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  1. #1

    Pathfinder rule question: two-handed weapons vs swift one-handed action?

    The Paladin's lay on hands, when done on himself, is a swift action requiring a free hand. Can such a swift action be used within a round while using a two-handed weapon?

    Any negative modifier on attacks?

    Can all actions (ex: full attack, charge) be done during the round?

    Thanks for the feedback.

  2. #2
    That depends on what action you think is required to switch from wielding a two-handed weapon to just holding it in one hand (which I don't believe is covered in the rules anywhere). I'd say that letting go with one hand is a free action, so you could full attack, let go, and lay on the newly free hand. Whether grabbing hold of the weapon again with the free hand is also a free action is more open to debate.

  3. #3
    Personally, I would adjudicate this as acceptable.

    While two hands are obviously required to wield the weapon in combat, it isn't unreasonable to assume that it could simply be held briefly in one hand.

    Combine that with part of the rule definition of a Swift action; "You can perform one swift action per turn without affecting your ability to perform other actions."

    Just my two cents

  4. #4
    By searching the Paizo forums, I ended up finding this statement by James Jacobs, creative director for Pathfinder:

    if you're wielding a 2H weapon, you can let go of the weapon with one of your hands (free action). You're now only carrying the 2H weapon, not wielding it, but your free hand is now free to attack or help cast spells or whatever. And at the end of your turn if your free hand remains free you'd be able to return it to grip your 2H weapon so you can still threaten foes and take attacks of opportunity if you want.

    So, that would confirm that a paladin wielding a 2H weapon can lay-on-hands on himself during a round?

  5. #5
    Mgrancey's Avatar
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    Correct, you can go from wielding to holding and vice a versa, as a free action, but its important to remember that you aren't wielding a weapon if they try to interrupt you or you provoke as well, since you won't get any bonuses that you might from either weapon properties or magical abilities.

    An example is one of my fighters, a halberd wielding lore warden that thru a boon is also proficient with bolas. I can hold my halberd in one hand and throw a bola with my other hand, this is obviously a move/move equiv. and standard actions used, but I can then grasp my halberd in 2 hands again so I can make an AoO.

    This isn't quite the same as a 1h weapon that you can wield 2h since you would still be able to use your weapon and be able to switch how your holding it.
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  6. #6
    Ok, I understand holding a two handed weapon is not wielding, so it doesn't threaten and can't interrupt with an AoO. I don't see anything in the rules that prevent this sequence though:

    1) Move Action
    2) Standard Action
    (Or replace both with full round action)
    3) Free Action: release one hand from two handed weapon
    4) Swift Action: Lay-on-hands on yourself
    5) Free Action: return hand to wield two handed weapon

    In this case, the only time the paladin wouldn't be wielding his two handed weapon would be if someone interrupted the swift action. Am I right?

  7. #7
    Mgrancey's Avatar
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    Yep. That is correct as far as I know.
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