Due to the negative reception, and the fact that other people have already done this better, I am PARTIALLY abandoning this project. I MIGHT finish going through the PHB weapons (which I seem to be able to do quickly), but I will NOT be expanding this into a more intricate upgrade system. After I have finished reviewing every other PHB melee weapon, I will not be continuing to change/update this, nor will I readjust mundane weapons presented in other books. If you want a better in-depth system, use Seerow's.
It's no secret that all mundane melee weapons are not created equal. Many exotic weapons are considered inferior to their martial counterparts (not worth the extra feat for exotic weapon proficiency). The goal of this thread is to tweak the mundane melee weapons to be appropriately powered for their tier (simple, martial, or exotic). I'll be using Jiriku's system for balancing melee weapons:
Originally Posted by jiriku
It assumes that weapons receive a 9-point buy.
|EASE OF USE||COST|
|Thrown 10 ft||1|
|Thrown 20 ft||2|
|+2 to skill||1|
|+4 to skill||2|
|set vs charge||1|
|other specials||1 or 2|
*build each half separately as a one-handed weapon and buy the double weapon benefit for both halves.
I will only list weapons which require change, or have some special property worth discussing. For each one, I will give the point-breakdown of the PHB version of the weapon, then give how I would adjust the weapon. Whenever the point value is unclear, I will give a range.
So, let us begin:
Simple Melee Weapons
Light Melee Weapons
RAW: 3 points spent on being light, 3 on simple, 1 on bludgeoning, and the damage cost is somewhere between 0 and 1 points. Dealing non-lethal damage should probably give a bonus point to be spent elsewhere. Thus the unarmed strike has only spent ~6.5 out of its 9 points.
Fix: Unarmed strike is intended to be inferior to using a gauntlet. This is one of the few times I think a weapon should actually be underpowered. I'd still change its damage to 1d4, but 7 points is fine for a free weapon that cannot be masterwork and will never be used by anyone actually intending to fight in melee.
Raw: 6 points spent on simple/light, 1 on bludgeoning, and somewhere between 0 and 1 on damage. Underpowered at 7 to 8 points.
Fix: I suggest increasing the damage to 1d6.
Raw: 6 points from simple/light, +2 to slight of hand (1 pt), thrown 10 ft. increment (1 pt.), 1d4 damage (1), 1 point on critical threat range, at least 1 point for slashing damage (possibly more because of the choice of damage type). The dagger clocks in the 11-12 range, extremely overpowered. Note that for most martial classes, it is still a poor choice, since being a simple weapon gives a huge hit to power. However, a martial class can be effective with a dagger--see the daggermaster prestige class in my homebrew.
Fix:This weapon needs some serious nerfing. I suggest making the damage piercing only, and eliminating the bonus to slight of hand (that seems to be the least helpful bonus in there). This brings it down to a 9-point weapon. Alternatively, you could keep the bonus to hiding, and just make it a martial weapon (or, you could make a more intricate variation on the dagger, which is martial). The problem with the dagger is that all of its buffs seem justified from a fluff perspective, but they make the weapon too powerful for a simple weapon.
RAW: Unlike its normal counterpart, the punching dagger is underpowered, with only 8 points.
Fix: Increase the damage to 1d6.
RAW: The immunity to disarming is worth about 1 point, and, as Lord Vukodlak pointed out (see below), it has other benefits worth an additional point. This makes it roughly a 9 point weapon.
One-Handed Melee Weapons
RAW: It deals both bludgeoning and piercing damage...this is probably not worth an extra point, and so the damage type only costs it the one point for bludgeoning. This puts it right at 9 points.
Wow, none of the simple one handed weapons required fixing, a heck of a lot better than WotC did in most categories of the core rules.
Two-Handed Melee Weapons
RAW: 1 point for being able to deal double damage against a charging opponent, plus 8 points from other stuff.
Fix: Because it is a 2-handed weapon, I would suggest changing the damage to 2d4. Or just leave it as is.
RAW: Under the 9-point system, double weapons are treated as two one-handed weapons, each of which should be 7 points. Both ends of the quarterstaff are identical (...boring...), and each total 8 points.
Fix: I think quarterstaffs are awesome for no particular reason...so I would just make it a martial weapon, and keep the power the same. If you want to keep it simple, then decrease the damage to 1d4/1d4. Alternatively, keep the damage as is, but make it non-lethal damage. Meh, I just like the quarterstaff too much to want to nerf it, so I'd make it martial.
Martial Melee Weapons
Light Melee Weapons
RAW: 8 points
Fix: Change the critical range to 19-20/x3
RAW: Counting the non-lethal damage as a -1 penalty, the sap is currently at 7 points.
Fix: Honestly, I'd make it a simple weapon, then increase the critical range to 19-20/x2. It never should have been a martial weapon.