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Gnaritas
2010-02-09, 03:08 AM
I am a human and i have a torch. I and am standing 25 feet away from a huge creature on a moonlit night. Can i see the creature if it is not hiding?

It seems by RAW i cannot...

EnnPeeCee
2010-02-09, 03:11 AM
Torch

A torch burns for 1 hour, clearly illuminating a 20-foot radius and providing shadowy illumination out to a 40-foot radius. If a torch is used in combat, treat it as a one-handed improvised weapon that deals bludgeoning damage equal to that of a gauntlet of its size, plus 1 point of fire damage.

You can see it well within 20ft, decently within 40ft, and not at all past that by RAW.

Farlion
2010-02-09, 03:11 AM
Are you looking in the right direction? :smallbiggrin:

A torch provides shadowy illumination in a 40 ft radius, so I'd say yes.

Cheers,
Farlion

Edit: Ninjaed

Gnaritas
2010-02-09, 03:16 AM
Ok, and how about the guy standing 100 feet away, can he see the huge creature in the shadows?

How about if i am standing 25 feet away from the monster, but on the other side of the monster are some archers on the wall, 300 feet away. They would at least see the silhouette of a huge monster, would they be able to fire at it?

EnnPeeCee
2010-02-09, 03:19 AM
Not positive on this, but by RAW I'm pretty sure anything that is standing within range of a light source is illuminated by it from all sides. Which means those archers would see the monster 25ft away from you.

Anything outside the illumination however, is completely un-illuminated.

Edit: http://www.d20srd.org/srd/exploration.htm#visionAndLight

Gnaritas
2010-02-09, 03:32 AM
At what point do you need to make a spot check. If the huge monster is standing in shadowy illumination, but is clearly not hiding, does the archer 300 ft away need to make a spot check?

SethFahad
2010-02-09, 03:49 AM
Note: shadowy ilumination provides concealment with 20% miss chance.
For the other guys, I will request a spot check with the following modifiers:
-4 to DC per size (of monster) larger than medium
+5 to DC because it's moonlight
+5 to DC as long as the monster stays still
+1 to DC per 10 feet distance
and a small high ground bonus for the archers on the wall.

plus the are varius things that will add to the DC such as the enviroment (trees, bushes, grassland, rocks cliffs etc.).


Maybe they manage to see a silouette but if it remains still, the may think its a tree or a large rock or something.

I would suggest to the guy with the torch, to throw the torch to the monster so it can be more easy for the other to spot it...and....RUN LIKE HELL under the cover of darkness. (and wish the moster doesnt have darkvision...:smalltongue:)

Darkfire
2010-02-09, 03:53 AM
Observers outside the illumination radius of a light source can see into the illumination just fine, making Spot checks as normal to discern creatures or objects in the illuminated area.


It also says that light sources can be spotted on a DC20 spot check:

at 20 times their radius of illumination if the observer is in complete darkness (half that on a failure)
at 10 times their radius of illumination if the observer is in dim light (half that on a failure)

So, as long as it's not actively trying to hide and the archer is in complete darkness, I'd say that there's no need for a spot check at any distance up to 400ft (800ft if the archer's got low-light vision).

Gnaritas
2010-02-09, 03:54 AM
Note: shadowy ilumination provides concealment with 20% miss chance.
For the other guys, I will request a spot check with the following modifiers:
-4 to DC per size (of monster) larger than medium
+5 to DC because it's moonlight
+5 to DC as long as the monster stays still
+1 to DC per 10 feet distance
and a small high ground bonus for the archers on the wall.

plus the are varius things that will add to the DC such as the enviroment (trees, bushes, grassland, rocks cliffs etc.).


Maybe they manage to see a silouette but if it remains still, the may think its a tree or a large rock or something.

How is this different from someone hiding in Shadowy Illumination? Cause it seems to be you are describing someone who is actively trying to hide.

SethFahad
2010-02-09, 03:59 AM
(I've editted my previous post.)

Well if someone hides, then I suppose you must beat his hide check aswell...

Kelb_Panthera
2010-02-09, 04:37 AM
The way I handle this sort of thing is: if it's not actively hiding, but it's somehow obscured anyway, then I add up the circumstance modifiers I'd use if it were hiding, and use that +10 as the spot DC. Oh, and on the night of a full moon, I rule that anything exposed to direct moonlight is only under concealment, not total concealment. Moonlight can be pretty bright ya know.

Matthew
2010-02-09, 06:33 AM
It also says that light sources can be spotted on a DC20 spot check:

at 20 times their radius of illumination if the observer is in complete darkness (half that on a failure)
at 10 times their radius of illumination if the observer is in dim light (half that on a failure)

So, as long as it's not actively trying to hide and the archer is in complete darkness, I'd say that there's no need for a spot check at any distance up to 400ft (800ft if the archer's got low-light vision).

I agree with this.

ericgrau
2010-02-09, 11:50 AM
That seems great for large distances. At smaller distances:


At what point do you need to make a spot check. If the huge monster is standing in shadowy illumination, but is clearly not hiding, does the archer 300 ft away need to make a spot check?

No, not at all. But the monster does have concealment from the shadowy illumination and could hide if he wanted to. Unlike the guy within 20 feet of the torch who may not hide at all no matter how high his modifier is.

IIRC the archer also has a 20% miss chance even if the monster isn't hiding, due to concealment.

jiriku
2010-02-09, 01:52 PM
It would seem logical that the base DC to see someone who is not hiding but which might be concealed, is to assume they made a Hide check with a result of 0, adjusted by appropriate Hide and Spot modifiers.

So, for example, spotting a huge creature walking through trees and heavy undergrowth at 300 feet is 0 - 8 (size) -5 (speed) + 30 (distance) = 17. If the creature is running, the DC would be 2 (-20 for speed instead of -5). If the creature is standing out in the open, you'd notice it automatically so long as you have line of sight, since you can't Hide without cover or concealment. If you don't have a detailed map of the terrain and you're not sure if there's cover or concealment blocking your vision, the SRD has some useful guidelines for spotting stuff based on the terrain type.

SRD:

Stealth and Detection in a Forest
In a sparse forest, the maximum distance at which a Spot check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 3d6◊10 feet. In a medium forest, this distance is 2d8◊10 feet, and in a dense forest it is 2d6◊10 feet.

Stealth and Detection in a Marsh
In a moor, the maximum distance at which a Spot check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 6d6◊10 feet. In a swamp, this distance is 2d8◊10 feet.

Stealth and Detection in Hills
In gentle hills, the maximum distance at which a Spot check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 2d10◊10 feet. In rugged hills, this distance is 2d6◊10 feet.

Stealth and Detection in Mountains
As a guideline, the maximum distance in mountain terrain at which a Spot check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 4d10◊10 feet. Certain peaks and ridgelines afford much better vantage points, of course, and twisting valleys and canyons have much shorter spotting distances. Because thereís little vegetation to obstruct line of sight, the specifics on your map are your best guide for the range at which an encounter could begin. As in hills terrain, a ridge or peak provides enough cover to hide from anyone below the high point.

Stealth and Detection in Plains
In plains terrain, the maximum distance at which a Spot check for detecting the nearby presence of others can succeed is 6d6◊40 feet, although the specifics of your map may restrict line of sight.

Stealth and Detection Underwater
How far you can see underwater depends on the waterís clarity. As a guideline, creatures can see 4d8◊10 feet if the water is clear, and 1d8◊10 feet if itís murky. Moving water is always murky, unless itís in a particularly large, slow-moving river.

Curmudgeon
2010-02-09, 02:16 PM
It would seem logical that the base DC to see someone who is not hiding but which might be concealed, is to assume they made a Hide check with a result of 0, adjusted by appropriate Hide and Spot modifiers.
Or you can just follow the actual rules. The Spot DC to see someone of Large size in plain sight (i.e., without making a Hide check) is 0; see the Difficulty Class Examples table (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/usingSkills.htm#difficultyClass) at the start of the Skills chapter. Each size step away from Large adjusts the DC opposing Spot by +4/-4, and then you just use the Spot description to try to make that DC.

So if a Huge creature is standing out in the open at 300 feet, the DC is -4, with a -30 penalty to your Spot check -- or effectively DC 26. By RAW there's no difference if they're standing or doing cartwheels, though the DM can add circumstance modifiers (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/usingSkills.htm#favorableAndUnfavorableConditions) (typically +2/-2) as usual.

Matthew
2010-02-09, 03:18 PM
Or you can just follow the actual rules. The Spot DC to see someone of Large size in plain sight (i.e., without making a Hide check) is 0; see the Difficulty Class Examples table (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/usingSkills.htm#difficultyClass) at the start of the Skills chapter. Each size step away from Large adjusts the DC opposing Spot by +4/-4, and then you just use the Spot description to try to make that DC.

So if a Huge creature is standing out in the open at 300 feet, the DC is -4, with a -30 penalty to your Spot check -- or effectively DC 26. By RAW there's no difference if they're standing or doing cartwheels, though the DM can add circumstance modifiers (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/usingSkills.htm#favorableAndUnfavorableConditions) (typically +2/-2) as usual.

The spot skill is only supposed to be used when there is a chance that the thing being spotted will not be seen, it is not a method of determining whether something is seen in plain sight. The example DC is an accretion error from the revision between 3.0 and 3.5. The Modern D20 rules even go so far as specifically explaining that.

Curmudgeon
2010-02-09, 04:03 PM
The example DC is an accretion error from the revision between 3.0 and 3.5. The Modern D20 rules even go so far as specifically explaining that.
You're perfectly free to mix in Modern D20 rules in your own campaign as house rules. I was just explaining the D&D 3.5 RAW, for which no errata have been published. In contrast, the Rules Compendium -- where quite a few rule changes have been made -- maintains that Spot is used when there's no Hide check.
A Spot check is either made against a DC that reflects how hard something is to see, or it is opposed by another creatureís Hide check.

Matthew
2010-02-09, 04:21 PM
You're perfectly free to mix in Modern D20 rules in your own campaign as house rules. I was just explaining the D&D 3.5 RAW, for which no errata have been published. In contrast, the Rules Compendium -- where quite a few rule changes have been made -- maintains that Spot is used when there's no Hide check.

I know I am, but the example contradicts the text of the skill.



Use this skill to notice bandits waiting in ambush, to see a rogue lurking in the shadows, to see through a disguise, to read lips, or to see the monstrous centipede in the pile of trash.

Check: The Spot skill is used primarily to detect characters or creatures who are hiding. Typically, your Spot check is opposed by the Hide check of the creature trying not to be seen. Sometimes a creature isnít intentionally hiding but is still difficult to see, so a successful Spot check is necessary to notice it.

Notice the intent of the skill is not to check whether you see somebody standing right in front of you. More importantly, the table is not even directly linked to the skill, but an example of generic difficulty classes. You are not explaining the RAW, just a rather silly interpretation of it that was clearly never intended and barely supported by the text.

Darkfire
2010-02-09, 04:23 PM
The example is ridiculous unless you assume that it's been adjusted for a fairly hefty range. I've got no trouble seeing a player at the far end of a pitch (rugby for preference) but using DC0 at 0ft with +1/10ft, I should be struggling to see anything past the half-way line.

In fact, I'd go as far to suggest that the DC to spot a Medium sized object in plain sight (i.e. not hidden or trying to hide) at 0ft in bright illumination (or even shadowy since concealment by itself doesn't increase the DC) is closer to -40 than it is to 0.

Slayn82
2010-02-09, 04:30 PM
Iluminated objects without cover or camouflage are automatically seem. Can you see the people in the game if a morning fog is around, or if the game is played at night without outside ilumination?

Curmudgeon
2010-02-09, 05:00 PM
You are not explaining the RAW, just a rather silly interpretation of it that was clearly never intended and barely supported by the text.
How is Difficulty Class (DC) Very easy (0) to notice something Large in plain sight (using Spot skill) not RAW? That's exactly what the table says. And, as you quoted:
Sometimes a creature isnít intentionally hiding but is still difficult to see, so a successful Spot check is necessary to notice it. which means that this table entry isn't an aberration; it explains that a far object may be difficult to see because of distance penalties.

Matthew
2010-02-09, 05:23 PM
How is Difficulty Class (DC) Very easy (0) to notice something Large in plain sight (using Spot skill) not RAW? That's exactly what the table says. And, as you quoted:

Because it is the difficulty irrespective of distance. It's not the base difficulty for seeing a large creature 1 foot away from you, it is the base difficulty for seeing a large creature.



which means that this table entry isn't an aberration; it explains that a far object may be difficult to see because of distance penalties.

No, it's not. Only the most convoluted unintuitive reading of the text could ever yield that as the logical meaning. The text says if something is difficult to see even if it is not intentionally hiding, not if something is some way off. Obstructed by bushes, darkness, whatever, but not in plain sight. Not the same thing, not even close.

Curmudgeon
2010-02-09, 05:36 PM
Because it is the difficulty irrespective of distance. It's not the base difficulty for seeing a large creature 1 foot away from you, it is the base difficulty for seeing a large creature.
Your adventuring party is out and about. There's a Large creature in the distance. You don't actually encounter it unless you make the required Spot check:
Spot checks may be called for to determine the distance at which an encounter begins. A penalty applies on such checks, depending on the distance between the two individuals or groups, and an additional penalty may apply if the character making the Spot check is distracted (not concentrating on being observant). It's right there in the rules: Distance matters.

Matthew
2010-02-09, 05:40 PM
Your adventuring party is out and about. There's a Large creature in the distance. You don't actually encounter it unless you make the required Spot check: It's right there in the rules: Distance matters.

"Spot checks may be called for to determine the distance at which an encounter begins." Not, "spot checks are used to determine the distance at which an encounter begins." They are used when the enemy is not in plain sight, which is to say whenever they are not attempting to hide or in conditions where there is a question as to whether they would be seen.

Foryn Gilnith
2010-02-09, 06:16 PM
If a Large monster with 14 Dex and no ranks in hide attempts to hide, and rolls a natural 1, the check required to see him is DC -1. So, by attempting to hide, he becomes more visible than if he had just been strolling along. :smallconfused:

ericgrau
2010-02-09, 06:40 PM
The DC is -4. DC 0 is a large object, not Large object/creature. And distance penalties do still apply. The DC is 0, sure, but there is also a -1 penalty per 10 feet. It's not that complicated. Next you'll tell me that the balance DC on a slippery hewn stone floor is 10 not 12, b/c the DC for hewn stone is clearly stated as 10.



So if a Huge creature is standing out in the open at 300 feet, the DC is -4, with a -30 penalty to your Spot check -- or effectively DC 26. By RAW there's no difference if they're standing or doing cartwheels, though the DM can add circumstance modifiers (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/usingSkills.htm#favorableAndUnfavorableConditions) (typically +2/-2) as usual.

Actually if you're applying the hide rules movement could apply a -5 or -20 to the DC. Vigorous showy acrobatics would be -20, making it a DC 6 spot check to notice a troll doing cartwheels 300 feet away in broad daylight. If he's just standing still or walking OTOH you might miss him without a good spot modifier.

Matthew
2010-02-09, 07:47 PM
The DC is -4. DC 0 is a large object, not Large object/creature. And distance penalties do still apply. The DC is 0, sure, but there is also a -1 penalty per 10 feet. It's not that complicated. Next you'll tell me that the balance DC on a slippery hewn stone floor is 10 not 12, b/c the DC for hewn stone is clearly stated as 10.

Actually, it says "large something", so technically it can be anything large, which is just pretty much par for the course with that particular interpolation. If we look even harder in the DMG, we find that:



A forest fire can be spotted from as far away as 2d6◊100 feet by a character who makes a Spot check, treating the fire as a Colossal creature (reducing the DC by 16). If all characters fail their Spot checks, the fire moves closer to them. They automatically see it when it closes to half the original distance. (DMG, p. 87)

and then that:



An avalanche can be spotted from as far away as 1d10◊500 feet downslope by a character who makes a DC 20 Spot check, treating the avalanche as a Colossal creature. If all characters fail their Spot checks to determine the encounter distance, the avalanche moves closer to them, and they automatically become aware of it when it closes to half the original distance (DMG, p. 90).

So, we need a DC 4 spot check to perceive an avalanche? A colossal sized object? Yeah, choose your poison, the books are not exactly consistent on this count, unsurprisingly since it is a revision between 3.0 and 3.5 that introduced this lunacy.

SethFahad
2010-02-10, 12:19 AM
Your adventuring party is out and about. There's a Large creature in the distance. You don't actually encounter it unless you make the required Spot check: It's right there in the rules: Distance matters.

This reminds me an OotS scene... (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0003.html)

Matthew,
I think our eyes may trick us sometimes. Just because you see something far away in a landscape under the bright sun, doesn't mean that you will actually understand that it is an enemy or a monster troll...
Sometimes we see but we don't ... we don't "pay attention" (hmmm I don't know how to say it in english... it's not my native language... never had lessons eather...).
So the monster (in plain sight but far away) is mistaken for plain landscape scenery.

So "SPOT" is not for merely seen something, but to "comprehend" what is this that you see.

In greek language there is word "vlepo" wich means "i see" (wich is very general in meaning) and there is word "entopizo" wich means that I "find" something through sight that its hidden , obscured, or somewhere that it is difficult to see (far away, or against the sun, or high up, or something very small, or a detail or or or...)

I hope I was somewhat clear in what I said above. (Maybe I need some lessons afterall:smalleek:)

Crow
2010-02-10, 12:33 AM
Oh my god, use common sense people.

SensFan
2010-02-10, 12:36 AM
This reminds me an OotS scene... (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0003.html)

Matthew,
I think our eyes may trick us sometimes. Just because you see something far away in a landscape under the bright sun, doesn't mean that you will actually understand that it is an enemy or a monster troll...
Sometimes we see but we don't ... we don't "pay attention" (hmmm I don't know how to say it in english... it's not my native language... never had lessons eather...).
So the monster (in plain sight but far away) is mistaken for plain landscape scenery.

So "SPOT" is not for merely seen something, but to "comprehend" what is this that you see.

In greek language there is word "vlepo" wich means "i see" (wich is very general in meaning) and there is word "entopizo" wich means that I "find" something through sight that its hidden , obscured, or somewhere that it is difficult to see (far away, or against the sun, or high up, or something very small, or a detail or or or...)

I hope I was somewhat clear in what I said above. (Maybe I need some lessons afterall:smalleek:)
I assume you're familiar with football(/soccer)?
If I am at one end of the pitch, and you are at the other, I guarantee you we can both see each other enough to know we're humans.
That's 330 feet or so; almost impossible in DnD if you require the Spot check rolls with distance.

Fiery Diamond
2010-02-10, 12:47 AM
Why can't we just say: "RAW is borked, what's a reasonable method for determining the DC?"

Math_Mage
2010-02-10, 12:48 AM
Oh my god, use common sense people.

Never! :smalltongue:

In any case, what people are doing is trying to generate a reasonable common-sense ruleset so additional common-sense interpretation is not required.

SethFahad
2010-02-10, 12:48 AM
I assume you're familiar with football(/soccer)?
If I am at one end of the pitch, and you are at the other, I guarantee you we can both see each other enough to know we're humans.
That's 330 feet or so; almost impossible in DnD if you require the Spot check rolls with distance.

Sure we can. If you are in plain sight no spot is required. But can you "spot" my facial features? Can you "spot" the mud in my blue shirt? So distance/size conditions aply. Fully.
What I'm trying to say is : To See is not to Spot.
Heck, if you have negative Spot skill, doesn't mean you are blind! You can see! That is why the governing ability in Spot is Wisdom.
If you are blind you automaticaly fail in all spot checks. Why? Because if you can't see you cant understand that something exists.

SensFan
2010-02-10, 12:50 AM
Sure we can. But can you "spot" my facial features? Can you "spot" the mud in my blue shirt? So distance/size conditions aply. Fully.
What I'm trying to say is : To See is not to Spot.
Heck, if you have negative Spot skill, doesn't mean you are blind! You can see! That is why the governing ability in Spot is Wisdom.
If you are blind you automaticaly fail in all spot checks. Why? Because if you can't see you cant understand that something exists.
Except the Spot check is to tell if I can see you are there, not if I can tell if you shaved today.

SethFahad
2010-02-10, 12:52 AM
Except the Spot check is to tell if I can see you are there, not if I can tell if you shaved today.

You can make an Int check for that...:smalltongue:

SensFan
2010-02-10, 12:59 AM
You can make an Int check for that...:smalltongue:
No offense intended, but please read the thread. You don't seem to understand the question. People aren't wondering how hard it is to tell what colour the Ogre's eyes are, they are wondering how hard it is to tell that the Ogre is 300 feet away.

SethFahad
2010-02-10, 01:14 AM
Please... I've read the thread since the begining. I even answerd in the primary question.

Rules say: You can see anything that is in plain sight. Full stop.
There are numerous bonuses and penalties that aply for conditions such as landscape, light/dark, hiding, size, movement, concealment etc.

In post #28 and consequend posts I was refering to the thoughts exchanged by Curmudgeon and Matthew.

So, no offence intended, but please read the whole thread, all the posts, and then maybe we can discuss what can I understand what I can not.

Asbestos
2010-02-10, 01:38 AM
Owned!

My answer was going to be "you can see some Ember in Torchlight and the implementation of a neat animal companion mechanic".

Matthew
2010-02-10, 07:33 AM
This reminds me an OotS scene... (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0003.html)

Matthew,
I think our eyes may trick us sometimes. Just because you see something far away in a landscape under the bright sun, doesn't mean that you will actually understand that it is an enemy or a monster troll...
Sometimes we see but we don't ... we don't "pay attention" (hmmm I don't know how to say it in english... it's not my native language... never had lessons eather...).
So the monster (in plain sight but far away) is mistaken for plain landscape scenery.

So "SPOT" is not for merely seen something, but to "comprehend" what is this that you see.

In greek language there is word "vlepo" wich means "i see" (wich is very general in meaning) and there is word "entopizo" wich means that I "find" something through sight that its hidden , obscured, or somewhere that it is difficult to see (far away, or against the sun, or high up, or something very small, or a detail or or or...)

I hope I was somewhat clear in what I said above. (Maybe I need some lessons afterall:smalleek:)

Perfectly true, but the issue above is that the rulebooks indicate that you need a DC 0 to see a large creature in plain sight and DC 4 to see an oncoming colossal avalanche, demonstrating a self evident degree of inconsistency. More importantly, it is the "starting an encounter" rules that demand detection of the opposing party be handled via sight ranges, spot and listen checks, and those rules are clear that it is detection, not discernibility, that is of interest.



Oh my god, use common sense people.

Certainly; but then we are still left with people claiming that the RAW intend spot to be used to see things in plain sight...



Why can't we just say: "RAW is borked, what's a reasonable method for determining the DC?"

That would be because there should not be a DC at all, which is what got us into this mess to begin with; spot is only supposed to be used when there is a chance of not perceiving the other party. In 3.0 automatic detection occurs at half the encounter distance, which has been carried over into the environmental encounters for 3.5, but left out of ordinary encounter detection. The rules for spotting in 3.5 are a mess, but not helped by the fact that the 3.0 rules for spotting were not perfectly consistent to begin with.

SensFan
2010-02-10, 08:04 AM
Please... I've read the thread since the begining. I even answerd in the primary question.

Rules say: You can see anything that is in plain sight. Full stop.
There are numerous bonuses and penalties that aply for conditions such as landscape, light/dark, hiding, size, movement, concealment etc.

In post #28 and consequend posts I was refering to the thoughts exchanged by Curmudgeon and Matthew.

So, no offence intended, but please read the whole thread, all the posts, and then maybe we can discuss what can I understand what I can not.
Curmudgeon and Mattew are talking about seeing if there's an Ogre out there, not being able to tell how recently that Ogre shaved...

Foryn Gilnith
2010-02-10, 08:33 AM
That would be because there should not be a DC at all, which is what got us into this mess to begin with; spot is only supposed to be used when there is a chance of not perceiving the other party.

If you're very far away from a creature (i.e. not at the ranges we're discussing ATM), for purposes of sniping, it would not be unreasonable for the DM to demand some manner of Spot check even if the target is making no attempt at hiding.

bosssmiley
2010-02-10, 10:08 AM
The example is ridiculous unless you assume that it's been adjusted for a fairly hefty range. I've got no trouble seeing a player at the far end of a pitch (rugby for preference) but using DC0 at 0ft with +1/10ft, I should be struggling to see anything past the half-way line.

Why are people assuming that the base situation is a flat, wide-open rugby (or football) field, rather than (say) the more varied outlines, low grade cover and ambiguous minor clutter more common to natural terrain? :smallconfused:

I mean, given that the game is about dungeon and wilderness adventuring, surely the base Spot DCs should assume a typical adventuring environment, not an arena?

ericgrau
2010-02-10, 10:38 AM
Actually, it says "large something", so technically it can be anything large, which is just pretty much par for the course with that particular interpolation. If we look even harder in the DMG, we find that:

"large" not "Large". Confusing and probably shouldn't have been worded that way. I'd consider a Medium creature to be something large in front of me when describing something I'm looking at. IIRC other examples set the DC at 0 with different wording.


I assume you're familiar with football(/soccer)?
If I am at one end of the pitch, and you are at the other, I guarantee you we can both see each other enough to know we're humans.
That's 330 feet or so; almost impossible in DnD if you require the Spot check rolls with distance.

1. You don't need a spot check when you already know your opponents are there. See also: "Just use common sense". A better example might be 2 random passerbys at opposite ends of the field.
2. This is much harder in a town / plains / forest / fields / hills / dungeon / absolutely anything you come across in D&D.
3. The closest thing to a soccer field might be mountains where it is so clear that the distance penalties are halved. Even then I'd say the soccer field is usually more clear. Base DC is then 16, tops.
4. Vigorous movement reduces the DC by 20, walking by 5.

Matthew
2010-02-10, 10:56 AM
"large" not "Large". Confusing and probably shouldn't have been worded that way. I'd consider a Medium creature to be something large in front of me when describing something I'm looking at. IIRC other examples set the DC at 0 with different wording.

Yes, "large" as anything you consider to be "large", rather than the technical "Large". The only other examples I have seen set the DC at 20, before being modified by size. Not only should it not have been worded that way, it flat out should not have been included, as it confuses the issue of what spot is used for.

unre9istered
2010-02-10, 11:53 AM
I am a human and i have a torch. I and am standing 25 feet away from a huge creature on a moonlit night. Can i see the creature if it is not hiding?

It seems by RAW i cannot...

I thought I saw somewhere that moonlight provides dim illumination as far as the eye can see (bright illumination for low-light vision) and starlight provided dim illumination for low-light vision as far as the eye can see. Can't seem to find the reference for it.

SethFahad
2010-02-11, 12:01 AM
Curmudgeon and Mattew are talking about seeing if there's an Ogre out there, not being able to tell how recently that Ogre shaved...

Really??? Damn! I thought they were talking about shaving habits! :smallsigh:

Give me a break man! If you don't want to understand what I'm saying, I can't simply open your head and stuff my thoughts inside... :smallannoyed:

I wont argue with you anymore. It's useless.

aboyd
2010-02-11, 12:46 AM
Rules say: You can see anything that is in plain sight. Full stop.
Can you quote the line that says that? Because all I've found is page 64 saying that spotting something large in plain sight is a DC 0. From that we can tell that spotting the cat next to you (size tiny, I think) might actually not be possible.


Why are people assuming that the base situation is a flat, wide-open rugby (or football) field, rather than (say) the more varied outlines, low grade cover and ambiguous minor clutter more common to natural terrain?
Because PHB page 64 gives its numbers as applying to "plain sight." Not "varied outlines" and not "low grade cover." So people are assuming that the thing to see is easily visible because that's what the book assumes too. I hope that helps you to understand everyone's assumptions.

In any case, my solution was just to house rule it. In my game, it's a DC 0 to spot something tiny in plain sight. This solves the football field issue almost -- taking a 20 on the spot would see someone on the other side assuming that they came juuuuuussst a few feet closer. It has a problem, which is on the other end spotting flies becomes too easy -- any commoner taking 10 can easily spot a fly up to 29 feet away. After that rolls are needed. But for me, I'd rather err on the side of seeing well than seeing poorly.

The other solution I've heard bandied about is that your spot modifiers don't kick in until after the spot range. So for example, spotting something on the plains has a listed max of 6d6 x 40. That's about 840 on average. So following this concept, you would have a DC of 0 to spot a large creature at 840 feet, and a DC 1 to spot it at 850 feet, and a DC 2 to spot it at 860 feet, and so on.

If you're in dense forest, the max spot range is 2d6 x 10. So that's 70 feet on average. So to spot something size large in the forest is a DC 0 at 70 feet, a DC of -1 at 60 feet, a DC of -2 at 50 feet, and a DC of -6 if the large creature is just 10 feet away.

I adopted that for a while, but there was some fallout with running the checks that way, and I no longer remember what the fallout was. It screwed up the math for something, but it's long gone from my memory. I'd kinda like to re-adopt that system now that I've forgotten the quirky math. :)

SethFahad
2010-02-11, 04:53 AM
Maybe it wasn't correctly stated. I'm sorry.

PH p.164

In an area of bright light, all characters can see clearly. A creature
canít hide in an area of bright light unless it is invisible or has cover.