Feather Falling and You.


Rules Questions

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Darth Grall wrote:
Well, seems he's wrong since the falling sections says what it says. But hey, it's an ignore I'm gonna ignore.

Only slightly.

He is right about it being a general rule that you fall too fast to have a chance to cast most spells.


Man,

This is really going to be a supprise to the next PFS game i run when FF is needed.

Silver Crusade

Flat-Footed wrote:-

'At the start of a battle, before you have had a chance to act (specifically, before your first regular turn in the initiative order), you are flat-footed.'

So you're walking down the regulation 10-foot wide corridor without noticing the giant 'X' on the floor, and a pit trap opens beneath you. The pit trap is 495-feet deep but there are no spikes or invisible gelatinous cubes at the bottom because they spent all their money on bribing the contractors.

You fall. The DM has no capacity to make a judgement, so resorts to reading the concentration rules untainted by any discretion. 'Concentration check DC21', he demands of your daydreaming first level wizard in the pointy hat.

Realising that this DM has no ears to hear good advice, only eyes to read rules, you fight fire with fire. You open the CRB to the section on 'flat-footed:-

'At the start of a battle, before you have had a chance to act (specifically, before your first regular turn in the initiative order), you are flat-footed.'

...and point out that this is not the start of a battle, initiative is not being rolled, so RAW, you aren't flat-footed!

Since you aren't flat-footed the restriction against immediate actions being unusable while flat-footed does not apply. Since you can use immediate actions at any time, even when it isn't your turn (except when you're flat-footed which you just proved you're not!), you can cast Feather Fall before you start to fall!

If the DM only goes by the letter of the rules, the above applies. If he uses his intellect rather than refusing to think for himself, then he must realise that Feather Fall is designed to stop first level wizards being killed by pit traps.

Until the spell's duration ends after 60-feet....!


Malachi Silverclaw wrote:

Flat-Footed wrote:-

'At the start of a battle, before you have had a chance to act (specifically, before your first regular turn in the initiative order), you are flat-footed.'

So you're walking down the regulation 10-foot wide corridor without noticing the giant 'X' on the floor, and a pit trap opens beneath you. The pit trap is 495-feet deep but there are no spikes or invisible gelatinous cubes at the bottom because they spent all their money on bribing the contractors.

You fall. The DM has no capacity to make a judgement, so resorts to reading the concentration rules untainted by any discretion. 'Concentration check DC21', he demands of your daydreaming first level wizard in the pointy hat.

Realising that this DM has no ears to hear good advice, only eyes to read rules, you fight fire with fire. You open the CRB to the section on 'flat-footed:-

'At the start of a battle, before you have had a chance to act (specifically, before your first regular turn in the initiative order), you are flat-footed.'

...and point out that this is not the start of a battle, initiative is not being rolled, so RAW, you aren't flat-footed!

Since you aren't flat-footed the restriction against immediate actions being unusable while flat-footed does not apply. Since you can use immediate actions at any time, even when it isn't your turn (except when you're flat-footed which you just proved you're not!), you can cast Feather Fall before you start to fall!

If the DM only goes by the letter of the rules, the above applies. If he uses his intellect rather than refusing to think for himself, then he must realise that Feather Fall is designed to stop first level wizards being killed by pit traps.

Until the spell's duration ends after 60-feet....!

Again, I think its dumb and for my homebrew I won't do it that way; but RAW you're supposed to make a concentration check. And being flat-footed has nothing to do with it. It's under the rules for falling in the CRB.

Silver Crusade

That's why you cast FF before you start to fall.

BTW, the immediate action is relevant because that's the casting time for FF. In order for you to be able to use that immediate action you cannot be flat-footed.


Malachi Silverclaw wrote:
That's why you cast FF before you start to fall.

If a pit opens up on you when it's not on your turn, then that's not really an option. Gotta make the check.

Quote:
BTW, the immediate action is relevant because that's the casting time for FF. In order for you to be able to use that immediate action you cannot be flat-footed.

I am aware, but in your situation you shouldn't be flatfooted since it isn't a battle... At least no more than walking up a set of stairs is.

DR doesn't apply to fall damage because no attacks are being made, the ground isn't "attacking" you; it's just a hazardous effect. Hence why it's in the enviroment section of the rules and not combat.


blackbloodtroll wrote:

Tell him you are actually having less fun.

Remember, having fun is the entire point.

Needless concentration checks impede your fun, and his bias towards spellcasters is helps no one.

If he refuses, ask if you can switch PCs, so you can play a class he won't needlessly pick on.

I'm not playing a Wizard. This whole thread exists because of a hypothetical scenario I used to explain Concentration rules to my GM out-of-game. It never actually happened in play, no actual players were harmed in the making of this thread.

It does turn me off to playing under him, yes, and it definitely is a screwed up bias he has against classes with spellcasting capability, but I'm not sure that "I'm not having fun" is a compelling reason for him to change his stance. Guys have a peculiar aversion to ever admitting being wrong or silly. If you want a guy to change his mind, you've got to convince him that it works out better for him.

Karlgamer wrote:

I asked:

me wrote:
Does Feather Fall require a concentration check if your falling?

James Jacobs responded:

James Jacobs wrote:
Nope. Does falling normally require a concentration check? I'd say probably not, since as a general rule, you fall too fast to have a chance to cast most spells.
This is a surprising yet typical James Jacobs response.

Now that's what we needed!


Aunt Tony wrote:
Karlgamer wrote:

I asked:

me wrote:
Does Feather Fall require a concentration check if your falling?

James Jacobs responded:

James Jacobs wrote:
Nope. Does falling normally require a concentration check? I'd say probably not, since as a general rule, you fall too fast to have a chance to cast most spells.
This is a surprising yet typical James Jacobs response.
Now that's what we needed!

You had better link your GM all the relevant information, both the Enviroment rules for falling & the response from JJ. As your gm, inexperienced or otherwise, he needs to be the one to make the decision on if he's playing with that rule.

For example, after looking things up and seeing that you do have to make a concentration check, I immediately posted a new house rule on my groups facebook page: "Spells with a casting time of an 'Immediate Action' don't require a concentration check when falling."

But if he still wants you to run with a conc check, that's his call. You just had be very careful until you reach mid levels...


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Aunt Tony wrote:
Karlgamer wrote:

I asked:

me wrote:
Does Feather Fall require a concentration check if your falling?

James Jacobs responded:

James Jacobs wrote:
Nope. Does falling normally require a concentration check? I'd say probably not, since as a general rule, you fall too fast to have a chance to cast most spells.
This is a surprising yet typical James Jacobs response.
Now that's what we needed!

Sorry, I'll take JJ's word over yours, Darth Grall. 'Cause if interpreting rules like JJ is wrong, I don't wanna be right :)

Seriously, that's what the freakin' spell is for.


I will point out that for PFS play sadly JJ's rulings hold no sway.

I will use his oppinion for my home games, but if you play PFS you better hope you can make a DC 21


Well, no I don't, but that inspires me to ask: have you heard of or seen that ruling in PFS? And has it been codified from the top down, or is it still down to the best guess of an individual judge?


seen what ruling?

one on feather fall? nope.

However as PFS judges we have to use RAW as much as we can.

Per current RAW FF while falling does require a check.

No one here is disputing that, most people (me too) say that it's stupid to need one, and that it could not have been the intent.

JJ also says that in his oppinion it sould not need a check.

However PFS is really specific on what rulings are legal and what are not.

So until the campaign leadership say otherwise, or it hits the FAQ, as PFS judges we are required to play by RAW.


Concentration:

The spell can be cast only on "one Medium or smaller free-falling object or creature/level."(CRB) If casting on yourself rather than another creature, you must already be falling in order to cast the spell ergo you are required to make the concentration check for casting while falling.

Flat-footed/Immediate action:

Unless you are flat-footed because of falling in combat (or while incapacitated in a manner that puts you in a flat-footed state) the immediate action can be taken. If you start your fall while flat-footed but lose the flat-footed state before landing, you can cast the spell as an immediate action as soon as you are able.


Yes but even RAW is disputable. You've seen the thread going round about deathwatch? The OP said, like, everyone was interpreting it one way. Then the main PFS dude (mike?) waded into the thread and said "Nope, tell 'em all they're wrong. That's absurd."

After his post, PSFers were still debating how the other way was right by RAW like he never posted :)

Edit: the point is, RAW is not always crystal clear.


Thefurmonger wrote:

seen what ruling?

one on feather fall? nope.

However as PFS judges we have to use RAW as much as we can.

Per current RAW FF while falling does require a check.

No one here is disputing that, most people (me too) say that it's stupid to need one, and that it could not have been the intent.

JJ also says that in his oppinion it sould not need a check.

However PFS is really specific on what rulings are legal and what are not.

So until the campaign leadership say otherwise, or it hits the FAQ, as PFS judges we are required to play by RAW.

Since no one ever seems to have used this interpretation before it was raised here, I would suggest hiding this thread and never mentioning it again. That way PFS judges won't see it and won't know they should be ruling stupidly on this issue.

</snark>

Alternately I suppose, the judges reading this could spring it on any players who try to use Feather Fall and any players could point it out to their judges in hopes of causing enough of a stink to get an official ruling quickly.


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littlehewy wrote:
Yes but even RAW is disputable.

How is it even questionable? I agree, it's not the way the spell was inteded in previous editions, but the reading is completely clear.

"A character cannot cast a spell while falling, unless the fall is greater than 500 feet or the spell is an immediate action, such as feather fall. Casting a spell while falling requires a concentration check with a DC equal to 20 + the spell's level. Casting teleport or a similar spell while falling does not end your momentum, it just changes your location, meaning that you still take falling damage, even if you arrive atop a solid surface.

The only way Feather Fall doesn't get a concentration check, is if immediate actions were meant to be immune to the bolded check.

Anyways, I asked JJ again for further clarification since he clearly wasn't aware of the rule, if it helps anyone.


Darth Grall wrote:
littlehewy wrote:
Yes but even RAW is disputable.

How is it even questionable? I agree, it's not the way the spell was inteded in previous editions, but the reading is completely clear.

"A character cannot cast a spell while falling, unless the fall is greater than 500 feet or the spell is an immediate action, such as feather fall. Casting a spell while falling requires a concentration check with a DC equal to 20 + the spell's level. Casting teleport or a similar spell while falling does not end your momentum, it just changes your location, meaning that you still take falling damage, even if you arrive atop a solid surface.

The only way Feather Fall doesn't get a concentration check, is if immediate actions were meant to be immune to the bolded check.

Yes but as pointed out, an immediate action can be used at any time - and so could be cast the split second before the falling began. I step on a pit trap, I begin to feel a tiny shift as the trap door moves, but I'm not yet falling - "Immediate action!" (This is meant as an example, not as proof or my opinion.)

Likewise with the deathwatch effect - the spell description doesn't specify that you need to be able to see the target to sense their life force, but it's understood... Does it say anywhere in RAW that humans are bipedal?

There are gaps everywhere. Is what I'm saying. Not specifically am I claiming that feather fall doesn't need a concentration check by RAW.


littlehewy wrote:
Yes but as pointed out, an immediate action can be used at any time - and so could be cast the split second before the falling began. I step on a pit trap, I begin to feel a tiny shift as the trap door moves, but I'm not yet falling - "Immediate action!" (This is meant as an example, not as proof or my opinion.)

But that doesn't work, since you can only cast Feather Fall on a free-falling creature or object. By the time you're falling, the concentration check would apply.

Not that I disagree with your general principle that RAW isn't always clear, but that isn't a way around it.


thejeff wrote:
littlehewy wrote:
Yes but as pointed out, an immediate action can be used at any time - and so could be cast the split second before the falling began. I step on a pit trap, I begin to feel a tiny shift as the trap door moves, but I'm not yet falling - "Immediate action!" (This is meant as an example, not as proof or my opinion.)

But that doesn't work, since you can only cast Feather Fall on a free-falling creature or object. By the time you're falling, the concentration check would apply.

Not that I disagree with your general principle that RAW isn't always clear, but that isn't a way around it.

Right you are...

It's 3.30am here. Not exactly the logic hour. I'll be back tomorrow with somewhat possibly compelling general concepts...

Edit: just to clarify, I'd never make my players roll that concentration check, and I'd be silently indignant if I were asked to, but I think it's entirely possible that it may just be RAI as well as apparently RAW to have to roll in that situation.


thejeff wrote:
Not that I disagree with your general principle that RAW isn't always clear, but that isn't a way around it.

That's the main problem. Just because it's stupid and shouldn't work like that isn't a reason to ignore the RAW when the GM is trying to learn the ... rules as written...

The Exchange

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Feather fall and Emergency Force Sphere are the only two spells that come to mind as immediate actions.

Immediate actions interrupt the normal turn flow and take place in the split second before the triggering action.

So, in this case, featherfall is triggered before the falling condition is acquired.

So, in that split second - you are not violently moving- in fact if you are considered to be moving at all you are moving at much less than the usual daily distractions of walking in a dark, dank creepy dungeon etc.
Restating - you are casting before the condition of violent movement applies.

This is both RAI and RAW.

I submit to your consideration that I have been reffed at official paizo events and this is how the spell has been reffed in these events.
Additionally, this is how it has been reffed at official 3.5 events.

But if this isn't enough, a bit about RAI:
Finally, as a bit of subjective evidence. The spell is meant to be available to low level characters as evidenced by the fact that its a first level spell. Had they meant to make it unusuable by requireing a concentration check there is a chance that the devs would have made it a higher level. Ie,. the fact that it is a first level spell suggests that the developers intended it to be usable at low levels.


cp wrote:

Feather fall and Emergency Force Sphere are the only two spells that come to mind as immediate actions.

Immediate actions interrupt the normal turn flow and take place in the split second before the triggering action.

So, in this case, featherfall is triggered before the falling condition is acquired.

So, in that split second - you are not violently moving- in fact if you are considered to be moving at all you are moving at much less than the usual daily distractions of walking in a dark, dank creepy dungeon etc.
Restating - you are casting before the condition of violent movement applies.

This is both RAI and RAW.

I submit to your consideration that I have been reffed at official paizo events and this is how the spell has been reffed in these events.
Additionally, this is how it has been reffed at official 3.5 events.

I'm fine with running the game like this, again I created a houserule for my own game just to avoid this nonsense, but I just think they need to clarify the wording for future editions like the eventual PF 2.0.

The problem is there isn't a good set of rules for interupting actions or reacting to them, like there is in more rule focused games. Simply saying you cast the spell before you fall is a falacy, since the spell has to be cast on someone currently free-falling. Simply including a few words, to the spell or perhaps the falling text, avoids this problem.

Quote:
Finally, as a bit of subjective evidence. The spell is meant to be available to low level characters as evidenced by the fact that its a first level spell. Had they meant to make it unusuable by requireing a concentration check there is a chance that the devs would have made it a higher level. Ie,. the fact that it is a first level spell suggests that the developers intended it to be usable at low levels.

Though I'm for running the spell like the 3.5 version, this I feel is a weak arguement. The DC isn't impossible and presumably a level 1 wizard isn't falling down a height that would automatically kill them either. Lets say you're a level 1 wizard, with 6 HP(no con mod, FC bonus to skills). You fall down 20 feet and would take 2d6 damage, potentially crippling but not going to outright kill you and is still variable damage.

But you cast Feather Fall. Assuming you had a low point buy/didn't want to min-max; you have at least a 16 in your Int. Your concentration check is +4 to a check of 21, meaning you need a 17 or higher roll. That a 20% chance of succeeding at taking no damage. At 18 Int you have a 25% chance of success and 30% at 20 Int. Each level adds another 5% chance of success as the spell scales with distance and the DC gets progressively easier.

That's not terribly unreasonable imo. It just means that falling is a serious threat, as opposed to something a level 1 Wizard never has to worry about. I don't think it's how my group would want to play the spell, especially since many of them are old 3.5 players, but none the less I don't think the rule's a terrible one. Just an inconvinient one.


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No, a spell having an 80% chance of instantly failing at doing the only thing it's supposed to do is incredibly unreasonable. Especially when it's already a corner-case spell that may not even see use on any given day.

For comparison, full plate only imposes a 35% arcane spell failure chance (down to 25% with mithral). Unless they're focusing on rays, Wizards don't care about the nonproficiency penalty to attack rolls, and that +9 AC makes them much more survivable. And 35% or 25% is a much lower chance of failure than 80% - so if an 80% chance of failure isn't terribly unreasonable, that mere 35% chance of failure must be a drop in the bucket, and all wizards should walk around in full plate at all times.

Also, your level 1 wizard probably only has four first-level spells per day, so if you're always spending one of them on Feather Fall, you're burning through 25% of your casting power just in case you might fall. That's a nontrivial cost to protect against falling. If you then decide that paying 25% of your spells per day to prevent falling has absolutely no effect 80% of the time even when you do fall? You may as well remove Feather Fall from the rules entirely; it's a worthless spell.


Roberta Yang wrote:
Stuff

But it gets better level by level, so more experienced wizards, IE higher level wizards, are practically guaranteed success. Again, not great, but its a choice between death and maybe not death; I think I'd take it.

Regardless, it seems that this was a rule that got in there late in development and they didn't catch it in time to add something to account for feather fall.

Though his arguement for why that they can cast it before they fall is in error imo, since the target is a character in freefall, but I'm fine with that they would have put something in either the spell or the text to exclude immediates from the check. I think that should settle it for PFS play.


By level 7, you've got a 50/50 chance of passing it. So apparently you can cast fourth-level spells, but a basic first-level spell is still way too hard to use consistently? You don't become guaranteed to pass it until the mid-teens, which is ridiculous.

Why would Feather Fall be the one first-level spell that's so hard to use? Color Spray and Grease don't require any sort of concentration check, but now Feather Fall needs to be impossible for a low- or even mid-level wizard to use properly?


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Aunt Tony wrote:
Is a DC 21 Concentration check required in order to cast Feather Fall after, say, a pit opened up beneath you?

I would ask my DM. If I disagreed with him (invariably a 'him', where are all the estrogen-based DMs in my life) I would try to get him drunk and record him agreeing with me.

I tend not to be of the "let's pick apart every sentence in the rulebook" crowd, so I either accept the ruling, or I passive aggressively bring nachos to the table and keep them just out of reach of the DM until they agree with me, then I push it closer to reward them.

It's a situational level 1 spell that's useful in arresting falls at a range. Would I rule that you'd need more rolling to make the spell work when the dust is finally blown off and it's employed...nope, but I could see others (generally those with die rolling fetishes) arguing the other side.

The spell is like a parachute. You almost never need it, but you feel happier that it's there waiting if you need it.

Add in a concentration check and that parachute is a coin flip away from being just a normal backpack filled with smelly socks. That's less fun, though possibly hilarious, especially when it happens to someone else.

At times the RAW vs. RAI thing is funny to watch because people will argue about anything. I could see a debate sparking up over the magic missile darting forth from one's fingertip and someone freaking out that wearing gloves blocks it!


Roberta Yang wrote:

By level 7, you've got a 50/50 chance of passing it. So apparently you can cast fourth-level spells, but a basic first-level spell is still way too hard to use consistently? You don't become guaranteed to pass it until the mid-teens, which is ridiculous.

Why would Feather Fall be the one first-level spell that's so hard to use? Color Spray and Grease don't require any sort of concentration check, but now Feather Fall needs to be impossible for a low- or even mid-level wizard to use properly?

Feather Fall completely counters falling though. It goes off, you stop everyone falling from taking damage and the distance scales it stops scales over level. Its very effective at what it does. I can see why someone would want to add a rule for a bit of chance for what otherwise is an auto-success with that spell.

Granted, I'm not saying I like the rule(Not playing with it); nor that I think such a DC scales appropriately(a DC 15 + spell level would be fairer) but completely countering every fall trap is a little boring. And don't tell me that you have to have it prepared... Cause wands of Feather Fall are cheap.


Darth Grall wrote:
Roberta Yang wrote:

By level 7, you've got a 50/50 chance of passing it. So apparently you can cast fourth-level spells, but a basic first-level spell is still way too hard to use consistently? You don't become guaranteed to pass it until the mid-teens, which is ridiculous.

Why would Feather Fall be the one first-level spell that's so hard to use? Color Spray and Grease don't require any sort of concentration check, but now Feather Fall needs to be impossible for a low- or even mid-level wizard to use properly?

Feather Fall completely counters falling though. It goes off, you stop everyone falling from taking damage and the distance scales it stops scales over level. Its very effective at what it does. I can see why someone would want to add a rule for a bit of chance for what otherwise is an auto-success with that spell.

Granted, I'm not saying I like the rule(Not playing with it); nor that I think such a DC scales appropriately(a DC 15 + spell level would be fairer) but completely countering every fall trap is a little boring. And don't tell me that you have to have it prepared... Cause wands of Feather Fall are cheap.

Unless you've got your wand of Feather Fall out already (and maybe even then?) it's not an immediate action, so it's of little use.


cp wrote:

Feather fall and Emergency Force Sphere are the only two spells that come to mind as immediate actions.

Immediate actions interrupt the normal turn flow and take place in the split second before the triggering action.

So, in this case, featherfall is triggered before the falling condition is acquired.

So, in that split second - you are not violently moving- in fact if you are considered to be moving at all you are moving at much less than the usual daily distractions of walking in a dark, dank creepy dungeon etc.
Restating - you are casting before the condition of violent movement applies.

This is both RAI and RAW.

I submit to your consideration that I have been reffed at official paizo events and this is how the spell has been reffed in these events.
Additionally, this is how it has been reffed at official 3.5 events.

But if this isn't enough, a bit about RAI:
Finally, as a bit of subjective evidence. The spell is meant to be available to low level characters as evidenced by the fact that its a first level spell. Had they meant to make it unusuable by requireing a concentration check there is a chance that the devs would have made it a higher level. Ie,. the fact that it is a first level spell suggests that the developers intended it to be usable at low levels.

As other's have said: RAW requires you to be falling to have Feather Fall cast on you. RAW requires a concentration check if you're falling. It doesn't seem possible to be both falling and not-falling simultaneously.

I agree that the intent seems obvious.

I suspect it's always been run that way at official events because everyone assumed that RAW made feather fall an exception.


Darth Grall wrote:

Feather Fall completely counters falling though. It goes off, you stop everyone falling from taking damage and the distance scales it stops scales over level. Its very effective at what it does. I can see why someone would want to add a rule for a bit of chance for what otherwise is an auto-success with that spell.

Granted, I'm not saying I like the rule(Not playing with it); nor that I think such a DC scales appropriately(a DC 15 + spell level would be fairer) but completely countering every fall trap is a little boring. And don't tell me that you have to have it prepared... Cause wands of Feather Fall are cheap.

Why is my wizard walking around with a Wand of Feather Fall in his hand?

And seriously, when the hell did Feather Fall become so game-breakingly powerful that it needs more than 50% failure chance added to it to balance it out? Next I'll be seeing threads about how Monks need to be nerfed because Slow Fall totally negates fall traps which breaks the game. I guess if it's so strong, screw Color Spray and Grease, I'm memorizing Feather Fall in all of my slots; after all, it's a complete counter, which is like a Dispel Magic except even better because it doesn't require a caster level check, and the only tiny drawback is that it's pretty much useless in most situations.

If you don't like Feather Fall, feel free to ban it when you GM, but don't pretend that it's overpowered because it "completely counters" falling.


Roberta Yang wrote:

And seriously, when the hell did Feather Fall become so game-breakingly powerful that it needs more than 50% failure chance added to it to balance it out? Next I'll be seeing threads about how Monks need to be nerfed because Slow Fall totally negates fall traps which breaks the game. I guess if it's so strong, screw Color Spray and Grease, I'm memorizing Feather Fall in all of my slots; after all, it's a complete counter, which is like a Dispel Magic except even better because it doesn't require a caster level check, and the only tiny drawback is that it's pretty much useless in most situations.

If you don't like Feather Fall, feel free to ban it when you GM, but don't pretend that it's overpowered because it "completely counters" falling.

Or just take a level of witch and the Flight hex. Feather Fall at will!

Now that completely counters falling.


thejeff wrote:

Or just take a level of witch and the Flight hex. Feather Fall at will!

Now that completely counters falling.

No, that's boring and completely negates falling traps, which I have suddenly decided is game-breaking and unacceptable even though it has never been an issue at any other point in the history of this game. It is imperative that you pass a DC20 INT check to use that flight hex, otherwise it's overpowered.


James Jacobs wrote:
Gauss wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Nope; no concentration check is necessary to cast feather fall if you cast it the instant before you are falling.

Unfortunately, some people state that is not possible for one of two reasons.

First reason: They believe (incorrectly) that the moment you have no surface to support you you are now falling and thus you cannot use an immediate action between the time you have no surface to support you and the time you start your falling movement.

First reason variation 2: Since the Feather Fall spell states that the target has to be free falling people state that you cannot cast it upon yourself until you are actually free falling. Thus, you cannot cast it until you actually start your fall. At that point you must also make a concentration check.

Second reason: They use the immediate action-flat-footed rule which states that you cannot us an immediate action until your first turn. So they then say that if you run into a hazard (Such as a pit) and the pit 'catches you flat-footed' you cannot then use feather fall because of that rule. They state you cannot cast it before you actually begin falling.

One other thing some people want to apply incorrectly: The concentration rules regarding vigorous or violent motion. Somehow they believe that falling qualifies as vigorous or violent motion and so want to force players to make two concentration checks while falling.

*sighs*

There is no question here, just a bit of a vent.

- Gauss

Sounds like, to some people, the game is not about having fun but about finding ways to make the game NOT be fun. I don't like gaming with those types of gamers.

Lol sounds like JJ doesn't play PFS :) (joking!)


Roberta Yang wrote:
Darth Grall wrote:

Feather Fall completely counters falling though. It goes off, you stop everyone falling from taking damage and the distance scales it stops scales over level. Its very effective at what it does. I can see why someone would want to add a rule for a bit of chance for what otherwise is an auto-success with that spell.

Granted, I'm not saying I like the rule(Not playing with it); nor that I think such a DC scales appropriately(a DC 15 + spell level would be fairer) but completely countering every fall trap is a little boring. And don't tell me that you have to have it prepared... Cause wands of Feather Fall are cheap.

Why is my wizard walking around with a Wand of Feather Fall in his hand?

And seriously, when the hell did Feather Fall become so game-breakingly powerful that it needs more than 50% failure chance added to it to balance it out? Next I'll be seeing threads about how Monks need to be nerfed because Slow Fall totally negates fall traps which breaks the game. I guess if it's so strong, screw Color Spray and Grease, I'm memorizing Feather Fall in all of my slots; after all, it's a complete counter, which is like a Dispel Magic except even better because it doesn't require a caster level check, and the only tiny drawback is that it's pretty much useless in most situations.

If you don't like Feather Fall, feel free to ban it when you GM, but don't pretend that it's overpowered because it "completely counters" falling.

This has nothing to do with "what should the rule be?"

We all agree that there should be no check.
This has nothing to due with weather or not falling damage is game breaking.

The question was "By the rules, does FF require a check?"

The strict anwser is "Yes"

Do I personally think thats right? well no.

Will I require it in my home campaign? also no.

However in some campaigns (PFS for one) RAW is king.

While I do not agree with the OP's GM decision to require it, in the end, he was right.


RAW requires common sense to function. And while "common sense" may be a troublesome term between philosophers, I think we all agree that RAW needs to be interpreted to function. I refer you to the old "RAW doesn't specify 'dead' as a condition, nor the negative effects of being dead, so I can keep attacking" idea. The GM and players need to interpret the rules and fill in the gaps with common sense in the interest of fun and fairness to play the game - RAW doesn't tell you how to do that.

"RAW is king" is an imaginary concept.


Too late to edit. Let me phrase it better:
In my opinion, "RAW is king" is an imaginary concept :)


littlehewy wrote:
In my opinion, "RAW is king" is an imaginary concept :)

RAI has always trumped RAW.

There is a reason why GM's don't allow Bag-Of-Rats Fighters.


Roberta Yang wrote:

Why is my wizard walking around with a Wand of Feather Fall in his hand?

And seriously, when the hell did Feather Fall become so game-breakingly powerful that it needs more than 50% failure chance added to it to balance it out? Next I'll be seeing threads about how Monks need to be nerfed because Slow Fall totally negates fall traps which breaks the game. I guess if it's so strong, screw Color Spray and Grease, I'm memorizing Feather Fall in all of my slots; after all, it's a complete counter, which is like a Dispel Magic except even better because it doesn't require a caster level check, and the only tiny drawback is that it's pretty much useless in most situations.

If you don't like Feather Fall, feel free to ban it when you GM, but don't pretend that it's overpowered because it "completely counters" falling.

Wow, chill Roberta.

All I was saying is that some DMs don't like certain spells automatically succeeding. Teleporting doesn't have an automatic success rate, you have a percentile depending on the location. For Fly, one has to make a skill check if they want to move fast or hover. Even Slow Fall, has a specific set of circumstances it works in(much smaller than feather fall, only works on yourself, and requires a wall to fall from). Automatic success takes away the risk of the game, ie the fun, so I can see

Furthermore, I reiterate, I'm not a fan of the interpretation, again I've house ruled immediates don't need a check, but it's plain that they need to add an exemption to the text in a future version of Pathfinder. That someone, our OP here, had someone call him out on how feather fall was used proves my case that common sense isn't enough. No need to be so hostile just for that.


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Karlgamer wrote:
littlehewy wrote:
In my opinion, "RAW is king" is an imaginary concept :)

RAI has always trumped RAW.

There is a reason why GM's don't allow Bag-Of-Rats Fighters.

And this is why, if the GM dares to pull this crap on me in actual play, he will be bludgeoned to death with a Type IV Bag of Holding containing many Fighters, each holding bags of rats... before he finds someone else to play with.


Aunt Tony wrote:
Karlgamer wrote:
littlehewy wrote:
In my opinion, "RAW is king" is an imaginary concept :)

RAI has always trumped RAW.

There is a reason why GM's don't allow Bag-Of-Rats Fighters.

And this is why, if the GM dares to pull this crap on me in actual play, he will be bludgeoned to death with a Type IV Bag of Holding containing many Fighters, each holding bags of rats... before he finds someone else to play with.

But are the fighters undead? Cause a bag of holding only has enough air in the bag for 10 minutes for a person and each additional fighter would theoretically reduce the air in the bag but undead fighters wouldn't care...


Darth Grall

A Little tidbit:

The Bag of Holding's statement about how much air it holds is related to another rule on CRB p445 regarding the amount of air in a 10x10x10 area (1,000cubic feet). 1,000cubic feet is stated to hold 6hours of air for a single person before going stale.

A Type 4 Bag of Holding has 250cubic feet so should be able to hold 1.5hours of air before going stale. oops :D

A Type 1 Bag of Holding has 30cubic feet which should be able to hold 10.8minutes of air (close to the 10minute statement).

Based on this, I would allow a person to stay in a Type 4 for a 1.5hours before suffocation issues set in.

- Gauss

Silver Crusade

Wands of Feather Fall are of limited use. The activation time for a wand is a minimum of a standard action even if the spell it contains has a casting time of a swift or immediate action.


Gauss wrote:

Darth Grall

A Little tidbit:

The Bag of Holding's statement about how much air it holds is related to another rule on CRB p445 regarding the amount of air in a 10x10x10 area (1,000cubic feet). 1,000cubic feet is stated to hold 6hours of air for a single person before going stale.

A Type 4 Bag of Holding has 250cubic feet so should be able to hold 1.5hours of air before going stale. oops :D

A Type 1 Bag of Holding has 30cubic feet which should be able to hold 10.8minutes of air (close to the 10minute statement).

Based on this, I would allow a person to stay in a Type 4 for a 1.5hours before suffocation issues set in.

- Gauss

Haha, good point! However to avoid carrying around a seperate table for the amount of air a bag of holing carries at all times, not counting the amount of space filled with Adventurers junk... I'd probably just rule that regardless of how long X amount of creatures can live inside a Bag they only get 10 minutes regardless. Especially since I remembered the wording of the item incorrectly and it seems to allow more than one creature in the bag anyways lol.
Quote:
If living creatures are placed within the bag, they can survive for up to 10 minutes, after which time they suffocate.

So the moral of the story is, you can carry living Fighters in a Bag of Holding... For 10 minutes anyways.


Malachi Silverclaw wrote:
Wands of Feather Fall are of limited use. The activation time for a wand is a minimum of a standard action even if the spell it contains has a casting time of a swift or immediate action.

The Ring of Feather Falling is only CL 1, but it triggers immediately and automatically should the wearer fall more than 5 feet.

... and Rings of FF juuuuuuuust might be a Ring of Air Control! so don't throw those puppies away.

Dark Archive

Darth Grall wrote:
So the moral of the story is, you can carry living Fighters in a Bag of Holding... For 10 minutes anyways.

So... I can load up my type II bag with around a dozen hobbits, and they can breath for 10 minutes. Or I can just put one hobbit in, and he still has only 10 minutes of air. Or, I can put in a bear, and it can breath for 10 minutes. Wow.

Oh well, it's a magic bag, it's supposed to do magic things like not make sense.


Maerimydra wrote:
Not being able to cast feather fall when flat-footed does make a lot of sense and this is how I would rule it.

Any time that you aren't in combat, you are flat-footed. If a pit suddenly opens up underneath you when you're not in combat, you are flat-footed. Worse, if you're standing on top of a wall all alone, nothing else happening, you're still flat-footed. By your rule, the wizard cannot cast Featherfall.

Characters with the Uncanny Dodge class ability would be able to cast whenever they want though.

[I don't subscribe to this interpretation. I am just presenting it as a reductio ad absurdum.]

Grand Lodge

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

RAW you have to be falling to cast FF: clear.
RAW you have a concentration check if vigorous motion: Clear.

RAW:Vigorous Motion:

If you are riding on a moving mount, taking a bouncy ride in a wagon, on a small boat in rough water, below-decks in a storm-tossed ship, or simply being jostled in a similar fashion, you must make a concentration check (DC 10 + the level of the spell you're casting) or lose the spell.

RAW:Violent Motion:

If you are on a galloping horse, taking a very rough ride in a wagon, on a small boat in rapids or in a storm, on deck in a storm-tossed ship, or being pitched roughly about in a similar fashion, you must make a concentration check (DC 15 + the level of the spell you're casting) or lose the spell. If the motion is extremely violent, such as that caused by an earthquake, the DC is equal to 20 + the level of the spell you're casting.

RAW:Violent Weather:

You must make a concentration check if you try to cast a spell in violent weather. If you are in a high wind carrying blinding rain or sleet, the DC is 5 + the level of the spell you're casting. If you are in wind-driven hail, dust, or debris, the DC is 10 + the level of the spell you're casting.

as far as I can see, free falling is NOT any of the above :)
so FF is working perfectly, no checks.


It has nothing to do with vigorous motion. You have a concentration check if falling.

RAW: Falling:
A character cannot cast a spell while falling, unless the fall is greater than 500 feet or the spell is an immediate action, such as feather fall. Casting a spell while falling requires a concentration check with a DC equal to 20 + the spell's level.

The only question is whether feather fall is an exception to that part, in the same way it and other immediate action spells are exception to the "you can't cast a spell" part.


Vrischika111 wrote:
RAW you have to be falling to cast FF: clear.

No: you have to be falling to have FF cast on you.

It would still be of some use if it couldn't be cast while falling; it wouldn't protect you but it could protect any other party member.

Grand Lodge

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

theJeff> well if you quoted the RAW as well, then we're fine :)

**you cannot cast while falling UNLESS the spell is an immediate action like feather fall **

so we all agree (despite the fact that I missed some important parts, hey Matthew ;p ) that FF fully works

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