|Sword||S||A generic sword|
|Bow||S||A simple bow|
|Quarterstaff||S||A long rod of wood|
|Club||S||Welcome to the club, pal|
|Sling||S||Load up with pebbles|
|Acinaces||An ancient dagger|
|Aruval||A billhook machete|
|Bisento||A pole weapon topped with a thick blade|
|Blowgun||S||Could they be poisoned darts?|
|Bolas||Heavy ball weights attached to the ends of cords and thrown to entangle|
|Boomerang||S||An aerodynamic throwing stick. Some are designed to return to the thrower|
|Brass Knuckles||Good for a bar fight|
|Chakram||A bladed weapon in the shape of a circle|
|Cinquedea||A wide-bladed dagger that is five fingers broad at the hilt and evenly tapers to a point in a triangular shape|
|Claymore||A large two-handed great sword|
|Crossbow||S||Like a bow that's angry. Crossbow.|
|Deer Horn Knives||Double crescent blades often wielded in pairs|
|Épée||A thin thrusting sword used to fence|
|Flail||S||Don't flail me now|
|Flamberge||A long, flame-bladed sword|
|Flanged Mace||A mace with flanges covering the striking head|
|Flyssa||Narrow, straight-backed single edged weapons that range in size from long knives to swords|
|Gladius||A short sword used by the Romans|
|Glaive||A polearm with a blade attached to the pole|
|Halberd||A two-handed pole weapon topped with an axe and spike|
|Hook Sword||A sword with a curved end for ensnaring foes and weapons|
|Janbiya||S||A dagger with a short, broad, curved blade|
|Javelin||A throwing spear|
|Kama||A sickle-like weapon|
|Katana||S||A curved, single-edged sword used by a samurai|
|Katar||A push knife|
|Khanjar||A sharply curved dagger in the shape of the letter 'J'|
|Kopesh||A sickle-shaped sword designed to be able to trap opponent's arms and legs|
|Kris||An intricately designed, wavy-bladed knife|
|Kukri||A machete or knife-like weapon with a recurved blade|
|Kunai||A leaf-shaped blade with a handle and ringed pommel that may be attached to a rope|
|Lance||A long spear used from horseback|
|Mace||S||A bludgeoning club|
|Mambele||A four bladed knife that may also be thrown|
|Man Catcher||A pole weapon with a semi-circular, spiked trap meant to ensnared necks|
|Net||S||Used to entangle and trip foes|
|Nunchaku||Two hardened rods connected by a chain|
|Rod||A short club of uniform diameter|
|Rungu||A wooden throwing club|
|Sabre||A thrusting and slashing sword used to fence|
|Sai||A three-pronged piercing weapon|
|Scimitar||S||A single-edged, curved sword|
|Shepard's Axe||A thin axe used both as a weapon, and as a walking stick|
|Shotel||A long, curved sword|
|Shuriken||A throwing star|
|Spiked Mace||A mace with spikes covering the striking head|
|Tepoztopilli||A pole weapon topped with an obsidian, grooved, sharpened head|
|Three Section Staff||Three hardened rods connected by chains|
|Tiger Claws||Sharp, short blades designed to fit over the knuckles|
|Tomahawk||A single handed axe that may be used in melee or thrown|
|Totokia||An ornately carved hardwood club with a central spike|
|Trident||A three-pronged spear|
|War Fan||A reinforced folding fan|
|Whip||S||A long length of leather or chain|
|Zweihänder||A long, large, two-handed sword|
|Wand||S||A magical rod|
|Wizard Staff||S||A magical length of wood for spell casting|
|Dagger||S||A simple knife|
Fantasy weapons are generally based on real world historical weapons, though there is no need for this to be the case. If your world is fantasy set in another age, this page will still help provide inspiration and ideas, but you should also look to weapons of that age for reference. A magically sentient intercontinental ballistic missile, for example.
In addition to regular, mundane weapons, weapons in fantasy worlds may also have magical properties. Perhaps they can cut through any material, perhaps they give the bearer the ability to fly, or perhaps they corrupt the heart of anyone who uses them.
Common Magical Properties for Weapons
- Poison (may be magic or not)
Magical weapons may have a will of their own, or may only allow certain types of people to wield them.
If your world has magic weapons, do not forget to consider how their presence may change battle tactics, defensive structures, or fighting styles.
For game worlds, magic types may be used in combination with creature types to make weapons either more or less effective.
Oftentimes weapons in fantasy worlds, particularly swords and knives, have names. These may be given to them by the forger, from a notable event, or be family names.
Name Examples for Weapons
- Cold Night
- Axe of Talas
- Big Bonker
- Quick Death
In game worlds names can provide players quick insight into weapon function or mechanic, such as Knife of Thunder or Volcano Hammer for weapons that deal a particular type of damage.
Forges, Master Smiths, and Unusual Materials
Weapons must be made or forged. Consider where this occurs in your world. Some forges or craftsmen may be able to create different caliber of weapon. If magical weapons exist, consider how these are made. In addition, in fantasy worlds the materials used to create weapons may not be bound by the same restrictions as real world weapons. This is particularly true if your world contains new or fantastic materials
Example Weapon Materials
- Rare Metal
- Rare Stone
- Bone, Teeth, Scale, or Claws
Lost & Legendary Weapons
It is common in fantasy worlds for there to be lost or legendary weapons. These can provide opportunities for quests in narrative and game worlds, or can serve as a simple way to add a bit of folklore into a world. Consider the legendary heroes of your world. What kinds of weapons did they wield and where are those weapons now? What would it take to reclaim such a weapon? Or is such a quest just a fool’s errand?
Lost and legendary weapons may be one avenue to help age a world.
Some weapons may be status symbols, representing a rank or class. A wielder of a particular kind of weapon may be from a unique group, or the wielder may be considered the true leader of an organization or state. Weapons may also be used in outside of warfare, in ceremonies or rituals.
Weapons in Game Worlds
For game worlds, weapons pose an opportunity for player advancement. Often characters begin with basic weapons, and then work slowly obtain ‘better’ tools. Different weapons may provide different strategies or gameplay. For game worlds with a player-versus-player component, a balance in weapons should be considered.