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Disabling traps


Rules Questions


I noticed something in the Disable Device skill description today that I haven't noticed before. As examples of difficult and extreme tasks, both requiring 2d4 rounds of actions to disable, we find "disabling a trap" and "disabling a complex trap".

In games I've played in as player or DM, it has always been played this way: If the rogue succeeds at his perception check and on his disable device check, then the trap never triggers.

But if the rogue has to spend 2d4 rounds to disable the trap, then an automatic reset trap would trigger anywhere from 2 to 8 times while the rogue is doing so, even if the rogue succeeds on his check.

If this is the way it should work, then traps may actually be worth their CR. At the same time, it would turn many traps into potential death machines.

So for the actual question: Does a rogue (or other trap-disabler) risk being affected by a trap for up to 8 rounds even when they succeed on both their Perception check and their Disable Device check?


Are wrote:
But if the rogue has to spend 2d4 rounds to disable the trap, then an automatic reset trap would trigger anywhere from 2 to 8 times while the rogue is doing so, even if the rogue succeeds on his check.

Only if the rogue (or whoever) triggers it.

For example, if a rogue spots a pit trap ahead, and alerts the group, and nobody steps on it, it doesn't trigger. The rogue can then spend however long it takes to fiddle with the ... bamboo rods or whatever that covers the pit, making it safe to walk on or knocking it down or whatever he does.

If there's a magical skull that causes a dispel magic on anyone who approaches within 10' of it, and the rogue enters that area to disable it, then since he's triggered the trap, it's going to dispel him while he works.

Those are terrible examples, but you know what I mean.


I realize that it would require that he triggers it :)

So, say, if you make a fireball trap with a proximity trigger (covering the room where the trap is) and automatic reset (with no delay), the rogue would eat a minimum of 2 fireballs while working on the trap, and possibly as many as 8?


The rules assume if the rogue is aware of the existence of the trap and doesn't botch his roll to disarm it, he can do so without triggering it. You can handwave this any way you like.


How could a trap be triggered 2-8 times? If it takes four rounds to disable the trap, it's disabled at the end of the fourth round and only disabled once. If the trap resets, it resets only once - on the fifth round...

It shouldn't trigger at all, unless the rogue, or whoever enters the area next sets it off. The rogue should get another perception check to see if the trap resets.


gamer-printer wrote:
How could a trap be triggered 2-8 times?

2d4 rounds. That's a minimum of two, and a maximum of eight.

If the GM rolls well, the rogue spends 8 rounds disabling the trap, which if it automatically resets, will trigger on each of those 8 rounds.

gamer-printer wrote:
It shouldn't trigger at all, unless the rogue, or whoever enters the area next sets it off.

If you must enter the proximity to disable the trap, you can't avoid triggering it.

Of course, the skill doesn't say you need to be adjacent, and that's a pretty bad trap design if it requires you to trigger it 2-8 times before disabling it.

Basically, the GM can hose the party as much as he wants, it's his responsibility to be reasonable (or not, as appropriate).

gamer-printer wrote:
The rogue should get another perception check to see if the trap resets.

He knows what the trap does (which should include whether or not it resets) if he beats the perception DC by 5.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

...Why would a GM include a trap that can only be disabled after triggering it?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Jiggy wrote:
...Why would a GM include a trap that can only be disabled after triggering it?

Sadism?


Jiggy wrote:
...Why would a GM include a trap that can only be disabled after triggering it?

That.

Also, there's nothing in the rules that says that traps with proximity triggers can't be safely disabled. The whole POINT of the rogue's trap abilities is to find and deal with such things.

Shadow Lodge

No.

Just no.


Oladon wrote:
Also, there's nothing in the rules that says that traps with proximity triggers can't be safely disabled. The whole POINT of the rogue's trap abilities is to find and deal with such things.

This.

What would be the point to having trapfinding/trapsense if you can't safely disarm traps. An auto-reset trap will confound a rogue because it can't successfully be disarmed, but shouldn't automatically be triggered. And while a rogue is attempting to disarm a trap, he should be doing it in such a way, that doesn't automatically trigger it.

The problem becomes the party knows of the trap, but can't get around it without triggering it. The problem is not automatically triggering no matter what.


10-foot pole saves the day again!


Pathfinder Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Jiggy wrote:
...Why would a GM include a trap that can only be disabled after triggering it?

hum... and what about Symbol of... spell.

I was always wondering how a rogue could detect and disarm a Symbol spell without trigger it...


Magical traps are different. A rogue/wizard multi-class would be necessary to disarm magical traps.


gamer-printer wrote:
Magical traps are different. A rogue/wizard multi-class would be necessary to disarm magical traps.

Err, no.

Trapfinding wrote:
A rogue can use Disable Device to disarm magic traps.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

gamer-printer wrote:
Magical traps are different. A rogue/wizard multi-class would be necessary to disarm magical traps.

According to what?

Trapfinding wrote:
A rogue can use Disable Device to disarm magic traps.


With a difficulty check yes. Having dispell magic helps though, and a rogue alone can't do that - is what I meant.


[sarcasm]FINALLY! A USE FOR SIFT! Detect the proximity trap from 30 feet away, then cast pilfering hand and disable the trap![/sarcasm]

But really, the point of being able to notice the trap and then disable it is to not set it off while you're doing so (if you noticed it and don't botch the disable roll).


Pathfinder Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Odea wrote:

[sarcasm]FINALLY! A USE FOR SIFT! Detect the proximity trap from 30 feet away, then cast pilfering hand and disable the trap![/sarcasm]

But really, the point of being able to notice the trap and then disable it is to not set it off while you're doing so (if you noticed it and don't botch the disable roll).

For Symbol of... spell, only a rogue may do that

"A rogue (only) can use the Perception skill to find a symbol of xxxx and Disable Device to thwart it."

So we assume that a rogue can do that even if the symbol is in a room 30 ft long and triggers as soon as you open the door...
In my language we have an set phrase that will be, translated: "SUIIM"
(i.e Shut Up! It Is Magical!")
I think you've the same. :-)

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