There are several old-school Dungeons and Dragons combat rules that have become redundant.
Initiative. Weapon vs. Armor tables. Cavalry rules. Weapon speed. Weapon length.
All were integral features of early DnD. And all was jettisoned or rendered essentially meaningless as newer versions of DnD were published.
The elimination of weapon length rules seems particularly obscene, considering that superior weapon length provided a palpable advantage to those who possessed it. There is a good reason why spears, pikes and other polearms were employed in ancient and medieval combats: the man with a spear was more likely to inflict the first wound, when faced with an opponent weilding a sword or dagger. And the first wound was often fatal, or at least eliminated that opponent as a serious threat.
Unsurprisingly, considering that the original DnD designers and players were wargamers, OD&D -- employing the Chainmail combat rules -- provided first-round combat advantage to the opponent with the longer weapon. All things being equal, the spear attacked before the sword, which attacked before the mace.
Weapon length was particularly important where your opponent could be eliminated with a single blow. Not only could you eliminate your opponent, but you avoided being wounded yourself. Therefore, that first-round weapon length combat advantage became significant. In OD&D combat rounds after the first, weapon speed became more important than weapon length, so it was critical for those employing longer, slower weapons, that they make their first attack count.
But now, in new versions of DnD length no longer matters. Length, speed, initiative, high ground, formations, battle tactics, manueverability, planning ... all are replaced with artificial powerz and player-to-player synergies. Weapon length no longer matters because today's game designers have decreed that we need system-imposed cinematics. We need endless combats and hit-point attrition that simulates the resource management design of the latest video games.
Should weapon length matter in our tabletop roleplaying games? Of course. The historical development of weaponry is in large part the story of extending one's combat reach and lethality. Daggers to swords. Swords to spears. Spears to Bows. Bows to rifles. Rifles to missiles. But you'd never know that, based on the role-playing games i've seen lately.