Rope Dart and Meteor Hammer - no Monk trait - why?


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion


Reading through Treasure Vault, I noticed that the Rope Dart doesn't have the Monk trait.

I'm surprised because the weapon features somewhat prominently in Wushu, so it seems like it would be a natural fit for a Monk, at least thematically speaking.

I thought it might be a typo but then I noticed a similar weapon, the Meteor Hammer, also doesn't have the Monk trait so I'm guessing it's intentional. Curious if anyone can shed light on why?

Liberty's Edge

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My guess : so that they would be competitive compared to other weapons for non-Monk classes.

If you put an additional trait (like Monk) on a weapon, it has to be balanced and ends up a bit weaker than the same weapon without the additional trait.


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I’m not sure how much more powerful a meteor hammer is compared to a kurasigama. Backswing doesn’t seem that great of a trait to warrant it being not a monk weapon. The rope dart has tons of traits but is only a d4, and many of the traits are standard for a d4 martial weapon.

I cannot say how the devs place value in certain traits and abilities, but it does appear rather arbitrary at times.


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not sure why rope dart should have monk trait

but what weapon get monk trait in 2e doesn't make sense at all

description read more like that rope hatchet main character of prey used


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25speedforseaweedleshy wrote:

not sure why rope dart should have monk trait

but what weapon get monk trait in 2e doesn't make sense at all

description read more like that rope hatchet main character of prey used

Simple, monks are themselves an appropriated character archetype from the wuxia storytelling tradition. Rope darts are a weapon that appears in the literature and films produced by this tradition. Ergo, the weapon from that tradition should be available to the class from that tradition.


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monk traits worth is wheighed much too high imo

causes most monk weapons to be subpar, especially compared to fighting styles which frankly speaking usually have advanced weapon stats


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The Raven Black wrote:

My guess : so that they would be competitive compared to other weapons for non-Monk classes.

If you put an additional trait (like Monk) on a weapon, it has to be balanced and ends up a bit weaker than the same weapon without the additional trait.

Worth noting this isn't really true for traits that don't have a mechanical effect on the weapon's use in combat. Ones other than monk, that is.

Ancestral traits don't seem to make weapons weaker than non-ancestral counterparts, for example. Same for weapons that are uncommon, generally. Monk weapons, for some reason, often end up slightly weaker than non-monk weapons, which is strange when compared with the budgets for monk's unarmed stances (as Drongo said).


I mean the reason for Met.Hammer is obvious: Flail crit spec, trip, backswing and reach. Being able to combine that with Flurry of Blows would make balance dent. There is a reason this is considered best reach weapon for 2 handed Fighters, especially since thanks to Trip trait you can use Knockdown with reach. Correct me if I am wrong (since I can't check it) but the only reach Monk weapon is Bo Staff? And that's the reason to keep reach in check as it's such strong trait. There is a reason why reach hammer and flails are D8 compare to Guirsame etc. being D10 reach and that's their crit spec. So imo it's just a part of weapons balance and preventing Fighters from taking Monk FA for Monastery Weapons feat and Flurry feat and still be able to attack with reach flail/hammers twice for 1 action price.


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Kyle_TheBuilder wrote:
I mean the reason for Met.Hammer is obvious: Flail crit spec, trip, backswing and reach. Being able to combine that with Flurry of Blows would make balance dent. There is a reason this is considered best reach weapon for 2 handed Fighters, especially since thanks to Trip trait you can use Knockdown with reach. Correct me if I am wrong (since I can't check it) but the only reach Monk weapon is Bo Staff? And that's the reason to keep reach in check as it's such strong trait. There is a reason why reach hammer and flails are D8 compare to Guirsame etc. being D10 reach and that's their crit spec. So imo it's just a part of weapons balance and preventing Fighters from taking Monk FA for Monastery Weapons feat and Flurry feat and still be able to attack with reach flail/hammers twice for 1 action price.

Unfortunately the meteor hammer is a frequent feature of wuxia. It is relatively more frequent there than it is in the historical and pseudo-historical annals of China's history. So it's status as a martial weapon but not a monk weapon is always going to look glaringly odd. (I do get what you're saying from a balance perspective. Although, I suspect that access to it wouldn't be as unbalancing as folks might assume.)


I think the tightrope they're trying to walk is between "not every Asian weapon or weapon featured prominently in Asian fantasy is a monk weapon" and also "the Monk class is a clearinghouse for Wuxia tropes."

Like some people in Wuxia should just be fighters or rangers or rogues or whatever. But I'm still kind of puzzled as to how the Khakkhara lacks the monk trait.


PossibleCabbage wrote:

I think the tightrope they're trying to walk is between "not every Asian weapon or weapon featured prominently in Asian fantasy is a monk weapon" and also "the Monk class is a clearinghouse for Wuxia tropes."

Like some people in Wuxia should just be fighters or rangers or rogues or whatever. But I'm still kind of puzzled as to how the Khakkhara lacks the monk trait.

Well, arguably the kinds of monks that typically use khakkara are also the kinds better represented by clerics. But also, I feel like we're splitting hairs about what should or shouldn't be a monk weapon. Realistically wuxia folks use all kinds of weapons.

As always though, a GM that wants to go a direction other than the rules dictate simply needs to apply their own house rule to effect the change.


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Kyle_TheBuilder wrote:
I mean the reason for Met.Hammer is obvious: Flail crit spec, trip, backswing and reach. Being able to combine that with Flurry of Blows would make balance dent. There is a reason this is considered best reach weapon for 2 handed Fighters, especially since thanks to Trip trait you can use Knockdown with reach. Correct me if I am wrong (since I can't check it) but the only reach Monk weapon is Bo Staff? And that's the reason to keep reach in check as it's such strong trait. There is a reason why reach hammer and flails are D8 compare to Guirsame etc. being D10 reach and that's their crit spec. So imo it's just a part of weapons balance and preventing Fighters from taking Monk FA for Monastery Weapons feat and Flurry feat and still be able to attack with reach flail/hammers twice for 1 action price.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, the kurasigama is a monk weapon and is very close to a meteor hammer in design. It lacks Backswing in place of Monk, and is in the knife group instead of flail. However, it also does either slashing or bludgeoning damage instead of just bludgeoning.

Regarding crit specialization, that requires two feats for a monk to get for a weapon so by no means guaranteed or worth adding to the budget. If the concern is a fighter using MC monk in order to access weapons they already can use but with Flurry of Blows (10th level access), then I think that is a bit unfair to monks as a whole. Why limit a class due to the possibility another class may dip into the former’s feats? The delay of access to certain feats (half level) and abilities (FoB at level 10) is the balance already in place.


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Michael Sayre made a post about this recently https://paizo.com/threads/rzs43sz6?Why-isnt-Khakkara-monk-weapon#25

Quote:

Monk weapons are in a bit of an awkward space in that their main purpose is to make sure that monks have access to a diverse array of weapons that match a variety of popular themes, but then there's some kind of uncomfortable orientalism that occurs when every Asian-inspired weapon has the monk trait tacked on. It's one of those reasons that I try to watch for opportunities to introduce non-Asian monk weapons that still make sense for the martial artist theme, and to try and introduce one non-monk Asian-inspired weapon for each new Asian-inspired monk weapon that's introduced, but it's just hard to do without introducing things that rub some people the wrong way when the options don't match their image of a monk, or when the option isn't the most optimal one for the monk specifically.

Flurry of Blows bars monks from having full martial proficiency (basically every limitation in a monk feat or ability referencing agile/finesse/monk weapons is there to make sure you never get to break the damage ceiling by flurrying with e.g. a greatsword or similar weapon), and a closed list in the class itself starts sucking basically as soon as you publish the second book in the edition (look at rogue and wizard weapon profs, or the various alchemist abilities we recently did errata for to open them up and give more player agency.)

So the monk trait does serve a very important purpose that goes well beyond just legacy pickups. You could just make it so they can flurry with any agile or finesse weapon, but then you'd lose a whole swath of non-agile/finesse weapons that match the theme and are still appropriate. You could just not do the weapon-wielding monk, but it's a concept that exists in our game world and has been popularly riffed on by franchises like D&D, Final Fantasy, Shadowrun, and literally hundreds more, so if it wasn't there, people would be asking where it went and when they're going to get it.

Personally, if I'm around for the next full edition cycle, I think it'd be worth re-evaluating how the monk trait is deployed and retooling the class to be less "Shaolin, specifically", and more "martial artist, generally", so that you can bring in a wider array of martial arts weapons that include things like hatchets, shields, maybe even certain pistols. But that would require a much more significant rework than is likely immediately apparent.

For the khakkara specifically, since it was put in the same book as the oracle and presented as the iconic oracle's primary weapon, I'd bet that what happened was that the weapon was designed to be more appropriate for a traveling priest than a martial artist, more of a straightforward beatstick. The version you'd want for using it like it's used in Shaolin styles would probably be a lot more like the whipstaff, with a smaller damage die but the ability to parry and make sweeping attacks.


Lucerious wrote:

As I mentioned in an earlier post, the kurasigama is a monk weapon and is very close to a meteor hammer in design. It lacks Backswing in place of Monk, and is in the knife group instead of flail. However, it also does either slashing or bludgeoning damage instead of just bludgeoning.

Regarding crit specialization, that requires two feats for a monk to get for a weapon so by no means guaranteed or worth adding to the budget. If the concern is a fighter using MC monk in order to access weapons they already can use but with Flurry of Blows (10th level access), then I think that is a bit unfair to monks as a whole. Why limit a class due to the possibility another class may dip into the former’s feats? The delay of access to certain feats (half level) and abilities (FoB at level 10) is the balance already in place.

It's a matter of balacnce as whole system to avoid "Flickmace meta" again and doing anything that might become "meta". A Flurry of Blows with reach Hammer/Flail would become Meta as it would be just a be mechanically probably best option for action economy + DPR. Kusarigama is "knife" group so very weak crit spec (probably the worst) and becasue of that can get Reach and Trip and even has Versatile B.

Also I don't see why you wouldn't just take Kusarigama as "mechanical" weapon of choice and simply refluff it at your table that you are using Meteor Hammer, it even has Versatile B so you can deal Blunt damage with it. Unless you want that flail crit spec on top and this is where balance issue arrise.

Some rules decisions don't seem fair in separate examples but when you try to make balanced system like PF2e you have to look at system as a whole. Look how careful they were with adding D10 reach flail (Dorn-Dergar). They made it Advance Dwarf becasue it's Flail, reach and D10 damage die so it couldn't be martial as everyone would start using it as "The best 2 handed weapon". But right now its balanced as now it's question of "is one damage die increase over Meteor Hammer worth a feat?".


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Kyle_TheBuilder wrote:
Lucerious wrote:

As I mentioned in an earlier post, the kurasigama is a monk weapon and is very close to a meteor hammer in design. It lacks Backswing in place of Monk, and is in the knife group instead of flail. However, it also does either slashing or bludgeoning damage instead of just bludgeoning.

Regarding crit specialization, that requires two feats for a monk to get for a weapon so by no means guaranteed or worth adding to the budget. If the concern is a fighter using MC monk in order to access weapons they already can use but with Flurry of Blows (10th level access), then I think that is a bit unfair to monks as a whole. Why limit a class due to the possibility another class may dip into the former’s feats? The delay of access to certain feats (half level) and abilities (FoB at level 10) is the balance already in place.

It's a matter of balacnce as whole system to avoid "Flickmace meta" again and doing anything that might become "meta". A Flurry of Blows with reach Hammer/Flail would become Meta as it would be just a be mechanically probably best option for action economy + DPR. Kusarigama is "knife" group so very weak crit spec (probably the worst) and becasue of that can get Reach and Trip and even has Versatile B.

Also I don't see why you wouldn't just take Kusarigama as "mechanical" weapon of choice and simply refluff it at your table that you are using Meteor Hammer, it even has Versatile B so you can deal Blunt damage with it. Unless you want that flail crit spec on top and this is where balance issue arrise.

Some rules decisions don't seem fair in separate examples but when you try to make balanced system like PF2e you have to look at system as a whole. Look how careful they were with adding D10 reach flail (Dorn-Dergar). They made it Advance Dwarf becasue it's Flail, reach and D10 damage die so it couldn't be martial as everyone would start using it as "The best 2 handed weapon". But right now its balanced as now it's question of "is one damage die increase over Meteor...

That’s a whole lot of presumptions without evidence to support. Do you have transcripts of the devs discussing this very thing? It seems what you feel is “balance” is nothing more than your interpretation

Again, two separate feats are needed to gain the critical specialization effect of weapons for monks. Two feats that could go elsewhere for other very powerful and useful abilities, and you’re suggesting the flail group is so powerful as to be limited for monks specifically. I get the game tries to focus on what the developers view as “balanced”, but I also don’t claim to know what view always is. Too often it comes off less a balance issue as much a legacy issue, or sometimes even just arbitrary without much consideration of mechanics. I’m willing to bet that if weapons like the meteor hammer and rope dart were made with the Monk trait, most players would still opt for stances.


Lucerious wrote:

That’s a whole lot of presumptions without evidence to support. Do you have transcripts of the devs discussing this very thing? It seems what you feel is “balance” is nothing more than your interpretation

Again, two separate feats are needed to gain the critical specialization effect of weapons for monks. Two feats that could go elsewhere for other very powerful and useful abilities, and you’re suggesting the flail group is so powerful as to be limited for monks specifically. I get the game tries to focus on what the developers view as “balanced”, but I also don’t claim to know what view always is. Too often it comes off less a balance issue as much a legacy issue, or sometimes even just arbitrary without much consideration of mechanics. I’m willing to bet that if weapons like the meteor hammer and rope dart were made with the Monk trait, most players would still opt for stances.

It's just logic, not really just presumptions. What do you think Meteor Hammer is D8 while Guirsame is D10 weapon? Both have Reach, both have Trip, one is Slashing, one is Blunt. The difference is obviously a crit spec of flails/hammers and becasue of that it gets one damage dice lower. If you compare hammer/flails in their weapon categories (two/one handed) you will see that they always pay extra with either lower damage die or less traits beacsue of crit spec. If you look across weapons you can see a pattern of balancing. Three-Section Naginata for example has Forcefull, has Deadly, has versatile and Falils crit spec. But in exchange is has no Reach and is Advanced weapon. Devs are doing what they can so there is no "best" weapon in the game by playing around with stuff like access, traits, advance, weapon damage die etc.

And to be clear: I agree with monks weapon feat being useless tax but I also see reason behind that.

For example Monk is standard FA dip for Animal Instinct Barbarians so at level 10 they can get Flurry of Blows with their D12 reach deer unarmed attacks. Simillar would happen with Fighters/Champions/Non-Animal Barbarians taking Flurry of Blows to use it with weapons like Meteor Hammer which would become monk weapon + removing feat tax to get monk weapons to be used by Monks. Multitalented 9 -> Monk Dedication, Level 10: Flurry of Blows would become standard 2 dip that would give superior action economy for other martials.


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Sorry to necro thread here, but I had to comment.

There is a theatrical precedence for the use of ropedarts by a monk. The final fight of The Legend of Fung Sai Yuk 2 staring Jet Li kicks off with ropedart fighting. Fight starts at ~1:20:00
https://youtu.be/icA5z6VVliM?si=EoO4i4Mdf-R_31FG&t=4856

I am sure there are more examples but it is where I first encountered ropedarts and I have not seen them in a western context.


Kyle_TheBuilder wrote:
Lucerious wrote:

That’s a whole lot of presumptions without evidence to support. Do you have transcripts of the devs discussing this very thing? It seems what you feel is “balance” is nothing more than your interpretation

Again, two separate feats are needed to gain the critical specialization effect of weapons for monks. Two feats that could go elsewhere for other very powerful and useful abilities, and you’re suggesting the flail group is so powerful as to be limited for monks specifically. I get the game tries to focus on what the developers view as “balanced”, but I also don’t claim to know what view always is. Too often it comes off less a balance issue as much a legacy issue, or sometimes even just arbitrary without much consideration of mechanics. I’m willing to bet that if weapons like the meteor hammer and rope dart were made with the Monk trait, most players would still opt for stances.

It's just logic, not really just presumptions. What do you think Meteor Hammer is D8 while Guirsame is D10 weapon? Both have Reach, both have Trip, one is Slashing, one is Blunt. The difference is obviously a crit spec of flails/hammers and becasue of that it gets one damage dice lower. If you compare hammer/flails in their weapon categories (two/one handed) you will see that they always pay extra with either lower damage die or less traits beacsue of crit spec. If you look across weapons you can see a pattern of balancing. Three-Section Naginata for example has Forcefull, has Deadly, has versatile and Falils crit spec. But in exchange is has no Reach and is Advanced weapon. Devs are doing what they can so there is no "best" weapon in the game by playing around with stuff like access, traits, advance, weapon damage die etc.

And to be clear: I agree with monks weapon feat being useless tax but I also see reason behind that.

For example Monk is standard FA dip for Animal Instinct Barbarians so at level 10 they can get Flurry of Blows with their D12 reach deer unarmed attacks. Simillar would...

That sounds more like the Problem is the ease of poaching flurry and less the strength of Monk weapons


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Based on Michael Sayre's quote, I feel there are two problems with the monk trait as it currently exists:

  • The trait is currently hand-picked on weapons, which imposes the additional workload for each weapon of deciding whether or not it's a valid monk weapon. It also means Paizo is constantly treading a thin line between choosing weapons that make sense as monk weapons to many players, and falling too much into orientalism, a constant risk when the monk themselves is basically "Wuxia: the class".
  • The monk trait on weapons is also limited by balance, as Flurry of Blows works too well with weapons that have a high damage die.

    For me, it sounds like the methodology ought to change, because right now it feels like the situation is such that Paizo can't help but get in their own way when determining which new monk weapons to add.

    There's almost certainly a flaw in what I'm about to suggest, but it feels like rather than give weapons the monk trait, it might be more economical to change the Monastic Weaponry feat so that you become trained in all weapons with a damage die of 1d8 or less, with perhaps the added limitation of a 1d6 damage die or less for ranged weapons, with the normal proficiency increases to expert and master after that. In theory at least, this would future-proof the feat so that it covers practically every weapon you'd consider to be a monk weapon without having to label weapons individually, nor risk leaning too hard into specific cultural biases.


  • Teridax wrote:

    Based on Michael Sayre's quote, I feel there are two problems with the monk trait as it currently exists:

  • The trait is currently hand-picked on weapons, which imposes the additional workload for each weapon of deciding whether or not it's a valid monk weapon. It also means Paizo is constantly treading a thin line between choosing weapons that make sense as monk weapons to many players, and falling too much into orientalism, a constant risk when the monk themselves is basically "Wuxia: the class".
  • The monk trait on weapons is also limited by balance, as Flurry of Blows works too well with weapons that have a high damage die.

    For me, it sounds like the methodology ought to change, because right now it feels like the situation is such that Paizo can't help but get in their own way when determining which new monk weapons to add.

    There's almost certainly a flaw in what I'm about to suggest, but it feels like rather than give weapons the monk trait, it might be more economical to change the Monastic Weaponry feat so that you become trained in all weapons with a damage die of 1d8 or less, with perhaps the added limitation of a 1d6 damage die or less for ranged weapons, with the normal proficiency increases to expert and master after that. In theory at least, this would future-proof the feat so that it covers practically every weapon you'd consider to be a monk weapon without having to label weapons individually, nor risk leaning too hard into specific cultural biases.

  • You could also have Flurry make attack traits at a fixed damage value, say d8, but carry over weapon traits. That fixes flurry breaking whatever the damage cap is and makes it a real choice for other classes to poach flurry as a damage booster.


    3-Body Problem wrote:
    Teridax wrote:

    Based on Michael Sayre's quote, I feel there are two problems with the monk trait as it currently exists:

  • The trait is currently hand-picked on weapons, which imposes the additional workload for each weapon of deciding whether or not it's a valid monk weapon. It also means Paizo is constantly treading a thin line between choosing weapons that make sense as monk weapons to many players, and falling too much into orientalism, a constant risk when the monk themselves is basically "Wuxia: the class".
  • The monk trait on weapons is also limited by balance, as Flurry of Blows works too well with weapons that have a high damage die.

    For me, it sounds like the methodology ought to change, because right now it feels like the situation is such that Paizo can't help but get in their own way when determining which new monk weapons to add.

    There's almost certainly a flaw in what I'm about to suggest, but it feels like rather than give weapons the monk trait, it might be more economical to change the Monastic Weaponry feat so that you become trained in all weapons with a damage die of 1d8 or less, with perhaps the added limitation of a 1d6 damage die or less for ranged weapons, with the normal proficiency increases to expert and master after that. In theory at least, this would future-proof the feat so that it covers practically every weapon you'd consider to be a monk weapon without having to label weapons individually, nor risk leaning too hard into specific cultural biases.

  • You could also have Flurry make attack traits at a fixed damage value, say d8, but carry over weapon traits. That fixes flurry breaking whatever the damage cap is and makes it a real choice for other classes to poach flurry as a damage booster.

    I disagreed with you in the past but I like the general idea of this one


    3-Body Problem wrote:
    You could also have Flurry make attack traits at a fixed damage value, say d8, but carry over weapon traits. That fixes flurry breaking whatever the damage cap is and makes it a real choice for other classes to poach flurry as a damage booster.

    Well you have broken it there already. Agile weapons are capped at d6 for a good reason.


    Gortle wrote:
    3-Body Problem wrote:
    You could also have Flurry make attack traits at a fixed damage value, say d8, but carry over weapon traits. That fixes flurry breaking whatever the damage cap is and makes it a real choice for other classes to poach flurry as a damage booster.
    Well you have broken it there already. Agile weapons are capped at d6 for a good reason.

    Would that actually be a huge issue though? It's an extra point of damage per die if you use a specific action and, for non-Monks, take a dedication. That seems like it would work out well enough to me.


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    Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
    Gortle wrote:
    3-Body Problem wrote:
    You could also have Flurry make attack traits at a fixed damage value, say d8, but carry over weapon traits. That fixes flurry breaking whatever the damage cap is and makes it a real choice for other classes to poach flurry as a damage booster.
    Well you have broken it there already. Agile weapons are capped at d6 for a good reason.

    This feels like a weird thing to say in a monk thread when they have easy access to d8 agile.


    Squiggit wrote:
    Gortle wrote:
    3-Body Problem wrote:
    You could also have Flurry make attack traits at a fixed damage value, say d8, but carry over weapon traits. That fixes flurry breaking whatever the damage cap is and makes it a real choice for other classes to poach flurry as a damage booster.
    Well you have broken it there already. Agile weapons are capped at d6 for a good reason.
    This feels like a weird thing to say in a monk thread when they have easy access to d8 agile.

    This feels like a wierd thing to say about a game where there are 20+ classes


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    Gortle wrote:
    Squiggit wrote:
    Gortle wrote:
    3-Body Problem wrote:
    You could also have Flurry make attack traits at a fixed damage value, say d8, but carry over weapon traits. That fixes flurry breaking whatever the damage cap is and makes it a real choice for other classes to poach flurry as a damage booster.
    Well you have broken it there already. Agile weapons are capped at d6 for a good reason.
    This feels like a weird thing to say in a monk thread when they have easy access to d8 agile.
    This feels like a wierd thing to say about a game where there are 20+ classes

    All 20 classes can already obtain those D8 Agile stance though?


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    Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    Just remove the Monk trait from all weapons and give monks proficiency in all non-firearm advanced weapons. It will instantly make them unique among classes and--alongside giving wizards and witches Simple Weapon Proficiency and Rogues and bards Martial Weapon proficiency--will nicely streamline all class' proficiencies along the three proficiency groups.

    After all, in nearly every medium they appear, monks and martial artist are all about using unusual weapons to outmaneuver their opponents in combat.

    Liberty's Edge

    Ravingdork wrote:

    Just remove the Monk trait from all weapons and give monks proficiency in all non-firearm advanced weapons. It will instantly make them unique among classes and--alongside giving wizards and witches Simple Weapon Proficiency and Rogues and bards Martial Weapon proficiency--will nicely streamline all class' proficiencies along the three proficiency groups.

    After all, in nearly every medium they appear, monks and martial artist are all about using unusual weapons to outmaneuver their opponents in combat.

    Let's see.

    The Karate Kid.
    Kung Fu.
    Saint Seiya.
    Kung Fu Panda.
    Bruce Lee's movies.

    Nope. Not many weapons there.


    Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    I actually think unarmed should be capped at 1d6 with a flat minor bonus to damage when they aren't using a weapon and then a number of weapons they can use a style with. have a level 12 or 14 feat that increases proficiency in a chosen stance by 1 step, allow the feat to be taken more than once. This keeps it out of range of other classes, shores up a monks lower damage at higher levels by giving them a limited amount of increased accuracy. It doesn't interact with Mauler or other dedications that grant additional proficiency because it is only in that stance with weapons and unarmed attacks allowed in that stance it works.

    Remove the monk trait entirely and just make flurry work with simple weapons and with additional weapons while in a stance only. That will keep it more monk/martial arts flavoured.

    If Monk trait it should only be to make it easy to keep track of what additional weapons a monk is proficient with. Flurry it restricted to simple weapons or weapons allowed in a given stance while in that stance. limits the ability of other classes to poach without leaning heavily into monk flavour and fighting style.

    Also stance for non Asian themed fighting could easily be added, or even ancestral ones for elves, orcs, dwarves etc.


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    Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    The Raven Black wrote:
    Ravingdork wrote:

    Just remove the Monk trait from all weapons and give monks proficiency in all non-firearm advanced weapons. It will instantly make them unique among classes and--alongside giving wizards and witches Simple Weapon Proficiency and Rogues and bards Martial Weapon proficiency--will nicely streamline all class' proficiencies along the three proficiency groups.

    After all, in nearly every medium they appear, monks and martial artist are all about using unusual weapons to outmaneuver their opponents in combat.

    Let's see.

    The Karate Kid.
    Kung Fu.
    Saint Seiya.
    Kung Fu Panda.
    Bruce Lee's movies.

    Nope. Not many weapons there.

    And yet here are 100s more martial arts movies where they use weapons. Cherry picking a very very limited list doesn't help anyone or make any kind of point.

    Numchaku are synonymous with Bruce Lee so not sure why you blanketly reference Bruce Lee movies without mentioning that he does use classic 'monk' weapons in many of them. Also arguably the reason Asian style martial arts and weapons became popular in the western countries.

    Some other great martial arts movies.

    Hero
    Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
    House of Flying Daggers

    These are amazing and award winning movies yet aren't on your list.


    Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    The Raven Black wrote:
    Ravingdork wrote:

    Just remove the Monk trait from all weapons and give monks proficiency in all non-firearm advanced weapons. It will instantly make them unique among classes and--alongside giving wizards and witches Simple Weapon Proficiency and Rogues and bards Martial Weapon proficiency--will nicely streamline all class' proficiencies along the three proficiency groups.

    After all, in nearly every medium they appear, monks and martial artist are all about using unusual weapons to outmaneuver their opponents in combat.

    Let's see.

    The Karate Kid.
    Kung Fu.
    Saint Seiya.
    Kung Fu Panda.
    Bruce Lee's movies.

    Nope. Not many weapons there.

    I said nearly. How many can you name in which one or more characters were proficient in unusual weapons? Unless you don't watch/read much media, it's probably a lot more than not.

    Rebuttal List:

    Note that the following information is AI generated and so may not be wholly accurate.

    Here are some popular books, movies, comics, and manga that feature martial artists or monks wielding oriental weapons:

    Books:
    "The Tao of Gung Fu" by Bruce Lee
    "The Book of Five Rings" by Miyamoto Musashi
    "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" by Wang Dulu
    "Shogun" by James Clavell
    "The Wheel of Time" series by Robert Jordan (features martial arts-like combat)

    Movies:
    "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" (2000)
    "The Raid: Redemption" (2011)
    "Ip Man" series (2008-2019)
    "Kill Bill" (2003-2004)
    "Enter the Dragon" (1973)

    Comics:
    "Iron Fist" (Marvel Comics)
    "Elektra: Assassin" (Marvel Comics)
    "Usagi Yojimbo" (Dark Horse Comics)
    "Shang-Chi" (Marvel Comics)
    "Ninja Scroll" (based on the anime film)

    Manga:
    "Naruto" by Masashi Kishimoto
    "Bleach" by Tite Kubo
    "Rurouni Kenshin" by Nobuhiro Watsuki
    "Dragon Ball" by Akira Toriyama
    "Fist of the North Star" by Buronson and Tetsuo Hara

    These are just a few examples, and there are many more great works that feature martial artists and monks wielding oriental weapons in various forms of media.

    Also, your list is flawed. Bruce Lee and various characters in Kung Fu Panda were shown to be proficient with a number of unusual weapons. If you're referring to Kung Fu, the series, there were unusual weapons wielded by some characters in there too (although it was relatively rare).

    I've not seen Saint Seiya, other than pictures, so I can't speak to that, but it looked like the heroes were wearing armor. What's the point of armor if people aren't using weapons against you?

    I don't recall any weapons used in Karate Kid, so you've got that one right I guess.

    Liberty's Edge

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    I'll repeat a point and request I made a while ago. The Monk desperately needs a level 1 "Discipline" silo where you choose from a selection of styles much like the Druid/Cleric/Alch/Rogue/Etc.

    No matter WHICH Silo they choose it needs to be tied to Legendary Prof in whatever choice you make that is unlocked BEFORE the pointlessly high level 19 threshold, a level so high that 95% of all PCs will NEVER see or benefit from it and while it's held there it's used as an example of why they lag behind on other stuff like it's an excuse dangling over their head they won't even be able to buy the ladder to reach until they get their post-graduate degree. FFS the Fighter, at level FOUR, gets the same accuracy a Monk has on (checks notes) ANY non-advanced Weapon in a desired type of Attack/Weapon Group at level 13 and maintains (double-checks notes...) forever.

    Different Silos I think that they could make and fully flesh out and support with 2-4 unique Feats across the 20 levels would be as follows:

    Unarmed Attacks
    Monastic Weaponry
    Improvised Attacks
    Maneuvers
    Unarmored Defense
    Armor + Shield Defense
    Ki
    Stances

    Trying to do EVERYTHING under the one generic chassis pulls it in too many directions at once and as a consequence they have everything watered down. Just my opinion.

    Liberty's Edge

    Okay so, on the topic of my last post, I was curious so I took a peek at the PC2 description and something jumped out to me that gives me hope...

    PC2 Product Description wrote:

    Pathfinder Player Core 2 includes:

    Eight fully detailed classes, including the alchemist, barbarian, champion, investigator, monk, oracle, sorcerer, and swashbuckler, each containing multiple character paths, multiclassing options, and dozens of feats!

    I don't know if this is an inelegant or maybe slightly inaccurate wording choice of if maybe... just maybe it's suggestive that Monk WILL get their own specific Class Path like those that already exist for all of the other Classes on the list. Hmmmmm...

    Liberty's Edge

    Cyder wrote:
    The Raven Black wrote:
    Ravingdork wrote:

    Just remove the Monk trait from all weapons and give monks proficiency in all non-firearm advanced weapons. It will instantly make them unique among classes and--alongside giving wizards and witches Simple Weapon Proficiency and Rogues and bards Martial Weapon proficiency--will nicely streamline all class' proficiencies along the three proficiency groups.

    After all, in nearly every medium they appear, monks and martial artist are all about using unusual weapons to outmaneuver their opponents in combat.

    Let's see.

    The Karate Kid.
    Kung Fu.
    Saint Seiya.
    Kung Fu Panda.
    Bruce Lee's movies.

    Nope. Not many weapons there.

    And yet here are 100s more martial arts movies where they use weapons. Cherry picking a very very limited list doesn't help anyone or make any kind of point.

    Numchaku are synonymous with Bruce Lee so not sure why you blanketly reference Bruce Lee movies without mentioning that he does use classic 'monk' weapons in many of them. Also arguably the reason Asian style martial arts and weapons became popular in the western countries.

    Some other great martial arts movies.

    Hero
    Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
    House of Flying Daggers

    These are amazing and award winning movies yet aren't on your list.

    Indeed. My list was more of a pop culture reference.

    And I am perfectly aware of the fighting with strange weapons trope.

    But to say that Monks and martial artists are all about this, as if they were not also (and even more IMO, at least in pop culture) about unarmed combat is not true.

    What I would agree with is that Monks and Martial Artists are about unusual combat styles, whether unarmed or using unorthodox weapons / improvised weapons.


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    Nobody said that monks are all about weapons

    This is more about why some weapons are monk weapons and why monk weapon support and the monk weapon trait are so bad

    Liberty's Edge

    Tactical Drongo wrote:

    Nobody said that monks are all about weapons

    This is more about why some weapons are monk weapons and why monk weapon support and the monk weapon trait are so bad

    And yet, what I reacted to was :

    Ravingdork wrote:
    After all, in nearly every medium they appear, monks and martial artist are all about using unusual weapons to outmaneuver their opponents in combat.


    5 people marked this as a favorite.
    Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

    ... It kind of feels like at its core this is a problem that exists to be the solution to another problem that exists to justify the first... in a way where none of them need to exist.

    Monks have a weird weapon list to limit what you can do with flurry, which is weird in order to bolster the monk's weird offensive options.

    Then there are ripple on effects like how unarmed combat is cordoned off from the rest of the game because monks (and barbarians) have uniquely overtuned unarmed attacks and the general issue of what can happen when you poach flurry.

    If monks got their damage from an internal mechanic that can't be poached like most other martials, then you wouldn't need to worry about their weapons in the same way and you wouldn't need to tiptoe around unarmed combat like we do. Monks would probably scale better too.

    At the same time, I wonder how bad the worst case actually is. Sayre talks about monks with greatswords being problematic.. but dragon stance already gives you d10 backswing (and lets you ignore one square of difficult terrain per Stride). D10 backswing to d12 is worth less than a full die of damage, and means you go from having both hands free to having no hands free.

    Add in the feat cost and that sounds less overpowered and more like a genuinely really bad idea.


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    I do like the idea of moving away from the tag altogether and focusing more on the actual heuristic Paizo's been using to judge whether something ought to be a monk weapon. Avoids the need to throw "monk" on anything Asian and lets people use weird weapons that represent unorthodox martial art traditions from around the world.

    I do think a thing to consider is the ergonomics of actually building a character with such a change. If a more complicated heuristic is needed, tags help people quickly visually filter what is and isn't relevant without leaving too much room for error. But the problem is having a tag literally applies a label. Maybe if the tag is literally applied to *all* weapons that meet whatever heuristic, that would avoid the tag having that orientalist bent... at least so long Asian weapons aren't pigeonholed into being foreign, exotic advanced weapons with lots of traits while European weapons are more straightforward damage dealers (and more often represented on optimized builds as a result) because they're "normal."


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    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

    honestly, the "solution" i would propose at least for my own house rules is as follows;
    The flurry of blows feature for the monk class works with any unarmed or melee weapon strike they have proficiency with. Does this allow a monk to potentially flurry with a greataxe? yes. do i think that this is an especially big deal? No, i do not, given the power of the stance strikes and the opportunity cost involved in grabbing scaling proficiency with such a weapon.

    Monastic Weaponry gives the monk scaling proficiency in all weapons with the monk tag.

    ancestral weaponry is no longer a feat as it is no longer needed.

    Monastic archer stance allows the user to flurry with all ranged weapons, rather than an al a cart list.

    and most importantly, the "flurry of blows" feat from the monk archetype only allows the user to flurry with unarmed strikes, or weapon strikes with the agile, finesse or monk tags.

    I would also recommend renaming the "monk" weapon tag to something else that implies a link to martial arts which has the additional benefit of encouraging other things to check for that tag

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