Targets for Bombs


Rules Questions

Sovereign Court

Can you take an alchemist's bomb and target an empty square instead of a grid intersection?

Could this potentially cause bomb splash damage to all foes within 5 feet on the empty square? Assuming that your attack roll overcame any cover bonuses that might apply to the empty square...

Or are we stuck with only attacking grid intersections?

If you miss with a bomb, you will affect 9 squares, but if you throw it on the ground, you only get 4 squares from an intersection?


I'm pretty sure you can attack a square, I believe it has an AC of 5.

You could even possibly hit an invisible creature if you're lucky.


Afaik Alchemist Bombs hit always one square:
like:

XXX
XBX
XXX

B is the Bomb
X the Splash damage

Edit:
I re-read the rules and it seems if you're attacking "the ground" your restricted to aim at intersection, so:

XX
XX


I'd just let you attack a square for AC 5 like Richard said. Having to alter the size of your splash based on if a creature is available to target or not breaks my suspension of disbelief.


The weird part is that if you target a grid intersection and miss, it suddenly affects a square, not an intersection.


I think that rule is in place so an enemy will not be able to attack the space a character is standing in rather than the character themselves. If you did allow for this, would you rule the character in the space successfully struck by the splash weapon receive full or secondary splash damage?


Secondary (splash), of course.

So there'd be no rules exploit. It'd just be a way when you care more about affecting the area at all than hitting a specific person full-on to increase your chances of getting it to land in that area.


Cheapy wrote:
The weird part is that if you target a grid intersection and miss, it suddenly affects a square, not an intersection.

No, it still affects a grid intersection. There are eight grid intersections surrounding each individual grid section.


StreamOfTheSky wrote:
Secondary (splash), of course.

Of course?

I would be fine with it, but I have to wonder about other GMs who would not agree with that interpretation. If not, they should probably just stick to attacking intersections.

Not that the squares and intersections are actually there. It just represents trying to hit an area close enough to a target; because you know what the say, "Close only counts with horseshoes and hand grenades."


Lakesidefantasy wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
The weird part is that if you target a grid intersection and miss, it suddenly affects a square, not an intersection.
No, it still affects a grid intersection. There are eight grid intersections surrounding each individual grid section.

Throw Splash Weapon: "After you determine where the weapon landed, it deals splash damage to all creatures in that square and in all adjacent squares."

A missed splash weapon hits a square, not an intersection.

Hitting a square is (in most cases) easier than hitting a creature, which may be why the area is reduced. So you can target the intersection, be almost guaranteed to hit where you want, or you can target a creature and have the chance of it going off in a random direction.

Dark Archive

This is a good point that I'm surprised I haven't had come up before. FWIW, I think I'm going to start having splash weapons always target a square, not an intersection. Makes a ton more sense that way.

Shadow Lodge

I always saw it as: when you hit a creature, it splashes off from a higher point in space, thus has a larger splash radius, while hitting the ground is a low point and a smaller splash radius.


Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
I always saw it as: when you hit a creature, it splashes off from a higher point in space, thus has a larger splash radius, while hitting the ground is a low point and a smaller splash radius.

This doesn't make sense with the rule about missed attacks hitting a square, presumably hitting the ground. I think it's just a balance issue, without any real fluff to describe it.

Dark Archive

Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
I always saw it as: when you hit a creature, it splashes off from a higher point in space, thus has a larger splash radius, while hitting the ground is a low point and a smaller splash radius.

But one could also argue that a splash weapon that hits a target would have most of the liquid on the target and would have a smaller splash radius than one that just hit the ground.


CrackedOzy wrote:
Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
I always saw it as: when you hit a creature, it splashes off from a higher point in space, thus has a larger splash radius, while hitting the ground is a low point and a smaller splash radius.
But one could also argue that a splash weapon that hits a target would have most of the liquid on the target and would have a smaller splash radius than one that just hit the ground.

Yes, exactly. Especially anyone that would have had soft cover from a ranged attack you made from the guy you hit with the splash weapon. Makes no sense to rationalize it that way.

Balance is also pretty laughable, splash damage is awful, you give up a lot in forfeiting the primary damage. Yeah, alchemist stink bombs and such can do cool things in the splash area, but the game should welcome those kinds of synergies (like how bard and summoner get "in-theme" spells early). Trying to nerf things just because they synergize with a class...that they should be synergistic with is dumb. It leads to stupid crap like Qingong Monk not getting Strangling Hair spell as an option - a bloody 3rd level spell - till 16th level and at the cost of 3(!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) ki points just because...the hair's damage is equal to your unarmed strike's.

Less of that design principle, please.

Back on topic, I am definitely doing it as splash weapons always hit a square, and you can purposely aim for a square instead of a creature if having it land in that area is more important to you than directly hitting someone. Makes the most sense, and is balanced.

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