Melee Weapons

A list of alternative or out of ordinary melee weapons and their statistics for RuneQuest play.


The pilum was actually a heavy javelin used by the Roman legions. Later on, variants were developed for melee use. The melee pilum was made out of wood and was shorter (1,83 meters) that the missile pilum. Its primary use was to thrust at the enemy from ramparts and to create pickets. Some versions were sharpened on both ends. For ease of play, the melee versions statistics have not been altered here.


A short hafted stabbing spear invented by Shaka Zulu. It has a broad iron blade and short wooden haft. Similar in purpose to a gladius, vis-à-vis, to get in close to ones enemy and draw him into single combat, thereby forcing him away from his formation. The broad blade leaves a nasty wound but, being made of iron, is not too strong against metal armour.

Cestus Maximus

A combination of the heavy cestus and the fighting claw. Allows the wearer to pack more weight behind their fighting claw, thereby doing more damage. Also gives the user the advantage of their melee weapon having armour points.


A set of oversize metal jaws inset with steel canines. Fitted tight over the jaws of the wearer and secured with leather straps around the back of the head, the real and metal jaws move in sequence. A biting action will produce an exaggerated mirror action from the chompers. Chompers have no practical every day use, but can have great intimidation value in battle, especially when forming part of an imposing helm or mask. Chompers are mostly used in the fighting pit.


A roman cavalry sword, similar to the gladius but longer.

Jawbone Sword

Inspired by a Dark Ages Miniature. This sword is a partially modified jawbone of some great reptile or fish. It bristles with razor sharp teeth down its curved length and can be deadly when used against an unarmoured/soft armoured foe.

Dark Ages Miniatures – Crocodile Warrior with Jaw Sword

Razor Nails

Razor sharp steel blades, manufactured to look like a cats claws. They are usually half a centimeter high at the base and half again as wide, narrowing down to a needle point over their 3 centimeter length. Blunt down their convex back, their concave inner is usually extremely sharp. Inferior quality versions come as uniform rings which slip over the end of the wearers fingers, or embedded into a leather glove. Razor nails of a high craftsmanship have been known to come in many forms, the most exquisite being set into a series of rings, one for between each finger joint. The blades (blunt for areas that ride against the finger) have stretched all the way across the back of the hand where they have proceeded to merge into a jeweled, but sturdy bracelet. Each blade has been tailored for the finger it is to slip on, with the thumb blade being thicker and stronger, to allow for an effective scissoring effect with the finger blades. Clearly these items are not meant for battle against armoured foes, but rather as subtle but effective weapons for high ranking ladies, sorcerers and other people who would cringe from having to carry a dagger or sword. Due to the small amount of damage that razor nails can inflict, they are often poisoned to enhance their lethality.

Toe Ring

Originating from India, this device slips over the big toe. A sharp, 5 centimeter barb protrudes from the ring at an angle. A practiced kick can have the often poisoned barb strike an enemy with all the force of the wearers leg. toe rings were often used in gladiatorial type combat, where the combatants did not have much protection in the way of armour.


A heavy three pronged fork, used as a two handed weapon.. Similar to a spear in that it can be thrown, but is usually used in melee situations. Looks like I should read my RQ material more closely. just realized they have stats for Trident and Combat Net in the Monster Coliseum supplement. The Monster Coliseum Trident is a one handed weapon. For the sake of RQ rules consistency, the tridents are listed under the spear weapon category.

Combat Net

From the Monster Coliseum supplement. Full rules for ensnaring etc are given in the Monster Coliseum.

CategoryWeapon DamageSTR/DEXENCBS%ArmourSRPrice
Spear, 1HPilum1D6 + 19/72.005102125
Spear, 1HIkilwa1D86/81.5076260
Spear, 1HTrident1D6+19/72.00592125
Spear, 2H Trident1D12+29/112.005131175
FistCestus Maximus1D4+211/91.5153170
FistRazor Nails1D24/50.1153100+
FootToe Ring1D35/110.115370
SwordJawbone Sword1D127/131.0105240
NetCombat Net1D4*12/103.00.561150

* A successful attack will ensnare the target, as long as targets SIZ is 20 or less. Ensnared targets can escape by Ripping Free (match STR vs. Nets STR {usually 2D6 +14, depends on quality and purpose}), Cutting Free (awkward, GM’s discretion to be used), or Burning the Net (if it can be set alight – the target may also get burned in the process). Dodging vs. Net is done at a -10 due to the Nets effective area. Successful parries will lead to the parrying weapon/shield and the arm using it becoming ensnared.

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