The Players Handbook lists more than forty different weapon types, covering nearly every combat weapon invented before the gun. Doubtless, those that haven't yet been detailed will be added as the scope of the AD&D game system increases, but a whole area of armed combat has yet to be touched on: the game has no rules for the combat use of items which aren't designed to be weapons. In fact, so great has been the concentration on designed weapons that even the commonplace rock has been ignored in the official tables.One wonders how AD&D players survived for so many years without official stats for the commonplace rock! If that sounds unbearably sarcastic, my apologies; it's just that I find it difficult to imagine that any referee or player would be the least bit bothered that Gary Gygax had omitted to include rules for rocks in his Players Handbook. Indeed, the entire notion that referees might need a six-page article with ten different tables to adjudicate a character picking up a broken bottle to use in a bar fight strikes me as absurd. And yet that's exactly what we get. The author even provides a separate table specifically for "rock-like items," so that the referee can properly distinguish between bricks and whetstones, saucepans and skillets.
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
I had some harsh words about another one of his articles, there's good reason for this fear. This time, Mr Inniss provides us with a lengthy article -- and tables -- to aid the referee in dealing with "improvised and impromptu weapons." Published in issue #97 (May 1985), "Sticks, Stones, and Bones" is intended to fill in what the author deems a significant lacuna in AD&D's rules. He explains his purposes better than I ever could: