How to handle weapon TAGs and Shield?




I have the following problem. In my previous understanding weapon TAGs are used to give a weapon flavor and some conditional advantage. My Examples: You can attack with a dagger while grappling, if you roll 20 with a big battle axe you chop off the hand of your enemy etc.

But there is a balance issue for me, that I can’t get around: Shield. It gives +2 Armor and can be destroy to soak up all the incoming damage. I love that! But: that way there not a lot of reason to have a two-handed weapon.
I was thinking about to give two handed weapons 2 dice of damage, but doesnt feel right,

How would you solve that ‘problem’? Is it even a problem to solve?



I don’t think it’s a problem. I don’t play ICRPG to be a powergamer, so loadout is based narratively on my character.

there are options though:

From core 2e
GREAT SWORD: The Zweihander! Near, Huge, Chopping, Heavy

from quickstart 2e
GREAT SWORD: A tremendous two-handed blade 5
feet long. This weapon occupies 3 inventory spaces, but
always inflicts ULTIMATE damage.

I mean even those tags from core are pretty evocative. i mean chopping. maybe you are likely to dismember enemies on a big hit. huge, i would allow multiple hits if doing a large swing arc.


Thanks! I wasn’t even aware of the quickstart solution.


I would go with two dice damage, b/c I think it’s cleaner (that way the weapon still uses the weapon category). I’m also fond of knockdown effects, and frequently use that for two-handed weapons.


Totally welcome, glad to help


I agree with all the above. I also one time let a player carry the shield on their back whenever they wanted to switch to a 2H weapon and while there, it still added the AC bonus if they were attacked from behind. They enjoyed that LOL.


I think you should look at this from other angles. Here comes dungeon world to the rescue!

First, tags are fictional. It makes sense in the fiction to swing a giant weapon and hit multiple goblins (just roll damage and apply it to multiple targets in range), but that same giant weapon is simply useless in a tight cavern where you can’t even swing it properly.

Second, balance is just not a thing in ICRPG. Try hard not to think about balance. Seriously, this is a 5e thing that icrpg’s design is not conserned about.

So, with all that in mind, I always tell my players that all weapons deal the same damage but they are fictionally different. “I parry his attack with my sword” is a valid description, while “I parry his attack with my pike” just makes no sense most of the time. Likewise, you can’t practically blunt stun someone with a dagger but a club is perfect for that. See where I’m going? One more example, cutting a throat with a dagger makes total sense and can be done silently, but a greatsword will not work, you want to chop limbs off with that.

So just leave weapon damage as it is and let players work with their fictional aspects imho.


Ultimately it is up to you. You see the info that Abodi posted from 2e and quickstart 2e. You can go with those or make up your own.

just a brainstorm idea… Great Sword does the usual weapon damage, but you double any Strength damage bonus AND because of its length you can distribute the damage to multiple opponents if they are all currently engaged with you.

ex. You have 3 gerblins attacking you. You swing the Great Sword and you make a successful “attempt” verus room number. (apply the success to the attack on all 3 opponents). You roll damage and do 4+3+3 (4 from a d6, strength bonus +3 doubled) = 10 HP. Say the gerblins each had 4 HP, You thus kill 2 and do 2 HP to the 3rd gerblin).

just an idea.

another thing…in the Elric of Melnibone novels they call his sword Stormbringer a large Battle Blade. Love that term.