Greater Feint: Dex bonus denied for Feinter's attacks only, or for everyone?


Rules Questions


29 people marked this as FAQ candidate. Answered in the FAQ. 1 person marked this as a favorite.

I see two opposing schools of thought on the forums about this, and would like to see an FAQ on this.

Greater Feint:
Greater Feint (Combat)
You are skilled at making foes overreact to your attacks.

Prerequisites: Combat Expertise, Improved Feint, base attack bonus +6, Int 13.

Benefit: Whenever you use feint to cause an opponent to lose his Dexterity bonus, he loses that bonus until the beginning of your next turn, in addition to losing his Dexterity bonus against your next attack.

Normal: A creature you feint loses its Dexterity bonus against your next attack.

Does a character with Greater Feint, who feints an opponent, deny the opponent its DEX bonus to AC versus the character's attacks only, or against attacks from any source?

I personally see the latter interpretation as grossly overpowered, even with the prerequisites, but would like to put this up as a possible FAQ.


My gut tells me this will get flagged 'no FAQ necessary', but just in case... (click).


Of course it's the latter. A feint would be a move action - if you use a move action you are only getting one attack (baring only a few exceptions)


Hawktitan wrote:
Of course it's the latter. A feint would be a move action - if you use a move action you are only getting one attack (baring only a few exceptions)

There are a number of people who read it differently; I can see how it could be read both ways. Thus why I posted it as an FAQ.


You should read the rules for Feinting in Combat before asking this:

Feinting is a standard action. To feint, make a Bluff skill check. The DC of this check is equal to 10 + your opponent's base attack bonus + your opponent's Wisdom modifier. If your opponent is trained in Sense Motive, the DC is instead equal to 10 + your opponent's Sense Motive bonus, if higher. If successful, the next melee attack you make against the target does not allow him to use his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any). This attack must be made on or before your next turn.

I know that Greater Feint treats them as flat footed until the beginning of your next turn, but the intent of Feinting is that you get to take advantage of them falling for your bluff, not anyone else.


Martiln wrote:

You should read the rules for Feinting in Combat before asking this:

Feinting is a standard action. To feint, make a Bluff skill check. The DC of this check is equal to 10 + your opponent's base attack bonus + your opponent's Wisdom modifier. If your opponent is trained in Sense Motive, the DC is instead equal to 10 + your opponent's Sense Motive bonus, if higher. If successful, the next melee attack you make against the target does not allow him to use his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any). This attack must be made on or before your next turn.

I know that Greater Feint treats them as flat footed until the beginning of your next turn, but the intent of Feinting is that you get to take advantage of them falling for your bluff, not anyone else.

I have, actually. And what you've described is how I have always interpreted it. However, if you do a quick forum search on the topic you'll see that it's far from a universal interpretation - and in this case, I believe the text is ambiguous enough that either could be valid.

Oh, and just to correct something you said: Denying DEX is not the same as flat-footed; they are two separate, similar, but distinct conditions.

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Greater Feint is a pretty pointless feat if it only applies to the feinter - since it takes a move action to feint, the vast majority of the time the feinting character will only get one attack, which they can do with just Improved Feint. Not sure it would be worth the feat to sometimes get benefits from the occasional AoO or extra off-turn standard action.

Compare to Greater Dirty Trick which can blind someone for 1d4 rounds or until they spend a standard action. In most circumstances blind is worse than just denied Dexterity.


At first I thought that it can't really be for everyone, but thinking about it for a minute, I think it probably should.
As ryric says, otherwise there's little difference to Improved Feint, not really enough to justify a feat.

On the other hand I think it might also be very overpowered.

And yes, blinding them denies them Dex bonus too, and that is against everyone (actually there's even more tied to it). However Dirty Trick goes against CMD using your CMB and at later level it becomes more and more difficult, especially when facing larger enemies. I had a character that tried to blind enemies and eventually I had to roll 18+ to manage it.
Feinting doesn't have those problems and is much more likely to succeed.

Shadow Lodge

I was about to say "of course it's only against your attack" and then I realized that I was thinking Improved Feint and Greater Feint worked like Two-Weapon Feint and Improved Two-Weapon Feint and let you feint as the first attack of your full-round attack. Like ryric, I think it's really underpowered if it doesn't benefit your friends because it would only benefit you if you get an AoO against the target between turns (or if you used a Quickrunner shirt to feint as a move and full-attack).

But if they intended for the opponent to lose Dex vs allies, how hard would it be to add "against all attacks"?


ryric wrote:

Greater Feint is a pretty pointless feat if it only applies to the feinter - since it takes a move action to feint, the vast majority of the time the feinting character will only get one attack, which they can do with just Improved Feint. Not sure it would be worth the feat to sometimes get benefits from the occasional AoO or extra off-turn standard action.

Compare to Greater Dirty Trick which can blind someone for 1d4 rounds or until they spend a standard action. In most circumstances blind is worse than just denied Dexterity.

This has to be the right interpretation.

There is NO benefit to having Greater Feint if it gives you only one denied-DEX attack which is all it will give you almost all the time. Sure, maybe the enemy will provoke you. Maybe you could cooperate with a team member so that you use Greater Feint and then someone else forces the enemy to provoke you - in these corner cases you get to make one extra attack with denied DEX. Most of the time this will never happen, so you're taking an advanced feat for what? Usually nothing but occasionally (rarely) something.

Based on that, it seems almost necessary to interpret it that you make the guy so confused by your super mega feint that he cannot properly defend himself for a few (six) seconds.

Heck, feinting is almost worthless, spending a feat on it makes it a little less worthless but at significant cost - those who might benefit most from improved feints are those with usually very few feats to toss away for small benefit. Burning another feat to have it do almost exactly what you could already do with the first feat seems rather dauntingly unrewarding.


Weirdo wrote:
But if they intended for the opponent to lose Dex vs allies, how hard would it be to add "against all attacks"?

I suspect they never considered the alternative interpretation and assumed that "he loses that bonus until the beginning of your next turn, in addition to losing his Dexterity bonus against your next attack" was explicit enough, since it grants both benefits (losing DEX against your next attack AND losing DEX for a whole round).


Let me offer up a (admittedly) high-level, feat-dependent build:

Combat Expertise (included only as a prerequisite)
Improved Feint (in this case, taken only as a prerequisite)
Greater Feint
Two-Weapon Feint
Two-Weapon Fighting
Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
Greater Two-Weapon Fighting

Now what are you getting? It's far more than the one attack. I readily admit that this is a very high-level build, but now you're getting to perform a full-round attack and sacrificing one of your attacks as your feint, denying your opponent his DEX until the beginning of your next turn. And if you're talking about a rogue at that level, every one of his additional attacks is now getting his sneak attack damage, so at +11 BAB (required for this build) that's a pretty significant number of attacks, all with their own +8d6 sneak attack damage...

So is the feat really not only granting the rogue (by my count) 40d6 in sneak attack damage alone (on successful hits, of course) while simultaneously denying the opponent his DEX against the other 4\5\8\ members of the party?

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I will concede that your 5 feat combo, including a feat that did not exist when Greater Feint was published, will allow a rogue to almost do as much damage as an unoptimized fighter at 15th level.

So yes, you are getting 40d6 if by some miracle all 5 of your attacks hit the CR15 or so opponent, once you remove your best attack for the feint. Then the rest of your party benefits from the denied dex, which is probably 1-2 people, since it's likely there are some casters in there who don't care about AC. Full BAB classes probably don't care about the denied dex as they can consistently hit anyway, except possibly with their last iterative. Often at best you've given the other PCs +2-+6 to hit, which is strong, but not broken.

If you have 8 other party members, yes it's more powerful because it's a party-oriented debuff. Same way that bardic music is more powerful with more allies.


Xaratherus wrote:


Does a character with Greater Feint, who feints an opponent, deny the opponent its DEX bonus to AC versus the character's attacks only, or against attacks from any source?

I personally see the latter interpretation as grossly overpowered, even with the prerequisites, but would like to put this up as a possible FAQ.

"he loses that bonus until the beginning of your next turn" - it is gone until the character's next turn and his dex bonus does not count toward AC for anyone attacking him until your next turn.


The portion of the statement you quoted, grammatically, is a clause that modifies the initial portion of the sentence - "Whenever you use feint to cause an opponent to lose his Dexterity bonus..."

So you're using feint. What does feint do? It causes the target to lose its DEX bonus towards you only - not towards anyone else. Read in that manner, all the second phrase does is extend the duration of that effect, not its scope.

Again (and I don't like sounding like a broken record, but...) the text is ambiguous. I can see validity in either interpretation, but pretending that it's absolutely clear one way or the other - especially when you've got posts in this very thread interpreting it in both ways? That's exactly why it needs an FAQ.


Xaratherus wrote:

So you're using feint. What does feint do? It causes the target to lose its DEX bonus towards you only - not towards anyone else. Read in that manner, all the second phrase does is extend the duration of that effect, not its scope.

Again (and I don't like sounding like a broken record, but...) the text is ambiguous. I can see validity in either interpretation, but pretending that it's absolutely clear one way or the other - especially when you've got posts in this very thread interpreting it in both ways? That's exactly why it needs an FAQ.

You are correct that when you use Feint without any other feats the target loses DEX against the next melee attack you make. Improved Feint just converts that to a move action instead of a standard. However, with Greater Feint the DEX bonus is lost from the target until the beginning of your next round. If the target has lost his DEX bonus until your next turn then it remains lost for any incoming attacks, until your next round.

I did mark this thread for FAQ.


Xaratherus wrote:
Again (and I don't like sounding like a broken record, but...) the text is ambiguous. I can see validity in either interpretation, but pretending that it's absolutely clear one way or the other - especially when you've got posts in this very thread interpreting it in both ways? That's exactly why it needs an FAQ.

It's not ambigous especially when you consider that it would be damn near useless otherwise.

Scarab Sages

Xaratherus wrote:

Let me offer up a (admittedly) high-level, feat-dependent build:

Combat Expertise (included only as a prerequisite)
Improved Feint (in this case, taken only as a prerequisite)
Greater Feint
Two-Weapon Feint
Two-Weapon Fighting
Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
Greater Two-Weapon Fighting

Now what are you getting? It's far more than the one attack. I readily admit that this is a very high-level build, but now you're getting to perform a full-round attack and sacrificing one of your attacks as your feint, denying your opponent his DEX until the beginning of your next turn. And if you're talking about a rogue at that level, every one of his additional attacks is now getting his sneak attack damage, so at +11 BAB (required for this build) that's a pretty significant number of attacks, all with their own +8d6 sneak attack damage...

So is the feat really not only granting the rogue (by my count) 40d6 in sneak attack damage alone (on successful hits, of course) while simultaneously denying the opponent his DEX against the other 4\5\8\ members of the party?

I don't know the answer to the OP's question, but you can essentially accomplish the build you describe at 9th level Rogue/Ninja by forgetting about Improved Feint and Greater Feint and instead taking:

Improved Two-Weapon Feint:

Your primary weapon keeps a foe off balance, allowing you to slip your off-hand weapon past his defenses.

Prerequisite: Dex 17, Int 13, Combat Expertise, Improved Two-Weapon Fighting, Two-Weapon Fighting, base attack bonus +6.

Benefit: While using Two-Weapon Fighting to make melee attacks, you can forgo your first primary-hand melee attack to make a Bluff check to feint an opponent. If you successfully feint, that opponent is denied his Dexterity bonus to AC until the end of your turn.

For a Human Rogue/Ninja, the progression looks like this:
1: Combat Expertise (included only as a prerequisite)
H: Two-Weapon Fighting
3: Two-Weapon Feint
8: Improved Two-Weapon Fighting (using Combat Trick, need +6 BAB)
9: Improved Two-Weapon Feint (Need +6 BAB)

I've got a PFS Ninja that's two levels away from accomplishing this. Throw in Greater Two-Weapon Fighting when you get to +11 BAB and you're looking at 5 sneak attacks per round. Though you do give up your highest BAB main hand attack to do it. Add an extra attack from KI and Haste/Boots or Weapons of Speed, and you can get to 7 sneak attacks.

As for Greater Feint, even if it only applies to the Rogue, it would still apply to AoO and other attacks taken out of turn (target of opportunity, maybe). So not completely useless, but also probably not worth a high level feat. The Two-Weapon Feint chain doesn't get to a point where it can apply to AoO on its own.

<Edit: And you are the OP. Sorry, didn't look at the top of the post again. So I don't know th answer to your original question.>

Shadow Lodge

Patricius wrote:
You are correct that when you use Feint without any other feats the target loses DEX against the next melee attack you make. Improved Feint just converts that to a move action instead of a standard. However, with Greater Feint the DEX bonus is lost from the target until the beginning of your next round. If the target has lost his DEX bonus until your next turn then it remains lost for any incoming attacks, until your next round.

I don't think that's a given. When an ability relaxes some sort of restriction, it's generally assumed that all restrictions not explicitly relaxed still apply.

Look at Sniper Goggles. They say "The wearer of these goggles can make ranged sneak attacks from any distance instead of the normal 30 feet." Does this mean that I can always make ranged sneak attacks, with any attack? No, the normal restriction on the target being denied their Dex applies. It is perfectly reasonable to assume that Greater Feint is not intended to remove the normal feinting restriction that Dex is lost only vs your attacks - you normally can't feint and then let the guy to your left sneak attack your opponent.

If you have Ability that says "gain Bonus against selected opponent for one attack" and then get Improved Ability that says "gain Bonus from Ability for one round" do you automatically assume that Improved Ability gives you Bonus against all opponents for that round? No, because Improved Ability extends duration, not number of targets.

DM_Blake wrote:
Weirdo wrote:
But if they intended for the opponent to lose Dex vs allies, how hard would it be to add "against all attacks"?
I suspect they never considered the alternative interpretation and assumed that "he loses that bonus until the beginning of your next turn, in addition to losing his Dexterity bonus against your next attack" was explicit enough,since it grants both benefits (losing DEX against your next attack AND losing DEX for a whole round).

It's clearly not explicit enough, since until someone pointed out how underpowered the feat would be otherwise I assumed the benefit only applied to your attacks and I'm still not 100% sure that it's not intended to work that way.

Hawkitan wrote:
It's not ambigous especially when you consider that it would be damn near useless otherwise.

There are damn near useless feats. Bullseye Shot actually decreases DPR for most ranged characters in most situations.


"Benefit: Whenever you use feint to cause an opponent to lose his Dexterity bonus, he loses that bonus until the beginning of your next turn, in addition to losing his Dexterity bonus against your next attack.

Normal: A creature you feint loses its Dexterity bonus against your next attack."

The devil is in the details here, as the feat doesn't specify a target of the dex loss it is a general dex loss until the players next action fairly simple read.

Where as the normal condition is targeted benefits only to the player that preformed the action.

This makes this feat potentially nasty but worthy of spending three feats to acquire assuming your players can take advantage of the situation.


Quote:
There are damn near useless feats. Bullseye Shot actually decreases DPR for most ranged characters in most situations.

I knew that someone would bring something like this up so thank you.

The difference is that with something like Bullseye Shot there are not two different interpretations - one being worthless and one not worthless.

Given a choice between worthless or not worthless lets go with not worthless shall we?

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

Hawktitan wrote:


I knew that someone would bring something like this up so thank you.

The difference is that with something like Bullseye Shot there are not two different interpretations - one being worthless and one not worthless.

Given a choice between worthless or not worthless lets go with not worthless shall we?

That's basically where I'm at - I see the two interpretations and I'm going with the one that actually does something.

Heck, I've still seen people decry taking Greater feint because it only helps your allies, it doesn't help the feinter. So many people focus on maximizing personal dpr and this feat doesn't help with that.


Hawktitan wrote:
Quote:
There are damn near useless feats. Bullseye Shot actually decreases DPR for most ranged characters in most situations.

I knew that someone would bring something like this up so thank you.

The difference is that with something like Bullseye Shot there are not two different interpretations - one being worthless and one not worthless.

Given a choice between worthless or not worthless lets go with not worthless shall we?

Anyone can feel free to interpret it however they wish. I, personally, would like to know the designers' intentions. Again, to point out to all the people making claims like "it's obvious" or "it's not ambiguous", the simple fact that there are people in the thread who believe it works one way, and other people who believe it works the other, seems to disprove such a claim.


Interested to know if this was actually answered in an FAQ (I don't see it anywhere) or if it was just marked to get it off the list. ;)

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