Nat 20 clarification


Rules Discussion


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber

I know this has been asked before, but it wasn’t included in the October Core Rulebook update. I am hoping to get some clarification. I think it is pretty clear on page 445 that checks move up one degree of success on a natural 20. On page 278 it states that an attack roll of 20 is a critical success. I have been playing those rules as written for the last 8 months meaning skill checks and saving throws aren’t necessarily critical successes, but attack rolls are. I am wondering if that was written by design or a mistake in the text? I would think if it were a mistake, it would have been included in the update? Just wanting to play the game the way it is supposed to be played. Thanks for you input in advance.


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Logan Bonner confirmed that a natural 20 is not always a critical success on attacks on his twitter.


Nat 20s are no longer automatic success or automatic critical success on anything. They improve the outcome one step.

If you roll a nat 20, but miss the target DC by 10, instead of critically failing you only fail.

If you roll a nat 20, but miss the target DC, you succeed instead of failing.

If you roll a nat 20, and hit the tagret DC you critically succeed.

If you roll a nat 20 and exceed the target DC by 10, you we're already going to critically succeed, but it might matter with other abilities that have effects on things (maybe).

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