I have a Rogue/Swordsage that fights with 2 daggers and has Two Weapon Fighting (TWF).

I'm considering taking Fire Riposte (Tome of Battle, 53) which grants the ability to do an immediate melee touch attack when dealt damage.

If I'm fighting with 2 daggers can I even use this?

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ It might be useful if you clarify exactly why you think you might not be able to use Fire Riposte while dual-wielding daggers; otherwise, we're just guessing whether our answers address your concern. \$\endgroup\$
    – BESW
    Mar 16, 2014 at 20:04

1 Answer 1


Yes, You Can Use It

It doesn't say that you need a free hand to make this attack, nor does it say that you need to be holding a particular item in hand to make it. So you can use the maneuver even if you used Two Weapon Fighting in the last round. The fact that it's a touch attack is just to tell you what AC number to roll against.

It would be very hard to use if that wasn't the case, as things like shields, two handed weapons, and even a torch would interfere otherwise.

Although not a rule, the flavor text gives you a hint about how this works:

You focus the pain from a wound you have just suffered into a fiery manifestation of revenge.

The maneuver in this case is actually fire shooting off of you when someone else hits you and hitting them back, so you can picture it working without you having to have an empty hand.

No Penalties For It Either

Using Two Weapon Fighting imposes a penalty on your attacks (-2 in your case), but those penalties don't apply to this attack. The reason why is this:

Once you take a two-weapon fighting penalty, the penalty applies to all the attacks you make with that hand during your current action. It does not apply to attacks you make during some other character's turn.

The reason why is that Two Weapon Fighting doesn't specify that its penalties last outside of your action. Compare to something like Power Attack, where the effects last until your next turn.

So, go ahead and use your twin daggers. It doesn't affect your use of this ability at all.

  • \$\begingroup\$ This goes beyond the use of Fire Riposte as well; you can initiate trips and grapples (which involve melee touch attacks) while holding two weapons as well. Unless specifically stated otherwise for a given purpose a melee touch attack does not require an open hand. \$\endgroup\$
    – Epiphanis
    Mar 17, 2014 at 10:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks. I wasn't sure because I'd seen some posts saying touch attacks can't go through weapons and other ones saying well, you could probably touch with a elbow or foot... etc. \$\endgroup\$
    – manafire
    Mar 17, 2014 at 14:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @onemanarmy Sometimes thats true, like if a spell charges your hand with an effect. You deliver that effect with a touch with your hand, and not a weapon (although classes like Daggerspell Mage can use their weapons even for that). For the ability you asked about, it's not an issue. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tridus
    Mar 17, 2014 at 14:30
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ In the very, very unusual case that you get attacked in the middle of your Two-Weapon Fighting full-attack, RAW this immediate action would take the TWF penalty. Readied actions, Karmic Strike or Robilar’s Gambit, or making the full-attack with a ranged weapon while threatened or unarmed without Improved Unarmed Strike could cause that situation, though all of those are pretty rare. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Mar 17, 2014 at 16:49

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