Bullet Points: 7 Feats for Sword and Board Fighting (PFRPG) PDF

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Sometimes rules supplements read like the world-setting bible of frustrated novelists. Although solid world-building is a useful skill, you don’t always need four paragraphs of flavor text to tell you swords are cool, magic is power, shadows are scary, and orcs are savage. Sometimes a GM doesn’t have time to slog through a page of history for every magic weapon. Sometimes all that’s needed are a few cool ideas, with just enough information to use them in a game. Sometimes, all you need are bullet points.

#1 With A Bullet Point is a line of very short, cheap PDFs, and each one gives the bare bones of a set of related options. It might be five spells, six feats, eight magic weapon special abilities, or any other short set of related rules we can cram into about a page. Short and simple, these PDFs are for GMs and players who know how to integrate new ideas into their campaigns without any hand holding—they just need fresh ideas and the rules to support them. No in-character fiction setting the game world. No charts and tables. No sidebars of explanations and optional rules. Just one sentence of explanation for the High Concept of the PDF, then bullet points.

The High Concept: Feats to make the otherwise fairly dull choice of fighting with a shield in one hand and a 1-handed weapon in the other more interesting.

The feats included in this PDF are:

  • Bashing Critical (Combat, Critical)
  • Knock Aside (Combat)
  • Guarded Attack (Combat)
  • Shield Check (Combat)
  • Shielded Maneuvers (Combat)
  • Shielded Rider (Combat)
  • Shielded Spellcasting (Combat)

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Average product rating:

4.00/5 (based on 4 ratings)

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Great work

4/5

Who doesn't like a good sword-and-board fighter? If you don't, then you won't like this. However, if you are like me and you think that sword-and-board fighters are awesome, then you should pick this up. It adds to the awesomeness that is sword-and-board. Guarded Attack is probably the best of the bunch but Shielded Rider and Shielded Check can see a lot of use too.


Good feats that lack the spark of brilliance

4/5

This pdf is 3 pages long, 1 page front cover/introduction, 1 page SRD and 1 page content, delivering 7 new feats centered on sword and shield fighting, so let's check them out!

-Bashing Critical: When equipped with one-handed weapon and shield, you may initiate a shield bash maneuver when scoring a critical hit.

-Knock aside: Sacrifice you shield bonus as part of an attack for one round to gain +2 to atk against a foe you attack.

-Guarded Attack: You may sacrifice one or all your attacks to gain a +1 bonus to shield bonus per attack you sacrifice. If you at least sacrifice one attack, you are immune against a foe's gaze attack until next round.

-Shield Check: When an opponent provokes an attack of opportunity from you, you can make a combat maneuver and attack the foe to shield bash that foe and prevent his movement this round as well as deal shield bash damage.

-Shielded Maneuvers: +2 to CMBs with bull rushes, disarm, overrun and trip when using a shield.

-Shielded Rider: When riding while wearing a shield, he gets +4 to ride-checks to negate attacks.
-Shielded Spellcasting: Cast while wearing a shield, but get 1 bonus less from the shield-ac-bonus.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any glitches. Layout adheres to SGG's 3-column-standard and the pdf has no bookmarks, but at this length, the pdf needs none. While the product value of this pdf is beyond questioning and Guarded Attack is awesome to speed up high-level play, I felt nevertheless rather disappointed by this pdf. Seeing how great the idea of guarded attack is, I nevertheless feel like it could have been expanded via more feats, as I doubt the usability of the minor AC-bonuses - a greater variant of the feat would help here. Additionally, most of the feats felt like good ideas, but didn't truly wow me. Taking a look at my other reviews from the BP-line, I'll settle for a final verdict of 4 stars due to wanting more awesome feats, but finding no true problems.

Endzeitgeist out.


Good Additions to a common archetype

4/5

The sword & board warrior is a fairly common concept, so this short product offers some options toward a character style that should see some actual in-game use.

As stated in the product name, there are in total seven feats on one page, with a cover page and a page reserved for the Open Game License.

While I will say that the mechanics are solid and nothing struck me as overpowered nor underpowered, I left feeling slightly underwhelmed, as I was hoping for something a bit more inspiring. Some of the feats requiring "all martial weapon proficiencies" was also slightly off-putting, as it can limit class options, even if the feat would fit the character concept.

I was, however, impressed with the concept of Guarded Attack, which allows you to trade attacks for increased armor. The reason for this is that those later iterative attacks are made with such hefty penalties that sometimes, it makes more sense to gain a bonus to armor instead of hoping for a 1-in-20 chance of actually hitting, although the bonus to the AC could have been a bit better without being too strong.

All-in-all, a solid product that adds decent options.


Solid but could have been better.

4/5

Bullet Points: 7 Feats for Sword and Board Fighting by Super Genius Games

This product is 3 pages long. It starts with a intro. (1 page)

7 Feats for Sword and Board Fighting (1 page)
7 new feats to use with a sword and shield fighting combo.
Bashing Critical – When you score a crit with your weapon you can make a shield bash as a swift action.
Knock Aside – Gain a bonus to hit while giving up the shield bonus for a turn.
Guarded Attack – Instead of making all your attacks you can forgo some to gain a AC bonus.
Shield Check – If a enemy tries to move past you, instead of a AoO. You can make a combat maneuver check and force them to stop moving.
Shielded Maneuvers – gain a bonus to several combat maneuvers.
Shielded Rider – gain a bonus on ride check to negate attacks against your mount.
Shielded Spellcasting – lost partial shield bonus to be able to use the shield hand for somatic spell component.

It ends with a OGL and credits. (1 page)

Closing thoughts. The art work is black and white, and is ok. Editing and layout was good. I liked Bashing Critical, Knock Aside, Shield Check. Shielded Casting was ok but not what comes to mine for a fighting style. Shielded Maneuvers and Shielded Riders are ok but they just give bonuses so nothing special. Guarded Attack I liked but I don't think it is worth it. For ever attack from a full attack action you give up, you only gain a +1 AC. I just don't see that being worth it, if it was a +2 then maybe. Another feat I was hoping for and maybe we can get a follow up product is. I will call it Shield Step, where you use your shield to force march someone backwards while engaged in combat. You see it in a lot of movies most recently in 300 and before that in Troy. Where while fighting in a line formation after the first charge one side starts to slowly force the other side back. So what's my rating? I am going to give this one a 4 star review, half was good, half was solid but nothing special and one I thought was weak.

Trust me, I'm a Succubus.


Scarab Sages

Going to carve more than a turkey this weekend? Pick up #1 With a Bullet Points: 7 Feats for Sword & Board Fighting.


Finally! A reason to use a shield!


Knock Aside: Should this instead be an Attack Action? That way it could be used with Vital Strike, and would be a bit more appealing.

Scarab Sages

Cheapy wrote:
Knock Aside: Should this instead be an Attack Action? That way it could be used with Vital Strike, and would be a bit more appealing.

Playtesting suggests that if Knock Aside and Vital Strike worked together, the combination would be a no-brainer. I want to err on the side of awesome, not create super-powered combinations. It's an easy change for GMs who want to give yet more oomph, but as the baseline I had to decide against it.


Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Knock Aside: Should this instead be an Attack Action? That way it could be used with Vital Strike, and would be a bit more appealing.
Playtesting suggests that if Knock Aside and Vital Strike worked together, the combination would be a no-brainer. I want to err on the side of awesome, not create super-powered combinations. It's an easy change for GMs who want to give yet more oomph, but as the baseline I had to decide against it.

I can see that being the case. It's a 2 feat investment (well, more like 4 feat, since you'd be eventually grabbing Greater VS), but it's like a charge...without the movement.

Here's a different version (not necessarily a better version!), which would probably be a bit more balanced than just switching "standard action" to "attack action".

Cheapy's Knock Aside:

Benefit: When you are equipped with a shield and a 1-handed or light weapon, as an attack action you can make a combat maneuver check against an enemy as a free action and make an attack following the combat maneuver check. You gain a bonus to the combat maneuver check equal to the shield bonus to AC that your equipped shield grants. If your combat maneuver check succeeds, you gain a +2 circumstance bonus on your attack roll. If you fail your combat maneuver check, you may still make your attack. You do not gain any AC bonus from your shield until the beginning of your next turn.

Pros:
* Can be used with Vital Strike!
* More dice rolled!
* Not guaranteed to get the bonus to hit, but if you fail, you still get the attack. This makes it still useful at high levels, when beating the CMD of a critter is quite hard.
* Uses the CM mechanics which were meant for stuff similar to this.

Cons:
* More dice rolled!
* Less elegant than the one in the PDF.
* Text is probably a bit confusing.
* Possibly errs a bit too much on the side of awesome.

Dark Archive

Reviewed.

Scarab Sages

Dark_Mistress wrote:
Reviewed.

Thanks for the review!


Reviewed here, on DTRPG and sent to GMS magazine. Cheers!

Scarab Sages

Thanks to jeremy.smith for his review!

Scarab Sages

Endzeitgeist wrote:
Reviewed here, on DTRPG and sent to GMS magazine. Cheers!

Thanks for the review!

Scarab Sages

I'd like to acknowledge General Dorsey's kind effort in taking time to give a critique of our humble pdf. :)

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