Ranged Flanking


Advice


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

I know in 4E there is a way to perform a ranged flank but what are my options in Pathfinder?


I'm pretty sure there are none. You can have certain benefits if others are flanking with certain feats but you can't flank directly. Definitely no sneak attack at range by flanking in case that's what you mean.

Sovereign Court

You can't flank with a ranged weapon because of what flanking is.

PRD wrote:

Flanking

When making a melee attack, you get a +2 flanking bonus if your opponent is threatened by another enemy character or creature on its opposite border or opposite corner.

When in doubt about whether two characters flank an opponent in the middle, trace an imaginary line between the two attackers' centers. If the line passes through opposite borders of the opponent's space (including corners of those borders), then the opponent is flanked.

Exception: If a flanker takes up more than 1 square, it gets the flanking bonus if any square it occupies counts for flanking.

Only a creature or character that threatens the defender can help an attacker get a flanking bonus.

Creatures with a reach of 0 feet can't flank an opponent.

As of yet (to my knowledge) there are not any ways to get around that. Flanking is for melee exclusively.

If your looking to sneak attack your best bet is to either learn how to snipe, accept you won't always get to sneak attack or get a melee weapon and go to town.


I believe that the Snap Shot line of feats would let you flank from range...of all 15 feet, IIRC. Oh, you just threaten. But flanking does require a melee attack, so nevermind.

There is a teamwork feat that lets you get +2 bonus to hit when an enemy is flanked...but you aren't counted as flanking.

Basically, the only way to get Sneak Attack in combat after the surprise round from range is being invisible or using stealth.

Ranged rogues suck.


Cheapy wrote:

I believe that the Snap Shot line of feats would let you flank from range...of all 15 feet, IIRC. Oh, you just threaten. But flanking does require a melee attack, so nevermind.

There is a teamwork feat that lets you get +2 bonus to hit when an enemy is flanked...but you aren't counted as flanking.

Basically, the only way to get Sneak Attack in combat after the surprise round from range is being invisible or using stealth.

Ranged rogues suck.

Which is why you play a melee rogue and buddy with a Zen archer.


Great Feint can do it too -- but that's about the limit of the options.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

There is a feat in Ultimate Combat called Enfilading Fire.
It´s a teamwork feat and you need to people having it, but if you are not flanking normally, you need two others flanking him. You get +2 on the attack then. It´s a little disappointing.
You could take the feats that let you attack ranged without provoking AoO´s, maybe some feats letting you threat with ranged weapons and then outflank, so you get a +6 bonus to hit if you and another one with the same feats flank.

As far as i can see this is also the best ingame bonus +hit you can get, especially nice for classes with lower BAB.

Silver Crusade

Quelyth wrote:
I know in 4E there is a way to perform a ranged flank but what are my options in Pathfinder?

I'm still trying to figure out what you're talking about in 4th edition. There are plenty of ways to get combat advantage in 4e without flanking, which gives you the +2 and allows you to sneak attack. But the act of flanking is still defined as having two people standing on either side of the same opponent - in melee range.

Shadow Lodge

Fromper wrote:
Quelyth wrote:
I know in 4E there is a way to perform a ranged flank but what are my options in Pathfinder?

I'm still trying to figure out what you're talking about in 4th edition. There are plenty of ways to get combat advantage in 4e without flanking, which gives you the +2 and allows you to sneak attack. But the act of flanking is still defined as having two people standing on either side of the same opponent - in melee range.

I think he's talking about the feat that if two allies are flanking, you get the combat advantage on that target as well. The rogue in our party had it, just not sure what it was called.


Abraham spalding wrote:
Great Feint can do it too -- but that's about the limit of the options.

I thought feint in combat only worked for melee attacks.


jlord wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:
Great Feint can do it too -- but that's about the limit of the options.
I thought feint in combat only worked for melee attacks.

It does.

Combat / Feint wrote:
Feinting is a standard action. To feint, make a Bluff skill check. The DC of this check is equal to 10 + your opponent's base attack bonus + your opponent's Wisdom modifier. If your opponent is trained in Sense Motive, the DC is instead equal to 10 + your opponent's Sense Motive bonus, if higher. If successful, the next melee attack you make against the target does not allow him to use his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any). This attack must be made on or before your next turn.

Emphasis mine.

Owner - Game Links

Cheapy wrote:
Ranged rogues suck.

You obviously haven't seen some of the guys I played with. Ranged Rogues are awesome and can be very deadly.


I've looked quite extensively (because I was a fan of the ability get combat advantage at range in 4E) and I've yet to find a similar ability in Pathfinder outside of 3rd-party products.

There are methods to do it, but they are somewhat convoluted and rely on someone else somehow rendering the target flat-footed or denying them their DEX bonus against all attackers.


Wow, someone just burned an expensive diamond.

Side note, not RAW, but we simply houserule to allow ranged flanking within point-blank range (30'). Same rules, you draw the line and it must pass through two opposite sides of the target's square to reach an ally. Seems to me that if you can't properly defend yourself from two guys right next to you in flanking position, then it isn't going to be easier if they are in the same position but farther apart.

Pure houserule territory, but it's been quite balanced. Those poor archers have to spend at least one and usually more than one action to move themselves around the enemy, far enough to avoid AoOs, to get into position, and then they're out of easy reach of the armored cleric if the target has friends that swarm the archer.

Scarab Sages

Hayato Ken wrote:

There is a feat in Ultimate Combat called Enfilading Fire.

It´s a teamwork feat and you need to people having it, but if you are not flanking normally, you need two others flanking him. You get +2 on the attack then. It´s a little disappointing.
You could take the feats that let you attack ranged without provoking AoO´s, maybe some feats letting you threat with ranged weapons and then outflank, so you get a +6 bonus to hit if you and another one with the same feats flank.

As far as i can see this is also the best ingame bonus +hit you can get, especially nice for classes with lower BAB.

You could dip three level of Inquisitor for Solo Tactics, alloying you to use these feats even if your team members don't have them.


Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
Fromper wrote:
Quelyth wrote:
I know in 4E there is a way to perform a ranged flank but what are my options in Pathfinder?

I'm still trying to figure out what you're talking about in 4th edition. There are plenty of ways to get combat advantage in 4e without flanking, which gives you the +2 and allows you to sneak attack. But the act of flanking is still defined as having two people standing on either side of the same opponent - in melee range.

I think he's talking about the feat that if two allies are flanking, you get the combat advantage on that target as well. The rogue in our party had it, just not sure what it was called.

Distant Advantage.

Contributor

Fromper wrote:
Quelyth wrote:
I know in 4E there is a way to perform a ranged flank but what are my options in Pathfinder?
I'm still trying to figure out what you're talking about in 4th edition. There are plenty of ways to get combat advantage in 4e without flanking, which gives you the +2 and allows you to sneak attack. But the act of flanking is still defined as having two people standing on either side of the same opponent - in melee range.

If you are a ranged Inquisitor, Solo Tactics makes this feat your best friend.


I have a home brew "rogue style" that lets them to be considered flanking if their opponent is engaged in melee with another ally. It's part of my rogue fix patch that brings them back in line with the avg base class power lvl. Other abilities in the "archer style" path allows them to fire in melee without provoking, and add dex to dmg.

I can post the link to the google doc if you are interested.


Cheapy wrote:
jlord wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:
Great Feint can do it too -- but that's about the limit of the options.
I thought feint in combat only worked for melee attacks.

It does.

Combat / Feint wrote:
Feinting is a standard action. To feint, make a Bluff skill check. The DC of this check is equal to 10 + your opponent's base attack bonus + your opponent's Wisdom modifier. If your opponent is trained in Sense Motive, the DC is instead equal to 10 + your opponent's Sense Motive bonus, if higher. If successful, the next melee attack you make against the target does not allow him to use his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any). This attack must be made on or before your next turn.
Emphasis mine.

You quoted feint. NOT greater feint

Greater Feint (Combat)

You are skilled at making foes overreact to your attacks.

Prerequisites: Combat Expertise, Improved Feint, base attack bonus +6, Int 13.

Benefit: Whenever you use feint to cause an opponent to lose his Dexterity bonus, he loses that bonus until the beginning of your next turn, in addition to losing his Dexterity bonus against your next attack.

Normal: A creature you feint loses its Dexterity bonus against your next attack.


Are we looking at ways to flank with a ranged weapon or ways to gain sneak attack from a ranged weapon?


There's Gang Up, but the interpretation is somewhat contentious last time I heard.


MacGurcules wrote:
There's Gang Up, but the interpretation is somewhat contentious last time I heard.

Gang Up still refers to flanking, the RAW of which only applies to melee attacks. That's probably where the contention comes in; by RAW it wouldn't grant any benefit to a ranged attacker.

Greater Feint is sort of under contention as well; there's a split in interpretation on whether the text indicates only an extension of duration of the target's loss of DEX, or if it truly removes the DEX bonus for all attackers.


SUMMARY:A ranged character can grant flanking bonuses to melee characters, but cannot actually get the flanking bonus. This is because flanking requires the opposite square to be "threatened" but does not specify the threat must be melee. Snap Shot feat tree and Combat Patrol allow ranged characters to threaten at range.

EXPLANATION: The question of flanking with ranged weapons has only covered half of the argument - whether the ranged character can attack. Here is the definition of flanking: When making a melee attack, you get a +2 flanking bonus if your opponent is threatened by another enemy character or creature on its opposite border or opposite corner.
That one word changes everything. For instance, your archer takes Snap Shot, Improved Snap Shot, Combat Reflexes, Combat Patrol, and Point Blank Master. You can have potentially 25-30 feet IN ALL DIRECTIONS from your character that you threaten. The ranged character CANNOT actually get the flanking bonus, but in that burst around them, ALL MELEE CHARACTERS DO, because the ranged character threatens the enemy on it's opposite border.


Inkendov wrote:

flanking requires the opposite square to be "threatened" but does not specify the threat must be melee.

Threatened Squares

You threaten all squares into which you can make a melee attack, even when it is not your turn.

Even if you're using a ranged weapon at an adjacent target, it's still a ranged attack.

Liberty's Edge

DM_Blake wrote:

Wow, someone just burned an expensive diamond.

Side note, not RAW, but we simply houserule to allow ranged flanking within point-blank range (30'). Same rules, you draw the line and it must pass through two opposite sides of the target's square to reach an ally. Seems to me that if you can't properly defend yourself from two guys right next to you in flanking position, then it isn't going to be easier if they are in the same position but farther apart.

Pure houserule territory, but it's been quite balanced. Those poor archers have to spend at least one and usually more than one action to move themselves around the enemy, far enough to avoid AoOs, to get into position, and then they're out of easy reach of the armored cleric if the target has friends that swarm the archer.

With such a houserule, are archers trying the Shot on the Run + Haste trick, or even better a mounted archer ?

It seems to me that such builds would reap its benefits while avoiding to pay the expected price.


Game Links wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Ranged rogues suck.
You obviously haven't seen some of the guys I played with. Ranged Rogues are awesome and can be very deadly.

Not when compares to any other offensivly optimised build. Ranged rogues suck, but feel free to prove me wrong.

Contributor

Wasum wrote:
Game Links wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Ranged rogues suck.
You obviously haven't seen some of the guys I played with. Ranged Rogues are awesome and can be very deadly.
Not when compares to any other offensivly optimised build. Ranged rogues suck, but feel free to prove me wrong.

Thug Archetype. Maximize your Intimidate Skill. Use Weapon Training to grab Weapon Focus, then pick up Dazzling Display before 8th level. At 8th level, use the Combat Trick rogue talent to earn Shatter Defenses.

Now, when you use Dazzling Display, all enemies that witness you use it become shaken for whatever you roll +1 additional round. If you attack a foe who is shaken, Shatter Defenses allows you to treat that foe as though it were flat-footed against your attacks until the end of your next turn. Conveniently, Shatter Defenses affects everything within 30 feet of you; the same range that you can Sneak Attack with ranged attacks.

Its a combo that doesn't become viable until 8th level when you grab Shatter Defenses, but once you do you can toss around a fairly significant debuff and get plenty of ranged sneak attacks against your enemies. All at the cost of two feats, plus a Rogue Talent that you probably would have taken anyway.

While all of this is going on, you have the skill set of a rogue, plus the Thug archetype's ability to sicken your foes for ungodly amounts of time. If you are looking at straight-up damage, this build is not going to beat an optimized fighter/ranger. But if you're looking for a character who puts on the hurt while making all of his allies better at the same time (which the Fighter cannot do and the Ranger does poorly), then it is an excellent build.

Too many people think that Pathfinder characters, especially nonmagical ones, exist in a vacuum. Sometimes the best way to play is to help boost the effectiveness of your allies.


It looks like there are some Third Party options available for this :

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/feats/3rd-party-feats/4-winds-fantasy-gaming/combat -feats/ranged-flank-combat/


Four years.

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