Rules arguments-You need to prove you're right, not have others prove you are wrong!


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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Berti Blackfoot wrote:
What is the Latin for "my spouse is always right"?

Yessius, Dearius.


knightnday wrote:
Snowblind wrote:


The implication of the phrase "Rules as Written" is that the word "Written" refers to the text in the official published documentation for the rules you are referencing. Unless you are specifically referring to house rules, RAW generally refers to rules written in published Paizo material, not rules that exist inside Rhedyn's head, or rules sharpied into his/her CRB for that matter.

Oh I know what the term means; I was simply mentioning how I dealt with notes in the book.

As far as RAW goes, I consider it the beginning of the conversation rather than the end. I enjoy RPGs and the writer's work. This does not always mean I agree with everything as written -- heck, neither do they sometimes! A sticky note lets me see what I changed, where, and what the original text is so that I can see why I changed it.

I wasn't trying to make any criticism about house rules at all. House rules are great when done right.

I was basically responding to the entire quoted conversation and pointing out that RAW has a fairly specific meaning. Arguing that the powers of the GM to alter rules (with or without a sharpie) do not give people the ability to call whatever they want RAW - I would describe trying to do so as playing semantics games.

Sovereign Court

Snowblind wrote:
I was basically responding to the entire quoted conversation and pointing out that RAW has a fairly specific meaning. Arguing that the powers of the GM to alter rules (with or without a sharpie) do not give people the ability to call whatever they want RAW - I would describe trying to do so as playing semantics games.

RAW, far more often than you seem to admit to, is interpretive.

Consider the following sentence:

I shot the man with the camera.

By RAW, that means at least three fairly different things:

"I used a camera to take a picture of that man."

"I used a gun to shoot that man who was carrying a camera."

"Of all those shot men out there, it was I who shot the man who has a camera."

Arguing what is RAW is about arguing how to interpret the semantics of language. Syntactic ambiguity is a prime example of why RAI, "what I think the author meant", is exceedingly relevant in arguments about RAW.


deusvult wrote:
Snowblind wrote:
I was basically responding to the entire quoted conversation and pointing out that RAW has a fairly specific meaning. Arguing that the powers of the GM to alter rules (with or without a sharpie) do not give people the ability to call whatever they want RAW - I would describe trying to do so as playing semantics games.

RAW, far more often than you seem to admit to, is interpretive.

Consider the following sentence:

I shot the man with the camera.

By RAW, that means at least three fairly different things:

"I used a camera to take a picture of that man."

"I used a gun to shoot that man who was carrying a camera."

"Of all those shot men out there, it was I who shot the man who has a camera."

Arguing what is RAW is about arguing how to interpret the semantics of language. Syntactic ambiguity is a prime example of why RAI, "what I think the author meant", is exceedingly relevant in arguments about RAW.

I know full well that part of the rules is interpretation.

Taking a rules quote related to the free action while nauseated thread.

Restricted Activity wrote:
Restricted Activity: In some situations, you may be unable to take a full round's worth of actions. In such cases, you are restricted to taking only a single standard action or a single move action (plus free and swift actions as normal). You can't take a full-round action (though you can start or complete a full-round action by using a standard action; see below).

Look at the sentence:

"In such cases, you are restricted to taking only a single standard action or a single move action (plus free and swift actions as normal)."
This can be interpreted in (at least) two different ways.

"In such cases, you are restricted to taking only a single standard action, which you can use for a move action as normal (plus free and swift actions as normal)."
This would include staggered but not nauseated.

"In such cases, you are restricted to taking only a single standard action(or a move action as normal) or you are restricted to taking a single move action (for both you may take free and swift actions as normal)."
This would include both staggered and nauseated. I much prefer this one, btw.

One might be better than the other (in terms of producing less absurdities, for example), but both are reasonable, valid ways of parsing the rules (FYI if you want to argue about these rules, there is a thread for that).

Here are 2 invalid interpretations
"Restricted Activity: In some situations, you may be unable to use all of the actions (swift, standard, move) available in a round. This may be due to not having any abilities that can use up each action (such as a fighter that doesn't have anything that uses swift actions). In such cases, you are unable to take a full round action (though you can start or complete a full-round action by using a standard action; see below)."

"Restricted Activity: In some situations, you may be unable to take a full round's worth of actions. In such cases, You are a unicorn."

One is applying an extremely stretched RAW interpretation that blatantly disregards both the Rules as Intended and the English language.

The other one is insane.

There are gray areas, of course, but when it isn't a gray area and the rules intepretation clearly does not follow The Rules as Written and Reasonably Interpreted then you are being dishonest and playing semantics games by trying to claim that staggered makes you a Unicorn by RAW.


Nauseated

Creatures with the nauseated condition experience stomach distress. Nauseated creatures are unable to attack, cast spells, concentrate on spells, or do anything else requiring attention. The only action such a character can take is a single move action per turn.

You can't take free actions or swift actions while nauseated, it says so right in the description...

"The only action..."

I don't see any room for interpretation at all.


alexd1976 wrote:

"The only action..."

I don't see any room for interpretation at all.

Cool

Feel free to tell the people here all about it.

It is an example. Here is not the place to debate the rules on restricted actions.

Unless you think staggered=unicorn. Then I guess here is the place. Fortunately for those in the nauseated thread.


hah hah, wrong thread. Clearly time for me to stop for the day.
Wait, thats not right...

I read about nauseated because it was mentioned, then quoted it...
um...

So yeah...

Anywho, my point is once again shown here, people arguing against a written rule that specifically states limitations, and using an example written for generic conditions to try and prove their point...

Regardless, I'm done for the day, time for chinese food. :D

Silver Crusade

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Our issue here is that a good legal system is generally permissive as opposed to prohibitive (technically the US is prohibitive towards the Government to limit its power to only specific powers delineated to it but...kettle of fish).

Games tend to operate on a loose prohibitive basis. There's an entire trope on tv tropes about this sort of thing, I think its 'there ain't no rule' or something.

There ain't no rule that says I can't use teleportation abilities in basketball! Well maybe, but that loophole will get closed.

A game system rationally, cannot and should not have to account for every possible novel spin dreamt up, and to that end they appoint referees on the spot to take care of such ad hoc determinations. These referees are the Gamemaster, who needs to determine if something is within the spirit of the rules or no.

The major flaw of the RAW argument is that it neglects that these referees are an integral portion of the system. And that complaining about 'house rules' is like being upset that your argument got overruled.

I don't want my game books to read like regulations with 30 pages of definitions in the front. It defeats the purpose.

Also, I've noticed that RAW arguments are basically sola scriptura arguments writ large, where one group furiously cites the feat on page 27, and another one furiously points to index page 3, and another group thumps the bestiary; and all of them claim to be 'just following the RAW' when in reality all they're doing is using select passages outside of context to support their particular argument.


alexd1976 wrote:
Create Mr. Pitt wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:

See, I'm still not articulating my question well... I will use an example from earlier today:

Someone was claiming they could cast a healing spell, move, discharge the healing spell onto their ally and then CONTINUE MOVING, because touching an ally as part of the casting is a free action...

The argument was that there was no rule restricting this, and they are technically correct about that statement. There aren't rules EXPLICITLY AND SPECIFICALLY saying that you cannot move-heal-move.

However, the rules about touch spells EXPLICITLY state that you CAN:

a)cast, touch then move
or
b)cast, move then touch
or
c)move, cast then touch

They don't SPECIFICALLY restrict you from move-heal-move, but the options of a, b and c clearly spell out what IS allowed.

So by their logic, there are no rules saying you DON'T get a free wish everyday, therefor you get one?

Why is this viewpoint so prevalent? How can someone defend this?

I know I'm using an absurd example with the Wish, but it proves my point precisely. Find a rule and show it to me proving that my character DOESN'T get a wish everyday...

This is not a great example. You've shown an example where the rules do explicitly forbid something in the rules for how touch spells work. It's a lot trickier when a power is implied by fluff or the logic of a spell or power, but not specifically explicated. That's when things can become more confusing. PF simply does not spell out every implication of every action or power. That's where it's the GM's job to adjudicate; but a hard and fast rule of "if it doesn't say it, you can't do it" is illogical in an open universe and silly in a fantasy game. Adjudication should take place on a case-by-case basis. A better iteration of your rule would be: If the rules forbid X then action which are part of the subset of X are also forbidden.
Actually my choice here was deliberate. Nowhere in the description of touch spells does it forbid...

The solution is clear and explicit, and is in the rules for taking actions and movement. Free actions are still distinct actions from other types of actions. You make your move action. Once your move action has ENDED (since you can't take a free action as part of a move action), then you can make your free touch action.

The only way you can move-heal-move is if you cast the spell on your previous turn and use two move actions (in lieu of a standard and a move). Move, free touch, move. No other standard action this turn.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

el cuervo wrote:
The solution is clear and explicit, and is in the rules for taking actions and movement. Free actions are still distinct actions from other types of actions. You make your move action. Once your move action has ENDED (since you can't take a free action as part of a move action), then you can make your free touch action.

This is wrong. If you were to go and re-read the very rules you're citing, you'd see that a free action CAN be used during another action. You don't have to wait until it ends.

Quote:

The only way you can move-heal-move is if you cast the spell on your previous turn and use two move actions (in lieu of a standard and a move). Move, free touch, move. No other standard action this turn.

This is wrong too: the free-action touch is only available on the round that you cast the spell. If you hold the charge until your next turn, you lose that option, and instead need a standard action to deliver the touch. Thus, your suggested scenario is illegal.


Jiggy wrote:
el cuervo wrote:
The solution is clear and explicit, and is in the rules for taking actions and movement. Free actions are still distinct actions from other types of actions. You make your move action. Once your move action has ENDED (since you can't take a free action as part of a move action), then you can make your free touch action.

This is wrong. If you were to go and re-read the very rules you're citing, you'd see that a free action CAN be used during another action. You don't have to wait until it ends.

Quote:

The only way you can move-heal-move is if you cast the spell on your previous turn and use two move actions (in lieu of a standard and a move). Move, free touch, move. No other standard action this turn.

This is wrong too: the free-action touch is only available on the round that you cast the spell. If you hold the charge until your next turn, you lose that option, and instead need a standard action to deliver the touch. Thus, your suggested scenario is illegal.

Whoops. You're right on the first part, was just going from what I remembered, which I admit is a little fuzzy. On the second part, assuming you're healing your buddy, it's still a free action, is it not?

Anyway, I'm confident the rules do solve the example presented by the OP without much interpretation at all:

Rules wrote:
You may take your move before casting the spell, after touching the target, or between casting the spell and touching the target. You can automatically touch one friend or use the spell on yourself, but to touch an opponent, you must succeed on an attack roll.

Emphasis mine. If you are taking your move action between casting the spell and touching your target, then it is explicit in this wording that, unless you have a second move, you cannot move again after the touch. It's the "between" that is particularly important. This is kind of where I was coming from with my previous post.


if i was a DM/GM and you wanted cast a touch spell then hold the charge in your hand while you moved over to your target i would have you roll a concentration check to see if you could concentrate enough to hold the spell as you moved over to your target adding a negative for each five step move until you got to the person you wanted to touch 15 feet = -3 or more and if you failed your held spell would fizzle causing a back lash roll will to see if you lost a memorized spell or being stunned for a round one or the other.


zainale wrote:
if i was a DM/GM and you wanted cast a touch spell then hold the charge in your hand while you moved over to your target i would have you roll a concentration check to see if you could concentrate enough to hold the spell as you moved over to your target adding a negative for each five step move until you got to the person you wanted to touch 15 feet = -3 or more and if you failed your held spell would fizzle causing a back lash roll will to see if you lost a memorized spell or being stunned for a round one or the other.

you're free to do that but know that it has absolutely 0 rules support to that. Once the spell has been cast you can hold that charge and do lots of stuff with no concentration check. The concentration check is only for casting the spell, once it's cast you don't need to concentrate any more.


zainale wrote:
if i was a DM/GM and you wanted cast a touch spell then hold the charge in your hand while you moved over to your target i would have you roll a concentration check to see if you could concentrate enough to hold the spell as you moved over to your target adding a negative for each five step move until you got to the person you wanted to touch 15 feet = -3 or more and if you failed your held spell would fizzle causing a back lash roll will to see if you lost a memorized spell or being stunned for a round one or the other.

You do know, don't you, that the rules actually and explicitly allow casters to do this. Right?

So you're proposing taking an actual rule that's in the game (moving while holding a spell) and removing it from the game with a house rule?

That's fine and all, if you want, it's your game. But shouldn't you post that in the house rules section?

Shadow Lodge

Ah, another thread about general etiquette when arguing rules has devolved into a specific rules argument.


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TOZ wrote:
Ah, another thread about general etiquette when arguing rules has devolved into a specific rules argument.

It would be so much easier if other people would just stop being wrong all the time.


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That's quite impossible. I'm always right, so they are always wrong.


It's weird, I don't remember even posting here, but there was the black dot...

Ahh, spring of 2015... Let me tell you about how things were back in those days... People used to start threads like this as an April fools joke, now people do it all the time, like it's a normal thing.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Orfamay Quest wrote:
So if you have to pick between everything-not-forbidden-is-permitted and everything-not-permitted-is-forbidden,.... the second literally creates an unplayable game.

That's a fallacy. The game only needs to permit enough to make it playable. Everything else beyond that is gravy.


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You can't make a set of rules that is foolproof because fools are ingenious.

What I do is resolve not to play with people who deliberately miss the point or set out to turn a fun game into a tedious session of arguing and paging through the PRD. I have to deal with people like that at work every day, why would I spend my leisure time with them? I am fortunate with my current group: If a rules question is taking longer than one snack break we go with GM fiat, then the people who were concerned email the rest with appropriate rules and errata between game sessions.

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