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D&D 5E And the award for "Best Improvised Weapon" goes to....


At my own table, the award went to comic related. The clever monk thought to ask what manner of food was filling up the vampire's banquet table. The vamp got "steaked," and we lost our collective naughty word.

Can you do better? What is the best improvised weapon you've ever seen in play?

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Nothing special comes to mind in D&D, but so many examples in Spycraft. There was one time we were dropped into a mission in rural India, and our local contact was a doctor who was going to lend us a spare ambulance as transport, and we needed to take out a nearby insurgent base's comms tower. We'd need a distraction in order to get in there unscathed.

So we wound up buying the ambulance, along with the several barrels of spare fuel he had for it, which were loaded into the back and topped off with a C4 charge. Then the wheelman set it on a course for the front gate, lights on and sirens blaring, and bailed out, while we got ready to go in the back.


Mod Squad
Staff member
Not many good examples come to mind from D&D. I suspect that's because in D&D, improvised weapons suck, so folks avoid using them.

Elsewhere, however?

Cans of Campbell's soup. It is astounding how much damage you can do with a thrown can of soup, when your character is strong enough to lift a medium-sized truck without breaking a sweat.
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Morkus from Orkus
During 2e one of my characters unknowingly picked a fight with a vampire. Not having a real magic weapon at that time, I pulled out my one +3 arrow and tried to shove it(and therefore the wooden shaft) through his heart. I hit and he decided that the risk wasn't worth it and we both went our separate, relieved ways.


Fully vaccinated!
In my gameplay experience, the best improvised weapon is...


Another PC.

My table has a house rule that if you throw someone at a target and hit, the thrown PC rolls the damage of their chosen weapon and also gets a bonus to damage based on the distance they “fell”.

So, if you were thrown 20 feet, hit, and decided to use your flame tongue greatsword, you deal 6d6 + your Strength modifier

In a submarine harbor, one of my players used a steam powered crane to grapple a giant crab. It was like playing a crane game, but bigger.

Also, one of my players dropped a large chandelier on top of a group of cultists, crushing them all in one go.


Just off relevant answer: I had a Mountain Dwarf Barbarian that had to break through a hatch. After a couple embarrassing strength rolls (with advantage no less), he climbed the 200 foot surface adjacent to it, pulled out his maul, and did a Thor dive straight into the hatch. The hatch took as much damage as the dwarf, and we were through.

On topic answer: A rogue snuck into a mountain cave to scout and proceeded to a.) Blow their stealth, b.) blow their perception, and c.) blow their initiative. The giant inside landed three high damage crits. Then, it carried the rogue out and threw the rogue as a boulder attack, which crit and took down a wounded PC, who proceeded to fall from their hiding spot (1 auto failed death save) and then roll a 1 on their death save at the start of the next turn. When the giant waged into battle, I had it pick up those two downed corpses and dual wield them.

Throwing the rogue was a way to let the PCs get their items back, and a way to potentially allow them to heal the rogue before it had three failed death saves (although they assumed the rogue was dead and never checked). Dual wielding the corpses was a way for me to reduce the damage the giant was going to deal to a suddenly underpowered group. It was horrific, though, to see in play. The rogue player doodled it all down and that ended up being on my binder cover for a while.


Bowl of noodles + animate rope = one very confused BBEG

Not sure if this counts, but had a Druid with a Dire Bear companion that was spider-climbing shoulder-drop an enemy below it, from a distance of mere 10 feet. With the Dire bear weighing several tons, by 3E rules that was a 20d6 shoulder drop.

Drop bear indeed.

Femur bone from the lich's own throne.

Prior edition (Pathfinder/3.5), so the setup isn't current, but it was an epic 40 round combat involving multiple rooms, ups and downs, and then the finale. Atrophied lich (basically one that has lost a lot of its spellcasting over the years) had permanently paralyzed all but 1 PC, an "inquisitor." Liches back then had a nasty defense: ignore the first 15 points of damage unless it was done by a magical AND blunt weapon. All the PC player had was pointy stuff. She wore a ring that protected her from being paralyzed and they'd run the lich out of spells (no unlimited cantrips back then). But, still, it was wearing her down with physical attacks, and she wasn't doing enough damage even with magically enhanced strength. The lich was able to do some minor healing in lieu of an attack, and the math wasn't on her side. Eventually, its healing would outpace the minor damage she could do. It was looking grim.

She looked around for a blunt weapon, but there were none in sight. She asked if she could break one of the bones off his bone throne to use as a weapon. I said sure. She risked the round and got a solid femur bone. She knew her class had a special ability to temporarily make any weapon she was wielding magical. And it was blunt. And she had 1 use of that ability left. We rolled in full sight, no DM help here. She got a few hits in. The lich got a few hits in. Both were on fumes. The lich's self heal couldn't keep pace if the PC hit. So then the combat came down to whoever hit next...

Well, as you can guess from the tag line, after 2 intense rounds of neither striking, she rolled the magic number. And down went an epic enemy in an epic battle, done it by his own bone throne.


Nothing specific I can think of from D&D but I do have one from Mutant & Mastermind

The crew and I were chasing a Mastermind who had some sort of water manipulation device and was flooding the concrete building we were in while they were in a deep diving suit with built in protection. They had hidden themselves in a control room one floor above us and were controlling blast doors and stuff to block us off and potentially drown us.

My character was in an alternate form that granted him super strength, wall crawling, but also a digging speed I specifically calibrated to go through concrete. So I break through the concrete ceiling and climb into the control room, surpising the Mastermind… Then I grabbed hold of them and used THEM as a blunt instrument to destroy the control computer before they could complete whatever plan they were working on!

It worked pretty well.


Back in 3e, a friend of mine ran a campaign where we all played giants. One special maneuver that giants could do was to pick up smaller creatures and wield them as weapons.

At one point early in the campaign we were ambushed by Drow slavers, so I grabbed one of them and tried to slam him into the others. However, I rolled a fumble which resulted in weapon breakage...


I had fun as a high potence (super strength) vampire in a vampire the masquerade game.

It is a bit of a terrible story and not for the squeamish. :)

I was playing an enforcer character and another PC came to me saying he had crossed powerful political vampires and was being hunted with a death bounty and needed to flee and get them off his back. We talked it over and planned to frame his death with me taking a picture of him staked, then ripping his hands off while he was staked so he would not feel it and passing them on to the vampires with the magic gloves he wore and saying I left him for the sun.

His hands would grow back with enough blood and he could skip town.

I improvised a stake by ripping out one of those long thin iron fence posts with a sharp end and skewering him.

Queue us learning that stakes need to be wooden to paralyze a vampire. Otherwise they just hurt, a lot. And require frenzy checks for the intense pain to not go berserk.

New improvised back up plan, I carried around a baseball bat as my tool of choice, and it was wood. A bit thicker than most stakes, but with enough force you can make it work.

The more you know. :)


Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
A familiar thrown into the face of the bad guy. Of course the reason I remember it is because of all the jokes about using the feline as a catapult.

It was mostly done as a distraction, but having a cat stuck to your face can't be a lot of fun.

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