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Choco
2010-03-14, 10:09 PM
RAW states that spell like abilities don't require either verbal or somatic components, so does that mean a monster/NPC that has had their str or dex drained to 0 can still use all it's SLA's as normal? I am assuming that SLA's that imply being able to see/target a foe will probably not work, but a paralyzed monster with teleport as a SLA could still use it to escape right?

Runestar
2010-03-14, 10:16 PM
I assume you still have line of sight and effect to your foe even when paralyzed, so you would still be able to use SLAs on them. But yeah, better to use that action to teleport away and heal yourself first. :smallwink:

Choco
2010-03-14, 10:21 PM
True, I guess by RAW it would still count as having line of sight/effect even if it was face down in the dirt....

Runestar
2010-03-14, 10:31 PM
Paralyzed foes aren't automatically prone, IIRC...

PhoenixRivers
2010-03-14, 10:35 PM
If it's Str 0, they are. If it's Dex 0, they're not. Str 0, by RAW, states that they collapse. Note: Neither condition is technically paralysis, though Dex 0 mimics it.

That said, yes, unless you were closing your eyes for some reason (such as avoiding gaze attacks), paralysis has no effect on LoS/LoE.

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-14, 10:43 PM
But LoS at least assumes you can move to look around you, if you become paralyzed or have dex/str dropped to zero what direction you were facing should be important.

Unless your going say you can see someone standing right behind you without turning your head.

AbyssKnight
2010-03-14, 10:58 PM
You could determine facing for a paralyzed PC, but I would point out many spells don't need line of sight, only line of effect.

So depending on what spell-like ability you are trying to use, it may not matter. Ex. you can Teleport away just fine even if you are blind, and can Fireball "40 ft behind me" but couldn't Charm someone you can't see.

KillianHawkeye
2010-03-14, 10:59 PM
Well, the Paralyzed status condition says you can only take "purely mental actions." Being reduced to 0 Str or Dex makes you Helpless, which likewise doesn't directly prohibit you from taking actions (beyond the fact that you're completely unable to move from being ability damaged). Since SLAs are activated mentally unless otherwise noted, then yes they can be used. You can also use mentally activated magic items (I'm sure there's some out there).

Also, this is when you love to be a Psion. :smallbiggrin:

Defiant
2010-03-14, 11:46 PM
But LoS at least assumes you can move to look around you, if you become paralyzed or have dex/str dropped to zero what direction you were facing should be important.

Unless your going say you can see someone standing right behind you without turning your head.

Facing does not exist in D&D 3.5.

It existed in previous editions, but it has been eliminated from 3.5.

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-14, 11:49 PM
Facing does not exist in D&D 3.5.

It existed in previous editions, but it has been eliminated from 3.5.

Facing doesn't exist simply because its assumed a creature can turn quickly enough to meet any threat.

If your paralyzed, and you can't move a muscle, and I'm standing right behind you. Explain to me how you can see me to meet the LoS requirement.

Kelb_Panthera
2010-03-15, 12:29 AM
Facing doesn't exist simply because its assumed a creature can turn quickly enough to meet any threat.

If your paralyzed, and you can't move a muscle, and I'm standing right behind you. Explain to me how you can see me to meet the LoS requirement.

Logically, you're right, I character shouldn't be able to see behind himself if he's completely paralyzed. RAW, I can see you anyway, because RAW doesn't care about logic.

SethFahad
2010-03-15, 12:53 AM
PH says:

Frozen in place and unable to move or act, such as by the hold person spell. A paralyzed character has effective Dexterity and Strength scores of 0 and is helpless, but can take purely mental actions. A winged creature flying in the air at the time that it becomes paralyzed cannot flap its wings and falls. A paralyzed swimmer canít swim and may drown. A creature can move through a space occupied by a paralyzed creatureóally or not. Each square occupied by a paralyzed creature, however, counts as 2 squares.

So, you can't move, and you can't take actions.

The only thing you are allowed to do is take purely mental actions.
What falls under the term "purely mental actions"?
A paralyzed character can see, think and listen normaly (spot, sense motive, spellcraft, listen checks etc.)
A paralyzed person can make will saves.
A paralyzed person can use magic items that can be activated mentaly (but NOT by command, since you can't talk)
A paralyzed person can use a spell like ability.
RC 118

No verbal, somatic, or material components are required to use a spell-like ability, nor does using one require a focus or have an experience point cost. The user activates it mentally.

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-15, 01:16 AM
Seth I don't think anyone said you can't use SLA while paralyzed.

SethFahad
2010-03-15, 01:30 AM
Seth I don't think anyone said you can't use SLA while paralyzed.

I know. :smallsmile:
Anyway, I did post some further info about paralyzed condition... :smallbiggrin:

PhoenixRivers
2010-03-15, 01:40 AM
Facing doesn't exist simply because its assumed a creature can turn quickly enough to meet any threat.

If your paralyzed, and you can't move a muscle, and I'm standing right behind you. Explain to me how you can see me to meet the LoS requirement.

Because RAW doesn't include facing, and states that you can see anything, as long as you can craw LOS from your square to the square it's in, and make the spot check required to see it, or have magic in place allowing you to detect it regardless (such as true seeing vs invisible foes, or people hiding behind illusory objects).

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-15, 03:22 AM
Because RAW doesn't include facing, and states that you can see anything, as long as you can draw LOS from your square to the square it's in, and make the spot check required to see it, or have magic in place allowing you to detect it regardless (such as true seeing vs invisible foes, or people hiding behind illusory objects).

Sometimes common sense has to trump RAW.
You can't see someone standing behind you if you can't move. I don't care what RAW says. Its just silly to say otherwise. How about this you have a -infinity to your spot check when paralyzed if the target moves behind you.

So I don't give a damn about RAW in this case as it makes no sense. If you can't turn your head. You can't see someone behind you.

Facing was eliminated because it overcomplicated combat, but there is nothing complicated about standing behind a character who can't move.

Choco
2010-03-15, 08:29 AM
Sometimes common sense has to trump RAW.
You can't see someone standing behind you if you can't move. I don't care what RAW says. Its just silly to say otherwise. How about this you have a -infinity to your spot check when paralyzed if the target moves behind you.

So I don't give a damn about RAW in this case as it makes no sense. If you can't turn your head. You can't see someone behind you.

Facing was eliminated because it overcomplicated combat, but there is nothing complicated about standing behind a character who can't move.

That is about what my group agrees on. I was planning on throwing the target face-down in the dirt specifically to avoid giving it chances to attack, was really just wondering if I needed to dimensional anchor it too.

I brought this up because a Pit Fiend has been harrassing our lvl 9-10 party (me specifically...) and I want to throw the DM a curveball and capture it (yes, I know he can fiat that away, and I actually expect it, I really just want the satisfaction of beating it to the point that fiat is required). I know I can get away with it because the DM hasn't been playing him NEARLY as smart as a Pit Fiend should be played probably because he don't see a lvl 10 party as a threat.

PhoenixRivers
2010-03-15, 08:37 AM
Sometimes common sense has to trump RAW.
You can't see someone standing behind you if you can't move. I don't care what RAW says. Its just silly to say otherwise. How about this you have a -infinity to your spot check when paralyzed if the target moves behind you.

So I don't give a damn about RAW in this case as it makes no sense. If you can't turn your head. You can't see someone behind you.

Facing was eliminated because it overcomplicated combat, but there is nothing complicated about standing behind a character who can't move.
Well, if you don't care about the rules, why are you playing a game with rules?

As for your spot check penalty, even if you were to ad hoc a spot penalty, please note that spot checks are not required for creatures that aren't hiding. Creatures within LoS cannot hide while being observed. So, even if it were to walk behind you, incurring your -infinity to spot checks, that wouldn't matter. You don't need to make spot checks for creatures within LoS that are not hiding. Seeing them is automatic.

Listen: If you want to houserule some facing rules, be my guest. But the powers that be at WotC are aware of facing, because some aspects of D&D use them; namely 3D movement maneuverability rules.

But introducing facing increases the amount of information that needs to be held on each character. This can bog down gameplay and lead to slower combats.

Does your stance make logical sense? Absolutely. Nobody's disputing that you have a reasonable position.

But the OP is citing RAW in his post. It makes sense that he's seeking the RAW of the issue(which was given). Perhaps reasonable divergances from that RAW. However, those should be spelled out as such, rather than preached as the way it's supposed to be. From there, he can make his own reasoned decisions on the common sense of it, and see about incorporating his own houserules into his game.

In any case, telling me which damns you do and don't give? Not very productive, sir. Points can be made reasonably, ideas can be justified on what changes you think should be made, and that can all be done courteously.

Greenish
2010-03-15, 08:39 AM
Sometimes common sense has to trump RAW.
You can't see someone standing behind you if you can't move. I don't care what RAW says. Its just silly to say otherwise. How about this you have a -infinity to your spot check when paralyzed if the target moves behind you.

So I don't give a damn about RAW in this case as it makes no sense. If you can't turn your head. You can't see someone behind you.

Facing was eliminated because it overcomplicated combat, but there is nothing complicated about standing behind a character who can't move.Has someone said that you should use RAW?

Runestar
2010-03-15, 08:41 AM
Sometimes common sense has to trump RAW.
You can't see someone standing behind you if you can't move. I don't care what RAW says. Its just silly to say otherwise. How about this you have a -infinity to your spot check when paralyzed if the target moves behind you.

Only question is - why is that someone wasting time making one giant u-turn around the paralyzed PC, when he could just approach him straight and make a coup de grad?

First off, the challenge is in determining what direction the PC was facing when he became paralyzed. Do you make him choose a direction there and then or roll a d8?

Lysander
2010-03-15, 08:49 AM
True, but magic usually uses line of effect instead of line of sight:


A line of effect is a straight, unblocked path that indicates what a spell can affect. A line of effect is canceled by a solid barrier. Itís like line of sight for ranged weapons, except that itís not blocked by fog, darkness, and other factors that limit normal sight.

You must have a clear line of effect to any target that you cast a spell on or to any space in which you wish to create an effect. You must have a clear line of effect to the point of origin of any spell you cast.

So you don't usually need to see a target to cast a spell on them. There just can't be a solid barrier between you two.

Tinydwarfman
2010-03-15, 08:50 AM
Sometimes common sense has to trump RAW.
You can't see someone standing behind you if you can't move. I don't care what RAW says. Its just silly to say otherwise. How about this you have a -infinity to your spot check when paralyzed if the target moves behind you.

So I don't give a damn about RAW in this case as it makes no sense. If you can't turn your head. You can't see someone behind you.

Facing was eliminated because it overcomplicated combat, but there is nothing complicated about standing behind a character who can't move.

You remind me very much of my friend when we got into an argument over whether his cleric could block LoS of my sorc to him while he was grappling me. Conversation went like this:
Him: I grapple your sorcerer and turn his head sideways so that he doesn't have LoS to me.
Me: What?!? That's ridiculous, grappling doesn't do that!
Him: I don't care what RAW says, it makes sense!
Me: No it doesn't! You can't turn someone's head when you grapple them, you're grabbing their arm.

We eventually agreed that if you can pin a caster you can block their LoS to you, but would you ever let a player do that in your game?

Choco
2010-03-15, 08:55 AM
You remind me very much of my friend when we got into an argument over whether his cleric could block LoS of my sorc to him while he was grappling me. Conversation went like this:
Him: I grapple your sorcerer and turn his head sideways so that he doesn't have LoS to me.
Me: What?!? That's ridiculous, grappling doesn't do that!
Him: I don't care what RAW says, it makes sense!
Me: No it doesn't! You can't turn someone's head when you grapple them, you're grabbing their arm.

We eventually agreed that if you can pin a caster you can block their LoS to you, but would you ever let a player do that in your game?

I probably would allow it. It makes sense to be able to do it while pinning someone, but when still in the grapple you can't do it cause the opponent will of course be resisting. I allow a lot in my games, but the PC's know that from then on it is fair game for NPC's too.

Greenish
2010-03-15, 09:00 AM
We eventually agreed that if you can pin a caster you can block their LoS to you, but would you ever let a player do that in your game?Well, since you can stop someone from talking if you got him/her/it pinned, shutting their eyes (or analogous sensors) or turning their head isn't too far-fetched. In normal grapple, no.

Lysander
2010-03-15, 09:01 AM
I mean, besides the fact you don't need LoS to cast spells and a guy sitting on your back definitely counts as LoE, you can't force people not to see you when wrestling them. Not easily at least.

If you're using both hands to keep their head turned away from you what exactly is holding the rest of their body in place? And the thing about eyes is that they don't have to stare straight ahead. They can look to the side. You're telling me that a grappled magician can't catch a glimpse of ANYTHING, not one finger, not a foot, not a sleeve, of their opponent? It's a moot point anyway since a magician could be blindfolded and still cast spells, but still...

ericgrau
2010-03-15, 09:06 AM
Hmm, never noticed this before. Cool.

If you pin the opponent you may prevent him from speaking, and I'd assume keep his face planted in the ground too. The high concentration DC (20 + spell level) helps a lot too at mid levels. Yeah, it seems perfectly reasonable to me to keep you from targeting what you can't see but you could, for example, blindly chuck an area spell behind you or probably even use a targeted spell on the guy you feel on your back since you can sense him.

Curmudgeon
2010-03-15, 09:41 AM
D&D paralyzed isn't the same as real world paralyzed. A paralyzed character can still balance and stay standing, can breathe and swallow normally (i.e., they don't suffocate or drown on their own saliva), can continue to hold onto items, and can look around them (make use of line of sight). They just can't relocate their hands or feet.

PhoenixRivers
2010-03-15, 09:48 AM
While it's true you don't need LOS to cast a spell, there is this:
Target or Targets

Some spells have a target or targets. You cast these spells on creatures or objects, as defined by the spell itself. You must be able to see or touch the target, and you must specifically choose that target. You do not have to select your target until you finish casting the spell.

So, for targeted spells (such as a Still/Silent Charm Person), grappling wouldn't work, because you are able to see or touch them.

For someone without LoS or physical contact, you'd not be able to affect them with such a spell.

Lord Vukodlak
2010-03-15, 12:54 PM
Only question is - why is that someone wasting time making one giant u-turn around the paralyzed PC, when he could just approach him straight and make a coup de grad?

First off, the challenge is in determining what direction the PC was facing when he became paralyzed. Do you make him choose a direction there and then or roll a d8?

It takes a move action to approach the creature unless you started right next to it, then you can start a coup de grad, which is a full-round action.

Assuming you have to move to get in range of the creature it would get one more turn to take some purely mental actions.

I actually had a PC die because he walked right up to a paralyzed opponent,
Even said he got in its face and taunted it. But as it takes a full round action to coup de grad an opponent he couldn't finish such an action on his turn.

The creature then got another turn and used its a SLA to hurl the PC off a cliff. The party thought it was funny as hell, especially when the cleric used his turn to dive after him because the height was such it take a full round to fall the full distance.
So the rogue went splat the damage he endured fighting the monsters gave a zip chance of survival. The cleric took some serious injury but was arrived in enough time to use revivify

Here's where a paralyzed creature having full LoS is a real oddity. A medusa
having its gaze retain its 360į power when it can't move.