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Sharpshooter (PHB p.170) has a host of effects on your ranged weapon attacks:

Attacking at long range doesn't impose disadvantage on your ranged weapon attack rolls.

Your ranged weapon attacks ignore half cover and three-quarters cover.

Before you make an attack with a ranged weapon that you are proficient with [...]

Tavern Brawler (PHB p.170):

You are proficient with improvised weapons.

Can the Sharpshooter feat be applied to improvised thrown weapons (rocks, chairs, kleptomaniac kender, my d20), and if so do you still need the Tavern Brawler feat to make it work?

So far we know improvised ranged weapon has range 20 feet and 60 feet with disadvantage.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Could you include more details about what you think Tavern Brawler’s relevance is? \$\endgroup\$ Nov 14 at 22:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ I thought TB has some relavance since it pretty much turns anything you touch and or lift/carry into a weapon. Basically TB makes you Jackie Chan. And I know smome demented geniuos WotC R&D guy twisted the languaged used when it comes to what is and is not a weapon, let alone what is and is not ranged or melee weapon. I figure there'd be some PITA rules lawyer would state "picking anything up and flinging it does not make it a weapon," like a paper air plane. Plus TB pretty much gives an "improvised thrown weapon" a damage die and range distance. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 14 at 23:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ It seems your question is about Tavern Brawler, so please include those details in the question. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 14 at 23:15
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Bullet points 1 and 2, Yes

When attacking with an improvised weapon you are still making a ranged weapon attack, so the first two bullet points apply.

Bullet point 3, no

Point 3 requires "Before you make an attack with a ranged weapon that you are proficient with…" and improvised weapons are not actually "weapons", since they do not appear on the weapons tables.

From the PHB, "an improvised weapon is similar to an actual weapon".

If you search this site for "improvised weapon" there are many answers about features that don't work with improvised weapons (warlock pact weapons, magic weapon spell, etc).

This is answered well in Are Improvised Weapons used in melee actually melee weapons? with the quote "Improvised Weapons are not a subset of Melee or Ranged Weapons, but they are Weapons."

See also What is the difference between a "ranged attack" and a "ranged weapon attack"?.

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    \$\begingroup\$ -1. Categorically incorrect. Improvised weapons can be treated as regular weapon types explicitly, and the weapon tables show 'common' weapons, never is it implied they are the only things that count as weapons. \$\endgroup\$
    – user2754
    Nov 15 at 3:34
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    \$\begingroup\$ Woah woah woah, the sentence from the PHB you quote is from the paragraph: "Often, an improvised weapon is similar to an actual weapon and can be treated as such. For example, a table leg is akin to a club." - you've cut off the start and end of the sentence to imply that improvised weapons aren't weapons, which the sentence is not saying by any stretch of the imagination. I don't know if you copy pasted this answer from another question, but it is wrong wrong wrong! Even your link says "they are weapons"! \$\endgroup\$ Nov 15 at 6:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ "improvised weapons are not actually "weapons", since they do not appear on the weapons tables." - I think you need to clarify your argument here, the tables clearly state: "The Weapons table shows the most common weapons used in the fantasy gaming worlds" - why should we believe they are exhaustive? Your arguments need to be explained instead of just making assertions and hoping readers don't know the rules... \$\endgroup\$ Nov 15 at 6:45
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    \$\begingroup\$ you claim: "improvised weapons are not actually "weapons""... and then you quote "they are Weapons". this answer seems to contradict itself. \$\endgroup\$
    – eis
    Nov 15 at 7:23
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    \$\begingroup\$ -1 for the reasons mentioned above. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jason_c_o
    Nov 17 at 1:58
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The Sharpshooter feat works with Improvised Weapons just fine.

You cannot take -5 to hit to gain +10 to damage unless you are proficient with the improvised weapon, however. There are two general ways this can occur.

a) The GM rules the improvised weapon is similar to a listed weapon that you are proficient with, such as a thrown rock being similar to a sling's damage, but with shorter range. They are encouraged to do this.

Often, an Improvised Weapon is similar to an actual weapon and can be treated as such. For example, a table leg is akin to a club. At the GM’s option, a character proficient with a weapon can use a similar object as if it were that weapon and use his or her Proficiency Bonus.

An object that bears no resemblance to a weapon deals 1d4 damage (the GM assigns a damage type appropriate to the object).

'Often' being the usual case, and 'no resemblance to a weapon' being required for it to be treated as a generic improvised weapon. So generally speaking, when a character snatches up a fireplace poker and tries to stab someone with it, that's a Club, and when the barbarian picks up the fancy glass sculpture and belabours his foes with it, that's an axe.

b) The Tavern Brawler feat. It grants proficiency with improvised weapons. That refers to the kind that 'bear no resemblance to a weapon' and thus do 1d4. This would cover situations such as a barbarian beating his foes with a duck, or a rogue using a playing card to slice someone's throat.

As a Side Note:

5th Edition of DnD has a common situation where players of the game will invent houserules and justify that as 'interpreting' the existing rules. This has existed in all editions of DnD and many other games but is very prevalent in 5e as it is the gateway to the hobby for many newer players (and has a fairly simple set of rules that stresses randomness and is open to houseruling (much like ADND or DND2e)). This is often used to curb any use of the rules that is deemed 'abuse', which covers anything exotic or strange (such as beating someone over the head with a duck or hurling coins into their eyes). It might seem odd in a fantasy game that people wish to remove the fantastical, but that is often the case.

In situations such as that - where people are 'interpreting' the rules in fairly crazy ways - just be aware that this is their workaround for not wanting to introduce houserules into the game yet wanting to ban or remove something they dislike. Arguing with people in this scenario over the exact wording of the rules or the like will often lead to bad feelings - to resolve the situation, I suggest instead simply accepting their 'view' of the rules and ask for an exception for your character. 'Can we houserule it so I can hurl improvised weapons at people, it only does a d4 so it's not very strong I just like the fluff' will work better than 'well that's not what the rules say so why are you saying they do?'.

People are often more willing to allow something they'd previously thought was 'bullshit' after looking at it again and thinking about the actual math, but are much less willing to admit the rules say something different than they think or decided, as that has additional reputational costs.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm sorry, but my eyes went cross-wise at "when a character snatches up a fireplace poker and tries to stab someone with it, that's a Club." Can I suggest you change either stab->beat or Club->short sword? \$\endgroup\$
    – nitsua60
    Nov 15 at 4:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ you can stab someone with a club. The blunt end is a very effective weapon. \$\endgroup\$
    – user2754
    Nov 15 at 5:00
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    \$\begingroup\$ In English "stab" is usually reserved for pointed weapons. Perhaps you meant thrust, prod, or poke? \$\endgroup\$ Nov 15 at 6:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ This answer has really opened my eyes about improvisation, thank you so much! \$\endgroup\$
    – SeriousBri
    Nov 15 at 8:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ Adding a citation to support your claim that these attacks are indeed ranged attacks with weapons and attack with ranged weapons would significantly improve this answer. As of right now, it makes unsupported claims. I would especially appreciate addressing the fact that improvised weapons that the DM doesn't consider close enough to a real weapon are not actually considered melee or ranged and thus cannot be used to make attacks with ranged weapons \$\endgroup\$ Nov 15 at 12:28
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All of them work

You can find the rules for improvised weapons here.

Improvised weapons can make ranged attacks

Improvised weapons can make ranged attacks:

An object that bears no resemblance to a weapon deals 1d4 damage (the DM assigns a damage type appropriate to the object). If a character uses a ranged weapon to make a melee attack, or throws a melee weapon that does not have the thrown property, it also deals 1d4 damage. An improvised thrown weapon has a normal range of 20 feet and a long range of 60 feet.

Improvised weapons can make ranged weapon attacks

Improvised weapons are weapons - they have "weapon" in the name, they are listed under the "weapons" section of the rules (between "weapon proficiency" and "silvered weapons") - they can make ranged attacks, that means they can make ranged weapon attacks.

An improvised weapon can be a ranged weapon

When you use something as an improvised weapon, the DM will often treat that weapon the same as they would an existing weapon:

Often, an improvised weapon is similar to an actual weapon and can be treated as such. For example, a table leg is akin to a club.

While it may be unlikely you can improvise a crossbow, you can probably improvise a dart from a steak knife, a sling from a sock, or a net from a fishing net. In that case, the improvised weapon is treated as a ranged weapon.

You can be proficient in an improvised weapon

The most common way for this to happen is if you use something that resembles a weapon you are proficient in - such as using a ham hock as a club or a butcher's knife as a dagger:

At the DM's option, a character proficient with a weapon can use a similar object as if it were that weapon and use his or her proficiency bonus.

You can also select the Tavern Brawler feat which says:

You are proficient with improvised weapons

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