Finesse attacks

slaughterj

Mongoose
Just to clarify, when you are doing a finesse attack:

The easy one:
1. if you meet/exceed the DV+ArmorDR, then you hit and ignore armor for damage done?

The tricky one:
2. if you meet/exceed the DV, but not the DV+ArmorDR, then you still hit, but the armor DR still reduces damage, or do you not hit at all? If you still hit, then there is no reason to ever use anything but a finesse attack with a finesse-capable weapon (except if your STR to-hit bonus is higher than your DEX to-hit bonus).
 

Yuan-Ti

Mongoose
slaughterj said:
Just to clarify, when you are doing a finesse attack:

The easy one:
1. if you meet/exceed the DV+ArmorDR, then you hit and ignore armor for damage done?

The tricky one:
2. if you meet/exceed the DV, but not the DV+ArmorDR, then you still hit, but the armor DR still reduces damage, or do you not hit at all? If you still hit, then there is no reason to ever use anything but a finesse attack with a finesse-capable weapon (except if your STR to-hit bonus is higher than your DEX to-hit bonus).

I think you are right on both counts (that is 1 is correct and 2 is you still hit). One thought, which I believe has met consensus, is that a finesse attack does not include strength damage... not sure, though, if that question was officially answered.
 

Johannixx

Mongoose
If you attack with finesse, you still get your Str bonus to damage (if I read that correctly), but NOT to your AP score. Thus, your arming sword has an AP of 2 when you're attacking with finesse, regardless of your Strength.
 

tagnetti

Mongoose
You are right on both counts, Finesse attacks use DEX or STR your choice, but you never add your STR modifier to armor piercing.

According to the book.
 

slaughterj

Mongoose
Okay, to sum up:

1. If you finesse attack, and you meet/exceed DV+DR, you hit, roll damage including STR bonus, and ignore DR
2. If you finesse attack, and you meet/exceed DV, but not DV+DR, you hit, roll damage including STR bonus, and take into account the weapon's AP (but do not add in STR bonus to AP) on whether there is any reductio to the armor's DR, then reduce the damage by the DR

The benefits for using a regular attack with a finesse weapon are:
1. If your STR bonus is higher than your DEX bonus, then you get a higher + to hit (the STR, rather than the DEX)
2. You get to add your STR bonus to the weapon's AP

Anything else?
 

Yuan-Ti

Mongoose
tagnetti said:
You are right on both counts, Finesse attacks use DEX or STR your choice, but you never add your STR modifier to armor piercing.

According to the book.

Wait! You can't choose to use your STR bonus for a finesse attack, can you? The book seems pretty clear that you need to use your DEX on the attack roll (as is the character sheet). Admittedly, the wording is a bit ambiguous but I think it means if you have a finesse weapon, you can use your DEX mod and conduct a finesse attack (instead of using your STR mod and conducting a melee attack).

Looking at it again, I think I agree with everything else you say, though. Let's get this straight, for simple-minded Serpentmen like myself:

Finesse Attack:
Use DEX bonus in attack roll. If your total roll matches or exceeds DV + DR then you ignore DR when calculating damage, so = damage roll + STR
Otherwise, your damage = the damage roll + STR - (DR)*

*DR is halved if the weapon's AP equals or exceeds the DR (no STR mod).

Melee Attack:
Use STR bonus in attack roll.
Damage = damage roll + STR - (DR)*

* DR is halved if the weapon's AP + STR equals or exceeds the DR

Is that right? :shock: So, the advantage of finesse attack is that if you have no chance of halving the DR using a melee attack, then you should use your finesse attack because you have a chance of avoiding DR altogether. However, if your AP and STR let you halve the DR of your opponent on any hit, you are probably better off going that way (using melee attack).
 

slaughterj

Mongoose
Yuan-Ti said:
So, the advantage of parry is that if you have no chance of halving the DR using a melee attack, then you should use your parry because you have a chance of avoiding DR altogether. However, if your AP and STR let you halve the DR of your opponent on any hit, you are probably better off going that way.

What are you saying here? By "parry" in the above quote, do you mean "finesse"?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
My take on the Finesse situation
(written in pseudo code-ese)

If (Attack Roll + Dex mod) >= (DV + DR)
then Damage = weapon dice + STR mod
else
If (Attack Roll + Dex mod) >= DV < (DV + DR)
then Damage = (weapon dice + STR mod) - DR
else
miss

The book does NOT say that STR mod is not used for calculating damage. It says "Finesse fighters never add their Strength modifer to the Armor Piercing rating of their weapon." (that one sentance from page 164 seems to be causing a lot of confusion - please re-read the second paragraph after the heading "Finesse and Armor".)

If your attack roll plus your Dex mod equals or exceeds the DV + DR of the target - then armor DR is ignored. You still get to add your STR mod to the damage. Even if you don't penetrate the armor - you still get to add STR mod to damage.

Even tho it is not stated, I would assume that any natural 20 attack roll would automatically be considered a finesse armor penetrator.

That's just my interpretation on a cumbersome and poorly explained (yet very important) combat rule. Your results may vary. Some settling of contents may occur during shipping.
 

Elfman

Mongoose
Thergrim said:
Even tho it is not stated, I would assume that any natural 20 attack roll would automatically be considered a finesse armor penetrator.
I would take the contrary position on this. Because it is not stated, one should not assume a brand new method for penetrating armour; instead assume that it works just like all other strikes, and a natural 20 is a threat and only a threat.

As a house rule, I have no problem with the "natural 20 on finesse strikes is an automatic armour penetrator" rule, if you want a game that favours finesse weapons. But that's not the official rules, and I disagree that one can assume a new rule when there are perfectly good existing rules to follow and no indication that a new rule was ever intended. 8)
 

Iron_Chef

Mongoose
Elfman said:
Thergrim said:
Even tho it is not stated, I would assume that any natural 20 attack roll would automatically be considered a finesse armor penetrator.
I would take the contrary position on this. Because it is not stated, one should not assume a brand new method for penetrating armour; instead assume that it works just like all other strikes, and a natural 20 is a threat and only a threat.

As a house rule, I have no problem with the "natural 20 on finesse strikes is an automatic armour penetrator" rule, if you want a game that favours finesse weapons. But that's not the official rules, and I disagree that one can assume a new rule when there are perfectly good existing rules to follow and no indication that a new rule was ever intended. 8)

I have always played that critical threats are automatic critical hits, and 1's are always critical fumbles (Reflex save DC 15 to negate). For AP, I would say that a critical hit is an automatic pierce (negating DR).
 

slaughterj

Mongoose
Iron_Chef said:
For AP, I would say that a critical hit is an automatic pierce (negating DR).

What do you mean exactly by this statement? Specifically, what does the "for AP" mean and what does the "pierce" mean? I.e., do you mean to say "In my game, in the event of a critical hit, a finesse attack automatically succeeds at ignoring armor DR"?
 

Iron_Chef

Mongoose
slaughterj said:
Iron_Chef said:
For AP, I would say that a critical hit is an automatic pierce (negating DR).

What do you mean exactly by this statement? Specifically, what does the "for AP" mean and what does the "pierce" mean? I.e., do you mean to say "In my game, in the event of a critical hit, a finesse attack automatically succeeds at ignoring armor DR"?

Yeppers. If you are finessing your weapon and score a critical hit, IMC you automatically bypass the armor, even if you normally wouldn't. Most of the time, that's the only way you'll bypass heavy armor anyway. Makes finesse more fun and slightly less risky. Nobody used finesse after the first few failed attempts before I instituted the new rule... actually, nobody uses Finesse even after. :roll:
 

Mayhem

Mongoose
Well, at low levels, there isn't really much need - unless you are attacking them with guys in full plate, in which case, at low levels, they are stuffed whicher tactic they use.

At higher levels, in the hands of low STR characters, pitted against opponents with half-decent armour, I can see Finesse attacks becoming *alot* more popular.

And of course, if all your party are STR 16+ combat monsters with double handed weapons, it doesn't matter what changes you make, finesse will never get a look in.
 

Iron_Chef

Mongoose
Mayhem said:
Well, at low levels, there isn't really much need - unless you are attacking them with guys in full plate, in which case, at low levels, they are stuffed whicher tactic they use.

At higher levels, in the hands of low STR characters, pitted against opponents with half-decent armour, I can see Finesse attacks becoming *alot* more popular.

And of course, if all your party are STR 16+ combat monsters with double handed weapons, it doesn't matter what changes you make, finesse will never get a look in.

They are all combat monsters, LOL.
 

slaughterj

Mongoose
Iron_Chef said:
slaughterj said:
Iron_Chef said:
For AP, I would say that a critical hit is an automatic pierce (negating DR).

What do you mean exactly by this statement? Specifically, what does the "for AP" mean and what does the "pierce" mean? I.e., do you mean to say "In my game, in the event of a critical hit, a finesse attack automatically succeeds at ignoring armor DR"?

Yeppers. If you are finessing your weapon and score a critical hit, IMC you automatically bypass the armor, even if you normally wouldn't. Most of the time, that's the only way you'll bypass heavy armor anyway. Makes finesse more fun and slightly less risky. Nobody used finesse after the first few failed attempts before I instituted the new rule... actually, nobody uses Finesse even after. :roll:

Pretty potent since you don't do threats in your game, just give out the crits for the natural 20...
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Has anyone considered finesse attacks and feints? After reading the post on errata and deciding that when the book refers to loosing dex bonus it really means DV I looked at the feinting rules. So if I beat the guy with my feint he has a DV of 10 plus any size modifier. If I then attack with a finesse weapon I only need to get an amount over 10 equal to his DV to bypass all armour. At most this would be another 12. A DC of 22 is hard for low level characters to reach but after gaining a couple of levels not so. You can then add in any sneak attack bonus damage and you've got a pretty devasting combination.
Does that seem a bit good?
I know that the defender gets to add his base attack to his sense motive roll but as soldiers don't get sense motive as a class skill and I made up a Shemtish Thief with a bluff bonus of +8 at first level with only 14 Cha.
 

Phil

Mongoose
Azza said:
Has anyone considered finesse attacks and feints? After reading the post on errata and deciding that when the book refers to loosing dex bonus it really means DV I looked at the feinting rules. So if I beat the guy with my feint he has a DV of 10 plus any size modifier. If I then attack with a finesse weapon I only need to get an amount over 10 equal to his DV to bypass all armour. At most this would be another 12. A DC of 22 is hard for low level characters to reach but after gaining a couple of levels not so. You can then add in any sneak attack bonus damage and you've got a pretty devasting combination.
Does that seem a bit good?
I know that the defender gets to add his base attack to his sense motive roll but as soldiers don't get sense motive as a class skill and I made up a Shemtish Thief with a bluff bonus of +8 at first level with only 14 Cha.

That's pretty much how it works in standard d20 - however the ability to bypass armour does make it a VERY potent combination.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Thats my point. A little too potent. In standard D20 the character will looses his dex and be flat footed but still has all his armour and shield protecting him. In the case of a heavily armoured character it might make no difference to the chance to hit him. In this d20 version it makes a huge difference.
 
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