Do Reactions occur AFTER the triggering condition?


Rules Discussion


Do they? Specifically, a situation came up in our game last night where the Fighter had tripped a monster. The monster stood up on its turn, which as an action with the Move trait triggered an Attack of Opportunity.

So: Was the monster flat-footed against the attack due to being prone? Or did it stand up first, and THEN the fighter reacted?

I didn't find a clarification in the CRB about the timing of reactions. I just applied the logic of the language and reasoned that, since something needs a trigger to happen, that it takes place AFTER the trigger. Thus, the monster stood up and THEN the fighter had his Attack of Opportunity.


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Core Rulebook, pg. 474: "Actions with the move trait can trigger reactions or free actions throughout the course of the distance traveled. Each time you exit a square (or move 5 feet if not using a grid) within a creature’s reach, your movement triggers those reactions and free actions (although no more than once per move action for a given reacting creature). If you use a move action but don’t move out of a square, the trigger instead happens at the end of that action or ability."

Note that this is specifically for move actions that trigger reactions. For something like a manipulate action, I would guess the Attack of Opportunity has to happen before the action resolves, since the Attack of Opportunity can disrupt it.

Exo-Guardians

Quote:

Move Actions that Trigger Reactions

Source: Core Rulebook pg. 474

Some reactions and free actions are triggered by a creature using an action with the move trait. The most notable example is Attack of Opportunity. Actions with the move trait can trigger reactions or free actions throughout the course of the distance traveled. Each time you exit a square (or move 5 feet if not using a grid) within a creature’s reach, your movement triggers those reactions and free actions (although no more than once per move action for a given reacting creature). If you use a move action but don’t move out of a square, the trigger instead happens at the end of that action or ability.

Emphasis mine. It appears that the answer depends on the situation, but you ruled correctly in the case of standing up from prone-- it was a move action that didn't involve moving out of a square, so the AOO happens after the monster stood up.

However there are other situations where the reaction can go off before or during the triggering action-- for example, there are rules on pg 462 for what happens when an action is disrupted partway through, which wouldn't be necessary if reactions never happened until after the triggering action was complete.


Thanks.

Okay, so it looks like the general rule is that the reaction occurs after the triggering condition, with the exception of situations when the reaction has the ability to disrupt the triggering action. In which case, it would be explicitly spelled out anyway.

(As a reference guide, I would have preferred it if the CRB had included the above quote under "Reactions" instead of only under the section on "Movement in Encounters.")

Exo-Guardians

The Rot Grub wrote:

Thanks.

Okay, so it looks like the general rule is that the reaction occurs after the triggering condition, with the exception of situations when the reaction has the ability to disrupt the triggering action. In which case, it would be explicitly spelled out anyway.

(As a reference guide, I would have preferred it if the CRB had included the above quote under "Reactions" instead of only under the section on "Movement in Encounters.")

I think it's the other way around-- since "using a move action without leaving a square" is called out as a specific exception where the reaction happens after the trigger. That implies that the general default is "reactions happen simultaneously with their triggers and can disrupt them" unless otherwise specified.

Dark Archive

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

“That implies that the general default is "reactions happen simultaneously with their triggers and can disrupt them" unless otherwise specified.”

Reactions can only disrupt if they say they do. If an action is disrupted, p462 describes the outcome: the actions are spent, and GM makes final call about the result. Usually this means the thing didn’t happen or succeed, but say a disrupted long jump doesn’t send the person back where they came from.

Nothing disrupts unless it explicitly says it does. Readying an attack to hit a spellcaster? Hits, only does damage because that’s all a melee strike does.

Very few things disrupt actions. The melee strike on the fighter’s attack of opportunity is one. It only works if :

1. It was a manipulate action
2. The attack critically hits.

Movement isn’t disrupted by an attack of opportunity.

The fighter feat Disruptive Stance expands this to concentrate actions too, and makes it work on a hit instead of a crit, but it still has to be from the attack of opportunity.

Rangers get Disrupt Prey, which lets them do a melee strike on a move, manipulate action, or leave a threatened square. On crit, the action is disrupted.

Rogues get Reactive interference, which lets them disrupt a reaction.

Casters may take counterspell to have a chance to disrupt spells.

That’s it. Those are the only ways to disrupt an action in 2E today.


So what happens if you kill the target with a reaction while the target is casting a spell? Does it prevent the spell from being cast?


Charlesfire wrote:
So what happens if you kill the target with a reaction while the target is casting a spell? Does it prevent the spell from being cast?
Core 462 wrote:

Disrupting Actions

Various abilities and conditions, such as an Attack of
Opportunity, can disrupt an action. When an action
is disrupted
, you still use the actions or reactions you
committed and you still expend any costs, but the action’s
effects don’t occur
. In the case of an activity, you usually
lose all actions spent for the activity up through the end of
that turn. For instance, if you began a Cast a Spell activity
requiring 3 actions and the first action was disrupted, you
lose all 3 actions that you committed to that activity.
The GM decides what effects a disruption causes
beyond simply negating the effects that would have
occurred from the disrupted action
.

Arguably no, if you kill a spellcaster when they provoke when casting, the spell does not go off.

Exo-Guardians

Glav wrote:

Reactions can only disrupt if they say they do.

...
Nothing disrupts unless it explicitly says it does.

Where are you finding this rule?


Saros Palanthios wrote:
Glav wrote:

Reactions can only disrupt if they say they do.

...
Nothing disrupts unless it explicitly says it does.
Where are you finding this rule?
"Disrupted and Lost Spells, CRB 303 wrote:

Some abilities and spells can

disrupt a spell, causing it to have no effect and be lost. When you lose a spell, you’ve already expended the spell slot, spent the spell’s costs and actions, and used the Cast a Spell activity.
If a spell is disrupted during a Sustain a Spell action, the spell immediately ends. The full rules for disrupting actions appear on page 462.

"Some." Which ones? The ones that tell you they do. There is no general rule on disrupting spells, or they would have stated it here.

Disrupting Actions, CRB 462 wrote:
Various abilities and conditions, such as an Attack of Opportunity, can disrupt an action.

"Various abilities." Which ones? The ones that tell you they do. Such as Attack of Opportunity. The rest of this general rule covers what happens when something is disrupted, not a general class of things that do disrupt, because there is no such thing.

Exo-Guardians

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Xenocrat wrote:
Saros Palanthios wrote:
Glav wrote:

Reactions can only disrupt if they say they do.

...
Nothing disrupts unless it explicitly says it does.
Where are you finding this rule?
"Disrupted and Lost Spells, CRB 303 wrote:

Some abilities and spells can

disrupt a spell, causing it to have no effect and be lost. When you lose a spell, you’ve already expended the spell slot, spent the spell’s costs and actions, and used the Cast a Spell activity.
If a spell is disrupted during a Sustain a Spell action, the spell immediately ends. The full rules for disrupting actions appear on page 462.

"Some." Which ones? The ones that tell you they do. There is no general rule on disrupting spells, or they would have stated it here.

Disrupting Actions, CRB 462 wrote:
Various abilities and conditions, such as an Attack of Opportunity, can disrupt an action.
"Various abilities." Which ones? The ones that tell you they do. Such as Attack of Opportunity. The rest of this general rule covers what happens when something is disrupted, not a general class of things that do disrupt, because there is no such thing.

That's a very narrow interpretation. In PF2, Paizo has intentionally moved away from the "if it's not explicitly called out in the RAW then it's impossible/doesn't exist" mindset of PF1, in favor of a "if there's ambiguity, use your brain/common sense" system.

Let's take a basic example-- say an enemy wizard begins casting a spell with a somatic component while standing next to the party Fighter. The Fighter uses Attack of Opportunity, and scores a hit but not a crit, so the spell isn't disrupted... however he rolls enough damage to kill the wizard anyway, and he's now dead (or unconscious and dying).

The rules don't specifically say that being killed or knocked unconscious Disrupts the Cast a Spell activity, so by your interpretation, the spell still wouldn't be disrupted and a dead wizard could somehow finish casting it from beyond the grave!

PF2 relies upon GMs and players to apply logic and common sense to apply the general rules to their specific in-game circumstances, rater than attempting to provide explicit verbiage for every possible eventuality. There are hundreds of conceivable ways that an action or activity might reasonably be Disrupted, beyond the examples called out in the CRB. What if I use Sudden Charge, but there's an invisible wall I didn't know about between me and my target? The CRB doesn't say that running into a solid barrier Disrupts move actions, but no GM worth their salt would rule that I should therefore get to charge through a stone wall. What if I'm performing a multi-day Ritual on the beach, when a tidal wave appears and washes the whole party out to sea? The CRB doesn't say that natural disasters can Disrupt, but would you really argue that the Ritual can therefore continue even while the casters are swimming for their lives?


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Those are cool house rules that totally make sense in those situations. But we're in the rules forum, and there are no rules providing for disrupting an action except for specific things that say "if X, disrupt." Things that do not say that do not, according to the rules, disrupt.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Here's a question for you:

A monk has the feat Stand Still. A prone enemy next to them stands up from prone. The monk's attack of opportunity is a critical hit. What happens?

Stand Still says it disrupts move actions. But the rules for triggers say that the monk does not get to use his reaction until the target has finished standing up. Are they knocked prone? Did they ever stand up in the first place? If another PC has readied an attack with the trigger "when the prone enemy stands up" does the readied attack trigger?

Exo-Guardians

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Xenocrat wrote:
Those are cool house rules that totally make sense in those situations. But we're in the rules forum, and there are no rules providing for disrupting an action except for specific things that say "if X, disrupt." Things that do not say that do not, according to the rules, disrupt.

If you want to rely on RAW alone, take a look at page 444 of the CRB:

Quote:

The GM Has the Final Say

If you’re ever uncertain how to apply a rule, the GM decides.
Of course, Pathfnder is a game, so when adjudicating the
rules, the GM is encouraged to listen to everyone’s point of
view and make a decision that is both fair and fun.
...
Ambiguous Rules
Sometimes a rule could be interpreted multiple ways. If one
version is too good to be true, it probably is. If a rule seems
to have wording with problematic repercussions or doesn’t
work as intended, work with your group to find a good
solution, rather than just playing with the rule as printed.

The rules themselves explicitly instruct you to ignore or modify the rules if they don't make sense in a particular context. Per the RAW, it is illegal to robotically stick to the RAW alone!


LOL


MaxAstro wrote:

Here's a question for you:

A monk has the feat Stand Still. A prone enemy next to them stands up from prone. The monk's attack of opportunity is a critical hit. What happens?

Stand Still says it disrupts move actions. But the rules for triggers say that the monk does not get to use his reaction until the target has finished standing up. Are they knocked prone? Did they ever stand up in the first place? If another PC has readied an attack with the trigger "when the prone enemy stands up" does the readied attack trigger?

I'd definitely rule it puts them back down on the ground but I dunno if that's supported by RAW.


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Xenocrat wrote:
Those are cool house rules that totally make sense in those situations. But we're in the rules forum, and there are no rules providing for disrupting an action except for specific things that say "if X, disrupt." Things that do not say that do not, according to the rules, disrupt.

You don't need to use the "disrupt" keyword to argue that a creature who cannot act (such as a wizard who just fell unconscious due to a reaction) cannot take actions.

Core Rulebook, pg. 462 wrote:
The most restrictive form of reducing actions is when an effect states that you can’t act: this means you can’t use any actions, or even speak.


Stand Still does absolutely nothing to a Person Standing up, as per the second post of this thread. It is a feat made to Keep Persons in one space, nothing more, nothing less.


Poit wrote:
Xenocrat wrote:
Those are cool house rules that totally make sense in those situations. But we're in the rules forum, and there are no rules providing for disrupting an action except for specific things that say "if X, disrupt." Things that do not say that do not, according to the rules, disrupt.

You don't need to use the "disrupt" keyword to argue that a creature who cannot act (such as a wizard who just fell unconscious due to a reaction) cannot take actions.

Core Rulebook, pg. 462 wrote:
The most restrictive form of reducing actions is when an effect states that you can’t act: this means you can’t use any actions, or even speak.

Cool nonsequitor. Please read my posts and limit your responses to the single thing I actually disputed. This isn’t it.

Scarab Sages

Saros Palanthios wrote:
Xenocrat wrote:
Those are cool house rules that totally make sense in those situations. But we're in the rules forum, and there are no rules providing for disrupting an action except for specific things that say "if X, disrupt." Things that do not say that do not, according to the rules, disrupt.

If you want to rely on RAW alone, take a look at page 444 of the CRB:

Quote:

The GM Has the Final Say

If you’re ever uncertain how to apply a rule, the GM decides.
Of course, Pathfnder is a game, so when adjudicating the
rules, the GM is encouraged to listen to everyone’s point of
view and make a decision that is both fair and fun.
...
Ambiguous Rules
Sometimes a rule could be interpreted multiple ways. If one
version is too good to be true, it probably is. If a rule seems
to have wording with problematic repercussions or doesn’t
work as intended, work with your group to find a good
solution, rather than just playing with the rule as printed.
The rules themselves explicitly instruct you to ignore or modify the rules if they don't make sense in a particular context. Per the RAW, it is illegal to robotically stick to the RAW alone!

We dont have a GM here, that entire argument doesn't work.

Exo-Guardians

Angel Hunter D wrote:
We dont have a GM here, that entire argument doesn't work.

Are we not all GMs and/or players, here to discuss how to run/play the game properly? Or are we just arguing for argument's sake?

My only point is that saying something like "according to the Rules, only things with the Disrupt tag can possibly disrupt an action, and nothing else can, ever" is idiotic, not least because the same set of Rules explicitly tells you to "work with your group to find a good solution, rather than just playing with the rule as printed".


Saros Palanthios wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
We dont have a GM here, that entire argument doesn't work.

Are we not all GMs and/or players, here to discuss how to run/play the game properly? Or are we just arguing for argument's sake?

My only point is that saying something like "according to the Rules, only things with the Disrupt tag can possibly disrupt an action, and nothing else can, ever" is idiotic, not least because the same set of Rules explicitly tells you to "work with your group to find a good solution, rather than just playing with the rule as printed".

For the purposes of the rules forum, a rule to houserule, which is what you're citing, is pointless, because it's not an answer to what the rules require. Such discussions belong in advice or general discussion threads. Here the answer is either (1) this is what you do, see pg XXX, or (2) ask your GM, there is no rule.


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Xenocrat wrote:
Saros Palanthios wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
We dont have a GM here, that entire argument doesn't work.

Are we not all GMs and/or players, here to discuss how to run/play the game properly? Or are we just arguing for argument's sake?

My only point is that saying something like "according to the Rules, only things with the Disrupt tag can possibly disrupt an action, and nothing else can, ever" is idiotic, not least because the same set of Rules explicitly tells you to "work with your group to find a good solution, rather than just playing with the rule as printed".

For the purposes of the rules forum, a rule to houserule, which is what you're citing, is pointless, because it's not an answer to what the rules require. Such discussions belong in advice or general discussion threads. Here the answer is either (1) this is what you do, see pg XXX, or (2) ask your GM, there is no rule.

So a Monk with Stand Still feat has someone move out of the threatened square and they get to take a reaction. In theory the reaction to make a strike should then happen. If a non-crit then just damage, if a crit there is an disrupt and they aren't able to move and lose the action.

The distinction here is when they exit the square (valid trigger) then you get to do a strike. If we're following the logic presented here that the action doesn't get stopped/halted or whatever you want to call it, through a reaction, the person could simply finish their move and be out of range of the Monk when we now are saying they can react. We know that isn't true because then what's the point? The reaction should get to finish resolution first.

The order has to be Action declared and taken/in process of happening (movement) -> Ready Trigger gets met -> Reaction happens and is resolved (including any disrupts) -> Action (if possible) finishes but if not possible doesn't finish. Otherwise what is to prevent a move action simply moving out of the range of Stand Still and making it an irrelevant power?

Reading some of these interpretations here would mean that if your Stand still non-crit killed someone as they were leaving a square they should still be able to complete finishing their move, scooting their corpse along the floor because you can't disrupt it with just an non-crit Stand Still hit, the same if they were finishing a spell? Pathfinder 2.0 Weekend At Bernie's y'all.

I don't think that makes any sense from the reading of the rules.

Page 462 of CRB states:
When its trigger is satisfied—and only when it
is satisfied—you can use the reaction or free action, though
you don’t have to use the action if you don’t want to.

Exo-Guardians

Xenocrat wrote:
Saros Palanthios wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
We dont have a GM here, that entire argument doesn't work.

Are we not all GMs and/or players, here to discuss how to run/play the game properly? Or are we just arguing for argument's sake?

My only point is that saying something like "according to the Rules, only things with the Disrupt tag can possibly disrupt an action, and nothing else can, ever" is idiotic, not least because the same set of Rules explicitly tells you to "work with your group to find a good solution, rather than just playing with the rule as printed".

For the purposes of the rules forum, a rule to houserule, which is what you're citing, is pointless, because it's not an answer to what the rules require. Such discussions belong in advice or general discussion threads. Here the answer is either (1) this is what you do, see pg XXX, or (2) ask your GM, there is no rule.

You're still thinking in terms of PF1, which inherited 3.5's proclivity for trying to predict and legislate for every possible circumstance or corner case that might come up in anyone's game. That was always an impossible task, and PF2 doesn't attempt to continue in that futile direction. Instead it intentionally relies on players and GMs to apply their common sense. In PF2, "ask your GM" oftentimes is the rule.

It's a different paradigm, and some people won't like it. PFS GMs in particular will have more personal responsibility now-- they won't always be able to just shrug their shoulders and say "that's the RAW, it's out of my hands". They'll actually have to engage their brains (and their social skills) and make a judgement calls, in a way that doesn't piss off their players. Some GMs will welcome the freedom, others will hate the lack of certainty. It is what it is. The only thing it definitely isn't is PF1.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Saros Palanthios wrote:
Xenocrat wrote:
Saros Palanthios wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
We dont have a GM here, that entire argument doesn't work.

Are we not all GMs and/or players, here to discuss how to run/play the game properly? Or are we just arguing for argument's sake?

My only point is that saying something like "according to the Rules, only things with the Disrupt tag can possibly disrupt an action, and nothing else can, ever" is idiotic, not least because the same set of Rules explicitly tells you to "work with your group to find a good solution, rather than just playing with the rule as printed".

For the purposes of the rules forum, a rule to houserule, which is what you're citing, is pointless, because it's not an answer to what the rules require. Such discussions belong in advice or general discussion threads. Here the answer is either (1) this is what you do, see pg XXX, or (2) ask your GM, there is no rule.

You're still thinking in terms of PF1, which inherited 3.5's proclivity for trying to predict and legislate for every possible circumstance or corner case that might come up in anyone's game. That was always an impossible task, and PF2 doesn't attempt to continue in that futile direction. Instead it intentionally relies on players and GMs to apply their common sense. In PF2, "ask your GM" oftentimes is the rule.

It's a different paradigm, and some people won't like it. PFS GMs in particular will have more personal responsibility now-- they won't always be able to just shrug their shoulders and say "that's the RAW, it's out of my hands". They'll actually have to engage their brains (and their social skills) and make a judgement calls, in a way that doesn't piss off their players. Some GMs will welcome the freedom, others will hate the lack of certainty. It is what it is. The only thing it definitely isn't is PF1.

It’s true GMs have more personal responsibility now. I also appreciate that :-) I agree that waking into a force wall of dying will likely “disrupt” (in the general sense) an action.

(In response to the various posts since my last one above)

When I talked about Disrupting an action, I’m talking about the mechanical effect listed on the book under disrupting an action on p,462. Sure, a force wall will make it impossible to move beyond that point. It may, in the general sense of the English word, “disrupt” the “sudden charge” activity. That’s not a “disrupt” ability per the book.

Let’s take readying an action to attack a spellcaster. Ready, page 470, says:

Quote:

You prepare to use an action that will occur outside your turn. Choose a single action or free action you can use, and designate a trigger. Your turn then ends. If the trigger you designated occurs before the start of your next turn, you can use the chosen action as a reaction (provided you still meet the requirements to use it). You can’t Ready a free action that already has a trigger.

If you have a multiple attack penalty and your readied action is an attack action, your readied attack takes the multiple attack penalty you had at the time you used Ready. This is one of the few times the multiple attack penalty applies when it’s not your turn.

So you could designate, “I see that spellcaster start to cast a spell”. Awesome! You can use an action, such as strike, when that happens.

Strike says:

Quote:

STRIKE [one-action] ATTACK

You attack with a weapon you’re wielding or with an unarmed attack, targeting one creature within your reach (for a melee attack) or within range (for a ranged attack). Roll the attack roll for the weapon or unarmed attack you are using, and compare the result to the target creature’s AC to determine the effect. See Attack Rolls on page 446 and Damage on page 450 for details on calculating your attack and damage rolls.
Critical Success As success, but you deal double damage (page 451). Success You deal damage according to the weapon or unarmed attack, including any modifiers, bonuses, and penalties you
have to damage.

No effect in strike says it disrupts (as in, the mechanic).

Sure, if they’re dead, they can’t act. A GM might rule that it took some time for an arrow to fly, and the player could finish the spell as they’re dying, or the player that kills the BBEG then they end the effect the BBEG wizard had before it goes off (or reverse the two for theme or time by the GM.). It probably kills them mid cast, and thus the action doesn’t finish. This is not the “disrupting an action” as described in P.462. This is the player succumbing to another status condition (dying) which prevents those actions in itself.

Mechanically, the “disrupt” effect only occurs when an ability says it. A readied attack has no way to disrupt a wizard the way it did in 3.5/PF1. Readied actions only do what they do: strike, move, or whatever other one cost action or free action you can do.

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