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    WolfInSheepsClothing

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    Default nonlethal weapon

    In 3,5, one could make a non-lethal sword, which was kind of a cool thing to have for a paladin. Now, starting with 5th ed, I'd like to have the same. Is there any way to accomplish this?
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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    When you drop an enemy to 0 with a melee weapon, you can decide to make it a non-lethal KO

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    When you drop an enemy to 0 with a melee weapon, you can decide to make it a non-lethal KO
    Note that it has to by you who gets the last blow in (unless everyone is trying for a nonlethal take-down). You can spend the whole fight beating an giant down to one hit point with a feather pillow, but if anyone else comes up and taps him for that one last hit point without also deciding for nonlethal then that giant is stabbed-in-the-heart dead.

    The corollary of course is that you can take some one with fifty arrows in them, on fire, melting in acid, poisoned, and three arteries spewing blood everywhere and as long as you do that last hit point 'non-lethally' they just fall unconscious and survive until you decide what to do with them.
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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Off-topic digression;

    Quote Originally Posted by Telok
    The corollary of course is that you can take some one with fifty arrows in them, on fire, melting in acid, poisoned, and three arteries spewing blood everywhere and as long as you do that last hit point 'non-lethally' they just fall unconscious and survive until you decide what to do with them.
    Which is why HP=/=Meat. A "hit" in D&D does not mean a character has necessarily been physically contacted by whatever attacked them, just as one "attack" is not necessarily one swing or thrust of a blade (which is also why a Fighter getting 9+ attacks in a round doesn't break any laws of physics). There's some fudgery with regards to spells, non-weapon damage and to an extent, missiles (re: ammo), but the principle is that only the final "drop to 0hp" blow actually connects. Anything up to then is nothing serious (which is why taking an hour to spend a HD is sufficient to recover from it is even possible; no amount of positive thinking would heal an actual arrow wound over the course of an hours rest).

    That guy that's been "hit" by 50 arrows, bathed in acid, set on fire, bitten by a snake and sneak attacked thrice? Yeah, that guy is physically in pretty good shape so long as he's got at least 1hp left; he's just out of breath, down in the dumps from too many near misses and plumb out of last chances.
    I apologise if I come across daft. I'm a bit like that. I also like a good argument, so please don't take offence if I'm somewhat...forthright.

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    WolfInSheepsClothing

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by Unoriginal View Post
    When you drop an enemy to 0 with a melee weapon, you can decide to make it a non-lethal KO
    Thank you, that migth be a workable solution

    Quote Originally Posted by Telok View Post
    Note that it has to by you who gets the last blow in (unless everyone is trying for a nonlethal take-down). You can spend the whole fight beating an giant down to one hit point with a feather pillow, but if anyone else comes up and taps him for that one last hit point without also deciding for nonlethal then that giant is stabbed-in-the-heart dead.
    well, that is a problem. but I think that would go the same way in 3,5
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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Also a dm can decide to let an enemy have death saves instead of insta death at 0 hp. In the case that a character was trying to subdue the enemy most of the battle I would allow it a chance to live depending on the nature of the "killing" blow.

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    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by JellyPooga View Post
    Off-topic digression;



    Which is why HP=/=Meat. A "hit" in D&D does not mean a character has necessarily been physically contacted by whatever attacked them, just as one "attack" is not necessarily one swing or thrust of a blade (which is also why a Fighter getting 9+ attacks in a round doesn't break any laws of physics). There's some fudgery with regards to spells, non-weapon damage and to an extent, missiles (re: ammo), but the principle is that only the final "drop to 0hp" blow actually connects. Anything up to then is nothing serious (which is why taking an hour to spend a HD is sufficient to recover from it is even possible; no amount of positive thinking would heal an actual arrow wound over the course of an hours rest).

    That guy that's been "hit" by 50 arrows, bathed in acid, set on fire, bitten by a snake and sneak attacked thrice? Yeah, that guy is physically in pretty good shape so long as he's got at least 1hp left; he's just out of breath, down in the dumps from too many near misses and plumb out of last chances.
    ah, this old nonsense.

    yes, of course, that's why vampiric touch that steals health gives the caster more hit points. and also why cure wounds and healing word spells are all about curing wounds and healing people.

    you recover from an arrow wound when you're at 0 HP about as fast as you do if you're at 1 HP, half HP, three-quarters HP, etc, barring the use of special abilities. "hit points are not meat" only makes sense if you ignore all of the large number of things in the game that very definitely treat hit points as meat.

    now, we all ignore the realism aspect because we want to. yes, it should take a long time to recover from an arrow wound, but that makes for much less satisfying gameplay and so we pretend like it doesn't. but don't try and spin this nonsense about how in D&D HP is not meat, because most of the time, it pretty much is.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    ah, this old nonsense.

    yes, of course, that's why vampiric touch that steals health gives the caster more hit points. and also why cure wounds and healing word spells are all about curing wounds and healing people.

    you recover from an arrow wound when you're at 0 HP about as fast as you do if you're at 1 HP, half HP, three-quarters HP, etc, barring the use of special abilities. "hit points are not meat" only makes sense if you ignore all of the large number of things in the game that very definitely treat hit points as meat.

    now, we all ignore the realism aspect because we want to. yes, it should take a long time to recover from an arrow wound, but that makes for much less satisfying gameplay and so we pretend like it doesn't. but don't try and spin this nonsense about how in D&D HP is not meat, because most of the time, it pretty much is.
    It boils down to this; HP can be meat, but usually is not. If it were, the game would be nonsense ("I ignore the guard with a crossbow pointed at me because my character can survive a bolt to the face" rather than "I ignore the guard because I trust that my experience, training and probably a little luck allows me to avoid that bolt (even though my HP still go down"). I won't argue it further, because it's off-topic and it's a matter of opinion anyway.
    I apologise if I come across daft. I'm a bit like that. I also like a good argument, so please don't take offence if I'm somewhat...forthright.

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    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by JellyPooga View Post
    It boils down to this; HP can be meat, but usually is not. If it were, the game would be nonsense ("I ignore the guard with a crossbow pointed at me because my character can survive a bolt to the face" rather than "I ignore the guard because I trust that my experience, training and probably a little luck allows me to avoid that bolt (even though my HP still go down"). I won't argue it further, because it's off-topic and it's a matter of opinion anyway.
    and then a spell called cure wounds can somehow heal the damage to your experience, training, and luck caused by the guard firing the bolt at you? how did your experience, training, and luck take damage from the bolt in the first place?

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    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    and then a spell called cure wounds can somehow heal the damage to your experience, training, and luck caused by the guard firing the bolt at you? how did your experience, training, and luck take damage from the bolt in the first place?
    There's no rule that says a Cleric has to shout "Cure Wounds!" when casting that spell. Spells, like other rules codify the game part of the game, not the storytelling part.

    If it serves someone's game better to have Cure wounds mitigate fatigue rather than bodily damage when the target is above 0 hp, but mitigate bodily damage rather than fatigue when why would you or anyone else give a flying flip.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Tavern brawler + pillow is probably going to be considered nonlethal by most dms. If you want it to be more weaponlike try stuffing padding on the weapon after removing sharp edges. You could also try to get a custom enchant to make your weapon heal the target as it does damage.

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    EvilClericGuy

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    SharkForce, it seems like you think people who say "hit points aren't meat" mean "hitpoints are never meat". That's not true any more than your claim that "hitpoints are only meat". (let's ignore that you're deliberately trolling and strawmanning).

    PHB says it clearly:
    Quote Originally Posted by PHB p.196
    Hit points represent a combination of physical and mental durability, the will to live, and luck. Creatures with more hit points are more difficult to kill. Those with fewer hit points are more fragile.
    Quote Originally Posted by PHB p.197
    Dungeon Masters describe hit point loss in different ways. When your current hit point total is half or more of your hit point maximum, you typically show no signs of injury. When you drop below half your hit point maximum, you show signs of wear, such as cuts and bruises. An attack that reduces you to 0 hit points strikes you directly, leaving a bleeding injury or other trauma, or it simply knocks you unconscious.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by JackPhoenix View Post
    SharkForce, it seems like you think people who say "hit points aren't meat" mean "hitpoints are never meat". That's not true any more than your claim that "hitpoints are only meat". (let's ignore that you're deliberately trolling and strawmanning).

    PHB says it clearly:
    if i tell you that hit points represent a bunch of different things, but the only way to restore them is one of those things, then i can scream all i want about how many different things they represent, but evidence points strongly to it being pretty much just the one thing the vast majority of the time.

    they can claim all they want that hit points represent luck, but meat by any other name still only gets restored by things that heal wounds.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    if i tell you that hit points represent a bunch of different things, but the only way to restore them is one of those things, then i can scream all i want about how many different things they represent, but evidence points strongly to it being pretty much just the one thing the vast majority of the time.

    they can claim all they want that hit points represent luck, but meat by any other name still only gets restored by things that heal wounds.
    And I still contend that even if a spell is called "Cure Wounds" it's mechanical effects on numbers do not have to define how it is described in the narrative.

    Influence certainly, but not define.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by GlenSmash! View Post
    And I still contend that even if a spell is called "Cure Wounds" it's mechanical effects on numbers do not have to define how it is described in the narrative.

    Influence certainly, but not define.
    well, when all of the various effects say they're healing you to restore hit points, and effects that don't heal you don't restore hit points, you wind up with a whole heck of a lot of influence that says "it's pretty much just meat" and a tiny little bit that insists it isn't in spite of all the evidence, well... it doesn't pass the sniff test. my olfactory organ detects large volumes of excrement that originated from a male bovine's posterior.

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    EvilClericGuy

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    well, when all of the various effects say they're healing you to restore hit points, and effects that don't heal you don't restore hit points, you wind up with a whole heck of a lot of influence that says "it's pretty much just meat" and a tiny little bit that insists it isn't in spite of all the evidence, well... it doesn't pass the sniff test. my olfactory organ detects large volumes of excrement that originated from a male bovine's posterior.
    Yes... because Fighter catching Second Wind causes his wounds to instantly regenerate. Or, to use your own example, Vampiric Touch. Or, you know, taking a short rest. Perhaps the reason you smell bovine excrement is that the odor comes from you?

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    well, when all of the various effects say they're healing you to restore hit points, and effects that don't heal you don't restore hit points, you wind up with a whole heck of a lot of influence that says "it's pretty much just meat" and a tiny little bit that insists it isn't in spite of all the evidence, well... it doesn't pass the sniff test. my olfactory organ detects large volumes of excrement that originated from a male bovine's posterior.
    I fail to see how taking such a narrow view of HP makes the game more fun and memorable for the DM and players.

    But if it does for you and yours I'm happy for you.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by Narmoth View Post
    In 3,5, one could make a non-lethal sword, which was kind of a cool thing to have for a paladin. Now, starting with 5th ed, I'd like to have the same. Is there any way to accomplish this?
    Discuss with the DM (unless you are the DM) one getting a nonlethal sword. I would recommend making it bludgeoning. That being said, you can declare your last hit in something that falls to 0 is nonlethal anyway. Still a cool idea.
    Life is precious, guard it will your soul.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JackPhoenix View Post
    Yes... because Fighter catching Second Wind causes his wounds to instantly regenerate. Or, to use your own example, Vampiric Touch. Or, you know, taking a short rest. Perhaps the reason you smell bovine excrement is that the odor comes from you?
    second wind comes from the fighter's stamina... as in the ability to endure stuff. like damage. so the fighter has extra ability to endure damage, which gives extra hit points. the level 18 champion ability represents the champion's resilience... again, how tough they are, how well they can resist damage. vampiric touch siphons life force to, and i quote, "heal your wounds". short rest activities include, and again i quote "tending to wounds", and precisely zero time in a short rest is noted as being dedicated to restoring your drained luck reserves or somehow increasing your vitality.

    perhaps the reason i smell bovine excrement is that the claim we're examining about hit points not being meat is composed of bovine excrement.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    second wind comes from the fighter's stamina... as in the ability to endure stuff. like damage. so the fighter has extra ability to endure damage, which gives extra hit points. the level 18 champion ability represents the champion's resilience... again, how tough they are, how well they can resist damage. vampiric touch siphons life force to, and i quote, "heal your wounds". short rest activities include, and again i quote "tending to wounds", and precisely zero time in a short rest is noted as being dedicated to restoring your drained luck reserves or somehow increasing your vitality.

    perhaps the reason i smell bovine excrement is that the claim we're examining about hit points not being meat is composed of bovine excrement.
    Ah, right... "luck reserves"... I forgot for a moment who am I talking to and mistook you for someone who's not a troll. Because I don't believe you're stupid enough to take your own claims seriously. Fighter's "ability to endure stuff" is his higher HP count. Second Wind doesn't allow him to regenerate an axe to the face, or multiple arrows sticking out of him, which would happen if HP were only meat. While short rest may include tending to wounds, it's not requirement... you can spend short rest by meditating, eating a lunch, or just taking an nap, and you still regain HP, if you wish so.

    Hit Points is an abstract construct. It's not only the ability to shrug an axe to the face. It's not only "luck reserve". It's not only the ability to avoid blows. It's not only endurance. It's a mix of all that and yet none at the same time. AC (and other defenses, like saves) isn't completely unrelated subject, either. You can be hit but take no hit point damage thanks to wearing heavy armor, or you can dodge, but still take hit point damage in the process... perhaps some light burns.

    In a movie, or other media, it could be called plot armor. Stormtoopers miss heroes all the time not (only) because they have ****ty aim, but because the story requires them to miss... heroes have "more hit points", while stormtroopers themselves, being mooks, go down much easier. Heroes still suffer injuries, because it adds to drama. But those injuries rarely take them out of battle: in other words, they still have HP left... but, perhaps, injured character can't defend himself that well, and it is more likely someone will manage to get through his defenses. Or take any lightsaber duel from the movies (I use Star Wars example, because it's well known, and pretty good demonstration how HP works visually): When fighting Darth Maul, Qui Gon Jinn didn't trade hits with each him until he couldn't take more and fell down dead (like he would in a videogame... SW:TOR is a pretty good (bad) example), only for Obi Wan to continue the trend. They parried, dodged and avoided each others' attack, until Jinn ran out of HP and got that one last serious hit. Obviously, the director didn't thought about HP in that scene, but it's what would it play like in D&D: they deplete each others' HP until one gets to 0. It wouldn't be "can't hit each other for 5 minutes thanks to great AC, only to cause instant kill the first time the hit connects".

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by JackPhoenix View Post
    Ah, right... "luck reserves"... I forgot for a moment who am I talking to and mistook you for someone who's not a troll. Because I don't believe you're stupid enough to take your own claims seriously. Fighter's "ability to endure stuff" is his higher HP count. Second Wind doesn't allow him to regenerate an axe to the face, or multiple arrows sticking out of him, which would happen if HP were only meat. While short rest may include tending to wounds, it's not requirement... you can spend short rest by meditating, eating a lunch, or just taking an nap, and you still regain HP, if you wish so.

    Hit Points is an abstract construct. It's not only the ability to shrug an axe to the face. It's not only "luck reserve". It's not only the ability to avoid blows. It's not only endurance. It's a mix of all that and yet none at the same time. AC (and other defenses, like saves) isn't completely unrelated subject, either. You can be hit but take no hit point damage thanks to wearing heavy armor, or you can dodge, but still take hit point damage in the process... perhaps some light burns.

    In a movie, or other media, it could be called plot armor. Stormtoopers miss heroes all the time not (only) because they have ****ty aim, but because the story requires them to miss... heroes have "more hit points", while stormtroopers themselves, being mooks, go down much easier. Heroes still suffer injuries, because it adds to drama. But those injuries rarely take them out of battle: in other words, they still have HP left... but, perhaps, injured character can't defend himself that well, and it is more likely someone will manage to get through his defenses. Or take any lightsaber duel from the movies (I use Star Wars example, because it's well known, and pretty good demonstration how HP works visually): When fighting Darth Maul, Qui Gon Jinn didn't trade hits with each him until he couldn't take more and fell down dead (like he would in a videogame... SW:TOR is a pretty good (bad) example), only for Obi Wan to continue the trend. They parried, dodged and avoided each others' attack, until Jinn ran out of HP and got that one last serious hit. Obviously, the director didn't thought about HP in that scene, but it's what would it play like in D&D: they deplete each others' HP until one gets to 0. It wouldn't be "can't hit each other for 5 minutes thanks to great AC, only to cause instant kill the first time the hit connects".
    oh goody. so now you're arguing that hits are also not hits. i dunno. i bet i can find lots of evidence in the books that hits are, in fact, hits.

    and yes, the d10 represents (some of) the fighter's ability to endure stuff. so does second wind, which again, is based on the ability to endure stuff. and sure, you can not tend wounds during a short rest. that would be something you might do if, for example, you do not have any wounds.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    oh goody. so now you're arguing that hits are also not hits. i dunno. i bet i can find lots of evidence in the books that hits are, in fact, hits.
    Hit is a hit in a mechanical terms. It doesn't mean it must also be "a hit" from the character's perspective. Hit points, armor class, saving throws, levels or classes exists in the rules. That doesn't mean character would know what any of that means.

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    and yes, the d10 represents (some of) the fighter's ability to endure stuff. so does second wind, which again, is based on the ability to endure stuff. and sure, you can not tend wounds during a short rest. that would be something you might do if, for example, you do not have any wounds.
    Like, for example, if they are missing HP, but are still above 50%?

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Remember people, be nice to one another.

    I use the first 75% of a things HPs as "not meat", indicating glancing blows, getting tired, very very minor injuries (a rapier nicking someone's cheek or something equally low level) , and generally being battered and bruised and sore.

    The last 25% I use as "meat" and the thing actually getting quite badly hurt now and receiving wounds that would actually require treatment post-battle, and ultimately the killing blow.

    Unless it regenerates, in which case it can all be meat and I'll be describing how everything stitching itself back together as you're hacking chunks out of it.


    And going back to the OP, sure you can have a non-lethal weapon. You can already do "non-lethal damage" with a melee weapon, and if that doesn't float your boat then talk to your DM about wooden swords and foam-padded warhammers and boxing glove arrows other such things. And if you're the DM; give your party a crate of wooden swords and foam-padded warhammers and boxing glove arrows other such things.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by JackPhoenix View Post
    Hit is a hit in a mechanical terms. It doesn't mean it must also be "a hit" from the character's perspective. Hit points, armor class, saving throws, levels or classes exists in the rules. That doesn't mean character would know what any of that means.



    Like, for example, if they are missing HP, but are still above 50%?
    so how does one fix a close miss with a healing spell, or a healer's kit, or by healing wounds with a vampiric touch, pray tell?
    Last edited by SharkForce; 2018-01-05 at 05:31 PM.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    so how does one fix a close miss with a healing spell, or a healer's kit, or by healing wounds with a vampiric touch, pray tell?
    Depends on the nature of the close miss. Was it the fighter's plate armor deflecting the blow? They are still hurt, but it's not an axe to the face. Was it rogue jumping out of the way of attack? They may have sprained a muscle with their sudden movement, or hit the ground too hard... but hey, at least they haven't tried to deflect a Disintegrate with their face! Perhaps the character is rattled by the close miss, and the kit has something to calm their nerves. Perhaps it *was* a hit, but just a scratch or shallow cut, not a sword sticking out of character's chest. Perhaps the character got tired from all that dodging, and the spell has an invigorating effect as well.

    Hit point loss may mean different things to different characters, even in a similar situation. Say, there's a group of adventurers, and bunch of bandits jumped out of the bushes, aiming their crossbows at them. Adventurers, being adventurers, decide to fight instead of surrendering. In your game, everyone gets apparently shot with a crossbow bolt, but they don't care, because they still have HP left. In my game, the fighter's armor may deflect the bolt, the cleric got lucky and the bolt hit the holy symbol worn around her neck instead of her heart (and later thanks her god for saving her life), the barbarian is actually hit, but he's just that tough... or perhaps partially dodged, so the bolt struck his arm instead of his chest, and the rogue's reflexes are fast enough to dodge the bolt. Meanwhile, the wizard doesn't have enough HP, gets hit and knocked unconscious.

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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    My first 5th edition DM wouldn't allow me to use that rule. I was playing a paladin so I wanted to take one of our enemies alive. The DM didn't think that hitting someone with a regular attack could be made non-lethal. He said I'd need to forgo my strength bonus or something to take an enemy down without killing them.

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    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Quote Originally Posted by JackPhoenix View Post
    Depends on the nature of the close miss. Was it the fighter's plate armor deflecting the blow? They are still hurt, but it's not an axe to the face. Was it rogue jumping out of the way of attack? They may have sprained a muscle with their sudden movement, or hit the ground too hard... but hey, at least they haven't tried to deflect a Disintegrate with their face! Perhaps the character is rattled by the close miss, and the kit has something to calm their nerves. Perhaps it *was* a hit, but just a scratch or shallow cut, not a sword sticking out of character's chest. Perhaps the character got tired from all that dodging, and the spell has an invigorating effect as well.

    Hit point loss may mean different things to different characters, even in a similar situation. Say, there's a group of adventurers, and bunch of bandits jumped out of the bushes, aiming their crossbows at them. Adventurers, being adventurers, decide to fight instead of surrendering. In your game, everyone gets apparently shot with a crossbow bolt, but they don't care, because they still have HP left. In my game, the fighter's armor may deflect the bolt, the cleric got lucky and the bolt hit the holy symbol worn around her neck instead of her heart (and later thanks her god for saving her life), the barbarian is actually hit, but he's just that tough... or perhaps partially dodged, so the bolt struck his arm instead of his chest, and the rogue's reflexes are fast enough to dodge the bolt. Meanwhile, the wizard doesn't have enough HP, gets hit and knocked unconscious.
    so in your games, are the material and somatic components for cure wounds putting a ninja turtle band-aid over the scratch and kissing it better?

    you have to make stuff up for your version to work. the only rule it is really supported by is the one that says you can ignore the rules and change whatever you like (the rule that says hit points are not always meat also supports it, but seeing as how there's a mountain of evidence the other direction where everything that restores hit points is healing actual injuries, that's not exactly supporting anything). that's a good rule, but it's really not the one you want to be citing if you're going to explain what the rules say.

  28. - Top - End - #28
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    Devil

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    Nov 2012

    Default Re: nonlethal weapon

    Normallyz you have salient points, Sharkforce.

    Today, you don't.

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