Shield Bashing


Character Operations Manual Playtest General Discussion

Acquisitives

I was looking at the shields when I saw there are no rules regarding shield bashing at all. I know it wouldn't be that strong, but there should still be a short wright up on damage in the shield rules.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

There is this.

Tactical Shield (basic, field, advanced, elite, paragon) A tactical shield is a small, mobile defensive plate carried in one limb and maneuvered to intercept attacks against you. A hand wielding a tactical shield can still hold another object and be used to reload weapons, but it cannot wield weapons or other shields. You can use a tactical shield to make unarmed attacks which do not count as archaic. A tactical shield can have weapon fusions added to it as if it were a one-handed basic bludgeoning weapon of the same item level, and adds such fusion effects to unarmed attacks made with it.


Yeah, the rules for Bashing basically uses Unarmed Strikes. So not the greatest weapon in the world (and requires a feat to even be a functional weapon) but it exists.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I think you underestimate the impact. Tactical shields, in their current form, are a buff to Ring of Fangs.

Ring of Fangs is already far too powerful for its miniscule cost, since IUS with ROF outdamages any 2 handed melee weapon money can buy until about item level 12.


HammerJack wrote:

I think you underestimate the impact. Tactical shields, in their current form, are a buff to Ring of Fangs.

Ring of Fangs is already far too powerful for its miniscule cost, since IUS with ROF outdamages any 2 handed melee weapon money can buy until about item level 12.

I'm just about certain that wouldn't work

When you wear this ring, your teeth become long and sharp, giving you a powerful bite attack. You can choose to have your unarmed attacks deal lethal piercing damage, and if you are 3rd level or higher, you automatically gain a special version of the Weapon Specialization feat that adds double your level to the damage of these unarmed attacks (rather than adding your level).

(italics mine so people can understand the point I'm making)

Unlike most (all?) other unarmed strikes in the game which are limb horn tail or claw agnostic the ring of fangs is one very specific unarmed attack: a bite. If you don't use that specific attack you don't gain the benefit from it.

Something works with unarmed strikes ---->works with---> ring of fangs: yes

Ring of fangs---->works with---> unarmed strikes: no.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I completely agree that it shouldn't work. But the wording of the rules text on Ring of Fangs works out to affecting all unarmed attacks, instead of just the bite. Which is why there is at least one person showing up at every other SFS table to punch for superdamage.

I do not believe it is the intended effect of the ring, but it is the technically written effect of the ring. I don't see the frequency of that irritating technicality-clinging going down with shield bashes.

Quote:
When you wear this ring, your teeth become long and sharp, giving you a powerful bite attack. You can choose to have your unarmed attacks deal lethal piercing damage, and if you are 3rd level or higher, you automatically gain a special version of the Weapon Specialization feat that adds double your level to the damage of these unarmed attacks (rather than adding your level).

In effect, people are reading "these unarmed strikes" as "unarmed strikes that deal piercing damage" not as "bites". And it is just ambiguous enough that it will never, ever, go away.

Having constant arguments about it wouldn't be an improvement to the game experience, either.


While I don't see any reason not to let someone reflavor the bite as punching or kicking, or mighty vesk snout horn. The shield bash is the first thing I've seen that would actually matter what your unarmed strike is.

There's NO ambiguity there. You have a bite attack. Your shield is pretty clearly not a bite attack.

I don't think its fair to blame an item for flagrant rules lawyering.

Quote:
But the wording of the rules text on Ring of Fangs works out to affecting all unarmed attacks

I cannot see any way to get from the rules to that conclusion.


BigNorseWolf wrote:

While I don't see any reason not to let someone reflavor the bite as punching or kicking, or mighty vesk snout horn. The shield bash is the first thing I've seen that would actually matter what your unarmed strike is.

There's NO ambiguity there. You have a bite attack. Your shield is pretty clearly not a bite attack.

I don't think its fair to blame an item for flagrant rules lawyering.

Quote:
But the wording of the rules text on Ring of Fangs works out to affecting all unarmed attacks

I cannot see any way to get from the rules to that conclusion.

It's actually right there in the very rules you posted. It's easily readable as two separate clauses:

Clause One wrote:
When you wear this ring, your teeth become long and sharp, giving you a powerful bite attack.

You get a Bite attack.

Clause Two wrote:
You can choose to have your unarmed attacks deal lethal piercing damage, and if you are 3rd level or higher, you automatically gain a special version of the Weapon Specialization feat that adds double your level to the damage of these unarmed attacks (rather than adding your level).

Your Unarmed Attacks (any unarmed attack) can deal lethal piercing damage. You gain the doubled Weapon Specialization with any Unarmed Attack that deals lethal piercing damage.

It can be argued to be a bigger leap to force clause two to only apply to the bite attack in clause one, as they are separate clauses and the second clause even references "unarmed attacks" plural.


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Shinigami02 wrote:
t can be argued to be a bigger leap to force clause two to only apply to the bite attack in clause one,

Not with a straight face.

Quote:
Your Unarmed Attacks (any unarmed attack) can deal lethal piercing damage. You gain the doubled Weapon Specialization with any Unarmed Attack that deals lethal piercing damage.

Even IF you completely ignore the context of having a bite attack to argue core rulebook to the head levels of raw absurdity

You need to argue 2 clauses. not 1 clause or 3 clauses. That isn't consistent. You can't disconnect clause 1 from clause 2 and then connect clause 2 to clause 3

Bite attack
Lethal piercing
2x level specialization


I wouldn't be surprised if the soldier got a shield-focused fighting style in the upcoming book, perhaps something that could let them deal damage with shields equal to [insert weapon type here], like the Armor Storm style does with armored gauntlets.


BigNorseWolf wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
t can be argued to be a bigger leap to force clause two to only apply to the bite attack in clause one,

Not with a straight face.

Quote:
Your Unarmed Attacks (any unarmed attack) can deal lethal piercing damage. You gain the doubled Weapon Specialization with any Unarmed Attack that deals lethal piercing damage.

Even IF you completely ignore the context of having a bite attack to argue core rulebook to the head levels of raw absurdity

You need to argue 2 clauses. not 1 clause or 3 clauses. That isn't consistent. You can't disconnect clause 1 from clause 2 and then connect clause 2 to clause 3

Bite attack
Lethal piercing
2x level specialization

Except that the "third clause" is within the same sentence as the second clause. It's less separate clauses and more "this happens at any level, and then once you're above a certain level add this to it." As compared to the bite attack which is its own self-contained sentence.


Shinigami02 wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
t can be argued to be a bigger leap to force clause two to only apply to the bite attack in clause one,

Not with a straight face.

Quote:
Your Unarmed Attacks (any unarmed attack) can deal lethal piercing damage. You gain the doubled Weapon Specialization with any Unarmed Attack that deals lethal piercing damage.

Even IF you completely ignore the context of having a bite attack to argue core rulebook to the head levels of raw absurdity

You need to argue 2 clauses. not 1 clause or 3 clauses. That isn't consistent. You can't disconnect clause 1 from clause 2 and then connect clause 2 to clause 3

Bite attack
Lethal piercing
2x level specialization

Except that the "third clause" is within the same sentence as the second clause. It's less separate clauses and more "this happens at any level, and then once you're above a certain level add this to it." As compared to the bite attack which is its own self-contained sentence.

Did this ever get resolved? And also how does the ring exactly make the shield thing op? :O


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

This did not get resolved and will not. BNWs reading is the logical one that we wold use in a sane world. Shinigami's is the commonly accepted legalistic one that, from what I've seen, most people are running by.

DISCLAIMER: This is not an absolute declaration of consensus, only what I have seen.

The reason that it would be OP is that the RoF is an incredibly cheap item that, combined with IUS, outdamages any melee weapon that money can buy until about item level 12. The only things holding it back are the archaic property (for races without natural weapons) and the inability to apply fusions. Being able to combine a shield with the ring would remove both of those limitations.

In short, it's not that the ring would make shield bashing OP, it's that the ring is already far too powerful for its price, and anything that improves it just makes that worse.


HammerJack wrote:

This did not get resolved and will not. BNWs reading is the logical one that we wold use in a sane world. Shinigami's is the commonly accepted legalistic one that, from what I've seen, most people are running by.

DISCLAIMER: This is not an absolute declaration of consensus, only what I have seen.

The reason that it would be OP is that the RoF is an incredibly cheap item that, combined with IUS, outdamages any melee weapon that money can buy until about item level 12. The only things holding it back are the archaic property (for races without natural weapons) and the inability to apply fusions. Being able to combine a shield with the ring would remove both of those limitations.

In short, it's not that the ring would make shield bashing OP, it's that the ring is already far too powerful for its price, and anything that improves it just makes that worse.

I'm new to SF. I see that the ring gives a bite attack, which is irrelevant if you're shield 'bashin', is it the weapon specialization that makes it more viable than say, a knife?


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Yes. Adding double your level to damage is a pretty huge deal, and outstrips the average damage increase of upgrading your weapons for a pretty long time, though if your game actually gets into the really high levels, it does come to a point where damage dice start going up really fast, and they finally overtake the damage potential of double level specialization and low dice.

That doesn't happen until late enough to not be relevant most of the time, though. Every game does not last long enough for characters to go to 20.


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HammerJack wrote:

This did not get resolved and will not. BNWs reading is the logical one that we wold use in a sane world. Shinigami's is the commonly accepted legalistic one that, from what I've seen, most people are running by.

DISCLAIMER: This is not an absolute declaration of consensus, only what I have seen.

It isn't legalistic, at all. Its arbitrary munchkinism using "what gives me the answer i want" as it's sole paradigm. For every actual legitimate LN rules lawyer following an overly literal meaning there are 10 munchkins cramming a square peg into whatever socket will let them draw the most power.

MOST people don't use that way. Munchkins tend to stand out because the increased power level gets you looking under the hood of their character and and heavy presence on the rules forums.

The phrase "these attacks" is, at best, ambiguous. Pretty clearly it means your bite attack. As much as rules lawyers would like to pretend otherwise, there isn't some objective way to determine where that clause is pointing outside of common sense and reading in context.

Applying it to attacks that have been made piercing and lethal, which now just happens to be ALL of your unarmed attacks, clearly goes against the entire sentence, which is declaring them a subset of your unarmed attacks.

So its not just a simple matter of RAW vs RAI. RAW giving one objective answer is largely a myth. The phrasing absolutely, positively does NOT get you to the absurd answer. Someone needs to push it there and push HARD.

The argument here is so bad it actually manages to disparage the name of rules lawyers.


HammerJack wrote:

Yes. Adding double your level to damage is a pretty huge deal, and outstrips the average damage increase of upgrading your weapons for a pretty long time, though if your game actually gets into the really high levels, it does come to a point where damage dice start going up really fast, and they finally overtake the damage potential of double level specialization and low dice.

That doesn't happen until late enough to not be relevant most of the time, though. Every game does not last long enough for characters to go to 20.

O.I missed the double level thing.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:
HammerJack wrote:

This did not get resolved and will not. BNWs reading is the logical one that we wold use in a sane world. Shinigami's is the commonly accepted legalistic one that, from what I've seen, most people are running by.

DISCLAIMER: This is not an absolute declaration of consensus, only what I have seen.

It isn't legalistic, at all. Its arbitrary munchkinism using "what gives me the answer i want" as it's sole paradigm. For every actual legitimate LN rules lawyer following an overly literal meaning there are 10 munchkins cramming a square peg into whatever socket will let them draw the most power.

MOST people don't use that way. Munchkins tend to stand out because the increased power level gets you looking under the hood of their character and and heavy presence on the rules forums.

The phrase "these attacks" is, at best, ambiguous. Pretty clearly it means your bite attack. As much as rules lawyers would like to pretend otherwise, there isn't some objective way to determine where that clause is pointing outside of common sense and reading in context.

Applying it to attacks that have been made piercing and lethal, which now just happens to be ALL of your unarmed attacks, clearly goes against the entire sentence, which is declaring them a subset of your unarmed attacks.

So its not just a simple matter of RAW vs RAI. RAW giving one objective answer is largely a myth. The phrasing absolutely, positively does NOT get you to the absurd answer. Someone needs to push it there and push HARD.

The argument here is so bad it actually manages to disparage the name of rules lawyers.

I don't disagree with you about how bad the argument is, only about how common it seems to me, based on how many people I have seen make it or accept it, in previous conversations.


HammerJack wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
HammerJack wrote:

This did not get resolved and will not. BNWs reading is the logical one that we wold use in a sane world. Shinigami's is the commonly accepted legalistic one that, from what I've seen, most people are running by.

DISCLAIMER: This is not an absolute declaration of consensus, only what I have seen.

It isn't legalistic, at all. Its arbitrary munchkinism using "what gives me the answer i want" as it's sole paradigm. For every actual legitimate LN rules lawyer following an overly literal meaning there are 10 munchkins cramming a square peg into whatever socket will let them draw the most power.

MOST people don't use that way. Munchkins tend to stand out because the increased power level gets you looking under the hood of their character and and heavy presence on the rules forums.

The phrase "these attacks" is, at best, ambiguous. Pretty clearly it means your bite attack. As much as rules lawyers would like to pretend otherwise, there isn't some objective way to determine where that clause is pointing outside of common sense and reading in context.

Applying it to attacks that have been made piercing and lethal, which now just happens to be ALL of your unarmed attacks, clearly goes against the entire sentence, which is declaring them a subset of your unarmed attacks.

So its not just a simple matter of RAW vs RAI. RAW giving one objective answer is largely a myth. The phrasing absolutely, positively does NOT get you to the absurd answer. Someone needs to push it there and push HARD.

The argument here is so bad it actually manages to disparage the name of rules lawyers.

I don't disagree with you about how bad the argument is, only about how common it seems to me, based on how many people I have seen make it or accept it, in previous conversations.

Hasn't this been the case since forever? I'm usually more rai rather than raw, but when it boils down, people seem to go for how the sentences are split up.


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I do feel I should note somewhere in here that I actually do agree with BNW, I just tend to Devil's Advocate and was explaining what I saw as the other side's argument. There's a lot of "Technically right but logically stupid" arguments that can be drawn from Paizo's rule text sometimes.


Shinigami02 wrote:
I do feel I should note somewhere in here that I actually do agree with BNW, I just tend to Devil's Advocate and was explaining what I saw as the other side's argument. There's a lot of "Technically right but logically stupid" arguments that can be drawn from Paizo's rule text sometimes.

There is a VAST difference between technically right but implausible (like wearing light armor under heavy armor and keeping evasion while in power armor) and technically POSSIBLE but implausible. One is RAI vs the RAW. The other is the RAI and the RAW vs the RAW. It's a MUCH worse argument that something that MIGHT be read one way is the right way to read it against intent and context.

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