Role-playing Games Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for gamemasters and players of tabletop, paper-and-pencil role-playing games. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

A natural 20 is automatically a hit, and threatens to be a critical, then you re-roll for confirming the critical (for which it has to be higher than the enemies AC to a maximum of 20).

Now if you're wielding a keen rapier you threaten a critical anywhere between 15-20 on the attack roll. What if that wouldn't be a hit though?

For example you roll a 15, attack bonuses are +4, enemies AC is 20. If it was a normal roll that would definitively be a miss, but it was a potentially critical roll; yet it wasn't a natural 20. Does it hit?

share|improve this question
up vote 43 down vote accepted

No, it does not hit. From the Pathfinder Reference Document (emphasis mine):

Increased Threat Range: Sometimes your threat range is greater than 20. That is, you can score a threat on a lower number. In such cases, a roll of lower than 20 is not an automatic hit. Any attack roll that doesn't result in a hit is not a threat.

To threaten a critical hit with that rapier, you need to roll 15 or above and hit normally.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.