I have a weird situation happening. Im involved in a game which is using path of war.

So an attack happens when someone or something leaves a threatened square of yours. Lets start with a base pathfinder example. You have a monk who is carrying a reach weapon, the enemy takes a move action and provokes from leaving that square and adjacent to you. Must the AOO come from the reach weapon or can you use a monks unarmed strike? In which square is the enemy?

In another example, lets say a character is carrying two reach weapons, one is a whip which doesnt threaten (normally, so thats what we are going with) and one that does (yes most reach weapons are two handed, lets ignore this). Would you be able to use the whip?

  • \$\begingroup\$ I was originally working on this line of logic in an attempt to cast spells as AOO's, but except for a specific magic item for bloodragers, just wasnt able to get it to work. \$\endgroup\$
    – Fering
    Commented Aug 1, 2018 at 18:35

1 Answer 1


The weapon must threaten the square the enemy is leaving. If there are two weapons then choose.

You threaten all squares into which you can make a melee attack... An enemy that takes certain actions while in a threatened square provokes an attack of opportunity from you... Moving out of a threatened square usually provokes attacks of opportunity from threatening opponents.

Situation 1: If a monk has a reach weapon and an opponent is immediately adjacent to him, when that opponent moves one square further away the monk can only make the attack of opportunity using his unarmed strike. This is because the reach weapon does not (normally) threaten adjacent squares.

Situation 2: If the opponent was two squares away from the same monk and moved into an adjacent square then the monk can only attack with the reach weapon, as the unarmed strike did not threaten the square the opponent was leaving.

Situation 3: If a character has multiple weapons readied which both can attack the threatened square then the character can choose which weapon to use (including which end of a double weapon). The only restrictions are that the character still only gets one attack per opportunity, even if they have the Combat Reflexes feat.

Situation 4: If the weapon you have readied does not threaten surrounding squares (eg whip, ranged weapons) then you cannot make attacks of opportunity, as you do not meet the requirement: "An enemy that takes certain actions while in a threatened square provokes an attack of opportunity from you"

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ I think that Situation 4 is the sticking point. The dude does threaten that square with one of the two weapons he's wielding—say, a dagger and whip. Must he make that attack of opportunity with the dagger or can he instead make the attack of opportunity with the whip? (Also see this question and its messy, controversial answers.) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 12, 2018 at 14:31
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ As @HeyICanChan says, there does not appear to be any rule specifying that you must choose make your attack of opportunity with the same weapon that threatened in the first place. The rules, as far as I have found, only say that you need to threaten, and then if provoked, you get to make an attack—nothing seems to connect those two requirements. Burden of proof is on you to demonstrate otherwise if you are going to claim otherwise. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Jul 12, 2018 at 14:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan You can't negate the requirements of making an attack (being within range, for example) by meeting the requirements of threatening an attack of opportunity. Nothing about holding a whip makes it so your dagger can hit an enemy 10ft away from you (assuming you're not throwing your dagger, which is an entirely different situation). \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 12, 2018 at 22:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Ifusaso No, I’m talking about hitting someone within the dagger’s range—with the whip. You actually do threaten—with the dagger— and you are thus eligible to make an attack—with nothing saying “with the dagger” so far as I can tell. Likewise, nothing says that you have to make a melee attack—you have to be threatening a melee attack, but the actual attack you then make, so far as I can tell, could be a ranged attack. So an archer with Improved Unarmed Strike could threaten with the unarmed strike, but then make the attack with their bow (and possibly provoke themselves, but that’s OK). \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Jul 12, 2018 at 22:26
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ The RAI appears clear. If character only has a whip and someone moves near them then they do not threaten and no AoO. If a character now has a whip and a dagger, I cannot see how the act of holding a dagger suddenly grants them the ability to make AoO with a whip. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 13, 2018 at 4:01

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