Improved Damage, Improved Natural Attack, and size increases


Rules Questions


3 people marked this as FAQ candidate.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

How does the Improved Damage eidolon evolution from Pathfinder Unchained interact with the Improved Natural Attack Feat and the recent FAQs on size increases to damage?

Improved Damage:

Improved Damage (Ex): One of the eidolon’s natural
attacks is particularly deadly. Select one natural attack form
and increase the damage die by one step. This evolution
can be selected more than once. Its effects do not stack.
Each time the eidolon selects this evolution, it applies to
a different natural attack.

Improved Natural Attack:

Improved Natural Attack
Attacks made by one of this creature's natural attacks leave vicious wounds.

Prerequisite: Natural weapon, base attack bonus +4.
Benefit: Choose one of the creature's natural attack forms (not an unarmed strike). The damage for this natural attack increases by one step on the following list, as if the creature's size had increased by one category. Damage dice increase as follows: 1d2, 1d3, 1d4, 1d6, 1d8, 2d6, 3d6, 4d6, 6d6, 8d6, 12d6.
A weapon or attack that deals 1d10 points of damage increases as follows: 1d10, 2d8, 3d8, 4d8, 6d8, 8d8, 12d8.
Special: This feat can be taken multiple times. Each time it is taken, it applies to a different natural attack.

FAQ:
Size increases and effective size increases: How does damage work if I have various effects that change my actual size, my effective size, and my damage dice?

As per the rules on size changes, size changes do not stack, so if you have multiple size changing effects (for instance an effect that increases your size by one step and another that increases your size by two steps), only the largest applies. The same is true of effective size increases (which includes “deal damage as if they were one size category larger than they actually are,” “your damage die type increases by one step,” and similar language). They don’t stack with each other, just take the biggest one. However, you can have one of each and they do work together (for example, enlarge person increasing your actual size to Large and a bashing shield increasing your shield’s effective size by two steps, for a total of 2d6 damage).

I'm thinking that my large eidolon would have a 1d8 bite attack normally, 2d6 with Improved Natural attack, and 2d8 with Improved Damage. I wanted to make certain though.

(And I know this has been brought up many times before, but I am so far unaware of the answer, or how the recent FAQ might effect it.)

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Those both don't appear to be effective size increases.

That second part of the FAQ, makes things difficult.

Do Monks no longer benefit from Lead Blades?

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies, Representative - D20 Hobbies

blackbloodtroll wrote:
Do Monks no longer benefit from Lead Blades?

Whether they worked at all would be table variance because of the "you are carrying" phrase. You don't carry Unarmed Strikes in many people's minds.

Liberty's Edge

Looks like they stack to me, given the language. The improved damage bit doesn't seem to have any sort of descriptor saying it has anything to do with size.

Scarab Sages

blackbloodtroll wrote:

Those both don't appear to be effective size increases.

That second part of the FAQ, makes things difficult.

Do Monks no longer benefit from Lead Blades?

I don't see anywhere where the monk unarmed damage increases say anything about effective size changes. The only place where it mentions size is about small or large monks.

Monk's Unarmed Strike Ability wrote:

Unarmed Strike: At 1st level, a monk gains Improved Unarmed Strike as a bonus feat. A monk's attacks may be with fist, elbows, knees, and feet. This means that a monk may make unarmed strikes with his hands full. There is no such thing as an off-hand attack for a monk striking unarmed. A monk may thus apply his full Strength bonus on damage rolls for all his unarmed strikes.

Usually a monk's unarmed strikes deal lethal damage, but he can choose to deal nonlethal damage instead with no penalty on his attack roll. He has the same choice to deal lethal or nonlethal damage while grappling.

A monk's unarmed strike is treated as both a manufactured weapon and a natural weapon for the purpose of spells and effects that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons.

A monk also deals more damage with his unarmed strikes than a normal person would, as shown above on Table: Monk. The unarmed damage values listed on Table: Monk is for Medium monks. A Small monk deals less damage than the amount given there with his unarmed attacks, while a Large monk deals more damage; see Small or Large Monk Unarmed Damage on the table given below.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

The FAQ implies that it effects all increases in damage dice, and not just effective size increases.

Reading it this way, anything that increases base weapon damage, is an effective size increase, in regards to stacking.

This is part of the FAQ that makes things difficult.

Scarab Sages

blackbloodtroll wrote:

The FAQ implies that it effects all increases in damage dice, and not just effective size increases.

Reading it this way, anything that increases base weapon damage, is an effective size increase, in regards to stacking.

This is part of the FAQ that makes things difficult.

While the unarmed strike follows the progression, it's not a size change or does it have any language about increasing a step, you just read it off the table like will saves or spells/day. I don't see any reason to read the FAQ so broadly that it includes the Monk's unarmed strike damage. I mean It's the most common progression, so you think they would have mentioned it by name.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I am saying, it could be, read that way.

I did mean to imply, that was my personal opinion.

The FAQ solves some problems, but create other possible problems.

Scarab Sages

blackbloodtroll wrote:

I am saying, it could be, read that way.

I did mean to imply, that was my personal opinion.

The FAQ solves some problems, but create other possible problems.

Didn't mean to imply you personally read it that way, just saying it's a bit of a reach. I always get the feeling you're one of the more pro-PC pro-martial interpreters out there (compared to a lot of people on these boards).

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Anything that creates a rift between Player, and DM, is anti-Player, and anti-DM.

Anything that creates table variation in PFS, is anti-PFS, and as such, anti-Paizo.

I am against such things.

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies, Representative - D20 Hobbies

blackbloodtroll wrote:

Anything that creates a rift between Player, and DM, is anti-Player, and anti-DM.

Anything that creates table variation in PFS, is anti-PFS, and as such, anti-Paizo.

I am against such things.

+1

Grand Lodge

FAQ- The same is true of effective size increases (which includes “deal damage as if they were one size category larger than they actually are,” “your damage die type increases by one step,” and similar language). They don’t stack with each other, just take the biggest one.

Feat- as if the creature's size had increased by one category

Evolution- increase the damage die by one step

The feat and the evolution do not stack with each other. They could stack with an actual increase in size, however.

Grand Lodge

If Improved Damage is not "similar language" then what is it? Imo the FAQ is quite clear in that your example doesn't work.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Except the Improved Damage evolution doesn't appear to be a size increase or even an effective size increase. It appears you actually change the die type to the next higher die type.

That means you use the following progression:
d4 > d6 > d8 > d10 > d12 > d20

It appears to be a distinctly separate rule from what we see on the damage size tables.

Grand Lodge

Ravingdork wrote:

Except the Improved Damage evolution doesn't appear to be a size increase or even an effective size increase. It appears you actually change the die type to the next higher die type.

That means you use the following progression:
d4 > d6 > d8 > d10 > d12 > d20

It appears to be a distinctly separate rule from what we see on the damage size tables.

But the FAQ specifically calls out the language used by the evolution and includes that language in defining what can and cannot stack. The evolution uses language that places it into a category that cannot stack with the language used by the feat.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Please show me this language you speak of in the Improved Damage evolution, I'm just not seeing it.

Grand Lodge

What makes you think that "increase the damage die by one step" increase a 1d10 attack a 1d12 and not to 2d8 like every other damage die increase in the game?

Grand Lodge

Ravingdork wrote:
Please show me this language you speak of in the Improved Damage evolution, I'm just not seeing it.

The Improved damage evolution includes this line "Select one natural attack form and increase the damage die type by one step."

the key part is "increase the damage die type by one step."

The FAQ says- The same is true of effective size increases (which includes “deal damage as if they were one size category larger than they actually are,” “your damage die type increases by one step,” and similar language). They don’t stack with each other, just take the biggest one.

"your damage die type increases by one step" is similar to "increase the damage die type by one step." which means Improved Damage Evolution is counted as an effective size increase. The feat Improved Nature Attack is also an effective size increase. They do not stack with each other but could stack with one actual size increase.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
claudekennilol wrote:
What makes you think that "increase the damage die by one step" increase a 1d10 attack a 1d12 and not to 2d8 like every other damage die increase in the game?

The summoner's Improved Damage entry says "your damage die type increases by one step"

The only die TYPES in the game are the d4, d6, d8, d10 (and d%), d12, and d20.

EDIT: Looking at it again, they changed the verbiage of the eidolon's Improved Damage evolution in Unchained, removing exactly one word.

Improved Damage (Ex): One of the eidolon's natural attacks is particularly deadly. Select one natural attack form and increase the damage die type by one step. This evolution can be selected more than once. Its effects do not stack. Each time an eidolon selects this evolution, it applies to a different natural attack.

And now the FAQ entry for completeness' sake...

Size increases and effective size increases: How does damage work if I have various effects that change my actual size, my effective size, and my damage dice?
As per the rules on size changes, size changes do not stack, so if you have multiple size changing effects (for instance an effect that increases your size by one step and another that increases your size by two steps), only the largest applies. The same is true of effective size increases (which includes “deal damage as if they were one size category larger than they actually are,” “your damage die type increases by one step,” and similar language). They don’t stack with each other, just take the biggest one. However, you can have one of each and they do work together (for example, enlarge person increasing your actual size to Large and a bashing shield increasing your shield’s effective size by two steps, for a total of 2d6 damage).

So yeah, they totally nerfed the eidolon BIG time.

Grand Lodge

Ravingdork wrote:
The only die TYPES in the game are the d4, d6, d8, d10 (and d%), d12, and d20.

but if you deal 1d8 with your regular attack and you increase in size you now deal 2d6 damage with your attack, not 1d10.

I think this is a confusion on the definition of die type. In this case the d# you listed are not the only types that we use to determine damage. 2d6 is a different type from 1d6 in this case.

Eidolon definitely got nerfed, but I'm guessing they'll still be strong. I haven't gotten to look at Unchained yet though. I look forward to rebuilding my summoner using Unchained rules and compare the eidolons to each other.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Die type refers to what kind of dice you roll:
d4, d6, d8, d10 (or d%), d12, or d20.

However, when it refers to "damage" using words like "as if they were one size category larger" than you are totally correct; you are supposed to reference the damage by size tables.

Scarab Sages

Ravingdork wrote:
claudekennilol wrote:
What makes you think that "increase the damage die by one step" increase a 1d10 attack a 1d12 and not to 2d8 like every other damage die increase in the game?

The summoner's Improved Damage entry says "your damage die type increases by one step"

The only die TYPES in the game are the d4, d6, d8, d10 (and d%), d12, and d20.

....

And now the FAQ entry for completeness' sake...

Size increases and effective size increases: How does damage work if I have various effects that change my actual size, my effective size, and my damage dice?
As per the rules on size changes, size changes do not stack, so if you have multiple size changing effects (for instance an effect that increases your size by one step and another that increases your size by two steps), only the largest applies. The same is true of effective size increases (which includes “deal damage as if they were one size category larger than they actually are,” “your damage die type increases by one step,” and similar language). They don’t stack with each other, just take the biggest one. However, you can have one of each and they do work together (for example, enlarge person increasing your actual size to Large and a bashing shield increasing your shield’s effective size by two steps, for a total of 2d6 damage).

So yeah, they totally nerfed the eidolon BIG time.

......

Die type refers to what kind of dice you roll:
d4, d6, d8, d10 (or d%), d12, or d20.

However, when it refers to "damage" using words like "as if they were one size category larger" than you are totally correct; you are supposed to reference the damage by size tables.

I would like to point out that the faq uses the term "damage die type", not straight damage dice. your own quote proves you wrong.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The FAQ can't change the english language. They seriously need to revise its wording.


I think Raving has a point, in the evolution, there is no reference to size increases:

Spoiler:
Improved Damage (Ex): One of the eidolon's natural attacks is particularly deadly. Select one natural attack form and increase the damage die type by one step. This evolution can be selected more than once. Its effects do not stack. Each time an eidolon selects this evolution, it applies to a different natural attack.

It just says "deadlier". Not much different, imo, than a longsword is deadlier than a shortsword.

Scarab Sages

Ravingdork wrote:
The FAQ can't change the english language. They seriously need to revise its wording.

So, shown the the pedantic word game you use to interpret that the FAQ does not apply in this case is undermined by the FAQ's word choice, you now say the FAQ is wrong? Tell me of great master, by what means do you determine which FAQs dont actually mean what they say?

Quintain wrote:

I think Raving has a point, in the evolution, there is no reference to size increases:

** spoiler omitted **

It just says "deadlier". Not much different, imo, than a longsword is deadlier than a shortsword.

Except it deos say more then just deadlier. Again, the FAQ.
FAQ wrote:
The same is true of effective size increases (which includes “deal damage as if they were one size category larger than they actually are,” “your damage die type increases by one step,” and similar language)
Which references very wording used by the evolution
Improved Damage wrote:
Select one natural attack form and increase the damage die type by one step.

as an example of an effective size increase. How much clearer could you get?


Because damage dice increasing doesn't necessarily have to be related to physical size increase or virtual size increases. It could easily be related to say a materials change, or sharpness or any other number of different factors that vary the damage dice of a weapon.

Unless the FAQ was not nerfing just damage dice increases via size or effective size, but all damage dice changes in general.

Which needs to be spelled out, as there is no way to divine intent from the text which seems to say something is a effective size increase regardless of any reference to size at all (such as Improved Damage evolution).

They need to be clearer.

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies, Representative - D20 Hobbies

Quintain wrote:
They need to be clearer.

I believe they are clear enough, but I appreciate you do not.

They do say "effective size increases" which means the size didn't increase but the damage die did. At least to me it does. This language covers things like this evolution die increase.

It seems we are back to table variance.

Scarab Sages

Quintain wrote:

Because damage dice increasing doesn't necessarily have to be related to physical size increase or virtual size increases. It could easily be related to say a materials change, or sharpness or any other number of different factors that vary the damage dice of a weapon.

Unless the FAQ was not nerfing just damage dice increases via size or effective size, but all damage dice changes in general.

Which needs to be spelled out, as there is no way to divine intent from the text which seems to say something is a effective size increase regardless of any reference to size at all (such as Improved Damage evolution).

They need to be clearer.

Allow me to quote the text again.

FAQ wrote:
The same is true of effective size increases (which includes “deal damage as if they were one size category larger than they actually are,” “your damage die type increases by one step,” and similar language).

No 'divining' necessary. Any similar language to increase damage dice is an 'effective' size increase. Note the word 'effective'. Meaning, its not necessarily a size increase, just that it functions like one.

Shield spikes are an excellent example of this design philosophy prior to the FAQ. The spikes didn't increase the size of the shield, but rather added peircing to focus the impact (kinda like increasing sharpness, to quote your own comment), and so changed the effective size. The intent, as explained by the FAQ, is that all 'step up the damage die' (or step up the damage die type) language is intended to be the same type of effect, and do not stack with each other.

Note areas this will not apply, like monks. Monks get a table, that while mostly following the Damage increase FAQ table does not increase like size increases (only upping at half the rate), and does not have any language similar to that in the FAQ. Neither do brawlers. Meaning these are not effective size increases and will not interfere with other effective size increases (if there are any that can apply)


Ok, tell me how someone using the english language will be able to communicate that the damage die for the weapon increases by one step without using those words and not covering the "language" you quoted above.

Go.

Ok, now that that useless effort is over, perhaps they should simply say any and all increases to the weapons die type is covered by this rule and leave out any references to size to avoid confusion.

Maybe?

Could be clearer.

Quote:


They do say "effective size increases" which means the size didn't increase but the damage die did. At least to me it does. This language covers things like this evolution die increase.

I agree...but if that does, why the superfluous reference to increases in size? Why not just use all increases or decreases to die type of the weapon and leave it at that?

Scarab Sages

Quintain wrote:

Ok, tell me how someone using the english language will be able to communicate that the damage die for the weapon increases by one step without using those words and not covering the "language" you quoted above.

Go.

Ok, now that that useless effort is over, perhaps they should simply say any and all increases to the weapons die type is covered by this rule and leave out any references to size to avoid confusion.

Maybe?

Could be clearer.

Quote:


They do say "effective size increases" which means the size didn't increase but the damage die did. At least to me it does. This language covers things like this evolution die increase.
I agree...but if that does, why the superfluous reference to increases in size? Why not just use all increases or decreases to die type of the weapon and leave it at that?

You are right that I do not see a way that all damage die increase by one step language wpuldn't be covered. Likely the language was maintained because most such language refrences size. and not all damage increases function by step, sometimes they function by table. but if they said ALL, it would apply to things like the monks damage, which it certainly should not.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

So I take it the Improved Damage evolution and the Improved Natural Attack feat don't stack then?

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies, Representative - D20 Hobbies

Ravingdork, that is my belief. There are others that believe they still stack.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Any idea how this faq plays in to the Rageshaper's (Bloodrager archetype) Bestial Aspect ability? Since it increase the damage by one die and not a die type or die size?

Bestial Aspect (Su):

At 4th level, whenever a rageshaper gains a natural attack through the use of a polymorph spell, he can increase the damage done by that attack by one die. If the spell grants multiple natural attacks, the rageshaper must choose one kind of natural attack for the ability to enhance. At 9th level, if the rageshaper's altered form grants him a new mode of movement, that movement's base speed increases by 10 feet. This is an enhancement bonus. If the rageshaper's bloodrage powers already grant natural attacks or alternate modes of movement, then the bonuses granted by bestial aspect also apply to these bloodrage powers.

This ability replaces blood sanctuary.


Decorpsed wrote:

Any idea how this faq plays in to the Rageshaper's (Bloodrager archetype) Bestial Aspect ability? Since it increase the damage by one die and not a die type or die size?

Bestial Aspect (Su):

At 4th level, whenever a rageshaper gains a natural attack through the use of a polymorph spell, he can increase the damage done by that attack by one die. If the spell grants multiple natural attacks, the rageshaper must choose one kind of natural attack for the ability to enhance. At 9th level, if the rageshaper's altered form grants him a new mode of movement, that movement's base speed increases by 10 feet. This is an enhancement bonus. If the rageshaper's bloodrage powers already grant natural attacks or alternate modes of movement, then the bonuses granted by bestial aspect also apply to these bloodrage powers.

This ability replaces blood sanctuary.

Its a poorly worded ability from a poorly edited book, but most likely it is just an effective size increase like all others.

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