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Thread: Crossbows?

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    Crossbows?

    Hey Guys,

    If I remember right crossbows in AD&D in Birthright were better than common DnD crossbows. Is this in the BRCS?

    Sin

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinister View Post
    Hey Guys,

    If I remember right crossbows in AD&D in Birthright were better than common DnD crossbows. Is this in the BRCS?

    Sin
    Nope.

    The rules follow the 3.5 rules as much as possible.

    Pretty much only campaign specific weapons got "added"; cutless, sabre, main-gauche and vos warspear. Some appear in "other" WotC products but not in the SRD and were such an inherent part of the setting that they were "added' specifically.

    Also the BR crossbows actually were paralleled in Player's Option: Combat and Tactics which had the same stats and effects - so essentially the BR crossbows became the "new" standard in D&D after PO: C&T.

    Basically the two products were written in parallel (or at least a large overlap occurred).
    Duane Eggert

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    Member stv2brown1988's Avatar
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    Does anyone have any house rules that can address the disadvantages of crossbows versus bows within dnd? I mean the damage is about the same and the range as well so it comes down to how many attacks per round you want and is it worth spending a feat on it (if you were a non-martial character).

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stv2brown1988 View Post
    Does anyone have any house rules that can address the disadvantages of crossbows versus bows within dnd? I mean the damage is about the same and the range as well so it comes down to how many attacks per round you want and is it worth spending a feat on it (if you were a non-martial character).

    What are you trying to get?

    How crossbows are "weaker" than bows?

    How to make crossbows better?

    Or just the list of reasons why crossbows aren't as good as bows?

    I mean are you looking for house-rules that make cross bows "better"?
    Duane Eggert

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    Quote Originally Posted by irdeggman View Post
    Nope.

    The rules follow the 3.5 rules as much as possible.

    Pretty much only campaign specific weapons got "added"; cutless, sabre, main-gauche and vos warspear. Some appear in "other" WotC products but not in the SRD and were such an inherent part of the setting that they were "added' specifically.

    Also the BR crossbows actually were paralleled in Player's Option: Combat and Tactics which had the same stats and effects - so essentially the BR crossbows became the "new" standard in D&D after PO: C&T.

    Basically the two products were written in parallel (or at least a large overlap occurred).
    Thanks for the answer. I'll house rule something. People that have been playing in my birthright games since AD&D know that "In the birthright campaign, crossbows have exceptional penetrating power" according to the old rulebook and it's an example of how rules should have either been introduced to "all" of DnD OR the setting. I think of birthright as having better crossbows than the rest of DnD, which at the time of my 3 year AD&D birthright game WAS true, particularly when my players shunned the player option books.

    it's an easy fix though.

    Thanks
    Sin

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Try this feat from PHB II.

    Crossbow sniper: Apply ½ dex bonus to damage {PHB II}
    Duane Eggert

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    Quote Originally Posted by irdeggman View Post
    Try this feat from PHB II.

    Crossbow sniper: Apply ½ dex bonus to damage {PHB II}
    Hey that's not bad. Thanks.

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sinister View Post
    Thanks for the answer. I'll house rule something. People that have been playing in my birthright games since AD&D know that "In the birthright campaign, crossbows have exceptional penetrating power" according to the old rulebook and it's an example of how rules should have either been introduced to "all" of DnD OR the setting. I think of birthright as having better crossbows than the rest of DnD, which at the time of my 3 year AD&D birthright game WAS true, particularly when my players shunned the player option books.

    it's an easy fix though.

    Thanks
    Sin
    Remember that the bonus "to hit" only applied to "armored" opponents and not a general always applicable bonus. And only at medium and short range to boot. Range increments have pretty much wiped out that short and medium range thing though. The general application for "precision" based types of bonuses in general only work within 30 ft nowadays.
    Duane Eggert

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    Member stv2brown1988's Avatar
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    Maybe I got my history wrong but I thought most RL armies swtched to the Crossbow from the bow due to the fact that it was easier to train troops to hit a target with a crossbow instead of a bow. Having fired both when I was a kid I remember hitting the bale of hay with the crossbow almost everytime but missing completly with the bow for many shots. (This was within the first two range bands)

    I was looking for something that either made it easier to hit with a crossbow or a rule about mustering crossbowmen or training levies into crossbowmen is easier/cheaper/faster than normal archers (bows). Does this make any sense to anyone else?

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    The crossbow was the prefered bow in the high middle ages for the reasons you mention, but the development of a compound longbow c.1300 turned English archers into a tremendous combat force. As in all things, the English were immitated, even without the compound bows.

    Also, keep in mind that accuracy is nearly irrelevant in war. The "target" is a large body of men called an army, and it is very large. Plus you don't have to hit anything to cause people to get nervous, take cover, and activate their self-preservation instincts. Put a thousand arrows into the air in the right general direction, and you're bound to hit something. And even when you hit only a few people, they will take cover during the archery. Its sufficient to keep them huddled under their shields while your cavalry moved down-field towards them.

    Of course having good archers is better than having bad archers, but for most medieval armies, bad archers were suffcient, and no effort was made to imporve thier archers' quality.

    Crossbows do have good armor penetration, but their rate of fire is so poor, they basically get one good shot at the begining of a combat, and then they have little use. The French were so contemptueous of their own hired Genoese crossbows that after they would fire, they would ride through them from behind to charge the enemy. Some of this might be distain for mercenaries, foriegners, or even their style of combat, but you can be sure that if they were really effective, they would be respected.

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