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This question may seem strange or self-explanatory, but I noticed that the light crossbow, despite its name, doesn't have the "light" property listed in its "properties" section. Can it be inferred, from the light crossbow's name, that it has the “light” property?

The reason I ask this is because I'm investigating creating a feat similar to Great Weapon Master that utilizes the “light” property, and I want to know if there are any weapons that would qualify which are not one-handed weapons.

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3 Answers 3

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No

It is not a light weapon. If it was, it would have the Light property.

The name light is a) legacy (the crossbow, light has been in D&D since at least AD&D) and b) relative to the other models of crossbow. The name does not grant weapon properties.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Is the Light spell a light weapon? Enquiring minds and all. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tiger Guy
    Oct 6, 2021 at 21:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ @TigerGuy If you cast it on the crossbow, I'd call that a Light weapon. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 7, 2021 at 8:54
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    \$\begingroup\$ @RutherRendommeleigh That'd be lighted, not light. If you set it on fire, it'd be both alight, and lighted, which also makes it a light... but it's still not Light, despite being an alighted light crossbow. :) \$\endgroup\$
    – T.J.L.
    Oct 7, 2021 at 13:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ If you made a illusory crossbow, is it made out of light and therefore a light weapon? \$\endgroup\$
    – yesennes
    Oct 7, 2021 at 18:52
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    \$\begingroup\$ @yesennes only if you cast the light cantrip on it and set it on fire, in which case it would be an alight lighted light crossbow made of light. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 8, 2021 at 14:32
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The "Crossbow, light" has the properties "Ammunition (range 80/320), loading, two-handed"

From the Simple Ranged Weapons table in chapter 5 of the PHB, we see that the light crossbow does not have the "light" property:

Weapon Name Cost Damage Weight Properties
Crossbow, light 25 gp 1d8 piercing 5 lb. Ammunition (range 80/320), loading, two-handed

If the light crossbow had the "light" property, this is where we would see it listed, as the rules explain:

The Weapons table shows the most common weapons used in the fantasy gaming worlds, their price and weight, the damage they deal when they hit, and any special properties they possess.

So no, it does not have the "light" property. The only ranged weapon listed with the "light" property is the hand crossbow, on the Martial Ranged Weapons table:

Weapon Name Cost Damage Weight Properties
Crossbow, hand 75 gp 1d6 piercing 3 lb. Ammunition (range 80/320), light, loading
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    \$\begingroup\$ The light crossbow is the hand crossbow, not the light crossbow. Got it. \$\endgroup\$
    – Yakk
    Oct 8, 2021 at 15:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Yakk Unfortunately, you are correct. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 8, 2021 at 15:49
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No, and there would be no point if it had

Nothing in the properties for the light crossbow states that it has the light property. On top of that, from the rules on weapons:

A light weapon is small and easy to handle, making it ideal for use when fighting with two weapons.

A light crossbow has the property: "two-handed". As such, you need both hands to wield one. The light property would be meaningless as it only relevant when dual wielding weapons.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Two-Weapon Fighting also requires melee weapons, so it'd be doubly useless \$\endgroup\$ Oct 7, 2021 at 0:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Medix2 yet the Hand Crossbow has the light property \$\endgroup\$
    – RHS
    Oct 7, 2021 at 7:09
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    \$\begingroup\$ @RHS And we have an entire question on whether that serves any purpose and it does not" \$\endgroup\$ Oct 7, 2021 at 11:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Medix2 which proves that it being pointless is irrelevant to the question whether it could have the property \$\endgroup\$
    – RHS
    Oct 7, 2021 at 13:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ @RHS We are clearly misunderstanding each other. I am simply saying that a ranged weapon has no reason to have the light property, as that answer shows. Thus, the light crossbow having the property would be double useless: not only is it two-handed but it is also ranged. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 7, 2021 at 13:38

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