Weapons in Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire build on the mechanics introduced in Pillars of Eternity, introducing a number of wrinkles to the formula. As usual, weapons are your primary method of aggressively negotiating with other denizens of the Archipelago (the other being your sharp wit), but added modal abilities to each weapon type allow you to further refine your playstyle. These are granted by weapon proficiencies chosen at level-up or character creation. Note that there is no penalty for using a weapon your character is not proficient in. You only won't have access to that weapon's modal ability.
Of course, each weapon (and shield, since they're coded as off-hand weapons) also has its own, unique tactical niche: Daggers deal low damage, but attack fast, pikes are slow, but have increased reach... Picking the right tool for the job is a large part of defeating enemies you come across in your journeys. As before, there are no class or race restrictions on weapons use.
Generally, Accuracy is king. After that, comes Modals that apply a direct Damage Bonus, but those work best for melee-range specialists; not for characters multiclassed as a spell caster. Lastly, Penetration provides consistent results if you build towards it, and most melee types can benefit with decently enough Accuracy. You typically want Armor reduction from some supporting source if you decide to specialize for Penetration as a damage enhancer. Rangers specializing with either any gun or the Arbalest itself should favor Penetration over Critical Damage.
Bows and crossbows have the largest attack range among all the ranged weapons in the game. Bows are the fastest to use. Crossbows are slower to reload/fire than hunting bows or war bows but they do more damage. The more powerful Arbalests can't be cocked by hand and need to be planted and cranked, and thus are slower to reload than crossbows, but still faster than Firearms.
BENEFIT: Your Hits can possibly knock your damaged targets prone.
PENALTY: -25% Action Speed with your Arbalest weapon. This makes your character's attack animations when firing your Arbelest slower. You will be easier to interrupt and the idea of moving around mid-battle worse.
BENEFIT: Your Crossbow Hits can possibly Interrupt your damaged targets.
PENALTY: -25% Action Speed with your Crossbow weapons. Your attack animations with this Weapon go off slower. You will be easier to interrupt, and moving your character while it's in mid-animation cancels your attack.
BENEFIT: +2 Penetration with your War Bow attacks. A large Penetration means more damage can go through. A significantly large bonus can enhance your regular damage in a way similar to a critical hit and stacks with critical damage.
PENALTY: +50% Recovery Time after attacking with your War Bow.
Firearms are very slow to reload, taking longer to reload than any other weapons and aren't very accurate, but they make up for it by dealing high damage and their unique advantage in dealing with Wizards standard magical defense with their Veil Piercing effect.
The biggest change to firearms in Deadfire is that Pistols and Blunderbusses are now 1-handed weapons. Dual wielding pistols and blunderbusses reduces their loading time, just as with melee weapons, though firing a brace and switching to another set is still often faster. Dual wielding a ranged weapon with a melee weapon will have the character only shoot by default against targets outside of melee range, but use the melee weapon exclusively against targets in melee. This gives both weapons the recovery time reduction from dual wielding and frees the need to swap weapons, but you lose the ability to use a shield and the accuracy bonus you would have normally gained if you were wielding each weapon by itself.
BENEFIT: -50% to your Pistol's Reload Time. It acts similar to Recovery Time, but it invokes an Accuracy penalty to everything your character may do if you move or generally cast a spell. A few offensive spells possibly do not invoke the penalty, but it may relate to either affliction or damage. I'm not sure if the Reload bonus applies twice when dual-wielding Pistols.
PENALTY: -15 Accuracy to Weapon attacks (I don't think this affects your character's spell casting, but it generally affects Items, like bombs and scrolls.)
BENEFIT: +20 to Accuracy with your Arquebus attacks. While this helps you achieve Critical Damage more often, those do less damage. This pairs better with Penetration if you have decent Accuracy.
PENALTY: -25% to your Arquebus Action Speed. This will make your Arquebus attacks easier to interrupt, since your attack animations will be somewhat slower. It's not a good idea to move your character around mid-battle with this Modal actively on.
Magical Implements are ranged magical missile weapons, that are quite fast and accurate, but not very powerful.
In Deadfire, Wands and Scepters are now 1-handed weapons, and can be dual wielded with 1-handed melee weapons. This give both weapons the Recovery Speed bonus for dual-wielding, but they lose the accuracy bonus of wielding a single one-handed weapon.
BENEFIT: Your damaged targets from your Wand attacks incur the penalty: -10 Accuracy for 10.0 sec. This can be useful when combined with a dual-wielding Barbarian's Carnage ability to support a tanky front-line type for reducing Damage.
BENEFIT: +20% Damage and +1 Penetration. This can possibly apply the best damage for single-handed weapons if you stack Penetration and reduce your opponent's Armor. A Monk that receives Wounds from incoming damage can do well with this Modal to help boost class resources. A Paladin of the Steel Garrote can help offset damage from the Modal itself, but you will typically receive more than you can heal from Weapon damage alone.
PENALTY: 20% of Damage dealt applied to self as Raw Damage from your Scepter attacks. This is possibly useful for re-directing damage back to your target from a beneficial Spell buff. Temporary health from Spells also delays the effect, but if you do massive damage, then temporary health will not prevent you from inevitably hurting yourself. While Rogue may make an interesting option with this Modal, the Trickster Rogue possibly serves best from its reduced Sneak Attack self-damage, and multi-classing it with Fighter generally helps to provide healing mid-battle and extra base health for offsetting self-damage.
BENEFIT: Your Rod attacks gain an AoE, so that they can affect multiple targets. Intellect affects this AoE range. While this Weapon Modal offers the best ability of combining melee-specialized spells, some Weapon abilities only affect a single target. However, if you can stack damage, then this makes for a nice backup for damaging a crowd. A Barbarian's Carnage will stack separately, but it should still affect your damaged targets.
PENALTY: -50% from all Damage applied from your Rod attacks. +50% Recovery Time after your character makes an attack with the Rod.
Different melee weapons will have different attack speeds, but for most weapons will be categorized by their relative handedness and speed (Fast One-Handed, Large One-Handed, and Two-Handed). Fast one-handed weapons attack more frequently than large one-handed weapons. Two-handed Weapons are almost universally hard-hitting weapons, that can deal more damage per-hit than their one-handed counterparts, but you cannot use a shield with them or use a second weapon.
Fast one-handed weapons are particularly effective against enemies with low damage reduction and two-handed weapons are particularly effective against enemies with high damage reduction.
BENEFIT: 10% of damage dealt is re-applied per 3.0 sec for 60.0 sec. Critical damage oddly does not seem to affect the total from this. While it's possible that the damage from this source stacks with itself from consecutive hits to damaged targets, they do not seem to trigger any afflictions.
PENALTY: +50% Recovery Time after making an attack with your Battle Axe.
BENEFIT: Your damaged targets suffers from a penalty: -25 to Will related Resists for 10 sec. It's possible that only your character gains this edge against your targets. This helps land Spells or abilities that need to succeed against Will checks. The inflicted penalty to Will resists does not seem to stack with itself, but it can possibly against your character. Inspirations can help counter this if it becomes a concern.
BENEFIT: -1 Armor for 10 seconds on damaged targets from your Mace attacks. This affliction possibly stacks with itself. If your character's Penetration is large enough to counter opposing Armor, the damage multiplier can be very significant.
PENALTY: +50% Recovery time after making an attack with your Mace.
BENEFIT: +2 Penetration against damaged targets from your Stiletto attacks. While most worn armor counters Piercing damage, this Modal should be useful for rapidly steady damage. You need high Penetration yourself and Armor reduction against your opponent to see this succeed well.
PENALTY: +50% Recovery time after your Stiletto attack.
BENEFIT: +2 Penetration against damaged targets from your Sword attacks. Combined with the dual damage types this Weapon offers, this Modal allows you to Engage a variety of targets for significant offensive advantage. However, this Modal makes Sword a terrible tanking Weapon. Some opponents will also actively target you if you have this active.
PENALTY: -15 Deflection for 10 seconds to yourself after making a Sword attack. It is unfortunately possible for this de-buff to stack with itself in certain situations.
BENEFIT: +2 Penetration against damaged target from your Estoc. Piercing Damage is most resisted with opponents, but this will do the most damage if vulnerable. However, opponents will generally favor you most, even with a tanky type present.
PENALTY: -15 Deflection for 10 seconds after you make an Estoc attack. This unfortunately seems to stack with itself.
BENEFIT: +30% Damage to your Great Sword attacks. If you have an Orlan Assassin Rogue, then hits that connect will possibly do the most single target Weapon damage. Multi-classing can raise chances in your favor.
PENALTY: -10 Accuracy to your Great Sword attacks.
BENEFIT: -10 Deflection for 10.0 second on damaged targets from your Pike attacks. This pairs well with a Barbarian's Carnage ability if you want decent damage and support for your tanky type from taking damage. Multi-classing a Barbarian with a Paladin can make for a decent offensive support if you have a tank already and want this Weapon Modal.
BENEFIT: +1 enemies Engaged. It's possible that this only affects damaged targets. Otherwise, it makes for a well balanced weapon for a supportive off-tank that provides distraction on occasion, like a Paladin.
PENALTY: -25% damage from Pollaxe attacks. Since a Paladin can also possibly cause Spell damage, this favors them over a situational Fighter.
BENEFIT: +20 Deflection against melee weapons. This combines excellently with a high amount of Stride to reach an opposing caster quickly in the back lines. Interrupting a caster repeatedly will relegate them to mainly melee, and a Quarterstaff caters to that if you have abilities focused into Interruption, Dexterity, and Attack Speed. Monk does well in that scenario.
PENALTY: +50% Recovery time after attacking with your Quarterstaff.
This page was last edited on 27 November 2020, at 23:15.
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