Can a reach weapon threaten an adjacent large opponent?


Rules Questions

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gustavo iglesias wrote:

fun fact: ogres are 10 feet tall, but they aren't 10 feet wide.

So people is using a gamism (ogres "using" 2x2 squares of space in tge table) to attack them in the rear by claiming it's realist.

So if the Ogre isn't 10 feet wide, what's to stop a character from moving to the "right side" of their OWN square, since humans aren't 5 feet wide, and stabbing towards the back of the ogre, which isn't blocked by the nearest square because they aren't 10 feet wide?

Why can't a human with a halberd chop at the back end of a horse if the horse is in front of him?

Why can't a dwarf with a lucerne hammer smash at an Otyugh's back... half?

Quote:
It's so funny when people try to make a game realist :). Everything you fix, it's two things you break

Except it's not a case of "make the game realist". It's a case of "the rule is ambiguous, so I'm going with what makes more realistic sense."

But clearly you aren't here to actually discuss this, you're here to mock people and act like you're better than them.


Horselord wrote:

My medium-sized character was using a reach weapon and a large creature was next to him occupying a 10'x10' area. The DM ruled that I didn't threaten the large creature and now I'm not sure if the answer is so obvious. I can see three outcomes that are justified but it would be good to know if there was anything official that could clear things up.

The three rulings I or the DM think are valid:

1) You don't threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon. The weapon doesn't threaten adjacent targets irrespective of their size. It could also be argued you attack the nearest square of a creature.

2) You do threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon. The large creature occupies a square you threaten so that creature is a valid target.

3) You do threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon but it gets cover. The large creature occupies a square you threaten so that creature is a valid target but nearer squares are occupied (with the same creature, but still...), so they obstruct the attack, granting cover to the defender.

All though not raw, I would rule 1, because if you think about it, when the large monster is adjacent, your polearm would be stuck outside of the large creatures guard, and therefore harmless if a weapon like spear,

however, with a polearm like a glaive or something, the person would be able to slash.

Sorry the raw is a little contradictory of itsf it seems.


Samasboy1 wrote:
DM_Blake wrote:

Player: I attack the ogre with my longspear.

GM: You can't. Your longspear has reach and the ogre is adjacent to you.
Player: Oh, no problem, I stab him in the face.
GM: What?
Player: His face isn't adjacent to me. It's 10' away, since ogres are 10' tall. Perfect target for my longspear's reach.
<snip>

Arm, shoulder, what ever.

The ogre occupies spaces that you can make an attack into (10' away). How you characterize attacking that space isn't particularly material.

No, his face is adjacent. Time to visualize in three dimensions instead of just two.

Here's a lame attempt at a sideways diagram - this is the view from the side. H is the human, O is the ogre:

O
OH

As you can see, the ogre's face would be in the upper o which, while 10 off the ground (or more like 8', but whatever), is still diagonally adjacent to the H.

So, until a creature is MORE than 10' tall, his face is NOT 10' away. Nor is his arm, shoulder, or whatever.


Snow_Tiger wrote:
Horselord wrote:

My medium-sized character was using a reach weapon and a large creature was next to him occupying a 10'x10' area. The DM ruled that I didn't threaten the large creature and now I'm not sure if the answer is so obvious. I can see three outcomes that are justified but it would be good to know if there was anything official that could clear things up.

The three rulings I or the DM think are valid:

1) You don't threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon. The weapon doesn't threaten adjacent targets irrespective of their size. It could also be argued you attack the nearest square of a creature.

2) You do threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon. The large creature occupies a square you threaten so that creature is a valid target.

3) You do threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon but it gets cover. The large creature occupies a square you threaten so that creature is a valid target but nearer squares are occupied (with the same creature, but still...), so they obstruct the attack, granting cover to the defender.

All though not raw, I would rule 1, because if you think about it, when the large monster is adjacent, your polearm would be stuck outside of the large creatures guard, and therefore harmless if a weapon like spear,

however, with a polearm like a glaive or something, the person would be able to slash.

Sorry the raw is a little contradictory of itsf it seems.

There is no contradiction here.

The RAW says you cannot attack an adjacent creature with a reach weapon. Period.

It does not say that you can attack an adjacent creature as long as it is so big that parts of it are not adjacent. Saying this is trying to interpret the RAW rather than simply reading the RAW, and it requires you to make a house rule to allow it.

So Option 1 is RAW.

Option 2 is is silly - it presumes that somehow you strike the creature in the "back" (whatever side of the is opposite you), without moving around and without the creature turning (if it did, its "back" would be too close for your reach weapon), and without jabbing though the "front" of the monster to hit its "back". That's very obviously just wishful thinking.

Option 3 is logically impossible - it presumes that somehow you strike the creature in the "back" by going through the "front" (hence the cover) but you cannot strike the "front" because it is adjacent to you (because reach weapon rules) so that clearly means you cannot strike the "front" hard enough to penetrate to the "back".


DM_Blake is correct.

Quote:
With a normal melee weapon, you can strike any opponent within 5 feet. (Opponents within 5 feet are considered adjacent to you.) Some melee weapons have reach, as indicated in their descriptions. With a typical reach weapon, you can strike opponents 10 feet away, but you can't strike adjacent foes (those within 5 feet).

Height, width, and so forth are irrelevant. The opponent is within 5 feet because the opponent is one big thing that occupies all squares allocated to it. It (being a single entity) is not 10 feet away. Ergo, you cannot strike the opponent with a typical reach weapon.

If you're crossing the street and a semi comes within inches of making you into road pizza, do you say that the truck was a few feet away because some part of the truck's interior happened to be that far away? No, because the truck is a truck, not a collection of cubic truck components. The ogre, likewise, is an ogre, not a bunch of smelly flesh cubes. If it is within 5 feet, you'd best (5-foot) step, son.


There is a 4th option:

OO1
OO2
34P

Player "P" in this case is adjacent to Ogre AND can reach the part of the ogre to the left of the "1" or the part ogre above the "3".

However, the adjacent rules may cause a problem with even this. I do not think they were taking into account such a situation.

- Gauss


Gauss wrote:
the part of the ogre

Again with the flesh cubes. There is no "part of the ogre"--there is the ogre, who is adjacent to the PC instead of being 10 feet away. The rules take this situation into account quite nicely.

The grid exists to easily facilitate tactical combat by limiting movements to discrete units. They do not exist to subdivide creatures into 5-foot cubes.


"Flesh cubes". I love it.

So, now that we've covered the RAW (no reach attacks against adjacent creatures regardless of size), we've satisfied the "Rules Questions" forum requirements.

Me, I think the Reach weapon prohibition is silly in the first place and should not exist. Well, maybe, if you have enough reach to hit something 15' feet away, like a very long pike, then THAT weapon should not hit adjacent creatures.

I can easily take the longest glaive, ranseur, spetum, naginata, spear, yari, etc., ever used in historical earth and hit someone standing just 5 feet away. Easily. In game terms, by "easily" I mean with no penalty and with full efficacy of the weapon in question. It's actually harder to use most of these to hit someone 10' away, though the really long ones can do it, but that's where the penalties would come in since they're very unwieldy and heavy at that distance.

Sorry, had to rant.

/rant


blahpers, the ranged rules do take that into account. The ranged rules specifically allow you to target a specific section of a creature in order to avoid shooting into melee.

CRB p184 wrote:
If your target (or the part of your target you’re aiming at, if it’s a big target) is at least 10 feet away from the nearest friendly character, you can avoid the –4 penalty, even if the creature you’re aiming at is engaged in melee with a friendly character.

Now, does that affect reach weapons as per RAW? No. While reach weapons are basically stated to work like ranged weapons for certain effects such as cover shooting into melee is not one of them. However, it is clear that the rules DO make a distinction between parts of a creature or as you put it 'flesh cubes'.

Back to the topic, it states to use the ranged weapon rules when not adjacent.

CRB p195 wrote:
When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from any corner of your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall). When making a melee attack against a target that isn’t adjacent to you (such as with a reach weapon), use the rules for determining cover from ranged attacks.

That is why I stated the adjacent rules may cause problem with the reach weapon question.

The problem with that is, that on CRB p194 the example is incorrect and ignores the text on CRB p195.
Merisiel IS adjacent and yet the Ogre is using the Reach=Ranged weapon rules to avoid having cover to Merisiel for it's attacks.

CRB p194 wrote:
#2: Merisiel is adjacent to the ogre, but lines from the corners of her square to the corners of the ogre’s square cross through a wall. The ogre has melee cover from her, but if it attacks her, Merisiel does not have cover from it, as the ogre has reach (so it figures attacks as if attacking with a ranged weapon).

So, in the example the Ogre had the choice of ignoring the adjacent clause.

Where does that leave us? If we follow the example I can ignore the adjacent clause and target a portion of the Ogre 10' away. From there we debate whether we can 'strike the back' or not. I say not.
But, striking the section of the Ogre left of #1 or above #3 is clearly in my reach and not through the ogre.

If we follow the RAW then I cannot attack the ogre without moving 5' away.

Like many sections of the rules, the Reach rules are not all inclusive and have some inconsistencies.

Summary:
RAW: Adjacent trumps reach and you cannot attack any part of a creature with a reach weapon if you are adjacent.
RAI based on example on CRB p194: If you can target them using Reach even if they are adjacent then go for it.

- Gauss


By RAW, you can't attack an enemy that is adjacent to you with reach.

In MY campaigns, I would let the PC aim up and stab it in the face. Why? Because reach weapons are already annoying enough to use and realistically this makes sense.

Hell... using your reach weapon against an enemy 5 feet away from you makes sense in reality too. "Your enemy is 5 feet away so you can't change your stance or grip to defend yourself". Except you CAN, you just need to take a Fighter archetype and get to level 7. IRL if you can use a quarterstaff with one side at 5 feet, you can use a spear at 5 feet.


Alarox, or level 2 for a different Fighter archetype. :)

- Gauss


Gauss wrote:

Alarox, or level 2 for a different Fighter archetype. :)

- Gauss

I have no idea why I remembered it to be level 7. That is the archetype I was thinking of, Polearm Master.


Because there is another archetype, Dragoon, which is even better. It threatens both 5 and 10 feet with a Lance at level 7.

- Gauss

Silver Crusade

DM_Blake wrote:

I can easily take the longest glaive, ranseur, spetum, naginata, spear, yari, etc., ever used in historical earth and hit someone standing just 5 feet away. Easily. In game terms, by "easily" I mean with no penalty and with full efficacy of the weapon in question. It's actually harder to use most of these to hit someone 10' away, though the really long ones can do it, but that's where the penalties would come in since they're very unwieldy and heavy at that distance.

Not only that... but I've heard some axe-style pole weapons could do a sort of 'drag back hooking' attack if the target were too close to attack from the front? That is, you intentionally swing wide, around, and behind the target... then drag the weapon back to pull the innerward 'hook' of the axe blade into the target's back?

This seems plausible to me, if somewhat time-consuming in a fight. I'd allow it as a way to attack a target around their squares, in an odd sense.


Gauss wrote:

blahpers, the ranged rules do take that into account. The ranged rules specifically allow you to target a specific section of a creature in order to avoid shooting into melee.

CRB p184 wrote:
If your target (or the part of your target you’re aiming at, if it’s a big target) is at least 10 feet away from the nearest friendly character, you can avoid the –4 penalty, even if the creature you’re aiming at is engaged in melee with a friendly character.

Now, does that affect reach weapons as per RAW? No. While reach weapons are basically stated to work like ranged weapons for certain effects such as cover shooting into melee is not one of them. However, it is clear that the rules DO make a distinction between parts of a creature or as you put it 'flesh cubes'.

Back to the topic, it states to use the ranged weapon rules when not adjacent.

CRB p195 wrote:
When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from any corner of your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall). When making a melee attack against a target that isn’t adjacent to you (such as with a reach weapon), use the rules for determining cover from ranged attacks.
That is why I stated the adjacent rules may cause problem with the reach weapon question.

True, the ranged rules mention particular locations (hooray for consistency), and reach weapons act like ranged weapons--for cover determination alone. For everything else, they act like melee weapons with unusual range requirements. The cover rule is explicitly stated, making it a specific exception that prevents the writers from having to write separate, identical cover rules for reach weapons. It's not as elegant as I'd like, but it beats having clever players try to stab an ogre in the backside *through* it's frontside, and targeting rules that satisfy both parties would be more complicated than they're worth.


Regarding the viability of reach weapons as non-reach weapons: Some reach weapons are quite capable of attacking melee targets, while others are not. I've seen people fight with a longspear up close; attacking alone wouldn't be a huge problem, but parrying and attacking might, as the spear ends up more like a staff at that point.

It would have been nice to have the weapons that could easily allow adjacent combat marked as such. That could have been done with an easy-to-remember weapon property. But maybe there was a good reason for it--simplicity, game balance, or whatever.


Hmm.. an idea to weigh-in on this.

Obviously the goal here is to find a solution outside of RAW as there is A LEVEL OF AMBIGUITY in the rules.

Yes, there are some distinct rules (such as not threatening creatures adjacent to yourself when using a Pole-Arm).

However, one of the 'aspects' of the lack of facing rules in Pathfinder is the representation, that although you 'occupy' the 5' square in which you are located, you are not COMPLETELY encompassing it (hence that humans are not flesh cubes).

What does combat theoretically mean? You are continually moving, dancing, dodging, ducking, shrugging, swinging within your own space.

Same goes for the Ogre - the Ogre is not a distinct 10x10x10 Block. He is more like 8' tall, 6' in shoulder breadth, and likely a few feet of depth. (maybe more for the torso region). However, knees and elbows bend, Weapons flail about in that area, etc.

Let's assume for a moment that not every adventurer is Chuck Norris:

Human Fighter, armed with <insert pole-arm here> swings at ADJACENT ogre. What is he really doing? He's arching back (within his square), and making wide-arcing swings to clinch this Ogre in the thigh, the shoulder, the hind area of the backside. Or coming down with a massive overhand swing to the face.

THAT BEING SAID, what is the Ogre doing during this fight? He's going to see Mr. Puny Fighter, laugh, and reach down (with hand or club) and intercept that swing before it gathers momentum.

What's my point? You ever try to use a fulcrum? If you don't get enough momentum in a swing or kick before pull-back, it fails. (hence why people can walk DIRECTLY behind a horse and prevent themselves from being kicked, as opposed to two feet where the horse and draw and get all kinds of power behind the shot.)

This being said - coming into the conversation I almost wanted to opt for "no, part of the object is far enough away -- let them swing."

However, at this point - I would have to conclude either:

A) You take a penalty to-hit (either -1 for fighting up-hill) or Soft Cover, or
B) No, with the target so close and the nature of combat - all your swings against this target would be instantly negated as a natural course of the fight.


HaeshkaManju wrote:

However, at this point - I would have to conclude either:

A) You take a penalty to-hit (either -1 for fighting up-hill) or Soft Cover, or
B) No, with the target so close and the nature of combat - all your swings against this target would be instantly negated as a natural course of the fight.

So, to be clear, you're proposing house rules in the Rules Questions forum, right?

It's always good to say so.


I don't find the rules ambiguous here. Slightly in satisfying, maybe, but you can't please everybody all the time, and the RAW make for a good combat experience as they are. I don't think a solution outside RAW is necessary or even desirable, but YMMV, so try a different method that allows for giant face-stabbing up close.

Liberty's Edge

No and no again. This is just another example of rule stretching munchkinism.


Martin Kauffman 530 wrote:
No and no again. This is just another example of rule stretching munchkinism.

I've remained quiet after my last post because the arguments have mostly been convincing me to change my opinion, but I hardly think it's munchkining to ask if your pole arm can hit a creature who is both adjacent and also 10' away.

Besides, everyone keeps visualizing it only in terms of stabbing through the Ogre- what about a Glaive? Why couldn't that hit?

I'm accepting that the raw disallows it at this point, but nobody's answered that logical question yet.


blahpers, you don't find the rules ambiguous here? Clearly the Devs do since the example they created clearly allows someone to use the reach=ranged weapon rules even while adjacent to avoid cover.

Either they made a mistake (plausible) OR the RAI is that you can choose to switch if it is beneficial to you.

Note: I am not advocating 'stabbing through a large creature to a square you can reach'. I believe that is not the intent.

However, if you have a target that you are adjacent to and you can use the Reach=Ranged weapon rules to remove cover, then you can do so according to the example.

Now, if that is the case and you can target a specific square of a creature (as the ranged weapon rules indicate) then my example #4 is viable as RAI. But, still not RAW.

- Gauss


Gauss wrote:

blahpers, you don't find the rules ambiguous here? Clearly the Devs do since the example they created clearly allows someone to use the reach=ranged weapon rules even while adjacent to avoid cover.

Either they made a mistake (plausible) OR the RAI is that you can choose to switch if it is beneficial to you.

- Gauss

They made reach work like ranged weapons solely for the purpose of determining cover. I assume that there was a mechanical reason for this, not that they thought the rules were ambiguous--otherwise, they'd have just changed the rules before printing them.

But no, the rules aren't ambiguous. A Small or Medium creature with a reach weapon can hit a foe 10 feet away, but not an adjacent foe. Simple enough that we've never even thought that someone might be read otherwise until this thread.

The diagonal approach shenanigans? Now that was a cluster.


blahpers, so are you saying that...

CRB p195 wrote:
When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from any corner of your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall). When making a melee attack against a target that isn’t adjacent to you (such as with a reach weapon), use the rules for determining cover from ranged attacks.

and

CRB p194 wrote:
#2: Merisiel is adjacent to the ogre, but lines from the corners of her square to the corners of the ogre’s square cross through a wall. The ogre has melee cover from her, but if it attacks her, Merisiel does not have cover from it, as the ogre has reach (so it figures attacks as if attacking with a ranged weapon).

...are not in conflict?

- Gauss


Bizbag wrote:
gustavo iglesias wrote:

fun fact: ogres are 10 feet tall, but they aren't 10 feet wide.

So people is using a gamism (ogres "using" 2x2 squares of space in tge table) to attack them in the rear by claiming it's realist.

So if the Ogre isn't 10 feet wide, what's to stop a character from moving to the "right side" of their OWN square, since humans aren't 5 feet wide, and stabbing towards the back of the ogre, which isn't blocked by the nearest square because they aren't 10 feet wide?

the rules

Quote:

Why can't a human with a halberd chop at the back end of a horse if the horse is in front of him?

because rules
Quote:


Why can't a dwarf with a lucerne hammer smash at an Otyugh's back... half?

see above.

Now, while we are at it:

Why can't a wizard target anything else but a square corner? The rules.

Why can't that dwarf move 7 feet, only 5 or 10? The rules
Why does a horse occupy a 10'x10' space? The rules

Quote:


Quote:
It's so funny when people try to make a game realist :). Everything you fix, it's two things you break
Except it's not a case of "make the game realist". It's a case of "the rule is ambiguous, so I'm going with what makes more realistic sense."

the rule isn't ambiguous, it is cristal clear. You can't target the ogre butt, because you are adjacent to his belly, and you can't attack adjacent foes.

Combat is abstract. This isn't diferent to being unable to move 3, 7 or 13 feet, only 5, 10 or 15. It is also not diferent to being able to attack a guy who is 10 feet away with a 7 feet halberd. Or being unable to target anything with your fireball except thd corner of an imaginary grid that your character can't see, spend your turn frozen while dome one is delaying, or not bring anle to dhare a 5'x5' space with another hhuman being. It makes sense, because it is a GAME, not a simulator.

Quote:
But clearly you aren't here to actually discuss this, you're here to mock people and act like you're better than them.

very poor flame bait

Liberty's Edge

It's not that simple. It's not the raw on the reach weapon but the raw on sneak attacks and round the corner attacks that make me wonder if the question is purposefully ignorant of larger sized creatures. The explanations pretty much assumes medium sized creature unless specifying a different size, so to me it seems obvious this is not RAW, but the part of RAW left to the GM to adjudicate.

Ignoring RAW for a sec I will quote SR and JJ

"on this one where we could, we tried to simplify the 3.5 rules where we could. Line of sight is, as folks have mentioned, a relatively simple term that doesn't really need over explanation and diagrams to make sense."

"So if the game doesn't have a definition for something, and the non-game language you're using *does* have a definition for that something, then use the non-game definition."

Let's define non game language and go back to what is said about a reach attack initially

Attack, Melee Attack, -With a typical reach weapon you can strike opponents 10 feet away but you can't strike adjacent foes ----and see the next part is where their words are important as they define the word adjacent ------- ( those within 5 ft).

Following what they wrote I am going to use my language skills, actually my dictionary and ask what does "within" mean since 5ft is pretty concrete? Merriam says " inside (a certain area or space) used as a function word to indicate enclosure or containment ---meaning all of the creature must be inside of that five foot area to be considered adjacent. That means the game specifically defines creatures as being adjacent only if they are entirely within five feet of you. A medium or small or tiny creature is, a large a huge and so on creature is not.

See that's a problem......

Other definitions of within (as this is a preposition and not an adverb)
6.in or into the interior of or the parts or space enclosed by: within city walls.
7.inside of; in.
8.in the compass or limits of; not beyond: within view; to live within one's income.
9.at or to some point not beyond, as in length or distance; not farther than: within a radius of a mile.
10.at or to some amount or degree not exceeding: within two degrees of freezing.

The rules are pretty explicit that adjacent means within five feet, rules creators say use dictionary where we have not defined words, dictionary says within means not beyond a certain point. Result.....

adjacent foes are ones that are no further than 5 feet away.

If we correct this and argue that within could also mean that a thing can be within five feet and outside five feet. For instance "the rope is within my grasp" does not mean that all the rope is 1 foot away just the nearest part of the rope is within that boundary of grasp. But the top of the rope is outside of my grasp. That means a thing can be both adjacent to my grasp and not adjacent.

Since it seems the part of RAW that is not defined is the language itself and the creators say use your language's definitions for words, and those definitions would suggest a thing can be both adjacent and not adjacent. RAW says you can only attack things non adjacent, a thing can be both adjacent and non adjacent, so it can also be a thing that can be attacked and not attacked I would say that RAW says anything that has a square that is not adjacent to you can be attacked with a reach weapon. Until I see otherwise I will use their words as my guidance and their words pretty much explicitly say exactly that

(not to mention in the "attack around a corner" example on 194 they define reach in a way that suggest a foes non adjacent facing body can be used to figure attacks as if a ranged weapon)

That also corrects the ridiculously vague notion that a rogue cannot "reach" the vitals in an adjacent creature that is huge or larger. Because now the GM can say the portion that is vital is not adjacent.


Gauss wrote:

blahpers, so are you saying that...

CRB p195 wrote:
When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from any corner of your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall). When making a melee attack against a target that isn’t adjacent to you (such as with a reach weapon), use the rules for determining cover from ranged attacks.

and

CRB p194 wrote:
#2: Merisiel is adjacent to the ogre, but lines from the corners of her square to the corners of the ogre’s square cross through a wall. The ogre has melee cover from her, but if it attacks her, Merisiel does not have cover from it, as the ogre has reach (so it figures attacks as if attacking with a ranged weapon).

...are not in conflict?

- Gauss

What is the conflict exactly?


Gauss wrote:

blahpers, so are you saying that...

CRB p195 wrote:
When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from any corner of your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall). When making a melee attack against a target that isn’t adjacent to you (such as with a reach weapon), use the rules for determining cover from ranged attacks.

and

CRB p194 wrote:
#2: Merisiel is adjacent to the ogre, but lines from the corners of her square to the corners of the ogre’s square cross through a wall. The ogre has melee cover from her, but if it attacks her, Merisiel does not have cover from it, as the ogre has reach (so it figures attacks as if attacking with a ranged weapon).

...are not in conflict?

- Gauss

No. The first paragraph states that you use the ranged attack rules for determining cover with reach weapons. The second paragraph states that you use the ranged attack rules for determining cover with reach weapons.

Edit: I see the confusion. The first paragraph states that you use melee rules for adjacent targets, and the implication is that this applies even with reach weapons--actually, the implication is that you can't do this at all with reach weapons, so it doesn't really address attacking adjacent targets with reach weapons.

An ogre can attack adjacent foes with its "reach" weapon (its natural reach), so it represents an exception to the "adjacent target = melee rules" rule. It admittedly could have been worded better, but it isn't a flat-out conflict given that they used the example to illustrate the exception.


qmslager wrote:
Following what they wrote I am going to use my language skills, actually my dictionary and ask what does "within" mean since 5ft is pretty concrete? Merriam says " inside (a certain area or space) used as a function word to indicate enclosure or containment ---meaning all of the creature must be inside of that five foot area to be considered adjacent. That means the game specifically defines creatures as being adjacent only if they are entirely within five feet of you. A medium or small or tiny creature is, a large a huge and so on creature is not.

If we're going to resort to dictionary definitions, allow me to invoke mathematics, at the risk of a catgirl somewhere.

"Within" does not apply to the ogre. It applies to the distance between the PC and the ogre.

A creature is within five feet if you if their distance from you is within the interval [0, 5] (measured in feet). The distance between two objects is typically defined as the distance between the two closest points on each object. Pathfinder uses grid squares as its smallest points for the purposes of tactics (spells targeting corners notwithstanding), so we use the distance between the two closest grid squares of the PC and the ogre. Since they're adjacent, that distance is five feet, which is within [0, 5] feet.

Or we could stop being pedantic and just accept that the rules clearly intend (indeed, state, though I doubt I'll convince you) that an ogre adjacent to you is, in fact, adjacent to you, and that the rules for reach weapons clearly state that you cannot attack a creature adjacent to you with a reach weapon.


blahpers, the first quote I provided specifically states that if you are adjacent you use the melee cover rules. The second sentence states that if NOT adjacent you use the ranged cover rules.

There is nothing about reach weapons as opposed to natural reach in there. Either you are adjacent and using the melee cover rules or you are not adjacent and using the reach = ranged cover rules.

Now, in the example on CRB p194 Merisiel is adjacent (even stated as adjacent) and yet, the Ogre uses the reach=ranged rules to determine cover rather than the melee rules to determine cover.

The two are in conflict and clearly the example is against RAW.

However, if, and I do mean if, the example is RAI then it means that you can choose to use adjacent melee or reach=ranged rules as most beneficial to you since that is what the Ogre did in the example.

- Gauss


The pg 195 example clearly mentions a reach weapon. The pg 194 example is referring to the orge's natural reach.

CRB p195 wrote:
When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from any corner of your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall). When making a melee attack against a target that isn’t adjacent to you (such as with a reach weapon), use the rules for determining cover from ranged attacks.
CRB p194 wrote:
#2: Merisiel is adjacent to the ogre, but lines from the corners of her square to the corners of the ogre’s square cross through a wall. The ogre has melee cover from her, but if it attacks her, Merisiel does not have cover from it, as the ogre has reach (so it figures attacks as if attacking with a ranged weapon).


Gauss wrote:

blahpers, the first quote I provided specifically states that if you are adjacent you use the melee cover rules. The second sentence states that if NOT adjacent you use the ranged cover rules.

There is nothing about reach weapons as opposed to natural reach in there. Either you are adjacent and using the melee cover rules or you are not adjacent and using the reach = ranged cover rules.

Now, in the example on CRB p194 Merisiel is adjacent (even stated as adjacent) and yet, the Ogre uses the reach=ranged rules to determine cover rather than the melee rules to determine cover.

The two are in conflict and clearly the example is against RAW.

However, if, and I do mean if, the example is RAI then it means that you can choose to use adjacent melee or reach=ranged rules as most beneficial to you since that is what the Ogre did in the example.

- Gauss

How does it mean that? The example is RAW, as it's written in the rules. Even if it wasn't, it does not follow that you can simply say "screw it, anything goes". Especially since the ogre has natural reach, which is explicily allowed to hit adjacent squares.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
inhuman_candyman wrote:

I fixed this whole problem with my character with one level of monk. Using a reach weapon and the lunge feat. I threaten everything 5 and 10 feet away with my knees as an unarmed strike and threaten 10 and 15 ft with my glaive.

Lunge work only during your turn, so you threaten that area only during your turn.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
KainPen wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:

If you cannot stick glaive into the Ogres bellybutton because its too close, why would you expect to be stab him in the rump with it?

because there is no facing in pathfinder. That could very well be his face at that end. Hard to tell all big creatures are so ugly.

I am not sure why pathfinder never implment facing in pathfinder, it is crucial to any combat simulation game. It existed in 1st and 2nd edtion d&d. It would clear up a lot of issuse with reach weapons, flanking, sneak attack, this little cover bit.

per raw you can't threaten the large creature, because he next to you but you can still attack targets 10ft away, techical the creature is 10ft away. because there is no facing so there is no front of the creature so I don't think it could give yourself soft cover. the way it is that 10ft square could ribs or elbow of creature that stands 15ft tall. and you could very well hit that with a reach weapon. It those spots you could never hit with a sword or none reach weapon. So I would say it is a normal valid target at my table. But you would provoke and AOO for attacking that distance. Much like a whip.

Because it would require things like:

- defining if your character is right handed or left handed;
- having a shield increase your AC only to the front and left side;
- different attack bonuses for front, side rear;
- different perception modifiers for front, side rear and the kind of sense used;
- etc.

Interesting? Yes, complicated? Yes, Time consuming? extremely YES.


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

Ok, setting aside all the rest of this thread for a moment, once again, here is why the example on CRB p194 violates the Cover rules on CRB p195.

A) CRB p195 states that if adjacent you draw lines from your corners to the target's corner goes through a wall.

CRB p195 wrote:
When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from any corner of your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall).

B) CRB p195 also states that if NOT adjacent you use the ranged weapon rules to determine cover.

CRB p195 (one sentence later) wrote:
When making a melee attack against a target that isn’t adjacent to you (such as with a reach weapon), use the rules for determining cover from ranged attacks.

Then, in the example on CRB p194 we have:

1) Ogre is adjacent to Merisiel.
2) Ogre is using the ranged weapon rules ("B") to determine cover to an adjacent target.

#2 is clearly in violation of the cover rules on CRB p195 but that is what the example states. The Ogre should be using the adjacent cover rule and not the non-adjacent cover rule and Merisiel should have a +4 cover bonus to AC.

The Cover rules on CRB p195 are not specific to a reach weapon or natural reach. Yes, it provides an example of reach weapon by saying "such as with a reach weapon" but natural reach does not change that if adjacent, you use the melee cover rules and if not adjacent you use the ranged cover rules.

Now, if anyone can show me where natural reach has an exception that allows it to use the ranged cover rules while adjacent I would love to see it.

As it stands, the example on CRB p194 is in violation of the rules on CRB p195.

- Gauss


But what if it was you were fighting a gelatinous cube that actually was a ten foot box? WHAT THEN?


Gauss wrote:

Ok, setting aside all the rest of this thread for a moment, once again, here is why the example on CRB p194 violates the Cover rules on CRB p195.

A) CRB p195 states that if adjacent you draw lines from your corners to the target's corner goes through a wall.

CRB p195 wrote:
When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from any corner of your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall).

B) CRB p195 also states that if NOT adjacent you use the ranged weapon rules to determine cover.

CRB p195 (one sentence later) wrote:
When making a melee attack against a target that isn’t adjacent to you (such as with a reach weapon), use the rules for determining cover from ranged attacks.

Then, in the example on CRB p194 we have:

1) Ogre is adjacent to Merisiel.
2) Ogre is using the ranged weapon rules ("B") to determine cover to an adjacent target.

#2 is clearly in violation of the cover rules on CRB p195 but that is what the example states. The Ogre should be using the adjacent cover rule and not the non-adjacent cover rule and Merisiel should have a +4 cover bonus to AC.

The Cover rules on CRB p195 are not specific to a reach weapon or natural reach. Yes, it provides an example of reach weapon by saying "such as with a reach weapon" but natural reach does not change that if adjacent, you use the melee cover rules and if not adjacent you use the ranged cover rules.

Now, if anyone can show me where natural reach has an exception that allows it to use the ranged cover rules while adjacent I would love to see it.

As it stands, the example on CRB p194 is in violation of the rules on CRB p195.

- Gauss

Ah, okay I see what you're getting at. Yeah, I'm not sure they go into natural reach all that much in the CRB, do they? I can see what they are doing but I don't think they explain it as explicitly as one would like. The orge gets the ranged rules because he is not attacking from the back of his square (with his butt, as you might say) so cover between you and "his butt" doesn't help you. (But, yeah I guess this is a little off topic)


Durngrun, you are still letting the rest of the thread cloud your thinking. :)
His 'butt' has nothing to do with it.

Diagram:

XXM
12W
34W

X = open space
1234 = different corners of the Ogre.
M = Merisiel
W = Wall

Adjacent cover rule: Draw a line from corner 4 to Merisiel. It goes through a wall and therefore, using the adjacent cover rule, Merisiel has cover.
Note: Corners, 1, 2, and 3 are clear but the Adjacent cover rule states that if ANY of your corners go through a wall the target has cover.

Reach (ranged) cover rule: Choose a corner and draw a line from that corner to all 4 of the target's corners. If that does not go through a wall or obstacle (such as a person) there is no cover.
So, we can draw a line from corner 1 or 2 and not have cover to Merisiel.

The Ogre should (by the rules on CRB p195) be using the adjacent rule since the Ogre is adjacent to Merisiel.

Since this is really turning into it's own issue I will create a new thread.

- Gauss


Gauss wrote:

Durngrun, you are still letting the rest of the thread cloud your thinking. :)

His 'butt' has nothing to do with it.

Diagram:

XXM
12W
34W

X = open space
1234 = different corners of the Ogre.
M = Merisiel
W = Wall

Adjacent cover rule: Draw a line from corner 4 to Merisiel. It goes through a wall and therefore, using the adjacent cover rule, Merisiel has cover.
Note: Corners, 1, 2, and 3 are clear but the Adjacent cover rule states that if ANY of your corners go through a wall the target has cover.

Reach (ranged) cover rule: Choose a corner and draw a line from that corner to all 4 of the target's corners. If that does not go through a wall or obstacle (such as a person) there is no cover.
So, we can draw a line from corner 1 or 2 and not have cover to Merisiel.

The Ogre should (by the rules on CRB p195) be using the adjacent rule since the Ogre is adjacent to Merisiel.

Since this is really turning into it's own issue I will create a new thread.

- Gauss

Oh no, sorry if I wasn't clear but I agree with you. I merely added what I thought was the reasoning. If he has to check from every corner, then he is penalized for being 10 x 10.


darth_gator wrote:
The large creature is both adjacent to you AND 10' away...

This. Also, people seem to think only in 2D. The large creature (at least, if "tall" and not "long"), is not only in a square 10 ft away from you on the horizontal axis. Its head (or whatever) is also towering ABOVE you. Without the rest of its body particularly in the way to give "soft cover" or any other nonsense.

DM: "How are you attacking the adjacent giant with your longspear?"
Player: "Uh...by stabbing it in the face?"
DM: "Oh, right... 3 dimensions..."

EDIT: Not surprised others have already brought this up, now that I'm actually scrolling through the posts.


Diego Rossi wrote:
KainPen wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:

If you cannot stick glaive into the Ogres bellybutton because its too close, why would you expect to be stab him in the rump with it?

because there is no facing in pathfinder. That could very well be his face at that end. Hard to tell all big creatures are so ugly.

I am not sure why pathfinder never implment facing in pathfinder, it is crucial to any combat simulation game. It existed in 1st and 2nd edtion d&d. It would clear up a lot of issuse with reach weapons, flanking, sneak attack, this little cover bit.

per raw you can't threaten the large creature, because he next to you but you can still attack targets 10ft away, techical the creature is 10ft away. because there is no facing so there is no front of the creature so I don't think it could give yourself soft cover. the way it is that 10ft square could ribs or elbow of creature that stands 15ft tall. and you could very well hit that with a reach weapon. It those spots you could never hit with a sword or none reach weapon. So I would say it is a normal valid target at my table. But you would provoke and AOO for attacking that distance. Much like a whip.

Because it would require things like:

- defining if your character is right handed or left handed;
- having a shield increase your AC only to the front and left side;
- different attack bonuses for front, side rear;
- different perception modifiers for front, side rear and the kind of sense used;
- etc.

Interesting? Yes, complicated? Yes, Time consuming? extremely YES.

Not so much

1. All Pathfinders characters are ambidextrous. so that does not matter

2. Front and both sides not necessarily left. Core rules since D&D depict combat as abstract free flowing and your character is constantly moving. so turning and shifting your body could lead to even a left handed shield covering your right side. only thing is your primary focus is on targets in the direction you are face.

3. yes rear would need a few special rules you could do. We did this all the time in old d&d. It really not that complicated. the rules where sides no shield bonus allowed, rear same as side with +2 bonus to hit and no dex bonus. (This whole thing would empower rogue and make them not suck so much) This how Rouges used to get sneak attack(back stab back in the day)if they got to your rear. But you don't need to take it that far. You can simplify it even more by letting the shield bonus stay on sides. so you only have special rule for the rear attacks.

4. Why would you need special perception rules for facing, there never was before. I would think when you are making a perception check you have a reason to do so you would be looking and listen in all direction constantly looking around changing you facing. The only time facing needs to come in to play is during actual combat.

They actual already have rules for this in use already for averting ones eyes from gaze attack could be used for rear if you really wanted to. it already exist and is in play. There is already a ton of rules for special perception checks and feats.

I really don't think spells would really be effected,some of them use it already, like detect magic. 60ft cone coming from caster, in direction they are looking/concentrating on.

not to mention uncanny dodge make you immune to and flaws from facing already.

All that is need from facing is to determine a rear and it would cause grid rotation, which fixes the whole reach weapon down a 5ft diagonal hall way thing.

Interesting? Yes, a bit more Realistic yes, logical yes, requires tactics yes. Possibly making a really weak class a little better differently. complicated? No is only a complicated if you make if overly complex, Time consuming? again only if you make it complex. It does not have to be.

Here a quick facing write up rule for you.

A character may change the direction she is facing as non action during her turn. After determining her final facing direction the character rear is defined. The character loses any shield bonus to his rear and grants a +2 flank bonus attack rolls (this gives sneak attack attackers) to targets that attack from that direction. The character may make AOO to targets at her rear should the be provoke but that target of the AOO is granted Concealment bonus for those attacks.(per averting ones eyes)

Facing would do a lot to empower the game without making a lot of changes. Stand still becomes more useful as a feat you could use it to prevent people from getting to your rear. so does side step ect. because they could change the direction of where your rear is. This would empower lots of weak feats and actual make them useful and maybe even worth having because they have a useful tactical reason for having them now.


StreamOfTheSky, the Large creature is only 5 feet away even up and diagonally.

Top down view:

12
34P

In this view P is 5' away from the large creature's 2nd and 4th squares.

Side view: (Dotted line is the ground under both)

AB
CDP
-----

In this view P is 5' away from the large creature's "B" and "D" squares (head and feet).

At the co-ordinates of 2B the distance is only 1 cube away (diagonally up at an angle) it is only 5' away. You would have to go 2 cubes away for it to be 10' (or 15' if it was diagonal twice).

- Gauss


For what it is worth, here is the separate thread.

- Gauss


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

The way I handle it in my own games.

The below is an overhead view of 3 guys trying to kill a horse.

.

XXBXX
XHHXX
XHHCX
XXXAX

X = Empty
H = Horse
Y = Attacker Y
Z = Attacker Z

A) Now, if I'm standing near the horses head, I can absolutely shove a spear into his flank from there. Because I'm catty-corner to him slightly. Again, talking real life. If I'm 2 feet from his bridle diagonally, and have a 5 foot spear, I can absolutely shove that at a shallow angle into his flank.

B) I can't attack the horse from here with my spear, I'm right on top of him, and I have no room to thrust. So I have to back up 5 feet to attack.

C) Same as B, I can't shove it into him because his head is in the way and I can't get a good thrust in, so I have to step back and stab him in the head.

Next Scenario
XXXXXX XXXXCX
XXXXXX XXOOXX
XXOOXX AXOOBX
AXOOBX XXXXXX

In this case, this is a sideways view of two guys trying to attack an Ogre, with an overhead next to it (the first is side view, the second is overhead view.

X = Empty SPace
O = Ogre (10x10 tall)
A = Attacker A
B = Attacker B
C = Attacker C (Hidden by B in side view)

A) Can attack Ogre at foot or chest level, no issues.

B) Cannot attack head or feet (head is within 5 feet)

C) Can attack Ogre's head (Diagonal in two directions), or can attack at an oblique angle in front of B (can't spear the near knee, but could shove it into the other knee if the closer one is not in the way.

The easiest way to handle all this is a soft cover penalty for oblique attacks.

Note that this is not RAW, but based on previous dev comments and the rules for firing arrows at large or larger creatures, I think it's RAI.


mdt, could you explain how "diagonal in two directions" equates to 10' distance?

- Gauss


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Gauss wrote:

mdt, could you explain how diagonal in two directions equates to 10' distance?

- Gauss

Basic math.

When I go diagonal on the following :

AXXXB
XXXXX
XXXXX
CXXXD

Now, assuming we're looking down on the above square (assume it's 10 feet from B to D, and A to C and A to B and C to D, a 10 ft square).

The distance from A to D = Square Root of A^2 + B^2

X = v/10^2 + 10^2
X = v/100 + 100
X = v/200
X = 14.14 (why we consider a diagonal 15 ft)

Now, we go from the line A-D (14.14) to the top corner of A (10 ft above A for our cube)

X = v/10^2 + 14.14^2
X = v/100 + 200
X = v/300
X = 17.3

So, going diagonal twice is a longer distance than Diagonal once.


I won't draw a diagram but I though it was worth running the numbers for a shorter distance.

(Assume it's 5 feet from B to D, and A to C and A to B and C to D, a 5 ft square).

The distance from A to D = Square Root of A^2 + B^2

X = v/5^2 + 5^2
X = v/25 + 25
X = v/50
X = 7.07

Now, we go from the line A-D (7.07) to the top corner of A (5 ft above A for our cube)

X = v/5^2 + 7.07^2
X = v/25 + 50
X = v/70
X = 8.36

A five foot diagonal-in-one-direction is 7.07 feet. This is closer to 5 feet than 10 feet.
A five foot diagonal-in-two-directions is 8.36 feet. This is closer to 10 feet than 5 feet.
I don't know if there's anything in RAW about it though.


StreamOfTheSky wrote:
darth_gator wrote:
The large creature is both adjacent to you AND 10' away...

This. Also, people seem to think only in 2D. The large creature (at least, if "tall" and not "long"), is not only in a square 10 ft away from you on the horizontal axis. Its head (or whatever) is also towering ABOVE you. Without the rest of its body particularly in the way to give "soft cover" or any other nonsense.

DM: "How are you attacking the adjacent giant with your longspear?"
Player: "Uh...by stabbing it in the face?"
DM: "Oh, right... 3 dimensions..."

EDIT: Not surprised others have already brought this up, now that I'm actually scrolling through the posts.

I actually did bring it up stating that you should be able to use a reach weapon adjacent to a larger the medium sized creature provided that it is longer the the reach weapon it self. I suggested you then attack it's upper regions and do get a penalty for fighting upwards of -1 to hit (similar to the +1 when fighting down on someone).

But thanx for reminding everyone this solution as well StreamOfTheSky

As a GM I would only allow an attack with a reach weapon on a square containing the large creature if the creature wasn't in the way of the square itself. So you can't strike the backside of the creature from the front position. You could strike the creature from a side square 10 ft away from yourself provided no square of the creature is between you and your target. Basically said if one of the creature squares provides cover for the square under attack you can't make the attack as it's adjacent and if you can attack a square of the creature without attacking it from cover (provided by a sqaure of the creature) you can attack even though it's technically adjacent.
If the creature is taller then your polearm then you can attack it's upper regions at -1 to hit.
But that's my opinion and may be in conflict with RAW


Ahhh, I didn't think to apply Pythagoras three times.

math:

Horizontal Diagonal = A+B
Vertical Diagonal = C+D

{[(A^2+B^2)^0.5]^2+[(C^2+D^2)^0.5]^2}^0.5
= {[(5^2+5^2)^0.5]^2+[(5^2+5^2)^0.5]^2}^0.5
= {[(25+25)^0.5]^2+[(25+25)^0.5]^2}^0.5
= {[50^0.5]^2+[50^0.5]^2}^0.5
= {7.07^2+7.07^2}^0.5
= {50+50}^0.5
= 100^0.5
= 10

Yes, I could have shortened that by combining the square root and square first, but not everyone may follow that.

Hmmm, while math-wise that is correct I'm not sure if that is the intent. Then again, there is virtually no support for three dimensional combat.

I'll have to think about it. If using the house rule where you can use a reach weapon against a specific portion of a creature if it is far enough this basically allows anyone to stand adjacent to a Large creature and attack it at an angle. It doesn't have to be the four corners, it can be adjacent anywhere and just attack something at an angle where there are two diagonals involved.

- Gauss


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Gauss wrote:

Ahhh, I didn't think to apply Pythagoras three times.

** spoiler omitted **

Hmmm, while math-wise that is correct I'm not sure if that is the intent. Then again, there is virtually no support for three dimensional combat.

I'll have to think about it. If using the house rule where you can use a reach weapon against a specific portion of a creature if it is far enough this basically allows anyone to stand adjacent to a Large creature and attack it at an angle. It doesn't have to be the four corners, it can be adjacent anywhere and just attack something at an angle where there are two diagonals involved.

- Gauss

Actually, that's not correct. You applied it 3 times to 5ft cubes, but you have to apply it 4 times (twice per cube, 2 cubes, 2x2 = 4). That's what I did up above with mine, I just did the larger 10x10 instead of 2 5ft cubes touching at the corners.

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