I am working on some custom gear for a character. I am in a gestalt game and playing a zen archer monk and druid. I like to have things planned out and researched before presenting my DM with what I would like to do, to help reduce the work load for them, and hopefully gain insight from experienced gamers.

The focus of the class is to use the druid wild shape ability take advantage of the air/wind elemental size and dex increase and have it benefit the ranged attacks of the monk, while taking advantage of the monks ability of increasing unarmed strike damage based on level and size, and that their arrows can deal that same damage.

What I am currently working on is a new weapon property based on either the spell ki arrow or the zen archer monks ability to spend a ki point and have all arrows deal unarmed strike damage for the round (also called ki arrows). Now normally an ability like this would not be all that powerful as weapons generally do more damage than unarmed strikes, but that is very not true in this case.

Here is a table which demonstrates how the damage grows

$$ \begin{array}{l|l|l} \text{Level} & \text{Medium} & \text{Large} \\ \hline 1 & 1d6 & 1d8 \\ 4 & 1d8 & 2d6 \\ 8 & 1d10 & 2d8 \\ 12 & 2d6 & 3d6 \\ \end{array} $$

As the table shows, it only gets better as I increase in level and size. As arrows do 1d8 for medium, after 4th level or even when I am large, the arrows will be dealing equal to greater damage.

Here is how I expect the final result to read like:

Price/bonus: ?

Aura faint transmutation, cl 1st; weight -


An Ranged Unarmed Strike bow/arrow allows the wielder to change the normal damage of their arrows to change the damage dice of arrows he shoots to that of their unarmed strikes.

Construction Requirements

Craft magical arms and armor, ki arrow, Cost ??

The details I would like help deciding are:

  • Should this ability be applied to the bow or arrows? Or is this even an appropriate ability to have? Or does it belong as some other kind of magic item, like a ring or bracers?
  • Should the ability be expressed as a price like adaptive or as a bonus like flaming?
  • What should the price or bonus be?
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do it have to be a magic item? Because this really sounds like something I would make a feat. Like you can spend one ki point to create an arrow or bolt that does the same damage as your unarmed attack, but is fired from a bow/crossbow normally, and gains any bonuses from the weapon... That would take more ki points, but would also lessen your ammo load. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 5, 2017 at 0:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ Just remember that you're basically asking for an enchantment that gives you an infinite Ki pool, which probably won't be even slightly balanced. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 20, 2020 at 16:34

1 Answer 1


Ki Channel

Price +3 bonus

Aura strong transmutation; CL 12th; Weight —


The weapon channels and amplifies the wielder’s ki, allowing her to use her special ki attacks through the weapon as though they were unarmed attacks. These attacks include the monk’s ki strike, quivering palm, and the Stunning Fist feat. The save DC for ki abilities used through the weapon increases by half the enhancement bonus of the weapon (minimum 1).

A creature may use its unarmed strike damage dice on attacks made with a Ki Channeling weapon. This does not allow them to deal non-lethal damage unless they take the normal penalty.

This ability cannot be placed on an amulet of mighty fist or similar non-weapon item. Weapons with the Ki Focus ability can be upgraded to be Ki Channelling.


Craft Magic Arms and Armor, creator must be a monk; Cost +3 bonus


  • Impact (+2) Increases damage by 1 size step
  • Ki Focus (+1) Allows you to do monk things with a weapon, basically a stepping stone
  • Ki Intensifying (+2) Allows you to do monk things and on-hit CMB's; not really useful to you, but establishes a Ki Focus upgrade concept
  • Using your Unarmed Strike is similar in strength to increasing size by a step or so in the middle levels (when you could afford this and it would start being useful), around 8-16. After that it's likely more, but you can't accommodate everything.
  • The GM may want to consider making it a +4 bonus (on par with Speed instead of Ki Focus+Impact). I tend to think +3 because of its power relative to +2 abilities like (element) Burst and Holy
  • I debated over-specializing it for your ranged attacks, but there's no reason it couldn't be used on melee weapons if you're going to make it
  • This ability could be applied to either the bow or arrows... I'm definitely a proponent of putting it on your bow because you will go through way more than 50 arrows per dungeon as a Zen Archer. There's little point to putting anything other than super specialized bonuses such as Bane on ammunition.
  • \$\begingroup\$ You make some very interesting points with this property. Ill think on it and likely present it to my dm \$\endgroup\$
    – Fering
    Jun 20, 2017 at 21:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ You also need to consider that it's effectively adding the Adaptive ability as well, not to mention that it's basically an infinite Ki pool as well. I think this rates a +4 equivalent at least. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 20, 2020 at 16:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't see how it's adaptive or infinite ki. It does not provide ki income, allow you to use ki abilities without spending, nor adjust to your Strength any more so than using your unarmed strike dice. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 21, 2020 at 3:32

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