Elven Weapon Training

With the new weapon category of Finesse Weapons, I wonder if elves would be better served by changing the Elven Weapon Training trait to: "When you attack with a one-handed finesse weapon, a shortbow or a longbow with which you have proficiency..." I believe it would be much more flavorful than the ubiquitous long sword. The weapons in that category are currently the dagger, rapier, scimitar, short sword, and whip.


I have been trying to make a longsword-wielding elf fighter, but the lonsword just does not mesh with the rest. It feels like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. Even the katana fits better than the longsword.

Just a thought

After having just chosen my first test character to be an elven fighter, I agree. I was excited to make a melee fighter with higher Dex than Str, but I just couldn't make it work if I wanted to take advantage of the longsword boost.

Dwarven Weapon Proficiency applies to axes and hammers. Elven Weapon Proficiency should apply to finesse swords and bows. 
Couldn't agree more.

Another thing that I am seeing is that the elven war cleric is the only class/subclass that really benefits from longsword Elven Weapon Training. I do hope that elven clerics of Corellon Larethian have access to finesse weapons instead of martial ones.
Couldn't agree more.

Another thing that I am seeing is that the elven war cleric is the only class/subclass that really benefits from longsword Elven Weapon Training. I do hope that elven clerics of Corellon Larethian have access to finesse weapons instead of martial ones.


Fourthed.

WotC, take note!

Rapier is much more thematic.

If you really want pointy-eared Longsword users, bring back the Eladrin.
Ahh, so THIS is where I can add a sig. Remember: Killing an ancient God inside of a pyramid IS a Special Occasion, and thus, ladies should be dipping into their Special Occasions underwear drawer.
I think elven warriors ought to be using a whole range of slender blades. Short swords, rapiers, and maybe something like the elven thinblade. (I want to say the thinblade appeared in the "Races of the Wild" splatbook from 3e. It's probably a little esoteric to include in the core weapons list, but the point is that finesse weapons are more appropriate than longswords.) As for a two-handed option, the katana works alright, and it conveniently resembles those badass swords from The Lord of the Rings films (although I don't overall agree with having one single Japanese reference in the weapons table... since when do katanas appear in the Player's Handbook?)
Note that increased weapon die for Finesse Weapon on an Elf could be unbalanced. Such an Elf Fighter can dump Str altogether and still run around with a 1d8 one handed melee weapon and a 1d10 Longbow and high AC. He would be awesome in melee AND ranged combat. I am fine with an increase of the damage die for some Finesse Weapons for the Elf, but only in exchange for the damage die increase with Bows.

Elfs could be trained in Melee OR Ranged combat and choose at character creation if they want to improve Finesse Weapons or Ranged Weaponry. 

@Da-Ni: I do not find it that unbalanced, taking into account that a Hill Dwarf gets +1 step to the damage die of axes/hammers AND +1 step to HD. The weapons the Hill Dwarf has access to are already +1 step on the damage die compared to finesse weapons, and he can have both melee and missile axes/hammers.

The comparison between a Hill Dwarf fighter and a Wood Elf fighter would be something like this (assuming Str 18 for the Dwarf and Dex 18 for the Elf):

Hill Dwarf Fighter-> HP:11+d12/lvl, AC 16 (Chain), Maul 2d6+4 damage, Throwing Axe 1d8+4 damage.
Wood Elf Fighter-> HP:10+d10/lvl, AC 15 (Leather + Dex), Rapier 1d8+4 damage, Longbow 1d10+4 damage.

The Hill Dwarf can even change his weapon to a Warhammer (reducing damage to 1d10+4) and increase his AC by 1 with a shield.

If we now look at the Human fighter, we would see this (assuming Str 20 for the Human):

Human Fighter-> HP:10+d10/lvl, AC 16 (Chain), Maul 1d12+5 damage, Throwing Axe 1d6+5 damage.

The Halfling is a whole different ballgame, so I won't ellaborate, but I do think that a Rapier/Longbow wielding Wood Elf, if the rapier were cosidered for Elven Weapon Expertise, would be superior than the Dwarf and Human in ranged combat, but inferior in melee. I see all three of them roughly equal to each other. Not EXACTLY equal, mind you, but in about the same level of proficiency.

Just my 2 cents

I agree that the longsword part of the trait ends up being something that just doesn't work in the actual character building process.  What if the trait gave the character proficiency with these weapons?  That way you could have an elven wizard that could wield a longsword.  I don't think this would be unbalancing since you rarely want your wizard getting into melee combat.
I played a 3.5 wizard who would sometimes pull and use a longsword. I liked the option but I am by no means married to it.

I wholeheartedly support SOME form finesse weapon the Elven Weapon Training list, but I don't think it should be all of them.

Rapiers and Scimitarts. Why Scimitars? Valenar from Eberron would possible to make.
I agree that the longsword part of the trait ends up being something that just doesn't work in the actual character building process.  What if the trait gave the character proficiency with these weapons?  That way you could have an elven wizard that could wield a longsword.  I don't think this would be unbalancing since you rarely want your wizard getting into melee combat.



Proficiency isn't a far stretch for them.  It makes thematic sense.

Perhaps base the blade type on the subrace too (that would make the Drow conversion for x-bows very natural).

Drow - Longsword/Crossbows
High Elves - Longsword/Bows
Wood Elves - Rapiers/Bows

Maybe just my view on it, but this makes sense to me. 
[evil dm voice] Yesssss.. yess... give the wizards longswords... anything to encourage them to enter melee!
[evil dm voice] Yesssss.. yess... give the wizards longswords... anything to encourage them to enter melee!




Lol...   Then there's that.
I suspect that a feat will come along to let them use finesse with a longsword but it will be a trade off.  I agree, for now it's there for balance.
Correlon Larethain's favored weapon is the Longsword...

What bugs me more is that in my mind Elves are Archers... all of them... 
Correlon Larethain's favored weapon is the Longsword...



True, but this was set in stone way before the rapier became part of D&D...

Give the elves (and all other races) proficiency in their favoured weapons while we're at it.
I agree with Surrealistik here... Why so stingy with proficiencies? Racial proficiencies seem like a great way to add a bit more flexibility in character creation. To me it makes more sense then a damage bonus, which makes you try often WAY TO HARD to make use of a weapon you get a damage bonus for. The idea of granting proficiency just seems to fit the racial ability vibe better... I would save weapon type damage bonuses for fighter combat styles and the like... Not a racial ability...
I agree with Surrealistik here... Why so stingy with proficiencies? Racial proficiencies seem like a great way to add a bit more flexibility in character creation. To me it makes more sense then a damage bonus, which makes you try often WAY TO HARD to make use of a weapon you get a damage bonus for. The idea of granting proficiency just seems to fit the racial ability vibe better... I would save weapon type damage bonuses for fighter combat styles and the like... Not a racial ability...



I'll have to agree, just grant automatic proficiency in racial weapons, weapon type damage bonus just causes problems, and makes the player feel as if they are being forced to use the racial weapons.  Of course if the racial weapon damage bonus is removed then demihumans might have to be rebalanced with respect to humans.

and of course the fighter gains no benefit at all from it
Something i just thought of as a minor tweak , yet is still realistic.

You gain proficiency with the weapon types listed, if you would be proficient due to other means, you instead increase the damage die by one
Something i just thought of as a minor tweak , yet is still realistic.

You gain proficiency with the weapon types listed, if you would be proficient due to other means, you instead increase the damage die by one



I like it.
works mechanically and  realistically represents your expertise wit hthat weapon over others in your class not of that race
So, the +1 die size of the subraces isn't nearly as good as people are making it out to be.

If I treat human as baseline, a human can get an 18 in an attack stat (and +1 to secondary stats), while non-humans end up with a 16 in the attack stat (and +1 to one secondary stat) at level 1.

This results in the human having +1 to hit and +1 to damage over the non-human using the same weapon.

When the non-human uses a racially appropraite weapon (slings and daggers for halflings, longsword and longbow for elves, axes and hammers for dwarves), they get a die size bump.  This is worth about +1 to damage.

Which leaves the human with +1 to hit over the similar build elf, dwarf or halfling, and basically the same average damage.  (The human has 1 point less average damage on a crit).

...

You could even go so far as to give the elf a +1 die bump on the longsword, and the ability to use dex to attack or deal damage with it, and it wouldn't be overly strong.

A 16 dex fighter in leather has 14 base AC, while the fighter in chain has 16 base AC.  The leather fighter has 5' more move and lacks disadvantage on stealth.  I'm stilll not seeing the problem.

Now, by level 12 or so, the human will have capped their attack stat, and the demihuman can continue to invest in it.  But by that point, the +1 damage or base weapon die size seems to matter less.

On the third hand, if we start getting 2[W] style powers, then the demihuman die size could start helping more.  However, the +1 to hit that humans get will still be quite tempting.

With the new weapon category of Finesse Weapons, I wonder if elves would be better served by changing the Elven Weapon Training trait to: "When you attack with a one-handed finesse weapon, a shortbow or a longbow with which you have proficiency..." I believe it would be much more flavorful than the ubiquitous long sword. The weapons in that category are currently the dagger, rapier, scimitar, short sword, and whip.


I have been trying to make a longsword-wielding elf fighter, but the lonsword just does not mesh with the rest. It feels like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. Even the katana fits better than the longsword.

Just a thought



There is a Reason why the Elf has master y in longsword and that comes from books and the histroy of the game. Elves should not be katana masters that puts an entire oriental flavor on all elves.

The fix is simple.

Add the rule to let Elves use Longsword as a Finesse weapon, in addition to the normal benefit.
wel looking at the equipment list the katana bothers me, it is lighter then the longsword yet needs 2 hands to use.
also a katana is a bit to oriental for a phb equipment list to my taste.

suggestion:
replace the katana in the list with an elven blade,
descrption somthing about how they are simular to longswords but lighter and more elegant.
stats same as longsword with these changes weight reduced to 3 like the katana had, and as special that this weapon can be used as a finisse weapns by those posessing elven weapon training.
I just want to toss in that the current implimentation of the "racial" weapons penalizes players who aren't making racial stereotype characters.

Want a sword weilding Dwarf?  You do less damage than had you been a stereotype.

Want a hammer weilding Halfling?  Less damage for not being a stereotype.

Yes, I know there's no* direct penalty, but it effectly works that way.  4e did it well by giving proficiency, and even a small advantage with the weapons (at levels 1-10) if you were willing to spend a feat toward it, but in the end that advantage disappeared entirely. 

Players should be free to play against type and not be punished for it.

*EDIT:  Left out the "no" 
Stay Frosty! - Shado
I just want to toss in that the current implimentation of the "racial" weapons penalizes players who aren't making racial stereotype characters.

Want a sword weilding Dwarf?  You do less damage than had you been a stereotype.

Want a hammer weilding Halfling?  Less damage for not being a stereotype.

Yes, I know there's direct penalty, but it effectly works that way.  4e did it well by giving proficiency, and even a small advantage with the weapons (at levels 1-10) if you were willing to spend a feat toward it, but in the end that advantage disappeared entirely. 

Players should be free to play against type and not be punished for it.


I agree - one of my players wanted to play a dual wielder dwarf (sorceror), but he was disappointed that he lost the bonus to axes/hammers, and the RAW wouldn't allow him to duel wield eiher of those.
Something i just thought of as a minor tweak , yet is still realistic.

You gain proficiency with the weapon types listed, if you would be proficient due to other means, you instead increase the damage die by one


Good idea
Something i just thought of as a minor tweak , yet is still realistic.

You gain proficiency with the weapon types listed, if you would be proficient due to other means, you instead increase the damage die by one



Probably the most intelligent way to deal with this, and the way I'm dealing with it in my games.
You could just make longswords finesse weapons if you use them in two hands. Same stats as a katana. Katanas don't really make sense as a finesse weapon if longswords aren't, considering the similarity of their size, use and purpose.
You could just make longswords finesse weapons if you use them in two hands. Same stats as a katana. Katanas don't really make sense as a finesse weapon if longswords aren't, considering the similarity of their size, use and purpose.



Maybe make them finesse for 2 hands with a feat (that elves get for free with elven weapon training). Most creatures still wouldn't bother trying to use a katana as a finesse weapon except the odd human every now and again.
I'm not a fan of the racial weapons. It means nothing if you can't use the weapon and is a wasted bonus. If you can use the weapon then you pretty much 'have' to use the weapon or it's still a wasted bonus.

That's something that should be part of a feat or background.  


      
We'd prefer if elves treated longswords as finesse weapons (no increased damage die) - same effect as making rapiers one die larger, they keep their longsword affinity, and a typical elfen soldier would be very different from a typical dwarven soldier, not only from its equipment, but also from stat distribution and fighting style (more mobile, less damaging)
I agree Craith, Elves with Longsword use Dex or Str and do 1d10.
Elves have had bonuses or proficiency with longswords since 1st edition. I don't see any reason to change. 
My two copper.
Elves have had bonuses or proficiency with longswords since 1st edition. I don't see any reason to change. 


Just for the sake of the exercise, roll a dex-based elf fighter and give him a longsword. I have no problem with the CONCEPT of elves using longswords (as someone wrote earlier, it is the weapon of Corellon Larethian), but it does not meld well with the current mechanics of the playtest.

Two things I see that would fix things:

1. So as not to add any additional special rules, change bonus from longsword to rapier.
2. Add a special rule allowing elves to use longswords as finesse weapons.

I'd be happy with either. What I don't like is the fact that as things stand, you can't make a good dex elf fighter and get the racial  bonus... unless you have excellent strength too.

Just my 2 cents.

I think I'd agree allowing elves to use dex for longswords without applying the finesse keyword to them would keep a lid on balance issues.
I think I'd agree allowing elves to use dex for longswords without applying the finesse keyword to them would keep a lid on balance issues.


I would argue against it, but really it wouldn't change much. Halfling rogues get d8 shortswords as it is lol. So I guess I could go either way.
My two copper.
I think I'd agree allowing elves to use dex for longswords without applying the finesse keyword to them would keep a lid on balance issues.


I would argue against it, but really it wouldn't change much. Halfling rogues get d8 shortswords as it is lol. So I guess I could go either way.



Yeah I'm not overly happy with the short sword issue for halflings.  Daggers and slings I can get on board with.  I think the problem becomes halfling fighters would have no reason to use a short sword if a dagger does the same damage and that feels a bit limiting concept-wise.  It may depend on what benefits can be added to finesse weapons (like 2 weapon fighting).  I think I'd prefer halflings and elves to use dex for the long/short sword weapons without any of the benefits of finesse like 2 weapon fighting etc.

Still, if small characters were to get bonuses and penalties for size like in 3e (but a -1 penalty instead of a die reduction) I wonder how powerful the +1 AC and +1 attack would be in a bounded system?
You gain proficiency with the weapon types listed,if you would be proficient due to other means,you instead increase the damage die by one

I think that's a good way to do it. I do think elves should either be given the bonus to finesse weapons, or allowed to use Dex with longswords, too. I've always thought of elves as nimble and dexterous, so if the longsword stays, they should be able to use dex.
Isn't all of this solved by playing an elven STR based fighter instead of DEX based?

If you are playing DEX based, stick to finesse weapons.  Nobody's shoving a longsword into your hands.
Sign In to post comments