Disable Device – When to say “No”?


Advice

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shroudb wrote:

i meant it more like:

come with me behind the alley
vs
come with me behind the alley where is an injured criminal

OR

let me enter the guardhouse
vs
let me entr the guardhouse because inside there is an antidote for my dying friend that he will perish within 1min

Come with me behind the alley +15 could result in punishment

Come with be behind the alley where there is an injured criminal still a +15 because the request is, "come with me".

Let me enter the guardhouse is +15 result in punishment.
Let me enter the guardhouse because antidote for friend is still +15.

Can you get the antidote for me is probably +0 simple aid though.


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Huh. This thread went somewhere.

/I Disable Device on the guard


Tarantula wrote:
shroudb wrote:

i meant it more like:

come with me behind the alley
vs
come with me behind the alley where is an injured criminal

OR

let me enter the guardhouse
vs
let me entr the guardhouse because inside there is an antidote for my dying friend that he will perish within 1min

Come with me behind the alley +15 could result in punishment

Come with be behind the alley where there is an injured criminal still a +15 because the request is, "come with me".

Let me enter the guardhouse is +15 result in punishment.
Let me enter the guardhouse because antidote for friend is still +15.

Can you get the antidote for me is probably +0 simple aid though.

Come with be behind the ally could also give a bonus to the roll if the PC is hot and has been flirting with the guard. :D


blahpers wrote:

Huh. This thread went somewhere.

/I Disable Device on the guard

In many ways it is still the same topic: Why I should/should not allow the character to actually use his skills without player metagaming.


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The thing is, Diplomacy requires 1 minute of continuous interaction, whereas Disable Device is a single instance.

Because Diplomacy involves some back and forth before you even get to a result, there's an assumption of interaction. You can't say "I go up to the guard and try flattery" roll "Nope, he's not into that kind of thing."
Diplomacy means you've started talking with the guard, talked a bit to find out what kind of stuff he responds too, and then tried your play based on how the conversation is going. To ask the player to give some kind of input on this would require info back from the DM.

To put it into a excerpt format:

Player: "I try to talk to the guard and see if he'll let us in. Rolling Diplomacy." *rolls 34, DC 35*
DM: "He seems disgruntled, he wasn't even supposed to work today. He was about to drink up with his friends when he got called in. Seems like if you slipped him something to 'quench his thirst', he'd look the other way."
Player: "I think I can manage that." *roots through his bag of holding and pulls something out he found earlier*
DM: "+2, good enough. He let's you guys past."

There we go. Diplomacy back and forth, complete with circumstance bonus opportunity given.

If the DM wants more interaction, he should be handing out the opportunities. Quite frankly, that's pretty much all the DM's job should be, on one level or another.


Actually, it only takes 1 minute of continuous interaction to influence his attitude. Making a request takes as little as 1 round, but also longer depending on the request.


thorin001 wrote:
Freehold DM wrote:
however, as the DM was forced to point out and make a permanent rule in a game I was in, not while f+%@ing a pig in front of them.

Actions can certainly modify the DC, but that is different than requiring specific actions.

Nobleman walks in on PC having sex with his daughter. PC tries to talk his way out of it. Nobleman probably starts out as hostile. Actions of daughter can easily give positive or negative modifiers. But unless this is a major NPC who you actually know all of the motivations for the PC should get a chance to talk his way out. He may be able to convince the nobleman that he is a worthy son in law or that the scene was not what it looked like, or any number of other things.

If the PCs just spent an hour or two having dinner with the man there would be several clues as to how to manipulate him, but I seriously doubt that all the dinner small talk was actually handled in character. I doubt that all of the furnishings and knickknacks were fully described. I doubt that all pillow talk with the daughter was done fully in character. Unless you are giving all these clues, which the character has seen, how can you really justify the player making argument. He simply does not have the proper frame of reference.

you don't understand. He bought a pig specifically to f~~$ in front of people he was engaged in diplomacy checks with because his diplomacy was so high. The argument that I posted this as a response to was his argument in game.


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Freehold DM wrote:
thorin001 wrote:
Freehold DM wrote:
however, as the DM was forced to point out and make a permanent rule in a game I was in, not while f+%@ing a pig in front of them.

Actions can certainly modify the DC, but that is different than requiring specific actions.

Nobleman walks in on PC having sex with his daughter. PC tries to talk his way out of it. Nobleman probably starts out as hostile. Actions of daughter can easily give positive or negative modifiers. But unless this is a major NPC who you actually know all of the motivations for the PC should get a chance to talk his way out. He may be able to convince the nobleman that he is a worthy son in law or that the scene was not what it looked like, or any number of other things.

If the PCs just spent an hour or two having dinner with the man there would be several clues as to how to manipulate him, but I seriously doubt that all the dinner small talk was actually handled in character. I doubt that all of the furnishings and knickknacks were fully described. I doubt that all pillow talk with the daughter was done fully in character. Unless you are giving all these clues, which the character has seen, how can you really justify the player making argument. He simply does not have the proper frame of reference.

you don't understand. He bought a pig specifically to f~@+ in front of people he was engaged in diplomacy checks with because his diplomacy was so high. The argument that I posted this as a response to was his argument in game.

Yeah, in that case I can see a hefty circumstance penalty on top of automatically starting at hostile. And then even if he raises the attitude to indifferent I can see being morally opposed to helping in any way. All the diplomacy check is likely to accomplish is to keep his audience from actively hindering him.

So it is entirely possible to get to "not while F'ing a pig" within the rules.


Hostile: base DC 25+
Give Aid that could result in punishment: +15

Quote:
Some requests automatically fail if the request goes against the creature’s values or its nature, subject to GM discretion.

Also, his character truly gets off on abusing a creature incapable of giving consent? Chaotic Evil ahoy!

That said, if he's good enough, and chooses the right racial features, he can get people to Friendly for 1d4 hours (longer or shorter, subject to GM discretion).

Congratulations, he's just turned into a corrupting force!

This guy or an affiliate with even higher Charisma shows up with invisibility, mind blank, and lots of curses (mostly wisdom and opposed saves, mostly while he's asleep, and thus "considered willing"), and charms the lad.

One negotiation (and a DC 20 Charisma check later, should the player be opposed), the character has signed a contract to instantly become a loyal devil upon death in exchange for three wishes and is shortly thereafter killed via rider contract.

The devil is happy, the PC is happy, the GM gains control of a new villain (the former PC), and the player rolls up a new character.

Alternatively, take one (1) succubus. Grant her an 18 in her charisma (increase of 7, total of 34), one tattoo of charisma +6 (total now 40), and a +5 inherent bonus (45), and maybe a few non-associated class levels to get an ability score increase (46 total), and the advanced template (50 total: +20 modifier). Make the tattoo do double duty as a tattoo of persuasion (as the circlet) granting her a +3 bonus).

Apply feats and class features accordingly.

CR is 9-12, probably.

She is quite furious at the PC for stealing her show, but aware of how dangerous he is.

Hence, she uses Diplomacy to make everyone hostile to him, planning and plotting his demise, turning them against him, and persuading them to attack and kill him on sight.

It's really easy: after all, she's just using the same rules he is. She's just not voluntarily making things harder on herself.

As combat is initiated immediately, there never really is a good time to use diplomacy.

Alternatively alternatively: tell him he's being disgusting and a jerk, and that kind of action is not welcome around your table. He may cease or leave.


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the game is a roll playing game,

you play a roll

its not a dice rolling game.

if you reduce the game to that, here is what you get:

Player: I roll my bluff check to make the guard let me pass.

DM: ok, roll

Player: Oh drat I roll a 3

Dm: You fail. You can't pass.

If that's ALL the interaction and explanation there is… we are now playing and convoluted miss mosh of strategy and yahtzee.

If the players don't play, how much do you really expect from the DM?
Players have to give the DM something to work with.

in the case of the DD roll.

it's simple. if you want to have the trap work like a puzzle where the players have to figure it out.

Yes, you can say you can't roll a DD because you cannot see a mechanism to manipulate, and/or cannot reach the mechanism.
you then ask your players to describe their actions and what they try to do in order to get past the obstacle.
In order to disable the device, he would have to walk not he trap an there by trigger it.
which means he falls in or whatever.

that's completely plausible and allowable, not just a simple, "I roll my way by it"

otherwise, instead of ingenious traps and descriptions, what you get from the DM is:

DM: You see a trap

Player: what kind of trap

DM: The DC 18 kind.

Player: I rolled a 6 , plus 5 is 11.

DM: you failed

Player: I try to walk by it.

DM: roll a saving throw

Player: 12

DM: you take 6 points of trap damage.

Yay…thrilling, exciting.

Don's sign me up.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

When to say to no to Disable Device?

When it's not a trap.


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blackbloodtroll wrote:

When to say to no to Disable Device?

When it's not a trap.

Or a lock.


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Pendagast wrote:

the game is a roll playing game,

you play a roll

its not a dice rolling game.

if you reduce the game to that, here is what you get:

Player: I roll my bluff check to make the guard let me pass.

DM: ok, roll

Player: Oh drat I roll a 3

Dm: You fail. You can't pass.

If that's ALL the interaction and explanation there is… we are now playing and convoluted miss mosh of strategy and yahtzee.

If the players don't play, how much do you really expect from the DM?
Players have to give the DM something to work with.

in the case of the DD roll.

it's simple. if you want to have the trap work like a puzzle where the players have to figure it out.

Yes, you can say you can't roll a DD because you cannot see a mechanism to manipulate, and/or cannot reach the mechanism.
you then ask your players to describe their actions and what they try to do in order to get past the obstacle.
In order to disable the device, he would have to walk not he trap an there by trigger it.
which means he falls in or whatever.

that's completely plausible and allowable, not just a simple, "I roll my way by it"

otherwise, instead of ingenious traps and descriptions, what you get from the DM is:

DM: You see a trap

Player: what kind of trap

DM: The DC 18 kind.

Player: I rolled a 6 , plus 5 is 11.

DM: you failed

Player: I try to walk by it.

DM: roll a saving throw

Player: 12

DM: you take 6 points of trap damage.

Yay…thrilling, exciting.

Don's sign me up.

That is exactly what you do for combat and lots of people look forward to fights.

That is exactly how you handle Spellcraft.
That is exactly how you handle knowledge checks.
That is exactly how you handle Sense Motive.
That is exactly how you handle Perception.
That is exactly how you handle Use Magic Device.
That is exactly how you handle Acrobatics.
That is exactly how you handle Swim
That is exactly how you handle Climb.
That is exactly how you handle Handle Animal.
That is exactly how you handle Ride.
So why do a couple of skills get singled out for encouraging metagaming?


thorin001 wrote:

That is exactly what you do for combat and lots of people look forward to fights.

That is exactly how you handle Spellcraft.
That is exactly how you handle knowledge checks.
That is exactly how you handle Sense Motive.
That is exactly how you handle Perception.
That is exactly how you handle Use Magic Device.
That is exactly how you handle Acrobatics.
That is exactly how you handle Swim
That is exactly how you handle Climb.
That is exactly how you handle Handle Animal.
That is exactly how you handle Ride.
So why do a couple of skills get singled out for encouraging metagaming?

Because the DM or the player who is doing the encouraging has too much or too little imagination regarding a couple of skills.


In the given example, a weak floor would be more of a Knowledge (Engineering) roll, but yes as for the propped up deadfall - a Disable Device roll should be allowed to rig that stick with another object so even if the stick was knocked out the deadfall wouldn't trigger.

As for the floor part itself, that's more of a Hazard as others have said, if the Rogue had some clever way around the floor that's one thing but Disable Device is supposed to be used on objects (locks and traps) though it does work on Magical Traps (which can be said to have no physical components, but somehow the Rogue is capable of disarming that). Magical Traps being the exception it shouldn't be allowed to bypass what is considered a Hazard with a roll alone but I would allow it to be used in conjunction with clever roleplaying and tool use (assuming he had the means to bypass a weak floor)


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook Subscriber

Although it is nowhere specified in the rules, the most logical way for a rogue to disable a magial trap is to set it off while remaining unaffected. Maybe he dodges into its zone just long enough to spring it, then dodges out before it can affect him. Maybe he throws a still-living rat he handily scooped up on the way in and throws it at the symbol.

For the collapsing floor, his mad skillz could have allowed him to identify a couple of support points and realize that if that last wooden door was wedged just so, it would allow people to pass over the hazard.

If the player doesn't come up with a viable solution like these, then his skill roll should give him hints. Doled out the right way, the player might even be convinced that he came up with the solution on his own. At the very least, a high disable device should tell him this hazard can't simply be disabled, and that therefore it isn't a "trap" as such.

In any event, as mentioned above, it's important not to nerf one of the rogue's few remaining valuable powers.

In the same vein, DMs shouldn't nerf diplomacy or bluff skills simply because some player has invested a lot and come up with high scores. Diplomacy shouldn't allow him to mind control adversaries either, but such a player should get a fair bit of milage out of his skill investment.


I totally agree that the RAW says the Rogue can disarm any device, a weak floor isn't really a trap though it's a hazard, a deadfall is a hazard, a stick set up in a rock pile that causes a deadfall is a trap (it may utilize a hazard but it's still a trap) so the Rogue gets to disarm it (or bypass it, etc as the rules allow).

Just with Disable Device a rogue can "hijack" a magical trap, through means unknown, and bypass or disable it, like they can with any mechanical trap. It's just one of their abilities much like a Clerics Channel Energy and so on.

I do agree there are instances where the Rogue can't disable a trap for one reason or another, where they can't physically access the trap in question. If the Rogue had to for example disable a trap on the other side of a locked door, but he knew it was there somehow he would have to somehow get inside the room or at least through the wall to get to the trap itself.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

So, Rogue rolls, and, let's say, succeeds, and then the PC/DM explains how they did it, together.

It is simple:

Together, they roleplay the roll, not roleplay away the roll.

What's that? Harmony between rolls and roleplay?

What is this, a tabletop RPG?


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Roll playing:

DM: You find a DC 18 trap.

Player: I use Disarm Device and... a 23.

DM: Okay, you succeed.

vs. Roleplaying:

DM: There's something rigged to the door. There are wires leading from the knob in through a hole in one panel. At the top of the door it looks like they're connected to a trap door in the ceiling above you.

Player: Is it a trap?

DM: It could be. What are you going to do?

Player: Is there some way I can disable it?

DM: Make your roll.

Player: Ah... 23.

DM: It looks like cutting the wire on the left with your dagger will disable the device, whatever it is. Is that what you want to do?

Player: Um... yeah, I'll cut the wire.

DM: There a soft click just as the wire parts. It looks like you've succeeded. What are you doing now, trying the door?


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
shroudb wrote:
Axelthegreat wrote:

I agree, so long as you communicate what you want to accomplish and in certain cases how, every GM should be able to work with the situation.

to go along with the examples:
Archer: I want to shoot the wizard
GM: How?
Archer: with my bow...

Converser: I want to persuade the guard to let me pass.
GM: How?
Converser: by persuading him.

archer:

player i shoot the wizard
gm: ok roll for attack with -4 because he is behind cover

gm: you COULD have moved to the side so that he wouldn't have cover though.

player: oh, i don't need to say that, my character has 16bab, so he knows how to fight, and he does that automatically

diplomacy:

player: i ask the guard to leave and go the the shady nearby alley

gm: ok roll with -25 because the guard doesn't want to be punished and it is dangerous for him to do so (both modifiers actually in the table of diplomacy roll)

gm: You could have rolled with a +5 because Jack the Ripper destroyer of worlds is bleeding to death in the alley nearby and you can arrest him.

player: oh i don't need to say that my character says that because i have +15diplomacy so my character automatically gives it as a reason

i just couldn't read anymore of this back and forth.

when you decide to move and not shoot from a position that has him with cover, that is the same as you realizing, that that guard is guarding the door, which has something you want behind it. The choice is you use diplomacy since you realize your good at talking to people instead of bluff, which you're bad at. You also, decide not to talk to the guard captain, or the guard during the night shift, as they are both harder to talk your way past, since the night guy is grumpy and the guard captain would probably auto decline.

In the same way, your character uses a bow because you know you can reach him from here and move to not have cover issues, instead of drawing his sword and sprinting at him.

if we had as much useful information during a battle encounter as during a social encounter, we probably wouldn't even know there was a guy wearing robes in the room, and that he was the reason we keep taking fire damage.

diplomacy is your social attack roll for success, everything else such as position and targeting, still all apply pretty much the same way to social encounters, you have to be at the right place at the right time, with the proper tools and talking to the right people to press your advantage and win the encounter.

Liberty's Edge

blackbloodtroll wrote:

When to say to no to Disable Device?

When it's not a trap.

There have been a handful of times in which the rogue knew the trap was there, but I would not allow her to roll a disable device check, due to the fact that there was some intervening barrier that actually prevented her from having access to actually disable it. Once the barrier was circumvented, then I allowed the check.

The Exchange

Wheldrake wrote:
Although it is nowhere specified in the rules, the most logical way for a rogue to disable a magical trap is to set it off while remaining unaffected... Maybe he throws a still-living rat he handily scooped up on the way in and throws it at the symbol...

You'd be surprised how many 'inescapable deathtraps' a guy can bypass with a cage full of gerbils* and a good pitching arm!

* Not hamsters. Minsc would find you and kill you.


thorin001 wrote:
Pendagast wrote:


DM: You see a trap

Player: what kind of trap

DM: The DC 18 kind.

Player: I rolled a 6 , plus 5 is 11.

DM: you failed

Player: I try to walk by it.

DM: roll a saving throw

Player: 12

DM: you take 6 points of trap damage.

Yay…thrilling, exciting.

Don's sign me up.

That is exactly what you do for combat and lots of people look forward to fights.

That is exactly how you handle Spellcraft.
That is exactly how you handle knowledge checks.
That is exactly how you handle Sense Motive.
That is exactly how you handle Perception.
That is exactly how you handle Use Magic Device.
That is exactly how you handle Acrobatics.
That is exactly how you handle Swim
That is exactly how you handle Climb.
That is exactly how you handle Handle Animal.
That is exactly how you handle Ride.
So why do a couple of skills get singled out for encouraging metagaming?

That isn't really what we do for combat. We don't let the player just say, "I attack". We force them to say things like, "I full-attack then take a five foot step back" or "I double-move into a flanking position on the chief orc, provoking an attack from the goblin."

Pathfinder combat involves decision making, tactics, cunning and imagination. To put it another way, combat involved metagaming. It doesn't matter what my Sorcerer stats or skills are, I, the player, am going to make my own decisions about whether to cast Grease or Magic Missile or rush forwards and pour a potion down the throat of my unconscious ally. The result will hopefully be a memorable and entertaining encounter. The disadvantage of this is that players who aren't good at tactical thinking will do poorly, even when they're playing a Tactician Fighter and ought to be really good at it. Of course, in some groups the GM might allow group discussion of tactics to help out the players who need it most.

"Make a skill check... you passed" doesn't produce a memorable and entertaining event. Something more is needed:

GM: "...there's a number of wires. You think you can see which one disables the trap, but if you're wrong, there's a good chance it will trigger it. In that case, the wall ahead of you will collapse. This doesn't seem very dangerous in itself, so there's probably a secondary effect that you can't see from here."
Rogue: "OK, I guess I'll make a Disable Device check to cut the wire."
Fighter: "Wait, before you do that, the rest of us should go and hide around the corner."
Cleric: "What if it there's a golem or undead behind the wall? Shouldn't we be ready to fight as a team?"
Wizard: "Maybe I should just summon a monster to trigger the trap for us."
Rogue: "But we're trying to be stealthy here..."

I think that's better than a dice roll on its own.
This goes double for Diplomacy. "I try to persuade the guard to let us pass" will be a more satisfying event if someone can come up with a plausible reason why the guard would do something that will almost certainly cost him his job, even if it's not the player whose PC has the high Diplomacy score. "Here's 500 gold pieces. Please get out of our way and let us get on with saving the world."

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
HangarFlying wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

When to say to no to Disable Device?

When it's not a trap.

There have been a handful of times in which the rogue knew the trap was there, but I would not allow her to roll a disable device check, due to the fact that there was some intervening barrier that actually prevented her from having access to actually disable it. Once the barrier was circumvented, then I allowed the check.

Those are two different things, indeed.

What I am saying, is that if there is a Trap, and no outside force prevents it(fire, barrier, enemies, etc), then Disable Device should always be an option.

If you then, can't use Disable Device, then it's not a Trap.

It's something else.


thorin001 wrote:
Pendagast wrote:

the game is a roll playing game,

you play a roll

its not a dice rolling game.

if you reduce the game to that, here is what you get:

Player: I roll my bluff check to make the guard let me pass.

DM: ok, roll

Player: Oh drat I roll a 3

Dm: You fail. You can't pass.

If that's ALL the interaction and explanation there is… we are now playing and convoluted miss mosh of strategy and yahtzee.

If the players don't play, how much do you really expect from the DM?
Players have to give the DM something to work with.

in the case of the DD roll.

it's simple. if you want to have the trap work like a puzzle where the players have to figure it out.

Yes, you can say you can't roll a DD because you cannot see a mechanism to manipulate, and/or cannot reach the mechanism.
you then ask your players to describe their actions and what they try to do in order to get past the obstacle.
In order to disable the device, he would have to walk not he trap an there by trigger it.
which means he falls in or whatever.

that's completely plausible and allowable, not just a simple, "I roll my way by it"

otherwise, instead of ingenious traps and descriptions, what you get from the DM is:

DM: You see a trap

Player: what kind of trap

DM: The DC 18 kind.

Player: I rolled a 6 , plus 5 is 11.

DM: you failed

Player: I try to walk by it.

DM: roll a saving throw

Player: 12

DM: you take 6 points of trap damage.

Yay…thrilling, exciting.

Don's sign me up.

That is exactly what you do for combat and lots of people look forward to fights.

That is exactly how you handle Spellcraft.
That is exactly how you handle knowledge checks.
That is exactly how you handle Sense Motive.
That is exactly how you handle Perception.
That is exactly how you handle Use Magic Device.
That is exactly how you handle Acrobatics.
That is exactly how you handle Swim
That is exactly how you handle Climb.
That is exactly how you handle Handle Animal.
That is...

That's not how *I* do any of that.

the PLAYER isn't the one who decides what skill he uses.

the PLAYER states what he is doing, the DM asks for saving throws or skill checks, or attack/init rolls to help him decide the out come of how the players stated actions interact with the obstacle at hand.

IF the character cannot reach the device to interact with it, in order to disable it, without putting himself in peril, the DM can simply explain/state that.

perhaps the player has a levitate spell?
or levels in ninja that let him light step,
or the group has limited access to fly…

or maybe the rogue just wants to wander into the trap, trusting that his evasion will protect him, and then make it safe for the rest of the party to follow.

But what the PC cannot do is simply point a finger at an obstacle and proclaim use of a skill/class ability/etc.
The game does NOT work that way.


blackbloodtroll wrote:
HangarFlying wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

When to say to no to Disable Device?

When it's not a trap.

There have been a handful of times in which the rogue knew the trap was there, but I would not allow her to roll a disable device check, due to the fact that there was some intervening barrier that actually prevented her from having access to actually disable it. Once the barrier was circumvented, then I allowed the check.

Those are two different things, indeed.

What I am saying, is that if there is a Trap, and no outside force prevents it(fire, barrier, enemies, etc), then Disable Device should always be an option.

If you then, can't use Disable Device, then it's not a Trap.

It's something else.

DM: you come to a door, it appears to be locked

Player: I check for traps
Dm: Roll perception
Player: 18
DM: it does not appear to be trapped.
Player I listen at the door can I hear anything beyond it?
DM: Roll perception
Player 15
DM: you do not hear anything
Player: I pick the lock on the door.
DM: roll disable device.

That is simple and straight forward.

A weakened floor with a trigger mechanism that you cannot reach without walking into and triggering the trap is not straight forward.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Pendagast wrote:

DM: you come to a door, it appears to be locked
Player: I check for traps
Dm: Roll perception
Player: 18
DM: it does not appear to be trapped.
Player I listen at the door can I hear anything beyond it?
DM: Roll perception
Player 15
DM: you do not hear anything
Player: I pick the lock on the door.
DM: roll disable device.

That is simple and straight forward.

A weakened floor with a trigger mechanism that you cannot reach without walking into and triggering the trap is not straight forward.

They roll.

Then you describe how the PC disables it, or fails.

If they cannot use Disable Device, it's not a trap.

It really is just that simple.

You can houserule to complicate it, but that's not RAW.

If you want a hazard, then it's a hazard.

Not a trap.


You don't just say 'I combat' you say; I swing the sword at the dragon after taking a five foot step, I'm using power attack and activating smite. You are specifying some level of detail. No, you aren't describing your sword swing and I don't think anyone wants to require the equivalent of that for diplomacy either. But something along the lines of ...

"I engage the guard in some small talk about his family, trying to weave in a story about my fictional daughter that was killed by goblins to attempt to convince him to send the guards out to help us with raiding the goblin fortress."

It's an entirely third person description, but it also gives some context to what's happening and makes it easier to adjudicate results and describe the aftermath.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Then you demand the Player disable the device, as if he/she had some major in engineering, instead of the PC, who is trained to do such a thing.

You negate the skill, the class abilities related, and the PC as a trained adventurer.

The class, PC, skill, and mechanics in total, are meaningless, as some DM wants to screw with the player, by playing an entirely different game.

You can destroy the social contract with sudden houserules, but you might as well try to punch your players, instead of rolling an attack against their PC's AC, because that's where you are at.


Straw man to the extreme much?


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RDM42 wrote:

You don't just say 'I combat' you say; I swing the sword at the dragon after taking a five foot step, I'm using power attack and activating smite. You are specifying some level of detail. No, you aren't describing your sword swing and I don't think anyone wants to require the equivalent of that for diplomacy either. But something along the lines of ...

"I engage the guard in some small talk about his family, trying to weave in a story about my fictional daughter that was killed by goblins to attempt to convince him to send the guards out to help us with raiding the goblin fortress."

It's an entirely third person description, but it also gives some context to what's happening and makes it easier to adjudicate results and describe the aftermath.

The difference there is that you're describing which mechanics you're using in combat."full attack" "smite" "power attack" "five foot step".

You need to do that and you can do that because the mechanics for combat go into a certain level of detail. There are different mechanical options you could use.

With Diplomacy and Disable Device, along with most other skills, the mechanics are much simpler. There are no (or very few) mechanical decisions that need to be made and that need to be reflected in your description of your actions.


"Ok, we're starting an adventure. Roll diplomacy four times, climb three times and make five attack rolls"

You succeeded? Good! Adventure is over, here's your experience!

If we want to play at hyperbole.


The game has its own definition of a trap. The problem here is that people are wanting to combine the real life definition with the game term.

In PF the trap(game term) can be disabled. Now I agree that if the player can not reach the trigger then he has to find a way to reach it so it can be disabled. However, if the GM makes it impossible to reach then it is a "trap" by the real life definition, but in game terms it has really just become an obstacle(these can not be disabled). It is not much different than intentionally assigning a climb or swim DC that you know the party can not overcome. It is not a skill based challenge at that point, but an obstacle.


The player should only have to state his general intention with a skill check, and then roll to see if the character is able to do it. If he says "I want to talk the king into giving me more money for this question", his intention is clear. If he(the player) is forced to come up with the reasoning that is well below what is 16 int, 18 cha character would say that is not fair. Not everyone is elegant with words and many other things on the character sheet, and pushing skill bonuses allows for the player to do these things through his character.

Example: Two players are playing the exact same rogue. One of them is a chemist in real life. He might be able to actually make poison. Should the player who is not a chemist have to describe how he is crafting it?

Most of us will say no.

If that is the case then the same logic should apply to diplomacy or disable device(do you really want a player to have to study lockpicking), and other skills.


Saying what the generic thrust of your argument is doesn't require you to be elegant with words, you could say. "MY character talk to King man. Me try to bring up daughter. Me say we rescue she. Me say need money to do this." Is not elegant. What your character really said? Was an elegant version of that. Very few people who play a role playing game aren't capable of that General level of description. The description is what you are trying, the roll translates that into results, or how it came off. If you have an absurdly high diplomacy, you can presume you portrayed the above in a very convincing and elegant manner. But having some other content than "I diplomacize" lets you put things in context and actually continue an interaction at some level beyond rolling dice at eachother.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
RDM42 wrote:
Straw man to the extreme much?

How?

Saying a PC cannot disable a device, because the player isn't knowledgeable about such things, negates the PC's skills, and ignores the PC's stats and class abilities.

It's not the PC, it's the player, doing the task.

Why is this not comparable to having the player do some other task, instead of the PC? Should the player be trying to hit things?

I am not attacking some straw man, but the argument put forth that it's the player's responsibility to figure out how to disable the device.

So, Fallacy Fallacy much? ಠ_ಠ


blackbloodtroll wrote:
RDM42 wrote:
Straw man to the extreme much?

How?

Saying a PC cannot disable a device, because the player isn't knowledgeable about such things, negates the PC's skills, and ignores the PC's stats and class abilities.

It's not the PC, it's the player, doing the task.

Why is this not comparable to having the player do some other task, instead of the PC? Should the player be trying to hit things?

I am not attacking some straw man, but the argument put forth that it's the player's responsibility to figure out how to disable the device.

So, Fallacy Fallacy much? ಠ_ಠ

Not at all. It's a narrative conceit. I almost certainly didn't define every single bit of mechanics about how the trap operates either. Because I'm not an expert trap designer just like you aren't a bomb disposal tech. You describe how you are trying to go about disarming the trap ... and if your roll succeeds THAT WAY WORKS ... But it gives a context to what you did other than "I rolled dice at it" to interact with the world.


blackbloodtroll wrote:
RDM42 wrote:
Straw man to the extreme much?

How?

Saying a PC cannot disable a device, because the player isn't knowledgeable about such things, negates the PC's skills, and ignores the PC's stats and class abilities.

It's not the PC, it's the player, doing the task.

Why is this not comparable to having the player do some other task, instead of the PC? Should the player be trying to hit things?

I am not attacking some straw man, but the argument put forth that it's the player's responsibility to figure out how to disable the device.

So, Fallacy Fallacy much? ಠ_ಠ

just remember that this can be two-way.

to put my example again:
should i immediatly force players with 7 cha get ordered around since they have 0 force of personality and go:
ok the guard asks you to stay, roll opposed charisma check: you fail, you stay there.

it is pointed out in the rules, that social rolls against the players are pointless because players have complete control over their character. A DM cannot roll diplomacy against a PC and go "you are now friendly with the evil dude that you just talked". That is a 100% player decision.
Likewise, players are suppossed to do a minimum of interaction with the NPCs. Or else we get to this:
DM: You enter the city
Player: i ask a peasant where the nearest inn is
DM: the peasant doesn't answer, roll for diplomacy for request dc 10+Cha (directions, simple -5, indifferent dc 15+cha)
Player: What? for asking where an inn is.
DM: those are the RAW rules

and we can even go for extremes:
player: i try to gather information on what quests are available in the city
DM: ok your roll seems to point out that at an inn a mechant is...
player (interrupting): hey hold on a minute, i don't need details, i search for a quest of my level range, that will reward 3000gp,
DM: well, you should go talk to...
Player: that is part of the roll. Does my character likes the quest?
DM:... Yes
Player (a few sessions later): really man? a dragon? on a lvl2?
DM: well, your player likes dragons and you have int 8 so you thought you can handle it.

that is silly isn't it?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I am not advocating a mechanical non-roleplay approach at all.

I never suggested it.

I also never touched on diplomacy. This is not the subject of the thread.

I am saying, that a "I try to disable the trap" is sufficient, without detailed explanation how.

So, the player rolls, and succeeds, and then the DM describes how the PC accomplished it.

Telling the player he/she needs to explain how, or they don't get to roll, is just not something that needs to be done.

I believe you are terribly misunderstanding my points.

I hope I have clarified.


blackbloodtroll wrote:

I am not advocating a mechanical non-roleplay approach at all.

I never suggested it.

I also never touched on diplomacy. This is not the subject of the thread.

I am saying, that a "I try to disable the trap" is sufficient, without detailed explanation how.

So, the player rolls, and succeeds, and then the DM describes how the PC accomplished it.

Telling the player he/she needs to explain how, or they don't get to roll, is just not something that needs to be done.

I believe you are terribly misunderstanding my points.

I hope I have clarified.

yeah, as far as disable device goes, usually just rolling is enough.

unless there are circumstances disallowing you to roll at all (p.e. you can't reach the trap)

but i usually advocate at least some roleplay from the player (not demand, just state that i like it) because the game becomes bland when you forgo desriptions, from DM AND PLAYER ALIKE:

player: i roll perception
dm: you see nothing
player: i open the door
dm: you are hit with 7 points of damage
player: wha??
dm:trap
player: what kind
dm: dc 21 type, 1d6+1damage
player: ?? err?

so:
player: i roll perception
dm: you see a trap
player:cool, i roll disable device, 23
dm: you avoid the trap

is boring compared to:
player: i examine the door (rolling perception)
dm: you see through the keyhole a piece of twine that stretches towards the end of a hallway, you are not certain where to, but from the tension you think that it will pull something when you open the door.
player: hmm, can i somehow keep it in place while i open the door? (rolls disable)
dm: you insert your tools through the crack of the door as you slowly open it, and with your pincers you keep it tight. At the end of the corridor you see a crossbow that is fixed to the twine, and would probably have fired if the twine got cut or loose.


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shroudb wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

I am not advocating a mechanical non-roleplay approach at all.

I never suggested it.

I also never touched on diplomacy. This is not the subject of the thread.

I am saying, that a "I try to disable the trap" is sufficient, without detailed explanation how.

So, the player rolls, and succeeds, and then the DM describes how the PC accomplished it.

Telling the player he/she needs to explain how, or they don't get to roll, is just not something that needs to be done.

I believe you are terribly misunderstanding my points.

I hope I have clarified.

yeah, as far as disable device goes, usually just rolling is enough.

unless there are circumstances disallowing you to roll at all (p.e. you can't reach the trap)

but i usually advocate at least some roleplay from the player (not demand, just state that i like it) because the game becomes bland when you forgo desriptions, from DM AND PLAYER ALIKE:

player: i roll perception
dm: you see nothing
player: i open the door
dm: you are hit with 7 points of damage
player: wha??
dm:trap
player: what kind
dm: dc 21 type, 1d6+1damage
player: ?? err?

so:
player: i roll perception
dm: you see a trap
player:cool, i roll disable device, 23
dm: you avoid the trap

is boring compared to:
player: i examine the door (rolling perception)
dm: you see through the keyhole a piece of twine that stretches towards the end of a hallway, you are not certain where to, but from the tension you think that it will pull something when you open the door.
player: hmm, can i somehow keep it in place while i open the door? (rolls disable)
dm: you insert your tools through the crack of the door as you slowly open it, and with your pincers you keep it tight. At the end of the corridor you see a crossbow that is fixed to the twine, and would probably have fired if the twine got cut or loose.

Versus this:

Player: I roll to hit
DM: you hit
Player Good, 12 points of damage
DM: Now it swings, does a 21 hit?
Player: Yes
DM: take 15 points of damage. Make a Fort save.
Player: I got a 17
DM You are good.

Is boring compared to:
Player: I swing my trusty longsword Fred at the foul spawn while taunting it: "Your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries." (rolls to hit/damage)

DM: Your blow connects! You thrust your sword through a gap in it's chitinous plates and watch as the ichor starts to flow. Then the thing turns to you and smiles. "My turn," it says with a voice like that of a thousand snakes. (rolls to hit/ damage).

DM: The foul abomination swings at you with a huge claw. It tears through your armor as if it were mere paper leaving seven deep furrows across your chest. You notice that its claws are dripping something other than your blood and you feel a cold tingle from your wounds. Take 15 points of damage and make a Fort save.

Player: "I call out to George, the god of healing, to protect me from this cursed venom." (rolls save)

DM: You feel the power of George enter your veins and help you withstand the blasphemous toxin.

Aside from taking six times as long, what is really added? In small groups you can get away with the extra prose. In larger groups all you do is slow things down and bore the people who are not taking their turn.


thorin001 wrote:
stuff

i always describe at least critical hits.

as for comparing it to combat:

you are comparing it to something that requires tens of rolls from each one involved vs a task that is a single check from one player?

seriously, how long does it takes to describe ONE thing compared to the pure enjoyment of roleplaying and not simply rolling dices?

in the same vein:
do you expect your DM to describe the rooms you enter, and the hallways of a dungeon crawl? or are you satisfied with:
"you enter a 10x10 room"
"you are in a 5ft wide corridor"
"you see a room, a closet, a chest and a table"


thorin001 wrote:

Player: I roll to hit

DM: you hit
Player Good, 12 points of damage
DM: Now it swings, does a 21 hit?
Player: Yes
DM: take 15 points of damage. Make a Fort save.
Player: I got a 17
DM You are good.

Is boring compared to:
Player: I swing my trusty longsword Fred at the foul spawn while taunting it: "Your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries." (rolls to hit/damage)

DM: Your blow connects! You thrust your sword through a gap in it's chitinous plates and watch as the ichor starts to flow. Then the thing turns to you and smiles. "My turn," it says with a voice like that of a thousand snakes. (rolls to hit/ damage).

DM: The foul abomination swings at you with a huge claw. It tears through your armor as if it were mere paper leaving seven deep furrows across your chest. You notice that its claws are dripping something other than your blood and you feel a cold tingle from your wounds. Take 15 points of damage and make a Fort save.

Player: "I call out to George, the god of healing, to protect me from this cursed venom." (rolls save)

DM: You feel the power of George enter your veins and help you withstand the blasphemous toxin.

Aside from taking six times as long, what is really added? In small groups you can get away with the extra prose. In larger groups all you do is slow things down and bore the people who are not taking their turn.

How is the second example boring to the people who aren't taking their turn? That would be far more interesting to watch than your first example.


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If there's a trap that the GM doesn't want the player to just disable device around then the GM needs to make sure it's as clear as day that disable device won't work on it. If you know a player is not good with getting subtle hints you might want to say it to their face.

Also dice rolling opportunities are not the only place you can roleplay.


JoeJ wrote:
thorin001 wrote:

Player: I roll to hit

DM: you hit
Player Good, 12 points of damage
DM: Now it swings, does a 21 hit?
Player: Yes
DM: take 15 points of damage. Make a Fort save.
Player: I got a 17
DM You are good.

Is boring compared to:
Player: I swing my trusty longsword Fred at the foul spawn while taunting it: "Your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries." (rolls to hit/damage)

DM: Your blow connects! You thrust your sword through a gap in it's chitinous plates and watch as the ichor starts to flow. Then the thing turns to you and smiles. "My turn," it says with a voice like that of a thousand snakes. (rolls to hit/ damage).

DM: The foul abomination swings at you with a huge claw. It tears through your armor as if it were mere paper leaving seven deep furrows across your chest. You notice that its claws are dripping something other than your blood and you feel a cold tingle from your wounds. Take 15 points of damage and make a Fort save.

Player: "I call out to George, the god of healing, to protect me from this cursed venom." (rolls save)

DM: You feel the power of George enter your veins and help you withstand the blasphemous toxin.

Aside from taking six times as long, what is really added? In small groups you can get away with the extra prose. In larger groups all you do is slow things down and bore the people who are not taking their turn.

How is the second example boring to the people who aren't taking their turn? That would be far more interesting to watch than your first example.

I know I'd be bored and exasperated if combat went like that. I felt that just reading it compared to the shorter version. As I was reading I thought, "Oh my gosh, just be done already, this is to long."


JoeJ wrote:
thorin001 wrote:

Player: I roll to hit

DM: you hit
Player Good, 12 points of damage
DM: Now it swings, does a 21 hit?
Player: Yes
DM: take 15 points of damage. Make a Fort save.
Player: I got a 17
DM You are good.

Is boring compared to:
Player: I swing my trusty longsword Fred at the foul spawn while taunting it: "Your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries." (rolls to hit/damage)

DM: Your blow connects! You thrust your sword through a gap in it's chitinous plates and watch as the ichor starts to flow. Then the thing turns to you and smiles. "My turn," it says with a voice like that of a thousand snakes. (rolls to hit/ damage).

DM: The foul abomination swings at you with a huge claw. It tears through your armor as if it were mere paper leaving seven deep furrows across your chest. You notice that its claws are dripping something other than your blood and you feel a cold tingle from your wounds. Take 15 points of damage and make a Fort save.

Player: "I call out to George, the god of healing, to protect me from this cursed venom." (rolls save)

DM: You feel the power of George enter your veins and help you withstand the blasphemous toxin.

Aside from taking six times as long, what is really added? In small groups you can get away with the extra prose. In larger groups all you do is slow things down and bore the people who are not taking their turn.

How is the second example boring to the people who aren't taking their turn? That would be far more interesting to watch than your first example.

Many people are more interested in advancing the plot than in a literary contest. There is still plenty of room for roleplaying in combat without excessive detail.


thorin001 wrote:
JoeJ wrote:
thorin001 wrote:

Player: I roll to hit

DM: you hit
Player Good, 12 points of damage
DM: Now it swings, does a 21 hit?
Player: Yes
DM: take 15 points of damage. Make a Fort save.
Player: I got a 17
DM You are good.

Is boring compared to:
Player: I swing my trusty longsword Fred at the foul spawn while taunting it: "Your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries." (rolls to hit/damage)

DM: Your blow connects! You thrust your sword through a gap in it's chitinous plates and watch as the ichor starts to flow. Then the thing turns to you and smiles. "My turn," it says with a voice like that of a thousand snakes. (rolls to hit/ damage).

DM: The foul abomination swings at you with a huge claw. It tears through your armor as if it were mere paper leaving seven deep furrows across your chest. You notice that its claws are dripping something other than your blood and you feel a cold tingle from your wounds. Take 15 points of damage and make a Fort save.

Player: "I call out to George, the god of healing, to protect me from this cursed venom." (rolls save)

DM: You feel the power of George enter your veins and help you withstand the blasphemous toxin.

Aside from taking six times as long, what is really added? In small groups you can get away with the extra prose. In larger groups all you do is slow things down and bore the people who are not taking their turn.

How is the second example boring to the people who aren't taking their turn? That would be far more interesting to watch than your first example.

Many people are more interested in advancing the plot than in a literary contest. There is still plenty of room for roleplaying in combat without excessive detail.

agreed.

but saying:
you see a string of twine trailing back towards the hallway
and be replying:
i try to find a way to keep this twine stretched

is NOT excessive detail imo.

and again, describing the action of ONE roll and it's effects is vastly different that describing the rolls of a 5-6pc combat with 2-3attacks each and another 4-5creatures that they fight.

it requires no time at all to do so, no more than what the actual roll takes.


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I think we've just pinpointed the fundamental area of disagreement in this thread. Role playing is a form of shared storytelling, but some players are mostly interesting in the "story" part while others are at least as interested in the "telling".


shroudb wrote:


but saying:
you see a string of twine trailing back towards the hallway
and be replying:
i try to find a way to keep this twine stretched

is NOT excessive detail imo.

and again, describing the action of ONE roll and it's...

I will agree that your example isn't egregious. But the more you describe the more it becomes a puzzle for the player instead of the character. There is a definite balance.


shroudb wrote:

but saying:

you see a string of twine trailing back towards the hallway
and be replying:
i try to find a way to keep this twine stretched

is NOT excessive detail imo.

and again, describing the action of ONE roll and it's effects is vastly different that describing the rolls of a 5-6pc combat with 2-3attacks each and another 4-5creatures that they fight.

it requires no time at all to do so, no more than what the actual roll takes.

Now if you allow them to roll the disable device with no penalty for "try to keep twine stretched", taking that phrase to mean they are using their skill, then sure sounds great.

If keeping the twine stretched doesn't "disable the device" and so them trying to keep it stretched is going to do nothing or penalize them. Then I see it as a bad thing, as it would be safer to just say I use my skill.

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