Author Topic: PF MECHANICS: Be Defensive, Be, Be Defensive!  (Read 507 times)

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Offline Wildfire

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PF MECHANICS: Be Defensive, Be, Be Defensive!
« on: March 10, 2015, 01:13:20 PM »
Often in the heat of the moment we can forget that there are options in d20/Pathfinder melee that goes beyond the “swing-hit-get hit” back and forth of combat (I like to imagine it being more like a dance with a series of attacks and defenses rather than just trading punches to the nuts). Sometimes in combat you just need a little bit more defense, other times you’re really desperate and are hoping you don’t get hit before the cleric arrives, and other times you just need to withdraw from combat altogether.
So here’s some options that you might use when the time is right.

Total Defense

You can defend yourself as a standard action. You get a +4 dodge bonus to your AC for 1 round. Your AC improves at the start of this action. You can't combine total defense with fighting defensively or with the benefit of the Combat Expertise feat. You can't make attacks of opportunity while using total defense.

Fighting Defensively as a Standard Action
 
You can choose to fight defensively when attacking. If you do so, you take a –4 penalty on all attacks in a round to gain a +2 dodge bonus to AC until the start of your next turn.

Withdraw

Withdrawing from melee combat is a full-round action. When you withdraw, you can move up to double your speed. The square you start out in is not considered threatened by any opponent you can see, and therefore visible enemies do not get attacks of opportunity against you when you move from that square. Invisible enemies still get attacks of opportunity against you, and you can't withdraw from combat if you're blinded. You can't take a 5-foot step during the same round in which you withdraw.

If, during the process of withdrawing, you move out of a threatened square (other than the one you started in), enemies get attacks of opportunity as normal.

You may not withdraw using a form of movement for which you don't have a listed speed.

Note that despite the name of this action, you don't actually have to leave combat entirely.

Restricted Withdraw: If you are limited to taking only a standard action each round you can withdraw as a standard action. In this case, you may move up to your speed.
Wildfire

One should never underestimate the stimulation of eccentricity