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Seth Rilea




Location: United States
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PostPosted: Sat 23 Feb, 2008 3:20 am    Post subject: Real weapons vs. D&D weapons         Reply with quote

This may not be appropriate for this forum at all, but I want people who know they're stuff instead of a bunch of people with names that vary on "Cloud" or "Sephiroth" and all trying to remake the Buster Sword or the Gunblade (which I do have to admit I have a few question about the possibility).

What I'm doing is trying to figure out how well real world weapons can crossover into the Dungeons & Dragons game world. My main focus right now is gathering weapons for a Stone Age setting (Using the 3.5 edition rules). There are already a lot of weapons available in a setting by the core rules, but I wanted to introduce weapons like the macahuitl, spear-Throwers, and boomerang (they have stats for it in the Complete Warrior, but I think they used the toy boomerangs as their reference). Another thing I was wondering about is, what weapons normally made of metal could be made from bone, stone, wood, leather, and other such items.

Some weapons I've been trying to work on are the different varieties of boomerangs, the yo-yo, and spear-throwers (the woomera and the atlatl). I was wondering what those old yo-yos (the ones used as weapons in the Philippines) looked like, but I can't find any info as all my searches invariably led to a site about replicas of atlatls. I read on Wikipedia that they were 5-pound stones attached to 20-foot lengths of string. Another thing I saw on Wikipedia is that boomerangs ranged in size from 10 centimeters (at smallest), to 2 meters (or more), and that there were different varieties (like Long Distance, Air Time, Non-Returning, and some not meant for throwing at all) but leave it to me to not find anything but the previously mentioned site after 4 hours of searching. The Complete Warrior's stats on the boomerang were the following (avert your eyes if you don't understand D&D).

Weapon: Boomerang
Wielding: Ranged (One-Handed)
Proficiency Group: Exotic (Simple if user is of a savage or primitive species)
Cost: 10 gp
Damage (Small): 1d3 Nonlethal
Damage (Medium): 1d4 Nonlethal
Critical Threat/Multiplier: 20/x2
Range Increment: 20 ft.
Weight: 2 lb.
Damage Type: Bludgeoning
Description: The Boomerang is a curved throwing stick that returns to it's thrower if it misses it's target. To catch a returning boomerang, the thrower must make an attack roll (as if her were throwing the boomerang) and hit AC 10. Failure indicates the boomerang lands in a randomly determined squares adjacent to the thrower (if the throw is proficient) or 1d4 squares away in a random direction (if not proficient).

I have a weapon list of weapons I think might be possible in a Stone Age setting, I haven't cleaned it up though so there are some weapons that may appear multiple times.

PHB: Unarmed Strike, Dagger, Punching Dagger, Club, Shortspear, Longspear, Quarterstaff, Spear, Dart, Javelin, Sling, Throwing Axe, Light Hammer, Handaxe, Sap, Battleaxe, Warhammer, Glaive, Greatclub, Guisarme, Longbow, Shortbow, Nunchaku, Siangham, Whip (they detail this as dealing nonlethal damage, but I've seen shows where it cuts deeply into the skin, so I don't know...), Bolas, Net, Shuriken
DMG: Blowgun
CAdv: Longstaff
CWar: Maul, Scourge, Greatspear, Double Hammer, Barbed Bolas, Boomerang (as stated previously, this needs to be worked on), Greater Blowgun, Greater Blowgun
OA: Blowgun, Tonfa, Kau Sin Ke, Three-Section Staff, Fukimi-Bari (Mouth Darts), Greater Blowgun

So...If anybody could help me, that'd be great. If this is the wrong place to be asking this sort of thing then I'm sorry. If you'd like to talk to me, I'll be online again tomorrow at 1500 Pacific time on all three of my instant message screen names.
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P. Cha




PostPosted: Sat 23 Feb, 2008 3:36 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Considering that the picture of a rapier in D&D is a cutlass and they say that a bastard sword weights 6 lbs...I have given up on D&D and realism. It's a game...the rules are there for game balance and fun and the sooner you realize this an ignore realim, the better you game will be.

Also there are rules already for stone age weapons in the arms and equipment guide. The altalt is in frostburn. And don't post rules outside of the SRD on other boards. You'll could get whoever runs the board in trouble for that.
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M. Eversberg II




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PostPosted: Sat 23 Feb, 2008 8:36 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hah, I made the mistake of founding my campus DnD club D:

Don't forget knives and daggers. You can make both from flint. I'd make stats, but I need to be out the door five minutes ago.

M.

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Anders Backlund




Location: Sweden
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PostPosted: Sat 23 Feb, 2008 10:50 am    Post subject: Re: Real weapons vs. D&D weapons         Reply with quote

Seth Rilea wrote:
This may not be appropriate for this forum at all, but I want people who know they're stuff instead of a bunch of people with names that vary on "Cloud" or "Sephiroth" and all trying to remake the Buster Sword or the Gunblade (which I do have to admit I have a few question about the possibility).


Something like this, perhaps:



Wink

(I don't mind discussing video game weapons myself. You just need to remember that there are different design objectives; swords in video games are oversized to make the details easier to see, look flashier, etc. That's why you tend to run into trouble when you want to recreate them in real life.)

The sword is an ode to the strife of mankind.

"This doesn't look easy... but I bet it is!"
-Homer Simpson.
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M. Eversberg II




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PostPosted: Sat 23 Feb, 2008 1:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Squalls Gunblade is the coolest looking fantasy weapon ever.

M.

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Anders Backlund




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PostPosted: Sat 23 Feb, 2008 1:23 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well, each to his own, I guess.

Me, I never quite got the gun part figured out. At least with Lightning's gunblade (FFXIII) you can actually shoot people. Wink

The sword is an ode to the strife of mankind.

"This doesn't look easy... but I bet it is!"
-Homer Simpson.
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Sat 23 Feb, 2008 1:42 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The combined gun/knife is not pure fantasy:



Please check out our Spotlight Article on Combination Weapons for more info.

Happy

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M. Eversberg II




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PostPosted: Sat 23 Feb, 2008 3:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Anders Backlund wrote:
Well, each to his own, I guess.

Me, I never quite got the gun part figured out. At least with Lightning's gunblade (FFXIII) you can actually shoot people. Wink


Well, it's function was weird. It wasn't so much a firearm as it was some sort of magic shell thing. Pulling the trigger apparently enhanced the blade with some sort of magic.

M.

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Jon H.





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PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb, 2008 1:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

M. Eversberg II wrote:
Anders Backlund wrote:
Well, each to his own, I guess.

Me, I never quite got the gun part figured out. At least with Lightning's gunblade (FFXIII) you can actually shoot people. Wink


Well, it's function was weird. It wasn't so much a firearm as it was some sort of magic shell thing. Pulling the trigger apparently enhanced the blade with some sort of magic.

M.


As a FF geek since the series began, I feel obligated to chime in on this one. The gunblades in FFVIII didn't have any mystical properties, nor did any of the main characters' weapons. Gunblades basically fired a kind of blank ammunition. One had to time the trigger pull to coincide with the moment a strike connects. The resulting vibration added extra damage to an attack.

Would this have any application in the real world? Probably not, but there it is.

Now that I've embarrassed myself with this post, I'll go back to lurking. Razz
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Gordon Clark




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PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb, 2008 6:14 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

From my very long ago - 25 years plus - D&D past, I think I remember that the weight is a measure of the weapons bulkyness as well as mass, since a character can only carry so much "weight". So a 12 oz boomrang might be rated at 2 lbs because it is somewhat hard to carry. Same with a very long swords, or a spear, etc.

As with all of these things, it is a game, and they were trying to make it work with some relation to reality. In my experience there is a happy medium between reality and playabilty. D&D did a decent job of fiding a balance.

Gordon
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Anders Backlund




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PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb, 2008 8:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jon H. wrote:

As a FF geek since the series began, I feel obligated to chime in on this one. The gunblades in FFVIII didn't have any mystical properties, nor did any of the main characters' weapons. Gunblades basically fired a kind of blank ammunition. One had to time the trigger pull to coincide with the moment a strike connects. The resulting vibration added extra damage to an attack.

Would this have any application in the real world? Probably not, but there it is.

Now that I've embarrassed myself with this post, I'll go back to lurking. Razz


I knew pulling the trigger caused some kind of explosive increase of damage within the blade, but this is the first explanation of it I've heard that actually makes a bit of sense. Thanks. Happy

The sword is an ode to the strife of mankind.

"This doesn't look easy... but I bet it is!"
-Homer Simpson.
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P. Cha




PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb, 2008 11:45 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gordon Clark wrote:
From my very long ago - 25 years plus - D&D past, I think I remember that the weight is a measure of the weapons bulkyness as well as mass, since a character can only carry so much "weight". So a 12 oz boomrang might be rated at 2 lbs because it is somewhat hard to carry. Same with a very long swords, or a spear, etc.

As with all of these things, it is a game, and they were trying to make it work with some relation to reality. In my experience there is a happy medium between reality and playabilty. D&D did a decent job of fiding a balance.

Gordon


While this was true of the older rule set, this isn't true of the current rule set. They actually think a bastard sword weights 6 lbs and a cutlass is a rapier. They also think a falchion is a two handed weapon.... So yes basically the current game designers are kinda clueless unfortunately...The current version has some serious game balance issues as well with the next version not looking so good. The common belief by players and DMs who do optimize and is that the druid is too good. The game designers think druids are too weak. The current batch of game designers are very clueless unfortunately.
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M. Eversberg II




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PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb, 2008 12:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I am to be DMing for my first (serious) time for my clubs short foray into DnD. I had considered redoing the weight values, but I'm unsure.

Anyways, this is more of a discussion for SFI or something.

M.

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Seth Rilea




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PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb, 2008 2:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

P. Cha wrote:
Gordon Clark wrote:
From my very long ago - 25 years plus - D&D past, I think I remember that the weight is a measure of the weapons bulkyness as well as mass, since a character can only carry so much "weight". So a 12 oz boomrang might be rated at 2 lbs because it is somewhat hard to carry. Same with a very long swords, or a spear, etc.

As with all of these things, it is a game, and they were trying to make it work with some relation to reality. In my experience there is a happy medium between reality and playabilty. D&D did a decent job of fiding a balance.

Gordon


While this was true of the older rule set, this isn't true of the current rule set. They actually think a bastard sword weights 6 lbs and a cutlass is a rapier. They also think a falchion is a two handed weapon.... So yes basically the current game designers are kinda clueless unfortunately...The current version has some serious game balance issues as well with the next version not looking so good. The common belief by players and DMs who do optimize and is that the druid is too good. The game designers think druids are too weak. The current batch of game designers are very clueless unfortunately.


Actually, I've got some info that disbands the "Unbalanced" argument, I didn't write it though. [URL="http://www.thealexandrian.net/archive/archive2007-03.html"]D&D: Calibrating Your Expectations[/URL]
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Jon H.





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PostPosted: Sun 24 Feb, 2008 9:29 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Anders Backlund wrote:
I knew pulling the trigger caused some kind of explosive increase of damage within the blade, but this is the first explanation of it I've heard that actually makes a bit of sense. Thanks. Happy


Heh. You're quite welcome.

As to the original topic, the past couple posters are right. There are some serious balance issues in the latest versions of D&D. I don't play the game personally (I'm more of a V:tM guy), but my friend Adam has complained to me about this. I don't know why such games can't get things at least a little bit right. Seems each new iteration just gets sloppier in the research department when it should be the other way around.

Oh well. Worried
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Darryl Aoki





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PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb, 2008 7:25 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The D&D "weight" of an object is, in at least one rulebook, stated to take into account the bulk of an object as well as its weight, which is why a longsword "weighs" 8 lbs, if I recall correctly. It's a shorthand so you don't have to take multiple types of encumbrance into account.

Mind you, none of this explains how my scout was able to carry an arbalest (a really heavy crossbow), a heavy crossbow, a composite longbow, a rapier, and a mace so that they were all ready at hand, and all without massive penalties to sneaking around. The mental image of this is bloody amusing though.

Back to the original question: I'd think it'd be possible to make a majority of the pointy non-sword weapons in the PHB out of bone or stone, but they ought to be somewhat less durable than their metal counterparts, and maybe do a little less damage (maybe.) On the plus side, it ought to be relatively easy to repair or replace said weapons when (not if) they break. Bludgeoning/crushing weapons ought not to lose that much durability, though.
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James Barker




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PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb, 2008 7:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I was recently rereading the dragonlance novels and laughed when in the second book they wrote halburk where they meant halberd; attacking people with a maille shirt on a 10 foot pole did not make much since at first Laughing Out Loud
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Otto Karl




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PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb, 2008 12:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:
My main focus right now is gathering weapons for a Stone Age setting (Using the 3.5 edition rules). There are already a lot of weapons available in a setting by the core rules, but I wanted to introduce weapons like the macahuitl, spear-Throwers, and boomerang (they have stats for it in the Complete Warrior, but I think they used the toy boomerangs as their reference). Another thing I was wondering about is, what weapons normally made of metal could be made from bone, stone, wood, leather, and other such items.


There is, indeed, a stone sword: it was called a Macuáhuitl and were used by the ancient Aztecs as the principal weapon of the heavy infantry. Macuáhuitl where actually 70 to 80 cm. sticks whit 6 to 8 obsidian blades on both sides, and where used primarily as a cutting sword. By the way, obsidian blades are very sharp: it was common to the Egyptian surgeons to use a obsidian blade in a surgical procedure Eek!, in fact, such a blade is sharper than a steel one because the top area of the obsidian blade edge is narrower than the steel one. We know that is true because we have electron microscopes and STMs.
Even well, Aztecs were not able to defeat the Spanish invaders not only because their odd sharp blades where nor though enough to withstand the heavy beating on the armors, but because the Spanish carried many strange diseases to America whit themselves. That fact weakened the native armies so much.
There was also a smaller version of the Macuáhuitl, called a Macuahuilzoctli: this one were about 50 cm. long and had only 3 to 5 blades per side. It can be compared to a short sword.
Important note: those weapons were not able to stab an enemy in any way, so many people say they were not actually swords.
Note that the center of percussion were aggressively carried to the point
P.D.: Such weapons were still in use when the Spaniards went to America. It was the renaissance at those times, so I can not tell if it was stone age in America.



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Benjamin H. Abbott




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PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb, 2008 1:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

According to Garcilaso de la Vega, the Amerindians in Florida had all types of weapons known to Spanish save the crossbow and gun. This includes pikes (picas), spears (lancas), partisans (partefanas), and two-handed swords (montante). However, they preferred bows and arrows.
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Anders Backlund




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PostPosted: Mon 25 Feb, 2008 1:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Actually, obsidian is a type of volcanic glass. Hence it's very hard, but not at all strong. It is true obsidian blades are sharper then steel but they were also extremely fragile. In fact, I belive the Aztec warrior would have carried extra blades to replace those that would be broken in battle.
The sword is an ode to the strife of mankind.

"This doesn't look easy... but I bet it is!"
-Homer Simpson.
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