Has the stealth errata made Sniping useless?


Rules Questions


Sorry posting error, reposting.

If you are hidden at start of turn, shoot, then use a MA to move zero square and hide again, because you're using Stealth your opponent is now "not aware" of where you are, eventhough he was a second ago.

Technically, this is exactly what the sniping maneuver does... except with a -20 to the check.

(Also this works even if you're behind a lonely column right in the middle of the room... I agree that the enemy can "not fully track your movement" but not "not aware of where I am")

Wth?


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FlorianF wrote:

Sorry posting error, reposting.

If you are hidden at start of turn, shoot, then use a MA to move zero square and hide again, because you're using Stealth your opponent is now "not aware" of where you are, eventhough he was a second ago.

Technically, this is exactly what the sniping maneuver does... except with a -20 to the check.

(Also this works even if you're behind a lonely column right in the middle of the room... I agree that the enemy can "not fully track your movement" but not "not aware of where I am")

Wth?

No. Attacking ends your stealth. Then you're not hidden and can't hide again.

Errata wrote:
Your Stealth immediately ends after you make an attack roll, whether or not the attack is successful (except when sniping as noted below)


It has made it less useful but it still has a benefit: If you move > attack > hide, the enemy was aware of where you where when you attacked. If you snipe, they do not.

Silver Crusade

There was a stealth errata?


Yep, and the most interesting new snippet:

"Creatures that fail to beat your Stealth check are not aware of you and treat you as if you had (total) concealment."

(I put "total" in brackets because the printing update PDF has "total concealment" while the online PRD doesn't have the word "total". I'm assuming it's supposed to be "total concealment", because "not aware of you" doesn't make sense with just normal concealment.)


Yup.

Here's the errata'd rules and here's a thread about it, with a few more clarifications from Jason on the second page.


Nope, sniping is still relevant. Normally attacking would end your stealth and the enemy knows where you are. Sniping means you remain hidden from the enemy.


It's actually made it better. By strict RAW, the rules previously did not grant you sneak attack bonus while sniping. Now with the errata (and doubly reinforced by Jason Buhlman's chime-in), the first attack you make while sniping gains sneak attack damage.


Xaratherus wrote:
It's actually made it better. By strict RAW, the rules previously did not grant you sneak attack bonus while sniping. Now with the errata (and doubly reinforced by Jason Buhlman's chime-in), the first attack you make while sniping gains sneak attack damage.

Very true.

I'm still not a big fan of Rogues, but this stealth errata will really help them to suck less.


FlorianF wrote:
If you are hidden at start of turn, shoot, then use a MA to move zero square and hide again, because you're using Stealth your opponent is now "not aware" of where you are, eventhough he was a second ago.

If you are stealthed and attack, then move zero squares and hide, what happens is that they don't know where you are, you attack and "unstealth." They immediately know exactly where you are and then you stealth again. Even though they can't see you anymore, they still know where you were and that you didn't move anywhere.

With Sniping, you never stop stealthing, so they have no idea where the attack came from at all and can't even begin to guess what square you're hidden in.


mplindustries wrote:
If you are stealthed and attack, then move zero squares and hide, what happens is that .... They immediately know exactly where you are and then you stealth again. Even though they can't see you anymore, they still know where you were and that you didn't move anywhere.

Makes a lot of sense BUT. My point hangs on the odd "Creatures that fail to beat your Stealth check are not aware of you and treat you as if you had concealment".

IF it refers to combat stealth situations, then if you are in plain view of you foe, move up to a column that affords regular cover, you can hide, and then though the foes knows well in what square you are *they are "not aware of you" meaning they would have to ignore you*, and that makes no sense.

Same goes for the cheap-sniping I describe.

So, that odd sentence should be taken to be meaningful only out of combat when your opponent is not aware of you to start with. There should be some clarification that creatures in combat are always aware of the position of all creatures that don't have total cover (though they would still be denied dex from stealthy creatures)


If you are stealthing (hiding) from someone and attack without "sniping" then the enemy knows you are there, from that point you have to use a bluff check to draw their attention away BEFORE you can stealth again.

Sniping however means they never become aware of your presence...so there is no need to create a diversion.

So attack from stealth without sniping = cannot stealth since you are now being observed (this will change if you happen to have HiPS or something similar)

Attack from stealth using sniping = enemy never becomes aware so you make the stealth check -20

ALL the change did was make stealth work the way in the book that just about every person I know or have talked to that plays PF rules it to work.


FlorianF wrote:
mplindustries wrote:
If you are stealthed and attack, then move zero squares and hide, what happens is that .... They immediately know exactly where you are and then you stealth again. Even though they can't see you anymore, they still know where you were and that you didn't move anywhere.

Makes a lot of sense BUT. My point hangs on the odd "Creatures that fail to beat your Stealth check are not aware of you and treat you as if you had concealment".

IF it refers to combat stealth situations, then if you are in plain view of you foe, move up to a column that affords regular cover, you can hide, and then though the foes knows well in what square you are *they are "not aware of you" meaning they would have to ignore you*, and that makes no sense.

Same goes for the cheap-sniping I describe.

So, that odd sentence should be taken to be meaningful only out of combat when your opponent is not aware of you to start with. There should be some clarification that creatures in combat are always aware of the position of all creatures that don't have total cover (though they would still be denied dex from stealthy creatures)

Explicitly not. There's no distinction between "in combat" and "out of combat".

The new rules only change/clarify what you can do when you start your turn hidden
Quote:

When you start your turn using Stealth,

you can leave cover or concealment and remain unobserved
as long as you succeed at a Stealth check and end your turn
in cover or concealment. Your Stealth immediately ends
after you make an attack roll

If you start in plain view, you can't use stealth because you're in plain view. You could, as you always could, use Bluff to dash into cover and hide.

I think, if you moved behind the pillar and ended your turn, you would be able to use stealth next turn as long as your target hadn't moved to where he could see you. But I would always have allowed that. It has nothing to do with this rules change.

The only change here is that if you meet the conditions for Stealth at the start of your turn, you can move through areas that don't meet them without losing Stealth until the end of your turn or until you attack.


The only difference I see is standardizing that successful Stealth check = full concealment.


RJGrady wrote:
The only difference I see is standardizing that successful Stealth check = full concealment.

That, and that stealth doesn't automatically end when you leave concealment (it ends at end of turn instead).


But... concealment doesn't provoke the target to lose DEX bonus, so... you still can't sneak attack with it.

Am I wrong ?


Avh wrote:

But... concealment doesn't provoke the target to lose DEX bonus, so... you still can't sneak attack with it.

Am I wrong ?

Yes, that's incorrect. See the link earlier in the thread to the stealth errata; Jason Bulhman (lead designer, I believe) also stated plainly in a thread about the stealth errata that the change allows you to use stealth to deny a target its DEX bonus.

[edit]
To summarize the intent: If a target is unaware of you, it cannot react to your attacks. A successful stealth check makes the target unaware of you until after you make your first attack roll. For sniping, you can then immediately make a stealth check to hide before they can pinpoint you (albeit at a penalty).


Xaratherus wrote:
Avh wrote:

But... concealment doesn't provoke the target to lose DEX bonus, so... you still can't sneak attack with it.

Am I wrong ?

Yes, that's incorrect. See the link earlier in the thread to the stealth errata; Jason Bulhman (lead designer, I believe) also stated plainly in a thread about the stealth errata that the change allows you to use stealth to deny a target its DEX bonus.

[edit]
To summarize the intent: If a target is unaware of you, it cannot react to your attacks. A successful stealth check makes the target unaware of you until after you make your first attack roll. For sniping, you can then immediately make a stealth check to hide before they can pinpoint you (albeit at a penalty).

Thank the gods, that sneak attack madness can finally be put to rest.


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The stealth errata allows you to do three things:

1. If you begin the turn with concealment from your target, you can make a stealth check and (having beaten all the enemies' perception rolls) move out of your hiding spot, through unconcealed areas, and to another area of concealment, without enemies becoming aware you're there. If you end the turn in an unconcealed area, your stealth immediately 'breaks' and you are noticed.
1a. The opposed stealth check this requires should be made (per Jason) at the most opportune moment for an enemy - i.e., at the moment when you would have the biggest penalty to your stealth. Although it's not technically RAW, I agree with Jason that anytime you're moving with stealth and there is some change in your status - like you begin moving more quickly, or are dashing through under a streetlamp between areas of shadow - your opponents should get an additional check to notice you.

2. If you begin your turn with concealment from your target, you can make a stealth check, and (assuming that you beat your enemies' perception rolls), move adjacent to the target and make your first attack against him denied his DEX bonus. The moment you make that first attack roll (whether it hits or not), your stealth ends and all enemies become aware of you.

3. If you begin your turn with concealment from your target at least 10 feet away from him, you can make a stealth check, and (assuming you beat your enemies' perception rolls), you can make a single ranged attack against him sans his DEX bonus. Whether you hit or not, if you wish the target to continue being unaware of your presence, you have to make a second stealth check at a -20 penalty; if that is successful, the target doesn't know where you're at, and you can repeat any of these 3 scenarios again the next round.


Xaratherus wrote:
Avh wrote:

But... concealment doesn't provoke the target to lose DEX bonus, so... you still can't sneak attack with it.

Am I wrong ?

Yes, that's incorrect. See the link earlier in the thread to the stealth errata; Jason Bulhman (lead designer, I believe) also stated plainly in a thread about the stealth errata that the change allows you to use stealth to deny a target its DEX bonus.

[edit]
To summarize the intent: If a target is unaware of you, it cannot react to your attacks. A successful stealth check makes the target unaware of you until after you make your first attack roll. For sniping, you can then immediately make a stealth check to hide before they can pinpoint you (albeit at a penalty).

Where is it in the new rules ?

'Cause, if it's all under interpretation, nothing have changed from the last version, except you can now use Stealth while in combat (as it was waaaaaaaay too hard before) : you still have to use common sense instead of the rule (so, the rule still doesn't grant you sneak attack, as total concealment does not allow for sneak attacks).


Avh wrote:
Xaratherus wrote:
Avh wrote:

But... concealment doesn't provoke the target to lose DEX bonus, so... you still can't sneak attack with it.

Am I wrong ?

Yes, that's incorrect. See the link earlier in the thread to the stealth errata; Jason Bulhman (lead designer, I believe) also stated plainly in a thread about the stealth errata that the change allows you to use stealth to deny a target its DEX bonus.

[edit]
To summarize the intent: If a target is unaware of you, it cannot react to your attacks. A successful stealth check makes the target unaware of you until after you make your first attack roll. For sniping, you can then immediately make a stealth check to hide before they can pinpoint you (albeit at a penalty).

Where is it in the new rules ?

'Cause, if it's all under interpretation, nothing have changed from the last version, except you can now use Stealth while in combat (as it was waaaaaaaay too hard before) : you still have to use common sense instead of the rule (so, the rule still doesn't grant you sneak attack, as total concealment does not allow for sneak attacks).

I think when the lead designer tells you that you can sneak attack and that is the intent and it's obvious, that means you can.

But then again, it seems once again, common sense is just not common enough.


Odraude wrote:
Avh wrote:
Xaratherus wrote:
Avh wrote:

But... concealment doesn't provoke the target to lose DEX bonus, so... you still can't sneak attack with it.

Am I wrong ?

Yes, that's incorrect. See the link earlier in the thread to the stealth errata; Jason Bulhman (lead designer, I believe) also stated plainly in a thread about the stealth errata that the change allows you to use stealth to deny a target its DEX bonus.

[edit]
To summarize the intent: If a target is unaware of you, it cannot react to your attacks. A successful stealth check makes the target unaware of you until after you make your first attack roll. For sniping, you can then immediately make a stealth check to hide before they can pinpoint you (albeit at a penalty).

Where is it in the new rules ?

'Cause, if it's all under interpretation, nothing have changed from the last version, except you can now use Stealth while in combat (as it was waaaaaaaay too hard before) : you still have to use common sense instead of the rule (so, the rule still doesn't grant you sneak attack, as total concealment does not allow for sneak attacks).

I think when the lead designer tells you that you can sneak attack and that is the intent and it's obvious, that means you can.

But then again, it seems once again, common sense is just not common enough.

But then, again, I rule it my own way at my table. It works fine there, because I houseruled it that way.

It still doesn't fix the fact that the rule doesn't work as intended. The errata didn't fix the main problem with stealth IMHO.

EDIT : Changing "Total concealment" to "Invisible" fix the main issue for example.


If u read what he actually says he explains that it WAS in the rules but just not blatantly clear and explained why they didn't go into more detail about it in the stealth rules


No it's not and was not in the rules.

Because "Can't react to a blow" isn't a condition.
"Not having acted this turn" provoke a condition => Flat-footed.
"Being invisible" is a condition by itself

Can't react to a blow is neither a condition by itself nor provoke a condition by the rules.

Again, it's an errata that fix almost nothing, but make everyone happy with it...

Quote:
2. Creatures are denied their Dexterity bonus to AC "if they cannot react to a blow" (CR pg 179 under AC). It was our intent that if you are unaware of a threat, you cannot react to a blow. I think we probably should have spelled this out a wee bit clearer, but space in the Stealth description was extraordinarily tight and ever word was at a premium. That said, I think these changes clear up the situation immensely (compared to where they were.. which was nebulous at best).

And invisible take less space than Total concealment... And it make the things work as intended instead of doing nothing.


Avh wrote:
Again, it's an errata that fix almost nothing, but make everyone happy with it...

Eh. I rather agree. It adds a new way to leverage stealth, but doesn't clear up the fundamental isssue of "not aware" thing that hasn't been changed and is not a clear rule wording.

Playing with the errata, I still feel like I have to make judgment calls for which I am convinced that different GMs will make different decisions.


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Avh wrote:

EDIT : Changing "Total concealment" to "Invisible" fix the main issue for example.

Then we would get to argue about whether you got a +20 Stealth bonus for being Invisible and/or a -20 Perception penalty and all the other Invisibility stuff.

You're not invisible, you're sneaking. See Invisible doesn't reveal you. Invisibility Purge doesn't reveal you. It's just that you haven't been seen yet.

And you can sneak attack. Jason confirmed which interpretation of the rules is correct: You can't react to someone you're unaware of, therefore you don't get a Dex bonus.

If you'd like hit the FAQ button on his post. Maybe we can get it into the FAQ. Will that be enough for you?


Interpretation is fine, the rule is not.

Interpretation was good for the last years just fine too, the rule were not either.

This errata does nothing, except allowing to move from cover to cover (as it was not possible before).

"Unaware" is not a condition that makes you lose your DEX bonus, as it's not a condition that exist. Neither being "Stealthed" allowing it for that matters.

The fact that AS INTENDED it should work that way is obvious, but in the rules it doesn't. And that's why the rule has issue, and that issue doesn't have been fixed.

Instead of "Invisible", using the sentence "A creature that is unaware of you lose its DEX bonus while you're stealthed".

Or even easier : in the Combat part of the rules, modify :

Quote:
Unaware Combatants: Combatants who are unaware at the start of battle don't get to act in the surprise round. Unaware combatants are flat-footed because they have not acted yet, so they lose any Dexterity bonus to AC.

By :

Quote:
Unaware Combatants: Combatants who are unaware at the start of battle don't get to act in the surprise round. Unaware combatants (whatever the reason) are flat-footed, so they lose any Dexterity bonus to AC.

And then, Unaware does mean something in the rule.

Because in the rule, that's the fact that they didn't acted yet that makes them flat footed, not the fact that they are unaware of your presence.


I don't see the problem.

"If you can't react to a blow, you can't use your Dexterity bonus to AC."

If you're unaware of something, you can't react to it. Common sense. If you allow people to react to certain things they aren't aware of, where does it stop? This is no more difficult to work out than the oft quoted "dead people can't take actions".


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Forseti wrote:

I don't see the problem.

"If you can't react to a blow, you can't use your Dexterity bonus to AC."

If you're unaware of something, you can't react to it. Common sense. If you allow people to react to certain things they aren't aware of, where does it stop? This is no more difficult to work out than the oft quoted "dead people can't take actions".

Exactly. There are numerous 'conditions' that are not explicitly spelled-out in the rules.

Let me offer up this argument: The errata to stealth adds (among other things), "Breaking Stealth: When you start your turn using Stealth, you can leave cover or concealment and remain unobserved as long as you succeed at a Stealth check and end your turn in cover or concealment. Your Stealth immediately ends after you make an attack roll, whether or not the attack is successful (except when sniping as noted below)."

What alternative reasons are there for adding in the emphasized text? As Jason B. pointed out in his reply, space was at a premium in the description; if they had not intended this to be an important change, it would have been left out. So if your argument is that the rules still do not both clearly state (and imply), then there must have been another reason to include this text - so what was it?

As for using the term "Invisible", it does have a specific definition, and while being invisible might make a creature unaware of your specific location, being unaware of your specific location does not make you "invisible".

To be honest, if you're not willing to take the lead designer's word as "official rule" - especially when he blatantly says that's exactly what it is - then why are you playing the game?

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