I'm assuming this should be a pretty easy question to answer!

I'm basically a brand new player, me and a buddy of mine are running through a few of the One on One adventures, and one thing I have yet to understand is how combat rounds are supposed to work when the PC is fighting multiple monsters at same time.

The one encounter I'm referencing in specific is in Blood Brothers, when the PC is approached by a Dire Wolf and multiple medium sized wolves.

Could someone give me an example of how this should be properly played out when fighting multiple monsters as a single player?

Thanks in advance!

  • \$\begingroup\$ @Miniman I definitely meant PC, not NPC. My apologies! \$\endgroup\$
    – SayMercy
    Feb 20, 2015 at 5:51
  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ How does a PC fight multiple creatures at the same time? Relunctantly! \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Feb 20, 2015 at 6:13
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ How does a PC fight multiple creatures at the same time? Multithreading! \$\endgroup\$
    – Kroltan
    Feb 20, 2015 at 10:20
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    \$\begingroup\$ Just wait for the monsters to form an orderly circle and come at you one at a time. That's what usually seems to happen in the movies. \$\endgroup\$
    – Theik
    Feb 20, 2015 at 20:44
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Kroltan That's why I multithread mine through async and await :D \$\endgroup\$
    – PRX
    Feb 20, 2015 at 22:12

1 Answer 1


In Pathfinder, everyone fights on their own turn, independently. They have a certain number of attacks and can direct them at targets as they see fit. (Assuming no rules specific attached to a given attack that limits how it can be targeted.)

This means that the PC facing multiple opponents will get one or more attacks out on their turn, and then every other enemy will get their own turn to attack the PC, before the initiative cycles back to the PC:

Example: Initiative was rolled, with the Dire Wolf winning initiative, but the six regular wolves rolling worse than the PC. The Dire Wolf will go first, then the PC, then each wolf. The PC has two attacks per round due to two-weapon fighting.

Dire Wolf: attacks the PC with its bite and hits. It gets a free trip attack that must be used against the same target as the successful bite; it misses.
PC: attacks the Dire Wolf twice, hitting twice and injuring the Dire Wolf a bit.
Wolf 1: bites at the PC, hitting.
Wolf 2: bites at the PC, hitting.
Wolf 3: bites at the PC, missing.
Wolf 4: bites at the PC, hitting.
Wolf 5: bites at the PC, missing.
Wolf 6: bites at the PC, missing.

Now that everyone has had their turn in the initiative order, it rolls back around to the "top of the round", starting with the Dire Wolf. The PC has been bit a lot, and has only managed to slightly injure one opponent.

(Yes, being outnumbered is bad.)

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for the tip, I'll be sure to do that. And based off your example, when you mentioned earlier in your post how the PC will get one or more attacks out on their turn, how exactly could he get more than one attack during his turn? The confusion I was having, was understanding if during the PC's turn, does he get to make an attack roll for every wolf, or roll just once and decide who he's attacking? \$\endgroup\$
    – SayMercy
    Feb 20, 2015 at 6:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SayMercy Default, a PC or any creature gets a single standard action that they can choose to use to make one attack with. Various things allow multiple attacks (wielding a weapon in each hand (like in my example), being high-level, being a monk, being a monster with multiattack, …), but they're exceptions that are spelled out clearly where they apply. \$\endgroup\$ Feb 20, 2015 at 6:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ Okay, got it. I think a lot of my confusion is coming from trying to play these one on one adventures while using the beginner box that we purchased (as we don't currently have a full group to play the adventures that come with the box), and a core rule book seems pretty important with the adventures were using . Thanks again for the clarification! \$\endgroup\$
    – SayMercy
    Feb 20, 2015 at 6:33
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    \$\begingroup\$ @SayMercy You may find the Pathfinder System Reference Document useful. It lists pretty much all the rules (though sometimes you need to know what you're looking for) \$\endgroup\$
    – Adeptus
    Feb 20, 2015 at 6:35

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