Can you Vital Strike with a double-barreled musket that uses the attack action to fire both barrels?

Rules Questions

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2 people marked this as FAQ candidate.

I would like to know how Vital Strike works, if at all, in the unusual situation listed in the title.

From the latest errata in Ultimate Combat, it is an attack action to simultaneously fire both barrels of a double-barreled musket. Likewise, the wording of Vital Strike is 'When using an attack action...', so Vital Strike should be usable with the double-barrel fire attack action. However, Vital Strike then states that using it is a single attack at your highest base attack bonus.

This takes some weird turns in that there are three ways this can pan out:

1. Vital Strike cannot be applied in this situation as Vital Strike specifically claims that it must be a single attack and firing both barrels with the attack action produces two attacks.

2. Vital Strike applies, but only to one of the attacks as Vital Strike states that one attack deals additional damage.

3. Vital Strike applies to both attacks as Vital Strike was printed before methods of getting multiple attacks using the attack action did not exist and the feat needs to be 'modernized' to account for new features (much like the Spell Mastery FAQ).

RAW, 1 and 2 are the strongest contenders as option 3 doesn't work RAW and requires an update to the Vital Strike feat to work, but it is a possible solution to this conundrum if Vital Strike is to work with all attack actions.

Thank you for reviewing this and I look forward to a possible PDT response.


Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Black Powder Chocobo wrote:
the wording of Vital Strike is 'When using an attack action...'

You're one word off in your quote.

"When using the attack action."

Each option requires using the standard action: "attack".

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

IMO, 2. Vital Strike would not prevent an extra attack being triggered from Cleaving Finish, either (although that extra attack would not benefit from Vital Strike).

Yes I think it is clear that Vital Strike does not work with the musket in this way.

I say #2, as double musket's description stronlgy suggests that firing both barrels at the same time count as two attacks at the use of the attack action (#3 out). It does'nt seem to restrain using vital strike though, as the only requisite specified in the feat's description states 'when using the attack action' (#1 out).

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Rule of thumb: if it would make Vital Strike usable, it doesn't work

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