Good catch on the Paragon Path, Nemesis. This serves to strengthen the argument against a Heroic Tier feat.
The free action bit is to resolve issues arising from Immediate Actions. Specifically, you can't use an Immediate Interrupt or an Immediate Reaction on your turn. Feat effects are, incidentally, no action
to activate. The 1-square shift is incidental. Rogues and rangers have a host of powers beginning at Level 1 which allow them to shift 1 or more squares.
As for this being a Level 2 power ... it's not. Compare it to other Level 2 utility powers and other Heroic Tier feats. It's clear that it's vastly superior. The monster
is Level 2 artillery, sure. But there's a lot more going into determining a monster's level than just it's powers. Much of it has to do with what else the monster can do, it's Defenses and Attack Bonus, and HP total. Take a look up the same page in the Monster Manual ... The Goblin Warrior gets +1d6 damage to a ranged attack (that doesn't draw Opportunity Attacks) and total movement of 9 squares. Every round.By the current argument in favor, this should be available to a Level 1 goblin PC. The Goblin Warrior is a Level 1 monster, after all...
The ability to attack and remain hidden is a huge tactical advantage. Rogues, with their stealth-related Utility powers, are the stealthiest class in the game. The fact that rogues don't gain ability to fire and remain hidden on a miss EVER, except as a Level 12 paragon utility power, should be an indication of just how potent this is.
Normally, simply attacking - regardless of hit or miss - is sufficient to draw enough attention to yourself to break stealth. Re-hiding can take a round or more, depending on circumstances. Re-hiding also requires another Stealth Check. Multiple checks increase the risk of a low result; you may be spotted anyway. There is opportunity cost here that's an important balancing component: it takes time to hide and attack, but it's safe(r) than closing to melee.
Allowing a Heroic Tier feat - even one that's limited to a specific race or race/class combo - to duplicate the bulk of the effect of a Paragon Rogue power is just ... no. There is much less opportunity cost here.
Originally Posted by Meek
Another thing to consider is that this isn't a general feat, to be proposed and included in a compendium or anything. This is a feat for one race, used by one player, that won't exactly lift him above the rest of the party in any unfair way.
I disagree completely, Meek. Rogues are the best PC class in the game for stealth, and have the At-Will utility powers to prove it. It's entirely unfair to tell a not-goblin rogue's player that his character must be Level 12 and follow the Cloaked Sniper paragon path to do what the goblin ranger's character can do at Level 4 (and maybe even Level 1).
Additionally, it's elevating the PC above the opponents
in an unfair way that ultimately matters in terms of game balance.