Why should someone use a bastard sword?

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Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby nakraal » Sat Sep 29, 2012 6:28 am

Comparing a bastard to a longsword there are 2 differences:

1. The bastard sword can be used two hand with a +1 damage, but
2. a bastard would reduce a characters long blade specialty by 1B whenever its used.

Isn't that kind of a big trade off?
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Kajani » Sat Sep 29, 2012 7:04 am

From that point of view you could also ask why should anyone use another one-hand-weapon than a sword (mace, axe etc. are all not so good - they are only cheaper). The +1 damage is not without benefit - if you are already a good fighter you have chances to have more benefit from that (on the other hand, you could use neither shield nor dagger as long as you use both hands).
I would say a bastard sword is also a question of style and personal appearance, not only from benefits or drawbacks, and similar it is with other weapons which are not the best.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Sat Sep 29, 2012 7:19 am

Historically you used it for its versatility.
You could use it as an one-handed sword but if you absolutly needed the extra punch of a two-handed overhead swing, you could do that too.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Saturno » Sat Sep 29, 2012 3:20 pm

I simply ignore completely these penalties by weapon if the character has the correct speciality. I really did not see any reason to punish a PC for using a weapon he is trained to use. If I have Fighting 3 (1B Long Blade) why should I lost this bonus dice?
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Carriker » Sat Sep 29, 2012 4:23 pm

Saturno wrote:I simply ignore completely these penalties by weapon if the character has the correct speciality. I really did not see any reason to punish a PC for using a weapon he is trained to use. If I have Fighting 3 (1B Long Blade) why should I lost this bonus dice?

Because no matter how skilled you are, a bastard sword is always harder to wield properly than a longsword is. There is no point in time, no matter how skilled you become, where they are the same thing to wield.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby stew31r » Sat Sep 29, 2012 5:20 pm

Being that I do reenactment combat and have used both, I would disagree with you Carriker. They are different swords in size, yes. But a trained bastard sword fighter and a trained longsword fighter use the same techniques, defenses, and strikes. One just has a longer grip to work with, that in no way, shape, or form slows down the sword. Too many times in gaming,IMHO, the bastard sword gets confused with the greatsword in its size, weight, and use and the longsword gets confused with the broadsword in the same manner. When in reality, a bastard sword is a longsword with a grip that's about four to five inches longer. Both are wielded two handed without a shield and the bastard sword is simply an evolution of the longsword to capitalize on the two handed fighting style that came about with the rise of plate armor, the advent of the longsword for defeating plate and mail and full plate, and the near absolute disuse of the shield that came from not needing it because of the newer, heavier armor and the need to wield a sword two handed to generate the power to defeat said armor.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby coldwind » Sat Sep 29, 2012 5:26 pm

Carriker wrote:
Saturno wrote:I simply ignore completely these penalties by weapon if the character has the correct speciality. I really did not see any reason to punish a PC for using a weapon he is trained to use. If I have Fighting 3 (1B Long Blade) why should I lost this bonus dice?

Because no matter how skilled you are, a bastard sword is always harder to wield properly than a longsword is. There is no point in time, no matter how skilled you become, where they are the same thing to wield.


Interestingly, if you're mounted, the bastard sword becomes better than, because of the bonus dice you get cover up the lost one for training.

Also, technically, Weapon Savants are skilled enough that they are "the same thing to wield" :)
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Carriker » Sat Sep 29, 2012 8:48 pm

stew31r wrote:Too many times in gaming,IMHO, the bastard sword gets confused with the greatsword in its size, weight, and use and the longsword gets confused with the broadsword in the same manner. When in reality, a bastard sword is a longsword with a grip that's about four to five inches longer.


Be that as it may, it's clear from his descriptions that Martin makes the same "mistake" - and its his setting we're reflecting, not reenactment society fighting.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby stew31r » Sun Sep 30, 2012 7:54 am

Which is ultimately a good thing, cause I'd hate to see the rules required for wrestling a guy to the ground and then killing him by beating his helm's visor in with the pommel of your sword. Sometimes knowing how it was really done is more of a pain than it's worth.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby DaimosofRedstone » Sun Sep 30, 2012 9:42 am

stew31r wrote:Which is ultimately a good thing, cause I'd hate to see the rules required for wrestling a guy to the ground and then killing him by beating his helm's visor in with the pommel of your sword. Sometimes knowing how it was really done is more of a pain than it's worth.

Oh, we DO have rules for that already.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Zorbeltuss » Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:32 am

nakraal wrote:Comparing a bastard to a longsword there are 2 differences:

1. The bastard sword can be used two hand with a +1 damage, but
2. a bastard would reduce a characters long blade specialty by 1B whenever its used.

Isn't that kind of a big trade off?


Overall? Aye.

But mostly because the game makes the following melee combat styles prevalent:
1. Shield for defense combined with a one-handed weapon.
2. Weapon with high damage value for offense (typically two-handed and powerful)
3. Acrobatic Defense and other Fencing related benefits.

1&2 can be combined, typically by using lance from horseback, though massive benefit coupled with a greatsword works wonders (one of my characters uses greatsword from horseback because of it, heh).

Though if your shield gets hacked into splinters, can't remember off-hand if that's possible as per the rules, though it did happen in the books, or you're caught unawares or in a "non-shield area", then bastard sword wins. But that's a bit too situational for my taste.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Flagg » Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:46 am

Zorbeltuss wrote:Though if your shield gets hacked into splinters, can't remember off-hand if that's possible as per the rules, though it did happen in the books, or you're caught unawares or in a "non-shield area", then bastard sword wins.


A weapon with the Shattering quality eats through shields, especially when and if enhanced by Bludgeon Fighter I.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby ceranko » Sun Sep 30, 2012 8:49 pm

That sounds like a stupid carry over from D&D. You had to have an exotic weapon specialty to use it without taking a negative bonus to hit, retarded. The point is if its ok for a longsword and ok for a two handed sword why is the bastard sword so damn different?! Its a game already. Ive never seen any other weapon so disparaged in my life as the bastard sword. OK it has a longer handle so you can grip it with two hands if you want for more power, who cares?! It makes no difference in the difficulty of wielding the weapon. Nuff said.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Paedrig » Mon Oct 01, 2012 6:42 am

I would agree with you. Perhaps you should use your own home rule. Use the normal stats of the bastard sword but minus the 1b Training. I do not think that it became inbalanced by this (given the fact that it is 200 ss more costly than the long sword and most time you would use an additional shield anyway and do not handle it with two hands if you are clever >:) )

By the way one rpg system where one-and-a-half swords are not so bad treated is Vampire (the old wordl) i think.
And in the german rpg system "das Schwarze Auge" (Dark Eye?) thus type of swords are a own category beside one handed swords and two anded blades. Dealing more damage than one handed blades (and with greater reach) and with more possible manouvers than two handed blades, but not with not so much damage than Greatswords...
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Legate » Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:20 pm

I always felt that the penalty should be applied to a user only if he had a skill level equal or lower to the penalty (ie for the bastard sword you would have the 1B penalty applied if you had 0-1 skill level in long bladed weapons. If you had 2+ then you could use the weapon without the penalty.

Just my two cents, anyway.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby nakraal » Tue Oct 02, 2012 5:20 pm

I guess I could modify the weapon to have no penalty if used one handed. The training penalty should kick off wen using its adaptable quality
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Paedrig » Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:56 am

Legate
I am not so certain concerning your idea, because as far as i knwo there are only very few weapons which haf a 2b. So a man with Fighting 2 (which is not much and will go for most thinkable examples) could handle nearly every weapon without penelties - and this would go against the idea of the need of training i think...

(Just my one cent to yout two cent... :wink: ).
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Legate » Wed Oct 03, 2012 4:27 am

Paedrig wrote:Legate
I am not so certain concerning your idea, because as far as i knwo there are only very few weapons which haf a 2b. So a man with Fighting 2 (which is not much and will go for most thinkable examples) could handle nearly every weapon without penelties - and this would go against the idea of the need of training i think...

(Just my one cent to yout two cent... :wink: ).


My idea isn't perfect, but I am not sure you are understanding completely what I mean. A character would have to have training in each specific weapon type that has a training penalty in it, and have over the penalty rating.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby coldwind » Wed Oct 03, 2012 4:43 am

If you have an issue with the training on a bastard sword, you could always bump its base damage to Athletics+2.

Vs longsword you gain +1 damage vs +1B
Vs greatsword you give up Powerful, Unwieldy, Slow and Vicious vs +1B

A little harder to see a clear cut winner then.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby Legate » Wed Oct 03, 2012 7:30 am

Sorry, I wrote my last post half asleep and while in a rush. What I meant was you would need to have each weapon type above the listed penalty for weapons that requires more training to use (ie 2+B in Long blades for the Bastard sword, 2+B in Axes for the Long Axe, etc.) without penalty.

I was also thinking you could add to the above a PC would need to have the (x) figter III benefit as well, just to simulate the extra training. Or you could, perhaps, use XP to buy off the penalty. It just seems to me that a veteran character, who has used a particular weapon all his "professional" life will know how to maximize his skill with the weapon and use it quite easily.

Just my two cents, for what it is worth.
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Re: Why should someone use a bastard sword?

Postby superbat_99 » Wed Oct 03, 2012 8:29 am

If you decide you don't like a rule as written you can always ignore it. Otherwise you could put a time that the PC needs to have and use the weapon and train with it for the training dice to go away.

In the books when Jon gets longclaw he practices quite a bit to get used to the longer blade as well as the different weight of valyrian steel. You could also have the training dice only apply to normal weapons and have castle forged weapons and above no longer be hindered by them do to superior craftsmanship.
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