Ranged Touch Attacks Provoking AoOs 2: Electric Boogaloo


Rules Questions

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meatrace wrote:
Mabven the OP healer wrote:

I have ignored nothing, and called no one a liar. I have debated you all point for point, and made very relevant and rational arguments, and additionally, have quoted the Editor-in-Chief of the book we are debating, yet I am the one who is ignored (many times in this thread I have made compelling arguments which are passed over), despite overwhelming evidence in my favor. When you ignore my points, and make other unrelated arguments to try and cloud the issue, it is not I who is ignoring people and calling them names.

You've ignored all the posts by James Jacobs saying, essentially, "but hey, don't listen to me, I'm not a rules guy". You keep calling him editor in chief, which he is not, and you defer to HIS advice as if it were the word of god, while ignoring the entirety of the CRB, everyone else's arguments, and Jason's post.

I have not ignored them, I have decided to believe him despite that, and taken his statement as a statement of humility. I am simply taking the word of someone who is much closer to the rules development process than any of us are. It is you who dismiss him out of hand. I do not think he would have answered the way he did if he did not think he had a good handle on the intent of this specific rule (and he does state unequivocally that the rules never intended to allow more than one aoo per action)


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Well, Hangar, if only actions can provoke AoOs, then being tripped cannot provoke. It's not falling to the ground that provokes, it's the attacker's successful trip attempt. Since the AoO CAN BE provoked by another AoO (trip attempt for example) surely you must concur that not ONLY actions can provoke attacks of opportunity.

Right?


HangarFlying wrote:


Well, an AoO is a FREE attack, whether you want to read that as a free action or not; I guess, that really doesn't make a difference.

I believe an AoO is a "Not an Action" or "No Action" because the only actions you can take when it's not your turn are Immediate Action's.

-Flash

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Stynkk wrote:

@meatrace - I understand the frustration, but we know that we're winning if the opposition has to say "james said so!" as their closing argument.

Diego Rossi wrote:
Tarantula wrote:
Bob now has to make 3 concentration checks at 10 + damage(10) + level(2) = 22 in order to finish casting his spell. Bob makes his checks, and fries the Ogre. Lucky Bob.

Ehm, no. Bob has already finished his spell. While a free action as part of casting the spell, the ray are fired after the spell has been completed, so Bob don' need to make a concentration check to fire them.

He need to be still alive and conscious after the ogre hits(s).

I am a bit dubious about the idea that scorching ray will provoke once per ray, but there is no doubt that someone with combat reflex can attack once per provocation.

@Diego: Ranged Touch Spells in Combat: Some spells allow you to make a ranged touch attack as part of the casting of the spell.

Actually, the Ranged Touch is part of the spell cast, so the concentration check would need to be enforced.

Touching 6 friends with a touch range spell is part of casting a spell and it provoke. Your idea is that, even if you have successfully cast defensively the spell you can still lose it when you try to touch the second friend?

It is the same kind of situation. You have completed the spell, it is only the delivery part that is now being resolved.


Mabven the OP healer wrote:
meatrace wrote:
Mabven the OP healer wrote:

I have ignored nothing, and called no one a liar. I have debated you all point for point, and made very relevant and rational arguments, and additionally, have quoted the Editor-in-Chief of the book we are debating, yet I am the one who is ignored (many times in this thread I have made compelling arguments which are passed over), despite overwhelming evidence in my favor. When you ignore my points, and make other unrelated arguments to try and cloud the issue, it is not I who is ignoring people and calling them names.

You've ignored all the posts by James Jacobs saying, essentially, "but hey, don't listen to me, I'm not a rules guy". You keep calling him editor in chief, which he is not, and you defer to HIS advice as if it were the word of god, while ignoring the entirety of the CRB, everyone else's arguments, and Jason's post.
I have not ignored them, I have decided to believe him despite that, and taken his statement as a statement of humility. I am simply taking the word of someone who is much closer to the rules development process than any of us are. It is you who dismiss him out of hand. I do not think he would have answered the way he did if he did not think he had a good handle on the intent of this specific rule (and he does state unequivocally that the rules never intended to allow more than one aoo per action)

Are you new here?

James has made these sorts of rulings, time and time again, that turn out to be wrong. It's his track record that makes him an unreliable authority, regardless of his position at Paizo.

If James came on and said "we've decided that the Monk is overpowered and will no longer be allowed in PFS play. APRIL FOOLS!" would you believe statement 1 despite statement 2?

His statements are not out of humility. They're out of the fact that he IS NOT A RULES GUY! He's a creative director and developer for the golarion world. He's a lot of things, a very talented and creative individual, but he's not any sort of authority on rules. If you don't believe me, LISTEN TO HIM!


wraithstrike wrote:
HangarFlying wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:

The text limits you to one AoO per opportunity, not one AoO per action.

The text states that one action provides one opportunity, and that one opportunity allows for one attack.
Show me a quote with the word "action" that supports that statement.

From the footnotes to the chart of "Actions in Combat":

Footnotes to Actions in Combat wrote:


1 Regardless of the action, if you move out of a threatened square, you usually provoke an attack of opportunity. This column indicates whether the action itself, not moving, provokes an attack of opportunity.
2 If you aid someone performing an action that would normally provoke an attack of opportunity, then the act of aiding another provokes an attack of opportunity as well.

Those are two instances where attacks of opportunity are stated to be provoked by actions. In fact, 1) specifically states that despite some of the listed actions including movement (which would provoke in its own right) it is the action itself which provokes. It is calling out that even though there are two provocations, there is only one aoo.

Direct link between actions and opportunities.


Tarantula wrote:


Mind quoting something for me? I've got:
"Combat Reflexes and Additional Attacks of Opportunity: If you have the Combat Reflexes feat, you can add your Dexterity modifier to the number of attacks of opportunity you can make in a round. This feat does not let you make more than one attack for a given opportunity, but if the same opponent provokes two attacks of opportunity from you, you could make two separate attacks of opportunity (since each one represents a different opportunity). Moving out of more than one square threatened by the same opponent in the same round doesn't count as more than one opportunity for that opponent. All these attacks are at your full normal attack bonus."

I altered the emphasis.

Movement is an example of a single (or double) action where a character can provoke a dozen times from multiple opponents. Yet all of those provocations are specified as the same opportunity.

You don't need to take the first provocation, or the fifth. But once you've made the AOO for that opportunity you can't take any others for the rest of the provocations for that opportunity.

What is to represent an opportunity is best left to the DM. I think that the devs should put a FAQ response to give good guidance here. The one example of movement is not enough for people. You wish to take the parenthetical remark there that referred to a specific example in the 3.5 PhB.. and are taking it to be a definition.

It's not.

What it is is saying that when you move out of a threatened square and then cast a spell not defensively in a threatened square that these are two separate opportunities. It's pages 137 to 138 (end of the former to the start of the later.. there's also a diagram on page 138 though it doesn't detail this.

Recall that all of these examples are removed in the 3.5 SRD where Paizo took much of Pathfinder verbatim. That's the confusion you're having here.

You and Stinkk are taking this as a definition. It's NOT. It's a REFERENCE to an EXAMPLE.

-James


Diego Rossi wrote:
It is the same kind of situation. You have completed the spell, it is only the delivery part that is now being resolved.

I disagree with your conclusion. A touch spell is completed, then the touch resolves - it is a two step process. A Ranged touch is different because the touch is part of the spellcast, it even states this in the rules.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

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I removed some posts that contained personal attacks or were getting excessively heated.

I've also removed some posts to the effect of 'in before the lock' or 'I bet this is gonna get locked'. At best, those are spam. At worst, they're self-fulfilling prophecies.

If you have a problem with what someone is posting, flag them or ignore them. Yelling is not going to be productive.

Also, I'd like to remind everyone that trolls thrive on attention, negative or otherwise. Attempting to prove that they are incorrect, or that you know they are a troll, only encourages them to continue.

Instead, simply pretend the post isn't there. If it violates our messageboard rules, please flag it. Don't call them out. Don't tell them you're going to ignore them. Just continue the conversation as if there were not there, just like a child throwing a tantrum.


Mabven the OP healer wrote:


Direct link between actions and opportunities.

I disagree with you here.

If a character provokes an attack of opportunity from an enemy, the enemy could attempt to say disarm that character.

Will this provoke an AOO? Is this to be considered an opportunity? There is NO action associated with it on the part of the enemy.

While it would be nice to have a computer answer, there isn't one. It was meant to be done using that most wonderful of resources- DM common sense.

If the internets prove anything, it's that people need help with that common sense. Which is why it would be nice for the devs to give examples of things that might be multiple provocations but only one opportunity as well as examples of when they are multiple opportunities.

For example:

1. Casting a ranged touch spell provokes twice (or more) yet is one opportunity.

2. Leaving multiple threatened squares provokes once for each square yet is one opportunity.

3. Crawling from one square to the other provokes from those threatening either square, yet is one opportunity.

4. Using a standard action to expend a TK spell to launch 15 bolts at targets provokes 15 times, yet is one opportunity.

5. Charging to unarmed strike someone provokes from each square left and provokes from the target for the unarmed strike. The movement is one opportunity regardless of the number of squares threatened by a given character. The attacker provokes a separate opportunity from the movement and that opportunity exists only for the victim of the attack.

We might disagree with any or all of the above, but that's how I would rule as a DM. It satisfies the description of what an AOO is supposed to represent (and if you want more on that go to the old 3.5 PhB as they have more text on it) as well as the rules for it.

-James


james maissen wrote:
Mabven the OP healer wrote:


Direct link between actions and opportunities.

I disagree with you here.

If a character provokes an attack of opportunity from an enemy, the enemy could attempt to say disarm that character.

Will this provoke an AOO? Is this to be considered an opportunity? There is NO action associated with it on the part of the enemy.

While it would be nice to have a computer answer, there isn't one. It was meant to be done using that most wonderful of resources- DM common sense.

If the internets prove anything, it's that people need help with that common sense. Which is why it would be nice for the devs to give examples of things that might be multiple provocations but only one opportunity as well as examples of when they are multiple opportunities.

For example:

1. Casting a ranged touch spell provokes twice (or more) yet is one opportunity.

2. Leaving multiple threatened squares provokes once for each square yet is one opportunity.

3. Crawling from one square to the other provokes from those threatening either square, yet is one opportunity.

4. Using a standard action to expend a TK spell to launch 15 bolts at targets provokes 15 times, yet is one opportunity.

5. Charging to unarmed strike someone provokes from each square left and provokes from the target for the unarmed strike. The movement is one opportunity regardless of the number of squares threatened by a given character. The attacker provokes a separate opportunity from the movement and that opportunity exists only for the victim of the attack.

We might disagree with any or all of the above, but that's how I would rule as a DM. It satisfies the description of what an AOO is supposed to represent (and if you want more on that go to the old 3.5 PhB as they have more text on it) as well as the rules for it.

-James

We agree on 99% of this, but I have to differ with you on this: a disarm attempt is an action, even when it is used as an attack of opportunity. Just because it is not done on your turn does not mean it is not an action.

Liberty's Edge

meatrace wrote:

Well, Hangar, if only actions can provoke AoOs, then being tripped cannot provoke. It's not falling to the ground that provokes, it's the attacker's successful trip attempt. Since the AoO CAN BE provoked by another AoO (trip attempt for example) surely you must concur that not ONLY actions can provoke attacks of opportunity.

Right?

Because being tripped by someone with greater trip and provoking an AoO is the exception spelled out in the rules?


Mabven the OP healer wrote:
We agree on 99% of this, but I have to differ with you on this: a disarm attempt is an action, even when it is used as an attack of opportunity. Just because it is not done on your turn does not mean it is not an action.

Okay.. is it a game term 'Action' (capital A) or just a English term 'action' (small a)?

I'm not aware of an 'Action' that encompasses it, yet I would call it an 'action' in that way I agree. But I would also call each attack of a full attack 'Action' an 'action', and likewise both attacks from a cleave would be separate 'actions' even though they are part of the same 'Action'.

Cleaving finish is that an 'action' or an 'Action'?

-James


james maissen wrote:
Mabven the OP healer wrote:
We agree on 99% of this, but I have to differ with you on this: a disarm attempt is an action, even when it is used as an attack of opportunity. Just because it is not done on your turn does not mean it is not an action.

Okay.. is it a game term 'Action' (capital A) or just a English term 'action' (small a)?

I'm not aware of an 'Action' that encompasses it, yet I would call it an 'action' in that way I agree. But I would also call each attack of a full attack 'Action' an 'action', and likewise both attacks from a cleave would be separate 'actions' even though they are part of the same 'Action'.

Cleaving finish is that an 'action' or an 'Action'?

-James

That does seem to be one of the main issues here, one I tried to allude to earlier.


I am talking about game terms: Action. A disarm attempt is an Action. First sentence of disarm:

Disarm wrote:
You can attempt to disarm your opponent in place of a melee attack

A melee attack is an Action listed on the chart of Actions. It does not stop being an Action just because it is granted to you on someone else's turn, and does not replace the Actions you are allocated during your own turn during the round.

Any type of full-round Action is its own particular Action, even if it contains multiples of other actions.


So if I full attack with a melee weapon, and try to disarm without Improved Disarm on the second iterative attack, I won't provoke from that? Since the full attack is its own action which doesn't provoke. What about if I try to disarm on my third iterative too?

What if I try to trip with my first attack (wihtout Improved Trip), and Disarm on my second (without Improved Disarm)?

Does the fact that I provoked from Trip mean I don't provoke from Disarm?


Both those examples allow one aoo, because they are both one action, one provokes once, the other provokes twice. Doesn't matter, one action, one aoo. I think I have made myself very clear on this. But keep throwing examples if you like.


Cheapy wrote:

So if I full attack with a melee weapon, and try to disarm without Improved Disarm on the second iterative attack, I won't provoke from that? Since the full attack is its own action which doesn't provoke. What about if I try to disarm on my third iterative too?

What if I try to trip with my first attack (wihtout Improved Trip), and Disarm on my second (without Improved Disarm)?

Does the fact that I provoked from Trip mean I don't provoke from Disarm?

i think a full attack is more of a way to get extra melee attack actions than an action in and of itself


Mabven the OP healer wrote:

I am talking about game terms: Action. A disarm attempt is an Action. First sentence of disarm:

Disarm wrote:
You can attempt to disarm your opponent in place of a melee attack

So a melee attack. We can agree its equivalent to that.

Yet not all melee attacks are standard actions. A full attack action could have many melee attacks it doesn't make them multiple standard actions.

Though following your logic you would then let a full attack action provoke multiple, separate opportunities. Right?

Along those lines a cleave attack involves multiple melee attacks, and thus multiple actions..

I'm not quite following your position on this, and it would be nice to get it down as we are indeed close on this.

-James


If an attack of opportunity is an action, then what kind is it?
Actions fall ONLY into the following categories: Full-round, Standard, Move, Swift, Immediate, Free. Everything else is not an action, like talking out of turn.

If an AoO is a standard action, you can't take it when it's not your turn. Likewise if it is a swift, full, or move action. That leaves Immediate, which would consume your Swift action on your next turn.

Is this what you are suggesting Mabven?

To turn your argument against you, making a ranged touch attack is an Action, even if it is part of another Action (casting a spell) and thus provokes twice.


dragonfire: the extra attacks you get aren't actually Attack Actions. They're still attack actions in the colloquial sense. But you can't replace them with vital strike, which is an Attack Action. Yea, it's confusing.


meatrace wrote:

If an attack of opportunity is an action, then what kind is it?

Actions fall ONLY into the following categories: Full-round, Standard, Move, Swift, Immediate, Free. Everything else is not an action, like talking out of turn.

If an AoO is a standard action, you can't take it when it's not your turn. Likewise if it is a swift, full, or move action. That leaves Immediate, which would consume your Swift action on your next turn.

Is this what you are suggesting Mabven?

To turn your argument against you, making a ranged touch attack is an Action, even if it is part of another Action (casting a spell) and thus provokes twice.

An attack of opportunity is one of a variety of melee attack actions - thus a type of standard action. It is not part of some other action. Each aoo, if the attacker chooses to use a combat maneuver which provokes, provides its own aoo. A full attack action, is a single action, as is a ranged-touch attack spell. They provoke only a single aoo.

My position is really not very hard to understand, unless you want it to be.

Liberty's Edge

meatrace wrote:

If an attack of opportunity is an action, then what kind is it?

Actions fall ONLY into the following categories: Full-round, Standard, Move, Swift, Immediate, Free. Everything else is not an action, like talking out of turn.

If an AoO is a standard action, you can't take it when it's not your turn. Likewise if it is a swift, full, or move action. That leaves Immediate, which would consume your Swift action on your next turn.

Is this what you are suggesting Mabven?

To turn your argument against you, making a ranged touch attack is an Action, even if it is part of another Action (casting a spell) and thus provokes twice.

An AoO is a free attack. I don't know if that qualifies to be specifically considered a "free action" or if it is just a "free" attack that occurs above and beyond. What's the big deal? I tuned Mabven out when he/she started ranting about James Jacobs.

Liberty's Edge

Mabven the OP healer wrote:
meatrace wrote:

If an attack of opportunity is an action, then what kind is it?

Actions fall ONLY into the following categories: Full-round, Standard, Move, Swift, Immediate, Free. Everything else is not an action, like talking out of turn.

If an AoO is a standard action, you can't take it when it's not your turn. Likewise if it is a swift, full, or move action. That leaves Immediate, which would consume your Swift action on your next turn.

Is this what you are suggesting Mabven?

To turn your argument against you, making a ranged touch attack is an Action, even if it is part of another Action (casting a spell) and thus provokes twice.

An attack of opportunity is one of a variety of melee attack actions - thus a type of standard action. It is not part of some other action. Each aoo, if the attacker chooses to use a combat maneuver which provokes, provides its own aoo. A full attack action, is a single action, as is a ranged-touch attack spell. They provoke only a single aoo.

My position is really not very hard to understand, unless you want it to be.

No, it's not a standard action, it's a free attack.

PRD wrote:
Sometimes a combatant in a melee let's her guard down or takes a reckless action. In this case, combatants near her can take advantage of her lapse in defense to attack her for free. These free attacks are called attacks of opportunity.


So far me, and my DM, are in agreement with mabven.
I understand clearly what hes saying and it makes sense to me.

-Flash


They actually aren't a defined action. They just kind of are. They use the rules of standard action attacks, but aren't them. You can still take your standard the next round.


By the by did anyone notice that this "Moving out of more than one square threatened by the same opponent in the same round doesn't count as more than one opportunity for that opponent." may not actually support the one Action = one opportunity stance.

Consider a character that takes a move action to move around in an opponent's threatened area and then takes another move action to do the same thing. It would seem that this movement only counts as one opportunity despite being two actions.


A pity that Come and Get Me doesn't really work well with the interpretation that one action = one provocation max. I mean, it doesn't say it allows you to bypass that "limitation", so even if the enemy makes a full attack, which "clearly" only provokes once, the barbarian just gets 1 AoO in return.


Mabven the OP healer wrote:


An attack of opportunity is one of a variety of melee attack actions - thus a type of standard action.

It is not a standard action, nor is a full attack action multiple standard actions.

A normal melee attack is not equivalent to a standard action attack.. much to those with vital strike wanting to use it with spring attack's sadness..

That's the disconnect here.

-James


Here is the text of Come and Get Me.

Come and Get Me wrote:
Come and Get Me (Ex): While raging, as a free action the barbarian may leave herself open to attack while preparing devastating counterattacks. Enemies gain a +4 bonus on attack and damage rolls against the barbarian until the beginning of her next turn, but every attack against the barbarian provokes an attack of opportunity from her, which is resolved prior to resolving each enemy attack. A barbarian must be at least 12th level to select this rage power.

The ability specifically says it allows aoo's for each attack made against the barbarian. This overrules the normal rule for AoO's, and in no way says anything about the way AoO's work without the ability.


james maissen wrote:
Mabven the OP healer wrote:


An attack of opportunity is one of a variety of melee attack actions - thus a type of standard action.

It is not a standard action, nor is a full attack action multiple standard actions.

A normal melee attack is not equivalent to a standard action attack.. much to those with vital strike wanting to use it with spring attack's sadness..

That's the disconnect here.

-James

A single melee attack is one type of standard action. A full-attack is a different type of action which allows you to make multiple melee attacks. Vital Strike specifically says you must use the Attack Action, which is a standard action consisting of a single attack, and thus Vital Strike can not be used for a full-attack.

I am seeing your point that an aoo is not a standard action, though, as it has been ruled to not allow Vital Strike, so by the same ruling, an AoO is not an Attack Action. It is however, an action of some type, and not tied to any other actions as in a full-round action, thus I would still say that AoO's which provoke would allow a responding AoO of its own, even if more than one is made during your opponent's round. But you are right, an AoO is a corner case as far as actions go, and I am not comfortable at this point describing it as a standard action, or any other specific type of action until I find further proof.


Mabven the OP healer wrote:
james maissen wrote:
Mabven the OP healer wrote:


An attack of opportunity is one of a variety of melee attack actions - thus a type of standard action.

It is not a standard action, nor is a full attack action multiple standard actions.

A normal melee attack is not equivalent to a standard action attack.. much to those with vital strike wanting to use it with spring attack's sadness..

That's the disconnect here.

-James

A single melee attack is one type of standard action. A full-attack is a different type of action which allows you to make multiple melee attacks. Vital Strike specifically says you must use the Attack Action, which is a standard action consisting of a single attack, and thus Vital Strike can not be used for a full-attack.

I am seeing your point that an aoo is not a standard action, though, as it has been ruled to not allow Vital Strike, so by the same ruling, an AoO is not an Attack Action. It is however, an action of some type, and not tied to any other actions as in a full-round action, thus I would still say that AoO's which provoke would allow a responding AoO of its own, even if more than one is made during your opponent's round. But you are right, an AoO is a corner case as far as actions go, and I am not comfortable at this point describing it as a standard action, or any other specific type of action until I find further proof.

As we've all been trying to say, attacks of opportunity aren't an action AT ALL! You have this weird idea in your mind that everything someone does is an action. They were tripped? They must have taken the "drop to the floor" free action out of turn.

You're jumping through all these hoops and rewriting every other combat-related rule to avoid the very concept that something doesn't need to be an Action to provoke an attack of opportunity.


*sigh* Have we swung back around to the "full attack only provokes once" side of the pendulum again? This is getting exhausting.


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blahpers wrote:
*sigh* Have we swung back around to the "full attack only provokes once" side of the pendulum again? This is getting exhausting.

Well, right now we have someone saying that an attack of opportunity is an action, except when it's not, and that only actions can provoke attacks of opportunity, and even then only once (except for the exceptions that say it provokes multiple times), and that provoking an AoO isn't the same thing as an opportunity, thus an action can provoke multiple times but only be one "opportunity" which is something undefined by the rules.

So it's much much more complex than how you state it :P


meatrace wrote:


As we've all been trying to say, attacks of opportunity aren't an action AT ALL! You have this weird idea in your mind that everything someone does is an action. They were tripped? They must have taken the "drop to the floor" free action out of turn.

You're jumping through all these hoops and rewriting every other combat-related rule to avoid the very concept that something doesn't need to be an Action to provoke an attack of opportunity.

with vicious stomp, if they drop to the floor while you're threatening them they provoke opps


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Indeed.

You are saying that each attack of a full-attack action with a ranged weapon doesn't provoke. That's not how the game works.

You are saying that someone can do as many combat maneuvers they want in a turn without the improved versions of the CMs, and only provoke one AoO. That's not how the game works.

You are saying that a magus who uses spell combat with an unarmed strike and no IUS only provokes once. Better cast the spell after the full attack, that way they'll take the AoO against you for that, and then they can't try to disrupt your spell! But no, that's not how the game works.

You are saying that a multitude of feats and abilities do not work the way they were intended to when written.

Your misinterpretation completely ignores the intent of the rules. What is the intent? That if you do something distracting, you provoke an AoO. The intent is NOT that you somehow automagically gain immunity to being distracted if you've already provoked an AoO. No, just because you were distracted and were hit by aiming carefully at an enemy 90' away doesn't mean you won't be distracted when you're aiming carefully at another enemy 45' away in a completely different direction. That is ridiculous.

Doing any sort of distracting act, that is, anything that's listed in the table as provoking an AoO, provokes, no matter what Action it's a part of. You do NOT gain immunity to AoOs after your first one during an Action and there is no text to support this idea of "distraction immunity" that you continue to spout off as the truth.

Jason added the Ranged Touch Spells in Combat section for a reason. It was to make it clear that the ranged touch attacks from those spells provoke as normal, whether or not you successfully cast the spell defensively.

I mean seriously. That section he added even says "Ranged touch attacks provoke an attack of opportunity" in the context of spells that grant them.

It doesn't get any more clear cut than that.

But hey, let's go with your CAGM logic about how it specifically says the attacks provokes AoOs, thus it gets around this supposed "one action = one opportunity max" rule.

Guess what else specifically says it provokes AoOs? Yep! Ranged touch attacks made as part of a spell.

Your own logic shows, based on your assumption, that ranged touch attacks made as part of a spell provoke.


so for my perspective... I think that each thing, casting the spell and making the ranged attack are different things that provoke opps. while they're all part of the spell, one happens before the spell is cast, and one happens after the spell is cast and thus justifies two attacks of opportunity


FWIW my perspect is that...it's unclear! My brain tells me that each instance should provoke individually. That makes the most sense to me and jibes with the rest of the rules about AoO the best. But then something like Scorching Ray would provoke, like, 4 AoOs which seems overmuch. That's the one corner case that makes me wonder, not if the rules as I've understood them are wrong, but if Scorching Ray needs to be a special case. Or that the rules in general need to be clarified.

I'm about 99% certain that a single action can provoke more than once. But there are obviously corner cases where this seems punitive, one of which being Scorching Ray and another being Vicious Stomp.


james maissen wrote:
Sarrion wrote:


For comparison, loading a cross bow and then firing the said crossbow in combat provokes two attacks of opportunity. The first is for loading and the second is for firing of the crossbow.

One may load the crossbow, then walk around before taking the separate action to fire.

Much like one may cast a melee touch spell, then move and then take a separate action to deliver it.

Now don't focus too much on the word 'action' but rather focus on the word 'separate'.

Then compare this to a ranged touch spell like acid arrow or scorching ray. One cannot even do the following: cast a ranged touch spell, take a 5' step and then make the ranged attack with it. Rather the two things- casting the ranged attack spell and making the ranged attack are not separable.

What Jason put into the rules does not say that casting a ranged touch spell is multiple opportunities. Rather even if such a spell is cast defensively the act is still going to provoke AN attack of opportunity. Anymore is reading into the rules what you want to read there.

-James

The way i was interpreting the spell was that two actions occur. First you cast the spell going through your somatic and verbal gestures, that is attack of opportunity number one. The second is actually performing the ranged attack against a target which results in another attack of opportunity.

The problem that i have with the wording of the spell is that it is essentially granting two actions for one standard action by casting the spell.

Ignoring that and trying not to read into the rules too deeply...

If you cast defensively and then fire the scorching ray, then by all rights you would provoke an attack of opportunity for making a ranged touch attack. When that happens the attack of opportunity is an immediate action that occurs prior to making your ranged touch attack. If this is the case then the attack of opportunity could potentially disrupt the spell because it hasn't been fully cast until the ranged attack is resolved.

Is that a fair assessment?

So in the end the lesson of the day would be..don't cast scorching ray when threatened by an enemy.


Sarrion wrote:
So in the end the lesson of the day would be..don't cast scorching ray when threatened by an enemy.

Nah just convince your DM that that one parenthetical statement in the concentration rules is a complete list and that the ranged attack is not the spell and you're fine. Well except for eating an attack but assuming you survive you're fine.


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meatrace wrote:

FWIW my perspect is that...it's unclear! My brain tells me that each instance should provoke individually. That makes the most sense to me and jibes with the rest of the rules about AoO the best. But then something like Scorching Ray would provoke, like, 4 AoOs which seems overmuch. That's the one corner case that makes me wonder, not if the rules as I've understood them are wrong, but if Scorching Ray needs to be a special case. Or that the rules in general need to be clarified.

I'm about 99% certain that a single action can provoke more than once. But there are obviously corner cases where this seems punitive, one of which being Scorching Ray and another being Vicious Stomp.

scorching ray does seem excessive, but if you think about it, you roll 1-3 ranged attack rolls, and thus should provoke 1-3 attacks, i think. but that's my interpretation


I agree with meatrace: it is ambiguous, and there are merits to both sides. I'd like to see it clarified. FWIW, my reading is:

(For all these examples, assume the opponent has Combat Reflexes and enough Dex.)

  • A single Action allows an opponent to make multiple AOOs if multiple events within the action each independently provoke. Thus, making a full attack with a bow allows one AOO for each attack, making an unarmed charge vs. a reach opponent provokes twice, etc. I am pretty sure about this, but I admit ambiguity.

  • Casting Scorching Ray defensively at low level (1 ray) allows one AOO. Explicitly stated, no ambiguity.

  • If the AOO from above results in damage being taken, there is no need for a concentration check against the damage, because the spell has already been cast. I feel strongly about this, but admit ambiguity.

  • Casting Scorching Ray NOT defensively at low level allows two AOO. I feel a little ambivalent about this. Even if this is not true, and it only allows one AOO, there is still a reason to cast defensively, because it prevents the necessity of a concentration check against damage, which is likely to be much higher than the cast defensively check.

  • Casting Scorching Ray defensively at high level (three rays) still allows only one AOO, because the three rays are simultaneous. This I am not at all confident of, but it is what makes sense to me. What makes sense to me isn't necessarily the rules, but I don't think it makes sense for three simultaneous events to provide multiple openings for an attack against a single person. Furthermore, although targeting three people simultaneously may require more concentration than targeting one, it surely takes less effort than casting a spell with a full-round casting time, which only provokes once.

  • If it turns out that there is a rule of "one AOO per action," then I would interpret it as, "Every circumstance within the action that provokes an attack of opportunity still provokes, but you may only choose to take one." The person provoking doesn't get to decide which one; the person making the attack of opportunity decides which one. I don't think "one AOO per action" is crazy or inconsistent; it's true that Greater Trip makes an AOO for something that I wouldn't consider an action (being tripped) but that's okay; specific rules can break general rules.

    Interestingly,

    Step up and Strike wrote:
    "When using the Step Up or Following Step feats to follow an adjacent foe, you may also make a single melee attack against that foe at your highest base attack bonus. This attack counts as one of your attacks of opportunity for the round."

    It does not say anything about a 5-foot step (which is Not an Action) provoking. It almost seems to go out of its way not to say that.

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