Tactical Trick and Sneak Attack

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So during our last D&D 4e Essentials session this came up. I am rather new to D&D still and don't have a brilliant grasp of the more advanced rules this so I apologise if it is plain as day.

I used tactical trick to get to an enemy that had an ally adjacent to them. I was standing beside my ally and so they were not directly opposite me. So under normal circumstances I would not get combat advantage as I was not flnaking my enemy.

But tactical trick says that I have combat advantage against an enemy that has an ally adjacent to them. Does this mean I also get my sneak attack additional dice for damage? The DM brought it up and wasn't sure if I would or not. It also seemed to him that my rogue was doing to much damage per hit and he doesnt want to make the game to easy for us.

He mentioned about effects not stacking but as they are not the same type or effect I didn't think this would matter. And that my tactical trick gave me the combat advantage but I could not benfit from sneak attack due to not flanking the enemy. So as I get the +2 form combat advantage on my to hit roll I cannot then get the second benefit of 2d6 dice from sneak attack as I was bypassing how I would natral get combat advantage. But if I were to flank the enemy I would gain it naturally and so could get the extra 2d6 damage dice as I was nto using a power to gain the combat advantage.

The sneak attack wording also says an enemy granting you combat advanatge" but the Tactical trick power says "you have combata advanatge". Because of this we were not sure if as it is the power giving me the combat advantage if due to the wording of Sneak attack I would get the extra damage dice.

I personally think I would as after scouring threads everywhere I have found out some good things. Firstly the stacking seems to be where two powers or two feats are providing a bonus. So if you were to have two powers one that gives you +2 to your damage roll and another that gives you +3 wouldn't stack for +5 you would only get the +3. Also gaining and being granted combat advantage are the same merely different (I saw someone describe them as passive and active) ways to get the combat advantage bonus. 

I plan on sending this thread along to him so that he can read all the answers for himself as he asked me to post this and look ofr answers as he doesn't know what the answer is either so this is not an "I said X he said Y, who is right it?" thread. This is the entire group looking for a definative answer so we were playing it ight.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Also any page and/or book references would be a masssive help.

Thanks
The sneak attack wording also says £an enemy granting you combat advanatge" but the Tactical trick power says "you have combata advanatge". Because of this we were not sure if as it is the power giving me the combat advantage if due to the wording of Sneak attack I would get the extra damage dice.

"You have combat advantage against X" is the same thing as "X grants combat advantage" or "X grants combat advantage to you."  The only thing you want to be careful of is to know there's a difference between "grants combat advantage," which means to everyone vs. "grants combat advantage to X" which means just to X.  Also note that the word "grant" doesn't mean anything.  It can just as easily be "you have combat advantage against so-and-so." 

So the bottom line is that yes, you have combat advantage against the enemy and yes, you can use sneak attack for the extra damage dice.

CA is described in Rules Compendium page 217.  Note you won't see the terms "grant" or "have" or anything like passive vs active CA discussed in the book because those terms don't mean anything.  If you have it or if someone grants it to you or you gain it or get it ... it's the same thing.

I personally think I would as after scouring threads everywhere I have found out some good things. Firstly the stacking seems to be where two powers or two feats are providing a bonus. So if you were to have two powers one that gives you +2 to your damage roll and another that gives you +3 wouldn't stack for +5 you would only get the +3. Also gaining and being granted combat advantage are the same merely different (I saw someone describe them as passive and active) ways to get the combat advantage bonus. 

You're right about how same typed bonuses don't stack and you only use the greater bonus, but to be a "typed" bonus it must actually state what type of bonus it is in the description.  In other words, a power bonus is only a power bonus if it explicitly says "power bonus."  Just because a bonus comes from a power does not automatically make it a "power bonus."  It must say "power bonus."  Same thing with "feat bonus," "enhancement bonus," etc.    And yes, bonuses of the same type do not stack with each other; you just use the greater bonus.  If a bonus just says it's a "bonus," without a type, then it is untyped and will stack with anything else, including other untyped bonuses.

IOW, it doesn't matter where the bonus came from, it matters what type it is explicitly defined as.  Types of bonuses are:  armor, enhancement, feat, item, power, proficiency, racial, shield and untyped (not really a type).  The bonus has to be one of these (not untyped) to be a typed bonus and not stack with the same typed bonus.  This is described in Rules Compendium page 27.

More advice:


An example of Tactical Trick combined with Backstab.  Tactical trick gives you CA which gives you a +2 bonus to hit.  Note that this is an untyped bonus.  Backstab gives you a +3 power bonus to hit.  so in this case you get a total of +5 to hit because backstab is a power bonus and the CA from tactical trick is untyped, so they stack.

Multiple instances of combat advantage do not stack.  So it doesn't matter if you have Tactical Trick going on, and the enemy is prone and you're flanking him and he's Dazed all at the same time.  You still just have Combat Advantage, not CA x 4, and you still just get the +2 to hit and any other benefits you might get from CA.

Rogues are Strikers and are supposed to do a lot of damage.  Your DM should not worry about you doing "too much damage."  That's what you do best.  If he thinks you're doing too much damage, well, he's wrong, unless you're cheating and he should consider that there are other ways to make the game more challenging besides nerfing you or trying harder to kill you.  You should talk to him about his concern about the game being "too easy."  What is he really worried about?  Does he think the game won't be fun if you beat the monsters without dying or being severely hurt?  If everyone's having a good time, then it's not "too easy."  He needs to understand that there are many ways to introduce challenge into the game, and challenge in and of itself is not the sole factor that determines if something is fun.  Easy combats can be fun too, and combat can have victory conditions beyond "kill the other team," and PC death is not the only way to create tension and immersion in the game.

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"Challenge" is overrated.  "Immersion" is usually just a more pretentious way of saying "having fun playing D&D."

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Your DM is mistaken.

Tactical Trick is designed to grant the Thief Combat Advantage so that it can use Sneak Attack. That's why the movement tricks are built into the class - it's a striker class, and dependent on Sneak Attack damage in order to reach the damage benchmarks for its role. If your DM nerfs your ability to use Sneak Attack, he/she removes the entire reason to play the class.

Stacking is not an issue in any way here - Combat Advantage is a defined game term giving you an effective +2 to hit. Sneak Attack is a defined class feature that triggers on any attack made when you have Combat Advantage (with the caveats that it's once per turn, with the listed weapons).

Flanking has nothing to do with this scenario, and will not prevent your Tactical Trick or Sneak Attack from working. 

Note that D&D 4e is an exclusion based rules system - unless a rule/power/feature specifically states that you cannot gain combat advantage, you can. The flanking exception applies only to flanking - it will not affect other means of gaining CA.

As a striker your damage per round is supposed to be roughly double that of a non-striker. So "too much per hit" is probably not an issue you're actually having. At-level combats should be lasting four rounds or less.

@Red's DM: Easier combats should happen. It uses up resources (surges, dailies). Every encounter doesn't need to be challenging, it is the total encounters per day that should be challenging. A really easy way to do that is have a massive encounter (level+3-4) as the first encounter of the day and then make them slog through the rest of the day doing easy encounters, surges in particular will become an issue (having skill challenges where you can lose surges for failures of greater than -5 is pretty brutal). Also they changed the monster math in the MM3 and Monster Vault. You can find the new math in the Rules Update Archive, DMG update PDF, last page. This will make the encounters more challenging, as well.
I am not really sure if he actually thought it would be to easy that is more just what I think he was talking about and I may have not explained his points correctly. We just didn't know which way it would resolve but thanks for all the replies it will help massively and is greatly appreciated.

UPDATE 

The confusion now is in the wording of Sneak attack. As it says "granting you combat advantage" which as an example the enemy grants you combat advantage when you flank them. But when using Tactical trick to get combat advantage the enemy is not granting me it the power gives me it, "you have combat advantage". Beacause of this my DM says that using this power alone to get CA the enemy is not granting me it so I cannot use the sneak attack bonus. He has asked me to seek clarification from an authority e.g. an admin. But, I do not know how to go about this. So any information on how to get a clarification form an admin or a book and page reference that will completly clear this up would greatly help.

Thanks 
I am not really sure if he actually thought it would be to easy that is more just what I think he was talking about and I may have not explained his points correctly. We just didn't know which way it would resolve but thanks for all the replies it will help massively and is greatly appreciated.

UPDATE 

The confusion now is in the wording of Sneak attack. As it says "granting you combat advantage" which as an example the enemy grants you combat advantage when you flank them. But when using Tactical trick to get combat advantage the enemy is not granting me it the power gives me it, "you have combat advantage". Beacause of this my DM says that using this power alone to get CA the enemy is not granting me it so I cannot use the sneak attack bonus. He has asked me to seek clarification from an authority e.g. an admin. But, I do not know how to go about this. So any information on how to get a clarification form an admin or a book and page reference that will completly clear this up would greatly help.

Thanks 



"You have combat advantage against X" is synonymous with "X grants you combat advantage".  Combat Advantage is Combat Advantage, and THE WHOLE POINT of the Tricks is to give you Combat Advantage more often, since your class' entire purpose is "combat advantage".

There is no "admin" of any sort to ask, only us.  Well, and Customer Service, but they give terrible answers that don't make sense because they don't actually know the rules.  So they might give you the right answer, or they might give you the wrong answer, but they can't give you an authoritative answer, because they're not authoritative AND not reliable even on the simplest questions.


Also:  If your GM still doesn't believe you that your Striker feature that gives you CA so that you can be a Striker works?  Say okay, and *make a different character*.  Make a Slayer or an Elementalist, or something else that isn't vulnerable to your semiliterate GM's semiliteracy.  You'll do the same damage, without having to argue with the GM over why.
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UPDATE 

The confusion now is in the wording of Sneak attack. As it says "granting you combat advantage" which as an example the enemy grants you combat advantage when you flank them. But when using Tactical trick to get combat advantage the enemy is not granting me it the power gives me it, "you have combat advantage". Beacause of this my DM says that using this power alone to get CA the enemy is not granting me it so I cannot use the sneak attack bonus. He has asked me to seek clarification from an authority e.g. an admin. But, I do not know how to go about this. So any information on how to get a clarification form an admin or a book and page reference that will completly clear this up would greatly help.

Thanks 

So your DM is wrong, says you should post and find out. You post and find out and, presumably, send him the link to the thread which has unanimous agreement from everyone that he is wrong. And instead of admitting he is wrong, he makes up some bs to justify himself.

Find a new DM.
If he wants text (this from the Rules Compendium):

 



Combat advantage has two rules.

+2 Bonus to Attack Rolls: A creature gains a +2 bonus to attack rolls against a target granting combat advantage to it.

Able to See Target: A creature must be able to see a target to gain combat advantage against it. This rule means a blinded creature cannot have combat advantage against anyone.




You can see that the usages go together- creatures grant combat advantage to other ones that have combat advantage against them, and vice versa. 
 
Your DM is wrong.  The other posters have outlined in multiple ways how and why.  If your DM is going to continue to stubbornly state you're overpowered because you want to get CA with your class feature as you should and deal your sneak attack damage, again as you should...  well that's on him.  There's nothing we or you can do about it.  

I want to make it very clear to you and your DM, if he's bothering to read this thread, that there's NOTHING overpowered about what you're doing.  It's a very basic game element and strategy.  What your DM should do is congratulate you on knowing what you're doing and if his monsters are getting their butts kicked too hard then he should be working on improving his own gameplay, not limiting or arbitrarily screwing over yours.  

Play as a group and have fun, what he's doing is clearly not fun. 
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Your DM does not seem to understand the concept of CA, and further seems to think that "sneak attack" only applies to flanking.  The whole point of the theif build for rogues in essentials, is to allow for an easy way to get CA.  This is offset, by only using basic attacks, which do not have the cool abilities other rogues attacks have ( piecing strike, low slash).

Your DM seems more bend on trying to limit your damage then challenge you in the encounter.  If he does not like you having CA so much, then he should send some enemies(Adjacent to each other) to melee you and force you to retreat hence using your move action to shift and removing your easy CA for the turn.

If the enemies you are facing are dropping too easy, then your DM could simply increase their HP.  He has other tools in his DM toolkit other than "NO!". 
I am not really sure if he actually thought it would be to easy that is more just what I think he was talking about and I may have not explained his points correctly. .... 
The confusion now is in the wording of Sneak attack. As it says "granting you combat advantage" which as an example the enemy grants you combat advantage when you flank them. But when using Tactical trick to get combat advantage the enemy is not granting me it the power gives me it, "you have combat advantage". Beacause of this my DM says that using this power alone to get CA the enemy is not granting me it so I cannot use the sneak attack bonus. He has asked me to seek clarification from an authority e.g. an admin. But, I do not know how to go about this. So any information on how to get a clarification from an admin or a book and page reference that will completely clear this up would greatly help.

Thanks 



Since the ruling sounds pretty clear at this point, the only thing of consequence from what you have posted is convincing your DM. Now mind that being a DM can be difficult sometimes when they have the unenviable job of keeping players from taking advantage of the rules. Doesn't mean anyone is being stupid or mean; it is just something that is best handled by being considerate.

 So, let's look for what the DM is patiently trying get information on so he can comfortably move forward. In the glossary, the first sentence of Combat Advantage is:
One of the most common attack roll modifiers is combat advantage, which represents a situation in which a target can’t give full attention to defense.

We should be able to conclude Combat Advantage is a situational modifier. Therefore, having it against an opponent creates the situational modifier, and an opponent that grants it is creating that same situational modifier. Since the presence of that situational modifier is basically Combat Advantage existing, Sneak Attack has its Combat Advantage requirement checked off.

Hopefully, you can present that to your DM and everything will go smoothly from there.

Side note: There are lots of great ideas here from DMs that have "been there, done that" so it is a good plan to voice any difficulties your DM faces in setting up a challenging game. Try not to be discouraged by people calling your DM names when he is just trying to do his best. Good luck
I am not really sure if he actually thought it would be to easy that is more just what I think he was talking about and I may have not explained his points correctly. .... 
The confusion now is in the wording of Sneak attack. As it says "granting you combat advantage" which as an example the enemy grants you combat advantage when you flank them. But when using Tactical trick to get combat advantage the enemy is not granting me it the power gives me it, "you have combat advantage". Beacause of this my DM says that using this power alone to get CA the enemy is not granting me it so I cannot use the sneak attack bonus. He has asked me to seek clarification from an authority e.g. an admin. But, I do not know how to go about this. So any information on how to get a clarification from an admin or a book and page reference that will completely clear this up would greatly help.

Thanks 



Since the ruling sounds pretty clear at this point, the only thing of consequence from what you have posted is convincing your DM. Now mind that being a DM can be difficult sometimes when they have the unenviable job of keeping players from taking advantage of the rules. Doesn't mean anyone is being stupid or mean; it is just something that is best handled by being considerate.

 So, let's look for what the DM is patiently trying get information on so he can comfortably move forward. In the glossary, the first sentence of Combat Advantage is:
One of the most common attack roll modifiers is combat advantage, which represents a situation in which a target can’t give full attention to defense.

We should be able to conclude Combat Advantage is a situational modifier. Therefore, having it against an opponent creates the situational modifier, and an opponent that grants it is creating that same situational modifier. Since the presence of that situational modifier is basically Combat Advantage existing, Sneak Attack has its Combat Advantage requirement checked off.

Hopefully, you can present that to your DM and everything will go smoothly from there.

Side note: There are lots of great ideas here from DMs that have "been there, done that" so it is a good plan to voice any difficulties your DM faces in setting up a challenging game. Try not to be discouraged by people calling your DM names when he is just trying to do his best. Good luck



Definatly a helpful post, they all have been and yeah calling someone "semi-illiterate" is not a good way of getting your point across and making someone want to listen to you. i ignored that part of the post as it wasn't called for. My DM makes the game fun and I know he is doing his best and there is a lot to know as a DM. Mistakes will be made its all part of the learning process for both a DM and a player. 

The whole thing was over the 'granted' CA vs 'gained' CA and needing to find if they are the same and where it staes it directly if so. Which it doesnt seem to but, this has been shown why they are interchangable. 

The reason I was asked to seek a ruling from a Moderator or and Admin was because my DM expected people who play or have played the class and want the same benefit as me and so may give a biased opinion on the matter. Which I thought wasn't a very fair assumption to make but nontheless I did see why he may have thought that as I have seen it happen before but very rarley. But I thank everyone for the contributions to this thread.
There are no such things as moderators or admins here, that take part in any discussion about game mechanics or rules and those that do, namely customer service, are usually wrong. 
This forum is the place to go if you have questions about anything game mechanics/rules. The collective in its entirety is the most reliable authority there is.
There is no such thing as consensual bias, cause you'll find experts of all stripes here who all strive to play by the rules. The consensus found here about any topic is the actual rule.
Tell this your DM.

This forum is the place to go if you have questions about anything game mechanics/rules. The collective in its entirety is the most reliable authority there is.
Tell this your DM.



I have to agree with this reasoning in a game where the fluidity of the rules sneak up on you like they do. As a group, the forum members represent lord-knows how many man-hours of rules and mechanics resolving, why not tap into that? Having said that I, as a 30+ year DM, asked one of my players if his information came from forums as a player-based source. What always swayed me was the logic used to derive the answer, and a flat "Yes, it just does/doesn't" (often followed by, 'stop wasting our time'), meant I didn't exactly have something on my hands that was going to help change my understanding.

As this post stands, I'm glad you found something useful and hope you continue to do so.
The reason I was asked to seek a ruling from a Moderator or and Admin was because my DM expected people who play or have played the class and want the same benefit as me and so may give a biased opinion on the matter.



He needs to be more logical and less paranoid, the entire reason for the power to exist is to get sneak attack, the entire reason for rogue/thief to exist is to get sneak attack.

Combat advantage is a relationship between a player and an enemy and the difference here is really only in regards to perspective, the enemy grants combat advantage to the player, the player has combat advantage against the enemy, these are both the same statement but from differing perspectives. It's not some wild conspiracy, its english, it seems silly to get hung up on, and no 'authority' need chime in on it.
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