Pathfinder Player Companion: Ranged Tactics Toolbox (PFRPG)

3.70/5 (based on 7 ratings)
Pathfinder Player Companion: Ranged Tactics Toolbox (PFRPG)
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Command the battlefield from afar with Ranged Tactics Toolbox! The fresh new tips, tricks, and tactics in this volume enable your Pathfinder RPG character to perform a huge variety of daring deeds from a distance—whether you’re launching fearsome warning shots at distant foes, hurling axes that swirl with cyclonic energy, or shooting your bow while clinging to a rope with your legs.

Ranged Tactics Toolbox is a player-focused manual that makes the most of your ranged weapons, spells, and abilities, in addition to providing a plethora of new rules options to make you even more formidable in combat. Each Pathfinder Player Companion includes new options and tools for every Pathfinder RPG player. Inside this book, you’ll find:

  • Tips on how best to fight in ranged combat, including suggestions for specific rules options that can give you the edge as well as tactics available to all characters.
  • Dozens of new magic ranged weapons, weapon special abilities, ammunition, and wondrous items to fling at your foes or protect you from distant attackers.
  • Over 20 new feats to bolster your combat prowess at range, including combat, teamwork, and metamagic feats.
  • An illustrated guide that provides terminology for various parts of iconic ranged weapons such as bows, crossbows, and pistols.
  • Tons of new spells, equipment, weapon types, character options such as magus arcana and ranger traps, and much, much more!

This Pathfinder Player Companion is intended for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and the Pathfinder campaign setting, but can easily be incorporated into any fantasy world.

Each monthly 32-page Pathfinder Player Companion contains several player-focused articles exploring the volume’s theme as well as short articles with innovative new rules for all types of characters, as well as traits to better anchor the player to the campaign.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-705-5

Other Resources: This product is also available on the following platforms:

Hero Lab Online
Fantasy Grounds Virtual Tabletop
Archives of Nethys

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Player Companion Subscription.

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Average product rating:

3.70/5 (based on 7 ratings)

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Decent book, but little that stands out

3/5

Read my full review on Of Dice and Pen.

On the whole, Ranged Tactics Toolbox is a decent book and there are some things in it that I rather like. However, I don't think those things are memorable enough to draw me back to the book when I'm designing new characters, even ones that specialise in ranged combat. There's just so much else out there, more than any one person can possibly keep track of. As a result, even the good stuff gets lost.


Truly a Useful Toolbox.

5/5

This toolbox goes beyond the use of the bow and crossbow, it is useful for other kinds of ranged weapons as well. This book gives new feats, skills, tactics, spells, and equipment to make the use of ranged weapons better. Since most of characters I play use ranged weapons, I have found this Toolbox to be invaluable.


verry solid, plus a great "new paizo" touch

4/5

This is a solid work of the expected items, feats archetypes, etc. But just as an example of how the "new" paizo seems to think of everything, there is even a table where they have gone through all of the Summon Monster spells, and made a list of stuff you can summon that has ranged attacks. Brilliant, would not have thought of that in 100 years!


Sorry, kinda meh...

3/5

Not a terribly inspired book on ideas for characters focused on Ranged weapons. There really isn't anything particularly new or interesting here, I'm afraid. It's particularly lacking on local flavor... nope, everyone uses bows. Apparently there aren't any places or ethnic groups with specific focus in specific ranged weapons beyond what we already knew (halflings like slings, Desna worshipers use the star knife).

If you're new to Pathfinder, you might find this useful. If you already have a large library of Pathfinder books, not so much.


Great for some ranged types, not so much for others

2/5

I felt like this product had a lot of great stuff for bows and throwing stuff. Unfortunately, I felt like bows were the one type that didn't really need much more. There was nearly nothing for gunslingers, aside from a few magic items, and some feats that could apply to them, but weren't specifically for them, but no archetypes or new guns. Same thing with crossbows. They have a lot of potential, but this book gives nothing to them, aside from a couple of situationally good uses, the same general feats and magic items. I just felt like there was a lot of missed potential here.


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Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Cyrad wrote:
Anything about the magus arcana?

Spoiler:

Magus Arcana:
Dark Shifter - 1 point, move action, change the target of an ongoing spell with the darkness descriptor.
Pool Ray - 1 point, standard action, infuse a ranged weapon with elemental power that can be discharged to deal 1d6 elemental damage on a single attack.
Ranger Trap - Learn a Ranger trap.
Reach Magic - Cast 1 spell/day as though it's modified by the Reach Spell feat.
Throwing Magus - 1 additional point, add returning to a weapon already enhanced with Arcane Pool.

-Skeld

Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Raef13 wrote:
Skeld I just wanna say thanks. We are bothering you a lot on this one and I just wanted to show appreciation for what you are doing.

You're welcome. I got my PDFs earlier than most people, so I'm happy to share what's inside. I try to do it in such a way that there are still some surprises and details waiting for people when they get their copies (in other words, I avoid copying/pasting text whole-cloth).

-Skeld


Any new cleric spells and other stuff for the cleric?


Skeld wrote:
Axial wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

** spoiler omitted **

-Skeld

spoiler:
I take it you can't use it as a positive energy lazer to heal party members?
.

Axial wrote:
Skeld wrote:
Axial wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

** spoiler omitted **

-Skeld

** spoiler omitted **.

Spoiler:
Actually, it seems you can. It mentions needing an attack to hit an unwilling target and not needing an attack to hit a willing target.

Skeld, would it be too specific to ask what stats the kunai has, and if the Pool Ray arcana for magus is a ranged Pool Strike? I'm hoping it scales, at least as Pool Strike does...

Shadow Lodge

Hey can you give us any more about the stonebow?

Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
xavier c wrote:
Any new cleric spells and other stuff for the cleric?

There don't appear to be any Cleric spells. (i had previously posted the spell up-thread.)

I don't see anything else specifically for Clerics, although the Channel Ray feat discussed up-thread is Channel-centric.

-Skeld

Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Axial wrote:
Skeld wrote:
Axial wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

** spoiler omitted **

-Skeld

** spoiler omitted **.

Spoiler:

The spell explicitly lays out how to handle willing and unwilling targets, so yes.

-Skeld

Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Ashram wrote:
Skeld, would it be too specific to ask what stats the kunai has, and if the Pool Ray arcana for magus is a ranged Pool Strike? I'm hoping it scales, at least as Pool Strike does...

Spoiler:

Kunai: 1d4 20/x2, B/P, 10' range. Can be used as a crowbar.

Pool Ray - Only works on ranged weapons. The damage does scale by +1d6 for every 3 levels.

-Skeld

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
doc the grey wrote:
Hey can you give us any more about the stonebow?

Yup.

Spoiler:

Stonebow: 1d6 20/x2, B, 50' range.

-Skeld

Scarab Sages

Kunai: Crafted from a single piece of iron, a kunai has a
leaf-shaped blade and a ring for a pommel. Adapted from
the common trowel, the kunai has a thick blade that is
sharpened only near the tip. Unlike finer weapons, the
kunai can readily substitute for a crowbar or piton without
being damaged in the process.

Simple Weapon 1d4 /x2 B or P damage. Range 10 ft

Stonebow: A stonebow, or bullet crossbow, resembles
a light crossbow except for the distinct U-shaped bend
in the stock. Instead of bolts, the stonebow shoots sling
bullets. The bow has two strings with a leather pocket
between them to hold the bullet. Loading a stonebow is
a move action (a free action if you have the Rapid Reload
feat) that provokes attacks of opportunity.
You can shoot ordinary stones with a stonebow, but
stones aren’t as dense or as round as bullets. When using
stones, you take a –1 penalty on attack rolls and deal
damage as if the weapon were designed for a creature one
size category smaller than you.
You can shoot, but not load, a stonebow with one hand,
but doing so imposes a –2 penalty on your attack rolls.
You can shoot a stonebow with each hand, but you take
a penalty on attack rolls as if attacking with two light
weapons. This penalty is cumulative with the penalty for
firing one-handed

Simple Weapon 1d6 /x2 B damage. Range 50 ft


Skeld wrote:
Axial wrote:
Skeld wrote:
Axial wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

** spoiler omitted **

-Skeld

** spoiler omitted **.

** spoiler omitted **

-Skeld

Wow. Seems like normal Cure spells will be going out of style. :)


Alexander Augunas wrote:
This is an awesome, awesome player companion. Believe it or not, but rogues (specifically the underground chemist archetype) get a LOT of love here.

One of the reviews said there's a rogue talent to gain alchemist bombs? Any other rogue talents? (I suppose it would be too perfect to get a way to flank or otherwise get consistent sneak attack damage at range..)

Scarab Sages

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Sharkles wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:
This is an awesome, awesome player companion. Believe it or not, but rogues (specifically the underground chemist archetype) get a LOT of love here.
One of the reviews said there's a rogue talent to gain alchemist bombs? Any other rogue talents? (I suppose it would be too perfect to get a way to flank or otherwise get consistent sneak attack damage at range..)

There are three rogue talents in the book. One is Bomber, that lets you make a limted number of alchemist bombs per day that do the same damage as your sneak attack.

The second is bomber discovery, that lets you take an alchemist discovery that modifies bombs.

The third is highly situational and allows you to make a stealth check at a penalty to hide as an immediate action when you use evasion to avoid damage.


Imbicatus wrote:

There are three rogue talents in the book. One is Bomber, that lets you make a limted number of alchemist bombs per day that do the same damage as your sneak attack.

The second is bomber discovery, that lets you take an alchemist discovery that modifies bombs.

The third is highly situational and allows you to make a stealth check at a penalty to hide as an immediate action when you use evasion to avoid damage.

This alone makes me want to get a book that I was previously going to pass on.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Skeld wrote:
DM_Kumo Gekkou wrote:
Dylos wrote:
Just downloaded my copy and oh my God that bowstring. I may have to build an archer skald now.
What bowstring?

** spoiler omitted **

-Skeld

Spoiler:
To be specific, you can maintain Bardic Performance without expending a round whenever you shoot an arrow. COmbined with retraining Lingering Performance into Harmonic Spell, my Archaeologist archer need almost never expend more than one round of performance a combat.
Grand Lodge

Hey Skeld, I'm playing a switch-hitting Bolt Ace (crossbow gunslinger) anything in this book that makes it a must have for me?

ie: can you go into some detail about Crossbow things.

Grand Lodge

How much does that bowstring cost?!

Grand Lodge

Imbicatus wrote:


Stonebow: A stonebow, or bullet crossbow, resembles
a light crossbow except for the distinct U-shaped bend
in the stock. Instead of bolts, the stonebow shoots sling
bullets. The bow has two strings with a leather pocket
between them to hold the bullet. Loading a stonebow is
a move action (a free action if you have the Rapid Reload
feat) that provokes attacks of opportunity.
You can shoot ordinary stones with a stonebow, but
stones aren’t as dense or as round as bullets. When using
stones, you take a –1 penalty on attack rolls and deal
damage as if the weapon were designed for a creature one
size category smaller than you.
You can shoot, but not load, a stonebow with one hand,
but doing so imposes a –2 penalty on your attack rolls.
You can shoot a stonebow with each hand, but you take
a penalty on attack rolls as if attacking with two light
weapons. This penalty is cumulative with the penalty for
firing one-handed

Simple Weapon 1d6 /x2 B damage. Range 50 ft

So is the stonebow considered a crossbow for bolt ace abilities?

Scarab Sages

London Duke wrote:
How much does that bowstring cost?!

18,000 GP. It's pricey, but worth every copper.

Scarab Sages

London Duke wrote:


So is the stonebow considered a crossbow for bolt ace abilities?

No weapon groups are included in the book, so expect table variation. I would say yes since the description calls it a bullet crossbow, and it's still a simple weapon, but some GMs are more strict on if it's not listed in the group, then no bonuses apply.


Does the "illustrated guide" provide anything useful (i.e. game mechanics) or does it just take up two pages like in the other player's guides?

Scarab Sages

A Mite Excessive wrote:
Does the "illustrated guide" provide anything useful (i.e. game mechanics) or does it just take up two pages like in the other player's guides?

No mechanics, just art detailing various ranged weapons and the components of them.


Revan wrote:
Skeld wrote:
DM_Kumo Gekkou wrote:
Dylos wrote:
Just downloaded my copy and oh my God that bowstring. I may have to build an archer skald now.
What bowstring?

That bowstring reminds me of an exotic weapon flail found in the "More Malcontent" PDF from TPK Games that allows you to play out musical tunes while using it as a weapon in battle. I like the idea, especially when combined with the new Skald class. Just think, now I can play a berserk half-orc knocking out a spritely tune while busily cavong in the skulls of his enemies/critics.

And silly question, but together with the bardic bowstring, are there any new Masterpieces for bards that can aid in ranged combat?

Contributor

London Duke wrote:
So is the stonebow considered a crossbow for bolt ace abilities?

Yes. The stonebow is in the crossbows weapons group.


Aw. The PDF was listed as available tomorrow now it shows November 24th. *fist shake* Dangit, Paizo! Aw, who am I kidding. I can't stay mad at you. I'll wait.


What happened to the PDF release date? Why did it get pushed back to Monday? I was really hoping to have it in time for my game next week...

Shadow Lodge

What does the crank crossbow actually get?


The crank crossbows are less new weapons than variations on older weapons to add non-weapon utility. You can use either to make grapple CMB checks at range, or to loose a rope & piton so you can winch yourself up or across...

Scarab Sages

Irnk, Dead-Eye's Prodigal wrote:
The crank crossbows are less new weapons than variations on older weapons to add non-weapon utility. You can use either to make grapple CMB checks at range, or to loose a rope & piton so you can winch yourself up or across...

Actually, you can't make grapple checks at range with it. It gives the crossbow the grapple weapon quality, which only allows you to make a limited grapple check on a critical hit with the weapon.

PRD wrote:

Grapple: On a successful critical hit with a weapon of this type, you can attempt a combat maneuver check to grapple your opponent as a free action. This grapple attempt does not provoke an attack of opportunity from the creature you are attempting to grapple if that creature is not threatening you. While you grapple the creature using a grappling weapon, you can only move or damage the creature on your turn. You are still considered grappled, though you do not have to be adjacent to the creature to continue the grapple. If you move far enough away that the creature you're grappling is no longer within the weapon's reach, you end the grapple with that action.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

Grapple. Isn't that some kind of breakfast food?

Shadow Lodge

Imbicatus wrote:
Irnk, Dead-Eye's Prodigal wrote:
The crank crossbows are less new weapons than variations on older weapons to add non-weapon utility. You can use either to make grapple CMB checks at range, or to loose a rope & piton so you can winch yourself up or across...

Actually, you can't make grapple checks at range with it. It gives the crossbow the grapple weapon quality, which only allows you to make a limited grapple check on a critical hit with the weapon.

PRD wrote:

Grapple: On a successful critical hit with a weapon of this type, you can attempt a combat maneuver check to grapple your opponent as a free action. This grapple attempt does not provoke an attack of opportunity from the creature you are attempting to grapple if that creature is not threatening you. While you grapple the creature using a grappling weapon, you can only move or damage the creature on your turn. You are still considered grappled, though you do not have to be adjacent to the creature to continue the grapple. If you move far enough away that the creature you're grappling is no longer within the weapon's reach, you end the grapple with that action.

So what it is just a crossbow with the grapple quality and made exotic?

Scarab Sages

doc the grey wrote:

So what it is just a crossbow with the grapple quality and made exotic?

It has a winch with 50 ft (heavy) or 30 ft (light) of rope attached to it. You can attach the rope to a barbed bolt to either harpoon foes or a grappling bolt to use a batman style grappling hook to climb or zip line.

Shadow Lodge

But you can do both of those things with a standard crossbow and either grappling bolts our the aforementioned barbed bolt.

Scarab Sages

It also grants a +2 bonus to associated checks. Here is the full text of the item:

Spoiler:
Crank Crossbow, Heavy: This heavy crossbow has a
winch mounted below the stock. Up to 50 feet of silk rope
can be wound onto the winch as a full-round action that
provokes attacks of opportunity. The wound rope can be
attached to a barbed bolt (see New Ammunition on page
19) or grappling bolt UE as part of a loading action. After
firing such a bolt, the wielder can use the winch to retract
the rope or pull herself along the rope if the bolt is secure.
When used with a barbed bolt, the winch provides a +2
bonus on grapple combat maneuver checks to pull the
target toward you. When used with a grappling bolt UE, the
winch provides a +2 bonus on Climb checks.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber
bishop083 wrote:
What happened to the PDF release date? Why did it get pushed back to Monday? I was really hoping to have it in time for my game next week...

Probably delayed due to warehouse backlog from the Golem Sale last month, and issues with getting a new minis set shipped.

They've had issues in the past where PDFs go on sale before every subscriber gets their PDFs, resulting in understandably annoyed subscribers. (We don't get our PDFs unlocked until the warehouse crew ships our individual packages.)

The least bad option they have is delay PDF general release until after all subscriber orders go out. Want your PDFs faster? Then subscribe!


Oh boy! I can't begin to tell you how much ranged characters need more options and more power, given that ranged damage is definitely not the most absurdly high damage per round available to any character, and that highly-optimized archers are definitely not capable of full attacking every round with nearly auto-hit accuracy while ignoring all forms of cover and concealment.

Yessiree, archers are very weak and definitely need the power boost this book is sure to bring. >_>


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Game Master wrote:
most absurdly high damage per round available to any character,

As long as we ignore certain melee builds which can pretty easily outstrip archery...

Game Master wrote:
and that highly-optimized archers are definitely not capable of full attacking every round

And your DM never, ever utilizes enemies that are capable of hampering you

Game Master wrote:
with nearly auto-hit accuracy

And again, your DM never utilizes the myriad ways available to reduce or outright shut down archery

Game Master wrote:
while ignoring all forms of cover and concealment.

Which of course won't be possible until later levels and we ignore all those previous levels where we *couldn't* ignore either one.

Game Master wrote:
Yessiree, archers are very weak and definitely need the power boost this book is sure to bring. >_>

Indeed, this book should have been all about bringing archery down a notch or four... because everyone would have bought *that* book. Or were/are you hoping for a "lore of the long forgotten rogue" book or perhaps an "anti-magic tactics for low wis fighters" book instead?

After all, extreme hyperbole is always the best way to deliver any sort of message on the internet.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

Was it me, I'd release the pdfs to subscribers no earlier than the date their order is spawned, and no later than the date they're released to the general public. But I don't know the ins and outs, so there's probably something about the process that I'm overlooking. Aside from the possibility that the order might be cancelled before the hard copies are actually shipped, which I suppose makes a difference. Although I suppose the subs could include a provision that if you do that after the pdf is released you pay full price for the pdf. :-)


Am I the only one who found the Ring of Far Strike kind of pointless?


Wasn't ranged disarm from the start of 3.0?

Robin Hood campaign.

Scarab Sages

Axial wrote:
Am I the only one who found the Ring of Far Strike kind of pointless?

Nope. It's short range, poor action economy and one a day use makes it not worth the cost of the item.


Could i please get the rule text for the volley fire feat from someone. I am kinda interrested in that one.

Scarab Sages

Raef13 wrote:
Could i please get the rule text for the volley fire feat from someone. I am kinda interrested in that one.

Volley Fire

Spoiler:
Volley Fire (Combat, Teamwork)
You have trained to work in ranks of archers to rain
arrows down upon your foes.
Prerequisite: Point-Blank Shot.

Benefit: You gain a +1 bonus on ranged attack rolls for
each ally with this feat who made a ranged attack since
the end of your last turn against a target within 15 feet
of your target, to a maximum of +4. These allies don’t
provide cover against your attacks.


Thank you Imbicatus.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
DM Under The Bridge wrote:

Wasn't ranged disarm from the start of 3.0?

Robin Hood campaign.

It was and then they added them into 3.5 Complete Warrior book later on. Ranged Disarm was in it, it allowed you to pick ONE ranged weapon you were proficient in and you can make disarm attacks with it as long as you were within 30 ft. (it can be taken multiple times to include other ranged weapons to use).

Ranged Pin was in it, allowed you to give the target the grappled condition and needing to make checks to break free from the hold, this can be done at any distance.

Ranged Sunder was in it, allowing you to deal full instead of half damage with ranged attacks on objects using a bludgeon or slashing ranged weapon; with piercing weapons you can deal objects damage but at half damage before applying hardness. Also needed to be within 30 ft.


Ah, ranged pin, good times.


ok, so I have worked up a gunslinger bolt ace, who at 20th level, using nothing but feats can make 9 shots with hand crossbows. these shots are +20 to damage as well. that's a potential 180 damage before damage dice are rolled. so with the new Splitting Bolt, is that now a potential 540 damage before damage dice?

Or did I just break the game?


I'm actually rather excited about this, particularly for Rogues. Between the new Talents in this & Orator and Esoteric Linguist from the Advanced Class Guide, I can finally make that smart-ass pyromaniac Rogue I never knew I wanted to play before.

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