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

RPG Superstar 2015

Ranged touch on prone target


Rules Questions


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

A player and a range of 10 feet casts a grease spell on a target and that target fails his save and falls to the ground and is prone. The following round the player shoots a scorching ray at the prone opponent.

My questions:

1. Would that prone target get a +4 bonus vs ranged attacks as per the prone condition?

2. Would the target of a failed grease save be flatfooted?


1) Yes. Ranged touch is a ranged attack, so they get the bonus to AC.

2) No. Spells only do what they say, and Grease says nothing about making you flat-footed (except that you aren't flat-footed if you succeed, in case anyone was still in 3.5 mode).


I think 'yes' and 'no'.

Being prone doesn't give you flat footed as a condition. Being prone does give you +4 on your AC vs ranged attacks. RAW. There's nothing to stop you as GM making different calls at your own table though.

Silver Crusade

Muad'Dib wrote:

A player and a range of 10 feet casts a grease spell on a target and that target fails his save and falls to the ground and is prone. The following round the player shoots a scorching ray at the prone opponent.

My questions:

1. Would that prone target get a +4 bonus vs ranged attacks as per the prone condition?

2. Would the target of a failed grease save be flatfooted?

Strangely enough, the prone condition doesn't state the character/creature under the condition as flat-footed. So, no, it isn't flat-footed.

Flat-footed denotes either not having moved yet or incapable of moving. While a prone target may be slower in movement, they can still crawl or get back up. Just look at it this way if the idea of 'being prone =/= flat-footed' seems strange.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Thanks, I guess that is more in line with what I thought/feared the rules were saying.

To be 10 feet away from a target that is helpless on the ground and have a tougher time hitting just makes little sense.


Prone is not helpless. Helpless has a very specific meaning in game terms.

Being on higher ground does get you a +1 to attack rolls, IIRC.


Interestingly enough, if the prone character were to make an Acrobatics check to crawl 5 feet, he would be flat-footed.


Muad'Dib wrote:

Thanks, I guess that is more in line with what I thought/feared the rules were saying.

To be 10 feet away from a target that is helpless on the ground and have a tougher time hitting just makes little sense.

Helpless is unconscious, tied up, paralyzed, or in some other condition that completely prevents you from moving.

Prone you are on the ground but are still very much aware of your surroundings and able to react to them. Roll to the side to dodge that sword strike, attempt to get your shield in front of that incoming arrow, etc.


Quote:
Crawling: You can crawl 5 feet as a move action. Crawling incurs attacks of opportunity from any attackers who threaten you at any point of your crawl. A crawling character is considered prone and must take a move action to stand up, provoking an attack of opportunity.

There is nothing about being flat-footed.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
bbangerter wrote:

Helpless is unconscious, tied up, paralyzed, or in some other condition that completely prevents you from moving.

Prone you are on the ground but are still very much aware of your surroundings and able to react to them. Roll to the side to dodge that sword strike, attempt to get your shield in front of that incoming arrow, etc.

I guess I just question how much effective dodging one can do while on the ground slipping on grease.


wraithstrike wrote:
Quote:
Crawling: You can crawl 5 feet as a move action. Crawling incurs attacks of opportunity from any attackers who threaten you at any point of your crawl. A crawling character is considered prone and must take a move action to stand up, provoking an attack of opportunity.
There is nothing about being flat-footed.

It's in the Acrobatics skill. If you make a Acrobatics check to move while balancing you are flat-footed.


Quantum Steve wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
Quote:
Crawling: You can crawl 5 feet as a move action. Crawling incurs attacks of opportunity from any attackers who threaten you at any point of your crawl. A crawling character is considered prone and must take a move action to stand up, provoking an attack of opportunity.
There is nothing about being flat-footed.

It's in the Acrobatics skill. If you make a Acrobatics check to move while balancing you are flat-footed.

I misunderstood. I thought you were saying any prone character that crawls is flat-footed.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
wraithstrike wrote:

Prone is not helpless. Helpless has a very specific meaning in game terms.

Being on higher ground does get you a +1 to attack rolls, IIRC.

Only for melee attacks.


You are using one section of the acrobatics skill (balancing) to a different section of the acrobatics skill (moving while threatened). There is still a third section (jumping).

While using section 2 (moving while threatened) you may crawl 5feet without provoking an attack of opportunity but this takes a full-round action. There is nothing there about it causing you to be flat-footed.

While using section 1 (balancing) there is the following wording:

CRB p87 wrote:
While you are using Acrobatics in this way, you are considered flat-footed and lose your Dexterity bonus to your AC (if any).

That wording does not apply to sections 2 and 3.

- Gauss


Mergy wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:

Prone is not helpless. Helpless has a very specific meaning in game terms.

Being on higher ground does get you a +1 to attack rolls, IIRC.

Only for melee attacks.

I could not remember if it applied to ranged or not.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Muad'Dib wrote:
bbangerter wrote:

Helpless is unconscious, tied up, paralyzed, or in some other condition that completely prevents you from moving.

Prone you are on the ground but are still very much aware of your surroundings and able to react to them. Roll to the side to dodge that sword strike, attempt to get your shield in front of that incoming arrow, etc.

I guess I just question how much effective dodging one can do while on the ground slipping on grease.

There's nary an animal alive that can outrun a greased Scotsman.


Gauss wrote:

While using section 2 (moving while threatened) you may crawl 5feet without provoking an attack of opportunity but this takes a full-round action. There is nothing there about it causing you to be flat-footed.

I didn't know you could "tumble" while prone. I must have overlooked that section. Neat!

Anyway, the first section of acrobatics applies to all movement while balancing, including crawling 5 feet as a full-round action, as described in the combat section, does it not?


Quantum Steve: No, it does not. Crawling 5feet is not 'movement while balancing'. IF you are crawling while on a ledge, that is balancing.

The current Acrobatics skill is a combination of 3 D&D3.5 skills.

First section: Balance

CRB p87 wrote:
You can use Acrobatics to move on narrow surfaces and uneven ground without falling.

Second section: Tumble

CRB p87 wrote:
In addition, you can move through a threatened square without provoking an attack of opportunity from an enemy by using Acrobatics.

Third section: Jump

CRB p88 wrote:
Finally, you can use the Acrobatics skill to make jumps or to soften a fall.

Perhaps they should have left in sub-headers for each skill use but they are really three completely independant uses of the same skill.

- Gauss


This is an interesting question, which I do not see the answer to in either the grease spell's description, or the acrobatics skill description. Forget crawling, just moving. Is the acrobatics check required by the grease spell to move at half speed a species of balancing, or is its own type of acrobatics check. Being a slippery surface adds a penalty to balancing on a narrow ledge or through uneven ground, but the skill does not mention whether moving on a slippery surface that is not narrow or uneven falls under the category of balancing, and thus causes you to lose your dexterity bonus to AC. Perhaps RAW can't answer this, and a GM needs to make his own call.


Mabven the OP healer wrote:
Is the acrobatics check required by the grease spell to move at half speed a species of balancing, or is its own type of acrobatics check.

This was discussed here, though we didn't really come to any consensus.

If walking within or through the area of grease at half normal speed with a DC 10 Acrobatics check is equivalent to using Acrobatics to move on narrow surfaces and uneven ground without falling, then you are considered flat-footed while you are using Acrobatics in this way.

The reason they may be equivalent is that grease specifically says that if a creature does not move, they are not flat-footed. This implies that if the creature does move, they might be flat-footed.

I'll bump that other thread and stick a FAQ request at the end.


@Grick

I missed that part of the grease spell description. That pretty much clinches it for me - in my mind, that sentence implies strongly enough that you are flat-footed when moving in a greased square that I will interpret it as such.


Yeah, based on the wording in grease I would consider grease as uneven ground thus subject to being flat-footed while moving.

- Gauss


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Gauss wrote:

Yeah, based on the wording in grease I would consider grease as uneven ground thus subject to being flat-footed while moving.

- Gauss

Having watched an extensive amount of mud, jello and KY wrestling I would concur.


Muad'Dib wrote:
Gauss wrote:

Yeah, based on the wording in grease I would consider grease as uneven ground thus subject to being flat-footed while moving.

- Gauss

Having watched an extensive amount of mud, jello and KY wrestling I would concur.

Perv :D

- Gauss


Muad'Dib wrote:
bbangerter wrote:

Helpless is unconscious, tied up, paralyzed, or in some other condition that completely prevents you from moving.

Prone you are on the ground but are still very much aware of your surroundings and able to react to them. Roll to the side to dodge that sword strike, attempt to get your shield in front of that incoming arrow, etc.

I guess I just question how much effective dodging one can do while on the ground slipping on grease.

Hence the reason for taking a -4 AC penalty against melee attacks if you are prone. Making the player flat footed in addition is double penalizing for being prone. A GM could house rule out the -4 penalty and house rule in a flat-footed condition - but that opens up the ability to sneak attack damage against a 'prone' target, and whatever other penalties flat footed might incur that prone does not. In most cases though the -4 to AC penalty is likely to be far more severe than being flat footed is.


bbangerter wrote:
Making the player flat footed in addition is double penalizing for being prone.

With the grease spell, it's not being prone that causes you to be considered flat-footed, it's attempting to move through it.

Either you're prone (with prone condition), standing (no condition), or standing and moving through the grease (considered flat-footed).


While Prone you still have dexterity bonuses. While Flat-footed you do not. As a general statement: I see no problem with stacking these two bonuses/penalties (prone can be a bonus).

- Gauss

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Grick wrote:
bbangerter wrote:
Making the player flat footed in addition is double penalizing for being prone.

With the grease spell, it's not being prone that causes you to be considered flat-footed, it's attempting to move through it.

Either you're prone (with prone condition), standing (no condition), or standing and moving through the grease (considered flat-footed).

After leaving the grease, the combatant would no longer be flat-footed, correct?

If my character uses Acrobatics to move over rough or uneven terrain, but finishes his movement in an area that is not uneven, is he no longer flat-footed, or does the use of the skill make him flat-footed for the rest of the round?

What if he were to move five feet through grease and then make an attack?

What if he were to move five feet through grease and then fly for the rest of his movement?


I think if you have to make keep your balance at any point while interacting with grease then you suffer the penalties, whatever those may be.


Mergy, I would say no longer flat-footed after leaving the area in question. To me, the flat-footed penalty from acrobatics is due to trying to focus on the terrain. If you are no longer on the terrain I would say you are no longer flat-footed.

- Gauss


Mergy wrote:
If my character uses Acrobatics to move over rough or uneven terrain, but finishes his movement in an area that is not uneven, is he no longer flat-footed, or does the use of the skill make him flat-footed for the rest of the round?

Acrobatics: "While you are using Acrobatics in this way, you are considered flat-footed and lose your Dexterity bonus to your AC (if any)."

When you are no longer moving across such a surface, you are no longer using Acrobatics in that way, thus you are no longer considered flat-footed.

Mergy wrote:
What if he were to move five feet through grease and then make an attack?

You would stop moving to make the attack. When you stop moving, you're no longer using Acrobatics to move on narrow surfaces and uneven ground, and thus no longer flat-footed.

If you were spring attacking through a grease field, then I guess it would be possible to attack while considered flat-footed, though I don't really see how that's relevant.


Grick, I disagree with your second section. If you are moving on a dangerous surface your check should apply to the entire duration of that surface (ie: the entire round if you remain on that surface the entire round).

- Gauss

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

That Acrobatics check is made as part of movement. If the character is no longer moving, they are no longer making a check. Therefore they are no longer "using Acrobatics in this way".

It seems that attacks of opportunity or readied actions are the only way to take advantage of the brief window. I'll inform the sneak attackers in my group.


Mergy wrote:

That Acrobatics check is made as part of movement. If the character is no longer moving, they are no longer making a check. Therefore they are no longer "using Acrobatics in this way".

It seems that attacks of opportunity or readied actions are the only way to take advantage of the brief window. I'll inform the sneak attackers in my group.

This interpretation of movement should also affect climbing and flying (if you want to be consistent in your interpretations.)

You should only have a chance of falling after taking damage while actually moving using the Fly or Climb skills.


wraithstrike wrote:
Mergy wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:

Prone is not helpless. Helpless has a very specific meaning in game terms.

Being on higher ground does get you a +1 to attack rolls, IIRC.

Only for melee attacks.
I could not remember if it applied to ranged or not.

On higher ground +1 Melee +0 Ranged


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

If someone poured oil all over the ground, stood in it and attempted to quickly dodge an object or swing something with power they would find themselves on their butts quickly. The slick surface does not give enough stability & friction to do many actions. Dodging would be very difficult and you would most likly have to rely on upper body movement.

I get the ruling and I understand why it is written that way I just think the Grease spell could use some clarification and act in a manner that is closer to a real world scenario.

But making a person flat footed as well would turn grease into a 2nd level spell in tems of power. It alreay is one of the best 1st level spells.


Grick wrote:
bbangerter wrote:
Making the player flat footed in addition is double penalizing for being prone.

With the grease spell, it's not being prone that causes you to be considered flat-footed, it's attempting to move through it.

Either you're prone (with prone condition), standing (no condition), or standing and moving through the grease (considered flat-footed).

My response was in the context of "while on the ground" (aka prone).

Gauss wrote:

While Prone you still have dexterity bonuses. While Flat-footed you do not. As a general statement: I see no problem with stacking these two bonuses/penalties (prone can be a bonus).

Accrording to RAW, no, you wouldn't suffer from both, and I would contend according to RAI as well. Standard disclaimer of you may do as you wish when you GM.

As a strict rules question this issue seems pretty cut and dry. As a models reality issue, YMMV.


Can you show evidence that you cannot be prone AND flat-footed? I cannot seem to find any.

- Gauss


That is a possibility, but grease as currently written does not provide it by itself.


Prone: -4penalty to melee attack rolls. Most missile weapons unusable. +4 AC vs ranged,-4AC vs melee

Flat-footed: Loss of dexterity bonus, cannot make attacks of opportunity.

I see nothing in either condition to preclude the other.

bbangerter, I was not commenting about Grease. I was commenting about being prone and flat-footed. The two conditions are compatible.

- Gauss


Not disagreeing with you on that :). This thread is (mostly) about the conditions inflicted by the grease spell though. Failed roll (prone), acrobatics while moving through (flat-footed), etc.


Agreed, but you DID disagree with me. Obviously a misunderstanding. :) I make very specific statements whenever possible and reading too much into my statements results in such misunderstandings.

Back on grease though, there could be situations where a prone person becomes prone AND flat-footed due to grease (trying to move while prone for example).

Additionally, if the flat-footed condition lasts for any length of time (rather than just during the move action to move in grease) then prone+flat-footed is a much more likely possibility. I have sent James Jacobs a question about the duration of being flat-footed due to acrobatics.

- Gauss


Combat is simultaneous. Even though we take turns in real life, the characters are not taking turns so you should be flat-footed until the beginning of your next turn if grease can make you flat-footed at all.


wraithstrike wrote:
Combat is simultaneous. Even though we take turns in real life, the characters are not taking turns so you should be flat-footed until the beginning of your next turn if grease can make you flat-footed at all.

That's not necessarily true. Say you win initiative, and move and attack your foe. On his turn, he tumbles away from you and moves to threaten the path you just took to attack him. He does not get to take an attack of opportunity. Combat is sequential in many ways, and concurrent in others.


Nothing like the board going down to bring all debates to a screeching halt :D

- Gauss


It was my positing of time-travelling AoO's which shocked and disgusted the server so much that it refused to run httpd.


James Jacobs quote:
James Jacobs wrote:

Gauss wrote:

Oh mighty guru who is James Jacobs this poor petitioner has a question. /humor

Anyhow, Acrobatics (narrow surfaces and uneven ground portion) states that while a person is using acrobatics to move across such ground they are flat-footed.

Example 1: I spend my move action to cross uneven ground (making an acrobatics check) and finish crossing it in the same move action. I now take a standard action to attack someone.
Question 1: Am I still flat-footed?
Question 2: If yes, How long am I flat-footed for?

Example 2: I spend my entire turn crossing uneven ground (I am still on uneven ground at the end of my turn) making acrobatics checks as before.
Question 3: Am I flat-footed after my move action(s) is completed (ie: until my next turn)?

Thanks again for your time.

- Gauss

Answer 1: Nope. You were only flat-footed when you were on the narrow surface; had you remained on that surface, you would have stayed flat-footed until your next turn gave you a chance to remedy that.

Answer 2: n/a

Answer 3: If you're still on uneven ground, yes. If you're not, no.

Well there you go: if you cross the uneven ground completely (ie: grease effect if we assume the grease effect is the uneven ground) then you are no longer flat-footed. If you have failed to completely cross it you remain flat-footed until next turn.

Of course, this is if you take James Jacobs at his opinion but this corresponds with my own opinion of how things run.

- Gauss


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Gauss wrote:

** spoiler omitted **

Well there you go: if you cross the uneven ground completely (ie: grease effect if we assume the grease effect is the uneven ground) then you are no longer flat-footed. If you have failed to completely cross it you remain flat-footed until next turn.

Of course, this is if you take James Jacobs at his opinion but this corresponds with my own opinion of how things run.

- Gauss

So say we all.

Thank you Gauss and James.

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder RPG / Rules Questions / Ranged touch on prone target 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.