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How far can PC shoot?

Rules Questions

We had this situation on our last Kingmaker session:
Haps Bydon (NPC) runaway on a horse from Oleg's Trading Post. PC elf shoot at him from composite longbow. How far can he shoot at NPC?

SRD wrote:

Range: Any attack at more than this distance is penalized for range. Beyond this range, the attack takes a cumulative –2 penalty for each full range increment (or fraction thereof) of distance to the target. For example, a dagger (with a range of 10 feet) thrown at a target that is 25 feet away would incur a –4 penalty. A thrown weapon has a maximum range of five range increments. A projectile weapon can shoot to 10 range increments.

Range increment on a composite longbow is 110ft, therefore up to 1100 feet.

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

A composite longbow has a range increment of 110 ft and can fire at a maximum of 10 range increments, so 1.100 ft if he has the visibility.

Every full 110 ft the fire get a -2 modifier.

"if he has the visibility."

How can I judge this?

Jakub Koprowski wrote:

"if he has the visibility."

How can I judge this?

That is up to you as a GM to decide how much obstruction is between the PC's and NPC's.

How did he get that far away before being shot at is what I am wondering though.

PS:If you are not the GM then he has to decide

He shot at him countinously once in round:)

When Happs was 800 ft. from archer, archer roll 20 (but not confirmed)- awesome scene;)

Well for starts you can take a look at the environment rules.

Some upfront impacts would be large terrain like trees or big rocks. Anything that blocks line of site gives Haps Bydon the opportunity to make a Stealth Check. At which point it's a +1 DC to the elf's perception check per 10 feet of distance. (very quickly you'll note the DCs past 200 feet are nearly impossible +20 or more)

Failing any kind of cover or concealment look to the weather. Is it overcast? Is it raining? Is it night?

Something to keep in mind, if you're an American, is a football field is 360 feet long. The elf is basically shooting nearly 3 football fields. Close to a quarter mile. On flat terrain, with clear weather a person standing flat on the ground level can see about 3 miles (~16,000 feet) on Earth (assume same on Golarion). Give them some elevation like a keep wall, and they can see much father. The trouble is spotting something that far away in the first place. Unfortunately for Haps Bydon the Elf is already watcing, so unless he can break that Line of Sight and "hide" the elf is going to be able to keep tracking until he's out of range.

Jakub Koprowski wrote:

"if he has the visibility."

How can I judge this?

Allow me to refer you to this thread wherein Ravingdork discusses the rules side of long range attacks.

Lurk3r wrote:
Jakub Koprowski wrote:

"if he has the visibility."

How can I judge this?

Allow me to refer you to this thread wherein Ravingdork discusses the rules side of long range attacks.

That post is pure nonsense unless one would agree the sun can not be seen. :)

wraithstrike wrote:
Lurk3r wrote:
Jakub Koprowski wrote:

"if he has the visibility."

How can I judge this?

Allow me to refer you to this thread wherein Ravingdork discusses the rules side of long range attacks.
That post is pure nonsense unless one would agree the sun can not be seen. :)

I'd mostly agree :)

The thing to remember is that Perectpoin (spotting) assume a level of detail. In other words you can positively identify what it is your looking at. The point to take away from that thread is terrain is a big factor, and something most GMs and Players don't think about very often. Even living in a desert, like I do, you can find terrain or changes in elevation that can interfere with line of sight.

Here's a collection of spotting distances by terrain. If you need a quick "hard" ruling to throw down, just use them as the maximum effective sighting distance before terrain gets in the way.

paraphrasing from PRD Environment section wrote:

Stealth and Detection in a Forest: In a sparse forest, the maximum distance at which a Perception check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 3d6 × 10 feet. In a medium forest, this distance is 2d8 × 10 feet, and in a dense forest it is 2d6 × 10 feet.

Stealth and Detection in a Marsh: In a marsh, the maximum distance at which a Perception check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 6d6 × 10 feet. In a swamp, this distance is 2d8 × 10 feet.

Stealth and Detection in Hills: In gentle hills, the maximum distance at which a Perception check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 2d10 × 10 feet. In rugged hills, this distance is 2d6 × 10 feet.

Stealth and Detection in Mountains: As a guideline, the maximum distance in mountain terrain at which a Perception check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 4d10 × 10 feet.

Stealth and Detection in the Desert: In general, the maximum distance in desert terrain at which a Perception check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 6d6 × 20 feet; The presence of dunes in sandy deserts limits spotting distance to 6d6 × 10 feet.

Stealth and Detection in Plains: In plains terrain, the maximum distance at which a Perception check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 6d6 × 40 feet.

Jakub Koprowski wrote:

He shot at him countinously once in round:)

When Happs was 800 ft. from archer, archer roll 20 (but not confirmed)- awesome scene;)

That's one of the absurdities of "nat.20 is always a hit". Any person will hit a snail up to 1100 feet away as long as (s)he is able to perceive it 1 in 20 times ...

Nixda wrote:
Jakub Koprowski wrote:

He shot at him countinously once in round:)

When Happs was 800 ft. from archer, archer roll 20 (but not confirmed)- awesome scene;)

That's one of the absurdities of "nat.20 is always a hit". Any person will hit a snail up to 1100 feet away as long as (s)he is able to perceive it 1 in 20 times ...

Natural 20 represents blind luck more than anything else. I'm quite fine with how it works, especially when they retconned that a 20 on a skill check is an auto-success.

Hama wrote:
Nixda wrote:
Jakub Koprowski wrote:

He shot at him countinously once in round:)

When Happs was 800 ft. from archer, archer roll 20 (but not confirmed)- awesome scene;)

That's one of the absurdities of "nat.20 is always a hit". Any person will hit a snail up to 1100 feet away as long as (s)he is able to perceive it 1 in 20 times ...
Natural 20 represents blind luck more than anything else. I'm quite fine with how it works, especially when they retconned that a 20 on a skill check is an auto-success.

They who?

concerro wrote:
Hama wrote:
Nixda wrote:
Jakub Koprowski wrote:

He shot at him countinously once in round:)

When Happs was 800 ft. from archer, archer roll 20 (but not confirmed)- awesome scene;)

That's one of the absurdities of "nat.20 is always a hit". Any person will hit a snail up to 1100 feet away as long as (s)he is able to perceive it 1 in 20 times ...
Natural 20 represents blind luck more than anything else. I'm quite fine with how it works, especially when they retconned that a 20 on a skill check is an auto-success.
They who?

I meant not an auto success...curse my buttery fingers...and in this case WOTC.

Hama wrote:
concerro wrote:
Hama wrote:
Nixda wrote:
Jakub Koprowski wrote:

He shot at him countinously once in round:)

When Happs was 800 ft. from archer, archer roll 20 (but not confirmed)- awesome scene;)

That's one of the absurdities of "nat.20 is always a hit". Any person will hit a snail up to 1100 feet away as long as (s)he is able to perceive it 1 in 20 times ...
Natural 20 represents blind luck more than anything else. I'm quite fine with how it works, especially when they retconned that a 20 on a skill check is an auto-success.
They who?
I meant not an auto success...curse my buttery fingers...and in this case WOTC.

I was just making sure. :)

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wraithstrike wrote:
Lurk3r wrote:
Jakub Koprowski wrote:

"if he has the visibility."

How can I judge this?

Allow me to refer you to this thread wherein Ravingdork discusses the rules side of long range attacks.
That post is pure nonsense unless one would agree the sun can not be seen. :)

Nah, not really. You're not seeing the sun, you're seeing the light of the sun, which has traveled to you. So you cannot fail the Perception check due to the light stabbing you in the eyes. It's an autopass unless you're blinded.

TriOmegaZero wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
Lurk3r wrote:
Jakub Koprowski wrote:

"if he has the visibility."

How can I judge this?

Allow me to refer you to this thread wherein Ravingdork discusses the rules side of long range attacks.
That post is pure nonsense unless one would agree the sun can not be seen. :)
Nah, not really. You're not seeing the sun, you're seeing the light of the sun, which has traveled to you. So you cannot fail the Perception check due to the light stabbing you in the eyes. It's an autopass unless you're blinded.

What about the moon or a mountain that is over 50 miles away? :)

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Well, I think the mountain gets a ginormous size penalty to its Stealth check, so even untrained Commoners should be able to see it. And the moon is just a mirror for the sun, so you're just seeing a distorted image of the sun. ;)

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Well, I think the mountain gets a ginormous size penalty to its Stealth check, so even untrained Commoners should be able to see it. And the moon is just a mirror for the sun, so you're just seeing a distorted image of the sun. ;)

Well the mountain according to the rules gets a -16 but you could argue that being that tall is like drawing attention to yourself on purpose which is like an auto-fail for a stealth check.

As to the moon being a mirror that does seem plausible, but it won't be confirmed until Paizo comes out with the planets book. Of course the problem is that the moon is not a planet. Maybe we will have to FAQ this if it is not covered in the planet book.

PS:Can you put a moon in a planet book?

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Well, I think the mountain gets a ginormous size penalty to its Stealth check, so even untrained Commoners should be able to see it. And the moon is just a mirror for the sun, so you're just seeing a distorted image of the sun. ;)

Ah, so the darker areas on the moon are just reflections of the sunspots.

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Cpt. Caboodle wrote:
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Well, I think the mountain gets a ginormous size penalty to its Stealth check, so even untrained Commoners should be able to see it. And the moon is just a mirror for the sun, so you're just seeing a distorted image of the sun. ;)
Ah, so the darker areas on the moon are just reflections of the sunspots.

Who are you, so wise in the ways of science? :)

That is why i think there should be size categories beyond colossal.
It seems ridiculuos kinda:

Player:What size is that battleship?
GM: Colossal
Player: Ok, what size is the pentagon?
GM: Colossal
Player: WTF?

Hama wrote:

That is why i think there should be size categories beyond colossal.

It seems ridiculuos kinda:

Player:What size is that battleship?
GM: Colossal
Player: Ok, what size is the pentagon?
GM: Colossal
Player: WTF?

I think its not needed. RD just likes to argue rules over common sense sometimes since the rules can't account for every possible situation.

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Who are you, so wise in the ways of science? :)

I read a book, once. I liked it. Maybe I'll do it again, some day.

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Hama wrote:

That is why i think there should be size categories beyond colossal.

It seems ridiculuos kinda:

Player:What size is that battleship?
GM: Colossal
Player: Ok, what size is the pentagon?
GM: Colossal
Player: WTF?

Me has flashback of the measurement system in DC heroes (it was logarithmic).

Hide in a closet trembling.

Jakub Koprowski wrote:

We had this situation on our last Kingmaker session:

Haps Bydon (NPC) runaway on a horse from Oleg's Trading Post. PC elf shoot at him from composite longbow. How far can he shoot at NPC?

Maximum firing distance of projectile weapons is 10 times the weapon's range increment as mentioned in above posts and 5 times the weapon range iuncrement for thrown weapons in open terrain

However its worth to remember than parts of Kingmaker area are rugged hills, judging from the maps. Thus it is quite reasonable to think that retreating character has a chance of find total cover at shorter range than this by running over and behind small hill. This can be countered by moving for optimal firing positions but bandits generally will have advantage of knowing the area better than PCs.

Ok, but Oleg's Trading Post is on hill (it's old fort as far as I know). So it's not usual to easy see a horseman riding down the hill. And that hex on a map is looking like plains - open terrain.

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Nah, not really. You're not seeing the sun, you're seeing the light of the sun, which has traveled to you. So you cannot fail the Perception check due to the light stabbing you in the eyes. It's an autopass unless you're blinded.

LOLWS!

wraithstrike wrote:
Hama wrote:

That is why i think there should be size categories beyond colossal.

It seems ridiculuos kinda:

Player:What size is that battleship?
GM: Colossal
Player: Ok, what size is the pentagon?
GM: Colossal
Player: WTF?

I think its not needed. RD just likes to argue rules over common sense sometimes since the rules can't account for every possible situation.

Agreed.

.
.
.

;P

A fair number of GM's I know like to use the optional rule that a 1 is a -10 and a 20 is a 30, so not automatic in either case. I've used 1 is -5 and 20 is 25 also---which is pretty close to the 1st edition convention with the repeating 20s on the to-hit charts.

The question is how far can a PC shot not how far it can see.

Copm Long Bow 110FT range Incerment
Flight Arrow +50%
Far Shot +50%

220ft total times 10 range incerments......

2200ft total.

Pathfinder Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
EWHM wrote:
A fair number of GM's I know like to use the optional rule that a 1 is a -10 and a 20 is a 30, so not automatic in either case. I've used 1 is -5 and 20 is 25 also---which is pretty close to the 1st edition convention with the repeating 20s on the to-hit charts.

I usually have 'Impossible' as a valid response in my games. If you roll 20, add any bonuses, and then multiply by 1.5 and you STILL can't succeed, then it's flat out impossible.

Similar to the 'hitting a snail at 1100 feet' comment earlier in the thread.

Snail's AC 10 - 3 (Low Dex) + 8 (Fine) + 20 (Range Mods) + 4 (Partial cover from a leaf he's eating on) = 39

If you can't get at least a 26 by adding BAB + 20 + Weapon/Feat mods, then it's an impossible shot.

Tom S 820 wrote:

The question is how far can a PC shoot not how far it can see.

Copm Long Bow 110FT range Incerment
Flight Arrow +50%
Far Shot +50%

220ft total times 10 range incerments......

2200ft total.

Pathfinder Far Shot does not increase the range increment. It only reduces the penalty from range. Pathfinder Flight Arrows only add 20 feet to a longbows range increment, so a longbow firing flight arrows has an increment of 130 feet, or a max range of 1300 feet.

But at least the Distance property is still the same. So a +1 Distance Longbow firing flight arrows has an increment of (110x2)+20 feet, or 240 feet, and a max range of 2400 feet.

To me this whole scenario is totally under the GM's control. This sort of thing happens all the time in my campaigns, it is a rare session where somebody isn't running away from someone shooting at them, whether the runner is a PC or NPC the same common sense rules apply.

Unless the area is a totally featureless, vegetation-free, unpopulated hard-clay plain, it is going to be nearly impossible to keep shooting at someone as they do their best to flee for a quarter mile and more.

In the vast majority of environments the terrain will include dips, rises, hills, cliffs, trees, shrubs, buildings, fog... whatever.

The typical scenario in my games goes something like this:

GM: "The thief leaps on the back of a horse and applies spurs causing the horse to leap forward."
Ranger player: "I use a full attack to bring him down before he flees!"
Sorcerer player: "I use magic missile!"
Fighter player: "I use a move action to draw my javelin and hurl it at him!"
Cleric player: "I use one move action to draw my crossbow and another to load it."

GM: OK, two arrows and all the magic missiles found their marks, the javelin went wide, the thief looks hurt, but he still seems able to ride. He is making for a copse of trees out past the stable and is riding past some high bushes, any ranged attacks will require a partial concealment check."

Fighter player: "That was my last javelin."
Sorcerer player: "How far away is he now?"
GM: "Well, he's been at a full run for a full round, but he's ducking behind those bushes, so he's about 190 feet away from you now."
Sorcerer player: "Crap, he's out of my range."
Cleric player: "Well, he's still in my range, I shoot my crossbow!"
Ranger player: "I do another full attack!"

GM: "OK, the crossbow is a near miss, the Ranger put one more arrow into him just as he rode behind the trees, but you didn't see him fall from the horse."

Ranger: "I shoot again! Look a natural 20!"
GM: "Nice roll, but you can't see him."
Ranger: "A natural 20 ALWAYS hits."
GM: "Not when you can't see your target behind a bunch of trees."

Or something similar to that. It would be a unique set of circumstances for a fleeing character (PC or NPC) to just ride in a straight line in perfect view of the people shooting at them. They would duck and cover as quickly as possible.

Jeraa wrote:

Pathfinder Far Shot does not increase the range increment. It only reduces the penalty from range. Pathfinder Flight Arrows only add 20 feet to a longbows range increment, so a longbow firing flight arrows has an increment of 130 feet, or a max range of 1300 feet.

But at least the Distance property is still the same. So a +1 Distance Longbow firing flight arrows has an increment of (110x2)+20 feet, or 240 feet, and a max range of 2400 feet.

Crap. I've been handling the Distance property incorrectly -- you're right - the bow has distance and not the arrow. I was doing (110+20)x2.

Thanks!

brassbaboon wrote:

Ranger: "I shoot again! Look a natural 20!"

GM: "Nice roll, but you can't see him."
Ranger: "A natural 20 ALWAYS hits."
GM: "Not when...

Wouldn't this just have a 100% miss chance for full cover? :)

Tilnar wrote:
brassbaboon wrote:

Ranger: "I shoot again! Look a natural 20!"

GM: "Nice roll, but you can't see him."
Ranger: "A natural 20 ALWAYS hits."
GM: "Not when...
Wouldn't this just have a 100% miss chance for full cover? :)

Not unless the PC actually chose a square they couldn't see to shoot into, which I suppose they could technically do, and they might have a remote chance of picking THE square the fleeing thief happened to be in at that moment. Nobody has ever chosen to do that, but if they did, that's probably how I'd rule.

Otherwise I'd just say that there was no way to target the fleeing thief since he was behind the trees.

These situations always have built in frustration, and there is always the potential charge of DM fiat ("Hey, those arrows would have TOTALLY killed him!"). But that's the way real people act in the real world, and very very few of my NPCs fight blindly to the death just because they are cannon fodder for the PCs. They don't know that. They actually think they have wives, kids, mothers, fathers etc...

brassbaboon wrote:
These situations always have built in frustration, and there is always the potential charge of DM fiat ("Hey, those arrows would have TOTALLY killed him!"). But that's the way real people act in the real world, and very very few of my NPCs fight blindly to the death just because they are cannon fodder for the PCs. They don't know that. They actually think they have wives, kids, mothers, fathers etc...

Well, to be fair, if the thief in question just stole the Ring of Ultimate Power and then gets away despite anything the party does (which isn't necessarily the best thing the party could have done, of course) - not a big surprise they might get upset. (And I understand the frustration having been on each side of the screen when things like that happen -- and certainly feeling railroaded when you fail to stop the thief -- of course, in that position, a thief with levels, I would have told everyone to drop the horse, but still).

However -- I fully agree with the idea of treating NPCs not like mindless "kill me" fodder who always fight to the death, but as people in the real world with limited knowledge and their own dreams. Then, they act based on their motivations and plans - which may be flawed because they don't know every item that the party is carrying and/or spell that the party members have access to.

Tilnar wrote:
brassbaboon wrote:
These situations always have built in frustration, and there is always the potential charge of DM fiat ("Hey, those arrows would have TOTALLY killed him!"). But that's the way real people act in the real world, and very very few of my NPCs fight blindly to the death just because they are cannon fodder for the PCs. They don't know that. They actually think they have wives, kids, mothers, fathers etc...

Well, to be fair, if the thief in question just stole the Ring of Ultimate Power and then gets away despite anything the party does (which isn't necessarily the best thing the party could have done, of course) - not a big surprise they might get upset. (And I understand the frustration having been on each side of the screen when things like that happen -- and certainly feeling railroaded when you fail to stop the thief -- of course, in that position, a thief with levels, I would have told everyone to drop the horse, but still).

However -- I fully agree with the idea of treating NPCs not like mindless "kill me" fodder who always fight to the death, but as people in the real world with limited knowledge and their own dreams. Then, they act based on their motivations and plans - which may be flawed because they don't know every item that the party is carrying and/or spell that the party members have access to.

Exactly.

brassbaboon wrote:
However -- I fully agree with the idea of treating NPCs not like mindless "kill me" fodder who always fight to the death, but as people in the real world with limited knowledge and their own dreams. Then, they act based on their motivations and plans - which may be flawed because they don't know every item that the party is carrying and/or spell that the party members have access to.
Exactly.

It's amazing to me how many players (and GMs) don't follow this rule. For instance, in a game I used to play, my Cleric of Sarenrae (who took Fire domain) suddenly stopped being targeted by fire attacks at level 6 -- even if I wasn't casting my higher-level domain spells. Apparently I had an invisible sign that said "Took the Fire Domain. Don't bother." or something. Too bad I never figured out what it was, I would have inscribed it on the rest of the party too.