Slam Someone Against the Wall (to deal damage)


Rules Questions

Dark Archive

I'm checked the rules, and can't seem to find any that allow you to shove someone up against the wall with the intent to hurt them. I see this in movies, described in books, and I naturally remember my days in high school.

Is this really just a grapple (which allows for damage) and the presence of a wall can just be used for flavor? Any other way to beat someone into a wall until they fall down?

How about using one character as a bludgeon to damage some him and someone you slam him into?

I'm not looking for class abilities, but something anyone can do (or try). How do you do it?


Grapple to do damage that is about it. You can always house rule to allow Bull Rush in to object. and do d6 or d3 non leathal for every 5ft over total amount pushed. That is what I do. but as RAW Grapple and Wall as flavor.


Bull rush them so they are shoved into a wall. They take 1d6 damage, based upon Telekinesis's Volent Thrust: "If a telekinesed creature is hurled against a solid surface, it takes damage as if it had fallen 10 feet (1d6 points)."

Probably how I'd handle it. Or if with a grapple, just refluff the unarmed damage as that.

EDIT: Also, since generally if a creature is forced or moved into an occupied space it causes them to fall prone in the space before that, bull rushing someone into a wall also knocking them prone might be reasonable, too.

If you want to do good damage with smashing people into walls and other solid, unyielding objects, you'd need the Dungeoncrasher Fighter from 3E's Dungeonscape. Great book, I highly recommend it.


if a grapple is already ongoing, the damage option works, 'fluff' as slamming against the wall.
if a grapple isn't going on, i would just use Unarmed Strike to do the same thing.
both would be unarmed damage... in some ways i guess you COULD do more damage if you slammed somebody's head against the wall, etc, but other ways of slamming in the wall shouldn't really do much more damage than a well-targetted punch/kick/etc., so normal UAS damage seems reasonable. Telekinesis MAY be justifiable, but it seems like it's probably assuming you are hurling them thru more space than just ~2' or so (and/or have the capacity to hurl them further).
if the wall surface is spiked or something, that could be used as base weapon damage instead, but use the attacker's STR mod.

EDIT: re: a Bullrush which SHOULD move them 1+ squares further being 'converted' to Tripping them when they hit the wall, that's well and good in a house-rule setting, I would just remember to 'apply' any Trip-relevant CMD bonuses they may have, which may mean they don't actually get Tripped.


I've always treated this sort of thing as if they had fallen the distance you pushed them.

Bull Rush someone 10' and they'll take 1d6 if they hit a wall at any point along those 10 feet. Push them 50' and I'd have it deal 5d6, etc.


I think that's how it should be, mplindustries. I don't know why telekinesis doesn't work that way. It's a 5th level single target spell (if using the violent thrust), even if you hurl someone 200 ft (since falling damage caps at 20d6) you're not really breaking the max damage dice cap by much, and how far you can hurl them is extremely environmentally dependent.


the only thing to note about that is when falling, you can make a check to catch yourself...
if the target is going to be able to take that much damage 'as if' falling,
it seems reasonable that they could catch themself on any surfaces/objects that they MAY be hurled past.
...that's kind of getting away from the OP's question which was already adjacent to the wall, though.


Already adjacent? So you're right there with them, pressing them to the wall like a hockey player being checked into the boards?

1d6 + str mod, I guess?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Normal grapple damage rules, in my opinion. You are choosing the "whack them against the closest available hard surface" option, as opposed to the "knee to the groin" or "poke in the eyes" or "pull their hair" options (or any of the other reasonable ways to inflict damage on someone while grappling).

As far as the Bull Rush into a wall is concerned, RAW it can't be done, which makes no sense at all, however there is no way that a character, no matter how strong, is capable of accelerating themselves and another character as much as gravity can, so I'd consider falling damage to be out. I'd also say that the distance the target is pushed isn't relevant, either (if I push someone while moving at a speed of 30, should it matter if I move them 2 squares or 6?). I think I'd be inclined to make it a free unarmed strike in terms of damage. I might also throw in a DC 15 + squares rushed Reflex save for the target to stay on his feet, just to make it an actual tactical option.


By RAW, two things came to mind:

1) The feat Shield Slam from the APG gives you a free bull rush maneuver with every successful shield bash attack. Opponents who cannot be moved back because of a wall or other surface are knocked prone. This feat can be obtained at 6th level by a full BAB class or as a 2nd level bonus feat by a ranger with the shield and weapon combat style (also APG).

2) The Bestiary feat Awesome Blow would work, but requires Str 25 and large size among its prerequisites.

Houseruling, your group is always welcome to do what you want. In my opinion, allowing any successful bull rush to knock an opponent prone if they cannot be moved back because of a wall seems reasonable. I'd be reluctant to add any additional damage to such a condition, since that might make bull rush maneuvers unbalanced compared to trip maneuvers and the Awesome Blow feat.

The Exchange

With Bull Rush you can't move a target 'into a space that is occupied by a solid object or obstacle' - but you're not really trying to move the other guy into the wall, just bounce him off it. RAW it has no real effect, however. You can Bull Rush one guy into another, but again you're just moving them about. Nothing prevents you from Bull Rushing a guy into hazards (like off a cliff). GM fiat could call a wall a hazard that inflicts 'x' damage, but that's really up to individual GMs and groups, not supported by RAW.

Grapple lets you move the other guy over hazardous things (like pits and walls of fire) but he gets a bonus to try to avoid that.

Reposition is even more toothless, as you can't use it to move a foe into a space that is intrinsically dangerous (so you can't Reposition a guy off a cliff, let alone smash him into a wall).

Punishing Kick forces the other guy back, or knocks him prone, but again he has to end up 'in a safe space he can stand in' (so you can't 'this is SPARTA!!!' people with it... so what's the point? Unless you class the space at the bottom of the 'pit of unnecessary danger' as both 'safe' and 'he can stand up in it' - it not being the pit's fault the guy wasn't wearing his ring of feather fall... Hmmm...).

Generally I'd go with what others have said: if you're grabbing him and slamming him repeatedly into a wall it's just using the grappling rules (although a GM assigned circumstance bonus may be appropriate - maybe make that grappling damage lethal instead of non-lethal: you are hitting the guy with a solid wall, after all...). If it's a shove or strike to slam him back, then I'd go for it being a bull rush, maybe with some sort of GM-assigned damage (probably no more than what a two-handed improvised weapon would do or something). Picking someone up and smashing him into another guy sounds like an improvised weapon too (probably 1d10 damage, like a greatclub). I'm pretty sure the 'weapon' would have to be helpless (or co-operating) though, otherwise you're just grappling with him.

EDIT: of course the default for any sort of brawling or cinematic combat you're not sure of is generally the Dirty Trick maneuver - but then you're not getting damage, you're getting effect (shakened or sickened seem appropriate for getting slammed into a wall).


Grabbing someone's head and bashing it over and over into a wall is a good example of how a DM might flavor a successful grapple check to deal damage (or several such checks). No independent mechanic is needed.

Shadow Lodge

ProfPotts wrote:

Generally I'd go with what others have said: if you're grabbing him and slamming him repeatedly into a wall it's just using the grappling rules (although a GM assigned circumstance bonus may be appropriate - maybe make that grappling damage lethal instead of non-lethal: you are hitting the guy with a solid wall, after all...). If it's a shove or strike to slam him back, then I'd go for it being a bull rush, maybe with some sort of GM-assigned damage (probably no more than what a two-handed improvised weapon would do or something). Picking someone up and smashing him into another guy sounds like an improvised weapon too (probably 1d10 damage, like a greatclub). I'm pretty sure the 'weapon' would have to be helpless (or co-operating) though, otherwise you're just grappling with him.

EDIT: of course the default for any sort of brawling or cinematic combat you're not sure of is generally the Dirty Trick maneuver - but then you're not getting damage, you're getting effect (shakened or sickened seem appropriate for getting slammed into a wall).

That sounds about right. If you're holding on, flavour the rules for damaging in grapple. I'd also allow a person who normally would deal nonlethal grappling damage to deal lethal grappling damage instead if they had a hard surface to smash their opponent against. If you're shoving and letting go, Bull Rush plus a small amount of damage (maybe 1 damage per 5 feet moved). Bashing two people into each other is improvised weapon territory. If the weapon resists, either require a grapple first or just disallow. Or feel free to call any of this a Dirty Trick that applies shaken, sickened, or dazed.


when you are in a grapple, and decide to bash them against the wall, grapple is reasonable.
a 'body check' agaisnt the wall, hockey-style, isn't really grapple at all, i would use UAS or bullrush.

i think the reference to shield slam is good, i have no idea why the 'prone if slammed into a wall' isn't a core part of bullrush itself, esp. since i don't understand how bullrushing with a shield via shield slam is different for this issue vs. bullrushing them with your body, or for that matter bullrushing with a shield via barbarian knockback (which doesn't use specific shield slam rules).

Quote:
(if I push someone while moving at a speed of 30, should it matter if I move them 2 squares or 6?).

you don't have to move with the target of your bullrush, and doing so doesn't help you bullrush them further. you don't even have to be moving yourself AT ALL. so i don't think your own speed is that relevant here.

Dark Archive

Thank you for all the responses!

I'm definitely not looking for any sort of houserule, but a full RAW complaint mechanic for describing this action.

I like the idea of calling it a simple UAS in cases like a "body check" where you aren't really moving the target, or pinning him in any way. The more I think of it, cases where you hold a target against a wall or other solid service is mechanically indistinguishable from a grapple. You might not be grasping or holding the target in any traditional sense, but you are effectively immobilizing them, which is grappling, so why not just deal damage?

I'd really like a throwing around creatures rule, where it lands somewhere non adjacent to the attack (or adjacent at the attacker's discretion) and takes damage upon landing there, especially if it's hurled at another creature. For this I'll have to figure out a house rule.

The Exchange

Quote:
I'd really like a throwing around creatures rule, where it lands somewhere non adjacent to the attack (or adjacent at the attacker's discretion) and takes damage upon landing there, especially if it's hurled at another creature. For this I'll have to figure out a house rule.

Ki Throw and the improved version (both from the APG) cover a lot of this ground, although not the damaging part. Greater Trip &/or Vicious Stomp would allow you to toss some AoO into the mix, but it's very much a Feat-intensive build, rather than something anyone can do.

Reposition lets you move something around more precisely than a Trip or Bull Rush, but is toothless with regards to damage.


Or use Tome of Battle from 3E.

The entire Setting Sun discipline is loaded with judo-style throws that send an enemy some distance and deals damage and leaves them prone, using the trip mechanic.

Liberty's Edge

The rules for doing damage during a grapple are as follows:
Damage: You can inflict damage to your target equal to your unarmed strike, a natural attack, or an attack made with armor spikes or a light or one-handed weapon. This damage can be either lethal or nonlethal.

It would not be unreasonable to adjudicate that bashing someone against a hard surface such as a wall to be equal to a light mace for damage (1d6).

As a side note, a player make make an argument that since they are using two hands to grapple, they should be able to do 1-1/2 Strength damage. I would suggest against it as it would be too powerful.

There isn't much in RAW to help with bull rushing someone into a wall. I would rule that if a player were to bull rush an opponent and the result is 5 or more over the CMD and the bull rush would push the opponent into a wall, they could inflict damage. This a house rule, of course.


Meh. My Barbarian uses Bull Rush to knock people into things all the time. I know it's not RAW, but we assumed 1d6 damage for ever 5 feet they should have moved but didn't, half damage for less than solid objects. For example, I'm using Knockback (rage power) to knock some poor guard into a stone wall. The stone wall is 10 feet behind him. I roll high enough to move him 20 feet. He takes 2d6 (plus my strength because of the rage power) since he should have moved 10 more feet. If we pretend the wall was another guard, then both take half of 2d6 (since flesh isn't as solid as bone) and the one I used Knockback on takes my strength modifier. Then I roll my bull rush again and they move as normal. So if I roll high enough to move the second guard 15 feet, they both move 5 more feet.

It's not the rules, but it makes sense. As far as being in a fight next to a wall and slamming them into a wall, I'd call it a grapple with the wall dealing lethal unarmed damage.


StreamOfTheSky wrote:

Or use Tome of Battle from 3E.

The entire Setting Sun discipline is loaded with judo-style throws that send an enemy some distance and deals damage and leaves them prone, using the trip mechanic.

Speaking of 3.5 sources, check into the Dungeoneer's Survival Guide and look at the 'Dungeon Crashing' option for fighters. It does exactly what your looking for with bull rushing people into things for some nice damage.

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