How do Critical Rolls work?

Do I roll for attack, and should it fall within the crit/threat range, I roll a second time for the critical? Because that doesn’t seem to make sense.

Two attacks. The first to see if the attack “might” be a critical and the second to see if indeed it was.If the second attack lands, the result is a “critical hit” and damage is generally doubled (unless the weapon used specifies more damage). If the second attack “misses”, the first attack still counts, just as a normal attack.

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it does. in the d&d rules the game is based upon an attack role was used for lots of things regarding interaction with opponents. it’s just a simplification to “simulate” how the character aims for a vital spot. a simple natural 20 won’t do because it already grants a guaranteed hit*. behind the curtains it’s there to tone down the chance to hand out lots of damage.

*) actually critical hits were introduced with ad&d 2nd edition as an optional rule - perhaps even the supplements for the first edition had something similar. you could either do a critical hit on a natural 20 or another free attack roll to confirm the critical hit. there was also an exploding natural 20 used. that is, if your second attack confirming the critcal rolled a 20 too the character got a third attack, and so on.

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So the second roll is done as if it were an attack roll, meaning it has to match or exceed the enemy’s AC in order to get a crit?

that’s correct.

Upon further consideration, that all makes sense. But is there a way to enhance the second roll’s chances, like how Keen doubles the threat range?

None that I’m aware. I think an on-hit AC reduction effect would likely apply after the critical hit is computed. There are massive critical damage bonuses though.

You might be able to script something though. Figure out the increased odds of the critical hit then add that randomly as a “bonus” damage on a successful hit.

The feat Power Critical gives a +4 bonus on the second roll for confirmation.


On-hit AC reduction? What’s that, a penalty to DEX?

Completely forgot that exists. Honestly in my dumb D&D rookie mind, back in the day I always thought Power Critical was just a lesser version of Improved Critical, like how there’s Weapon Focus and Greater Weapon Focus.

In these few years, I can’t believe how I was so ingrained into the JRPG playstyle.