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Old 06-04-2023, 11:45 PM   #31
Pursuivant
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Default Re: [Low-Tech/Basic] Pick: War Club or Pickaxe

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blind Mapmaker View Post
Now for the axe vs. adze head. I thank DanHoward for making us look again since this is really a bit of fuzzy language issue. I'll keep the term pickaxe because it's closest to German (Spitzhacke / Pickel).
It appears that in German, as in English, there is a lot of variation in what the terms Pickaxe (Spitzhacke/Kreuzhacke) and Mattock (Hacke) actually mean. Pre-20th century farmers and miners probably had much more precise terminology.

Messing around with Wikipedia and search engine image searches I found the civilian precursor of the warhammer, the Bergmannspickel (miner's pick).

For clarification, this is the tool I've spent way too much time swinging. It's very good at turning slabs of concrete into rubble, but not something I'd want to take into battle.

By comparison, a pickaxe with a lighter head (2.5 lbs/1 kg) would be a much handier weapon. Call it the difference between a Pickaxe and a Heavy Pickaxe.
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Old 06-05-2023, 07:01 AM   #32
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Default Re: [Low-Tech/Basic] Pick: War Club or Pickaxe

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Originally Posted by Pursuivant View Post
Messing around with Wikipedia and search engine image searches I found the civilian precursor of the warhammer, the Bergmannspickel (miner's pick).
There's also the dolabra, a Roman-era multi-purpose entrenching tool, pickaxe, infantry weapon, and religious ritual tool: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolabra
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Old 06-05-2023, 01:16 PM   #33
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Default Re: [Low-Tech/Basic] Pick: War Club or Pickaxe

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Originally Posted by mburr0003 View Post
Consider this yoinked.
Yoink away. Predictable would be a good trait to have in an actual weapon design system, but I wouldn't know where to start pricing it.

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Originally Posted by mburr0003 View Post
I might not call it cutting damage though. The adze head on a mattock could be sharpened, but it usually won't be... it might be more proper to treat it as blunt with a +1 or +2 damage over a comparably heavy axe head.
* That'd be the pick-adze combo. For an actual axe head, go with cutting, for the "tiller" option...
Unfortunately, there are no numbers for axe head weight in GURPS, though the 5 pound head on Pursuivant's Mattock should get us into the lower end of the Great Axe, call it -1 damage if cutting. I really wouldn't want to up it for crushing. Same as Great Axe would, but crushing work for me, but the Maul is certainly way heaver and only does only +1 damage.

I'd still feel better with cutting, though. Ideally there would be some blunt-narrow-edge damage type for a x 1.25 damage modifier, but let's not go there. Great Axe damage -2 cutting is a little underwhelming for a two-handed weapon, though. I guess Great Axe damage -1 cut if it's been professionally sharpened and the same in cr if it hasn't?

I'm not touching that tiller option. I thoroughly confused now and happy to know I got a couple of these sorted out. Jeez, it's starting to glaive-guisarme in my head...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pursuivant View Post
It appears that in German, as in English, there is a lot of variation in what the terms Pickaxe (Spitzhacke/Kreuzhacke) and Mattock (Hacke) actually mean. Pre-20th century farmers and miners probably had much more precise terminology.
Sure, but if you look in actual dictionaries the Spitzhacke is always Pickaxe, the Kreuzhacke is never featured and the Hackbe becomes the hoe. (Okay, apparently it gets weirder if one goes to Austrian, but they're our Australians kind of, so that is to be expected).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pursuivant View Post
Messing around with Wikipedia and search engine image searches I found the civilian precursor of the warhammer, the Bergmannspickel (miner's pick).
That thing is featured in the article on "Keilhaue" and I translated it as a miner's pick independently of the article you found.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pursuivant View Post
For clarification, this is the tool I've spent way too much time swinging. It's very good at turning slabs of concrete into rubble, but not something I'd want to take into battle.

By comparison, a pickaxe with a lighter head (2.5 lbs/1 kg) would be a much handier weapon. Call it the difference between a Pickaxe and a Heavy Pickaxe.
That is good to know. I guess it it would not handle too differently with an axe blade, though. It is pretty dang top-heavy for sure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone View Post
There's also the dolabra, a Roman-era multi-purpose entrenching tool, pickaxe, infantry weapon, and religious ritual tool: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolabra
German Wiki has a nice close-up of archaeological finds of dolabrae heads. I guess that's the pickaxe minus pick - or axe-adze, though it's not completely the same. Again this makes me think that crushing isn't quite what you're looking at, when talking adze damage.

Need to think on this a bit more.
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Old 06-05-2023, 06:56 PM   #34
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Default Re: [Low-Tech/Basic] Pick: War Club or Pickaxe

A cheap mattock these days is cast rather than drop-forged. It makes them brittle - I've broken one and shattered another (a piece went into my calf). You can't really tell whether they are cast or forged until they are broken - where you can see the crystalline structure of the cast items.
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Old 06-05-2023, 08:15 PM   #35
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Default Re: [Low-Tech/Basic] Pick: War Club or Pickaxe

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Originally Posted by Blind Mapmaker View Post
I guess that's the pickaxe minus pick - or axe-adze, though it's not completely the same.
It looks like another example of how names get applied somewhat loosely to weapons and weapon-like things. There's also a dolabra writeup on (for what it's worth) the Deadliest Warrior Wiki, proclaiming the dolabra to be a pick.

Well, whatever sort of axe/adze/pick/hammer combo weapon head falls under a given name, it's nice that GURPS will handle it.

While we're talking pick stuff:

1) I've poked around at creating a more universal setup for hand weapons vs hand weapon-like tools (maces vs hammers, warhammers vs pickaxes, etc.), but have nothing exciting to report. Like many commenters here, I'm still pondering what exactly defines the differences.

(The model I'm leaning toward: Tools like logging axes and pickaxes are generally very robust – they "attack" trees, stone, etc., not thin armor and flesh – and are heavier than weapon counterparts. More to the point, weapons stick to reasonable minimum ST for combat nimbleness, whereas tools typically have minimum ST greater than user ST. That high minimum ST isn't a problem at the slower, regular pace of labor, but isn't suited to the frantic needs of combat. That's what currently seems sensible to me, anyway.)

2) Should anyone want 'em, I recently added light and heavy versions of the one-handed melee pick on my page of new weapons. Oh, and throwing versions of the same, too. (Was a throwing pick ever a thing? Probably not. But why let that stop us? : )
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Old 06-09-2023, 02:30 AM   #36
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Default Re: [Low-Tech/Basic] Pick: War Club or Pickaxe

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanHoward View Post
A cheap mattock these days is cast rather than drop-forged. It makes them brittle - I've broken one and shattered another (a piece went into my calf). You can't really tell whether they are cast or forged until they are broken - where you can see the crystalline structure of the cast items.
Ouch, that does not sound good. Seems like there are plenty of opportunities for cheap quality (materials) tools from TL 5 onwards.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone View Post
It looks like another example of how names get applied somewhat loosely to weapons and weapon-like things. There's also a dolabra writeup on (for what it's worth) the Deadliest Warrior Wiki, proclaiming the dolabra to be a pick.
Not sure where that image on Deadliest Warrior is from, but it does look a bit wonky and not at all like the dolabrae I saw so far. Sort of pick-like, but then again not.

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Originally Posted by tbone View Post
Well, whatever sort of axe/adze/pick/hammer combo weapon head falls under a given name, it's nice that GURPS will handle it.

While we're talking pick stuff:

1) I've poked around at creating a more universal setup for hand weapons vs hand weapon-like tools (maces vs hammers, warhammers vs pickaxes, etc.), but have nothing exciting to report. Like many commenters here, I'm still pondering what exactly defines the differences.

(The model I'm leaning toward: Tools like logging axes and pickaxes are generally very robust they "attack" trees, stone, etc., not thin armor and flesh and are heavier than weapon counterparts. More to the point, weapons stick to reasonable minimum ST for combat nimbleness, whereas tools typically have minimum ST greater than user ST. That high minimum ST isn't a problem at the slower, regular pace of labor, but isn't suited to the frantic needs of combat. That's what currently seems sensible to me, anyway.)
I'd be very interested in seeing your setup if when it's finished. I think the model of extra minimum ST is a very sensible way of doing this without needing extra rules. raising the two-handed pick to ST 14 means that the grunts of the slave rebellion will have a disadvantage, while the big burly hero-types don't. It might go against the grain of the usual tropes that the troops quickly want to upgrade their weapons while the leader is fine with what they have, but it makes for a good and sensible narrative.

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Originally Posted by tbone View Post
2) Should anyone want 'em, I recently added light and heavy versions of the one-handed melee pick on my page of new weapons. Oh, and throwing versions of the same, too. (Was a throwing pick ever a thing? Probably not. But why let that stop us? : )
Those are perfectly good write-ups for DFRPG, but I disagree with the throwing pick. I still think that LTC2's +$10 to make weapon types that are sometimes throwable into throwing weapons is cheap, but in this case I'd really think the +9 CF from that book is appropriate. Not that I'd use it in DFRPG, but at least +3 CF seems better for a silly, but not that ineffective weapon.
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Old 06-09-2023, 10:20 AM   #37
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Default Re: [Low-Tech/Basic] Pick: War Club or Pickaxe

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Originally Posted by DanHoward View Post
A cheap mattock these days is cast rather than drop-forged.
If found that you get exactly what you pay for with tools. Low-end tools of any sort, like those inflicted on unwary customers by outfits like Horrible Fright in the U.S., are usually accidents or landfill waiting to happen.

The drawback of TL6+ metallurgy is that in addition to getting Fine-Quality weapons/hand tools for Good-Quality prices, you can also get Good-Quality tools for Cheap-Quality prices and Cheap-Quality tools for "too good to be true" prices. Merchants at big box stores have a mix of the latter two classes of tools, with just a few dollars separating "OK for light use" from "not worth owning at any price."
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Old 06-09-2023, 10:35 AM   #38
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Default Re: [Low-Tech/Basic] Pick: War Club or Pickaxe

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Originally Posted by Blind Mapmaker View Post
Those are perfectly good write-ups for DFRPG, but I disagree with the throwing pick. I still think that LTC2's +$10 to make weapon types that are sometimes throwable into throwing weapons is cheap, but in this case I'd really think the +9 CF from that book is appropriate. Not that I'd use it in DFRPG, but at least +3 CF seems better for a silly, but not that ineffective weapon.
Nothing there that I can argue against. I'm simply running with the idea that, as picks use the same melee skill as axes and maces, they must have similar balance, and would presumably be as throwable as axes and maces.

(And that simple guess might be cinematic, in which case a substantial CF would be better, as you suggest.)
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