Archer Pressure


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion


So I have an archer slayer with point blank master, which allows him to fire his bow without provoking attacks of opportunity, and there's a character that I have that hates him and that the party will be fighting at some point.

My main goal here is that I want him to be able to put pressure on this PC specifically to show how he's trained to fight him, but step up doesn't do anything if the PC doesn't need to five foot step.

Does anyone know of something that might be able to get around PBM, even if only once? If not, that's fine, I'll just have to figure something else out. If there's a solution other than through PBM, that would be fine as well.

The NPC in question here is a magus.

Any help would be very appreciated!


Sunder the bow, as a normal attack rather than an AoO.


I would think that a high dex martial with combat reflexes and cut from the air would be a good way to harry an archer without being straight up a counter character.

Silver Crusade

If you don't want to resort to sundering, you could trip the archer. Blade Lash, or Spell Combat using True Strike and a trip combat maneuver are a couple of ways to do it.

Lantern Lodge

And don't forget he's a Magus... Use Magic. I didn't look at the Magus spell list, but there may be something there that the Magus can use to counter the archer.


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Wind wall.


The best way to counter the archer is with defenses. Look to some of the defensive spells that a magus has. Thing with a miss chance are always good. Displacement gives a 50% miss chance so would really cut down how much damage the archer can do. Since Displacement also give you total concealment it shuts down sneak attack as well.

Slayers also have s weak will save so spells requiring a will save will be good against a slayer. Even without targeting will save you can simply use the normal intensified shocking grasp tactics to do massive damage.


Salt Spray Ring with Goz mask. Now the character has total concealment, which will screw most archers.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I would be very, very hesitant to give my PC's a Goz Mask as loot. That's an item that can get very broken very quickly. I honestly wouldn't be comfortable with items that let you see through fog-like concealment until around 10th level, because it's really powerful.


Who said the PCs get it as loot?

The NPC can harass and flee before being defeated.


Unseen servant and disarm weapon.

Have the unseen servant pick it up and throw it off a cliff. Or up a tree. Or walk around you. Or unstring it.

Meanwhile, continue doing what you do.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Claxon wrote:

Who said the PCs get it as loot?

The NPC can harass and flee before being defeated.

If you send an NPC into battle with the PC's, then you need to accept that he can and probably will die. And when he dies, anything he owns will become property of the PC's. Don't give anything to your NPC's that you'd be uncomfortable falling into the hands of your players.


A blink effect will allow you to have a 50% miss chance from each shot. However, you also have a 20% chance to miss with all of your attacks that are not AOE.


Scipio's trip build idea may be most appropriate - it's still effective against others so it isn't 100% directly targeted, but it is especially effective against an archer who thinks he can hang in melee. You can't shoot a bow while prone after all.


deflect arrows feat blocks one range attack hit per round


Dasrak wrote:
Claxon wrote:

Who said the PCs get it as loot?

The NPC can harass and flee before being defeated.

If you send an NPC into battle with the PC's, then you need to accept that he can and probably will die. And when he dies, anything he owns will become property of the PC's. Don't give anything to your NPC's that you'd be uncomfortable falling into the hands of your players.

Eh. I guess maybe I'm a bad GM in the sense that I don't let the rules interfere with the story. If the story says the bad guy escapes, the bad guy escapes. A GM can make this happen through various rules elements if you want to try to force it to happen, but I prefer the imagery of "This NPC is a misty assassin and when they realize can't win this confrontation they turn to mist and disappear".


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I guess that boils down to different GM styles and depends how the OP runs his games.

I wouldn't respond well to that kind of DMing.

If I win an encounter and trap an enemy only for him to just nope out with narrative power I would not be happy.

Very rocks fall you die vibes.


To clarify, it's not something to use often but sometimes the narrative is more important than following the rules.

If I want a reoccurring enemy NPC I feel it's within my purview to make the enemy be able to do things that aren't necessarily within the rules.

Dark Archive

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Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:

I guess that boils down to different GM styles and depends how the OP runs his games.

I wouldn't respond well to that kind of DMing.

If I win an encounter and trap an enemy only for him to just nope out with narrative power I would not be happy.

Very rocks fall you die vibes.

I agree. I'd NOPE out of the game myself


Is there much of a difference between an NPC having some mysterious ability that allows them to escape and an NPC that is under the effect of mythic contingency to teleport away? What if instead of mythic contingency its some sort item? Or special racial ability?

Not everything needs to be available to players that is available to GMs. I'm not saying GMs should abuse this power and use it with everything, but restricting a GM to "only this is allowed by the rules" means a lack of narrative control. Because frankly the PCs are monsters in comparison to what GM NPCs can do under the rules*.

It's also a very different sort of thing to have an enemy escape than it is to say "the whole party died with no way to save themselves".

But I don't think this is something I can change anyone's opinion about, so I wont bother discussing it further when this isn't the topic of the thread.


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I agree it's not keeping on topic. I also allow bad guys to escape so long as it doesn't do it in a way that cheapens the enjoyment of the players, for what it's worth. Key is it can't just seem cheap.

As for the OP I think between Sunder disarm winds and trips that's all you'll need to make an archer unhappy.

I'd also like to add in one more. Grapple. Bows need 2 hands. Grapple occupies a hand. No hand? No bow.


As a way to counter the archer, and the party more generally, Solid Fog spell can really go a long way. Regardless of anyone having anyway to see through the fog, it's still "solid" and makes ranged attacks ineffective. And a wand of solid fog is relatively cheap.

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