In Pathfinder, you can't see the Sun


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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Quote:
so what about other stars that we can see from light years away?

Simply rule that Perception checks to notice light is always automatic success unless this light (or it's source) has total cover.

We know you can notice a candle lit in the middle of nowhere about 30 miles away on average.

It is also known that it's atmosphere that makes light less perceptible from far away, not the distance by itself.
So that rule for -1 per 10 feet is cast out when measuring the distance in space.


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shadowkras wrote:
Quote:
so what about other stars that we can see from light years away?

Simply rule that Perception checks to notice light is always automatic success unless this light (or it's source) has total cover.

We know you can notice a candle lit in the middle of nowhere about 30 miles away on average.

It is also known that it's atmosphere that makes light less perceptible from far away, not the distance by itself.
So that rule for -1 per 10 feet is cast out when measuring the distance in space.

Cool. So we can make out features on Pluto as clearly as on the moon, right? No greater penalty for all that distance through vaccuum.

Or all stars are just as noticable as the sun.

And none of that helps with the more realistic problems. I still can't see that dragon a mile away.


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Quote:
Cool. So we can make out features on Pluto as clearly as on the moon, right? No greater penalty for all that distance through vaccuum.

Call NASA, pluto is now a star.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

With how s@#&ty my perception rolls are, none of it matters. I wouldn't see the broadside of a barn if I was standing next to it.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
captain yesterday wrote:
With how s+!%ty my perception rolls are, none of it matters. I wouldn't see the broadside of a barn if I was standing next to it.

Without my glasses I'm right there with you Captain Y.


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captain yesterday wrote:
With how s!!%ty my perception rolls are, none of it matters. I wouldn't see the broadside of a barn if I was standing next to it.

Holy crap, where did that barn come from!?


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The only rule I've been able to find about object size only refers to how to calculate the object size of a weapon. Other rules do indicate how to calculate the AC of an object based on its size, but not even the creature size rules actually tell you how tall/wide/deep a creature is, let alone an object. So the broad side of a barn might actually be a fine object for all we know.


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TOZ wrote:
I'm going to start requiring players to roll Perception checks to hear their comrades speak.

I actually need to do that IRL, judging by the number of "pardons" and "what-was-thats" that pepper my speech.

Shadow Lodge

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Oh, I can hear you. Understanding is completely different. :)


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The perception check gives you two pieces of information. (1) that a thing is there (if not already obvious), AND (2) precisely what 5 foot squares it occupies.

It specifically does NOT give you sight of an object. Ie, you can make a perception check against an invisible foe. If you succeed you are made aware of their presence and know exactly what space they occupy. But you don't get to see them. They still get a full cover bonus.

We can therefore infer that because the perception check doesn't grant sight, it doesn't govern sight.

So, failing a perception check for an object (like the sun) means you do not precisely know its location down the exact 5 foot cubes (in this case) that it occupies (that would be a huge and quite impossible check, like, with a -59 billion modifier for a creature on Earth as indicated by the OP). That, however, doesn't preclude you from seeing it since we have already inferred that sight isn't covered by perception anyway.


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Human (and predator) sight is excessively precise. In complete darkness, we are able to see even a single photon worth of light. We are also immediately aware of anything that moves, so long as we are even able to see it. And if something glows brighter (or a different colour) than the surroundings, there is simply no way we're not seeing it.

Given this, using a skill check to see things is simply weird.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Seeing something, and noticing it, are two different things. One is a physical response, the other mental.


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captain yesterday wrote:
With how s!#@ty my perception rolls are, none of it matters. I wouldn't see the broadside of a barn if I was standing next to it.

And now you begin to grasp why the gazebo is such a dreadful opponent....

Dark Archive

Xellrael wrote:

Per RAW:

The Sun is a colossal object (+8 perception to see it)

Okay, since you are nitpicking the rules, I'll nitpick your post. Give me a book reference where it defines the Sun as a colossal object. Because a Great Wyrm dragon is a colossal object, but it's not the size of a planet, much less a freakin' star. Since we don't actually know the size of Golarion nor the size of it's star, we only have Earth to compare... 1,300,000 Earths would fit inside our Sun. I think that's quite bigger than the itty bitty "colossal" designation of D&D/Pathfinder.


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No larger size than "Colossal" exists. As we have no frame of canonical reference to define the size of the Pathfinder sun, and the Pathfinder sun is not Earth's sun, we can only conclude that the Sun is Colossal. Comparing it to Earth's sun is flat-out inaccurate. Suns come in all shapes and sizes.


The rules start out imprecise and a bit ridiculous.
Isn't applying reductio ad absurdium to them even sillier than normal?


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Zelda Marie Lupescu wrote:
Xellrael wrote:

Per RAW:

The Sun is a colossal object (+8 perception to see it)
Okay, since you are nitpicking the rules, I'll nitpick your post. Give me a book reference where it defines the Sun as a colossal object. Because a Great Wyrm dragon is a colossal object, but it's not the size of a planet, much less a freakin' star. Since we don't actually know the size of Golarion nor the size of it's star, we only have Earth to compare... 1,300,000 Earths would fit inside our Sun. I think that's quite bigger than the itty bitty "colossal" designation of D&D/Pathfinder.

Well, it technically only applies to creatures, but Colossal is the classification for creatures 64' or more (tall or long).

Unless there's another reference for objects, I can't speak directly for the actual sun, but a sun-sized living creature would be Colossal and a +8 to Perception. :)


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Objects have sizes, according to the CRB. So do forest fires and avalanches—effectively, anyways.


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[Insert joke about sizable objects here]


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Daw wrote:

The rules start out imprecise and a bit ridiculous.

Isn't applying reductio ad absurdium to them even sillier than normal?

Well, yes, but it's amusing.

And it does point to a real breakdown in the rules, even handwaving the Sun as a special case. The Perception rules just break at long distances - even for large things you should be able to see.

You can handwave it to be automatic, but there's really nothing you can do within the rules. Even extending the size scale doesn't help, since it's exponential vs linear distance.

Dark Archive

Kobold Cleaver wrote:
No larger size than "Colossal" exists. As we have no frame of canonical reference to define the size of the Pathfinder sun, and the Pathfinder sun is not Earth's sun, we can only conclude that the Sun is Colossal. Comparing it to Earth's sun is flat-out inaccurate. Suns come in all shapes and sizes.

It's not so much flat-out inaccurate, it's an estimation based on astronomy. A star with planets orbiting it isn't 64' diameter. They are MASSIVE... At the very least, Golarion's star probably isn't smaller than the smallest known star in real life, which is 164,000km in diameter, just slightly larger than Jupiter. SO then 1300 Earths would fit inside it. Either way, Golarion's star, ANY star, is beyond the scale of "Colossal" especially when seen from the planet(s) orbiting it was my point.


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From this we can conclude that the object size rules were not made to model the size of the sun. Surprise surprise.


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Perhaps the Pathfinder Sun is just very, very dense. Or it's magic. Nothing in the Pathfinder rules says stars have to be big, anyways. :)


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Clearly this issue demands pathfinder 2.0! it's the only way to be sure.


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So were going with the giant turtle with 4 elephants and the sun and the moon are flat discs that spin around said turtle. Woo disc world planet.


Zelda Marie Lupescu wrote:
A star with planets orbiting it isn't 64' diameter.

... yyyyyyyyyyyyes?

No one made the serious claim that this wasn't the case.

(Though, I suppose, KC hypothetically made that as a possible claim; we can demonstrably prove him wrong in the official Golarion setting, but perhaps not int the non-world "generic" setting suggested by the rules which, to be fair, do differ from Golarion.)

Zelda Marie Lupescu wrote:
Either way, Golarion's star, ANY star, is beyond the scale of "Colossal" especially when seen from the planet(s) orbiting it was my point.

You are explicitly ignoring in-game text in order to come to that conclusion (which thejeff already mentioned): "64' or more"

(Bold/bigger text formatting added for emphasis.)

andygal wrote:
From this we can conclude that the object size rules were not made to model the size of the sun. Surprise surprise.

Pretty much this one. :)


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Actually, there are a few options that help with Perception checks:

1) Spyglass
For 1000gp, you get a -1 penalty per 20ft

2)Mwk Spyglass
For 2000gp, you get a -1 penalty per 40ft

3) Skill unlocks allow a -1/60ft ratio, at 20 ranks.

4) Telescopes can divide the distance penalty for viewing objects by up to 250; this Stacks with the skill unlock or mwk spyglass

5) If you must absolutely see everything, use the feat Mythic Eagle Eyes.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Just don't look directly at it when using them.


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actually no rules state that looking at the sun through a telescope is dangerous

*says while eyes are literally on fire*

In seriousness, the telescope + skill unlock still isn't enough. You're still taking about a -32 million penalty on that Perception check.

I envision some mythic hero being sung of in bardic ode after ode: "Eagle-Eye Edna, The Woman Who Worked Out Where All This Weird Daytime Light Is Coming From".


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The real argument Zelda should be making is actually quite simple: Nothing in the rules says the Pathfinder sun is 490 billion feet away. It's clearly hovering right above our heads at all times. Check and mate, OP!


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But are you really seeing (or not seeing) the sun or is that just what the computers want you to see?


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Dunno, I still say that it's in plain sight, since the sun light reaches us - even when it has total concealment by obscuring mist-esq clouds. And nowhere is it stated that the sun has HIPS or is allowed to roll a stealth check.

The other use Perception has is to notice "fine details in the environment". But I'm not too sure that the sun and the sun light (which is almost everywhere) qualifies as "fine details in the environment".

In conclusion: Even if one where somehow to beat the -32 million penalty due to distance, you still can not see the sun. Because you're not allowed to roll a Perception check to see it.


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Rub-Eta wrote:

Dunno, I still say that it's in plain sight, since the sun light reaches us - even when it has total concealment by obscuring mist-esq clouds. And nowhere is it stated that the sun has HIPS or is allowed to roll a stealth check.

The other use Perception has is to notice "fine details in the environment". But I'm not too sure that the sun and the sun light (which is almost everywhere) qualifies as "fine details in the environment".

In conclusion: Even if one where somehow to beat the -32 million penalty due to distance, you still can not see the sun. Because you're not allowed to roll a Perception check to see it.

The perception skill literally lists "Notice a visible creature" and "Notice the smell of rotting garbage" as examples of fine details with a perception DC (note that stealth is completely separate to these). I find it difficult to agree with the notion that a dude standing next to you is a fine detail, but the sun isn't.


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Compared to sun light, it's "fine details in the environment".
A visible creature is, by the rules, "fine detail in the environment". But the sun or sun light is not listed as "fine details in the environment".

EDIT: It says "visible creature" not "dude standing next to you" - You can't roll a perception check to notice "dude standing next to you" either. Because nowhere is it stated that "dude standing next to you" is a visible creature. Who knows, maybe he's and invisible creature?


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Maybe The problem lies in what we are defining as the sun from a logical stand point we want to say its the thing we trust to be the big glowy ball in the center of the universe but to people on earth Its the kind of small yellow globe in the sky. even though in actuality all we really see is the sun with the exception of artificial light fires etc. Everything we see is the sun technically the falsehood is everything else.

WE ARE ALL IN THE MATRIX OF THE SUNS LIGHT!


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Of course you can't see the sun. It's moved on from its original position by the time the light reaches you.


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One of the reasons you can't see the Sun is because all those Fine particles of dust and microorganisms suspended in the air constantly clouding your vision.
In Pathfinder you don't need a microscope, just a +8 perception bonus.


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Stabbyface flew too close to the sun and burns it.

Did Stabbyface says sun? He's meant Paladin, and he ambushes him.

Still burned thoughs.


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New rule, everyone needs a light source because the sun is too far away to have its light be seen by perception. :P

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

*spit-take*


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Is it really worth a spit-take? I'm like that fighting game character who's only in every other installment of the series at this point.


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Wait, so vampires are immune to the sun as long as they fail their perception check?


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Why haven't the drow ambushed us by now?


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Is it really about your lack of perception skills or the fact that the sun is in such a super light category that you have no choice but to notice it! or maybe your just making so many checks a micro second your nat 20 a few times, or maybe The matrix is feeding you the information directly into your skull...

Follow the white rabbit.


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Does that make James Jacobs...

The Architect


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Well the sun is supposedly in the sky and he is the mastermind ergo It does point a finger. Vis a Vis he does not grant us the ability to see the sun so Concordantly Your assumption is ACK!>>! *ate by dinosaur*


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Obviously, we can't see the sun because a lion ate it.


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Ventnor wrote:
Obviously, we can't see the sun because a lion ate it.

I really desperately need to stat that lion out now


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber

To be fair, it's entirely plausible that the sun may not be directly observable from Golarion's surface.

As an object, it's supermassive but it is admittedly very distant. The sun itself could be beyond what an unaided eye is able to see.

On the other hand, the light it emits is not exactly an object, since it's both particles and waves, so the object rules don't apply.


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Vidmaster7 wrote:
Ventnor wrote:
Obviously, we can't see the sun because a lion ate it.
I really desperately need to stat that lion out now

Been done, complete with alchemical relations to metals

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