Tier List for Reactions


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion


So I was thinking after at the debate around shields it would be interesting to compare the different things you could potentially spend your reaction (ignoring spells slots). I am bound to have miss some so do point them out to me.

This my tier list

TOP TIER

Retributive Strike (the best IMO) has an easy trigger great range, is both defensive and offensive and with all the add on does persistent good damage and grants each ally an opportunity attack at a -2. Nothing else comes close. If you get the opportunity to use this your never going to regret spending your reaction on it.

Attack of Opportunity fairly common multiple triggers an extra strike is a great effect and with the right add on it can reliably disrupt spells and other effects.

Glimpse of Redemption -Easy trigger a great defensive feature with amazing upgrades

Liberating Step: Easy trigger, great range, great defensively a little bit more situational than the other two paladin reactions when it comes to it secondary effect but when it does come up its awesome.

Opportune Backstab: An easy trigger and who doesn't like a free strike likely with combat advantage and sneak attack.

Shield of Reckoning - A paladin reaction + a shield block harder to trigger than a paladin reaction due to the range limit of shield block and it has all of the negatives of a shield block but spectacular with a sturdy shield and some luck.

GOOD TIER

Reactive Shield: +2 to AC till the start of next turn for a reaction is solid

Stand Still: Like Attack of opportunity but less reliable triggers.

Disrupt Prey: Like Attack of Opportunity but with limited targeting

Guardian Deflection: has a neet trigger that means you can't use it unless it's going to be helpful. Turning a hit into a miss or a crit into a hit is solid.

AVERAGE TIER

Cleave/Great Cleave: not the most reliable of triggers and useless in a boss encounter wwithout minions but great effect for the hard hitting barbarian.

Your next: has the same trigger as cleave a less potent but still very useful effect and much better range

Shield Block: A good defensive reaction with build usage limiter, it has a strong amount of feat support. Very equipment dependent and unlike a lot of reactions on this list above there will be times you will not want to use it when it triggers.

Duelling/ Two Weapon Riposte: A an extra strike is a good effect, limited by the critical miss trigger but it benefits from iterative attack penalties so against equal or level enemies it should trigger once or twice a combat.

Mirror Shield: A really good effect but relies on a critical miss trigger on a spell attack which are less likely to suffer iterative penalties than melee attacks.

BELOW AVERAGE TIER
Nimble dodge: a +2 to AC is good and the trigger is easy but unlike guardian deflection this doesn't only trigger when it would be useful so it gives you the potential to waste your reaction.

POOR TIER
Storm Retribution: Resource dependent with trigger you want avoid at all cost.


Not sure where I would place them, but Rogue also has You're Next and Nimble Dodge, the latter of which can be enhanced by Nimble Roll.


My 2 cents on the additional reactions mentioned:

Nimble dodge, unless they errata it, is a pretty terrible one unfortunately. You have to use it prior to the attack being rolled, so it's got an 80% chance of doing nothing, effectively. It's below average, but Storm Retribution might be worse :-P.

You're Next is decent, and later becomes a free action, making it even more awesome. The downside is that it's going to be hard for *you* to take advantage of the frightened condition, so it's more useful for others in your party/to make the enemy miss.

Nimble Roll makes Dodge slightly better, but it's still not something I take over opportune backstab. Nimble Roll's ability on Reflex Saves, however, can be rather good, as those AoE's tend to be a lot less frequent and a lot more impactful, so I wouldn't mind using my reaction for that.

EDIT: I might put Liberating Step on the good tier. Yes, it's sometimes *super* handy, but the other two champion reactions are more universally useful IMO. Overall though, I generally agree with most of your rankings.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I have updated adding nimble dodge, your next and guardians deflection. I am loath to lower the tier of liberating step because I played in a game with a gm who loved grabby monsters and it saved our bacon so many times.


Liberating Step is really great against any creature without reach because the free step makes you out of the enemy range negating even more damage.

Liberty's Edge

6 people marked this as a favorite.

I think you're underselling Storm Retribution. Sure, you never want to see it triggered, but you're 100% gonna get crit at some point, and getting a free two-action attack out of it isn't too shabby. It's something that will be triggered rarely, but feel good and useful when it is.

I'm not saying it's amazing, but it's probably better than Nimble Dodge, IMO.

tivadar27 wrote:
EDIT: I might put Liberating Step on the good tier. Yes, it's sometimes *super* handy, but the other two champion reactions are more universally useful IMO. Overall though, I generally agree with most of your rankings.

Liberating Step's tactical movement options are sweet. It can utterly shut down secondary attacks (really good vs. boss monsters), set up flanking, allow the target to get into their own reach on opponents with greater reach without spending an action, and similar things.

The escape effect is niche, but the movement is really good if used properly.


Better than nimble dodge?

I still don’t get why anyone thinks nimble dodge is even remotely close to bad. If PCs didn’t inherently know a first attack is more likely to hit, then maybe, but they do and a +2 to ac is massive and it can be used every turn (and will be).

I mean seriously, how many reactions can you realistically use every single turn? That alone makes it valuable.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Deadmanwalking wrote:

I think you're underselling Storm Retribution. Sure, you never want to see it triggered, but you're 100% gonna get crit at some point, and getting a free two-action attack out of it isn't too shabby. It's something that will be triggered rarely, but feel good and useful when it is.

I'm not saying it's amazing, but it's probably better than Nimble Dodge, IMO

Yeah, strong disagree here. If I get attacked and have the option of Nimble Dodging ahead of time knowing I won't be able to use Storm Retribution if I do, I'm 100% Nimble Dodging...

As for Liberating Step, yeah, I understand it can definitely be useful, and I don't think it's bad, I just think the other two tend to be better. Honestly, I might rank those two reactions above all the others in "best" tier... But everyone's going to have different opinions.


Nimble dodge amounts to a 20% reduction in damage from one attack which isn't bad. It comes of worse because I compare it to guardians deflection which leads to a 50% - 100% reduction in damage for 1 attack just by having a nicer trigger.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Midnightoker wrote:

Better than nimble dodge?

I still don’t get why anyone thinks nimble dodge is even remotely close to bad. If PCs didn’t inherently know a first attack is more likely to hit, then maybe, but they do and a +2 to ac is massive and it can be used every turn (and will be).

I mean seriously, how many reactions can you realistically use every single turn? That alone makes it valuable.

This is fair. I was mostly just saying I wouldn't put Storm Retribution on the absolute lowest tier by itself.

But looking at Nimble Dodge, maybe it's just a 'feel bad' thing? Nimble Dodge feels bad because it's usually useless. Most attacks you use it on it makes absolutely no difference to the result. Yes, it makes a difference 20% of the time, and over time that'll definitely add up, but it still feels bad to usually 'waste' your Reaction.


Deadmanwalking wrote:

But looking at Nimble Dodge, maybe it's just a 'feel bad' thing? Nimble Dodge feels bad because it's usually useless. Most attacks you use it on it makes absolutely no difference to the result. Yes, it makes a difference 20% of the time, and over time that'll definitely add up, but it still feels bad to usually 'waste' your Reaction.

Not to detract from the feeling, but I would say the number of times I have seen ND produce a miss (or a nullified crit) when it otherwise would have hit is high for my table.

Even if only 50% of the time the +2 made a difference, that's once every two turns you avoided damage.

Everyone's experience is different, but I can't say the Rogues I've seen "feel bad" about it all that often.


You might put Readied action on the list. It has a high cost of 2 actions and a reaction but it can be very useful and as a plus everyone can do it.


Very interesting subject.
I would just point that triggers are less important than effects as all your reactions compete for your single reaction per turn.

For example, Nimble Dodge has a common trigger but a meh effect. If you just have it, it's nice. But once you start adding Opportune Backstab or impredictable reactions like Attack of Opportunity, you'll stop using it to give you a chance to trigger your other reactions.

Top tier:

Fortutious Shift: Awesome reaction. Both easy to trigger with excellent effects even if random. A must have for any class without a built in reaction.

Drop Dead: Common trigger, strong effect. The only drawback is the resource cost, but at high levels it's awesome.

Good Tier:

Goblin Scuttle: Can be triggered voluntarily by your allies. The effect is nice if you need it, meh otherwise.

Breath of Life: Saving an ally is awesome. But it should happen very rarely and it's a high level spell.

Divine Grace: A staple. Also, it's a circumstance bonus to save which is hyper rare.

Average:

Spontaneous Counterspell: Ruining nearly a whole enemy turn for a reaction and a spell is awesome. But the trigger is still hard to meet, and you need preferably to counter a Signature spell so you can choose the best level to counter. Still, some spells (Heal, Harm, Dispel Magic, Dimension Door) are cast a lot by enemies.

Clever Counterspell: Makes prepared counterspelling usable.

Below Average:

Unexpected Shift: Easy to trigger but the effects are random and you take a penalty for one round. Better to wait for the next one.

Pride in Arms: The effect is too low, even if you can meet the trigger quite often.

Anathematic Reprisal: I love the thematic part, but it's not incredible otherwise as it will rarely be triggered in combat. Free damage still.

Poor Tier:

Prepared Counterspell: It's so hard to get the good spell at the good level that I hardly see how to use it without Clever Counterspell.


Midnightoker wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:

But looking at Nimble Dodge, maybe it's just a 'feel bad' thing? Nimble Dodge feels bad because it's usually useless. Most attacks you use it on it makes absolutely no difference to the result. Yes, it makes a difference 20% of the time, and over time that'll definitely add up, but it still feels bad to usually 'waste' your Reaction.

Not to detract from the feeling, but I would say the number of times I have seen ND produce a miss (or a nullified crit) when it otherwise would have hit is high for my table.

Even if only 50% of the time the +2 made a difference, that's once every two turns you avoided damage.

....

Sorry, but it's only 20% of the time, *at best* that Nimble Dodge effects the outcome of the attack. It's most likely *actually* 20% of the time, though, but still, it's never 50%, that number's wrong and pretty easy to compute. (Note: this isn't to say it prevents 20% of the damage... that's a different computation, and there, it could be either more or less than 20% of the damage that Nimble Dodge prevents).

Part of the problem is that while this can be really good, it means you're wasting your reaction which could be doing something else in 80% of the cases. For rogues with no other reaction, it's fine, but generally, once you get better options, you probably don't want to use your reaction for something that will whiff so often.


The idea of wasting a reaction doesn't make a ton of sense to me. It's like wasting a swift action on PF1- I'm just grateful to have something to do with it that doesn't require raising a shield every round.


tivadar27 wrote:


Sorry, but it's only 20% of the time, *at best* that Nimble Dodge effects the outcome of the attack. It's most likely *actually* 20% of the time, though, but still, it's never 50%, that number's wrong and pretty easy to compute.

It affects the damage 20% of the time, but if you always use it on the most effective attack, which you know is always the first one, it produces more bountiful effects.

I'm not saying "50% of the time" so much as I'm saying if you always use it on the most powerful attack each turn, you're targeting a specific attack that you know has the highest opportunity to critical.

That translates to 10% less likely to hit, 10% less likely to crit, and 10% more likely to critically fail (a standard strike, that means nothing but a spell or other effect might not).

But it also applies to activities that involve an attack roll, which can be two action trades.

so yes, 20%, but also that 20% can be pinpointed to target the most effective action and 30% when critical failure is involved.


Midnightoker wrote:
tivadar27 wrote:


Sorry, but it's only 20% of the time, *at best* that Nimble Dodge effects the outcome of the attack. It's most likely *actually* 20% of the time, though, but still, it's never 50%, that number's wrong and pretty easy to compute.

It affects the damage 20% of the time, but if you always use it on the most effective attack, which you know is always the first one, it produces more bountiful effects.

I'm not saying "50% of the time" so much as I'm saying if you always use it on the most powerful attack each turn, you're targeting a specific attack that you know has the highest opportunity to critical.

That translates to 10% less likely to hit, 10% less likely to crit, and 10% more likely to critically fail (a standard strike, that means nothing but a spell or other effect might not).

But it also applies to activities that involve an attack roll, which can be two action trades.

so yes, 20%, but also that 20% can be pinpointed to target the most effective action and 30% when critical failure is involved.

So yes, fine, you are using it on the most powerful attack, that I agree with, but you did literally say "50% of the time..." and indicate every other round it would be useful :-P. As for critical failures mattering, it's only for attacks (minus Nimble Roll, which we've already mentioned...) and so far as I know, pretty much all spell attacks have the same failure vs critical failure effect.


QuidEst wrote:
The idea of wasting a reaction doesn't make a ton of sense to me. It's like wasting a swift action on PF1- I'm just grateful to have something to do with it that doesn't require raising a shield every round.

Its opportunity cost when you could potentially demoralize, or make an attack with that reaction the idea that your going to spend it becomes harder to justify spending a reaction with an 80% chance of achieving nothing.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Spell reactions and focus spells indeed have some hidden gems.

Drop Dead is indeed amazing, becoming invisible as a reaction is so good.

Shadow Syphon is good too, and an incredible amount of stuff is magical and the counteract being 2 lvls higher for the attempt is huge, at lvl 9 you counteract stuff from lvl 12 or lower by failing.

Disperse into Air is godly to make sure that you don't get more than one hit in a turn.

Energy Absorption from Wizard for some big elemental resistance, not triggered often but you will be glad when it happens.

Arcane Countermeasure from Imperial can trigger against any spell and increase everyone that it targets bonus to AC and DC, and because it reduce the spell level as well you can see some incapacitation spells from the enemy being forced to fail against your party.


Drop dead is super cool it may be one of my favourite spells of this edition.


Note that a flat rating system probably isn't entirely fair either. Opportunity cost matters. Yes, Nimble Dodge is bad when compared to Opportune Backstab, but you're getting it for a 1st level class feat. If you happen to have a build where none of the other 1st level feats are that useful, then you might actually want to get Nimble Dodge and use it when it makes sense. Spells obviously have a resource cost associated with them as well.

See, I can argue for Nimble Dodge in some ways too :-P. There's a reason it doesn't compare with higher level reactions. It's just sort of unfortunate it doesn't compare with other 1st level reaction feats/class abilities.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Nimble Dodge is nice. Not incredible but nice. It's replaced by Opportune Backstab at some point for most Rogues. But for a multiclassed character, it's also very handy. Especially for spellcasters who don't have any built in reaction.


siegfriedliner wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
The idea of wasting a reaction doesn't make a ton of sense to me. It's like wasting a swift action on PF1- I'm just grateful to have something to do with it that doesn't require raising a shield every round.
Its opportunity cost when you could potentially demoralize, or make an attack with that reaction the idea that your going to spend it becomes harder to justify spending a reaction with an 80% chance of achieving nothing.

Sure, the level 8 feat gives a better option. But it's got the opportunity cost of a level 8 feat, instead of a level 1 feat.

Between "I spend a level 1 Rogue feat to demoralize as a reaction when I kill somebody" and "I spend a level 1 Rogue feat to get +2 vs an attack as a reaction once per round", I'd much rather spend my feat on the latter. And until I have another option, there's no opportunity cost to use it.

I would pretty much never keep Opportune Backstab and Nimble Dodge on the same character, agreed. I'd either get another 8th level feat (since Opportune Backstab has the opportunity cost of taking -2 AC to one attack per use, essentially), or I'd retrain to a different 1st level feat (since I no longer get the benefits every round, it's less valuable).


I would like to throw Orc Ferocity into the ring for Good Tier. It's available at lvl 1, and upgrades from once per day to once per hour at 13th level. For characters that don't gain AoO or a Champ Reaction, it can be a god send.


One problem w/ Nimble Dodge is that anybody can have a better effect w/ a shield, in that it works vs. all attacks for zero feats. (1 Bulk though, which may matter).
Sure it's an action, but it's still cheap & otherwise superior.
And if you have a really good Reaction, it's a simple choice.
Also, the Shield spell is fairly easy to pick up for similar effect (and often comes w/ another Cantrip or even more.)

Rogues have lots of potent high-level Reactions, making choosing hard.

I think the hidden downside to Opportune Backstab is nearly all Rogue builds have to have ended their turn next to their opponent. For an 8 h.p. class w/ mediocre defense, that could be punishing.


Castilliano wrote:

One problem w/ Nimble Dodge is that anybody can have a better effect w/ a shield, in that it works vs. all attacks for zero feats. (1 Bulk though, which may matter).

Sure it's an action, but it's still cheap & otherwise superior.
And if you have a really good Reaction, it's a simple choice.
Also, the Shield spell is fairly easy to pick up for similar effect (and often comes w/ another Cantrip or even more.)

An action is generally a much bigger cost than a reaction. And having a shield takes up a hand, which means you can't also dual-wield (though if you're dual-wielding, you're possibly looking at Twin Feint instead anyway).


Nimble dodge is very good imho.

It's a reaction which you like to have in your pool, whether you will be using it or not.

Rogue class has to rely on positioning and eventually delay its initiative to let others go ahead and take damage instead of them.

If they are then targeted, they can rely on a +2 AC ( very strong if used on the second enemy attack ).

***

As for the best reactions

Top Tier:

- Retributive Strike: Simply broken. I'd give it a -2 on hit to balance it out ( for allies, a -5 which can be upgraded to -2 by wasting 2 class feats is a decent trade. Not mandatory but still reasonable ).

- Attack of Opportunity/Stand Still: Great with reach weapons, assurance athletics to trip enemies and let them stand up, or even flails/hammers critical specialization. Tends to shine the more you proceed through leveling ( at low levels is not comparable to retributive strike ).

- Liberating strike: Fantastic. It gives your friend a free step, allowing enemies ( the lowest the level, the higher the probability ) to have to step to they if they are out of reach, wasting one action out of 3. It also gives a free check to break free from immobilizing effects ( instead of wasting an action ).

- You Are Next: Wonderful. It helps a lot in any situation.

- Opportune backstab: Very good when it happens.

- Sidestep: As Opportune backstabe. Having both would give you a wide choice.

Good Tier:

- Quick Shield Block/Quick block: Extra reaction which can be used for a shield block. It allows you to mitigate even more the incoming damage.

- Sense the unseen: Good against invisible or hidden targets. It saves you from using a hero point in critical situations.

- Disrupt Prey: AOO which can only be used on your prey.

- Reactive pursuit: Excellent to catch up

- Reactive interference: God I love it ( fortunately is lvl 12, because low level you won't be facing many enemies with available reaction ).

Ok Tier:

- Nimble Dodge ( Good/Top tier at low levels, but you could probably replace it at some point ).

Situational:

- Cognitive Loophole: Very strong, but you could probably find yourself not using that much.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

Actually, in many cases Nimble Dodge is best used on the first attack. First of all because sometimes you don't know if a second attack will be coming, but also for a mathematical reason.
If the enemy hits you on a 8+ with their primary attack (and thus crits on a 18+), getting a +2 AC means that you have an effect when the die roll is 8 or 9 (which become a miss instead of a hit), and also 18 or 19 (which become normal hits instead of criticals). That's 20%.
Using the reaction on the secondary attack, which hits on 13+ and only crits with a natural 20, your bonus AC only affects rolls of 13 or 14 (10%).
The damage reduced when your Nimble Dodge has effect is the same (one hit) except when the enemy has some nasty rider on criticals, in which case using the reaction against the first attack is even more beneficial.

To be honest, there is a case where using Nimble Dodge on the secondary attack would be better, but it's only when the enemy brutally outmatches you (shouldn't happen in real play).
Say, if their attack bonus is +21 and your AC is 20, bumping it to 22 doesn't help much because you are only reducing the chances to be critically hit, and not those of a normal hit.
When the second attack comes the enemy will hit on a 4+ instead, and the reaction would then have its maximum effect.


Thanks for the math!

Which situations you couldn't know about a second attack?

Maybe it's because my party is still lvl 5, but for monsters seems to be way too convenient to expend at leat 2 action attacking.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Well, first of all it depends on the table and how the GM plays monsters. They could split their two attacks against different targets, for example, and you don't really know until the first one is resolved.
The enemy may have to move twice before attacking. Unless the GM specifies that it did, the player doesn't always know if it has spent one or two actions reaching them, and how many are left.
Another common situation that comes to my mind is when the monster has Grab: it moves, attacks and then (in the case of a hit) Grabs. Grab has no attack roll, so Nimble Dodge won't help against it.
I'm sure there are a lot of other cases.


Yeah, I think it's totally fair to put Nimble Dodge in the "OK"/"Average" tier. Looking at other things in that tier, it's probably comparable. Still, there are a lot of things better than it, and it's still "not that great" IMO. Sorry, I was being more hyperbolic than I should by saying it was terrible, that's on me. It's definitely not a must-take, but depending on your build, it isn't always going to be a bad pick either.

EDIT: I guess I was mostly comparing it to other 1st level Martial feats and class abilities that give reactions. It's worse than most of them. Can be rather useful, as others have pointed out, if you're a caster who MCs into rogue.


Megistone wrote:

Well, first of all it depends on the table and how the GM plays monsters. They could split their two attacks against different targets, for example, and you don't really know until the first one is resolved.

The enemy may have to move twice before attacking. Unless the GM specifies that it did, the player doesn't always know if it has spent one or two actions reaching them, and how many are left.
Another common situation that comes to my mind is when the monster has Grab: it moves, attacks and then (in the case of a hit) Grabs. Grab has no attack roll, so Nimble Dodge won't help against it.
I'm sure there are a lot of other cases.

Indeed there are alot of possibilities, but for what I happened to check until now ( AoA + EC first chapter ) attacking twice ( even if you have grab or knockdown ) seems to be the better choice ( unless ofc specific situations, like being in melee with the party caster and decide to grab him ).

As well for attacking the same target.

I mean, a monster injuries a hero... then swap on another one?
Unless there's a logic behind this reasoning I think he wouldn't ( even low int characters would probably try to kill their prey instead of attacking once per target ).

That's why I think a nimble dodge user could know if a second attack would come.


HumbleGamer wrote:
That's why I think a nimble dodge user could know if a second attack would come.

There are many potential reasons why a monster wouldn't make a second attack. Each specific reason is fairly rare and/or situational, but taken together it's enough so that you can't be certain there's a second attack incoming. But at the time you make the call on nimble dodge, you know there's a first attack incoming.

Assuming I didn't have an alternate reaction to use (maybe I've multi-classed rogue and champion or something - but if I have, I probably shouldn't spend the feat on Nimble Dodge), the only case where I'd hold back on Nimble Dodge is if I'm in a boss + minions scenario. That would make me consider holding my Dodge until the boss attacks. But that's a risky move, because the boss might attack someone else and then I've wasted my chance.


Staffan Johansson wrote:
HumbleGamer wrote:
That's why I think a nimble dodge user could know if a second attack would come.

There are many potential reasons why a monster wouldn't make a second attack. Each specific reason is fairly rare and/or situational, but taken together it's enough so that you can't be certain there's a second attack incoming. But at the time you make the call on nimble dodge, you know there's a first attack incoming.

Assuming I didn't have an alternate reaction to use (maybe I've multi-classed rogue and champion or something - but if I have, I probably shouldn't spend the feat on Nimble Dodge), the only case where I'd hold back on Nimble Dodge is if I'm in a boss + minions scenario. That would make me consider holding my Dodge until the boss attacks. But that's a risky move, because the boss might attack someone else and then I've wasted my chance.

Well, as said mine is a consideration for what I happened to see playing 2 campaigns 1-5.

Against a boss i would save my dodge for the first attack, indeed, but i was talking about a standard encounter. Like a 4v4.

Apart from that, knowing that I wasted my reaction because the enemy didn't attack me is fine ( i avoided the attack ). Depends on your level then, and if you decided to spend more talents on reactions, you could have different options.

If by lvl 6 you just have nimble dodge reaction, well, then you don't have to worry that much since you have 2 choices ( however, if i'd go with nimble dodge i'd also take another reaction ).


My big question is, where is the Monk's Impossible Technique? 20th level feat, gives a reaction. If you're hit, you make the attacking foe reroll and take the worse result. If you fail a saving throw? You reroll and take the better result.

Both are great options, and all come under one feat. It reminded me a bit of the Crown Chakra my Serpent Fire Adept Unchained Monk had.


I've been playing Nimble Dodge wrong. I've been allowing it to be used when the player knows he will be hit and knows it will be useful. I don't like abilities that waste a player's time or resources. Nimble Dodge should be effective at preventing damage when it will work. I will likely house rule this to work as I've been playing it. Otherwise it will feel like a wasted feat to avoid rather than a way for the rogue to look occasionally cool dodging by a hair's breadth some dangerous attack or converting a crit to a regular hit.

Shadow Lodge

Nimble Dodge Math By Die Roll Originally Needed To Hit You:
<01 = 10% (Changes two crit results into hits. Yes, there is at least one published AP 'level+3' encounter where the attack bonus is equal to a rogue's AC, so this can definitely happen)
01 = 15% (2 no longer hits, 11 & 12 no longer crit)
02-08 = 20%
09 = 15% (9 & 10 no longer hit, 19 no longer crits)
10-18 = 10% (you are no longer pushing crits off the table at this point)
19 = 10% (19 no longer hits, 20 no longer crits)
20 = 05% (20 no longer crits)
Statistically, the best use of this ability is when your opponent requires a number in the range of 2-8 in order to hit, but even then it will really come down to your luck...


Deriven Firelion wrote:
I've been playing Nimble Dodge wrong. I've been allowing it to be used when the player knows he will be hit and knows it will be useful. I don't like abilities that waste a player's time or resources. Nimble Dodge should be effective at preventing damage when it will work. I will likely house rule this to work as I've been playing it. Otherwise it will feel like a wasted feat to avoid rather than a way for the rogue to look occasionally cool dodging by a hair's breadth some dangerous attack or converting a crit to a regular hit.

Well, there are some feats which work the way nimble dodge works, like Champion's divine grace or Orc Superstition.

Consider also that that specific feat can be enhanced, so a nimble dodge + nimble roll could decide to also use the reaction on a reflex save and move on a critical success ( which is not rare for a rogue performing a reflex save with a +2 bonus ).

A fighter could use reactive shield "after" the roll, indeed, but:

- it has to have a shield equipped
- it has to waste his reaction on it ( the class rely on reactions to deal dmg, as rogue rely on precision damage ).
- Even with "reflexive shield" extra feat you can't use it to grant yourself a bonus to reflex, since the trigger would be still

"Trigger An enemy hits you with a melee Strike."

- Continuing the last point, a fighter can't use reactive shield on a ranged attack, while a rogue can ( Trigger A creature targets you with an attack and you can see the attacker. )

So, to me there's balance.
Skills are differents, but that's it ( even though I share the idea of a system with no "unknown" at all, but modifying the rouge would mean to modify some other abilities too ).

ps: Eventually a rogue which just prefer to have extra ac after the hit could go with fighter dedication and reflexive shield ( eventually even just the last wall sentry dedication feat ).


1 person marked this as a favorite.
HumbleGamer wrote:

A fighter could use reactive shield "after" the roll, indeed, but:

- it has to have a shield equipped
- it has to waste his reaction on it ( the class rely on reactions to deal dmg, as rogue rely on precision damage ).

As a side note, I don't think this analysis is correct. Fighters do not rely on reactions to deal damage. They deal damage by being the best there is at what they do, and what they do isn't pretty. That translates into better proficiency. With their main weapons, they are about +2 over other martial classes to hit. If making 2 attacks against equal-level foes, that's about 20% extra damage.

The rogue's damage mechanic is sneak attack, but it's more of a catch-up mechanic. Sneak attack requires agile or finesse weapons, which basically restricts you to weapons dealing 1d6 or less damage. The +d6 lets the rogue catch up with high-damage martial weapons, and maybe get ahead a little. Non-thief rogues are also behind by adding a secondary (at best) stat to their damage instead of their primary. And the extra dice at higher levels basically keep pace with Striking weapons.

You are probably thinking about Attack of Opportunity, but the purpose of AoO is not to deal damage. The purpose is to control the opponent. It tells the opponent, "I'm right here in your face, and you'd better deal with me fair and square instead of running away or trying something tricksy, or I will smash you in your face."

If a fighter never gets to make an AoO because all their foes decide to stick with them and fight, that's working as intended. Actually making an AoO for a fighter is a failure, because it means that the threat of punishment was insufficient motivation for the opponent to stay and fight.

Now, you're right that Reactive Shield still deprives the fighter of their AoO, but at that point you've already "won". The opponent is targeting you, not your squishier buddies.


Crane Parry nowhere to be seen...


Staffan Johansson wrote:

You are probably thinking about Attack of Opportunity, but the purpose of AoO is not to deal damage. The purpose is to control the opponent. It tells the opponent, "I'm right here in your face, and you'd better deal with me fair and square instead of running away or trying something tricksy, or I will smash you in your face."

If a fighter never gets to make an AoO because all their foes decide to stick with them and fight, that's working as intended. Actually making an AoO for a fighter is a failure, because it means that the threat of punishment was insufficient motivation for the opponent to stay and fight.

I think it's fair to say that control and damage are not mutually exclusive, sometimes they are simply counting on a miss or just have no other options.

A Reaction that grants the best class to hit in the game another attack at their highest bonus is pretty effective DPS increase.

I hear what you're saying overall, but I do feel like AoO is a damage focused ability, and there are reliable ways to trigger it (Trip for starters practically guarantees one).

Overall, I agree, the focus is control, but damage is also a form of control and it does increase DPS reasonably when you can trigger it.


Midnightoker wrote:
Staffan Johansson wrote:

You are probably thinking about Attack of Opportunity, but the purpose of AoO is not to deal damage. The purpose is to control the opponent. It tells the opponent, "I'm right here in your face, and you'd better deal with me fair and square instead of running away or trying something tricksy, or I will smash you in your face."

If a fighter never gets to make an AoO because all their foes decide to stick with them and fight, that's working as intended. Actually making an AoO for a fighter is a failure, because it means that the threat of punishment was insufficient motivation for the opponent to stay and fight.

I think it's fair to say that control and damage are not mutually exclusive, sometimes they are simply counting on a miss or just have no other options.

A Reaction that grants the best class to hit in the game another attack at their highest bonus is pretty effective DPS increase.

I hear what you're saying overall, but I do feel like AoO is a damage focused ability, and there are reliable ways to trigger it (Trip for starters practically guarantees one).

Overall, I agree, the focus is control, but damage is also a form of control and it does increase DPS reasonably when you can trigger it.

I don't know if I'd call it a form of control or not, but it's a fact it can also control not in terms of damage.

As you also mentioned, an aoo given to the class with the best chance to hit says everything itself.

Not to mention that if a critical hit occurs you will also disrupt the enemy movement ( even on a hit while using disruptive stance).

However, my previous post was meant to give an overall look to two classes ( focusing on aoo alone was, unfortunately, not my goal ) , just to sum up why some abilities requires you to decide to use them before the roll, and others the opposite.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Second Edition / General Discussion / Tier List for Reactions All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.