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Thread: Can mages use bows?

  1. #1
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    Default Can mages use bows?

    Sorry, just noticed there is another sub-forum better suited for this question.

    Is there no way to delete posts?

    Edit:
    Bah! Someone moved this thread on me from another sub-forum (I hoped they'd delete it), now we have a duplicate :(

    In Tales II Trilogy Volume I "The Reign of Istar", in the story "The Silken Threads" Nuitari asks the mage Akar to use steel to draw the blood of a cleric upon the bridge leading from the Lost Citadel. Akar replies, "The only steel weapon we mages are permitted to carry is a dagger."

    So I wonder, can Elven mages use bow and arrow? Though most of the weapon is wooden, the arrowhead is probably a steel blade. I suspect the bow and arrow isn't considered a "steel weapon", but I don't know the reason mages are not supposed to use steel weapons. Is it a Conclave rule?

    I'm thinking of making a Pathfinder Qualinesti mage, who at low levels will rely on his bow often.
    Last edited by Adrian; 03-10-2016 at 05:27 PM.

  2. #2
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    Thumbs up

    Not the authority on all things DL, but I think your DM would be being a bit of a if they didn't let you.

    Mechanically, it is in no way game breaking. And thematically, it fits in just fine. Elven traditions are just as strong as those of High Sorcery; I doubt a fellow mage would admonish an Elven colleague for keeping to it. Especially when it's non-harmful to magical study (unlike, for example, raging) and keeps those fingers strong and eyes sharp.

    I say do it!

    Game on!
    Seriously; what's the point of being a minotaur if you're not going to skewer something, anything, on those beautiful horns....

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaygahMinotaur View Post
    Not the authority on all things DL, but I think your DM would be being a bit of a if they didn't let you.
    I'm the DM. I just want to follow as much of the canon as I'm able.


    Quote Originally Posted by SaygahMinotaur View Post
    Mechanically, it is in no way game breaking. And thematically, it fits in just fine. Elven traditions are just as strong as those of High Sorcery; I doubt a fellow mage would admonish an Elven colleague for keeping to it. Especially when it's non-harmful to magical study (unlike, for example, raging) and keeps those fingers strong and eyes sharp.
    Is the rule just a Conclave rule? Aside from this one reference, is the "no steel weapons" rule documented anywhere else that you know of?

  4. #4
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    Mechanically, there's no reason that they shouldn't. Even in the DL setting, I'd say "don't bring your bow to the Tower".

    Something else to consider is that at low levels, your Elf could get away with it easily. Taking the Test of High Sorcery to join the Orders doesn't typically happen until your character has access to third-level magic spells, or Character Level 5.

    So use that bow until you join the Order. Hells, use the bow after, too. I doubt you'd be branded renegade for that. Especially if the Conclave doesn't know anyway.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuperBall View Post
    Mechanically, there's no reason that they shouldn't. Even in the DL setting, I'd say "don't bring your bow to the Tower".

    Something else to consider is that at low levels, your Elf could get away with it easily. Taking the Test of High Sorcery to join the Orders doesn't typically happen until your character has access to third-level magic spells, or Character Level 5.

    So use that bow until you join the Order. Hells, use the bow after, too. I doubt you'd be branded renegade for that. Especially if the Conclave doesn't know anyway.
    Is a bow and arrow a "steel weapon"?

    For that matter why can't mages use "steel weapons"? Is there any reference to it outside of what I quoted?

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    It's been quite a while since I remember reading this, but I don't believe there is any rule against "Steel weapons" specifically. If I recall correctly, mages were originally only allowed to use quarterstaffs and their staves, until Magius was captured. The story is something like if he had had a dagger on him he would have been able to defend himself, and so the rule was opened to allow wizards to carry daggers as well. Those two weapons would be the traditional wizardly weapons.

    That said, I don't believe it is an actual rule with the Conclave. A wizard who uses other weapons might be gossiped about or minorly ostracized for not embracing tradition, but they wouldn't be a renegade.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jake View Post
    That said, I don't believe it is an actual rule with the Conclave. A wizard who uses other weapons might be gossiped about or minorly ostracized for not embracing tradition, but they wouldn't be a renegade.
    Did you see my quote from Reign of Istar? In it Nuitari asks a mage to kill a cleric with a steel blade. The mage replies, "The only steel weapon we mages are permitted to carry is a dagger." Nuitari then suggests that they have someone else do the task for them.

    Is it just something the author made up, or was it sourced from elsewhere?

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    I could be completely wrong, but I believe earlier novels treat it as a hard and fast rule because in the system at the time (AD&D maybe?) wizards were restricted to quarterstaff and dagger only. Later novels published under different game systems without this restriction makes it feel more like a tradition as opposed to an actual rule, to me, anyway.
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    Here's a previous post on this topic, probably where I heard all this from.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jake View Post
    Here's a previous post on this topic, probably where I heard all this from.
    Can you delete the other thread with the identical name as this thread? Someone moved it from another sub-forum after I'd created this one (I'd expected it to be deleted not moved).

    Edit:
    Thank you
    Last edited by Adrian; 03-10-2016 at 06:37 PM.

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