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I would like to use these three feats, but I'm not sure how they work together.

Aggressive Block

You push back as you block the attack, knocking your foe away or off balance. You use your shield to push the triggering creature, either automatically Shoving it 5 feet or causing it to become flat-footed until the start of your next turn. The triggering creature chooses whether to be moved or become flat-footed. If it chooses to be moved, you choose the direction. If the Shove would cause it to hit a solid object, enter a square of difficult terrain, or enter another creature’s space, it must become flat-footed instead of being moved.

Flinging Shove

Increase the distance you Shove your opponent with Aggressive Block or Brutish Shove to 10 feet on a success or 20 feet on a critical success. When you use Aggressive Block, you can choose whether the target is flat-footed or Shoved. When you make a Brutish Shove, you also Shove the target 5 feet on a failure.

Powerful Shove

You can push larger foes around with your attack. You can use Aggressive Block or Brutish Shove against a creature up to two sizes larger than you. When a creature you Shove has to stop moving because it would hit an object, it takes damage equal to your Strength modifier (minimum 1). This happens regardless of how you Shoved the creature.

For example: An enemy next to a wall hits me and I use the Shield Block reaction. According to Flinging Shove, I can choose whether the enemy is flat-footed or Shoved. I would like to Shove them into the wall to get the damage from Powerful Shove. But the final sentence of Aggressive Block (italicized above) and the text of Powerful Shove seem to be mutually exclusive. Aggressive Block says the target will become flat-footed rather than being pushed back into the wall, meaning that it never ends up meeting the criteria for Powerful Shove to deal damage!

How do these feats work together?

Thank You ^^

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  • \$\begingroup\$ What exactly would you like to understand? \$\endgroup\$
    – Akixkisu
    Jul 6 at 10:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ If I have have these three feat can I choose to push an enemy against a wall damaging him? \$\endgroup\$
    – Vaniglio
    Jul 6 at 10:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ So, essentially you don't know if whether you can use Flinging Shove to push a man against a wall and damage him according to your Strength modifier when the man hits the wall due to Powerful Shove, or if you don't have the option to do that because Aggressive Shove (the prerequisite feat that enables you to take the other two feats) says that the man must become flat-footed instead of being moved? In that case, what size is your character and the man that you want to shove? \$\endgroup\$
    – Akixkisu
    Jul 6 at 13:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Vaniglio I've made an edit to try to highlight the contradiction that I think you're asking about. \$\endgroup\$
    – Cellion
    Jul 6 at 14:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't think they're mutually exclusive at all. If there is not a space between the wall and the creature you shove then yes, by the text of Aggressive Block, the creature would become flat-footed because it is shoved into an object. However, this doesn't bear on Powerful Shove because regardless of how, you've pushed the creature into an object so it would take damage anyway as per the feat. This is my interpretation. \$\endgroup\$
    – DLynch
    Jul 6 at 14:14
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You are giving the aggressive block feats too much importance in relation to the other two feats in this chain.

Keep in mind that both powerful shove and flinging shove are modifying aggressive block.

Let's go step by step: Aggressive block.

The triggering creature chooses whether to be moved or become flat-footed. If it chooses to be moved, you choose the direction. If the Shove would cause it to hit a solid object, enter a square of difficult terrain, or enter another creature’s space, it must become flat-footed instead of being moved.

This text is here to limit the enemy choice, not yours. You have no choice at all here.

Why there is a limitation like this? Well let's assume you make me (an enemy) hit a wall.

I take no damage (since you have only aggressive block)...

So why would I choose to become flat-footed instead of hitting a wall since the latter does literally nothing to me? (the same is for hitting another creature).

In short? With only aggressive block tossing an enemy against a wall is pointless.

Now going with the second feat 'Powerful Shove' it provides you two well distinct benefit.

  • When you use aggressive block you can shove bigger creatures. Cool.
  • When something is shoved by you against a solid object it takes damage

This feat do not overrule the fact that when you use aggressive block against an enemy it is the enemy who is chosing what happens..and that enemy is still limited to always choose to become flat-footed (mechanically the worst option for him in the majority of situations) instead of hitting a solid object or entering difficult terrain.

Now the last feat Flinging shove does overrule precisely the last sentences of the aggressive block feat.

When you use Aggressive Block, you can choose whether the target is flat-footed or Shoved.

Now you are the one who choose what happens and since the limitation of aggressive block are not present here you have no more such limitations at all.

In short? Now you can throw off enemy from cliffs or towers (into water, lava..you name it) without a saving throw and the enemy must deal with it and yes, now finally you can shove him against the wall to deal him your STR modifier as damage.

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    \$\begingroup\$ With only aggressive block, tossing an enemy against a wall ensures that you get the flat-footed effect. If your rogue buddy is going after next, then being able to guarantee that regardless of what the target chooses could be quite handy. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ben Barden
    Jul 6 at 15:58
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    \$\begingroup\$ So you are saying that an enemy can voluntarily choose to both take damage and become flat-footed? To me the ruling seems exclusive (choose A or B. If there is a wall you can not choose A but only B)..but I admit the feat phrasing is not so clear about that. Anyway, for sure, with Flinging Shove you can push one into a wall and damage him and we agree on that it seems. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mouza
    Jul 6 at 16:14
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First, it's worth noting that Powerful Shove is explicitly a modification on Aggressive Shove. Thus, it is the more specific rule, and it can be assumed that it is taking the Aggressive Shove rule into account. Beyond that, though, there's not actually a conflict here. Aggressive Shove says

If the Shove would cause it to hit a solid object, enter a square of difficult terrain, or enter another creature’s space, it must become flat-footed instead of being moved.

Powerful Shove says

When a creature you Shove has to stop moving because it would hit an object, it takes damage equal to your Strength modifier (minimum 1). This happens regardless of how you Shoved the creature.

So, Aggressive shove pushes the target into a wall. As per Aggressive Shove, it stops due to the wall and becomes flat-footed. Powerful Shove notes that the target has stopped moving because it would hit an object and thus the strength damage triggers. The fact that Aggressive Shove has particular rules on how the "stopped moving because it would hit an object" works does not change the motion was stopped or its cause.

Flinging Shove, in turn, means that you have more distance to work with when you make that push. It also modifies a different part of Aggressive Shove. In the initial Aggressive Shove, the creature can choose to become flat-footed rather than being pushed (perhaps because he was about to be pushed into a wall, and thus take damage and become flat-footed anyway). With Powerful Shove, you get to make that choice at that time, rather than the target.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Aggressive shove does not do what are you saying. Since it is the enemy that chooses what happens (you can only choose the direction IF the enemy chooses to be shoved) and the enemy is limited to always choose to become flat-footed in the situations where solid objects or difficult terrains are hitten. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mouza
    Jul 6 at 15:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Mouza that's what Flinging Shove is for, as noted in my last paragraph. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ben Barden
    Jul 6 at 15:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ well you are saying 'The fact that Aggressive Shove has particular rules on how the "stopped moving because it would hit an object" works does not change the motion was stopped or its cause'. That is not true. The enemy must choose to be flat footed if by moving it will hit a wall and therefore it will never move and take damage from aggressive block/Powerful shove combination...until you take Flinging Shove. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mouza
    Jul 6 at 15:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Mouza - That's just not true, though. There's two different steps. The first is that you powerfully shove. At that time, the target can choose to become flat-footed ro accept hte shove. If it accepts the shove, and the shove would push it into a wall, then the wall stops it, and it becomes flat-footed instead. The fact that most enemies would not accept the push if there was a wall to push them into does not mean that it is not possible. Still, on re-reading, I recognize that some of my text was unclear. I have clarified it. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ben Barden
    Jul 6 at 15:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ A creature that becomes flat-footed because it was not allowed to choose to be Shoved (note the capital) was never Shoved. Powerful Shove does not apply. \$\endgroup\$
    – darch
    Jul 8 at 8:54

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