New FAQ: Big Creatures and "Centered on You"


Rules Questions

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Paizo Employee Official Rules Response

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FAQed!

FAQ wrote:

Big creatures and centered effects: If a Large or larger creature has up an effect “centered on you,” does that mean that sometimes the emanation doesn’t even affect the creature’s entire space, let alone anything else?

No, when a creature uses an emanation or burst with the text “centered on you,” treat the creature’s entire space as the spell’s point of origin, and measure the spell’s area or effect from the edges of the creature’s space. For instance, an antimagic field cast by a great wyrm red dragon would extend 10 feet beyond her 30x30 foot space, for a total of a 50 foot diameter.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Awesome! This makes life so much better for my mammoth rider :D


Very nice this is a big start to fixing some sizing issues.


Mine is sad her mammoth gave up share spells. :P

Good ruling, though.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Didn't even realize this was in dispute.

Paizo Employee Official Rules Response

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blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

The previous FAQ, due to being announced immediately elsewhere, already had a thread (actually several threads) created about it, thus making another thread redundant. This fact was mentioned elsewhere, but those threads are long and there are several to check, so admittedly not seeing that post is understandable.

As a note, however, please talk about this FAQ in this thread. Other FAQs each have their own thread.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Mmkay.

So, what happens if create a "centered on you" effect, and then you change size, like say with Enlarge Person?

Does the effect change with you?


Does this ruling effect spells like Emergency Force Sphere? In the past If I have cast this, I have been told to center the sphere on one of my character's four intersections, and it covers 4 squares, with my character being in one of them. This spell technically isn't an "emanation" but it does use the wording "centered on you", and I always thought the way I've been told to use it is a little wonky.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Mmkay.

So, what happens if create a "centered on you" effect, and then you change size, like say with Enlarge Person?

Does the effect change with you?

Is the spell one with a duration?

If yes, and you are large, then it extends out N feet from your space, whether that space is 5, 10, or 15 ft on a side.

If it's an instant thing (like splash from a thrown alchemical weapon) then you use the size you are when it hits.

Sczarni

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Does this affect Alchemist bombs at all?

Edit: darn it, ninja'd by 28 seconds!

Paizo Employee Designer

Nefreet wrote:

Does this affect Alchemist bombs at all?

Edit: darn it, ninja'd by 28 seconds!

Interesting question; am I missing a "centered on you" in the text for bombs?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I was talking more like Zone of Silence, cast when medium, then increasing in size whilst the spell is still active.


Mark Seifter wrote:
Nefreet wrote:

Does this affect Alchemist bombs at all?

Edit: darn it, ninja'd by 28 seconds!

Interesting question; am I missing a "centered on you" in the text for bombs?

Splash damage is centered on the target. So there's a big difference between Huge creatures making splash worthless or not.


From the prd
"If the target is Large or larger, you choose one of its squares and the splash damage affects creatures within 5 feet of that square."

unless I am mistaken this covers throwing a bomb or splash weapon at a large or larger creature, you can target 1 square of the creature for where the splash goes.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Rynjin wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Nefreet wrote:

Does this affect Alchemist bombs at all?

Edit: darn it, ninja'd by 28 seconds!

Interesting question; am I missing a "centered on you" in the text for bombs?
Splash damage is centered on the target. So there's a big difference between Huge creatures making splash worthless or not.

Ah, I see! You were thinking it was between hitting a colossal creature and getting no splash (since it struck at the center of the 30x30) or hitting a colossal creature and splashing 28 squares. I believe that normally it's neither in this case, as you select a square of the enemy to target (for the purpose of determining cover and firing into melee and such) and then it splashes on the squares adjacent to that one. My post is, of course, not an official FAQ in and of itself, but it is how I've always seen it done across many tables.

Edit: And Jayder22 indicates why I had always seen that; it's because the rules explicitly told us. Thanks Jayder22!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Design Team wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

The previous FAQ, due to being announced immediately elsewhere, already had a thread (actually several threads) created about it, thus making another thread redundant. This fact was mentioned elsewhere, but those threads are long and there are several to check, so admittedly not seeing that post is understandable.

As a note, however, please talk about this FAQ in this thread. Other FAQs each have their own thread.

In case anyone is curious, before we go back to talking about this ruling, the explanatory post PDT refers to is <here>, explaining the decision to let John Compton announce the FAQ for PFS purposes and then getting beat to the punch by quick posters:

Mark Seifter wrote:
BigDTBone wrote:
Xethik wrote:
Was attempting to be humorous. Really, I'm looking for some reasoning behind what led to this decision from the PDT. Mark has been the usual poster to mention that if there is no official post by the PDT.

Indeed, the regular PDT post accompanying this FAQ was notably absent.

Unfortunately, absence spawns speculation. I speculate that the explanation for this would involve pointing a finger rather than a discussion about balance.

I therefore presume that the explanation was not offered to keep the heat off of whomever that finger would have been pointed at.

It was mainly because I thought it would be a good idea if PFS folks saw the solution to what to do at the same post as the announcement, and then this thread was already up soon after. I can confer with the PDT and get another thread up if you guys like, but it seems redundant with this one.


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0.0 Dragons with Antimagic Field are gonna be rough to fight now.


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I like this ruling :)


4 people marked this as a favorite.
Scavion wrote:
0.0 Dragons with Antimagic Field are gonna be rough to fight now.

As they should be. Finally an iconic monster might actually work half way decently.


Claxon wrote:
Scavion wrote:
0.0 Dragons with Antimagic Field are gonna be rough to fight now.
As they should be. Finally an iconic monster might actually work half way decently.

Not that I dislike this ruling but AMF is probably the single most obnoxious, game slowing mechanic in the game so while it makes dragons more threatening it's not in a fun way.

Source: Recently fought an encounter against a Great Wyrm Bronze Dragon who used it.


blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

LOL,I thought the same thing. Both about this FAQ and the others. ;)

And I have to agree with Rynjin: AMF + dragons makes them more threatening in a non-fun way. It might be ok as a once off thing but it'd get old fast.


Claxon wrote:
Scavion wrote:
0.0 Dragons with Antimagic Field are gonna be rough to fight now.
As they should be. Finally an iconic monster might actually work half way decently.

Woops. Addendum.

Dragons with Antimagic Fields are scarier for melee martials.

Casters not so much since summons still wreck em.


graystone wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

LOL,I thought the same thing. Both about this FAQ and the others. ;)

And I have to agree with Rynjin: AMF + dragons makes them more threatening in a non-fun way. It might be ok as a once off thing but it'd get old fast.

I mean, how often do you fight a very old age category dragon? That shouldn't be happening every day, and to my knowledge dragons can't cast it before that age category.

Doesn't seem like it should be a problem with it being over used (within a campaign).

Silver Crusade

Glad to see a ruling on this, faith is slowly being restored.


Claxon wrote:
graystone wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

LOL,I thought the same thing. Both about this FAQ and the others. ;)

And I have to agree with Rynjin: AMF + dragons makes them more threatening in a non-fun way. It might be ok as a once off thing but it'd get old fast.

I mean, how often do you fight a very old age category dragon? That shouldn't be happening every day, and to my knowledge dragons can't cast it before that age category.

Doesn't seem like it should be a problem with it being over used (within a campaign).

I've been in games where dragons where the main enemies. We fought quite a few very old+ dragons. So it might not be average but it can happen. :)


Claxon wrote:
graystone wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

LOL,I thought the same thing. Both about this FAQ and the others. ;)

And I have to agree with Rynjin: AMF + dragons makes them more threatening in a non-fun way. It might be ok as a once off thing but it'd get old fast.

I mean, how often do you fight a very old age category dragon? That shouldn't be happening every day, and to my knowledge dragons can't cast it before that age category.

Doesn't seem like it should be a problem with it being over used (within a campaign).

Even once is painful.

When something casts AMF the game comes to a screeching halt as everybody in the game goes "Hold on, let me calculate what my bonuses are without literally everything". Which takes approximately as long as leveling up a character while at the table.

So you're there for an hour subtracting a good 60% of the things from your sheet and recalculating ALL of your stats.

Then compound that by making the monster actually still strong while in an AMF and the fight takes another 4 hours because you're dealing piddly damage when your attacks actually manage to hit because all of the enemy's AC comes from Natural Armor.

Not fun.


Rynjin wrote:
Claxon wrote:
graystone wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

LOL,I thought the same thing. Both about this FAQ and the others. ;)

And I have to agree with Rynjin: AMF + dragons makes them more threatening in a non-fun way. It might be ok as a once off thing but it'd get old fast.

I mean, how often do you fight a very old age category dragon? That shouldn't be happening every day, and to my knowledge dragons can't cast it before that age category.

Doesn't seem like it should be a problem with it being over used (within a campaign).

Even once is painful.

When something casts AMF the game comes to a screeching halt as everybody in the game goes "Hold on, let me calculate what my bonuses are without literally everything". Which takes approximately as long as leveling up a character while at the table.

So you're there for an hour subtracting a good 60% of teh things from your sheet and recalculating ALL of your stats.

Then compound that by making the monster actually still strong while in an AMF and the fight takes another 4 hours because you're dealing piddly damage when your attacks actually manage to hit because all of the enemy's AC comes from Natural Armor.

Not fun.

AND! All your "Become permanent bonuses after 24 hours" become temp.


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Maybe best done as a Cliff-hanger: "...you finally reach the vault room, and upon entering, here the deep pitched chanting of an ancient language, and looking up, the beast whirls around, as you feel the auras of all your gem-studded equipment dampen suddenly..." >next session, bring your de-magicked character to the game, ready to roll initiative<


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate. 1 person marked this as a favorite.

Mark - With this change it would probably be a good idea to remove the last line in the Antimagic Field spell text.
"Should a creature be larger than the area enclosed by the barrier, any part of it that lies outside the barrier is unaffected by the field."


MechE_ wrote:

Mark - With this change it would probably be a good idea to remove the last line in the Antimagic Field spell text.

"Should a creature be larger than the area enclosed by the barrier, any part of it that lies outside the barrier is unaffected by the field."

Well it's still true. If My medium character has the field and I'm next to a huge creature only the parts of the creature in the field are effected.


Chess Pwn - Very good point and one I hadn't considered. Still could be a bit confusing and ideally would be worded a bit differently, but perhaps not enough of a problem to issue errata for.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Scavion wrote:
Claxon wrote:
Scavion wrote:
0.0 Dragons with Antimagic Field are gonna be rough to fight now.
As they should be. Finally an iconic monster might actually work half way decently.

Woops. Addendum.

Dragons with Antimagic Fields are scarier for melee martials.

Casters not so much since summons still wreck em.

I assume you mean called critters. Since their natural attacks and attacks with summoned manufactured weapons should not be able to touch a dragon inside an AMF.


Rynjin wrote:
Claxon wrote:
Scavion wrote:
0.0 Dragons with Antimagic Field are gonna be rough to fight now.
As they should be. Finally an iconic monster might actually work half way decently.

Not that I dislike this ruling but AMF is probably the single most obnoxious, game slowing mechanic in the game so while it makes dragons more threatening it's not in a fun way.

Source: Recently fought an encounter against a Great Wyrm Bronze Dragon who used it.

I agree. Rebuilding characters mid-game is going to take a long time if people are not ready for it. Some will take a long time even if they are ready for it.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Claxon wrote:
graystone wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

LOL,I thought the same thing. Both about this FAQ and the others. ;)

And I have to agree with Rynjin: AMF + dragons makes them more threatening in a non-fun way. It might be ok as a once off thing but it'd get old fast.

I mean, how often do you fight a very old age category dragon? That shouldn't be happening every day, and to my knowledge dragons can't cast it before that age category.

Doesn't seem like it should be a problem with it being over used (within a campaign).

There are published adventures where you meet more than one that can cast it. It might require for a GM to change some spells out, but it(for a dragon) is still an option.

It might not happen in every campaign, but it is one of those "once is more than enough" type of things for some groups.


I don't think this FAQ is consistent with the rules, because

Core Rulebook wrote:
Burst, Emanation, or Spread: Most spells that affect an area function as a burst, an emanation, or a spread. In each case, you select the spell's point of origin and measure its effect from that point.

For comparison and possible RAI the Rules Compendium has a slightly different explanation:

RC, pg 135 wrote:

A burst spell affects whatever it catches in its area, even

including creatures that you can’t see. It can’t affect creatures
that have total cover from its point of origin—its effects
don’t extend around corners. The default shape for a burst is
a sphere, but some burst spells are specifi cally described as
cone-shaped. A burst’s size defines how far from the point
of origin the spell’s effect extends.

And, further down the same page,

Quote:

Sphere: A sphere-shaped spell expands from its point of

origin to fill a spherical area of a given radius. Spheres might
be bursts, emanations, or spreads.

In all cases the rules appear to say that the 'radius' of the spell's area is just that: the radius from the point on which it is centered, not the distance from the edge of a creature.

As far as author's intent goes, I think it would be reasonable to guess that the authors of that section of the rules just didn't think about spells centered on very large creatures, and would have worded it differently had they thought of it. I'd further guess that the editors of the rules compendium didn't think to change it. That's just my guess though, there's not really any way to know the author's intent unless you hunt down Tweet (or whoever wrote that section) and see if he still remembers.
The pathfinder editors also pretty clearly just copied the spell area rules from the 3.5 srd, since the texts are identical.
With all that said, this is a very good house rule that I have been using for a long time and been happy with. IMHO, it should have been the rule from the beginning, and I'm glad Paizo decided to endorse it. It may be one of my favorite Paizo FAQs ever.

I don't know if there are many (any?) people outside of PFS who weren't using this house rule before but are suddenly going to start using it just because Paizo made it an FAQ, but if there are any such people, I am happy for them too, since there's a decent chance it will improve their enjoyment of the game:)

EDIT:

wraithstrike wrote:
<discussion about AMF>

While AMF is really annoying to adjudicate, even it isn't as bad as Disjunction. That requires everyone to rewrite their character sheets without buffs, roll saves for all their magic items, adjust their character sheets for suppressed/destroyed magic items...

and then when it wears off, you need to rewrite your character sheets again, with some magic items, but not the magic items that were permanently destroyed.
And disjunction may even show up somewhat more frequently, since it doesn't screw over the caster the way AMF does.


Rynjin wrote:
Claxon wrote:
graystone wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

LOL,I thought the same thing. Both about this FAQ and the others. ;)

And I have to agree with Rynjin: AMF + dragons makes them more threatening in a non-fun way. It might be ok as a once off thing but it'd get old fast.

I mean, how often do you fight a very old age category dragon? That shouldn't be happening every day, and to my knowledge dragons can't cast it before that age category.

Doesn't seem like it should be a problem with it being over used (within a campaign).

Even once is painful.

When something casts AMF the game comes to a screeching halt as everybody in the game goes "Hold on, let me calculate what my bonuses are without literally everything". Which takes approximately as long as leveling up a character while at the table.

So you're there for an hour subtracting a good 60% of the things from your sheet and recalculating ALL of your stats.

Then compound that by making the monster actually still strong while in an AMF and the fight takes another 4 hours because you're dealing piddly damage when your attacks actually manage to hit because all of the enemy's AC comes from Natural Armor.

Not fun.

It supposed to be painful, that's why you use it only once. Besides which, it just literally didn't make any sense for dragons to even have antimagic field before this change because it could only even partially affect them, which made it a nightmare to determine how it should work.

Yes, such an encounter requires careful handling. But as another poster suggested, you end a session on a cliff hanger and tell players to bring both a antmagic zone'd character sheet and their normal one next week. You don't just spring this sort of thing on players, because that is basically asking to TPK them. They should know they're about to fight an big ol' dragon and they should have opportunities to prepare.


Game mechanics are supposed to be painful for the characters, not the players. I'd rather get hit with a save or die and fail than deal with an AMF since at least then I'll have fun making a NEW character rather than the same one with less options to play with.

Ending the session on "He casts AMF" is ending a session on a low note, and starting the next session thinking "Let's get this over with."

Which, I dunno about you, doesn't seem like the attitude a player should have about a game.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
Rynjin wrote:

Game mechanics are supposed to be painful for the characters, not the players. I'd rather get hit with a save or die and fail than deal with an AMF since at least then I'll have fun making a NEW character rather than the same one with less options to play with.

Ending the session on "He casts AMF" is ending a session on a low note, and starting the next session thinking "Let's get this over with."

Which, I dunno about you, doesn't seem like the attitude a player should have about a game.

Hmm. Have you considered banning the spell (as a GM) or speaking to your GMs about doing so (as a player)? I don't mean this to negate your opinion, just as an idea. EDIT: this question goes for anyone else who'd like to chime in as well.

For myself, one of my groups is all-Herolab, so it's not as big a concern. Though Wrath of the Righteous might run into some issues...


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

The solution to this is easy.

If you are going to have AMF show up during the game, ask the players to keep two sheets, one with magic items and one without.

Every time they level up, make sure they keep the AMF version updated.

"Ok guys, you set off the trap, the entire room becomes an Anti-Magic Field, and the room is filling with water. Take out your AMF sheets and tell me what you do..."

Shadow Lodge

I think it might be better to say something like " If a creature with a space larger than 5ft is targeted by an area affect and the area is equal to or smaller than their space, the area of the affect radiates to reach 5ft beyond their space on all sides, unless it would normally extend beyond that point."

This wouldn't give larger creatures such a huge advantage with area spells and effects, but would allow them to still affect a small area around them.

It would also be much less wonky with Huge and larger creatures where the grid intersection which is the point of origin would not be the middle square(s).


I've been playing like this for a very long time, so I won't be affected in the slightest. I'm just glad to see its official now. As for AMF being a pain, its supposed to be, but it only takes me about 3 minutes to recalculate the numbers, so also no biggie. YMMV.


Claxon wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Claxon wrote:
graystone wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Good ruling.

Likely, that's why it was one of the ones they decided to let anyone know happened.

We had to catch the other ones they sneaked in.

LOL,I thought the same thing. Both about this FAQ and the others. ;)

And I have to agree with Rynjin: AMF + dragons makes them more threatening in a non-fun way. It might be ok as a once off thing but it'd get old fast.

I mean, how often do you fight a very old age category dragon? That shouldn't be happening every day, and to my knowledge dragons can't cast it before that age category.

Doesn't seem like it should be a problem with it being over used (within a campaign).

Even once is painful.

When something casts AMF the game comes to a screeching halt as everybody in the game goes "Hold on, let me calculate what my bonuses are without literally everything". Which takes approximately as long as leveling up a character while at the table.

So you're there for an hour subtracting a good 60% of the things from your sheet and recalculating ALL of your stats.

Then compound that by making the monster actually still strong while in an AMF and the fight takes another 4 hours because you're dealing piddly damage when your attacks actually manage to hit because all of the enemy's AC comes from Natural Armor.

Not fun.

It supposed to be painful, that's why you use it only once. Besides which, it just literally didn't make any sense for dragons to even have antimagic field before this change because it could only even partially affect them, which made it a nightmare to determine how it should work.

Yes, such an encounter requires careful handling. But as another poster suggested, you end a session on a cliff hanger and tell players to bring both a antmagic zone'd character sheet and their normal one next week. You don't just spring this sort of thing on players, because that is basically asking to TPK them. They should know they're...

I don't know if I would automatically call it a TPK. It really depends on the group.

A few days ago I thought of another factor, but I will just make a rule thread for it because what I always assumed to be RAI may not be.*

*I will explain in the thread which I am about to create.


Kalindlara wrote:
Rynjin wrote:

Game mechanics are supposed to be painful for the characters, not the players. I'd rather get hit with a save or die and fail than deal with an AMF since at least then I'll have fun making a NEW character rather than the same one with less options to play with.

Ending the session on "He casts AMF" is ending a session on a low note, and starting the next session thinking "Let's get this over with."

Which, I dunno about you, doesn't seem like the attitude a player should have about a game.

Hmm. Have you considered banning the spell (as a GM) or speaking to your GMs about doing so (as a player)? I don't mean this to negate your opinion, just as an idea. EDIT: this question goes for anyone else who'd like to chime in as well.

For myself, one of my groups is all-Herolab, so it's not as big a concern. Though Wrath of the Righteous might run into some issues...

For my current game it is still in play. For any other games I will ask the players about it up front. For now the idea is that if they won't use it, then I won't use it.

I tend to prep an unbuffed version of most important characters anyway in case dispel magic is thrown around a few times, or in case the PC's use stealth. However I don't do this for every character(mostly minions), so if antimagic field was used when I was not ready I might have to pause the game.

Shadow Lodge

Do these images look right for the 10-foot and 5-foot radius effects?

Does that mean Emergency Force Sphere hits 9 squares instead of 4 now?


Avatar-1 wrote:

Do these images look right for the 10-foot and 5-foot radius effects?

Does that mean Emergency Force Sphere hits 9 squares instead of 4 now?

Your five foot radius looks good, but I think you're missing some corners on the 10 ft radius. Check out my image

10 foot bursts

Here is another image of a medium and huge cleric using a 30 foot burst and 35 foot burst Channel Energy. I totalled up the number of squares to demonstrate how much extra space the bursts now grant.

I only did medium and huge since my Wood Oracle takes medium and huge plant forms. On the side are the old bursts for comparison. the 35 foot burst is when I make a Ring of Protected Life and increase the radius by 5 feet.

am I doing this right?

30 and 35 fot bursts


Is there a separate forum where these threads are cross-created with? That'd make tracking a lot easier!


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
mdt wrote:
Didn't even realize this was in dispute.

Wasn't really in dispute so much as it was unclear.

Grand Lodge

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Avatar-1 wrote:

Do these images look right for the 10-foot and 5-foot radius effects?

Does that mean Emergency Force Sphere hits 9 squares instead of 4 now?

There are a pair of posts from Mark Seifter that says this FAQ is only supposed to apply to Large and larger creatures, and that the wording will be corrected to better reflect this.

See here and here.

Paizo Employee Designer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Jeff Merola wrote:
Avatar-1 wrote:

Do these images look right for the 10-foot and 5-foot radius effects?

Does that mean Emergency Force Sphere hits 9 squares instead of 4 now?

There are a pair of posts from Mark Seifter that says this FAQ is only supposed to apply to Large and larger creatures, and that the wording will be corrected to better reflect this.

See here and here.

I sent those fixes up early last week, but I've stated that it is not a huge priority. Some day the PDT will be able to edit FAQs so we don't have to bother them every time.

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