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Can a character wearing a ring of force shield use two-handed-weapons or make actions that need both hands and keep the shield-bonus, or is the hand occupied as though using a normal shield?

I'm asking about Pathfinder, but it might not be different in D&D 3.5.

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up vote 13 down vote accepted

The hand is occupied while it is activated.

It's basically because of the following, I'll bold out the important part:

An iron band, this simple ring generates a shield-sized (and shield-shaped) wall of force that stays with the ring and can be wielded by the wearer as if it were a heavy shield (+2 AC). This special creation has no armor check penalty or arcane spell failure chance since it is weightless and encumbrance-free. It can be activated and deactivated at will as a free action.

So, since you have to wield it as a heavy shield, it will take up your shield slot while it is on.

However, if you feel like it, you can activate and deactivate it as a free action, so turn it off at the beginning of your turn, smack some things around with your 2-hander, and turn it back on at the end of the turn.

(Free actions can only be taken on your turn.)

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+1 for mentioning the free turn limit. I never saw it that explicitly stated but it does make sense "In general, speaking is a free action that you can perform even when it isn't your turn." - thus all other free actions are on your turn only. :-) Then again - I've heard people talking about seizing concentration on a spell not during their turn, but I just read "You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally." - which also suggests during your turn, unless the can is "may" not "have to". Would you mind telling me how you know free actions are on turn only? –  Julix Jun 7 '13 at 6:51
    
@Julix - There's actually another question on the site that covers this. Link to my answer: rpg.stackexchange.com/a/8896/1736 –  Cthos Jun 8 '13 at 3:57
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Ring of force shield essentially grants you a +2 shield bonus to your AC as if you were wielding a heavy shield without needing to actually wield anything. It requires no hands to wield--just an open ring slot. — Paizo designer Joshua J. Frost, Jul 6, 2009, 07:20 PM

Ring of force shield does not occupy nor take up your hand.

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Note that there is a difference between wielding and using an item. Just because you can wield it without it occupying your hand doesn't mean you can use it always. (For another example of the difference, just because you have a bow in one hand and an arrow in the other doesn't mean you can shoot while your arms are pinned.) –  SevenSidedDie Jan 8 at 4:39
    
I can't pull up the quote anymore (link not found?) - but it does sound to me like the force shield is just some magical thing floating around near the hand protecting you when you wear the ring... --- then again I just imagined trying to hold a two handed weapon with a weightless but bulky "heavy" shield on my hand :D And them mentioning the free activation and deactivation does sound like you can't have it on while you attack two-handedly... unless you have a third limb with it's own ring slot ;-) –  Julix Jan 19 at 5:59
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