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Defending weapon property

Dross

Explorer
Greetings all, thought that i'd delurk and say hi ("Hi.") to everyone. :eek:

my question is about the Defending property for weapons. if you choose to make the entire plus of the weapon as a bonus to defence, do you still get the masterwork property of the weapon for your attack rolls?

from the SRD (emphasis mine)
[font=&quot]A defending weapon allows the wielder to transfer some or all of the sword’s enhancement bonus to his AC as a bonus that stacks with all others.
[/font]
and for masterowrk weapons
[font=&quot]it provides a +1 enhancement bonus on attack rolls.[/font]


So if you have a longsword +2 of defending and you use the +2 for you AC, do you still get the +1 masterwork enhancement bonus to you to hit?

I think that the masterwork proprty would not still be included in your attack bonus because it is an enhancement bonus and you have put all the enhancement bonus to your AC (which doesn't stack with the magic +2)

thanks in advance,

Dross

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PrinceZane

First Post
My guess would be yes, but no. Yes it it applicable but not stackable. So you take the higher of the two numbers, therefore the +2 > +1mw.
 

myradale

First Post
You know, I never thought of that before, but yeah.

A +2 defender has a +2 magical enhancement bonus to attack and damage, and a +1 physical enhancement bonus that do not stack with each other. The +1 is due to the masterwork construction of the weapon, a purely physical quality involving the keeness of teh blade and the perfect balance and so forth.

Not only does this mean that if you transfer +2 to your defence, you maintain the +1 to hit, but if you suddenly found yourself in an antimagic field, you still have a masterwork +1 weapon. It's still as balanced and keen as it was when it was magical.

interesting.
 

SidusLupus

First Post
Yes, I'd say so since like the others have noted, the blade is still sharp, and that can't be taken away from it when you swing it (or poke with it).
 

Endovior

First Post
Normally, the masterwork bonus doesn't stack with the enhancement bonus... but IN THIS SITUATION, the wielder has gotten rid of the enhancement bonus entirely (he has an unnamed bonus to his AC instead...), so it's not a matter of stacking, it's a matter of there being only one bonus, the masterwork bonus. Of course, when you do that, your weapon is effectively nonmagical, so this is not advisable agains the myriad foes with DR/Magic.
 

Infiniti2000

First Post
Endovior said:
Normally, the masterwork bonus doesn't stack with the enhancement bonus... but IN THIS SITUATION, the wielder has gotten rid of the enhancement bonus entirely (he has an unnamed bonus to his AC instead...), so it's not a matter of stacking, it's a matter of there being only one bonus, the masterwork bonus. Of course, when you do that, your weapon is effectively nonmagical, so this is not advisable agains the myriad foes with DR/Magic.
See, that's just it. The defending property 'got rid' of the enhancement bonus on attacks. Why doesn't that also include the masterwork enhancement bonus? The defending property doesn't restrict itself to just the magical enhancement bonus.

I agree with you about the DR/magic part though.
 

VorpalStare

First Post
From the DMG p. 224:
[font=&quot]
A defending weapon allows the wielder to transfer some or all of the sword’s enhancement bonus to his AC as a bonus that stacks with all others.
[/font][font=&quot]
Note that the text refers to the enhancement bonus in the singular. If the weapon has more than one enhancement bonus, only one can be tranferred to AC. This avoids the problem of having a +1 defending weapon with 3 or 4 Greater Magic Weapon spells cast on it providing +15 AC bonus. An argument can be made for this because the (unstackable) enhancement bonuses from the spells become unnamed (stackable) AC bonuses when transformed via the defending weapon property. I believe that the intent of the designers was to allow only the weapon's permanent enhancement bonus to be adjusted so that the defending benefit could not be obtained too cheaply.

Also, the enhancement bonus transferred to AC is at the discretion of the user, so, in the current example, he can simply choose not to transfer the masterwork bonus to AC and retain the +1 to hit. The description of the defending property doesn't say whether the enhancement bonus needs to be both to hit and damage or just to hit to provide an AC benefit. I'd rule that the MW bonus is not sufficient to generate +1 AC to avoid giving the user of the weapon a free benefit without sacrificing any combat bonuses.[/font]
 

Dross

Explorer
VorpalStare said:
[font=&quot]
Note that the text refers to the enhancement bonus in the singular. If the weapon has more than one enhancement bonus, only one can be tranferred to AC. This avoids the problem of having a +1 defending weapon with 3 or 4 Greater Magic Weapon spells cast on it providing +15 AC bonus. An argument can be made for this because the (unstackable) enhancement bonuses from the spells become unnamed (stackable) AC bonuses when transformed via the defending weapon property. I believe that the intent of the designers was to allow only the weapon's permanent enhancement bonus to be adjusted so that the defending benefit could not be obtained too cheaply.

Also, the enhancement bonus transferred to AC is at the discretion of the user, so, in the current example, he can simply choose not to transfer the masterwork bonus to AC and retain the +1 to hit. The description of the defending property doesn't say whether the enhancement bonus needs to be both to hit and damage or just to hit to provide an AC benefit. I'd rule that the MW bonus is not sufficient to generate +1 AC to avoid giving the user of the weapon a free benefit without sacrificing any combat bonuses.[/font]

Well, with regard to multiple GMW the enhancement bonus is not the sword's, it's a spell that provides the better enhancement value at least to my way of thinking. VorpalStare, would ou allow the GMW to be cast on a +2 weapon making it +5 attack and damage and +2 for AC? That would seem plausable given what you have said.

i will not asked people individuall about what they said but ask questions in general.

The SRD doesn't state that the enhancement moved is the magical enchancement bonus only (although that could be reading too much into it) but the implied total enhancememnt bonus. So in this case does the source of the bonus override the type of bonus?

Are there other instances where source of the bonus overrides the bonus type? it has been stated that the MW property still works in an anti-magic field, but that's because the magic has been suppressed, not the enhancement bonus of the weapon. using this as an example, doesn't that at least imply that the MW enhancement goes with the magical enhancement to AC (+2), but does not stack for an additional +1 to AC (+3)

PrinceZane, i'm confused (again/still :confused:) does that mean that you think the +1 MW goes with the +2 magical enhancement to AC or not?
 

This is a really interesting question!

My gut reaction is no. You should not be able to get the +1 enhancement bonus to hit for a masterwork weapon. This is mainly because it would have been explicitly stated in the DMG if such was how it worked. The vagueness in description means that they may not have really thought it through - they have just assumed that everyone else was thinking in the same way that they were.

However, I'm finding it difficult to come up with anything to justify this position. :confused:
The masterwork enhancement bonus still applies and is separate to the magical enhancement bonus which has been transferred into AC. There is nothing that says that because the weapon is magical, the masterwork property no longer exists anymore and so, I think I'd have to let it stand: +1 to hit +0 to damage. You just lose that +1 to damage. I think this is worthy of further study though. Hypersmurf can usually smurf these ones out.

In regards to DR/magic though, I totally disagree with Endovior and Infiniti2000. The weapon is still magical - even if it's enhancement bonus has been "magically" transferred to a different bonus (unnamed to AC). It does not ever stop being a magical weapon and so unless it is momentarilly dispelled or anti-magicked, then I would still say that this ability is not affected.

Best Regards
Herremann the Wise
 

Hypersmurf

Moderatarrrrh...
Herremann the Wise said:
In regards to DR/magic though, I totally disagree with Endovior and Infiniti2000. The weapon is still magical - even if it's enhancement bonus has been "magically" transferred to a different bonus (unnamed to AC). It does not ever stop being a magical weapon and so unless it is momentarilly dispelled or anti-magicked, then I would still say that this ability is not affected.

It's still a magical weapon. But do you consider it to be a weapon with a +1 or higher enhancement bonus (not counting the enhancement from masterwork quality) while that bonus is transferred to AC?

Related question - a Medium +1 defending longsword has hardness 12 and 15 hit points. If you transfer the +1 enhancement bonus to AC, what are its hardness and hitpoints in that time?

Regarding the masterwork bonus - in 3E it was unambiguous. The masterwork quality provided an unnamed bonus to attack rolls, that didn't stack with an enhancement bonus. Thus, even if one transferred enhancement bonus entirely to AC with a Defending weapon, the masterwork unnamed bonus was unaffected. No argument.

In 3.5, I can see how either reading can be argued... but I'd support 'same as in 3E'. The 'enhancement bonus' you transfer is that referred to in the opening paragraphs of the Magic Weapons section, by context; the masterwork quality's enhancement bonus is unaffected.

-Hyp.
 

Hypersmurf said:
It's still a magical weapon. But do you consider it to be a weapon with a +1 or higher enhancement bonus (not counting the enhancement from masterwork quality) while that bonus is transferred to AC?
I think they've used that definition of "magical weapon" because it is all encompassing, or so they thought with their qualification regarding masterwork equipment. I think the defending quality is the only one that can defy this definition and was not considered or thought of. My opinion is that the magic that creates the +1 enhancement bonus is in effect and still active, it has just been channelled elsewhere - into an unnamed AC bonus. Obviously, I would fail to find any ruling to support this view, but I think it a reasonable interpretation.

Hypersmurf said:
Related question - a Medium +1 defending longsword has hardness 12 and 15 hit points. If you transfer the +1 enhancement bonus to AC, what are its hardness and hitpoints in that time?

I don't know if there's errata on this but:
DMG said:
Each +1 Enhancement bonus also adds 1 to the weapon's or shield's hardness and hit points.
Your base medium longsword has hardness 10 and hit points 5. Because it only has an enhancement bonus of +1, does this mean that the new hardness is 11 and hit points 6?
However, that is a slightly separate question again.

In regards to the transfer to AC of the enhancement bonus, I suppose this would slightly change the hardness and hit points of the weapon back to it's base quality. Does this also make the defending weapon vulnerable to mundane attacks? With a strict reading, I suppose it does although I would be inclined to capriciously ignore this. I suppose I prefer the interpretation of what the weapon normally is rather than what it is at that moment due to an effect caused by itself. A garbled way of saying, "hey, if it's magical, it's still magical".

Best Regards
Herremann the Wise
 

Hypersmurf

Moderatarrrrh...
Herremann the Wise said:
My opinion is that the magic that creates the +1 enhancement bonus is in effect and still active, it has just been channelled elsewhere - into an unnamed AC bonus.

So does the wielder get to add +1 to his attack and damage rolls? Or is it a weapon that doesn't have a +1 enhancement bonus?

I don't know if there's errata on this but:

There's errata on this. +2 hardness, +10 hit points, per point of enhancement.

Does this also make the defending weapon vulnerable to mundane attacks?

All weapons are vulnerable to mundane attacks. The "must have an enhancement bonus equal or greater to sunder" rule doesn't exist in 3.5, post-errata.

I suppose I prefer the interpretation of what the weapon normally is rather than what it is at that moment due to an effect caused by itself.

Regardless of what caused the effect, the effect was caused.

-Hyp.
 

Dross

Explorer
I'm inclined to go with Hypersmurf's 'same as in 3E' call.

So you will still get the MW +1 to hit, and the weapon is magical for things like DR (at +0 if it ever becomes important), with the (magically adjusted) normal hardness and HP.

I have a feeling that the person who said this was thinking 3E not 3.5E, something common enough in our games unfortunately.

Thanks for all the replies

Dross
 

Zandel

First Post
That sounds right. In 3.0 the weapon would no longer be able to defeat DR as you needed a +x to defeat it but in 3.5 it is still magic so it still bypasses DR x-magic. The Masterwork +1 is in effect because they overlap and the larger/better magic +x is now gone just as if you were in an anti-magic field.
 


Hypersmurf

Moderatarrrrh...
Zandel said:
That sounds right. In 3.0 the weapon would no longer be able to defeat DR as you needed a +x to defeat it but in 3.5 it is still magic so it still bypasses DR x-magic.

To bypass DR X/Magic in 3.5, you require a weapon with a +1 or higher enhancement bonus.

Effectively, 3.5's DR X/Magic is the same as 3E's DR X/+1. A magical weapon without a +1 or higher enhancement bonus cannot bypass DR X/magic, just as an epic weapon without a +6 or higher enhancement bonus cannot bypass DR X/Epic.

-Hyp.
 


Hypersmurf

Moderatarrrrh...
Zandel said:
Do you have an SRD quote to back that one up? I can't remember seeing any.

DAMAGE REDUCTION
Some magic creatures have the supernatural ability to instantly heal damage from weapons or to ignore blows altogether as though they were invulnerable.

The numerical part of a creature’s damage reduction is the amount of hit points the creature ignores from normal attacks. Usually, a certain type of weapon can overcome this reduction. This information is separated from the damage reduction number by a slash. Damage reduction may be overcome by special materials, by magic weapons (any weapon with a +1 or higher enhancement bonus, not counting the enhancement from masterwork quality), certain types of weapons (such as slashing or bludgeoning), and weapons imbued with an alignment. If a dash follows the slash then the damage reduction is effective against any attack that does not ignore damage reduction.

Ammunition fired from a projectile weapon with an enhancement bonus of +1 or higher is treated as a magic weapon for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction. Similarly, ammunition fired from a projectile weapon with an alignment gains the alignment of that projectile weapon (in addition to any alignment it may already have).

Whenever damage reduction completely negates the damage from an attack, it also negates most special effects that accompany the attack, such as injury type poison, a monk’s stunning, and injury type disease. Damage reduction does not negate touch attacks, energy damage dealt along with an attack, or energy drains. Nor does it affect poisons or diseases delivered by inhalation, ingestion, or contact.

Attacks that deal no damage because of the target’s damage reduction do not disrupt spells.

Spells, spell-like abilities, and energy attacks (even nonmagical fire) ignore damage reduction.

Sometimes damage reduction is instant healing. Sometimes damage reduction represents the creature’s tough hide or body,. In either case, characters can see that conventional attacks don’t work.

If a creature has damage reduction from more than one source, the two forms of damage reduction do not stack. Instead, the creature gets the benefit of the best damage reduction in a given situation.


-Hyp.
 

Cam Banks

Explorer
I think we could be fairly confident in saying that a +5 defending longsword still counts as having +1 or better enhancement bonus even if it's all been moved to AC for a round, when determining if it can bypass DR. To argue against that is a little silly.

I do find the idea of the enhancement bonus of the masterwork weapon remaining even when the weapon's bonus is used for AC quite clever. Not sure if that's ever come up to be honest. It sure makes a +1 defending weapon a sure bet.

Cheers,
Cam
 

glass

(he, him)
Cam Banks said:
I think we could be fairly confident in saying that a +5 defending longsword still counts as having +1 or better enhancement bonus even if it's all been moved to AC for a round, when determining if it can bypass DR. To argue against that is a little silly.

I don't consider it silly. I consider it obvious. The rule says you need a +1 enhancement bonus to bypass DR/magic. If you haven't got a +1 enhancement bonus, you don't bypass it.

I'd also say that by the RAW the hp and hardness also change, but I'd be tempted to houserule that. I'd also houserule that the full enhancement bonus contributed to your opposed roll against being disarmed, however it was distributed.


glass.
 

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