A long, long time ago, our ancestors discovered that in order to kill animals or prevent other bipedals from stealing their shit, hitting them with something was more effective than just punching them (unless you're a Monk). The first Homo Erectus that picked up a stick was soon imitated by others and soon, the Club was invented.
One of the oldest and most primitve weapons of the world with the spear, the club is the older, less refined brother of the mace. Even more straightforward than a mace since basically any object sturdy enough to bash a face in can fit the bill, the club is the primitive weapon of choice, considered crude even by Barbarians. Mostly used by cavemen or tribals, the club is a firm indicator of a brutish, very technologically impaired or savage setting (when used by enemies, doubly so for the latter if they use improvised ones) or that the situation is dire (if used by adventurers, who have almost always better gear unless they blew their starting gold in useless shit).
Types of Club
While the most popular form of this weapon is the "cartoon" variant, either a drumstick or bottle-shaped lump of stone or wood, clubs over the world have been used as mainstay weapons by cultures lacking access to metallurgy or the common folk, who either didn't have access to real weapons in order to prevent an uprising against their lords or couldn't carry around "peasant" weapons such as axes or spears.
- Ball club: A club made of a ball of stone or wood tied to a wooden handle, either on the side of the handle or on top (giving them a "drum mallet" shape). Mostly used by South American tribes as well as Huron and Iroquois tribes for the side-mounted variant, with the top-mounted variant more common among Central and South African tribes.
- Baton: The one used by police officers and security guards to wallop the shit out of criminals, protesters and any lawbreakers they come across. One of their first documented uses was in Victorian England, where they were made of wood and known as billy clubs. Modern one are made of plastic or rubber and come in several variants: the basic simple short variant (still called a baton or truncheon), the longer version used by riot cops, tonfa-shaped and the retractable ones.
- Blackjack: Also called a cosh or sap. The original blackjack was a flail-like weapon where a couple of hard objects like stones or lead balls were wrapped in a cloth bag, tied with strong rope, and then attached to a stick. Unlike medieval flails, blackjacks had lower reach as they were basically meant to be used like maces with extra momentum, but this meant that a lower degree of training was needed as it was less likely to harm the user while swinging it around. Blackjacks are also popular with mobster types as their close combat weapon of choice, although forgoing the stick with just a sturdy cloth bag filled with a few hard objects that they use to whack people with. This also had the added bonus of being very inconspicuous, as a nondescript bag with some mundane objects inside typically do not raise a lot suspicions from passer-bys.
- Improvised club: Dear God, where to begin with this one? Baseball bats, crowbars, flashlights, gun stocks... Hell, even a big enough stick laying around is an improvised club. If you don't know what this is, nobody can help you. A notable variant is the life preserver, used as a self-defense weapon during the 19th century, which could be described as a DIY version of the ball club or blackjack above.
- Jutte: Used by police forces and palace guards of Imperial Japan (and later by anybody on Imperial business), the jutte is a short iron rod with a hook on it's side, used to snag the clothing of an opponent or the opponent itself.
- Knobkierie: Also called the iwisa in Zulu and induku by the Ndebele, it is a multipurpose walking stick/emergency throwing club that has multiple cultural uses. Fell out of style with the Zulu but remained popular in active combat with other Southern Africa peoples and is even used by protestors in modern times. Has a lot of modern symbolic cultural uses, but still packs a wallop if swung at a person.
- Nunchuku: Two sticks connected by a short chain or rope, creating a simple form of flail; most likely made from repurposed agricultural flails. Although these weapons show up in martial arts movies, they have never been a really popular weapon and are mainly used for training or self-defense. People seem to think that they are a much more dangerous weapon than they actually are because they are banned or restricted in many places.
- Shillelagh: A knotty wooden stick with a large head, forever associated with Ireland, where it was both used as a walking stick and a weapon. Probably one of the sources for the "fighting Irish" stereotype.
- Tonfa: A stick with a handle mounted perpendicularly near the bottom. Originated in Okinawa, repurposed from handles for small millstones. Interestingly, almost all the forms one can do with the tonfa can be done with empty hands. Nowadays mostly used in martial arts flicks or by cops.
|Battleaxe - Dagger - Lance - Mace - Club |
Pole-arm - Spear - Sword - Warhammer
|Blowgun - Bows and Arrows - Cannon |
Crossbow - Firearm - Rocket - Shuriken - Sling
|Armor:||Armor - Fantasy Armor - Helmet - Shield|