D&D 5E Help me with my modified unarmed fighting

Ymdar

Explorer
In my latest game I talked to my players what they think about the following changes:
  • Fists are now light finesse weapons
  • (as such) can be dual 'wielded' (attack with one fist then with the other as an offhand bonus action)
  • can be used for sneak attack
  • the Fighter's Unarmed fighting style can be used to do d8 damage with both fists if the character has nothing in either hand
  • the Fighter's two-weapon fighting allows to add the ability modifier to the damage of the second attack.
The way I see it, 2xd8+1xstr mod dmg (2 fists, no two-weapon fighting) is still weaker than 2xd6+2xstr mod dmg (2xschimitars + two weapon fighting) if str is at least 16 and significantly lower than two handed weapon.

Is there anything I'm missing combat wise that could abuse this rule aside from the odd Gloves of Soul Catching (Candlekeep Mysteries 12+ lvl adventure legendary item increasing fist damage by 2d10 force) use-case?
 

log in or register to remove this ad

DND_Reborn

The High Aldwin
  • Fists are now light finesse weapons
We have been doing this for about two years, but NOT finesse!!! That is the point of Monks, not everyone else. They are also simple weapons and require proficiency (Sorcerers and Wizards don't know how to punch, sorry. ;) ).

I would encourage you to try it without the finesse property first.

  • (as such) can be dual 'wielded' (attack with one fist then with the other as an offhand bonus action)
One of the main reasons we did this. It also allows the unarmed attack to be replaced with grapples, shoves, etc. making it more useful and cinematic IMO.

  • can be used for sneak attack
RAW, sure if you keep the finesse property. We removed the finesse requirement from sneak attack--you only need proficiency, so for us finesse was not needed.

  • the Fighter's Unarmed fighting style can be used to do d8 damage with both fists if the character has nothing in either hand
I thought that was already the rule? I don't know what the current version of the fighting style does....

  • the Fighter's two-weapon fighting allows to add the ability modifier to the damage of the second attack.
This is RAW anyway, so nothing to change about it.

Is there anything I'm missing combat wise that could abuse this rule aside from the odd Gloves of Soul Catching (Candlekeep Mysteries 12+ lvl adventure legendary item increasing fist damage by 2d10 force) use-case?
Nothing IME has abused the chances we've made in our game and it has been very positive overall. As I mentioned, I would encourage you to remove the finesse property and simple change the sneak attack requirements instead. IMO a "bruiser"-type STR-based Rogue should be better using unarmed strikes for sneak attack than a DEX-based Rogue.
 


In my latest game I talked to my players what they think about the following changes:
  • Fists are now light finesse weapons
  • (as such) can be dual 'wielded' (attack with one fist then with the other as an offhand bonus action)
I have house ruled this since 2016ish.
  • the Fighter's Unarmed fighting style can be used to do d8 damage with both fists if the character has nothing in either hand
this isn't something I have done I like the 1+stat mod damage, although I have experimented with a d3. I don't want everyone to be better then d4 monk at 1st level.
Is there anything I'm missing combat wise that could abuse this rule aside from the odd Gloves of Soul Catching (Candlekeep Mysteries 12+ lvl adventure legendary item increasing fist damage by 2d10 force) use-case?
even when I used the finesse light d3 it was at most a fall back (although used alot when bar brawls broke out)
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
All characters that fight with two weapons can do 1d6+MOD and 1d6 damage with the two weapons. If they have the Two-Weapon Fighting fighting style then it's two attacks each doing 1d6+MOD damage. If they also have the Dual Wielder feat then their two attacks can do 1d8+MOD damage.

With those default mechanics out of the way... I personally do not care one way or the other how any of my players wish to fluff what those weapons are. Whether they are two of the same type of weapon, two different types of weapons, a weapon and a fist, two fists, one bludgeoning and one piercing, two slashing, smaller weapons that do higher damage, etc. etc. etc. whatever... the differences of those fluff choices are so inconsequential that they aren't worth being stingy on.

I find absolutely no reason to restrict the kind of weapon a player wishes to use for character customization even if that weapon's traditional numbers in the book are different than what their "best in slot" option would normally be. If a player wants to be a Daggermaster... then they can be a Daggermaster whose daggers do 1d8 damage rather than the 1d4 damage the book says they do. That's completely okay. If they took the Dual-Wielder feat and thus would normally be fighting with two Rapiers for 1d8... then they can fight with two Daggers at 1d8 too. Because why not? If it's more fun for their visualization of their PC to fight with daggers rather than rapiers... then it's good enough for me and I'll let them have the higher damage.
 
Last edited:


DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
yeah more and more I wish D&D would go more free form...
I dunno... I don't think D&D needs or even should do what I do, because that is less detail and more confusing to work out for DMs. There's nothing wrong with having a default weapons chart that lists what it does and lets most of the player base (who really don't care about any of this) just choose easily-found weapons with easily understood damage and weapon details.

Almost always... those of us who want stuff "more open" are players who have been playing this game for so long that we no longer want to be shackled to the default stuff. But we are the exception, not the rule. As a result I think it is up to us to just create our own house rules and rules expansions off the default, rather than expect WotC to change their default to suit us.
 

Almost always... those of us who want stuff "more open" are players who have been playing this game for so long that we no longer want to be shackled to the default stuff. But we are the exception, not the rule. As a result I think it is up to us to just create our own house rules and rules expansions off the default, rather than expect WotC to change their default to suit us.
well that is why I said more not totally. I loved the 2e 16 paged of pole arms, but if we aren't going to make weapons different (and since '95 I think 5e has the least ways to make weapons different) I just wish there was some kind of optional rule like "Hey since weapons are just esthetic + damage, you can just have classes use any esthetic and deal damage equal to there class HD"
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
well that is why I said more not totally. I loved the 2e 16 paged of pole arms, but if we aren't going to make weapons different (and since '95 I think 5e has the least ways to make weapons different) I just wish there was some kind of optional rule like "Hey since weapons are just esthetic + damage, you can just have classes use any esthetic and deal damage equal to there class HD"
Sure... if they want to put an optional rule in the DMG regarding just the die mechanics for weapons and letting the players decide on their own weapon fluff, that'd be fine. Might give out some ideas to players who might not have otherwise thought of it. That's what the optional rules are there for after all. :)
 

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top