In Descent each character has a number of dice representing their skill with melee, ranged, or magic. There are also dice added for their weapons.

Can a character attack without a weapon? Are there any special rules for this?


Yes, a character can attack unarmed. "If a hero attacks without a weapon, he attacks with his fists. This is a melee attack that grants one red die and has no special abilities." (Descent rules, p19.) So it's a base melee attack using the minimum melee dice - the red plus however many black.

Ranged and Magic attacks cannot be made without a weapon.

If you want to house-rule allowing weaponless attacks of all three kinds, I would argue strongly in favour of using the base red (melee), blue (range) or white (magic) die as well as the black; this is the basic die used for all weapons of that type and is important for game design in distinguishing the range/damage properties of each attack type. These basic attack dice also carry the important one-in-six automatic-miss chance.

  • +1 for actually picking up the rulebook (more than I can say for some of those other answerers). ;)
    – Stu Pegg
    Mar 18 '11 at 14:35

Since all weapons and skills etc. are essentially adding dice to your standard black dice, I would say you'd use only the black dice (or die) you have as standard for that type of attack.

Of course such an attack would be absolutely pants in comparison to a normal attack (1/3 chance of doing 1 damage with no surge conversion), but then so would fists in comparison to an actual weapon; I doubt you could judo throw a dragon.

I suppose this would presume ranged attacks would use bits of rock/rubble from nearby (or spit given the effectiveness), and magical attacks would be using the mage's own innate skill (or just meaningful frowning).

  • 1
    Meaningful frowning gave me quite the chuckle. Hey, it works for Gandalf.
    – C. Ross
    Oct 25 '10 at 18:33
  • That's a good summary, and an extra thumbs up for "meaningful frown". Oct 26 '10 at 0:33
  • 1
    @C. Ross, @LittleBobbyTables: Glad it amused you: "If looks could kill, I'd be bruised."
    – Stu Pegg
    Oct 26 '10 at 10:22

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.