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Sean K Reynolds clarifies Flurry of Blows


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

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Grick wrote:
Enevhar Aldarion wrote:
I would allow two free actions in a combat round

The guards surround the wily rogue, crossbows drawn. The captain shouts "Drop your weapons and surrender, thief, or face immediate execution!"

The rogue yelps "I give up!" and drops one of his short swords to the ground.

The guards shoot him for not complying, because the poor rogue was limited to two free actions per turn. If only he had kept silent, he could have dropped both weapons!

But the thief and guards are not in a combat round at that point, combat and initiative would not happen unless the thief tried to do anything other than surrender, so there is only a vague, reasonable limit on free actions at that point and not a strict limit that would be required when in combat.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Enevhar Aldarion wrote:
Grick wrote:
Enevhar Aldarion wrote:
I would allow two free actions in a combat round

The guards surround the wily rogue, crossbows drawn. The captain shouts "Drop your weapons and surrender, thief, or face immediate execution!"

The rogue yelps "I give up!" and drops one of his short swords to the ground.

The guards shoot him for not complying, because the poor rogue was limited to two free actions per turn. If only he had kept silent, he could have dropped both weapons!

But the thief and guards are not in a combat round at that point, combat and initiative would not happen unless the thief tried to do anything other than surrender, so there is only a vague, reasonable limit on free actions at that point and not a strict limit that would be required when in combat.

Some GMs would consider that combat, actually.

Besides, it was just an example to demonstrate the silliness of free action hard caps.

Consider instead a barbarian with Quickdraw: He can't draw a weapon, enter a rage and speak in the same round. Or he can't enter a rage, scream "BLOOD DEATH AND VENGEANCE!!!", and then draw a weapon or even drop the expensive vase he was carrying.

Or the high level archer can't fire more than two arrows in a round, because drawing ammunition is a free action.

The point is that applying a universal hard cap doesn't work. Take it case-by-case.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Jiggy wrote:
I don't recall it being prohibited, either, but perhaps you can find a link?

My search-fu is not that good. I remember there being discussions against the "cheese" (their word not mine) that is using a THW and then using armor spikes, unarmed strikes, etc to qualify for TWF. Or loosing your grip and then using the quick draw feat to draw another weapon, attack with it using TWF. The next round, you use the light weapon for the "primary" attacks, drop it (free action), restore your grip on the THW and use it to take the extra attacks, albeit with a non-light penalty. I have been playing under the impression that none of this was RAI for PF and was banned. I know it was quite prevalent in 3.5 but was considered over-powered.

Qadira ***** RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

Jiggy, Mark, after consultation with Jason B., clarified that a character needs to have a hand free in order to use armor spikes. I have been following that guideline, usually with apologies to my players, ever since that ruling. You can strike with a two-handed weapon, release one hand, and then use armor spikes with the free hand. But you cannot re-grip the two-handed weapon until the beginning of your next turn.

This is not the case with unarmed attacks.

Grand Lodge *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Tales Subscriber
Jiggy wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
That's a dangerous comment because it implies that I could use TWF and a THW. Take all the iterative attacks with the THW, and then loose the grip to take the extra attacks using a gauntlet or unarmed strikes. As I recall, that was prohibited.

What's so "dangerous" about that? You can already TWF with a greatsword and unarmed strike (because you can kick), or use armor spikes instead of the unarmed strike, or whatever. Not really hurting anything.

I don't recall it being prohibited, either, but perhaps you can find a link?

Here is where it is leading to: TWF with Greataxe and Bladed boots.

I do have a Drunken Barbarian who is using both. He tends to use the Greataxe - but in case he needs to drink a potion he is doing the following: lose grip on one hand (free), drink potion (move action for Drunken Brute), kick with bladed boot (guess you didn't see that one coming).

I would feel uncomfortable if I'm now told I just need to add TWF and I kick AND fight with the Greataxe in the same round. I'm not intending to go down this route as I don't interpret it as RAI and assume if it is RAW now (?) it will at some stage get the fate of the flurry if it spreads.

Thod

Cheliax ****

Chris Mortika wrote:

Jiggy, Mark, after consultation with Jason B., clarified that a character needs to have a hand free in order to use armor spikes. I have been following that guideline, usually with apologies to my players, ever since that ruling. You can strike with a two-handed weapon, release one hand, and then use armor spikes with the free hand. But you cannot re-grip the two-handed weapon until the beginning of your next turn.

This is not the case with unarmed attacks.

That's a really bizarre ruling. :/ What if my armour spikes are on my chest? What's the free hand for?

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

IMO, attacking with armor spikes outside of a grapple at all is just silly, but that's just my preference. ;)

But near as I can tell, Greatsword+Kick is a valid TWF setup, and I've seen nothing saying otherwise. (I've also seen no other examples of "this particular combo/action is banned in PFS".)

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Mergy wrote:
What if my armour spikes are on my chest?

Wouldn't that require you to enter the opponent's square to apply the weapon and thus provoke an AoO?

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Chris Mortika wrote:

Jiggy, Mark, after consultation with Jason B., clarified that a character needs to have a hand free in order to use armor spikes. I have been following that guideline, usually with apologies to my players, ever since that ruling. You can strike with a two-handed weapon, release one hand, and then use armor spikes with the free hand. But you cannot re-grip the two-handed weapon until the beginning of your next turn.

This is not the case with unarmed attacks.

Wow, I'm getting ninja'd a lot today. Can you link that ruling on the ARMor Spikes? (See what I did there?) I'd like to list it for easy future reference. I'd love something to prohibit booby-stabs; as stated a moment ago, I think they're silly.

Qadira ***** RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

Jiggy, I searched Mark's posts on the subject of "armor spikes" and found this.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Chris Mortika wrote:
Jiggy, I searched Mark's posts on the subject of "armor spikes" and found this.

Yay!

There's still Greatsword+Kick, but I'm less opposed to that.

Taldor ****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Card Game Subscriber
Thod wrote:


Here is where it is leading to: TWF with Greataxe and Bladed boots.

I do have a Drunken Barbarian who is using both. He tends to use the Greataxe - but in case he needs to drink a potion he is doing the following: lose grip on one hand (free), drink potion (move action for Drunken Brute), kick with bladed boot (guess you didn't see that one coming).

Thod

Thod: Serious inquiry, as I have a drunken barbarian player...in this line of actions, where is the drawing of the potion taken into account? It is assumed to be done as part of the move action to drink?

I read it as requiring 2 move actions, one to drink, one to draw from a container, but I am glad to be wrong on this one, as it drew contention from the player.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Jiggy wrote:
There's still Greatsword+Kick, but I'm less opposed to that.

Armed or as an unarmed strike? There is at least one weapon that can be worn (bladeboot) that becomes equivalent to pulling an off-hand weapon with a free action.

Cheliax ****

Chris Mortika wrote:
Jiggy, I searched Mark's posts on the subject of "armor spikes" and found this.

He also says later in the thread that it's just his interpretation and not an official PFS ruling. That's right here. So GMs adjudicate how you like.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Bob Jonquet wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
There's still Greatsword+Kick, but I'm less opposed to that.
Armed or as an unarmed strike? There is at least one weapon that can be worn (bladeboot) that becomes equivalent to pulling an off-hand weapon with a free action.

I was referring to unarmed strikes.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Mergy wrote:
So GMs adjudicate how you like.

Yayyy! More table variation that is sure to pi$$ someone off [/sarcasm]

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Jiggy wrote:
I was referring to unarmed strikes.

Personally, I am good with banning using a THW in conjunction with TWF except in the case of monks. It seems to be more in line with their schtick IMO. And gives them a little bit more "oomph" to balance against the other martial classes.

EDIT--corrected

Cheliax ****

It's like he said, they can't FAQ everything. Personally I find nothing wrong with a player covering their bases by wearing spiked armour while using a reach weapon. You still want to get within their reach because at that point they're attacking you with at best a masterwork weapon instead of the +3 weapon they have weapon specialization with.

It makes little difference, and it makes players happy.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Bob Jonquet wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
I was referring to unarmed strikes.
Personally, I am good with banning using TWF in conjunction with TWF except in the case of monks. It seems to be more in line with their schtick IMO. And gives them a little bit more "oomph" to balance against the other martial classes.

...you lost me.

Grand Lodge *

Jiggy wrote:

IMO, attacking with armor spikes outside of a grapple at all is just silly, but that's just my preference. ;)

But near as I can tell, Greatsword+Kick is a valid TWF setup, and I've seen nothing saying otherwise. (I've also seen no other examples of "this particular combo/action is banned in PFS".)

[snark]Come on. You know any day now they are going to "clarify" that the Greatsword was intended to have the stats of a Dagger, just 2 handed, and that it actually takes a free hand to wield the "kick".[/snark]

Cheliax ****

Bob, why are you so eager to ban a sub-optimal combat style? A fighter using a two-handed weapon will outdamage one who tries to TWF with a two-handed weapon and spiked armour, simply because of stat spread, the fact that the two don't apply together to weapon training; he needs two weapon focus and weapon specialization feats or else one of them is quite underpowered.

Grand Lodge *

Jiggy wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
I was referring to unarmed strikes.
Personally, I am good with banning using TWF in conjunction with TWF except in the case of monks. It seems to be more in line with their schtick IMO. And gives them a little bit more "oomph" to balance against the other martial classes.
...you lost me.

Maybe "using TWF in conjunction with 2HW" is what they mean?

Grand Lodge *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Tales Subscriber
Sniggevert wrote:


Thod: Serious inquiry, as I have a drunken barbarian player...in this line of actions, where is the drawing of the potion taken into account? It is assumed to be done as part of the move action to drink?

I read it as requiring 2 move actions, one to drink, one to draw from a container, but I am glad to be wrong on this one, as it drew contention from the player.

Sniggevert

Yes - I always assumed it is part of the move action to drink - assuming you have the potion ready and not somewhere in a sack, backpack, etc. Otherwise Raging drunk would only work any other round and be pretty pointless. But rereading it I agree your question is fully valid.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Thod wrote:
Sniggevert wrote:


Thod: Serious inquiry, as I have a drunken barbarian player...in this line of actions, where is the drawing of the potion taken into account? It is assumed to be done as part of the move action to drink?

I read it as requiring 2 move actions, one to drink, one to draw from a container, but I am glad to be wrong on this one, as it drew contention from the player.

Sniggevert

Yes - I always assumed it is part of the move action to drink - assuming you have the potion ready and not somewhere in a sack, backpack, etc. Otherwise Raging drunk would only work any other round and be pretty pointless. But rereading it I agree your question is fully valid.

The action required to use an object never includes retrieving said object unless otherwise specified.

Cheliax *

Mattastrophic wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Would you mind sharing that concept? I'm curious about it. (Or you could PM if you prefer, so as not to de-rail the thread.)

Sure thing.

Lady Gabrielle d'Apcher, lovely Taldan noblewoman, carries her courtier's fan with her constantly, as any well-to-do lady of Taldor would. She is often seen fluttering it about, fanning herself as relief from the heat of the day. However, when combat inevitably begins, little do others know that her feminine fan can quickly become a deadly weapon!

Under SKR's post, Lady Gabrielle would have to start punching people. How unbecoming of a lady of such stature! (I'll also note that she just added Agile to her fan on Monday. Unarmed damage: 1d6-2, fan damage: 1d4+5. Ugggh.)

-Matt

Punch? Oh, no. That's unbecoming of a lady.

Open palm slap across the face for daring to threaten a lady? Perfectly appropriate.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Mergy wrote:
Bob, why are you so eager to ban a sub-optimal combat style?

Why sub-optimal. With a small -2 penalty to the primary attack, the fighter can get all iterative attacks with full THW damage benefits AND then kick in TWF to add up to three more secondary attacks, albeit with a light weapon. If he is built optimally, the damage from the weapon itself is incidental to the bonuses he can add with enchants/feat/class abilities. It just does not seem to be the RAI.

Grand Lodge *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Tales Subscriber

From the CRB:

CRB p136 wrote:

Two Weapon fighting (Combat)

You can fight with a weapon wielded in each of your hands. You can make one extra attack each round with the secondary weapon.

Bolding is mine. I wouldn't mind for flavour allowing someone with sword and bladed boots to wield and kick. But the use of 'hands' clearly indicates it isn't meant to allow a Two Handed Weapon AND some other weapon elsewhere.

And about sub-optimal options. The issue often is that it starts with a suboptimal option for flavour - and then someone turns it into something that is more powerful and powercreep sets in.

I loved the heirloom weapon. It allowed to use some of the suboptimal weapons without the high price.

A wizard with an oriental background and some shuriken, a ranger with a whip. It made some weird weapons feasible for the very first time. But it wasn't used much that way.

Cheliax *

Thod wrote:


I loved the heirloom weapon. It allowed to use some of the suboptimal weapons without the high price.

A wizard with an oriental background and some shuriken, a ranger with a whip. It made some weird weapons feasible for the very first time. But it wasn't used much that way.

As a side note, if you're willing to play a Half-Elf, the Ancestral Arms alternate class feature is a good substitute for these cases. Not perfect, but worthwhile.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Thod wrote:
From the CRB

I agree with your intent, but I hate using rules-lawyery interpretations to justify RAI. It could be just as easily stated that you ARE wielding a weapon in each hand. It just happens to be the SAME weapon. That would seem to be appropriate since we have double weapons.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Bob Jonquet wrote:
Mergy wrote:
Bob, why are you so eager to ban a sub-optimal combat style?
Why sub-optimal. With a small -2 penalty to the primary attack, the fighter can get all iterative attacks with full THW damage benefits AND then kick in TWF to add up to three more secondary attacks, albeit with a light weapon. If he is built optimally, the damage from the weapon itself is incidental to the bonuses he can add with enchants/feat/class abilities. It just does not seem to be the RAI.

As someone already pointed out, it's suboptimal because of all those feats/class abilities you reference, plus increased MAD (remember, TWF requires 15 DEX).

The 2H-only guy can max out STR, dump WF, WS, Fighter Weapon Training, etc all into his primary weapon and make CON his secondary stat, etc.

The TWF Greatsword+Kick guy has to spend two whole extra feats (TWF and IUS, plus more if he wants to continue the TWF chain) just for the extra 1d3+2 damage (and a -2 to hit with his big sword!). If he wants to make that damage non-trivial, he now has to take WF again, take WS again, apply another shot of Fighter Weapon Training, etc. Meanwhile, due to needing 15 DEX, he also can't afford as much STR/CON (or other stats).

It seems stronger on the surface than it actually is.

Cheliax ****

Jiggy wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
Mergy wrote:
Bob, why are you so eager to ban a sub-optimal combat style?
Why sub-optimal. With a small -2 penalty to the primary attack, the fighter can get all iterative attacks with full THW damage benefits AND then kick in TWF to add up to three more secondary attacks, albeit with a light weapon. If he is built optimally, the damage from the weapon itself is incidental to the bonuses he can add with enchants/feat/class abilities. It just does not seem to be the RAI.

As someone already pointed out, it's suboptimal because of all those feats/class abilities you reference, plus increased MAD (remember, TWF requires 15 DEX).

The 2H-only guy can max out STR, dump WF, WS, Fighter Weapon Training, etc all into his primary weapon and make CON his secondary stat, etc.

The TWF Greatsword+Kick guy has to spend two whole extra feats (TWF and IUS, plus more if he wants to continue the TWF chain) just for the extra 1d3+2 damage (and a -2 to hit with his big sword!). If he wants to make that damage non-trivial, he now has to take WF again, take WS again, apply another shot of Fighter Weapon Training, etc. Meanwhile, due to needing 15 DEX, he also can't afford as much STR/CON (or other stats).

It seems stronger on the surface than it actually is.

That was me! :P

For armour spikes it's a little more optimal than greatsword + kick, but the fighter still has another weapon that they now have to upgrade. Two Weapon Rend would be required also to get any amount of good damage out of it. I know fighters have a lot of feats, but even 2HW can be feat intensive if you want to grab all the good stuff.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Jiggy wrote:
It seems stronger on the surface than it actually is.

It's a slower entry to be sure, but if you stick with it, I think you can be very scary at high levels with some of the critical feat chains that would apply to all attacks, thus further enhancing the damage potential of the off hand attack.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Bob Jonquet wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
It seems stronger on the surface than it actually is.
It's a slower entry to be sure, but if you stick with it, I think you can be very scary at high levels with some of the critical feat chains that would apply to all attacks, thus further enhancing the damage potential of the off hand attack.

So we've discovered a build which requires a lot of investment and is slow to get going but if you stick with it for the long haul and pay all your dues you'll end up powerful in higher levels.

And this is bad?


Jiggy wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
It seems stronger on the surface than it actually is.
It's a slower entry to be sure, but if you stick with it, I think you can be very scary at high levels with some of the critical feat chains that would apply to all attacks, thus further enhancing the damage potential of the off hand attack.

So we've discovered a build which requires a lot of investment and is slow to get going but if you stick with it for the long haul and pay all your dues you'll end up powerful in higher levels.

And this is bad?

Depends on whether you are talking about playing in general or in PFS where seeing those required high levels has almost no chance of happening for the average player. I am sure there a quite a few builds that do not reach their peak til into the teens for character level.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Kind of adds to my point, Enevhar. ;)

Cheliax ****

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Bob Jonquet wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
It seems stronger on the surface than it actually is.
It's a slower entry to be sure, but if you stick with it, I think you can be very scary at high levels with some of the critical feat chains that would apply to all attacks, thus further enhancing the damage potential of the off hand attack.

It's a slower entry, and it will never be as optimal as 2HW. I don't understand the issue.


Bob Jonquet wrote:


Why sub-optimal.

Because people have done the math and shown it to be.

Do out two PCs one with and one without. Fully out. As you need to see the impact on stats, gear AND feats for trying to do this. Then take a reasonably challenging opponent and see how they fare.

This is something that always seems overpowered but when you actually do it out you find out differently. It's come up time and time again since 3e started and made armor spikes in the first place.

As to RAI, the old 3.5 FAQ had examples of a PC wielding a longspear and armor spikes. If it wasn't intended then it certainly was accepted in 3.5 and not unknown.

If it wasn't intended for PF then they certainly could have banned it. But rather than that, or simply to remove things like armor spikes from the game Paizo has added more weapons like it that don't require hands to wield. Moreover they've added abilities to enable PCs to have a third hand that expressly can wield a weapon.

So I would posit that its actually using the RAI as well as not being 'over-powered',

James


I think this thread has gone off course a bit.

Coming back to the flurry of blows, what happens to all those monks who have invested in fighting with a one handed weapon for their flurries etc (And having another hand open to deflect arrows/melee attacks via crane style).

I know we will need for an official ruling/update, but this means those of us with such characters cannot play for now.

*

Absolutely nothing. You should be treating your flurry like two weapon fighting anyway. You just alternate between your one handed weapon and an unarmed strike. You don't even need to use a fist, you could use a kick as your unarmed strike thus keeping your hand always free for other things.

I still think it the dust has not settled on flurry of blows:
1) This is all just a clarification on the as written rules. This is how the developers wanted it to work and so that's how it will.- probably won't be an FAQ / errata for flurry of blows.
2) Probably will be an errata for two handed monk weapons and flurry of blows.

If the rules actually get changed (errata) then you have the chance to change your character and adjust to the changes. If it just ends up being a clarification or FAQ, then you just have to play your character the new way (since these are not actually rule changes just further description on how the rules already work).

Osirion *** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Buford aka bartgroks

Lab_Rat wrote:


If the rules actually get changed (errata) then you have the chance to change your character and adjust to the changes. If it just ends up being a clarification or FAQ, then you just have to play your character the new way (since these are not actually rule changes just further description on how the rules already work).

Actually if you read the 1st Mike Brock post on page 1 of this thread he says he is allowing rebuilds now. check it out.


bartgroks wrote:
Lab_Rat wrote:


If the rules actually get changed (errata) then you have the chance to change your character and adjust to the changes. If it just ends up being a clarification or FAQ, then you just have to play your character the new way (since these are not actually rule changes just further description on how the rules already work).

Actually if you read the 1st Mike Brock post on page 1 of this thread he says he is allowing rebuilds now. check it out.

Thanks I somehow missed it. The loot I suppose is kinda tricky. Dont mind selling what I dont need anymore. Changing my last feat is all I really want to do. Weapon focus needs to change to unarmed, my one handed sword isnt gonna work so well.

But seems I wont be playing PFS till next weekend (If I am lucky) anyway, So maybe Ill wait a little longer?

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

We've offered an option to rebuild your character if this ruling has affected your character and if you do not wish to stay the course until the design team can fix it through errata. The tone of these threads has started to turn south and I removed several that are going to do nothing but stir up arguments and bad feelings. I'm locking this thread since the PFS side of it has been handled. Take any further discussion to the Rules forum.

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