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I'm a bit confused with how to put together reach and threatened squares. A character has a natural reach range of 5ft around it, meaning I would 'threaten' the immediate vicinity in the "x"s:

xxx
xCx
xxx

Specifically with the white haired witch archtype, it states:

"At 1st level, a white-haired witch gains the ability to use her hair as a weapon. This functions as a primary natural attack with a reach of 5 feet."

does that mean I maintain the original threat range of 5ft like the example above, or does that extend my threaten range to the surrounding squares, indicated with the "X"s?

oXXXo
XxxxX
XxCxX
XxxxX
oXXXo

With the Prehensile Hair hex, it states:

"The witch can instantly cause her hair (or even her eyebrows) to grow up to 10 feet long or to shrink to its normal length, and can manipulate her hair as if it were a limb with a Strength score equal to her Intelligence score. Her hair has reach 10 feet,"

Does this mean the threat range would look like the example above, being able to reach and threaten all "X" and "x"s?

At the 4th level, the WHW archtype gains another 5ft to its hair range, which would mean it has a total reach of 10ft at lvl 4.

"At 4th level and every four levels thereafter, a white-haired witch’s hair adds 5 feet to its reach, to a maximum of 30 feet at 20th level."

My confusion is partially stemming from reach vs threat range, and how the word "reach" is used these abilities. Particularly because the WHW defines it as haveing a reach of 5ft, which would be the natural "range" of attack already implied by the rules? Are are they just weapons that extend your natural reach to the limit defined (IE: 5ft/10ft); or these natural weapons treated as "reach" weapons, in the sense that a reach of 5ft would threaten 10ft, and a reach of 10ft would threaten 15ft.

I did notice that it doesn't state these abilities take penalties attacking within 'close' range as well, like most reach weapons have. This is also assuming the character is medium in size. I do also know that you can increase your "threaten" range beyond your "reach" range via feats, etc, and that the two ranges can differ.

Mainly asking this for clarification because I can't really seem to find anything specifically pertaining to this subject (I already have a general idea of what would happen, just wanting to cross-check to make sure it is correct).

[pathfinder reach range[1]

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The question's first diagram's xs correctly indicate the area threatened by a Medium or littler level 1-3 white-haired witch's white hair. The question's second diagram's xs and Xs correctly indicate the area threatened by a Medium or littler level 4-7 white-haired witch's white hair and the area threatened by a Medium or littler witch that's employing the hex prehensile hair. Below is further clarification of these abilities.

White hair

The witch archetype white-haired witch's supernatural ability white hair says

At 1st level, a white-haired witch gains the ability to use her hair as a weapon. This functions as a primary natural attack with a reach of 5 feet.

A creature with this class feature threatens squares adjacent to its space with its white hair, a natural attack, no matter the white-haired witch's size. For example, a Tiny white-haired witch normally threatens no squares and a Large (tall) white-haired witch normally threatens adjacent squares and squares 10 ft. from its space, but both white-haired witches threaten only squares adjacent to their spaces with their white hair.

The supernatural ability white hair continues, saying

At 4th level and every four levels thereafter, a white-haired witch’s hair adds 5 feet to its reach, to a maximum of 30 feet at 20th level.

Thus the white-haired witch increases the distance from its space that it threatens with its white hair by 5 ft. to 10 ft. at level 4, from 10 ft. to 15 ft. at level 8, from 15 ft. to 20 ft. at level 12, from 20 ft. to 25 ft. at level 16, and, finally, from 25 ft. to 30 ft. at level 20.

Unlike a creature with a typical reach weapon like a longspear, the white-haired witch threatens with its hair all those squares, functioning, essentially, like a creature with natural reach except that, for example, the Medium white-haired witch can typically only make attacks into squares beyond adjacent squares with its white hair.

Obviously, folks laugh at high-level white-haired witches that lack both a high Dexterity score and the feat Combat Reflexes.

Prehensile hair

The witch hex prehensile hair, a supernatural ability, says

The witch can instantly cause her hair (or even her eyebrows) to grow up to 10 feet long or to shrink to its normal length, and can manipulate her hair as if it were a limb with a Strength score equal to her Intelligence score. Her hair has reach 10 feet, and she can use it as a secondary natural attack that deals 1d3 points of damage (1d2 for a Small witch).

A witch employing this hex threatens with its prehensile hair, a natural attack, squares adjacent to its space and 10 ft. from its space no matter the witch's size. For example, a Tiny witch normally threatens no squares and a Large (tall) witch normally threatens adjacent squares and squares 10 ft. from its space, but both witches threaten adjacent squares and squares 10 ft. from their spaces when employing the hex prehensile hair.


Note: Because these distances are set by the special abilities themselves, their specificity trumps the more general rules about reach. For instance, a Medium white-haired witch shouldn't see its white hair threaten an even bigger area if the white-haired witch is the subject of an enlarge person spell (although such a witch will see the area threatened modified due to the white-haired witch occupying more space for the spell's duration). However, a generous GM may rule otherwise.

Also, typically a white-haired witch just can't take the hex prehensile hair, the white-haired witch's supernatural ability white hair replacing the witch's class feature hex.

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A reach of 5 feet is the same as a normal melee attack. Logically speaking, you can't reach something 10 feet away using the hair attached to your head if your hair were only five feet. I feel like they tried to clarify the distance, but because combat doesn't describe a reach of 5 feet, it's more confusing than intended. Starting at fourth level, the WHW's ranges increases to 2 squares away, and increases every fourth level thereafter, making them pretty decent at "ranged" attacks as they increase in level.

The only "reach" they describe in combat is the "reach" weapon special ability:

Reach: You use a reach weapon to strike opponents 10 feet away, but you can't use it against an adjacent foe.

This suggests that the reach of 10 feet at level 4 is intended to be as threatening as a long spear, but with the ability to also attack a target that's adjacent to you (natural attacks can generally attack anywhere within their maximum reach).

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