MSRD:Archaic Melee Weapons

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Archaic Melee Weapons

Most of these weapons deal damage by means of a blade or a sharp point. Some of them are moderately expensive, reflecting their archaic nature in modern-day society.

Table: Archaic Melee Weapons (require the Archaic Weapons Proficiency feat)
Weapon Damage Critical Damage Type Range Increment Size Weight Purchase DC Restriction
Battleaxe 1d8 20/x3 Slashing Med. 7 lb. 11
Bayonet (fixed)1 1d4/1d6 20 Piercing Large 1 lb. 7
Cutlass* 1d6 19–20 Piercing, Slashing Small 3 lb. 11
Falchion 2d4 18–20 Slashing Large 16 lb. 12
Flail, heavy* 1d10 19–20 Bludgeoning Large 20 lb. 8
Flail, light* 1d8 20 Bludgeoning Med. 5 lb. 7
Glaive† 1d10 20/x3 Slashing Large 15 lb. 9
Greataxe 1d12 20/x3 Slashing Large 20 lb. 12
Greatclub 1d10 20 Bludgeoning Large 10 lb. 6
Greatsword 2d6 19–20 Slashing Large 15 lb. 13
Guisarme*† 2d4 20/x3 Slashing Large 15 lb. 9
Halberd*† 1d10 20/x3 Piercing, Slashing Large 15 lb. 10
Hatchet 1d6 20 Slashing 10 ft. Small 4 lb. 4
Lance, heavy 1d8 20/x3 Piercing Med. 10 lb. 7
Lance, light 1d6 20/x3 Piercing Small 5 lb. 6
Longsword 1d8 19–20 Slashing Med 4 lb. 11
Machete 1d6 19–20 Slashing Small 2 lb. 5
Maul 1d10 20/x3 Bludgeoning Large 20 lb. 10
Naginata† 1d10 20/x3 Slashing Large 15 lb. 13
Pick 1d4 20/x4 Piercing Small 4 lb. 6
Pickaxe 1d6 20/x4 Piercing Med. 6 lb. 7
Ranseur† 2d4 20/x3 Piercing Large 15 lb. 9
Rapier 1d6 18–20 Piercing Med 3 lb. 10
Saber* 1d8 19–20 Slashing, Piercing Med. 4 lb. 11
Scimitar 1d6 18–20 Slashing Med. 4 lb. 12
Scythe 2d4 20/x4 Piercing, Slashing Large 12 lb. 7
Spear 1d8 20 Piercing Large 9 lb. 6
Straight razor 1d4 19–20 Slashing Tiny 0.5 lb. 4
Sword cane1 1d6 18–20 Piercing Med 3 lb. 9
Sword, short 1d6 19–20 Piercing Small 3 lb. 10
Trident 1d8 20 Piercing 10 ft. Med. 5 lb. 7
Wakizashi 1d6 19–20 Slashing Small 3 lb. 11
Warhammer 1d8 20/x3 Bludgeoning Med. 8 lb. 9
  1. See the description of this weapon for special rules. Reach weapon. Double weapon.

Weapon Descriptions


The battleaxe has a large metal head and is popular with cultists and others who like to leave big, bloody wounds.

Bayonet (Fixed)

The statistics given describe a bayonet fixed at the end of a longarm with an appropriate mount. With the bayonet fixed, the longarm becomes a double weapon: club-like at one end and spear-like at the other. A character can fight with it as if fighting with two weapons, but if the character does so, he or she incurs all the normal attack penalties associated with fighting with two weapons, as if using a one-handed weapon and a light weapon.


This sword, which is essentially a two-handed scimitar, has a curve that gives it a keener edge.

Flail, Light and Heavy

With a flail, you gain a +2 bonus on your opposed attack roll when attempting to disarm an enemy (including the roll to avoid being disarmed if you fail to disarm your enemy). You can also use this weapon to make trip attacks. If you are tripped during your own trip attempt, you can drop the flail to avoid being tripped.


A glaive has reach. You can strike opponents 10 feet away with it, but you can’t use it against an adjacent foe.


This big, heavy axe is a favorite of large Shadow creatures or anybody else who wants the capability to deal out incredible damage.


A greatclub is a two-handed version of a regular club.


This huge sword, including the Scottish claymore, can deal tremendous damage in the right hands.


A guisarme has reach. You can strike opponents 10 feet away with it, but you can’t use it against adjacent foes. Because of the guisarme’s curved blade, you can also use it to make trip attacks. If you are tripped during your own trip attack, you can drop the guisarme to avoid being tripped.


Halberds are extremely rare outside of ceremonial functions or museums, although some Shadow creatures wield them. Normally, you strike with the halberd’s axe head, but the spike on the end is useful against charging opponents. Because of the hook on the back of the halberd, you can use it to make trip attacks. If you are tripped during your own trip attempt, you can drop the halberd to avoid being tripped.


This light axe is a chopping tool that deals slashing dam­age when employed as a weapon.

Lance, Heavy and Light

A lance deals double damage when used from the back of a charging mount or vehicle (like a motorcycle or bicycle). A heavy lance has reach. You can strike opponents 10 feet away with it, but you can’t use it against an adjacent foe. Light lances are primarily for Small riders.


This classic, straight blade is the weapon of knighthood and valor.


This long-bladed tool looks much like a short, lightweight sword.


Bigger than a sledgehammer, the maul is a two-handed warhammer of enormous size. Ogres and other brutes favor it.


A naginata is a finely crafted Japanese polearm. A naginata has reach. You can strike opponents 10 feet away with it, but you can’t use it against an adjacent foe.


A pick is designed to concentrate its force on a small, penetrating point. It is a small, one-handed instrument that includes rock cutting picks and picks designed for combat.


This is a heavy, two-handed tool commonly used for mining and digging dirt. The version listed here is strengthened for martial use.


This curious-looking polearm has reach. You can strike opponents 10 feet away with it, but you can’t use it against an adjacent foe.

With a ranseur, you get a +2 bonus on your opposed attack rolls when attempting to disarm an opponent (including the roll to avoid being disarmed if you fail to disarm your opponent).


The rapier is a lightweight sword with a thin blade. A character can select the Weapon Finesse feat to apply his or her Dexterity modifier instead of Strength modifier to attack rolls with a rapier.


The saber is a long, heavy sword specialized for use in mounted combat. You gain a +1 equipment bonus on your attack rolls when you use a saber while mounted (horse or a vehicle such as a motorcycle).


A curved sword. The curve on this blade makes the weapon’s edge effectively sharper.


The scythe can be a powerful weapon in the right hands. The design of the scythe focuses tremendous force on the sharp point as well as allowing devastating slashes with the blade edge.


This primitive device is a reach weapon. A character can strike opponents 10 feet away with it, but can’t use it against an adjacent foe.

Straight Razor

Favored by old-school organized crime “mechanics,” this item can still be found in some barbershops and shaving kits.

Sword Cane

This is a lightweight, concealed sword that hides its blade in the shaft of a walking stick or umbrella. Because of this special construction, a sword cane is always considered to be concealed; it is noticed only with a Spot check (DC 18). (The walking stick or umbrella is not concealed, only the blade within.)

Sword, Short

This sword is popular with heroes for its concealability.


This three-tined piercing weapon can be thrown just as a shortspear can be, but its range increment is shorter because it’s not as aerodynamic. Scuba divers and aquatic Shadow creatures make use of tridents.


The wakizashi is a Japanese masterwork short sword, granting a +1 bonus on your attack rolls. A masterwork weapon’s bonus to attack does not stack with an enhancement bonus to attack.

A samurai’s wakizashi is part of a matched pair with his katana, and—like the katana—is an important part of his honor. Its most prominent use is in the suicide ritual called seppuku.


This is a one-handed sledge with a large, heavy head. It includes large work hammers such as those that can be found around construction sites.

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