Precise Shot and engaged in melee question


Rules Questions


"Two characters are engaged in melee if they are enemies of each other and either threatens the other."

Greetings. I am sorry for my bad English, but I do not understand which variant of "either" used here:

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/either

a) either = EACH (every one of two)

b) either = OR (one of two)

For instabce: there are two men in near squares, they are enemies, one has longsword, another - unarmed (and no Improved Unarmed Strike, no Natural Attacks etc.) - are they engaged in melee (because they are enemies and one of them with the sword threatens the other)?


Yes, in this case those two are engaged in melee, and precise shot will be needed to avoid taking a -4 to attack if firing at the swordsman or the unarmed man.


A more extreme example.

A large sized ogre with a reach weapon threatens one of your party members. The ogre is 15' away from your party member but thanks to size and weapon he threatens. So technically they are both in melee.


Shooting or throwing into melee rules:

“If your target (or the part of your target you’re aiming at, if it’s a big target) is at least 10 feet away from the nearest friendly character, you can avoid the –4 penalty, even if the creature you’re aiming at is engaged in melee with a friendly character.”

So if they’re not adjacent, or they take up multiple squares and you can target one of their non-adjacent squares (like if you’re behind them), you don’t need precise shot.

Scarab Sages

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"Two characters are engaged in melee if they are enemies of each other and either threatens the other."

What this means is if two characters are within melee range, are enemies, and at least one of them threatens the other (Meaning they could take an AoO if that person tried to move away), then precise shot would be needed to not take a -4 penalty. Including if they have reach of some sort, it would still count because one person is still threatening the other with a melee weapon, just like Meirril said.


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AsimTheAnubite wrote:


"Two characters are engaged in melee if they are enemies of each other and either threatens the other."

What this means is if two characters are within melee range, are enemies, and at least one of them threatens the other (Meaning they could take an AoO if that person tried to move away), then precise shot would be needed to not take a -4 penalty. Including if they have reach of some sort, it would still count because one person is still threatening the other with a melee weapon, just like Meirril said.

But if you continue reading, the section I posted is almost directly after that quote. Reach *does* matter for shooting into melee. If an enemy is at least 10ft away from all allies, you do not take the penalty for shooting into melee. Or if it is a large (10x5 or larger) creature, taking up multiple squares, *if* you can target a square of the creature that is not adjacent to any allies, you do not take penalties for shooting into melee.

Y'all need to start reading entire rules sections

EDIT: TL/DR? Engaged in melee =/= shooting/throwing into melee. Penalties for shooting/throwing into melee *only* occur when you target a square of the creature that is adjacent to any ally.


To put it all together:

Two characters are engaged in melee if they are enemies and one or more of them threatens the other.

You take a -4 penalty for shooting and throwing into a melee if the enemy's square you are targeting is at least 10ft. from the nearest friendly participant.

Does that make sense?

Logically, say I'm getting robbed. The guy is holding a knife. I am holding a baby.
I may not be able to participate in the actual exchange of the melee, but I am certainly (and unfortunately) engaged in it.


Quixote wrote:


You take a -4 penalty for shooting and throwing into a melee if the enemy's square you are targeting is at least 10ft. from the nearest friendly participant.

Except this part is just barely backwards... it's that you *don't* take the penalty if the enemy's square you are targeting is at least 10 ft form the nearest friendly participant... closer than 10 ft (ie: sharing the enemies' square or adjacent) takes the penalty, 10 ft or farther (a one square gap or more) does not take the penalty.


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'Either' in the sentence is a pronoun, rather than an adjective (the definitions listed are for either as an adjective.)

Either as a pronoun can only mean 'the one or the other'


Dave Justus wrote:

'Either' in the sentence is a pronoun, rather than an adjective (the definitions listed are for either as an adjective.)

Either as a pronoun can only mean 'the one or the other'

Thank you

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