Action expenditures and Attacks of Opportunity / Readied Actions


Rules Questions

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FAQ question: If an AoO (or Readied Action) prevents you from completing an action can you change your action or change the order of your actions?

Example: I declare I am using a "Move" move action to move out of a threatened square. I move zero distance when the Attack of Opportunity (or Readied Action) results in my being tripped.

Change action: Did I actually use my "Move" move action even though I didn't travel any distance before I was tripped? Ie. Can I replace the "Move" move action with another action?

Change Order of actions Can I use the Stand Up action and then use the "Move" move action I had already declared?

This has come up in multiple threads (this is the latest).


That appears to be a fair wording for the FAQ with no bias towards either position.


Thanks


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If you get tripped while trying to move, you've still spent your move action even if you haven't actually moved any distance. You cannot change your action once it's started, even if interrupted.

In effect, what happens is the trip happens first, putting you on the ground. You may now continue your move action... however, you are attempting an action which is no longer possible. It's not that you've lost or are no longer taking the move action, but that you're no longer able to actually move anywhere with it.

As a slightly more complicated example:
1) Player A readies an action to remove the prone condition from B, should they get tripped. (exactly what action or spell this is, is irrelevant to the logic - assume they have something)
2) B tries to move, as your example, and gets tripped
3) A's ready goes off, removing the prone condition
4) B may now continue their move action

So as you can see, being tripped in of itself isn't removing or preventing B's move action.

Likewise, you cannot change the order of actions. If you get tripped whilst trying to move, this action must complete before you may attempt any other action, such as standing up.

Still, I can see where the confusion comes from. FAQing for you.

Shadow Lodge

Byakko wrote:
In effect, what happens is the trip happens first, putting you on the ground. You may now continue your move action... however, you are attempting an action which is no longer possible.

That's not quite true.

"Crawling" is the type of movement used when prone; it is listed as a sub-type of the "move" (distance) move action alongside climbing or swimming. I think it's accepted that if you begin to move and then fall off a pit into water, you can continue the same move action while swimming for a reduced distance.

Since you haven't actually moved any distance you should be able to devote the entire distance of your move to a 5ft crawl, provoking an additional AoO. This may not be worth it in many cases, but I believe the rules allow it.

Move wrote:

Many nonstandard modes of movement are covered under this category, including climbing (up to one-quarter of your speed) and swimming (up to one-quarter of your speed).

...

Crawling

You can crawl 5 feet as a move action. Crawling incurs attacks of opportunity from any attackers who threaten you at any point of your crawl. A crawling character is considered prone and must take a move action to stand up, provoking an attack of opportunity.


I'd probably allow someone to continue their movement by crawling, but I don't believe it's actually legal.

Crawling is a move action. You can't generally substitute one move action for another just because of interruption.

If you allow a crawl move action to substitute for a "moving" move action, then couldn't the player substitute any other sort of move action, such as retrieving an item?

Note that when people say they're moving, they're not simply "using a move action".

"The simplest move action is moving your speed. If you take this kind of move action..."

They're using their move action to "move their speed", a distinct type of move action.


Byakko, If what you state is true, a trip lock would be possible.

If you begin standing up, and then find your self on the ground again, it would take another move action to begin standing up again.

Form the other thread, but I will attempt to keep it all here now:

It is a tell. It is a tell that allowed an opening. It is an opening that the threatening character took advantage of. It is not a crazy change the space-time-continuum paradox. It only plays like one at the table in an effort to simulate a dynamic environment.

---

As to the charge scenario, here is what I meant.

You declare you are charging an enemy, 50' away, while adjacent to another enemy.

The adjacent enemy hits you with an Attack of Opportunity, it was a critical hit and you are now standing (barely) at 1 HP.

Do you have to continue the charge even though you know that the target of the charge has a reach weapon and will get an Attack of Opportunity against you?

---

It is my position that the character that declared the charge has still taken no action and can in fact change their mind and perform a different action. In other words, they do not lose a full round of actions because of an AoO based on a declared action and they are also not forced into charging into death.

I believe this position is bolstered by the 3.5 clarification that states, "If someone tries something that provokes an attack of opportunity, the attack of opportunity happens first."

And I also believe that the Paizo Trip Lock FAQ bolsters my position because the trip lock does not work because (wait for it) The person that is trying to stand up, hasn't stood up, therefore can't be knocked down and doesn't lose their actions!

So, if a person attempts a move action (move 10') that provokes an AoO and that person is tripped, said person loses (or has used, which ever verbiage you apply) that move action because they "started" the action and they cannot change their action because the action happened BEFORE the AoO...

But:

...If a person attempts a move action (stand from prone) that provokes an AoO and that person is tripped, said person DOES NOT lose (or has not used, which ever verbiage you apply) that move action because ...they started the action and they can continue their action because it happens AFTER the AoO?

The ENTIRE reason that a trip lock doesn't work is because, "the target is still prone when the attack of opportunity occurs" (FAQ). A person standing from prone is not magically or even specifically immune from the trip AoO, it is just a Null Gain as the AoO happens BEFORE they try to stand up.

And I found the relevant Paizo Quote HERE:

Jason Bulmhan wrote:

I realize there are other issues floating around in here, but let me go on and state one point clearly...

You can use your AoO to trip a creature that is standing up from prone, but it has no effect, since the AoO is resolved before the action is completed, meaning that the creature is still prone. Once the AoO resolves, the creature would stand up normally.

As for the rest.. I'll let it shake out a bit.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

If the AoO INTERRUPTED (as in stopped) the person from standing, they would have lost/used a move action to stand and a trip lock would in fact be possible.


Crawling is a move action, unless...

There are a few cases in which you can gain a crawl speed. The most common is through a rogue trick.


Komada:

Concerning trip locking:
Trip locks aren't possible, because if you trip someone who's trying to stand up, the trip happens before their "stand up" action does. So you're tripping someone who's already prone, thus nothing happens. Then their stand up action completes, and they're no longer prone.

Concerning the charging character who longer wants to continue charging:
Once you've started charging, you've used your actions. Technically, I'm nut sure you can decide to stop charging, although most GMs seem to allow you to stop an action mid-way if you desire. However, even if they do, you've still spent your actions.

Quote:
If the AoO INTERRUPTED (as in stopped) the person from standing,...

Interrupted does not mean stopped. Interrupted means your action goes on pause until whatever the interruption is completes. Then the interrupted action continues.


Komoda wrote:


As to the charge scenario, here is what I meant.

You declare you are charging an enemy, 50' away, while adjacent to another enemy.

The adjacent enemy hits you with an Attack of Opportunity, it was a critical hit and you are now standing (barely) at 1 HP.

Do you have to continue the charge even though you know that the target of the charge has a reach weapon and will get an Attack of Opportunity against you?

There is no rule that says you have to move the planned movement path. In the case of charge there is no rule that says you can't end your movement in the charge early, swing (at the empty air) and be out of range of the reach weapon.

Komoda wrote:


If the AoO INTERRUPTED (as in stopped) the person from standing, they would have lost/used a move action to stand and a trip lock would in fact be possible.

You misunderstand the sequence here.

I am prone.
I declare I'm going to stand up (but so far am still prone).
This triggers an AoO.
The AoO decides to trip, and applies the prone condition to me (which I already have).
Now I complete my action, which is a legal action for me to take, that is stand up removing the prone condition.


My entire point is that it is also the case that the trip happens before the "enter any provoking action here" action happens.

And if the trip happens first, the other action hasn't happened.

And if the other action hasn't happened, how can it be a lost/used action?


bbangerter:
I don't know a single GM that will force you to declare your entire move in advance, without being able to change it... but the rules are kinda vague about it, as far as I know.

Likewise, I'd probably let someone simply stop charging mid way through.

BUT, I'm pretty sure there's clarification out there that you can't attack an empty square (for, for example, gaining a Combat Expertise or fighting defensively bonus), although this triggers all sorts of "what if you think an invisible enemy is there" type debates.

Also, what happens if someone has effects that happen only when charging? For example, if they gain extra movement speed, ignore difficult terrain, gain DR, or whatever, while charging. Won't the player simply choose to charge everywhere instead of moving?

Anyway, starting to get off topic here.


Komoda wrote:

My entire point is that it is also the case that the trip happens before the "enter any provoking action here" action happens.

And if the trip happens first, the other action hasn't happened.

And if the other action hasn't happened, how can it be a lost/used action?

I think you're still confusing what "interruption" means, in the scope of the game.

Interruption doesn't stop, prevent, or negate whatever else is happening. The other action just goes on pause for a little bit while the interrupting action completes.

So the stand up action -starts- to happen, but they're still prone. They get tripped again, but are still prone so nothing happens. Then the stand up action completes and they're back on their feet.

Just because the results of an action haven't happened yet, doesn't mean the action isn't in progress with the action type already spent. As another example, if you interrupt a wizard casting a spell, do they get their standard action back since their spell never happens? Nope!


It is not that I misunderstand the sequence, it is that we do not agree on that sequence.

I am standing.
I declare I am going to move.
This triggers an AoO.
The AoO decide to trip and applies the prone condition to me.
Now I complete my action as it happens AFTER the prone condition was done to me, I can now attempt any action for which I still have action economy (in this case any) and that the prone position allows me to attempt.

As to charge, there is a rule that says "you must move to the closest square from which you can attack your opponent."

But either way, in that case you are allowing someone to declare an action and change it after the AoO. There is no difference.


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As soon as you declare you are using your move action to move, you are spending it. If you immediately get tripped, you've STILL spent that move action, even if you can no longer move.

Many GMs will allow you to change the details of the action even if it's already started. But you cannot change the action itself into a different action.


Byakko, I agree with your. First three lines.

The people that disagree with me state that you Start moving, and moving is stopped, therefore you lose/used that action that was moving.

Jason Balmahn clarifies that the trip happens before the prone person stands. Not in the middle of them standing. That is key to my position and the entire reason the trip lock is not valid.

The 3.5 rules of the game that I quoted in the other forum state the same thing:

Wizards.com Rules of the Game wrote:

Common Misconception #3: Attacks of opportunity happen after the actions that trigger them.

Resolve an attack of opportunity before you resolve the action that triggered it, not after. Sometimes, the attack of opportunity will prevent the triggering action (such as when the attack of opportunity proves lethal to a moving character). If someone tries something that provokes an attack of opportunity, the attack of opportunity happens first. Attacks of opportunity you make in response to a foe's spellcasting or use of a spell-like ability are an exception (see the Making an Attack of Opportunity section), as is moving into a space another creature occupies.

The Rules as Written for 3.5 and Pathfinder match, word for word; comma for comma.

The line that I emphasized above is the birth of disallowing the Trip Lock in the D20 system that Paizo's entire company is based on. Paizo has never done anything to say it is not still in effect. JB's quote above give support to my position that you CAN trip a prone person, it just (normally) doesn't gain you anything (Ki Throw still works) as there is no benefit to being prone'er.

Notice the 3.5 clarification also states that you resolve the AoO BEFORE the action that triggers it. It specifically states NOT AFTER. Also implied (in that sentence) is BEFORE and not IN THE MIDDLE OF the provoking action, which again, is what JB jumped into the middle of a forum about other stuff and pointed out because that single fact is so important.


And by sticking to the position that a person that provokes an AoO cannot change their action due to battlefield changes, you are stating that the person making the AoO is at a heightened sense of awareness and can react to possibly many battlefield changes (combat reflexes) when it is NOT his turn, but the character whose TURN IT IS, cannot possible react to those same battlefield conditions with his actions.

I am not aware of any RAW statement that says that if you declare an action it is spent even if you can't use it.

For instance:,

Player: "I take a 5' step forward."

GM: "You can't, there is an invisible force stopping you from moving into that square. Oh, and you have used your 5' step for the round, which also means you cannot move any distance. What would you like to do now?"

Really?


There's a difference between declaring an action, and resolving it. Once you've declared you're doing something, your character has spent the action even if the results don't turn out how they like.

5' steps get funky, so let me change this slightly. Assume the character only has 5' base speed (for example, a merfolk):

If they attempt to move forward one square, and an invisible force stops them from moving into that square (for example, if they bump into an invisible wall), then yes, they have indeed used their move action for the round and cannot choose to move elsewhere instead.

(For the 5' step example, yes, they would have expended their 5' step. Can they now spend a move action to move since their 5' step failed to happen? This gets a bit murky and subject to GM fiat.)


As far as the strange superhuman reflexes on readies, yeah... it's not realistic.

Yes, a wizard can ready to cast a fireball if another caster starts to cast.

Even if that caster is only doing a simple cantrip, the fireball will resolve first and interrupt it, and they won't have a chance to stop casting the cantrip and do something else instead.

It's not realistic, but that's how the rules work.

Liberty's Edge

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I've been flip-flopping in my mind and have thought about a few scenarios. I've come to rest on the "you can't change the action" side. Though, in the example of being tripped before moving, I would allow the character to crawl 5 feet. In this case, I don't look at crawling as a separate move action from moving, rather its costing you your entire movement rate to crawl those 5 feet.


Please, stop using the 3.5 stuff. You're not understanding what was explained with the trip lock. You are indeed standing up, but you're still prone, so you can't make someone double prone. You are more than welcome to trip a already prone target, but it doesn't cause them to go prone because they're already prone.

The 3.5 things you're twisting and ignoring other parts of what's written. Please discuss pathfinder, and don't derail with 3.5. Both systems are before the triggering action is FINISHED.

To the charge people.

charge wrote:
You must have a clear path toward the opponent, and nothing can hinder your movement (such as difficult terrain or obstacles). You must move to the closest space from which you can attack the opponent.

you need to plan it all out, and then you arrive to the closest space, while enjoying all the consequences that happen along the way. You also spend a full round action and it just goes start to finish.

No one has the position that you lose your action, but you are not able to preform the action that you initially began.

Byakko's first post pretty much sums up what myself and others wrote in the other thread, and is pretty well written. Crawl from what I recall is a separate kind of move action, like standing up, but could possibly be a legal alternative if you never got to make any movement previously like the trip situation.


Human Fighter, no. I am stating that 3.5 and Pathfinder write exactly the same thing. They both came to the exact same conclusion on trip lock, the exact same way. And in both cases, the AoO happens BEFORE the trigger. If there was any word from Paizo that said any differently than what 3.5 says, of course Paizo takes precedence. To ignore it is rather silly.

There is nothing in any Paizo adjudication that has been presented that is different than what 3.5 says, except your (and all the people that agree with you) interpretation. There is no conflicting statement in my logic or between Paizo's and Wizard's clarifications. If anyone can show something from Paizo stating that Wizard's clarification is incorrect, I assure you, I will relent upon that position.

---

I thought it was clear that a lot of people support the position that the Move action is taken up even though no movement took place? HangarFlying just solidified that it is his position. But then at the same time gives the provoker one type of move action for free while not allowing others. So clearly he is not following RAW.

---

Now, Byakko, say a spell caster starts casting a spell, say Forbiddance, and suffers an AoO and fails the concentration check. We both agree the spell is lost and that some action economy is lost, as is specific to spell casting. (And clearly stated as an exception by Wizards.)

Is it your position that the entire next 6 rounds are lost to the caster and that there is nothing else that he can do since he declared he was casting a spell that takes 6 rounds?

If not, what is the mechanical difference or the specific rule that your are using to limit it to whatever action economy cost that you have assigned to it, other than the 6 rounds?

---

I don't have a problem with the super-human readiness, I have a problem with the super-human readiness for the person that threatens the AoO and the lack of regular sloth-level readiness of a charging character NOT to run 60' straight to his death after receiving a devastating hit.

And when you have to specifically ignore my 5' step scenario because it breaks the logic you have been supporting, doesn't that support my position at least somewhat? And I do not believe these are crazy corner cases either.

---

Please understand that I am just debating, and I enjoy the thought exercise. I am not trying to be a troll or argumentative. I am trying to show why I believe that the logic you are using is flawed (although it is more popular than I thought) and what you are claiming as hard and fast rules are not.

But every rebuttal to my position is lacking a quote or support from any Paizo source.

That said, it is not like I haven't been wrong before!


Komoda wrote:

It is not that I misunderstand the sequence, it is that we do not agree on that sequence.

I am standing.
I declare I am going to move.
This triggers an AoO.
The AoO decide to trip and applies the prone condition to me.
Now I complete my action as it happens AFTER the prone condition was done to me, I can now attempt any action for which I still have action economy (in this case any) and that the prone position allows me to attempt.

As to charge, there is a rule that says "you must move to the closest square from which you can attack your opponent."

But either way, in that case you are allowing someone to declare an action and change it after the AoO. There is no difference.

This isn't a trip lock scenario, so I'm not sure why you are bringing it up as a counter point.

My error on the charge. Technically by RAW, yes you must move the full length of the charge. Though as a GM I'd always allow a player to abort an action if for any reason they decided they didn't want to do it anymore, though they'd still lose the action, and if casting a spell, lose the spell to boot. But that would be my own addition to the rules.

(Byakko, my comment about attacking the air wasn't a serious one).


Komoda wrote:
Human Fighter, no. I am stating that 3.5 and Pathfinder write exactly the same thing. They both came to the exact same conclusion on trip lock, the exact same way. And in both cases, the AoO happens BEFORE the trigger. If there was any word from Paizo that said any differently than what 3.5 says, of course Paizo takes precedence. To ignore it is rather silly.

It isn't silly to ignore wizards, because we aren't discussing 3.5. Stop using wizards for anything in this thread, PLEASE.

Komoda wrote:
There is nothing in any Paizo adjudication that has been presented that is different than what 3.5 says, except your (and all the people that agree with you) interpretation. There is no conflicting statement in my logic or between Paizo's and Wizard's clarifications. If anyone can show something from Paizo stating that Wizard's clarification is incorrect, I assure you, I will relent upon that position.

Where do you come to your conclusion with what is written? You are cherry picking/twisting from that webpage, and you're not understanding what is being written by what you present here. Please, cite me rules from Pathfinder with your arguments.

3.5 D&D Article and not PATHFINDER wrote:

"Common Misconception #3: Attacks of opportunity happen after the actions that trigger them.

Resolve an attack of opportunity before you resolve the action that triggered it, not after. Sometimes, the attack of opportunity will prevent the triggering action (such as when the attack of opportunity proves lethal to a moving character). If someone tries something that provokes an attack of opportunity, the attack of opportunity happens first. Attacks of opportunity you make in response to a foe's spellcasting or use of a spell-like ability are an exception (see the Making an Attack of Opportunity section), as is moving into a space another creature occupies."

For the last time, this is saying that the action is happening, but you don't resolve the action until you take care of the initial Attack of Opportunity. You are not doing anything BEFORE the action exists, but you do it BEFORE it resolved. Please, understand this, and move on from 3.5.

Komoda wrote:
I thought it was clear that a lot of people support the position that the Move action is taken up even though no movement took place? HangarFlying just solidified that it is his position. But then at the same time gives the provoker one type of move action for free while not allowing others. So clearly he is not following RAW.

Their personal choices don't matter with the rules discussion. They can do whatever they want in a home game, especially if he feels that it's fair, but this is about RAW.

Komoda wrote:


Now, Byakko, say a spell caster starts casting a spell, say Forbiddance, and suffers an AoO and fails the concentration check. We both agree the spell is lost and that some action economy is lost, as is specific to spell casting. (And clearly stated as an exception by Wizards.)

Is it your position that the entire next 6 rounds are lost to the caster and that there is nothing else that he can do since he declared he was casting a spell that takes 6 rounds?

If not, what is the mechanical difference or the specific rule that your are using to limit it to whatever action economy cost that you have assigned to it, other than the 6 rounds?

For spells that go for multiple rounds, if you lose the spell then the spell stops. I don't get where you equate Byakko's logic to what you've written, but please point out what I must have overlooked.

Komoda wrote:

I don't have a problem with the super-human readiness, I have a problem with the super-human readiness for the person that threatens the AoO and the lack of regular sloth-level readiness of a charging character NOT to run 60' straight to his death...

It's a game with game mechanics. You spend a full round action to charge, if you can meet its requirements, then you do all the AoO's that apply and things before you reach your destination. You then make your melee attack and finish out whatever happens to resolve your turn. If you have rules that state otherwise, then please present them.

Shadow Lodge

Byakko wrote:

Crawling is a move action. You can't generally substitute one move action for another just because of interruption.

If you allow a crawl move action to substitute for a "moving" move action, then couldn't the player substitute any other sort of move action, such as retrieving an item?

Note that when people say they're moving, they're not simply "using a move action".

"The simplest move action is moving your speed. If you take this kind of move action..."

They're using their move action to "move their speed", a distinct type of move action.

No, crawling isn't a different kind of move action, it's a subtype of the "move" move action. The format in the CRB is as follows:

Actions in Combat wrote:

Move Actions (Heading)

- (Paragraph) With the exception of specific movement-related skills, most move actions don't require a check.

Move (subheading)

- (Paragraph) The simplest move action is moving your speed. If you take this kind of move action during your turn, you can't also take a 5-foot step.

- (Paragraph) Many nonstandard modes of movement are covered under this category, including climbing (up to one-quarter of your speed) and swimming (up to one-quarter of your speed).

- (Paragraph) Accelerated Climbing: You can climb at half your speed as a move action by accepting a –5 penalty on your Climb check.

- (Paragraph) Crawling: You can crawl 5 feet as a move action. Crawling incurs attacks of opportunity from any attackers who threaten you at any point of your crawl. A crawling character is considered prone and must take a move action to stand up, provoking an attack of opportunity.

Direct or Redirect a Spell (subheading)...

Simplified:

Move Actions
-Move
--Accelerated Climbing
--Crawling
-Direct or Redirect a Spell

Given this organization, I believe the correct interpretation is:

HangarFlying wrote:
In this case, I don't look at crawling as a separate move action from moving, rather its costing you your entire movement rate to crawl those 5 feet.

It is generally accepted that different forms of movement can be combined in a single move action (though I believe climb is the only one that says so explicitly, under the climb skill). A character can move 10ft, turn a corner, unexpectedly encounter a wall, and use their remaining 20ft of movement to climb 5ft. Since Crawling is listed as a subheading of the "Move" action, with (accelerated) climbing, it should work similarly. A character should be able to begin a move action to move out of a threatened square, be tripped, and then use their remaining full movement speed to crawl 5ft (provoking an AoO for crawling which is separate from one for leaving a threatened square).


Anything in the rules that says a prone creature can't climb? If not, then if you're near a surface you can climb, then climb up it then free action let go, and continue your move, assuming you can do this as part of your initial move action. I wonder if you can climb from prone if you're remaining prone or it clears.


Byakko's logic was simply stated as, "Once you've declared you're doing something, your character has spent the action even if the results don't turn out how they like." In my example, the character declared what he is doing for 6 rounds. Therefore, based on Byakko's statement, that character has spent 6 rounds worth of actions. Why can he change what he is doing based on battlefield conditions when the character that declared a charge cannot?


Well, Komada, technically when you're casting a multi-round spell:

Quote:
"When you begin a spell that takes 1 round or longer to cast, you must continue the concentration from the current round to just before your turn in the next round (at least). If you lose concentration before the casting is complete, you lose the spell."

This implies that you invest each round's actions on each round as it comes up, not as a total upfront cost. Each round, if you desire, you may stop concentrating on the spell, resulting in it fizzling.

In general, the assumption is that if you're doing a lengthy task, you can choose to stop doing it on any round, should you desire. I don't believe this is spelled out in the rules anywhere - I imagine they thought it'd be common sense.

Trust me, it's not that hard to find uncovered issues in the rules that totally break the game as intended. Everyone should be happy that this, at least, is fairly straight forward, unless you -really- poke at it.

Btw, I was treading lightly around the 5' step example because it has other attached rules that complicate the matter. But as far as action consumption goes, it also conforms.


Weirdo, just because they're grouped together doesn't make them the same type of move action. For example, different combat maneuvers are also grouped together, but are also not the same type of standard action. Still, I feel this is a bit anal to enforce, and would allow someone to crawl in my game if it came up, as mentioned before.

Concerning climbing while prone: I don't see anything in the rules that prevents you from having the prone condition while climbing. Nor does falling allow you to land "on your feet" - if you make the Acrobatics check you simply don't fall prone (again). But yeah, it quickly starts to get into bizarro rules land. Personally, I'd probably require them to be standing up before they commenced climbing at all, although that's not in the rules afaik.


Komoda wrote:

I am standing.

I declare I am going to move.
This triggers an AoO.
The AoO decide to trip and applies the prone condition to me.
Now I complete my action as it happens AFTER the prone condition was done to me, I can now attempt any action for which I still have action economy (in this case any) and that the prone position allows me to attempt.

So if you provoke an AoO for firing a bow you must restart the act of firing the bow once it has resolved which triggers another AoO?


You already initiated the action to provoke, so no more aoo, but that's funny to think about with that interpretation. Endlessly provoking by choosing to continue with the action because you see the aoo happening before the action ever exists.


Human Fighter wrote:
but that's funny to think about with that interpretation. Endlessly provoking by choosing to continue with the action because you see the aoo happening before the action ever exists.

Exactly, and this is the exact same circumstance as starting an action, taking an AoO, then starting a different action instead.


Gauss can you add a question to your first post asking if the move can be continued as a crawl?

Shadow Lodge

I would think that the meaning of "prone" and "climbing" would prohibit climbing. "Prone" means lying down ie on some horizontal surface with the body oriented generally parallel to that surface. That's not a position favourable to ascending vertical surfaces.

Byakko wrote:
Weirdo, just because they're grouped together doesn't make them the same type of move action. For example, different combat maneuvers are also grouped together, but are also not the same type of standard action. Still, I feel this is a bit anal to enforce, and would allow someone to crawl in my game if it came up, as mentioned before.

I appreciate that you would allow it but I also think it is allowed by RAW or at least RAI and would like to argue that point. It is not 100% clear but I do believe the organization is intended to indicate that crawling is a part of the "move" action (and not a separate move action).

Firstly, the "Move" action and crawling are within the part of the Combat chapter that is organized by action type, while Combat Maneuvers are not. That suggests that the subsections underneath the "move" action are united by action type, but the same does not necessarily apply to subsections under Combat Maneuvers.

Second, the general text under the "move" action reads: "The simplest move action is moving your speed.... Many nonstandard modes of movement are covered under this category (examples)." This suggests that the subsections below (which again include climbing) are examples of nonstandard modes of movement which are covered under the "move" action.

The general text under Combat Maneuvers in contrast indicates that "Although these maneuvers have vastly different results, they all use a similar mechanic to determine success" which suggests that the specified mechanic is the unifying theme, and moreover it explicitly states "While many combat maneuvers can be performed as part of an attack action, full-attack action, or attack of opportunity (in place of a melee attack), others require a specific action."


NikolaiJuno, no I cannot, once an hour has passed there are no further edits.

Grand Lodge

bbangerter wrote:

There is no rule that says you have to move the planned movement path. In the case of charge there is no rule that says you can't end your movement in the charge early, swing (at the empty air) and be out of range of the reach weapon./QUOTE]

You mean except for the charge rule itself that says you must charge an opponent?

Silver Crusade

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There is a problem with the overuse of the word 'action' in the game.

Action: one of the six types of 'action' that make up the parts of the action economy (full-round, standard, move, free, swift, immediate).

Action: the various 'actions in combat' that creatures may take, and which 'use' one of the 'action types' mentioned above, such as 'charge' (which uses a full-round action), 'attack' which uses a standard action), 'open a door' (which uses a move action), 'drop an item' (which uses a free action), 'cast a quickened spell' (which uses a swift action), or 'cast feather fall' (which uses an immediate action).

Action: the thing you actually do, which falls into one of the categories above, such as 'charge the ogre in the silly hat next to the necromancer' (which is a use of the 'charge' action), 'attack the elf with my longsword' (which is a use of the 'attack' action), 'open the green door' (which is a use of the 'open a door' action), 'drop my longsword' (which is a use of the 'drop an item' action), 'cast my prepared quickened magic missile' (which is a use of....well, you get the idea by now).

Although we are familiar enough with the mechanics of the game that we don't think about the minutiae of what we're doing rules-wise, here is an example of one player's turn, in minute rules-oriented detail:-

DM: Tom, it's Valeros' turn. Since you are controlling Valeros, you decide how he'll use his actions in this combat turn. Is he using a full-round action, or one standard and one move, or some other legal combination?

Tom: Valeros intends to take one standard action and one move action.

DM: Which will he take first? Note that you are not yet commited to a standard action after you complete your move action, you can take a second move action if you wish, and you only have to decide at that moment.

Tom: Valeros will use this move action to move his speed.

DM: Okay, he is now using the 'move your speed' move action. Tom, start moving Valeros' mini on the battlemat.

*Tom moves Valeros' mini one square. At that point the DM interrupts*

DM: Stop! Valeros is moving out of a threatened square! The Orc uses an attack of opportunity, and may take a single melee attack with any weapon that threatens you. He is threatening with each end of his orc double-axe, but he chooses the cold iron end. He attempts the trip manoeuvre as his attack. He succeeds! Valeros is now prone in his starting square, and is currently taking the 'move your speed' move action, which you may resume, using any mode of movement that you can take while prone.

Tom: If I crawl I'll provoke again, and I think the Orc has Combat Reflexes. I'm not going to move. Can I do something else?

DM: Well, you must end your move action first, and then you can take any legal free, move, swift or standard action that you are able.

Tom: No, I mean can I pretend that I never moved in the first place, and take a different action instead?

DM: if you never moved then you were never tripped. No backsies!

Tom: No, I realise that I can't go back in time and avoid being tripped; I mean that, since I never left my starting square, did I really use that move action at all?

DM: Yes you did. First, you chose to use your move action. This did not provoke an AoO. Second, you chose the 'move your speed' action. This didn't provoke either. Third, you actually started moving out of a threatened square. That is what provoked, and at that point you were already taking the 'move your speed' action, by using your move action.

When you use your full-round action to charge, and actually have your PC leave his square, then you are commited to the 'charge' action and are already doing your full-round action. If you are attacked by an AoO provoked by leaving your starting square, you cannot change your mind about the action you are taking ('charge'), and are already doing your full-round action. However, you can still charge any creature that would be legal for you to charge from that starting square. Furthermore, you can choose not to go through with the attack at the end of the charge, nor are you forced to complete the movement mandated by that charge. However, if you move then you can only move as dictated by the rules of charging the target you end up charging. Furthermore, you do not have to attack, but if you attack at all then you must attack the target of that charge in accordance with the rules for attacking on that charge.

If you choose to take the 'open a door' move action, and an enemy has a readied action to open that door himself as soon as someone else tries to open it, then as you attempt to open the green door, the door is opened by the enemy. At this point, you are commited to the 'open a door' action, and are already in that move action; you can't swap it for a different action. However, you may use that 'open a door' action to open the blue door instead, or you may abandon your door opening activity. If you abandon it (by not opening a door), you have still used that move action; you can't swap it for another action.

You use a swift action to cast a quickened spell. You want to cast magic missile. the target has an action readied to teleport away if you start spellcasting. He disappears. Now you continue your 'cast a quickened spell' action. Since the trigger for his readied action was you spellcasting, you must already be casting that spell, so you may either continue to cast it at a valid target, or lose the spell. You can't cast a different quickened spell in this case, because you already started casting that spell to trigger his readied action.

TL;DR, you can change the details of your action (which squares you move to, which target you attack, which item you drop, which target you charge),or abandon the action, but you can't change the action itself (move your speed, attack, drop an item, charge) if that action triggered the AoO or readied action that resolved in response to your action.


Except if that were true, trip lock would be possible as after you started standing, you would be on your but again, and you would have to start standing again.

Sorry, but we disagree on the order of operations.

Silver Crusade

Trip lock:-

First, use a move action. This does not provoke.

Second, choose the 'stand up from prone' action. Choosing this action does not, in and of itself, provoke.

Third, attempt to stand up. This is what provokes!

By this point (attempting to stand), you are already into your 'stand up from prone' move action. You are actually doing it, or attempting to do it. No backsies.

If you are threatened, then you may suffer an AoO. That AoO takes place after you have started to stand, but before you have completed standing. Therefore, you are still prone. If the AoO was a trip attempt then you gain a condition that you already have: prone.

Once that AoO trip is resolved (successful or not), you still have the prone condition, but may now resume your 'stand up from prone' action. You don't have to stand up, but you were already in the process of standing up when the AoO happened; indeed, the AoO was triggered by you taking that 'stand up from prone' action, therefore that action was in the process of happening.

That 'stand up from prone' action was already underway, by definition. You can't pretend that you didn't take that action, because the AoO which just happened was triggered by it.


I get your point but disagree. And so did the original writers of the rules that Paizo copied, word for word, and have not (as of yet) contested.


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Komoda

The link you provided in the other thread didn't say anything about getting to choose to do something entirely different (unless I missed it). So while the wording is the same, claiming that 3.5 allowed you to change your action is just as much up for debate as it is for pathfinder.

But here is a thought exercise for you under the premise that you may choose to take a different action.

Opponent as combat reflexes and a high dex. How does the following sequence play out?

I'm an archer standing next to said opponent.
On my turn I declare I'm making an attack with my bow.
This triggers an AoO and I get whacked by the opponent.
I decide that I no longer want to shoot with my bow and instead retrieve a potion from my back pack.
This triggers another AoO and I get whacked again.
Decided maybe that isn't a good idea either I decided to move away.
This provokes an AoO and my enemy decides to trip me, knocking me prone.
Thinking this still isn't working I decide to take the stand up from prone action.
This provokes an AoO and I get stabbed once more.

So, I've done absolutely nothing so far, but in return have been hit 3 times and tripped once. Do you believe this is either RAW or RAI?

If you don't believe the above sequence is valid under the context of being able to decide on a different action, please explain why not.


I do believe that based on Round by Round combat where a delineation is required between when characters are acting, that your scenario is in fact how it works.

I believe that the Disarm scenario linked in the other page supports this.

I believe that if you declare a charge and are tripped before you ever move 5', that you have not lost/used your actions and can therefore change your action.

I do not believe that if you declare a charge, are hit by the AoO and brought to 1 HP, that you MUST now charge into death.

I believe that the delineation is simply: The AoO happens before the provoking action.

I mean, Wizards clearly states that the AoO happens before the triggering action.

Wizards wrote:

Common Misconception #3: Attacks of opportunity happen after the actions that trigger them.

Resolve an attack of opportunity before you resolve the action that triggered it, not after. Sometimes, the attack of opportunity will prevent the triggering action (such as when the attack of opportunity proves lethal to a moving character). If someone tries something that provokes an attack of opportunity, the attack of opportunity happens first. Attacks of opportunity you make in response to a foe's spellcasting or use of a spell-like ability are an exception (see the Making an Attack of Opportunity section), as is moving into a space another creature occupies.

Let's try it from another direction. We are both 10' apart with reach weapons. I declare a charge on someone else, provoking an AoO. You try to disarm me, provoking an AoO. I try to disarm you, provoking an AoO. You try to disarm me, provoking an AoO. I try to disarm you, provoking an AoO. You try to disarm me, provoking an AoO. (At this point we both have 3 AoO's ready to go.) I disarm you, nullifying your ability to disarm me. You have made 0 attacks and I have made 1. Is it your position that we both used 3 AoO's in the round?

More from the Wizards article:

Wizards wrote:
Even if the target survives the attack, the damage you deal might still disrupt the spell or spell-like ability if the target fails a Concentration check. This is one case when an attack of opportunity happens during the action that triggers it rather than before that action.

Again, in most cases (such as trip), the AoO happens BEFORE the triggering action.

But clearly many people disagree with me.

Silver Crusade

The AoO is resolved before the triggering action resolves, not before the triggering action has been started.

In order to charge, you must be taking the 'charge' action.

In order to stand, you must be taking the 'stand up from prone' action.

In order to provoke an AoO, you must be taking the action that provokes.

The AoO is resolved before the provoking action is resolved, meaning 'completed'. Not before it has been started. If the provoking action hasn't been started then there has been no provoking action!


Komoda wrote:


Wizards wrote:

Common Misconception #3: Attacks of opportunity happen after the actions that trigger them.

Resolve an attack of opportunity before you resolve the action that triggered it, not after. Sometimes, the attack of opportunity will prevent the triggering action (such as when the attack of opportunity proves lethal to a moving character). If someone tries something that provokes an attack of opportunity, the attack of opportunity happens first. Attacks of opportunity you make in response to a foe's spellcasting or use of a spell-like ability are an exception (see the Making an Attack of Opportunity section), as is moving into a space another creature occupies.

Yes yes yes. It happens before the triggering action. This does not equate to 'the person who is taking the triggering action can choose to take a completely different action'.

Komoda wrote:


Let's try it from another direction. We are both 10' apart with reach weapons. I declare a charge on someone else, provoking an AoO. You try to disarm me, provoking an AoO. I try to disarm you, provoking an AoO. You try to disarm me, provoking an AoO. I try to disarm you, provoking an AoO. You try to disarm me, provoking an AoO. (At this point we both have 3 AoO's ready to go.) I disarm you, nullifying your ability to disarm me. You have made 0 attacks and I have made 1. Is it your position that we both used 3 AoO's in the round?

Yes. Both of you have used 3 AoO's up. The fact that some of those are no longer valid actions isn't a problem. Conceptually the lost actions/AoO's are no different then if I'd killed you with my AoO, making your AoO's and planned actions no longer valid - they have been foiled.

As to the second quote, unfortunately the more I've read from the wizards resource over the past couple of years, the less valuable I see it. The style of writing takes a rather lazy approach for something trying to clarify the rules. The writer(s) don't seem to have a care for preciseness.

And again though, even with the second quote, there is no implication that when the AoO happens before the triggering action that the triggering action can be altered.

Komoda wrote:


Again, in most cases (such as trip), the AoO happens BEFORE the triggering action.

But clearly many people disagree with me.

I don't think many actually disagree with this. We are disagreeing that this allows for you to change to a completely different action. Readied actions plainly state they happen before the action that triggered it.

The emphasis you are seeing put on resolved is because that is where the emphasis should be to get the correct RAI (and is still a valid RAW reading). The before simply means you should figure out what happens with the AoO/readied action before you figure out what happens with the triggering action. It does not mean everyone in the world is precognitive and knows what those around them are going to do before they start doing it making paradoxes a common occurrence a they no longer do what you precognitively knew they would.


Komoda wrote:
Byakko's logic was simply stated as, "Once you've declared you're doing something, your character has spent the action even if the results don't turn out how they like." In my example, the character declared what he is doing for 6 rounds. Therefore, based on Byakko's statement, that character has spent 6 rounds worth of actions. Why can he change what he is doing based on battlefield conditions when the character that declared a charge cannot?

There's a semantics issue here. I can declare, in linguistic terms, what my character will be doing for the next 5 rounds. That's great, but it has no in game effect. When I declare a move action that draws an AOO, that has a mechanical effect in game. Thus you've done something, even though the AOO hits before you actually do it.

I think your reasoning leads to a paradox: I declare an action, that action draws an AOO, after the AOO is resolved I choose not to carry through with that action and do something else instead, but then the action that drew the AOO never occurs so there can't have been an AOO. AOO happens but nothing provoked it = paradox.

So, I think you're committed to the action that provoked the AOO. Some actions can be stopped in the middle, so you can choose to not carry on with them, but you've still burned the type of action they require:

--Move action to stand up -> take AOO that knocks you down to 1 hp -> choose not to continue standing up and bluff to play dead. You've used up the move action, but you still have a standard action left.

--Declare full attack with a ranged weapon -> draw AOO on first attack -> Choose not to take iteratives = Burned standard action but still have a move action left.

--Declare full attack with a ranged weapon -> draw AOO on first attack -> Make second attack -> Draw another AOO from someone with Combat Reflexes -> Choose not to make third attack = Burned a full round action, only have swift and free actions left.

--Declare a withdraw action, move 5' -> Opponent with Step Up follows -> move the next 5' and take an AOO -> Choose not to move any more = Burned a full round action, only swift and free actions left. Here, you could have simply stopped your movement after the first 5', but it would still have burned a full round action.

--Charge -> Take an AOO before you get to your target but only moved your normal movement or less -> Stop moving = Burned a full round action.

I don't think the fact that an AOO happens before the action that triggered it means you can take the action back and do something else. You committed to the action enough to provoke the AOO that you just drew, you can't change gears without losing what you started.

Taken to your logical conclusion, I could cast a spell, take an AOO, choose not to cast that spell instead of making the concentration check, and then cast another spell without worrying about drawing an AOO. You should not get a mechanical advantage for taking an AOO, clever play might give you a strategic advantage for doing so ("I'm going to move into flank. Oh, you AOO'd me? Now I cast Dismissal,") but you shouldn't gain something without giving up something else.


I hear you all. But I still disagree.

When you fight with two weapons you can declare you are doing so. If you decide not to after the first hit, you can stop and change your action. You count as using a Standard action for the first attack but still have all your other action types left. Why doesn't that declaration use up all your actions?

You should also not get a mechanical advantage simply because of a turn based system.

Akerlof, you are correct about my logical conclusion. That said, I think that will happen much less than the person that has to charge to his death because he cannot change his action after he was hit.

Both sides have a ridiculous "logical conclusion".

But my position is supported buy the original writers and Paizo never changed a single word.

At my table, we simply call BS when someone tries something like that. It is usually pretty clear when someone is trying to "cheat" the system in that manner.

But it isn't like the game doesn't have this problem in other cases, such as the Two-Weapon Fighting with a Two-Handed Weapon and Armor Spikes ruling. By RAW, no questions asked, it is a legal option. By ruling, no questions asked, it is not.

An Attack of Opportunity, IMHO, it the recognition of a slight opening. If it were a super-fast response from the threatening character, it would indicate that all combatants are "faster" on the draw when it is NOT their turn, then when it ACTUALLY is their turn.

It would be precognition to say that the threaten character can see what the provoking character is doing and react to it yet the provoking character would not be able to react to the threaten character's action EVEN AFTER completed.

Think about it, (assume 30' speed) you try to step away from me, but I am so fast (not my turn), I punch you in the face. Now you're so pathetically slow in combat (on your turn) that you have to continue stepping away from me and cannot punch back. Not only that, but if you were thinking about running 120' away, it would take you 3 rounds before you could even try to punch me back. And if I move 5', you would have to wait 4 rounds.

And again, you can't trip lock precisely because the target never starts standing until AFTER the attack, and therefore can't be stopped from standing.

Your version of RESOLVED = only the mechanical process. Which is not supported by the "happens before the action that triggers it" line.

My version of RESOLVED = The AoO happens before the attack that triggered it. Which IS supported by the "happens before the action that triggers it" line.

If an attack happens before I stand up, than I haven't stood up until after the attack. If I am "half way" standing up, the trip would make me be not standing up (prone), and I would have to start standing up again, therefore I would provoke again. In addition, I would have lost/moved my first move action to stand up.

It is not like Skip Williams (the author of the 3.5 post) didn't have a hand in all things rules. He was the official end word on all rules questions for 3.5.

But again, we clearly disagree.

I am sure that one day we will get an official answer, because as Gauss stated, this comes up rather often.


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Komoda wrote:

I hear you all. But I still disagree.

When you fight with two weapons you can declare you are doing so. If you decide not to after the first hit, you can stop and change your action. You count as using a Standard action for the first attack but still have all your other action types left. Why doesn't that declaration use up all your actions?

Because the game rules make a specific exception in that scenario.

Silver Crusade

Taking an 'action in combat', such as 'charge', 'stand up from prone', 'move your speed', and so on, doesn't actually do anything, nor provoke. Taking such an action allows you to do the things covered by that action.

For example, choosing to take the 'move your speed' action doesn't actually move you or provoke. What it does allow you to do is to start moving your mini across the battlemat, a certain number of squares no greater than that allowed by your speed. Once you start moving your mini, then you are actually in the midst of taking your 'move your speed' action. If you try to leave that first square, you are in the midst of that 'move your speed' action already. You are already taking that action; it's too late to change your mind.

You can change your mind as many times as you like before you start taking an action, but once you've tried to move your mini then you are already in the midst of taking that action.

If pressing a button triggers a response which occurs before anything else, then that button was still pressed. You can't pretend you didn't press it.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber

Once you start an action, in most cases the action is committed. Sure, most GMs would allow a PC who is moving to reroute/change path as long as they've got movement left, but that's about it.

The order of your actions also happen in the order you declare them.

Morty Butthurtbad I'm hurt, so I'm going to draw a potion as a move action 'cuz I need healing.
Oscar Opportunist Excellent. I'm going to make an AoO to sunder the bottle.
Morty Butthurtbad Darn. You broke my potion, but since my move action to retrieve an item clearly can't happen because you sundered it before I retrieved it, I instead want to use my move action to retrieve a potion 'cuz I need healing.

Yeah, no.

======

Integrate the original example of an AoO trip interrupting a move with the above example:

Morty Butthurtbad I'm hurt, so I'm going to draw a potion as a move action 'cuz I need healing.
Oscar Opportunist Excellent. I'm going to make an AoO to sunder the bottle.
Morty Butthurtbad Darn. You broke my potion and I think you have Combat Reflexes so... I'm going to use my Swift action to cast a quickened invisibility, then use my move to retrieve a potion (because I never got to, see!), and finally use my Standard to drink it.
Oscar Opportunist Seriously?

Also, yeah, no.


But Malachi, using your example with my view, pressing the button actually makes the move action happen. Hovering over the button lets everyone know what you are doing and provokes the AoO. Then you may not actually press the button.

Thanks for the awesome analogy. I figure I don't sway you, but that is what I believe the RAW and RAI are stating.

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