# Mounted combat and attacks of opportunity

### Rules Questions

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

If a mount with rider moves through a threatened square, who exactly provokes the attack of opportunity? The mount? The Rider? Both? In other words, if a mounted attacker rides up to a target armed with a reach weapon and Combat Reflexes, can the target make attacks of opportunities against both the rider and the mount before the rider can attack? It would seem weird somehow, because the movement of both mount and rides is simultanous.

raw i would say only the Mount provokes.

Combat -> Attacks of Opportunity wrote:

Two kinds of Actions can provoke attacks of opportunity: moving out of a threatened square and performing certain actions within a threatened square.

Moving: Moving out of a threatened square usually provokes attacks of opportunity from threatening opponents. There are two common methods of avoiding such an attack—the 5-foot step and the withdraw action.

so weather or not you provoke an AAO is decided by the fact if you did take a move Action. the first sentence tells us provoking the AOO requires an Action.

in mounted combat we learn:

Combat -> mounted combat wrote:

Your mount acts on your initiative count as you direct it. You move at its speed, but the mount uses its action to move.

so the rider does not provoke an AOO. yes he did move out of a threatened square, but he didnt take a move Action, wich is a condition to provoke the AOO.

This is RAW, however it should be considered that the mounted combat is pretty poorly ruled.

Personally i feel, there should be 1 AOO and you can decide if you want to attack the rider or the Mount.

to your specific example:

i dont think there is an AOO at all. I try to "paint the example".
the guy with reach weapon is "O". 1 square.
the mounted rider is "RR". 2x1 squars, if he rides a horse.
threatened square is "T".
other Sqares is "X"

your Situation is (from the side):

OXTXXXXXXRR

now the rider attacks:

ORRXXXX

the rider is in contact but did not yet leave the threatened square, because he is 1x2 squares large. So he doesnt provoke, because he did only enter, not leave a threatened square.

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Quote:
... the rider is in contact but did not yet leave the threatened square, because he is 1x2 squares large. So he doesnt provoke, because he did only enter, not leave a threatened square.

Hm, this is an interesting way to look at it.

i think that is pretty clear. thats why you use readied Actions vs charging Mounts.

only moving out provokes, there is no exception for creatures with a size > 1 square. so they dont provoke it a part of them leaves a threatened square.

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Anyway, the same situation occurs if the rider passes by someone else with Combat Reflexes. One attack of opportunity, or two?

I have always treated it as both provoke.

The thing that provokes is moving out of a threatened square?

Did the rider move out of a threatened square? Yes. Did he spend a move action to do so? Doesn't matter.

That's why actions like reposition explicitly tell you that the movement doesn't provoke, because otherwise it would.

Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber
Baumfluch wrote:

i think that is pretty clear. thats why you use readied Actions vs charging Mounts.

only moving out provokes, there is no exception for creatures with a size > 1 square. so they dont provoke it a part of them leaves a threatened square.

I would interpret this exactly opposite. There is no provision, so even if only part of them leaves a threatened square, they provoke.

It's equivalent to leaving a threatened square to enter another threatened square. Leaving the threatened area isn't what provokes. Leaving a single threatened square is what provokes.

Claxon wrote:

I have always treated it as both provoke.

The thing that provokes is moving out of a threatened square?

Did the rider move out of a threatened square? Yes. Did he spend a move action to do so? Doesn't matter.

That's why actions like reposition explicitly tell you that the movement doesn't provoke, because otherwise it would.

This is also how I've always seen it. Getting bull rushed explicitly tells you you don't provoke. Otherwise you would, even though you aren't in control of leaving the threatened area.

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

But if the rider passes you by, you basically have to make both attacks of opportunity at the same time. making one after the other feels off.

Claxon wrote:

I have always treated it as both provoke.

The thing that provokes is moving out of a threatened square?

Did the rider move out of a threatened square? Yes. Did he spend a move action to do so? Doesn't matter.

It does matter, because the rules say you need to take an move Action to provoke AOO, as i cited above.

Claxon wrote:

That's why actions like reposition explicitly tell you that the movement doesn't provoke, because otherwise it would.

not any rule can be taken reversely. there are constitutive and declarative rules (like in laws).

this sentence is declarative. it just repeats a rule given(the rule i cited), to make sure its not forgot.

RAI i´d argue, that the rules try to treat a mounted rider as 1 creature most time. they share the same space, the share the same cover, they threaten the same squares, they both take the AC-Penalty of a Charge etc.

according to this i think RAI its correct that the "mounted rider" provokes 1 AOO in sum, and you can decide if you wanna attack the rider or the Mount. however raw he didnt take a move Action, so he doesnt provoke, see cites above.

But i have to admit, one can read it the way you did, understanding this addon sentence as constitutive. the main reason i feel that i read it right, is the Point, that the General rule calls for an Action to provoke, and that i think provoking 1 AOO together RAI is clear. but your Argument is defenetly reasonable aswell.

No, the rules don't say you need to take a move action.

It says two kinds of actions provoke, but it is not necessarily indicating that it's an action type (like move action, full attack action, full round action).

It then says in the next line specifically, that moving out of threatened square provokes. You moved, you provoke.

Both characters can be attacked, but would require combat reflexes to do so or multiple people threatening.

Your understanding is incorrect. The rules are not meant to be read like a legal document. It is not intended to be written in legalese, and you shouldn't get bogged down in thoughts like constitutive and declarative rules. It just doesn't quite work like that.

The easiest way to resolve is to treat mount and rider as a single entity for purposes of provoking AOO via movement. The attacker chooses whether to direct his AOO at either the mount or rider, but the pair of them only provokes one AOO.

There are some simplified mounted combat rules available in this book, if you're interested.

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Baumfluch wrote:

raw i would say only the Mount provokes.

Combat -> Attacks of Opportunity wrote:

Two kinds of Actions can provoke attacks of opportunity: moving out of a threatened square and performing certain actions within a threatened square.

Moving: Moving out of a threatened square usually provokes attacks of opportunity from threatening opponents. There are two common methods of avoiding such an attack—the 5-foot step and the withdraw action.

so weather or not you provoke an AAO is decided by the fact if you did take a move Action. the first sentence tells us provoking the AOO requires an Action.

in mounted combat we learn:

Combat -> mounted combat wrote:

Your mount acts on your initiative count as you direct it. You move at its speed, but the mount uses its action to move.

so the rider does not provoke an AOO. yes he did move out of a threatened square, but he didnt take a move Action, wich is a condition to provoke the AOO.

This is RAW, however it should be considered that the mounted combat is pretty poorly ruled.

Personally i feel, there should be 1 AOO and you can decide if you want to attack the rider or the Mount.

to your specific example:

i dont think there is an AOO at all. I try to "paint the example".
the guy with reach weapon is "O". 1 square.
the mounted rider is "RR". 2x1 squars, if he rides a horse.
threatened square is "T".
other Sqares is "X"

your Situation is (from the side):

OXTXXXXXXRR

now the rider attacks:

ORRXXXX

the rider is in contact but did not yet leave the threatened square, because he is 1x2 squares large. So he doesnt provoke, because he did only enter, not leave a threatened square.

You are trying to rule as if the rider is some kind of Schrödinger creature that now is in one square of his mount, now in another, without moving from point A to B.

Instead the rider is in every space of his mount for all the time.

So using your example

OXTXXXXXXRR

now the rider move and enter the threatened area:

OXRRXXXX

then move in contact

ORRXXXXX

he has moved from the threatened area to the square adjacent to the target. Some part of him has moved away from a theatened square, so he provoke.

BTW, a horse is a 2x2 creature, not 2x1.

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Alpha Release 1                                           General Discussion                                           Races & Classes                                           Skills & Feats                                           Combat & Magic                         Advanced Player’s Guide Playtest                               General Discussion                               Investigator Playtest                               Oracle Playtest                               Swashbuckler Playtest                               Witch Playtest                   Pathfinder Society Scenario Submissions                   Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Faction Talk                         Dark Archive                         The Exchange                         Grand Lodge                         Liberty's Edge                         Scarab Sages                         Silver Crusade                         Sovereign Court                         Retired Factions                   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