Arcane Sight and its overuse


Homebrew and House Rules


I DM a game where a PC has cast Arcane Sight cast as a permanent spell upon himself. The PC enters every encounter using this ability to find the auras of magic and power with his sight. Is there anyway to fool or thwart this ability. Something along the line of a nondetection spell of Nystul's Magic Aura? Thanks.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 8

baldwin the merciful wrote:
I DM a game where a PC has cast Arcane Sight cast as a permanent spell upon himself. The PC enters every encounter using this ability to find the auras of magic and power with his sight. Is there anyway to fool or thwart this ability. Something along the line of a nondetection spell of Nystul's Magic Aura? Thanks.

Dispel magic.

And then laugh.


Nondetection and Magic Aura to start.

But seriously; if the player has it permanized on himself, then he has likely paid his 7.5 K in GP (more than many good magic items) for an ability which can be removed with relative ease. At 11th level (minimum that it can be permanized, IIRC) the spell, while useful, is fairly tame and easily overcome by halfway intelligent or resourceful enemies. If the player paid his gold for it, which could have bought a wand and/or and armload of scrolls instead, why try to play directly against it? That's like having a wizard getting excited about learning fireball only to have the DM use nothing for fire elementals for a session.


baldwin the merciful wrote:
I DM a game where a PC has cast Arcane Sight cast as a permanent spell upon himself. The PC enters every encounter using this ability to find the auras of magic and power with his sight. Is there anyway to fool or thwart this ability. Something along the line of a nondetection spell of Nystul's Magic Aura? Thanks.

It is a good spell, but I don't know if it is worth being made permanent. In any event he did pay for it so I would not just negate it. That would just result in wasted gold. Nondetection type spells would work though. If you are going up against high level opponents common sense should kick in on his side, and he will probably just use a dispel magic to get rid of whatever is blocking arcane sight.


This board is great with the quick responses. This is high leveled game, the characters are at 16/17th level and I'm not concerned about he cost that he paid. He can afford it.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

  • nondetection provides SR of sorts against it.
  • they have be able to see the things that have magical auras
  • mind blank provides total immunity to it
  • mislead sets up some patsy's auras instead of the target's
  • they only get presence, number and strengths - he can make the schools with Spellcraft checks
  • magic item identification is not a free action with arcane sight

There are other means of thwarting this as well, the Master Spy prestige class is just one of them. As posted above, he can lose it with a dispel magic targeting that effect or that happens to pick it off for either being to weak to pop the stronger spells up and running with other methods of dispelling.

Every foe doesn't necessarily care - those that do will hopefully be exceedingly dangerous. ^_^


Remember that his eyes constantly glow blue. Anyone with decent Spellcraft/Knowledge: Arcane should be able to recognize the effect, unless it is rare spell in your campaign.

Also, if the PC relies upon this ability much then make encounter where he sees absolutely no magic aura... Why? Because no magic was involved, or maybe dead magic zone, antimagic field or flight of beholders (or some other equivalent of magic dampening creatures... Uh, I start to think what stats would have Otataral Dragon).


Turin the Mad wrote:
  • nondetection provides SR of sorts against it.
  • they have be able to see the things that have magical auras
  • mind blank provides total immunity to it
  • mislead sets up some patsy's auras instead of the target's
  • they only get presence, number and strengths - he can make the schools with Spellcraft checks
  • magic item identification is not a free action with arcane sight

There are other means of thwarting this as well, the Master Spy prestige class is just one of them. As posted above, he can lose it with a dispel magic targeting that effect or that happens to pick it off for either being to weak to pop the stronger spells up and running with other methods of dispelling.

Every foe doesn't necessarily care - those that do will hopefully be exceedingly dangerous. ^_^

Thanks for the help. Lots of ideas


1 person marked this as a favorite.

As a player one of the most annoying things to encounter is when the GM metagames against some ability, feat or skill my character has developed. So I would caution you not to set up encounters designed specifically to counteract arcane sight.

However, if the party is engaged in any multi-encounter story line against a single enemy, then it is likely that enemy would soon realize that someone in the party is spotting magical auras and would take some actions to exploit that knowledge.

As a GM in that situation I would likely start to telegraph to the party that the BBEG has become paranoid about divination, and is starting to utilize anti-divination tactics. Those would include masking auras and creating false auras, as well as having some dispel magic abilities to at least suppress the ability for a while.

But it has to make sense in terms of the story. For encounters that are completely unrelated to the story to suddenly be tailored to defeat arcane sight would give me a problem as a player.


I played a character with that. Having your eyes glow blue seemed to freak out our foes, and drew considerable attention whenever he did it.
It's a beacon to anyone in the dark.

Remember too, it's a standard action to check out another caster for spell abilities, and they're not likely to be happy about it.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 8

brassbaboon wrote:

As a player one of the most annoying things to encounter is when the GM metagames against some ability, feat or skill my character has developed. So I would caution you not to set up encounters designed specifically to counteract arcane sight.

However, if the party is engaged in any multi-encounter story line against a single enemy, then it is likely that enemy would soon realize that someone in the party is spotting magical auras and would take some actions to exploit that knowledge.

As a GM in that situation I would likely start to telegraph to the party that the BBEG has become paranoid about divination, and is starting to utilize anti-divination tactics. Those would include masking auras and creating false auras, as well as having some dispel magic abilities to at least suppress the ability for a while.

But it has to make sense in terms of the story. For encounters that are completely unrelated to the story to suddenly be tailored to defeat arcane sight would give me a problem as a player.

Good post. I may have seemed trigger-happy when I said "dispel magic then laugh," but it was more for comedic effect than anything. :)


I have one simple thing to say. Ouch could the character be blinded by magic that is the area around him/her? I could see a problem with seeing party members with this arcane sight (if it works like dectect magic.) I look at my party members decked out in full magic gear and see a glowing shape of different colors. You could say it is distracting always seeing the world with a version of tie dyed glasses. Does it say anywhere how bright magic auras are.

Also how prevalent is magic in your world. That could complicate things too.

just some fun ideas to toss around. How do you invision the way one see auras around objects


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
brassbaboon wrote:
As a player one of the most annoying things to encounter is when the GM metagames against some ability, feat or skill my character has developed. So I would caution you not to set up encounters designed specifically to counteract arcane sight.

+1

Intentionally targeting a player's ability can easily fall into the realm of 'you wake up naked on a deserted beach...;, the dm vs. spellbook conflict, rust monsters and NPC-only spells. I ran this as per perception rolls in 3.5, including modifiers for confusing factors. In the last fight I remember the spell being cast, Each foe had at least 3 items and a buff or two. Add in an area effect trap going off, a strong necromantic background aura and the party's contribution and there where over 100 different things that registered.

Poke your head into a room full of people with nametags at a convention and try to avoid data overload. Quick! Who had the mis-matched saddle Oxfords? You'll also benefit from reinforcing the use of the Perception skill and give the player a limit to work with.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Homebrew and House Rules / Arcane Sight and its overuse All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.
Recent threads in Homebrew and House Rules