View Full Version : I smell a rat in Oriental Adventures

2007-05-20, 04:25 AM
I was looking at the nezumi's racial traits in OA when I noticed something strange. A nezumi can only make one unarmed attack per round using its bite or claw.

So, by RAW, does a nezumi never get iterative attacks on a full attack action or flurry using its unarmed strike?

This would also mean that a nezumi fighting unarmed would never get to attack on his/her turn and make an AoO in the same round.

Fourth Tempter
2007-05-20, 06:14 AM
Bite and claw attacks are not unarmed strikes, they are natural attacks. The rules for such are readily availible in the System Reference Document (www.d20srd.org).

Shhalahr Windrider
2007-05-20, 06:40 AM
Right, unarmed strikes follow a different set of rules—the manufactured weapon rules for the most part—than natural attacks. They're quite different.

Natural Weapons such as bites and claws never gain iterative attacks from high BAB. However, they can generally be used in just about any full attack where the natural weapon in question is free to make the attack.

The rule you cite, however, does override the standard rules, however. Typically, a creature with claw and bite natural attacks could attack with a one-handed weapon (even gaining iterative attacks if the BAB allows) and make both a claw attack and a bite attack in attack in the same round. However, a nezumi is limited to only attacking with the weapon and either a bite or claw, but not both.

Since an unarmed strike follows the manufactured weapons, a creature with natural weapons could possibly attack with unarmed strikes and then use their natural weapons as secondary attacks.

I think the Main 3.5 FAQ (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/er/20030221a) explains things a more clearly than the SRD itself.

2007-05-20, 07:50 AM
A ratling's sharp teeth and claws deal XXX points of normal damage with a successful unarmed strike. A ratling can make only one unarmed attack per round, using either claw or a bite attack.

This is the rule I'm referring to in its full glory. It states that the bite and claws are unarmed strikes, not natural weapons. I'm guessing that this is a mistake on the writer(s) part. It was intended for the claws and bite be natural weapons, but they were written as unarmed strikes.

Shhalahr Windrider
2007-05-20, 09:23 AM
I'm guessing that this is a mistake on the writer(s) part.
Yeah. That's written so poorly as to make astral devas cry.

Now the first sentence seems to imply the ability simply ups the damage on regular unarmed strikes.

The second sentence implies it was meant to be actual natural attacks.

The fact that you can actually choose specific bite or claw attacks would indicate that the second sentences is likely the most accurate.

The fact that Oriental Adventures is 3.0 doesn't even help us fix things because the distinction between Unarmed Strikes and Natural Weapons existed even then. Unfortunately, this issue is not even addressed in the OA errata. (Just in case you are unaware, Dragon #318 (http://paizo.com/dragon/products/issues/2004/318) does include an article that provides a 3.5 update to OA. But it doesn't change the nezumi at all.)

So, it's poorly written. I recommend treating the bites and claws as natural weapons with the restrictions I mentioned in my previous post.

2007-05-20, 11:25 AM
Yeah, I never really liked how they made the races in Oriental adventures. So I’ve had to go through and fix some stuff, one of them was the Nezumi.

2007-05-20, 12:54 PM
Thanks for giving some of your time to answer my question. I'm surprised that this rule managed to slip by the editors, errata, and an update (by the original author!).

And I leave you with an interesting character idea:

were-rat nezumi

Just think about it.

2007-05-21, 11:08 AM
And I leave you with an interesting character idea:

were-rat nezumi

Just think about it.

It undergoes a hideous transformation into itself under the light of the full moon?