Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

I never really got why you can't trip flying creatures


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

With the exception of creatures with perfect maneuverability, I never understood why flying creatures can't be tripped. I envision tripping a flying creature where the tripper would grab or using a weapon to hook onto the flying creature's leg or wing and yank them down to the ground. If one fails the trip check bad enough that'll be trip themselves it could be the fact the attempt just knocks them off balanced and they fall down to the ground as result.

Sure "tripping" the flying creature by yanking them down would be more difficult than sweeping their legs from under than them. But is it really so impossible that it can't be done, not even four or six legged creature are immune.


Sounds like reposition.


I don't know if you can make them prone off repostion. Maybe with Dirty Trick however.


Tripping a character doesn't move them toward the ground, it knocks them prone.

How, exactly, can a flying creature be prone?

Does a tripped flying creature take falling damage? Do they get a check to stay in the air?

What if two creatures were flying high in the air, and one trips the other? Does it knock them all the way to the ground? If the creatures are more than 500 ft up does the fall take more than 1 round?

Reposition is the maneuver you want for moving a creature from one space (in the air) to another space (on the ground). It won't knock them prone, but that'd be like getting two maneuvers in one.


I don't know if you can either, but the environment might. If I repositioned and enemy onto a floor with Grease already cast on it, then the enemy will needto make a save.

That's not incredibly relevant, but anyway, magical means of flying make this "trip flying creatures" weird.


I always figured one might be able to spin a flying creature around, enough so they lose their orientation and sense of direction, ie. prone. That said, I've never actually used it in a game.


If it had less than perfect maneurvability and didn't want to make the check to stay in place wouldn't it have to move or fall. Or otherwise waste its move action to stand up or fall.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Vendis wrote:
Sounds like reposition.

I didn't know that existed. But after reading it on the PFSRD, I find that's another silly maneuver, I don't understand why they can't force a move into the wall or fire. Besides without the prone condition it's like you cause them to simply just land rather then forcing them crash to the ground.

Osirion

2 people marked this as a favorite.

I kinda love the idea of smacking a Beholder so hard in his magical levitation gland that his eyestalks cross and he plotzes to the ground for a round...

"Ow! My gland!" <Thud>

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Quantum Steve wrote:

Tripping a character doesn't move them toward the ground, it knocks them prone.

How, exactly, can a flying creature be prone?

Does a tripped flying creature take falling damage? Do they get a check to stay in the air?

What if two creatures were flying high in the air, and one trips the other? Does it knock them all the way to the ground? If the creatures are more than 500 ft up does the fall take more than 1 round?

Reposition is the maneuver you want for moving a creature from one space (in the air) to another space (on the ground). It won't knock them prone, but that'd be like getting two maneuvers in one.

Perhaps treat it like the flyer failed their fly check.


So what if someone who flew by means of magic (actually, it could even be Levitate, I think), is prone, in that condition by whatever means, and wants to fly up? Do they need to spend a move to stand up, then fly? Or, can they fly up, then spend a move to stand up (thus having the prone condition while being floating in midair)? Do they even need to spend the action at all, or does flying away from the ground remove the prone condition automatically?


I've always treated it like Stalling or failing to maintain minimum forward movement was done in 3.5.

3.5SRD wrote:
If a flying creature fails to maintain its minimum forward speed, it must land at the end of its movement. If it is too high above the ground to land, it falls straight down, descending 150 feet in the first round of falling. If this distance brings it to the ground, it takes falling damage. If the fall doesn’t bring the creature to the ground, it must spend its next turn recovering from the stall. It must succeed on a DC 20 Reflex save to recover. Otherwise it falls another 300 feet. If it hits the ground, it takes falling damage. Otherwise, it has another chance to recover on its next turn.

I just replace the reflex save with a fly check and make it a move action rather than a full round.

Andoran

Suzaku wrote:
I envision tripping a flying creature where the tripper would grab or using a weapon to hook onto the flying creature's leg or wing and yank them down to the ground.

That sounds more like a grapple.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
RedDogMT wrote:
Suzaku wrote:
I envision tripping a flying creature where the tripper would grab or using a weapon to hook onto the flying creature's leg or wing and yank them down to the ground.
That sounds more like a grapple.

To trip someone standing you could sweep their legs or use your weapon to hook onto their legs and pull them out from under them.


A lot of this shouldn't have a written rule at all. I would never go to the book to find out how to trip a flying creature.

I would ask the player to describe what he is trying to do and then I would tell him what to roll.


I just looked over at my girlfriend, who has never played. Never looked at the rules. Could care less what a d12 is and refers to Pathfinder as my "monster game".

I read the name of this thread to her. She understands with no details why you can't trip a flying creature. I'm going with RedDog on this.

Andoran

Suzaku wrote:
RedDogMT wrote:
Suzaku wrote:
I envision tripping a flying creature where the tripper would grab or using a weapon to hook onto the flying creature's leg or wing and yank them down to the ground.
That sounds more like a grapple.
To trip someone standing you could sweep their legs or use your weapon to hook onto their legs and pull them out from under them.

So, your explanation has changed, but you are leaving out one element. A trip maneuver is effective because once you remove the target's balance, gravity does it's part in bringing the target to the ground. A flying creature is able to counter gravity.

The only argument you could make for tripping a flying creature is that it may cause them to become unbalanced during their flight, but it's not worth it make a rule to account for that. If there was, the devs would have done so.

If you want to bring a flying creature to the ground with a CMB maneuver, performing a grapple & move, reposition, or a drag is the way to go.


I think there were rules for tripping flying creatures in 3.5. Not sure though, and if that's the case, I dunno why they didn't make it to Pathfinder.

I suppose it'd be a different effect that just shared its mechanics with the trip combat maneuver. Like, hurt it's wings or disrupt its flight somehow. It was just called "tripping" because it'd be too much of a niche scenario to warrant its own combat maneuver and apropriate feats.

In Pathfinder, the closest thing I can think off of the top of my head right now is the Gunslinger ability to force flying enemies to make Fly checks or fall 20ft.

tl;dr: There is no particular reason. It's just semantics.

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder RPG / General Discussion / I never really got why you can't trip flying creatures All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.

©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.