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The Warrior: The Champion's love letter to the Battle Master

And, it's not being directly mentally manipulated - no telepathy or magic nor even verbal communication is involved. It could be something as simple as a big, obvious attack that's easily avoided by stepping to that side. You could have stood there, but you'd've gotten pasted. Also, while we can think things through and weigh options, acting and reacting in HTH is presumably more a matter of instinct & training than deliberation.

And if I were the player, I'd want to know and decide that option myself. "Instead of abandoning the princess and moving 40' and also getting hit by the Maneuvering Attack arrow, I'm going to stay between her and the archer. I don't care if that means the arrow auto-crits me, it's totally worth it. Besides, Deflect Missiles reduces the damage I take by d10+12 anyway."

If you force me to abandon the princess and run away just because the rule says you can, I'm liable to be peeved.
 

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DaedalusX51

Explorer
And if I were the player, I'd want to know and decide that option myself. "Instead of abandoning the princess and moving 40' and also getting hit by the Maneuvering Attack arrow, I'm going to stay between her and the archer. I don't care if that means the arrow auto-crits me, it's totally worth it. Besides, Deflect Missiles reduces the damage I take by d10+12 anyway."

If you force me to abandon the princess and run away just because the rule says you can, I'm liable to be peeved.

That same thing could happen to your character if they were frightened by a fear effect from the enemy as well... I don't think giving the good abilities just to spell casters because "it's magic" is a good enough reason when the narrative makes sense.

However, many of your suggestions would make the narrative a bit clearer. I can agree with that.
 
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Tony Vargas

Legend
And if I were the player, I'd want to know and decide that option myself. "Instead of abandoning the princess and moving 40' and also getting hit by the Maneuvering Attack arrow, I'm going to stay between her and the archer. Besides, Deflect Missiles reduces the damage I take by d10+12 anyway."
That strikes me as unduly trying to unravel the abstractions of combat. Along the lines of "I try to cut of his head, what AC do I need to hit? What do you mean 'roll damage?' I'm cutting his head off, he's dead!"

I don't care if that means the arrow auto-crits me, it's totally worth it.
What if it's kills you outright leaving her defenseless against the next shot, vs moving and 'drawing his fire' away from her?

I mean, the result of an attack resolution is the best the other guy can come up with to kill you outright, vs the best you can do to stop him. That's not always going to go your way nor leave you with a lot of options to mull over in the split second it takes the arrow to reach you.

If you force me to abandon the princess and run away just because the rule says you can, I'm liable to be peeved.
I get that, I feel the same way about high-level fighter's WILL (now WIS) saves sucking so hard vs scaling DCs ever since 3.0, too. "Fearless?" Hardly.

But, we can exercise your imaginations to pick rationales that works for us, not those that don't.
 

That same thing could happen to your character if they were frightened by a fear effect from the enemy as well... I don't think giving the good abilities just to spell casters because "it's magic" is a good enough reason when the narrative makes sense.

However, many of your suggestions would make the narrative a bit clearer. I can agree with that.

A fear effect is external. If you cast Fear on me, and I fail my saving throw, I can accept that I temporarily went crazy and ran away. But if you try to claim that you somehow shot an arrow that made me choose to run away from the Princess because I didn't want to get hit, I'm going to feel like you're interfering with how I roleplay.

If you make it a supernatural, external fear effect, then make it a fear effect--which will mean that certain enemies (e.g. high-level Paladins, anyone under a Heroism spell) will be immune. But don't make it a mandatory roleplaying decision imposed on someone else's character. That violates the implicit norms of the D&D family of RPGs--players always have complete authority over their own PCs' roleplaying decisions, and they get really mad if the DM tells them "You decide not to do that."
 
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That strikes me as unduly trying to unravel the abstractions of combat. Along the lines of "I try to cut of his head, what AC do I need to hit? What do you mean 'roll damage?' I'm cutting his head off, he's dead!"

What if it's kills you outright leaving her defenseless against the next shot, vs moving and 'drawing his fire' away from her?

That's a pretty alarmingly false choice if the DM imposes it. You have to either do something that makes zero tactical sense (uncovering the princess reduces her cover bonus, making her easier to hit, not harder) or take an unbelievably harsh penalty (auto-death). That's inappropriately railroady DMing IMO. It's like saying, "You can either accept this impossible quest or my DMPC archwizard will send a thousand demons to swallow your soul."

That's precisely why I think these things should be defined up front, because a DM who tries to come up with a rationale on the fly will probably do it wrong. It's important to give the players real, actual choices.
 

Tony Vargas

Legend
That's a pretty alarmingly false choice if the DM imposes it.
Is it? I mean, an arrow is a deadly weapon. You and the princess are both mortal.

It's important to give the players real, actual choices.
And, remember: it's not a choice, it's a rationale. You took a little damage and moved because it was the best result of the resolution you could achieve, just like the other guy did a little damage and forced you to move because that was the best he could do. You'd rather have stood there, he'd rather have killed you.

That's precisely why I think these things should be defined up front, because a DM who tries to come up with a rationale on the fly will probably do it wrong.
That's what mechanics do, up front. As far as the right or wrong of a rationale, that's going to vary with the audience. So pick a 'right' one, for you. It needn't even be exactly the same for everyone at the table.
 


Is it? I mean, an arrow is a deadly weapon. You and the princess are both mortal.


And, remember: it's not a choice, it's a rationale. You took a little damage and moved because it was the best result of the resolution you could achieve, just like the other guy did a little damage and forced you to move because that was the best he could do. You'd rather have stood there, he'd rather have killed you.

Not so. That might explain moving a few feet to the side, and it might maybe explain uncovering the princess (though I'm quite skeptical--seems like the princess would auto-die instead if that were the situation), but it sure doesn't explain running 40' away. You explained that by claiming that it "draws fire".

That's what mechanics do, up front. As far as the right or wrong of a rationale, that's going to vary with the audience. So pick a 'right' one, for you. It needn't even be exactly the same for everyone at the table.

Clearly it's a matter of taste and there's probably nothing more to say about it. Some people would hate Maneuvering Attack as written. Some people apparently would like it.
 

Tony Vargas

Legend
Clearly it's a matter of taste and there's probably nothing more to say about it. Some people would hate Maneuvering Attack as written. Some people apparently would like it.
Opinion about a given visualization is a matter of taste. Which visualization you use is a matter of choice - unless the game settles on one up-front, then it's a matter of house-ruling.
 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flushing_(military_tactic)

I mean it's not like this idea isn't an actual tactic in real life. Sure it's abstracted, but it's not that far from reality.

Flushing is nothing like the princess-with-bodyguard situation being discussed. Flushing is about making someone else break cover; it's not about making the cover (bodyguard) run away from the individual hiding behind cover (the princess).
 

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