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Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Weapon Mastery

DnD Weapons Mastery Bola

Dungeons and Dragons – Mystara

Weapons Mastery – Bola

A type of throwing weapon made of weights on the ends of interconnected cords, used to capture animals by entangling their legs.

Weapons Mastery – Bola

Weapon Mastery Non-Proficient – Attacks are with disadvantage, and damage is halved rounded down. Non-Proficient use does not grant access to most of the weapon special properties.

(Non-Proficient)
Bola Attack +Str to hit one ranged target, Thrown range (-/50ft)
Basic Hit: 1d6 +Str mod bludgeoning (Halved)
Weapon AbilitiesRange

Weapon Mastery Proficient – This is the standard weapon stats from sourcebooks.

(Proficient)
Bola Attack +Str +Prof to hit ranged target, Thrown range (20/60ft)
Basic Hit: 1d6 +Str mod bludgeoning + Entangle.
Weapon AbilitiesBase DC, Entangle, Range

Weapon Mastery Skilled – Weapons do an extra dice of damage. Gain abilities to activate as a bonus action on your round, or a reaction.

(Skilled)
Bola Attack +Str +Prof to hit ranged target, Thrown range (25/70ft)
Basic Hit: 2d6 +Str mod bludgeoning + Entangle
Weapon AbilitiesBase DC, Defensive, Entangle, Range

Weapon Mastery Expert – You gain an expertise on your attack, and weapons do an extra dice of damage. Abilities with weapons improve. Can use weapon options with this weapon.

(Expert)
Bola Attack +Str +Prof +Prof to hit ranged target or two adjacent creatures of same size or smaller, Crit (19-20), Thrown range (30/80ft)
Basic Hit: 3d6 +Str mod bludgeoning + Entangle
Weapon AbilitiesBase DC, Defensive, Entangle, Range
Weapon Options (Available to learn) – Blinding Binds, Headcrack, Wing-Wrapping Attack

Weapon Mastery Master – Your gain advantage on your attack, weapons do an extra dice of damage. Abilities and Options improve.

(Master)
Bola Attack +Str +Prof +Prof to hit one target or three adjacent creatures of same size or smaller sharing a corner, Crit (19-20), Thrown range (35/90ft),
Basic Hit: 4d6 +Str mod bludgeoning + Entangle
Weapon AbilitiesBase DC, Defensive, Entangle, Range
Weapon Options (Available to learn) – Blinding Binds, Headcrack, Wing-Wrapping Attack

Weapon Mastery Grand Master – A natural 1 counts counts as a critical hit, and if both dice deal a critical hit, then all dice in the attack are maximised. Weapons do an extra dice of damage. Abilities and Options improve.

(Grand Master)
Bola Attack +Str +Prof + Prof to hit one target or four adjacent creatures of same size or smaller sharing a corner, Crit (1-2 or 19-20), Thrown range (40/100ft)
Basic Hit: 5d6 +Str mod bludgeoning + Entangle
Weapon AbilitiesBase DC, Defensive, Entangle, Range
Weapon Options (Available to learn) – Blinding Binds, Headcrack, Wing-Wrapping Attack

Beyond Grand Master in Weapon Mastery – While not possible to learn at this level, some abilities and magical items might push skill above grand master, and if it does it adds an extra dice of damage and improves abilities and options as per the weapon progression.

Weapon Abilities – Bola

Weapon Ability – Base DC – Some of the effects produced by weapons masters has a saving throw to resist. This saving throw is calculated as 8 plus the ability modifier used in the attack roll, your weapon mastery bonus, your Weaponologist bonus, your weapons mastery feats and Archetypes.
Base DC = 8 +Ability Mod +Prof +WM Bonus +Circle Bonus +Feat Bonus +Arch Type Bonus (Martial +2)
Associated WeaponsBardiche, Bastard Sword, Battleaxe, Bill, Blackjack, Blowgun 1H, Blowgun 2H, Bola, Cestus, Club, Dagger, Dart, Flail, Glaive, Greataxe, Greatclub, Greatsword, Guisarme, Halberd, Hand Crossbow, Handaxe, Hat, Heavy Crossbow, Heavy Shield, Holy Symbol, Horned Shield, Javelin, Knife Shield, Lance, Lasso, Light Crossbow, Light Hammer, Light Shield, Lochaber Axe, Longbow, Longsword, Mace, Maul, Medium Shield, Morningstar, Net, Orb, Partisan, Pike, Poleaxe, Quarterstaff, Ranseur, Rapier, Ring, Rod, Scimitar, Scythe, Shortbow, Shortsword, Sickle, Sling, Spear, Spetum, Spontoon, Staff, Sword Shield, Tome, Tower Shield, Trident, Tusked Shield, Unarmed or Natural, Vaulge, Wand, Warhammer, Warpick,

Weapon Ability – Defensive – If you spend your bonus action this round on this quality you gain a bonus for your armour class until the start of your next round as long as you still have your reaction. Each level above skilled adds +1 WM Bonus to the Shield bonus provided.
Defensive (Skilled Bonus Action) – This weapon provides a +1 Shield bonus to your armour class as long as your still have your reaction. If an attack would have hit you, but misses because of using defensive, you deflect the attack and expend your reaction. (Martial weapons add +1 to the shield bonus, A shield weapon does not use up reactions but can trigger retaliate instead)
Associated WeaponsBardiche, Bastard Sword, Battleaxe, Bill, Bola, Club, Flail, Glaive, Greataxe, Greatclub, Greatsword, Guisarme, Halberd, Handaxe, Heavy Crossbow, Heavy Shield, Horned Shield, Lance, Light Crossbow, Light Hammer, Light Shield, Lochaber Axe, Longbow, Longsword, Mace, Medium Shield, Morningstar, Net, Partisan, Pike, Poleaxe, Quarterstaff, Ranseur, Rapier, Scimitar, Scythe, Shortbow, Shortsword, Sling, Spetum, Tower Shield, Tusked Shield, Voulge, Warhammer,

Weapon Ability – Entangle – A creature up to one size larger is restrained. A creature may make an action to perform an Entangled Saving Throw to free a someone restrained. Dealing 5 slashing damage (AC 10) also frees the creature without harming it and destroying the weapon. On a Critical Hit, the target must make a Paralysis Saving Throw. When you attack with this weapon it is the only attack you can make in the round. Each level above skilled adds +1 WM Bonus to the DC (Net gives bonus starting at Proficient). Once you reach expert level, you crit on roll of a 19-20. Once you reach Grand master level you crit on roll of a 1-2 and 19-20.
Entangle Saving Throw – Strength vs Base DC. Failure causes restrained.
Paralysis Saving Throw – Constitution vs Base DC. Failure causes paralysis.
Associated WeaponsBola, Lasso, Net,

Weapon Ability – Range – A weapon that can be used to make a ranged attack has a range shown in parentheses after the ammunition or thrown property. The range lists two numbers. The first is the weapon’s normal range in feet, and the second indicates the weapon’s maximum range. When attacking a target beyond normal range, you have disadvantage on the attack roll. You can’t attack a target beyond the weapon’s long range.
Associated WeaponsBastard Sword, Battleaxe, Blowgun 1H, Blowgun 2H, Bola, Club, Dart, Flail, Greatsword, Handaxe, Heavy Crossbow, Javelin, Light Crossbow, Light Hammer, Light Shield, Longbow, Longsword, Mace, Morningstar, Net, Shortbow, Shortsword, Sling, Spear, Trident, Warhammer, Warpick,

Weapon Options – Bola

Blinding Binds (Attack Option) – Instead of restraining your foe, you may instead wrap the thick cords of your weapon around a single creature’s head. A Large or smaller creature hit by the weapon must make a Blinded Saving Throw, and remains so until the weapon is removed. Each level above expert with the weapon adds +1 WM Bonus to the DC.
Blinded Saving Throw – Dexterity vs Base DC. Failure causes blinded.
Associated WeaponsBola, Lasso, Net, Whip

Headcrack (Attack Option) As an attack, you may make a ranged weapon attack with your bludgeoning weapon. If the attack hits, the target must make a Stunned Saving Throw. Each level above expert with the weapon adds +1 WM Bonus to the DC.
Stunned Saving Throw – Constitution vs Base DC. Failure causes target to be stunned until the beginning of its next turn.
Associated WeaponsBlackjack, Bola, Light Hammer, Mace, Sling, Warhammer

Wing-Wrapping Attack (Attack Option) Instead of restraining a flying creature, you may entangle its wings in your weapon. A winged creature up to one size larger hit by the weapon when you use this maneuver has its fly speed reduced to 0 (but is not restrained) until the weapon is removed. Each level above expert with the weapon adds +1 WM Bonus to the DC.
Grounded Saving Throw – Strength vs Base DC. Failure causes flying speed reduced to 0 (but is not restrained).
Associated WeaponsBola, Lasso, Net, Whip

Design Development Notes

The choice to reduce the effectiveness for non-proficient use was to make it more useful to those who are skilled. I did not want to cheapen weapon skill by allowing the unskilled person to be able to take down a larger foe as well.

I was also glad to be able to add in a few weapon options even if they overlap a little with the weapon qualities.

Changes from Version 1 to 2 removed the strangle aspect and replace it with a paralyse effect. Had similar effects mechanically, but this keeps it in the 5th ed version of the conditions.

Weapons Mastery Version 1.0
  • Bola Attack: (Non-Proficient) + to hit, Thrown range (-/50 ft), one target
    • Hit: 1+mod bludgeoning + Entangle
      • Entangle – (Base DC) A creature up to your size is restrained.
  • Bola Attack: (Proficient) + to hit, Thrown range (20/60 ft), one target
    • Hit: 1d2+mod bludgeoning + Entangle.
      • Entangle – (Base DC) A creature up to one size larger is restrained.
    • Crit: Strangle – (Base DC) Save vs Con or become paralysed and stops the target from breathing (if it needs to breathe) and the start to suffocate.
  • Bola Attack: (Skilled) + to hit, Thrown range (25/70 ft), one target
    • Hit: 1d4+mod bludgeoning + Entangle
      • Entangle – (Base DC+1) A creature up to one size larger is restrained.
    • Crit: Strangle – (Base DC+1) Save vs Con or become paralysed and stops the target from breathing (if it needs to breathe) and the start to suffocate.
    • (B) AC Defence (+1/1) – You gain an armour class bonus, for a set number of attacks each round.
  • Bola Attack: (Expert) + to hit, Crit (19-20), Thrown range (30/80 ft), one target or two adjacent medium or smaller creatures
    • Hit: 2d4+mod bludgeoning + Entangle.
      • Entangle – (Base DC+2) A creature up to one size larger is restrained.
    • Crit: Strangle – (Base DC+2) Save vs Con or become paralysed and stops the target from breathing (if it needs to breathe) and the start to suffocate.
    • (B) AC Defence (+1/1) – You gain an armour class bonus, for a set number of attacks each round.
  • Bola Attack: (Master) + to hit, Crit (19-20), Thrown range (35/90 ft), one target or three adjacent medium or smaller creatures sharing a corner
    • Hit: 3d4+mod bludgeoning + Entangle.
      • Entangle – (Base DC+3) A creature up to one size larger is restrained.
    • Crit: Strangle – (Base DC+3) Save vs Con or become paralysed and stops the target from breathing (if it needs to breathe) and the start to suffocate.
    • (B) AC Defence (+1/2) – You gain an armour class bonus, for a set number of attacks each round.
  • Bola Attack:(Grand Master) + to hit, Crit (19-20), Thrown range (40/100 ft), one target or four adjacent medium or smaller creatures sharing a corner
    • Hit: 4d4+mod bludgeoning + Entangle.
      • Entangle – (Base DC+4) A creature up to one size larger is restrained.
    • Crit: Strangle – (Base DC+4) Save vs Con or become paralysed and stops the target from breathing (if it needs to breathe) and the start to suffocate.
    • (B) AC Defence (+1/2) – You gain an armour class bonus, for a set number of attacks each round.

Content Updates

  • 2022-04-30 – Converted over to version 2.0 of my weapon mastery rules.
  • 2021-08-05 – Updated the layout and links.
  • 2020-06-10 – Updated to Grand Master and added Options.
  • 2020-05-07 – Reduced the size of target affected by non-proficient use.
Weapons Mastery

Overview, Downtime for Weapons Mastery, Secret Craft: Weaponologist

Simple 1H or Versatile: Blackjack (or Sap), Cestus, Club (or torch), Dagger, Handaxe (or Tomahawk), Javelin, Lasso, Light Hammer, Mace, Quarterstaff, Sickle, Spear, Unarmed

Simple 2H: Greatclub, Scythe

Simple Ranged: Bola, Dart, Light Crossbow, Shortbow, Sling

Martial 1H or Versatile: Bastard Sword, Battleaxe, Flail, Lance, Longsword, Morningstar, Rapier, Scimitar, Shortsword, Spontoon, Trident, Warhammer, Warpick, Whip

Martial 2H: Bardiche, Bill, Glaive, Greataxe, Greatsword, Guisarme, Halberd, Lochaber Axe, Maul, Partisan, Pike, Poleaxe, Ranseur, Spectum, Voulge

Martial Ranged: Blowgun 1H, Blowgun 2H, Hand Crossbow, Heavy Crossbow, Longbow, Net

Martial Shield: Heavy, Horned, Knife, Light, Medium, Sword, Tower, Tusked

Magical Implement: Hat, Holy Symbol, Orb, Ring, Rod, Staff, Tome, Wand

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By thedarkelf007

I am a long term gamer, I run 6 RPG's a fortnight, host board game, card game and LANs each about once a quarter and have an addiction to buying more games. Games I am currently running are Pathfinder (1st and 2nd Edition) and Dungeons and Dragons (5th Edition).

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