Flanking is a concept in the combat system that encourages tactical positioning on the battlefield.

Dragon Age: Origins Edit

Whenever a combatant is located in within 120 degrees of an opponent's back, he receives a flanking bonus. With the Combat Movement talent, available only to rogues, the flanking angle increases to full back 180 degrees of the target. Flanking is only personally active, i.e., it only grants benefits to the combatant in the flanking position, not to anyone else fighting the target. A successful backstab changes the character's attack to a "stabbing" movement.

The magnitude of the flanking bonus is calculated off the relative positions of the attacker and the target. Attackers that are directly behind their target will receive the full flanking bonus. The bonus is proportionally reduced the more the attacker moves towards the side of the target. The bonus is applied to both ranged and melee attacks.

The following diagrams illustrate different flanking conditions:

Normal flanking With Combat Movement
Flanking normal Flanking combat movement
Flanking angle: 120 degrees
Flanking bonus: up to +15.0
Flanking angle: 180 degrees
Flanking bonus: up to +20.0

Effects Edit

Receiving a flanking bonus triggers the following benefits for the attacker:

  • The flanking bonus is added to character's attack rating. Please note only rogues receive full flanking bonus, all other classes get half the value.
  • 20% of the flanking bonus is applied as a bonus to critical chance.
  • A rogue that receives a flanking bonus while attacking will always backstab.

Note: The toolset version of the combat script multiplies critical chance by up to 2.5 for non-rogues and by up to 5.0 for rogues, instead of adding some fraction of the bonus.

These benefits emphasize the importance of tactical positioning in combat. A full flanking bonus of +15.0 to attack negates the equivalent of 15 attribute points invested into dexterity by the target—that is, 5 full levels.

Since rogues automatically do critical (backstab) damage when flanking this would be quite a threat, if the number of flanking enemy rogues in the course of an average campaign were greater than zero.

A successful backstab

A successful backstab

Mitigation and negation Edit

Letting enemies move into a flanking position will increase their chance to hit and to inflict critical hits significantly, especially early to mid-game. A number of ways exist in the game to mitigate vulnerability from being flanked:

Talent wns shieldblock Shield Block, a passive ability grants flanking immunity on the left side.
Talent wns shieldtactics Shield Tactics, a passive ability grants full flanking immunity.
Ru evasion Diligence RuneDiligence Rune
Armor rune
A Tevinter eye, all-seeing

Flank immunity
, which grants full flanking immunity.
Ico greataxe Griffon's EnsembleGriffon's Ensemble


+15% electricity resistance
Set: Flank immunity
, which grants full flanking immunity.

External links Edit