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View Full Version : spotting, hiding, sniping



Draak_Grafula
2007-04-23, 04:21 AM
A couple of questions / remarks on these topics.

but first the quotes from the SRD.

spot (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/spot.htm)

Action
Varies. Every time you have a chance to spot something in a reactive manner you can make a Spot check without using an action. Trying to spot something you failed to see previously is a move action (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/combat/actionsInCombat.htm#moveActions). To read lips, you must concentrate for a full minute before making a Spot check, and you canít perform any other action (other than moving at up to half speed) during this minute.

hide (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/hide.htm)

Sniping
If youíve already successfully hidden at least 10 feet from your target, you can make one ranged attack, then immediately hide again. You take a -20 penalty on your Hide check to conceal yourself after the shot.
...
Action
Usually none. Normally, you make a Hide check as part of movement, so it doesnít take a separate action. However, hiding immediately after a ranged attack (see Sniping (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/hide.htm#sniping), above) is a move action (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/combat/actionsInCombat.htm#moveActions).

Q1 Its unclear to me how often you get to spot "in a reactive manner" when someone is moving around hiding for a couple of rounds without doing enything else. In round by round action do you..
a) make a spot check (and hide check) every single move? (so twice when doing a double move)
b) make a spot check once every round while the hiding target is moving and does the target therefore make a new hide check every round?
c) Only reactive spotting when the target starts hiding and no new reactive spot until the target shows himself through an action and starts hiding again afterwards?

Q2 If you try 'to spot something you failed to see previously' you use a move action. Does the target roll a new hide check in this situation or does he use the check result you failed to beat with your spot earlier?

Q3 about sniping. When you want to ambush someone I find the following problem. Usualy you would get a surprise round (assuming noone has seen you yet.) Though sniping requires a standard (shooting) and a move (hiding) action. This make sniping impossible from the ambush perspective.
I think I've thought of a sollution for this but I'm not sure whether its fair.
So the question really is: Is the following a fair sollution for the problem stated above?:
Combat starts without the ambushed group knowing, the surprise round is forfitted. Round by round combat starts but the ambushed folls don't realise it yet. The sniper "'holds its action until all the group members had their turn". The thing here is that the group doesn't know somethings up yet so they use their tuns to travel. When all the group members had their turn the ambusher fires (standard) and hides (move). Ini is now rolled and the ambushers ini will be placed one point below the lowest rolled ini. (The ambusher holds his ini until the last group memer had its 'fictional turn' in order to ensure that the groupmember who actually rolled the highest ini also gets to act first.)

Lord Lorac Silvanos
2007-04-23, 04:39 AM
Q1 Its unclear to me how often you get to spot "in a reactive manner" when someone is moving around hiding for a couple of rounds without doing enything else. In round by round action do you..
a) make a spot check (and hide check) every single move? (so twice when doing a double move)


I think once a round is the most sensible.


b) make a spot check once every round while the hiding target is moving and does the target therefore make a new hide check every round?


Every round you move you are essentially trying to hide under new conditions, so it seems reasonable to require a new hide check.


c) Only reactive spotting when the target starts hiding and no new reactive spot until the target shows himself through an action and starts hiding again afterwards?


If the hiding creature on the other hand just stayed in one place it seems reasonable to only make one check (and then apply distance modifiers as appropriate as the spotter moves around).


Q2 If you try 'to spot something you failed to see previously' you use a move action. Does the target roll a new hide check in this situation or does he use the check result you failed to beat with your spot earlier?


You are the one trying to spot something you think you missed, so you are making the new roll. The hiding creature is not trying to re-hide, so rolling again does not make much sense.


Q3 about sniping. When you want to ambush someone I find the following problem. Usualy you would get a surprise round (assuming noone has seen you yet.) Though sniping requires a standard (shooting) and a move (hiding) action. This make sniping impossible from the ambush perspective.


The sniper simply delays his/her turn until first in the next round where he/she can take a full round action. The sniper will then have the highest initiative, unless of course someone else got to act in the surprise round and took an action that changes this.

Miles Invictus
2007-04-23, 04:41 AM
Q1. I would rule that you get a reactive Spot check every time the sniper has to roll a Hide check. I would also rule that the sniper rolls a Hide check during his round if he performs an action that might betray his position (basically, anything that isn't a free or swift action). The sniper only needs to make one check per round, though -- and if he doesn't do anything, he doesn't have to make a check.

Q2. I'd allow the sniper the option of taking 10 on a Hide check, or keeping the results of his initial roll. The idea is that a sniper might initially botch his hide roll, but given a few moments of privacy he can compensate for it.

Q3. The simple solution is to say that the ambushers get a full round to act during the surprise round, because of the planned nature of the attack.

Justin_Bacon
2007-04-23, 01:41 PM
Q1 Its unclear to me how often you get to spot "in a reactive manner" when someone is moving around hiding for a couple of rounds without doing enything else. In round by round action do you..
a) make a spot check (and hide check) every single move? (so twice when doing a double move)
b) make a spot check once every round while the hiding target is moving and does the target therefore make a new hide check every round?
c) Only reactive spotting when the target starts hiding and no new reactive spot until the target shows himself through an action and starts hiding again afterwards?

You make a reactive Spot check whenever the person hiding makes a Hide check (you are reacting to their Hide check). So the question boils down to: How often do you need to make a Hide check?

There is no firm answer to this question, largely due to the hazy definition of the "double move action". Is a double move action two move actions or is it a full action? Reading the combat chapter seems to give a firm answer of "two move actions", but at other times its defined identically to a full action.

I find it more consistent (and much simpler) to treat a double-move as a full-round action: This means that a person hiding basically makes one Hide check per round, regardless of how fast or how far they decide to move. This Hide check is reactively opposed by the Spot checks of anyone who could spot the hider during the move.

In addition, the Hide check result remains "in effect" until the hider moves again: So if anyone decides to actively look for him during the next round, their Spot check is opposed by the same Hide check result.


Q2 If you try 'to spot something you failed to see previously' you use a move action. Does the target roll a new hide check in this situation or does he use the check result you failed to beat with your spot earlier?

No, the hider does not re-roll their Hide check. You can see this more clearly in a non-movement scenario:

1. The hider is in a room and hears someone about to come in. He makes a Hide check to hide in the room.

2. The guard comes in. He immediately gets a reactive Spot check immediately.

3. The guard came in because he thought he heard something, so he spends a round looking carefully around the room. He burns two move actions and makes two new Spot checks against the DC set by the hider's Hide check.

The hider doesn't make a new check because he hasn't actually taken an action to Hide again.


Q3 about sniping. When you want to ambush someone I find the following problem. Usualy you would get a surprise round (assuming noone has seen you yet.) Though sniping requires a standard (shooting) and a move (hiding) action. This make sniping impossible from the ambush perspective.

I think the easiest solution to this problem would be to change the rule so that sniping is treated like charging: It's a full-round action that can be performed as a standard action if you are limited to a single action.

This produces results completely consistent with the RAW, while basically adding the proviso "this combo can be performed on a surprise round".

Justin Alexander
http://www.thealexandrian.net

(Tangentially: I also find it useful to continue using the 3.0 terminology of partial actions, which neatly avoids the 3.5 rules abuse of partial charges on readied actions. But that's neither here nor there.)

Indon
2007-04-23, 01:55 PM
Combat starts without the ambushed group knowing, the surprise round is forfitted.

Alternatively: Combat starts, the ambusher(s) delay, forfeiting their surprise round in order to go at the top of the initiative order on the next turn.

Matthew
2007-04-23, 04:49 PM
Hmmn. I think a Double Move is a Full Round Action, since a Full Attack is itsef divided into a Standard Action (first attacks) and a Move action (remaining Iterative Attacks) [i.e. You do not need to declare a Full Attack until after the first attacks have been resolved].

Lyinginbedmon
2007-04-23, 04:55 PM
Running is a full-round action, as is a full attack. A double move is just that: two move actions

Justin_Bacon
2007-04-23, 06:55 PM
Running is a full-round action, as is a full attack. A double move is just that: two move actions

If you want to go with that interpretation then your Hide checks become a bit more complicated to resolve. On any given round, if the hider:

(1) Moves half their speed of less, then make a single check with no penalty.

(2) Moves their speed, then make a single check with a -5 penalty or two checks with no penalty.

(3) Moves more than their speed but less than half their speed, then make two checks with a -5 penalty.

(4) Moves more than twice their speed, then make one check with a -20 penalty.

(Or you could just interpret a double-move as being a full-round action and save yourself the hassle on this and a half dozen other skills. :smallcool:)

Justin Alexander
http://ww.thealexandrian.net

TSGames
2007-04-23, 08:22 PM
It seems quite simple, really. The person sniping makes his hide check. He attacks the target. The target gets a free reactive spot check to see if he notices the sniper. If this is failed, then the sniper hides again at a -20 penalty. Since the target didn't find the sniper he now must take a move action to try to find the sniper. The spot check would oppose the last hide check made by the sniper.

Now for question 3:I don't mind your solution, but I find nothing wrong with the current sniping RAW.

Justin_Bacon
2007-04-24, 12:49 AM
The target gets a free reactive spot check to see if he notices the sniper. If this is failed, then the sniper hides again at a -20 penalty.

You'd obviously want to reverse those two steps: You need to make the Hide check in order to set the DC for the Spot check.

Justin Alexander
http://www.thealexandrian.net