Rules Question

All right, so the Pathfinder rules state that you get to add a Dex bonus to attack rolls when making ranged attacks.  You add a strength bonus for thrown weapons and composite bows to damage.  This is all pretty clear in the rule books.  Does the Dex bonus not apply to damage?  That’s the way I played it in 2nd edition but maybe that was houserules and I never realized it.  This makes shooters without many shot seem a lot less awesome to me.  Good by crossbow shooting Halfling ranger idea.

5 Comments on “Rules Question

  1. dex bonus does not apply to damage — attack rolls = to-hit, damage rolls = damage roll.

    your 2nd edition was house rules if memory serves.

    shooters in this edition are in some ways not as good as 2nd edition in base, but the feats probably end up making up for it.

    that said, there was some bonkers stuff in 2nd edition. in dark sun, where attribute rolls were 4d4+8, it wasn’t hard to get a character with a few scores at or above 19. fighters and gladiators, for example, were pretty awesome at this. with a weapon specialization in darts, they could throw 4+ darts per round, often with attack/damage bonuses of over +8/+6 per round. that’s a lot of guaranteed damage. so although stuff like that was neat, it was a bit broken.

  2. That’s right, non-thrown ranged weapons usually only get their stated damage.
    Thrown and composite ranged weapons get their stated damage +STR bonus.

    The benefit of using a ranged weapon is that you are 80ft from the guy with the battleaxe. The downside is that it does less damage.
    The benefit of using thrown weapons is that you get to add your strength bonus. The downside is that you sacrifice that safe distance.
    The benefit to using composite ranged weapons is that they are great and the downside is that you have to be strong enough to draw them/rich enough to buy them.

    The other benefit to a normal ranged weapon is that you can load it up with magic arrows/bolts at a relatively comparable gp per hit compared to a magic weapon. You can buy these in installments too, rather than the lump sum of a melee weapon.

    Magic +1 Longsword: 2315gp and does 1d8+1+STR bonus per hit, while something is murdering you.
    50 Magic +1 Arrows from a plain longbow: 2350gp 1d8+1 per hit, of which you should get 97 or so before all the arrows break; all shot off while something terrible is murdering your friends over there.

    Extra bonus: That Longsword will be long outdated by the time you hit 8th level, whereas your arrow complement should be due to be refreshed.

    Focused Shot (a third tier feat after Point-Blank and Precise) allows you to add your Int bonus to damage… so if he was a bright Halfling ranger, that might work. Also Rangers get to add damage for their chosen specialty groups.

    • Oh, the extra bonus I meant to add was that you can have a few cheap arrows for different types of damage resistance, whereas that gets super expensive to carry around a Cold Iron Longsword, an Adamantine Long Sword, a Holy Longsword, etc.

      Having no arrows in your quiver is not that extra bonus I meant to put in there.

      Check out Treantmonk’s Guide to Rangers if you want some ideas about feats to take: Deadly Aim (-1 to hit for +2 damage) seems like it would be great for a high Dex (likely to hit) archer.

      • When I played Baaz, I definitely got a little archer envy. Especially while Kerplak made pin cushions out of enemies while Baaz got the snot beat out of him while doling out similar damage at a more limited crit range. So I don’t think that the lack of STR damage bonus is at all unfair.

        And as Albedon recently proved with his coup de grace of a fleeing stone giant 400 feet away with a long bow, you don’t fuck with a weapon that can hit you over a football field away despite its lack of STR bonus damage.

  3. Did you know?

    You can critical/sneak attack most undead in Pathfinder? Constructs too.

    When using a ranged weapon, if there is anything blocking line of effect or providing cover, or a creature (enemy OR ALLY) in between you and your target, the target is given a +4 cover (soft in case of creatures) bonus to AC (unless you have certain feats).

    Readying an action, is itself a standard action. It restricts you to ONE of movement or standard actions. You cannot move and then do something as part of the readied action.

    Blimey, I should really read these rules…