My PC is an archer—a human no-archetype fighter 4/hawkguard warder 5—who has taken only feats that let him make more ranged attacks and deal more damage with ranged attacks. My PC doesn't even have a melee weapon.

The enemy is also level 9 but he's taken the feats Combat Reflexes and Cut from the Air. The enemy's feats, attack bonus, and really high Dexterity bonus mean that his attack rolls with arrow cutting are on average about 7 points higher than my PC's attack rolls with his arrows and that the number of times he can cut arrows launched at him exceeds my PC's rate of fire. The enemy has multiple special senses, including darkvision, tremorsense and see invisibility.

What can my PC do to beat this guy?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Does he have any other relevant senses besides darkvision and tremorsense? Additionally, does he have evasion? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Nov 25, 2018 at 13:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ He can also see invisible, not that I really have any way to go invisible. I dont believe he has evasion. \$\endgroup\$
    – Fering
    Commented Nov 25, 2018 at 17:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ What are your opponent's movement capabilities? Is this a monk with a high base move speed? \$\endgroup\$
    – Dan B
    Commented Nov 25, 2018 at 17:58
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Why does your character need to beat him? What about the rest of your group? \$\endgroup\$
    – YogoZuno
    Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 21:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Fering I presume because Pathfinder, by default, is a group game, not a solo game. It is logical to assume you were part of a group...not to mention, you also neglected to mention that you are, by the looks of things, already engaged in combat? So, the situation is a little more limited than presented.\ \$\endgroup\$
    – YogoZuno
    Commented Nov 28, 2018 at 21:28

3 Answers 3

  1. Snipe them! As long as you can deal your damage from afar without revealing your position, you should be able to whittle down their HP total over the course of several, different engagements. During the surprise round (and again if you happen to win initiative) the opponent will be flat-footed and unable to use Cut from the Air. Be aware that, if the monk is not protecting some of their own allies from you, he will probably start searching you and they're going to be fast and have a decent Perception bonus.

  2. Actually, Cut from the Air requires one to make an Attack of Opportunity (AoO), which means they have to actually be able to perform AoOs. Have someone grapple, paralyze or stun the foe. Anything that prevents them from attacking, such as the nauseated condition, should also apply (ask your DM).

  3. Let the monk be unaware of your attacks (this also prevents them from using Cut from the Air). Despite invisibility not working for this opponent, blinding it should work unless they have some other special senses.

  4. Stack bonuses to your attack roll. Buy an Oil of Greater Magic Weapon. Have someone cast greater invisibility on you (the monk will be denied their Dexterity bonus to AC, which does nothing against Cut from the Air but remember you still need to hit his AC, but the +2 bonus for being invisible applies for both purposes). Have the bard/cleric/buffer in your party buff you so you can get more hits in.

  5. Stack debuffs to their attack roll. This works the same ads the previous point but it will probably force some save and monks have good saves. Also, they need to debuff his to hit but also his AC: the only advantage is that finding several differently typed buffs is harder than stacking debuffs (and of course if your party can do both buffing and debuffing, that's great).

  6. Well, I guess all enemies are standing close to the monk, so that he can shut you down. Keep firing while your party blaster(s) cast(s) area spells. For this encounter, you're not the damage dealer, you're the controller.

Note: be aware that if you and the monk both score the same number, you win. It's a little edge, true, but it could mean a lot.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Combat Reflexes allow a character to make attacks of opportunity while flat-footed. \$\endgroup\$
    – Frezak
    Commented Nov 25, 2018 at 16:28
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Frezak Yes, but they still can't use Cut from the Air because the feat itself (linked in the question) requires you not to be flat-footed, regardless of having the Attack of Opportuinty available or not. \$\endgroup\$
    – Zachiel
    Commented Nov 25, 2018 at 17:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yep, you're entirely correct. My apologies! \$\endgroup\$
    – Frezak
    Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 10:22

You're pretty screwed. I recommend running away.

It's not clear from your description what your opponent's movement capabilities are like, but it seems unlikely that you can snipe him for long -- you might get one round of unblocked attacks and then he'll be aware of you and run you down quickly.

You could level the playing field a bit by shutting down vision using an obscuring mist effect. Your opponent's darkvision will not penetrate this. This would prevent your opponent from being aware of your attacks, so he wouldn't be able to parry them. A typical round of combat might involve your opponent making melee attacks against you with a 20% miss chance due to concealment; then you would five-foot-step away and make ranged attacks against him with a 50% miss chance due to concealment, but he wouldn't be aware of the attacks and would not get his Cut From The Air feat or his DEX bonus to AC.

Unfortunately, it looks like your character has no spellcasting ability, so it's very unlikely that you have access to an effect like this. You can't win this fight.


It sounds like your focused, one-trick-pony character has been neutered by an opponent designed to do so. So, you probably need to rely on the other other members of your party, who presumably have a different focus to you?

Assuming you are not playing in a one-man party (your question doesn't really make this clear), you could potentially use your allies to draw attacks of opportunity from him prior to your turn, or use your allies to provide conditions that render him incapable of making attacks of opportunity, such as grappling, stunning or dazing.

Alternatively, you could try disarming him or sundering his weapon, although this is, by default, not able to be done with a ranged weapon. The feat Ranged Disarm would potentially allow this, and might not trigger Cut from the Air, depending on how your GM rules it (Cut from the Air triggers on attacks - a Combat Maneuver isn't actually an attack, but counts as one for a lot of rules).

You could potentially also use splash weapons, magic items or spells to attack the opponent, depending on your capabilities. None of these are able to be stopped by Cut from the Air.

You could also potentially use an alchemical item such as a Smokestick or smoke pellet to create a smoke effect he cannot see through, but such items require an action to activate, and typically have very short durations.

  • \$\begingroup\$ The ranged disarm feats or the POW abilities that allow the same are still attacks and cut/smash from air remove them. Even the two arrows from manyshot are affected instead of just one of the arrows. \$\endgroup\$
    – Fering
    Commented Nov 27, 2018 at 12:59

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