Casting Light on someone's Eyeballs


Rules Questions


I just had one of my players ask me if he could cast the level 0 spell light on someone's eyeball to interfere with their vision. My reasoning is that "light" causes torch level brightness, and if your eye is literally that bright, wouldn't it cause permanent damage to someone's sight? My qualm is that Blindess is a level 2 spell, and cantrips aren't supposed to replicate level 2 curses. I am actually at a loss on how to approach this. Help please.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I think this actually used to work in older editions of the game, but it isn't supposed to work anymore. Anyhow, the target for Light is "object touched", and I don't think that a creature or parts of a creature generally count as objects (at least not as long as the parts are attached)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Allow it and give the target the Dazzled condition? (basically a -1 penalty)

Grand Lodge

Only if they have Light Sensitivity/Blindness.

PRD, Universal Monster Rules wrote:

Light Sensitivity (Ex) Creatures with light sensitivity are dazzled in areas of bright sunlight or within the radius of a daylight spell.

Light Blindness (Ex) Creatures with light blindness are blinded for 1 round if exposed to bright light, such as sunlight or the daylight spell. Such creatures are dazzled as long as they remain in areas of bright light.

And even with that, Light (as in the 0 lvl spell) isn't bright enough to interfere with that. If Light doesn't interfere with monsters that have light sensitivity/blindness, then there's no way it's going to affect a monster without it.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Kaelan Ashenveil wrote:
I just had one of my players ask me if he could cast the level 0 spell light on someone's eyeball to interfere with their vision. My reasoning is that "light" causes torch level brightness, and if your eye is literally that bright, wouldn't it cause permanent damage to someone's sight? My qualm is that Blindess is a level 2 spell, and cantrips aren't supposed to replicate level 2 curses. I am actually at a loss on how to approach this. Help please.

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/l/light

the target is object touched. people are not objects.
if you disagree, then it's still a touch range spell and you can't touch someone's eyes.

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/gamemastering/other-rules/called-shots
unless, i suppose, you're using the alternate called shots rules, in which case, you could grant the listed penalties for being hit in the eye. note that if you choose to go this route, the player would still be better off doing a called shot to the eyes with a ray of frost.

there's no reason to allow this.

Grand Lodge

2 people marked this as a favorite.
hraithe wrote:
the target is object touched. people are not targets.

That's also a very good and valid point. Though I think you meant "people are not objects."


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I believe this scenario occurred in a D&D 3.0/3.5 story. When the cleric cast light inside a goblin's eye. It was dumb.


claudekennilol wrote:
hraithe wrote:
the target is object touched. people are not targets.
That's also a very good and valid point. Though I think you meant "people are not objects."

woops, thanks. edited.


It was a legit tactic back when light took a spell slot, it only caused temporary blindness and blindness was a lot less crippling due to limited rules. And honestly, I SAY "legit", i mean "my 2nd ed DM allowed it and I don't know of a rule in the book saying it wasn't legit."

But no, this is pathfinder.


If you pin them, gouge out their eye with a spoon, cast light on the eye, and then restore it with the regenerate spell it might work, and then the GM would have to adjudicate exactly what effects having a glowing eyeball would have.

At that point, I'd probably let the players choose any reasonable effect, including permanent blindness since they have gone to a whole lot of trouble, but that is just me.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

In 2e we had a Magic-User who rolled just 1 spell known for 1st level, and it was Light. The DM allowed him to blind people, but I couldn't recall if that was "legit" or if the DM just felt bad for the player.

Dark Archive

I'd allow it if they had a bionic eye or a magical eye replacement and I was the DM, otherwise I'd allow you to cast it on a sharp rock and try to throw it at their eye(although I guess that defeats the purpose)

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Devilkiller wrote:
In 2e we had a Magic-User who rolled just 1 spell known for 1st level, and it was Light. The DM allowed him to blind people, but I couldn't recall if that was "legit" or if the DM just felt bad for the player.

To make an educated guess, if I were that DM, I would feel bad for that player.


Devilkiller wrote:
In 2e we had a Magic-User who rolled just 1 spell known for 1st level, and it was Light. The DM allowed him to blind people, but I couldn't recall if that was "legit" or if the DM just felt bad for the player.

That sounds legit. In 1st & 2nd editions, Light could blind creatures that failed their save.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

It was an extremely common house rule in AD&D, but there's no allowance for temporary blindness in the rule book, as of 2e.

Quote:

Light (Alteration) Reversible

Level: 1
Range: 12"
Duration: 6 turns + 1 turn/level
Area of Effect: 2" radius globe
Components: V,S
Casting Time: 4 segments
Saving Throw: None

Explanation/Description: This spell causes excitation of molecules so as to make them brightly luminous. The light thus caused is equal to torch light in brightness, but its sphere is limited to 4" in diameter. It lasts for the duration indicated (7 turns at 1st experience level, 8 at 2nd, 9 at 3rd, etc.) or until the caster utters a word to extinguish the light. The light spell is reversible, causing darkness in the same area and under the same conditions, except the blackness persists for only one-half the duration that light would last. If this spell is cast upon a creature, the applicable magic resistance and saving throw dice rolls must be made. Success indicates that the spell affects the areas immediately behind the creature, rather than the creature itself. In all other cases, the spell takes effect where the caster directs as long as he or she has a line of sight or unobstructed path for the spell; light can spring from air, rock, metal, wood, or almost any similar substance.

Light was, at least, a ranged spell back then. The tactic clearly can't work in Pathfinder without touching your opponent's eyes and provoking.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

RAW, this absolutely does not work in Pathfinder.

Cantrips are designed, and intended, to never have any kind of effect that powerful.


The Wizard spell description in 2e says that, "Light centered on the visual organs of a creature blinds it, reducing its attack roles and saving throws by 4 and worsening its Armor Class by 4."

The Priest spell had some very minor changes in wording, but the effect was the same.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Hm, you may be right about 2e. This is actually AD&D 1st edition I'm reading out of. The only difference with the wizard version of the spell is a shorter casting time, duration, and range.

So the tactic was presumably legal for 2e but not before or after.


Has no one mentioned the spell Flare? It's literally another cantrip that does this exact thing, except it dazzles instead of blinds.


Joana wrote:

Hm, you may be right about 2e. This is actually AD&D 1st edition I'm reading out of. The only difference with the wizard version of the spell is a shorter casting time, duration, and range.

So the tactic was presumably legal for 2e but not before or after.

I thought I remembered it being in 1e, but when I looked in my PHB it had the same text you quoted. So either what I'm remembering was a common house rule, or I'm simply old enough that my memory is no longer under warranty. (Or possibly both are true.)

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Rules Questions / Casting Light on someone's Eyeballs All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.