Somewhat bizarre situation involving a door


Rules Questions


Last session, three party members were standing in front of a door, and I was standing right behind them. Was there any legal way for me to open the door on my turn, without having reach?

_M_
AAA
#D#

M = me
A = allies
D = door
_ = empty space
# = wall

I ended up delaying, but it struck me as odd that it was impossible to open that door.


you're allowed to move through squares, you just can't end in the same square. So you could move and open the door and keep moving as long as you end in an open square.
At least that's what I think the rules are.


Chess Pwn wrote:

you're allowed to move through squares, you just can't end in the same square. So you could move and open the door and keep moving as long as you end in an open square.

At least that's what I think the rules are.

Problem is you can't move, perform an action, and continue moving. That is part of the point of feats such as Flyby Attack, Shot on the Run, and Spring Attack. They allow you to move-attack-move.


My bad, I was thinking opening a door was part of a move action, not a move equivalent action.


I know that is how I've played it, but I can't find the rules limiting you to not being able to.

I'm finding: "Movement in Combat: Generally, you can move your speed in a round and still do something (take a move action and a standard action)."

So, take a move action, you are now allowed to move up to 30'. Move 5' forward, trade your standard action for another move action (open the door), and move up to 25' into the door.

Likewise: "Accidentally Ending Movement in an Illegal Space: Sometimes a character ends its movement while moving through a space where it's not allowed to stop. When that happens, put your miniature in the last legal position you occupied, or the closest legal position, if there's a legal position that's closer."

Take a move action, move 5 feet into the space with ally. Take a move action to open the door. You are now in an illegal space, so you get bumped back 5 feet to where you started.


Tarantula wrote:
Take a move action, move 5 feet into the space with ally. Take a move action to open the door. You are now in an illegal space, so you get bumped back 5 feet to where you started.

You were in an illegal space as soon as you stopped. Thats when you would of been bumped back. You wouldn't be able to open the door.


But you haven't stopped yet, as you have 25' of movement left until you use the move action.

Once you use the move action, now your movement is ended, but the door is open.

If the door isn't open, then you didn't use a move action, and you still have 25' left of movement.


I don't think you can purposely end your move in an illegal space, though. The "accidentally ending movement in an illegal space" rules would come into effect if, say, you fail an Acrobatics check or a Bull Rush attempt to move through an opponent, or if an enemy uses the Stand Still feat on you when you are in an ally's square.

The rules say "You can't end your movement in the same square as another creature unless it is helpless." So, opening the door would require ending your movement in an ally's square, which isn't legal if done intentionally.


Where does it say that your movement ends if you take your standard action?


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RumpinRufus wrote:

I don't think you can purposely end your move in an illegal space, though. The "accidentally ending movement in an illegal space" rules would come into effect if, say, you fail an Acrobatics check or a Bull Rush attempt to move through an opponent, or if an enemy uses the Stand Still feat on you when you are in an ally's square.

The rules say "You can't end your movement in the same square as another creature unless it is helpless." So, opening the door would require ending your movement in an ally's square, which isn't legal if done intentionally.

The only logical answer is to incapacitate one of your allies so that you may open the door unimpeded next turn. Dungeoneering 101, my dear.


DominusMegadeus wrote:
The only logical answer is to incapacitate one of your allies so that you may open the door unimpeded next turn. Dungeoneering 101, my dear.

Hah, great idea! I could standard action kill my buddy, 5-foot step, and move action open the door.

Or I suppose I could use a Reposition maneuver on my buddy, 5-foot step, and open the door. But my PC is the "love to hate" type so I'm not sure whether I could count on all three allies deciding not to take their AoOs on me...

Sovereign Court

Yeah, opening doors while in combat is a bit wonky. Just part of how it's a game mechanically is all.

You could ready an action to 5' step to the door and open it if a space comes open. Of course I'm not sure if you're aware if the door is stuck/locked/etc but that's usually the best way to go about it given what you've got going on there.


Tarantula wrote:
Where does it say that your movement ends if you take your standard action?

The point of Shot on the Run, Flyby Attack, and Spring Attack feats are to let you continue after you move and attack (or any other standard action for Flyby Attack). If anyone could always move, stop and perform an action, and then continue the move action, those feats would not be needed.

Shot on the Run wrote:

Benefit: As a full-round action, you can move up to your speed and make a single ranged attack at any point during your movement.

Normal: You cannot move before and after an attack with a ranged weapon.

Spring Attack wrote:

Benefit: As a full-round action, you can move up to your speed and make a single melee attack without provoking any attacks of opportunity from the target of your attack. You can move both before and after the attack, but you must move at least 10 feet before the attack and the total distance that you move cannot be greater than your speed. You cannot use this ability to attack a foe that is adjacent to you at the start of your turn.

Normal: You cannot move before and after an attack.

Flyby Attack wrote:

Benefit: When flying, the creature can take a move action and another standard action at any point during the move. The creature cannot take a second move action during a round when it makes a flyby attack.

Normal: Without this feat, the creature takes a standard action either before or after its move.


Jeraa: Like I said before, I can't find in the rules where it doesn't allow you to take the standard action during the move. I know its somewhere, I just can't find it.

I agree those feats have points. But where is it stated?

Also, why does move action to open the door and end movement in an illegal space not work?


Tarantula wrote:
Also, why does move action to open the door and end movement in an illegal space not work?

Because the rules state you cannot end your movement in an occupied space.

Quote:
You can't end your movement in the same square as another creature unless it is helpless.

It's therefore simply not legal to end my movement in front of the door. I can move to that occupied space, but then I still have 25' of movement and I am required to use it to move somewhere else. Opening the door would require ending my movement, which is illegal.

I am really thinking now Reposition + 5-foot step is the only way I can think of that I could have opened the door.


Except the rules facilitate when movement is accidentally ended in an illegal space. Which is the end the movement, and move the creature back to the last/closest legal space it occupied.

So, move action move 5 feet; move action open door and end movement in illegal space; be moved 5 feet back.


Tarantula wrote:
Except the rules facilitate when movement is accidentally ended in an illegal space.

Emphasis added. You cannot choose to end your movement in an illegal space. It's just not an option.

Those rules about accidentally ending your movement in an illegal space only can come into effect when something external (like an enemy with the Stand Still feat) stops your movement.


I am not choosing to end my movement there. If I could, I would take the rest of my movement to move back to the space I started in.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

this, I think, is another one of those unwritten rules. only swift actions mention being able to "not affecting your ability to perform other actions". In essence, only swift actions say they can be done during another actions use. so to use your standard as a move, you must first purposefully end your movement.


Tarantula wrote:

Jeraa: Like I said before, I can't find in the rules where it doesn't allow you to take the standard action during the move. I know its somewhere, I just can't find it.

I'm not aware of the rules specifically calling that out, however:

PRD wrote:


...You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally...

Leaves an implied 'You can't interrupt your own actions with other actions' except for in the case of free actions where it is called out as allowing it.

(And of course the various feats already called out further emphasizing it).


This made me think of something (sorry for short derail): is it irrelevant WHEN you take your move action?
example:If you start your turn adjacent to an enemy, can you make an attack (standard action), then run away (move action)?
I've simply ruled that you can use your action types(standardmoveswift or fullroundswift)in any sequence in your turn. is that raw? or have I made a houserule without knowing it?


LuxuriantOak wrote:

This made me think of something (sorry for short derail): is it irrelevant WHEN you take your move action?

example:If you start your turn adjacent to an enemy, can you make an attack (standard action), then run away (move action)?
I've simply ruled that you can use your action types(standardmoveswift or fullroundswift)in any sequence in your turn. is that raw? or have I made a houserule without knowing it?

You are allowed to take your actions in any sequence as long as they are kept seperate, ie. no move - attack - move.


Lifat wrote:
LuxuriantOak wrote:

This made me think of something (sorry for short derail): is it irrelevant WHEN you take your move action?

example:If you start your turn adjacent to an enemy, can you make an attack (standard action), then run away (move action)?
I've simply ruled that you can use your action types(standardmoveswift or fullroundswift)in any sequence in your turn. is that raw? or have I made a houserule without knowing it?
You are allowed to take your actions in any sequence as long as they are kept seperate, ie. no move - attack - move.

That's what I thought, thank you.


If you could interrupt your move action with a standard action wouldn't everybody have Flyby Attack for free? I think you can interrupt your own actions with swift actions and maybe immediate actions though.

Regarding the door, is it actually illegal to share a space with your ally, or do you just have to squeeze? I think the latter is the case, and if so you could squeeze in, open the door, and ready an action to do something after your ally moves (or just go Total Defense to cover your -4 AC)


Quote:
A creature can squeeze past a creature while moving but it can't end its movement in an occupied square.

So no, you can't squeeze and share the space.


Ok, that seems pretty clear. Can you share a space with an unconscious ally though? If not then how about with an unconscious enemy? I ask since I'm not sure what should happen if you move into such a space and then the fallen friend or foe is restored to above 0hp. It would be odd if you got ejected. I guess maybe you'd just be squeezing until one of you had a turn and then you'd have to move out of the square (at least if you move at all)


If a character is helpless, you are allowed to end your movement in their square.

If you are in the square of someone who is restored to 0 or more HP, I think THEY get ejected, according to the rules for accidentally ending movement in an occupied square. They will either go to the last square they occupied, or if there is a closer square, they will move to the closest available square.


unconscious creatures are just like rough terrain or something, they no longer occupy their square.


This is one of the situation where the rules just don't work. Logically, opening the door is a simple task. Remember those squares aren't fully occupied by bodies (as evidenced by the ability to move through them). It's the GM's job to adjudicate situations like this that aren't properly simulated by the rules. The GM should never tell a player "no" for no other reason than incomplete rules. I'd they do, they're not doing their job.

In these types of situations, it's best to just tell your GM what you'd like to do, and ask how he wants to resolve it mechanically. Reasonable rulings I've seen:

*Squeeze into one of the squares with your ally
*Open the door (assuming it's not locked or barred) while moving through it, perhaps taking up some or all of your remaining movement (not that hard in real life).
*Take a big reach and open it from behind your allies (equivalent to the step-open-step back combo discussed here).

Your GM could apply small penalties as warranted to AC, movement, etc.

Figure out how to make it work. Don't be that kind of GM, nobody likes him.


Paulicus wrote:
Figure out how to make it work. Don't be that kind of GM, nobody likes him.

Unfortunately, some of us play in environments where we are not allowed to the bend the rules or make up new ones, no matter how much we'd like to.

As a GM, I always have the players tell me what they want to do and then figure out how to make it work. But sometimes the rules just do not support what the player wants to do, and as an organized play GM, I can't just waive the rules. Now, I can't ignore the rules for the monsters either, so the bad guys would be in the exact same situation.

In this case, if the door opens away from you and was not locked or heavy, I might allow you to essentially bull rush the door and continue moving through it. But if you can't do enough damage or roll high enough on your strength check, the door would still be closed and you'd be shunted back to the closest available space. And even if you did open the door, you'd be moving into the room blindly, and you'd probably want to go at least 10 feet so you're not blocking the doorway. (I'd make sure to tell the you all of the consequences before you took your action: I'm not trying to trick players in to getting themselves killed.)

If the door towards you, I wouldn't allow that, because you have to stop your forward motion and pull the door in the opposite direction (which is why that counts as ending your first move action before you can open the door).

However, what I would do is ask the players how they ended up in that situation. Why are your three friends standing in front of the door when none of them has an action to open it? Where are the bad guys in this situation?

Then I'd suggest some tactical adjustments to avoid this kind of thing in the future, like leaving an empty square behind the guy in front, leaving gaps in your marching order so you can switch places, not putting the 20-foot movement people further than 15 ft behind the front person, etc.


Why can't the PC move into same space as the other PC, take move action to open the door and be shunted back?


Tarantula wrote:
Why can't the PC move into same space as the other PC, take move action to open the door and be shunted back?

Because in order to take a move action to open the door, they would have to end their move in an illegal position.

Let's say you were standing in a 5 foot corridor, and there were six orcs in the corridor ahead of you, and you intend to fight them one at a time. And then let's say the GM decided that each orc could move forward into the same space as the front orc, attack you, and then be shunted back to a legal position. Wouldn't you think that was wrong?


Matthew Downie wrote:
Tarantula wrote:
Why can't the PC move into same space as the other PC, take move action to open the door and be shunted back?

Because in order to take a move action to open the door, they would have to end their move in an illegal position.

Let's say you were standing in a 5 foot corridor, and there were six orcs in the corridor ahead of you, and you intend to fight them one at a time. And then let's say the GM decided that each orc could move forward into the same space as the front orc, attack you, and then be shunted back to a legal position. Wouldn't you think that was wrong?

Thanks for providing an example that drives it home. Ok, I can see the problem with allowing that now.

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Which way does the door open and is it really 5x5' ? That's a huge door that is blocked by your allies if it swings into you. Perhaps you could undo the hinges and push it in? Or simply use a cantrip or stick or rope to open the door safely from a distance.

If desperate an unseen servant should be ok to open it.

Edit: if you are not in combat why are you in inititive and in a combat grid. Seems like frustration for no reason.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Opening a door is a move-equivalent, not a standard action. It would not be unreasonable to rule that a you can move while performing another move-equivalent action (but not a standard action.) This doesn't allow the line of orc attack problem, and there is some support for the idea in that drawing a weapon, normally a move equivalent, can be done as a free action while moving if you have a base attack of +1.

I would probably limit it to move actions that don't provoke.

This isn't of course strictly RAW, but I think there is some support thematically and contextually for making the call this way in a non-PFS setting.


I like the idea of, if you aren't in combat, just say who opens the door. If you are in combat, then yes, it matters, because you'd be in the way of your friend who is in a fighting stance and ready to defend himself.


Gwen Smith wrote:
However, what I would do is ask the players how they ended up in that situation. Why are your three friends standing in front of the door when none of them has an action to open it? Where are the bad guys in this situation?

We had been talking to the people inside the building, and then we heard them starting to cast buffs so we rolled initiative. One PC was in front of the door because they had knocked on it, and another PC was just standing next to him. Once combat started, the third PC tried to break in the door with a strength check and failed.

Between the failed strength check and my initiative, we heard a "click" indicating the door had been unlocked from the inside. So I knew the door was unlocked, I just couldn't figure out any way to open it.


Tarantula wrote:
I like the idea of, if you aren't in combat, just say who opens the door. If you are in combat, then yes, it matters, because you'd be in the way of your friend who is in a fighting stance and ready to defend himself.

Are you trying to open the door and jump back so someone else fights the orcs that will come boiling out of the open door? If so, you're -still- in the way of your friend. Just have one of the three not in the direct line open the door.


You could ready an action to 5' step and open the door if a space next to the door becomes available. Then tell your party to move so you can open it? This would let you open it prior to their action. Letting them move 5 feet over to share space with an ally, your action interrupts, you move into the space that is now open, and open the door, then their action continues, with them moving through the now open door?


Oddly enough you can make the attack in a Spring Attack from an ally's square. I can't recall if you have to take the penalty for squeezing or not, but it seems like a great way to take advantage of high AC front line PCs. I suppose this means that if you had Spring Attack you could attack the door though not just simply open it. Sometimes the rules are pretty odd.

I personally like having improved familiars and getting them to open the darned doors..saves a lot of worries and frees up your action in the surprise round...


Stand in the front rank with someone behind you, and fill the other spaces around with rubbish:

#A# A, B, C=allies, M=me, D=door, #=junk
BMC
-D-

Round 1: Cast Hold Person on A. He voluntarily fails his save and is now helpless.
Round 2: Open door, step back into A's space. He's helpless, so is ejected to your space. Dismiss Hold Person as a free action.
Round 3: Profit


Dismissing a spell is a standard action. Also, my character is a swashbuckler. But that is an interesting solution nonetheless!


I knew I should have looked it up. It still works, as you can use an ME to open the door, a 5' step to move and a standard to dismiss.

Why are you ducking back? You're a fighter. Get the cleric to open it. And being a swashbuckler, you'll have awful Will saves so you'll find it easy to fail it.


Use a quickened hold person then?


Gwen Smith wrote:
Paulicus wrote:
Figure out how to make it work. Don't be that kind of GM, nobody likes him.

Unfortunately, some of us play in environments where we are not allowed to the bend the rules or make up new ones, no matter how much we'd like to.

I assume you're referring to PFS. I also play PFS, and that's just not accurate. Yes, us PFS GMs can't go about ignoring the rules, but we're not automatons that are required to run the rules like a computer script. It says right in the guide that PFS GMs will need to adjudicate situations that come up not covered by the rules, just like this one. Do you GMly responsibility and figure out how to make it work.

I seriously doubt anyone is going to come and strip your PFS GM license for opening a door. In fact, making the game run more smoothly and less like a video game gives a better impression and is more fun for newer players. We want new players to have a good experience so they come back and PFS can grow. Strict video-game logic doesn't do that.


Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber

Except this isn't a situation that the rules don't cover. There are clear and explicit rules for every part of the situation. The OP explained the situation. They were in initiative and rolled poorly. That means that everyone crowded around the door was caught off guard.

In PFS there isn't any clear way to get around this. The bad guys* are going to get to open the door.

*Well maybe the good guys. The ones trying to finagle the door are murderhobos afterall. :-)


Tarantula wrote:
I like the idea of, if you aren't in combat, just say who opens the door. If you are in combat, then yes, it matters, because you'd be in the way of your friend who is in a fighting stance and ready to defend himself.

Oh, absolutely. If we're not in combat. this entire discussion is unnecessary.

(It actually never occurred to me that it might not be in combat--good catch!)


Paulicus wrote:
Gwen Smith wrote:
Paulicus wrote:
Figure out how to make it work. Don't be that kind of GM, nobody likes him.
Unfortunately, some of us play in environments where we are not allowed to the bend the rules or make up new ones, no matter how much we'd like to.
I assume you're referring to PFS. I also play PFS, and that's just not accurate. Yes, us PFS GMs can't go about ignoring the rules, but we're not automatons that are required to run the rules like a computer script. It says right in the guide that PFS GMs will need to adjudicate situations that come up not covered by the rules, just like this one. Do you GMly responsibility and figure out how to make it work.

But this situation is absolutely covered by the rules, as everyone else on this thread has painstakingly explained. It's just that you don't like the rules, so you want to ignore them. You can't do that in PFS. I'm sorry, but sometimes players can't do what they want because what they're trying to do is explicitly against the rules.

Letting a character purposefully end their movement in an illegal space is against the rules. Matthew Downie already gave a brilliant example how abusive this could be if you decided to allow it.

Likewise, you can't take a move action, stop and take a move equivalent action, and then continue the original move action. I don't care what the move equivalent action in the middle is, and I don't care how far you've moved on either side: it's against the rules.

Quote:
I seriously doubt anyone is going to come and strip your PFS GM license for opening a door.

That kind of depends on what's on the other side of the door.

Suppose my bad guys are in this situation and I let one of them break the rules to open the door. Then his three buddies full attack the player in the doorway, and he dies.

Now imagine that the players specifically closed the door to hold off the bad guys and long enough to give their cleric a chance to heal them. Oops.

Or imagine what happens when your player sits down at my table and I'm using a completely different set of rules (from his perspective).

And while you claim "it just opening a door", it really isn't. It's giving someone three move actions in a single round. If I start randomly giving bad guys additional actions just because "it makes sense to me", I absolutely should be stripped of my PFS GM license. (Of course, there's no such thing as a PFS GM license, so that's just hyperbole anyway.)

Quote:
In fact, making the game run more smoothly and less like a video game gives a better impression and is more fun for newer players. We want new players to have a good experience so they come back and PFS can grow. Strict video-game logic doesn't do that.

Since I don't actually play video games, I can't comment on this.

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