D&D 4E messy's 4e newbie questions thread

you may only make one free action attack per turn, you may make any number of no action attacks on your turn.

if your stunned, unconscious or dominated you cant take free actions. but you can always take no actions

Ah, yes, I had forgotten they added that "only one free action attack" clause in the wording for Essentials. Free actions have always had a 'DM discretion' clause which I assume was always intended to provide an explicit 'out' to the DM so they could put the kibosh to things like endless cycles of free attacks (which have arisen a couple of times with various combos). That kind of stuff got errated pretty quickly, but I guess now it is REALLY truly and explicitly illegal. Truthfully there are very few 'no action' attacks, and the ones that do exist are at least notionally coming from something outside of the character itself.
 

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captpike

First Post
one thing to note is there are several attacks that have no stated action, like "on a crit you may make on additional attack" that does not say if its a free or no action. it would be best to ask your DM about these if you have one.
 

one thing to note is there are several attacks that have no stated action, like "on a crit you may make on additional attack" that does not say if its a free or no action. it would be best to ask your DM about these if you have one.

IMHO they are part of the original action, not separate actions. Just like there can be powers which have more than one target or allow separate attacks against single/multiple targets, in those cases there is only the one underlying action. 4e's terminology surrounding 'Action' vs 'Attack' is a bit unclear and they never chose to resolve that ambiguity. Thus some powers I suppose could potentially present situations where the action is 'unspecified' (that would possibly happen if a follow-on attack was something that took place at a different point in the round than the original power use, which is possible. I'd think such things SHOULD be constructed as separate attacks within the main power, but WotC didn't always do things entirely consistently). Feats are actually the most likely culprits as they don't really have a standardized layout and don't directly deal with actions in any specific way. I think you'll find in practice it isn't a big problem, you can let the narrative logic of the situation inform the players as to what is expected (IE if it was say a power that granted a riposte then logically the PC would need to be able to take a Free action to do it and therefor not be say unconscious, but if a ghostly force is protecting the character then maybe no action is appropriate).
 

captpike

First Post
IMHO they are part of the original action, not separate actions. Just like there can be powers which have more than one target or allow separate attacks against single/multiple targets, in those cases there is only the one underlying action. 4e's terminology surrounding 'Action' vs 'Attack' is a bit unclear and they never chose to resolve that ambiguity. Thus some powers I suppose could potentially present situations where the action is 'unspecified' (that would possibly happen if a follow-on attack was something that took place at a different point in the round than the original power use, which is possible. I'd think such things SHOULD be constructed as separate attacks within the main power, but WotC didn't always do things entirely consistently). Feats are actually the most likely culprits as they don't really have a standardized layout and don't directly deal with actions in any specific way. I think you'll find in practice it isn't a big problem, you can let the narrative logic of the situation inform the players as to what is expected (IE if it was say a power that granted a riposte then logically the PC would need to be able to take a Free action to do it and therefor not be say unconscious, but if a ghostly force is protecting the character then maybe no action is appropriate).

I was talking more about feats and features then powers, but I agree in practice it will rarely be an issue, the two times it would are when unconscious, or for some loops.
 

I was talking more about feats and features then powers, but I agree in practice it will rarely be an issue, the two times it would are when unconscious, or for some loops.

Right, it is one of those endlessly debated dark corners of 4e that never quite got cleaned out entirely. I guess given the sheer amount of STUFF in 4e they probably just figured it wasn't worth trying to clarify every possible thing like that. They seemed to be trying back in the early days maybe 4 years ago, but I suspect WotC decided the amount of silly little errata wasn't worth it. I was a bit disappointed that Essentials wording didn't really help much, but perhaps again they were reluctant to 'stealth errata' the whole game and produce some OTHER new bugs vs just leaving it to common sense. The debates on the Q&A forum were entertaining, for a while at least... lol.
 

Storminator

First Post
The compendium gives 185 No Action powers (out of 9300+ powers). They are often triggered or riders on other powers. I believe you can't take Free Actions out of turn, so those are either No Action or Interrupt powers.

PS
 

The compendium gives 185 No Action powers (out of 9300+ powers). They are often triggered or riders on other powers. I believe you can't take Free Actions out of turn, so those are either No Action or Interrupt powers.

PS

Free Actions can happen in ANY character's turn, you can take them basically whenever you want, but only during the 'action portion' of turns, not during for instance the ongoing damage resolution, saving throws, etc portion. There has been some arguments about whether or not you can break into another action to take a free action, but generally it seems that this is the intent. So for instance a PURE free action attack could be done at any time in anyone's turn, friend or enemy. Of course the few powers that do grant attacks and are free actions generally are more restrictive, having triggers or other types of conditions and requirements limiting when they can happen. It is worth noting though that a triggered free action doesn't consume the character's limit of interrupts or immediate actions, and that is sometimes the intent.
 

pemerton

Legend
I believe you can't take Free Actions out of turn
As others have said, you can. (Unless the wording of the action itself precludes this, eg "as a free action on your turn".)

As others have also said, the main function of "no action" abilities is to circumvent unconsciousness, stun, etc plus other oddities of the action economy, so you seem it on healing/self-res effects, initiative-boosting effects, etc.
 

messy

Explorer
46. when a creatures selects a multiclass feat that grants a once/encounter use of a class ability typically usable a number of times per encounter based on level (like the cleric's healing word or warlord's inspiring word), can he/she use the power once/encounter or multiple times/encounter based on level?

47. are dump stats as much of an issue in 4th edition as in 3rd edition?

toda (i'm running out of languages...)
 

Herschel

Adventurer
No multiclass feats gives you an Encounter Heal, it gives you that power as a Daily heal. You can then, however, use a powerswap feat to grab healing utilities, most often Level 6 leader class utilities, to get an Encounter heal.

Define "issue".
 

47. are dump stats as much of an issue in 4th edition as in 3rd edition?

Because of the high (and indeed required) high point buy in 4e, I don't think dump stats are much of an issue. I don't think you're allowed to buy below an 8, and there are no racial penalties.

Having said that, every PC needs two high stats, so some stats get neglected. If the key stat is Intelligence or Dex, there's pressure to raise it to a 20 at 1st-level. (I disagree with that; my wizard PC started with Int 18.)

The NAD system mollifies the penalties of low stats to some extent. You only need one high stat between Strength/Con, Dex/Int, and Wis/Cha. Unlike in 3rd Edition, I don't see lots of low Charisma PCs. Charisma has intrinsic value now (because it gives you a good Will defense), and indeed for each pair of stats, at least one will have intrinsic value. I see lots of high Cha/low Wis sorcerers, warlords, and other such classes. Even if you have a pair of low stats, the NAD-boosting feats can save you.
 

MarkB

Legend
47. are dump stats as much of an issue in 4th edition as in 3rd edition?

They're mitigated somewhat by the fact that your secondary defenses (4e equivalent of save bonuses) each use the higher of two scores - so, for instance, you'd need to dump both Int and Dex in order to make a serious dent in your Reflex defense.

There's also the fact that, no matter your class, you'll never run out of attacks based upon your primary attribute scores, so your wizard will never expend his spells and find himself having to rely upon Dex or Strength for his primary combat contributions. Many classes even offer At-Will attacks which can be used in place of basic attacks, allowing your character to remain effective even when using granted attacks or Opportunity Attacks.

Low ability scores can still make a difference when it comes to skills, especially since the revision of the Aid Another rules.
 

sabrinathecat

Explorer
I don't even remember 3rd edition very much. Something to do with that horrible marriage interfering with gaming. Never mind.
Short version, no.

I will muddy the waters with one point though. "This Power Can Be Used As A Basic Attack" is not the same as "This Power Is a Basic Attack" or "This power Counts As A Basic Attack." In one session, the guy playing the fighter got mad because a monster's effect limited him to only using basic attack powers, so he couldn't use his encounter/daily (or even his combat superiority Fighter Challenge), but the warlock could still use Eldrich Strike.
 
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messy

Explorer
48. does the ranger's hit and run power work like spring attack from 3rd edition (meaning, can you move, then attack, then move again)?

49. do all at-will powers increase in damage at level 21?

50. does prime shot affect all ranged powers?

51. is there any way to change the frequency a power can be used (like making an encounter power usable at-will)?

anksthay.
 

MarkB

Legend
48. does the ranger's hit and run power work like spring attack from 3rd edition (meaning, can you move, then attack, then move again)?

No. For that, you'd need something like a power which allows you to move as part of your attack action, such as the rogue's Deft Strike.

49. do all at-will powers increase in damage at level 21?

It's a general design feature of At-Will powers, though it's possible there might be exceptions.

50. does prime shot affect all ranged powers?

Yes - it does exactly what it says on the tin.

Note, though, that "ranged" has a specific usage in 4e, and doesn't just mean "any power that attacks a target at a distance". Attack powers in 4e generally have one of four attack-type keywords - Melee, Ranged, Close or Area. Only attacks with the Ranged keyword can take advantage of Prime Shot.

51. is there any way to change the frequency a power can be used (like making an encounter power usable at-will)?

Not generally. Half-Elves have a Dilettente racial feature which lets them take another class's At-Will power as an Encounter power, and I think there's a Paragon or Epic feat which lets them use their Dilettente power at-will, but generally speaking there's no such option.
 
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48. does the ranger's hit and run power work like spring attack from 3rd edition (meaning, can you move, then attack, then move again)?

Just read what it says. A power that lets you do that either says shift, attack, and shift, or move, attack, and move, with the move not provoking an opportunity attack. There are lots of ranger powers that let you shift before or after an attack.

IIRC Spring Attack was a full-round action in 3e. In 4e, a power that lets you shift and then attack is a standard action, so you can still move away afterward. The Essentials melee ranger has stances that give free shifts and so let you replicate the effect.

Because full-round actions don't exist in 4e, you cannot literally replicate it. There are monsters with similar powers though, called Mobile Melee Attack, which is actually better because you still have a move action to play around with.

49. do all at-will powers increase in damage at level 21?

I haven't seen any that don't.

50. does prime shot affect all ranged powers?

Yes. It says ranged attacks without any additional restrictions. If you're multiclassed, or using a non-class power (such as throwing an axe as a ranged basic attack) Prime Shot still applies.

Note that it applies to both rangers and warlocks, despite one using ranged weapons and the other using spells.

51. is there any way to change the frequency a power can be used (like making an encounter power usable at-will)?

Not directly, but the demigod epic destiny causes you to recharge an encounter power whenever you have none left, so in effect you never have to use an at-will. This makes it one of the most popular EDs in the game.

The Fey Charge feat lets you not use up Fey Step if you hit with the attack. Power Strike is supposedly an encounter power, but you get more uses with levels. There's an item that lets you use a channel divinity more than once.
 


51. is there any way to change the frequency a power can be used (like making an encounter power usable at-will)?

anksthay.

No, the way 4e works this would be fundamentally broken. You can certainly buff up an at-will to some nasty degrees, and its a good way to optimize, but as a general rule, no. A half-elf dilettante can get an AT-WILL of another class as a 3rd at-will of their own, no boost in frequency from what the power was designed for. That guideline is pretty universally followed because there are some very nasty encounter powers. Demigod characters already leverage the 'always have an Encounter power' thing, but at least their Epic...

Dump stats KINDA don't exist in 4e. Most PCs are built around either 2 or possibly 3 key stats. A few characters are just built around ONE stat. Any given character will have one 8 or 10. For a given build there are TYPICAL stat allocations, so maybe a lot of fighters are kinda on the slow side. If I WANT to build a smart fighter though? I can do several things. I can build a Warlord, I can build a fighter that maybe knows ritual magic? I can just build a smart fighter! He'll probably have a bit lower dex than is ideal, maybe lose a point of Wis, he'll still do his job fine, and he can have some interesting skills. 4e is nice in that it doesn't lock you into things very much, and there are so many options that you can pretty much pick any stats and build a viable character that fits most backstories and concepts reasonably well. If you're willing to do some more serious reflavoring of game elements, then you can pretty much do anything you can dream up.
 

messy

Explorer
52. can intimidate be used to demoralize an opponent (like in 3e)?

53. with armor class and reflex defense being so similar, do we really need both?

54. can a two-weapon ranger use two-weapon fighting while wielding a two-handed weapon (by say, kicking for the secondary attack)?

55. what notable sacred cows from 3e were slain (i realize this could be a rather long list)?

shukran.
 

52. can intimidate be used to demoralize an opponent (like in 3e)?

Yes, but only if they're bloodied, and there's a penalty if they're hostile (which is likely the case if you bloodied them or are in combat with them). It can't be used to eliminate a combat encounter.

53. with armor class and reflex defense being so similar, do we really need both?

If you're a heavily-armored character with low Dex/Int, there will be a significant difference. Clerics and paladins generally suffer from this, especially the former as they're not usually proficient with shields.

I killed a PC in my Dark Sun campaign due to this; he had high AC but low Reflex, being an armored shaman, and he got into a fight with a lightning drake. Sadly, the drake was roasting the entire party, and when the shaman fell they got around him in order to try to revive him (he was their only healer, so no ranged healing until he got up). He died due to failing death saves, and the other clustered PCs fell unconscious and were captured.

54. can a two-weapon ranger use two-weapon fighting while wielding a two-handed weapon (by say, kicking for the secondary attack)?

Do you mean the feat, or a power? In either case the answer is no. To use either you need to have a weapon in each hand, and holding a greatsword in two hands doesn't count.

55. what notable sacred cows from 3e were slain (i realize this could be a rather long list)?

Many. What in particular are you looking for? The definition of sacred cow varies from one person to another.
 
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