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The 2nd-level Sor/Wiz spell hurl [trans] (SpC 117) says that

For the duration of the spell [1 min./level], when thrown, the weapon returns to its wielder at the beginning of the wielder's next action.... On its return, the thrown weapon hovers for 1 round next to the wielder and can be seized and thrown again. After 1 round, the weapon falls to the ground.

  1. Does the phrase at the beginning of the wielder's next [unstated type of] action mean the affected weapon can be used to make iterative attacks? Does the phrase can be seized and thrown again mean the wielder needn't employ a method of faster readying between iterative thrown attacks (e.g. perhaps a crystal of return (least) (MIC 65) (300 gp; 0 lbs.), the feat Quick Draw (PH 98))? Assume, in both cases, a 1-handed or light weapon.
  2. Although the spell lacks the teleportation descriptor--therefore presumably the weapon must reach the thrower manually (again, presumably--although this goes unstated in the spell's description--by flying (but burrowing would be hilarious))--is there a limit to the distance the wielder can move between throwing the weapon and the weapon's inevitable return?
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Does the phrase at the beginning of the wielder's next [unstated type of] action mean the affected weapon can be used to make iterative attacks?

By RAW, no, because "make an iterative attack" is not considered an action type. You'd likely be getting those from a full attack action, which is a full round action.

By that wording, if you had a way to throw it as a move or swift action, it'd come back in time to also use it for a standard action. Which is kind of silly, but welcome to RAW. You could house rule it such that you can use it during a full attack, but you'd almost certainly also want to do that with the Returning property if you do, otherwise the spell would be strictly better.

Does the phrase can be seized and thrown again mean the wielder needn't employ a method of faster readying between iterative thrown attacks (e.g. perhaps a crystal of return (least) (MIC 65) (300 gp; 0 lbs.), the feat Quick Draw (PH 98))?

Since you can't use it to make iterative attacks, it's a moot point. But assuming you could, the rules don't say. Returning is a free action to gab the weapon again (and says so), and in the absence of anything saying otherwise, I'd be inclined to treat this the same way.

Although the spell lacks the teleportation descriptor--therefore presumably the weapon must reach the thrower manually (again, presumably--although this goes unstated in the spell's description--by flying (but burrowing would be hilarious))--is there a limit to the distance the wielder can move between throwing the weapon and the weapon's inevitable return?

No, because the spell doesn't say there is. That can also lead to goofy situations like the weapon going at warp 1 on it's way back to you, but hey. Magic doesn't obey the laws of physics, and the spell is explicit in when it returns to you. I do find it an odd omission, since Returning does say how it gets back to you.

As for the teleport subschool, it doesn't apply. That applies to spells that teleport something, which are conjuration spells. This is transmuting the weapon (hence transmutation school), and if it gave the weapon the ability to teleport back to you, that wouldn't necessarily need to have the teleport subschool. (It doesn't mean that it is teleporting or that it isn't teleporting, just that you can't rule it out by the lack of the subschool.)

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm not sure about this - but, does the "next action" opens the option to use the weapon again (in the same round) if you are under the effect of Haste? \$\endgroup\$ – G0BLiN Sep 21 '14 at 13:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ @G0BLiN No, because haste doesn't grant an extra action. It grants an extra attack as part of the action you're already using. Thus, the weapon still returns before the next action. \$\endgroup\$ – Tridus Sep 21 '14 at 14:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ Right - I keep thinking of the D&D 3.0 Haste... \$\endgroup\$ – G0BLiN Sep 21 '14 at 16:03
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    \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan What to do about the 4th-level Sor/Wiz spell fire stride [trans] (SpC 93), which is a teleportation spell even in the 2013 Spell Compendium? \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Sep 21 '14 at 17:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan I think even Wizards forgets their own rules sometimes, especially when they are inane and nit-picky. Subschools should never have been a thing, just descriptors possibly with a note that they are usually found on spells of a given school. It's worth noting that fire stride does use the [Descriptor] notation rather than the (Subschool) notation. Cf. baleful transposition, pg. 23, which is Conjuration (Teleportation), to fire stride’s Transmutation [Teleportation]. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Sep 22 '14 at 0:21
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1) Yes! But only in certain circumstances. You can take certain free actions out of turn or even in the middle of other actions (like talking). Since the action type is unspecified in the spell description any action will work, like you have said. You may thus make iterative attacks, but only if you interrupt your full attack with a free action after each attack but the first.

2) There is no such limit. Indeed, the ability even functions across planes or in areas where teleportation is rendered inoperative. It probably can't enter antimagic fields or dead magic planes, though.

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To answer your question you will first need to understand a few laws of magic:

A spell does not do more then it is asked to do.

An action that is magical in nature is less restricted by physical sciences.

When Thrown, the weapon will "return" or teleport to the one who threw it last, at the beginning of the wielder's next action, you do not need quick draw to grab it and throw it again the following round. The weapon dose not strike things on its path to the target and dose not strike things on its return path to the target. If the target is behind something that blocks line of effect you may not select it as a target to throw at, and if something happens during your turn as an immediate action that blocks the item thrown it will still return to whoever threw it last.

You can throw your weapon at a target within range, grab it when it returns and make a melee attack with it to the person next to you, provided you have enough attack actions in the round to do so based on your "Base Attack" but you will provoke an attack of opportunity for making a ranged attack while threatened.

You may make multiple thrown actions in the same round provided you have enough attack actions to make them. Nothing short of an anti magic field will stop this return effect unless great powers intervene such as gods or more powerful magics.

The only distance that the weapon should not be able to return from is if the original owner in the time before his next action is not on the same plane as the weapon.

Warning! if you rule that the weapon fly's or burrows its way back to the owner you have made the magic more powerful and it will heavily effect your game.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ The word is "does," not "dose." A "dose" is how much of a medicine to administer. Also, I find it extremely dubious to claim that the effect causes teleportation when no explicit mention of teleporting is made, and the spell is in the wrong school for teleportation. Specifying that it only works on the same plane is weird, since the spell definitely doesn't say that. Finally, attacks are not "actions" so your claims about the timing and references to Base Attack [Bonus] are invalid. Your warning also seems heavy-handed and making it teleport already seems to have made it more powerful. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Sep 21 '14 at 16:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan First their are many spells that have effects in the wrong school to them as part of the magic employed; Second the spell is not restricted in range thus all effects of its magic do not check for range of the spell to owner after it was cast. Attacks are actions and are indeed valid in a full attack action from a "returning" weapon. As per the spell Hurl must be cast as a swift action to gain any further attacks with the weapon in the same round. But the spell specifically tells that the weapon hovers by the caster for 1 round after it was used thus the following full-round action of us \$\endgroup\$ – Pro756 Sep 21 '14 at 18:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ If the weapon fly's or burrows its way back to the owner it will possibly hit objects smash through walls and travel at speeds that would cause massive sound and light and possibly heat and wind effects. \$\endgroup\$ – Pro756 Sep 21 '14 at 18:34

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