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Arrow catching was an enhancement that could be added to magical shields. They were useful defensive items, as they provided an added level of protection against ranged weaponry to the wielder and his or her allies, but diverted ranged attacks were far more likely to hit an arrow catching shield.
The wearer of an arrow catching shield could activate or deactivate the property with a command word. When active, it drew thrown weapons and projectiles to it. An arrow catching shield thus granted the wielder an additional level of defense against ranged attacks.
However, any projectile or thrown weapon that passed within 5 feet (1.5 meters) of the shield-bearer bent in its flight path and targeted the bearer instead. If the bearer was obscured to the sight of the attacker, the attacker's chance of missing was eliminated. This did not hold true if the wearer was under total cover relative to the attacker, or if the projectile or thrown weapon had a higher level of magical enhancement than the shield in question.