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Currently, I'm playing a character with three fighter and two rogue levels. I'm a part of two-man party in which the other player is Cleric. Shadowdancer Prestige Class always intrigued me so I went ahead and took two levels in it.

As you know, the prestige class requires three feats; Combat Reflexes, Dodge and Mobility, so I took them. Now I'm considering taking Combat Patrol feat as it has those feats as a requirement.

The feat sounds really good: I can take an action to increase my threatened area, which means the opponents will provoke more attacks of opportunity, and it lets me move toward provokers. I have 22 dexterity so that is a lot of attack of opportunity potential. In essence, I will move to those who provoke and strike. A nice part is that as I move part of these attacks, I can use stealth thanks to Hide in Plain Sight, and strike flat-footed victims.

Is this as good as it sounds?

I'm asking this because I don't really have any experience playing high level characters. The downside of this feat is I sacrifice my normal attacks but can take more attacks if there are a lot of opponents trying to get close to us.

Also, if this feat is worth taking, what other feats synergize well with it?

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2 Answers 2

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It depends on how good your Cleric is at forcing attacks of opportunity. If you had more buddies they could do things like Greater Drag and Greater Bullrush to basically throw baddies into the woodchipper, the woodchipper in this instance being you.

Your best bet is if your Cleric has any spells that can knock enemies prone over a large area, though I'm not familiar with anything that will accomplish that and a cursory glance at the SRD doesn't seem to offer any options. Altneratively, they can summon a batch of wolves (later dire wolves) to trip everything around you, in which case you can just can stand there daring enemies to try to stand back up.

Even then, it's hard for a two person party to corral enemies in such a way to make Combat Patrol worth it. Moving to hit one enemy will often take you out of range to hit another. I'd advise against it from an optimization perspective (there's just too many more useful feats out there to waste on this), but go for it if you feel like it fits your character concept and your Cleric buddy is game in helping you get the most out of it.

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It’s... OK. The odds of you getting to make as many attacks of opportunity as you give up using it are somewhat slim, however, and even if you do, that damage is going to be spread around rather than focused on one enemy, since it’s fairly rare for someone to perform more than one provoking action in a turn (if they want to do things that provoke, they usually just provoke once by leaving your threatened area). It’ll shut down archers pretty hard, but ... well, archers are typically not that good.

On the other hand, all those attacks will be at full BAB, and you may have (should have, if this is your goal) bonuses on Attacks of Opportunity that you don’t get on regular attacks.

At any rate, you have a rather low-optimization build, and as you go into higher levels you may – or may not, depending on your DM and party, but the risk becomes significantly greater – find it difficult to keep up. The feat seems good enough at what it does to keep you at around that optimization level you have been at. I probably would not take it, but I tend to play in groups that require moderate amounts of optimization to succeed, and I probably would not be playing a Fighter/Rogue in the first place.

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Just to reiterate - using Combat Patrol means you're making no attacks at all on your turn. Which means you might end up doing no damage at all, if no one provokes. It can be a very powerful feat with the right support, but it's probably not a great one for a two-person party. –  Bobson Oct 9 '13 at 19:18

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