Hide in Plain Sight in the interrogation room


Rules Questions

101 to 123 of 123 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
Shadow Lodge

That line shouldn't be there. It was important to be there in the 3.X version of the Shadowdancer because that version could hide near any shadow. The Pathfinder Shadowdancer needs to hide near an area of dim light. Maybe they thought it thematic.

You'll notice, if you read the entire Pathfinder Shadowdancer entry, that the word shadow only ever comes into play when it's part of a name. There is no mechanical definition of an object giving off a shadow, and there is no reference to the shadowdancer being able to do anything with them except as fluff for her abilities.

Hide in Plain Sight - requires dim light
Shadow Illusion - no light-based restrictions
Summon Shadow - no light-based restrictions
Shadow Call - no light-based restrictions
Shadow Jump - requires dim light
Shadow Power - no light-based restrictions
Shadow Master- requires dim light

Liberty's Edge

Interesting thread. I had not considered interpreting the 'within 10 feet of an area of dim light' as 'inside 10 feet of an area of dim light'. The Shadowdancer literally fades into the shadows. It fits very well.
.
.
.
What I do not buy is that being tied to a chair equates to the helpless condition. Simply being 'bound' is not enough. If a character's thumbs are 'bound' together, is he helpless? Of course not. If his hands are 'bound' together, is that enough? No (as he runs away). If his hands and feet are bound together, what about then? Oh look, now he's rolling away!!! OK, let's tie him up after a grapple. Nope, he is still only pinned.

The degree of freedom is what determines the condition. A helpless character would have to be bound by ropes to such an extent that he was 'completely at an opponent's mercy'.

From RD's description, I don't get the impression that the Shadowdancer was tied up to the point of being helpless. Pinned is more likely.

Shadow Lodge

"Within 10 feet of an area of dim light" or even "Inside 10 feet of an area of dim light" means you need to be 10 feet or less away from an area of dim light. That's how the phrase works. If you wanted it phrased so that one needed to be inside an area of dim light, and 10 feet away from the border between dim light and normal light, you'd need to use something like "at least 10 feet inside an area of dim light". If you were perhaps taking it to mean that the dim light needed to be at least 10 feet wide and you had to hide in the dim light, you'd use phrasing like "Inside/Within a 10 foot area of dim light".

Note that if you read it as "at least 10 feet inside an area of dim light", then a Shadowdancer could never use HiPS in the the dim light shed by a torch (or most other light-producing effects), since there's only 20 feet of dim light, and the shadow dancer has to be 10 feet away from both the darkness and normal light edges.

No, a shadowdancer cannot use HiPS in complete darkness. She could use normal stealth rules, but only if not being observed (as normal).

Regarding being tied up as helpless, I'd say no, since the victim can always try to spend a minute using Escape Artist, which is an action. The only time you would be truly helpless is when the Escape Artist DC is > 20 + your Escape Artist bonus, which means you can't ever hope to get out of them with escape artist.

Saying that every single Stealth check must be accompanied by movement is pretty ridiculous ("what, I'm not allowed a stealth check to try and stay as still as possible underneath a blanket someone put over me?"). Combining that with the fact that the Shadowdancer's HiPS is Supernatural (it's magic!) now puts me firmly in the "yes, this is possible" camp.

EDIT: Found out where I saw the most relevant low-light vision rules.

Vision and Light wrote:
Characters with low-light vision (elves, gnomes, and half-elves) can see objects twice as far away as the given radius. Double the effective radius of bright light, normal light, and dim light for such characters.

Grand Lodge

I conceed the point that RAW you just have to be standing near an area of dim light for the shadowdancer to use HiPS. My problem is how the effect works in the game world. Essentially as a DM how do I describe this. We all know what jumping or a fireball looks like but HiPS seems to be written only as rule with no workable context in game.

I can see shadows creaping into the light and enveloping a person to allow the stealth check but what then? The darkness receeds and even if the person is stared at directly they are not noticed? Seen through? Or is a blob of shadow remaining letting the shadowdancer be stealthed but leaving obvious to what square he's in.

This was why in the first place I assumed you had to be inside of the dim light to become shadowy then fade away with a stealth check.


Serum wrote:
That line shouldn't be there. It was important to be there in the 3.X version of the Shadowdancer because that version could hide near any shadow. The Pathfinder Shadowdancer needs to hide near an area of dim light. Maybe they thought it thematic.

I happen to agree that the 'object casting a shadow' thing is a PITA, and the reason I am interrogating the issue so much is that I GM a game with a Shadowdancer and whilst we had a chat that we were happy left us sans the taste of cheeze, I am just checking how 'fair' I was being.

If that last sentence is a legacy line then it needs removal.

I'm still wondering if the light has to be DIM light, is there an inference that if it is DARK that the SD can't do their stuff? Doesn't say Dim or darker... :p

Shadow Lodge

Winston, if you're looking at something thematic, I'd say it looks like she just faded away into the dimly lit area. If your perception is good enough, you see that she's actually just translucent and blends into background extremely well. Maybe she changed colour to fit the lighting conditions and reflections in the room.

Note that many of her other abilities just say she draws upon raw shadow to do something (real shadows don't even need to be present!).

Yes, Shifty, there needs to be an area of dim light for the abilities to function, not dim light or darkness.

Sovereign Court

Shifty wrote:
Serum wrote:
That line shouldn't be there. It was important to be there in the 3.X version of the Shadowdancer because that version could hide near any shadow. The Pathfinder Shadowdancer needs to hide near an area of dim light. Maybe they thought it thematic.

I happen to agree that the 'object casting a shadow' thing is a PITA, and the reason I am interrogating the issue so much is that I GM a game with a Shadowdancer and whilst we had a chat that we were happy left us sans the taste of cheeze, I am just checking how 'fair' I was being.

If that last sentence is a legacy line then it needs removal.

I'm still wondering if the light has to be DIM light, is there an inference that if it is DARK that the SD can't do their stuff? Doesn't say Dim or darker... :p

You migth consider that the 'own shadow' bit covers monstrous PCs and NPCs as well as 'typical' shadowdancers.

A rune giant shadowdancer probably can leave a shadow which produces an area of dim light that covers a 5ft square... but they can't hide in it.


Serum wrote:
Saying that every single Stealth check must be accompanied by movement is pretty ridiculous ("what, I'm not allowed a stealth check to try and stay as still as possible underneath a blanket someone put over me?"). Combining that with the fact that the Shadowdancer's HiPS is Supernatural (it's magic!) now puts me firmly in the "yes, this is possible" camp.

You're confusing someone else hiding you and you remaining motionless, with you hiding yourself and then remaining motionless.

In your scenario let us add one more factor.. you were paralyzed. This should HELP you remain motionless. So are you claiming that you are better at hiding while paralyzed? That I would call pretty ridiculous.

Likewise how many stealth checks should you need to roll once you are remaining motionless under the blanket? One every 6 seconds? Or just one to represent how concealed you are by having that unmoving blanket on top of you? What skill was involved by you having someone else put it on you? Was it your skill or theirs at work?

-James


james maissen wrote:
Serum wrote:
Saying that every single Stealth check must be accompanied by movement is pretty ridiculous ("what, I'm not allowed a stealth check to try and stay as still as possible underneath a blanket someone put over me?"). Combining that with the fact that the Shadowdancer's HiPS is Supernatural (it's magic!) now puts me firmly in the "yes, this is possible" camp.

You're confusing someone else hiding you and you remaining motionless, with you hiding yourself and then remaining motionless.

In your scenario let us add one more factor.. you were paralyzed. This should HELP you remain motionless. So are you claiming that you are better at hiding while paralyzed? That I would call pretty ridiculous.

Likewise how many stealth checks should you need to roll once you are remaining motionless under the blanket? One every 6 seconds? Or just one to represent how concealed you are by having that unmoving blanket on top of you? What skill was involved by you having someone else put it on you? Was it your skill or theirs at work?

The blanket provides concealment allowing you to use the stealth skill.

You make your rolls to remain motionless and avoid making noise.


GeraintElberion wrote:

You migth consider that the 'own shadow' bit covers monstrous PCs and NPCs as well as 'typical' shadowdancers.

A rune giant shadowdancer probably can leave a shadow which produces an area of dim light that covers a 5ft square... but they can't hide in it.

But could my medium sized shadowdancer hide in the rune giant's shadow?

Could a rune giant shadowdancer hide in another rune giants shadow?
Could 2 rune giant shadowdancers hide in each other's shadows? Do they still cast shadows once hidden?


Hey thats amazing, that blanket is in the perfect shape of a person, yet I cant see them. Maybe I'll just stab it and see what happens.

Sovereign Court

thejeff wrote:
Roac wrote:


A bound character is considered to have the helpless condition and a character with the helpless condition is treated as having an effective 0 in dexterity, meaning that he can't use stealth anyway. So... I don't think he would be able to use it.

By this logic, a bound character, being helpless and thus an effective 0 Dex, also can't use Escape Artist to get out of the bindings.

Even if you allow the check, since that's one of the purposes of Escape Artist, do all attempts to get out of ropes have an effective penalty of 5 + Dex modifier for being helpless: Highly dextrous characters are no better than anyone else at escaping bonds?

As a side note, does it really make sense for characters tied up outside of grapples, while unconscious or whatever, to have their escape difficulty based on the binder's CMB? Big, strong creatures are better at tying people up?

Fair enough it was poorly worded on my part. But there are rules for tying people up.
Tie Up wrote:
If you have your target pinned, otherwise restrained, or unconscious, you can use rope to tie him up. This works like a pin effect, but the DC to escape the bonds is equal to 20 + your Combat Maneuver Bonus (instead of your CMD). The ropes do not need to make a check every round to maintain the pin. If you are grappling the target, you can attempt to tie him up in ropes, but doing so requires a combat maneuver check at a –10 penalty. If the DC to escape from these bindings is higher than 20 + the target's CMB, the target cannot escape from the bonds, even with a natural 20 on the check.
Then there's the pinned condition.
Pinned wrote:
A pinned creature is tightly bound and can take few actions. A pinned creature cannot move and is denied its Dexterity bonus.. A pinned character also takes an additional –4 penalty to his Armor Class. A pinned creature is limited in the actions that it can take. A pinned creature can always attempt to free itself, usually through a combat maneuver check or Escape Artist check. A pinned creature can take verbal and mental actions, but cannot cast any spells that require a somatic or material component. A pinned character who attempts to cast a spell or use a spell-like ability must make a concentration check (DC 10 + grappler's CMB + spell level) or lose the spell. Pinned is a more severe version of grappled, and their effects do not stack.

It takes a full minute to escape from ropes so I would rule that if the shadowdancer would be able to do that without the interrogator doing something about it (and if he escaped from the bonds) then he would be able to use HiPs.


Roac wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Roac wrote:


A bound character is considered to have the helpless condition and a character with the helpless condition is treated as having an effective 0 in dexterity, meaning that he can't use stealth anyway. So... I don't think he would be able to use it.

By this logic, a bound character, being helpless and thus an effective 0 Dex, also can't use Escape Artist to get out of the bindings.

Even if you allow the check, since that's one of the purposes of Escape Artist, do all attempts to get out of ropes have an effective penalty of 5 + Dex modifier for being helpless: Highly dextrous characters are no better than anyone else at escaping bonds?

As a side note, does it really make sense for characters tied up outside of grapples, while unconscious or whatever, to have their escape difficulty based on the binder's CMB? Big, strong creatures are better at tying people up?

Fair enough it was poorly worded on my part. But there are rules for tying people up.
Tie Up wrote:
If you have your target pinned, otherwise restrained, or unconscious, you can use rope to tie him up. This works like a pin effect, but the DC to escape the bonds is equal to 20 + your Combat Maneuver Bonus (instead of your CMD). The ropes do not need to make a check every round to maintain the pin. If you are grappling the target, you can attempt to tie him up in ropes, but doing so requires a combat maneuver check at a –10 penalty. If the DC to escape from these bindings is higher than 20 + the target's CMB, the target cannot escape from the bonds, even with a natural 20 on the check.

Not poorly worded on your part, I just think the rules about tying someone up are even worse than the other rules we've been discussing here.

As a side note, it only takes a minute to get out of ropes if you're using Escape Artist. Trying to break them with a CMB check only takes an action. In fact, by RAW the CMB check will almost always be better, unless you're weak and heavily invested in Escape Artist. BAB + Str bonus instead of Escape Artist - 5 (Helpless Dex 0 penalty. And you can
try every round instead of every minute.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

The whole tied up in an interrogation room reminds me of the time in 'Bloom County' where Steve Dallas tried to quit smoking. They tied him up to try and break his nicotine habit. The end result was this frame (and opus hiding in the toilet)
Steve with axe

(source p91, 'Billy and the Boingers Bootleg')

Clearly he's bound, but not necessarily immobile. I'd probably treat this as closer to 'entangle' than anything else in which case chair + prisoner would "disappear".

PFSRD wrote:
The character is ensnared. Being entangled impedes movement, but does not entirely prevent it unless the bonds are anchored to an immobile object or tethered by an opposing force. An entangled creature moves at half speed, cannot run or charge, and takes a –2 penalty on all attack rolls and a –4 penalty to Dexterity. An entangled character who attempts to cast a spell must make a concentration check (DC 15 + spell level) or lose the spell.

This all happened while the guard sneezed. When will they ever get guards without asthma!

Sovereign Court

Shifty wrote:
Hey thats amazing, that blanket is in the perfect shape of a person, yet I cant see them. Maybe I'll just stab it and see what happens.

[sneaks quietly out of the door] I can't believe he fell for it. Doofus is stabbing a pile of old pillows!

Dark Archive

thejeff wrote:
GeraintElberion wrote:

You migth consider that the 'own shadow' bit covers monstrous PCs and NPCs as well as 'typical' shadowdancers.

A rune giant shadowdancer probably can leave a shadow which produces an area of dim light that covers a 5ft square... but they can't hide in it.

But could my medium sized shadowdancer hide in the rune giant's shadow?

Could a rune giant shadowdancer hide in another rune giants shadow?
Could 2 rune giant shadowdancers hide in each other's shadows? Do they still cast shadows once hidden?

I don't see why those rune giants couldn't hide into each other's shadows. Yeah, it's weird, but it's not hard to imagine if you try (says Lennon). It's also a SU ability, so it could work. They do cast shadows, but PCs might not notice it (hence the Perception check once they are stealthed again). I basically would flavor it they hide, PCs are baffled, make Perception checks. If successful, one of the giants did not do it properly, and PCs can see him or his shadow. If PCs failed the check, the giants have stealthed properly and PCs do not know where they are.

Hide in Plain Sight has always been a weird ability. It's definitely better than invisibility most of the time because it requires a check, and lots of spells do not reveal steathled creatures, only invisible ones. And all the various rules that it can bend/break, along with just players having trouble buying into it with their imagination.

Dark Archive

Ravingdork wrote:

Say that a shadowdancer is tied up in an interrogation chamber, with a bright light in his face. The rest of the room is shrouded in darkness (within 10 feet). An interrogator stands before him, attentive and alert, and altogether focused on his prisoner.

The shadowdancer uses his hide in plain sight ability.

What happens? What does the interrogator see?

An empty chair? Floating ropes? A shroud of supernatural darkness? Or a helpless prisoner?

This is how I would do it.

Guard stands there, and then the shadow dancer uses HiPS (I would allow the use of the SU ability while bound/tied).

Guard makes Perception check (I would consider adding penalties to the stealth check since he is trying to stealth while bound to an object that is close to his size, as opposed to just his hands bound):

If successful, the guard makes out the shadow dancer still bound, in the chair. Treat is as an optical illusion, where the guard thought the shadow dancer was missing, but he ends up seeing the ropes, and then the outline, and then the shadow dancer.

If failed, the guard doesn't see the shadow dancer, and he doesn't notice the ropes are still there, and the outline, and etc.

The flavor can be the guard is watching, and then he blinks or turns away for a second, and then he doesn't see the shadow dancer anymore (assuming he fails). Guard then takes whatever action, and then shadow dancer works to escape or sits in the chair

I would use gaming logic to the extend that a shadow dancer cannot use HiPS unless there is enough shadow to hide himself. So one cannot use a single coin's shadow for a rune giant. It's not RAW, but in this case, I would have to use RAI or apply adjudication when it wasn't called for to preemptively settle issues or to start debate.


How I'd run it, assuming there was dim light within range:

"A shadow falls across your prisoner, though you can't see what casts it. He twists in his bonds and is gone.
Roll Perception."

If they fail perception, they don't see the dancer or notice the ropes. If they specifically ask about the ropes, they get a second check, since they're examining the chair closely. If they reach for it or directly interact with the chair they'll notice.

Dark Archive

Roac wrote:


Then there's the pinned condition.

Pinned wrote:
A pinned creature is tightly bound and can take few actions. A pinned creature cannot move and is denied its Dexterity bonus.. A pinned character also takes an additional –4 penalty to his Armor Class. A pinned creature is limited in the actions that it can take. A pinned creature can always attempt to free itself, usually through a combat maneuver check
It takes a full minute to escape from ropes so I would rule that if the shadowdancer would be able to do that without the interrogator doing something about it (and if he escaped from the bonds) then he would be able to use HiPs.

It only states that it takes 10 rounds if you are using the Escape Artist skill. A combat maneuver check is also an option and since no action is listed for that, I can assume that it would be a standard (as a grapple CM). I figure that the rogue has, a minimal, a 5% chance to escape (nat 20 on the CM check) going that route. If that does not work, then it is time to bluff and get working on those ropes.

away from that, I always described the HiPS as the characters eyes slipping past that space with out realizing it (think of Hitchhikers Guide's "Someone Else's Problem Field"). A high perception means that you are good at seeing things that other either cannot or will not see (at least in my mind).


Happler wrote:
I figure that the rogue has, a minimal, a 5% chance to escape (nat 20 on the CM check) going that route. If that does not work, then it is time to bluff and get working on those ropes.

It's specifically stated that a natural 20 doesn't always succeed in breaking out of ropes.

Happler wrote:
away from that, I always described the HiPS as the characters eyes slipping past that space with out realizing it (think of Hitchhikers Guide's "Someone Else's Problem Field"). A high perception means that you are good at seeing things that other either cannot or will not see (at least in my mind).

Does this mean I should paint my next Shadowdancer pink?


thejeff wrote:


The blanket provides concealment allowing you to use the stealth skill.
You make your rolls to remain motionless and avoid making noise.

So a paralyzed PC can't move nor make any noise... do they auto-succeed or do they still have to roll the stealth check?

See any problem with this?

-James


james maissen wrote:
thejeff wrote:


The blanket provides concealment allowing you to use the stealth skill.
You make your rolls to remain motionless and avoid making noise.

So a paralyzed PC can't move nor make any noise... do they auto-succeed or do they still have to roll the stealth check?

See any problem with this?

-James

Let's take the common trope of being hauled past the guards at the gate in a wagon with stuff piled in it and blankets covering you all so that the blanket is not in the perfect shape of a person.

Who has a better chance of not being noticed: The trained rogue with maxed out stealth, the clumsy fighter with no stealth practice or the paralyzed guy?

Or should it only depend on the roll of the driver who pulled the blanket over the top?

In some cases the paralyzed guy would auto-succeed. If he's behind cover so he can't be seen but only heard, for example.


thejeff wrote:


Let's take the common trope of being hauled past the guards at the gate in a wagon with stuff piled in it and blankets covering you all so that the blanket is not in the perfect shape of a person.
Who has a better chance of not being noticed: The trained rogue with maxed out stealth, the clumsy fighter with no stealth practice or the paralyzed guy?

Or should it only depend on the roll of the driver who pulled the blanket over the top?

Who's doing the hiding? Lie there be still doesn't sound like it to me.

Shouldn't the guy who pulled the blanket over you in the manor described above matter? Isn't that the skill that's involved in this?

Now when the wizard sneezes, or the barbarian says 'ooh that tickles', certainly they factor in and give themselves away (in very comedic manors to boot). But the first job was done in the embolden stage above that had nothing to do with the 'cargo'.

Now the paralyzed guy would not give himself away like the wizard or barbarian above, but it's not him hiding, but rather being hidden. He's the object of the action, not the one doing the action.

-James

101 to 123 of 123 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Rules Questions / Hide in Plain Sight in the interrogation room All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.