Amulet of Mighty Fists and Grappling: Can We Get An Answer?


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This is a thread for a simple question that has arisen time and time again:

When a character or creature is wearing an Amulet of Mighty Fists and attempts a grapple maneuver, does the enhancement bonus of the AoMF (if any) add to the character's roll to perform the grapple?

If it does, then does the enhancement bonus (if any) also apply to the character resisting a grapple maneuver?

I post this because the question keeps on popping up in thread after thread, and nowhere have I (with my admittedly weak search-fu) been able to find an answer from the developers. I, for one, would like to see the issue settled once and for all with a simple answer: YES or NO.

If you feel the same way, please click FAQ and here is hoping that we will finally receive an answer.

Post your own opinions and thoughts below, if you like.

MA


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Enhancement doesn't normally apply to CMD. (i think)

I would let Enhancement add. Hard to grapple a person without using your hands, knees, elbows, and feet.

Shadow Lodge

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I would be thrilled if it did. That said, I'm not so sure that it would, because of a few RAW reasons involving keeping the CRB consistent and the fact that it would be a good thing for monks, which is something Paizo is reluctant about ;p


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See this, second and third paragraphs.

And this, a relevant opinion on grapple from a developer.


I read that, so it means Sean is on board with this. Previously it said he had to talk to Jason about it. So maybe Jason isn't convinced?

The rules seem plain to me that they can. That the rules say that AotMF will work until a developer makes a ruling. The clarification didn't address it.


I'll mark this as a FAQ, but I think I'll mostly lurk this thread as I'm finding it hard to keep any amount of snark out of my posts. Maybe I'll be in a better mood later on.


Marthkus: "Enhancement doesn't normally apply to CMD. (i think)" I am just about sure that is correct. The Amulet of Mighty fists would not particularly protect you from others' grappling, though (I assert) it would help you inflict grapples on others.

aboniks, your first link isn't really to the point: The amulet of mighty fists is not a weapon. It enhances natural and unarmed attacks.

Why do I think so? Well,

"This amulet grants an enhancement bonus of +1 to +5 on attack and damage rolls with unarmed attacks" --http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic-items/wondrous-items/wondrous-items/a-b/amu let-of-mighty-fists. Is this text in dispute?

Until the rules get changed by the publisher, and unless the above quotation is found to be false in some way, the question is: Is a grapple check an attack?

"When you attempt to perform a combat maneuver, make an attack roll" http://www.d20pfsrd.com/gamemastering/combat#TOC-Combat-Maneuvers

Why, yes it is! All combat maneuvers are attacks. If the attack is being performed without a weapon, then it is unarmed. And logically, I suppose that if something is an attack, and it is unarmed, then it is an unarmed attack. Why do I think so? Well,

www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unarmed‎
Merriam‑Webster
"not using or involving a weapon."

Am I being a pedantic jerk? Yes, but some clear and obvious things are sometimes wrong. For instance, while you are grappled, you take a -4 to your Dexterity. And when you are denied your Dex bonus, you might be subject to precision damage. But the rules specifically exempt the grappled condition from precision damage, even when the grappleds' dex modifiers are reduced to 0. So in this case, having your dex bonus denied is not the same thing as being denied your dex bonus.

On a side note, it does seem pretty clear that if you are attempting to trip your opponent with a halberd, or attempting to grapple via a spear and Hamatula Strike, you may NOT apply your AMoMF bonus.

I have cast my vote added to yours asking for an FAQ on this.


Tels wrote:
I'm finding it hard to keep any amount of snark out of my posts. Maybe I'll be in a better mood later on.

Well, between you and me, you are the better person this time.


Well, I was wrong, seems I can withhold the snark as long as I'm refuting something.

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Am I being a pedantic jerk? Yes, but some clear and obvious things are sometimes wrong. For instance, while you are grappled, you take a -4 to your Dexterity. And when you are denied your Dex bonus, you might be subject to precision damage. But the rules specifically exempt the grappled condition from precision damage, even when the grappleds' dex modifiers are reduced to 0. So in this case, having your dex bonus denied is not the same thing as being denied your dex bonus.
Grappled wrote:

A grappled creature is restrained by a creature, trap, or effect. Grappled creatures cannot move and take a –4 penalty to Dexterity. A grappled creature takes a –2 penalty on all attack rolls and combat maneuver checks, except those made to grapple or escape a grapple. In addition, grappled creatures can take no action that requires two hands to perform. A grappled character who attempts to cast a spell or use a spell-like ability must make a concentration check (DC 10 + grappler's CMB + spell level), or lose the spell. Grappled creatures cannot make attacks of opportunity.

A grappled creature cannot use Stealth to hide from the creature grappling it, even if a special ability, such as hide in plain sight, would normally allow it to do so. If a grappled creature becomes invisible, through a spell or other ability, it gains a +2 circumstance bonus on its CMD to avoid being grappled, but receives no other benefit.

Pinned wrote:
A pinned creature is tightly bound and can take few actions. A pinned creature cannot move and is denied its Dexterity bonus. A pinned character also takes an additional –4 penalty to his Armor Class. A pinned creature is limited in the actions that it can take. A pinned creature can always attempt to free itself, usually through a combat maneuver check or Escape Artist check. A pinned creature can take verbal and mental actions, but cannot cast any spells that require a somatic or material component. A pinned character who attempts to cast a spell or use a spell-like ability must make a concentration check (DC 10 + grappler's CMB + spell level) or lose the spell. Pinned is a more severe version of grappled, and their effects do not stack.

Ok, first off, having a -4 penalty to Dexterity, even if this reduces you to a Dexterity score of 0 is not that same as being denied your dexterity bonus.

Second, neither the Grappled condition, nor the Pinned condition exempt a person from dealt precision damage. Unless there is some obscure rule somewhere that I am unaware of.


Scott Wilhelm wrote:
aboniks, your first link isn't really to the point: The amulet of mighty fists is not a weapon. It enhances natural and unarmed attacks.
Strike, Unarmed wrote:

Strike, Unarmed

An unarmed strike is always considered a light weapon. Therefore, you can use the Weapon Finesse feat to apply your Dexterity modifier instead of your Strength modifier to attack rolls with an unarmed strike. Unarmed strikes do not count as natural weapons (see Combat). The damage from an unarmed strike is considered weapon damage for the purposes of effects that give you a bonus on weapon damage rolls.

Pedantic jerkery aside (which I've been known to engage in myself, on occasion), Unarmed strikes are weapons. They are enhanced by the AoMF.

blog wrote:
For other maneuvers, either you’re not using a weapon at all, or the weapon is incidental to making the maneuver and its bonuses shouldn’t make you better at attempting the maneuver...Of course, the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers, such as when using a sap in a dirty trick maneuver to hit an opponent in a sensitive spot.

If telling the GM that unarmed strikes are weapons, the AoMF enhances them, and that those enhancements can be applied to grapple (as an "other maneuver'), is not a clear answer to the question, I'm at a loss as to what more one might need to clarify it.

OP wrote:
When a character or creature is wearing an Amulet of Mighty Fists and attempts a grapple maneuver, does the enhancement bonus of the AoMF (if any) add to the character's roll to perform the grapple?

The blog post answers the OP's question. The fact that it doesn't spell it out in one nice tidy sentence is the price of doing business in a hideously complex system like this. "X and Y, if Z Please Apply Rule Zero" is the best answer one could hope for, because it doesn't create a new stack of corner-case nitpicky rules for the Devs to have to create.

2cp, as always. I clicked FAQ too, even though the question has been answered unambiguously, in my opinion.

Sczarni

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Starfinder Charter Superscriber

aboniks is right on the money, here.

The Amulet adds to your grapple roll, but not to your CMD.

(I was pretty sure everyone was on board with this understanding, so it's odd to see so many that aren't)


Nefreet wrote:

aboniks is right on the money, here.

The Amulet adds to your grapple roll, but not to your CMD.

(I was pretty sure everyone was on board with this understanding, so it's odd to see so many that aren't)

It totally came up in this thread.

At least a few pages on the topic.

Sczarni

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Wow. 889 posts of "this is better than that". I knew there was a reason I never ventured over to the General Discussion Forum.


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Hey, it's not THAT bad. Well, most of the time. Look, as long as no one discusses wizards, fighters, monks, rogues, errata, feats, skills, saving throws, full attacks, guns, WBL, hexes, or alignment, everything is just fine.


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Amulet of mighty fists should not by the rules influence grapple. The rules on when Items enhancement bonuses affect Combat maneuvers are clear.

It needs to be a weapon that is used to do the combat maneuver. the fact that you are unarmed, and unarmed strikes are weapons is not actually relevant to this.

When you do an Grapple maneuver, It is not being done with your unarmed strike weapon. Its being done with your hands.

Would it make alot of sense for the amulet to boost Grapple? yes but by the rules it does not. unless there is some rule i have missed.

Just because something is done with your hands, does not mean it is being done with the unarmed strike weapon. and the 'done with a weapon' is normally the requirement to add a weapons enhancements to a Combat maneuver.

However, you can take Weapon focus Grapple, but no clue if thats relevant to this.


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Cerberus Seven wrote:
Hey, it's not THAT bad. Well, most of the time. Look, as long as no one discusses wizards, fighters, monks, rogues, errata, feats, skills, saving throws, full attacks, guns, WBL, hexes, or alignment, everything is just fine.

ALCHEMISTS ARE OP


On topic, currently the amulet does not influence grapple, though the GM is free to rule otherwise. Same with melee touch attacks. I would say the it would influence a grapple induced by a natural attack with the grab property, though, as in that case there clearly is a weapon involved.

Sczarni

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I wrestled in high school. Wrestlers don't just use their hands. You use your arms, legs, feet, weight, elbows, and even your head.

Monk wrote:
Unarmed Strike: A monk's attacks may be with fist, elbows, knees, and feet.

The connection seems clear to me.


Tels wrote:

Well, I was wrong, seems I can withhold the snark as long as I'm refuting something....

Ok, first off, having a -4 penalty to Dexterity, even if this reduces you to a Dexterity score of 0 is not that same as being denied your dexterity bonus.

Second, neither the Grappled condition, nor the Pinned condition exempt a person from dealt precision damage. Unless there is some obscure rule somewhere that I am unaware of.

...

I think if you read my post to understand what I REALLY SAID, you will find you have refuted nothing.


Mojorat "Amulet of mighty fists should not by the rules influence grapple."

Yes it should. In this thread, I have shown the rules that say it should. I have demonstrated that other people's contrary rules quotations do not address the question and fail to refute what I said.

aboniks "If telling the GM that unarmed strikes are weapons,"

Case in point: whether or not unarmed strikes are weapons is completely irrelevant to the question at hand.

aboniks "the AoMF enhances them, and that those enhancements can be applied to grapple (as an "other maneuver'), is not a clear answer to the question, I'm at a loss as to what more one might need to clarify it."

Read the description of Amulet of Mighty Fists again. I think you will find it does NOT modify weapons per se. It modifies ATTACKS. Combat Maneuvers are attacks. AMoMF therefore modifies them. And I am at a loss as to what more one might need to clarify it.


I hope you get an answer from the developers that makes you happy, Scott.


aboniks wrote:
I hope you get an answer from the developers that makes you happy, Scott.

Well, Thanks. I only hope we all find clarity one way or another.


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Scott Wilhelm wrote:

Mojorat "Amulet of mighty fists should not by the rules influence grapple."

Yes it should. In this thread, I have shown the rules that say it should. I have demonstrated that other people's contrary rules quotations do not address the question and fail to refute what I said.

aboniks "If telling the GM that unarmed strikes are weapons,"

Case in point: whether or not unarmed strikes are weapons is completely irrelevant to the question at hand.

aboniks "the AoMF enhances them, and that those enhancements can be applied to grapple (as an "other maneuver'), is not a clear answer to the question, I'm at a loss as to what more one might need to clarify it."

Read the description of Amulet of Mighty Fists again. I think you will find it does NOT modify weapons per se. It modifies ATTACKS. Combat Maneuvers are attacks. AMoMF therefore modifies them. And I am at a loss as to what more one might need to clarify it.

Edit: Edited, to retype clearer.

Theres some issues with the rules that you are not grasping, im going to try and separate them to make this clearer.

1) only three maneuvers in the game can be done in place of an attack. Trip sunder disarm. Grapple is not one of these. just because you are doing it with your hands mechanically does not make it an unarmed strike. You need a game rule saying 'you can do a grapple in place of an unarmed strike'

2) I can take Weapon focus Grapple, i am mentioning this again because it is important. it shows the game distinguishes Unarmed strike (a specific weapon) and Grapple (a specific weapon)

3) So ti sum it all up, Grapple is not an unarmed strike or a natural attack, because of this it does not benefit from AMF. There is no need to faq this it is in fact not confusing unless you try to insert the Idea that an attack is an unarmed strike because a weapon is not used. Something can be done unarmed (as in without weapons) and this does not make it an unarmed strike.


Mojorat wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:

Mojorat "Amulet of mighty fists should not by the rules influence grapple."

Yes it should. In this thread, I have shown the rules that say it should. I have demonstrated that other people's contrary rules quotations do not address the question and fail to refute what I said.

aboniks "If telling the GM that unarmed strikes are weapons,"

Case in point: whether or not unarmed strikes are weapons is completely irrelevant to the question at hand.

aboniks "the AoMF enhances them, and that those enhancements can be applied to grapple (as an "other maneuver'), is not a clear answer to the question, I'm at a loss as to what more one might need to clarify it."

Read the description of Amulet of Mighty Fists again. I think you will find it does NOT modify weapons per se. It modifies ATTACKS. Combat Maneuvers are attacks. AMoMF therefore modifies them. And I am at a loss as to what more one might need to clarify it.

Edit: Edited, to retype clearer.

Theres some issues with the rules that you are not grasping, im going to try and separate them to make this clearer.

1) only three maneuvers in the game can be done in place of an attack. Trip sunder disarm. Grapple is not one of these. just because you are doing it with your hands mechanically does not make it an unarmed strike. You need a game rule saying 'you can do a grapple in place of an unarmed strike'

2) I can take Weapon focus Grapple, i am mentioning this again because it is important. it shows the game distinguishes Unarmed strike (a specific weapon) and Grapple (a specific weapon)

3) So ti sum it all up, Grapple is not an unarmed strike or a natural attack, because of this it does not benefit from AMF. There is no need to faq this it is in fact not confusing unless you try to insert the Idea that an attack is an unarmed strike because a weapon is not used. Something can be done unarmed (as in without weapons) and this does not make it an unarmed strike.

You are wrong. It does not state that only 3 maneuvers in the game can be done. It plainly states that the three maneuvers are TYPICALLY the only ones to get it, as the weapon is incidental to the combat maneuver, as an example they use a dagger in grapple being incidental. How can anyone state that the body is not as important as a mancatcher or a garrot. It does not say it in absolute terms, the was a qualification and the rule still stands.

Rule:

Quote:
When you attempt to perform a combat maneuver, make an attack roll and add your CMB in place of your normal attack bonus. Add any bonuses you currently have on attack rolls due to spells, feats, and other effects. These bonuses must be applicable to the weapon or attack used to perform the maneuver.

Isn't this the same logic that the developers used for why a monk can't use brass knuckles to improve, in that he uses every part of their body?

Grand Lodge

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Mojorat wrote:


When you do an Grapple maneuver, It is not being done with your unarmed strike weapon. Its being done with your hands.

I know you clarified it down below, but I just have to say, the raw existence of this sentence makes me cry. And giggle, but mostly cry.


"1) only three maneuvers in the game can be done in place of an attack... Grapple is not one of these." Mojorat

It is not my contention that a grapple replaces some other attack, but that a grapple is an attack.

"When you attempt to perform a combat maneuver, make an attack roll" http://www.d20pfsrd.com/gamemastering/combat#TOC-Combat-Maneuvers

Things that modify attack rolls modify grapples, because a grapple check is an attack roll.

“2) I can take Weapon focus Grapple, i am mentioning this again because it is important. it shows the game distinguishes Unarmed strike (a specific weapon) and Grapple (a specific weapon)”

Like Weapon Focus. A grapple is a different attack from an Unarmed Strike, but it IS an attack, and usually, it is a unarmed attack.

“So to sum it all up, Grapple is not an unarmed strike or a natural attack,”

But it is an unarmed attack

“because of this it does not benefit from AMF.”

Not true! The Amulet of Mighty Fists gives a bonus to unarmed ATTACKS! Look at the description of the item:

"This amulet grants an enhancement bonus of +1 to +5 on attack and damage rolls with unarmed attacks" --http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic-items/wondrous-items/wondrous-items/a-b/amu let-of-mighty-fists.

Is this text in dispute?

An Unarmed Strike is an unarmed attack, but it is not the only kind of unarmed attack. It says in the description of Combat Maneuvers that a Combat Maneuver Check is an attack roll. You yourself pointed out that a Grapple Check can be modified by Weapon Focus, by which

”You gain a +1 bonus on all attack rolls you make using the selected weapon.” (http://www.d20pfsrd.com/feats/combat-feats/weapon-focus-combat---final)

So a grapple check is modified by things which modify attack rolls.

“There is no need to faq this it is in fact not confusing unless you try to insert the Idea that an attack is an unarmed strike”

I’d be inclined to agree that it is unambiguous, though my opinion is the opposite of yours. I am not trying to say that an attack is a strike. I am only saying that an attack is an attack.


@myrrdin in the core rules there is that I know of no way to substitute an attack with a weapon to do a combat maneuver other than those 3. To use any weapon with a combat maneuver you need an exception.

The core assumption of the game is unarmed strike is a weapon used to injure. Punch kick whatever. It does a specific amount of damage and is for the most part mechanically identical to a longsword or a dagger.

You can apply uas to all the maneuvers as a longseord to apply them to grapple you need a rule saying "a long sword can be used as part of a grapple" it is the same for unarmed strike.

In sources outside the core book we have the quick maneuver feats which let you change the conditions the maneuvers are applied.

But really ill say it again weapon focus grapple the game treats grapple as its own weapon.

I'd like to note I'm simply arguing what the book says I honestly see no issue with house ruling a change.

Sczarni

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Hey Scott, when you post a link, can you please do it in this format:

[URL=http://www.yourlink.com]Name of your link[/URL]

It will then appear as this: Name of your link

When you just type the hyperlink text into a post, Paizo cuts it in half (notice the spaces in the posts you made?), so as to cut down on spam posts. It makes your link broken and not functional.

Also, as a side note, you should really be referencing the PRD in this debate, not a 3rd party site.


Mojorat wrote:

@myrrdin in the core rules there is that I know of no way to substitute an attack with a weapon to do a combat maneuver other than those 3. To use any weapon with a combat maneuver you need an exception.

The core assumption of the game is unarmed strike is a weapon used to injure. Punch kick whatever. It does a specific amount of damage and is for the most part mechanically identical to a longsword or a dagger.

You can apply uas to all the maneuvers as a longseord to apply them to grapple you need a rule saying "a long sword can be used as part of a grapple" it is the same for unarmed strike.

In sources outside the core book we have the quick maneuver feats which let you change the conditions the maneuvers are applied.

But really ill say it again weapon focus grapple the game treats grapple as its own weapon.

I'd like to note I'm simply arguing what the book says I honestly see no issue with house ruling a change.

The core rules have changed. Depending on the revision you have. It used to be that you only used to be able to use a trip weapon to trip etc... This was changed to a +2 for trip weapons and any weapon can trip, even unarmed.

There are grapple weapons. Which again give a bonus. Combat maneuvers and special bonuses was clarified in a post by Paizo:

http://paizo.com/paizo/blog/v5748dyo5lcom?Combat-Maneuvers-and-Weapon-Speci al-Features

Combat maneuvers are complicated and can be used to accomplish many things, it goes on to clarify that typically only the 3 can be used by any weapon because the weapon is incidental. It does not say that absolutely there is only the 3, it goes on to say that GM's can rule with the incidental logic to whether something can have the bonus. In grappling unarmed, it is an unarmed attack and not an unarmed strike (there is a difference), AotMF gives bonus to all unarmed attacks not just strikes. It has been shown that grappling unarmed is not incidental, therefore it gives the bonus to grapple.

SRD:
When you attempt to perform a combat maneuver, make an attack roll and add your CMB in place of your normal attack bonus. Add any bonuses you currently have on attack rolls due to spells, feats, and other effects. These bonuses must be applicable to the weapon or attack used to perform the maneuver.

There is no conditionals. The clarification is about when to apply the bonus and clearly shows that AotMF bonus to grappling is legal. It isn't specifically stated but all rules are consistent.

Sczarni

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Also, I'd like to point out that Improved Unarmed Strike is a prerequisite for Improved Grapple.

Seems logical to follow that anything enhancing an Unarmed Strike would similarly enhance a Grapple attempt.


Nefreet wrote:

Also, I'd like to point out that Improved Unarmed Strike is a prerequisite for Improved Grapple.

Seems logical to follow that anything enhancing an Unarmed Strike would similarly enhance a Grapple attempt.

That is slippery argument as Combat Expertise is a Prereq to a lot of Maneuver feats that have no benefit from it.


Someone posted a link where SKR basically said you do add enhancement bonus from the amulet to grapple CMB checks.

What's the argument?


Hmm, I should actually stress I am actually simply arguing Bonuses to Unarmed Strikes do not apply to Grapple, as Grapple and UAS are seperate weapons.

I also want to stress again, as a general game usage I also have no issue with it. IF i were Gming a game and a PC playing a grappler asked to use this I wouldnt have an issue.

Im just trying to stress, Weapon Focus UAS has no effect on Grapple, SKR basically said

"I'd file that under "the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers.""

Which i hav eno issue with. Im simply stressing Grapples are not in any way shape or form mechanically unarmed strikes. Unforunately in general as far as RAW goes to have the AMF affect you it has to be one of these.

But ive basically said my point, So i'll leave this to others.


Marthkus wrote:

Someone posted a link where SKR basically said you do add enhancement bonus from the amulet to grapple CMB checks.

What's the argument?

SKR said "ask your GM".


Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
#1:
SKR wrote:
Like I said, I'd be on board for changing the trip property to also give a +2 on trip combat maneuver checks. We just have to get Jason to agree to it.
I guess you guys are still deliberating on that one?

Jason feels that "you can't trip me in return" is a significant benefit for the trip weapon, even though it doesn't make your trip attempts any more successful, and even though the guy specialized in tripping probably isn't going to ever fail by 10 or more and need that ability.

Jiggy wrote:
Belafon wrote:
#2 So... My monk has Weapon Focus (Unarmed Strike) and is wearing an Amulet of Mighty Fists +1. Does this mean he gets to add those two bonuses to other Combat Maneuvers such as Grapple?
Still consulting on that one too, I presume.

Yes.

Jiggy wrote:
#3: If you have Tripping Strike and attempt to disarm someone, can you "crit" the disarm attempt and thereby trigger your Tripping Strike?

Combat maneuvers don't have threat ranges and can't critically hit.

someone wrote:
Does rolling a 1 on the combat maneuver check automatically count as failing by 10 or more?
No.

If you go further in that thread SKR give a definitive yes to the grapple question and also says that Weapon Focus (Unarmed Strike) gives a +1 to grappling. Its weird though because the text on Weapon Focus clearly calls Unarmed Strike and Grappling out as being different things.

EDIT : The post is a little over half way down the third page if anyone wants to look up the context.


The "Yes." is in response to Jiggy stating "Still consulting on that one too, I presume." As in, "Yes, still consulting", not "Yes, Weapon Focus (Unarmed Strike) and +1 amulet of mighty fists adds to grapple checks". That's the last time SKR posts about grappling in the thread as far as I've seen.


Sean said he is still discussing with Jason about it.

By Sean's ""I'd file that under "the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers."

It's even in quotes. It was directly pulled from the clarification.

"For other maneuvers, either you’re not using a weapon at all, or the weapon is incidental to making the maneuver and its bonuses shouldn’t make you better at attempting the maneuver.... Of course, the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers"

I would say that he agrees with it. Might be the two disagree, all I know is I haven't found a ruling.

To me it's pretty plain that rules allow it.


SKR wrote:
I'd file that under "the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers."

means "ask your GM".


blahpers wrote:
SKR wrote:
I'd file that under "the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers."
means "ask your GM".

Yes, combat maneuvers are complicated and there are many factors involved. Hence the wording. They gave enough guidance and the rules are plain to guide a GM though with a little thought.


The simplest question that needs to be answered is if you can take weapon focus grapple, what type of weapon is a grapple? I've always assumed it was a natural weapon attack if bonus's to unarmed strike didn't help it.


blahpers wrote:
SKR wrote:
I'd file that under "the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers."
means "ask your GM".

He didn't say ask. He quoted the rule that he thought allowed a GM to rule that way.


Marthkus wrote:
blahpers wrote:
SKR wrote:
I'd file that under "the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers."
means "ask your GM".
He didn't say ask. He quoted the rule that he thought allowed a GM to rule that way.

All the quote says is that the GM is free to rule that it applies. The GM is also free to rule that it doesn't apply. The quote does not endorse either ruling as superior to the other. Otherwise, he'd have just come out and said "yes, the bonuses apply".

Since the quote says that the GM is free to rule, then it follows that you should talk to your GM and find out how he or she rules.

Hence...

...ask your GM.


blahpers wrote:
Marthkus wrote:
blahpers wrote:
SKR wrote:
I'd file that under "the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers."
means "ask your GM".
He didn't say ask. He quoted the rule that he thought allowed a GM to rule that way.

All the quote says is that the GM is free to rule that it applies. The GM is also free to rule that it doesn't apply. The quote does not endorse either ruling as superior to the other. Otherwise, he'd have just come out and said "yes, the bonuses apply".

Since the quote says that the GM is free to rule, then it follows that you should talk to your GM and find out how he or she rules.

Hence...

...ask your GM.

GM has final say on all rules. I don't see the point you are trying to make.


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ಠ_ಠ


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blahpers wrote:
ಠ_ಠ

Heh. :)

Can you see how someone could come to the conclusion that the wording of the ruling in the blog post (not an opinion from an individual develper...

paizo wrote:
"...Of course, the GM is free to rule that in certain circumstances, a creature can apply weapon bonuses for these maneuvers..."

...is intended to cover a wide variety of circumstances that the devs simply weren't going try to address individually?

I mean they could have gone into detail about every possible combination of weapon, circumstance, and maneuver. It would require a gigantic sourcebook of its own, but it could be done. But then we (and they) would be in an even worse spot, with a whole slew of new what-if questions that people felt they needed/deserved a ruling on, and the problem would grow exponentially every time a new book came out with material they hadn't addressed previously.

"...the GM is free to rule that..."

It's how they avoid having to deal with all that. They hand it to the DM and say "do what makes sense". I don't blame them for it.

My question has to be "In what gaming situation is a rule telling the DM to make a judgement call insufficient?"

I'm not saying that such a situation doesn't exist, or bagging on people for wanting a grapple-specific ruling, I just don't understand where/how/why people are playing with this degree of zealous adherence to RAW, and are yet unwilling to use the "GM is free to rule" portion of RAW to deal with maneuvers that were not specifically addressed.

I'm also willing to bet that if the blog post had said "Enhancements on the AoMF are to be applied to grapple checks" we'd still have people (perhaps different people) clamoring for clarification of what-if scenarios. I'm not in the least surprised that they haven't addressed this with a specific answer.

As a thought exercise, (for the folks who want a black and white clear-cut ruling on this) try writing a ruling that allows AoMF enhancements while using the grappling mechanics, without requiring any discretion or judgement whatsoever on the part of the GM. Make sure there are no obvious issues that break your ruling. Ensure that you've answered every basic question that might reasonably be expected to occur as a result of your ruling. Make sure it doesn't break anything else in the combat system. Then condense it down into three paragraphs. Then remember that there are other weapons that can be used to grapple and can have enhancement bonuses, and re-write the whole thing.

If that seems like more trouble than it's worth...well, the DM is always free to rule that...

EDIT: And when you've finished all that, figure out how much time it would have taken out of real paid employees days, and decide whether it makes any kind of financial sense at all to spend hours rationalizing mechanics that can be handled with rule zero, when you could instead be developing new content that will actually keep your business profitable.


It would seem by the wording he answer would be yes, but I believe grapple is a special attack and not a natural or unarmed attack, even if it does meet those criteria as well. That's why it has its own modifier


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“I am actually simply arguing Bonuses to Unarmed Strikes do not apply to Grapple” (Mojorat, 3/17/14, 7:21PM)

I pretty much agree with you. I would say anything that gives a bonus to Unarmed Strikes does not necessarily apply to Grapple. The phrase “bonus to unarmed strikes,” does NOT grant a bonus to a grapple check.

But there may be things that grant bonuses to grapple checks, right?

There may be things that grant bonuses to both grapple checks and to unarmed strikes, right?

I (among others) contend there might be such things, and that I (among others) have found just such a thing: the Amulet of Mighty Fists.

What if something is giving a bonus to ALL attack rolls?

Who contends that a grapple attempt is not an attack?

On http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/combat.html, Combat Maneuvers are under the heading “Special Attacks.”

Who is contending that a special attack is not an attack? I contend that a special attack is still an attack: it’s just special.

Furthermore, http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/combat.html says, “When you attempt to perform a combat maneuver, make an attack roll…”

Who contends that the fact that you make an attack roll when performing a Combat Maneuver does not mean that a Combat Maneuver is an attack?

Just what does an Amulet of Mighty Fists do? The Pathfinder PRD says,

“Amulet of Mighty Fists… This amulet grants an enhancement bonus of +1 to +5 on attack and damage rolls with unarmed attacks…” (http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/magicItems/wondrousItems.html)

So the AoMF gives bonuses to all kinds of unarmed attacks. A Combat Maneuver is an attack, and if it is attempted unarmed--Sundering your opponent's shield with a karate chop instead of with an Earthbreaker hammer--then it is an unarmed attack and merits the bonus.


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aboniks wrote:
My question has to be "In what gaming situation is a rule telling the DM to make a judgement call insufficient?"

In organized play.


Atarlost wrote:
aboniks wrote:
My question has to be "In what gaming situation is a rule telling the DM to make a judgement call insufficient?"
In organized play.

I see. Mark me down in the 'permanently disorganized' column, in that case. :)

Does the blog post ruling referenced early even apply at all in organized play? (and do FAQ's?)


My point is that there's no need to invoke Rule Zero to rule that grapple does--or does not--benefit from such feats. The rule is that there is no rule, so the GM decides. This isn't an alien thing. Pathfinder is full of such rules--see paladin and cavalier mounts, spell research, magic item creation, dozens of optional rules sets, and so on--things with RAW that empower (and in some cases require) the GM to decide how the rules work.

The GM deciding to go one way or another on this subject isn't a "house rule" divergent from RAW--it is RAW, because the printed text is vague and designer clarification points to the GM and says "her call".

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