Nameless Assassin

Ignotus Advenium's page

192 posts. Alias of Joe Kondrak.

I'm happy to say I'll be attending this event! It sounds like it'll be a blast.

I'm looking for some advice regarding 2 traps that I'll be running tonight (traps and questions spoiled below):

spell crucible:

Trigger proximity (alarm); Reset automatic
Effect The spell crucible summons three shadowfire elementals
(see Creatures, below). Then the crucible makes a targeted
dispel magic (CL 12th) against each non-elemental creature
in the chamber. As long as the spell crucible is active, any
creature casting a spell or using a spell-like ability in this
room is immediately subject to a counter spell (dispel magic,
CL 12th). If the crucible succeeds in dispelling an existing
spell or counterspelling a spell being cast, the affected
creature or caster is targeted by a fireball 1 round later (10-ft.
burst, Reflex DC 14 half). The fireball deals 1d6 points of fire
damage per level of the triggering creature’s dispelled spell
(or the combined level of all spells if the crucible dispelled
multiple spells on that creature

The targeted dispel option for the spell dispel magic typically removes only 1 spell from the target if it's successful. The part at the end (bolded) of the trap seems to suggest that the trap might dispel multiple spells on each creature when it goes off.

Would you run it just like the spell, limiting it to removing only 1 spell? If you think the trap can remove more than 1 spell, would you roll once for each target, and dispel any or all spells on the target that that roll beats? Or, roll once against each spell on each target, dispelling or not dispelling each spell accordingly?


Trap: Opening the door into area K10 unleashes the firefall,
a waterfall of burning oil that pours down the grooves and
quickly burns any living thing below. The oil is contained in
large vessels underneath the flagstones of the landing at the
south end of the room, and is discharged through a number
of tiny pipes leading into the grooves.
If the PCs set off the trap, the oil pours through the pipes
and then ignites. The grooves swiftly disperse the flaming
oil through the room and down toward the door leading to
area K9.

XP 2,400
magic; Perception DC 30; Disable Device DC 30
Trigger proximity (alarm); Reset none
Effect The door to this room locks, and flaming oil fills the
trenches in the room—it affects the southern 15 feet in
round 1, affects the whole room in round 2, and flows under
the northern door to affect area K9 on round 3. This creates
flaming rain in the infinite pit in round 4; 4d6 fire damage
and target catches on fire (Core Rulebook 444), Reflex DC
17 half; heavy smoke, target is unable to act and spends
the round coughing and choking, Fortitude DC 15 negates.
A choking character takes 1d6 points of nonlethal damage
each round until it succeeds at a DC 15 Fortitude save. The oil
burns off after 5 rounds, but the heavy smoke persists for 10
minutes. When the smoke has dissipated, the doors unlock.

The paragraph text says it triggers when the door is opened, but in the trap's stat block, the 1st effect is, "The door to this room locks," and then other effects ensue. I can't quite tell what the intent is here. If the door locks (closing 1st?), then the PCs would be on the safe side, with the flaming oil getting to them (under the door) on the 3rd round — the 1st two rounds, the oil would be burning on the other side of the door. Maybe opening the door "arms" the trap, and then the trigger = "proximity" to the source (deeper in the room, where the oil starts), which would likely put some PCs in the area that's affected on the 1st or 2nd round.

Any suggestions? How would you run it?

I'd like some advice or rules-clarification for an upcoming session I'll be running:

The rules for the Perception skill indicate that a character may Try Again to sense something if the stimulus is still present. But, the Action subsection indicates that most Perception checks are "...reactive, made in response to observable stimulus.", and that a move action is taken only when intentionally searching for something. Let's call a reactive check a check to notice something.

Now, suppose some characters pass by a niche in the wall of a dungeon corridor (the stimulus) and fail to notice it. It's not critical to the plot that they discover the niche, but it would be beneficial for them to notice it, as it would either reward them or protect them (by preventing the triggering of a nearby trap).

Then, the same characters spend a few minutes in a nearby room, after which they re-traverse the same corridor, passing by the same niche again.

Should they be allowed to Try Again and roll another set of Perception checks, and if so, with or without any penalties?

My gut instinct is to have them roll again (or roll myself), but with a –4 penalty. My reasoning for applying a penalty is that they're typically cautious and observant when first traversing an area, but on return trips they're less on-guard.

If the 1st pass by should be their only chance, then I'm being too generous. If they should get a new roll with no penalties every time they pass the stimulus, then I'm being too stingy.

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In the text for the spell Dispel Magic, there are several instances of the terms dispel check and caster level check that seem to indicate essentially the same thing (d20 + caster level). The term dispel check occurs earlier and is more directly relevant to the spell, and the more-general term caster level check is typically associated with overcoming spell resistance, so...

For clarity, I suggest that the spell's text be edited to replace the term caster level check with the term dispel check, throughout.

I understand that the roll and mods are the same, and that a dispel check may be considered a sub-class of caster level check, but within one spell description, using the two terms interchangeably serves to confuse.

Actus Fodiendo (BRD 2)


Portion of Dispel Magic spell text provided below to highlight the relevant terms (all instances of checks bolded):


...Targeted Dispel: One object, creature, or spell is the target of the dispel magic spell. You make one dispel check (1d20 + your caster level) and compare that to the spell with highest caster level (DC = 11 + the spell's caster level). If successful, that spell ends. If not, compare the same result to the spell with the next highest caster level. Repeat this process until you have dispelled one spell affecting the target, or you have failed to dispel every spell.

For example, a 7th-level caster casts dispel magic, targeting a creature affected by stoneskin (caster level 12th) and fly (caster level 6th). The caster level check results in a 19. This check is not high enough to end the stoneskin (which would have required a 23 or higher), but it is high enough to end the fly (which only required a 17). Had the dispel check resulted in a 23 or higher, the stoneskin would have been dispelled, leaving the fly intact. Had the dispel check been a 16 or less, no spells would have been affected.

You can also use a targeted dispel to specifically end one spell affecting the target or one spell affecting an area (such as a wall of fire). You must name the specific spell effect to be targeted in this way. If your caster level check is equal to or higher than the DC of that spell, it ends. No other spells or effects on the target are dispelled if your check is not high enough to end the targeted effect.

If you target an object or creature that is the effect of an ongoing spell (such as a monster summoned by summon monster), you make a dispel check to end the spell that conjured the object or creature.

If the object that you target is a magic item, you make a dispel check against the item's caster level (DC = 11 + the item's caster level). If you succeed, all the item's magical properties are suppressed for 1d4 rounds, after which the item recovers its magical properties. A suppressed item becomes nonmagical for the duration of the effect. An interdimensional opening (such as a bag of holding) is temporarily closed. A magic item's physical properties are unchanged: A suppressed magic sword is still a sword (a masterwork sword, in fact). Artifacts and deities are unaffected by mortal magic such as this.

You automatically succeed on your dispel check against any spell that you cast yourself.

Counterspell: When dispel magic is used in this way, the spell targets a spellcaster and is cast as a counterspell. Unlike a true counterspell, however, dispel magic may not work; you must make a dispel check to counter the other spellcaster's spell....