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Long spear?


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In the weapons tables the group of spears have the characteristics of flex and set. The long spear has the characteristics of 2H and LS. I assume that the characteristic of 2H for the longspear overrides the flex for the spear group and the longspear requires two hands to use.  My question is about the LS characteristic. It states that it allows the weapon to be used as a longspear and to be set against a charge, with a "Change Stance" action required to change its usage. Does this mean that unlike other weapons with the "Set" characteristic a longspear requires changing stance to switch from using it set against a charge to using it to thrust at an opponent?

It's not quite clear to me what the game mechanical differences between longspears and shortspears are.  I understand that pole weapons are two-handed, and can be set against a charge. I presume that they require a change stance action to set or to return to using as a melee weapon after setting them, is this correct?

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Ok lets unpack this.

First off ignore the Flex trait - without the STR/DEX requirements (which I dropped in OpenQuest Refreshed) its a typo that I'll remove. It also makes very little difference mechanically, its a hangover from the MRQ SRD (which had all sorts of inconsistencies). 

Then ignore the Set trait for all Spears. The Set trait is only used on the heading for Spears, and obviously doesn't apply to Short Spears (that are the short stabbing variety used by Zulus, that occasionally get thrown - hence the Range triat).

Then all that applies to the Longspear is the LS trait, which now on its own should make sense. 

I'll mark removal of the Flex and Set traits down for the next issue of errata. 

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Thanks Newt. That does make more sense now.

Long spears and certain polearms can be set to recieve a charge with a change stance action, and a change stance action to go back to using them for melee. And they are all two-handed.

Short stabbing spears are one-handed and cannot be set to recieve a charge, although they can be thrown. Lances, obviously cannot be set.

Flex for spears made a certain amount of sense for medium spears that you might use with one or two hands, but no issue from me with dropping it. Makes things simpler.

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Would a long spear be much use for an adventurer in a small party? IIRC, they were meant to be used in mass, tightly-bunched formations is skewer any cavalry foolish enough to charge into them. I imagine y0u can thrust with them to poke things, but wouldn't they be inefficient at the task and very difficult to handle?

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have seen enough martial arts films to know that a long spear can be deadly in the right hands.

They are even useful for poking in tunnels, but not great for squeezing round very tight bends.

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