What penalties for a paralyzed creature using a fly spell?


Rules Questions

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Fergie wrote:
As far as I know, there is no penalty for failing a fly check (if you are NOT using wings). Although I don't know if you would then hover, or move at the minimum speed required to not make a check...

If you fail a fly check to hover, it doesn't make sense that you would then get to hover. So I'd say you have to fly in a straight line.


Galnörag wrote:
what about a half-way option, one doesn't stop flying, but continues flying in the direction/speed they were last traveling in, until you hit a solid object, then you just sort of float into it. So magical flight continues to work, but you lack the ability to use your body to control the flight.

Good thing your body isn't mentioned as a required control method in the spell.

Liberty's Edge

I see some admirable efforts and some not-in-good-faith efforts on both sides here, but I keep getting stuck on this point.

From Fly (spell):

The subject of a fly spell can charge but not run, and it cannot carry aloft more weight than its maximum load, plus any armor it wears.

From Paralyzed (condition):
A paralyzed character is frozen in place and unable to move or act. A paralyzed character has effective Dexterity and Strength scores of 0 and is helpless

0 STR = 0 lb carry capacity

From equipment:
Pouch, Spell Component
Price 5 gp; Weight 2 lbs.

The way I see it, a subject with a str of 0 and carrying anything can no longer be subject to the effects of a fly spell.

Additionally would the fly skill have an armor check penalty if it could be attempted while paralyzed?

Additionally I think you need to provide a source before declaring that an action definitively does or does not meet the "mental only" condition.

Just some thoughts... carry on.


Fly safe. Fly naked


BigNorseWolf wrote:
Fly safe. Fly naked

You would literally have to be naked... which is why I find it so funny that this thread (and others related to it) have gone on for so long...

Even IF the rules allowed for paralyzed flight (which it does not, per FAQ) you would have had to cast the spell... nude.

I mean... depending on how strict the GM is, that might even mean you can't have a spell component pouch (if required), worn magic items etc...

Hilarious.


Harrison Wise wrote:

I see some admirable efforts and some not-in-good-faith efforts on both sides here, but I keep getting stuck on this point.

From Fly (spell):

The subject of a fly spell can charge but not run, and it cannot carry aloft more weight than its maximum load, plus any armor it wears.

From Paralyzed (condition):
A paralyzed character is frozen in place and unable to move or act. A paralyzed character has effective Dexterity and Strength scores of 0 and is helpless

0 STR = 0 lb carry capacity

From equipment:
Pouch, Spell Component
Price 5 gp; Weight 2 lbs.

The way I see it, a subject with a str of 0 and carrying anything can no longer be subject to the effects of a fly spell.

Additionally would the fly skill have an armor check penalty if it could be attempted while paralyzed?

Additionally I think you need to provide a source before declaring that an action definitively does or does not meet the "mental only" condition.

Just some thoughts... carry on.

From paralyzed: "can take purely mental actions"

From Fly: "Using a fly spell requires only as much concentration as walking"

To me, that seems like you control it with your mind, but as per the FAQ, spellcasters are now obligated to flap their arms while under the effects of the spell.

That's gotta look silly. :D


Or they steer themselves Superman-style by pointing their arms, angling their bodies and so forth, if you want to imagine something a bit less silly.


Matthew Downie wrote:
Or they steer themselves Superman-style by pointing their arms, angling their bodies and so forth, if you want to imagine something a bit less silly.

It seems he doesn't have to do that though... there are plenty of instances of Superman just hovering about and doing his thing...

So, uh, yeah.

Check him out at the three minute mark.

He's hovering in midair killing tons of stuff... not flapping his arms like a bird.

Clearly, he doesn't NEED physical mobility to fly, he just dresses it up a bit to look cool.

It's a moot point though, the FAQ about this removed the ability to use mental actions altogether while paralyzed. This means EVERYTHING including purely mental stuff.

I'm ignoring the FAQ at my table.


alexd1976 wrote:
It's a moot point though, the FAQ about this removed the ability to use mental actions altogether while paralyzed.

No it didn't, unless you take parts of it out of context.


Matthew Downie wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:
It's a moot point though, the FAQ about this removed the ability to use mental actions altogether while paralyzed.
No it didn't, unless you take parts of it out of context.

At best it is contradictory:

"No, any creature that loses all actions can’t take an action to attempt a Fly check to hover in place and thus automatically falls. That includes a paralyzed, stunned, or dazed creature. Magical flight doesn’t act any differently, even for paralysis, as it isn’t a purely mental action."

The bolded parts are why it looks like you lose all actions... because, you know, it says exactly that.

Not sure how that is out of context.

It doesn't say 'loses all PHYSICAL actions'.

Anywho, it clears up what happens when paralyzed in regards to the Fly spell, but also (accidentally?) cripples things like telepathic communication and Dominate Person.

The last line muddles things by once again referring to mental actions for some reason (does this contradict the bolded parts? Yeah, it kinda does) but also tells us that Fly REQUIRES movement to work.

So whether it be the flapping of arms or peddling an invisible bicycle, it is an observable action that needs to take place for Fly to function.

This alters my enjoyment of the game, so I will not be using this at my table. My players agree.

*shrugs* I'm okay with ignoring rules sometimes.


OK, I think I got it:
If you are flying using the fly spell, and you become paralyzed, you move the minimum distance to stay aloft without requiring a fly check. If you have any equipment, then you no longer have the strength to stay aloft, and fall like a stone.

alexd1976 wrote:
It's a moot point though, the FAQ about this removed the ability to use mental actions altogether while paralyzed.

I think you are adding too much weight to the first sentence, and perhaps missing the third sentence.

"Magical flight doesn’t act any differently, even for paralysis, as it isn’t a purely mental action."
It seems pretty clear to me that this ruling is about flight requiring a physical action you can't take, because you are paralyzed. It has nothing to say about taking mental actions while paralyzed, as that has nothing to do with this topic.

I think it is important to remember that these things are written to be easy to read, not withstand picking apart word by word. It's and FAQ, not a new amendment to The Constitution.


Fergie wrote:

OK, I think I got it:

If you are flying using the fly spell, and you become paralyzed, you move the minimum distance to stay aloft without requiring a fly check. If you have any equipment, then you no longer have the strength to stay aloft, and fall like a stone.

alexd1976 wrote:
It's a moot point though, the FAQ about this removed the ability to use mental actions altogether while paralyzed.

I think you are adding too much weight to the first sentence, and perhaps missing the third sentence.

"Magical flight doesn’t act any differently, even for paralysis, as it isn’t a purely mental action."
It seems pretty clear to me that this ruling is about flight requiring a physical action you can't take, because you are paralyzed. It has nothing to say about taking mental actions while paralyzed, as that has nothing to do with this topic.

I think it is important to remember that these things are written to be easy to read, not withstand picking apart word by word. It's and FAQ, not a new amendment to The Constitution.

I think that by you ignoring the part I was talking about and talking about a different section of text altogether, it changes the meaning...

Your assumption that I 'missed' the third sentence is incorrect.

The FAQ says what it says, and it says you can't act while paralyzed.

I've assigned as much 'weight' to every line, every word... as any other portion.

They use the term 'mental action' later in the text, so they are clearly aware of it, but do NOT use it when stating that you cannot act when paralyzed.

So.

If we assume the FAQ is correct, then paralysis prevents all actions.

Because it actually says that.

Question intent all you like, I quoted text.

As I said, I'm ignoring it at my table, as my group believes that something that "requires only as much concentration as..." is a mental action, and that being hit with Curare doesn't stop your brain.

But, you know, maybe that's just us. I'm okay with that.


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alexd1976 wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:
It's a moot point though, the FAQ about this removed the ability to use mental actions altogether while paralyzed.
No it didn't, unless you take parts of it out of context.

At best it is contradictory:

"No, any creature that loses all actions can’t take an action to attempt a Fly check to hover in place and thus automatically falls. That includes a paralyzed, stunned, or dazed creature. Magical flight doesn’t act any differently, even for paralysis, as it isn’t a purely mental action."

The bolded parts are why it looks like you lose all actions... because, you know, it says exactly that.

Not sure how that is out of context.

It doesn't say 'loses all PHYSICAL actions'.

Anywho, it clears up what happens when paralyzed in regards to the Fly spell, but also (accidentally?) cripples things like telepathic communication and Dominate Person.

The last line muddles things by once again referring to mental actions for some reason (does this contradict the bolded parts? Yeah, it kinda does) but also tells us that Fly REQUIRES movement to work.

So whether it be the flapping of arms or peddling an invisible bicycle, it is an observable action that needs to take place for Fly to function.

This alters my enjoyment of the game, so I will not be using this at my table. My players agree.

*shrugs* I'm okay with ignoring rules sometimes.

In context, it's made regarding magical flight. The last statement you quoted notes that even magical flight isn't a purely mental action. So no, the point isn't to state that a paralyzed person now cannot even do solely mental actions.

When in doubt, if there are two readings of a statement and one is relatively straightforward and clarifies a question or rule and the other wholly and unquestionably makes a major rules change, particularly seemingly out of nowhere, err on the side of the more conservative reading. There's no reason to think they'd be revamping the ability to make solely mental actions in a FAQ regarding magical flight, particularly when they clarify that even magical flight isn't solely a mental action.

EDIT: Also, more importantly you're ignoring the question that was addressed. The question wasn't "Can a paralyzed creature continue to fly ...". It was "Can a paralyzed or stunned creature continue to fly ...".

The first statement is no, creatures that lose all actions.... Stunned creatures cannot take even mental actions. So again, while paralysis is directly mentioned and implicated, you're reading it way too far by concluding that they've now disallowed paralyzed creatures from taking mental actions.


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alexd1976 wrote:
As I said, I'm ignoring it at my table, as my group believes that something that "requires only as much concentration as..." is a mental action, and that being hit with Curare doesn't stop your brain.

Flying and walking require the same amount of concentration, in that you don't have to think all that hard to get your body to do what you want. That doesn't mean flying doesn't have any physical component to it. That is where you infer too much.

It also doesn't mean a wizard must flap his or her arms to stay aloft. It just means that perhaps there is some physical component, even if slight.


fretgod99 wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:
As I said, I'm ignoring it at my table, as my group believes that something that "requires only as much concentration as..." is a mental action, and that being hit with Curare doesn't stop your brain.

Flying and walking require the same amount of concentration, in that you don't have to think all that hard to get your body to do what you want. That doesn't mean flying doesn't have any physical component to it. That is where you infer too much.

It also doesn't mean a wizard must flap his or her arms to stay aloft. It just means that perhaps there is some physical component, even if slight.

If the action required isn't mental, then by default it must be physical, yes?

If physical, then observable.

Invisible bike peddling, flapping arms, swimming motion... something.


alexd1976 wrote:
fretgod99 wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:
As I said, I'm ignoring it at my table, as my group believes that something that "requires only as much concentration as..." is a mental action, and that being hit with Curare doesn't stop your brain.

Flying and walking require the same amount of concentration, in that you don't have to think all that hard to get your body to do what you want. That doesn't mean flying doesn't have any physical component to it. That is where you infer too much.

It also doesn't mean a wizard must flap his or her arms to stay aloft. It just means that perhaps there is some physical component, even if slight.

If the action required isn't mental, then by default it must be physical, yes?

If physical, then observable.

Invisible bike peddling, flapping arms, swimming motion... something.

You can be stressed out which causes your body to suffer in various ways which has no outward or visible indicators. That is why they made lie detectors.

Your logic is flawed. Just because it physical doesn't mean it is visible or outwardly apparent.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Fergie wrote:

You may be right, but that would seem to be a change from this:

PRD Fly skill -
Quote:
Try Again: Varies. You can attempt a Fly check to perform the same maneuver on subsequent rounds. If you are using wings and you fail a Fly check by 5 or more, you plummet to the ground, taking the appropriate falling damage (see Environment).
As far as I know, there is no penalty for failing a fly check (if you are NOT using wings). Although I don't know if you would then hover, or move at the minimum speed required to not make a check...
I agree with you that its a change (look up through the thread, through the saaaands of tiiiiime) but the FAQ seems pretty straitforward on it. If you're paralyzed you can't hold the superman pose and that makes you drop.

Exactly my problem. That make falling any skill check way more dangerous. Let's consider items like the Broom of Flying (+4 on Fly skill checks) or a fly potion (+6 total bonus to the check at CL 5).

They were two good ways to fight flying opponents for a melee combatant.
Now? consider the guy with some kind of armor, probably not stellar dexterity and no way to get the fly skill 8as least with the potion) as training it require to be able to fly every day. Beside the item bonus probably he has a penalty for the combined effects of armor, encumbrance and dexterity.
Chance to engage a flying creature with the fly skill in melee? Practically 0.
They would have to move in a straight line toward the enemy, make a single attack, then suffer a full attack, then they will have to make a DC 15 check to hover and make a full attack (BTW, it should be made at the start or end of the round? I would say immediately when you want to hover).
To be sure to stay in flight they would have to make 1 attack and then move at least at half speed, getting an AoO.
Great way to do very little and get a lot of damage.


A physiological change is not always visible to the naked eye.


alexd1976 wrote:
fretgod99 wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:
As I said, I'm ignoring it at my table, as my group believes that something that "requires only as much concentration as..." is a mental action, and that being hit with Curare doesn't stop your brain.

Flying and walking require the same amount of concentration, in that you don't have to think all that hard to get your body to do what you want. That doesn't mean flying doesn't have any physical component to it. That is where you infer too much.

It also doesn't mean a wizard must flap his or her arms to stay aloft. It just means that perhaps there is some physical component, even if slight.

If the action required isn't mental, then by default it must be physical, yes?

If physical, then observable.

Invisible bike peddling, flapping arms, swimming motion... something.

Observable, sure. Observable to the naked eye? No. Observable because overly demonstrative? No. Comically slap-stick in absurdity? No.

Simply observable, even if slight.


I am just glad this whole thing is answered, one way or another.

Now, where's my Bardic Masterpieces FAQ. I wanna stack Archaeo's Luck, Fate's Favored and Pageant of the Peacock and I wanna do it RIGHT NOW.

seriously though, it would be nice to know if that works, and if Triple Time is ever worth picking up


Chris Lambertz already stated that the team is working on that question and that due to the complexity of it they plan on taking their time.


CampinCarl9127 wrote:
Chris Lambertz already stated that the team is working on that question and that due to the complexity of it they plan on taking their time.

I saw a post from Mark that gave me roughly the same impression.

Doesn't stop me from being impatient, though.


Dex and Str = 0
Both are listed in the Glossary as causing unconsciousness.
You can't take purely mental actions of the voluntary sort while unconscious.

Then again in the "Getting Started" section of the CRB a Dexterity of 0 is the only ability score which leaves you neither unconscious nor comatose except Con which merely leaves you 'dead'. Dex of 0 leaves you '... effectively immobile (but not unconscious)'

Basically RAW contradicts itself within the CRB.

Wanders off to see if the FAQ (or errata somewhere) addresses this basic issue.

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