Can you forgo crit effects or other riders?


Rules Discussion


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Can you forgo crit effects or other riders?

My GM ruled that you couldn't, and my wouldbe prisoner bled out after I brought him low with a NONLETHAL Tiger Claw critical.

Do the rules themselves indicate anything on the matter?


Ravingdork wrote:

Can you forgo crit effects or other riders?

My GM ruled that you couldn't, and my wouldbe prisoner bled out after I brought him low with a NONLETHAL Tiger Claw critical.

Do the rules themselves indicate anything on the matter?

It's pretty clear: the rules state the riders as a fact: you "must" or "the target takes". It'd be different if it was worded 'can' but all the ones I just glanced at aren't worded in a way that you get a choice: if you have those riders and you meet the activation requirements, they auto-activate without any extra input from the PC.

In the future, be ready to use a Administer First Aid to stop the bleeding you cause if taking prisoners is something you want to do.


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graystone wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:

Can you forgo crit effects or other riders?

My GM ruled that you couldn't, and my wouldbe prisoner bled out after I brought him low with a NONLETHAL Tiger Claw critical.

Do the rules themselves indicate anything on the matter?

It's pretty clear: the rules state the riders as a fact: you "must" or "the target takes". It'd be different if it was worded 'can' but all the ones I just glanced at aren't worded in a way that you get a choice: if you have those riders and you meet the activation requirements, they auto-activate without any extra input from the PC.

In the future, be ready to use a Administer First Aid to stop the bleeding you cause if taking prisoners is something you want to do.

Not Quite

Critical Specialization Effects wrote:


Source Core Rulebook pg. 283
Certain feats, class features, weapon runes, and other effects can grant you additional benefits when you make an attack with certain weapons and get a critical success. This is called a critical specialization effect. The exact effect depends on which weapon group your weapon belongs to, as listed below. You can always decide not to add the critical specialization effect of your weapon.

Bolding mine


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Ravingdork wrote:
My GM ruled that you couldn't

Your GM doesn't sound very good.


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I would have ruled as the GM did in the absence of that bolded sentence from page 283.


Talonhawke wrote:
Not Quite

AH, missed that one. But is there something similar for non-crit effects? The OP asked on a feat affect not a crit specialization.

Tiger Stance [feat]: "On a critical success with your tiger claws, if you deal damage, the target takes 1d4 persistent bleed damage." This isn't a "critical specialization effect of your weapon" so the bolded doesn't apply.

David knott 242 wrote:


I would have ruled as the GM did in the absence of that bolded sentence from page 283.

*Nods* I looked at the feat rider in question and didn't look into the broader question. [Can you forgo crit effects or other riders?] Didn't even enter my mind to critical specialization specifically.


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graystone wrote:
Talonhawke wrote:
Not Quite

AH, missed that one. But is there something similar for non-crit effects? The OP asked on a feat affect not a crit specialization.

Tiger Stance [feat]: "On a critical success with your tiger claws, if you deal damage, the target takes 1d4 persistent bleed damage." This isn't a "critical specialization effect of your weapon" so the bolded doesn't apply.

David knott 242 wrote:


I would have ruled as the GM did in the absence of that bolded sentence from page 283.
*Nods* I looked at the feat rider in question and didn't look into the broader question. [Can you forgo crit effects or other riders?] Didn't even enter my mind to critical specialization specifically.

Yeah like I said in the other thread I failed to realize this isn't a CS. But as a GM I likely would rule it to function the same I mean if I can not bleed with a knife on a crit I wouldn't rule that it's harder to not bleed with your own hands.


Talonhawke wrote:
Yeah like I said in the other thread I failed to realize this isn't a CS.

I didn't know there was another thread. I was just making sure I didn't miss something similar for other effects.

Talonhawke wrote:
But as a GM I likely would rule it to function the same I mean if I can not bleed with a knife on a crit I wouldn't rule that it's harder to not bleed with your own hands.

Sounds reasonable but I'm sure Ravingdork is looking for RAW. He makes lists of characters, so if he's making a build that relies on nonlethal he knows not to have these type of riders in it so you don't pick it up and find a table, like PFS, has your KO'd baddies die before you can drag them into town.


Artificial 20 wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
My GM ruled that you couldn't
Your GM doesn't sound very good.

Darn DM following the rule... *shakes head sadly* What is this world coming to.


graystone wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
My GM ruled that you couldn't
Your GM doesn't sound very good.
Darn DM following the rule... *shakes head sadly* What is this world coming to.

You do make a good point. Unfortunately, the Acrobatics DC to jump to that point was 20, and you rolled a 28, so since the result of your Acrobatics check indicates the distance travelled in the jump, you overshot the point you aimed for and landed in spikes.


Artificial 20 wrote:


You do make a good point. Unfortunately, the Acrobatics DC to jump to that point was 20, and you rolled a 28, so since the result of your Acrobatics check indicates the distance travelled in the jump, you overshot the point you aimed for and landed in spikes.

I get where you're coming from but the success condition of the long jump action increases your leap distance to the desired distance, not a distance based on your roll.


Squiggit wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:


You do make a good point. Unfortunately, the Acrobatics DC to jump to that point was 20, and you rolled a 28, so since the result of your Acrobatics check indicates the distance travelled in the jump, you overshot the point you aimed for and landed in spikes.
I get where you're coming from but the success condition of the long jump action increases your leap distance to the desired distance, not a distance based on your roll.

Darn Squiggit bringing up rules facts! ;)

"Success Increase the maximum horizontal distance you Leap to the desired distance."

"The DC of the Athletics check is equal to the total distance in feet you’re attempting to move during your Leap (so you’d need to succeed at a DC 20 check to Leap 20 feet)."

PS: Jumping is Athletics, not Acrobatics so... Snark fail Artificial 20?


graystone wrote:
PS: Jumping is Athletics, not Acrobatics so... Snark fail Artificial 20?

Quoting P1E's rules copy and paste, which Paizo let sit a decade. If a new edition wipes slates, his GM still doesn't sound good, having under a year's relevant experience.


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Artificial 20 wrote:
graystone wrote:
PS: Jumping is Athletics, not Acrobatics so... Snark fail Artificial 20?
Quoting P1E's rules copy and paste, which Paizo let sit a decade. If a new edition wipes slates, his GM still doesn't sound good, having under a year's relevant experience.

Disagree. I want a GM who follows the rules, just as they expect me to follow the rules. Aside from one specific crit-related bonus, there (apparently) isn't verbiage permitting reducing the effect of a crit. Just like so far there evidently isn't working permitting voluntarily lowering AC, or voluntarily reducing base damage dealt. Paizo could have include a rule saying "you can always choose not to apply bonuses to rolls or statistics". They didn't.

A GM's job is to invent rulings where existing rules don't say what to do. With damage and crits, the rules do. Now, if this was "a player asked to use their weapon outside of combat to carefully dig out a sliver", a GM who didn't come up with a non-attack-roll-and-damage-roll way to simulate that... would be a "bad" GM. Maybe.

Finally, even the PF1 Acrobatics rules don't do what you've said they do. Rolling too high doesn't make someone jump too far. It too just involves a DC that has to be met, with that DC based on how far you want to go.


It seems that RAW, you can't.
But RAW can't and won't cover every situation. The rules are there to address the common cases (I want to hit my enemy, and I want to hit it hard) and the most notable exceptions: critical effects are something that can often work against you, like pushing the enemy out of your reach or towards your squishy allies.

There are infinite possible other situations, and that's why you need a DM who can think. Being told: "No, you cannot decide not to dodge that blow because there are no rules for that" is something that I wouldn't accept easily.


Artificial 20 wrote:
graystone wrote:
PS: Jumping is Athletics, not Acrobatics so... Snark fail Artificial 20?
Quoting P1E's rules copy and paste, which Paizo let sit a decade. If a new edition wipes slates, his GM still doesn't sound good, having under a year's relevant experience.

As we're in a PF2 thread talking about the PF2 game with a PF2 Dm and PF2 players... I'm not sure what PF1 has to do with anything. PF1's expectations aren't PF2's. Maybe make Pf1 arguments in a PF1 forum? Not to mention how confusing it is to use a different edition or games rules in a debate/argument.

As to that Pf1 argument: does it feel/sound odd that someone could under AND overshoot a jump? Nope. Would it be nice to be able to lower you roll? Yes, but I wouldn't think the Dm evil, bad or a jerk for actually doing what the game tells him the rules are. That's about all I want to say on a PF1 issue.

Megistone wrote:
There are infinite possible other situations, and that's why you need a DM who can think. Being told: "No, you cannot decide not to dodge that blow because there are no rules for that" is something that I wouldn't accept easily.

It's not there aren't rules: it's that there are rules that don't include what you want it to do. In this case it says things like "must" or "the target takes" for riders and that means what it says: crits make crit effects happen so there is a rule for it. What's missing is a specific exclusion like weapon crit effects has. That lack isn't what I'd call lack of a rule.

Even if it's something you want to houserule: In this case you're smacking someone around with a slashing attack: it's not odd to me that knocking someone out with a slashing attack might result in them bleeding so it's not, IMO, a contradiction. Heck, you can punch someone and cause bleeding IRL. That said, I wouldn't complain if a DM allowed a player to use the weapon crit rules fr all crit affects. Either way I wouldn't say the Dm was bad for doing it that way.


graystone wrote:
Megistone wrote:
There are infinite possible other situations, and that's why you need a DM who can think. Being told: "No, you cannot decide not to dodge that blow because there are no rules for that" is something that I wouldn't accept easily.

It's not there aren't rules: it's that there are rules that don't include what you want it to do. In this case it says things like "must" or "the target takes" for riders and that means what it says: crits make crit effects happen so there is a rule for it. What's missing is a specific exclusion like weapon crit effects has. That lack isn't what I'd call lack of a rule.

Even if it's something you want to houserule: In this case you're smacking someone around with a slashing attack: it's not odd to me that knocking someone out with a slashing attack might result in them bleeding so it's not, IMO, a contradiction. Heck, you can punch someone and cause bleeding IRL. That said, I wouldn't complain if a DM allowed a player to use the weapon crit rules fr all crit affects. Either way I wouldn't say the Dm was bad for doing it that way.

I never like cases where rolling "too good" can be worse than rolling bad, but in this example I would't complain too much.

Anyway, two monks doing a friendly tiger style match shouldn't end up bleeding any time a critical hit happens: they are the masters of non-lethal combat, after all.

In general, I think that there isn't much difference between absence of rules and corner cases where rules exist, but don't work as expected. As I said, I find much better to have a simple rule with only a few, important exceptions specified, and leave the rest to the GM, than have a full page detailing a lot of cases - that will never be all the possible ones anyway.


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Part of a critical hit is luck. Part of it is skill. You sometimes try to hit a particularly vulnerable spot, and you sometimes just do. The dice tell you the result.

Keep in mind that PF2 is a game where the designers decided that unless everyone in a party is dishing out non-lethal damage, it's AYG (Ask Your GM) regarding if a particular target goes straight from fully combative to irretrievably dead. The conclusion of every default combat was written to not give players control over the outcome without serious effort and penalty.

TLDR: accidentally killing things is the default assumption in PF2.


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I interpret critical success as achieving a result better than expected. If the PC is trying not to kill their opponent by using nonlethal means and rolled a critical success on their attack I'd rule that they succeeded and the opponent has been knocked out with no other negative effects, assuming their HP was below zero as a result of the attack.

Kind of related - I had a player trying to kick in a door that was locked. They got a critical success on their athletics check, so instead of ruling the door was smashed open violently because of the high roll, I ruled that they kicked the door in just such a way so that it was forced open but didn't break the lock or frame, and they could close the door behind them without obvious signs of their passing.


Megistone wrote:

I never like cases where rolling "too good" can be worse than rolling bad, but in this example I would't complain too much.

Anyway, two monks doing a friendly tiger style match shouldn't end up bleeding any time a critical hit happens: they are the masters of non-lethal combat, after all.

This isn't a situation that they rolled a total too high but they rolled a critical, something outside their control. In "a friendly tiger style match", I'd expect someone on hand that had medicine and a healer's tool to stop any bleeding if needed. IMO, it's the same as a friendly match with 2 flaming swords: any crits will cause persistent fire damage. You can't turn off the magic item's crit affect as long as flaming is on no matter it's being lethal of nonlethal: it's still on fire like a tiger stance attack is still slashing. So it make sense to me. Now would I be upset if they allowed you to opt out of all crit affects? Not really, I'm good either way.


Anguish wrote:
Finally, even the PF1 Acrobatics rules don't do what you've said they do. Rolling too high doesn't make someone jump too far. It too just involves a DC that has to be met, with that DC based on how far you want to go.

Your disagreement is with the rules.

Acrobatics wrote:
Finally, you can use the Acrobatics skill to make jumps or to soften a fall. The base DC to make a jump is equal to the distance to be crossed (if horizontal) or four times the height to be reached (if vertical). These DCs double if you do not have at least 10 feet of space to get a running start. The only Acrobatics modifiers that apply are those concerning the surface you are jumping from. If you fail this check by 4 or less, you can attempt a DC 20 Reflex save to grab hold of the other side after having missed the jump. If you fail by 5 or more, you fail to make the jump and fall (or land prone, in the case of a vertical jump). Creatures with a base land speed above 30 feet receive a +4 racial bonus on Acrobatics checks made to jump for every 10 feet of their speed above 30 feet. Creatures with a base land speed below 30 feet receive a –4 racial bonus on Acrobatics checks made to jump for every 10 feet of their speed below 30 feet. No jump can allow you to exceed your maximum movement for the round. For a running jump, the result of your Acrobatics check indicates the distance traveled in the jump (and if the check fails, the distance at which you actually land and fall prone). Halve this result for a standing long jump to determine where you land.
graystone wrote:
I wouldn't think the Dm evil, bad or a jerk for actually doing what the game tells him the rules are. That's about all I want to say on a PF1 issue.

I'm glad you won't begrudge me for requiring you to move all of your speed each Stride action.

Speed wrote:
Most characters and monsters have a speed statistic—also called land Speed—which indicates how quickly they can move across the ground. When you use the Stride action, you move a number of feet equal to your Speed. Numerous other abilities also allow you to move, from Crawling to Leaping, and most of them are based on your Speed in some way. Whenever a rule mentions your Speed without specifying a type, it’s referring to your land Speed.

Could you find an opposing quote? Yes, but I wouldn't think the DM evil, bad or a jerk for ejecting a disruptive rules lawyer.


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Fumarole wrote:
I interpret critical success as achieving a result better than expected.

I hear you. I really do. It's a compliment to the system that it's adaptable so easily to suit different players' outlooks.

I'd say "critical success is achieving a result that exceeds expectations".

For me, I'd remember that "didn't know his own strength" is a phrase we're aware for a reason. Fiction (and reality) are full of examples of accidental death from unexpected efforts. The moment violence is undertaken, lives are in danger.


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Artificial 20 wrote:
Could you find an opposing quote?

"Stride Single Action

Move
Source Core Rulebook pg. 471
You move up to your Speed.": Up to.

"Speed
Source Core Rulebook pg. 13
Speed is the distance a character can move using a single action, measured in feet.": can

"Speed
Source Core Rulebook pg. 33
This entry lists how far a member of the ancestry can move each time they spend an action (such as Stride) to do so.": can

"Movement in Encounters
Source Core Rulebook pg. 473
Your movement during encounter mode depends on the actions and other abilities you use. Whether you Stride, Step, Swim, or Climb, the maximum distance you can move is based on your Speed.": can

So... Is 4 quotes ok?

EDIT: "disruptive rules lawyer": so someone is disruptive for following the rules and not making a houserule to allow something outside the rules? To each their own. Not everyone has the some perspective or common sense so what you see as a "rules lawyer" someone else sees it as someone playing the game as presented and as it's expected to be played. For myself, I like to be able to go from 1 game to another and KNOW what the rules are when I sit down, so I expect things to follow the rules [or at least be informed of changed at the start]. Having rules like in the OP change depending on the DM's whim/fiat because it 'feels right' is something I'd rather avoid.

AS to 'kicked from the game', I think insisting on a houserule to make the rules work like you think they should be instead of how they are would get you kicked faster than following the rules as they stand...


graystone wrote:
So... Is 4 quotes ok?

1 quote was insufficient, 2 quotes was OK, 4 was too high and the hypothetical DM we're using to avoid any meaningful accountability (who isn't evil, bad or a jerk) has kicked you from the game.

Secretly, they wanted you to use your time better than this silliness.

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