Are there any Feats for / ways to use spears it that reflect it’s dominance over shorter melee weapons

Spear are wildly effective weapons, in small-ish Combat Groups. In particular, when used defensively, they can keep melee attackers at bay with no ability to retaliate relatively easily. You would, for example be able to hold a 5ft-wide bridge against a mass of opponents pretty easily if they weren’t willing to rush you and sacrifice themselves.

I was disappointed to find that in DnD 5e, they really aren’t very effective or interesting weapons. They don’t even have Reach.

I’m planning to come up with some ideas for a homebrew additions to them, and propose them on here, but before I do, are there any existing official ways to make a spear behave like this?

Is a Chakram a ranged or Melee weapon?

For the purposes of using Sharpshooter (-5/+10 Dam) can I use a Chakram?

The weapon is from the Odyssey of the dragon lords campaign with a description of: Thylean Weapon: Chakram Martial Weapon. Damage: 1d6 slashing. Properties: Thrown (range 60/120 ft.), light, finesse, special: The chakram returns to you when thrown, unless you fumble the attack by rolling a natural 1. Weight: 2 lbs. Cost 10 gp.

Im assuming a martial weapon can be melee or ranged. Is it possible the Chakram is both a melee weapon and a ranged weapon?

Please only use RAW to answer the question. Thanks.

Should unarmed melee weapons like fists and claws have the *finesse* and *light* traits? [closed]

In DnD 5e you find under Melee Attacks:

Instead of using a weapon to make a melee weapon attack, you can use an unarmed strike: a punch, kick, head-butt, or similar forceful blow (none of which count as weapons). On a hit, an unarmed strike deals bludgeoning damage equal to 1 + your Strength modifier. You are proficient with your unarmed strikes.

Also Martial Arts for monks, and Claws for tabaxis and tortles deal with unarmed strikes.

All use Strength for the attack and damage roll, with the exception of the Martial Arts for monks, which accepts Dexterity too.

Should "unarmed strikes with these natural weapons" have the finesse and light traits, because wrestling and boxing are not only based on strength but also dexterity like wushu or bujutsu, and there is no reason to use two daggers but can’t do so with claws or fists, feets etc.? The monk still has more damage and would gain two-weapon fighting with its body. So it would not unbalance in game, but give the tabaxi and tortle non-throwable natural daggers.

How do you resolve the damage and effects of Eldritch Claw Tattoo’s “Eldritch Maul” ability on a hit that is beyond your weapon’s normal melee range?

The Eldritch Maul ability says:

each of your melee attacks with a weapon or an unarmed strike can reach a target up to 15 feet away from you, as inky tendrils launch toward the target. In addition, your melee attacks deal an extra 1d6 force damage on a hit.

So, let’s say that I’m using the Eldritch Maul ability with a normal shortsword to melee attack a target that is 15 feet away. Is it only the inky tendrils that hit the target, dealing just 1d6 force damage, or should I also factor in the 1d6+STR/DEX piercing damage of the shortsword as if it hit the target as well?

Follow-up question: If the weapon was magical, would its magical properties factor into the attack?

For example: Would your attack with the Eldritch Maul ability benefit from a +1 weapon?

In another example: Would a Dagger of Venom’s poison property proc on a melee hit from 15 feet away while using the Eldritch Maul ability?

Dagger of Venom says:

You can use an action to cause thick, black poison to coat the blade. The poison remains for 1 minute or until an attack using this weapon hits a creature.

What are good options for a frontline melee with very limited source material?

I recently entered a Planescape campaign with a very rules heavy DM. I rolled stats in order, and now I have to make a character. As long as it stays within these sourcebooks and is neither a druid nor a full cleric (which my party already has) I’m open to options. Here’s the situation:

  • We are currently level 13, no LA buyoff possible.

  • I have 17 str, 15 Dex, 13 Con, 15 Int 15 Wis and 13 Cha.

  • I want to fill the role of a tank/melee combat controller. (I was considering maybe a trip oriented build?)

I have these options available:

  • PHB I
  • DMG I
  • MM I
  • Book of Exalted Deeds
  • Planar Guidebook
  • Tome of Magic
  • Guidebook to the Planetouched

Is “a special melee attack” an actual game term?

PHB page 195 mentions "special melee attack" when talking about Grapple and Shove:

you can make a special melee attack to shove a creature

you can use the Attack action to make a special melee attack, a grapple

It uses words "make a special melee attack" like it is a thing in 5e, however, nowhere in the game text it’s being said what a "special melee attack" actually is. It isn’t even mentioned anymore. I believe that "special attack" is not a game term — it’s a vestige from the previous editions, where "special attacks" was a thing, but I could be mistaken.

Are there any other examples of "special melee attack" (or just "special attack") in any official source book for 5e?

I was searching through dndbeyond and the only thing I’ve found was Sword Of Answering. But it uses words "special attack" in the context of the magic item description:

while you hold the sword, you can use your reaction to make one melee attack

any damage dealt with this special attack ignores any damage immunity or resistance the target has

You can remove the word "special" from its description and nothing changes. So it is plain English meaning here, not the game term.

So what is a "special attack" in terms of the game mechanics?