Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends


I Drank What? An FAQ on Poison

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

For quite a while now there has been a bit of confusion on how poison is applied in the Pathfinder RPG. While the application of a single dose is simple enough, the rules allow for the stacking of poisons that causes them to combine into a more powerful effect. There are, unfortunately, some timing issues with these rules that can make poisons a bit tricky to adjudicate during play. Since this issue is a bit more complex than your average FAQ issue, the design team thought it would be a good idea to take a more in depth look at the issue here.

Poisons fall under the category of afflictions. They each have a save, a frequency, an effect, and a cure. At the most simple level, this means that when a character comes into contact with the poison, she gets a save. If the save succeeds, the poison has no effect, regardless of the cure entry. If the saving throw is failed, the character takes the effect and must continue to makes saves, dictated by the frequency, or continue to take the effect with each failed save. The only way to be free of the poison at this point is to meet the conditions of the cure entry, usually one or more successful saving throws (usually consecutively if more than one).

When a character is subject to more than 1 dose of the same poison, things get interesting. Each dose increases the DC by +2 and increases the total duration listed in the frequency by half of the original duration. Due to timing, however, this can make for a rather confusing situation. When does the DC increase apply? When are the saving throws made? When is the duration increased? To keep things simple, use the following guidelines.

1. Whenever a character is exposed to a poison (regardless of method), that character gets a saving throw to negate the poison.
2. The saving throw DC is increased by +2 for every active dose currently affecting the character. Poisons that were cured, have run through their entire frequency, or were negated with a successful initial saving throw do not increase the DC.
3. The character must make a saving throw against every poison affecting him on his turn, but may make the saving throw at any point during his turn. If a poisoned character delays his turn, he must immediately make these saving throws. They are not delayed.
4. Unless the poison has an onset time, the character takes the effect of the poison every time he fails a saving throw against the poison, even when additional doses are inflicted.
5. The total duration of the poison listed in the frequency only increases by half the original duration and only when the initial saving throw against a dose is failed. If the initial saving throw is made, the duration is not increased.
6. If a character is exposed to multiple doses of inhaled and ingested poisons simultaneously, only one save is made at the higher DC. If the save fails, the character is subject to all of the doses, but still only takes the effect once for the failed saving throw. If the save succeeds, the character avoids all of the doses.
7. Finally, if the character is exposed to a poison that is similar, but not the same, such as having a slightly different frequency or DC, it is treated as a different affliction that is tracked separately, even if it has the same name or other identical entries.

So, keeping these rules in mind, let's take a look at a few scenarios using poison and how they are resolved. In all cases, the character is exposed to greenblood oil, an injury poison, with a DC of 13, a frequency of 1/round for 4 rounds, an effect of 1 Con damage, and a cure entry of 1 save.

Scenario A: Valeros is hit by an arrow coated in greenblood oil. He fails the DC 13 Fort save and takes 1 point of Con damage. At the end of his turn, he fails a saving throw against the poison and takes 1 more point of Con damage. Before his second turn, he gets hit again and must attempt a DC 15 Fort save (because 1 dose is already affecting him). He fails this save as well, which deals another point of Con damage, increases the save DC he must make each round to 15, and extends the total duration by 2 rounds.

Scenario B: Valeros is hit by a pair of arrows coated in greenblood oil, during the turn of one enemy archer. He fails the first DC 13 Fort save and takes 1 point of Con damage. He then must make a DC 15 Fort save for the second arrow. He makes this save and suffers no ill effect. On his turn, he must make a DC 13 For save (since only 1 dose of the poison is in effect). He makes this save and takes no damage, as the poison ends. If he is hit again on the next turn, his save would reset to DC 13.

Scenario C: Valeros is hit by a pair of arrows coated in greenblood oil. He fails the DC 13 Fort save and takes 1 point of Con damage. He then must make a DC 15 Fort save for the second arrow. He fails this save and takes 1 point of Con damage. On his turn, he must make another DC 15 Fort save, which he fails, causing him to take yet another point of Con damage. On the next turn, the archer fires an arrow coated in special greenblood oil poison, with a DC of 20. It hits poor Valeros, who fails the save and now must track the two poisons separately (since they are not identical). To add to his misery, another arrow coated in ordinary greenblood oil poison hits him as well, forcing him to make a DC 17 Fortitude save, which he also fails, increasing the total duration to 8 rounds (1 of which has passed). Valeros is in trouble.

As you can see, poison is a deadly business. Monsters that can use injury poison, such as spiders and centipedes, should not be taken lightly. Best to stock up on a scroll or two of neutralize poison, or better yet, a wand.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Design Tuesdays Frequently Asked Questions Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
1 to 50 of 123 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>

7 people marked this as a favorite.

Thank you very much, I didn't was using poisons all wrong and this made things really clear for me, especially the scenarios.

It is really great to have these types of blogs and have the Paizo staff showing such an active role in the fanbase.

Again its really great seeing some of these fundamentals, that can commonly be mistaken, be addressed.


This is a great help. I look forward to similar blogs.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Wow, poisons actually become viable under these rules. In 3.5 I never thought it was worth using poison because of high cost, usually low save, and difficulty of use.


Thank you.

And I see, there are Alchemyst and Rogue class features able to make them even more deadly.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

What did Valeros ever do to you!

Poor guy, being a fighter but regularly failing DC 13 fort saves...

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

hmm... I didn't know that the subsequent saves should be made on the victims turn.
Good to know!


Quote:
Poisons fall under the category of afflictions.

Well, sure... The Poison rules (under Afflictions) seem very sure of themselves that all Poisons use the Affliction rules.

Except for, you know, ones that DON`T, like Cloudkill... 8-/
(though it isn`t clear if non-Affliction poisons SHOULD still use any relevant rules, e.g. DC increases for multiple dosages, even if most aspects of Afflictions e.g. duration, onset, cure, don`t apply to them)

Anyhow, good blog post...

Shadow Lodge Manager - Good Games Central, Owner - Good Games Wollongong, Manager - Good Games Miranda

Any chance you can also clarify how delay poison works in the above, Jason, if the poison isn't neutralised before the spell wears off?


An FAQ blog entry! Hallelujah! I hope there are many more to come. FAQ! FAQ! FAQ!


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
concerro wrote:
This is a great help. I look forward to similar blogs.

+1

Andoran

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

I have a question..using your example of greenblood oil which has a duration of 4 rounds, if Valeros goes after the person who inflicted him with the poison in the same round does he still make 2 saves for the poison (Once when getting it, once during his turn) in the same round? By your example it seems he does. If that is the case does that mean he can take the poison damage twice in the same round even though it says 1/round? Does he still have 3 rounds left or does the second save in the 1st round reduce the duration by a round?


Quote:
If a poisoned character delay's his turn, he must immediately make these saving throws. They are not delayed.

I was surprised by this part...

Why go thru the bother of establishing a whole sub-system for poison saves on the target`s turn (at their choice of beginning or end of turn, bizarrely), which brings up problems like Dragnmoon mentions, only to then have a case where the `Init` of the Poison must once again be tracked separately? (only this time it is based on the target`s original Init, rather than attacker`s)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

This is a great blog entry and really helps clarifying a few things. Thanks Jason!

I hope to see more of these. And if you're looking for ideas, a similar blog explaining the details of the grab ability would also be very helpful.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I don't want to sound annoying, but this is the kind of text I would like to see in sidebars, in a future edition of the Core Rulebook... :)
The Core is a big book I know, but this kind of clarifications are pure gold, and should be definitely be featured on the book itself.


Dragnmoon wrote:

I have a question..using your example of greenblood oil which has a duration of 4 rounds, if Valeros goes after the person who inflicted him with the poison in the same round does he still make 2 saves for the poison (Once when getting it, once during his turn) in the same round? By your example it seems he does. If that is the case does that mean he can take the poison damage twice in the same round even though it says 1/round? Does he still have 3 rounds left or does the second save in the 1st round reduce the duration by a round?

his examples seemed to suggest that the once per round is totally separate from the initial save. I'n all his examples Valeros made an initial save then again on Valeros turn.


Thank you! Hoping to see more of these in the future!


Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dragnmoon wrote:

I have a question..using your example of greenblood oil which has a duration of 4 rounds, if Valeros goes after the person who inflicted him with the poison in the same round does he still make 2 saves for the poison (Once when getting it, once during his turn) in the same round? By your example it seems he does. If that is the case does that mean he can take the poison damage twice in the same round even though it says 1/round? Does he still have 3 rounds left or does the second save in the 1st round reduce the duration by a round?

He makes a save once when hit and then once on his initiative. Only the save on his initiative counts towards the 4 rounds. Meaning after his second save you have 3 more rounds of greenblood oil.

Quandry wrote:
Why go thru the bother of establishing a whole sub-system for poison saves on the target`s turn (at their choice of beginning or end of turn, bizarrely), which brings up problems like Dragnmoon mentions, only to then have a case where the `Init` of the Poison must once again be tracked separately? (only this time it is based on the target`s original Init, rather than attacker`s)

I think the intention is to stop players from delaying to allow another player to cure him/her. That being said I assume that when a player delays he immediately makes his saves and then he would make his next round of saves on his new initiative.


Thanks for the info. This kind of stuff is great. I also hope to see more of these in the future.


6. If a character is exposed to multiple doses of inhaled and ingested poisons simultaneously, only one save is made at the higher DC. If the save fails, the character is subject to all of the doses, but still only takes the effect once for the failed save

I was wondering what about injected into the bloodstream does it rase the DC or the Damage

I ask because i have a Alchemist with a Syringe Spear from the Pathfinder Armory


This was SUPER helpful - and different from how I was adjudicating poisons.

How I (wrongly) did poisons:

Round 1:
  • Valeros gets hit with a poisoned arrow before his turn in the initiative, fails his save and takes 1 point of Con damage.
  • Valeros takes his turn, but the poison's effects don't kick in yet.
  • Valeros gets hit with the same kind of poison after his initiative count, the DC of the save is 2 higher, and he fails. He suffers another point of Con damage.

    Round 2:
    At the top of the round, before any body takes an action, I would call for saves vs any poisons. If anybody failed, they would suffer the effect of the respective poison. In this instance, if it were the aforementioned greenblood oil, this would count as the first round of the 6 round duration (normal 4 round + 50% for failed save) and Big V would take 1 point of Con damage.

    Rounds 3+:
    For the rest of the encounter, I'd call for poison saves/effects at the top of the round.


  • Munkir wrote:

    6. If a character is exposed to multiple doses of inhaled and ingested poisons simultaneously, only one save is made at the higher DC. If the save fails, the character is subject to all of the doses, but still only takes the effect once for the failed save

    I was wondering what about injected into the bloodstream does it rase the DC or the Damage

    I ask because i have a Alchemist with a Syringe Spear from the Pathfinder Armory

    Scenario B should answer your question. Two inflicted applications during the same initiative.

    Osirion

    One of the most useful blog posts yet. Very cool!

    Paizo Employee Lead Designer

    4 people marked this as a favorite.
    Al Rigg wrote:
    Any chance you can also clarify how delay poison works in the above, Jason, if the poison isn't neutralised before the spell wears off?

    Delay poison simply stops the process in its tracks, but you should still track the order in which new poison is applied to the target. When delay poison ends, all of these initial saves happen in order, then then character must track rounds as outlined above.

    Hope that helps

    Jason Bulmahn
    Lead Designer
    Paizo Publishing

    Paizo Employee Lead Designer

    Quandary wrote:
    Quote:
    If a poisoned character delay's his turn, he must immediately make these saving throws. They are not delayed.

    I was surprised by this part...

    Why go thru the bother of establishing a whole sub-system for poison saves on the target`s turn (at their choice of beginning or end of turn, bizarrely), which brings up problems like Dragnmoon mentions, only to then have a case where the `Init` of the Poison must once again be tracked separately? (only this time it is based on the target`s original Init, rather than attacker`s)

    Unfortunately, because when poisons combine, you can no longer track their durations separately on different initiatives and it is easiest to track on the PCs turn. The wording you refer to is there simply to prevent the "I delay" loophole from skipping a save.

    Jason Bulmahn
    Lead Designer
    Paizo Publishing

    Andoran

    Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    Jason, first - WOW! Thanks for this. Frankly, poison has always been a bit of a quandary wrapped in an enigma for me - regardless of the system.

    Second, can I suggest you immediately rip this from the Blog and include it in your next errata for the Core rules. If one is not planned, then plan one. The examples alone are worth half their weight in gold.

    Taldor

    Thank you Design Tuesday! So many people have been waiting for this clarification Jason, this will really make several of my players happy (and my monsters). Finally poison is as nasty as it should be, especially with poison DC's ranging from 11 to the mid 20's.

    --HemVrock


    Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

    While I like that poison is now really dangerous, and appreciate the clarifications here, I can't help but laugh at your last comment, regarding neutralize poison.

    That spell has become arguably the most worthless of the clerical status healing spells in the game with the changes made to it. I don't think I would ever prepare it, since the probability of it doing any good is so low at lower levels, and heal gets around the poison entirely while healing as well at higher levels.

    I could see neutralize poison as a 2nd level spell, maybe. Not a 4th by any stretch of the imagination.


    1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.
    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    Thanks. The FAQ actually managed to throw me off on what I thought I understood well.

    Question:

    If a poison requires multiple saves: does each successful save "prevent" the poison's effect for the round - or does it just add to the poison-end-tracking?


    Great FAQ! Thanks Paizo people! :)

    I got 2 questions, though.

    1. How about poison with an onset of let's say 1 minute? The character is poisoned, and fails the save to prevent it. One minute later: Does he get a save against the first time the poison damages him or doesn't he? Before the FAQ, I would have said he gets the save, but then an onset poison would allow one save more than a poison without onset.

    2. How exactly does a poison with an initial and a secondary effect work? I know these aren't very common, but I've encountered at least one so far (and I've been playing Pathfinder for less than a year). Here's the poison:

    City of Golden Death Spoiler:
    Water of the Whispering River
    Type Contact; Save Fort DC16
    Onset 1 Round; Frequency 1/round for 6 rounds
    Initial effect 1 Con drain; Secondary Effect 1d3 Con damage; Cure 2 consecutive saves

    So, how would that one work? Is the initial damage done when the character is poisoned and after 1 round (the onset) the character suffers the secondary effect (unless the Save is made of course)?
    Or does the character suffer the initial effect after the onset and the secondary in the following rounds? If yes, does the round with the initial effect count for the duration?

    Shadow Lodge

    Very good blog entry and exactly the sort of thing I was hoping to see here (though I loved the terrain entries too!).

    This is a tiny bit different from what you'd posted previously but I like this better since it makes poisons slightly more nasty.

    Thanks for working to make this site the best gaming resource on the 'net.


    Brilliant FAQ. I learned something from it, and I thought I had a good grasp on the subject.

    More please!

    Paizo Employee Lead Designer

    3 people marked this as a favorite.
    Blave wrote:

    Great FAQ! Thanks Paizo people! :)

    I got 2 questions, though.

    1. How about poison with an onset of let's say 1 minute? The character is poisoned, and fails the save to prevent it. One minute later: Does he get a save against the first time the poison damages him or doesn't he? Before the FAQ, I would have said he gets the save, but then an onset poison would allow one save more than a poison without onset.

    2. How exactly does a poison with an initial and a secondary effect work? I know these aren't very common, but I've encountered at least one so far (and I've been playing Pathfinder for less than a year). Here's the poison:

    ** spoiler omitted **

    So, how would that one work? Is the initial damage done when the character is poisoned and after 1 round (the onset) the character suffers the secondary effect (unless the Save is made of course)?
    Or does the character suffer the initial effect after the onset and the secondary in the following rounds? If yes, does the round with the initial effect count for the duration?

    1. So, he gets the save when first exposed. If he makes it, the poison ends with no effect. If he fails, he has contracted the poison, but does not take the effect (due to it having an onset, as noted in the onset rules). After a minute (in your example), he saves again and if he fails takes the effect. Poisons with an onset allow for one extra save.

    2. A poison with an onset and an initial and secondary effect are tricky, but the way it works is this. You get your first save. Make it and the poison ends. Fail and you've got it, but take no effect yet. After the onset, you make another save. Fail and take the initial effect, make it and check cure to see if it ends. After that first one, its all secondary effect. The onset time is not part of the frequency. Also note if you get multiple doses of a poison with an initial and secondary effect, you can not take the initial more than once as long as the poison is still during its frequency. If it ends and you get exposed again, you can suffer the initial effect again.

    Jason Bulmahn
    Lead Designer
    Paizo Publishing

    Paizo Employee Lead Designer

    LoreKeeper wrote:

    Question:

    If a poison requires multiple saves: does each successful save "prevent" the poison's effect for the round - or does it just add to the poison-end-tracking?

    A successful save, after the first, prevents the effect that round, checks vs the cure, and continues the tracking through the frequency.

    Jason Bulmahn
    Lead Designer
    Paizo Publishing


    A related question, (sorry if I’ve overlooked these rules in the book)…

    If a character is unknowingly exposed to a poison, say from a goblet of wine, and makes the saving throws, would the imbiber know the wine is poisoned?

    Paizo Employee Lead Designer

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    GoldenOpal wrote:

    A related question, (sorry if I’ve overlooked these rules in the book)…

    If a character is unknowingly exposed to a poison, say from a goblet of wine, and makes the saving throws, would the imbiber know the wine is poisoned?

    The rules are silent here, but I think that if the poison never takes effect than the imbiber should not know.

    Jason Bulmahn
    Lead Designer
    Paizo Publishing


    I had always been a bit confused by the Green Prismatic Poison. With an initial effect of death, I've never been sure when the secondary effect and saves to cure would actually come into play.

    Paizo Employee Lead Designer

    Blazej wrote:
    I had always been a bit confused by the Green Prismatic Poison. With an initial effect of death, I've never been sure when the secondary effect and saves to cure would actually come into play.

    That is a bit odd. I am going to look into that and get back to you. I have a suspicion that the effect of that ray will need to change. Looks like it was a left over from an earlier version of the poison mechanics.

    Jason Bulmahn
    Lead Designer
    Paizo Publishing

    Cheliax

    Thanks, Jason! As others have said, this was SUPER helpful; damn, I have treated all poisons as if they had an onset (i.e. no effect on the first failed save). I'm really glad the rules on poisons have finally been clarified with your thorough examples (and replies on this thread). :)

    Taldor

    Asgetrion wrote:
    Thanks, Jason! As others have said, this was SUPER helpful; damn, I have treated all poisons as if they had an onset (i.e. no effect on the first failed save). I'm really glad the rules on poisons have finally been clarified with your thorough examples (and replies on this thread). :)

    Same here I played it as if the effects did not occur until they failed the save on their turn.

    --Toxic Vrock Syndrome


    How long does poison applied to a weapon last?

    Can you sheath it for years, and it's still good when you use it later? Is it all expended on the first successful hit? Can you apply multiple doses so that it lasts multiple hits?


    What to do when you extract poison with alchemy? If a PC uses poison in himself, can he get immunity to it?

    Cheliax

    Blazej wrote:
    I had always been a bit confused by the Green Prismatic Poison. With an initial effect of death, I've never been sure when the secondary effect and saves to cure would actually come into play.

    Maybe for the hypothetical critter that is immune to death effects but not to poisons?


    Jason Bulmahn wrote:
    Quandary wrote:
    Quote:
    If a poisoned character delay's his turn, he must immediately make these saving throws. They are not delayed.

    I was surprised by this part...

    Why go thru the bother of establishing a whole sub-system for poison saves on the target`s turn (at their choice of beginning or end of turn, bizarrely), which brings up problems like Dragnmoon mentions, only to then have a case where the `Init` of the Poison must once again be tracked separately? (only this time it is based on the target`s original Init, rather than attacker`s)
    Unfortunately, because when poisons combine, you can no longer track their durations separately on different initiatives and it is easiest to track on the PCs turn. The wording you refer to is there simply to prevent the "I delay" loophole from skipping a save.

    OK... I guess I´m not sure exactly what the line ´They are not delayed´ means...

    If it is not delayed, i.e. Init is not changed, then the Poison Save(s) (if different types) would be made immediately (when the char chooses to delay, on their original Init), and on-going on the ORIGINAL Init order, not the char´s NEW Init? (i.e. a separate Init event to track)
    ...Or would the Save(s) be made on the original Init, the char takes their Delayed turn without making a new Save, and no new Saves are made until their NEXT turn at the new Init? It just seems like you´re missing a half-sentence or so, ´they are not delayed´ clearly deals with the immediate Saves but isn´t so clear what happens to subsequent ones.

    Quandary wrote:

    The Poison rules (under Afflictions) seem very sure of themselves that all Poisons use the Affliction rules.

    Except for, you know, ones that DON`T, like Cloudkill... 8-/
    ...should non-Affliction poisons still use any relevant rules, e.g. DC increases for multiple dosages, even if duration, onset, cure, don`t apply to them?
    Blazej wrote:
    I had always been a bit confused by the Green Prismatic Poison. With an initial effect of death, I've never been sure when the secondary effect and saves to cure would actually come into play.

    ...It looks like there´s other issues with ´Spell Poisons´ as well... Perhaps that merits a Blog Post Part 2.

    The rules basically seem to ignore the fact that non-Affliction Poisons DO in fact exist in the Core Rules,
    yet stuff like dealing with multiple doses is just the type of thing that could be ruled ´either way´...
    It´d be nice to have a clear-cut take from the horse´s mouth on how these OTHER Poisons are supposed to fit in.

    Cheliax

    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    Jason Bulmahn wrote:
    Blazej wrote:
    I had always been a bit confused by the Green Prismatic Poison. With an initial effect of death, I've never been sure when the secondary effect and saves to cure would actually come into play.

    That is a bit odd. I am going to look into that and get back to you. I have a suspicion that the effect of that ray will need to change. Looks like it was a left over from an earlier version of the poison mechanics.

    Jason Bulmahn
    Lead Designer
    Paizo Publishing

    Why not like Black Lotus Extract, except with an immediate onset? (1d6 Con damage per round for 6 rounds)

    Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

    Quandary wrote:

    OK... I guess I´m not sure exactly what the line ´They are not delayed´ means...

    If it is not delayed, i.e. Init is not changed, then the Poison Save(s) (if different types) would be made immediately (when the char chooses to delay, on their original Init), and on-going on the ORIGINAL Init order, not the char´s NEW Init? (i.e. a separate Init event to track)
    ...Or would the Save(s) be made on the original Init, the char takes their Delayed turn without making a new Save, and no new Saves are made until their NEXT turn at the new Init? It just seems like you´re missing a half-sentence or so, ´they are not delayed´ clearly deals with the immediate Saves but isn´t so clear what happens to subsequent ones.

    I think it just means they aren't delayed that round.

    Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

    The "not delayed" aspect is, in fact, pretty wonky.

    Example: On Round 1, Seoni (Initiative 16) gets hit with a dose of purple worm poison at Initiative count 14. She fails her initial saving throw and suffers 1d3 ⇒ 1 points of Strength damage.

    On round 2, Seoni delays. The poison still affects her on Initiative 16. She fails her save again, and takes another 1d3 ⇒ 2 points of Strength damage. She gets hit with a second dose on Initiative count 14. She fails the save (it is, after all, DC 24, now up to 26) and takes 1d3 ⇒ 3 more points of Strength damage. She chooses to act on Initiative count 10.

    Okay. On initiative count 10, what happens? She was already affected by the first dose during Round 2, and I don't imagine she should suffer its affects multiple times in one round. But this is her first turn after getting hit the second time. Does she make a save, only against the second dose? Or does the first dose in her bloodstream somehow protect her from that?

    On Round 3, what happens? Does the first dose of poison continue to affect her at Initiative count 16? Is the DC now 26? Or does it affect her now at Initiative count 10? What if she delays again?

    Osirion

    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber

    Chris - I'd say it makes the most sense to deny the "delay" for the poison the first time the character delays, to avoid ultra-metagamy actions, but otherwise only hit them once per round.

    Jason Bulmahn wrote:
    Blave wrote:
    2. How exactly does a poison with an initial and a secondary effect work? I know these aren't very common, but I've encountered at least one so far (and I've been playing Pathfinder for less than a year). Here's the poison:
    2. A poison with an onset and an initial and secondary effect are tricky, but the way it works is this. You get your first save. Make it and the poison ends. Fail and you've got it, but take no effect yet. After the onset, you make another save. Fail and take the initial effect, make it and check cure to see if it ends. After that first one, its all secondary effect. The onset time is not part of the frequency. Also note if you get multiple doses of a poison with an initial and secondary effect, you can not take the initial more than once as long as the poison is still during its frequency. If it ends and you...

    I was about to contest this, but it does work out like that with onset, very strange. The flip side of that is that after the first dose it only takes a single failed save for the next dose to afflict you (no second save to take the initial damage), and from what you said, no onset delay in adding to the frequency/duration.

    A poison with a nasty initial effect (and no onset) could get pretty horrible on repeated doses. Those would inflict the initial with each failed save to avoid the affliction.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    Say a particularly potent poison has 3 saves before it can be overcome/cured.

    Which specific saves count towards that? I don't think the initial save does, because if you make that the poison goes away. You were pretty clear in that the second save at the end of an onset period counts towards the cure. I assume the saves against poison made on your turn all count towards the cure.

    But what if I got hit with multiple doses of the poison? Do the initial saves (the ones that could throw off the new dose entirely) count towards curing of prior doses if I make them? Which of the below is correct?

    Scenario 1: Poor Valeros is hit by both of a Tarn Linnorm's poisonous bite attacks. He fails his first save (base DC 32) but passes the second. He takes 6d6d acid damage and 1d8 Con drain from having failed the first save. His second save, however, counts as one of his three successes needed to cure ALL the poison in his system. On his turn, he passes his save with a natural 20, getting him 2/3 of the way to being cured. On the Tarn's next turn, it bites twice more, with Valeros failing both saves and taking the poison's effect twice (12d6 acid damage and 2d8 Con drain). This also raises the DC to 36 and increases the duration from 10 rounds to 20 rounds, but since one round is already passed, he has 19 rounds to go. Valeros is in trouble. On Valeros' second turn, he rolls his save against DC 36 and fails, but opts to use his Improved Great Fortitude feat to reroll, and passes. Valeros is now cured of all the poison in his system and is far more wary of the Linnorm's dangerous bite attacks.

    Scenario 2: Poor Valeros is hit by both of a Tarn Linnorm's poisonous bite attacks. He fails his first save (base DC 32) but passes the second (DC 34). He takes 6d6d acid damage and 1d8 Con drain from having failed the first save. On his turn, he passes his save with a natural 20, getting him 1/3 of the way to being cured. On the Tarn's next turn, it bites twice more, with Valeros failing both saves and taking the poison's effects twice (12d6 acid damage and 2d8 Con drain). This also raises the DC to 36 and increases the duration from 10 rounds to 20 rounds, but since one round is already passed, he has 19 rounds to go. Valeros is in trouble, though it doesn't last long. On his turn, he fails both saves and takes enough damage and Con drain to kill him.

    It might actually be possible to cure someone sooner by pumping them with more poison under one of these interpretations, albeit at great risk.

    1 to 50 of 123 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
    Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder RPG / General Discussion / Paizo Blog: I Drank What? An FAQ on Poison All Messageboards

    Want to post a reply? Sign in.

    ©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.