Variant Weapon Focus Edit already good enough -- does it really need an extra bonus to go along with it? Surgo 03:55, November 12, 2009 (UTC)

Well, if you didn't notice, this is a exotic weapon that is exactly like a martial weapon (mark for mark), except for the mastery bonus. This weapon is requiring you to burn two feats for it to get a few minor benefits. This weapon is more about improving exotic weapon proficiency to a reasonable level than it is about improving variant weapon focus. → Rith (talk) 04:32, November 12, 2009 (UTC)
Let me preface this by saying that I like it. Really. But it's problematic. It's a non-standard equipment design and is a poor fit for games that use the standard 'mundane equipment only gets better with magic' paradigm, even with the variant weapon focus tie-in. So even though I like it, I don't think it's a good call without a variant exotic weapon feat (which should probably be a variant rule in it's right) that specifically makes every exotic weapon work along similar lines. And if you're going to write that anyway, you may as well just use that as a base that builds directly off of bab or whatever and leave off the weapon focus entirely. Then the rule/feat can be tagged rogue or wizard or whatever, you can make awesome weapons like this that link back to it, and users can treat every weapon written to that standard as being in the same pile and take them or leave them with a better understanding of what they'd be doing. - TarkisFlux 05:08, November 12, 2009 (UTC)
Well, this weapon isn't really drastic enough to call for an entirely new rule for the game. But, to explain my meaning by this, I have to go on a tangent:
Right off the bat you find yourself with feat lost and an exotic weapon that looks, feels, acts, and is, in every way, shape and form, a scimitar. Now then, not off to the best start, are you?
Next you take weapon focus, spend a bit of gold to make your exotic scimitar masterwork, and suddenly, you find that you have a finessable scimitar. Now then, you find yourself at a delima, seeing as, if you want to dual wield weapons with your dex bonus, then you are a feat behind everybody else (who would have weapon finesse and TWF), and, on top of this, you are at a penalty when compared to the guy with the kurki's. Of course, you have superior damage. Wait, no you don't (2d4 Kurki versus 1d6 Shamshir). Still not that great for an exotic weapon, but, assuming you don't wish to dual weild, it's acceptable for the time being.
Next, you go up a few levels, and find yourself with a new ability: when you miss, you have a better chance of recuperating. Now, this bonus might be good, only bad part is, that it only applies to a single foe, and it cannot go above +1. This means that you have to miss a lot of foes to gain any safe benefit, and even then, that benefit is not safe, considering that you have been attacking for several rounds, not doing any damage, and they may or may not have been hitting you the entire time. Not that smart. So, new trick makes this weapon useful, and, with the finessability earlier, it might be worth it being exotic, but it's still not very good.
Now then, next you get a bonus to make AoO in a couple of levels. This is great for an AoO build, but, Spiked Chain is much better for such a build (two attacks versus one with a +4 bonus), not to mention that you are a single feat behind still (EWP and Combat Reflexes versus EWP, WF, and Combat Reflexes), though, with the finessability and the hopeful ability earlier, this weapon might be said to be on par with an exotic weapon, if a little bit low.
Though, then you gain a few more levels, and you find yourself able to take 10 on an attack roll. Stop the presses! Did he actually go there!? Now hold on just a second, look at what the ability actually is. It's got four requirements. You have to be weilding a shamshir, the shamshir has to be masterwork, you must be making a full attack option, and it can only be made on a single attack during that round. Now then, that's a good few requirements. But wait, what is this reward that you have so painstakingly set up for? You take 10 on an attack. What? This is not taking 20 on an attack, this is not auto-hitting, this is barely anything. This is taking the average. How is that good? You are just removing the chance part of the equation. If you use this ability, you will for sure either miss or hit, there is nothing more to it. Of course, it is good for gauging a foes abilities, and is a good safe mark to start an attack, but is not powerful in the least, and does not raise the bar at all. Now then, with the finessability earlier, the hopeful ability, and the AoO helper, and this, you are getting a nice little list of special abilities lined up, and, compared to the Spiked chain, this could be said to be almost fully equal to an exotic weapon.
Though, next up, you reach the final ability. A note on this ability first though: you will never reach it, unless you get quite a few levels in a full BAB class. Now that that has been said, lets look at the actual ability. You deal Con damage if you make a critical hit. Now that's nice. Of course, you have to score a critical hit to make use of it, and this does not synergize well with it's other abilities, considering that one directly removes your ability to make a critical hit, not to mention that critical hits are still kind of rare. Though, it is still powerful enough to make the weapon pretty good, if you manage to get that benefit.
Okay, wrapping up at the max this weapon can be, it's a finessable scimitar with a hopeful ability, an AoO helper, a 'no luck' mechanic, and Con damage on occasion. This is about good for what a good exotic weapon already is. Wrapping up though, at every level in the game, this weapon is capable of doing decently, and is worth taking EWP for, in the end, but it in no way constitutes creating an entire variant rule based around higher power, since it doesn't have higher power in the first place. Thank you. → Rith (talk) 07:30, November 12, 2009 (UTC)
Red herring much? You didn't address Tarkis's point at all--that it goes away from the usual paradigm of how weapons in D&D 3.5 work, and thus should be under a different variant so DMs and players know that they're leaving the usual paradigm through which the game works. --Ghostwheel 09:22, November 12, 2009 (UTC)
I think I see this in a slightly different way than you do Rith, and I wasn't as clear as I could have been about the variant rules bit. I wasn't suggesting that this was crazy overpowered or anything (cause it's not), I was saying that I agree that this would be a better way to do exotics for the entire game and I'd like to see this as a new exotic weapon paradigm. That way you spend a feat on an exotic weapon and it's not a minor boost to damage or an extra +2 on a combat maneuver or whatever, but something that's actually interesting and whatnot over your entire career. Doing this for all of the exotics in the game is a variant rule since it's replacing PHB entries. But since then I could make a spiked chain that started without reach similar to other base weapons, gained reach, gained ranged grapple / improved grab, and then gained some auto-damage constrict like thing while also doing similar interesting things for all of the other ogl exotic weapons, well, that sounded fun to me. And if the paradigm is different for all of the weapons, you don't have to go through any hoops or requirements to make this conform to the old way of doing things and could just plain old drop the variant weapon focus requirement, and the previously craptastic exotic weapon feat becomes worth looking at again. In fact, I think I'm going to go start that up in a sandbox unless you want it because I really prefer this style to the old one, and would like to see it expanded on. - TarkisFlux 18:08, November 12, 2009 (UTC)
I agree with Tarkis that it could work, but changes the paradigm through which weapons currently work and thus would have to be part of its own variant. --Ghostwheel 19:36, November 12, 2009 (UTC)
(Pshaw, edit conflict)
Oh, yeah, I agree, this is an extremly fun idea, and it would be really interesting to see it as a variant rule with variants of all the PHB weapons set up and ready to be used for an intrigued player. Though, on the matter of the weapon, it wasn't meant to be an entirely new rule when it was made. Indeed, it was made to be used in tandum with PHB weapons, just while using a different mechanic that co-existed with outstanding mechanics. I apoligize for not being clear, but my tangent was made to illuminate that the shamshir is on that level, and can be used side by side with PHB weapons as is. I guess this was beside the point in this discussion, but I digress. Though, feel free to go ahead and start making this as a variant rule, I'd like to see it (though I don't think that the spiked chain needs any more power myself). In fact, I will be more than willing to team up with you on developing this variant rule if you like. Of course, I think these weapons should also be left with the weapon focus feat required, so that they may be incorporated easily into games that do not use said variant rule, and still be used freely.
(Reply to Ghosty:) The statement 'change in the paradigm through wich weapons currently work' is essentially claiming that this single weapon changes the entire system, which it obviously doesn't, as it is merely adding an interesting little bit on. Of course, if this was to be made a variant rule, then yes, it would change in the paradigm through wich weapons currently work. As is, not so much. → Rith (talk) 19:59, November 12, 2009 (UTC)
This. --Ghostwheel 20:58, November 12, 2009 (UTC)

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