Role-playing Games Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for gamemasters and players of tabletop, paper-and-pencil role-playing games. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Obviously the Magus class from Utlimate Magic requires one hand free to cast, but is there anything to stop them from attacking two handed in a round when they don't cast?

share|improve this question
Related question: Switching hands – Rob Mar 26 '13 at 8:37
up vote 7 down vote accepted

Not at all. If he doesn't do anything that requires having a free hand, he doesn't need to keep it free. Of course, if he cast something in a round they won't be able to make an AoO two handed, and if it is a two handed weapon he has, he'll have a penalty for that. Edit: strike that last one. I forgot that the Magus class specifically states that he can only cast with a light or one-handed weapon, So I guess he won't be able to cast while wielding a two-handed weapon in one hand, even if he doesn't mind the penalty.

share|improve this answer

I am building a Magus for a new game. I would suggest a bastard sword (with exotic weapon feat). It cost a feat, but you should be able to switch the from one to two hand and back again as a free action. Thus if you want to cast a spell, go one handed that round, then for any round you are not casting a spell go two handed. Just have to keep track of what handed state you are in outside your turn for AoO etc. Pathfinder doesn't have any support for two handed weapons one handed (ala 3.5's Monkey Grip) so I'm not sure your DM will allow you to cast any spells with a great sword, even if you are not attacking.

share|improve this answer
Welcome to the site. Interesting answer situated in your experience. +1 from me :) – Brian Ballsun-Stanton Mar 19 '12 at 19:27
Well, by default you everything you can find from 3.5 can be used in Pathfinder unless stated otherwise, so you can use a two handed weapon in a hand, but you take a -4 penalty, and you could also take Monkey Grip. That doesn't change the fact that per RAW you can't cast spells with a two-handed weapon even if you just have it in one hand. The bastard sword proficiency states that it becomes a one-handed weapon for you, so that's a good idea if that's what you're going for. – Yandros Mar 20 '12 at 3:49
Was going to suggest the bastard sword myself. +1 from me :) – Rob Mar 20 '12 at 9:19
Could you technically wield a longsword one or two handed and save yourself a feat (at a lower dmg dice of course)? – Rantar Mar 22 '12 at 18:02
@Rantar You could, and this will always be the mechanically-superior choice. – KRyan Mar 26 '13 at 14:50

I don't think RAW agree with your original assertion. You could attack with a two-handed weapon in the same round you cast a spell requiring a free hand. You don't need a feat to "hold" a two-handed weapon with one hand. According to the main faq, "A character can hold a two-handed weapon in one hand; he just can’t attack with it while it’s held like that." In the example, the player attacks with a two-handed weapon using both hands, then uses quick draw to draw a dagger and make a ranged attack (thrown) all as a full action. I don't see why this would be any different.

share|improve this answer
You might like to read the ability first - 'To use this ability, the magus must have one hand free (even if the spell being cast does not have somatic components), while wielding a light or one-handed melee weapon in the other hand.' – YogoZuno Nov 14 '13 at 20:59
Good point YogoZuno; the text does make this appear to be the intent with respect to the Magus, but I would not apply this restriction to any other spell caster. – Wyrmwood Nov 14 '13 at 22:59
Except that no other class has the Spell Combat ability, so the only way any other class would be doing this would be with something like a Quickened Spell, allowing casting in the same round as attacking. And the OP's question was specifically about the Magus. – YogoZuno Nov 15 '13 at 0:29
Right, quickened or any spell with casting time swift or less or any class ability (Duskblade, et al), feat or otherwise that imbues spells into attacks. (Can't think of name, but one divine class allows casting as a move action...) – Wyrmwood Nov 15 '13 at 2:41

The magus can use a two handed weapon. While Spell Combat specifically limits the Magus to a light or one handed weapon, Spell Strike allows delivery of the spell through any weapon the Magus is wielding. This should allow the Magus to cast a spell, holding his sword in one hand, then grab the weapon and use it two-handed for the touch attack to deliver the spell.

share|improve this answer
Welcome to the site! Your comment to the question is useful but unfortunately it doesn't address what the asker wants to know. Would you mind editing your answer to include your take or the rules about the Magus attacking two-handed? – LitheOhm Mar 26 '13 at 0:23

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.