Dismounting riders


Rules Questions


Hello again. Excuse me the question. How a rider can be dismounted? It can be dismounted with a bow?

Dark Archive

Any effect in the game that forces a creature to move from the space he's in will cause him to be dismounted.
Most common examples include:
- Drag Combat Maneuver
- Bull Rush Combat Maneuver
- Reposition Combat Maneuver

Specific methods of forcing a dismount are:
- Unseat Feat
- Lance of Jousting, Magic Item

There are other examples but these were the only ones that came to mind.

I am unaware of any way to force a dismount using a bow.

Silver Crusade

While I too can't think of anything specifically pertaining to a bow dismounting a rider. I can only imagine that they failed their ride check?


A level 11 Archer (fighter archetype) can bull rush with an arrow. Other than that, there's no easy way to actively knock someone off of a mount using a bow.


Kill the mount? :)


Anytime you take damage you do a "Stay in Saddle" roll. Base DC is 5 plus the damage you received. Under Ride skill in PRD or CRB.
A Bill (p.24 UE) gives a penalty of -1 to Stay in Saddle. (it also is illustrated and described as a Halberd rather than a Bill)

So that's how you could dismount someone with a bow - do enough damage!


Just gone and checked that I was remembering the Ride rule correctly and it doesn't actually state the amount of damage taken is added to the DC yet I don't see how it couldn't be. Is there a general rule on damage being added to the DC of skill, balance and concentration checks?


There is not. It's only added if it's stated that it's added.

Dismounting someone with a bow is going to be difficult.


I have a cavalry campaign on the go at the moment so I think damage to Ride DC will be a house rule.

Apologies for confusing the issue.


I'd advise against it.

You get hit for 20 damage by an ogre at level 8. You now have a DC 25 check to stay mounted.

Your cavalry campaign will not involve much cavalry, at that point.


They'll have to invest some skill points in Ride then. I made it a class skill and gave them an "extra" point in it at first. Ride of 11(+Dex) and a Military saddle means they need to roll a 12(-Dex) or above. Seems fair enough for the advantages they get.

One of them already has Ride-By and Spirited Charge.

Soft Fall remains the same DC


CountofUndolpho wrote:

They'll have to invest some skill points in Ride then. I made it a class skill and gave them an "extra" point in it at first. Ride of 11(+Dex) and a Military saddle means they need to roll a 12(-Dex) or above. Seems fair enough for the advantages they get.

One of them already has Ride-By and Spirited Charge.

Soft Fall remains the same DC

So, uh, you're giving them a 40% chance to stay in the saddle in the face of a slightly above average hit at that level? S&++, I got crit for 40some at level 8 in ROTRL. My mounted paladin - with some brutally ridiculous stat rolls and Dual Talent - threw a +16 on ride checks at that level. At that point it's impossible for me to stay in. I miiight see 1/2 damage, but by the time you're level 8 you're supposed to be a paragon of human (or elven or whatever) achievement. If you're focused on riding, that pretty much means not falling out of the saddle.

What if they have a military saddle that literally straps their legs in?


Yeah, I was just about to post that you were wrong Undolpho but it seems you found that after reviewing the skill.

Like Bronnwynn I also highly suggest against it because even if you place a skill point into ride at every level, and have a mdoerate dex lets say (+2, maybe +3) you're ride skill bonus is going to pale in comparison to the potential damage you can take. Pathfinder actually makes it quite difficult to unseat someone from their horse, and honestly I think it should stay that way. Making them perform a ride check of 5+damage dealt just means you're going to have everyone being unhorsed. At that point, why bother.

At level 10 you could reasonably have: 10+3(class skill)+3 dex+6 skill focus (super unlikely, most people aren't going to spend a feat on this) for a 22. More reasonable is the +16 without skill focus. Enemies will often be able to deal enough damage that characters will have less than a 50% chance to stay in the seat with every hit. Basically after getting hit twice you should be off the horse.

That sounds awful if the point is to have a mounted campaign. And if you argue that skill focus makes it reasonable, then all your saying is you adding an extra feat tax to make players play this campaign. Which isn't a good thing, at least in my opinion.

If they make highly optimized cavalary charging lance wielding death machines...do the same thing back. When player characters start dying they might reconsider their tactics. Especially with teamwork feats that could enable a whole group of lancer to collectively charge one player.


Points well made and taken on board thanks Bronnwynn and Claxon, I'll have to have a think about it.

DC5 just seems too easy really, all of the characters in my game automatically succeed on a 5 DC. Being unhorsed in combat occasionally just seems part of the flavour of a mounted campaign but there isn't really provision in the rules for it without a specific feat.

Perhaps a Masterwork military saddle giving +10 bump the ordinary military one up to +5? There are already a number of tweaks in play to keep the mounts alive and so on, including Mounted Combat as a free feat. The mounted combat rules are... a little unpolished? but we are managing to make it work.

We've been playing together for more than 20 years now so we tend to make house rules as a group, I'll ask the mob for ideas.


CountofUndolpho wrote:
DC5 just seems too easy really, all of the characters in my game automatically succeed on a 5 DC. Being unhorsed in combat occasionally just seems part of the flavour of a mounted campaign but there isn't really provision in the rules for it without a specific feat.

That's kind of the point. It's not supposed to be difficult for characters who devote resources into mounted combat to be competent at it.

Besides which, there are classes that do not have ride as a class skill and aside from the cavalier everyone else takes their armor check penalties to their ride checks. Now, this still doesn't make it particularly likely that a rider will be unseated...but this is a feature not a bug.

Consider, that a player who puts his whole method of combat into being in the stirrups on his mount suddenly finds himself deprived of that? It's not quite as bad as putting a wizard in an antimagic zone, or asking a player to play as a fallen paladin, but it isn't much better.

If you want people to occasionally be unseated use the feat to do so. If you want to make combat more challenging don't give away things like mounted combat for free, make them take the feat if they want the benefit. Otherwise you know the weak point is the mount. Heck, most people should realize that the mount is generally an easier target than the person on it's back.


I think, Claxon you are assuming too many things about the campaign and play style of our group. I appreciate the effort you put into pointing out the problems at higher levels though and assure you that I am fully aware of the points you make in your latter post.


CountofUndolpho wrote:
I think, Claxon you are assuming too many things about the campaign and play style of our group. I appreciate the effort you put into pointing out the problems at higher levels though and assure you that I am fully aware of the points you make in your latter post.

You're free to do as you will in your games, but if my DM said "Okay. Instead of a DC 5 check to stay in saddle, it's a DC 5+damage taken" I'd assume three things.

First, that he wanted some kind of carnival-like world where your average mounted troop flings themselves out of the saddle trying to dodge even minor blows.

Second, I'd assume that cavalry wouldn't exist in his world because they'd be laughably ineffective, and at best would serve the same way mechinf do today - ride to battle, then dismount and fight in a manner that doesn't resemble a circus act.

Third, I'd assume that he didn't want anyone to play any kind of mounted character, and that giving away Mounted Combat the feat away for free was some kind of perverse joke.


I think, Bronnwynn you are assuming too many things about the campaign and play style of our group. I appreciate the effort you put into pointing out the problems at higher levels though and assure you that I am fully aware of the points you make in your latter post.


Actually after re-reading that it just sounds like you are trying to get a rise, though a fairly polite trolling I'll admit. Slow day?


CountofUndolpho wrote:
Actually after re-reading that it just sounds like you are trying to get a rise, though a fairly polite trolling I'll admit. Slow day?

Not trying to get a rise, just letting you know how I'd respond if you were my DM and told me that.


Bronnwynn, I think at this point he's just ignoring what we have to say based on his last two posts.

I don't think there is any value in trying to continue this discussion.


Maybe you don't need to do the dmg/ride check.

A lot of creatures have improved bull rush as a feat, which can dismount a rider.
I think this is all you need.

I was just thinking about this last night why so many Giants have improved bull rush and disabling mounted riders seems to be a good reason for it.

It creates a dynamic battle without adding mechanics. The character still takes damage, but not much and you get you play with the idea of monsters trying to eat the mount, lol.

It's your call, of course, but I think using the combat maneuvers instead of a new mechanic is a safe way to go.

Either way, good luck!


I will ask one more thing, if you're so set on making them make ride check at 5+damage taken to stay in the saddle are you also going to modify the check to guide the mount with knees because that's too easy in your opinion too? It's also just a DC 5. Changing it would have a more obviously detrimental effect than the other because people wont even be able to move their mount and attack with two handed weapons, two weapons, or ranged weapons. The only viable options because lances, and one handed weapons only.

Now this is an extreme example, but the fact that players are likely to be unsteaded every round...I mean is that what you actually want?

I may be assumptions because I don't know your group, but I highly doubt that their idea of a fun mounted campaign involves falling off their mount every time they are attacked.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Make a Handle Animal check for Throw Rider (a trick from Animal Archive).

This would normally be a "Push" since you can't be sure the animal has the trick, so DC 25 to start. Strangely enough, DC 27 if the animal is hurt.

I'm curious how this should be handled when you've got a Druid doing it to a Ranger's or Paladin's horse. A silly reading of the rules would result in a Ranger or Druid getting +4 to Handle Animal for any animal that is an animal companion.

CRB pg 98 wrote:
A druid or ranger gains a +4 circumstance bonus on Handle Animal checks involving an animal companion.

Note how it isn't limited to their own animal companion...

The way the trick reads in Animal Archives, it isn't even an opposed check. Having Improved Trip would help you stay seated though, since it adds to your CMD vs trip attempts.

Guess this is a good reason for the exclusive trick (also from Animal Archive) on any mount.


BretI wrote:
HA stuff from AA

"Hey, look, cool stuff from a splatbook!"

"Cool beans! How do you defend against it?"

"... pick up the splatbook."

"..."


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Bronnwynn wrote:
BretI wrote:
HA stuff from AA

"Hey, look, cool stuff from a splatbook!"

"Cool beans! How do you defend against it?"

"... pick up the splatbook."

"..."

Well, the exclusive trick from Animal Archive would be the defense. It prevents others from giving your animal orders.

As for the 'cool stuff', keeping with just Core Rule Book you could push with the Perform trick since it specifically mentions Roll Over. Sitting up might not be quite as spectacular.


Claxon wrote:

I will ask one more thing, if you're so set on making them make ride check at 5+damage..... STUFF.....

I may be assumptions because I don't know your group, but I highly doubt that their idea of a fun mounted campaign involves falling off their mount every time they are attacked.

I have already said that I agree with Bronnwynn and yourself that DC5 + damage is unworkable and thanked you both for pointing it out. So if we take that point as made do we need to address the rest of the post above?

I'm more than happy to discuss suggestions for making it fun and playable but how many times must you guys point out that I was wrong at first? I know I was, I've acknowledged I was, I've thanked you for pointing it out - that's four times now.

Only thing I've come up with for a compromise is use the sort of sliding scale used in acrobatics, climb or even Mounted Archery namely the DC increases with the speed (difficulty) so 5 for single move, 10 for double and 15 for run? Still too high do you think? That way people can choose the risk they take.

Climb and Acrobatics need an immediate re-roll against the original DC when hit, speed on a mount affects a number of other rolls so...


It didn't really sound like you were agreeing with us. In fact, it seemed more like you were saying "I understand what the rule books says, but I'm going to continue to disregard that in favor of my rule". It didn't seem like you admitted it was untenable.

What it did seem like is after we pointed out how it was a bad idea you set about trying to come up with extra bonuses that master work saddle could give to counteract the panlties that would occur from taking damage as well as considering other options.

This the first time I feel like you're acknowledge what we had to say. Perhaps we're just interpretting things differently from what you intended, but I don't think any of us got these admissions from any of your posts before. Were not trying to tell you that you're wrong to rub it in your face, we were trying to convince you it was a bad idea because you seemed dead set on doing it anyways.

I think the compromise is to use the rules as writte in this case and keep it a DC 5 to stay in the saddle. What are you really hoping to accomplish with this change to the rules?

Is your goal to make it more difficult? Why? Is it just because you feel like it should be? It is because you feel like mounted combat is too strong?

I really don't understand why you're so dead set on changing a rule that works okay as it is, only to make things more difficult for your players.

While it doesn't always work for everything, I think this is a good example of where the KISS principle should be employeed. Do you actually want to bog the game down every round for every character (because this a mounted campaign) to determine if people fall off their mounts?

The point of the DC5 was to make it such that with a single rank in ride and having it as a class skill makes it virtually impossible to fail, unless you have ACP.

Do you think that making it more likely that characters will come out of the saddle will make the game more of less fun? And do you think your players feel the same way?

I can at least say for myself that as I player I would highly opposed to the changes in the rules you are suggest as they add unnecessary, cumbersome, and time eating activities to the game for no real gain or increase in fun.


Avoron wrote:
A level 11 Archer (fighter archetype) can bull rush with an arrow. Other than that, there's no easy way to actively knock someone off of a mount using a bow.

This.

Also, unreliably Impact Critical Shot.
CountofUndolpho wrote:
Just gone and checked that I was remembering the Ride rule correctly and it doesn't actually state the amount of damage taken is added to the DC yet I don't see how it couldn't be. Is there a general rule on damage being added to the DC of skill, balance and concentration checks?

Thanks, i was like "Whaaat? I knew DC5 is too low, where did i missed the damage" but i guess not XD. Seems to make sense (since damage to caster from AoO is concentration check and AoO damage against combat maneuver applies as penalty - similar to increasing CMD) but as people noted, character who maxing up ride probably should be have no problems with the check, and unless you are cavalier you take ACP to Ride (-6 for full plate? -10 if tower shield?). Someone untrained like Gimli may fail tho.


Jings Claxon you're like a terrier with a rat.

So far I've taken the players through two levels on slow xp; at least half of the combat has been on horseback and of course we've had jumps, forced marches, snow, rain etc. A large part of working with mounts seems to be selectively/creatively applying the rules to keep flow going. As well as some interesting hijinks with scale on a large battlemat. Since they worked out they could ride away from things firing whilst still firing at them distances have grown!

I really AGREE WITH YOU about kiss but I've been making them roll to stay in the saddle on a big hit all the way through the game, it hasn't ruined it so far. At least they asked me back to take them from 2nd to 3rd and they didn't tell me it was s**t after they had drunk the last pint of cider of the session - in sicera veritas so to speak.

On another point do you find that when you type so rudely to people it helps convert them to your point?
I usually find that lots of rhetorical "why?" "are you stupid?" "that idea is so rubbish" comments tend to just annoy people and harden their opinions rather than convince them. Have you not found that to be the case?


DarkPhoenixx wrote:

Stuff

Thanks, i was like "Whaaat? I knew DC5 is too low, where did i missed the damage" but i guess not XD. Seems to make sense (since damage to caster from AoO is concentration check and AoO damage against combat maneuver applies as penalty - similar to increasing CMD) but as people noted, character who maxing up ride probably should be have no problems with the check, and unless you are cavalier you take ACP to Ride (-6 for full plate? -10 if tower shield?). Someone untrained like Gimli may fail tho.

What did you think of the sliding scale according to speed idea? it puts it in line with climb/acrobatics etc means that a lot of people will auto-succeed most of the time but adds the random bit in - makes it worth getting a military saddle or a bill.


I should've have taken my own advice earlier, I don't know why I came back.


It would have been better to just engage politely.


Wow!. Thanks for all the answers.

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