Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

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grendelson
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Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by grendelson »

On page 174 grappling is described. AC of the defender appears to be backwards.

"If an an attacker is larger than the defender apply a +2 to AC for every size category larger than the defender's size, and a -2 for every size category smaller."

The example given in Overbearing is the opposite of what is written above and appears correct. The AC is LOWERED if the defender is smaller by a category. Or am I completely misunderstanding this. It appears to be a typo but I cannot find an official errata.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by serleran »

If you are smaller than the opponent, for a grapple, you can wiggle free more easily, so you get a bonus to be hit (or whatever.)

If you're just trying to bring someone down, being bigger is more helpful.

I dunno. Seems to make sense to me. But, I don't use the C&C maneuvers. I use other stuff.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by grendelson »

I wasn't thinking of the addition to AC as your ability to wiggle free, that does make more sense.

In my head I was thinking it is MUCH easier to hang onto my 12 YO who I am much taller than and outweigh than my 14 YO who is as tall and weighs as much as me! SO The smaller one is easier " TO hit (match AC)" and get a grapple on than the larger.

I'll need to play this out a bit and maybe just make it opposed checks every time. Opposed checks makes the most sense to me.

A monster or character trying to grapple versus another character/monster trying to NOT get grappled , whomever wins does the thing they are trying to do. This make a Large character with a great Str more likely to grab and hold onto a smaller weaker character. Then I can give the small wily character a check using their DEX or INT ( kicking in groin, or causing something to fall on grappler) to get out of it.

GAH I'm already sucked into House Rules Creating! :-)

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by alcyone »

I think it's pretty clearly backwards, and in any case changed from older versions. It used to read "For each size difference larger, add +2 to the defender’s
armor class. For each size difference smaller, a -2 penalty is imposed on the defender’s armor class."

Wriggliness is already accounted for by adding Dex to the defender's AC.
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Aramis
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Aramis »

There is no more terrifying phrase for a DM to hear from his player than "I attempt to grapple him" :lol:

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by gabriellyon »

Grrrr, sorry seems like with new printings come New mistakes. As far as grapple though, it has come up a couple times in my games and we never even dropped a beat. Was easy to handle given the rules.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Traveller »

I don't have access to my draft copy at this moment. I'll have a more complete answer tomorrow, but if I recall the numbers are actually correct.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by grendelson »

Aergraith wrote:I think it's pretty clearly backwards, and in any case changed from older versions. It used to read "For each size difference larger, add +2 to the defender’s
armor class. For each size difference smaller, a -2 penalty is imposed on the defender’s armor class."

Wriggliness is already accounted for by adding Dex to the defender's AC.

The wording you put here makes the most sense and was perfectly clear. I found the line you mean in my Digital copy of the 2007 version of the PHB. It clearly states the DEFENDER gets a +2 if he is a size larger ( and the example backs it up with a troll and halfling trying to grapple).

The problem is even in that earlier edition it puts an Overbearing paragraph right in the Grapple section, then in trying to clarify the grapple and overbearing in this 6th edition some new editing mistakes seems to be introduced :( Oh well I'll pencil over the -2 to make it +2 and vice versa). In the 6th the block of troll versus halfling example was moved to the overbearing section and grapple was edited to remove the overbearing lines.

I still like opposed checks :)

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Traveller »

Aergraith is correct that the wording changed, because I changed it. However, the +2/-2 modifiers have been consistent since the 1st printing.

The 1st-4th printing version of the text was, "The AC is modified by the strength, the dexterity, the BtH or hit dice of the defender, as well as the size difference between the two opponents. For each size difference larger, add +2 to the defender's armor class. For each size difference smaller, a -2 penalty is imposed on the defender's armor class."

The revision I made for the 5th printing was, "The AC is modified by the strength, the dexterity, and the size difference between the two opponents. If an attacker is larger than the defender apply a +2 to AC for every size category larger than the defender's size, and a -2 for every size category smaller." BtH was removed from the paragraph because the defender only gets a BtH modifier in an overbearing attack.

All printings of the text make it abundantly clear that the paragraph is referring to the defender, as the first three sentences all make it clear that the defender's AC in a grapple is different from the norm, with added emphasis on the defender's primes. The armor class bonuses and penalties therefore all apply to the defender. Your size makes it either easier or more difficult to hold you. A smaller creature is going to be harder to hold on to than a larger one, and the modifiers reflect this. Thus, as I mentioned previously, the numbers are correct.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by alcyone »

So, a small gnome wants to wrestle a hill giant to the ground, sure, the giant is easier to hit I guess, but it doesn't really do much to help the gnome realize his dream. If the hill giant wants to wrestle a gnome to the ground (well, the gnome is practically there already), sure, he'll be harder to hit, but once he has him, he's toast.

I can see it as a balancing thing, but it seems like establishing the grapple is an AC thing and squishing the guts out of something is something else. Both have to do with size (and strength), but in the squishing case an AC penalty seems pretty weird.

In 3.5e there is sort of this thing where you enter the same "square" and are "in a grapple". Once in the grapple, it really doesn't matter which one of you got you into that situation (though there are characteristics you may also possess that make that situation better or worse for you). With that in mind it doesn't come up often, but I do see it come up when someone is very large (Ogre looks at sword, then looks at kobold, drops the sword, picks the kobold up, and throws him like a football).

In the gnome and giant case, the giant would need extreme strength to overcome the AC penalty. But a strong gnome may as well try it.

I won't beg too much of it though, it's an abstraction after all. But I think I'll come up with something different.
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Rhuvein »

Good information, many thanks.

I've often thought about having my gnome or halfling try to climb the leg of a giant or troll and if successful, then attempt to grapple his testicles. At that point (no pun intended) he can stab those lovely large and hairy globules!

Hmm, back or sneak attack?

Leme put all that together and get back to y'all!

;)
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Rhuvein »

Hmm, that's odd. Aergraith and I think alike, but he didn't want to mention testicles.

I didn't think of an ogre.

Now I wonder who would have the largest testicles.

Leme review this and get back to you.

:)
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Traveller »

Using the gnome and the hill giant from Aergraith's example...

Armor class in a grapple or overbear is not based upon the character's current AC, but uses a set AC depending on whether the being's strength is prime or not. In the case of both the gnome and the giant, they have physical primes, meaning they have strength as a prime, and thus both gnome and giant have a base grapple AC of 18.

If the gnome is defending, the two size category difference results in the gnome's grapple AC being increased to 22 from the base of 18 (+2 per size category). There are no modifiers for strength or dexterity, as creature gnomes have no attribute scores. The giant rolls 1d20 and adds his to hit bonus of +9, and has to roll 13 or better to successfully grapple the gnome.

If the case of the giant, if defending it does not get any additional modifiers for strength or dexterity, as giants do not have attribute scores. The two size category difference between it and the gnome subtracts 4 from the grapple AC of the giant, resulting in an AC of 14. The gnome would have to roll 13 or better to successfully grapple the giant.

For the example, I used the creature version of the gnome, which has no attribute scores. If the gnome were a PC or NPC with attribute scores, he would gain additional bonuses to his grapple AC for high strength and dexterity scores. In the case of our example gnome, if he had strength 15 and dexterity 17 and was on defense, he would get an additional +3 bonus to his grapple AC, meaning the giant would have to roll 16+ on 1d20 to successfully grapple the gnome.

Overbearing attacks are conducted in the same manner and have nearly the same modifiers. The only difference between grappling and overbearing attacks is that the defender in an overbearing attack gets an additional modifier to his base AC for his to hit bonus.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Captain_K »

So a pixie, let's assume is 2' tall. This pixie, the wrestling champ of his clan, gets a bit drunk and boasts he will wrestle a titan to the ground. When they meet, the pixie, who's STR still isn't a prime, has a 12 base AC, no DEX bonus, and the size difference of 2' vs 24' or S vs L (only three categories in CnC) is +4 more so an AC of 16 for the pixie.. assuming he stays visible. The titan is a great friend of the pixies and only agreed to do this because she loves her little friends so. She has a base AC of 18, no dex bonus either, and -4 to AC or 14 AC. So the pixie with 1HD has a 35% chance to "pin" the Titan each round (13 or better to hit and thus hold the Titan immobile except to try to "wrestle free"), but the Titan can break that hold with a successful roll which is at +17, so 95% of the time the Titan will wrestle free (1 assumed a fumble). Since this example is sticking with P & M guidelines of the M&T only, no STR or DEX bonus was given, that would only make it harder for the pixie who likely has a STR penalty and easier for the Titan who likely has a STR bonus. Yes the pixie might also have a DEX bonus, but even with +4 it would not make much difference. In the end, the pixie will occasionally grab the Titan for no damage and the Titan will shrug off the pixie for no damage... one will tire first and they'll laugh about it and go back to drinking. Even if wrestling invisible, the pixie will loose.

This follows the words in Grapple to ADD +2 to AC for size differences.. so if that ADD of +2 is to AC of the Defender, as talking about in the first part of the sentence, small is good in wrestling. But real world fighting and wrestling has weight and effectively size classes not to help out the big guy from the dangerous little guy but the other way around... so I must agree, the wording is NOT clear AND based on the Example under Overbear, bigger grapplers get the advantage, not the smaller. So the above example fall totally to the Titan, always and forever, as one would expect.

Might want to clarify this a bit in future printings. So many times we know what we want and have read things so many times... it takes folks totally new and neutral to help get something "clear and clean".
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Traveller »

The pixie's grapple AC when defending would be 16. The titan's grapple AC would be 14. The pixie would need to roll 13 or better to grapple the titan as it has a +1 bonus to hit. The titan would automatically grapple unless it rolls a 1, as it has a +17 bonus to hit.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Captain_K »

Now lets have some real fun AND assume that small size is a problem. John Dough is THE hobbit heavy weight wrestling champ, with STR & DEX as primes, and his CON ain't to shabby either, plus he's a 10th level Monk! John is very strong and stocky, but rather short, even by Halfling standards, at 2'8" tall (S). In a pub there is a Friday Night Fight Series where the drunk, stupid, or truly gifted match their fighting skills against a muzzled and gloved troll (12' tall - L).
To grapple: Monk: 10d12+20 for hp, +9 BtH +2 STR+2 Monk = 13 to hit, AC = 18+3-4 = 17
Troll: 9d8 for hp, +9 to hit, AC 18+4 = 22

The troll will need an 8 or better to "hold" or break free from the little Halfling, but the Halfling will need a 9 or better to "hold" or break free. Note, the Halfling cannot overbear the troll. Anyone judging this fight after "10 rounds" would likely declare John Dough the winner simply because John will be more skilled and seem to half twice the stamina. But it would be a really even and close match.

:twisted: New Confusion, in Grapple, your BASE AC is set by prime vs no prime as 18 vs 12. It says grapple is affected by STR... OK, normally I assume STR helps to hit ONLY. BUT in the example under overbear, STR bonus ALSO adds to BASE AC, you get to double dip on STR! If this is true for Grapple, that would push the fight two more points into John's corner for the slight edge on to hit.
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Traveller »

What is the monk's strength and dexterity scores? It's not clear in your post, and those scores are needed to determine the AC of the halfling.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Captain_K »

So your first thought is small size HELPS AC in grapple.. on that we agree that is the way the PH words it.. but its not clear and overbear contradicts that.

My Halfling monk example is a STR high enough to give a +2 bonus, say 16. DEX I assumed was an 18 for +3 bonus. After all he is a champ!
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Traveller »

The overbear example may contradict, and if it did, I didn't notice it. However, the text specifies that overbear is determined almost identically to grapple, except the defender adds their bonus to hit to the AC as a modifier.

Your halfling monk's grapple AC when defending against the troll is 27. Base 18, +2 for strength, +3 for dexterity, and +4 for size differential. The troll's grapple AC when defending would be 14. Base 18, -4 for size differential. The halfling would need a 5 or better to grapple the troll. The troll would need 16 or better to grapple the monk.

In an overbear, the AC of both parties would increase by 9.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Captain_K »

OK, So we're down to this KEY point. SIZE matters, BIGGER (aka STRONGER) matters and it HELPS not hinders in wrestling/grappling. So, based on that logical fact and the example in Overbear, I think (IMHO) that the goal of the words in Grapple is that bigger things gain advantages in unarmed combat against smaller things, not the other way around.

If you think the smaller (weaker) creatures should grapple better than the large (stronger) ones, then there is a serious difference in how to run this. Plus its an 8 point swing in combat!

Two things, I interchange bigger and stronger because monsters only come in bigger and I think its a fair assumption that a Titan is stronger than a sprite.
Second, I fully agree with you, the way the PH reads today, it implies that the smaller guys gets the wrestling/grappling advantage.. but I (IMHO) think that must be an error in need of correction in the face of reality and the example in overbear.

Thoughts?
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Traveller »

To the best of my knowledge, the numbers in the text are correct, but it wouldn't be the first time I was wrong in saying that. Looking at the example, the example mentions the troll's size reducing the halfling's AC by 4. Based on the rule as written, it should ADD 4 to the AC, making the halfling's AC 25.

If the halfling's grapple AC is 17, the troll would need to roll 8+ to knock the halfling off the bridge. If the grapple AC is 25, the number becomes 16+. Now, size does matter, but strength? Not so much. If the halfling were to have a girdle of storm giant strength, he would then be stronger than the troll. However, he is still smaller than the troll so the AC modifier still applies.

So, is the example correct, or is the rules text correct? The Trolls are best suited to answering that, but I do believe it makes for better play if it's more difficult to knock the halfling off the bridge. Therefore, I think the example is wrong and the text right.

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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Captain_K »

Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the little guy and playing "by the book" favors the little guy.. but I fear in reality, the values would all be the other way, the little guy looses. I'm 6' 0", one of my students is 6'9", that small difference in reach alone makes a HUGE difference trying to spar with him. I cannot imagine any 3' tall student at about 80# ever giving me a serious threat on physicality. Yep it was cool to watch Yoda bounce about.. but well he had the Force, a light saber and the ability to leap 4x his height.

So I'll leave it to you or the Trolls to set the book right by changing the language in one place or the other, but it can't be both.
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Re: Errata for 6th PHB? Grapple confusing me:(

Post by Traveller »

It's possible the Trolls unintentionally flipped the signs. I know I did it writing the first example before correcting it. After the new year I'll ask Steve to look at this thread.

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