Vital Strike


Rules Questions

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Really, what SKR said is still true in many if not most cases. If SRMF is to be believed, we have confirmation that a mount and rider maintain separate action economies except in the case where the rider wants the lance/spirited charge benefit. Otherwise, anyone who ever made the argument that a rider atop a charging mount is always considered charging was and is still wrong. It is only the case during aforementioned condition and was "clarified" in this way to keeping from combining with Vital Strike, a misguided mission in itself.


In some people's opinion Vital Strike's restrictions are the problem. Why limit the use to only standard actions when combining it with a charge, spring attack, etc would open up options? But, those are the rules whether they make sense to an individual or not.

Being able to use Vital Strike while charging just because you were using a mounted charge flies in the face of the rule that you cannot use Vital Strike while charging. It makes sense to some (myself included) that if you cannot charge on foot and use Vital Strike you should not be able to charge on a mount and use Vital Strike.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

Gauss wrote:

In some people's opinion Vital Strike's restrictions are the problem. Why limit the use to only standard actions when combining it with a charge, spring attack, etc would open up options? But, those are the rules whether they make sense to an individual or not.

Being able to use Vital Strike while charging just because you were using a mounted charge flies in the face of the rule that you cannot use Vital Strike while charging. It makes sense to some (myself included) that if you cannot charge on foot and use Vital Strike you should not be able to charge on a mount and use Vital Strike.

Again, I think it's silly to say that it makes sense that you lose action economy because... Well because they don't want Vital Strike to stack with anything, basically. I can have my mount charge, and "make a single attack that deals significantly more damage than normal", but only if I don't want to "deal a tremendous amount of damage".

It's the weight and momentum of the giant animal beneath you that is making your weapon more powerful on a charge. It makes no sense at all that if you want to take advantage of that you have to use some weird and nebulous "mounted charge" action. What am I doing differently between riding the horse and hitting someone really hard with a lance, and riding the horse and hitting someone really hard with a lance that is creating this difference. Spending 3 more seconds leaning forward. Does that honestly make any sense? I can Vital Strike from the back of a charging mount, but it doesn't count as a mounted charge unless I do this nebulous, undefined thing that transforms me sitting on the horse and hitting someone with a lance into me "charging" on the horse and hitting someone with a lance. It doesn't make any sense.

Vital Strike couldn't be combined by unmounted characters before because it was a standard action to utilize and charge is a full round, but mounted characters could use it because the mount was the one taking the full round action. Now, a mounted character can use it on a charging mount but it doesn't count as a charge because there's now this nebulous mechanic that allows you to somehow divorce yourself from the momentum of the half-ton beast hurtling acros the battlefield with you on its back. How can you honestly say that that makes more sense? I can hit it hard, or I can hit it hard backed my horse's momentum, but I can't do both. Somehow, me putting my back into the hit with this lance magically disperses the momentum of the creature I'm riding, unless I spend the whole round... what, putting my back into it?


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Does it make sense that guys in plate mail can swim? Does it makes sense that....well frankly, so many things in the game fail to make sense in the context of reality that debating what makes sense is pointless. It is a set of rules, it is not reality.

In this set of rules Vital Strike cannot be combined with a charge. Thus, within the context of the rules it makes sense that it cannot be combined with a mounted charge. Any context outside of the rules is not really relevant.

Oh, and just for a bit of reality...it is not *just* the weight and momentum of the animal beneath you. If you are not properly set you cannot properly use that weight and momentum. That requires specific actions on the part of the rider to get set.


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It also made sense that it could, because it worked with the mounted combat action economy as previously described (your so-called "context of the rules). They nerfed something that didn't need it, because they didn't want Vital Strike to stack, not because inventing a new kind of charge made more sense in the broader context of the system. They didn't address that at all, and so now there is (thankfully) an outpouring of demand to give the mounted combat rules an overhaul.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

Gauss wrote:
In this set of rules Vital Strike cannot be combined with a charge. Thus, within the context of the rules it makes sense that it cannot be combined with a mounted charge. Any context outside of the rules is not really relevant.

Vital Strike not stacking with a charge is specifically described as a function of action economy. Up until this point there wasn't some mystical force in the universe that went around changing the laws of physics to prevent Vital Strike, there was a dearth of action economy necessary to perform it. It does not make sense for them to change action economy specifically to deal with one not particularly great feat. If they don't want Vital Strike to stack with anything they should just say so in the ability instead of going around tweaking with rules and changing things whenever it comes up that someone actually found something it works with.

The only upside to this is that it brought attention to an issue very much in need fo it, and hopefully at the end of it there will be one consistent set of rules.

Gauss wrote:
Oh, and just for a bit of reality...it is not *just* the weight and momentum of the animal beneath you. If you are not properly set you cannot properly use that weight and momentum. That requires specific actions on the part of the rider to get set.

That is not a claim that holds up to any kind of scrutiny. I either can or cannot strike someone with a lance from the back of a charging horse. If I'm not set I'm either going to miss them or do a pole vaulting impression that ends with a broken lance and a broken knight. Please don't pretend like there is any realistic analogue to a situation where I can hit someone really hard with a lance from the back of a charging mount (Vital Strike), but not hit them really hard with a lance from the back of a charging mount (Spirited Charge).


To turn that around a bit, you are right, it doesn't make sense for them (SKR) to change action economy to specifically deal with one broken aspect of the game (RAGELANCEPOUNCE). Thankfully, he didn't. He gave his opinion in a post rather than making a FAQ or an Errata.

Again, the rules were not clear before. They were not clear before SKR made his post. They were not clear after SKR made his post (since it did not have the weight of a FAQ nor was it an errata to the rules). Now, finally, they are looking at the mounted combat rules and trying to clear them up by making a FAQ and an Errata.

In short, you say they are changing action economy, I say they are not because the rules on what the action a rider used has never been clear (SKR's post did not have the weight of FAQ or rule). Until we can agree that they have not been clear there is really nothing left to discuss since you keep bringing us back to that point.

Oh, and if you read up on how a knight has to set himself for a lance charge he DOES have to set himself or he does not put the mount's momentum into the lance. Failure to do so results in the knight (probably) being unseated and loss of the extra momentum being delivered through the lance into the target. I did not state any comparison between Vital Strike and a Charging Lance. I stated that, in reality, there was a specific action involved in preparing yourself for a lance charge to use the mounts momentum. You stated that that it did not make sense that 3 extra seconds leaning forward made a difference. I explained that difference. The difference is either you are using the mount's momentum or you are not. In any case, it does not matter since this is a game and not reality.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

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Gauss wrote:

To turn that around a bit, you are right, it doesn't make sense for them (SKR) to change action economy to specifically deal with one broken aspect of the game (RAGELANCEPOUNCE). Thankfully, he didn't. He gave his opinion in a post rather than making a FAQ or an Errata.

Again, the rules were not clear before. They were not clear before SKR made his post. They were not clear after SKR made his post (since it did not have the weight of a FAQ nor was it an errata to the rules). Now, finally, they are looking at the mounted combat rules and trying to clear them up by making a FAQ and an Errata.

In short, you say they are changing action economy, I say they are not because the rules on what the action a rider used has never been clear (SKR's post did not have the weight of FAQ or rule). Until we can agree that they have not been clear there is really nothing left to discuss since you keep bringing us back to that point.

When SKR clarified how the rules worked, he didn't need to delete a paragraph out of the CRB, amend the equipment entries in multiple books, and amend existing FAQs. This FAQ flat out changed things. If you disagree you need to double-check the definition of the word change. At best, there were two valid interpretations previously, and this ruling killed the one with the longest standing and best supported material.

I wish that one side of this conversation would stop trying to pretend like nothing changed and half of the people who played the game didn't know how to read. You need to admit that something did in fact change, and that in doing so it emphasized existing issues with the rules and created entire new ones. I'll say it again; if to enforce their ruling they had to delete entire paragraphs out of the CRB that had been there as long as The Pathfinder CRB has been in print, and amend entries in multiple books SOMETHING CHANGED. Just because a few people were house-ruling it all along or using their understanding of the rules from an older edition of the game does not mean that this was a change to what was written in the book.


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Show me in the CRB (not SKR's post) where it states that the Rider is or is not charging when his mount charges. You cannot. At best it was unclear.

I am not saying nothing changed. I am saying that it was unclear before and SKR's post did not clarify the rules. It may have clarified some people's understanding but the RULES were not clarified.

Now they (the rules) are finally being clarified. YAY! Unfortunately for some people they are being clarified in the opposite of the desired direction. Fortunately for some people they are being clarified in the desired direction.

Personally? It doesn't matter to me which direction they get clarified in so long as they are clarified. Justifications for either direction can be made.

My problem is that you keep presenting your case as if this is some major change to a clear rule. It isn't. The rule was never clear.

Frankly, I have a house rule that you can use Vital Strike anytime you make a single attack regardless of action economy so I really have no personal stake in which direction the Rider charging/not charging rules get clarified. It really just doesn't matter for my own games.

My posts in the Rules forum assume no house rules. I only state my own house rule in this case to indicate my lack of a personal stake in the direction this comes down on.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

Gauss wrote:

Show me in the CRB (not SKR's post) where it did or did not state that the Rider is or is not charging. You cannot. At best it was unclear.

I am not saying nothing changed. I am saying that it was unclear before and SKR's post did not clarify the rules. It may have clarified some people's understanding but the RULES were not clarified.

The mount uses its action to move. If the mount charges, you get the bonus at the end of the charge. There are multiple entries referring to the separation of action economy. There would be no need for it to state that you gain charge bonuses if the mount charges if you were already charging.

When a guy who's been working with and writing for the game for over a decade states that when the rules say X, they mean X, that's a clarification.

"I am saying that it was unclear before and SKR's post did not clarify the rules. It may have clarified some people's understanding but the RULES were not clarified."

I can't believe that's even a statement. "He clarified what the rules mean to you by telling you what they mean when they say what they say, but that's not actually a rules clarification".

If that were coming from anyone other someone who I know is as intelligent and reasonable as you are, I would swear it was trolling.

We both agree that at best there two valid interpretations of the rules. Your argument seems to be that just because SKR said the rider wasn't taking a charge action, doesn't mean he meant he was taking some other action instead. The only other place it talks about what action you can take is where it states you can make an attack if your mount moves more than 5 feet. Mounted Skirmisher, the first rule that actually addressed mounted combat after JB created the attack action rule, specifically states that the action you can take is an attack action.
There is nothing (prior to this ruling) that actually says that a rider can use the charge action while mounted. There are things that state he can take an attack action, and that he gets the bonuses if his mount charges.


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The mount using it's action to move does not mean you are not using a charge action. What you posted does not tell me in any way that you are not using a charge action. That is the debate that has raged for years. The same debate that was clarified back in 3.X.

Posting an opinion to clarify understanding does not mean the rules themselves are clarified. They are two separate things. The rules are still grey and unclear and if they require explanation to clarify them that does not mean they (as an object) have been clarified (changed).

Perhaps this will explain the difference:
"I am explaining the rules to you in order to clarify them."
"I am re-writing the rules in order to clarify them."
These are very different statements.

No, I made no such argument. My argument stems around the fact that SKR's clarification is not in the rules or even a FAQ. It is a post which (as Stephen pointed out) does nothing to clarify the understanding of the rules for a majority of people (the majority probably do not visit the boards let alone know of that one single post tucked away somewhere). So the statement that the new rules re-write is reversing a previous rules clarification is only correct in that it is reversing some people's understanding of the rules (via SKR's post). It is not actually reversing the rules since the rules themselves were grey even after SKR's post.

P.S. It does not state that if you take an attack action at the end of the charge you get the bonus. It states that if you make an attack at the end of the charge you get the bonus. They are different statements and do not mean the same thing. If it said attack action I would be agreeing with you.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

Gauss wrote:


P.S. It does not state that if you take an attack action at the end of the charge you get the bonus. It states that if you make an attack at the end of the charge you get the bonus. They are different statements and do not mean the same thing. If it said attack action I would be agreeing with you.

The attack action verbage didn't exist when the CRB was written. That was something JB made up after the fact so that there could be consistency with his Vital Strike interpretation going forward. There is a reference to the fact that you can only make an attack after your mount moves, and the Mounted Skirmisher feat, printed after JB's new attack action ruling, clarifies that that is an attack action.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Ssalarn wrote:
Shimesen wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Shimesen wrote:

i agree that it does not seem logical that the developers do not want creative uses and niche builds made out of this feat. that said, i can understand the reason behind it to a degree.

If you're defining "creative use" as either breaking the intent, or twisting the rules entirely, then yes, you're correct.
you are twisting my words. i said it does not seem logical that they DONT want you to do these things.

Especially when they publish things like the Valkyrie whose stat block would very much lead you to believe that she's combining both Spirited Charge and Vital Strike, especially in light of the previous commentary.

But hopefully we'll be seeing an answer in the FAQ thread looking to get this mess sorted out sometime in the not too distant future.

I've just read the valkyrie statblock and I don't see this stacking of vitalstrike. the damage block doesn't have the damage dice rolled twice. You're drawing the conclusion solely from the fact that she has both feats.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

There is not a single stat block that ever shows Vital Strike calculated in. The one time they did include it's use in a tactics block they had a guy using it with spring attack, sooooooo.....


Ssalarn, we cannot take a feat that is not part of the core rules as a complete re-write of the core rules.

As of the current printing of the CRB "attack" applies equally to an "attack (standard) action" or a "full-round (charge) action". Both can make a single attack. Even if attack is changed to "attack (standard) action" that does not mean you use a standard action during a mounted charge. No such statement exists.

Lets put it another way:
You make an attack after the mount moves 5'.
This can apply equally well to attack (standard) or charge (full-round) actions.

BTW, it is interesting you bring up this feat since, if it is correct, it limits the number of options a rider can perform. It limits it from "attack" (any single attack) to "Attack Action". There are abilities that it would cut out if it were try.

As for the lack of "attack action" when initially written, I agree that it was later added to things like Vital Strike but they could have added it to the Mounted Combat section as well. Perhaps it is still just an "attack" (thus leaving any single attack option open). If the feat is correct then the feat is a very significant rewrite without the actual rules being rewritten.


Gauss wrote:

Ssalarn, you often state it was always possible. Do you have a citation to back that up?

I am not aware of SKR stating that it was always possible. To my knowledge he neither stated that it was always possible nor did he state it was not always possible. He made a statement that the rider is not charging his mount is charging without providing any historical background.

In fact, if you check the historical background (3.X) it was unclear until it was clarified in "Rules of the Game: All About Mounts" where it was placed in the Full-Round Action category for rider's actions when riding a moving mount. I am not aware of anything Paizo/Pathfinder did to change that understanding (pro or con) until SKR's post.

You repeatedly make statements that this has always been possible but the fact is, until SKR made his statement it was not well explained and many people were forced to rule one way or the other.

Additionally, you and several others keep stating that this was covered in the RAGELANCEPOUNCE FAQ and that is also not true. There was no statement in the FAQ that a rider was not charging. It required SKR providing further explanation in a post (not FAQ) to arrive at that conclusion.

Yeah, this is part of what I was trying to say in my long post that got eaten.


Purpose of vital strike = dragon disciple (level 9+) + 15+ sorcerer bloodline power levels + reach weapon + enlarge person + lunge + power attack + pushing assault + two handed weapon with 2d4 or more damage dice + flyby attack which may not be allowed by your GM = 25ft reach powerful attack that can hit anytime during 90ft movement + your enemy will trigger AoOs unless charge = your enemy will not be able to deal full attacks on you = You will have higher chance to beat him in melee since you deal more damage in a single attack, only if there is enough space to do so.

Second option, titan mualer with a huge Aklys. It is the only 1d8 light weapon exist in the game.

Note, not very effect against more than one enemy. Most effective in a duel or a boss fight. but almost not worth taking because of the amount of feat it takes to make it effective.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
WinterwolfNW wrote:

Sorry it's been a while since I been here, I'm not a forum troll. I see I stirred up some conversation.

I can see your arguments about the extra free damage when you have to move anyway before attacking. Good point.

However I hardly think an extra D8 (for a Longsword) is stupidly overpowered when a -3 Power attack does 6 extra points of damage, but then I admit I don't know your campaigns.

As for "Attack Actions"... I consider anything that would break an Invisibility spell an "Attack Action", I guess we each have our own interpretations here.

There is a difference between an attack action, which is under the heading of "Standard Actions," (Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook 182) and an attack when you use a full-attack action, which is under the header of "Full-Round Actions" (Core Rulebook 187). It can be a little confusing because and attack action has one attack, while a full-attack action has multiple attacks and things in the game can trigger on attacks or attack actions or rules can hinge on using an attack action or when making an attack. While the distinction is there in the text, it can be very easy to gloss over it because of the similarity of words and terms the rules use.

If we had it to do over, I think we could have made a better distinction between the two, but it was like that way in the 3.5 ruleset as well, so a bit of momentum took hold and now the problem my be too systemic for a reasonable and complete fix.

To answer the original question, you can gain the benefits of Vital Strike when you take the attack action, that is a standard action where you make one attack. You cannot use it when you take a full-attack action where your make multiple attacks.

I think the OP has a point and this doesn't necessarily address it. :(

What I mean: You are not required to "announce" your Full-Attack action before hand.
If you haven't moved, you can make a Standard Attack at your full Base Attack Bonus. You then have a choice of whether to continue making attacks (at iterative attack penalties) or to take a Move Action, or to do nothing.

PRD wrote:
Deciding between an Attack or a Full Attack: After your first attack, you can decide to take a move action instead of making your remaining attacks, depending on how the first attack turns out and assuming you have not already taken a move action this round. If you've already taken a 5-foot step, you can't use your move action to move any distance, but you could still use a different kind of move action.

Source: Paizo PRD

So, why couldn't you take that first attack, using the benefits of Vital Strike, and then decide to continue making attacks, as per the allowed rules quoted above?

The answer, I believe, is that choosing to use Vital Strike "locks you out" of taking more attacks. The problem with that answer is that the feat never mentions this. And as the OP already mentioned, feats do let you know when you can't make your extra attacks (as addressed in the wording of the Whirlwind combat feat).

tl;dr - I do not see anything in the RAW that prohibits you from using Vital Strike and making a full-attack action, based on the above quoted rule. It is very clearly against RAI, but I do not see any RAW to back up the RAI.


Neo: It is prevented because that one attack is part of the Full Attack Action, not the standard attack action.

When you take a full attack action, after the first attack has hit, you may chose to take a move action instead of taking the rest of the attacks. This does not turn the full attack action into a standard attack action; essentially, you've actually had both a full-round and move action that round, just a very limited full-round action.

If anything, by RAW the reverse argument could be made; that you could utilize manyshot on the first attack in a full attack action, then drop the rest of the attacks in favor of taking a move action.


Manyshot specifically says that you must be making a full-attack action, which "locks you in" to making all your attacks.

If you don't make your additional attacks, then you aren't making a full-attack action, and if you aren't making a full-attack action, then you can't use Manyshot.

If you had to decide you were making a "full-attack" before you had actually done so (as you seem to suggest), then the rest of the Full-Attack rules would come into play, mainly:

PRD wrote:
The only movement you can take during a full attack is a 5-foot step. You may take the step before, after, or between your attacks.

If you've decided on a Full Attack, then the only movement you can take is a 5-ft step, which means you cannot decide to take a Move Action after your initial attack.

Which means that you have not "used" a Full-Attack action until you've decided to make that second attack.


Neo2151 wrote:
Manyshot specifically says that you must be making a full-attack action, which "locks you in" to making all your attacks.

I don't see anything in the rules supporting this at all. Manyshot only affects a single attack, so you take the full attack action, make a single attack. Then after you made the first attack of the full attack action, you get to choose between doing the rest of your attacks, and taking a move action.

At no point does the full attack action turn into a standard action, nor is taking the full attack action taking a standard attack action and then turning it into a full attack.

On the other hand, you could not two-weapon fight or use rapid shot to make two attacks at your highest iterative and then choose to move, because you have to choose "after making your first attack" rather than "before making your second iterative attack".

I'm not sure what the RAI is (using manyshot in that specific kind of attack and move is hardly broken), but I'm fairly sure any argument from RAI that would sink this interpretation would equally sink Vital Strike on a full attack.

Because vital strike only works on a standard attack action, and a full attack action isn't a standard attack action, even if you only make one attack.

Quote:


If you had to decide you were making a "full-attack" before you had actually done so (as you seem to suggest), then the rest of the Full-Attack rules would come into play, mainly:
PRD wrote:
The only movement you can take during a full attack is a 5-foot step. You may take the step before, after, or between your attacks.

Those do not interact. The only movement you can take during the full attack is a 5ft step - correct. However, if you choose not to take the rest of the attacks, you gain an extra move action. Your movement is during that move action, not during the full attack.

Quote:


Which means that you have not "used" a Full-Attack action until you've decided to make that second attack.

Yes you have. No rule at any point indicates that it is any other way.

These are the options:
Standard attack + Move action
Full attack action (making all attacks)
Full attack action (making only one attack) + Move action

Nowhere in the rules does it indicate the actions turning into other actions.

This is in the Full Attack action section:

Quote:
After your first attack, you can decide to take a move action instead of making your remaining attacks, depending on how the first attack turns out and assuming you have not already taken a move action this round. If you've already taken a 5-foot step, you can't use your move action to move any distance, but you could still use a different kind of move action.

For the rules to work the way you want, something like this would have to have been in the Attack Action section:

Quote:
After making a standard attack, if you have not taken a move action this round, you may elect to turn your standard attack into a full-round attack, treating the attack you've already made as the first attack in the full attack sequence

(not the best legalese but you get the point)


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Ilja wrote:
I'm not sure what the RAI is (using manyshot in that specific kind of attack and move is hardly broken), but I'm fairly sure any argument from RAI that would sink this interpretation would equally sink Vital Strike on a full attack.

The interaction of Manyshot and that phrase regarding full attacks has been clarified in the FAQ:

FAQ wrote:

Manyshot: Can I fire two arrows with my shot, then cancel the full attack and take a move?

No. Though the rules for "Deciding between an Attack or a Full Attack (Core Rulebook 187) give you the option to move after your first attack instead of making your remaining attacks, Manyshot locks you into using a full attack action as soon as you use it to shoot two arrows.


The rule is, "Deciding between an Attack or a Full Attack," not, "Deciding how to use your Full Attack."

Also (for what it's worth, and only somewhat related to my initial post) the RAW never differentiates between an Attack, an Attack Action, and a Standard Action. Those distinctions are entirely forum-based and do not exist in RAW anywhere I can find.
The rules language really needs to be cleaned up. :(


Are wrote:


The interaction of Manyshot and that phrase regarding full attacks has been clarified in the FAQ:

Ah, very well. That explains how Manyshot works at least :)

Neo2151 wrote:

The rule is, "Deciding between an Attack or a Full Attack," not, "Deciding how to use your Full Attack."

As a section under the Full Attack action section. Attack is kind of a generic word when used by it's own.

Quote:


Also (for what it's worth, and only somewhat related to my initial post) the RAW never differentiates between an Attack, an Attack Action, and a Standard Action. Those distinctions are entirely forum-based and do not exist in RAW anywhere I can find.
The rules language really needs to be cleaned up. :(

That I agree with, though it depends on to how a large degree you consider FAQ RAW.

Personally, I would have eradicated the "attack action" and "full attack action" and replaced them with a "strike action" and "full strike action". That way the actions are separated from the attack term itself.


im a little unclear whats being argued. manyshot says it happens as part of a full atttack if you use many shot you have locked yourself into a full attack. you cab choose not to make the attacks but your still onky taking a 5 foot step


Mojorat wrote:
im a little unclear whats being argued. manyshot says it happens as part of a full atttack if you use many shot you have locked yourself into a full attack. you cab choose not to make the attacks but your still onky taking a 5 foot step

No argument about manyshot anymore; hadn't seen the FAQ.

The argument was/is about whether taking a full attack action, then using the clause in the full attack action section that you can opt out of your remaining attacks to instead take a move action; whether this would turn your first attack into a standard attack or whether it remained a single attack taken as part of a full-attack action.

I'm still of the opinion that since the full attack action section does not mention the full attack action turning into a standard attack action, it doesn't.


I suppose it depends on the DM.

I'd let someone stack Vital Strike and Manyshot, but Vital Strike would only work with one of the arrows of manyshot.

That could be counted as houserule though.


GreyWolfLord wrote:

I suppose it depends on the DM.

I'd let someone stack Vital Strike and Manyshot, but Vital Strike would only work with one of the arrows of manyshot.

That could be counted as houserule though.

I think any interpretation that allows Vital Strike would explicitly not allow Manyshot, since they both require specific but distinct actions.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay, folks, after some long and illuminating talks about this issue, I have answers.

First, I learned that the Core Rulebook I use at home is woefully out of date, so I got myself a shiny new home copy to help answer after-hours rules questions. The Spring Attack issue I noted last night has, of course, been fixed in later printings of the book. I know you are all excited. ;)

Second, my suspicions and knowledge of the rules were correct. Vital Strike can only be used when you make an attack action. It cannot be used with any other actions (including those actions that happen to be standard actions) that allow you to make an attack roll as part of them (even if it is a single attack roll). It can’t be used as part of Spring Attack, as part of a charge (even if it is the standard action charge you can take if you are limited to only taking standard actions), Ride-By Attack, or even as part of the fleet charge champion strike in Mythic Adventures.

In short, if you want to use Vital Strike, you must take the attack action as describe on page 182 of the Core Rulebook. Attack rolls as part of another action and ability's will not do, unless there is an some exception involving Vital Strike written in that action and ability’s rules.

That, of course, brings us to the question of whether or not you are considered charging when making a mounted charge. After much discussion, some gnashing of teeth, and combing through the various rules bits involving mounted combat, we have decided to clarify that section of the Core Rulebook to state that when you charge on horseback you do so as a full-round action, and both you and your mount are considered charging.

There will be an official FAQ of that change to that clarification of mounted charge in the near future posted by the Design Team.

Also, keep in mind that while the design and development team does enjoy to interact with all of you, and even give our feedback to rules issues, off-the hip (and after hours) rules...

Thank you very much Stephen for answering my original question and for your time is resolving the many issues with this feat.


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You must have a very different idea of resolution than I do.

To quote Ssalarn from last week, "The only upside to this is that it brought attention to an issue very much in need of it, and hopefully at the end of it there will be one consistent set of rules."

Because a designer wandered into a topic he thought he understood, then realized he didn't so decided to nip it in the bud, we have a ruling that highlights way worse issues with the system than were originally under discussion. We also know for a fact that different devs had totally different ideas about how mounted combat worked. Official or not, we know from SKR and JJ, the most prolific dev posters in the forums, that they did not see the rider as charging when the mount was charging. So, the idea that this "clarification" communicates how the designers always intended mounted combat to work is a joke, and actually a bit insulting.


I built a great wyrm black dragon. With feats I focused on Improved Natural Attack (bite) and the chain through Greater Vital Strike.

So his bite now does 12d6 + 20
With Greater Vital Strike he does 48d6 + 20.

My question comes with his first mythic tier where I took Vital Strike (Mythic).

I read this as the strength bonus (+20) gets multiplied by the 48 d6's for a total of 48d6 + 960.

Am I reading this right?


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Mykull wrote:

I built a great wyrm black dragon. With feats I focused on Improved Natural Attack (bite) and the chain through Greater Vital Strike.

So his bite now does 12d6 + 20
With Greater Vital Strike he does 48d6 + 20.

My question comes with his first mythic tier where I took Vital Strike (Mythic).

I read this as the strength bonus (+20) gets multiplied by the 48 d6's for a total of 48d6 + 960.

Am I reading this right?

Nope. A greatsword would still have one "weapon die" despite that requiring two physical dice. Multiply the static damage by four instead.


QuidEst, I'd roll 4d6 for a greatsword if I were vital striking with it, that's true (and 6d6 for Improved, and 8d6 for Greater). But my question pertains to the mythic version of vital strike:

Vital Strike (Mythic)Whenever you use Vital Strike, Improved Vital Strike, or Greater Vital Strike, multiply the Strength bonus, magic bonus, and other bonuses that would normally be multiplied on a critical hit by the number of weapon damage dice you roll for that feat.

I multiply the Strength bonus (in this case, +20) by the number of weapon damage dice I roll for that feat (the use of Greater Vital Strike).

I've maxed Improved Natural Attack (Bite), so the weapon damage dice of the dragon's bite is 12d6. When I use Greater Vital Strike, I roll 48d6.

So why don't I multiply 20 by 48?


Mykull wrote:

QuidEst, I'd roll 4d6 for a greatsword if I were vital striking with it, that's true (and 6d6 for Improved, and 8d6 for Greater). But my question pertains to the mythic version of vital strike:

Vital Strike (Mythic)Whenever you use Vital Strike, Improved Vital Strike, or Greater Vital Strike, multiply the Strength bonus, magic bonus, and other bonuses that would normally be multiplied on a critical hit by the number of weapon damage dice you roll for that feat.

I multiply the Strength bonus (in this case, +20) by the number of weapon damage dice I roll for that feat (the use of Greater Vital Strike).

I've maxed Improved Natural Attack (Bite), so the weapon damage dice of the dragon's bite is 12d6. When I use Greater Vital Strike, I roll 48d6.

So why don't I multiply 20 by 48?

Your Weapon Damage Dice (W) in your example is = 12d6.

The NUMBER of Weapon Damage Dice is measured by X. The formula would be = X(W); X is the actual number being referred to by Mythic Vital Strike. In your example, X = 4; 1 for regular Weapon Damage Dice, and another 3 for Greater Vital Strike.

Mythic Vital Strike is letting you add your modifier (C) a number of times equal to your number (X) of Weapon Damage Dice, whereas Vital Strike and even Greater Vital Strike only adds it once. X(W+C) with Mythic Vital Strike, rather than X(W)+C with regular Vital Strike line of feats.

Basically
Normal = W+C = 12d6+20
Vital Strike = X(W)+C = 2(12d6)+20
Improved Vital Strike = X(W)+C = 3(12d6)+20
Greater Vital Strike = X(W)+C = 4(12d6)+20
Mythic Vital Strike with Greater Vital Strike = X(W+C) = 4(12d6+20)

Also a great wyrm black dragon would have a 3d8 bite (the dragon is one size larger than the huge Ancient Black Dragon, thus gargantuan according to the Dragon Age Categories table). According to this FAQ and the Improved Natural Attack feat (which can only be taken once per natural attack), the damage only goes up to 4d8. I'm not sure how you're doing 12d6.
Are you adding the acid damage from the bite attack?
If so that doesn't get multiplied by Vital Strike and gets added independently.

EDIT: Oh I get it, you're probably using the stats from the D20pfsrd site and applying Improved Natural Attack repeatedly to bite. Well the site has a disclaimer that it's a homemade variant because the PRD only had Ancient Black Dragon as the biggest/oldenst black dragon example, and the variant was probably introduced from when the size increases changes weren't FAQ'd yet so the bite damage is off. And, unless you're playing with houserules, not supposed to apply Improved Natural Attack several times to a single natural attack.

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies

Mattaus wrote:

Does this feat mean you give up all your attacks for one attack that deals more damage?

OR

One of your attacks deals more damage?

The first.

More precisely, it is "you must make a Standard action to obtain one attack".


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Mykull wrote:

QuidEst, I'd roll 4d6 for a greatsword if I were vital striking with it, that's true (and 6d6 for Improved, and 8d6 for Greater). But my question pertains to the mythic version of vital strike:

Vital Strike (Mythic)Whenever you use Vital Strike, Improved Vital Strike, or Greater Vital Strike, multiply the Strength bonus, magic bonus, and other bonuses that would normally be multiplied on a critical hit by the number of weapon damage dice you roll for that feat.

I multiply the Strength bonus (in this case, +20) by the number of weapon damage dice I roll for that feat (the use of Greater Vital Strike).

I've maxed Improved Natural Attack (Bite), so the weapon damage dice of the dragon's bite is 12d6. When I use Greater Vital Strike, I roll 48d6.

So why don't I multiply 20 by 48?

Right, I'm just using the greatsword as an example. 48d6 is not 48 weapon dice, it is four weapon dice of 12d6 each, just like a 2d6 greatsword is not 2 weapon dice, it is 1 weapon die of 2d6. You multiply by 4 because that's what Mythic Vital Strike plus Greater Vital Strike does.

As noted above, there are other issues. Why do you need a mythic dragon with over 1,000 damage on one attack anyway?


Sarrah wrote:
VS isn't for everyone. There are some builds that can crack out damage with Vital Strike. Siege Mage is a perfect example of where VS is amazing. A Heavy Catapult goes from 6d6 to 12d6 with Vital Strike. Large (and larger) sized characters and monks are also good choices when thinking about taking vital strike.

Catapult + vital strike, that is a combination that would never have occurred to me and seems utterly bizarre.

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