sniping and interative attacks


Rules Questions

Dark Archive

I have a goblin rogue in a home game with a +23 stealth (level 5) that positions himself in a good spot to snipe (within 30 ft for sneak damage if stealth roll succeeds vs target's perception).

if I take the rapid shot feat, can I make an additional opposed roll to get a second shot for sneak damage? I have to make an opposed stealth roll to maintain my precision damage for the next turn, so is there a difference between doing that and taking a second potshot from concealment in the same turn?

alternately, can I at least get the second shot off without precision damage and still re-conceal myself for sneak damage the following round?


If you want to use Stealth to remain hidden, then you must spend a move action to do that. Which means you can only make one attack, as a standard action.

If you don't want to use Stealth to remain hidden, then you can make a normal full attack, with iteratives and rapid shot. Only the first attack will be a sneak attack, since the stealth is broken after the first attack (unless you're also eligible for sneak attack for other reasons).


Are wrote:

If you want to use Stealth to remain hidden, then you must spend a move action to do that. Which means you can only make one attack, as a standard action.

If you don't want to use Stealth to remain hidden, then you can make a normal full attack, with iteratives and rapid shot. Only the first attack will be a sneak attack, since the stealth is broken after the first attack (unless you're also eligible for sneak attack for other reasons).

While it is true that you can only make a single action attack while sniping, if the enemies were unaware of you at the start of the round they are flatfooted to you and you are still able to apply sneak attack damage to the rest of your attacks that turn.

To expand on this and make sniping wonderful. If you manage to succeed on your sniping roll then the enemies still are unaware of you and are flat footed towards you (possibly the rest of the group if they are hiding too) so on the next round you can shoot again and it would still be a sneak attack against the flat footed AC if they haven't found you by then.

Sniping is cool, but you need to keep in mind that once that first shot goes off the enemies are going to start running around and looking for you.

Dark Archive

Are wrote:
If you don't want to use Stealth to remain hidden, then you can make a normal full attack, with iteratives and rapid shot. Only the first attack will be a sneak attack, since the stealth is broken after the first attack (unless you're also eligible for sneak attack for other reasons).

so would I be able to reset my stealth? I'm fine with losing the sneak damage on the second shot, just not sure if it would be worth losing it altogether. sniping is a move action for the stealth roll, so I'm guessing I can get my first off for sneak damage from stealth, take my second shot with no precision damage, and then next round potentially stealth/move and shoot again for sneak damage?

BaconBastard wrote:
Sniping is cool, but you need to keep in mind that once that first shot goes off the enemies are going to start running around and looking for you.

we are in a campaign and have the assistance of a ranger NPC under our control. I'm hoping he can act as a decoy, as he would be shooting a bow as well. but I need to sell that to my GM.

the dilemma is if I take rapid shot or deadly aim with my 5th level trait. right now, deadly aim only gives me an extra +2 damage (but jumps to +4 next level), whereas rapid shot gives me a second shot. and I won't ALWAYS be sniping, there are times when I'll be shooting from 60+ feet away, so the second shot would be more beneficial at this point than the extra damage.


melferburque wrote:
Are wrote:
If you don't want to use Stealth to remain hidden, then you can make a normal full attack, with iteratives and rapid shot. Only the first attack will be a sneak attack, since the stealth is broken after the first attack (unless you're also eligible for sneak attack for other reasons).
so would I be able to reset my stealth? I'm fine with losing the sneak damage on the second shot, just not sure if it would be worth losing it altogether. sniping is a move action for the stealth roll, so I'm guessing I can get my first off for sneak damage from stealth, take my second shot with no precision damage, and then next round potentially stealth/move and shoot again for sneak damage?

You would have the sneak attack damage applied to all attacks that round I believe, while the enemies would know your location if you don't "re-stealth" via sniping, they would still be flat-footed to you and not have their dex bonus to AC, so sneak attack away.

melferburque wrote:

we are in a campaign and have the assistance of a ranger NPC under our control. I'm hoping he can act as a decoy, as he would be shooting a bow as well. but I need to sell that to my GM.

the dilemma is if I take rapid shot or deadly aim with my 5th level trait. right now, deadly aim only gives me an extra +2 damage (but jumps to +4 next level), whereas rapid shot gives me a second shot. and I won't ALWAYS be sniping, there are times when I'll be shooting from 60+ feet away, so the second shot would be more beneficial at this point than the extra damage.

Using other characters as decoys would be good, this all depends on how your GM runs the game and runs enemies. If you're hiding in the bushes making a snipe attack and "re-stealthing" while the rest of the party is on the front lines fighting, the enemies might not find you all encounter and you'll get to sneak attack every time.

I suggest rapid shot based off the fact that getting a second chance to hit is better than an extra two points of damage.


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Shooting from stealth does not make the target flat footed. You are denying their dexterity. You still get your bonus damage, but for a different condition. Flat footed would mean you get a full round of sneak attacks, and you don't.

After that first attack, your target gets a chance to spot you, making it very difficult to stay hidden without using a move action to hide. Given the DC to spot someone in 30', staying hidden without your stealth is very difficult. Shooting from darkness solves this vs. someone without darkvision, assuming you can see. The same goes for Fire-sight & smoke; Water-sight & fog cloud; and so on. If you can see and your target cannot, you can make full round attacks. As soon as they can see you back, you have to snipe.

/cevah


Cevah wrote:

Shooting from stealth does not make the target flat footed. You are denying their dexterity. You still get your bonus damage, but for a different condition. Flat footed would mean you get a full round of sneak attacks, and you don't.

After that first attack, your target gets a chance to spot you, making it very difficult to stay hidden without using a move action to hide. Given the DC to spot someone in 30', staying hidden without your stealth is very difficult. Shooting from darkness solves this vs. someone without darkvision, assuming you can see. The same goes for Fire-sight & smoke; Water-sight & fog cloud; and so on. If you can see and your target cannot, you can make full round attacks. As soon as they can see you back, you have to snipe.

/cevah

So, unless you use the move action, you get the -20 penalty - i.e. that's the penalty to try and get that second sneak attack in a round?


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@Kwauss No, you take the -20 on the stealth check to snipe when you use the move action to hide while in cover. If you don't use a move action, you don't get to stealth at all, which is why it is only one shot from range.

Ranged sneak attack is kind of bad in pathfinder.

You have to be within 30ft. You only get one shot from stealth a round, unless you have greater invisibility up. You don't count as flanking for ranged attacks.

So, if you start the round stealthed and the enemy is unaware of you, you get a surprise round. That is a single standard or move action (or a special charges scenario). You cannot snipe in a surprise round (which is stupid) but you can take one shot with sneak attack.

Then, you roll initiative. If you win, you may make a single attack with sneak attack, and if you are still in cover, you get a choice. Use a move to make a hide check with a -20 to remain stealthed (there are some ways to lower this penalty) or take another attack and automatically be seen by the enemy.

It doesn't matter if you have 2 shots, or 5 shots, if you take more than one, and you aren't greater invisible, you are no longer stealthed.

Like anything, Magic provides exceptions. There are Sandals of the Quick Reaction that let you take a full round in the surprise round.
Sniper Goggles and several feats/class abilities add to the range. The Ninja trick vanish can be used to become invisible for a couple rounds and get you another single attack.

Also, the Lookout Teamwork feat (both have to take this feat) gives you a full round in the surprise round if the two of you weren't surprised (i.e. passed your perception checks or were the ambushers).


TGMaxMaxer wrote:

Then, you roll initiative. If you win, you may make a single attack with sneak attack, and if you are still in cover, you get a choice. Use a move to make a hide check with a -20 to remain stealthed (there are some ways to lower this penalty) or take another attack and automatically be seen by the enemy.

It doesn't matter if you have 2 shots, or 5 shots, if you take more than one, and you aren't greater invisible, you are no longer stealthed.

Nitpick:

If you win initiative, even without stealth, you get a full round of sneak attack potential because the target is flat footed until it has a chance to act.

/cevah


I thought I saw something about stealthing using a 5' step on the forums?


that's debated heavily due to people thinking its OP

also to stealth as a simple 5 ft step you usually have to have some sort of HiPS ability or abilities that function similarly


@ Cevah Yes, I could have worded that better. I was simply pointing out that if he takes any more attacks, you automatically fail to remain stealthed after.

@Kwauss Stealthing using a 5ft step is debated. Stealth says "as part of movement", so some will and some won't let you do it with only a 5ft step. Depending on the GM, you may or may not get to roll stealth with a 5ft step ... which is a whole other issue from sniping. The OP was trying to remain stealthed after taking 2 attacks, and that doesn't work.


There is a lot of confusion between "move" and "a move action".

"A move action" is a kind of action, that takes less time than a standard action.

In general, stealth does not require a move action, because stealth does not require any action at all. However! That is in general. In the specific case of sniping, you are required to "spend a move action" to regain stealth without being seen. Note that you can't move when doing that! You use your standard action to make a single attack (rapid shot won't help, it can only give you extra attacks if you are making a full attack), you use your move action to re-stealth, and you're out of actions.

Outside of sniping, there's no such thing as "spend a move action to stealth". You don't spend any action at all to stealth, because "in stealth" is not actually a recognized state in general. You move, and if you were not previously observed, you make a stealth check, and if the enemy doesn't beat that with a perception roll, they still don't know where you are. You aren't spending any kind of action to "enter stealth", and you don't have to be moving to benefit from concealment.


I've seen all the text, the part that's very hard to grasp is when the sniper is in concealment and doesn't leave it to shoot. Presumably the sniping rule is about game balance and not realism, but there appears to be no mechanism for 'maintaining stealth' when shooting (especially more than once), but rather sniping involves shooting to break stealth, and 're-hiding' (at a penalty in case they saw you, as a move action). The mechanics are clear from a game balance perspective, but if someone shoots from cover/concealment and makes their stealth check for sniping, does the target actually know where they are? Did they see them briefly or never? Their failed perception check would seem to indicate they didn't see them, but there is that 'breaking stealth to shoot' once. Do they know the hex the person is in, or nothing? What is the DC to mark a missile's trajectory and figure out where it came from (approximately or exactly)? Is it affected by whether it hit or not?


The sniping check (at the -20) is to shoot without ever breaking cover, meaning they have no idea where it came from. Failing the check means they saw what square you were in, but provided you still have cover they can't necessarily see you at the moment. The DC to mark the missile's path and trace it back is that same check. Whether it hits or not is irrelevant.

The stealth rules are admittedly poorly lined out (check out the stealth playtest blog/threads)... this whole thing stems from somebody's knee jerk reaction to "ZOMG dice" if rogues could snipe regularly. (at 20th level, 11d6 factoring in shortbow, for 4 attacks with rapid shot, and projecting for expected magic items, is around 200 damage per round. About what you would expect from any competent martial, and well under what some get to with favorable conditions)

It's the game mechanic for describing that movie moment when the shot rings out, and the guy falls over, do his friends know which spot it came from? Sometimes yes, sometimes no... based on that check.

Remember, each round is 6 seconds. (yes... I know trained snipers can shoot several times in that time, but not with muzzle loaders or crank crossbows. Bow and arrow or repeating crossbow sure, but your moving too much to not draw attention at that point) With the level of (early)firearms or crossbows in this game, shooting precisely enough to deliver a (head/heart/vital organ) shot from bushes, then reload without giving yourself away, is actually fairly difficult.

Now... compared to messing with some random crap in your pockets, mumbling to yourself, tossing a bolt of lightning 60 feet... (all while still being able to dash 10 yards) difficult? Probably not... but them's the rules we got to work with.


1) if you "snipe" you can only make a single ranged ( says it pretty plainly). You then immediately (no action needed) may attempt to hide again at the -20. If you succeed, you sniped and the target doesn't locate you. If you fail he obviously knows where your at, or if your not visible ( like greater invis) your general area.
2) Raw you cannot make additional attacks using sniping.
3) yes, you can get your 2nd potshot off without precision damage and stealth again, as long as you can take a 5 foot step. Remember stealth is part of movement, not part of a move action.
4) a successful while sniping the target doesn't see you, even briefly.
5) there are no rules for finding the hex/general trajectory of the missile, that would be a gm call.


Quote:

ou are skilled at avoiding detection, allowing you to slip past foes or strike from an unseen position. This skill covers hiding and moving silently.

Check: Your Stealth check is opposed by the Perception check of anyone who might notice you. Creatures that fail to beat your Stealth check are not aware of you and treat you as if you had concealment. You can move up to half your normal speed and use Stealth at no penalty. When moving at a speed greater than half but less than your normal speed, you take a –5 penalty. It's impossible to use Stealth while attacking, running, or charging.

Creatures gain a bonus or penalty on Stealth checks based on their size: Fine +16, Diminutive +12, Tiny +8, Small +4, Medium +0, Large -4, Huge -8, Gargantuan -12, Colossal -16.

If people are observing you using any of their senses (but typically sight), you can't use Stealth. Against most creatures, finding cover or concealment allows you to use Stealth. If your observers are momentarily distracted (such as by a Bluff check), you can attempt to use Stealth. While the others turn their attention from you, you can attempt a Stealth check if you can get to an unobserved place of some kind. This check, however, is made at a –10 penalty because you have to move fast.

Breaking Stealth: When you start your turn using Stealth, you can leave cover or concealment and remain unobserved as long as you succeed at a Stealth check and end your turn in cover or concealment. Your Stealth immediately ends after you make and attack roll, whether or not the attack is successful (except when sniping as noted below).

Sniping: If you've already successfully used Stealth at least 10 feet from your target, you can make one ranged attack and then immediately use Stealth again. You take a –20 penalty on your Stealth check to maintain your obscured location.

Creating a Diversion to Hide: You can use Bluff to allow you to use Stealth. A successful Bluff check can give you the momentary diversion you need to attempt a Stealth check while people are aware of you.

Action: Usually none. Normally, you make a Stealth check as part of movement, so it doesn't take a separate action. However, using Stealth immediately after a ranged attack (see Sniping, above) is a move action.

Special: If you are invisible, you gain a +40 bonus on Stealth checks if you are immobile, or a +20 bonus on Stealth checks if you're moving.

Above are the rules for sniping...there was a lot of misinformation early in this thread. I think most of it as been corrected, but I lack the energy this morning to go through it all.

Suffice it to say, there is no way to get multiple attacks and snipe. It's impossible. Further, using stealth alone you will not get more than one sneak attack in a round.

Also, BaconBastard is incorrect. Flat-footed only applies until a creatures first turn in combat. Afterwards they are no longer treated as flat-footed (with the exceptions of some specific feats and actions that allow you to cause the flat-footed condition).


I believe "stealth is part of movement" doesn't mean "you have to move to use stealth", but "if you are moving, and have a way to be concealed or other abilities letting you do so, you can roll stealth while doing it". Moving implies the ability to make a stealth check, that doesn't mean you have to move to make a stealth check.


Other than this part

1) if you "snipe" you can only make a single ranged ( says it pretty plainly). You then immediately (no action needed) may attempt to hide again at the -20. If you succeed, you sniped and the target doesn't locate you. If you fail he obviously knows where your at, or if your not visible ( like greater invis) your general area.

Action: Usually none. Normally, you make a Stealth check as part of movement, so it doesn't take a separate action. However, using Stealth immediately after a ranged attack (see Sniping, above) is a move action.

Bleeding Sun is correct.


There is a debate as to the ability to stealth in addition to the 5' step. Some feel it is completely valid while others feel it is not.

Fell free to search for that information if you are interested.


Under A Bleeding Sun wrote:
1) if you "snipe" you can only make a single ranged ( says it pretty plainly). You then immediately (no action needed) may attempt to hide again at the -20. If you succeed, you sniped and the target doesn't locate you. If you fail he obviously knows where your at, or if your not visible ( like greater invis) your general area.
TGMaxMaxer wrote:

Other than this part

1) if you "snipe" you can only make a single ranged ( says it pretty plainly). You then immediately (no action needed) may attempt to hide again at the -20. If you succeed, you sniped and the target doesn't locate you. If you fail he obviously knows where your at, or if your not visible (like greater invis) your general area.

Action: Usually none. Normally, you make a Stealth check as part of movement, so it doesn't take a separate action. However, using Stealth immediately after a ranged attack (see Sniping, above) is a move action.

Bleeding Sun is correct.

Please check your text. Under A Bleeding Sun is not correct.

PRD wrote:

Stealth

Sniping: If you've already successfully used Stealth at least 10 feet from your target, you can make one ranged attack and then immediately use Stealth again. You take a –20 penalty on your Stealth check to maintain your obscured location.

There is no "(no action needed)" in the PRD.

/cevah

Edit: noted TGMaxMaxer was quoting Under A Bleeding Sun, so added original text.


TG was saying that Bleeding Sun wasn't correct, on that part.


Komoda wrote:
TG was saying that Bleeding Sun wasn't correct, on that part.

Check your text. :-)

TGMaxMaxer wrote:
Bleeding Sun is correct.

/cevah


"Other than this part..."

"...Bleeding Sun is correct. "

Check.


My bad!


Don't know if it can be interesting (it's late and I don't want to read all this text), but here is the "reworked" rules for discretion, from the blog. IIRC, some stuff are clarified about stealth while moving, and maybe about sniping.

http://paizo.com/paizo/blog/v5748dyo5lcml


Thanks for the link. That also clarifies that you can indeed stealth with a 5 foot step as the devs working on that uses it in examples. That's how I've always seen it ruled but i notice some people said it was debated. I had never seen that post before and play a lot of stealth character's and npcs so that article and corresponding posts is great!


HectorVivis wrote:

Don't know if it can be interesting (it's late and I don't want to read all this text), but here is the "reworked" rules for discretion, from the blog. IIRC, some stuff are clarified about stealth while moving, and maybe about sniping.

Stealth Playtest, Round Two

Linkified for you.

Please note that this is from 2011.

/cevah


Wow, I never noticed that post either. It breaks with all convention for me, but hims the boss.


Now, how does the sniping stealth check work - if you fail the roll with -20 (after paying move action), they have some idea where you are, but if your unmodified check still beats their perception they still can't see you (and have a miss chance)? Or is it all or none - you shoot and pay a move action and if your -20 modified stealth check fails, you're obvious (e.g. they see you crouching behind a bush)?


If they beat your stealth, you are spotted.


Komoda wrote:
If they beat your stealth, you are spotted.

So all or none?


Correct

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