Here's What A 5' Square Actually Looks Like

Russ Morrissey

Comments

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
True. Like all classifications, the term "rapier" changes based on era and region. Terms are so loose in D&D that rapier can easily encapsulate multiple styles of swords, I just can't envision a modern fencing epee that many people think of as a rapier as being used for anything but tournaments.

So it's just how I envision it.
Sure, but I don’t think very many people think of that when they hear rapier in the context of an actual weapon. They think of movies.
 

S'mon

Legend
Sure, but I don’t think very many people think of that when they hear rapier in the context of an actual weapon. They think of movies.
Maybe I've been watching too much ScholaGladiatoria et al, but I certainly think of a Rapier as the big heavy 16th century stabby thing people called rapiers (rapiers weigh at least as much as medieval arming swords), not an epee - epees are derived from smallswords, which are a completely different weapon than historical rapiers.

AFAICS the 5e PHB illustration shows something like an actual Rapier, not an epee. Just like the 5e PHB Longsword appears to describe something like an actual Longsword (as the term is currently used) rather than an arming sword.

Edit: Also when I google for images of Rapier just now, I see all pics of actual rapiers, not an epee/foil in sight!
Edit 2: While D&D Rapier turns up 5E - The D&D rapier: What is it? :)
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Maybe I've been watching too much ScholaGladiatoria et al, but I certainly think of a Rapier as the big heavy 16th century stabby thing people called rapiers (rapiers weigh at least as much as medieval arming swords), not an epee - epees are derived from smallswords, which are a completely different weapon than historical rapiers.

AFAICS the 5e PHB illustration shows something like an actual Rapier, not an epee. Just like the 5e PHB Longsword appears to describe something like an actual Longsword (as the term is currently used) rather than an arming sword.
You know that rapiers ranged in length and weight over the course of a couple centuries, right?

Even at the same time, weight and length varied quite a lot. Spaniards and French dualists had quite different preferences for length, and the Spanish Circle school used blades made for cutting and thrusting for quite a bit longer than the French and even mainstream Spanish duelists.

Also, a small-sword is a kind of rapier.

Anyway, a rapier can represent any of those things, but more people are going to think Pirates of the Carribean and Princess Bride than anything else when they see “rapier” in the PHB.
 

S'mon

Legend
Also, a small-sword is a kind of rapier.
Tell that to Matt Easton! :p

Like I said, if you Google Rapier, you see images of a bunch of actual Rapiers, mostly reproductions being sold by various companies. Not a smallsword or epee in sight.

I dunno about 'most people', at least most people who care - in 1985, yes, people would hear 'rapier' and think of a fencing foil. Not sure about now.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Tell that to Matt Easton! :p

Like I said, if you Google Rapier, you see images of a bunch of actual Rapiers, mostly reproductions being sold by various companies. Not a smallsword or epee in sight.

I dunno about 'most people', at least most people who care - in 1985, yes, people would hear 'rapier' and think of a fencing foil. Not sure about now.
I don’t know where you’re getting fencing foil from in anything I said. Did you watch pirates of the carribean? Even the swords in princess bride are pretty decent replicas of later rapiers.

And yes, most people are going to read rapier in the phb and think of weapons from movies. Even if we try to keep a gate we’ve no business keeping, and only count people who are already into fantasy and/or gaming, most of them will picture the classic movie musketeer/zorro weapon, not an arming sword or side sword.
 

S'mon

Legend
I don’t know where you’re getting fencing foil from in anything I said. Did you watch pirates of the carribean? Even the swords in princess bride are pretty decent replicas of later rapiers.

And yes, most people are going to read rapier in the phb and think of weapons from movies. Even if we try to keep a gate we’ve no business keeping, and only count people who are already into fantasy and/or gaming, most of them will picture the classic movie musketeer/zorro weapon, not an arming sword or side sword.
Now I have no idea what you're talking about. If the rapiers in those films are rapiers, then what's the problem?
 

Arvok

Explorer
Looks about right for the space a human-sized creature can control in close combat.

Really wish D&D would make the switch to metric. Especially cause you could make squares meters and then it would be 1-1. Maps would be a bit smaller, but I think that’s a worthwhile change.
D&D is (supposed to be) a medieval fantasy game. Why would you want to drop a medieval measurement system in lieu of a modern one? Measuring distance in feet and weight/mass in pounds and ounces helps maintain the medieval feel.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
D&D is (supposed to be) a medieval fantasy game. Why would you want to drop a medieval measurement system in lieu of a modern one? Measuring distance in feet and weight/mass in pounds and ounces helps maintain the medieval feel.
Same reason the game uses a decimalized currency system. It’s more convenient.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Now I have no idea what you're talking about. If the rapiers in those films are rapiers, then what's the problem?
To get more specific and make a real response, the "problem" was never on my end, far as I can tell. I was just noting that rapier covers a decent range of swords of varying weight, length, bulk, and efficacy in cutting vs stabbing. The idea that there is a single "rapier" that is the correct or real rapier simply isn't accurate, but more importantly doesn't matter because DnD isn't a medieval earth IRL simulator, it's a game of vaguely psuedo-medieval-unless-the-campaign-is-something-else fantasy.

My wife's dual wielding Paladin started out with a rapier and handaxe, because I houseruled that rapiers could be used to dual wield without the feat, and the rapier made the most sense as a close-to-the-hilt balanced one-handed sword like the one we imagined her using.

My gnome rogue's "rapier" is a weapon made of bone with an obsidian leaf shaped blade similar to the attached image, but longer with a slightly thinner blade that comes to a more distinct taper. Spear and scimitar both didn't make sense to me and my buddy who DMs that campaign, so we stuck with rapier.

The weapons are statistics with a name meant to evoke the vague general sort of thing you can use the stat line to represent.
 

Attachments

Arvok

Explorer
Same reason the game uses a decimalized currency system. It’s more convenient.
Yeah, I didn't like it when they went to the decimalized currency system. It was part of the drift away from a medieval setting to a modern setting with people dressed up in medieval clothes.
 

S'mon

Legend
Yeah, I didn't like it when they went to the decimalized currency system. It was part of the drift away from a medieval setting to a modern setting with people dressed up in medieval clothes.
I just assume the official currency is an abstraction, since counting coins isn't very interesting. In my Thule game I'll sometimes mention the Margish Silver Krakens, Nesskians Fangs and Quodethi Double Peacocks, but it's mostly a flavour thing.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
I just assume the official currency is an abstraction, since counting coins isn't very interesting. In my Thule game I'll sometimes mention the Margish Silver Krakens, Nesskians Fangs and Quodethi Double Peacocks, but it's mostly a flavour thing.
Yeah I’d really hate to have to reference the various strange exchanges of value between coins, and to get realistic you have to change the exchanges and values from place to place and year to year.

No thanks.
 

MoonSong

Rules-lawyering drama queen... Be nice plz n_n
The Aztecs apparently used a base 20 numeric system, but it's one I still think is still based on fingers.
Not apparently, they did -except the names still are in decimal, not surprising as the Nahua people were relative newcomers that adopted local customs-. And not only them, all of Mesoamerican cultures had 20 as the base. It may have fingers as a base, but it makes for a cool divider for the year and the period of human gestation.

Fun fact, ancient Mesoamerican astronomers used a square 20x20 grid to make astronomic observations, and since it was used to register the skies, both the grid and the number 400 became metaphors for the heaven and infinity.

One hundred metres is:

One one-hundred thousandth of the distance from the equator to the north pole.

The length of 165076373 wavelengths in vacuum of the radiation of krypton-86.

The distance light travels in a vacuum in the time of 3.33564095e-7 seconds.
Or 131 of my steps. Pretty convenient my steps happen to roughly be 2-1/2 feet/30 inches. Of course, if you happen to be taller than me -and odds are you are- then this is useless as a number. But hey! I'm my own 5x5 square!

I've been toying with the idea of creating a fantasy measure unit using this number. I call the area I can cover with one step a Rose (not my most humble moment there, but I also like the metaphor of one circular spot where you can comfortably dance in that kinda looks like a flower's petals). Also I call 200 steps/the length of 100 aligned Roses (about 150m) a Rose Field.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Not apparently, they did -except the names still are in decimal, not surprising as the Nahua people were relative newcomers that adopted local customs-. And not only them, all of Mesoamerican cultures had 20 as the base. It may have fingers as a base, but it makes for a cool divider for the year and the period of human gestation.

Fun fact, ancient Mesoamerican astronomers used a square 20x20 grid to make astronomic observations, and since it was used to register the skies, both the grid and the number 400 became metaphors for the heaven and infinity.



Or 131 of my steps. Pretty convenient my steps happen to roughly be 2-1/2 feet/30 inches. Of course, if you happen to be taller than me -and odds are you are- then this is useless as a number. But hey! I'm my own 5x5 square!

I've been toying with the idea of creating a fantasy measure unit using this number. I call the area I can cover with one step a Rose (not my most humble moment there, but I also like the metaphor of one circular spot where you can comfortably dance in that kinda looks like a flower's petals). Also I call 200 steps/the length of 100 aligned Roses (about 150m) a Rose Field.
That is rad as hell.
 

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