Can you "trip" him?


Rules Questions

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Shadow Lodge

Remy Balster wrote:
Elbedor wrote:

If an ability wants me to successfully hit a target in combat, I need to make contact with it in some way. Anything that happens after the hit takes place isn't important for the sake of the ability. My flame damage doesn't care if any regular damage gets through. It triggers once the Hit happens. The purpose here is to hit and once I make contact I have successfully done so. Now any ability that triggers here can do so.

That brings up an interesting question...

Do you get flaming weapon enchant weapon (or similar) when making combat maneuvers? >.>

I seems to follow that indeed you would. I've not used a weapon enchanted like that since... like ever. So... I'm curious if by RAW you should actually roll damage from your flaming enchant on a successful trip.

Hrm. Could be an interesting way to up a tripper build's damage output.

I don't know about a normal trip but it really does seem like these would apply if your weapon has the trip feature. I mean if you have a flaming whip and you use it to trip it only makes sense that the target would get burned by the flaming coiled leather wrapped around their leg.


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Remy Balster wrote:
This clearly demonstrates your misunderstanding about readied actions. Thanks for the clear and direct reply.

Curious. One wonders how your initiative ends up ahead of the character you end up interrupting with your readied action if your action doesn't actually technically occur before that character acted.

Ready says readied actions occur before their triggering event. Initiative consequences say that your new initiative is set at when you acted. In all subsequent rounds, you act before the character who triggered you.

But what do I know? I'm probably just misunderstanding everything.


Remy Balster wrote:
fretgod99 wrote:
Remy Balster wrote:

I think you got confused somewhere along the way.

Here is what I wrote, if you'd like another crack at responding:

Nope. Wasn't confused. And Nope. Don't feel like responding to things I've already responded to. I appreciate you looking out for me, though. I'm sure you only have my best interests at heart.
You can simply say you prefer to not respond. Or, you know... don't respond. There is no reason to say you've responded to what was actually written when you didn't.

But I did. So I was clearing up your misapprehension. Your inability to understand my response isn't my problem.


Remy Balster wrote:
[begs questions and repeats the same things we've been talking about for a month]

That's all well and good, but I've responded to all these points. Other people have all responded to these points. It doesn't really help anything to keep saying the same things over and over again. We disagree on definitions.

That doesn't bother me. It's certainly ok. This is a rather minimally impactful issue. We can each play our own way. If and when the Developers come out and say it works one way over the other, then whoever was playing it differently can alter their style slightly and continue playing virtually the same way, with one relatively minor difference.

Good gaming!

Shadow Lodge

fretgod99 wrote:
Remy Balster wrote:
This clearly demonstrates your misunderstanding about readied actions. Thanks for the clear and direct reply.

Curious. One wonders how your initiative ends up ahead of the character you end up interrupting with your readied action if your action doesn't actually technically occur before that character acted.

Ready says readied actions occur before their triggering event. Initiative consequences say that your new initiative is set at when you acted. In all subsequent rounds, you act before the character who triggered you.

But what do I know? I'm probably just misunderstanding everything.

Readied actions seemed so simple but now are making my head hurt after this thread. So consider the following scenario:

PC and NPC start fight 30' apart and neither has a reach weapon.
PC readies an action to trip NPC if he comes within 5'.
NPC moves to attack character with longsword.
PC now performs his trip attempt.

According to the rules for readied actions "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it." So the readied action goes off just before the NPC moves within 5'. So how can the PC trip this NPC that is not adjacent? That doesn't seem right. What am I missing?

Edit: In fact according to the wording for readied actions it seems like the trip should go off before the entire freaking move because your initiative would change to just before your opponents.


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Elbedor wrote:
"Whenever you successfully trip" is a simple and straightforward bit of text. Everywhere else in the rules where we find "If you successfully Verb", it is talking about the verb of "Verbing". If that Verb also happens to be a combat maneuver Noun, then the game distinguishes between whether it is talking about the Verbing or the Noun.

If it's talking about the Verbing, then we get something like "Whenever you Verb" or "When you successfully Verb". The Verb is the action happening.

If it's talking about the Noun, then we get something like "When your Noun is a success" or "If you succeed on a Noun". The words "is" and "succeed" in this case are the Verbs that apply to the Nouns. The Verb of tripping never applies directly to the Noun of a Trip Combat Maneuver.

This is precisely the definition disagreement I am talking about. You are insisting on the verb "trip" meaning "to knock prone". And so it makes sense you do not see the verb (to knock prone) ever being applied to the combat maneuver. But the verb can be simply defined differently for game terms. That is the point. The verb is "to knock prone" the verb is "to perform the combat maneuver". So while your substitution is "successfully knock prone", the other is "successfully perform the combat maneuver".

And I don't know what else there is to say about the whole noun/verb thing. This happens all the time both in real life and in the rule books. Attack is used in both sense. So it trip. So is bull rush. So is roll. So is disarm. So is check. So are a lot of words. It's a common occurrence.

As for proof that has been supplied, this has been going on for a month. Do you honestly believe the only thing any of us has been doing is saying "Nuh-uh!" every time you make a point? I generally disagree with the reasons you're using to justify your position, but that doesn't mean I don't recognize that you've made arguments to support it.


@ PatientWolf

Read the text right after "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it." You might then find that this should probably read "...before the action that triggers it resolves." Sort of like how the Trip entry says "exceeds" and not "equals or exceeds". I'm guessing a typo that was never corrected.

Readied actions can trigger either way. If I Ready to hit should my target move out of my threatened space, then I hit him before he leaves the square. If I Ready to hit should my target move into my threatened space, then I hit him after he moves into the square.

So it isn't always before the trigger. Sometimes the trigger has to happen first. It all depends on what you're Readying. But once that is done, your Initiative score is automatically set to the same value as you target's, but you get to act ahead of him now.


PatientWolf wrote:

Readied actions seemed so simple but now are making my head hurt after this thread. So consider the following scenario:

PC and NPC start fight 30' apart and neither has a reach weapon.
PC readies an action to trip NPC if he comes within 5'.
NPC moves to attack character with longsword.
PC now performs his trip attempt.

According to the rules for readied actions "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it." So the readied action goes off just before the NPC moves within 5'. So how can the PC trip this NPC that is not adjacent? That doesn't seem right. What am I missing?

Edit: In fact according to the wording for readied actions it seems like the trip should go off before the entire freaking move because your initiative would change to just before your opponents.

No, you wouldn't go prior to the entire move. That's the purpose of the "interrupting" language in the next sentence.

This is the scenario I've addressed. When that situation is presented, context is clear that you want to attack once the character is actually in the square you threaten, not as the character enters the square. That's where you exercise your common sense as a GM.

But what if you ready an action for a character to leave or move out of a threatened space? NPC takes a 5' step from a threatened square to a non-threatened square. If your action simply interrupts, at what point are they in their movement? Don't they have to be out of the threatened square for your readied action to trigger? How then can you make your attack if they're out of your threatened area? If their 5' step places them behind cover, does the cover apply to your readied attack or not? There is no "in between" state in Pathfinder, which is what leads to this issue in simulation. That's why the rules say to resolve them prior to the triggering action. In most cases, this will solve any issues. In a couple of situations (like when it's phrased as triggering off of someone entering a space or something similar), it leads to some possible weirdness. But that's when you as a GM need to understand what your player's intent was and allow that to happen.

Shadow Lodge

fretgod99 wrote:
PatientWolf wrote:

Readied actions seemed so simple but now are making my head hurt after this thread. So consider the following scenario:

PC and NPC start fight 30' apart and neither has a reach weapon.
PC readies an action to trip NPC if he comes within 5'.
NPC moves to attack character with longsword.
PC now performs his trip attempt.

According to the rules for readied actions "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it." So the readied action goes off just before the NPC moves within 5'. So how can the PC trip this NPC that is not adjacent? That doesn't seem right. What am I missing?

Edit: In fact according to the wording for readied actions it seems like the trip should go off before the entire freaking move because your initiative would change to just before your opponents.

No, you wouldn't go prior to the entire move. That's the purpose of the "interrupting" language in the next sentence.

This is the scenario I've addressed. When that situation is presented, context is clear that you want to attack once the character is actually in the square you threaten, not as the character enters the square. That's where you exercise your common sense as a GM.

But what if you ready an action for a character to leave or move out of a threatened space? NPC takes a 5' step from a threatened square to a non-threatened square. If your action simply interrupts, at what point are they in their movement? Don't they have to be out of the threatened square for your readied action to trigger? How then can you make your attack if they're out of your threatened area? If their 5' step places them behind cover, does the cover apply to your readied attack or not? There is no "in between" state in Pathfinder, which is what leads to this issue in simulation. That's why the rules say to resolve them prior to the triggering action. In most cases, this will solve any issues. In a couple of situations (like when it's phrased as triggering off of someone entering a space or something...

I agree. The readied action rules just do not work right in some cases if you take them 100% literally. OK, I wasn't missing anything the RAW really does get wierd in those specific cases and the GM just has to work around it. I can live with that.


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Greater Trip wrote:

You can make free attacks on foes that you knock down.

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

Benefit: You receive a +2 bonus on checks made to trip a foe. This bonus stacks with the bonus granted by Improved Trip. Whenever you successfully trip an opponent, that opponent provokes attacks of opportunity.

Normal: Creatures do not provoke attacks of opportunity from being tripped.

This would seem to clearly give us the context of what they mean by "trip". Both sentences even include reference to what you get to do when you knock down/trip your target.

Does anyone really think the writer would put "on foes that you knock down" if he really meant "against foes that you make a successful trip attempt on"?

Shadow Lodge

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Elbedor wrote:
Greater Trip wrote:

You can make free attacks on foes that you knock down.

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

Benefit: You receive a +2 bonus on checks made to trip a foe. This bonus stacks with the bonus granted by Improved Trip. Whenever you successfully trip an opponent, that opponent provokes attacks of opportunity.

Normal: Creatures do not provoke attacks of opportunity from being tripped.

This would seem to clearly give us the context of what they mean by "trip". Both sentences even include reference to what you get to do when you knock down/trip your target.

Does anyone really think the writer would put "on foes that you knock down" if he really meant "against foes that you make a successful trip attempt on"?

That does seem to make it pretty clear what the author considers a successful trip and he equates success with application of the result not just a successful roll.


fretgod99 wrote:
Remy Balster wrote:
This clearly demonstrates your misunderstanding about readied actions. Thanks for the clear and direct reply.

Curious. One wonders how your initiative ends up ahead of the character you end up interrupting with your readied action if your action doesn't actually technically occur before that character acted.

Ready says readied actions occur before their triggering event. Initiative consequences say that your new initiative is set at when you acted. In all subsequent rounds, you act before the character who triggered you.

But what do I know? I'm probably just misunderstanding everything.

You are.

Readied actions take place in the middle of any action they interrupt. They simply finish and are resolved before an action which they interrupt. If y ready an action to hit a dude who tried to punch you... your attack it trigger when he tries to punch you, your attack goes through and resolves. Your turn is over. His attack then goes through to completion, and then his turn is over.

And, for the record… Readied actions DO NOT say they happen before their triggering event. You are and have been making that up. Any hang-up you have about the way Readied Actions work or function or how it is worded is entirely on your end. You can continue to believe in time traveling actions if you want to, but… just know that you are in house rule territory.

As to why your initiative comes first in subsequent rounds? Because you have been idle longer. You finish fractions of a second earlier, and thus get your next turn fractions of a second earlier.


PatientWolf wrote:
fretgod99 wrote:
Remy Balster wrote:
This clearly demonstrates your misunderstanding about readied actions. Thanks for the clear and direct reply.

Curious. One wonders how your initiative ends up ahead of the character you end up interrupting with your readied action if your action doesn't actually technically occur before that character acted.

Ready says readied actions occur before their triggering event. Initiative consequences say that your new initiative is set at when you acted. In all subsequent rounds, you act before the character who triggered you.

But what do I know? I'm probably just misunderstanding everything.

Readied actions seemed so simple but now are making my head hurt after this thread. So consider the following scenario:

PC and NPC start fight 30' apart and neither has a reach weapon.
PC readies an action to trip NPC if he comes within 5'.
NPC moves to attack character with longsword.
PC now performs his trip attempt.

According to the rules for readied actions "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it." So the readied action goes off just before the NPC moves within 5'. So how can the PC trip this NPC that is not adjacent? That doesn't seem right. What am I missing?

Edit: In fact according to the wording for readied actions it seems like the trip should go off before the entire freaking move because your initiative would change to just before your opponents.

If you follow Fret et al down their rabbit hole... that is where they are leading you.

It is pure madness!


Remy Balster wrote:
And, for the record… Readied actions DO NOT say they happen before their triggering event. You are and have been making that up.

Wat?

Ready wrote:
You can ready a standard action, a move action, a swift action, or a free action. To do so, specify the action you will take and the conditions under which you will take it. Then, anytime before your next action, you may take the readied action in response to that condition. The action occurs just before the action that triggers it.

Man, I gotta get my glasses checked. I could have sworn that the entry on readied actions in the core rule book says explicitly, "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it." But, I do have it on your authority that the core rule book never says that readied actions happen before their triggering event. You even all-caps'ed it.

I stand corrected. My apologies.


@fretgod99. We agree on this:

Elbedor wrote:
fretgod99 wrote:
The only thing I find odd about the trip entry...is that it says "exceeds" not "equals or exceeds". I have always assumed this to be an oversight.
WHAT?!? Now we have to debate that too?!? No, actually I agree with you. I see "exceeds", but read it "equals or exceeds" anyway.

Is it possible that the word "resolves" as in "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it resolves" is an oversight as well? Because including the text after this sentence we get:

"The action occurs just before the action that triggers it. If the triggered action is part of another character's activities, you interrupt the other character. Assuming he is still capable of doing so, he continues his actions once you complete your readied action."

This makes it appear that the readied action is behaving like an AoO. Again, it makes sense that if I ready to attack someone leaving my threatened area, that I get to hit him before he leaves the square. But if I ready to hit someone entering my threatened square, I don't hit him until after he's moved into it. So the readied action can either go before or even after resolution depending on what our set conditions are.

@ anyone left still reading this thread.

Any comments as to my last post and the writer's intent regarding Greater Trip and the meaning of "trip"?


fretgod99 wrote:
Remy Balster wrote:
And, for the record… Readied actions DO NOT say they happen before their triggering event. You are and have been making that up.

Wat?

Ready wrote:
You can ready a standard action, a move action, a swift action, or a free action. To do so, specify the action you will take and the conditions under which you will take it. Then, anytime before your next action, you may take the readied action in response to that condition. The action occurs just before the action that triggers it.

Man, I gotta get my glasses checked. I could have sworn that the entry on readied actions in the core rule book says explicitly, "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it." But, I do have it on your authority that the core rule book never says that readied actions happen before their triggering event. You even all-caps'ed it.

I stand corrected. My apologies.

It does say that.

It does not say "they happen before their triggering event".

Not understanding the distinction is where you keep getting the whole issue confused.

Edit/clarification: Not all readied actions are set to trigger from actions. Many times they are set to trigger from something more specific, a specific event.

If I ready an action to hit a guy if he attacks me... it really doesn't matter if you say whether the readied action interrupts the other guys attacks or if it comes before the other guys attack or whatever. It is superfluous.

If you ready an action to attack a guy if he gets within melee range... now you have set a trigger to an event, not to an action. It wouldn't make any sense to attempt to resolve your readied action before his move action.

So... you don't. The RAW doesn't tell you to either, it isn't an action that is triggering the readied action, it is a specific event. It doesn't matter how the enemy gets within range, whether by his move action, or if he is pushed, or if he falls, or teleports... simply doesn't matter. All that matters is that the trigger event has occurred, and then the readied action triggers immediately and is resolved immediately. Then you carry on where you left off.

Furthermore. Readied actions don’t much matter for our discussion. How is it relevant to Greater Trip? It really isn’t. I’ve tried to respond to this detour on a number of occasions already… but it really isn’t relevant. And if Readied Actions are your only fallback to explain why the AoO from Greater Trip occurs before the tripped opponent is prone…. Your argument has some holes in it.


Remy Balster wrote:
Furthermore. Readied actions don’t much matter for our discussion. I know it is a pet favorite subject for you… but how is it relevant to Greater Trip? It really isn’t. I’ve indulged this detour on a number of occasions already… but it really isn’t relevant. And if Readied Actions are your only fallback to explain why the AoO from Greater Trip occurs before the tripped opponent is prone…. Your argument has some holes in it.

I agree with your position. However, there really is no need for the bold to be part of your post. It really detracts from the discussion. It is designed to incite and not to inform.


Elbedor wrote:

@fretgod99. We agree on this:

Elbedor wrote:
fretgod99 wrote:
The only thing I find odd about the trip entry...is that it says "exceeds" not "equals or exceeds". I have always assumed this to be an oversight.
WHAT?!? Now we have to debate that too?!? No, actually I agree with you. I see "exceeds", but read it "equals or exceeds" anyway.

Is it possible that the word "resolves" as in "The action occurs just before the action that triggers it resolves" is an oversight as well? Because including the text after this sentence we get:

"The action occurs just before the action that triggers it. If the triggered action is part of another character's activities, you interrupt the other character. Assuming he is still capable of doing so, he continues his actions once you complete your readied action."

This makes it appear that the readied action is behaving like an AoO. Again, it makes sense that if I ready to attack someone leaving my threatened area, that I get to hit him before he leaves the square. But if I ready to hit someone entering my threatened square, I don't hit him until after he's moved into it. So the readied action can either go before or even after resolution depending on what our set conditions are.

It's possible, but I don't think so. I think readied actions were likely designed to function essentially like they're attacks of opportunity. As I've stated, I think the interruption language just clarifies how it works when you trigger in the middle of someone else's action. It's a game tracking issue.

What happens when you ready an action to defensively cast Mage Armor when someone attacks you? At what point in the attack does the interruption occur? Is it when they declare the action? Nothing has actually occurred at that point. How does your character know that the attack is coming if nothing has occurred? In game terms, we don't have a "pull back your sword arm to indicate an attack" part of an action. If you wait until the attack roll is made, isn't it too late to benefit from Mage Armor?

What happens if you ready an action to disarm a foe who sunders your weapon? What happens if ready an attack for when an opponent takes a 5' step out of a threatened space? What happens if ready a ranged attack for anyone who targets you with a ranged attack, then your opponent casts Acid Arrow? What happens if you ready to cast Silence whenever an opponent casts a spell? What is left to resolve if the trigger is an opponent casting a spell? Are they interrupted mid-cast or has the casting occurred, but the effect is on hold until after your action?

All of those are quite easy if the readied action actually goes first. If not, you have to figure out what "resolve" means. What's the actual trigger, then? Do you have to actually make the attack roll in order to have attacked? Is the actual casting part of the spell done or is there still something left to cast? Is it just the effect of the action taken that is left to apply? Does it depend on context?

The situations you'd actual have to parse seem far fewer if the general rule is the readied action goes first. There are very few examples of things that can't be immediately handled that way. The point was to streamline activity. In so doing, the Developers likely recognized that they'd be creating a handful of head-scratching situations, but accepted that consequence for the benefit of having a simpler system.

Elbedor" wrote:

@ anyone left still reading this thread.

Any comments as to my last post and the writer's intent regarding Greater Trip and the meaning of "trip"?

That's one of the reasons why I think your interpretation is certainly quite reasonable. But you can't really be beholden to fluff or descriptive text. Titan Mauler is a prime example of when intent doesn't match outcome. If fluff text was controlling, you couldn't combine Knockout Artist and Vicious Strike. There was a massive debate about whether Thunder and Fang requires you to use a Klar to wield an Earthbreaker one-handed. You can find other examples around, too.

Some people will find it determinative. Some people will completely dismiss it. Most will probably be somewhere in the middle.


fretgod99 wrote:

What happens when you ready an action to defensively cast Mage Armor when someone attacks you? At what point in the attack does the interruption occur? Is it when they declare the action? Nothing has actually occurred at that point. How does your character know that the attack is coming if nothing has occurred? In game terms, we don't have a "pull back your sword arm to indicate an attack" part of an action. If you wait until the attack roll is made, isn't it too late to benefit from Mage Armor?

What happens if you ready an action to disarm a foe who sunders your weapon? What happens if ready an attack for when an opponent takes a 5' step out of a threatened space? What happens if ready a ranged attack for anyone who targets you with a ranged attack, then your opponent casts Acid Arrow? What happens if you ready to cast Silence whenever an opponent casts a spell? What is left to resolve if the trigger is an opponent casting a spell? Are they interrupted mid-cast or has the casting occurred, but the effect is on hold until after your action?

All of those are quite easy if the readied action actually goes first. If not, you have to figure out what "resolve" means. What's the actual trigger, then? Do you have to actually make the attack roll in order to have attacked? Is the actual casting part of the spell done or is there still something left to cast? Is it just the effect of the action taken that is left to apply? Does it depend on context?

All of those triggers are actions. It is superfluous whether they come before or interrupt.

You must know that. Use of numerous examples of the only type of trigger which makes sense under your reading of Readied Actions seems intentionally misleading. You are certainly aware of other sorts of triggers, right?

What happens in these examples?
You ready to cast a cure spell if your adjacent buddy is injured. Does the cure spell happen before the attack that injured him?

You ready an action to shoot the next person around the corner. Do you shoot him before he takes the move action from around the corner?

You ready to cast wall of force just behind the first enemy to get within 20ft of your party to divide your enemies. Do you cast wall of force before he takes his move action?

Not all readied actions trigger from actions and you must know that they don't. When dealing with an action as a trigger for a readied action is doesn't matter either way whether the readied action is called before or during. It matters a great deal if the trigger isn't an action, but is instead an event of some other kind.

You absolutely must be aware of this, right?


Remy Balster wrote:
Furthermore. Readied actions don’t much matter for our discussion. I know it is a pet favorite subject for you… but how is it relevant to Greater Trip? It really isn’t. I’ve indulged this detour on a number of occasions already… but it really isn’t relevant. And if Readied Actions are your only fallback to explain why the AoO from Greater Trip occurs before the tripped opponent is prone…. Your argument has some holes in it.

I'm not the one pressing the issue. I'm just responding to you incorrectly stating the rules.

I've noticed you do this a couple of times though. You make claims about something, argue it pretty vociferously, then when the evidence is presented contradicting what you're saying, your response is something along the lines of "No, you're wrong, but I don't even know why you insist on talking about this. It doesn't even help your case."

And in this instance, I was responding to your claim.

Remember, you said:

Remy Balster wrote:
And, for the record… Readied actions DO NOT say they happen before their triggering event. You are and have been making that up.

Then I quoted the actual rules. They say:

Ready wrote:
The action occurs just before the action that triggers it.

So, it's pretty clear I'm not making anything up. You set the conditions that trigger the readied action. The readied action occurs before whatever it was that triggered it.

But, I suppose you're free to read that however you like. It's really no skin off my back.

*shrug*


fretgod99 wrote:
Remy Balster wrote:
Furthermore. Readied actions don’t much matter for our discussion. I know it is a pet favorite subject for you… but how is it relevant to Greater Trip? It really isn’t. I’ve indulged this detour on a number of occasions already… but it really isn’t relevant. And if Readied Actions are your only fallback to explain why the AoO from Greater Trip occurs before the tripped opponent is prone…. Your argument has some holes in it.

I'm not the one pressing the issue. I'm just responding to you incorrectly stating the rules.

I've noticed you do this a couple of times though. You make claims about something, argue it pretty vociferously, then when the evidence is presented contradicting what you're saying, your response is something along the lines of "No, you're wrong, but I don't even know why you insist on talking about this. It doesn't even help your case."

And in this instance, I was responding to your claim.

Remember, you said:

Remy Balster wrote:
And, for the record… Readied actions DO NOT say they happen before their triggering event. You are and have been making that up.

Then I quoted the actual rules. They say:

Ready wrote:
The action occurs just before the action that triggers it.

So, it's pretty clear I'm not making anything up. You set the conditions that trigger the readied action. The readied action occurs before whatever it was that triggered it.

But, I suppose you're free to read that however you like. It's really no skin off my back.

*shrug*

If you continue to be unable to make the distinction between a triggering action and a triggering event... you will continue to be unable to understand this rule.

Triggering action: I ready an action to attack a guy who attacks me.
Triggering event: I ready an action to cast cure light wounds on my ally if he is injured.

If you try to force the readied action contingent on a triggering event to occur before the event that triggers them, the entire readied action breaks down into nonsense.

You see that right?


fretgod99 wrote:
Tripping someone in Pathfinder means you are using the Trip combat maneuver.

Tripping someone in PF means you knock them down via the Trip Combat Maneuver. I don't declare a trip so that I can make a Trip Combat Maneuver against them. I declare a trip so that I can knock them down. The Combat Maneuver is the mechanics through which I accomplish this.

"I trip my foe" means "I knock down my foe". Every player and GM at the table knows this.

fretgod99 wrote:
Trip is being (potentially) used in two different ways - does trip as used in the GT feat retain its game specific reference to the Trip Combat Maneuver (so the verb references the specific trip combat maneuver - as in trip = perform the trip combat maneuver) or is it used there more generically, akin to the standard English word "to trip" (trip means to have knocked prone via the trip combat maneuver)? It's a fair question.

It is a fair question. But the writer answers it. We can clearly see how he is defining the word. Just because you wish to ignore this, doesn't change anything.

Or are you really believing that the writer had no idea what he was talking about? Do you really think he would put "knock down" when what he really meant was "perform a combat maneuver"? And in the Core book of all places? This is your position?

fretgod99 wrote:
That's one of the reasons why I think your interpretation is certainly quite reasonable. But you can't really be beholden to fluff or descriptive text. Titan Mauler is a prime example of when intent doesn't match outcome.

I'm not sure what you mean here. The description of the Archetype is pretty much summing up loosely what you get. But with Greater Trip you are saying the writer put X in the fluff but really meant Y. That is a HUGE conflict. Your argument does not hold up here.

fretgod99 wrote:
If fluff text was controlling, you couldn't combine Knockout Artist and Vicious Strike.

Do you mean Vicious Stomp or Vital Strike? There is no conflict in the fluff between Knockout Artist and these. Or perhaps you're referencing something else?

fretgod99 wrote:
There was a massive debate about whether Thunder and Fang requires you to use a Klar to wield an Earthbreaker one-handed. You can find other examples around, too.

There is no problem with the fluff here also. It describes what you can do with the feat. It says very simply that you can fight with increased effectiveness when using those two items. As to whether you MUST use the feat this way to maintain the benefit can be debated.

But again, this is nothing like what you're saying with Greater Trip. In order for your interpretation to be even remotely possible, you have to assert that the writer had no idea what he was doing. He very clearly and pointedly defines "Trip" as "knock down". But you are saying that AFTER giving us this context he then goes on to mean that he wasn't really talking about Knock Down at all, but something else.

You and others in your camp stand by this argument? Because wriggle as you like, there really is no room. The writer gave us exactly what we needed here. You can keep restating your premise, but that is all you're doing at this point. You offer no evidence and cite no rule to support your premise. You just keep restating it as if it is evidence for itself.

I give you this; you are quite the stubborn one. ;)


@ Remy. Fair point about Ready. I never really dug that deep to distinguish between Actions and Events. Makes sense though.

Any chance I can hear your thoughts on Greater Trip's fluff?


Elbedor wrote:

@ Remy. Fair point about Ready. I never really dug that deep to distinguish between Actions and Events. Makes sense though.

Any chance I can hear your thoughts on Greater Trip's fluff?

Yeah. Fluff is fluff. In my personal opinion fluff isn't just fluff... but I usually divorce myself from the notion here on the rules forum... simply because so many of us who lurk here seem to disregard that text completely as if it were meaningless or nonexistent.

I tend to think of the mechanics as supplementary to the fluff... the mechanics tells us how the fluff operates in a game world that is entirely made of fluff.

That if we ignore the fluff, then the mechanics aren't really relevant to whatever we are now talking about.

If I change the fluff of a longsword to 'big giant ax of great size' then I'm not really even talking about the same thing anymore, and longsword mechanics aren't relevant, no matter how much I call it a longsword, it isn't.

So... long story short, I view the fluff to be the driving force for even having mechanics at all. The fluff is the lord and master, it is the thing of which we are discussing... it is he 'what'.

The mechanics follows the fluff, the mechanics are the 'how' of the 'what'. They tell us how whatever it is we are talking about functions.

So. When an ability calls out how it should work in the fluff... I think we are fools to ignore that.


And before this conversation veers off into debating other things, what we have in essence is some text that opens Greater Trip. Our focus becomes something about how we get free attacks on someone we've knocked down. The mechanics then proceed to tell us how to go about doing this. We need to successfully trip our target.

You can make free attacks on foes that you knock down.
Whenever you successfully trip an opponent, that opponent provokes attacks of opportunity.

Unless I'm missing something extraordinary, this means my free attacks (AoOs) happen when my foes are knocked down (successfully tripped). Or reverse it if you like; that whenever I successful trip my opponents (knock down), they provoke AoOs (free attacks). There really isn't any other way to read this.

Now does this mean that the 'fluff' is infallible in every case all throughout the rules? I'm sure that topic could be debated case by case on another thread. But to say it is wrong here is not just to imply that the writer is off somewhere, but that he is saying the exact opposite of what he meant! That would be like saying you really get a penalty when the fluff says bonus. I find that very hard to believe that the writers and editors of this game would be that careless.

Maybe they haven't bothered to FAQ this topic because the answer was staring us in the face the whole time. I know I was missing it for a while. :)


Knockout Artist wrote:
You can throw devastating knockout punches.
Vicious Stomp wrote:
You take advantage of the moment to brutally kick an enemy when he is down.

If you take the fluff too seriously, you can't combine these feats. That's all.


fretgod99 wrote:
Knockout Artist wrote:
You can throw devastating knockout punches.
Vicious Stomp wrote:
You take advantage of the moment to brutally kick an enemy when he is down.
If you take the fluff too seriously, you can't combine these feats. That's all.

Ironically enough, in any game I'd GM for... you actually cannot combine those two feats.


Elbedor wrote:

And before this conversation veers off into debating other things, what we have in essence is some text that opens Greater Trip. Our focus becomes something about how we get free attacks on someone we've knocked down. The mechanics then proceed to tell us how to go about doing this. We need to successfully trip our target.

You can make free attacks on foes that you knock down.
Whenever you successfully trip an opponent, that opponent provokes attacks of opportunity.

Unless I'm missing something extraordinary, this means my free attacks (AoOs) happen when my foes are knocked down (successfully tripped). Or reverse it if you like; that whenever I successful trip my opponents (knock down), they provoke AoOs (free attacks). There really isn't any other way to read this.

Now does this mean that the 'fluff' is infallible in every case all throughout the rules? I'm sure that topic could be debated case by case on another thread. But to say it is wrong here is not just to imply that the writer is off somewhere, but that he is saying the exact opposite of what he meant! That would be like saying you really get a penalty when the fluff says bonus. I find that very hard to believe that the writers and editors of this game would be that careless.

Maybe they haven't bothered to FAQ this topic because the answer was staring us in the face the whole time. I know I was missing it for a while. :)

If you want to get pedantic (and who in the rules forum doesn't), the fluff doesn't even necessarily resolve it. Does the free attack occur while you knock them down, or after? The verb tenses used make it unclear. Notice that in your explanation, you changed "knock" to "knocked" - one implies it has already happened; one could mean it has already happened or it could mean it is in the process of happening.

Plus, the fluff of the feat contradicts the rules language itself. The fluff mentions only you, the actor, get an AoO. The rules language implies that anybody who threatens the object of the trip maneuver gets to make an AoO.


Remy Balster wrote:
fretgod99 wrote:
Knockout Artist wrote:
You can throw devastating knockout punches.
Vicious Stomp wrote:
You take advantage of the moment to brutally kick an enemy when he is down.
If you take the fluff too seriously, you can't combine these feats. That's all.
Ironically enough, in any game I'd GM for... you actually cannot combine those two feats.

Why not? Honestly curious. Is it because of the fluff part? The rules require only unarmed strikes.

Ridiculous but Plausible Scenario (because it really is a corner case): Rogue under invisibility is standing next to an NPC the party wants to capture. NPC is targeted by an overrun and knocked prone.

You wouldn't let the Rogue combine the feats here?


Also, consider Greater Overrun.

Greater Overrun wrote:
Enemies must dive to avoid your dangerous move.

Does that mesh with how anyone understand a Greater Overrun to work? It implies your opponents can dive out of the way to avoid the maneuver, but we know that isn't true because Improved Overrun specifically disallows it.

Again, I'm not trying to say fluff is worthless. I'm just saying you can't always put a lot of stock into it. And if that's the case, you really shouldn't ever rely on it to be the determining factor in a rules debate.


fretgod99 wrote:

Also, consider Greater Overrun.

Greater Overrun wrote:
Enemies must dive to avoid your dangerous move.

Does that mesh with how anyone understand a Greater Overrun to work? It implies your opponents can dive out of the way to avoid the maneuver, but we know that isn't true because Improved Overrun specifically disallows it.

Again, I'm not trying to say fluff is worthless. I'm just saying you can't always put a lot of stock into it.

I agree that Greater Overrun is not covering any mechanics in its fluff. It's more like painting a mental image of people flying out of your way as you barrel through. Are they diving out of your way? No, they can't choose to avoid you as per Improved Overrun.

But then you have fluff like Weapon Focus that is critical to understanding how the feat works. If we ignored it, we would have no idea what our range and limits of choices are. So it becomes quite important to pay attention.

For Greater Trip we are left with "successfully trip". Is it the action of knocking prone or the combat maneuver? The fluff gives us that context in this case just like it gives us the range for Weapon Focus.

fretgod99 wrote:

If you want to get pedantic (and who in the rules forum doesn't), the fluff doesn't even necessarily resolve it. Does the free attack occur while you knock them down, or after? The verb tenses used make it unclear. Notice that in your explanation, you changed "knock" to "knocked" - one implies it has already happened; one could mean it has already happened or it could mean it is in the process of happening.

Plus, the fluff of the feat contradicts the rules language itself. The fluff mentions only you, the actor, get an AoO. The rules language implies that anybody who threatens the object of the trip maneuver gets to make an AoO.

Ok yeah, you are really splitting hairs with that. There is no "almost prone" condition. Either you are or you aren't. "To knock prone" means "When you have knocked prone". You know this. Your argument is only to blur lines, not illuminate definitions.

Also the fluff mentions 'you'. How is that contradictory? Don't 'you' get an AoO? Just because it doesn't say "you and all your buddies" this is somehow contradictory in your mind? That's a bit of a weak argument. If it said "only you", I could see that as contradictory. But it doesn't. So no issues. I'm hardly contradicting myself if I say "You can have a beer" and then proceed to give you and half a dozen other people beers. I did just what I said. I gave you a beer.

fretgod99 wrote:
And if that's the case, you really shouldn't ever rely on it to be the determining factor in a rules debate.

You are forgetting that the burden of proof is not on me. The rules can be taken quite literally and grammatically on their own. When I knock my target over, I get a free attack on him. If you think otherwise, then you must cite your sources to support your argument. But you don't. You offer premise Y and ask people to accept it as valid. You don't cite any rules as to why it should be considered valid. You only restate the premise. Then when someone says they don't think Y is possible because of X, you argue that maybe X isn't really X but more like X1. Your whole focus becomes to blur the lines. You've been doing it for weeks now. ;) But then you don't actually get around to why Y should be seen as valid. So your position remains lacking.

We know the game was not written for rocket scientists and language professors. So we don't have to dissect and split atoms to reach a fair understanding of what's happening.
We know that 'successfully' means the action it is describing has happened.
We know the rules do a very good job of pointing out "a maneuver", "an attack", or "an attempt" when it is referring to them.
We also know that when these types of key words are missing, it is the action being referred to. i.e. "A successful hit" vs "When you successfully hit".
We know the opening text of Greater Trip does a good job of setting context as it spells out exactly what is to follow regarding the mechanics.
We know 'Prone' is not a partial condition. Either you are or you aren't. If you knock someone prone, then they are not on their way there. They are there. The game does not recognize any inbetween state.
We know AoOs interrupt actions that people take and we know Feats can disregard this.
We know that Roll/AoO/Prone opens the door wide to rule abuses that a GM must come in and shut down.

These and more all point to 'Prone before AoO' and away from 'Prone after AoO'. But if you believe that it is otherwise, then cite the source that makes your point.


Elbedor wrote:

I agree that Greater Overrun is not covering any mechanics in its fluff. It's more like painting a mental image of people flying out of your way as you barrel through. Are they diving out of your way? No, they can't choose to avoid you as per Improved Overrun.

But then you have fluff like Weapon Focus that is critical to understanding how the feat works. If we ignored it, we would have no idea what our range and limits of choices are. So it becomes quite important to pay attention.

For Greater Trip we are left with "successfully trip". Is it the action of knocking prone or the combat maneuver? The fluff gives us that context in this case just like it gives us the range for Weapon Focus.

The fluff to Weapon Focus isn't critical. It's certainly helpful, because otherwise there would be some disagreements about rays and grapples and the like. But it's not critical.

Regardless, Greater Trip does not fall into the camp of either Greater Overrun or Weapon Focus. It's somewhere in between.

Elbedor wrote:

Ok yeah, you are really splitting hairs with that. There is no "almost prone" condition. Either you are or you aren't. "To knock prone" means "When you have knocked prone". You know this. Your argument is only to blur lines, not illuminate definitions.

Also the fluff mentions 'you'. How is that contradictory? Don't 'you' get an AoO? Just because it doesn't say "you and all your buddies" this is somehow contradictory in your mind? That's a bit of a weak argument. If it said "only you", I could see that as contradictory. But it doesn't. So no issues. I'm hardly contradicting myself if I say "You can have a beer" and then proceed to give you and half a dozen other people beers. I did just what I said. I gave you a beer.

It's really not splitting hairs at all. The language used literally can have two meanings. I'm just demonstrating why it's not always clear just by looking at the language. There is no "in-between" state - that's why things like AoO get shunted to the front. That doesn't mean that the conceptualization of the feat cannot be that what causes the lack of defense is the act of falling. Also, "knock down" isn't a game term, either. So why are we limiting the fluff text to game-specific terms and situations (as opposed to simple descriptive text) when it's using language that isn't a game-specific term? You read "on foes that you knock down" to mean "on foes that you have knocked prone". That could certainly be how it is intended to be read. Again, it's not the only way to read it - it does not mandate that the effect has already been resolved.

Regarding the "you" section, it is contradictory at worst and inferring at best (which is something you've called me out for doing). You're saying the fluff text gives guidance for how the feat is supposed to be used. The fluff text says "you" not "you and your allies".

You may not be contradicting yourself if you say, "You may have a beer" and then you hand out beers to me and everybody else. But you certainly are inferring quite a lot if someone else says, "You may may have a beer" and then you grab one for yourself and hand a bunch out to your friends.

The point is that the fluff text also isn't necessarily as clear as you'd like it to be. It certainly is if you presume that "knock down" means "have knocked prone". But that's sort of the point, isn't it? That's the discussion we're having.

Elbedor wrote:
You are forgetting that the burden of proof is not on me. The rules can be taken quite literally and grammatically on their own. When I knock my target over, I get a free attack on him. If you think otherwise, then you must cite your sources to support your argument. But you don't.

1. The burden of proof isn't really on anybody beyond demonstrating that it is not unreasonable to interpret the rules in the preferred manner. I've done that. Others have done that.

2. I'm getting tired of the "but you don't bring any evidence" arguments. I've been talking about this for a month. I've presented evidence, and you disagree with it. That's fine. That's how these things work. But when you present evidence and I disagree with it, now I'm just nay-saying and not actually presenting an argument. Disagreeing with evidence does not mean it does not exist. It's a weight v. admissibility issue. You're arguing admissibility when you're actually talking about weight.

Saying "Trip" means the game-specific term of "to perform the trip combat maneuver" is no less evidence than saying "Trip" means "to apply the effect of the trip combat maneuver", which is what you're claiming. If one is not, than neither is the other. And frankly, contradicting the evidence you provide is presenting evidence. That's how this works. It's how it works when you make attempts to contradict evidence brought by this side; that's how it works when this side makes attempts to contradict evidence brought by you. Undercutting an opposing argument is an equally valid means of demonstrating a point.

We don't "know" half of the things you claim to know. You're presuming a position on things to be proven. I can just as easily claim to "know" that trip is analogous to hit, not damage. But you'd dispute that. You don't really provide any evidence to support your dispute, but you still dispute it. The GT/VS FAQ allows two AoO. You claim that "trip" actually is to knock prone. You're now allowing one triggering event to provide to AoO. You claim "successfully" means action+effect, which is important because that means "successfully trip" can't possibly mean "successfully perform the trip combat maneuver". This is demonstrably false and evidence is provided. You change your argument to "successfully" means to accomplish whatever it is you set out to do. I demonstrate that this is the argument I've been making for a month. This means everything reverts back to what, precisely, "trip" means. You present evidence that "Trip" isn't analogous to "Hit" because the rules entry doesn't specifically mention "success". I present the same unresolved issue on the phrasing of the rules entries. You argue Trip is different. You prove this by demonstrating that it is different than every other combat maneuver, which all specifically mention "success". But you also analogize Trip to every other combat maneuver to demonstrate when effects are applied and how Greater feats work.

You cannot prove that "Trip" means "apply the effect of the trip combat maneuver" any more than I can prove that "Trip" means "perform the trip combat maneuver". That is the point. This is the bone of contention. This is where every argument circles back to. It has for a month. I know how to present evidence. I know how to make an argument. I do it for a living. I haven't been standing here simply saying, "Nuh-uh!" every time you make an argument. But it appears that this is the impression you have of this discussion. If that's the case, I'm through wasting my time. I should have been a week or two ago. We see it differently. Accept that and move on.


fretgod99 wrote:
You cannot prove that "Trip" means "apply the effect of the trip combat maneuver"...

Really?

Trip wrote:
If your attack exceeds the target's CMD, the target is knocked prone. If your attack fails by 10 or more, you are knocked prone instead.

If we bungle a trip attempt badly enough we are knocked prone instead of the target. The target isn't making a return trip attack of any kind. Our being knocked prone is automatic.

Trip(Ex) wrote:
A creature with the trip special attack can attempt to trip its opponent as a free action without provoking an attack of opportunity if it hits with the specified attack. If the attempt fails, the creature is not tripped in return.

Here, it says "the creature is not tripped". What does this mean? It means "the creature is not knocked prone". If "Trip" meant "the action of performing a trip attack", then this phrase makes no sense, because it would suggest that a return trip attack normally happens, but in this case it doesn't. But we all know targets don't get to make a return trip attack. What the text is pointing out is that the creature is not knocked prone (tripped) when it fails its own trip attempt.

As I've been saying, the action "to trip" means "to knock prone". If we fail badly, then we "are knocked prone" (tripped). But if the creature with this ability fails badly, then it "is not tripped" (knocked prone).

Tie this into Greater Trip and what do we get? Whenever I successfully knock prone my opponent, that opponent provokes...


fretgod99 wrote:
You cannot prove that "Trip" means "apply the effect of the trip combat maneuver"...

And again...

Warren Chief wrote:

Tactics

Before Combat The monk drinks his potions of barkskin and protection from energy (fire) if he has had time to study his foes' weaknesses. When fighting in cramped or narrow areas, he instead drinks his potion of invisibility and coats an area of the floor with his salve of slipperiness. He then waits for foes to enter the greased area before attacking.

During Combat The monk uses his kama in conjunction with Spring Attack and Improved Trip to knock foes prone, potentially using the kama's ki focus special ability to channel his Stunning Fist. If he has successfully tripped foes with his salve of slipperiness, he activates his slippers of spider climbing so he doesn't have to cross the slippery floor, and uses flurry of blows with his shuriken. If outnumbered, he uses his elemental gem and flanks with the earth elemental.

The text says "successfully tripped" and we know that no trip attack was made here because Salve of Slipperiness does not make trip attacks.

So again we see "trip" as meaning "knocked prone".


And again ...

Unarmed Fighter wrote:
when an unarmed fighter successfully trips an opponent with an unarmed attack, he can attempt a dirty trick combat maneuver against that creature (before the opponent becomes prone) as an immediate action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity.

Here we have trip meaning, specifically, not knocked prone. The text specifically says "successfully trip" and yet it's used in reference to the character not being prone yet.

We can do this all day. We can do this all month (again). We've been through it. Over and over and over again. Two interpretations. I see both as being valid. I won't be surprised whichever the Developers favor, but they'll undoubtedly have to opt for one at some point.

I'm going to go ahead and take this thread off my radar now.


fretgod99 wrote:

And again ...

Unarmed Fighter wrote:
when an unarmed fighter successfully trips an opponent with an unarmed attack, he can attempt a dirty trick combat maneuver against that creature (before the opponent becomes prone) as an immediate action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity.
Here we have trip meaning, specifically, not knocked prone. The text specifically says "successfully trip" and yet it's used in reference to the character not being prone yet.

Yes, but what you missed is that the text also makes it very clear that it is pointing out "(before the opponent becomes prone)". Now why does it need this extra text? Because normally "trip" means "knock prone". But in this specific case, it doesn't.


Like here...

Ageless Master wrote:
During Combat The monk expends a point from his ki pool at the beginning of combat to increase his speed. He then closes with a single opponent to deliver an Improved Vital Strike combined with Stunning Fist. If successful, he makes a full attack with his flurry of blows in the next round, attempting to finish the hampered opponent. He uses this tactic whenever possible, using flurry of blows or Power Attack only against targets that have already had their AC compromised from being stunned or tripped.

So "trip" here means your AC is compromised....because you're prone.

You can say it's past tense, so that's different. But tense doesn't matter.

If "Whenever I trip" means "Whenever I perform a trip attack", then "Whenever I've tripped" means "Whenever I've performed a trip attack".

But we know from this text, the two previous, and your example making sure we know an exception to the norm that "trip" and "tripped" mean "knock prone" and "knocked prone".


fretgod99 wrote:
Remy Balster wrote:
fretgod99 wrote:
Knockout Artist wrote:
You can throw devastating knockout punches.
Vicious Stomp wrote:
You take advantage of the moment to brutally kick an enemy when he is down.
If you take the fluff too seriously, you can't combine these feats. That's all.
Ironically enough, in any game I'd GM for... you actually cannot combine those two feats.

Why not? Honestly curious. Is it because of the fluff part? The rules require only unarmed strikes.

Ridiculous but Plausible Scenario (because it really is a corner case): Rogue under invisibility is standing next to an NPC the party wants to capture. NPC is targeted by an overrun and knocked prone.

You wouldn't let the Rogue combine the feats here?

No. I generally enforce fluff. I'm cruel like that.

My personal game philosophy regarding fluff is that it is the primary element. Fluff is king. Mechanics simply tell us how the fluff functions.

So, while the feats don’t directly say it, I would limit them to the use for which they are named and described as. When I read them, what I see is:

"When you use your unarmed strike with punches to deal nonlethal damage and sneak attack damage to an opponent denied his Dexterity bonus to AC, you gain a +1 bonus on the damage roll per each sneak attack damage die you roll."

and

"Whenever an opponent falls prone adjacent to you, that opponent provokes an attack of opportunity from you. This attack must be an unarmed strike with a kick."

I bolded what I read into them. I'm firmly aware that this is not RAW.I generally don't discuss my homebrew stuff here in this forum though. But yes, I read the mechanics as though they work in support of the fluff... if the fluff says punches, it is punches. If it says kicks, it is kicks.

On the flip side, I also allow quite a lot of creative made-up stuff. Someone says what they want their feat to do (ie. tells me the fluff) and I'll custom build them mechanics for it. Alternatively, if they want to swap the feel of a feat, the fluff can be tweaked a little. But it always gets a new name, and is documented as such. And I catalog the new feat/ability for later reference.

So... I'm simultaneously more and less restrictive.


Ok, maybe this is my ignorance showing here, but I'm not getting why based on fluff these two feats can't be combined. If I Improved Feint a target as a move and then Knockout Artist punch him, if he falls unconscious from this and collapses adjacent to me, why can't I then kick him?


Elbedor wrote:
Ok, maybe this is my ignorance showing here, but I'm not getting why based on fluff these two feats can't be combined. If I Improved Feint a target as a move and then Knockout Artist punch him, if he falls unconscious from this and collapses adjacent to me, why can't I then kick him?

He meant use them in conjunction.

Ie. Can you kick/punch him simultaneously? Take the AoO from him falling prone with a kick-punch that does the extra damage from knockout artist punch but is a kick somehow from Vicious Stomp.

The RAW is that you can, since the mechanics only specify 'unarmed strike'. But the fluff doesn't match. One is with a kick, one is with a punch.


Ah, I see. He was saying the Knockout Artist attack IS the Vicious Stomp AoO. So you're only making 1 attack here. I was seeing them as two different attacks. You would take the punch on your attack action. Then when he collapses you follow up with a kick. So I wasn't seeing any timing issues here.

In that case, then yes, I can see the fluff not quite lining up. If "unarmed strike" was defined specifically as a kick or a punch somewhere, then I could see an issue with using these two feats simultaneous. But as it's not, the fluff is taken 'with a grain of salt' so to speak.

Greater Trip however functions more readily like TWF, Weapon Finesse, or Weapon Focus. The terms "trip" and "knock prone" are synonymously used throughout different examples. So the fluff here lines up correctly. My argument wasn't that fluff always rules. Just that it can set the context for us. Some feats better than others. But meh. It is what it is.


Elbedor wrote:

Ah, I see. He was saying the Knockout Artist attack IS the Vicious Stomp AoO. So you're only making 1 attack here. I was seeing them as two different attacks. You would take the punch on your attack action. Then when he collapses you follow up with a kick. So I wasn't seeing any timing issues here.

In that case, then yes, I can see the fluff not quite lining up. If "unarmed strike" was defined specifically as a kick or a punch somewhere, then I could see an issue with using these two feats simultaneous. But as it's not, the fluff is taken 'with a grain of salt' so to speak.

Greater Trip however functions more readily like TWF, Weapon Finesse, or Weapon Focus. The terms "trip" and "knock prone" are synonymously used throughout different examples. So the fluff here lines up correctly. My argument wasn't that fluff always rules. Just that it can set the context for us. Some feats better than others. But meh. It is what it is.

Yep! The case you've outlined is very clear and decisive.


Yeah, I am still with Fret.

The way I see it, when it was first discussed (FAQs, JB, etc.) there was no benefit from tripping a prone person, i.e. the net effect of 0.

Then there was light (Advanced Player Guide, Ultimate Combat, etc.) which gave a reason to "trip" prone people with the net effect greater than 0 (Ki Throw, Greater Trip). Once that happened, all things were muddied.

I am sure this was brought up, but I didn't take the best notes over the last month:

Jason Bulmahn wrote:

FAQ: The Greater Trip feat allows you to take an attack of opportunity against a foe that you trip. The Vicious Stomp feat allows you to take an attack of opportunity against a foe that falls prone adjacent to you. If you have both these feats and trip a foe, do you get to make two attacks of opportunity (assuming that you can)?

Yes, the two triggering acts are similar here but they are different. One occurs when you trip a foe. The other occurs when a foe falls prone. It requires a large number of feats to accomplish, but you can really pile on the attacks with this combination.

FOUND HERE

I think this clearly gives support to the distinction between "Trip" and "Prone".

Maybe Fret and I are incorrect. Maybe the other side is. Like Fret has stated, both interpretations are reasonable.

I still advocate that you can only choose for your table and await a clear, detailed DEV response to the many issued raised by this thread.

Both sides have given great support for their arguments but neither can prove the correct answer.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

A friendly refresher from the official PRD.

Attacks of Opportunity

Sometimes a combatant in a melee lets her guard down or takes a reckless action. In this case, combatants near her can take advantage of her lapse in defense to attack her for free. These free attacks are called attacks of opportunity. See the Attacks of Opportunity diagram for an example of how they work.

Threatened Squares: You threaten all squares into which you can make a melee attack, even when it is not your turn. Generally, that means everything in all squares adjacent to your space (including diagonally). An enemy that takes certain actions while in a threatened square provokes an attack of opportunity from you. If you're unarmed, you don't normally threaten any squares and thus can't make attacks of opportunity.

Reach Weapons: Most creatures of Medium or smaller size have a reach of only 5 feet. This means that they can make melee attacks only against creatures up to 5 feet (1 square) away. However, Small and Medium creatures wielding reach weapons threaten more squares than a typical creature. In addition, most creatures larger than Medium have a natural reach of 10 feet or more.

Provoking an Attack of Opportunity: Two kinds of actions can provoke attacks of opportunity: moving out of a threatened square and performing certain actions within a threatened square.

Moving: Moving out of a threatened square usually provokes attacks of opportunity from threatening opponents. There are two common methods of avoiding such an attack—the 5-foot step and the withdraw action.

Performing a Distracting Act: Some actions, when performed in a threatened square, provoke attacks of opportunity as you divert your attention from the battle. Table: Actions in Combat notes many of the actions that provoke attacks of opportunity.

Remember that even actions that normally provoke attacks of opportunity may have exceptions to this rule.

Making an Attack of Opportunity: An attack of opportunity is a single melee attack, and most characters can only make one per round. You don't have to make an attack of opportunity if you don't want to. You make your attack of opportunity at your normal attack bonus, even if you've already attacked in the round.

An attack of opportunity “interrupts” the normal flow of actions in the round. If an attack of opportunity is provoked, immediately resolve the attack of opportunity, then continue with the next character's turn (or complete the current turn, if the attack of opportunity was provoked in the midst of a character's turn).

Combat Reflexes and Additional Attacks of Opportunity: If you have the Combat Reflexes feat, you can add your Dexterity bonus to the number of attacks of opportunity you can make in a round. This feat does not let you make more than one attack for a given opportunity, but if the same opponent provokes two attacks of opportunity from you, you could make two separate attacks of opportunity (since each one represents a different opportunity). Moving out of more than one square threatened by the same opponent in the same round doesn't count as more than one opportunity for that opponent. All these attacks are at your full normal attack bonus.

Where does it say the event occurs before the trigger?


Komoda wrote:
I think this clearly gives support to the distinction between "Trip" and "Prone".

It really doesn't though.

You trip an opponent vs an opponent falls prone adjacent to you. They aren't the same trigger. If they were the same trigger, they would always, always, always happen from the exact same events. But they don't.

Say you trip a guy 10ft away. GT activates. VS doesn't.
Say a guy falls unconscious while adjacent to you. GT doesn't activate. VS does.

The fact that they have some overlap does not make them the same trigger.

A wizard casts scorching ray while adjacent to a combat reflex bearing enemy fighter. How many AoOs does the fighter get? 1 or 2?

He gets 2. One for the wizard casting a spell, one for the wizard making a ranged attack.

Here we have 1 action causing 2 AoOs! But the two kinds of triggers are unique from one another.

The triggers are different here. Just like GT and VS triggers are different too. No matter which side of this argument you fall on, GT and VS have unique triggers from one another. They require different conditions, even if the same action can sometimes cause them both.

Quote:

Ranged Touch Attack Spells and AOOs: When you cast a spell that allows you to make a ranged touch attack (such as scorching ray), and an enemy is within reach, do you provoke two attacks of opportunity?

Yes, you provoke two attacks of opportunity: one for casting the spell and one for making a ranged attack, since these are two separate events.
(Note that at spell that fires multiple simultaneous rays, such as scorching ray, only provokes one AOO for making the ranged attack instead of one AOO for each ranged attack. It still provokes for casting the spell.
This answer originally appeared in the 9/11/12 Paizo blog.

You could get a multitude of AoOs from the same action if you had enough abilities that allowed you to.

Say you have these:
Anytime you are attacked with a sword, your attacker provokes an AoO.
Anytime an attacker misses you with an attack, your attacker provokes an AoO.
Anytime you are attacked by an adjacent opponent, that opponent provokes an AoO.
Anytime an orc attacks you, that orc provokes an AoO.

Say an orc attacks you with a sword while adjacent...and misses. How many AoOs do you get on him? You get 4.

Each trigger is unique, even if they are similar. Each trigger causes him to provoke... so, you get 4.

Greater Trip and Vicious Stomp have different triggers, no matter if falling prone is required for both or not. It really doesn't make a difference.


FAQ wrote:

The Greater Trip feat allows you to take an attack of opportunity against a foe that you trip. The Vicious Stomp feat allows you to take an attack of opportunity against a foe that falls prone adjacent to you. If you have both these feats and trip a foe, do you get to make two attacks of opportunity (assuming that you can)?

Yes, the two triggering acts are similar here but they are different. One occurs when you trip a foe. The other occurs when a foe falls prone. It requires a large number of feats to accomplish, but you can really pile on the attacks with this combination.

The verb "trip" as in "to trip" is used 3 times in the FAQ. The question becomes, what does it mean? Are we talking about knocking a target prone? Or is it referring to the performance of the trip combat maneuver? Or maybe it could be either as the meaning changes back and forth from rule to rule?

What I wonder is if there is anywhere in the rules that links the verb "to trip" with "to perform a trip attack? Because everywhere I look I only see it meaning "to knock prone".

The Trip weapon feature and avoiding being "tripped" if your attempt fails badly enough. Being "tripped" here does not include any counter trip attack against you...it only means knocked prone.
The Trip creature ability working the same way.
2 NPC Codex entries that refer to "tripped" as having been "knocked prone"...one of them not even involving any Combat Maneuver.
Clobbering Strike working similarly to the Trip(Ex) ability and the weapon feature.
The Bolas entry referring to avoiding becoming "tripped" where a CM is not counter-performed.
The Snag Net that specifically says if you succeed on your CM check you can either "trip" (this implies knock prone) or deal damage.

Anywhere "trip" is used to mean the combat maneuver generally includes words like "attack" or "attempt" or "maneuver". The only place this doesn't happen is the Unarmed Fighter Archetype's ability, Trick Throw. But here it specifically points out that this is "(before the opponent becomes prone)". Why does it bother to even include this text? It sounds like it is trying to make sure that we understand this case of tripping is different. So if this case is different, then it means "after the opponent is prone" is the norm...meaning "to trip" still means "to knock prone".

Of course feats and abilities are free to change the general rules. But based on the above references and more it appears that whenever something generally refers to the action of tripping, it is talking about the action of knocking something prone. Which means "successfully trip" in Greater Trip is meaning "successfully knock prone".

If there are cases where the general meaning of "to trip" clearly shows to mean performance of the maneuver, then this would challenge the above and lend support to the roll/AoO/prone argument. I just haven't found it yet.


Incidentally if "tripped" means "knocked prone", then does "can't be tripped" mean "can't be knocked prone"? ;)

Is it possible to perform a trip attack with a Meteor Hammer to drag a flying man closer?
Is it impossible to knock that flying man prone from an Overrun?

But then this might be a whole other can of worms.

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