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Old 06-29-2011, 07:29 AM   #1
Drow Warrior

Join Date: August 6, 2002
Location: Sweden
Age: 32
Posts: 286
Default Martial vs simple


Im creating a new game after having been away from the game awhile and was wondering. Is there any real point in taking the martial feat with lets say a bard? Are martial in anyway automaticly better? Or is a morningstar just as good as a long sword? And I have always been very fond of spears so could I stick with a spear and not loose out alot of having one?

I did not mean for this to be a "what weapon is the best" topic but more if my char will lose out on not having the martial feat. (And no im not going to multiclass to get the feats for free)
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Old 06-29-2011, 10:01 PM   #2
Jack Burton

Join Date: March 31, 2001
Location: The zephyr lands beneath the brine.
Age: 37
Posts: 5,459
Default Re: Martial vs simple

You can pick a simple weapon and it shouldn't cripple your character. The differences are fairly small (about +1 dmg/hit) and become less important as the items are more heavily enchanted and much of your damage comes from other areas like buffs, sneak attack bonuses, a high strength modifier and so on.
A better reason to pick advanced weapon proficiencies is to allow you to use magic items you're not normally proficient with. You might find a greatsword which can cast a spell for you or a katana with elemental damage to cut through a monster's resistances. It's never a bad thing to be versatile.

That said, martial weapons are automatically better than simple weapons with exotic weapons better still. If you use ranged weapons and aren't a rogue, or if you play a warrior class, a bard or divine caster, you could consider upgrading to new weapon type options.

If you want to crunch numbers though, there is a lot to keep in mind. Aside from the damage die, threat range and crit multiplier a weapon's use also depends on whether it works with Weapon Finesse, on its weight, the damage type(s) and above all its size (relative to yours). Special rules apply to some of them like dual-headed weapons or to morning stars and light flails. Ranged weapons in particular all play by different rules.
I think the best advice then is to pick something you like for your main weapon, if you need to specialize in anything at all.

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Old 06-30-2011, 09:02 PM   #3
Xanathar Thieves Guild

Join Date: March 17, 2001
Location: Wichita, KS USA
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Default Re: Martial vs simple

The short answer is: If you're not going to use a weapon type that requires the feat, then no, there's no reason to take it. You can take it for just in case, as Legolas mentioned, but really, if you know what weapon you're going to use, and you don't need the feat to either use it, or to get another feat related to it, don't take it. Save the feat for something else.
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