Updated: December 02, 2021, at 02:51 PM

Combat Maneuvers are special abilities that many martial characters are able to access in order to help them and their allies in combat. They reflect countless hours of practice and honing martial prowess, and are capable of changing the tide of a battle if used with expertise.

Maneuvers in Combat

Combat maneuvers, as the name implies, are techniques that can be used in combat. The number of combat maneuvers a character may know is determined by their class and level, and are chosen from the combat traditions that the character is proficient with. Whenever you learn a new maneuver, you can choose one of the maneuvers you know and replace it with another maneuver of the same level or lower.

To use a combat maneuver, you need to spend the appropriate amount of focus points (as notated next to the "cost" descriptor of the maneuver) and either an action, bonus action, or reaction. Some maneuvers are performed as part of the Attack action. The requirements of using a maneuver are noted in the maneuver description. Sometimes, a maneuver may force a target to make a saving throw to resist the effects of the maneuver. The saving throw DC is calculated as follows:

Maneuver DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength or Dexterity modifier

Combat maneuvers are nonmagical in nature.


In order to learn a maneuver you must be proficient in the combat tradition it is listed under and meet any prerequisites it may have. New combat maneuvers learned through a feat or by taking levels in an additional class may be chosen up to the highest degree of combat maneuvers you are able to learn.


Some combat maneuvers are of a special variety known as stances, which always require a bonus action to activate. Once activated, a stance will remain active until you are knocked unconscious, stunned, activate a different combat stance, finish a short or long rest, or choose to end it on your turn.

Focus Pool

In order to use a maneuver, you need to expend focus points. You have a maximum number of focus points equal to double your proficiency bonus, and you regain any spent exertion points at the end of a short or long rest.

Alternatively, you can refill your focus pool more quickly through meditation or refocusing. By expending Hit Dice to do so, you can recover 1d4 focus points for each Hit die expended. The process takes 1 minute per expended Hit Die.

Combat Traditions

Schools of maneuvers are broken into groups of related maneuvers called combat traditions, which are as defining to a martial warrior as a preferred school of magic may be to a mage. The traditions you can pick from are determined by your character's class, and these traditions narrow down the pool of maneuvers you can select from.

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