A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #1
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    Default Stand Still feat

    OK, this one is creating some consternation from our group, and I'd love to get some additional viewpoints on the feat. The feat is, from the SRD:

    Stand Still [General]
    You can prevent foes from fleeing or closing.

    Prerequisite
    Str 13.

    Benefit
    When a foe’s movement out of a square you threaten grants you an attack of opportunity, you can give up that attack and instead attempt to stop your foe in his tracks. Make your attack of opportunity normally. If you hit your foe, he must succeed on a Reflex save against a DC of 10 + your damage roll (the opponent does not actually take damage), or immediately halt as if he had used up his move actions for the round.

    Since you use the Stand Still feat in place of your attack of opportunity, you can do so only a number of times per round equal to the number of times per round you could make an attack of opportunity (normally just one).

    Normal
    Attacks of opportunity cannot halt your foes in their tracks.
    As we see it, there are two questions to be asked.

    1) And in my opinion, the lesser of the two - what do you roll for the damage roll? The feat just says you roll "normally" which would imply that any and all bonuses and bonus damage die would get rolled, which has the potential to send that Reflex DC into the "nigh impossible" realm. Hell, if you can hit for more than 35 damage, it means there are no creatures that can make the save on anything but a 20. In my opinion, this is a small issue, as bonus damage dice aside, we can all make a power attacking raging barbarian with a greataxe who hits for that kind of damage without any other help... so there it is.

    2) What does it mean where it says "immediately halt as if he had used up his move actions for the round"? If that is read literally, it means that you can't move at all, as you have "used up" your move actions for the round. But I have trouble with that... in a big way. Effectively, that would mean that some creatures would be so easily defeated that it would be laughable. Hell, a enlarged spike chain wielder using this feat and dishing out reliable damage, could lock any creature in place and render it unable to move at all. And if the move actions are "used up", the poor thing can't even attack back unless it has reach equal to or greater than the Stand Still user! Sure, smarter critters will Free 5, and nimble ones will tumble. But what about really dumb ones? What about the lowly purple worm and his ilk?

    In my opinion, it means that you have used that move action, and must immediately stop that move, as though your moves were used up, with all that implies (legal space, etc.) but that if you have another move action, you'd be free to use it, and as you can't get hit for two AoOs for the same thing, you'd be free to move.

    Any thoughts? There is no clarification in the errata or the faq. One of my group has sent the question to Customer Service, but a) I don't know if they are still answering 3.5 questions, and b) I don't know that I'd trust their answer anyway.

    EDITED: for clarification
    Last edited by Tyger; 2010-02-21 at 11:52 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by theos911 View Post
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  2. - Top - End - #2
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    1) It's just that awesome.

    2) I'm pretty sure they're just supposed to "Stand Still." The idea is to keep the character from moving.
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    This only triggers on AoO movement, so a 5ft step won't activate it. If he does start moving, and fails the save, it counts as if he'd wasted his move action to move in place. Likewise, Tumble negates it.
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    RAI and RAW, it would be your damage on the AoO normally, so practically impossible to make. Also, it says move actions, so they can not move again.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    1) He still has to hit the target.

    I know it's not THAT hard. It is a powerful feat.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    There is a reason that Stand Still trippers are considered very strong (if dreadfully boring). You hit upon them above. I personally really dislike Stand Still, for being waaaay too easily broken, but that's just me.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Thicket of Blades to fix the 5-ft step problem.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    It's a powerful feat, but not broken. A wizards level 1 grease is nearly as effective at low levels, and it hits a group. Fighters need some loving to stand alongside casters.
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    While I like the Grease spell too, I don't think its even remotely comparable, nor does it scale up as quickly to the "impossible" realm that this feat appears to.

    Level 1 casting of grease means that the monsters get to make a DC ~ 15 Reflex save even without a bonus they will make it 25% of the time. Then a 50% chance to make the Balance check to get out of the grease. Yes, its good, but not nearly as good as Stand Still.

    That same level 1 barbarian can lock down almost all level 1 creatures. Halberd (for reach), with 10 damage total (easy to hit!) means the monster gets to move if it rolls a 20, and only if it rolls a 20.

    And it just gets worse the higher you go. Combined with something like Thicket of Blades, this means that you can effectively lock down any creature that doesn't have reach equal to or greater than yours and without ranged attacks.

    Hydras, purple worms, hell, half the monster manual now is completely ineffective without rolling a 20??? That's arguably the most broken feat I've come across. Sure it requires a rather specific build, but that build is a very effective melee build for all kinds of other reasons too, so its not like you are building a complete one-trick-pony...

    Yes, its not the power of a full caster, but in some instances, its actually more powerful than most casters can pull off, and this build can do it all day long, with no loss of effectiveness or power. That's pretty ugly in my books.
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    Quote Originally Posted by theos911 View Post
    Fighter: I can kill a guy in one turn.
    Cleric: I can kill a guy in half a turn.
    Wizard: I can kill a guy before my turn!
    Bard: I can get 12 idiots to go kill guys for me
    Quote Originally Posted by grarrrg View Post
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    So, you're telling me that against the big dumb creatures (lower threats), it's very strong?

    And against the smarter foes, it's less effective?

    I don't see the problem.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    It is a strong feat that in certain scenarios can win you the fight. It does not win you every fight, and neither does it win the fights it does win without investment or specialization.

    A melee feat doing something a spellcaster can't precisely replicate at the same level is unusual, but... it's just giving the melee some form of battlefield control. =/



    EDIT: I wouldn't use the feat on CR 1 opponents, as you did in your example. If I have the ability to deal 10+ damage/hit, I'd rather use it to kill them instead.
    Last edited by Ernir; 2010-02-22 at 07:09 AM.
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixRivers View Post
    So, you're telling me that against the big dumb creatures (lower threats), it's very strong?

    And against the smarter foes, it's less effective?

    I don't see the problem.
    No, actually, against anything that doesn't have reach as great as the feat user's or a ranged attack, it is a show stopper. Particularly if combined with something like Thicket of Blades.

    Its not that its "very strong" so much as it is a 95% guarantee of victory against such critters. If it gave an edge, I'd probably like it. But eliminating threats completely? That's a bit over the top.

    And yes, I am all in favour of increasing melee class advantages. Casters rule the roost, and this doesn't, per se, change that. But this feat, can essentially remove a creature (or creatures if you have Combat Reflexes, and what build incorporating this isn't going to have that) from the fight - completely, with no real chance for the creature to escape. Yes, there are save or die and save or suck, but none of them have anywhere close to the same save DC as this feat, which is available at first level, and just gets stronger through the entire game.

    For 7 power points, a Psychic Warrior Spiked-chain wielder can lock the Tarrasque down, with its only hope a natural 20 on the Reflex role. Note, I didn't say he could kill it, just that he could prevent it from moving.

    Purple worms are dead too, probably by level 3 or 4. Trolls? Not a problem by level 2, maybe 3.



    One level seven physic warrior can reliably lock down the Tarrasque. This doesn't bother people??
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    Quote Originally Posted by theos911 View Post
    Fighter: I can kill a guy in one turn.
    Cleric: I can kill a guy in half a turn.
    Wizard: I can kill a guy before my turn!
    Bard: I can get 12 idiots to go kill guys for me
    Quote Originally Posted by grarrrg View Post
    Oh, and Person-Man's real name is a little something called "SKYNET"

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    One level seven physic warrior can reliably lock down the Tarrasque. This doesn't bother people??
    Given that a Warlock - not the strongest class, either - can fly over the Tarrasque and pew-pew it to death with impunity before that level? Nope, not so much.
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyger View Post
    No, actually, against anything that doesn't have reach as great as the feat user's or a ranged attack, it is a show stopper. Particularly if combined with something like Thicket of Blades.
    Really? So there's no miss chance? Let's take a creature with a SLA of teleport or dimension door. Let's take a creature that displaces itself, or becomes invisible. Let's take the incredibly large number of creatures with ranged attacks, or spells.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tyger View Post
    Its not that its "very strong" so much as it is a 95% guarantee of victory against such critters. If it gave an edge, I'd probably like it. But eliminating threats completely? That's a bit over the top.
    The only thing I find "over the top" is your exaggeration of the feat. Yes, there are many creatures that lose vs this. At a similar level of optimization, can't the same be said of casters?
    Quote Originally Posted by Tyger View Post
    And yes, I am all in favour of increasing melee class advantages. Casters rule the roost, and this doesn't, per se, change that. But this feat, can essentially remove a creature (or creatures if you have Combat Reflexes, and what build incorporating this isn't going to have that) from the fight - completely, with no real chance for the creature to escape. Yes, there are save or die and save or suck, but none of them have anywhere close to the same save DC as this feat, which is available at first level, and just gets stronger through the entire game.
    There are also "no save, just suck". There are many, MANY abilities that trump this tactic. I know. I've used most of them, and fought trippers.

    Heck, low visibility nerfs it. Darkness, fog, etc.
    Several ToB maneuvers nerf it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tyger View Post
    For 7 power points, a Psychic Warrior Spiked-chain wielder can lock the Tarrasque down, with its only hope a natural 20 on the Reflex role. Note, I didn't say he could kill it, just that he could prevent it from moving.
    Really? 7PP?
    Because it sounds like: 7pp, a successful hit, and a damage roll of 49 or higher, along with enough feat investment to have the feat, and to overcome a 20 foot reach, while penetrating AC 35.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tyger View Post
    Purple worms are dead too, probably by level 3 or 4. Trolls? Not a problem by level 2, maybe 3.
    Really? REALLY?
    Level 3-4, you're talking greater than 15 feet of range, along with maintaining the entire chain trip feats, negating tremorsense, reliably hitting the AC, and dealing enough damage?

    Because frankly? I think your argument is suspect.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tyger View Post

    One level seven physic warrior can reliably lock down the Tarrasque. This doesn't bother people??
    Well, provided a level 7 warrior can reliably hit AC 35 from 25+ feet away, while expending a couple feats for thicket of blades, and deal 40 or so damage per hit.

    Personally, without TO levels of optimization, I find your argument to hold as much water as a collander.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    I am also on the opinion that a control-focused meatshield being able to prevent (1+dex bonus) of creatures from moving most of the time is not terribly overpowered.

    [Edit]: 7th level psychic warrior with Expansion augmented to become Huge would have a reach of 15 feet, double that with a reach weapon, so 30 feet. Tarrasque has the reach of 20 feet and an area of 30 feet, so it could easily reach the poor psychic warrior without provoking AoOs.

    So, what am I missing?
    Last edited by Greenish; 2010-02-22 at 10:25 AM.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Quote Originally Posted by Greenish View Post
    I am also on the opinion that a control-focused meatshield being able to prevent (1+dex bonus) of creatures from moving most of the time is not terribly overpowered.

    [Edit]: 7th level psychic warrior with Expansion augmented to become Huge would have a reach of 15 feet, double that with a reach weapon, so 30 feet. Tarrasque has the reach of 20 feet and an area of 30 feet, so it could easily reach the poor psychic warrior without provoking AoOs.

    So, what am I missing?
    He would also need to make the DC 35 save against fear.
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Roc View Post
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    And survive its full attack. Also DR 15/epic tends to reduce damage. In fact to lock down the Tarrasque in the way you suggest one would have to be able to deal 54 damage every attack. The Tarrasque has a lot of Hit Dice and therefore a very good Reflex save (+29).
    Last edited by Zanatos777; 2010-02-22 at 11:39 AM.
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    I really haven't. The players quickly move to the tavern after the campaign starts but they never start there. Even the three which have taken place in a city.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    (Nitpick: Halberds aren't even reach weapons. Sadly.)

    Yeah ... most of the examples you're giving are critters that have pretty good reach.

    Beating a troll at level 2? Trolls have 10-foot reach. How are you beating that? Just a reach weapon won't do it. Just a reach weapon and Expansion will work ... for two rounds. A reach weapon and Deformity feats? OK, now we're talking a very heavy feat investment for this level.

    And you're still assuming that all of these lockdown builds' attacks will do enough damage to make Reflex DCs "impossible." I doubt that. And hitting the monsters' AC ... there are just a lot of things that can go wrong here.

    And you can't have Thicket of Blades until Level 5 at the very earliest, probably later. Until then, the five-foot step will still keep the Troll functional.
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Random note...couldn't anything with tumble and either decent ranks or high dex just slip right on by?
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Quote Originally Posted by AtwasAwamps View Post
    Random note...couldn't anything with tumble and either decent ranks or high dex just slip right on by?
    That is a constant question I have. Does Thicket of Blades trump Tumble? Otherwise yes they could completely negate AoOs from moving.
    "78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. If you're one of the 22% that didn't, copy and paste this into your signature."
    I really haven't. The players quickly move to the tavern after the campaign starts but they never start there. Even the three which have taken place in a city.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Quote Originally Posted by Zanatos777 View Post
    That is a constant question I have. Does Thicket of Blades trump Tumble? Otherwise yes they could completely negate AoOs from moving.
    Thicket of Blades says any movement. To me, that trumps tumble.
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Roc View Post
    Ring of Evasion means never playing a monk with monk levels again. There is just no reason to dip that stuff. I know we're all about using every part of the buffalo here, but can we just admit that it's inedible?

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Quote Originally Posted by Zanatos777 View Post
    That is a constant question I have. Does Thicket of Blades trump Tumble? Otherwise yes they could completely negate AoOs from moving.
    It's been discussed before. Answer: both abilities are written as absolutes (an "unstoppable force vs. immovable object" paradox), and nothing in the rules makes it really clear which rules have higher priority. So ask your DM.

    Personally I rule Thicket of Blades trumps, because Tumble's immunity-to-AoO clause is already stronger than I'd like it to be. (Game design-wise. Don't get me wrong, as a player I'll still abuse Tumble mobility all I can.)
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    For anyone who is considering using this lock down technique i would advise using the mage slayer feat (from the Complete Arcana or Mage) and possiably the run feat. If i remember correctly the Mage slayer feat will not allow enemys within your AoO range to cast defensivly, thus making the concentration check null and void.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Interesting fact: When jumping, you have to use up your move actions to fall. So if you can constantly hit a target with Stand Still AoOs and they're jumping over you, then you can get them to levitate above you, as they have no more move actions to jump and fall with.
    Last edited by Melamoto; 2010-02-22 at 12:17 PM.
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Quote Originally Posted by Vampire D View Post
    For anyone who is considering using this lock down technique i would advise using the mage slayer feat (from the Complete Arcana or Mage) and possiably the run feat. If i remember correctly the Mage slayer feat will not allow enemys within your AoO range to cast defensivly, thus making the concentration check null and void.
    They can still cast normally, eat your AoO and make a concentration check against it. Still, Mage Slayer is decent, even though a Stand Still lockdown build is more for keeping the melee enemies off of your squishies than delivering punishment yourself.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Yes, Stand Still is a strong feat, but depending on the situation it's not quite as powerful.

    For instance, thinking of the Red Hand of Doom module, there are many minion-heavy fights. Most fighters aren't likely to have a DEX modifier of +5 or so, assuming they really focus on getting a lot of AoO's. In fights like that, enemies are going to slip through the cracks no matter what they do. It's more powerful versus single, big monsters, but really, a party of adventurers fighting one big stupid thing are usually much easier than an encounter using mixed tactics (casters, archers, etc.)

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    When your target provokes an AoO because of movement you make an attack roll. All damage bonuses apply (Power Attack, weapon enhancements, etc). Yes, if you can reliably hit the enemy and deal 40ish+ damage, this makes the Reflex Save 95% unpassable. If your enemy fails their Save, they do not move, and their Move action is wasted. It's a very effective tool. But consider:

    1) You're giving up the damage from the attack of opportunity. In many cases, this damage could have been used to kill your enemy.

    2) You can avoid the AoO with Tumble, a Withdraw action, or various magical/psionic modes of transportation (Dimension Door being the most obvious).

    3) A 5 ft step does not provoke in most cases.

    4) You have to hit your enemy. So if they have a high AC and/or Miss Chance, it's largely ineffective.

    5) If the enemy has reach equal to or greater then your reach, then the enemy does not need to move in order to attack you.

    6) They lose their Move action. But they still have their Standard Action. They can use this action to use an ability, attack you, or attempt to Move again (in which case you need to hit them again).

    Stand Still is a good feat, but it has many limits.

    RE: Mage Slayer - instead of Stand Still, consider using a net with a trailing rope. Don't even bother with proficiency, as it's a touch attack to use. Once you hit your enemy, their movement is limited, their Dex/AC is debuffed, and the have to beat you in a Str check if they want to move away from you.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Teleportation is fairly easy to get (considering two feats get it), and many Outsiders all ready have it. This is a considerable problem even with Standstill.
    Last edited by Sinfire Titan; 2010-02-22 at 12:45 PM.

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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Quote Originally Posted by Melamoto View Post
    Interesting fact: When jumping, you have to use up your move actions to fall. So if you can constantly hit a target with Stand Still AoOs and they're jumping over you, then you can get them to levitate above you, as they have no more move actions to jump and fall with.
    Sometimes, strictly-RAW physics just remind me of a really buggy, really poorly-programmed video game.
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    Default Re: Stand Still feat

    Let's look at the last ten monsters I've used for my EL10 party and see what Stand Still would have done. No one in the group has the feat, so you can't make any argument that I've optimized the monsters against it.

    1. umbral dark naga mindbender - incorporeal, so easily able to avoid AoO by flying or moving through walls. Also able to has blacklight, greater mirror image, and wings of cover for protection.
    2. sand creature - burrows, so ditto
    3. greater air elemental - flies and gains concealment when in whirlwind form, so again no use
    4. scorpion swarm - immune to weapon damage
    5. death scarab swarm - immune to weapon damage
    6. mummy sorcerer - somewhat useful, but the mummy can cast spells from a distance
    7. large pack of tomb motes - somewhat useful, but the tomb motes can overwhelm a lockdown tank through sheer numbers
    8. brass golem - pretty useful here, although the golem has 10' reach and can use maze against a troublesome foe
    9. crocosphinx - quite useful here, although the crocosphinx is an intelligent opponent with superior mobility. It has options.
    10. small pack of skirrs - modestly useful since skirrs are stupid, but they do fly and have 10' reach.


    So by my count, Stand Still would be entirely useless against half of these opponents, and of decent value against the other half. With optimization, I could see a lockdown tank controlling several of these encounters, but only if he has at least 15 feet of reach. A Wizard Could Do It Better.

    This also doesn't consider the assorted scything blade, poisoned spear, rolling boulder, and pit traps my players have faced recently, which can inflict serious harm in their own right. Stand Still isn't applicable against them.
    Last edited by jiriku; 2010-02-22 at 12:54 PM.
    Subclasses for 5E: magus of blades, shadowcraft assassin, spellthief, void disciple
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