Spell combat + Whirlwind Attack


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Cavall wrote:
_Ozy_ wrote:
Cavall wrote:

I fail to see how a free attack with a spell isn't a bonus attack with a spell. Which is not allowed by the feat.

Free or not it isn't allowed because the feat explicitly states it.

What about attacks of opportunity?
Aren't granted by feats spells and ability so therefore not part of this conversation. If you had a free one from a feat spell or ability then it wouldn't be allowed unless outside of your turn.

Wait, where did you get the 'outside of your turn' language? Also, does this mean extra AoOs from Combat Reflexes (a feat) wouldn't be allowed?


Outside the full attack action. There has to be an outside your turn for immediate actions to exist, which clearly are after your turn is finished and therefore your full attack action could be.

Combat reflexes would count because the attack action is over and you could do more. Something like stomp wouldn't if you tripped people during a whirlwind because that's an extra attack from a feat.


I think part of the problem is that some people think that 'extra' and 'bonus' attacks don't have specific meaning, when it seems that they do. Consider:

Quote:

Cleaving Finish (Combat)

Benefit: If you make a melee attack, and your target drops to 0 or fewer hit points as a result of your attack, you can make another melee attack using your highest base attack bonus against another opponent within reach. You can make only one extra attack per round with this feat.

Quote:

Two-Weapon Fighting (Combat)

You can fight with a weapon wielded in each of your hands. You can make one extra attack each round with the secondary weapon.

Benefit: Your penalties on attack rolls for fighting with two weapons are reduced. The penalty for your primary hand lessens by 2 and the one for your off hand lessens by 6. See Two-Weapon Fighting.

Normal: If you wield a second weapon in your off hand, you can get one extra attack per round with that weapon. When fighting in this way you suffer a –6 penalty with your regular attack or attacks with your primary hand and a –10 penalty to the attack with your off hand. If your off-hand weapon is light, the penalties are reduced by 2 each. An unarmed strike is always considered light.

Quote:

HASTE

When making a full attack action, a hasted creature may make one extra attack with one natural or manufactured weapon.

People seem to be treating extra attack as a generic descriptor instead of a pathfinder rules specific descriptor. Not sure if that's correct.


Cavall wrote:

Outside the full attack action. There has to be an outside your turn for immediate actions to exist, which clearly are after your turn is finished and therefore your full attack action could be.

Combat reflexes would count because the attack action is over and you could do more. Something like stomp wouldn't if you tripped people during a whirlwind because that's an extra attack from a feat.

Free action attacks are also outside of your full attack action. As would be the swift action attack from Hurtful.

Furthermore, AoOs could be triggered during your full-attack-actions if people had readied actions that provoked. An edge case, sure, but in this case what would you rule?

Stomp is NOT an extra attack, it's a feat that causes a person to provoke. You then can use an AoO to attack, though maybe not more than one if you think Combat Reflexes are invalidated.

Frankly, I think you're entirely missing what the phrases 'extra attack' and 'bonus attack' actually mean.


Perhaps that's why they not only say extra but bonus as well, to help define that.

"When you use the Whirlwind Attack feat, you also forfeit any bonus or extra attacks granted by other feats, spells, or abilities."

So if it's not defined as an extra attack but it's more than your usual attack it's a bonus attack and falls clearly under that definition. So that's cleared right up in the feat itself.


Well Ozy you seem to think not getting extra attacks from feats abilities or spells means you can
Cast spells
Use those spells to get extra attacks
Use feats to do extra attacks during a whirlwind.

So maybe it's not me that doesn't understand the definitions. But forfeit is pretty clear.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

They are standing up on their turn, not yours. Whirlwind is like TWF, all the penalties are gone once the attack is.

To point out something else in Ozzy's quote, a character would not be able to take a move action when using a full round action, as the full round action takes up the Standard and Move.

This is in Special Spell Effects in the CRB

Quote:

Attacks: Some spell descriptions refer to attacking. All

offensive combat actions, even those that don’t damage
opponents, are considered attacks. Attempts to channel
energy count as attacks if it would harm any creatures
in the area. All spells that opponents resist with saving
throws, that deal damage, or that otherwise harm or
hamper subjects are attacks. Spells that summon monsters
or other allies are not attacks because the spells themselves
don’t harm anyone.

This is the spell "Shocking Grasp"

Quote:


SHOCKING GRASP
School evocation [electricity]; Level sorcerer/wizard 1
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S
Range touch
Target creature or object touched
Duration instantaneous
Saving Throw none; Spell Resistance yes
Your successful melee touch attack deals 1d6 points of electricity
damage per caster level (maximum 5d6). When delivering the jolt,
you gain a +3 bonus on attack rolls if the opponent is wearing metal
armor (or is carrying a metal weapon or is made of metal).

So, how is that spell not an attack?

Here is the CRB on Duration.

Quote:

Touch Spells and Holding the Charge: In most cases,

if you don’t discharge a touch spell on the round you cast
it, you can hold the charge (postpone the discharge of the
spell) indefinitely. You can make touch attacks round after
round until the spell is discharged. If you cast another
spell, the touch spell dissipates.
Some touch spells allow you to touch multiple targets as
part of the spell. You can’t hold the charge of such a spell;
you must touch all targets of the spell in the same round
that you finish casting the spell.
Discharge: Occasionally a spells lasts for a set duration
or until triggered or discharged.
(D) Dismissible: If the duration line ends with “(D),”
you can dismiss the spell at will. You must be within
range of the spell’s effect and must speak words of
dismissal,
which are usually a modif ied form of the
spell’s verbal component.
If the spell has no verbal
component, you can dismiss the effect with a gesture.
Dismissing a spell is a standard action that does not
provoke attacks of opportunity.
A spell that depends on concentration is dismissible
by its very nature, and dismissing it does not take an
action,
since all you have to do to end the spell is to stop
concentrating
on your turn.

So holding the spell allows for another attempt to attack with it in the next round, attacking this time as a standard action. Now, I am not seeing this free action attack specifically in these passages, but that is what the spell provides as a part of it's casting, an attack to dispense the effects of the spell.


I thought it was obvious about the move action thing and Whirlwind. I didn't think it needed to be stated at the time how that just doesn't work.


Cavall wrote:

Perhaps that's why they not only say extra but bonus as well, to help define that.

"When you use the Whirlwind Attack feat, you also forfeit any bonus or extra attacks granted by other feats, spells, or abilities."

So if it's not defined as an extra attack but it's more than your usual attack it's a bonus attack and falls clearly under that definition. So that's cleared right up in the feat itself.

If it doesn't say bonus attack, why would you assume it's a bonus attack? Your definition would include AoOs (at least those granted by Combat Reflexes) and yet you say those are exempt.

Can you point to the rules that specifically define what a bonus attack is? Because all I can find is this:

Quote:
Some combat options are free actions meant to be combined with an attack. Often, these are feats with specific limitations defined within the feat—for example, Cleaving Finish gives you an extra melee attack, but only after you make an attack that drops a foe.

and that clearly doesn't apply to free action attacks granted by touch attack spells.


Wow.


thaX wrote:
Darksol, to keep going on that, when you do the third option with this combination of Spell Combat and Whirlwind, it would still be used during the combat action. If the character waits until the combat is done, he has missed his opportunity to use that free action attack, his turn is effectively over.

You know what? Just for fun, let's go over the Touch Spell rules again.

Touch Spells in Combat wrote:
Many spells have a range of touch. To use these spells, you cast the spell and then touch the subject. In the same round that you cast the spell, you may also touch (or attempt to touch) as a free action. You may take your move before casting the spell, after touching the target, or between casting the spell and touching the target. You can automatically touch one friend or use the spell on yourself, but to touch an opponent, you must succeed on an attack roll.

The touch spell rules state that, to use a touch spell, you (first) cast the spell (A), and then touch the subject (B). This means that it is in tandem, or A->B, as I've described before.

Now, delivering a cast spell as a Free Action applies within the round of casting the spell. So, if you had some ability that let you take a single Free Action of your choice outside your turn, then until it becomes your turn again, you may still deliver that spell as a Free Action.

It even gives concise examples as to when I can be able to use these spells in relation to movement, which means that I can move at any conjuncture between the two activities (let's call movement C, for simplicity). So, I can have C->A->B, A->C->B, or A->B->C. Note, between all of those options, that eventually, A will always lead to B (though in some cases, B will lead to C). These are all in tandem of each other, and the rules state that all of those tandem combinations are legal.

So, it says delivering the spell within the round is a Free Action, right? Free Actions are a defined game term, and they say:

Free Actions wrote:

Free actions consume a very small amount of time and effort. You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally. However, there are reasonable limits on what you can really do for free, as decided by the GM.

...

Free actions don't take any time at all, though there may be limits to the number of free actions you can perform in a turn. Free actions rarely incur attacks of opportunity.

So, we have it listed, in multiple fashions, that a Free Action takes little to no time. The rules also say that I can perform one (or multiple) free actions when taking other actions normally, which means that during other actions, I can perform Free Actions.

Sure, the rules then go on to say that there can be a limitation on Free Actions, but state that those same limitations are GM FIAT. In other words, table variation at best. Of course, when the Free Action FAQ was released (limiting certain free actions, most notably reloading projectile weapons), that was almost unanimously repealed. That should tell you something right there; when a limitation such as that is applied to a core mechanic of a class or function within the game, chances are, it's not intended nor fundamental to be restricted that way, which means your intentions are most likely wrong. After all, if they were right, then the Free Action limitations FAQ wouldn't have been repealed, and players would still complain about it to this day.

There's also the matter of a Quickened Spell, which casts as a Swift Action (and likewise requires the same amount of time and effort to deliver the spell, if the Quickened Spell that was cast was likewise a Touch Spell). That's an interesting topic that's been brought up in relation to the primary subject, so let's look at that as well; just to be safe, right?

That entry says:

Swift Actions wrote:
A swift action consumes a very small amount of time, but represents a larger expenditure of effort than a free action. You can perform one swift action per turn without affecting your ability to perform other actions. In that regard, a swift action is like a free action. You can, however, perform only one single swift action per turn, regardless of what other actions you take. You can take a swift action anytime you would normally be allowed to take a free action. Swift actions usually involve spellcasting, activating a feat, or the activation of magic items.

So, we have Swift Actions taking identical time to Free Actions (based on copy-pasted text), but requiring further effort, and as such, can only be done once per round. Swift Actions also state that they can be taken any time a Free Action can be taken, and that it doesn't affect your ability to take other actions, just like a Free Action doesn't.

The last two parts are crucial. Why? Because let's take our hypothetical Quickened Shocking Grasp within the most dubious combination ever conceived. If your claim is "I can't deliver Touch Spells in the same round I cast them because [Spell Combat + Whirlwind Attack]," then I can't cast or deliver Quickened Spells either, as those take the same amount of time, and can be taken any time a Free Action can be taken. At least, that's what the rules say.

Except, you're saying I can't take a Free Action to deliver a Touch Spell when another action, like the one described above, is being taken. But then you say that I can cast a Quickened Touch Spell, AND deliver that very same Touch Spell with the identical Free Action that you not so long ago denied to be possible to take?


Cavall wrote:

Well Ozy you seem to think not getting extra attacks from feats abilities or spells means you can

Cast spells
Use those spells to get extra attacks
Use feats to do extra attacks during a whirlwind.

So maybe it's not me that doesn't understand the definitions. But forfeit is pretty clear.

Free action attacks are not 'extra attacks', they are attacks that occur during free actions separate from full-attack actions, just like they occur separate from the standard-move-free action attack during a normal spell casting.

You can't use feats to do extra attacks during whirlwinds, however there may be feats that allow you to, once again, do attacks during actions that occur after or outside of your full-attack-action

Once again, here is what extra attacks and bonus attacks refer to:

Quote:
Some combat options are free actions meant to be combined with an attack. Often, these are feats with specific limitations defined within the feat—for example, Cleaving Finish gives you an extra melee attack, but only after you make an attack that drops a foe.

But hey, if you have alternate rules defining what bonus or extra attacks actually are, and manage to somehow maintain consistency with AoOs, then feel free to offer them.


thaX wrote:
They are standing up on their turn, not yours. Whirlwind is like TWF, all the penalties are gone once the attack is.

Dude, try to follow along. The Vicious Stomp feat provokes an AoO when you knock a creature prone.

So, if you used your whirlwind to trip a bunch of enemies, you would get multiple AoOs as each of them provokes.

However, if you want to avoid all of that complication, let's just say that during your Whirlwind, all of your opponents had readied actions to cast spells, so all of them provoked AoOs on their own during your whirlwind.

Now, Clavell says that you only get the one AoO that isn't associated with a feat, spell or ability. It sounds like you think you wouldn't get ANY AoOs. Is this correct?

Quote:
To point out something else in Ozzy's quote, a character would not be able to take a move action when using a full round action, as the full round action takes up the Standard and Move.

*sigh* I was offering another example of standard spell casting of shocking grasp where the caster 1) casts the spell (standard action) 2) moves (move action) and 3) touch attacks (free action)

Obviously the free action attack CAN'T be part of the standard action of casting the spell since it occurs long after that action is complete.

So, why are you insisting that it has to be part of a full-attack action during spell combat?


After reading more rules, it seems even clearer that extra and bonus actions refer to additional attacks that are granted as part of the full attack action. Along with Haste and TWF, this includes:

Flurry of Blows
bonus attacks from ki pool
Finishing kick
Broken Blade Stance
Tangle Leg

Improved/Greater TWF
Takedown
Smash (Stalwart Defender)
Blade Skills (Soulknife)

and so on. It is pretty clear which abilities and feats provide 'extra attacks' as part of a full-attack action, and which simply gives you a free action or swift action attack that operates outside of the full-attack action.

AoOs do not count as extra/bonus attacks, nor do free action attacks such as from touch attack spells.

Think of it this way. If an feat/ability gives you an attack that you can use WITHOUT having performed a melee attack already, then how can it be classified as an extra/bonus attack?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Ah, so the free action is in a different section than the ones I quoted. Put all four together, please. It is an action done as a part of the spell, and the spell is still considered an attack when done in this way.

When you hold the spell for the next round, it takes a standard to attack with the held spell, just as you would for a held weapon. It can also be discharged when performing an AoO, as the held spell counts as a weapon as it is being held.

This is assuming you do not attack with it in the round it is cast. The first passage I quoted says...

"All spells that opponents resist with saving
throws, that deal damage, or that otherwise harm or
hamper subjects are attacks."

So, as we get into separate actions because of touch spells in combat, remember this passage, as the spell still counts as an attack.

The difference between Spell Combat and a Quickened spell is the action taken to cast the spell. Shocking Grasp is, for example, 1 standard action. A quickened spell is a swift action.

A swift action is done at any point in the turn, though likely not while the character is using Whirlwind, as the swift action would benefit more from being cast before or after the attack is done and not have Whirlwind take the attack away, causing the character to hold the spell.

So, that passage also answers my own question on Black Tentacles and Burning Hands. They are both also considered attacks.

Is there something I am missing here?


I see I must break this down for you.

Let's take the case of a spellcaster casting a shocking gasp, moving, and then touching an opponent, all on the same round.

1) he casts a spell (standard action)
2) he moves to his opponent (move action)
3) he touch attacks the opponent (free action)

The spell is OVER and done at 1. There is no more spell, it can't be interrupted, it is over. The touch attack HAS NOT OCCURRED. So, how the heck can the touch attack be considered as 'part of the spell action' when it occurs long after the spell has been cast? The attack takes place at step 3. If the caster was invisible, he doesn't become visible until the touch attack has taken place.

The free action touch attack is in NO WAY part of action 1, and action 1 (casting the spell) is in NO WAY an attack.

None of these facts change during Spell Combat.


Okay, so upon careful examination of the view of both sides (admittedly I am biased towards one side) I believe I can narrow down this discussion to a few core points that are being disagreed upon.

1) The most important barrier to entry is whether it can even be used with spell combat in the first place. Without having any evidence, all we have is conjecture, which is why this is so contested. There are two possibilities:
> the FAQ on spell combat includes whirlwind attack within its "other effects" clause
> the FAQ on spell combat is speaking of effects that directly affect full-attacks, and not ones that are used to modify it.

2) Second highly contested viewpoint is what the text within whirlwind attack is stating. Specifically, the line "When you use the Whirlwind Attack feat, you also forfeit any bonus or extra attacks granted by other feats, spells, or abilities."
> One side views "bonus or extra" attacks as specifically meaning things that tack extra attacks onto the full-attack action. Haste, two-weapon fighting, et cetera.
> The other side views this to encompass every possible attack you could be making.

3) Third contested viewpoint is whether or not the spell counts as a spell that is given up upon first using whirlwind attack. There are different interpretations of this, unfortunately.
> By one definition, anything that is remotely offensive is considered an attack, as written under magic special effects. This definition is used for things like invisibility, where any offensive action ends the spell.
> By another more restricted definition, only when you roll a d20 to-hit is it considered an attack. This definition IS used quite often, one example being the rogue's sneak attack and how it can only apply to anything that you roll an attack roll on, and won't work on things like magic missile.

Unless I missed something, these appear to be the 3 contested core points, and are all results of either vague language or conflicting definitions. Unless we can agree on which definitions we're using for which points, we won't come to an agreement on how the interaction works. So, in my opinion, until a FAQ comes out, it's up to the GM of a specific game to decide what interpretations of these core points are correct in order to rule whether this interaction works.

And, again, I'm pretty biased, but I think I'm as fair as possible in this assessment.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

The Vicious Stomp would be something to look at, certainly, and is more likely a question deserving a FAQ rather than this combination of Spell Combat and Whirlwind.

Reading the Attacks of Opportunity section of the Core Rulebook, it looks like that the AoO's provoked from the use of Vicious Stomp would be taken as one is performing Whirlwind Attack. This is a reactionary attack and not a part of the normal attacks gained through effects and abilities. Be a nice little combo with the Greater(?) Trip feat that gives AoO's to all allies around the target tripped, giving the character two AoO's.

It is not, though, the same as the spell that is being discussed, as those are effects that give extra attacks, as I have been explaining.


Johnny_Devo wrote:
... until a FAQ comes out, it's up to the GM of a specific game to decide what interpretations of these core points are correct in order to rule whether this interaction works.

Yes. This has been the case for like 6 pages now.

It's unlikely to be FAQ'd, since even if this did work, it's not something you'd see many people wanting to do, but no amount of arguing back and forth is going to convince anybody to change their mind on this.

The only reason I keep clicking back on this thread is to see if there was a FAQ.


thaX wrote:

The Vicious Stomp would be something to look at, certainly, and is more likely a question deserving a FAQ rather than this combination of Spell Combat and Whirlwind.

Reading the Attacks of Opportunity section of the Core Rulebook, it looks like that the AoO's provoked from the use of Vicious Stomp would be taken as one is performing Whirlwind Attack. This is a reactionary attack and not a part of the normal attacks gained through effects and abilities.

Exactly. I provided a list of extra and bonus attacks that are provided as add-ons to the normal full-attack sequence.

Other attacks that are not part of the normal attack sequence:

Free action attacks granted by spells.

In fact, let's ponder the text under Spellstrike:

Quote:
Instead of the free melee touch attack normally allowed to deliver the spell, a magus can make one free melee attack with his weapon (at his highest base attack bonus) as part of casting this spell. If successful, this melee attack deals its normal damage as well as the effects of the spell. If the magus makes this attack in concert with spell combat, this melee attack takes all the penalties accrued by spell combat melee attacks.

You notice words like 'extra' and 'bonus' are nowhere to be found. Additionally, these words:

this melee attack takes all the penalties accrued by spell combat melee attacks

are actually important and necessary because the free action attack is NOT part of the normal full-attack action, and otherwise would not suffer the same penalties as the spell combat melee attacks.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
Johnny_Devo wrote:
... until a FAQ comes out, it's up to the GM of a specific game to decide what interpretations of these core points are correct in order to rule whether this interaction works.

Yes. This has been the case for like 6 pages now.

It's unlikely to be FAQ'd, since even if this did work, it's not something you'd see many people wanting to do, but no amount of arguing back and forth is going to convince anybody to change their mind on this.

The only reason I keep clicking back on this thread is to see if there was a FAQ.

Hey, it changed my mind. Originally I thought only non-offensive spells could be cast during Spell Combat + Whirlwind.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
_Ozy_ wrote:

I see I must break this down for you.

Let's take the case of a spellcaster casting a shocking gasp, moving, and then touching an opponent, all on the same round.

1) he casts a spell (standard action)
2) he moves to his opponent (move action)
3) he touch attacks the opponent (free action)

The spell is OVER and done at 1. There is no more spell, it can't be interrupted, it is over. The touch attack HAS NOT OCCURRED. So, how the heck can the touch attack be considered as 'part of the spell action' when it occurs long after the spell has been cast? The attack takes place at step 3. If the caster was invisible, he doesn't become visible until the touch attack has taken place.

The free action touch attack is in NO WAY part of action 1, and action 1 (casting the spell) is in NO WAY an attack.

None of these facts change during Spell Combat.

So, lets take this from the CRB into account.
Special Effects in Magic section of CRB page 208 wrote:

Attacks:Some spell descriptions refer to attacking. All

offensive combat actions, even those that don’t damage
opponents, are considered attacks. Attempts to channel
energy count as attacks if it would harm any creatures
in the area. All spells that opponents resist with saving
throws, that deal damage, or that otherwise harm or
hamper subjects are attacks.

Now, the spell is an attack, which is something I have been saying, and those that have the Free Actions are still considered attacks when that free action attack is used.

Can you cast an attack spell and hold the charge instead? Possible.

Can you cast a buff spell instead, or a summon spell? Maybe.

If you attack with the spell effects, it is an attack done from that spell, which Whirlwind will not allow when used with spell combat.


They are not 'extra attacks' as prohibited by the text of the Whirlwind feat, and in any case it's irrelevant to the Shocking Grasp case under discussion which provides a free melee attack as a free action separate from the normal full-attack action.


_Ozy_ wrote:
Irontruth wrote:
_Ozy_ wrote:

People seem to be really misinformed when it comes to the free action touch attack granted by casting a spell such as shocking grasp.

If cast as a standard action, you can do a complete move action BEFORE using the free action to use the touch attack. So what makes people think that this free action is 'part' of the full-attack action Spell Combat when it is obviously NOT part of the action used to cast the spell?

I think what we need to have here is people start actually quoting rules when they come up with comments like this, so lets see it.

Is the spell part of the full attack action (Spell Combat)?
The spell is. The free action attack is not. Just like if you trip someone with an attack during the Whirlwind, the AoO you get when they stand up is also not part of your full attack action.

Try to avoid too many tangents.

Can you take the attack before the spell?


Irontruth wrote:


Try to avoid too many tangents.

Can you take the attack before the spell?

Which attack?

EDIT: Ok, to avoid confusion and tangents as you suggest, let's start with the standard scenario I laid out above:

1) cast shocking grasp (standard action)
2) move to enemy (move action)
3) touch attack enemy (free action)

It is clear that:
- casting shocking grasp is not an attack (you would stay invisible)
- the touch attack is not part of the standard action to cast a spell
- the touch attack is not 'part' of casting the spell at all (spell is over).

None of these facts change during spell combat, other than: 1) casting is done as part of a full-attack action, none of these facts change with spellstrike, none of these facts change during whirlwind.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
_Ozy_ wrote:
Irontruth wrote:


Try to avoid too many tangents.

Can you take the attack before the spell?

Which attack?

EDIT: Ok, to avoid confusion and tangents as you suggest, let's start with the standard scenario I laid out above:

1) cast shocking grasp (standard action)
2) move to enemy (move action)
3) touch attack enemy (free action)

It is clear that:
- casting shocking grasp is not an attack (you would stay invisible)
- the touch attack is not part of the standard action to cast a spell
- the touch attack is not 'part' of casting the spell at all (spell is over).

None of these facts change during spell combat, other than: 1) casting is done as part of a full-attack action, none of these facts change with spellstrike, none of these facts change during whirlwind.

You are using spell combat.

Now, we have an attack with a weapon during spell combat. I assume he is not talking about that attack.

We have a spell being cast as a part of the full round action, taking the place of an extra attack from TWF. That spell could have an effect that gives a touch attack to strike at the target.

The spell itself is considered an attack, because it does damage with it's effect. It matters not when that attack is performed. Let me show you that quote again.

Special Effects in Magic section of CRB page 208 wrote:

Attacks:Some spell descriptions refer to attacking. All
offensive combat actions, even those that don’t damage
opponents, are considered attacks. Attempts to channel
energy count as attacks if it would harm any creatures
in the area. All spells that opponents resist with saving
throws, that deal damage, or that otherwise harm or
hamper subjects are attacks.

So, with spell combat using an extra attack (an offensive spell), it is an extra attack that Whirlwind will adjudicate. The caster will be forced to hold the spell or lose it, if these abilities can be used together. (Spell Combat and Whrilwind Attack)


thaX wrote:

You are using spell combat.

Now, we have an attack with a weapon during spell combat. I assume he is not talking about that attack.

We have a spell being cast as a part of the full round action, taking the place of an extra attack from TWF. That spell could have an effect that gives a touch attack to strike at the target.

The spell itself is considered an attack, because it does damage with it's effect. It matters not when that attack is performed. Let me show you that quote again.

Special Effects in Magic section of CRB page 208 wrote:

Attacks:Some spell descriptions refer to attacking. All
offensive combat actions, even those that don’t damage
opponents, are considered attacks. Attempts to channel
energy count as attacks if it would harm any creatures
in the area. All spells that opponents resist with saving
throws, that deal damage, or that otherwise harm or
hamper subjects are attacks.

So, with spell combat using an extra attack (an offensive spell), it is an extra attack that Whirlwind will adjudicate. The caster will be forced to hold the spell or lose it, if these abilities...

That's quite the obtuse assumption you're making in relation to the text being presented.

By that logic, I can make a Full Attack Action and cast a spell, even without Spell Combat, since I can substitute a Spell for an Attack if I so desired, because, according to you, Spells are Attacks, right?

Except, nobody is suggesting that Spell Combat is the equivalent of Prone Shooter, are they?

...Are they?


Quote:
We have a spell being cast as a part of the full round action, taking the place of an extra attack from TWF. .

Stop repeating stuff that is in direct contradiction to the rules you have been shown.


thaX wrote:

Ah, so the free action is in a different section than the ones I quoted. Put all four together, please. It is an action done as a part of the spell, and the spell is still considered an attack when done in this way.

When you hold the spell for the next round, it takes a standard to attack with the held spell, just as you would for a held weapon. It can also be discharged when performing an AoO, as the held spell counts as a weapon as it is being held.

This is assuming you do not attack with it in the round it is cast. The first passage I quoted says...

"All spells that opponents resist with saving
throws, that deal damage, or that otherwise harm or
hamper subjects are attacks."

So, as we get into separate actions because of touch spells in combat, remember this passage, as the spell still counts as an attack.

The difference between Spell Combat and a Quickened spell is the action taken to cast the spell. Shocking Grasp is, for example, 1 standard action. A quickened spell is a swift action.

A swift action is done at any point in the turn, though likely not while the character is using Whirlwind, as the swift action would benefit more from being cast before or after the attack is done and not have Whirlwind take the attack away, causing the character to hold the spell.

So, that passage also answers my own question on Black Tentacles and Burning Hands. They are both also considered attacks.

Is there something I am missing here?

No, there's not "four" Free Action sections. There's only two, and I've linked them, and they're all in the Combat chapter. There is zero other mention or description of Free Actions in any other chapter of the Core Rulebook.

I've looked in the Magic Section, and found only a Touch entry, which does nothing to denote that touching creatures at the time of casting the spell is mandatory. In fact, it says the exact opposite.

Touch wrote:
You must touch a creature or object to affect it. A touch spell that deals damage can score a critical hit just as a weapon can. A touch spell threatens a critical hit on a natural roll of 20 and deals double damage on a successful critical hit. Some touch spells allow you to touch multiple targets. You can touch up to 6 willing targets as part of the casting, but all targets of the spell must be touched in the same round that you finish casting the spell. If the spell allows you to touch targets over multiple rounds, touching 6 creatures is a full-round action.

We have multiple instances where it is using permissive optional language; that is, it's telling us you can, but you don't have to. But it has nothing to do with Free Actions or the requirement of delivering the spell as you cast it, which means it has zero relevance here.

I also love how you just glossed over my statement in regards to Swift Actions having identical application as Free Actions, and that in one instance, you deny the use of a Free Action, but in another, allow both a Swift Action, and the same exact Free Action in the prior instance that would be used in tandem with that Swift Action.

Again, if your claim is that Spells are Attacks, then Spell Combat is a useless feature, and that I can simply cast spells in place of any melee attack that I make in a Full Attack Action.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

who? what?

No, you are gaining the spell because of Spell Combat, specifically one that can be cast as a standard action, as well as being able to attack with a weapon. It is stated in the ability that the off hand weapon is considered to be the spell. If that spell is an attack, as defined in the CRB in the quote above, it is an extra one on top of the weapon being used in Spell Combat.

I am looking at how the two abilities are working with one another, not trying to look at rules one letter at a time.

When you cast a spell, it is considered an attack if it does damage.

So when you cast a spell that is considered an attack when using Spell Combat, it is a second attack on top of the weapon being used in the main hand.

When you use Spell Combat in this way with Whirlwind Attack, the spell would be giving the character an extra attack.

When that happens, Whirlwind will have the character forfeit that attack to instead hit each target in reach a single time.

Now, when that happens, can you...

  • use that attack as one of the single attacks against a target?
  • use Spellstrike to one of the attacks on a single target instead of getting an extra strike?
  • hold the spell for the next round?

That is what is my question would be.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I meant the section you quoted and the three section I quoted. They correlate with one another.

The Spell is cast as a swift action with Quickened. It is normally a standard action for Shocking Grasp and most other spells used with Spell Combat.

It isn't the spell, it is the spell that the character casts. They cast it and it is considered an attack when it does something to an enemy, like damage and giving negative levels.

Casting still takes the normal action, you are confusing the free action attack mentioned in the combat section to the casting of the spell. The spell effects determine what it is considered to be. That determination isn't delayed by the separate event of attacking with the spell after the casting.

Edited, I was ninja'd


_Ozy_ wrote:
Irontruth wrote:


Try to avoid too many tangents.

Can you take the attack before the spell?

Which attack?

EDIT: Ok, to avoid confusion and tangents as you suggest, let's start with the standard scenario I laid out above:

1) cast shocking grasp (standard action)
2) move to enemy (move action)
3) touch attack enemy (free action)

It is clear that:
- casting shocking grasp is not an attack (you would stay invisible)
- the touch attack is not part of the standard action to cast a spell
- the touch attack is not 'part' of casting the spell at all (spell is over).

None of these facts change during spell combat, other than: 1) casting is done as part of a full-attack action, none of these facts change with spellstrike, none of these facts change during whirlwind.

I'd prefer to talk about Spell Combat, and that scenario doesn't sound like Spell Combat.


We're trying to avoid tangents and confusion, so let's start with the basics first. Casting a spell. We can move to the more complex Spell Combat once we agree with the basics.

Is there anything I listed that you disagree with regarding that starting point?

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies

Johnny_Devo wrote:
Okay, so upon careful examination of the view of both sides (admittedly I am biased towards one side) I believe I can narrow down this discussion to a few core points that are being disagreed upon.

Good summary. My various positions:

1) Whirlwind is not included in other.
2) Bonus includes every attack.
3) Remotely offensive is considered attacks.

I hope if this is answered it isn't a full FAQ and is simply a nod to 1, Whirlwind isn't one of the "other" effects you can perform.


thaX wrote:

I meant the section you quoted and the three section I quoted. They correlate with one another.

The Spell is cast as a swift action with Quickened. It is normally a standard action for Shocking Grasp and most other spells used with Spell Combat.

It isn't the spell, it is the spell that the character casts. They cast it and it is considered an attack when it does something to an enemy, like damage and giving negative levels.

Casting still takes the normal action, you are confusing the free action attack mentioned in the combat section to the casting of the spell. The spell effects determine what it is considered to be. That determination isn't delayed by the separate event of attacking with the spell after the casting.

Edited, I was ninja'd

Again, where are you getting Free Action definition entries outside of the two Combat Chapter ones in the Core? By those definitions, you're treating Swift Actions as being able to be used above and beyond Free Actions, even though Swift Actions and Free Actions are synonymous in their usage. It even says in the Swift Action entry that, any time you can take a Free Action, you can take a Swift Action. Likewise, any time you can take a Swift Action, you can take a Free Action. They're equivalent in that regard, which is the only relevant factor here, as you're saying I can't deliver the spell because I can't take the free action to do so.

So, how is it that you're saying I can Quicken + Deliver Touch Spell with Spell Combat, but I can't Spell Combat + Deliver Touch Spell, even though, if I can both cast and deliver a spell, simply delivering a spell by itself is illegal?

An attack by that term would most likely fall under the clause that it's a hostile action taken against a given creature, the same as it is if you were under the effects of an Invisibility spell. It by no means equates to being able to substitute in place of whenever you would make an attack roll, AoO or otherwise, which is what Whirlwind Attack is referring to removing bonus or excess of. That would fall in the realm of Scorching Ray, which does attacks as you cast the spell. I'll repeat what I said before:

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
...[I]f your claim is that Spells are Attacks, then Spell Combat is a useless feature, and that I can simply cast spells in place of any melee attack that I make in a Full Attack Action.

So, this means I can cast Scorching Ray, get upwards of 2 or 3 attacks, and just be able to (almost) infinitely cast spells, since Scorching Ray generates attacks, and spells are attacks, therefore Scorching Ray generates spells. See how silly that sounds when we take your interpretation?

I never said casting doesn't take the normal action required, nor is that relevant to being able to deliver a spell when you cast it. That's a strawman. (And no, I don't care if I used it wrong, point is that it's irrelevant to the issue at hand.) But you're again ignoring the rules of Touch Spells, which clearly state that you must first cast the spell, and then touch the target. First A, then B.

It then says that if you attempt to perform B within the same round of A, it takes only a free action to do B. Whereas if you don't, it requires replacing an attack (AKA a standard action, or part of a full round action) to do B. And I already provided the definition of Free Actions, and there's no indicator that the Free Action to deliver the spell has any limitations beyond whatever the general definition of a Free Action is, which means at best, the limitation you're putting on that Free Action is GM FIAT, something which is table variation at best, and not a hard-evident rule.


James Risner wrote:
Johnny_Devo wrote:
Okay, so upon careful examination of the view of both sides (admittedly I am biased towards one side) I believe I can narrow down this discussion to a few core points that are being disagreed upon.

Good summary. My various positions:

1) Whirlwind is not included in other.
2) Bonus includes every attack.
3) Remotely offensive is considered attacks.

I hope if this is answered it isn't a full FAQ and is simply a nod to 1, Whirlwind isn't one of the "other" effects you can perform.

2) including AoOs? Until your next turn?

3) casting shocking grasp turns you visible before you actually attack?

In short, I disagree. There is no definition in Pathfinder that says 'bonus attack' means 'every attack', and I challenge you to find one.

Instead, I can find rules that call out bonus attacks as attacks added to your full attack sequence. The rules don't support your claim.


_Ozy_ wrote:

We're trying to avoid tangents and confusion, so let's start with the basics first. Casting a spell. We can move to the more complex Spell Combat once we agree with the basics.

Is there anything I listed that you disagree with regarding that starting point?

I disagree with some of your statements. I don't disagree with the rules or sequence of events, but your analysis of them.


Irontruth wrote:
_Ozy_ wrote:

We're trying to avoid tangents and confusion, so let's start with the basics first. Casting a spell. We can move to the more complex Spell Combat once we agree with the basics.

Is there anything I listed that you disagree with regarding that starting point?

I disagree with some of your statements. I don't disagree with the rules or sequence of events, but your analysis of them.

You could be a little more specific. Given the basic starting scenario, what do you actually disagree with so far?


I disagree with the attack not being part of the spell at all.


Irontruth wrote:
I disagree with the attack not being part of the spell at all.

'Part' is a vague term which has no particular meaning for the rules, so you need to put it in game terms.

Does the free touch attack happen during the same action as the spell? No.

Does the free touch attack happen during the casting of the spell? No.

Does the free touch attack mean that you turn visible when casting the spell? No.

Does the free touch attack mean that casting the spell itself is treated as an attack? No.

Does the free touch attack have some connection to the spell? Sure, you get the free touch attack by casting the spell. Without casting the spell, you wouldn't have a free touch attack. However, this connection currently has no bearing on the particular basic rules scenario under discussion.

Do we at least agree on that? Or, if not, can you indicate what this 'connection' changes with respect to the rules statements that have been made?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
_Ozy_ wrote:
Irontruth wrote:
I disagree with the attack not being part of the spell at all.

'Part' is a vague term which has no particular meaning for the rules, so you need to put it in game terms.

Does the free touch attack happen during the same action as the spell? No.

It take the spell action to gain the attack, both happen because the spell is cast. The main reason the Free Action attack is used in this way is to move into range after casting. Notice, the ray spells do not have this, yet they are worded in the same manner in the spell descriptions.
_Ozy_ wrote:

Does the free touch attack happen during the casting of the spell? No.

The Free Touch Attack happens because you cast the spell. It puts that charge into your hand, and the character is considered armed with that hand until he discharges the spell.

_Ozy_ wrote:


Does the free touch attack mean that you turn visible when casting the spell? No.
You turn visible when the spell actives, If your character stealths before casting, being visible right before you step up and deliver your spell would not change the target being flat footed.
_Ozy_ wrote:


Does the free touch attack mean that casting the spell itself is treated as an attack? No.
The fact that the spell does damage means it is considered an attack. I quoted the passage above, that said "All spells ... that deal damage ... are attacks." This is in the core rulebook, page 208, under Special Effects in the Magic section.
_Ozy_ wrote:


Does the free touch attack have some connection to the spell? Sure, you get the free touch attack by casting the spell. Without casting the spell, you wouldn't have a free touch attack. However, this connection currently has no bearing on the particular basic rules scenario under discussion.

Do we at least agree on that? Or, if not, can you indicate what this 'connection' changes with respect to the rules statements that have been made?

This is where the disagreement is. The spell enables the free attack, the free attack is put into the caster's hand, the spell is considered an attack.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
thaX wrote:

I meant the section you quoted and the three section I quoted. They correlate with one another.

Again, where are you getting Free Action definition entries outside of the two Combat Chapter ones in the Core?

So, how is it that you're saying I can Quicken + Deliver Touch Spell with Spell Combat, but I can't Spell Combat + Deliver Touch Spell, even though, if I can both cast and deliver a spell, simply delivering a spell by itself is illegal?

Where are you getting them?

I never said that a Quickened Spell can be cast as a part of Spell Combat. It is a separate action itself, a swift one, that can be done at anytime in the round. (before or after the Whirlwind Attack)

The casting of the spell is what changes with Quickened, both get the Free Action Attack.

The spell like Shocking Grasp takes a standard action to perform. The character casts the spell. Now, before anything else happens, that spell is considered an attack, as it will do damage with its effects. The spell itself says nothing about a free attack, this is a combat event that comes as a result of a spell being cast, giving the caster an attack to effect the spells damage to the target. (your A -> B)

The rulebook even says that the spell is considered an attack. This is an attack that is subject to being excluded by the Whirlwind Attack action, as it is a second attack done as the Character is using the feat while performing the Spell Combat ability. Whether or not you hold the free action or use it immediately does not matter, it is the casting of the attack spell that is being done, not the results of the spell via Free Action Attack in the combat section, that Whirlwind Attack feat is not allowing.


thaX wrote:
It take the spell action to gain the attack, both happen because the spell is cast. The main reason the Free Action attack is used in this way is to move into range after casting. Notice, the ray spells do not have this, yet they are worded in the same manner in the spell descriptions.

Irrelevant.

Quote:
[The Free Touch Attack happens because you cast the spell. It puts that charge into your hand, and the character is considered armed with that hand until he discharges the spell.

Irrelevant.

Quote:
You turn visible when the spell actives, If your character stealths before casting, being visible right before you step up and deliver your spell would not change the target being flat footed.

Wrong. You turn visible when you attack with the touch attack. The spell has already been cast. The word 'activates' is not a Pathfinder rules term with regard to casting or delivering spells, and is thus meaningless in this context.

Quote:
The fact that the spell does damage means it is considered an attack. I quoted the passage above, that said "All spells ... that deal damage ... are attacks." This is in the core rulebook, page 208, under Special Effects in the Magic section.

Wrong. Casting shocking grasp is not an attack, otherwise you would turn visible when you cast it rather than when you used the touch attack.

Casting shocking grasp DOES NOT DEAL DAMAGE. Hitting someone with the touch attack does.

In short, you are conflating two different actions, casting the shocking grasp spell which effectively gives you a magic 'charge' to attack someone using a free touch attach, and an 'attack spell' which does damage in and of itself, like fireball.

Casting shocking grasp is like drawing a weapon. It allows you to do damage with what is in your hand. Drawing a weapon is not an attack, neither is casting a shocking grasp spell.


Shocking grasp is a spell that deals damage. It requires an attack roll rather than a save. This makes it an offensive combat action.

All offensive combat actions even ones that don't deal damage are considered attacks. That's directly above the core book quote that also says all spells that deal damage are attacks. 208.

Regardless of how the spell does so, it is a spell that deals damage. If we can't get past this basic idea that shocking grasp deals damage (regardless of when because such a rider is NOT provided as exceptions to the core book rules dispute you wanting to make it so) then it is an attack. It would make you visible.

The core book provides no exceptions to what you're saying.

And for people that like to use the words irrelevant so much can we stick to the topic of whirlwind and spell combat?


Cavall wrote:
Shocking grasp is a spell that deals damage. It requires an attack roll rather than a save. This makes it an offensive combat action.

I think you need to read a bit more carefully what I wrote.

CASTING shocking grasp is not an attack. CASTING shocking grasp is not an offensive combat action.

You do not turn visible while casting shocking grasp. You turn visible when you use the granted free touch attack. You can remain invisible and hold the charge until you touch something, or make the attack that turns you visible.

This is established fact which, frankly, I'm pretty damn shocked that people are still having problems understanding. No pun intended.

And as stated, I'm trying to build up to the axioms surrounding Spell Combat and Whirlwind by starting with the basics. Because, OBVIOUSLY, we're still having problems with those basics.


Just to shut down this basic disagreement:

FAQ

Quote:

Familiar and Invisibility:

If I use my familiar to deliver a touch spell while I am invisible, does that break my invisibility?
No. The familiar is not you, and the familiar attacking does not count as you attacking, therefore your invisibility is unaffected.

So, not only do you stay invisible while casting a touch spell, if you hand off the charge to someone else and they attack, you still remain invisible.


_Ozy_ wrote:

]Does the free touch attack have some connection to the spell? Sure, you get the free touch attack by casting the spell. Without casting the spell, you wouldn't have a free touch attack. However, this connection currently has no bearing on the particular basic rules scenario under discussion.

Do we at least agree on that? Or, if not, can you indicate what this 'connection' changes with respect to the rules statements that have been made?

This is the claim of yours that I disagree with.

I think you misrepresent the bolded portion.

This is a situation of direct causation, and when direct causation exists things are connected. It's pretty simple logic, when event B can only happen after event A, they are directly linked. There are 3 steps to show a causal link:

1. As one thing varies, so does another.
2. One thing must proceed the other.
3. Other causes must be excluded.

1. The spell has a binary state, either being cast or not being cast (we could use 1 and 0 respectively). When the spell is 0 (not being cast), the free attack is also 0 (no free attack). When the spell is 1 (being cast), the free attack is 1 (you get a free attack).
2. Can the attack happen prior to the spell? No it cannot.
3. We can excluded other causes, some abilities include free attacks as well, but the attack from a specific spell cannot come from another source, it must come from the spell.

Therefore, the free attack is linked and dependent upon the spell. I have shown a link between the spell and the attack using logic and reasoning.

Do you have a rule specifically saying that my logic is wrong?


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Yeah, you need to think of it less as an attack spell, and more like a spell that grants you a one-use special attack. That's more like a buff than it is say, like a magic missile spell, which is clearly a direct attack spell.


I'm kind of amused that my counterpoint to "all spells are attacks" has been completely ignored.

One definition of "attack" has been provided, which was awesome, ThaX, you found and provided evidence for your case. It 100% supports that side of the argument.

However, there is at least one other definition of "attack". One in particular that interests me is the definition that essentially means "anything that requires you to make an attack roll to-hit".

Where is this used? Rogue's sneak attack. Rogue's sneak attack reads "The rogue's attack deals extra damage anytime her target would be denied a Dexterity bonus to AC"

So, if you were using the "anything remotely offensive is an attack" definition for all situations, then sneak attack would work differently for the rogue. However, it is widely accepted (just do a search on the forums or the FAQs) that the rogue can only sneak attack with things that involve an attack roll.

What, then, does that mean for the over-arching definition in the magic section? It means that it's yet another situation in this game where the writers got sloppy and defined something in an inconsistent manner, leaving us with topics such as this one.

So, again, that's why I think this argument cannot be resolved except by FAQ, because two sides are defaulting to two different and entirely valid definitions which lead to two entirely valid interpretation based on those definitions.

And, for the record, a third definition for "attack" that is widely used is something that you get as part of your full-attack. This could easily be solved by simply using the term "iterative" within the book and then less confusion would happen, but c'est la vie.


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So if it's a spell that doesn't do damage and instead grants you an extra attack, how is this allowed by the Whirlwind feat that says bonus and extra attacks from spells aren't allowed?

How can it work both ways?

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