Athletics (4E)

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4ED&D 4E
4th Edition Dungeons & Dragons

House Rules

Interacting with the Environment

Athletics can be used instead of Strength checks made for feats of strength, to break objects, and so on. See Interacting with the Environment, Player's Handbook page 263.

Interacting with the Environment

  • DC: Varies; see table under Interacting with the Environment, Player's Handbook page 263.


Make an Athletics check to jump vertically to reach a dangling rope or a high ledge or to jump horizontally to leap across a pit, a patch of difficult terrain, a low wall, or some other obstacle.

Jump: Part of a move action.

  • DC: Calculated separately for height and length of jump, then the highest DC is used. You can also begin by making the check, then see how far you got using the check result as your DC.
    • Vertical Jump DC: Height in feet x4 or height in squares x20.
    • Horizontal Jump DC: Length in feet x1 or distance in squares x5.
      • Running Start: If you do not move at least 2 squares before making the jump, double the DC.
      • Assisted Jump If you can leapfrog, use a line to swing, or use a device such as a trampoline or vaulting pole, halve the DC.
  • Uses Movement: Count the number of squares you jump as part of your move. If you run out of movement, you fall. You can end your first move in midair if you double move (Player's Handbook page 284).
  • Jump and catch: If you do not jump far enough or high enough, but fail by less than five feet, you can catch hold by using the Climb rules.
  • Jump and Attack: You can make an attack at the highest/furthest point of a leap. Add the jump to your effective reach.
  • Jump over enemies: To jump over an enemy has a difficulty of that enemy's space x20; Add 20 if you wish to leap over its reach.
    • This maneuver has a minimum DC of 15 after all modifiers.
    • The DM can halve this difficulty for multipeds, slimes and other mostly horizontal creatures.
    • The standard modifiers for running start and assisted jumps apply here. It is generally easy to do an assisted jump as long as you are not trying to avoid opportunity attacks.

Lifting and Dragging

You can extend the normal limits on lifting and dragging things for a short time. See Player's Handbook, page 223 for the normal limits on load.

Lifting, and Dragging: Part of Move action; slows and grants combat advantage
Athletics can be used to increase the normal limits on carrying, lifting and dragging.

  • DC: 10 + weight modifiers
    • Lifting weight off the floor: DC +1 per 20 extra pounds
    • Dragging weight along the ground DC +1 per 50 extra pounds
  • Success You lift or drag the load for one round. You can sustain the effect as a standard action.
  • Failure You fail to move and the load and take 1d6 damage due to overexertion.
  • Slowed: You are slowed when dragging or lifting weight in excess of your normal load (Strength x 10 lbs.)
  • Grant Combat Advantage: You grant combat advantage when trying to lift or drag loads in excess of your normal limitations.

Reduce Falling Damage When Jumping

If jump down from a height, you can make an Athletics check to reduce the amount of falling damage you take.

Reduce Falling Damage: Part of move action

  • Damage Reduced: Make an Athletics check, and reduce the amount of falling damage you take by one-half your check result (round down).
  • Combines with Acrobatics: This can be combined with Acrobatics used for the same purpose.