View Full Version : Animated Shields and Shield Bash (3.5)

2007-09-15, 05:10 PM
Alright... this is a question that's been burning with the creation of my latest character, a Chaos Gnome Duskblade, with glamered elven chain and an animated light shield.

According to the DMG, Animated is as follows:

Upon command, an animated shield floats within 2 feet of of the wielder, protecting her as if she were using it herself but freeing up both her hands. Only one shield can protect a character at a time. A character with an animated shield still takes any penalties associated with shield use, such as armor check penalty, arcane spell failure penalty, and nonproficiency.

My question pertains to the Shield Bash special attack, so...

According to the SRD...

Shield Bash Attacks

You can bash an opponent with a light shield or heavy shield, using it as an off-hand weapon. See Table: Weapons for the damage dealt by a shield bash. Used this way, a shield is a martial bludgeoning weapon. For the purpose of penalties on attack rolls, treat a heavy shield as a one-handed weapon and a light shield as a light weapon. If you use your shield as a weapon, you lose its AC bonus until your next action (usually until the next round). An enhancement bonus on a shield does not improve the effectiveness of a shield bash made with it, but the shield can be made into a magic weapon in its own right.

So my question goes as this; can one Shield Bash with an Animated Shield in its animated state? Or must one actually take it in hand to shield bash with it? Neither the description of Animated nor of Shield Bash say either way, but I'm beginning to think that it can't be done.

To those who have been involved in more rule lawyering than me; can a Shield Bash with an Animated shield be done?

2007-09-15, 06:16 PM
Generally speaking, som people allow things if rules do not forbid them, but others take the oppoite view.

I would allow it, but say you do not gain str mod to damage or attack rolls, but instead use the enhancement bonus

2007-09-15, 07:05 PM
Funny, I could swear I had seen somewhere that you could use only defensive maneuvers with it, so I couldn't shield bash with it.
On the other hand, as written, you can't do any maneuver with it at all (even defensive ones), as it just float on your front. However, since you get the normal penalties, one can assume that you could.
I think it's a DM call here. So you could use a great sword, with a spiked armor, with snap kick, and improved shield bash, to attack 4 times in one round. :smallamused:

Kurald Galain
2007-09-15, 07:14 PM
I would disallow it on grounds that it doesn't make sense.

Aside from that, the DMG says "Upon command, an animated shield floats within 2 feet of of the wielder, protecting her". It does not say "upon command, the shield smacks her opponents in the face", or "upon command, the shield explodes in a 10d6 fireball". Hence, the shield does neither of those.

2007-09-15, 08:16 PM
Thanks for the replies. For less confusion I think I'm just going to swap out Improved Shield Bash for a feat I'm actually going to make use of. (Trying to keep one hand free for somatic components of spells, since Duskblade doesn't get to use their weapon for it like Spellsword. Or was that Bladesinger? Can't remember.)

Thanks again for everyone's thoughts on this; I tend to agree that it doesn't make sense that an enchantment designed for defensive purposes could be used for an offensive one.

2007-09-15, 08:28 PM
I'd consider homebrewing a feat to allow it, but there'd be minuses or something. It really depends on how generous I was feeling.

Kurald Galain
2007-09-16, 04:09 AM
Trying to keep one hand free for somatic components of spells,

Alternatively, you can use a two-handed weapon. Note that you can hold such a weapon in one hand, you just can't fight with it that way. Thus you can release one hand, cast a spell with that, then re-grip your weapon. And since dropping your weapon is a free action, so is releasing one hand.

2007-09-16, 10:19 AM
There's a feat in Complete Mage called Somatic Weaponry that allows you to use your weapon or whatever you're holding in your hand to perform somatic components of spells. Pre-requisites are Concentration and Spellcraft 5 ranks.

Huh - and apparently RealmsHelp doesn't have stuff from Complete Mage, or I would have linked to it for you.