Does Sleep make you Prone? + Do you drop held items?


Rules Questions

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28 people marked this as FAQ candidate.

Unconscious creatures are knocked out and helpless. Unconsciousness can result from having negative hit points (but not more than the creature's Constitution score), or from nonlethal damage in excess of current hit points.

A helpless character is paralyzed, held, bound, sleeping, unconscious, or otherwise completely at an opponent's mercy. A helpless target is treated as having a Dexterity of 0 (–5 modifier). Melee attacks against a helpless target get a +4 bonus (equivalent to attacking a prone target). Ranged attacks get no special bonus against helpless targets. Rogues can sneak attack helpless targets.

As a full-round action, an enemy can use a melee weapon to deliver a coup de grace to a helpless foe. An enemy can also use a bow or crossbow, provided he is adjacent to the target. The attacker automatically hits and scores a critical hit. (A rogue also gets his sneak attack damage bonus against a helpless foe when delivering a coup de grace.) If the defender survives, he must make a Fortitude save (DC 10 + damage dealt) or die. Delivering a coup de grace provokes attacks of opportunity.

Creatures that are immune to critical hits do not take critical damage, nor do they need to make Fortitude saves to avoid being killed by a coup de grace.

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1. Does going Unconscious (as per the Slumber hex) render you prone?

2. Does going Unconscious cause you to drop your held items?


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Based on the dictionary definition of "unconscious", I would say yes to both.


As written, no.

However, it is safe to assume the intention is yes.

Ask your GM.

The rules won't really help. Technically, no to both, because it never says so.

So apparently you sleep standing up, or at least can.


also, there are no penalties for being dead.

Sczarni

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Yes to both.

Good reason for low Will save martials to use locked gauntlets.


Nefreet wrote:

Yes to both.

Good reason for low Will save martials to use locked gauntlets.

Has this been fixed? does it actually say that now?

Sczarni

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

"Fixed"?

Grand Lodge

basically, the arguement is that unlike (for example) the stunned condition, unconsious does not say you drop what you hold, nor does it say you fall to the ground.


Nefreet wrote:
"Fixed"?

Yes, fixed.

Have they put something in print that says sleeping characters fall over prone, or drop stuff?

I know it seems intuitive, but if we go by rules as written, prone and dropping stuff are both things that happen under certain conditions.

Trip mentions prone.
Stunned mentions dropping stuff.

Unconscious doesn't actually mention either of these.

It seems it SHOULD, but it does not.


Don't get me wrong, at my table, getting knocked out makes you drop everything you're holding, and down you go, nighty night.

Scarab Sages

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For the sleep spell, we generally play yes: that you fall down and drop your weapon.

It is not specified but Paralysis (which is a helpless condition) specifically calls out that you are rooted in place unable to move your limbs. Which leads me to believe the other helpless conditions imply prone and dropping items.

Stunned calls out dropping items, but Stunned is not a helpless condition, which is why dropping items has to be specifically called out in that case.

Of course neither paralysis nor stunned are unconscious conditions.


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Words literally fail me as to why this is a question that needs to be asked. I can not think of a single GM who would rule any other way than a fall where you drop your weapons. Anything else is just... Ugh, I have a headache.

Sczarni

Starfinder Charter Superscriber
mourge40k wrote:
Words literally fail me as to why this is a question that needs to be asked. I can not think of a single GM who would rule any other way than a fall where you drop your weapons. Anything else is just... Ugh, I have a headache.

+1

Grand Lodge

Well, to be fair, I have fallen asleep clutching things. They don't generally stay clutched, but for 30 seconds or so? Sure. I have even fallen asleep sitting up, though never quite while standing (that I can remember), but I didn't immediately fall to the floor, it was more of a gradual slump. So it is not entirely unreasonable. Also, given the sort of actions that can wake a slept character, falling suddenly to the ground would seem to have a chance of waking them.

Certainly, if you slept, say, a cow, I would not expect it to fall prone. A biped might just slump up against the wall behind it, etc.


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To use a PFS scenario as an example (minor spoilers):

From Heresy of Man, Part 1:
There is a Haunt in HoM Pt 1, where the PCs are in a 5ft-wide long cavern path that has about two feet of tidal water in it.

When the haunt manifests, those who are affected by it succumb to the equivalent of deep slumber. The author makes a note to apply the drowning rules to any PC who is affected by the Haunt, as they collapse down into the water.

In addition, the author also goes on to specifically mention that an NPC accompanying the PCs falls against the cavern wall in such a way as to maintain a sitting position, thus allowing the PCs to deal with the Haunt's after-effects (as well as the voracious rats that suddenly come after them) rather than worrying about the NPC.

So, take that as you will, but when an official paizo product like that makes it through their editors and such, odds are that is the company's take on how a particular mechanic works.

I understand that this isn't RAW, but it is how I would rule it regarding whether or not a PC goes prone from a sleep effect.

Regarding dropping things, honestly, I have seen it played both ways by GMs and have no problem with either ruling. That being said, I err on the side of caution and expect it to be ruled on the 'yeah, you drop your stuff' side. If it isn't ruled that way, great.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Echoen wrote:

Unconscious creatures are knocked out and helpless. Unconsciousness can result from having negative hit points (but not more than the creature's Constitution score), or from nonlethal damage in excess of current hit points.

A helpless character is paralyzed, held, bound, sleeping, unconscious, or otherwise completely at an opponent's mercy. A helpless target is treated as having a Dexterity of 0 (–5 modifier). Melee attacks against a helpless target get a +4 bonus (equivalent to attacking a prone target). Ranged attacks get no special bonus against helpless targets. Rogues can sneak attack helpless targets.

As a full-round action, an enemy can use a melee weapon to deliver a coup de grace to a helpless foe. An enemy can also use a bow or crossbow, provided he is adjacent to the target. The attacker automatically hits and scores a critical hit. (A rogue also gets his sneak attack damage bonus against a helpless foe when delivering a coup de grace.) If the defender survives, he must make a Fortitude save (DC 10 + damage dealt) or die. Delivering a coup de grace provokes attacks of opportunity.

Creatures that are immune to critical hits do not take critical damage, nor do they need to make Fortitude saves to avoid being killed by a coup de grace.

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1. Does going Unconscious (as per the Slumber hex) render you prone?

2. Does going Unconscious cause you to drop your held items?

**Facepalm** Really? Is there some kind of corner agenda behind these two questions?


I guess a DM could rule that the sleep spell and the slumber hex both cause persons to sleep, and rule that when they fall they take 1d6 of damage, thus waking them up....

...but of course that would "ruin" the game for some people.

The other idea is that the sleep spell and slumber hex, if they put the person to sleep, they also cushion the person's fall (feather fall) such that they are gently laid to slumber.

If my DM ruled that way I would do spell research to add the feather fall to it and tell him/her; he/she is being an idiot and over-thinking everything.....


alexd1976 wrote:
also, there are no penalties for being dead.

You might want to actually check the CRB about that. This argument is easily refuted by reading how the conditions work. It is also reufted by the statement that you have no

The problem with "sleep" is that it is not a condition. The spell lists the conditions it places on you.

People want to change what they see in the CRB to fit their notions but when the RAW dose not support them they make statements, like this, that are unrelated to the question at hand. This in turn means that there cannot be a discussion about SLEEP because then this sort of statement used to ridicule anyone who questions their preconceived notions.


Echoen wrote:

Unconscious creatures are knocked out and helpless. Unconsciousness can result from having negative hit points (but not more than the creature's Constitution score), or from nonlethal damage in excess of current hit points.

A helpless character is paralyzed, held, bound, sleeping, unconscious, or otherwise completely at an opponent's mercy. A helpless target is treated as having a Dexterity of 0 (–5 modifier). Melee attacks against a helpless target get a +4 bonus (equivalent to attacking a prone target). Ranged attacks get no special bonus against helpless targets. Rogues can sneak attack helpless targets.

As a full-round action, an enemy can use a melee weapon to deliver a coup de grace to a helpless foe. An enemy can also use a bow or crossbow, provided he is adjacent to the target. The attacker automatically hits and scores a critical hit. (A rogue also gets his sneak attack damage bonus against a helpless foe when delivering a coup de grace.) If the defender survives, he must make a Fortitude save (DC 10 + damage dealt) or die. Delivering a coup de grace provokes attacks of opportunity.

Creatures that are immune to critical hits do not take critical damage, nor do they need to make Fortitude saves to avoid being killed by a coup de grace.

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1. Does going Unconscious (as per the Slumber hex) render you prone?

2. Does going Unconscious cause you to drop your held items?

1) It renders you "helpless" more like a hold person.

2) It is not stated and you would have to get a GM ruling.


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Minos Judge wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:
also, there are no penalties for being dead.
You might want to actually check the CRB about that. This argument is easily refuted by reading how the conditions work.

Okay, refute it. Here's the text of the Dead condition:

Quote:


The character's hit points are reduced to a negative amount equal to his Constitution score, his Constitution drops to 0, or he is killed outright by a spell or effect. The character's soul leaves his body. Dead characters cannot benefit from normal or magical healing, but they can be restored to life via magic. A dead body decays normally unless magically preserved, but magic that restores a dead character to life also restores the body either to full health or to its condition at the time of death (depending on the spell or device). Either way, resurrected characters need not worry about rigor mortis, decomposition, and other conditions that affect dead bodies.

According to this text, nothing stops the something with the Dead condition from taking ordinary actions, including moving, attacking, casting spells, etc. There are no penalties attached except an inability to benefit from magical healing.

Unconscious is in a similar bind; there's no statement that prevents you from taking actions while unconscious, let alone remaining standing.

Grand Lodge

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Part of the answer depends on is this cinematic sleep? Or is this realistic sleep? I feel like given pathfinder, this is more cinematic sleep than realistic. Given that, it would be reasonable for it to be anything from "target stands there, head lolling, his hand (still holding his sword) drops to his side" all the way to "he collapses in a puddle on the floor, his sword dropping, and his helmet rolling away"

So, GM discretion, Expect table variation. May depend on your opponent and as in the case from HoM, dramatic necessity.

In my case:

Random villager in a field? drops to the ground, drops his hoe.

Kid with teddy bear, drops to the ground, clutching the teddy bear (good luck getting it free without waking them).

Cow, stands there, possibly still chewing.

Palace guard on a really boring duty, stays standing, holding his spear (That's how he normally sleeps on duty.) May be hard to tell he is asleep from a distance.


Orfamay Quest wrote:
Minos Judge wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:
also, there are no penalties for being dead.
You might want to actually check the CRB about that. This argument is easily refuted by reading how the conditions work.

Okay, refute it. Here's the text of the Dead condition:

Quote:


The character's hit points are reduced to a negative amount equal to his Constitution score, his Constitution drops to 0, or he is killed outright by a spell or effect. The character's soul leaves his body. Dead characters cannot benefit from normal or magical healing, but they can be restored to life via magic. A dead body decays normally unless magically preserved, but magic that restores a dead character to life also restores the body either to full health or to its condition at the time of death (depending on the spell or device). Either way, resurrected characters need not worry about rigor mortis, decomposition, and other conditions that affect dead bodies.

According to this text, nothing stops the something with the Dead condition from taking ordinary actions, including moving, attacking, casting spells, etc. There are no penalties attached except an inability to benefit from magical healing.

Unconscious is in a similar bind; there's no statement that prevents you from taking actions while unconscious, let alone remaining standing.

I would rather start a new thread for this; however then people would complain about we do not need this thread. I do not want to derail this thread for more then needed.

Dead is a continuation of the Dying condition. It is listed as such on page 189. It is listed as the next condition for losing HP.

And Unconscious lists that you are helpless.


This thread should have derailed by a 30000 character scream into a muffled pillow.

You're asleep. You're prone. And even if you're holding something, it's not like one couldn't just take it. Because your asle.... I can't even finish this.

Sczarni

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Starfinder Charter Superscriber

The old "Knights of the Dinner Table" joke used to be about the Knight that kept on fighting, after his head was cut off, because he still had hit points left.

These jokes are out there. And they're meant to poke fun at the realities of simulationist gaming. But they're not meant for serious rules discussions.

I can't help but feel that a lot of the "RAW" crowd keeps pushing us in that direction.


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Nefreet wrote:


These jokes are out there. And they're meant to poke fun at the realities of simulationist gaming. But they're not meant for serious rules discussions.

I can't help but feel that a lot of the "RAW" crowd keeps pushing us in that direction.

Agreed. I can't imagine anyone seriously claiming that a person "knocked out" (RAW) will remain on his feet just because the rules text doesn't include the word "prone."

If there is anyone who does make that claim, I offer the counterclaim that "dead" does not include any behavioral limitations by RAW (and no, by RAW it's not "a continuation of the Dying condition," either. There is no such link made.)


Orfamay Quest wrote:
Nefreet wrote:


These jokes are out there. And they're meant to poke fun at the realities of simulationist gaming. But they're not meant for serious rules discussions.

I can't help but feel that a lot of the "RAW" crowd keeps pushing us in that direction.

Agreed. I can't imagine anyone seriously claiming that a person "knocked out" (RAW) will remain on his feet just because the rules text doesn't include the word "prone."

If there is anyone who does make that claim, I offer the counterclaim that "dead" does not include any behavioral limitations by RAW (and no, by RAW it's not "a continuation of the Dying condition," either. There is no such link made.)

There is a direct link on pg 189.

The real problem is that this is a rules set to simulate certain events. The problems happen when people read the rules and have to use any judgement of their own. If the developers would just answer the question, which some people believe has an obvious answer, then it would be simple. The rules people choose to leave it open to interpretation. Therefor there must be something that I do not see that stating the obvious would not work for them. Could it be that then they would have to make additional rulings and revamp a few spells? Or is that it would allow people to abuse something that I do not see.

I also like how people will ignore RAW when it does not agree with them, but use it when it supports their position.


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Depends.

Are you a horse?

Paizo doesn't like to waste time on obvious answers because they don't like people abusing the FAQ button on questions they already know the answers to.

Grand Lodge

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Well, sometimes I am a little horse, for example when I have a colt.

Grand Lodge

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By the way, can we drop the rediculous hyperbole? I think a made a convincing case that there could be varient outcomes within the rules and common sense. I would like to find out if people think that is a reasonable assertion, and not another thread about "dead doesn't mean you can't act" like the 45,435,365 other threads on this board.


Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Depends.

Are you a horse?

Paizo doesn't like to waste time on obvious answers because they don't like people abusing the FAQ button on questions they already know the answers to.

The problem is that this question comes up every couple of months. That may not seem like much but this is just the people who are willing to take the time and post here. How many people do not bother to post. If you check it was something that I asked about awhile ago. I got much more vitriolic responses then it has received this time.


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One thing to keep in mind is that the rules were made with innumerable assumptions of what is common sense. For example, nothing in the rules prevents an elephant from jumping, even though it is impossible for an elephant to jump.


Poor elephants.

Prone and weapons dropped. Because sleep.


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On the plus side, if you assume the game is written from the perspective of elephants, it makes the "What's the Acrobatics DC to jump a 10 foot pit?" question really simple.


FLite wrote:
I think a made a convincing case that there could be varient outcomes within the rules and common sense.

If there can be, it is a sure thing Paizo will not answer this in the FAQ. The FAQ is for clear-cut rules questions only—that is to say, questions with a single, right vs. wrong answer. If Paizo wants to leave it ambiguous so GMs can make their own rulings based on the circumstances, the FAQ will not be involved.


FLite wrote:
Kid with teddy bear, drops to the ground, clutching the teddy bear (good luck getting it free without waking them).

I personally know an 18 month old girl who falls asleep clutching her bottle with a death grip. If you try and take it from her after she's asleep, she often wakes up and grabs it immediately. So no, falling asleep doesn't automatically mean people let go of things.


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Didn't we just have a thread on this?

Two things:

1) Being asleep and being unconscious are not necessarily the same thing. In many uses, there is a clear distinction between the two. You can wake someone up by poking them, whereas the unconscious person may be in a near coma-like state. For example, a creature at negative hp is unconscious and can't be roused the same way a sleeping person can be.

2) Magical sleep MAY WELL leave the victims on their feet. There are many examples in fantasy writing and shows where the victims of such magic are left standing in a slumped over posture, oblivious to the world, as the protagonists sneak by.

That being said, yeah, I'd have sleeping people drop prone and count as unconscious. I just don't feel it's as obvious a ruling as some are implying.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Cheapy wrote:
On the plus side, if you assume the game is written from the perspective of elephants, it makes the "What's the Acrobatics DC to jump a 10 foot pit?" question really simple.

The great thing about elephants... they always involve answers you'll never forget.


FLite wrote:
By the way, can we drop the rediculous hyperbole? I think a made a convincing case that there could be varient outcomes within the rules and common sense.

When you show me a substantial number of humans who are in the habit of standing up while sleeping, I will consider whether you made "a convincing case ... within ... common sense."

Grand Lodge

Okay If you insist.

less than 5 minutes of google search.

I'm not saying everyone should stay standing, just saying if there is a upright surface near them, it would be reasonable for them to slump against it.

And as Byakko points out, this is supernatural sleep. Not natural, so applying natural rules is somewhat limited. (Also, I did not notice it at first. The rifle in that first picture has a bayonette on it. Take a good look where it is pointing...)


Quote:

Melee attacks against a helpless target get a +4 bonus (equivalent to attacking a prone target).

(equivalent to attacking a prone target).

(equivalent

----------------

Seems RAW is that unconscious people do not go prone.

Oh, and I'm the GM. My mind got blown last week about how differently Charge works in Pathfinder, so I'm fully open to the concept that Paizo intends for stuff like Sleep and Slumber hex do not make the opponent fall prone.

Grand Lodge

I don't know, I could see a common english interpreation of that sentance as "you get +4 to hit them, as if they were prone, even when they are not." Note that although melee attacks get the same bonus to hit them as they would if they were prone, ranged attacks get no penalty, which they would get if they were prone.

Now that said, that is for a helpless person, such as someone affected by hold person.


I am going to start keeping better track of thread person names


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On the matter of falling unconscious: Did the victim make a Spellcraft check to know what spell was being done to them, so that they had time to shift their stance? If not, in my opinion, then the only way they'd remain standing while prone is by shear random luck.

On the matter of held items: If the victim falls to the ground, the chances that they'd maintain an uncontrolled grip on any object is very low. When unconscious, muscles relax and digit muscles return to their un-stretched state. This is unlike other status affects that cause a bodily surge or charge of tension. In my opinion, it is unlikely that common object would be held in grip, unless any other fastening or adhesion was applied.


Holy Sh..... I seriously thought this thread was a joke till like the halfway point......

Never would I have ever even wondered about this one.... If a player hit me with it at a game I was running I would have a LOT of issue not saying something more than "you are kidding right?"


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you are lucky
if you have been paying attention to the thread quality lately
you would have seen more of this
and by this
I mean tire fires


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We have had a lot of "This doesn't seem like it should be a thread" rules question threads lately, haven't we? Prone sleepers, ten-foot jumps, first-level wizards casting 9th-level sorcerer spells, AoOs from movement...is this a trend, or have I just not noticed all these sorts of threads before?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
We have had a lot of "This doesn't seem like it should be a thread" rules question threads lately, haven't we? Prone sleepers, ten-foot jumps, first-level wizards casting 9th-level sorcerer spells, AoOs from movement...is this a trend, or have I just not noticed all these sorts of threads before?

It's summertime at Paizo. Lots of kids free from school homework.


The one that made me rage the worst was "are throw weapons considered weapons that are thrown?"

But this is close. Yes. My head would explode.

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