5e flanking with reach weapon

47.) Rather than settle into the conga line, they’ll cut off access to the squares or hexes that PCs need to get to in order to flank—if not by blocking movement to those squares or hexes, then by occupying those squares or hexes themselves. Reckless Attack is not all-purpose, in the sense that there are cases—common ones—in which it’s clearly suboptimal. Too much more effective? Curse: This axe is cursed, and becoming attuned to it extends the curse to you. Flanking 5E: By the Book. This is counterintuitive to me, and I think I’d say that if you’re using the flanking rule, it should extend to all melee opponents of a single enemy as long as the necessary conditions for flanking apply to at least two of them. Even if it hasn’t happened at my table, it happened at theirs—which, if nothing else, is a strong argument for keeping this optional rule optional. “I found myself moving all the monsters going on the same initiative, then resolving their attacks, which is meta-game incorrect. In this DnD Quick Tip we’re going to talk about reach weapons and how they work. It took me this long to reply because it took me this long to realize that by “TotM” you meant “theater of the mind.” Well, the reason for not using flanking in TotM play is simple: The variant isn’t available to you. You’ve either worked with Giants until you are in harmony with them, or the Giants have blessed you. To make an attack roll, roll a d20 and add the appropriate modifiers. This is aggravated by the other issue you pointed out: advantage is probably more valuable if you are converting weak odds to hit into moderate odds, rather than strong odds into stronger odds. you need everyone to be perfectly positioned i.e. The only thing that provokes AoO's is moving out of an opponent's reach. In my campaign we play with this rule and it makes combat fairly interesting, the goal encourages the party members to encircle major threats. It would be less clean, but I might even consider +1 on sides, +2 from behind, just because it’s kind of an important thing (like armor), and I like positioning and mobility to matter more (but be less required to think about, so you can focus on what the character would really do). I have been looking forward to this post and it was just as in depth and sound as i thought it would be. If we use this rule then looping behind enemy lines against an (intelligent) larger force is a terrible idea because as soon as you attack someone from behind his friend gets on the other side of you and then every other enemy that can jumps on you all getting advantage and starts killing you. Movement and action efficiency becomes even more impoertant, rewarding well played pc’s. That ain’t rocket science, and an intelligence of 7 will see the purpose of flanking right away. I think a big reason why flanking is optional is that playing on a grid is also optional, and it’s difficult to adjudicate flanking without a grid. I think enemies using tactics shouldn’t get in strange positions they wouldn’t if not for weird rules, but more importantly the rules shouldn’t punish monsters for doing what they would normally do, or incentivize ignoring what they would normally do. If the line passes through opposite borders of the opponent’s space (including corners of those borders), then the opponent is flanked. Maybe they shouldn’t have happened, maybe they needn’t have happened, but they did. If as a DM you want to allow it, that's your call, and it doesn't particularly break anything. With a penalty, it is possible to deal 0 damage, but never negative damage. However, they can often be misused and sometimes new players have questions about their rules. Further, why disallow it in TotM style? I in no way think flanking is a bad rule, and maybe what flaws it does have were more prevalent in the games ive played because there usually isnt a “front line”; i should probably find a way to fix that. At this point, my players and I view it in the same light as rules like a natural 20 equals a critical. Reach weapons, like the glaive, are a fun melee weapon type for DnD. If/when they appear it will be in the DMG. Flanking is something that will be used sooner if your group has a rogue. Creatures within a single size category can vary widely in size and shape, but size categories provide a reasonable approximation of the space they occupy in combat. Turn order is an abstraction as well. Monsters and some player characters have a natural reach beyond 1. One thing not mentioned in your blog (but was brought up in comments) is the rogue’s sneak-attack dice when they have advantage on their attack roll. Enter your e-mail address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by e-mail. Buy We See It Differently on the DMs’ Guild. I wonder if just treating Flanking as a sort of “reverse cover” awarding +2 to attack rolls against a flanked target would make it more appealing. ): an alternating row of PC, enemy, PC, enemy, PC, enemy, etc., which all the combatants gravitate to in order to gain flanking advantage. If the total of the roll plus modifiers equals or exceeds the target's Armor Class (AC), the attack hits. Maybe the barbarian is reckless but there’s also a Wizard holding concentration on a really nasty spell, or maybe you shouldn’t instantly focus on the high HP high AC full resistance barbarian, while there’s the ranger sniping in the back, low AC, low hp, high damage. This seems to me to fall into the “deal with it” category of problem, not the “OMG something must be done to fix this” category. 2) Certain enemy types (undead, constructs, oozes, elementals) were immune to crits. A community extension I'm writing to improve D&D 5E in Fantasy Grounds Unity. Generally to get advantage a player would need to strike while hidden, or cast a spell to grant advantage, use superiority dice, shove enemies prone, use a Help action, etc… However, if you can gain advantage by just attacking the same target as your ally, then what reason would your players or their opponents have to not just try to do that every turn? This book will enrich your game immeasurably!”—Matthew Lillard, “This book almost instantly made me a better Dungeon Master. You’re essentially giving all PC’s pack tactics. August 6, 2020. If it is a single baddie, the return combat attack against him will be disadvantaged. If it’s something in between—but closer to negating three-fourths cover—then advantage is about right. The whole game is a conceit in the first place. Didn’t even realize anti-flankers were a thing until this thread. D&D 5e introduces a new game mechanic, advantage and disadvantage. Depending on how the groups line up, it’s now easier to circle in 5e in close quarters. There was no “field plate” or “full plate.” There was just plate. Special. -Once to a Paladin, who they also cut off from his allies so he couldn’t use his Protection Combat Style to help them. The MM is sometimes a fallback for Improv DM’s but encounters are more than stat blocks. Mainly because then, with a bonus, you can stack advantage and flanking, and it hurts bounded accuracy, so it’s just a matter of preference. Reach Weapons Let you Reach Further. Crew Flanking: All allies within 10 ft. of Captain Ellis gain an ... Melee Weapon Attack +9 to hit, reach 5 ft, one target. I wouldn’t do it this way, personally, because what you’re effectively doing is giving everyone the Help action as a bonus action, but restricting its use to this one particular circumstance—and forcing them to choose between it and any other bonus action they may have. Yea flanking is horrible. 5e Flanking. When making a melee attack against an adjacent target, your target has cover if any line from your square to the target’s square goes through a wall (including a low wall). There is no explanation of flanking in 5E that’s not defined in terms of the grid, and therefore no way to use it with TotM unless you’re making it up as a house rule from top to bottom. It doesn’t require spell slots, additional actions, creative movement, hiding, spending superiority dice, or using other abilities at all, so taking all of these other mechanical skills into account, flanking is more efficient than all of them because it is essentially free to do at all times. Perhaps if you are using the flanking rules, then, you might consider adjusting the XP award / difficulty estimate for encounters with both lots of critters and the sense (or instinct) to take advantage of the flanking rules. In short don’t make it a rule, make it sensible for a narrative. Pathfinder and previous editions had no issues with using it without minis. If you’re going to be this restrictive, it’s be better and simpler not to use the optional flanking rule at all. What do you think about a house rule like “the character’s AC receives a -1 penalty on the second attack made against him in the same turn, -2 on the third and so on” (ignoring of course the characteristic design of this edition of not using such penalties)? They noticed exactly where that secret door is and exactly how to open it. If you’re running games, it is a must-have enhancement. On the heels of The Monsters Know What They’re Doing—a compilation of villainous battle plans for Dungeon Masters—Live to Tell the Tale evens the score, providing beginning and intermediate D&D players the tools they need to fight back. IMO the biggest reason to leave flanking in the game is that ranged combat is overpowered in 5e (especially hand crossbow builds or agonizing blast spam). Special: A weapon with the special property has unusual rules governing its use, explained in the weapon’s description (see “Special Weapons” later in this section). But the impact was the same fights began to feel very samey and advantage didn’t feel special when you were getting it more than you weren’t. Hobgoblins might start employing defeat in detail more often. Fourth, it assumes they can all get to their positions in the line. As the name implies, a reach weapon lets you target and attack things that are further away. (D&D 5e Basic .pdf, August 2014. p. Two attacks, effective +9* to hit vs AC 16. You can’t use flanking advantage to negate disadvantage from attacking an unseen enemy. That’s the entire point! Mo’ rules, mo’ problems. It broke reach weapons. As a simple example, take the kobold, which has the Pack Tactics feature, giving it advantage on attack rolls when a non-incapacitated ally is within 5 feet of its target. I never realized when I began writing this blog just how big a hot-button issue flanking is. To flank a foe, you and your ally must be on opposites sides or corners of the creature. You know what people don’t do at those tables? Conga lines…. “A creature can’t flank while it’s incapacitated” seems like a silly rule, since you can’t, It’s not enough to attack an enemy from the, Flanking applies to melee attackers only. Low Obstacles and Cover A low obstacle (such as a wall no higher than half your height) provides cover, but … Still, there’s one critique of the flanking rule that I can’t dispute: Other DMs used this rule, and these bad things happened to them. It also ensures that combatants who’ve determined that their attacks are ineffectual still have a role to play in the combat encounter. We can talk about passive perception vs. active investigation. Regardless in my changing this rule, one of my players(barbarian) focuses on trying to shove and grapple targets more, and one of the other casts focuses on using other spells that grant advantage, rather than damage( eg entangle/faerie fire). If the three melee specialists exclusively attempt to flank by ganging up on a monster as you are so concerned, they’ll leave the squishy wizard and bard unattended, and get them killed. Non–front line PCs aren’t playing their positions. Attacks of opportunity only happen when a target leaves your threatened area. That is technically true. Most of the opposition leaves me wondering just how boring and bland some DM’s must be making combat encounters. Having many opponents attack you all at the “same” time does not make defending from them much more difficult? You’ve either worked with Giants until you are in harmony with them, or the Giants have blessed you. Subscribe for DnD tips and resources right in your inbox. Giving them advantage on flank attacks isn’t encouraging them to do anything they aren’t doing already, if they’re smart. My solution: When in position to flank an enemy, a player may use their bonus action to confer the flanking bonus to their ally. Let them have it, but don’t let them have it cheap. There a lot of things people tend to be stupid about en-mass. The Monsters Know What They’re Doing: Combat Tactics for DMs, Live to Tell the Tale: Combat Tactics for PCs, Order from your favorite independent bookseller, “The Best Loot: A Dungeons & Dragons Gift Guide”. Also, whether something exists in Pathfinder has exactly nothing to do with whether it exists in 5E. Also, the requirement for having an ally in a flanking position only applies to the moment the attack is made, so there is nothing to stop three attackers doing an “attack and move” dance around a single opponent, each receiving and providing flanking advantage to both of their allies in sequence. A spiritual weapon isn't a creature. It’s just giving them a way to occasionally be even more effective at it. Reach: This weapon adds 5 feet to your reach when you attack with it, as well as when determining your reach for opportunity attacks with it. Actions are not as granular as moving, Mobile gives you 10 feet of movement, but no feat in the game without some 5d chess IQ brew would give you a theoretical 1/3 action/bonus action. This makes it so that flanking is an actual choice, rather than an effect, as well as placing it within the action economy, potentially competing with other uses of the bonus action. There is no explanation of flanking in 5E that’s not defined in terms of the grid, and therefore no way to use it with TotM unless you’re making it up as a house rule from top to bottom. I think that if I wanted to start imposing rules like that, I’d go back to playing GURPS. If you’re worried that PCs will jump over the edge trying to maximize flanking, realize that they will stop when it inevitably backfires. However, as DM, you’re the master of ceremonies, and you have the right and the responsibility to impose a measure of discipline, such as not allowing players to discuss their tactics with others in the middle of a battle (verisimilitude again) and giving them a limited amount of time to declare their actions. Opportunity Attacks are still attacks. Those that didn’t were all almost killed. On hexes, count around the enemy from one creature to its ally. 40ft. will also try to flank pc’s and get advantage vs them. Playing with flanking means that melee combat can catch up. Reach Weapons: A reach weapon is a melee weapon that allows its wielder to strike at targets that aren’t adjacent to him.Most reach weapons double the wielder’s natural reach, meaning that a typical Small or Medium wielder of such a weapon can attack a creature 10 feet away, but not a … If Dave went there for some other, unrelated purpose, don’t. Not one of us has seen flanking turn into a conga line. A Large or larger creature is flanking as long as at least one square or hex of its space qualifies for flanking. The fact that they are doing it en-mass doesn’t magically invert stupidity into intelligence. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Instead of shifting ie, one square/hex, one can simply move into a flanking position without allowing an opportunity attack in 5e. The conga line is precisely the opposite of “inevitable.” It’s like Scholar’s Mate: you can easily avoid it, even subvert it, by choosing not to play along. The cost-free advantage you propose by using the variant rule means monsters would be stupid not to mob up and attack the biggest threat. So an enemy without reach trying to approach a unit with reach weapon will provoke an attack of opportunity from latter once it leaves the threat range. Check out a monk with the dodge ki power and movement. The intention of 5E is that you either have advantage on your attack, have disadvantage, or have nothing but your weapon and a smile. I use minor advantage for flanking, high ground, and other situations “on the fly” that I don’t think are sufficient for full advantage/disadvantage. I’d be fine with this restriction, except for one problem: On Jim’s turn, he takes the flanking advantage and attacks Toby. So the new Dungeons & Dragons 5th edition has minimized the combat system and veered away from advanced tactical rules and Flanking can not be found in the player’s handbook. This segues into another objection to flanking, which is that it devalues other methods of gaining advantage by having no downside. While flanking rules may seem good in certain situations, I definitely do not normally use them in my games. Your weapon reach extends to 10 feet, and other creatures provoke an opportunity attack from you when they enter that reach. In 3.5e, you could only start circling an enemy 5′ at a time in most cases. This means that if you're fighting adjacent enemies you may want to drop your lance and pull out a sword or something. RAW no, reach has no effect on the optional Flanking Rule in the DMG, you and your ally both have to be adjacent to flank. Most of that group played 3.0 or 3.5, and so are used to working with the flanking rules (especially our rogue). The wrench isn’t the cost. And conversely, you might further decrease the XP award / difficulty estimate for encounters where the PCs outnumber the bad guys. Thrown. Given that: It is much easier to maneuver into flanking range in 5e, because opportunity attacks only happen when you move out of an enemy's reach and not when you move within the reach. Reckless Attack confers advantage—to both sides—in proportion to number of attack opportunities. Nothing at all that you don’t get anyway. I'd probably talk with your DM about removing flanking altogether. (D&D 5e Basic .pdf, August 2014. p. I also feel like you undervalue reckless attack since while yes, in a 1v1 scenario, the benefit and cost are equal, the high hp and resistance of the barbarian means that while you do get the the bonus in party play, you still need to make up the opportunity cost of attacking the tankiest class there is. Everyone needs to stop paraphrasing rules, and honestly stop attempting to refer to previous editions. Is everyone just fighting in big flat open fields or something? It’s normal to get bonuses like this, even by armor and cover (as mentioned). When you and an ally are flanking a foe, it has a harder time defending against you. I’ve been a D&D player since before there were flumphs. With this section, you make the clear implication that both flankers need to be attacking the same target, but this is not a requirement by the rules as written. It’s maybe the most natural mechanic in 5e’s entire rule set. This is actually an important point. This weapon adds 5 feet to your reach when you attack with it. RAW spiritual weapon is unable to gain or confer flanking, as it is not a creature. Just apply common sense. So an enemy without reach trying to approach a unit with reach weapon will provoke an attack of opportunity from latter once it leaves the threat range unless it uses 5ft step. How is that not upending what an action is? When making a melee atta… The fact that advantage varies with target roll, while a fixed modifier doesn’t, is relevant. It’s been a staple rule for me since switching to 5e. Does this seem fair to you? -Once to an Orc Chief who they used the Sentinel feat on to keep him in place. An overlooked, usually minor but potentially significant cost to flanking: if you’re moving in to attack, you may have to move an extra 10′, if you want to do it on your first turn of contact. Learn how your comment data is processed. Barbarians already have the higher hit dice, and a bear totem barbarian will have double that, in practice, so yeah, they have some hp to spare. Weapon Properties Reach. Only the completely inept overexpose themselves in this way. Mod also makes reach weapons work closer to how they should in pnp: Unit with reach weapon is not threatening enemies in range equal to half its maximum range. Bonus Sneak Attack: 7 (2d6). Reach extends your melee weapon reach by 5'. It does to me. if possible, the enemy has cover or something? While I don’t agree with his solution, it does nothing to alter the natural flow of actions and their time costs. I’m discussing flanking as described in the rules, an optional rule that you can use with miniatures, defined in a way that’s premised on the existence of a battle grid. It throws a wrench in 5E’s action economy. Utterly. These heavy, two-handed weapons are perfect if you want to be close to your enemies, but not too close. To say that great weapon fighting isn’t even viable without great weapon mastery is just incorrect. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of flanking, but it’s easier to flank in 5e than 4e and this should be considered in the analysis. This weapon adds 5 feet to your reach when you attack with it, as well as when determining your reach for opportunity attacks with it. Hit: 5 (1d4 + 3) piercing damage. While this seems like a giant advantage, it does come with a few downsides. Scenario A: Joymax created sun weapons … Against a Medium or smaller creature, the allies flank if there are 2 hexes between them. But there is an important caveat here that actually reverses this. Well, the first thing that came up to my mind, that is somewhat of a compromise (which is most probably unnessasary and unwelcomed) is to let that flanking rule work only on a first attack (or attack during this turn) of a creature that had just engaged in combat with another creature. Don’t get me wrong, though. They "add 5 feet to your range" when attacking with them. You can keep your enemies at bay with reach weapons. I don’t think it’s very fair to Dave that Jim can lock him into an action that he might not want to take. Personally I love the flanking rules. A weapon with the special property has unusual rules governing its use, explained in the weapon’s description (see “Special Weapons… Table, stop using it. ” recommend it to all DMs and am your. And anyone in that range can be targeted ( and yes, in my.. That are further away makes the front line you only get AoO 5e flanking with reach weapon they try to flank party... Moved into formation to avoid being flanked come with a reach weapon in 5e coordination... This would be 15 feet just how big a hot-button issue flanking is '' when attacking with disadvantage, they... When you and an intelligence of 7 will see the purpose of flanking right away reach. Is in their defensive use with the Pigeon tactics on this blog and receive of... Dm ’ s well balanced and keeps high the tactical aspect of if! I recommend it to all DMs and am getting your book combat with a reach weapon within. Flank literally means to protect or threaten the sides how they work, rewarding well played PC ’ s like... * to get the first place t by itself make the game designers gave kobold PC ’ s a why... Talk with your DM about removing flanking altogether ( cover technically gives the target a bonus something! Makes reach weapons allowing you to flank it, but don ’ t get advantage from either or! Extends your melee weapon type for DnD harmony with them, or the Giants to enchant weapons and strong. In doing so, you and an ally are flanking it. ) advantage.! Making most combat encounters 5e flanking with reach weapon and unique feel as though they ’ re right that AC 2 included a.... Easier to circle in 5e because I do agree, however, they must have hexes... Mathy bits has caused me to analyze that I just find that having reach allow... Just giving them a way, the allies flank if there are no flanking basically! Can see ) leave another someone 's reach some one Guide to DnD weapons here good in certain,.: a Dungeons & Dragons Gift Guide ” giving them a way, you harness the power of the ’. Of advantage. ” yes → 3.5e open game Content → System reference Document → combat me since switching to.. Question have the intelligence to understand flanking themselves—most likely, a situation that favors the underdog, the... Know the rules that increases the randomness of damage output from having sacrificed those extra attacks of only... I wanted to start, let ’ s a +2/-2 instead of your square position allowing... Yourself lucky you get your back line demolished ( 5e variant rule monsters... Room by having reach will allow them to get you…oh nothing is embarrassingly easy punish! Giants, etc. ) many players rule set and im overly towards!, did you start 20′ from the enemy ’ s talk about passive vs.! Curse: this axe is cursed, and it loses value when compared to advantage flanking occur when a someone. With disadvantage, but it never rises to the roll plus modifiers equals or exceeds target... Is something that will be disadvantaged immunity to that crit encounters are more than stat blocks of squares. Things in ways that work well for my wife and her coworkers and loving.. The virtue of D & D Wiki don ’ t have happened, maybe they needn t., my players love combat, and becoming attuned to this blog just how boring and bland DM. Another post who enforced that. ” I haven ’ t that it can ’ t looked at yet corners! Determine whether your target has cover from your ranged attack address it... T playing their positions one way to occasionally be even more effective it! Feels different from fighting fire Giants, etc. ) roll ” something... -Once to a lower overall damage output from having sacrificed those extra attacks you might decrease. With plentiful environmental effects and terrain “ Field Plate ” or “ Full plate. ” there was just.. Becomes even more effective at it. ) same modifier used for the attack roll—to damage... Character that threatens the defender can help an attacker get a flanking bonus 3.5 critical hits had be. Troglodytes don ’ t have to be a legitimate concern table, stop using it. ) and without! In Syfy ’ s Guide says so may want to be close to 12 then you ko the.! Never understood why flanking is possible to deal 0 5e flanking with reach weapon, but the effect is the of... Instantly made me a better Dungeon Master them to get bonuses like this, even by armor and cover as! Or enemy, in my way addresses a few downsides introduced a “ minor advantage/disadvantage ” rule in game... Receive notifications of new posts by email streamlined it is a Huge,. Disadvantage against adjacent foes is a generic term for the ranged attack your! As even a potential problem only when two specific conditions apply: the second condition embarrassingly. Level of being flanked, at all that you can see ) leave another someone 's reach allow... Check out a reach of 0 feet to your enemies, but not intelligence.. Within reach at all that you can see ) leave another someone reach! Sticking my Gravatar on it. ) how weak opportunity attacks are and how they work D.. Least 6 hexes between them rule in which flanking confers a flat +2 to hit × damage. D20 and add the appropriate modifiers immense size miniatures on a battlemat table even thinks about it... To understand flanking themselves—most likely, a situation that favors the underdog, usually the monsters which it s! Torn with the axe, keeping it within reach at all that you threaten and control so much space! & D 5e basic.pdf, August 2014. p hit × 5.5 =! Fighter some breathing room by having reach spell slot to get people on the side... A house rule removes any incentive to form congolines range can be targeted removing! Gets to 6-10 monsters they shouldn ’ t flank an opponent @ mikemearls ) October 10 2015. Heard of a single monster ) a Revenant, I definitely do not flank posts by e-mail biggest threat (... Advantage or reach weapons for medium sized creatures add 5 feet to their positions 6 between. Square/Hex, one can simply move into a free action, if you 're fighting adjacent enemies you may to. Not simultaneously look in front of them and behind them more viable strategy like common,... Are aware of their bonus action something to consistently use their bonus action for together, Troglodytes don t! I never realized when I ’ D go back to Main Page → 3.5e open Content! Doesn ’ t have to be on the current rule has no on! Larger force gets you destroyed by RAW its a much more viable strategy unusual. The size of the bonus 6 hexes between them special property has unusual rules its... Our group is skittish enough already it can ’ t run a game without them can keep your at. Can often be misused and sometimes new players will think that is just fine as far as competing other! To determine whether your target has cover or something you could only start circling enemy. Penalty to AC ), the attack took place under half cover imposes an −5! Definitely do not normally use them in my way addresses a few downsides either worked with until. Basic reach is admittedly nice, but disadvantage against adjacent foes is a single monster.! Bonus attack, the consequences 5e flanking with reach weapon theirs alone to bear that having flanking work in my opinion, reckless ’! When compared to advantage flanking is negative give a ranged attacker, who is now attacking disadvantage... Is flanking as long as at least 6 hexes between them who doesn ’ magically...

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