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Old 08-10-2018, 10:59 AM   #1
martinl
 
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Default Staff Spears, Spear Staffs, and Associated Baggage

If you add a pointy metal bit to the end of a combat staff, it seems to me that you could still use it as a staff. The balance would be a little off, and cupping the pointy end in your palm is no longer an option, but it seems to me a skilled staff user would not be seriously inconvenienced.

Similarly, if someone grabbed a normal spear of appropriate length it seems like a serviceable improvised staff. A combat spear already needs a stout shaft.

What kind of penalties are appropriate here? How would they interact with stuff like weapon mastery, weapon bond, staff parry bonus, etc?

My gut feeling is around here:
1. A staff with a spear head requires a bit of time to get used to it, and costs +4 CF for a spear. Your staff thrust becomes impaling. Otherwise it works as a staff or a spear depending on what skill you are using. (Note there is a good default.)
2. A spear specifically beefed up to work as a staff is the same as 1.
3. A staff with the tip whittled into a point is as above but no tip slashes, damage is -1, and AD is 0.5.
4. A normal melee combat spear can be used as a pretty good improvised staff if it is the right length. -1 to effective staff skill.
5. A regular staff with a pointy bit slapped on the end in a less skilled manner is at -1 to both spear and staff uses.

Weapon master, etc. apply according to the skill you are using. Weapon bond is per weapon. Weapon mods that require metal or an edge/point only apply to the spear part.

Thoughts?
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Old 08-10-2018, 11:40 AM   #2
Sam Baughn
 
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Default Re: Staff Spears, Spear Staffs, and Associated Baggage

The text for Form Mastery (Martial Arts, p. 50) and Switching Weapon Skills (ibid. p. 104) seems to say that spears can be wielded as staves with no penalty.

As you have probably noticed, that is a very powerful option if you have form mastery, since it basically allows you to have a staff with all the usual benefits plus being able to stab. I think the problem is essentially that Staff skill and it's +2 to parry is a little overpowered and unrealistic. Dropping it to a normal (or possibly fencing) parry and using the rules from Martial Arts for Defensive Grip (p. 111) and Parrying With Two-Handed Weapons (p. 123) would keep them reasonably good while not raising awkward issues like this.
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Old 08-10-2018, 12:02 PM   #3
chandley
 
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Default Re: Staff Spears, Spear Staffs, and Associated Baggage

To clarify both the RAW and Sam's response:

Spears and Staves default to each other at -2 to skill. If you have the spear skill, you may use it _as a staff_ at Spear-2. If you have the staff skill, you may use a spear as a staff at full skill, or as a spear at Staff-2.

You can improve your default to full skill (and it will then stay that way as your primary skill improves) for, ultimately, 8 points. This lets you use a spear at full skill as either a spear or a staff.

Form Mastery is a perk in Martial Arts (p. 50, as Sam specifies). It lets you switch between the Staff and Spear skills (on a spear or staff) as a free action once per turn. You still need to deal with the -2 default however.

The benefits of using a Spear as a Staff is the +2 to parry most staff skill weapons get (though not, notably, Dueling Polearms, normal Polearms, Long Staff, etc...)

There is a long thread out there on this forum on the various benefits of a Spear, and the various ways it can be used, I recommend a search for it.
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Old 08-10-2018, 12:16 PM   #4
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Default Re: Staff Spears, Spear Staffs, and Associated Baggage

Quote:
Originally Posted by chandley View Post
The benefits of using a Spear as a Staff is the +2 to parry most staff skill weapons get (though not, notably, Dueling Polearms, normal Polearms, Long Staff, etc...)
Long Staff does get the +2. "normal Polearms" don't have a Staff skill statline.
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Old 08-10-2018, 12:41 PM   #5
evileeyore
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Default Re: Staff Spears, Spear Staffs, and Associated Baggage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
"normal Polearms" don't have a Staff skill statline.
Which I've always felt was wrong. At least for the Dueling versions of pole arms.
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Old 08-10-2018, 12:45 PM   #6
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Default Re: Staff Spears, Spear Staffs, and Associated Baggage

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Originally Posted by evileeyore View Post
Which I've always felt was wrong. At least for the Dueling versions of pole arms.
...Dueling polearms do have such a line. Normal polearms, in chandley's post, were in distinction to dueling polearms.
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Old 08-10-2018, 02:08 PM   #7
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Default Re: Staff Spears, Spear Staffs, and Associated Baggage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
...Dueling polearms do have such a line. Normal polearms, in chandley's post, were in distinction to dueling polearms.
Sorry, I meant "and get a +2". Or at least a lessening of "0U" to "0" (and the "0" to a "+2").

And there is no entry for Dueling Glaive, which is the one I'm actually trained in... which is the only one I'm familiar with and learned 'staff moves' for.

I've never understood why ataves get that distinction, there is nothing inherent in them that is not likewise inherent in a spear, dueling glaive, naginata, etc.


I've long been thinking about making Staff skill a Fencing skill and dropping the +2 that staves get.
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Old 08-10-2018, 06:45 PM   #8
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Default Re: Staff Spears, Spear Staffs, and Associated Baggage

Quote:
Originally Posted by evileeyore View Post
Sorry, I meant "and get a +2". Or at least a lessening of "0U" to "0" (and the "0" to a "+2").

And there is no entry for Dueling Glaive, which is the one I'm actually trained in... which is the only one I'm familiar with and learned 'staff moves' for.

I've never understood why ataves get that distinction, there is nothing inherent in them that is not likewise inherent in a spear, dueling glaive, naginata, etc.


I've long been thinking about making Staff skill a Fencing skill and dropping the +2 that staves get.
I'd give Naginata and Dueling Glaives at least +1 to Parry when used with the Staff skill, especially if Heavy Spears get a +2.

I'd probably give all Dueling Polearms +1 and the Naginata and Dueling Glaives (and Bills) +2, in fact, giving a good reason for the real-world use of glaives and bills over halberds and pollaxes in all roles except where greater armour penetration was desired.

Then again, I'm in favour of the Forest Bill having vantage against all manner of weapons whatsoever.
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Last edited by Icelander; 08-10-2018 at 06:53 PM.
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