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Consider a barbarian that loves to charge at things. On top of his trusty axe (which is indeed a manufactured weapon) he also has a pair of claws by the virtue of Beast Totem or maybe from some another source. He then gets on a mount.

Spirited Charge says this:

Benefit: When mounted and using the charge action, you deal double damage with a melee weapon (or triple damage with a lance).

Now, if the guy charges and attacks with his axe, he obviously deals double damage. What if for some reason he decides to attack with his claws? Is the damage doubled or not?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

I'd say yes, they do, based primarily on the following:

"Armed" Unarmed Attacks: Sometimes a character's or creature's unarmed attack counts as an armed attack. A monk, a character with the Improved Unarmed Strike feat, a spellcaster delivering a touch attack spell, and a creature with natural physical weapons all count as being armed (see natural attacks).

d20pfsrd (emphasis mine)

Also, if natural weapons didn't count as melee weapons, creatures would be unable to deliver a coup de grace, since its rules explicitly say:

As a full-round action, you can use a melee weapon to deliver a coup de grace (pronounced "coo day grahs") to a helpless opponent. You can also use a bow or crossbow, provided you are adjacent to the target.

d20pfsrd (emphasis mine)

So, if a natural weapon isn't a melee weapon, then you could deliver a coup de grace with a dagger, but a dragon couldn't deliver one with a foot-long claw. That would be weird. :)

Sure, whether natural weapons are melee weapons isn't explicitly stated in the RAW, but it seems strongly implied... to me, at least. (Check also that some creatures with natural weapons only have Weapon Focus as a feat, etc.)

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  1. A natural weapon is a melee weapon (a weapon without a range increment) as opposed to a ranged weapon. Called 'weapon', strikes in 'melee', yep.

  2. A natural weapon counts as an armed attack.

  3. You could make an argument from RAW that an Unarmed Strike would not apply to the use of that feat, but it says 'weapon' so you can't use a spell at the end of a charge and do a 20d8 Combust at level 10. It's not intended to shaft monks or something. The intent is pretty clear.

Intent is clear, RAW is maybe arguable but not really, answer is pretty clearly yes.

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