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Kiara LeSabre
2008-08-14, 04:29 PM
Some replies that I got recently on some questions, two of them prompted by a disagreement in a game:

Q: Hi! Let's say I'm a rogue with Hide in Plain Sight. I'm facing four enemies. I make a Bluff check to create a distraction to hide, opposed by their Insight checks, of course. Three of them beat my Bluff check, but one of them fails, so I make a Stealth check against that one and also beat his passive Perception. I now, as a minor action, activate Hide in Plain Sight and become invisible to all of them, despite the fact that I was not at any point successfully hidden against three of the four of them.

A: Hello,

Unfortunately, there isnít an official answer for the situation you describe. Iíve passed along this conversation to the gameís developers. Hopefully, weíll see an update or FAQ entry covering it soon, but until then itís up to the campaignís Dungeon Master to decide. The DM is always the final arbiter on how they want their campaign to run. Have fun!

Please let me know if you need anymore help!

Q: Hi, recently a friend of mine wrote in with a question about Fleeting Ghost. The answer he received contradicts a previous answer I found from Wizards Customer Service regarding the same issue.

Which is correct?

The original question and answer I found online is as follows:


Q: Fleeting Ghost, p119, says you can move & make a stealth check. Does this mean that use of this power allows the rogue to ignore the normal rule that moving through open space during combat negates stealth, and allow them to make a stealth attack immediately after moving, while in plain view? Or does the rogue have to end their turn in concealment/cover for the stealth check to be valid?

A: This ability allows you to move at your full speed and not take a penalty to your stealth check, as described on page 188. All other rules for stealth, cover, and concealment still apply.

source: http://www.enworld.org/wiki/index.php/4E_Customer_Service_Answers

Quoted below is what he just forwarded to me, which completely contradicts that and seems to give incredible power to a level 2 utility power, making it far stronger than Shadow Stride, a level 10 utility power, which is all but rendered irrelevant if this is really how it works.


Q: When using the fleeting ghost ability does it allow you to move while ignoring the regular rules for stealth (ie cover and concealment)? Or must you still follow the regular rules?

A: Greetings,

No, you don't have to follow the normal rules for making stealth checks. You simply get to make one as a part of that power.

So which is correct?

A: Hello,

Unfortunately, there isnít an official answer for the situation you describe. Iíve passed along this conversation to the gameís developers. Hopefully, weíll see an update or FAQ entry covering it soon, but until then itís up to the campaignís Dungeon Master to decide. The DM is always the final arbiter on how they want their campaign to run. Have fun!

Please let me know if you need anymore help!

Q: Okay, let's say I'm a rogue with Warrior of the Wild and Novice Power who has used the latter feat to pick up Disruptive Strike. I have a crossbow, and my opponent also has some kind of bow, maybe a longbow.

We roll initiative, and my opponent wins and fires an arrow at me. As an immediate interrupt, I use Disruptive Strike and hit. Since my attack was an interrupt and therefore actually happened before my attacker fired his arrow, do I benefit from First Strike and get to apply my Sneak Attack damage to the Disruptive Strike?

A: Greetings!

Thank you for writing.

No. You would not benefit from First Strike since your opponent is already acting even though you interrupting his action.

Good Gaming!

AKA_Bait
2008-08-14, 04:31 PM
Yes... the FAQ people have been incredibly helpful for me as well...

Frosty
2008-08-14, 04:32 PM
Do we even trust the people who work in the FAQ department?

Kiara LeSabre
2008-08-14, 04:34 PM
Of particular interest to me are the first two. The ramifications of this are a little staggering.

Fleeting Ghost, a level 2 utility power, might allow you to completely throw out the usual requirements for Stealth and use it anywhere, under essentially any conditions? :smalleek:

You might be able to become invisible to all of your opponents using Hide in Plain Sight if just one of them has a shoddy Perception check, even if all of the others are Perception gods with +100 modifiers to Perception? :smallfrown:

I guess what I thought was common sense might not be right ...

Kiara LeSabre
2008-08-14, 04:36 PM
Do we even trust the people who work in the FAQ department?

Well, the trouble is, I'm dealing with a player who honestly thinks he should be able to use Fleeting Ghost as described above, using it to ignore cover and concealment for Stealth checks, and who thinks he should be able to use Hide in Plain Sight to become invisible to all enemies if just a single enemy out of all of them fails to beat his Stealth check.

Where else could I go?

Covered In Bees
2008-08-14, 04:44 PM
To your authority as a DM. "No, sorry, that'd be ridiculous."

Where's this "if even one of them fails the perception check" thing coming from, anyway?

Kiara LeSabre
2008-08-14, 04:49 PM
To your authority as a DM. "No, sorry, that'd be ridiculous."

I can't. I'm a player, too, and it's an arena thing I've been participating in to get a more active feel for just the combat system. There's a DM, but he's been slightly absent, so we've been running it ourselves up to this point (after all, it's not like there's a plot to worry about), where we reached a disagreement.


Where's this "if even one of them fails the perception check" thing coming from, anyway?

There are four of us in this "arena," and basically, he's arguing that while in a wide open space with no cover or concealment, he can move his speed and make a Stealth check using Fleeting Ghost, and if even just one of us fails to beat check with Perception, he's considered hidden and can then use Hide in Plain Sight, becoming invisible to all of us.

I have no idea where he gets that idea, but he's absolutely adamant that it's so.

Anyway, I'm going to be watching to see what the developers decide on this. I can't imagine they're actually going to let Fleeting Ghost work that way. It would make it the most powerful level 2 utility in the game, not to mention more powerful than a level 10 utility (Shadow Stride) in essentially every way ...

Myshlaevsky
2008-08-14, 04:50 PM
This is kind of irritating. You would expect them to have (and be enforcing) a way of RAI. I suppose it's possible it's been set to be covered in an upcoming errata though.

Saph
2008-08-14, 05:28 PM
Well, after all the discussing and experimenting and (usually-good-natured) arguing I took part in concerning the Stealth skill, it's sort of amusing to see that the WotC guys basically haven't got any better idea of how it works than I have. :P

Explains why the arguments got so convoluted, too. Personally, after I'd finished tuning the Stealth-Cheese Rogue build, I stopped playing it just because I decided it wasn't fair to the DM to require him to oversee and make rulings on something you have to study the books for about half an hour to figure out.

- Saph

TwystidMynd
2008-08-15, 08:51 AM
My favorite class is and has always been the Rogue. I have to admit that, as a Rogue, I've been looking over the Stealth rules a fair bit more than I thought I would. In 3.5 I almost never used Stealth mid-combat, just 'cause it seemed way too difficult. Prior to the Stealth re-ruling, when you just needed cover or concealment to make one, I found that it was pretty easy to just toss my magic dagger around at people, and then use my move action to re-stealth with Fleeting Ghost. I thought that was a bit overpowered, so I'm glad they changed it.

I'm not sure if you've seen the latest changes to stealth, and they're publicly posted on the WotC website, so I'm pretty sure they're freely available for copy/pasting. Just in case, you can see the updates here (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/updates).

Playerís Handbook, page 188
Replace all text after the first paragraph with the following:
Stealth: At the end of a move action.
✦ Opposed Check: Stealth vs. passive Perception. If multiple enemies are
present, your Stealth check is opposed by each enemyís passive Perception
check. If you move more than 2 squares during the move action, you take a Ė
5 penalty to the Stealth check. If you run, the penalty is Ė10.
✦ Becoming Hidden: You can make a Stealth check against an enemy only if
you have superior cover or total concealment against the enemy or if youíre
outside the enemyís line of sight. Outside combat, the DM can allow you to
make a Stealth check against a distracted enemy, even if you donít have
superior cover or total concealment and arenít outside the enemyís line of
sight. The distracted enemy might be focused on something in a different
direction, allowing you to sneak up.
✦ Success: You are hidden, which means you are silent and invisible to the
enemy (see ďConcealmentĒ and ďTargeting What You Canít See,Ē page 281).
✦ Failure: You can try again at the end of another move action.
✦ Remaining Hidden: You remain hidden as long as you meet these
requirements.
Keep Out of Sight: If you no longer have any cover or concealment
against an enemy, you donít remain hidden from that enemy. You donít need
superior cover, total concealment, or to stay outside line of sight, but you do
need some degree of cover or concealment to remain hidden. You canít use
another creature as cover to remain hidden.
Keep Quiet: If you speak louder than a whisper or otherwise draw
attention to yourself, you donít remain hidden from any enemy that can hear
you.
Keep Still: If you move more than 2 squares during an action, you must
make a new Stealth check with a Ė5 penalty. If you run, the penalty is Ė10. If
any enemyís passive Perception check beats your check result, you donít
remain hidden from that enemy.
Donít Attack: If you attack, you donít remain hidden.
✦ Not Remaining Hidden: If you take an action that causes you not to
remain hidden, you retain the benefits of being hidden until you resolve the
action. You canít become hidden again as part of that same action.
✦ Enemy Activity: An enemy can try to find you on its turn. If an enemy
makes an active Perception check and beats your Stealth check result (donít
make a new check), you donít remain hidden from that enemy. Also, if an
enemy tries to enter your space, you donít remain hidden from that enemy.

To me, these rules clearly state that, unless the Rogue beats ALL of the people he's making his Stealth vs. Passive Perception against, then he's not considered "hidden." He may have Combat Advantage against some of his enemies, but he's not "hidden." That's just my interpretation, though.
Furthermore, you have to have total concealment or superior cover to be stealthed. He can attempt a Stealth Check after he's done moving with the use of Fleeting Ghost, but that Stealth Check auto-fails if he doesn't have superior cover or total concealment from the character he's attacking.

Gamebird
2008-08-15, 09:04 AM
If your arena-friend insists that's how the rules play out and these rules would make a particular build very superior to all other builds, then use that build. Play the same sort of character that he has and use the power against him time after time. Eventually he'll figure it out. And if he doesn't, then at least the rules are being applied fairly and consistently if you all have access to the same cheese-power.

Yakk
2008-08-15, 11:41 AM
Fleeting Ghost + Rogue Utility 2

My RAI: This removes the penalty to stealth checks from moving at full speed. That's it. If you don't have cover/concealment during your move, the Stealth check auto-fails, as the standard rules state.

The RAW: The moment you lack any cover, your stealth collapses. So without some cover/concealment, making a stealth check is useless. Argueably, Fleeting Ghost as written allows a Stealth Check without total/superior concealment/cover.

Chameleon + Rogue Utility 6

My RAI: This lets you keep stealth up after someone gets LOS with you.

Shadow Stride + Rogue Utility 10

My RAI: This is a combo of Chameleon and Fleeting Ghost in a sense. You can run out of cover, then into cover, and not have to make a Chameleon check (when you break cover), and then a 2nd cover to keep your stealth on your next turn. Instead, you can use the cover at the end of the movement to make one check for the entire movement.

Note that if Fleeting Ghost is interpreted as the arena-twink wants, then Shadow Stride .. does nothing?! Is worse than Fleeting Ghost?!

Hide in Plain Sight + Rogue Utility 16

By RAW: If any hostile opponent can see you, they can (as an free action, reaction or interrupt) break your hidden state. And you are not invisible against anyone you are not hidden from.

My RAI: You need to be concealed from every enemy for Hide in Plain Sight to work, or you are only invisible to those you are hidden from.

Erk
2008-08-15, 06:46 PM
From the errata that was quoted above, "If any enemyís passive Perception check beats your check result, you donít remain hidden from that enemy" seems clear enough about the Hide in Plain Sight thing.

Regarding fleeting ghost, just hit him with a frying pan if he keeps trying to argue with you. His interpretation is nothing short of absurd, and I'm not sure how he even thinks he can get away with that.

Mewtarthio
2008-08-15, 06:56 PM
My RAI: You need to be concealed from every enemy for Hide in Plain Sight to work, or you are only invisible to those you are hidden from.

I'd go with the latter. It makes no sense that you wouldn't be able to hide from Bob the Blind simply because Eagle-Eyed Eric is standing next to him.

Gralamin
2008-08-15, 07:02 PM
Even if your invisible to all enemies, you might not be hidden from all enemies. In the newest errata....

Targeting What You Canít See [Revision]
Playerís Handbook, page 281
Replace the ďInvisible Creature Uses StealthĒ and ďMake a Perception CheckĒ
paragraphs with the following:
Invisible Creatures and Stealth: If an invisible creature is hidden from you
(ďStealth,Ē page 188), you can neither hear nor see it, and you have to guess
what space it occupies. If an invisible creature is not hidden from you, you can
hear it or sense some other sign of its presence and therefore know what space
it occupies, although you still canít see it.
Make a Perception Check: On your turn, you can make a Perception check
as a minor action (page 186) to try to determine the location of an invisible
creature that is hidden from you.

So while he does have CA and is immune to OA, you still know which square he's in, meaning in theory, you can attack them. And the moment he leaves his current square, he no longer gets his benefits.

clericwithnogod
2008-08-15, 11:35 PM
Furthermore, you have to have total concealment or superior cover to be stealthed. He can attempt a Stealth Check after he's done moving with the use of Fleeting Ghost, but that Stealth Check auto-fails if he doesn't have superior cover or total concealment from the character he's attacking.

You don't become stealthed, you become hidden. Without the use of another power or skill, you need Total Concealment/Superior Cover to make that stealth check. Fleeting Ghost allows you to make a Stealth check, if you succeed in that check you are hidden. Then, under conditions of remaining hidden, you are no longer hidden if you don't retain at least cover/concealment and some other stuff. If you made the check granted by Fleeting Ghost in a square that grants at least cover/concealment, and you haven't done anything else that keeps you from remaining hidden, you're hidden.

If you use the Stealth check provided by Fleeting Ghost in a square that doesn't provide cover/concealment (or better) and enemies have Line of Sight to you, you're seen immediately, prior to taking another action. Hide in Plain Sight is a minor action and requires you to be hidden to use it, so if you are in the open after you make your Stealth check, you can't use it.

Edit: Added "the Stealth check provided by" for clarity.

TwystidMynd
2008-08-18, 02:36 PM
You don't become stealthed, you become hidden. Without the use of another power or skill, you need Total Concealment/Superior Cover to make that stealth check. Fleeting Ghost allows you to make a Stealth check, if you succeed in that check you are hidden. Then, under conditions of remaining hidden, you are no longer hidden if you don't retain at least cover/concealment and some other stuff. If you made the check granted by Fleeting Ghost in a square that grants at least cover/concealment, and you haven't done anything else that keeps you from remaining hidden, you're hidden.

"You can make a Stealth check against an enemy only if
you have superior cover or total concealment against the enemy or if youíre
outside the enemyís line of sight."
Or, equivalently, "If you don't have superior cover or concealment against the enemy, or if you're not outside the enemy's line of sight, then you cannot make a Stealth check against an enemy."

I believe this is a case where specific trumps general... Fleeting Ghost allows you to make a Stealth Check, but the Stealth Skill's rules specifically states that you are unable to do so unless you have superior cover or concealment.

Of course, there's plenty of leeway to argue which is actually the more specific of those two... the Fleeting Ghost rules or the Stealth Skill rules. *shrugs* Darned if I know the right answer.

clericwithnogod
2008-08-18, 11:08 PM
"You can make a Stealth check against an enemy only if
you have superior cover or total concealment against the enemy or if you’re
outside the enemy’s line of sight."
Or, equivalently, "If you don't have superior cover or concealment against the enemy, or if you're not outside the enemy's line of sight, then you cannot make a Stealth check against an enemy."

I believe this is a case where specific trumps general... Fleeting Ghost allows you to make a Stealth Check, but the Stealth Skill's rules specifically states that you are unable to do so unless you have superior cover or concealment.

Of course, there's plenty of leeway to argue which is actually the more specific of those two... the Fleeting Ghost rules or the Stealth Skill rules. *shrugs* Darned if I know the right answer.

In the favor of Fleeting Ghost being the specific factor is the fact that in Shadow Stride, the requirement for cover is specifically delineated:

Fleeting Ghost: "You can move your speed and make a Stealth check."

Shadow Stride: "You can move your speed. At the end of the movement, if you have cover, you can make a Stealth check with no penalty for moving."

But, that may not be the answer they give in a FAQ, and the answer they give in a FAQ, either way, may not be the answer they would have given before the changes to the Stealth rule itself.