Long weapons, also known as pole weapons or polearms, are a class of mêlée weapons characterized by long shafts as their basic structure. In general, the length of such shafts ensure that the weapons necessitate two hands to wield effectively in combat while their overall profile extend the wielder's effective range.
The most basic examples of long weapons include the quarterstaff and the spear, though numerous, far more sophisticated variants exist, such as the halberd, the Guandao, the long mace, the bec de corbin, and the corseque. Because of their long range, polearms can be employed to effectively keep adversaries at bay, and historically, they have served in dedicated defensive roles such as on the battlefield against cavalry. Seekers, guards specialized in the use of long weapons, were a mainstay of professional armies before firearms rendered mêlée weapons obsolete, and these soldiers were often deployed as guardsmen of entrances and exits.
The aptly named long weapons are essentially polearms: weapons whose main bodies are shafts typically longer than their wielders' height. The most basic variant of this is a staff, no more than a long stick typically constructed from wood, and almost all other variants are derived from embedding a deadly object—especially a blade or sharp point—at one end of a staff. Common examples include the spear, the halberd, and the pike.
The function of polearms is to increase the wielder's leverage. The extended reach allows the user to maintain a greater distance from his or her opponent than he or she otherwise would with a shorter weapon such as a sword, keeping enemies at bay and yet still within striking range. For this reason, polearms can be formidable in defensive capacities; historically, solid formations of pikemen served as effective counters against cavalry.
Because they deterred easy counter-attacks from wielders of shorter weapons, even the legendary Assassin Ezio Auditore da Firenze struggled to counter Seekers, combatants wielding polearms, for most of his life without relying on his Hidden Blades or an equally long weapon, such as a greatsword or another halberd. Even so, it was not an utterly impossible feat for him to do so with a short sword, as he demonstrated throughout his operations in Spain in 1191, only that it demanded swifter reflexes and more precise technique. Ironically, Ezio found it easier to combat Seekers when unarmed; wielders of polearms can be more susceptible to being disarmed, as the long handles provide prominent and safe targets for the grasp of an open hand.
Given their size, long weapons can be more cumbersome than shorter alternatives, limiting the mobility of their wielders. Spanish Seekers tended to adopt stationary battle stances while Ezio had a habit of discarding any polearm on hand before engaging in freerunning. While polearms can hinder a user's ability at parkour, skilled Assassins, such as Arno Dorian and others of the French Brotherhood, have proven that this can be overcome through training.
Historically, the poles of long weapons were constructed out of wood, a material not especially durable against the striking of a metal sword. As a result, they lacked the resilience of swords and could be snapped in two after a few slashes, or one, when used to parry against the Smash Attack of a heavy weapon.
A standard technique utilizing a long weapon that pervaded throughout European history is the Sweep Attack, so called because it involved sweeping at an opponent's legs to cause him to trip and fall.
Although a sweep to the legs with a bladed polearm can sever the target's limbs entirely, a proper Sweep Attack is non-lethal, and thus delivered with the shaft of the weapon. The result is achieved by swinging the polearm around the rear of an opponent's legs, and through sheer force alone, knock their feet from right under them. A collapsing enemy may even crash into those behind them, further disrupting enemy ranks.
Correct execution of the maneuver, however, necessitates standing still to prepare for the sweep, effectively rendering its user highly vulnerable to interruption by an enemy attack. To compensate, the sweep can be performed with shorter preparation time, though at the cost of greater efficacy, as the more force placed behind a sweep, the wider the arc of its effect.
The Sweep Attack was a fairly ubiquitous technique; Seekers throughout Italy and the Ottoman Empire practiced the maneuver during the Renaissance. Assassins, too, were trained in it, and the Mentor of the Italian Brotherhood, Mario Auditore, taught it to his nephew Ezio Auditore. While polearms were phased out by firearms by the French Revolution, the Assassins, who continued to service the weapons, still provided standard lessons on the technique to their recruits, such as Arno Dorian, during that era.
From the Fall of Monteriggioni, Ezio Auditore learned a far more radical application of long weapons, one which from then on, he favored far more than the Sweep Attack whenever he had a polearm in his hand. With his expert marksmanship, Ezio could hurl a polearm directly at an enemy with extreme precision, skewering him or her from a distance of more than ten meters. As with a Sweep Attack, this technique requires preparation, as the user has to swing the weapon around to properly position his arms for the throw, as well as take time to accurately aim. Parallel to this, Ezio developed a similar technique with heavy weapons, wherein he threw the weapon at target with a powerful swing.
- Spears and halberds have the longest reach of any melee weapon in Assassin's Creed II, and are the most difficult to counter.
- The maximum combo strikes for long weapons is 3 hits in Assassin's Creed II.
- An individual half of a long weapon can be kept in an empty weapon sheath for later use, however, it will vanish upon a save and reload.
- If a long weapon equipped by either Ezio or Seekers is broken in half by a Smash Attack, it effectively functions as a sword and can even be used to perform pistol executions.
- Seekers can more commonly be found wielding the spear than the halberd.
- The Papal Staff is the only weapon, aside from the Sword of Altaïr, to have the Damage, Speed, and Deflect stats maxed out in Assassin's Creed II.
- It is possible to wield the Papal Staff by either poisoning Rodrigo Borgia, or by taking a heavy weapon from a Brute outside the Sistine Chapel, and performing the Smash Attack on Rodrigo.
- During the Bonfire of the Vanities, one of Girolamo Savonarola's lieutenants, the Farmer, carries a unique long weapon, the pitchfork. However, once he is killed, it turns into a halberd.
- The "Sweeper" achievement can be earned in Assassin's Creed II by sweeping five guards at once using a long weapon.
- It was possible to carry a spear onto the rooftops in Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood by using a lift, ladder, or by throwing it at a rooftop guard.
- The "Strong Arm" achievement can be earned by throwing a heavy weapon, a long weapon, and a smoke bomb more than 10 meters at a guard.
- In Assassin's Creed II, two of the patrolling guards on the western side of the Cannaregio District carry halberds.
- In Assassin's Creed III, Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, and Assassin's Creed: Rogue, muskets equipped with bayonets effectively function as long weapons when used in melee by the protagonists. Unlike in the previous games, they do not drop them when they enter high-profile.
- After the siege of Monteriggioni, Ezio's proficiency with a long weapon improve. His sweep attack no longer trips guards, but instead slit the throats of all enemies within range. 
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 Assassin's Creed II
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Assassin's Creed: Unity,
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Assassin's Creed: Revelations
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Assassin's Creed: Project Legacy
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Assassin's Creed II: Discovery