Concerns about Ultimate Combat


GM Discussion

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Silver Crusade

Having recently read through Ultimate Combat, I do have a few concerns for PFS play. The number one concern involves arcane bond and its potential usage with guns. A first level wizard could take gunsmithing and choose to bond with, say, a culverin, and start with 4,300 gp weapon. That is a rather painful advantage over anyone else in the party.

Additionally, as to guns in general: what is the logic in letting any class use guns as long as they take gunsmithing, but restricting the archetypes that use them? I have players who took a one level dip of gunslinger just to use a gun, and that was using the Beta version. If you don't want guns in Pathfinder Society, that is entirely ok. If you want guns in Society play, that is fine too. But this half-and-half measure is just puzzling. It doesn't make guns rare, or hard to get, it just makes it convoluted.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Hm. I see the issue here, as, between the language of Arcana Bond, Gunsmithing, and the Additional Resources page this is technically allowed. And it is a bit much, as even a gunslinger can't start with that.

I think the best solution is to remove firearms as potential arcane bonds. The potential for abuse is high, very very high (one level of wizard, the rest gunsligner, or rogue, or whatever). The RP utility is much lower, a few people might want wizards who tote guns for flavor, but they can do so without the arcane bond.

As for the second, issue, I'm less concerned about this. I see where you're coming from, but I don't think it's so much an issue of making guns rare as much as making characters who are very good at using guns rare. Other characters may invest feats to use a firearm, but mastery of the weapon will be harder to come by. That's my take on it, anyway.

Scarab Sages

Alexander_Damocles wrote:

Having recently read through Ultimate Combat, I do have a few concerns for PFS play. The number one concern involves arcane bond and its potential usage with guns. A first level wizard could take gunsmithing and choose to bond with, say, a culverin, and start with 4,300 gp weapon. That is a rather painful advantage over anyone else in the party.

I was confused as to this as well and put a previous link in a GM thread. I have seen this come up a couple of times over the last couple of days across the boards and apparently it is being looked at, but won't be in the faq for a while.

By RAW, it is absolutely fine, which means that this either needs sorting quick, so that we don't have loads of wizards who are put out by the sudden change of rules and thereby have to rethink there character, or it needs to be allowed for certain, in which case the whole arcane bond thing needs looking at!

P.S. I totally agree with the half-hearten approach to guns, specifically archetypes, that PFS has chosen. It just means that instead of taking the archetype, everyone will just dip a level into gunslinger, to get them the 3 feats they need, I know I am tempted!

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Just noticed here that Mark is aware of this and plans to FAQ it when he gets the chance.

Until then, if you see a player trying to do this, advise them that the rule may be changing soon and that it might be ill advised to build a character on a mechanic that (hopefully) will turn out to be a foundation of sand.

You can't stop them, but you can (and should) discourage them.

As for gunslinger dips, one-level dips for certain features are nothing new. I've not seen anything about firearms to indicate this is any worse than oracle dips for CHA to AC, etc. If people want to, I see no problem.

Scarab Sages

Alorha wrote:


As for gunslinger dips, one-level dips for certain features are nothing new. I've not seen anything about firearms to indicate this is any worse than oracle dips for CHA to AC, etc. If people want to, I see no problem.

I more meant that banning the archetypes just means that people will do this instead, thus making it a bit pointless to ban the archetypes...

It's good that it has been picked up quickly and will hopefully be sorted before too many people are put out by any changes, which probably should be put in place IMO. Even if it is not allowed I would not be put off making a character like this, it would just mean taking gunslinger 1st level, then taking Wizard second and making the battered gun my arcane bond then.

Silver Crusade

Professor Calaelen wrote:
Alorha wrote:


As for gunslinger dips, one-level dips for certain features are nothing new. I've not seen anything about firearms to indicate this is any worse than oracle dips for CHA to AC, etc. If people want to, I see no problem.

I more meant that banning the archetypes just means that people will do this instead, thus making it a bit pointless to ban the archetypes...

It's good that it has been picked up quickly and will hopefully be sorted before too many people are put out by any changes, which probably should be put in place IMO. Even if it is not allowed I would not be put off making a character like this, it would just mean taking gunslinger 1st level, then taking Wizard second and making the battered gun my arcane bond then.

Which results in (tada!) the equivalent of the Spellslinger archetype. I'm glad that it is being looked at for Pathfinder, but there are a plethora of other issues with guns. Ninja gunslinger using two double barrled pistols is a terrifying thing to behold. Vanishing trick, so now he is targeting flatfooted touch, aka 10. Even with the total of a -6 per shot, thats four attacks at a ranged touch. Its easy to stack that to a +11 (bab of +3, +5 dex, weapon focus, +2 from invisibility) to hit at fourth level (gunsligner 1/ninja 3), so, thats hitting on a 5 and up for four shots. 4d8 plus 8d6. Now, lets add a ki strike. 6d8 + 10d6. That is, on average, 62 points of damage. And that is nigh unstoppable damage, as well.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Which results in (tada!) the equivalent of the Spellslinger archetype. I'm glad that it is being looked at for Pathfinder, but there are a plethora of other issues with guns. Ninja gunslinger using two double barrled pistols is a terrifying thing to behold. Vanishing trick, so now he is targeting flatfooted touch, aka 10. Even with the total of a -6 per shot, thats four attacks at a ranged touch. Its easy to stack that to a +11 (bab of +3, +5 dex, weapon focus, +2 from invisibility) to hit at fourth level (gunsligner 1/ninja 3), so, thats hitting on a 5 and up for four shots. 4d8 plus 8d6. Now, lets add a ki strike. 6d8 + 10d6. That is, on average, 62 points of damage. And that is nigh unstoppable damage, as well.

Only one of those shots would get sneak attack, as invisibility breaks with the first attack rolled. The following round would be interesting, as reload becomes a problem.

Also, between two-weapon fighting, point blank and precise, this is a pretty heavily feat taxed character. Oh, can't forget rapid reload. Even with rapid reload, two-fisting guns doesn't make for easy reloading. Also a this is fairly heavily gold taxed character, beyond feat taxing. Not to mention the risk of the guns exploding.

I remain unconcerned by this. Theoretical gunslinger issues got tossed around quite a bit during the playtest, but anyone running the numbers seemed to find the reality didn't match the fears. The free 4k gun is a bit much, and I think that should be excluded. The gunsliger/ninja is fine. Any character that's only good every other round strikes me as a poor player decision.

Now once a ninja has greater invis (at 10 ninja, so with this build, a level 11 character) the damage does get up there, but a vanilla alchemist can be just as dangerous, if not worse, and he needs fewer feats to do so.

Silver Crusade

I did not realize that invisibility only grants sneak attack dice on the first attack. I would think it would work until the end of the round in which you attack. Could you site a source for this, so that I can show this to my players?

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Alexander_Damocles wrote:
I did not realize that invisibility only grants sneak attack dice on the first attack. I would think it would work until the end of the round in which you attack. Could you site a source for this, so that I can show this to my players?

Certainly, glad to help!

Some confusion may result if you used Wizard's 3.5 ninja, as its ability to vanish is different than Paizo's ninja.

Unlike the invisibility of the ninja class in 3.5, which granted the invisible condition for a full round (but only lasted the one round), the Vanish trick from the Pathfinder ninja specifically says

Ultimate Combat wrote:
This ability functions as invisibility.

(Italics Paizo's)

Looking to the invisibility spell it says

PRD wrote:
The spell ends if the subject attacks any creature. For purposes of this spell, an attack includes any spell targeting a foe or whose area or effect includes a foe.

So any attack breaks the spell. Roll an attack, no more invisible.

Silver Crusade

Alorha wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
I did not realize that invisibility only grants sneak attack dice on the first attack. I would think it would work until the end of the round in which you attack. Could you site a source for this, so that I can show this to my players?

Certainly, glad to help!

Some confusion may result if you used Wizard's 3.5 ninja, as its ability to vanish is different than Paizo's ninja.

Unlike the invisibility of the ninja class in 3.5, which granted the invisible condition for a full round (but only lasted the one round), the Vanish trick from the Pathfinder ninja specifically says

Ultimate Combat wrote:
This ability functions as invisibility.

(Italics Paizo's)

Looking to the invisibility spell it says

PRD wrote:
The spell ends if the subject attacks any creature. For purposes of this spell, an attack includes any spell targeting a foe or whose area or effect includes a foe.
So any attack breaks the spell. Roll an attack, no more invisible.

Ahh, ok, I think I just understood our disconnect. I was interpreting attack to include a full round attack, not just the first in the sequence. Interesting.

Grand Lodge 4/5

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Ahh, ok, I think I just understood our disconnect. I was interpreting attack to include a full round attack, not just the first in the sequence. Interesting.

Common misconception that's been around since 3.0, but the rules have always been 1 sneak attack from invisibility, then your opponent is aware of you and no longer loses Dex bonus to AC.

5/5

Alexander_Damocles wrote:

Having recently read through Ultimate Combat, I do have a few concerns for PFS play. The number one concern involves arcane bond and its potential usage with guns. A first level wizard could take gunsmithing and choose to bond with, say, a culverin, and start with 4,300 gp weapon. That is a rather painful advantage over anyone else in the party.

Additionally, as to guns in general: what is the logic in letting any class use guns as long as they take gunsmithing, but restricting the archetypes that use them? I have players who took a one level dip of gunslinger just to use a gun, and that was using the Beta version. If you don't want guns in Pathfinder Society, that is entirely ok. If you want guns in Society play, that is fine too. But this half-and-half measure is just puzzling. It doesn't make guns rare, or hard to get, it just makes it convoluted.

I agree with you on all those points.

From my perspective (as a gamer) this is all about the hate firearms have gotten since the anouncement of the gunslinger class.
Since some players have been very vocal about their fears of what fireamrs would do to the PFS campaign, the developers and campaign management have tried to walk the fone line between allowing firearms into the game and keeping them rare enough that they would not become common place.
Thus a lot of compromises have been made. One being the absurdly high prize of firearms, which leed to this apparent advantage for wizards with bound firearms. Culerines are probably the gravest example. It is good for fireing once at the start of a fight and then being dropped. Other firearms, while having a hi cost really do not afford that big an advantage.
The banning of firearm related archetypes and the black powder inquisition do not make much sense from a game balance perspective, but serve to reduce the chance that players will want to use fire arms.
As it is right now I am happy at least that we get to use all early firearms. If gunslingers had been restricted to using regular pistols and muskets as before the gunslinger class would have been very unatractive.

Silver Crusade

Thorkull wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Ahh, ok, I think I just understood our disconnect. I was interpreting attack to include a full round attack, not just the first in the sequence. Interesting.
Common misconception that's been around since 3.0, but the rules have always been 1 sneak attack from invisibility, then your opponent is aware of you and no longer loses Dex bonus to AC.

I checked with my venture captain last night, and he said that its a full round before they can begin to dodge and thus get their dex bonus back. Now I've got rulings going both ways here.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Thorkull wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Ahh, ok, I think I just understood our disconnect. I was interpreting attack to include a full round attack, not just the first in the sequence. Interesting.
Common misconception that's been around since 3.0, but the rules have always been 1 sneak attack from invisibility, then your opponent is aware of you and no longer loses Dex bonus to AC.
I checked with my venture captain last night, and he said that its a full round before they can begin to dodge and thus get their dex bonus back. Now I've got rulings going both ways here.

Which venture captain? That's certainly a ruling that I've never seen at a table. Invisibility, as stated in the spell, vanishes after an attack. You only deny DEX while you benefit from invisibility.

I think whichever VC has made this ruling is confused. (S)he may think that invisibility renders a foe flat footed, and so that condition lasts until the foe acts. Invisibility does not render a foe flat footed, though, it denies dexterity bonus to AC, which is similar but not identical to being flat-footed.

The discussion going on about the stealth rewrite on the blog sheds some light on this. Even there, attacking breaks the condition immediately. Only one attack gains the benefit.

Silver Crusade

Alorha wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Thorkull wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Ahh, ok, I think I just understood our disconnect. I was interpreting attack to include a full round attack, not just the first in the sequence. Interesting.
Common misconception that's been around since 3.0, but the rules have always been 1 sneak attack from invisibility, then your opponent is aware of you and no longer loses Dex bonus to AC.
I checked with my venture captain last night, and he said that its a full round before they can begin to dodge and thus get their dex bonus back. Now I've got rulings going both ways here.

Which venture captain? That's certainly a ruling that I've never seen at a table. Invisibility, as stated in the spell, vanishes after an attack. You only deny DEX while you benefit from invisibility.

I think whichever VC has made this ruling is confused. (S)he may think that invisibility renders a foe flat footed, and so that condition lasts until the foe acts. Invisibility does not render a foe flat footed, though, it denies dexterity bonus to AC, which is similar but not identical to being flat-footed.

The discussion going on about the stealth rewrite on the blog sheds some light on this. Even there, attacking breaks the condition immediately. Only one attack gains the benefit.

It's Azymuth, responsible for PFS Northern California. I'll run it the way the VC wants, until I see otherwise.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Alexander_Damocles wrote:
It's Azymuth, responsible for PFS Northern California. I'll run it the way the VC wants, until I see otherwise.

That's a fair position to take, regarding a VC's statement. Don't know 'em personally, so I've no insight as to why he'd feel that way.

Still I stand by my reading and reasoning of the rule. Maybe point Azymuth to this thread so he can explain his reading. That might help.

It'd be best if we could avoid a West Coast/East Coast divide on something like this.

The Exchange

Alorha is right. Sneak attacking while invisible only goes on the first attack roll you make. If you miss it, well there goes your sneak attack too. It is a common mistake (I made this a number of times back in 3.5), but a mistake you can [and should] correct easily.

/I could also tell you this is how my VC runs it, but that's a moot point in matters of Pathfinder mechanics.


Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Alorha wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Thorkull wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Ahh, ok, I think I just understood our disconnect. I was interpreting attack to include a full round attack, not just the first in the sequence. Interesting.
Common misconception that's been around since 3.0, but the rules have always been 1 sneak attack from invisibility, then your opponent is aware of you and no longer loses Dex bonus to AC.
I checked with my venture captain last night, and he said that its a full round before they can begin to dodge and thus get their dex bonus back. Now I've got rulings going both ways here.

Which venture captain? That's certainly a ruling that I've never seen at a table. Invisibility, as stated in the spell, vanishes after an attack. You only deny DEX while you benefit from invisibility.

I think whichever VC has made this ruling is confused. (S)he may think that invisibility renders a foe flat footed, and so that condition lasts until the foe acts. Invisibility does not render a foe flat footed, though, it denies dexterity bonus to AC, which is similar but not identical to being flat-footed.

The discussion going on about the stealth rewrite on the blog sheds some light on this. Even there, attacking breaks the condition immediately. Only one attack gains the benefit.

It's Azymuth, responsible for PFS Northern California. I'll run it the way the VC wants, until I see otherwise.

I think your VC might be in error.

The rules for the spell "Invisibility" state that:

prd wrote:
If the subject attacks directly, however, it immediately becomes visible along with all its gear.

A "Full Attack" is a full-round action that allows you to make multiple attacks if your Base Attack Bonus is high enough. The first of those attacks though will break the invisibility spell.

There is no text anywhere specifying any delay in regaining one's dexterity bonus (not dodge) to AC.

If you cannot see your attacker, you are denied your dexterity bonus to AC. If you can see your attacker, you are not denied your dexterity bonus to AC.

It would be my suggestion that you ask him for specific rules text supporting his assertion. In many cases, what people think are the rules are really house rules that have become ingrained in their consciousness to the point where they "feel" like the official rules.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Generally, I agree with the sentiment that you only get one sneak attack when attacking from invisibility.

However, it is a fair and understandable ruling, to state that the invidual being attacked by the invisible attacker, would be flat footed to the invisible attacker once the invisible attacker attacks and is no longer visible.

This creates layers of complication within a single combat though.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Andrew Christian wrote:

Generally, I agree with the sentiment that you only get one sneak attack when attacking from invisibility.

However, it is a fair and understandable ruling, to state that the invidual being attacked by the invisible attacker, would be flat footed to the invisible attacker once the invisible attacker attacks and is no longer visible.

This creates layers of complication within a single combat though.

Not quite. Invisibility does not render a target flat footed, the target simply cannot add DEX or dodge bonuses to AC. Flat footed is that and more. There are only a few things that actually render a target flat footed. Invisibility is not one of those things.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Alorha wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:

Generally, I agree with the sentiment that you only get one sneak attack when attacking from invisibility.

However, it is a fair and understandable ruling, to state that the invidual being attacked by the invisible attacker, would be flat footed to the invisible attacker once the invisible attacker attacks and is no longer visible.

This creates layers of complication within a single combat though.

Not quite. Invisibility does not render a target flat footed, the target simply cannot add DEX or dodge bonuses to AC. Flat footed is that and more. There are only a few things that actually render a target flat footed. Invisibility is not one of those things.

That isn’t what I said. I never once said that invisibility renders anyone flat footed.

What I did say, was that it is logical to assume that someone suddenly noticing someone coming out of invisibility might be flat footed.

You’d give them a perception check or something such.

Indeed, if an ambush were set up, and the ambushers got surprise because they were invisible, and then won the initiative in round 1, and they were high enough level to get 3 attacks, they would get 4 sneak attacks. One for the surprise round in which the enemy was flat footed, and 3 for round 1 for the same reason. And invisibility triggered the flat footedness, even though it did not directly cause it.

And if a GM wants to deal with complexities and layers upon layers of surprise vs flat footed vs regular combat, vs. whatever… then it is logical to assume that the person being attacked by someone who was invisible, might be considered flat footed against the once invisible attacker until the next time they get to act.


Don't forget that some characters are only going to get a single strike with that full attack. The rules have to apply to all characters, not just to TWF multi-attack characters.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Andrew Christian wrote:


That isn’t what I said. I never once said that invisibility renders anyone flat footed.

What I did say, was that it is logical to assume that someone suddenly noticing someone coming out of invisibility might be flat footed.

Only if the defender had not acted that round. Invisibility is covered in the rules as denying dex. Not treating a defender as flat-footed. If it were the latter, it'd be there.

Now if there's a surprise round and the defender hadn't acted, of course they'd be flat footed, but not because of invisibility, because they hadn't acted.

PRD Conditions wrote:
Invisible: Invisible creatures are visually undetectable. An invisible creature gains a +2 bonus on attack rolls against sighted opponents, and ignores its opponents' Dexterity bonuses to AC (if any). See Invisibility, under Special Abilities.

Further

Invisibility (Spell):
School illusion (glamer); Level bard 2, sorcerer/wizard 2

Casting Time 1 standard action

Components V, S, M/DF (an eyelash encased in gum arabic)

Range personal or touch

Target you or a creature or object weighing no more than 100 lbs./level

Duration 1 min./level (D)

Saving Throw Will negates (harmless) or Will negates (harmless, object); Spell Resistance yes (harmless) or yes (harmless, object)

The creature or object touched becomes invisible. If the recipient is a creature carrying gear, that vanishes, too. If you cast the spell on someone else, neither you nor your allies can see the subject, unless you can normally see invisible things or you employ magic to do so.

Items dropped or put down by an invisible creature become visible; items picked up disappear if tucked into the clothing or pouches worn by the creature. Light, however, never becomes invisible, although a source of light can become so (thus, the effect is that of a light with no visible source). Any part of an item that the subject carries but that extends more than 10 feet from it becomes visible.

Of course, the subject is not magically silenced, and certain other conditions can render the recipient detectable (such as swimming in water or stepping in a puddle). If a check is required, a stationary invisible creature has a +40 bonus on its Stealth checks. This bonus is reduced to +20 if the creature is moving. The spell ends if the subject attacks any creature. For purposes of this spell, an attack includes any spell targeting a foe or whose area or effect includes a foe. Exactly who is a foe depends on the invisible character's perceptions. Actions directed at unattended objects do not break the spell. Causing harm indirectly is not an attack. Thus, an invisible being can open doors, talk, eat, climb stairs, summon monsters and have them attack, cut the ropes holding a rope bridge while enemies are on the bridge, remotely trigger traps, open a portcullis to release attack dogs, and so forth. If the subject attacks directly, however, it immediately becomes visible along with all its gear. Spells such as bless that specifically affect allies but not foes are not attacks for this purpose, even when they include foes in their area.

Invisibility can be made permanent (on objects only) with a permanency spell.

You only benefit from the Invisible condition while under the effect of the Invisibility spell. The condition is what allows you to deny the defender's dex to AC. When you attack, the Invisibility spell ends. You no longer are under the Invisible condition. All subsequent attacks do not deny the defender his dexterity to AC.

Of course other conditions might, but invisibility itself only allows one attack to be a sneak attack. The defender not having acted, flanking, the defender being paralyzed, and countless other things might allow other attacks to gain sneak attack, but the Invisibility spell only aids the first attack.

[edit]Of course there are other ways to gain the condition. Improved Invisibility, etc, but for this discussion we only care about how that one second level spell affects a defender.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Enevhar Aldarion wrote:
Don't forget that some characters are only going to get a single strike with that full attack. The rules have to apply to all characters, not just to TWF multi-attack characters.

I don’t see how that applies. If something is possible because you have a high enough base attack bonus, you shouldn’t be denied doing it because someone with a lower base attack bonus doesn’t have enough attacks to do so.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Alorha wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:


That isn’t what I said. I never once said that invisibility renders anyone flat footed.

What I did say, was that it is logical to assume that someone suddenly noticing someone coming out of invisibility might be flat footed.

Only if the defender had not acted that round. Invisibility is covered in the rules as denying dex. Not treating a defender as flat-footed. If it were the latter, it'd be there.

Now if there's a surprise round and the defender hadn't acted, of course they'd be flat footed, but not because of invisibility, because they hadn't acted.

PRD Conditions wrote:
Invisible: Invisible creatures are visually undetectable. An invisible creature gains a +2 bonus on attack rolls against sighted opponents, and ignores its opponents' Dexterity bonuses to AC (if any). See Invisibility, under Special Abilities.

Further

** spoiler omitted **...

Um, I know all this.

And you still haven’t understood what I said.

I have never once said that invisibility renders a defender flat footed.

But because you are invisible, it may allow you to surprise your foe.

Then you go to the rules for surprise.

Some GM’s don’t immediately assume that surprise is impossible because combat has been enjoined. Therefore the act of attacking out of invisibility essentially creates a sub-set of surprise/combat within the original combat.

I don’t like creating unneeded complexity, so probably wouldn’t rule this way.

However, it is not outside of the rules, and it is not outside of logic to rule this way.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Andrew Christian wrote:

However, it is not outside of the rules, and it is not outside of logic to rule this way.

I actually disagree. I see where you're coming from, but this situation is actually outside the parameters of the flat footed condition.

PRD Flat-Footed wrote:
At the start of a battle, before you have had a chance to act (specifically, before your first regular turn in the initiative order), you are flat-footed. You can't use your Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) while flat-footed...

There are also some effects that can render you flat footed. Nothing else can.

I see the idea behind surprise, but even that's covered.

PRD Surprise wrote:
When a combat starts, if you are not aware of your opponents and they are aware of you, you're surprised.

It only happens at the start of combat. Any other ambush-type effect in the midst of an ongoing battle is handled by denying dex a la standard invisibility rules. There is no provision for making an opponent who has acted flat footed without an ability (feinting, stunning, etc) that expressly assigns that condition.

Flat-footed is a condition like any other. Merely being unaware of a threat does not grant it. It's about whether or not you've acted, and, to a lesser extent, whether or not someone has used an offensive ability to assign you that condition.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Alorha wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:

However, it is not outside of the rules, and it is not outside of logic to rule this way.

I actually disagree. I see where you're coming from, but this situation is actually outside the parameters of the flat footed condition.

PRD Flat-Footed wrote:
At the start of a battle, before you have had a chance to act (specifically, before your first regular turn in the initiative order), you are flat-footed. You can't use your Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) while flat-footed...

There are also some effects that can render you flat footed. Nothing else can.

I see the idea behind surprise, but even that's covered.

PRD Surprise wrote:
When a combat starts, if you are not aware of your opponents and they are aware of you, you're surprised.

It only happens at the start of combat. Any other ambush-type effect in the midst of an ongoing battle is handled by denying dex a la standard invisibility rules. There is no provision for making an opponent who has acted flat footed without an ability (feinting, stunning, etc) that expressly assigns that condition.

Flat-footed is a condition like any other. Merely being unaware of a threat does not grant it. It's about whether or not you've acted, and, to a lesser extent, whether or not someone has used an offensive ability to assign you that condition.

Agreed, and that’s why I stated it would essentially create a sub-battle under the main battle. It creates more layers of complexity than is necessary I my mind, but doing so is not really outside the rules.

The only thing is, you have to allow for the fact that just because someone is engaged in battle, does not mean they cannot be surprised by something they were not previously aware of. Thus surprised again, and a new battle inside the ongoing battle is enjoined. Perhaps even with its own sets of initiative.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Apologies. I made some mistakes. Stunning does not grant flat-footed. I could have sworn it did. Same with feinting. Now that I'm looking through things, the only express ability that comes to mind is the second level Flowing Monk ability Unbalancing Counter. There may be others, but I can't think of them right now.

But to your point, I think the rules as written do not allow for sub battles. As there's no PFS provision for such things, and they're out by RAW, then they're out.

If someone has acted, it doesn't matter how unexpected an attack, the defender is not flat footed. You don't set up two initiative tracks, etc. That would not only add complexity, it would have no basis in the rules. The rules specify the conditions based on acting or not. Pretty clear that if you've acted you're not flat footed.

I've yet to see anything in the surprise rules that remotely suggests this as a possibility.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Andrew, I'd also like to point out that surprise only allows a single action (ie not a full attack).

Alexander: You are absolutely right to follow the interpretations of your local co-ordinator. I disagree with that interpretation personally, but the confusion over stealth/invisibility is why we have the current rules blog.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
K Neil Shackleton wrote:

Andrew, I'd also like to point out that surprise only allows a single action (ie not a full attack).

Alexander: You are absolutely right to follow the interpretations of your local co-ordinator. I disagree with that interpretation personally, but the confusion over stealth/invisibility is why we have the current rules blog.

That is very true. However if you are surprised and then lose initiative in round 1, you would be considered flat footed until you actually get to take your turn.


The idea of a wizard / gunslinger multi-class does intrigue me. For 1 level of wizard dip you can get the most expensive gun in masterwork for free and the ability to modify it as if you had the appropriate craft skill. Plus some utility 0 and 1st level spells. Not a horrible dip at all.

Considering the price differential between normal weapons and guns, they probably should ban guns as an arcane bond.


Lab_Rat wrote:

The idea of a wizard / gunslinger multi-class does intrigue me. For 1 level of wizard dip you can get the most expensive gun in masterwork for free and the ability to modify it as if you had the appropriate craft skill. Plus some utility 0 and 1st level spells. Not a horrible dip at all.

Considering the price differential between normal weapons and guns, they probably should ban guns as an arcane bond.

No, the gun will not be masterwork til you pay 300 gold and use the Gunsmithing skill to upgrade it. And Mark has stated that he will be coming out with a ruling on whether a gun can also be an arcane bond.

Silver Crusade

Enevhar Aldarion wrote:
Lab_Rat wrote:

The idea of a wizard / gunslinger multi-class does intrigue me. For 1 level of wizard dip you can get the most expensive gun in masterwork for free and the ability to modify it as if you had the appropriate craft skill. Plus some utility 0 and 1st level spells. Not a horrible dip at all.

Considering the price differential between normal weapons and guns, they probably should ban guns as an arcane bond.

No, the gun will not be masterwork til you pay 300 gold and use the Gunsmithing skill to upgrade it. And Mark has stated that he will be coming out with a ruling on whether a gun can also be an arcane bond.

Actually, it would be masterwork. Using it as your arcane bond means you start with a masterwork version of the item, be it a ring, amulet, staff, or weapon.

Grand Lodge 5/5

Alexander_Damocles wrote:

Actually, it would be masterwork. Using it as your arcane bond means you start with a masterwork version of the item, be it a ring, amulet, staff, or weapon.

I'm against having a firearm be an arcane bond. The potential abuse is pretty high.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

Michael Brock wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:

Actually, it would be masterwork. Using it as your arcane bond means you start with a masterwork version of the item, be it a ring, amulet, staff, or weapon.

I'm against having a firearm be an arcane bond. The potential abuse is pretty high.

While I agree, it would be pretty amusing for the wizard's arcane bond gun to misfire twice and explode, leaving them without their arcane bonded item.


Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Enevhar Aldarion wrote:
Lab_Rat wrote:

The idea of a wizard / gunslinger multi-class does intrigue me. For 1 level of wizard dip you can get the most expensive gun in masterwork for free and the ability to modify it as if you had the appropriate craft skill. Plus some utility 0 and 1st level spells. Not a horrible dip at all.

Considering the price differential between normal weapons and guns, they probably should ban guns as an arcane bond.

No, the gun will not be masterwork til you pay 300 gold and use the Gunsmithing skill to upgrade it. And Mark has stated that he will be coming out with a ruling on whether a gun can also be an arcane bond.
Actually, it would be masterwork. Using it as your arcane bond means you start with a masterwork version of the item, be it a ring, amulet, staff, or weapon.

And Mark Moreland, the PFS head, has already posted that it would still have to be upgraded to masterwork before you can make it an arcane bond, if he even allows it to be bonded. You get the free gun for being a Gunslinger in PFS, not just for taking the Gunslinging feat, and since you get it as a Gunslinger, it follows those rules and it is not masterwork til you pay to upgrade it.

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Alaska—Anchorage aka Dragnmoon

Enevhar Aldarion wrote:


And Mark Moreland, the PFS head, has already posted that it would still have to be upgraded to masterwork before you can make it an arcane bond, if he even allows it to be bonded. You get the free gun for being a Gunslinger in PFS, not just for taking the Gunslinging feat, and since you get it as a Gunslinger, it follows those rules and it is not masterwork til you pay to upgrade it.

That is not what He said, The post you are talking about was the Gunsmithing Feat, and that Only the Gunslinger gets the free Weapon with the Feat not other classes. He was answering 2 diferent questions.

Mark Moreland wrote:
Enevhar Aldarion wrote:
There are a couple of other threads where the question of arcane bonding a firearm has been asked, but Mark Moreland has not given an answer yet. On a related topic, he did confirm that someone with the Gunslinging feat can upgrade their starting firearm from normal to masterwork for the standard 300 gold cost.

A gunslinger can use the Gunsmithing feat to upgrade her starting gun for the standard 300 gp cost, but other classes taking this feat don't get a free gun along with it, and thus need to either buy a masterwork version or a mundane version.

I've flagged this thread for FAQ review, but likely won't get to it until a few other things with hard deadlines get taken care of.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Enevhar Aldarion wrote:
And Mark Moreland, the PFS head, has already posted that it would still have to be upgraded to masterwork before you can make it an arcane bond, if he even allows it to be bonded. You get the free gun for being a Gunslinger in PFS, not just for taking the Gunslinging feat, and since you get it as a Gunslinger, it follows those rules and it is not masterwork til you pay to upgrade it.

Dragonmoon is right, further, the issue isn't about getting a gun from

gunsmithing, it's about getting a gun from Arcane Bond. That ability expressly gives you a masterwork version of your chosen item for free.

If you choose some of the more expensive guns, you've just gotten a free 4,300 item.

That's what's at issue, and what I and some others don't feel should be allowed.


Is anyone concerned over the feat from Ultimate Combat Clustered Shots?

It effectively lets Archers bypass DR from 6th level. And its not like archery needed help, its already hands down the best way to do damage.

I wouldn't have any problem with this feat if the prerequisites weren't so stunningly easy while the power is fantastic. This should be a high level feat, if one at all.

Liberty's Edge 4/5

vagrant-poet wrote:

Is anyone concerned over the feat from Ultimate Combat Clustered Shots?

It effectively lets Archers bypass DR from 6th level. And its not like archery needed help, its already hands down the best way to do damage.

I wouldn't have any problem with this feat if the prerequisites weren't so stunningly easy while the power is fantastic. This should be a high level feat, if one at all.

Umm. You DO know that the ONLY DR it would, even at 6th level, make any sort of difference against is DR/---?

Heck, at 1st or 2nd level, my archer character was carrying normal arrows (lots), silvered arrows, cold iron arrows, and looking at adamantine arrows.

Since, as the resources have been created, he has added blunt arrows, and adamantine weapon blanched arrows to his armory.

The only DR that he cannot effectively ignore is DR/---.

Hmmm. And here I was thinking of taking that feat next level for my archer build, but it looks like Improved Snap Shot just took a serious lead in the race.


Alexander_Damocles wrote:


I checked with my venture captain last night, and he said that its a full round before they can begin to dodge and thus get their dex bonus back.

They would be wrong. Just because they are a VC doesn't mean that they are a 100% on the rules.

In this case they are flat wrong.

-James

Grand Lodge 5/5

I agree that one attack breaks invisibility. For purposes of a full round attack, only the first attack would gain the bonus of invisibility and the rest of the attacks would not.

Grand Lodge

Michael Brock wrote:


I'm against having a firearm be an arcane bond. The potential abuse is pretty high.

To a certain extent, the crafting rules keep it in check. If you wanted a Greater Reliable double musket, you're looking at needing to reach a CL of 12th (ie not in PFS play). If you're going for straight enhancement without any big CL enchantments (which isn't delivering benefits as you're hitting on touch AC anyhow and with clustered shot DR isn't a worry), the player can effectively save something like 20,000+ gold.

Silver Crusade

Emmeline Kestler wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:


I'm against having a firearm be an arcane bond. The potential abuse is pretty high.

To a certain extent, the crafting rules keep it in check. If you wanted a Greater Reliable double musket, you're looking at needing to reach a CL of 12th (ie not in PFS play). If you're going for straight enhancement without any big CL enchantments (which isn't delivering benefits as you're hitting on touch AC anyhow and with clustered shot DR isn't a worry), the player can effectively save something like 20,000+ gold.

The problem isnt the enhancements...its starting with a 4,300 gp item. Something that would normally take a character until aproximately level 4 to buy.


Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Emmeline Kestler wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:


I'm against having a firearm be an arcane bond. The potential abuse is pretty high.

To a certain extent, the crafting rules keep it in check. If you wanted a Greater Reliable double musket, you're looking at needing to reach a CL of 12th (ie not in PFS play). If you're going for straight enhancement without any big CL enchantments (which isn't delivering benefits as you're hitting on touch AC anyhow and with clustered shot DR isn't a worry), the player can effectively save something like 20,000+ gold.

The problem isnt the enhancements...its starting with a 4,300 gp item. Something that would normally take a character until aproximately level 4 to buy.

Which leads to the root problem of having mundane weapons priced at >4000gp.

The decision was made to make guns rare, but given free to one class at character creation. it's inevitable that a one-level dip would get used by other classes to gain that high cost item.

I'm not sure what the solution is, but crafting additional specific rules around the guns seems like it will only lead to more problems down the road.

Silver Crusade

Fozzy Hammer wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Emmeline Kestler wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:


I'm against having a firearm be an arcane bond. The potential abuse is pretty high.

To a certain extent, the crafting rules keep it in check. If you wanted a Greater Reliable double musket, you're looking at needing to reach a CL of 12th (ie not in PFS play). If you're going for straight enhancement without any big CL enchantments (which isn't delivering benefits as you're hitting on touch AC anyhow and with clustered shot DR isn't a worry), the player can effectively save something like 20,000+ gold.

The problem isnt the enhancements...its starting with a 4,300 gp item. Something that would normally take a character until aproximately level 4 to buy.

Which leads to the root problem of having mundane weapons priced at >4000gp.

The decision was made to make guns rare, but given free to one class at character creation. it's inevitable that a one-level dip would get used by other classes to gain that high cost item.

I'm not sure what the solution is, but crafting additional specific rules around the guns seems like it will only lead to more problems down the road.

To be entirely honest, I ran a gunslinger the first day the playtest went live. I've puttered about with the mechanics. And I would be perfectly fine if they decided to cut guns from PFS. They've created a morass of rules that don't work to keep guns rare, they just confuse players. Either open up guns completely, get rid of the gunsmithing feat requirement, and let the archetypes that are built around guns be played, or take the guns out of the campaign entirely. This halfbaked measure isn't doing anyone any favors.


Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Fozzy Hammer wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Emmeline Kestler wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:


I'm against having a firearm be an arcane bond. The potential abuse is pretty high.

To a certain extent, the crafting rules keep it in check. If you wanted a Greater Reliable double musket, you're looking at needing to reach a CL of 12th (ie not in PFS play). If you're going for straight enhancement without any big CL enchantments (which isn't delivering benefits as you're hitting on touch AC anyhow and with clustered shot DR isn't a worry), the player can effectively save something like 20,000+ gold.

The problem isnt the enhancements...its starting with a 4,300 gp item. Something that would normally take a character until aproximately level 4 to buy.

Which leads to the root problem of having mundane weapons priced at >4000gp.

The decision was made to make guns rare, but given free to one class at character creation. it's inevitable that a one-level dip would get used by other classes to gain that high cost item.

I'm not sure what the solution is, but crafting additional specific rules around the guns seems like it will only lead to more problems down the road.

To be entirely honest, I ran a gunslinger the first day the playtest went live. I've puttered about with the mechanics. And I would be perfectly fine if they decided to cut guns from PFS. They've created a morass of rules that don't work to keep guns rare, they just confuse players. Either open up guns completely, get rid of the gunsmithing feat requirement, and let the archetypes that are built around guns be played, or take the guns out of the campaign entirely. This halfbaked measure isn't doing anyone any favors.

I can agree to that, mostly.

Since guns are now legal, pandora's box has already been opened. If they banned them now, they would essentially be banning a whole bunch of already created characters.

So the options are really:

1) Bite the bullet and accept that guns exist. Yes, some player characters might take single level dips into Gunslinger to gain advantage. Yes, Arcane Bond gets wonky. Does any of this seriously threaten the campaign? I personally do not think it does. I think that if you don't like guns in Golarion, you will continue to not like guns in Golarion. I think that if you do like them, you get to continue to like them. I haven't seen any truly broken builds, and even if those might crop up, FAQing a feat or two to a houserule will end up being easier than

2) Keep trying to kludge the entire system so that only certain folks get to have guns. If you go this route, every single character option that comes out ends up having to be vetted through the lens of "how do guns affect this?" "Does this allow a gun toter to somehow come up with another combination we haven't thought of?"

(Reminds me of the joke that Puritans lie awake at night, worried that someone, somewhere might be having fun.)

I personally don't play a gunslinger. I really don't get attracted to it, but that's just personal preference. I can see how some people might like it. And I think that giving players choices is generally a good thing. Even if those choices aren't ones that we might make for ourselves.


Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Fozzy Hammer wrote:
Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Emmeline Kestler wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:


I'm against having a firearm be an arcane bond. The potential abuse is pretty high.

To a certain extent, the crafting rules keep it in check. If you wanted a Greater Reliable double musket, you're looking at needing to reach a CL of 12th (ie not in PFS play). If you're going for straight enhancement without any big CL enchantments (which isn't delivering benefits as you're hitting on touch AC anyhow and with clustered shot DR isn't a worry), the player can effectively save something like 20,000+ gold.

The problem isnt the enhancements...its starting with a 4,300 gp item. Something that would normally take a character until aproximately level 4 to buy.

Which leads to the root problem of having mundane weapons priced at >4000gp.

The decision was made to make guns rare, but given free to one class at character creation. it's inevitable that a one-level dip would get used by other classes to gain that high cost item.

I'm not sure what the solution is, but crafting additional specific rules around the guns seems like it will only lead to more problems down the road.

To be entirely honest, I ran a gunslinger the first day the playtest went live. I've puttered about with the mechanics. And I would be perfectly fine if they decided to cut guns from PFS. They've created a morass of rules that don't work to keep guns rare, they just confuse players. Either open up guns completely, get rid of the gunsmithing feat requirement, and let the archetypes that are built around guns be played, or take the guns out of the campaign entirely. This halfbaked measure isn't doing anyone any favors.

The Gunslinger should have been a prestige class with a req of a BAB of +6 with no weapon provided. This would solve almost all of the problems associated with the gunslinger class.

For my home game I just banned guns completely, problem solved.


For those throwing around the high value of that gun that a gunslinger starts with, this is from the Additional Resources:

Quote:
Gunslinger: A gunslinger’s starting gun (granted by the gunsmith class feature) is worth 22 gp if sold (the average of 4d10).

And while it does not specify, and Mark would need to make a ruling on it, I would assume that no matter what you did to that starting gun, this would be all it would ever sell for. That takes care of the concern that someone would take a single level of Gunslinger, upgrade the gun to masterwork, and then sell it to have a couple thousand more gold than other characters.

Grand Lodge

That's like a truck driver selling his truck for half its value then realizing he's not a truck driver any more. Also he doesn't have the revenue to buy a new truck.

*skims the standard gun hate*

So starting off with a +1 gun is game breaking, but having the 25,000gp bonus over every other character via Arcane Bond upgrades is fine. Wha? Why would a gunslinger upgrade a weapon and then lose half of their investment by selling to a store? They *need* a gun to be viable.

How has PFS handled Eldritch Knights-to-be using Arcane Bond to enchant super rapiers/scimitars/elven curveblades? What's good for the goose is good for the gander.

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