This is about two feats I intend to use for a Large character :

Devastating Charge (Combat)

Prerequisite: Str 13, Power Attack, base attack bonus +1.

Benefit: When you are not mounted and you use the charge action, a successful attack deals an additional 2d4 points of damage. If you are using a 2-handed weapon, or a 1-handed weapon in 2 hands, you instead deal an additional, 3d4 points of damage.

Exalted Bullrush (Combat)

Prerequisite: Str 13, Improved Bull Rush, Power Attack, BAB +1.

Benefit: You can charge into a foe and use your body to damage him, while simultaneously pushing him backwards. When you make a Bull Rush, you also make a normal melee attack roll. (This is considered a charge.) If your attack roll succeeds, you deal melee damage. The damage is 1d3 if you are unarmored, 1d4 if in light armor, 1d6 in medium armor, and 1d8 in heavy armor. You add 150% of your Strength bonus to this damage.

Devastating Charge gives bonus damage dice not treated as precision damage, Exalted Bullrush is a new attack used in combination with a bull rush. For both, it looks like it would make sense to deal higher damage with a Large character or less with a Small one, like many other feats giving similar benefits, Head Butt is a good example.

So, are these damage dice unchanged by character size or should at least one of these feats deal more damage for larger characters and less for smaller ones ?


1 Answer 1


This GM would leave the Devastating Charge and Exalted Bull Rush damages unchanged for other-than-Medium creatures

First, both feats are available at level 1. A creature that can, at level 1, either deal an extra 2d4 or 3d4 damage on a charge or up to 1d8 + the 150% of the creature's Strength bonus on a successful bull rush is making a valuable low-level contribution in melee. For example, there's a real, measurable difference between a Str 20 level 1 fighter that's using the feat Power Attack to deal 2d6+10 points of damage and another Str 20 level 1 fighter that's also using the feat Devastating Charge to deal 2d6+15 points of damage.

Also, a feat needn't be viable throughout a creature's adventuring career if the GM allows the rules for retraining. A creature can ditch the feats when they lose their lusters.

Second, flat damage bonuses are better for littler creatures. The game already gives bigger creatures a lot of advantages, and tossing the littler ones the occasional bone just seems (ew!) fair. For example, were the extra damage deal by Devastating Charge to scale, one way the damage could do so is like this:

SIZE        --DAMAGE-----
Fine...........0 (or 1d2)
Diminutive.....3 (or 1d3)
Tiny.........3d2 (or 1d4)
Small........3d3 (or 2d4)

Such creatures were already struggling to stay competitive in melee by dealing damage. Making the flat damage scale by size makes them even less.

Finally, by making the flat damage scale, one may begin to question why all flat damage doesn't scale. I mean, why does a titan rogue's sneak attack deal only +1d6 damage when the titan's humongous greatsword is punching a much bigger hole in the poor, denied-its-Dex-bonus-to-AC slob's liver than a grig rogue's dagger? But, again, making such a change skews the game even more in favor of bigger creatures.

This GM would leave the feats alone. Given their prerequisites, they appear to be designed as low-level feats, possibly meant to be exchanged for better ones as the creature advances in levels.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Precision damage has never been supposed to scale with size then the sneak attack is not really a good example. But I can get some balance logic behind these choices : Devastating Charge gives bonus damage similar to the bonus from Strength that is the same for every character, and Exalted Bullrush is already advantageous to larger creatures that have better chances to succeed combat maneuvers. I guess it's perfectly OK to not have them scale with size. \$\endgroup\$
    – user26561
    Aug 22, 2016 at 9:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ @FlashRebel That's a fair point about precision damage, but that was simply the example of least resistance; likewise, for example, the magic weapon special ability flaming still doesn't deal more than 1d6 points of fire damage when added to a Colossal weapon, but, then again, that's energy damage. Nonetheless, the point—which I'm glad I conveyed—is that flat damage can just be flat damage; it needn't scale. Glad to've helped. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 22, 2016 at 9:37

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