I was flipping through Holmes to get prepped for my upcoming post on followers & hirelings when I came across a really weird combat rule that I'm pretty sure is unique to Holmes. And frankly, it's the worst D&D rule I've ever come across.
Here is the rule: "Each round consists of an exchange of blows with ordinary weapons. Light weapons such as the dagger allow two blows per round. The heavy two-handed sword, battleaxe, halberd, flail, morningstar, and most pole arms can be used only once every other round."
Really? This is especially amazing in a game in which all weapons do 1d6 damage.
So with this rule a dagger is capable of 2-12 points of damage per round and a two-handed sword is capable of 1-6 points every other round. The dagger is 4x as lethal!
Even if you go with the assumption that Holmes included this in preparation for the variable weapon damage from AD&D, it's still ridiculous. A battleaxe does 1d8 and a dagger 1d4 with variable damage. So this would equate to 2-8 points of damage for the dagger and 1d8 every other round for the axe. So the dagger is over twice as lethal as the battleaxe even using variable damage.
What gives here? Was this a mistake? It clearly wasn't an inadvertent statement. It was even followed up by a statement that crossbows similarly only allow a shot every other round.
Has anyone used this rule?