Combat Tactics: Gorilla’s Paw

I discovered a great tactic in our game this past week. It’s overcoming an enemy’s strong efense using another enemy’s offense through a weak defense. Confused? Let me explain…

Here’s the set-up: There are at least two adversaries: a powerful, high-hit point enemy with a strong Will defense and bad AC and a big, dumb brute with strong arms and weak mind. Amongst the party members there needs to be a character with an ability like the Psion’s Betrayal [DDI] or the Bard’s Song of Discord [DDI] or the Rogue’s Strong-Armed Loyalty [DDI], that is, a power that has the ability to make one create attack his ally.

What you need to do is have your character gets around the smart enemy’s strong Will defense by having the brute smash on him. Generally characters are either Brainy or Brawny, and so if you have a strong gorilla, you can get him to attack his trainer through a Will attack, rather than attack the trainer’s Will outright. This is your fabled Cat’s Paw scenario, and it works like a Charm (pun intended).

Try it out in your game and let me know if it works. Also, are there parallel situations with other defenses? Can you push a character with a low Fort into one with a high one and explode him for some damage?

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