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Alternative Flurry Mechanic


Suggestions/House Rules/Homebrew

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

One of the big problems - mechanically speaking - of monks is that they are given two-weapon-fighting for free; and then are left alone to fend for themselves with nothing else to differentiate themselves. Other combat classes get either conditional (sneak attack, favored enemy) or limited use (smite, rage) or just plain flat bonuses (weapon training, access to fighter-only feats).

By my reckoning, "something" interesting should happen to allow the monk to distinguish himself in a combat setting. I've previously put together a new flurry mechanic that is designed to create new options for a monk (refer to the blog post) - but in this post I want to suggest an alternative flurry mechanic that is more combat orientated and suitable for monks in their current form (rather than a complete monk rewrite).

Quote:

Flurry of Blows

Starting at 1st level, a monk can make a flurry of blows as a full-attack action. When performing a flurry of blows, if the monk successfully hits a foe he may make one additional attack at his highest base attack bonus. For the purpose of a flurry of blows, the monk’s base attack bonus from his monk class levels is equal to his monk level. For all other purposes, such as qualifying for a feat or a prestige class, the monk uses his normal base attack bonus.

At 8th level, when performing a flurry of blows a monk who successfully hits with two attacks (including attacks granted by the flurry of blows class feature) is granted an additional attack at his highest base attack bonus.

At 15th level, when performing a flurry of blows a monk who successfully hits with three attacks (including attacks granted by the flurry of blows class feature) is granted an additional attack at his highest base attack bonus.

A monk may substitute disarm, sunder, and trip combat maneuvers for unarmed attacks as part of a flurry of blows. A monk cannot use any weapon other than an unarmed strike or a special monk weapon as part of a flurry of blows. A monk with natural weapons cannot use such weapons as part of a flurry of blows, nor can he make natural attacks in addition to his flurry of blows attacks.

A monk may spend 1 ki point to initiate a flurry of blows as a standard action. Unlike a flurry of blows performed as a full-attack action, a monk that initiates a flurry of blows as a standard action does not get iterative attacks, just a single attack - however he does benefit from using his monk level as his base attack bonus, and if his attack is successful he gains additional attacks as normal for the flurry of blows ability. This allows the monk to make up to four attacks as a standard action at level 15, provided that at least the first three attacks successfully hit.

Two-weapon fighting has been removed out of the flurry of blows class feature. However, they are still compatible: a monk that so chooses could take the two-weapon fighting feats the usual way and thus gain more attacks with which to trigger bonus attacks from the flurry of blows class feature.

The provision to use a flurry of blows as a standard action using ki additionally goes quite some way to allow the strengths of the monk class to merge: high mobility and many attacks.


i think i like this. it cuts out the whole second BAB table. it is simple, and does not require much of an explanation as to how it mixes with multi-classing. quite elegant really. is it fair?...

the last paragraph has some funny wording. maybe redundant. how about:

"A monk may spend 1 ki point to initiate a flurry of blows as a standard action. If he does, the only extra attacks he may make are those gained from the flurry of blows ability"

would adding the ability to combo this with spring attack, vital strike, charge, and other single-attack options and feats break it?

lastly, add a capstone that says something like "if all flurry of blows hit, the opponent is automatically reduced to 0 HP" - i am reminded of a combo sequence finisher a la fighter video games etc...

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

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

I realize that such a fundamental change goes hand-in-hand with the need to examine the power level. I've created 4 different monk builds and programmed a simulation to establish their expected DPR vs 24 AC. The first 3 builds emphasize high DPR and use unarmed TWF, unarmed without-TWF, and weapon respectively. The final build is unarmed without any feat selection - just vanilla with some generic items.

Unarmed, TWF-build alternative flurry; emphasizing DPR:

str 15 + 2 racial + 1 level + 4 item
dex 14 + 1 level + 2 item
con 14
int 10
wis 14
cha 8

level 1 - toughness, dragon style, dodge
level 2 - combat reflexes
level 3 - two-weapon fighting
level 4 -
level 5 - weapon focus (unarmed)
level 6 - deflect arrows
level 7 - dragon ferocity
level 8 -
level 9 - improved-two weapon fighting
level 10 - medusa's wrath

attack (flurry) 16/16/11/11
10 monk + 6 str + 1 feat + 1 magic - 2 TWF

damage 17
2d6 + 6 str + 3 dragon + 1 magic

equipment (42000 spent): +1 amulet of mighty fists (5000), monk's robe (13000), belt of strength +4 (16000), dex +2 ioun stone (8000)

DPR vs AC 24: 59
DPR vs AC 24: 71.5 (with ki)

Unarmed, non-TWF-build alternative flurry; emphasizing DPR:

str 16 + 2 racial + 2 level + 4 item
dex 14
con 14
int 10
wis 14
cha 8

level 1 - toughness, dragon style, dodge
level 2 - combat reflexes
level 3 - mobility
level 4 -
level 5 - weapon focus (unarmed)
level 6 - deflect arrows
level 7 - dragon ferocity
level 8 -
level 9 - spring attack
level 10 - medusa's wrath

attack (flurry) 19/14
10 monk + 7 str + 1 feat + 1 magic

damage 18
2d6 + 7 str + 3 dragon + 1 magic

equipment (42000 spent): +1 amulet of mighty fists (5000), monk's robe (13000), belt of strength +4 (16000)

DPR vs AC 24: 52
DPR vs AC 24: 70 (with ki)

Weapon wielder, non-TWF-build alternative flurry; emphasizing DPR:

str 16 + 2 racial + 2 level + 4 item
dex 14
con 14
int 10
wis 14
cha 8

level 1 - toughness, blind-fight, dodge
level 2 - combat reflexes
level 3 - mobility
level 4 -
level 5 - weapon focus (temple sword)
level 6 - deflect arrows
level 7 - step-up
level 8 -
level 9 - spring attack
level 10 - medusa's wrath

attack (flurry) 21/16
10 monk + 7 str + 1 feat + 3 magic

damage 14.5
1d8 + 7 str + 3 magic

equipment (34000 spent): +3 temple sword (18000ish), belt of strength +4 (16000)

DPR vs AC 24: 52
DPR vs AC 24: 67.5 (with ki)

Unarmed, not emphasizing DPR:

str 14 + 2 racial + 2 level + 2 item
dex 14 + 2 item
con 14 + 2 item
int 10
wis 14 + 2 item
cha 10

level 1 - ?, ?, ?
level 2 - ?
level 3 - ?
level 4 -
level 5 - ?
level 6 - ?
level 7 - ?
level 8 -
level 9 - ?
level 10 - ?

attack (flurry) 18/13
10 monk + 6 str + 1 feat + 1 magic

damage 14
2d6 + 6 str + 1 magic

equipment (38000 spent): +1 amulet of mighty fists (5000), monk's robe (13000), belt of perfection + 2 (16000), headband of wisdom +2 (4000)

DPR vs AC 24: 29
DPR vs AC 24: 41.5 (with ki)

...

Personally I find the mundane non-DPR monk the most compelling. This is a monk that anybody could make and he still contributes meaningfully in the DPR. Not a big hitter by a long shot, but compared to a similar vanilla monk with the traditional flurry, this one is a good stretch forward.

Another nice finding is that although TWF does help - the payout is so small that I do not think it is generally worth investing the feats and resources to make it happen.

Another pleasant finding: going unarmed, with a weapon, or multi-wielding - for the monk these are all roughly equally good.

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
rainzax wrote:
would adding the ability to combo this with spring attack, vital strike, charge, and other single-attack options and feats break it?

Adding it to Spring Attack is something I'd encourage, similar for charge - but on Vital Strike it becomes a problem. On the one hand it would make Vital Strike super attractive for monks - but on the other hand, the feat is not intended to give extraordinary damage potential.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

So the monk is on constant 3/4 BAB, is still MAD, and still behind on enhancement. Sorry, but the chance of landing those initial blows are not good. I'd have to crunch some numbers, but I think this will result in less attacks and less hits rather than more.

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dabbler wrote:
So the monk is on constant 3/4 BAB, is still MAD, and still behind on enhancement. Sorry, but the chance of landing those initial blows are not good. I'd have to crunch some numbers, but I think this will result in less attacks and less hits rather than more.

You're mistaken about 3/4 BAB:

Quote:
Starting at 1st level, a monk can make a flurry of blows as a full-attack action. When performing a flurry of blows, if the monk successfully hits a foe he may make one additional attack at his highest base attack bonus. For the purpose of a flurry of blows, the monk’s base attack bonus from his monk class levels is equal to his monk level. For all other purposes, such as qualifying for a feat or a prestige class, the monk uses his normal base attack bonus.

So he's on full BAB when flurrying.

I'm only presenting an alternative to flurry, not a complete remake of the monk. Various enhancements are superfluous for the description of the alternative flurry mechanic.

Fortunately I've already run some numbers (see post 3 in the thread), and the results are favorable to monks. The reason is that unlike the old flurry, the alternative does not require a -2 to attacks - it acts purely on full-BAB which is a form of covert +2 bonus to attacks.

Take the unarmed monk (non-TWF) build that I've posted. 52 DPR without using ki (or other buffs). At 18 damage a hit, that implies about 3 (52/18) attacks hit on average. Not bad for a monk that has an unmodified attack of +7/+3 at level 10. Now using ki increases the average hit count to about 4 (70/18) - the number of hits actually went up exactly by 1. This implies that the alternative flurry mechanic of conditional extra attacks balances out exactly in such a way that on average if you get an extra attack at level 10, then on average it will hit.

Keep in mind that although the monk gets nominally less attacks (unless you specifically build a TWF monk) - all the extra attacks are granted at full-BAB, so at level 10 you have an effective flurry attack sequence of +10/(+10)/(+10)/+5. The bracketed attacks being conditional on some attacks hitting. And you can still use ki to add an extra +10 attack into the sequence.

So yes, it doesn't address MAD directly - and it doesn't grant the monk additional bonuses to attack (other than the covert +2). However, it does significantly increase the monk's DPR - and that indirectly impacts MAD: since you don't need to try so hard to get passable DPR, you can spread your stats a little more MAD-friendly.


are you using core monk damage to do your calculations?

have you considered calculations where the monk does gain enhancement bonus (ascending +1 to strike and damage) at 4/8/12/16/20 or 3/7/11/15/19? (like, instead of core damage going up, it is fixed, such as at 1d6 or 1d8, then 'goes up' in the form of enhancement)

i am considering adopting your Flurry because it is so elegant. something like:

Spoiler:

Monk

1... Open Hand Combat (1d4), Flurry of Blows, Stunning Fist
2... Ki Pool, Monk Secret, Martial Arts Style Feat
3... Ki Strike +1, Fast Movement
4... Monk Secret, Evasion
5... Open Hand Combat (1d6)
6... Monk Secret, Martial Arts Style Feat
7... Ki Strike +2
8... Monk Secret, Improved Evasion
9... Open Hand Combat (1d8)
10.. Advanced Secrets, Monk Secret, Martial Arts Style Feat
11.. Ki Strike +3
12.. Monk Secret
13.. Open Hand Combat (1d10)
14.. Monk Secret, Martial Arts Style Feat
15.. Ki Strike +4
16.. Monk Secret
17.. Open Hand Combat (1d12)
18.. Monk Secret, Martial Arts Style Feat
19.. Ki Strike +5
20.. Monk Secret, Ki Enlightenment

where the other abilities are explained here, Open Hand Combat grows slowly in damage (from d4 to d12), but dropping my alternate BAB table, dropping Monastic Weapons Training (as your Flurry addresses the issue), and just giving them standard 3/4 BAB plus your Flurry of Blows...

whats cool here is this might approximate the 1E monk who first has the mechanical viability to fight with weapons at earlier levels, slowly eschewing them as their power grows because soon their unarmed attacks do greater damage...


language proposal:

Flurry of Blows

A monk using unarmed strikes and/or monk weapons strikes with lightning speed and accuracy, and can make a flurry of blows as a full-attack action, using his monk level in place of his base attack bonus. If one of his attacks hits this round, he rolls damage as normal, and may immediately make an additional attack against a foe within reach at full bonus.

At 8th level, when performing a flurry of blows, a monk who successfully hits with two attacks this round is granted a second additional attack at full bonus.

At 15th level, when performing a flurry of blows, a monk who successfully hits with three attacks this round is granted a third additional attack at full bonus.

A monk who is using weapons that are not monk weapons may not perform a flurry of blows, and must use his regular base attack bonus. A monk may make special attack actions, such as disarm, sunder, and trip combat maneuvers, as part of a flurry of blows.

At Xth level, a monk may spend 1 ki point to initiate a flurry of blows as a standard action, or as part of an attack action that allows a single attack. If this attack hits, he is granted any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability, as normal. This is an exception to the rule that a character may only make multiple attacks as part of a full-round action.

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

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

The alternate language proposal is perfectly fine. But I'm wary of allowing the flurry on Vital Strike, unless the wording ensures the additional attacks are not also Vital Strikes. Additionally, Spring Attack, is not captured by the wording as it uses a full-round action that grants a melee attack. Finally, if allowing standard action attacks, it would be great to see Cleave and Great Cleave also benefit.


last paragraph "as part of an attack action" could be taken as standard or full action, no?

Vital Strike is unambiguously worded "When you use the attack action, you can make one attack at your highest base attack bonus that deals additional damage...", so that shouldn't be a problem.

what sentence/s in the proposed language change precludes Cleave?

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

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

Well this bit: "or as part of an attack action that allows a single attack". Cleave doesn't allow a single attack, depending on how you read it at least. It definitely grants a single attack, but also a conditional secondary (or even more) attacks.


Cleave similarly begins "As a standard action, you can make a single attack at your full base attack bonus against a foe within reach..." so i think that shouldn't be a problem either.

maybe adding one word for extra signification in the sentence:

"At Xth level, a monk may spend 1 ki point to initiate a flurry of blows as a standard action, or as part of a special attack action that allows a single attack. If this attack hits, he is granted any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability, as normal. This is an exception to the rule that a character may only make multiple attacks as part of a full-round action."

lastly,
at this point it seems it will also combo with Whirlwind Attack. i think that is fair. am i mistaken?


rainzax wrote:

Cleave similarly begins "As a standard action, you can make a single attack at your full base attack bonus against a foe within reach..." so i think that shouldn't be a problem either.

maybe adding one word for extra signification in the sentence:

"At Xth level, a monk may spend 1 ki point to initiate a flurry of blows as a standard action, or as part of a special attack action that allows a single attack. If this attack hits, he is granted any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability, as normal. This is an exception to the rule that a character may only make multiple attacks as part of a full-round action."

lastly,
at this point it seems it will also combo with Whirlwind Attack. i think that is fair. am i mistaken?

What about a monk striking during an AoO? I don't think a monk should be able to flurry on someone elses turn.

*Monks Turn-Dishes out Damage on par with other full BAB Characters
*Evil Char Turn-occurs AoO. Fighter Hits with Falchion only once with decent damage, Monk on other hand flurries for alot of damage again.

I am ignoring feats that would make fighter hit harder/better as similar things can be applied to monk.

The overall feel of this mechanic is nice. I just feel like there are with this wording certain ways to take this over the extreme. Just my opinion. Keep it up! I love changes like this.


@Kjeldor - nice catch. yea that would be unfair. how about:

Alternate Flurry of Blows

Spoiler:

A monk fighting unarmed and/or using monk weapons strikes with lightning speed and accuracy, and can make a flurry of blows as a full-attack action, using his monk level in place of his base attack bonus. If one of his attacks hits this round, he rolls damage as normal, and may immediately make an additional attack against a foe within reach at full bonus.

At 8th level, when performing a flurry of blows, a monk who successfully hits with two attacks this round is granted a second additional attack at full bonus.

At 15th level, when performing a flurry of blows, a monk who successfully hits with three attacks this round is granted a third additional attack at full bonus.

A monk who is using weapons that are not monk weapons may not perform a flurry of blows, and must use his regular base attack bonus. A monk may make special attack actions, such as disarm, sunder, and trip combat maneuvers, as part of a flurry of blows.

At Xth level, on his turn, a monk may spend 1 ki point to initiate a flurry of blows as a standard action or as part of a special attack action that allows a single attack. If this attack hits, he is granted any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability, as normal. This is an exception to the rule that a character may only make multiple attacks as part of a full-round action.

(i added "on his turn" into last paragraph)

then again, to gain the Flurry on an Attack of Opportunity (AoA), he would have to spend his Ki. it isn't free...

the control would be hard to word. how do we move this (1-pt) 'fast flurry' into the 'swift economy'? saying "as a swift action as part of a standard action..." sounds totally wonky...

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

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

I don't think the wording allows that anyway. An AOO is not an attack action or a standard attack. The wording would be:

"At Xth level, a monk may spend 1 ki point as part of a standard action or attack action that allows at least one attack (such as Vital Strike, Charge, Spring Attack and Cleave). If this attack hits, he is granted any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability, as normal. This is an exception to the rule that a character may only make multiple attacks as part of a full-round action."


Balancing Furry of Blows to compensate for the extra attack--a full extra attack at first level would be too much--not by giving a -2 to the attack rolls but by making the extra attack conditional is elegant. The -2 is a major handicap to the monk class, because it prevented the monk from every getting full benefit from the full BAB during Flurry of Blows.

I crunched some numbers to see how well it works.

Suppose a 5th level monk with a +2 Strength bonus to hit attacks a foe with AC 18. He does not get iterated attacks yet. His one main attack has a 50% chance of hitting. Thus, he has a 50% chance of qualifying for the extra flurry attack. Given a 50% chance of hitting with that extra flurry attack, the probability of the monk getting an extra hit from Flurry of Blows is 25%. That is the same chance as if the monk had a guaranteed extra attack at a -5 penalty.

Next we put the monk against a foe with AC 20. He has a 40% chance to hit with his main attack. That gives him a 40% chance of having a flurry attack and a 40% chance of hitting with that flurry attack, so the probability of the monk getting an extra hit from Flurry of Blows is 16%. That is close to the chance of a guaranteed extra attack at a -5 penalty.

Against a foe with AC 22, the monk has a 30% chance to hit. That gives him a 30% chance of having a flurry attack and a 30% chance of hitting with that flurry attack, so the probability of the monk getting an extra hit from Flurry of Blows is 9%. That is close to the chance of a guaranteed extra attack at a -4 penalty.

Against a foe with AC 24, the monk has a 20% chance to hit. That gives him a 20% chance of having a flurry attack and a 30% chance of hitting with that flurry attack, so the probability of the monk getting an extra hit from Flurry of Blows is 4%. That is close to the chance of a guaranteed extra attack at a -3 penalty. Except that hitting on a natural 20 only, the limit of all penalties, is 5%. Thus, the effect is the same as a -4 or -5 penalty.

Your alternative Flurry of Blows ability on a 5th level monk is much like receiving a guaranteed extra attack at a -4 penalty to hit.

The math gets tougher for a monk with iterated attacks. A 6th level monk with a 50% chance of hitting on his first main attack has a probability of 62.5% of receiving an extra flurry attack and a probability of 31.25% of receiving and hitting with that flurry attack (-4 penalty). At a 40% chance of hitting on his first main attack, the flurry hit becomes 19.6% (still a -4 penalty). At a 30% chance of hitting on his first main attack, the flurry hit becomes 10.05% (still a -4 penalty).

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

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

Thank you Mathmuse - that is a refreshing way to look at the maths; most of my maths focused on the difference in expected DPR vs the classic flurry. The maths is manageable before level 7; but once the 8th level potential 2nd flurry attack arrives, the numbers get a little out of control. It is much easier to simply write a simulation (which I did) to get an estimate at the average damage.

There are various things not immediately captured by the math in general though: given the conditional flurry mechanic, there are several ways to capitalize on it - for example a trip build; it is relatively easy to get large bonuses to a particular maneuver (several items and feats help along) - and trip would constitute a successful attack for the purpose of conditional flurry attacks. In conjunction with AOOs generated it can give excellent attack frequency.

Similarly, any effects (spells, items, feats) that give a boost to a single attack (such as true strike and Inexplicable Luck) have knock-on effects when used with this flurry.


i have recently noticed two things.

at 1st level, your monk may make up to two attacks (before feats)
at 8th level, this suddenly jumps to four attacks
at 15th level, to six attacks

this uneven progression bothers me some.

the other observation, in light of Mathmuse's maths, is that subsequent flurry attacks, being conditional, drop at a curved rate in hitting-probability, whereas regular iterative attacks drop at a constant rate (25%) in hitting probability.
this means that although it is theoretically possible to hit with all your bonus flurry attacks, the further they are from the first, the less of a factor they play in overall DPR.

(i am still teaching myself DPR calculations, and so i am not yet skilled enough to back up my claims with anything but conjecture at this point)

this means to me that the difference between having, say, 3 additional/conditional flurry attacks is not too far behind having, say, 4 or 5, again, because those last two contribute very little to overall DPR compared to the first three.

thus from a design perspective, if one wanted to space out the extra attacks more evenly, being liberal with the distribution wouldn't necessarily skyrocket the DR needlessly.

so, i am having an idea about how to do this. immutable are the iterative attacks gained at 8th and 15th from standard 3/4 BAB. so, rather than flurry attacks doubling up at 1/8/15, options could include an extra flurry attack being granted at either 1/6/11/16 or 1/5/9/13/17. the first spread would conform to the core monk (these are when he gains extra core-flurry attacks), the second spread would conform to the 'dead BAB' levels of 3/4 BAB (an idea that appeals to me)...

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

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

I don't think there are sudden jumps, keep in mind that you're using the monk's level for BAB. Showing guaranteed attacks, and conditional attacks in brackets, and remeber option for ki attack from level 4 onwards:

2 level 1 - +1/(+1)
2 level 2 - +2/(+2)
2 level 3 - +3/(+3)
2 level 4 - +4/(+4)
2 level 5 - +5/(+5)
3 level 6 - +6/+1/(+6)
3 level 7 - +7/+2/(+7)
4 level 8 - +8/+3/(+8)/(+8)
4 level 9 - +9/+4/(+9)/(+9)
4 level 0 - +10/+5/(+10)/(+10)
5 level 1 - +11/+6/+1/(+11)/(+11)
5 level 2 - +12/+7/+2/(+12)/(+12)


LoreKeeper wrote:

"At Xth level, a monk may spend 1 ki point as part of a standard action or attack action that allows at least one attack (such as Vital Strike, Charge, Spring Attack and Cleave). If this attack hits, he is granted any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability, as normal. This is an exception to the rule that a character may only make multiple attacks as part of a full-round action."

this wording is ambiguous about the monk using his monk level in place of his BAB, as the flurry isn't mentioned until after the attack is made.

i am assuming this is not intentional.

how about:

"At Xth level, a monk may spend 1 Ki point to initiate a flurry of blows as a standard action or in conjunction with an attack action that allows at least one attack. If this attack hits, he is granted any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability, as normal. This is an exception to the rule that a character may only make multiple attacks as part of a full-round action."

though, i am still not satisfied with this wording as it does not a) preclude opportunity attacks and b) take it's place in the swift economy - which it should. but, i would loathe to say "as a swift action" and "as a standard action" in the same sentence. it'd be like "what?!?"...

can i get away with saying "a monk may swiftly spend 1 Ki..."? i think not! aaahh!

edit:
ooh how about this:

"A monk may expend 1 Ki point as a swift action to initiate a flurry of blows in conjunction with any attack action that allows at least one attack. Any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability are granted, as normal. This is an exception to the rule that a character who can make more than one attack per round must use the full-attack action in order to get more than one attack."

if you like you can add your tacky "(such as Vital Strike, Charge, Spring Attack and Cleave)" parenthesis lol!

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

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

I'm very much a fan of being explicit, to help prevent misunderstanding and interpretations down the road. I would suggest:

Quote:
A monk may spend 1 ki as a swift action to initiate a flurry of blows as part of any standard action or full-round action that allows at least one melee attack. Any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability are granted as normal, and the monk may use his monk level as BAB for this action. This allows the monk to apply his flurry of blows ability to actions such as charging, using any maneuvers, Vital Strike, Spring Attack, Cleave, and so forth.

The cave-at "one melee attack" is to somewhat circumvent spellcasters using their touch attack spells in conjunction with a flurry.

I exclude the "exception to the rule" bit, as there are other ways that grant multiple attacks on a standard action that do not call that out explicitly (e.g. Cleave).


(one last ki-lango tweek, order-of-operations tweek, acronym tweek, alpabetize tweek):

A monk may spend 1 point from his ki pool as a swift action to initiate a flurry of blows as part of any standard action or full-round action that allows at least one melee attack. The monk may use his monk level in place of his base attack bonus and is granted any additional attacks from the flurry of blows ability, as normal. This allows the monk to apply his flurry of blows ability to actions such as charging, combat maneuvers, or feats such as Cleave, Spring Attack, Vital Strike, and so forth.

Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

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

Perhaps also add another cave-at:

Additional attacks granted by the flurry of blows are ordinary attacks and do not benefit from any modifiers that are specific to the action that is used to trigger them. No enhanced damage dice from Vital Strike, no bonus to hit from charging, and so forth. Penalties still apply normally though.

Perhaps somebody can figure out an alternate way to present this?


LoreKeeper!

my friend and i are running some preliminary numbers. from here, it is looking as if the Alternate Flurry combined with Full Enhancement, Modest Unarmed Damage Progression, and at Maximized Feat Selection will exceed the Desired Specs. as we are not in an organizational space to present our full mathematics yet on the forum, it is looking like that if we want to hold all these aspects constant (as i do), the 'free play' would be in reeling in the 2nd and 3rd conditional flurry attacks to -5 and -10 respectively (rather than at full bonus). we presume that this might fix the output without touching the flavor.

we expect to run and present our numbers with this last change in mind over the coming weeks. cheers.

Spoiler:

Full Enhancement: +1 strike and damage at 3/7/11/15/19 or 4/8/12/16/20
Modest Unarmed Damage Progression: d4/d6/d8/d10/d12 at 1/5/9/13/17
Maximized Feat Selection: pending teaching ourselves the munchkin arts... certainly includes Weapon Focus, Style/Critical feats, Hammer The Gap... suggested builds from forum members supplied here would be greatly appreciated for levels 1/5/10/15/20...
Desired Specs: near parity with other martial classes. any numbers from other forum members supplied here would also be greatly appreciated...


Zax Alternative Flurry

Quote:

Flurry of Blows

A monk striking unarmed or with monk weapons can make attack combinations with incredible speed. He may activate this ability at any point during his full attack. Doing so is a swift action. The effects of the flurry of blows are as follows:

At 1st level, he may resolve one additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach.

At 6th level, he may resolve one additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach. If this additional attack succeeds, he may resolve a second additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach.

At 11th level, he may resolve one additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach. If this additional attack succeeds, he may resolve a second additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach. If this second additional attack succeeds, he may resolve a third additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach.

At 16th level, he may resolve one additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach. If this additional attack succeeds, he may resolve a second additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach. If this second additional attack succeeds, he may resolve a third additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach. If this third additional attack succeeds, he may resolve a fourth additional attack at full bonus against any foe within reach.

Ki Flurry

At 4th level, a monk may activate his flurry of blows ability as part of a special attack action. Doing so is a swift action that consumes 1 point from his ki pool. Special attack actions include standard or full round actions such as a charge or a readied attack, attacking during a grapple, even aiding an ally, or those attacks granted by feats like Cleave, Spring Attack, Vital Strike, and Whirlwind Attack. A monk may take the additional flurry attacks at any point during the action.

i have removed the 'virtual BAB'.
i feel that a class either ought to have full BAB, or it oughtn't. no 3/4 for this but full for that. one table.
as it has been said, a virtual full BAB is a lot like a full BAB anyhow except with respect to making opportunity attacks and qualifying for feats.
honestly, if you are going to design a class with 3/4 BAB, give it Weapon Training every 4 levels, plus extra iterative attacks here and there, why not just go ahead and give it full BAB?...

some of what i have changed here is subtle.
i have kept the contingencies self-contained. that is, the additional flurry attacks are granted based only upon previous flurry attacks hitting. (not any attack hitting, per Lorekeeper's original)
and so, in also making it a swift action, it can be more easily combined with different kinds of strategic actions. such as Aid or Ready.
i feel this change does even more to live up to the monk's Intro and Role, while still establishing itself as a unique and fun mechanic:

Spoiler:
Monk
For the truly exemplary, martial skill transcends the battlefield—it is a lifestyle, a doctrine, a state of mind. These warrior-artists search out methods of battle beyond swords and shields, finding weapons within themselves just as capable of crippling or killing as any blade. These monks (so called since they adhere to ancient philosophies and strict martial disciplines) elevate their bodies to become weapons of war, from battle-minded ascetics to self-taught brawlers. Monks tread the path of discipline, and those with the will to endure that path discover within themselves not what they are, but what they are meant to be.

Role: Monks excel at overcoming even the most daunting perils, striking where it's least expected, and taking advantage of enemy vulnerabilities. Fleet of foot and skilled in combat, monks can navigate any battlefield with ease, aiding allies wherever they are needed most.

(my opinion on monks)

anyway, i intend to use it on my upcoming monk revision once i crunch some numbers. (did i say 'weeks' in my previous posts? i meant 'months')

if it proves too generous in DPR, i was considering restricting flurry attacks (only) from making critical confirmations. since it is more insular now, it would be a matter of adding a single sentence to the language.

anyway, feedback appreciated, cheers!

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