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Hashmir
2009-11-24, 02:03 AM
I have a question, just to make sure I'm reading the rules correctly. I keep seeing monsters with, say, a spear and several javelins, and the premade characters in modules like Escape from Sembia tend to have something like a warhammer and several throwing hammers. This suggests to me that they intend for the player to use the thrown weapons as backups, while mostly making use of their main weapons.

However, it is my understanding that drawing a weapon is a minor action, and sheathing a weapon is a minor action. Wouldn't this mean that any character who usually holds their main weapon would have to spend a minor to sheath it, another minor to draw the secondary, and a standard to throw it? Doesn't this make such a maneuver almost completely useless, as it takes up all three actions for the turn, forces you not to move, and leaves you without an equipped weapon for a turn (thus costing you another minor action just to get your real weapon back out)?

Don't get me wrong; I can certainly see how thrown weapons are excellent for characters who use them as primaries. A thrown-dagger rogue has a similar action economy to one who uses crossbows (with "reload minor"). It's just that throwing hammers and axes seem to be designed as secondaries, and I can't see how they're helpful beyond a very specific niche. Are they good for anything other than fighting enemies who are strictly unreachable?

nightwyrm
2009-11-24, 02:09 AM
Grab the quick draw feat or get a magical thrown weapon.

Hashmir
2009-11-24, 02:21 AM
Even with quick draw, though, the whole thing still costs you at least 1 minor and 1 standard action (to sheath the primary and throw the secondary). This isn't bad at all, except that you'll be completely without a weapon until your next turn, unless you spend the third action on redrawing your primary.

In other words, you get to throw something, but you then have to choose between moving and being armed for the next turn. That's not a choice a melee fighter should have to make.

1of3
2009-11-24, 03:34 AM
That is only a problem, if you use weapon and shield or two weapons. Otherwise you do not have to sheath it.

Even if you have items in both hands, you can drop one.

Nightson
2009-11-24, 03:35 AM
When you need your melee weapon, spend the minor action to draw it, you don't have to resheath the thrown weapon.

Kurald Galain
2009-11-24, 04:42 AM
However, it is my understanding that drawing a weapon is a minor action, and sheathing a weapon is a minor action. Wouldn't this mean that any character who usually holds their main weapon would have to spend a minor to sheath it, another minor to draw the secondary, and a standard to throw it?
No, it means that you keep your melee weapon in one hand (you can do this even if it's a 2H weapon), use a minor to draw the secondary, then use a standard to throw it, then (if it's magical and returns to you) use a free action to drop it when you don't need it any more.

Alternatively, use a melee weapon that can also be thrown (a dagger for rogues, any heavy thrown for fighters, etc). It does mean that a sword-and-board fighter is screwed, at least until they get a Captain America Shield from the AV. I'd take ranged capability over a small bonus to AC any day.

However, you will encounter monsters that slow or immobilize you. Best be prepared.

The New Bruceski
2009-11-24, 06:50 AM
Alternatively, use a melee weapon that can also be thrown (a dagger for rogues, any heavy thrown for fighters, etc). It does mean that a sword-and-board fighter is screwed, at least until they get a Captain America Shield from the AV. I'd take ranged capability over a small bonus to AC any day.


I love the lack of penalties for fighting with two weapons, it means my one-hander characters always have a dagger ready to throw, and next time they have a spare minor action they draw the next one.

dsmiles
2009-11-24, 07:58 AM
Correct me if I'm wrong, but switching a weapon from one hand to another does not expend an action?

Just hold your melee weapon in your off-hand until you need it.

Kurald Galain
2009-11-24, 08:30 AM
Just hold your melee weapon in your off-hand until you need it.

You don't even need to do that. All player characters are ambidextrous.

dsmiles
2009-11-24, 08:41 AM
Let's apply a little realism here, how many people do you know that are ambidexterous?
The same applies to characters, otherwise everyone would wield a weapon in each hand and do equal damage with each weapon instead of just a +1 bonus to damage.

Yakk
2009-11-24, 08:46 AM
They do do equal damage with weapons in their offhand by default. :)

Anyhow, ignoring that -- you can always move to the new location, free drop your melee weapon, minor draw your ranged, then standard to throw.

But practically, ranged backup is useful when you have chokers crawling on the ceiling 10' up at level 1.

A swordmage who is using a 1 handed sword can draw minor and throw a weapon without a problem.

Small shields apparently can be dequipped for free, then reequipped as a minor, and the hand is usable meanwhile.

dsmiles
2009-11-24, 08:51 AM
They do do equal damage with weapons in their offhand by default. :)

Really?


PHB page 201:
Two-Weapon Fighting
Prerequisite: Dex 13
Benefit: While holding a melee weapon in each
hand, you gain a +1 bonus to damage rolls with your
main weapon.


I don't see anything covering fighting with two weapons in the combat section.

Not to nitpick or anything...:smalltongue:

The New Bruceski
2009-11-24, 09:00 AM
Off-hand weapons are light enough that "you can hold it, and attack effectively with it, while holding a weapon in your main hand." (PHB, page 217) People take that to mean people are ambidexterous, but really only rangers are by default.

KillianHawkeye
2009-11-24, 09:00 AM
Really?


PHB page 201:
Two-Weapon Fighting
Prerequisite: Dex 13
Benefit: While holding a melee weapon in each
hand, you gain a +1 bonus to damage rolls with your
main weapon.


I don't see anything covering fighting with two weapons in the combat section.

Not to nitpick or anything...:smalltongue:

You don't need the TWF feat to hold 2 weapons. The damage is based on the power used, regardless of how many weapons you are capable of holding.

Also, "let's apply a little realism here?" This is D&D we're talking about. Realism has nothing to do with it. :smallamused:

Kurald Galain
2009-11-24, 09:01 AM
Really?


So this is the first system where you have to spend a feat on not being ambidextrous :smallbiggrin:

Mark Hall
2009-11-24, 11:28 AM
My warforged solved the action economy by building his ranged backup into his forearm. Better living through cybernetics!

Tiki Snakes
2009-11-24, 11:36 AM
Just a note, quick-draw doesn't leave you without a weapon in the situation mentioned, because as soon as you want to attack there is one in your hand. As far as I understand, that includes for the purpose of making any free attacks or opportunity attacks.

Hzurr
2009-11-24, 12:22 PM
My warforged solved the action economy by building his ranged backup into his forearm. Better living through cybernetics!

If he only had a dex score so he could hit with it....

Artanis
2009-11-24, 12:27 PM
Even if you're ambidextrous, you can easily have trouble using two full-sized weapons in the same attack move due to it being two full-sized weapons. TWF Rangers are specially-trained to handle that sort of thing :smallwink:

Mark Hall
2009-11-24, 12:41 PM
If he only had a dex score so he could hit with it....

Wasn't my dex score that was the problem. Gorram darklings are like spider monkies on meth.

Besides, you have no room to talk. I know what you woke up under today. ;-)

(For reference, that was not nearly as dirty as it sounds)

dsmiles
2009-11-24, 12:48 PM
The "Off-Hand Weapon" property reads as follows (RAW):

An off-hand weapon is light enough that you can hold it and attack effectively with it while holding a weapon in your main hand. You can’t attack with both weapons in the same turn, unless you have a power that lets you do so, but you can attack with either weapon.

The "Two Weapon Fighting" feat reads as follows (RAW):

While holding a melee weapon in each hand, you gain a +1 bonus to damage rolls with your main weapon.

The RAW definition of turn is:

On your turn, you take actions: a standard action, a move action, a minor action, and any number of free actions, in any order you wish. See “Action Types,” page 267, for what you can do with these different actions.

So, in essence only TWF rangers can attack with two weapons in the same turn, let alone two full sized weapons, unless that particular character has a power to allow them to attack with two weapons in the same turn.

Now that that's settled. You can hold a weapon on your off-hand, and attack with that weapon, but not in the same turn you attack with your primary weapon.

So, I draw my primary weapon. I draw my backup thrown weapon. I attack with said backup weapon. Now I have to wait until my next turn anyways to attack with my primary weapon, unless I happen to have an Immediate Reaction power or get an OA. Quickdraw becomes mostly useless, except in the aforementioned circumstances (and as a +2 bonus to initiative), as I will generally have the ability to draw a weapon on my next turn anyways.

Oracle_Hunter
2009-11-24, 12:57 PM
So, I draw my primary weapon. I draw my backup thrown weapon. I attack with said backup weapon. Now I have to wait until my next turn anyways to attack with my primary weapon, unless I happen to have an Immediate Reaction power or get an OA. Quickdraw becomes mostly useless, except in the aforementioned circumstances (and as a +2 bonus to initiative), as I will generally have the ability to draw a weapon on my next turn anyways.
You seem to miss the point of having a backup weapon.

It's a weapon you use when your main weapon cannot be used.

If you plan on attacking with your main and backup weapon on the same turn - ur doin it wrong :smalltongue:

Kylarra
2009-11-24, 01:03 PM
I love the lack of penalties for fighting with two weapons, it means my one-hander characters always have a dagger ready to throw, and next time they have a spare minor action they draw the next one.Psh, just get a +1 distance dagger and it'll always return to you so no extra actions required.

hamishspence
2009-11-24, 01:11 PM
Aren't most melee-ers based on Str- so wouldn't a heavy thrown weapon, like a hammer or axe, work better than a dagger?

Kylarra
2009-11-24, 01:21 PM
Aren't most melee-ers based on Str- so wouldn't a heavy thrown weapon, like a hammer or axe, work better than a dagger?Well yes, but he said dagger in his post, so I was mostly pointing out that getting a +1 distance version of your secondary weapon is better than having to burn extra actions (even if only minor ones) grabbing another one.

Theodoric
2009-11-24, 01:23 PM
Back to the OP: ranged backups are there so the PC can attack an enemy whoch can't by attacked by melee weapons due to flight or whatever. Yes, it uses up some actions to draw it, but at least you can now hurt the flying bastard.

Yakk
2009-11-24, 01:44 PM
Yes. Because attacking with a weapon takes more than just your arm muscles. It requires attention, aim, and putting your body into it. Or, in 4e, you don't get attacks just by holding a weapon and being ready to attack with it.

So when you take a swing with your offhand weapon, you cannot at the same time (barring powers or epic-tier feats) take a swing with your main weapon.

If you have TWF, you can use your offhand weapon to distract your target, dealing extra damage with your mainhand blow.