Does the Rogue Acrobat Archetype ability mean Shields also grant no ACP?


Rules Questions


I was reading Shattered Star and noticed there were Acrobat Rogue enemies. So I decided to check out the archetype.
It says:
At 1st level, an acrobat does not suffer any armor check penalties on Acrobatics, Climb, Fly, Sleight of Hand, or Stealth skill checks while wearing light armor. When she is not wearing armor, she gains a +2 competency bonus on Acrobatics and Fly skill checks.

It doesn't say ACP from Armor but all ACP (granted only on skills).

So a Rogue can use a Heavy Shield (not proficient) and suffer no ACP to those skills?
Not that it would be super useful, but hey 2 extra AC bonus isn't bad.


A Shield is not Light Armor. It's a Shield.

So no, the archetype doesn't affect it.

However, a Masterwork Buckler has no ACP (and you can use it without proficiency, as it has no ACP).

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Technically, since there shields have Armour Check Penalties like Armour, yes, a rogue could even use a tower shield and not take the -10 on Acrobatics, Climb, Fly, Slight of Hand, or Stealth. Keep in mind that the ACP does apply to attack rolls, and all Dexterity or Strength based rolls, including Initiative.


I consider that to go against the rules as intended.

But, furthermore, using a heavy shield when not proficient also means you take a penalty to your attack roll equal to your ACP, so you'd have a -2 to all attacks. A net loss in my opinion.


Weren Wu Jen wrote:

A Shield is not Light Armor. It's a Shield.

So no, the archetype doesn't affect it.

However, a Masterwork Buckler has no ACP (and you can use it without proficiency, as it has no ACP).

Well, it only limits while wearing it (not to armor ones). Yes, there would be ACP penalty to hit if not proficient, but eh, good to know how rules stand.

Hmm, Tower Shields would give no ACP to Skills, but -10 to hit for a Acrobat Rogue.
Tower Proficiency sadly require Shield proficiency first.

Shadow Lodge

And everyone hates a -10 to initiative. Well, except for maybe this guy.


The Rogue is proficient with Light Armor, but not Shields.

If they intended the Acrobat to use Shields with that class feature, they would have mentioned them in the class feature.

Giving the archetype a benefit that mentions one thing specifically (Light Armor) does not automatically include other things (such as Shields).

By default, the fact that Shields are not mentioned in the Acrobat class feature means that the class feature does not apply to Shields.

Remember, General Rules always apply unless overridden by Specific Rules (look at the latest incarnation of the Monk's Flurry of Blows class feature to see how FoB modifies TWF).


The RAI of the ability seems pretty clear: It refers to 'wearing' armor, and specifically to light armor, which is a class of armor that does not include shields (which are their own class). Thus, it seems pretty obvious to me that it was intended to reduce ACP from any armor listed on the Light Armor tables in the various books (including magical variants).


Weren Wu Jen wrote:

The Rogue is proficient with Light Armor, but not Shields.

If they intended the Acrobat to use Shields with that class feature, they would have mentioned them in the class feature.

Giving the archetype a benefit that mentions one thing specifically (Light Armor) does not automatically include other things (such as Shields).

By default, the fact that Shields are not mentioned in the Acrobat class feature means that the class feature does not apply to Shields.

Remember, General Rules always apply unless overridden by Specific Rules (look at the latest incarnation of the Monk's Flurry of Blows class feature to see how FoB modifies TWF).

It doesn't need to mention Shields. It applies to all ACP (while wearing light armor).

If there was a magic item, that gave ACP, but didn't count as armor (weird as that would be): it would still apply.


It does not say "applies to all armor check penalties". It says that it reduces the armor check penalty while (meaning "from" in this case) wearing light armor.

Arguing that it affects a hypothetical magic item that imposes an ACP as long as you're wearing light armor is like claiming you could wear leather armor under full plate and take no armor check penalty because you're "wearing light armor".

The intent is pretty unambiguous here: It reduces armor check penalties from things that are specifically classified as light armor, and nothing else. So a shield? Not light armor - therefore, not affected by RAW.

Now, as a GM I might allow it, because I don't see it as game-breaking, but it'd be a house rule.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32

ArmouredMonk13 wrote:
Keep in mind that the ACP does apply to attack rolls, and all Dexterity or Strength based rolls, including Initiative.

Incorrect. It only applies to Dex or Str based skill checks.

PRD wrote:
Armor Check Penalty: Any armor heavier than leather, as well as any shield, applies an armor check penalty to all Dexterity- and Strength-based skill checks.

If you're not proficient, then it applies to attack rolls, skills, and ability checks. Including initative.

PRD wrote:
Nonproficient with Armor Worn: A character who wears armor and/or uses a shield with which he is not proficient takes the armor's (and/or shield's) armor check penalty on attack rolls as well as on all dexterity- and strength-based ability and skill checks. the penalty for nonproficiency with armor stacks with the penalty for shields.

Just wanted to make sure the right information was in the thread. The nonproficiency penalty to initiative was new information to me!


@ubiquitous: Never mind, you fixed it. :)


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This is as bad as the Shield Master "You do not suffer any penalties on attack rolls made with a shield while you are wielding another weapon." business. NOTHING CAN STOP THE SHIELD MASTER ACROBAT

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32

Xaratherus wrote:
@ubiquitous: Never mind, you fixed it. :)

In my rush to be correct, I almost missed the part about nonproficiency. Learn something new every day.


Xaratherus wrote:

It does not say "applies to all armor check penalties". It says that it reduces the armor check penalty while (meaning "from" in this case) wearing light armor.

Arguing that it affects a hypothetical magic item that imposes an ACP as long as you're wearing light armor is like claiming you could wear leather armor under full plate and take no armor check penalty because you're "wearing light armor".

The intent is pretty unambiguous here: It reduces armor check penalties from things that are specifically classified as light armor, and nothing else. So a shield? Not light armor - therefore, not affected by RAW.

Now, as a GM I might allow it, because I don't see it as game-breaking, but it'd be a house rule.

Still say they should errata it to be from if they meant that.


Starbuck_II wrote:
Xaratherus wrote:

It does not say "applies to all armor check penalties". It says that it reduces the armor check penalty while (meaning "from" in this case) wearing light armor.

Arguing that it affects a hypothetical magic item that imposes an ACP as long as you're wearing light armor is like claiming you could wear leather armor under full plate and take no armor check penalty because you're "wearing light armor".

The intent is pretty unambiguous here: It reduces armor check penalties from things that are specifically classified as light armor, and nothing else. So a shield? Not light armor - therefore, not affected by RAW.

Now, as a GM I might allow it, because I don't see it as game-breaking, but it'd be a house rule.

Still say they should errata it to be from if they meant that.

They should, but it's pretty low priority since few people would go out of their way to read it as such, and the designers have way more important things to do.


blahpers wrote:
This is as bad as the Shield Master "You do not suffer any penalties on attack rolls made with a shield while you are wielding another weapon." business. NOTHING CAN STOP THE SHIELD MASTER ACROBAT

>.> Make him a human with Racial Heritage: Kobold, and then he'll grow a tail... And then he can start tripping prone things.


Yup, tripping prone things....with his shield....wielded with his mutant tail....with no penalties of any sort!

/brilliant.jpg


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Rule of thumb:

Which interpretation is worse for the rogue?

That's the correct one.


Marthkus wrote:

Rule of thumb:

Which interpretation is worse for the rogue?

That's the correct one.

If Rogue was a caster, would it be the opposite rule of thumb? :P


Starbuck_II wrote:
Marthkus wrote:

Rule of thumb:

Which interpretation is worse for the rogue?

That's the correct one.

If Rogue was a caster, would it be the opposite rule of thumb? :P

Perhaps, but just in case lets nerf some monk option.

Shadow Lodge

Alexandros Satorum wrote:
Starbuck_II wrote:
Marthkus wrote:

Rule of thumb:

Which interpretation is worse for the rogue?
That's the correct one.
If Rogue was a caster, would it be the opposite rule of thumb? :P
Perhaps, but just in case lets nerf some monk option.

New Rule:Skin counts as Armour that can be worn under all Armour, grants no Armour Bonus, has no Armour Check Penalty or Arcane Spell Failure Chance. Anyone with the Craft Magical Arms and Armour feat may enhance skin like Armour.

New Rule:A monk is denied all class features when wearing Armour of any kind.


@ Starbuck_II - If you are planning on running the Shattered Star AP and want the Acrobats to have shields to make them tougher opponents, there is another option:

Give them Darkwood Shields (257gp, CRB page 467). These are heavy wooden shields made from darkwood, and as such have no ACP.

Your opponents are a little tougher, but the PCs will get a little extra loot if they win.

As for the wording of "Expert Acrobat", yes, they could have worded it better. Remember that they are merely human like the rest of us, and as such, fallible.


ArmouredMonk13 wrote:
Alexandros Satorum wrote:
Starbuck_II wrote:
Marthkus wrote:

Rule of thumb:

Which interpretation is worse for the rogue?
That's the correct one.
If Rogue was a caster, would it be the opposite rule of thumb? :P
Perhaps, but just in case lets nerf some monk option.

New Rule:Skin counts as Armour that can be worn under all Armour, grants no Armour Bonus, has no Armour Check Penalty or Arcane Spell Failure Chance. Anyone with the Craft Magical Arms and Armour feat may enhance skin like Armour.

New Rule:A monk is denied all class features when wearing Armour of any kind.

The most evil thin I have seen in this forum XD

Shadow Lodge

Alexandros Satorum wrote:
ArmouredMonk13 wrote:
Starbuck_II wrote:
Marthkus wrote:

Rule of thumb:

Which interpretation is worse for the rogue?
That's the correct one.
If Rogue was a caster, would it be the opposite rule of thumb? :P
Perhaps, but just in case lets nerf some monk option.
The most evil thin I have seen in this forum XD

I'm not sure if this is meant as an insult or a complement. But either way, Thank You. The strange-looking half-elf Monk wearing Full Plate Armour walks out of the eTavern with an evil laugh

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