A character with this feat can attempt a special knockdown attempt, which does not cause damage but may provoke an attack of opportunity. A character may only knock down creatures that are one size larger than itself or less. The attacker makes a d20 roll modified by his strength bonus, and the difference between his creature size and the target creature size times 4. The defender makes a d20 roll modified by the better of his strength or dexterity bonus. If the attacker meets or beats the defender's roll, the defender is knocked down. Prone characters cannot attack. Characters receive a +4 bonus to attack prone opponents in melee (with the next flurry of attacks) until the end of the round, but a -4 penalty to attack them with a ranged weapon.
Special: Monks receive this feat for free at level 6. A Wolf animal companion will receive Knockdown for free at 1st level.
- Knockdown attempts:
- A successful knockdown:
- requires a successful melee touch attack to be made (this includes mirror images)
- disrupts spell-casting
- The check for the knockdown attempt is not modified by spells such as Enlarge Person and Reduce Person because they have no effect on the size modifier
- A prone opponent recovers at the end of the round, which can be very brief if the Knockdown occurs with later attacks
Gameplay tips and observations
- Knockdown is most effective against a target that has a low dexterity and strength - commonly wizards and sorcerers, although bard and cleric type classes may not have a great deal of those either. However, most spell casters have defensive spells that protect against this feat
- This feat is most useful in a party situation because if there are allies attacking the (prone) target, they gain bonuses against it for the remainder of the round and the target cannot defend itself (it loses, for instance, combat expertise bonuses, as this bonus is a combat mode that is temporarily rendered inoperable by the inability to attack)
- The +4 bonus to prone targets may not be always be advantageous, with the one attack used for the Knockdown and the bonus then delayed until the next flurry of attacks, which may be at a much lower AB. Therefore, this feat is not recommended before the PC has three (3) attacks per round and then only for characters with high Strength (e.g. 17 + 1 per 2 levels)
- Knockdown dealt damage, but was an attack with -4 to hit, and had the same effects applied. It also was countered by the now removed discipline skill, since the attack roll also had to beat the targets discipline.
- This mechanic works quite differently in 3.5e PnP assuming one is talking about 3.5e Trip special attack (for one, you do not need to select it as a feat - anyone can attempt to trip, with some risks and penalties that NWN2 does not have). There is an actual 'Knockdown' feat in 3.5e PnP, but that too is a completely different ability/mechanic.