Crusaders (Tome of Battle p. 10) have a feature, steely resolve, that allows them to delay the damage they take until the following round. The size of the delayed-damage pool is limited based on their level. They also gain bonuses (via the furious counterstrike feature) based on how much damage is in this pool.

The Stone Power feat (Tome of Battle p. 32) allows you to voluntarily take a penalty to your attack rolls in order to gain temporary hit points:

When you use an attack action or a full attack action, or you initiate a Stone Dragon strike in melee combat, you can take a penalty of as much as -5 on your attack rolls. This number cannot exceed your base attack bonus. You gain temporary hit points equal to twice the number that you subtract from your attack rolls (to a maximum of +10). These temporary hit points last until the beginning of your next turn.

A 10th level crusader gets hit for 20 points of damage, he places 10 into his steely resolve damage pool and negates 10 points with the Stone Power feat. My question is, on the next round when that 10 points that are in his damage pool comes due, can he negate that 10 with Stone Power feat on the next round?


1 Answer 1


To be clear, Stone Power doesn’t “negate” any damage, and you don’t “decide” to apply damage to it. Stone Power gives you temporary hit points, which are always deducted first, before your actual hp. The only choice a crusader has is to direct damage into their steely resolve pool—then it doesn’t go towards your hp at all, temporary or otherwise.

But yes, Stone Power can soak both damage that exceeds what you can put in steely resolve, and then also soak the delayed damage from steely resolve.

That is, this sequence is valid:

  1. Crusader uses Stone Power, taking a −5 penalty on attack to get 10 temporary hit points.

  2. Crusader takes 20 damage.

  3. Crusader directs 10 damage into the steely resolve delayed-damage pool.

  4. The remaining 10 damage removes the 10 temporary hit points from Stone Power. The crusader’s actual hp remains untouched.

  5. On the crusader’s next turn, they use Stone Power again, taking a −5 penalty and gaining a fresh batch of 10 temporary hp.

  6. At the end of that turn, the 10 damage directed into steely resolve comes due, and the crusader takes 10 damage—which removes the 10 temporary hp from Stone Power. The crusader’s actual hp still remains untouched.

For this reason, Stone Power is a fairly strong feat for a crusader. Unfortunately, both steely resolve (max of 30 at 20th level) and Stone Power (max of 10 at 5th level) scale poorly, so at higher levels the combination isn’t all that great. Still, for a low-level game, it can make a character very beefy.


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