AoO quick question


Rules Questions


If I am in combat with a monster and I want to move to his back to flank when an ally turn is next, if I stay adjacent to the monster and move around him do I trigger 3+ attacks of opportunity or zero?

I hope this is clear, I know in D&D you can move around without triggering but we have different ideas on Pathfinder.


Phenix234 wrote:

If I am in combat with a monster and I want to move to his back to flank when an ally turn is next, if I stay adjacent to the monster and move around him do I trigger 3+ attacks of opportunity or zero?

I hope this is clear, I know in D&D you can move around without triggering but we have different ideas on Pathfinder.

You provoke 1 AoO.

In Pathfinder (1st edition), you trigger an AoO when you leave a threatened square, regardless of whether your new square is next to a target or not. However, you never provoke from the same opponent more than once in a round for movement. You might provoke once for movement, then once for making a ranged attack next to them, but you can run circles around them if you want and only provoke once for doing so.


Remember that you can try to use acrobatics to avoid the AoO.


Under chapter combat statisctic wrote:
Moving out of more than one square threatened by the same opponent in the same round doesn’t count as more than one opportunity for that opponent.

You provoke once


Also remember that a 5-foot step doesn't provoke AoOs. You can only take a 5-foot step if it is the ONLY movement you make in a round though, so you can't step and then move to avoid the AoO.


Short answer: You provoke once.

Slightly longer answer: RAW says (more or less) "you provoke once" but does not really elaborate on what that actually means. Normally, you would provoke for leaving any of the three threatened spaces, so if it not for all three, which is it?

Therefore, I generally think of its being "you provoke for each space you leave, but each opponent can only take advantage of one of those provocations (even if they would otherwise be able to take more than one AoO)". Which I don't think is strictly RAW, but it is my best guess for RAI, and the only way I can see it actually working without holes.


Threatened Squares: You threaten all squares into which you can make a melee attack, even when it is not your turn. Generally, that means everything in all squares adjacent to your space (including diagonally). An enemy that takes certain actions while in a threatened square provokes an attack of opportunity from you. If you're unarmed, you don't normally threaten any squares and thus can't make attacks of opportunity.

RAW you provoke an AoO from a specific foe. So, the rule of only provoking once actually means you only provoke one AoO per foe for an action. So, the idea glass is stating is actually RAW. If I move out of three threatened squares any and all creatures threatening any of those squares can make one AoO on me.

The way I would phrase it, is that you only provoke an AoO once per creature threatening per action.


There is a little extra nuance in Glass' example: if you truly only provoke once, then you can only provoke on the first square you leave, meaning say I wanted to use a trip to stop your movement, but its better if I stop you in your second square instead of the first. With a strict "once" reading, I don't get the AoO in the second square, only the first. But we all agree that isn't really the intended case.

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