Rogues and concealment (from spells like Blur)


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DM_Blake wrote:

You cannot sneak attack just because you're stealthy.

You can only sneak attack when you flank an enemy or when that enemy is denied his DEX bonus to AC. Stealth does neither. Admittedly, you may be able to use Stealth to get into a flanking position, or to sneak up on someone out of combat so you can sneak attack in a surprise round while he is flat-footed.

So the cloak of displacement will do nothing for your sneak attacks.

Some DMs (like me) will also not allow Stealth from this kind of concealment. My reasoning is that the Blur spell says "The subject's outline appears blurred, shifting, and wavering." That specifically means the enemy can see you, but it's hard to exactly know where you are which makes a chance for attacks against you to miss. Furthermore, this spell has no effect if the opponent cannot see you (if you're invisible, or it's pitch black, or you're in an Obscuring Mist, etc.) which means that for this spell to work, the opponent CAN and DOES, in fact MUST, see your blurry self with your wavering outline, which in my opinion means you are still in his plain sight. Stealth rules say you cannot attempt stealth while being observed.

That's just one interpretation. The alternative interpretation is that the spell says it grants concealment and stealth works with concealment.

I see these two interpretations as mutually exclusive and both of them are directly written in the rule book. Some DMs see it the way I do, others don't. It's something you should keep in mind for PFS - you might be at a table one day where the DM says you cannot use the cloak to make a Stealth check, and he would be right (and wrong) according to the rulebook, so it's really his call.

(Unless there's been an official ruling on this of which I'm unaware)

DM_Blake, while by strict RAW, you are correct in that Stealth doesn't blatantly allow Sneak Attacks; I can not put enough emphasis on the fact that it is RAI. It has been RAI since D&D 3.5 and is unfortunate that they have yet to codify it into solid RAW. But there is enough RAI behind it to convince most people that Stealth is supposed to grant Sneak Attack. I've never had a DM that didn't allow SA damage from Stealth.

THIS is what D&D 3.5 FAQ had to say about it.

3.5 FAQ wrote:

If a rogue has successfully hidden behind some bushes and fires an arrow at a target less than 30 feet away from her, does she deal sneak attack damage?

Yes. The rules don’t come right out and say this, but a character who has successfully hidden from an opponent is considered invisible for the purpose of rendering that foe flatfooted, and thus deals sneak attack damage.

That paired with the push to have it written into PF RAW should be enough to convince someone IMO. Apparently codifying it into RAW was a bigger project than originally thought so it's been put on hold unfortunately. Obviously when you are DMing how you arbitrate the rules, RAW, and RAI is up to you. I've never played under a DM who didn't allow SA from Stealth.

This isn't intended to start a RAW vs RAI argument with you. It's just how I see it and how I prefer to play and rule my own games.

.....

LINK to the original WotC FAQ post. For what it's worth.


The whole "Concealment enables Stealth" vs. "You Can't Stealth in Bright/Normal Light (unless Invisible or with Cover) but Dim Light (and Darkness) Enables Stealth" thing is just weird, the mention of Concealment (in general) in the Skill seems pretty much superfluous to the extent that the Light & Vision rules supersede it. Maybe the only case where the Skill description makes any difference is when you are in Dim Light/Darkness, and the enemy has Low-Light Vision/Darkvision. In that case, they don't suffer from any Concealment from the Lighting Conditions, but because it isn't Bright/Normal Light, you are allowed to use 'any' Concealment to enter Stealth, e.g. Blur, Fog, Wind Stance, etc.

Even though the rules for Low-Light Vision otherwise pretty much say that LLVision types TREAT low-light vision areas AS normal lighting areas, which would negate that function... But that aspect of the LLVision rules are kind of borked per RAW (changing effects of Dim Lighting on LLVision character's Perceptions vs. changing Dim Light into Normal Light for LLVision characters or changing bright/normal/dim lighting radiuses for light sources depending on the type of vision you have). The RAW combines at least 2 of those different paradigms without seeming to notice that there are 2 different paradigms in play which could potentially 'stack' with each other since the mechanics are very different. So depending on your interpretation there, there either may or may not be some corner cases where the Stealth Skill/Lighting rules have some reason for simultaneously existing, vs. the Lighting rules simply making the Stealth Skill wording superfluous re: Concealment.

About the attack breaking Stealth thing, I always understood/played that to mean Stealth is broken AFTER an attack, but the RAW doesn't say that.

About Stealth enabling Sneak Attack, that is just a specific case of the main problem of Stealth not actually saying what a succesful check DOES. But that really comes down to the fact that Stealth is not it's own sub-system, it is a unity with Perception. Perception states:

Quote:
Perception has a number of uses, the most common of which is an opposed check versus an opponent's Stealth check to notice the opponent and avoid being surprised. If you are successful, you notice the opponent and can react accordingly. If you fail, your opponent can take a variety of actions, including sneaking past you and attacking you.

If the Perception fails (with or without Stealth, Stealth just ups the DC), then the Perceiver doesn't notice the Stealther and is surprised by them. That pretty much equates to being Flat-Footed IMHO, but that isn't actually spelled out (even though it wouldn't take much more words to do so).

Where does all this lead? Stealth/Perception/Lighting is borked. Which Paizo seems to agree with since they tried to re-write it. Who knows why they never issued any FAQs to remediate the borked RAW when their planned new revision to RAW fell thru.


Is there a rule that clearly state that you do not gain dex AC against an opponent you cannot see?


Quandary wrote:
The whole "Concealment enables Stealth" vs. "You Can't Stealth in Bright/Normal Light (unless Invisible or with Cover) but Dim Light (and Darkness) Enables Stealth" thing is just weird, the mention of Concealment (in general) in the Skill seems pretty much superfluous to the extent that the Light & Vision rules supersede it. Maybe the only case where the Skill description makes any difference is when you are in Dim Light/Darkness, and the enemy has Low-Light Vision/Darkvision. In that case, they don't suffer from any Concealment from the Lighting Conditions, but because it isn't Bright/Normal Light, you are allowed to use 'any' Concealment to enter Stealth, e.g. Blur, Fog, Wind Stance, etc. Even though the rules for Low-Light Vision otherwise pretty much say that LLVision types TREAT low-light vision areas AS normal lighting areas, which would negate that function... But that aspect of the LLVision rules are kind of borked per RAW (changing effects of Dim Lighting on LLVision character's Perceptions vs. changing Dim Light into Normal Light for LLVision characters or changing bright/normal/dim lighting radiuses for light sources depending on the type of vision you have). The RAW combines at least 2 of those different paradigms without seeming to notice that there are 2 different paradigms in play which could potentially 'stack' with each other since the mechanics are very different.

1. Windstance definitely doesn't qualify for granting a Stealth Check. It specifically says under benifit:

PRD Windstance wrote:
Benefit: If you move more than 5 feet this turn, you gain 20% concealment for 1 round against ranged attacks.

You only gain 20% concealment against attacks made with ranged weapons, it's not true concealment. Like Blur it only makes you harder to target, not actually any harder to see.

2. Fog Cloud should work to grant Stealth checks:

PRD Fog Cloud wrote:
A bank of fog billows out from the point you designate. The fog obscures all sight, including darkvision, beyond 5 feet. A creature within 5 feet has concealment (attacks have a 20% miss chance). Creatures farther away have total concealment (50% miss chance, and the attacker can't use sight to locate the target).

This source of concealment actually makes you impossible to visually aquire past 5' away. It grants similar circumstances as dim light, darkness, or invisibility.

3. Aside from the vision and light rules there are other reasons I don't think Blur should allow Stealth checks, based on the wording of the spell iteslf.

PRD Blur wrote:
The subject's outline appears blurred, shifting, and wavering.

It doesn't make you impossible to visually aquire, it simply makes you harder to accurately make out. This is similar to dim light so you could come to the conclusion that it works like dim light. Even if you did come to that conclusion, you still can't use Stealth if someone is actively observing you.

Furthermore:

PRD Blur wrote:
Opponents that cannot see the subject ignore the spell's effect (though fighting an unseen opponent carries penalties of its own).

If you allow Stealth based on Blur you are in a way creating a paradox. Because once under Stealth they become unseen, and (according to the spell description) lose the concealment that is granted by Blur. When they lose concealment they no longer qualify for Stealth.


Nearyn wrote:
Is there a rule that clearly state that you do not gain dex AC against an opponent you cannot see?

Yes.

If your attacker is "invisible" then you lose your DEX against that attacker and he gets +2 on his attack roll. This requires the spell Invisibility or equivalent.

If you are "blind" you lose your DEX against all attacks.

Blind-Fight can eliminate both penalties, allowing you to fight while blind and to fight invisible opponents.

Both of those situations remove any possibility of you seeing your attacker. Zero chance of seeing him out of the corner of your eye, even if it's at the last possible second. Nothing you can do to protect yourself.

Stealth doesn't give you that advantage. You must have cover or concealment to use Stealth and you cannot use it while attacking, so the instant you leave your cover or concealment you no longer have Stealth. Also, the instant you begin any kind of attack you lose stealth. Even when "Sniping" (note that to use the sniping rule, you specifically make an attack and then, after that, you make your attempt to re-Stealth, not before, so during your attack you don't even know if later this round you will successfully re-Stealth, so how could any benefit from Stealth be applied when you know you lost stealth and you don't yet know whether you will have Stealth later? - not that it matters since you cannot attack with Stealth, so the instant you begin to fire that arrow or throw that dagger or whatever, you're visible).

I didn't want to turn this into a debate about the RAW Stealth rules. I just wanted to answer the OP's question since he specifically asked about Blur and Rogue sneak attacks.

For the record, I also allow sneak attacks from stealth, as a houserule. The important thing to know in the "Rules Quesions" forum is that the RAW disallow it, regardless of how obvious it seems to everyone, or how many of us houserule it.


@Blake: It's all good :)

Though I want to point something out.

invisibility wrote:
The spell ends if the subject attacks any creature
Stealth wrote:
It's impossible to use Stealth while attacking

Seems to me like both effects(Stealth/invisibility) just end when you make an attack. And naturally, since the enemy was unaware of you when you declared that attack, he loses his dex bonus to AC, against the first to-hit roll, meaning precision damage applies.

So by my reading, it does not appear that there is any difference between attacking from stealth, and attacking from invisibility.

I know you said you did not want to discuss the RAW, so I do not expect you to. Just felt like dropping my two cents into the basket :)

-Nearyn


relevant to the OP: if you want to save 22k, you can get 20% concealment from mistmail. Seems kinda broken that an item worth [a bit over] 2k can do nearly the same sort of thing as an item worth 24k. I guess the huge and significant difference is with mistmail you can't wear any armor, although with mage armor or bracer of armor(assuming that's allowed), that wouldn't be as big of a deal.
Personally I always considered it rather strange that a misted (but maybe blurred too) character could be stealthed. In my opinion the concealment has-to/should-be caused by something that doesn't move with the character/creature; otherwise, observers would notice the movement since the concealing entity is moving as well (although that's harder to justify for blur than it is for mist)

Shadowlord wrote:
3.5 FAQ wrote:

If a rogue has successfully hidden behind some bushes and fires an arrow at a target less than 30 feet away from her, does she deal sneak attack damage?

Yes. The rules don’t come right out and say this, but a character who has successfully hidden from an opponent is considered invisible for the purpose of rendering that foe flatfooted, and thus deals sneak attack damage.

That paired with the push to have it written into PF RAW should be enough to convince someone IMO. Apparently codifying it into RAW was a bigger project than originally thought so it's been put on hold unfortunately. Obviously when you are DMing how you arbitrate the rules, RAW, and RAI is up to you. I've never played under a DM who didn't allow SA from Stealth.

This isn't intended to start a RAW vs RAI argument with you. It's just how I see it and how I prefer to play and rule my own games.

While I agree that stealth should work for sneak attacks in melee, I think it's dumb/silly that people can either have or lose their dex bonuses vs arrow/bolt attacks at all. The arrows/bolts/throw-weapons aren't invisible when they are flying at the target, so the target should still be able to avoid them. Conversely, arrow/bolt[/sling] attacks are so fast that you'd have be be rather inhuman to dodge them, especially at close range, so it doesn't make much sense to have dex bonus to any arrow/bolt[/sling-bullet] attack. Maybe at best half dex bonus.


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If sniping breaks stealth, what exactly is the benefit of sniping?

If stealth is broken, the enemy will know where you are. Using stealth immediately after a ranged attack is a move action. You must already be under some form of cover or concealment to begin sniping at all. After taking the shot, you'll still be in the same place, under the same manner of cover or concealment as before the shot. What's the difference between just "being there" and "being there under stealth", if your target is aware of your position in both cases?

I know, you could make a 5 foot step and be one square away from where the target saw you 'de-stealth', but for the sake of the argument, let's assume you didn't.

What does sniping do, exactly?


I absolutely do not think that stealth should work for melee. If you are fighting someone, you aren't going to suddenly lose them. Sneak Attacks are attacks made at the soft spots on a target that are vulnerable when the target isn't aware of your presence, or is distracted such that you can sneak up an get them in their squishy places. That's why it is feint that grants you your sneak attack damage: you're drawing your foe in one direction, and stabbing them quickly in the openings in their armor in response.

Furthermore, losing your dexterity bonus to your armor class is like saying that you weren't able to move out of the way of the attack. If you can't see it, it might miss, but you certainly are not going to move out of the way consciously. Thus, no dex bonus to AC. If, however, you even know the direction a projectile could be coming from, you can at least try to move out of the way.

Oh, Forseti, by its very nature, sniping is really a one-shot deal. You sit in one place for ages waiting for your shot, you take it, you get out. Targets aren't meant to survive a sniping.


@Forseti:

I read your question as a flavour question, so I'll give you a flavour answer:

The way I see it, if a person is aware of you, and able to follow your movement (and not caught flat footed :) ) he will be able to throw himself out of the way of your arrows, meaning he gets the benefit of dex to his AC.

But if you snipe, even if you are in the same square as before, you make it so that he cannot efficiently trace the path of your shot, meaning he cannot effectively dodge it, and does not gain dex to AC, meaning you get to sneak attack him on the first shot.

That is how I would rationalize the mechanics with the narrative flow of combat. It does not matter if you know he is there, if you cannot efficiently respond to his attack, going for your vitals :)

-Nearyn


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@Nearyn:

Actually, I was hoping for a RAW explanation. The circles I play in pretty much play like you're telling it. :)

////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

As an aside: stealth not actually doing something that's specifically spelled out becomes a much more acute problem when some stealth-augmenting powers come into play.

One of the groups I play in has a rogue character within one level of learning this sorcerer shadow bloodline power, through the Improved Eldritch Heritage feat:

"Shadow Well (Sp): At 9th level, you can use the Stealth skill even while being observed and without cover or concealment, as long as you are within 10 feet of a shadow other than your own."

What'll happen with that? You're right in front of an enemy, observed by him, without any cover or concealment, and the required shadow is there. You beat his perception check and successfully use stealth. What's the benefit?

According to the perception skill, a failure to notice a stealth-using creature has the following consequences:

"If you fail, your opponent can take a variety of actions, including sneaking past you and attacking you."

What's the point of "and attacking you" in that line? Surely, attacking would also be possible if the perception check succeeds. What's so special about attacking someone who failed to notice you that it needs to be specifically called out as an option?

This rule is stated in such a way that it begs for something special to happen when attacking while under stealth. If the rules are to be interpreted as the following, they're just obsolete and cumbersome:

  • After failing to use stealth, you may make an attack, unmodified by any effect of the stealth skill.
  • After successfully using stealth, you may make an attack, unmodified by any effect of the stealth skill.

Surely something else must be intended to happen. If the rules don't tell us what, we need a FAQ.


@Forseti: Ah! Okay :)

Well... I might not be the best person to ask about this, but as far as I've been able to tell, if you attack from stealth, you get precision damage on your first attack.

Sovereign Court

Seraphimpunk wrote:
This thread is a ridiculous over analysis of stealth

No, it is pretty tame compared to others that have come before.


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Nearyn wrote:
Is there a rule that clearly state that you do not gain dex AC against an opponent you cannot see?
The closest thing to that would be the rules on armor class which state
Quote:
Sometimes you can't use your Dexterity bonus (if you have one). If you can't react to a blow, you can't use your Dexterity bonus to AC. If you don't have a Dexterity bonus, your AC does not change.

which i consider RAW saying you get no dex bonus to attacks you cannot perceive (eg the first attack from a stealthed opponent).


Rycaut wrote:
(specifically I'm considering a big ticket purchase for a 10th level PFS character - possibly buying a cloak of displacement (minor) - the 20% miss chance alone is pretty solid as an always on ability - but if it also allowed this character to get his sneak attacks in more frequently that would make it quite valuable - though whether it is more valuable than say buying a Cloak of Resistance +5 is somewhat debatable.)

Here's the beef with stealth. . . or at least my understanding of it. . .

Stealth is supposed to prevent you from being noticed. Obviously it's hard to not be noticed if you're cutting someone down with a sword. But before you attack, if you aren't noticed, you are effectively invisible. I treat attacking from stealth mostly the same way I would treat attacking from the invisibility spell. Before you hit, you are invisible relative to the opponent. When you hit, you are visible, but the consequences of invisibility (denied Dex bonus to AC) have already happened (sneak attack).

But that's it for stealth unless you have some special abilities. Once you attack, you're noticed. You can't typically use stealth while being observed. So if you have 50 attacks to dish out, only the first from stealth will happen against an "unaware" opponent. The opponent has Dex bonus to AC against all the other attacks. Also, any ability that helps you retain your Dex bonus against invisible attackers works here (Uncanny Dodge against about everything/Blind Fight against melee). If you Whirlwind Attack a group of orcs while stealthed, the first attack is from stealth, but all the other attacks have no stealth benefit. . . you're being observed by them.

Blur mentions giving you concealment, so it should help you make a stealth check. But once you are observed, you can't make a stealth check. You typically make a stealth check as part of movement, so if you're surprised, it doesn't help you. You have to actively try to stealth in order to not be observed.


Josesi wrote:
While I agree that stealth should work for sneak attacks in melee, I think it's dumb/silly that people can either have or lose their dex bonuses vs arrow/bolt attacks at all. The arrows/bolts/throw-weapons aren't invisible when they are flying at the target, so the target should still be able to avoid them.

I disagree. Have you ever tried to follow an arrow with your naked eye? It may not be moving as fast as a bullet fired from a gun, but from a combat-tuned hunting bow you are still looking at a projectile traveling 300 feet per second. That means that even at its third range increment, a longbow or crossbow projectile takes only a second to travel from shooter to target.

The only way a person - even a heroic one like a PC - could 'react' to an arrow is if they saw the shooter as he readied to loose the arrow. Otherwise, the only reaction you could feasibly have from a surprise arrow or crossbow bolt would be to get hit and bleed.

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2013 Top 8

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Rycaut wrote:
possibly buying a cloak of displacement (minor) - the 20% miss chance alone is pretty solid as an always on ability - but if it also allowed this character to get his sneak attacks in more frequently that would make it quite valuable - though whether it is more valuable than say buying a Cloak of Resistance +5 is somewhat debatable.)

Regardless of the stealth/sneak attack debate, a cloak of minor displacement does not grant you concealment. "This displacement works similar to the blur spell, granting a 20% miss chance on attacks against the wearer. It functions continually." (emphasis mine).

Similar is not equal to. The cloak explicitly grants you a 20% miss chance, but it is not due to concealment. It is just a plain 20% miss chance.


Xaratherus wrote:
Josesi wrote:
While I agree that stealth should work for sneak attacks in melee, I think it's dumb/silly that people can either have or lose their dex bonuses vs arrow/bolt attacks at all. The arrows/bolts/throw-weapons aren't invisible when they are flying at the target, so the target should still be able to avoid them.

I disagree. Have you ever tried to follow an arrow with your naked eye? It may not be moving as fast as a bullet fired from a gun, but from a combat-tuned hunting bow you are still looking at a projectile traveling 300 feet per second. That means that even at its third range increment, a longbow or crossbow projectile takes only a second to travel from shooter to target.

The only way a person - even a heroic one like a PC - could 'react' to an arrow is if they saw the shooter as he readied to loose the arrow. Otherwise, the only reaction you could feasibly have from a surprise arrow or crossbow bolt would be to get hit and bleed.

Aside from your last paragraph, if you read and understood what I was saying, I think you're actually agreeing with me. I'll try to explain. First I'll cover the last paragraph: Whether you see someone holding a bow ready to shoot at any time, or know that someone invisible is at a specific spot who might shoot at any time, it doesn't make a difference, both will spot the arrow at nearly the same time (I guess the time for the arrow to leave the bowstring is a few milliseconds advantage, but that's it).

I'm saying two distinct —not only that, but incongruent— things: one related to invisibility/stealth, one unrelated.

1. Realistically speaking, arrows and bolts (and maybe sling bullets) should not EVER get dex bonus to dodge (or at best it should be half dex maybe) since they move so fast. This would be a big rules change though.

2. Invisibility-wise, as long as someone knows roughly where a creature is (not surprise round and located the approximate location of the invisible creature), because arrows/bolts aren't invisible, the victim should still be able to react to them. In melee there's no reaction because the weapons are still invisible since they don't leave the invisible creature. now for the most important part of this statement that I should have said earlier: **this is completely ignoring point #1, since if one was to factor in #1, there wouldn't be any dex possibility to begin with (unless it was half dex)**

Implementing point #1 would drastically change PF and also would be a big character-sheet/calculation mess if it used half-dex instead of no dex.
Implementing #2 wouldn't be a big deal, since it's only logic. In my opinion the fact that a shooter is invisible or not doesn't really matter; what matters more is if the target knows about the shooter and if he's paying attention to any shots the shooter might make. Realistically, If someone's engaged in a melee fight with 2 orcs, a shooter on the edge-of or behind that character's line of sight (~180º) wouldn't be noticed whether the shooter was invisible or not, and the arrows would be visible whether the shooter was invisible or not (but still probably unnoticed)


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

As a DM when an item says "it works similarly to Spell X" and then spells out that it grants the same abilities (and even has that specific spell as part of the creation process) I will generally interpret that has being that spell - just with some modifications (like in the case of Cloak of Minor Displacement of being active all the time not for a limited duration.

It further says that it warps and bends light. I'd interpret that as the effect being like a heat shimmer or mirage - light is distorted around the wearer.

My personal interpretation of stealth in this capacity would be that character, if successful in stealthing while wearing the cloak is hiding where she will be attacking from - so even though he may be seen the fact that he is about to attack may not be clear - and making out who he or she is (and heck if she is a she or a he) is made difficult by the concealment.

But all that said I probably won't be getting the cloak for this specific character - he'll probably get a pair of Gloves of Dueling (he is a multiclassed Fighter/Monk/Rogue) for better damage from his primary rapier or secondary daggers (light weapons training) and may just get a better cloak of resistance to boost his saves (his Will save is his primary weakness).

For the person who suggested the Mistmail - he relies on a buckler and on brawling armor (for when he attacks with unarmed strikes - the buckler is a Burglar's Buckler so primarily for helping with his Dirty Tricks only secondarily for AC if/when he uses it). When he Two weapon fights it is primarily with a Rapier and an unarmed strike (as a monk his unarmed strike will frequently not be a hand but something else)

(and yes this is perhaps my most complex character I've built - a ton of fun to play but far from a typical fighter or a typical rogue - his INT is 20 for example)


@Josesi: My apologies. I totally misread the first line of your statement, and you're right - I do agree, on all points actually. Treating targets of arrow or bolt attacks as flat-footed (or even halved-DEX) would be more 'realistic', but would also require a complete re-balancing of ranged weapons (I think).


Forseti wrote:

If sniping breaks stealth, what exactly is the benefit of sniping?

If stealth is broken, the enemy will know where you are. Using stealth immediately after a ranged attack is a move action. You must already be under some form of cover or concealment to begin sniping at all. After taking the shot, you'll still be in the same place, under the same manner of cover or concealment as before the shot. What's the difference between just "being there" and "being there under stealth", if your target is aware of your position in both cases?

I know, you could make a 5 foot step and be one square away from where the target saw you 'de-stealth', but for the sake of the argument, let's assume you didn't.

What does sniping do, exactly?

Sniping is a special attack that creates a special circumstance. If you roll well and if you beat your enemy's Perception, you NEVER leave the cover of Stealth. It might be more accurate, and less confusing, to say: although you momentarily leave the cover of Stealth in the instant that you attack, you disappear back under the cover of Stealth so rapidly after the attack that you are never spotted and thus can't be hunted down effectively.

PRD Stealth wrote:
Sniping: If you've already successfully used Stealth at least 10 feet from your target, you can make one ranged attack and then immediately use Stealth again. You take a –20 penalty on your Stealth check to MAINTAIN YOUR OBSCURED LOCATION.

If you are MAINTAINING your obscured location, the idea is that you are NEVER seen and remain essentially under the cover of Stealth through the entire attack sequence. Hence the term "Sniping."


DM_Blake wrote:
I didn't want to turn this into a debate about the RAW Stealth rules.

Nor do I.

DM_Blake wrote:
...The important thing to know in the "Rules Quesions" forum is that the RAW disallow it...

I agree, it is important to be clear on RAW in a Rules Questions thread. However, if there is significant RAI I think it's equally important to be clear on that, especially if the OP is asking regarding a home game rather than a PFS game. Both RAW and RAI reference Rules; MHO.


Shadowlord wrote:

Sniping is a special attack that creates a special circumstance. If you roll well and if you beat your enemy's Perception, you NEVER leave the cover of Stealth. It might be more accurate, and less confusing, to say: although you momentarily leave the cover of Stealth in the instant that you attack, you disappear back under the cover of Stealth so rapidly after the attack that you are never spotted and thus can't be hunted down effectively.

PRD Stealth wrote:
Sniping: If you've already successfully used Stealth at least 10 feet from your target, you can make one ranged attack and then immediately use Stealth again. You take a –20 penalty on your Stealth check to MAINTAIN YOUR OBSCURED LOCATION.
If you are MAINTAINING your obscured location, the idea is that you are NEVER seen and remain essentially under the cover of Stealth through the entire attack sequence. Hence the term "Sniping."

I agree that's how it should work. My post was meant to be in response to DM Blake, whose post is a bit above mine. He stated that while sniping, you don't maintain stealth, but lose it and reapply it. I should've quoted it to make it clear I was questioning that interpretation. I didn't because when I started typing my response, his post was the most recent one and the intent seemed clear.

Sniping would break stealth if it weren't for the fact that the text for it states that it doesn't. It's obviously meant to be an exception to the general rule.

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