbow".

Because if you had said crossbow you would had meant the whole category, since the regular one is called crossbow.

On the other hand, they could have replaced weapon with crossbow.

The point is that shorten a line by 2 or 3 words in this way was not the best idea.

I am not saying one of the interpretations is better than the other, but that I can't rule out neither the first nor the second.

Saying something like

"If you are using a simple weapon"

"If the crossbow you are using is a simple weapon"

Or

"If you are using the crossbow ( not the heavy or hand one )"

would have been better.

I agree that the feat's text is worded very unfortunately and each of your option would have been far better... for either interpretaion. :)


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I dont agree that any errata is needed. There is only one interpretation that actually works without changes, the language works if you parse it as rules languag and it isnt broken one way or the other.

I cant see how folks dont see this clearly.


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There is no "simple crossbow" weapon, nor anything to indicate a regular crossbow is simpler in construction or use than a hand or heavy crossbow. They are all in fact just as easy to use, being simple weapons, so there is actually no basis to call the regular crossbow the "simple crossbow" at all.

Errata is overkill, if anything is needed an FAQ covers it easily as it would just be a clarification, not a rules change (unless they wanted to rename the crossbow into the "light crossbow" again so they could change the feat text to that, if your interpretation was the intent here).


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The light crossbow thing would have simplified things too, indeed.

Ps: just remembered there is not crossbow subgroup but only bows.

So seems way more likely meant to work with all crossbows.


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I'm pretty sure that the future proofing is anticipating some sort of repeating crossbow that has reload 0 (until you empty the magazine), which they could make a martial weapon in order to keep it from getting the die size increase.

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