Can you use Clan's Edge with only one target?


Rules Discussion


Pathfinder Pawns, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Can you use Clan's Edge when there is only one target to attack?

Or must there be two targets available to use this ability? Are players forced to bring sacks of furry sacrices to the battlefield to be able to take advantage of abilities like Protective Sheath?


I don't see why not. This is the same action cost as making a single Strike and then raising a Heavy Shield, the feat really only provides more than that when you are actually able to strike two foes with it.

It's like asking if you can Sudden Charge when you only need to Stride once to reach your foe; there's no reason not to disallow it, since a character could instead literally Stride and then Strike for the same action cost. It would make no sense to disallow it because it's overpowered, when it's not any better in action economy than any other sword-and-board character. In fact, it's actually worse, since the feat includes an Interact action to benefit from the Parry trait, which triggers AoO for having the Manipulate trait, meaning that action could be disrupted, compared to simply spending a non-listed Action for the same +1.

That being said, I would expect table variation on whether any future strikes in the round would be at -4/-5 or at -8/-10, since some GMs may rule you still take the efforts to strike (even an empty square) to benefit from the other part of the feat.


You could. It just wouldn't really be any different from making a standard strike and then parrying.

Horizon Hunters

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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

"Make two clan dagger Strikes against different targets."

I would allow you to make one strike if there's only one target, and gain the benefits, but you wouldn't be able to strike the same target twice.


My bad. It would be different from standard strike + parry. I thought protective sheath was just a passive that gave you a better parry on your clan dagger but it only works with clan's edge. I don't see why you couldn't do it with one target and one strike though.


My respose is:

RAW: No
RAI: No
Game Balance: Yes. No problem

Why!? Is simple "Make two clan dagger Strikes against different targets" no matter how you read it's restrict the feat usage. But I don't see any real problem or exploit in game balance allow it's usage in this way. Even considering that the player will do this to allow the usage of Protective Sheath it's simply has almost none advantage over use a shield. The only one I can think is a player using an free action to drop another weapon to be able tu use the Sheat witout loosing actions. But you are still wasting a LvL 5 ancestry feat to this so I cannot see this as a real problem.


Just using Clan's Edge against one target would be nearly the same as doing a 1-action Strike and 1-action Parry.

Protective Sheath does require you to use the actual Clan's Edge activity though. So I would also allow Clan's Edge to be used for 1 strike against 1 target if only 1 target is available.

My question on Protective Sheath is:

Protective Sheath wrote:
When you use Clan’s Edge, if the hand you’re not holding the dagger with is empty, you can use your clan dagger’s sheath to block attacks as well.

Where is the sheath?

If your other hand is empty, then you aren't holding it in that hand. You can't hold both the dagger and its sheath in your attacking hand. So...


breithauptclan wrote:

Just using Clan's Edge against one target would be nearly the same as doing a 1-action Strike and 1-action Parry.

Protective Sheath does require you to use the actual Clan's Edge activity though. So I would also allow Clan's Edge to be used for 1 strike against 1 target if only 1 target is available.

My question on Protective Sheath is:

Protective Sheath wrote:
When you use Clan’s Edge, if the hand you’re not holding the dagger with is empty, you can use your clan dagger’s sheath to block attacks as well.

Where is the sheath?

If your other hand is empty, then you aren't holding it in that hand. You can't hold both the dagger and its sheath in your attacking hand. So...

It's a little strange but I think it's meant to preserve your free hand since it doesn't say it would become occupied. Probably just that you have access to quickly grabbing it and warding off an attack when needed and putting it back seamlessly. I wish it just gave a better parry and just said you need a free hand to do it instead of the flavor of the sheath being confusing.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I don't think there is such a thing as "action fizzling" in this game.
If you attempt to Strike twice but can only make one, that doesn't mean you stop reading. If you Sudden Charge but have your first Stride denied by an enemy's reaction, then you would still Stride a second time and have the option to Strike at the end.

If Clan's Edge required two targets to be within your reach to use it, then that would be on the requirement line of the action.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:


Includes an Interact action to benefit from the Parry trait, which triggers AoO for having the Manipulate trait, meaning that action could be disrupted, compared to simply spending a non-listed Action for the same +1.

This is almost certainly an errata issue. Since the Lost Omens Character Guide was written, the action to gain a circumstance bonus with a party weapon has gone from an Interact to a unique action instead. I'm sure this was not intended to make Parry worse, but just hasn't been updated since the CRB was updated.


I don't think that a errata is needed.

The [url]https://2e.aonprd.com/Feats.aspx?ID=969]Protective Sheath[/url] don't add a Manipulate trait to Clan's Edge action. The movement to take the Sheath is included in the action as part of it without any trait just like happen to Rise a Shield action and as many other actions that add circumstance bonus to AC do.


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Xethik wrote:

I don't think there is such a thing as "action fizzling" in this game.

If you attempt to Strike twice but can only make one, that doesn't mean you stop reading. If you Sudden Charge but have your first Stride denied by an enemy's reaction, then you would still Stride a second time and have the option to Strike at the end.

If Clan's Edge required two targets to be within your reach to use it, then that would be on the requirement line of the action.

There is, actually.

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. For instance, a Leap disrupted midway wouldn’t transport you back to the start of your jump, and a disrupted item hand off might cause the item to fall to the ground instead of staying in the hand of the creature who was trying to give it away.


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You can always strike at an empty square though, maybe there is an undetected creature in it. Though that would raise your MAP.


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That's true. An empty square or an object can still be a target (and Clan's Edge doesn't restrict to creatures) so you can use this as a RAW solution.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
breithauptclan wrote:
Xethik wrote:

I don't think there is such a thing as "action fizzling" in this game.

If you attempt to Strike twice but can only make one, that doesn't mean you stop reading. If you Sudden Charge but have your first Stride denied by an enemy's reaction, then you would still Stride a second time and have the option to Strike at the end.

If Clan's Edge required two targets to be within your reach to use it, then that would be on the requirement line of the action.

There is, actually.

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. For instance, a Leap disrupted midway wouldn’t transport you back to the start of your jump, and a disrupted item hand off might cause the item to fall to the ground instead of staying in the hand of the creature who was trying to give it away.

Yeah I had intentionally swapped my word choice from disrupted to denied, since there are additional rules around disruption. Nothing in the activity or subordinate rules implies that the activity suddenly ends if you don't perform one of the subordinate actions.

To use MtG terms, disruption is like countering a spell; there is no equivalent to activities fizzling due to lack of a proper target, though a GM may decide that it doesn't make sense for an activity to continue if something were to happen with a requirement that is met when the activity starts but interrupted midway through.


Xethik wrote:
Yeah I had intentionally swapped my word choice from disrupted to denied, since there are additional rules around disruption. Nothing in the activity or subordinate rules implies that the activity suddenly ends if you don't perform one of the subordinate actions.

Well, don't do that. It is confusing.

If you are aware of a rule that could apply, but don't think that it should. Mention the rule and the reasons why you don't think it should apply. Otherwise it feels like you are just hoping that people will not notice that there are rules that could be used.

And changing from a defined game term to a synonym that is not defined in order to make your logic more believable also feels like shady logic.


Xethik wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:


Includes an Interact action to benefit from the Parry trait, which triggers AoO for having the Manipulate trait, meaning that action could be disrupted, compared to simply spending a non-listed Action for the same +1.
This is almost certainly an errata issue. Since the Lost Omens Character Guide was written, the action to gain a circumstance bonus with a party weapon has gone from an Interact to a unique action instead. I'm sure this was not intended to make Parry worse, but just hasn't been updated since the CRB was updated.

Potentially. If the ability simply referred to the Parry activity, I would agree, but it is a special ability that lets you strike twice and benefit from a Circumstance Bonus to AC from a weapon trait for two actions, and calls out Interact specifically.

IMO, the errata might stem with Protective Sheath being tied to Clan's Edge explicitly, and not just the Parry activity.


YuriP wrote:
That's true. An empty square or an object can still be a target (and Clan's Edge doesn't restrict to creatures) so you can use this as a RAW solution.

Clan's Edge doesn't have a target line and only requires "two clan dagger Strikes against different targets." As such, it still can't RAW target objects as Strike isn't otherwise changed. Now empty squares are still possible targets.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
breithauptclan wrote:
Xethik wrote:
Yeah I had intentionally swapped my word choice from disrupted to denied, since there are additional rules around disruption. Nothing in the activity or subordinate rules implies that the activity suddenly ends if you don't perform one of the subordinate actions.

Well, don't do that. It is confusing.

If you are aware of a rule that could apply, but don't think that it should. Mention the rule and the reasons why you don't think it should apply. Otherwise it feels like you are just hoping that people will not notice that there are rules that could be used.

And changing from a defined game term to a synonym that is not defined in order to make your logic more believable also feels like shady logic.

Sorry, I almost used disrupted as a common, regular word but I did not want it to be conflated with the game-term - hence the swap. You can have actions denied without being disrupted, such as from reactions that prevent you from using certain subordinate actions or by making your would-be-target no longer valid.

If your Clan Edge is disrupted, then I agree you might not get your Parry off. I just did not mean to imply that. If you simply can't make your Strikes for reasons that don't involve being disrupted (what I am referring to as denied), that doesn't stop you from finishing the activity.


Ah, so you need something that is less of a synonym then. I think I understand the distinction that you are making. Though usually if an ability has optional components to it the wording reflects that. Things like Electric Arc having a target of '1 or 2 creatures'. But that isn't always the case.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
breithauptclan wrote:
Ah, so you need something that is less of a synonym then. I think I understand the distinction that you are making. Though usually if an ability has optional components to it the wording reflects that. Things like Electric Arc having a target of '1 or 2 creatures'. But that isn't always the case.

Yeah, the rules are a bit more clear cut with spellcasting targets. If this was a spell that targeted two creatures, I would say that the spell could not function if you did not have two valid targets. But without a requirement listed, my opinion is that the rules support using the action to do no Strikes, if you so desired.

If you use Clan Edge and are disrupted on the first Strike, then I believe you lose the rest of the activity. I don't believe the disruption rules apply if you can't/choose not to use one of the subordinate actions.
I didn't word that very well before and I apologize. I did not intend to try to sneakily parse rules to present a favorable reading, but I can see how it looked that way.


I think that is what most of us are leaning towards. At least in this case. There may be other cases where it does make more sense that all of the subordinate actions have to be done in order to make the ability work.

And yeah, I am notoriously bad about taking things way too literally.

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