On Pathfinder core rulebook page 180, in regard to Provoking an Attack of Opportunity:

Two kinds of action can provoke attack of opportunity: moving out of a threatened square and …

Two situations,


If there is a threatened creature flanked by two others (T - threatened creature, F - flanking creature, X - square that threatened creature is moving to for the first 5' of a full move action)



Or, if there is a non-flanked creature moving into a flanking square:


Do the attacks of opportunity happen in the square T occupies before the first 5 feet of movement or after they have left the threatened square as part of that movement?

NOTE: T is moving a full 30 ft, I've only shown the first 5ft of movement. Combat reflexes aren't involved here as neither flanker has them. Flanking bonuses and sneak attack damage are affected by whichever happens.

By RAW it isn't obvious because the phrase 'moving out' doesn't really state whether the attack is happening before moving out or is 'activated' by the movement.

Can the attackers choose?

The first situation came up on a game this past week when our opponent turned tail and ran, and one of the flankers was a rogue. We weren't sure if the rogue's sneak attack damage came into play or not.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, basically exact duplicate. Looking at your rep, you probably already know this, @highbandwidth, but closing your question as a duplicate isn't meant as some kind of punishment, just trying to keep all the answers to the same question in the same place. Just follow the link in doppelgreener's comment to find your answer(s). \$\endgroup\$ Mar 23, 2015 at 0:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for the pointer to the other answer. I honestly searched for one before asking the question (and reviewed those answers that came up while formulating my question) but didn't see this. Possibly was lost in the noise of all the results. One interesting data point drawn out by the other answer is that the character has a choice as to whether they take the AoO, so the 2nd situation becomes pertinent in that they can wait until the target is in flanking position before taking the AoO. Thanks again, knew it had to be somewhere! \$\endgroup\$ Mar 23, 2015 at 7:51


Browse other questions tagged .