Scent, Stealth and Handle Animal


Rules Questions


Hello Pathfinder friends! I haven't been on here in a while, but I was hoping to pick the brains of those infinitely smarter than me.

The Situation:

My rogue is under the affects of Greater Invisibility. I am stalking behind a giant and three mammoths who are leaving a building (big building). I am near the other entrance of said big building, which housed mammoths. I move 5 feet in and decide to take a pot shot at one of the mammoths. I hit said mammoth and it yells loudly (or whatever mammoth's do). The giant, on his turn, gives the order for the mammoths to seek and tells them to go directly towards the other door (which was open, but I did not open it). They of course make a bee-line towards me and get within 5 feet, using scent and begin to pummel my pot-shotting tielfing butt.

I have a problem with this scenario.

First, how does the giant know where the arrow came from? Even if I didn't specify, with all the hair and such that mammoth's have and angle and such, how does the giant know that the arrow came from said other entrance? How did the giant not know I was flying or in one of the mammoth stalls that was in the building?

Second, even after the mammoth's found me, does the giant now have to give the order (spending a standard action during his turn) to give them the order to attack? You can't combine seek, and than add 'attack the thing you found' into a handle animal check, can you?

Needless to say, I felt very butt-hurt (which I apologized for afterwards), but I felt like my DC 53 Stealth check (+36 to stealth plus a 17 on the die), on top of the +20 from invisibility, which makes it a 73, gets nerfed by scent, which CR 1/2 dogs have. It just seems to me that any bad guy would keep dogs, as they completely negate someone's ability to sneak up on them. I made the decision that every bad guy I in my games from now on will keep dogs.

Any help on this would be appreciated.

Thank you.


First, the arrow is visible the moment it leaves you. He can see the arrow in flight and can thus note the direction.

CRB p302 wrote:
Items dropped or put down by an invisible creature become visible; items picked up disappear if tucked into the clothing or pouches worn by the creature. Light, however, never becomes invisible, although a source of light can become so (thus, the effect is that of a light with no visible source). Any part of an item that the subject carries but that extends more than 10 feet from it becomes visible.

Additionally, what was the distance from the mammoth to yourself? Scent has a range of 30 feet (half upwind, double downwind). Determining the direction is a move action after which it could move to you.

Second, Handle Animal (giving it orders) is a Move action, not a Standard action (unless they are Animal Companions).

Regardless, even with scent you have 50% concealment and should be able to handle a couple Mammoths at the level where you would have Greater Invisibility.

Finally, your stealth check was blown the moment you shot. You still retain +20 from Invisibility but unless you made another stealth check (move action) that is all you have.

Greater Invisibility does not stop retaliation, although it does mitigate it. It stops the creatures from initially detecting you.

How to deal with Scent: I suggest a potion of the spell Negate Aroma to fix that. :)

Alternately, just move out of the way. They will have to take another move action to reorient on your direction. You can move faster than they can when you double move and they do not.

- Gauss


I assume you made your sniping roll, since the -20 for sniping is offset by the +20 for invisibility.

That said, if the door was the most likely place for the arrow to come from, even a fairly stupid giant would do the same thing he did. Next time, move.


PRD wrote:
If an invisible creature strikes a character, the character struck knows the location of the creature that struck him (until, of course, the invisible creature moves). The only exception is if the invisible creature has a reach greater than 5 feet. In this case, the struck character knows the general location of the creature but has not pinpointed the exact location.

This means the mammoth knew roughly where you shot from the moment he was attacked. With that in mind understand (from a realistic POV) there are a LOT of things that happen INSTANTLY in your brain to process a threat to your life. Some of those things also include recognizing when things around you are reacting to danger and where they perceive that danger to be. That said, it is reasonable to think that between natural recognition of danger cues and a decent level of intelligence the Giant would be able to quickly guess the attacker's general location.

This is where the scenario breaks down a little, although I still think the GM's arbitration was pretty fair. As the mammoths charged toward you they would not have instantly found you as soon as you were inside the range of their scent ability. You would have been detected but there is a process for them to pinpoint something.

PRD wrote:
The creature detects another creature's presence but not its specific location. Noting the direction of the scent is a move action. If the creature moves within 5 feet (1 square) of the scent's source, the creature can pinpoint the area that the source occupies, even if it cannot be seen.

Another thing to note is that, if by chance, the creatures charged to within 5 feet of you, on their next turn they would be able to pinpoint you and attack on it's next turn. So your GM's scenario may well have been perfectly fair.

As for ALL bad guys having dogs, Scent is just a special ability that helps defeat stealth and invisibility. So, it just requires a little more special attention to circumvent when you are trying to be stealthy.

PRD wrote:
False, powerful odors can easily mask other scents. The presence of such an odor completely spoils the ability to properly detect or identify creatures, and the base Survival DC to track becomes 20 rather than 10.

There are several mundane, extraordinary, and magical things that can mask scents.


grab this feat:

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/feats/general-feats/conceal-scent


Quote:
I have a problem with this scenario.

Sorry, get a spatula. you're flattened.

Quote:
First, how does the giant know where the arrow came from?

1) the arrow is visible the second it leaves the bow, he can see it coming

2) The arrow and your bow are both rather audible, he can hear what zip code you came from with a dc 20 perception check. A creature can generally notice the presence of an active invisible creature within 30 feet with a DC 20 Perception check. The observer gains a hunch that “something's there” but can't see it or target it accurately with an attack

3) There is an arrow sticking out of his but.

If an invisible creature strikes a character, the character struck knows the location of the creature that struck him (until, of course, the invisible creature moves). The only exception is if the invisible creature has a reach greater than 5 feet. In this case, the struck character knows the general location of the creature but has not pinpointed the exact location.

4) Invisible creatures leave tracks. They can be tracked normally. Footprints in sand, mud, or other soft surfaces can give enemies clues to an invisible creature's location.

While not exactly a track, the arrow sticking out of his but is literally pointing at you.

Quote:
Second, even after the mammoth's found me, does the giant now have to give the order (spending a standard action during his turn) to give them the order to attack? You can't combine seek, and than add 'attack the thing you found' into a handle animal check, can you?

1) The mammoths probably have defend, and you are attacking their master

2) You shot the mammoth. It doesn't like you. He doesn't NEED to tell them to attack. If i got up to a police dog and whap it accross the ears I'm probably going to need some superglue for my fingers.

Quote:
Needless to say, I felt very butt-hurt (which I apologized for afterwards), but I felt like my DC 53 Stealth check (+36 to stealth plus a 17 on the die), on top of the +20 from invisibility, which makes it a 73, gets nerfed by scent, which CR 1/2 dogs have. It just seems to me that any bad guy would keep dogs, as they completely negate someone's ability to sneak up on them. I made the decision that every bad guy I in my games from now on will keep dogs.

Its one of the bigger problems with stealth.

There is an alchemist potion and a first level spell to negate it.

You still also get a 50% miss chance, which is really a LOT for a second level spell.

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