Can you attack yourself as part of a full attack?


Rules Questions

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Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Okay, I know this is gonna be pretty unorthodox and weird, so bear with me. Is it possible to attack yourself as part of a full attack? I'm working with my blood conduit bloodrager, and I was thinking that an interesting way to throw a quick self-buff on himself during combat would be to hit himself with an unarmed strike with his lowest iterative, and use the Spell Conduit ability to throw a beneficial touch spell on himself at the end of a full attack. Yes, I know, it specifies "an enemy." Ignore that bit for this thread.

I like the visual too - he tears open the skin on his chest as his boiling blood morphs into a wreath of flame around him, or something. Is there anything stopping you from making an attack against yourself in this manner?

Liberty's Edge

Well, like the problem with the spell conduit specifying an enemy, in the language for attacks it states that you can target an opponent. So it's really up to whether you can consider yourself an opponent. Although it's probably written this way because the developers didn't consider attacking yourself or allies as beneficial. Personally I don't see any reason why you shouldn't be able to attack yourself, but there's enough in the rules that if the GM wants to be a stickler, they can disallow it.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

There's a lot of anecdotal evidence that people can attack themselves (a couple of weird mind-control abilities force a self-coup-de-grace attempt, for example). There's no super clear definition of "opponent" or "enemy" in the rules either, and it's not much of a stretch for a person to designate either themself or an ally as an "opponent."

Grand Lodge

Ignoring the part that you told us to ignore.. You're going to get into weird areas elsewhere, too. I can imagine the first time you roll an attack roll and end up missing yourself you'd also have issues with that? How can I miss myself when I'm trying to hit myself? What happens to your dex to AC, are you allowed to ignore it because you're not trying to dodge yourself? Can you automatically hit yourself? If you can automatically hit yourself, why can't you automatically do other stuff?

Liberty's Edge

That's kind of what I was getting at. Your GM could say you're not an opponent of yourself, so it doesn't work. Or they could allow you to do so. And the self attacking spells aren't really a good example. They're usually an attack from an enemy where they take control of your body and use it to attack you, so it's them causing the attack, not you.


I want this to work but i think it is gonna need some GM Fiat to fly.


Don't think it works with spell conduit due to specifying enemy, but I have used a similar tactic with spell storing to give myself in-combat buffs or healing by hitting myself, risky since it applies damage as well but with some builds its really good for action economy.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
The Morphling wrote:
Okay, I know this is gonna be pretty unorthodox and weird, so bear with me. Is it possible to attack yourself as part of a full attack? I'm working with my blood conduit bloodrager, and I was thinking that an interesting way to throw a quick self-buff on himself during combat would be to hit himself with an unarmed strike with his lowest iterative, and use the Spell Conduit ability to throw a beneficial touch spell on himself at the end of a full attack. Yes, I know, it specifies "an enemy." Ignore that bit for this thread.

I've bolded a bit in my quote of your original post. This is probably why I would consider the move a bit cheesy and wouldn't allow it in any games I run. You're basically metagaming the system to turn a lower-percentage attack into an auto-success buff on the sly.


im going to say i think you can, and id say you would auto hit as well. though you would also have to roll out your full damage to yourself as well.

think of it as a lay on hands that can be used as part of an attack action.

Liberty's Edge

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Mr GM, I cast Disintigrate.
What? You are only a first level and a barbarian...
Well, can't we just ignore that part for a moment?
Ah, no.

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies

You are welcome to attack yourself, nothing in the rules prevents it.

If you want to gain the benefit of something that requires you attack "an enemy" or "an opponent", then you can't gain that for attacks made against yourself.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber
James Risner wrote:
If you want to gain the benefit of something that requires you attack "an enemy" or "an opponent", then you can't gain that for attacks made against yourself.

To be fair - and I am playing the devil's advocate here - it's long-established practice that you can determine who is your ally on the fly, and to your own benefit. You could allow a monster through your squares if you wanted, by deciding to treat them as an ally. I think the clarification/FAQ/whatever that eventually spelled this out was regarding the age-old question of "am I my own ally", but I could be wrong on the origin.

If that is the case, then it seems only fitting that you can decide to treat any creature - yourself included - as an enemy as and when it benefits you.

In this case, this may be cheese, but it may actually be flavorful cheese. Maybe.

Dark Archive

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RedDogMT wrote:

Mr GM, I cast Disintigrate.

What? You are only a first level and a barbarian...
Well, can't we just ignore that part for a moment?
Ah, no.

Player: GM, I cast POWER WORD KILL on the kobold.

GM: ...You're a first level barbarian?
P: Yeah, see, I hit him in the face with my greatsword, and he dies. So, Power Word Kill.


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Seranov wrote:


Player: GM, I cast POWER WORD KILL on the kobold.
GM: ...You're a first level barbarian?
P: Yeah, see, I hit him in the face with my greatsword, and he dies. So, Power Word Kill.

I named my falchion Power Word, and I like to talk to it.

"Power Word, kill!"

As for the OP, I say sure, you can attack yourself.

Liberty's Edge

To be honest if you were at my table I would allow it but with the exceptionyou have to forgo your highest bab for an auto hit and then allow the buff... Of course after you dealt the damage first


RAW, you can.

RAI, you can't with the methods you're trying to pull, as subbing out attacks to yourself for an effect that requires an opponent will fail.

That being said, I would personally allow it if you actually decided to stab yourself to deliver the effect, similar to how 3.X's Blade of Blood spell dealt damage to the caster to create a greater effect.


If there's another BloodRager in the group, you could both attack each other as AoO. Who would miss the chance to attack a friend?


Kchaka wrote:
If there's another BloodRager in the group, you could both attack each other as AoO. Who would miss the chance to attack a friend?

Sure, but they're still not valid targets for the action in question, so the ability still fails.

That being said, friends punch each other all the time, so why not?


The word "enemy" isn't really a mechanical term.

What if the party is Evil, and hates each other as much as anyone else? What if you catch your Rogue ally stealing from your teacher/mentor?

I guess it probably does imply it can't be yourself, but other party members aren't clearly excluded.


James Risner wrote:

You are welcome to attack yourself, nothing in the rules prevents it.

If you want to gain the benefit of something that requires you attack "an enemy" or "an opponent", then you can't gain that for attacks made against yourself.

Bingo! As the americans would say.


Samasboy1 wrote:

The word "enemy" isn't really a mechanical term.

What if the party is Evil, and hates each other as much as anyone else? What if you catch your Rogue ally stealing from your teacher/mentor?

I guess it probably does imply it can't be yourself, but other party members aren't clearly excluded.

If you want to cut him down in this fight, he is an enemy. Otherwise he might be an a**hole you want to backstab tomorrow, but "Not Today!".

And now it gets into really legalistic nitpickings of the finest creamed cheese sort. Your fellow PCs and you yourself are not enemys outside of the strangest, pulled hither on its hair, situations. Can only directly thing of [Mind Control] and [Evil Party inter-party-conflict has gone hot and at the end one PC will be "looted"].


The Morphling wrote:
I was thinking that an interesting way to throw a quick self-buff on himself during combat would be to hit himself with an unarmed strike with his lowest iterative, and use the Spell Conduit ability to throw a beneficial touch spell on himself at the end of a full attack.

Nope not legal.

From the combat chapter page 187 of hte core rule book.

Quote:
If you get multiple attacks because your base attack bonus is high enough, you must make the attacks in order from highest bonus to lowest.

Now you may be able to debate you can use your BEST attack to buff yourself that way, or use your last attack AFTER you have attacked to buff yourself. But you can not use your worst attack before your better attacks so the buff will be open for the good attacks of your first round.


If I'm holding the charge on a Cure Critical Wounds spell and I try to hit an undead with it as part of a full attack and miss, can I use my final attack to heal myself instead?


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Ughbash wrote:
Now you may be able to debate you can use your BEST attack to buff yourself that way, or use your last attack AFTER you have attacked to buff yourself. But you can not use your worst attack before your better attacks so the buff will be open for the good attacks of your first round.

You realize he DID say at the end of the Full Attack, right? You even quoted it.


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"Guru-Meditation wrote:

And now it gets into really legalistic nitpickings of the finest creamed cheese sort. Your fellow PCs and you yourself are not enemys outside of the strangest, pulled hither on its hair, situations. Can only directly thing of [Mind Control] and [Evil Party inter-party-conflict has gone hot and at the end one PC will be "looted"].

You can keep the sanctimonious attitude.

Your enemy is who you say it is, and changes when you say it does. Cause the word is entirely dependent on your subjective point of view.

Liberty's Edge

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"Enemy", "Opponent", "Foe", "Ally", etc are all relative terms that your character can decide at any time, and switch definitions from one ability to the next. Typically, however, you are always considered your own ally, and that is mutually exclusive with opponent/enemy/foe/etc, so I can easily see the argument that you can never be your own foe.

However! It would be totally RAW to punch your fellow party member in the face by declaring them an "enemy" for that attack. If they were in on the shtick they could possible even allow themselves to be flat-footed against it to make it easier, but you still have to make the attack roll and you'll still deal damage (potentially with power attack, and other, bonuses!), though I assume you'd choose to deal nonlethal. Pair this with a mummification alchemist friend and you have a good thing going.

And all that said, I would actually look at the impact before judging this too harshly. First of all, you're a bloodrager. Who's to say you aren't a little self-destructive? Secondly, you still have to hit your own (at least flat-footed) AC with the attack, sacrifice an attack against the enemy, take nonlethal damage that gains the bonus from your power attack (and rage and...), *and* spend your swift action. With that many steps between you and a low-level buff, I'd say go for it. I'm not even sure the math works out in this option's favor.


Samasboy1 wrote:
Ughbash wrote:
Now you may be able to debate you can use your BEST attack to buff yourself that way, or use your last attack AFTER you have attacked to buff yourself. But you can not use your worst attack before your better attacks so the buff will be open for the good attacks of your first round.
You realize he DID say at the end of the Full Attack, right? You even quoted it.

Honestly, I misread it.

I thought he wanted to use the lowest iterative first.


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Don't you guys remember. "You are your own worst enemy!" so of course you can attack yourself as an enemy.


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Being able to attack yourself would make for some pretty amusing shenanigans with a few teamwork feat combinations. It would be like the masochist's version of the old Bag of Puppies Whirl-cleave trick.


Yes, you can totally attack yourself or your friends if you choose to, anybody who disagrees with that is just nuts or a PFS Cultist.

But I see two main problems here, the lack of mechanics to specifically attack yourself and the use of a "sure hit" attack to activate a spell that would normaly require a successful attack againt a activelly defending enemy.

If you really wanted to attack yourself, surelly you would negate all your Dex bonus to AC (effectivelly DEX 0, -5 to AC) and would be helpless to yourself (-4 to AC). If you are wearing armor, that should certantly be in your way, but since you also know where are the joints of your own armor, maybe you could avoid the armor AC if you use a short, thin, piercing or slasing weapon, and you're not picky of where you are hitting (don't go for the eye). Natural Armor must be harder to get though, even if it has weak spots, your armor was probably designed to protect those weak spots, so it's less likelly that they will be close to the joints, but then again you only need one universal weak spot. It's hard to say how magical effects, like from a ring of protections, would deal with you attacking yourself. If the item is not intelligent, I would say it would protect you even from yourself.

The truth is , none of the above matters, because if you are attacking yourself it's a good sign that something is probably wrong.

The Blood Conduit ability, much like a Spell Storing weapon, it's designed to award you with the free casting of a Spell (action-economy wise) in case you succeed on attacking a real enemy (a defending one).

Instead of doing something cheesy like attacking yourself, I think it would be better to say the ability allows you to cast a spell on yourself if you successfuly hit a real enemy. If you think that's more power for the ability, maybe you could say that casting a spell on yourself in this manner limits you to spells one level lower than the maximum spell level you can cast.

As far as the rules go, this is well within the way they work. If you are not bound by PFS, then you can fix the rules for your game.


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No DM/GM fiat at all, and no rule that says you can't attack yourself. In fact, logistically, unless you have some palsied problem, hitting yourself would be a free action by reality and RAW. Nothing anywhere stops you from putting your hands on yourself(unless you don't have hands lol). Not even an attack roll as you can't "miss" yourself. So yes, you can attack yourself. Nail in the coffin. Gives new meaning to touching yourself. lol.


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Meiliken wrote:
In fact, logistically, unless you have some palsied problem, hitting yourself would be a free action by reality and RAW.

Not true - touching yourself with a touch spell is normally a standard action.


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Matthew Downie wrote:
Meiliken wrote:
In fact, logistically, unless you have some palsied problem, hitting yourself would be a free action by reality and RAW.
Not true - touching yourself with a touch spell is normally a standard action.

Touching someone (anyone, yourself, an ally, an enemy) in the round you cast a spell is part of casting the spell.


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Ignoring the part of the ability that you shouldn't ignore, it works.

Keeping in mind that under virtually no circumstances can you count as your own enemy it would make absolutely no sense. This an obviously cheesy attempt, and if I were your GM this sort of attempt to bend the rules would make me watch you very closely for compliance with the spirit of the rules.


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Samasboy1 wrote:
"Guru-Meditation wrote:

And now it gets into really legalistic nitpickings of the finest creamed cheese sort. Your fellow PCs and you yourself are not enemys outside of the strangest, pulled hither on its hair, situations. Can only directly thing of [Mind Control] and [Evil Party inter-party-conflict has gone hot and at the end one PC will be "looted"].

You can keep the sanctimonious attitude.

Your enemy is who you say it is, and changes when you say it does. Cause the word is entirely dependent on your subjective point of view.

If it smells like munchkinism to me, i tell it like i see it. In clear and direct words.

Anyway, back to topic. If you could switch the "Enemy" and "Ally" definitions around in-combat as a free action at-will, they loose all meaning. There are many spells and effects that do not target simplpy "a creature" or "several creatures", but say explicitly that they only effect enemys or allies. If your theory would be true, these distinctions would be superfluous. But the distinctions exist, thus there must be a reason why they were written into D&D 3.x & thus Pathfinder.

Who is an enemy and who is an ally can switch during an encounter, but the way that the OP intends to (ab-)use this possibility of change to get around an existing restriction simply seems like munchkinism to me.

Would the Spell Conduit ability not explicitly talk of Opponents and Enemys, but of creatures, i would have gratulated the OP for a clever use of this ability that is not directly obvious. But this restriction is in there.

P.S. - independent of all the above:
Imho if you should want to hit yourself in combat it should be treated like an attack against a helpless creature, as both make no move to defend themself.


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Guru-Meditation wrote:

]

If it smells like munchkinism to me, i tell it like i see it. In clear and direct words.

Opinions are like bodily orifices, and mean nothing in a rules discussion.

Quote:


Anyway, back to topic. If you could switch the "Enemy" and "Ally" definitions around in-combat as a free action at-will, they loose all meaning. There are many spells and effects that do not target simplpy "a creature" or "several creatures", but say explicitly that they only effect enemys or allies. If your theory would be true, these distinctions would be superfluous. But the distinctions exist, thus there must be a reason why they were written into D&D 3.x & thus Pathfinder.
.

I didn't say there's no distinction between enemies and allies. Just that the determination is determined by the character/player.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The reason I don't have a problem with declaring myself an "enemy" is that I tend to think of things as a physical action, rather than a philosophical one. My character is capable of channeling a touch spell through his fist - does it matter, on a physical level, who that fist strikes? If I punch an ally who is disguised as an enemy with magic, does my shocking grasp refuse to trigger, since this is actually NOT an enemy after all?

Obviously, I realize the implication that this ability is clearly intended for use as a weapon, rather than to aid. It just seems like an unconventional but clever use of your ability to deliver your touch-range magic to someone friendly (or yourself). The "enemy" restriction is a technicality, and references a term that the rules don't define in any way (enemy/opponent).

It's an interesting debate, minus the trolls who are only here to insult others' interpretations of the game.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

That argument, that the enemy restriction "is a technicality" would also throw up a red flag for me. You're basically trying to rules lawyer a way to get this to work by interpreting away a restriction as irrelevant.

What it comes down to is wanting to find a way to buff yourself as a swift action with an attack that's likely to be a waste anyway thus gaining at least one attack with a reasonable chance of success and a buff that would otherwise take 2 rounds to accomplish. And that's when the power is intended to apply an offensive touch spell to an otherwise low- or no-damage attack. I just don't see that as an appropriate trade-off.


Bill Dunn wrote:
What it comes down to is wanting to find a way to buff yourself as a swift action with an attack that's likely to be a waste anyway thus gaining at least one attack with a reasonable chance of success and a buff that would otherwise take 2 rounds to accomplish.

Huh?

You use an attack that is less likely to hit.....sure.

to apply a buff to yourself or an adjacent ally....okay.

But where is the extra attack coming from?

And why would the buff take two rounds otherwise?


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

It's in the action economy. Presumably most of his buff spells would be a standard action - something not compatible with making attacks in the same round because that would also require either a standard action or a full action. So, if his thought is to use his lower bonus iterative attack to hit himself, he's already used his higher bonus one to attack (that's the attack with a reasonable chance of hitting), then he'd get his buff as a swift action in combo with the lower-bonus attack that he's effectively eating but would probably miss with anyway. One round to accomplish what he would normally be doing in two - attacking with a reasonable bonus and getting a buff.


Okay....

Scenario A
Attack One (probably hits) enemy also affected by offensive spell
Attack Two (less likely)
Attack Three (probably misses)

Enemy hit once or twice, affected by free spell.
Casting the offensive spell and attacking would normally take two rounds.

Scenario B
Attack One (probably hits)
Attack Two (less likely)
Attack Three (probably misses an enemy, but used to punch your buddy) buddy affected by buff

Enemy hit once or twice. Buddy affected by free spell.
Casting the buff and attacking would normally take two rounds.

I am not seeing the benefit in action economy....
Both times the enemy was hit once or twice, and a free spell was cast.

It also depends on some things.

When you punch your buddy, do you have to roll to hit (since it is explicitly an Unarmed Strike)? Probably. So if you use it on the lowest iterative, you could miss your buddy and not buff him.

Can you hit yourself? I conceded earlier I doubt "enemy" or "opponent" can really include yourself, but you should be free to consider anyone else an "enemy" or "opponent," if just temporarily, because it is an entirely subjective (to you) value.

Say you can hit yourself. Is the attack an auto hit. Sure, why not, its pretty easy to hit yourself.

Even then, when everything is ruled in your favor, the scenario would be

Attack One (probably hits)
Attack Two (less likely)
Attack Three (auto hit self buff)

Enemy hit once or twice, you are affected by free spell.

No advantage in action economy. There is an increase in flexibility, which is valuable.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

no


No.

If it says enemy, opponent or similar... then JUST NO.

You can NOT take a 'non action' to decide you hate yourself and attack yourself...

NO NO NO.

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies

Bandw2 wrote:
no

+1

You are never your enemy or opponent.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Tough luck for the Sadomasochist.


If you declare yourself the enemy, you should immediately be under the control of the GM.

Therefor, lose control of character.

There is a reason this kind of test exists in the game.

You found it.


Sometimes, you're your own worst enemy.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

The enemy of my enemy is my ally.

If I become my own enemy, do those who are also my enemy, become allies?

Can one be both an enemy, and an ally?

Can you choose to be your own enemy, then decide you are no longer your own enemy?

Can you choose an ally, to be your enemy?

How does one become incapable of choosing who they can attack?

Is magic compulsion?

Is it an inner sense of self-preservation, that cannot be overcome?

Do the gods alter reality to make it impossible?

How is one able to commit suicide in such a world?

Is the dishonored Samurai forced to suffer more dishonor, as he is incapable of Seppuku?


I take back what I said.

You absolutely can damage yourself as part of your full attack.

If you declare yourself an enemy at that point in an attempt to take advantage of a buff...

THEN you become an NPC.

By all means, attack yourself. Apply the buff, and hand your character sheet to the GM.

No GM should stop you.

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