I’m here today to share another embarrassing moment from my gaming career.

I’m playing a ranger named Aphen. Aphen was overall a good character, solid stats and a pretty decent backstory; He was poised to be the next big character of mine in Pathfinder, as the last one I played kind of jumped into a well that ported him to the elemental plane of water.

That didn’t pan out.

For starters, I tried building him around the idea of being a Switch Hitter. The Switch Hitter, at its core, is a ranger that takes the archery combat style, but takes feats like power attack and doesn’t exactly rely on his bow primarily. He opts to use a two handed weapon instead, and will switch back and forth as the fight demands. I figured this would have been a great thing to bring to the table, but my group seemed to disagree with the idea of a ranger not being ranged all the time.

After several missteps, one of which involves trying to melee an elder fire elemental way above our level range, I find myself in a large, foreboding forest with two other party members. This forest held terrifying creatures  and all sorts of bad things in there. It’s generally a bad place to be, especially at night, I found out.

I’m on watch, and I notice some movement off in the distance. Not taking any chances, I rouse the rest of my party awake in time for us to be assaulted by two dire bears. The dire bears descended upon us, and in the first round killed my animal companion.  The cleric almost went down as well, but managed to keep everyone and himself patched up.

Finally, an idea strikes inside my head like a lit match. I smile at my own cleverness, and tell Pedro that I’m going to climb the tree and “snipe those bitches out the box”.

A high climb roll gets me up the nearest tree in one round, and I let loose an arrow into the nearest bear the next round. The bear roars, and starts climbing the tree after me. I start to protest. “Bears can’t climb trees, what the shit is this? I asked, shooting Pedro a confused look. Everyone stops to look at me, just barely managing to contain their laughter.

“Didn’t you see mother fucking Winnie the Pooh? He fucking lived in one.”
“Yeah…but I didn’t know he could climb a bitch.”

The bear easily scaled the tree, and charges me down. At this point I had two options: Melee the bear down with my falchion, or jump down 60 feet and get away from that bear. I elected to jump down from the tree, thinking that 6d6 damage would be less than what the bear would do to me the following round. What I failed to realize is that the other Dire Bear was down there fighting my friends, and it wasn’t much different from the last option.

I was banking on the fall damage being low, but Pedro ended up rolling damn near max damage. My ranger collapses into single digit hit points, and then the dire bear on the ground charges me, ending the switch hitter’s life with a bite to the jugular.

The worst part was realizing that my ranger should have known about the climbing prowess of bears thanks to his high modifier in Knowledge: Nature.

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