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There is some confusion in another thread about whether or not all ranged attacks suffer the -4 penalty for when someone is in melee.
There is also confusion about whether or not the precise shot feat applies to removing penalties that apply to all ranged attacks because it uses the "ranged weapon" verbage.
Some parts of the game use the term "ranged weapon" instead of "ranged attack".
If you shoot or throw a ranged weapon at a target engaged in melee with a friendly character, you take a –4 penalty on your attack roll.
Precise Shot (Combat)You are adept at firing ranged attacks into melee.
Prerequisite: Point-Blank Shot.
Benefit: You can shoot or throw ranged weapons at an opponent engaged in melee without taking the standard –4 penalty on your attack roll.
The specific FAQ question is bolded below.
Do spells such as Acid Splash and similar effects which are not "weapons", but do use ranged attacks suffer the same -4 penalty to attacks when firing at an opponent in melee, even though they are not weapons?
Do feats such as Precise shot which remove such penalties apply to ranged attacks, even if they specifically weapons?