Ok, this will be a tricky question.

This is an idea I got recently when creating a character specialized in explosives. I looked for ways to mimic a proximity mine with non-advanced technology.

My character is a Bomber, thus can use the same Bombs as an Alchemist and upgrade them with Discoveries. The Delayed Bomb would be ideal to create an explosive trap, above all when combined with the Remote Bomb feat. Obviously, putting a bomb on the ground in the open doesn't make a good trap, and burying it would likely reduce its chances to detonate when needed.

Luckily, trap creation allows the use of alchemical items in traps to be used. Most of the time, splash weapons are used in such traps and don't increase their CR, alchemical items that mimic spells increase their CR by the level of the spell mimicked.

So here is my question : Is an Alchemist's Delayed/Remote Bomb a valid alchemical item to place in a miscellaneous trap ? If so, does it modify the trap's CR ?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Is there any reason you don't want to simply cover the bomb with straw or a sheet or a thin layer of dirt? Those would be much easier. \$\endgroup\$
    – GreySage
    Commented May 16, 2016 at 16:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ Pretty sure that covering it enough to block line of sight would block line of effect. \$\endgroup\$
    – Frezak
    Commented May 16, 2016 at 16:55
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ This might be an X/Y problem. That is, you might be better off asking a new question like How can I create a proximity mine in Pathfinder using mundane materials? or How can my level X bomber archetype rogue create a proximity mine without using magic items? \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 16, 2016 at 17:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ Although its usually generated by an alchemist, an alchemist's bomb isn't an alchemical item but a supernatural ability that has no equivalent spell level listed and that scales with class level—I'm not sure it's a good idea to even try to establish some kind of parity between an alchemist's bomb and, like, a tanglefoot bag. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 16, 2016 at 18:55

1 Answer 1


The GM may allow a properly discovered alchemist's bomb to be used as a trap's effect, but doing so is likely not worth the trouble

The rules don't cover this. Nevertheless, a GM may allow an alchemist (or similar bomb-tosser, like a rogue with the third-party archetype bomber) to replace the typical damage-dealing effect of an existing trap with an alchemist's bomb.

Rather than making the typical Disable Device skill check to disable such a bomb-that's-now-a-trap-effect, disabling this trap should probably require making a successful Disable Device skill check at the DC of the discovery delayed bomb (DC = 10 + the alchemist's level + the alchemist's Intelligence modifier).

This is really complicated, though, and probably not worth the trouble. In addition to lugging around or building in place whatever mechanism the GM deems necessary for accommodating the alchemist's bomb, the nature of delayed and remote bombs means another such bomb-that's-now-an-effect-in-a-trap renders the first inert. Hence, it's not as though the alchemist could single-handedly create a mine field or something. Further, in this case, the short duration of the remote bomb's existence (maximum 1 min./level!), the small area affected by any bomb's splash damage, and the comparatively minor amount of any bomb's splash damage make alchemist's bombs an unusually difficult choice for a proximity-triggered trap.

(Also note that to manually detonate early a bomb modified by the discovery remote bomb mandates not a skill check but an Intelligence check (DC 20 +1 per 10 ft. between the alchemist and the bomb). That means even if the alchemist is willing to be right next to the bomb when it explodes, it's easy to fail this check, making even manual activation of such a trap frequently a failed strategy.)

So this GM would probably adjust the CR of a trap incorporating an alchemist's bomb, depending on the alchemist's level, down by 1 or 2. Were I GM, I'd urge a player wanting to do this to find another method creating an explosive effect in his traps besides a fragile, limited-duration, tricked-out alchemist's bomb.


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