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D&D General Spear: d8; versatile d10, and when used two-handed, can be lunged one-handed (d8) with reach.

greg kaye

Explorer
Long live Sparta (and the rest of history more honestly)

Spear: d8; versatile d10, and when used two-handed, can be lunged one-handed (d8) with reach.

That's how I think spears should be used. =D

Please adopt.

edit (10:50) 20/5/23:

Thanks for the wealth of great response. How about:

Spear (when used with Martial training): d8 piercing; versatile d10 piercing or d6 bludgeoning and, while being used two-handed, can be lunged one-handed (d6) with reach?

I'd similarly suggest that all polearms might be useable for d6 bludgeoning.

edit (for take 3)

How about:

Spear (when used with Martial training): two-handed, d10 piercing, d6 bludgeoning or, one-handed (but still with two hands still available for spear use), d8 piercing with reach?
 
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Voadam

Legend
Turn spears into a martial equivalent?

I can see that, it means that Fighters will not be behind the curve if they are like the cover of B/X D&D:

Longsword, battleaxe, warhammer all being d8 versatile d10.

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Reach mechanically seems a bit much to add though, particularly if you keep the thrown.

Not sure if two handing a spear makes as much difference as two-handed swinging a warhammer or battleaxe. I could see d8 martial thrown instead of versatile. Debatable though and there is the 5e PH simple weapon versatile precedent.

Making it martial would take spears away from most bards, clerics, druids, rogues, and warlocks.
 


I mean, I get the concept, but it also seems like a lot of fiddling to (selectively) replicate IRL combat effects. If we also had axes able to hook shields and pilums able to impede shield use/break up formations and swords having some advantage on carrying/access (which probably means actually a penalty for everything else, given how forgiving the current weapon-drawing rules are), I would say go for it.

I also don't know exactly what this does for you in-game-mechanics-wise. Reach only on your own turn doesn't translate into all that much benefit in the game we have. I guess it means you can attack but then make them advance to you, which helps if and only if you also have PAM.

An easier alternative would be to just have spears be d8 (versatile d10) for anyone with martial weapon proficiencies (the throwing distance is kind of a ribbon ability, given that you can also have a sword/hammer/axe and a bunch of javelins at your disposal).
 

CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing (He/They)
What if we reversed the process? What if the player chose a damage type and two properties, and the DM assigned a weapon to it?

Player 1: "I want a bludgeoning weapon with Reach and Versatile."
DM: "Here's your quarterstaff."

Player 2: "I want a slashing weapon with Reach and Versatile."
DM: "No problem, here's your long-handled battleaxe."

Player 3: "I want a piercing weapon with Versatile, Finesse, and Thrown."
DM: "Okay, but that's three properties instead of two...I'll have to lower the damage to d4. Deal?"
Player 3: (begrudgingly) "Okay, it's a deal."
DM: "Here's your dagger."

Or something along those lines.
 

CreamCloud0

One day, I hope to actually play DnD.
Long live Sparta (and the rest of history more honestly)

Spear: d8; versatile d10, and when used two-handed, can be lunged one-handed (d8) with reach.

That's how I think spears should be used. =D

Please adopt.
in the interests of keeping it a simple tier weapon (the martial warhammer, longsword and battleaxe all have d8/d10 damage and that's before the reach property becomes a factor) i'd drop the 1-handed reach's damage to d6 then versatile d8 without reach

I’d probably copy this structure to the quarterstaff too, just because simple weapons are meant to be y’Know, simple, that doesn’t mean I think martial weapons should get all the good toys properties-wise, there’s very little decision points in the simple weapon table,
 
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I think there are multiple kinds of spears.

A short spear/javelin is simple/d6/thrown.

A shoulder-high pointy stick is the simple/d6/d8 versatile/thrown weapon.

The long spear/pike/sarissa is a martial/d10/heavy/reach.
 

Tonguez

A suffusion of yellow
1 Every weapon starts d6 one handed.
2 Then the player chooses their weapon group (Axe, Blade, Club, Flail, Polearm, Bow, Sling, Spear)
3 Then decide weapon size
*light - reduce damage dice one step
*heavy/twohanded - increase damage dice one step
*reach - increase range
4 Weapon Properties are determined by Class Proficiencies
* eg Finesse is a Proficiency of Fighters, Rogues, Rangers etc that both allows use of dex in melee and increases damage one step
5 Name your weapon

Eg I want a two handed bladed polearm weapon (d8, reach) which is light (d6) so I can use with finese (d8, dex) - I call it a Ti dao light glaive
 
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I mean there is long term wide spread archaeological evidence for the spear being the primary weapon of choice.
That's because they were cheap. Equipping your infantry with the cheapest possible weapons has been government policy ever since government was invented.
Long live Sparta
And Sparta was bronze age - they didn't have iron or steel weapons.
Turn spears into a martial equivalent?
This is the elephant in the room so far as D&D rules are concerned. Make a simple weapon better than martial weapons? That has big consequences for the game. Martial Weapon proficiency becomes worthless, and spears become compulsory for clerics, bards and the like.

My suggestion if you want to have better spears: gate it behind a Spear Fighting Combat Style.
 

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