Yeah, it'd be great to use planks of wood and such. Maybe if the wood is rotten it shatters after a couple of full-strength hits leaving you empty handed. Indeed it would require a lot of animation, but if you want to make a quality game you've got to be willing to do some work, right?
It's probably too much, but it would be awesome to be able to swing around a lantern as a weapon. It would show off the dynamic lighting system as the shadows danced all over the room. Then it shatters on the creature's face and the creature goes up in flames screaming.
I read the blog on fogging. So maybe the room starts to get smokey and remains that way for a while after, a soft plume of smoke still rising from the creature's smouldering corpse, big black scorch marks spread on the floor all around it. That would be freaking incredible. The lantern might even serve as your most powerful weapon in that way, but you have to decide whether you want to sacrifice your light source. Use it as a last resort.
Knives might be a little overpowering. I think I'd rather be limited to lead pipes and such, but whatever. I guess if it were introduced late in the series it would be a very nice treat by that time. They could introduce a large kitchen knife or an old pistol with limited ammo and we'd be like "OH HO HO HOHO! YESS!!!" ^_^ What we wouldn't realize at the time, however, is that we were about to face a boss where that extra power might not add up to much. o.o