Although all weapons are used with a slightly different technique, many weapons are similar so if one can be used effectively another can be used unskilled (1d8) but at the same bonus. Each weapon belongs to a category and training for one weapon confers benefits to others in the same category. This does not apply to the oddity category.
The categories are:
Types and groups
Weapons in the same group are used at -1 to hit.
Weapons in an unknown group but of the same type are used at full disadvantage (initiative, attack, damage and defence bonus = -2).
Weapons of a different type are also unskilled.
- 1 handed
- 2 handed
- Chop & bludgeon
- Pole arms
- Great weapons
- Assisted (mainly bows)
For each size of creature the damage level and minimum strength requirement is adjusted by their size.
The maximum and average damage from a weapon rises as your ability increases.
Roll all the dice and discard the lowest (keep at least 1).
Falchion, Mace, Hammer, Axe, Side sword
|Sword||d6 / d4||5||3.9|
|Pollaxe, Scimitar||d6 / d6||6||4.5|
|Dane Axe||d8 / d4||7||4.8|
|Great sword||d8 / d8||8||5.6|
|d10 / d8||9||6.4|
|d12 / d8||10||7.4|
|d10 / d6 / d4||12||9.6|
|d12 / d6 / d4||13||10.6|
|d12 / d8 / d6||14||12.0|
|2d12 / d6||15||13.9|
There are three types of weapon
- Cutting (e.g. swords)
- Bludgeon / Chop (e.g. maces, hammers, clubs / axes, some heavy swords)
- Pierce (e.g. spears, daggers / arrows)
- Cut / slash
- Drawing a sharp edge across the body
- Heavy blade normally with a curved edge to focus the force on a small area
- Lump of metal/wood... Spreads the impact more than chop but less likely to slip with a glancing blow against angled armour (+3 to hit plate).
- Pierce / Thrust
If a weapon has more than one mode you may use either mode at will.
Different weapons are differently effective against an armour type, for example mail will stop completely a normal sword blow from cutting you, however in doing so some of the cutting damage is converted to blunt trauma as the impact jellifies your internal organs. A hard shell however such as boiled leather is better against blunt weapons as the force is spread out more, however a cutting weapon may go through it.
Although the bigger heavier blunt weapons do more damage they are more difficult to wield and tend to have attack penalties.
Weapons with multiple attack styles
Some weapons such as the battle-axe may use either the piercing or the slashing side of the weapon. There is no penalty for choosing either one.
|Weapon||To hit||Str||Dex||Type||Damage||2nd hand||Width
|One handed weapons|
|Mace / Morning Star /
Hammer / Axe
|Hand axe||-1||X||Bludgeon||d4||4'||Can be thrown,
off hand use
|Scimitar / cutlass||X||Cut||d6d6||5'|
|Arming sword / Sabre||X||Cut||d6d4||5'|
|Knife||-1||X||Pierce||d3||3'||off hand use|
|Dagger / Stiletto||-1||X||Pierce||d4||3'||off hand use|
|Side sword / Rapier||X||Pierce||2d4||5'|
|Two Handed Weapons|
|Quarterstaff ‡||+1||X||Bludgeon||2d4||X||9'||REACH, Swirly attack*,|
|+1||d4||3'||REACH, Jabbing, confined area|
|Wizard's knobbly staff ‡||X||Bludgeon||d4||X||6'||
Swirly attack*,Confined use possible down to 3' ¿
|Morning Star Flail §||-1||X||Bludgeon||2d4||8'||Ignores shields|
|Lance||X||Pierce||2d12||-||Riding skill required, Roll +1 d12 if galloping|
|Dane axe / Dwarf Axe||X||Bludgeon||d8d4||X||6'|
|Pollaxe (Any pole arm)||0||X||Bludgeon / pierce
In confined areas may use spear tip only
|Sword - Bastard||X||Cut||d6d4||+ 2 levels||6'||1 or 2 hands, 5' space for 1 hand|
|Sword - Great||+1||X||Cut||2d8||X||8'|
|Martial arts||-1||X||Bludgeon||d4||3'||No Parry / Attacks vs dodge|
|Brawling||-1||X||Bludgeon||d2||3'||No Parry / Attacks vs dodge|
Weapon width needs changes by 20% for each size category (Damage goes up by ~14% slowly reducing as level goes up).
REACH = Weapon gets first strike when closing regardless of initiative. All these are REACH 10'
The weapon bonus is a combination of its speed and reach, long/medium/short (e.g. pole arm/sword/dagger)
¿ The width needed includes 3' for a normal human, this should be adjusted for smaller or larger creatures. It is the width required to use the weapon without too much hindrance or where you are fighting next to someone so there is some shared space. Insufficient space up to 1' incurs disadvantage to hit and damage, beyond that it is not possible to use the weapon.
§ Minimum dexterity of +2
† Riding check (9) required each round of combat or no attack.
‡ The military quarterstaff is 7-9' long a wizards staff <6' (and old and knarly).
* Swirly attack: +3 dmg levels and opponent gets an opportunity attack before you hit that disrupts your attack if it hits.
Needs 2x the normal space (12' diameter) it may be whirled with both hands at one end for additional damage. This takes up two attacking slots against a defender so not against anyone in a corner and sole attacker normally. This can only be done every other round.
|Axe - hand||-1||d4||1||Chop||-||10'||30'||3|
|Spear 5' / Javelin||0||d4||1||Pierce||10'||20'||50'||1|
|Grenade thrown †||Pebble||0||d1||2||Bludgeon||10'||25'||90'||-|
|Net (& Trident)||-1||-||1||-||5'||10'||20'||-|
|Staff‡||-1||d8 / d4||1||Bludgeon||-||30-40 yds||120yds||-|
* If the rate of fire is >1 you do not take the multiple action penalty
§ Rate of fire approximates 2/3, When reloading on the round after attacking add 5 to initiative, if it is over 10 then you act in the relevant segment of the next round (e.g. 12 = segment 2).
† Flasks and other thrown objects come under the grenade skill, however the range and other statistics are different due to the weight of the objects.
‡ Hurls grenade like objects. Due to the high arcs required it has a minimum range of 30 yards. 30 yards - 40 yards is counted as short range, there is no point blank range.
¥ Oil flasks need a round of preparation to light unless someone is throwing a lighted torch (which must also hit)
£May be dual wielded
Shooting at point blank or long range grants you combat advantage / disadvantage on the skill and damage rolls.
Daggers are primarily thrusting rather than slashing weapons.
A stiletto is a short knife or dagger, with a long slender blade of various designs. This dagger is a stabbing weapon, its narrow shape ending in a rigid pointed end allows it to penetrate deeply. It is not suited for cutting, even with edged examples.
It is popular as a tool against heavily armoured knights when in close combat. The thin blade can easily pass through most chainmail, or find its way through tiny gaps in a knight's armour. It ignores armour completely and causes wounds if the fighters have entered wrestling range.
Short swords are like the Roman Gladius, often without cross-guards and used solely as a stabbing weapon.
The decisive characteristic is the length of the grip. Indeed, some blades can be made into either a typical arming sword, or a typical bastard word, depending on the hilt that is attached to it. As a general rule, if, when handling the sword with both hands, the left hand does not fit on the grip but holds the pommel, it is considered an arming sword. If the left hand fits 2 fingers on the grip, it is a bastard sword. If both hands fit then it is a two handed sword. The grip will frequently have a distinctive 'bottle' shape to facilitate this. If the grip is as long as or longer than the wielder's lower arm (ell) it is a usually considered a two-handed sword proper.
Swords are designed to be used as slashing weapons throgh some will incorporate a degree of cut and thrust depending upon the blade.
Often called an Knights sword or Knightly sword and erroneously a long sword (which are actually bastard swords).
Typically used with a shield or buckler, the arming sword is the standard military sword of the knight. In the absence of a shield the empty (normally left) hand could be used for grabbing or grappling opponents. The arming sword was overall a light, versatile weapon capable of both cut and thrust combat, however it was largely ineffective against plate armour and even mail was excellent at deflecting the typical glancing blows that were dealt.
Sabres which have a slight curve are coverd by arming sword as they are still capable of both cut and thrust.
A lighter more advanced sword similar to the arming sword but depends upon fast movement of the blade rather than strength. More expensive than arming swords as they require better steel.
Scimitars are an oriental sword with a curved blade, cutlasses are more curved and with heavier blades. Both are designed as slashing weapons with little if any capability to thrust. Heavier than an arming sword they gain more impetus but without the thrust action are less versatile though the shorter length means they can typically be used in more confined areas.
Also known as the War sword, hand and a half sword or long sword. These swords can be used with either one or two hands, In one hand they act as a more powerful long sword but can only be used with a buckler not a medium or larger shield.
A bastard sword is any sword which it is possible to get two fingers of the second hand on the grip and the rest of the hand around the pommel. Bastard swords are often used one handedly until your shield breaks or you become too exhausted to use it with one hand. Exhausted characeters may not use a bastard sword in 1 hand.
A bastard sword may be used with 1 + 1/2 hands with a buckler but not any larger shield.
A two handed or great sword such as the Zweihänder or Claymore is one that it is possbile to fit both hands around the pommel. They are too heavy and cumbersome to be used single handedly by most people. They are strong enough to smash the head off polearms enabling attackers to fight through a formation of halberds to reach the weilders. You need to be at least 5'10" to wield a great sword.
Simple Hand weapons
When metal armour and chain mail protects against the blows of edged weapons and blocked arrows and other projectiles solid metal flanged maces and war hammers are able to inflict damage on well armoured knights, as the force of a blow from a mace is large enough to cause damage without penetrating the armour. Flanged maces have protruding edges of metal that allow it to dent or penetrate even the thickest armor.
The morning star is a weapon consisting of a spiked club resembling a mace, usually with a long spike extending straight from the top and many smaller spikes around the particle of the head.
War hammers were developed as a consequence of the ever more prevalent metal armors of the battlefields. The war hammer could deal blows of force to the target and by impact alone do damage without penetrating the armour. The spike end could be used for grappling the target's armour, reins, or shield, or could be turned in the direction of the blow to pierce heavier armours.
Axes & Pole arms
Axes and pole arms are related as most pole arms include an axe blade and a hook to help unseat riders or trip oppnents.
Traditionally this was a large bladed axe like a viking axe. The axe was superseeded by the sword until plate armour against which swords had little effect. The battleaxe in a changed form then made a reappearance.
Used by knights when fighting against other knights as it is designed as an anti-armour weapon. It consists of an heavy curved axe blade for cutting and crushing armour (as well as anything else!),and a normally a curved back spike useful for puncturing armour, as well as hooking shields, bits or armour, people etc.
In use it may either be treated as a slashing weapon or a piercing weapon by hitting with the spike.
Relatively long they are more effective when used with 2 hands. To be used one-handed the character must have a minimum strength of +2.
The spike end could be used for grappling the target's armour, reins, or shield, or could be turned in the direction of the blow to pierce even heavy armour. Against mounted opponents, the weapon could also be directed at the legs of the horse, toppling the armored foe to the ground where he could be more easily attacked.
Pole arms are all 2 handed weapons.
There are a lot of pole arm types and they all merge into one another sometimes only with subtle differences, on top of that the same weapons are often called by different names by different people. Therefore read these descriptions with a pinch of salt.
Given the almost infinite variety I've only included a limited selection that are obviously different such that they will have an effect on gameplay.
A simple weapon used as a training weapon for the other polearms.
Pollaxes (not pole axe, it's from old English poll or head ) are the favoured weapons of knights in combat against well armoured opponents as swords can not penetrate plate armour effectively.
Pollaxes are have a hammer on one side and an axe or spike on the other surmounted by a steel spike. In some cases the hammer is replaced with an axe blade. These are very similar to but longer than a battle-axe.
Pollaxes were developed as a consequence of the ever more prevalent metal armors of the battlefields. The hammer headed pollaxe could deal blows of tremendous force to the target and by impact alone do damage without penetrating the armour.
The glaive-guisarme is a glaive or cutting blade with with a guisarme or hook on the rear face to help unseat riders.
The halberd is an axe blade on the front with a hook on the rear for dismounting riders and a long spike on top.
Spears up to 8' long can be used in one hand and are ideal for keeping an opponent at range. When used with two hands they are significantly more powerful.
The flail is a medieval weapon made of one (or more) normally spiked weights attached to a handle with a hinge or chain.
- Unlike a sword or mace, it doesn't transfer vibrations from the impact to the wielder. This is a great advantage to a horseman, who can use his horse's speed to add momentum to an underarmed swing of the ball, but runs less of a risk of being unbalanced from his saddle.
- It is difficult to block with a shield or parry with a weapon because it can curve over and around shields or armor. It ignores 2 points of shield protection.
- The flail needs space to swing and can easily endanger the wielder's comrades.
- Controlling the flail is much more difficult than rigid weapons.
- If the flail was swung with enough force it can crack open plate armour and stun the wearer.
A three pronged military fork normally used with a net
Lances must be used on horseback when cantering or galloping, they are uncontrollable at a trot. The damage assumes you are cantering. Lances need the horse riding skill (you can't begin until you are 3rd level at riding) and then each riding level means you can train 2 levels of lance
2nd level lance at 3th level riding, (Cantering only and at disadvantage)
4th level lance at 4th level riding, (Cantering normally or galloping at disadvantage)
6th level lance at 5th level riding, (Galloping at -1 skill)
If you are galloping you gain an additional d12 in the damage pool.
Nets may be thrown to snare either a character or their weapon. If used against a weapon they are not normally released, the net is used to make the weapon useless. A successful hit entangles the creature / weapon. Weapon attacks are made at +3, attacks against smaller creatures gain +1 for every 10% height difference from the thrower.
Touch attacks where the attacker does not need to strike flesh.
Thrown weapons such as the spear gain 1 additional damage level for each speed category (jog, run, sprint, at faster than sprint you cannot effectively aim or do anything)
Short/horse bows and long bows are so similar that they count as one skill.
Previously known as a short bow. tink Turkish, Crimean-Tartar & Mongol bows.
Less than 4' long with a pull of under 50lbs.
Horse bows do not have the stopping power of a full long bow so operate at -2 damage levels.
They may be fired from horseback with the feat
Approximately 6' long with a pull of up to 100-150lbs and gain damage bonus normally for high strength.
There are many different arrow types, used for specialist purposes, the most common are. Only war arrows are used within the campaign.
- Square or needle bodkins give low damage but high penetration. (penetrate all armour types unless otherwise restricted)
- War arrows
- Use against non-metal armoured warriors, they cause more damage as they are larger and may break off in the body.
- Used for large animals, high stopping power but heavy and innacurate. They have little to no penetration capability against armour (excluding natural hide) or natural scales.
- They are cutting weapons at all ranges.
- Used for knocking birds and small animals in trees, without impaling them to a high branch. They are slashing at all ranges.
- Normal hunting. They are slashing at all ranges.
Light and heavy crossbows are counted as only one skill.
Crossbows are easier to use and thus require less training than hand bows as once cocked they do not take any effort to maintain the pull, additionally they may be aimed by resting on a handy surface.
If a crossbow is supported such as resting on a rock then an additional +1 to hit is gained.
As crossbows have a pull of 150 lb. or more they need assistance from a mechanism to cock them. This will vary from a simple foot stirrup for a pellet crossbow through a spanning lever for a light to a full windlass for a heavy crossbow. This affects the time to span the bow and hence reduces the number of shots per round.
A crossbow will have a pull of 250lbs for a light one up to 1000lbs for a heavy, whereas a longbow would have an average pull of 80-100lbs and up to a maximum of 150lbs.
A one handed crossbow. These can be cocked by hand. These use small bolts that only cause stamina points.
Crossbows with a pull of under 250lb. These require a foot stirrup and belt hook or a spanning lever to cock the weapon.
Crossbows with a pull of over 250lbs. These require a windlass to cock the weapon.
Max distance for a 1/2 lb flask = 90' + 10' x strength.