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    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

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    Default Picking an Arcane Lock

    I just had a discussion about picking locks and we ended up with a lot of confusion about how the arcane lock spell is supposed to work.

    Quote Originally Posted by SRD
    You touch a closed door, window, gate, chest, or other entryway, and it becomes locked for the duration. You and the creatures you designate when you cast this spell can open the object normally. You can also set a password that, when spoken within 5 feet of the object, suppresses this spell for 1 minute. Otherwise, it is impassable until it is broken or the spell is dispelled or suppressed. Casting knock on the object suppresses arcane lock for 10 minutes.
    While affected by this spell, the object is more difficult to break or force open; the DC to break it or pick any locks on it increases by 10.
    Does this spell only affect lockin mechanism, or does it magically seal doors whether they have a lock or not?

    The door is passable only if it is broken down or the spell is dispelled or surpressed. So what would picking the lock do?
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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    GreenSorcererElf

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    Default Re: Picking an Arcane Lock

    The wording doesn't mention locks on things like windows, and does say that it affects passageways and by lack of mention implies that locks aren't needed. Considering magic requirering no explanation, i'd say that it just magicall forces portals shut, lock or no. Put a sheet of metal in a doorway and you can use the spell to lock it in place. That's the way i see it.

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    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

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    Default Re: Picking an Arcane Lock

    I compared the spell with its version from 3rd edition and it's basically the same, except that is only mentions the DC increasing by 10 for breaking, not mentioning picking at all.

    It looks to me like the spell got copy-pasted and added "or picking the lock" at the end, without noticing that the spell doesn't reference locks at all.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Jul 2017

    Default Re: Picking an Arcane Lock

    I'd go with the spell becoming suppressed (or dispelled, DM's call) when the lockpick check is passed successfully.
    Of course, passageways that don't have locks to pick would need to be broken open.

    I see it as a chance to have the party Strongman do some B&E instead of always putting it upon the Rogue to get in someplace.

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Zombie

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    Jun 2015

    Default Re: Picking an Arcane Lock

    I would just treat a barrier with no lock as DC 10 and move on.
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Picking an Arcane Lock

    Make sure to compare it to Knock, which does almost the exact opposite. Knock opens virtually ANYTHING that can be opened, even if it's blocked off by some kind of physical obstruction. Theoretically, if a boulder is on top of a trap door, Knock moves that boulder.

    I'd treat Arcane Lock as the explicit opposite: If it was opened, now it is closed (likely with a DC 10). If it already was closed, it becomes 10 DC harder to open. It seems like that would be the simplest thing.

    I'd also say that Arcane Lock can be destroyed just like any other lock. Using things like Wall of Water and Wall of Stone, it's entirely possible for a magical, physical object to be destroyed. So if someone picks the lock, Arcane Lock still probably works. If someone bashes down the door, Arcane Lock is probably destroyed (but it added 10 to the DC of destroying the door, so it still did its job).
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-04-16 at 10:22 AM.
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