Reverse Gravity- outdoors


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion


Hello

This weekend I pitted my 11th level party (5 characters) against a Glabrezu. He pulled off his ambush like a champ and really left me with a dilemma as he caught the party completely by surprise (via his veil ability). He was outside when the party got wise to his deception and was using reverse gravity at will. OUCH!! I had wrestled with how I was going to handle RG in an outside setting as essentially, the rules seem a bit vague so I would assume a pc who cannot grasp onto anything would just get launched into the stratosphere.

Ultimately I decided to be extremely lenient and just said the party members caught in the RG well would accelerate at base speed each round. One party member had a scroll of fly so I let him fly around and push or pull people out of the well. If I had been really hardnose about it, this was an easy TPK.

Anyone else out there have an opinion on how RG should work outdoors?

Thanks!!!
CC


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I've run into exactly the same situation. Here's how I read it:

The area of the spell is "up to one 10-ft. cube/level (S)". The first line of the spell says: "This spell reverses gravity in an area, causing unattached objects and creatures in the area to fall upward and reach the top of the area in 1 round."

A glabrezu has CL 14. Since he wanted maximal effect, he shaped the area vertically--14 10-ft. cubes straight up.

Gravity is reversed in that area only. So the PC doesn't go shooting into the stratosphere. They "fall" upwards 140 feet, at which point, they remain where they are, because gravity above that point is normal.

It's still an awesome offensive spell, because they're stuck upside down, floating, at 140 feet. Until someone kills the glabrezu, at which point...


quibblemuch wrote:


It's still an awesome offensive spell, because they're stuck upside down, floating, at 140 feet. Until someone kills the glabrezu, at which point...

Uh Oh!!! hate it when that happens!!! :) :) :)

Thank you for the very informed post. Much appreciated.


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11th level characters have only themselves to blame if they can't fly out of it.


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Currahee Chris wrote:
quibblemuch wrote:


It's still an awesome offensive spell, because they're stuck upside down, floating, at 140 feet. Until someone kills the glabrezu, at which point...

Uh Oh!!! hate it when that happens!!! :) :) :)

Thank you for the very informed post. Much appreciated.

Sure! If it's the encounter I'm thinking of:

Spoiler:
Carrion Crown, the Abbey of St. Lymarin?

it was hilarious. I may actually have danced an unseemly GM jig as the "stable boy" sent the party's martials skyward. And then he lucked out and managed to call a glabrezu friend! That never works...

They won, but I think it permanently scarred those players. They opened up a can of whupass on everything thereafter, no matter how benign looking... they wouldn't go to Sunday brunch without full buffs...


quibblemuch wrote:


They won, but I think it permanently scarred those players. They opened up a can of whupass on everything thereafter, no matter how benign looking... they wouldn't go to Sunday brunch without full buffs...

Im sensing the same thing here with my group.

They recovered a major Holy text and were rushed along to rendezvous with their PF Patron- Grogan- at the abandoned PF lodge in WestCrown, Cheliax. Little did the party know that a Glabrezu had caught wind of the parties whereabouts and disguised himself and the guards as the real Grogan and other PF's. They arrive and "grogan" breaks the party into two groups- one group to try and read and translate the text- the other group to go down to the docks to find a dwarven cleric who was supposed to arrive to assist with the more difficult parts of the translation.

2 Days pass and the group never finds the cleric. On the 3rd day, "grogan" goes down to the translation team in a hurry stating that "we've been made by Cheliax authorities. Ill take the book- and the "messiah" (an NPC whom the party must protect at all costs). You guys flee now. Meanwhile, the other 3 party members were on guard duty.

The glabrezu is still in human form and runs. As he does, the ranger and barbarian pulling guard in the tower notice another Grogan and a dwarven paladin coming down the road towards the lodge. At that point the gig is up and all breaks loose!

The barbarian drops from the tower. The glabrezu uses RG to shoot the "messiah" into the air- the rogue reads his scroll of fly and goes to rescue him. The barbarian drills him for 48 points of dmg.

The barbarian then gets launched into the sky. The druid shapeshifts into a Triceratops (I cant make this up lol) and she gores him for 50 points. This enrages the Glabrezu so he melee attacks her (OUCH!!!) for 93 points (confirmed a crit with his pincer). Druid is KIA.

He then chases the messiah around the complex while the ranger peppers him with arrows from the belfry tower. The real grogan and the dwarven paladin arrive to assist and the party wear the demon down and kills him.

The ironic thing about all of this is that earlier in the campaign the group had to do a "favor" for a lich. He warned them that "Grogan is not all he appears." My daughter was playing the ranger and she blurts out "Remember what the lich said" AFTER the battle was over!!! :) Might have helped if she said it BEFORE hand!! :)


quibblemuch wrote:

I've run into exactly the same situation. Here's how I read it:

The area of the spell is "up to one 10-ft. cube/level (S)". The first line of the spell says: "This spell reverses gravity in an area, causing unattached objects and creatures in the area to fall upward and reach the top of the area in 1 round."

A glabrezu has CL 14. Since he wanted maximal effect, he shaped the area vertically--14 10-ft. cubes straight up.

Gravity is reversed in that area only. So the PC doesn't go shooting into the stratosphere. They "fall" upwards 140 feet, at which point, they remain where they are, because gravity above that point is normal.

It's still an awesome offensive spell, because they're stuck upside down, floating, at 140 feet. Until someone kills the glabrezu, at which point...

Actually, the PC would be travelling quite quickly (as if they had fallen 140ft) when they hit the top of the RG column. They would continue upwards until they decelerated due to normal gravity to stop at just below 280ft height (accounting for additional deceleration due to air resistance). They would then fall again, slowing when they hit the RG column to stop before they hit the ground, then start falling upwards again.

This would continue until they eventually reached a steady state position at the top of the 140ft column (or the spell duration expired).

Note that this does not take into consideration PC's getting moved out of the RG column by high winds or other effect (such as planetary rotation which is a rabbit hole I don't want to go down).

Sovereign Court

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Bacondale wrote:


Actually, the PC would be travelling quite quickly (as if they had fallen 140ft) when they hit the top of the RG column. They would continue upwards until they decelerated due to normal gravity to stop at just below 280ft height (accounting for additional deceleration due to air resistance). They would then fall again, slowing when they hit the RG column to stop before they hit the ground, then start falling upwards again.

This would continue until they eventually reached a steady state position at the top of the 140ft column (or the spell duration expired).

Note that this does not take into consideration PC's getting moved out of the RG column by high winds or other effect (such as planetary rotation which is a rabbit hole I don't want to go down).

Except none if this happens, because the spell description says once they reach the top of the area without hitting anything they remain there "oscillating slightly". Not oscillating the same distance they fell up. Real physics goes out the window when magic is involved.


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Firebug wrote:
Real physics goes out the window when magic is involved.

I disagree, magic introduces new forces, but doesn't change how the world reacts to them. Magic lets you push the guy standing 100 feet away from you, that you wouldn't already be able to do without magic, and ignores Newton's third law as there are no forces acting on the wizard who does the push, but the person being pushed still reacts precisely the same way they would had they been subject to the same force via non-magical means.

Magic introduces new physics, it does not change how the old ones work in the absence of magical intervention.


I think his point is that the spell does create magical intervention.

Magic locally ignores physics to do its thing and lets physics take over thereafter - but there are so many little tidbits that it ignores that physics sometimes seems to become very dubious after a while.

EDIT: Because it's unclear, PC, I'm actually somewhat in agreement with you. It's just that, based on all the little "nah, physics, take a break" interactions (from fireball not causing expansion, to reverse gravity letting someone bob innocently and with no fear at the top, to any myriad of other effects), it can be hard to distinguish when that happens at times - especially for folks not well versed in physics, but even without, unless you're studying the real thing a lot more than the game, it's easy to miss exactly how many little things are just... off. And even then, you might not focus on it. So, that, I think, is the idea behind such statements.

Dark Archive

I always prefer reverse gravity in combination with a ceiling.

First, they take a ton of falling damage from hitting the ceiling.
Sure, some of them will have feather fall, but they will be unable to steer efficiently and a couple of ray attacks should help deal with sitting ducks.

Then, when you're done picking them off, casually dismiss the spell, and everyone gets the same ton of damage once more.

If nothing else, it turns their bloodlust to 11 X-D


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increddibelly wrote:

I always prefer reverse gravity in combination with a ceiling.

First, they take a ton of falling damage from hitting the ceiling.
Sure, some of them will have feather fall, but they will be unable to steer efficiently and a couple of ray attacks should help deal with sitting ducks.

Then, when you're done picking them off, casually dismiss the spell, and everyone gets the same ton of damage once more.

If nothing else, it turns their bloodlust to 11 X-D

REALTOR: And Mister... Glabrezu was it? Is that Italian? Anyway. You'll notice these wonderful 10 ft. ceilings throughout the property.

GLABREZU (underwhelmed): Yeah... 10 feet... great... do you have anything with, you know, higher ceilings?

REALTOR: Are you thinking something vaulted? I have a listing with a 20 foot vaulted ceiling in the entryway.

GLABREZU (calculating): No... that's not enough... I'm thinking 140 feet.

REALTOR: W-what? *nervous laugh*

GLABREZU: The person from Coldwell Banker said he could get me 140 foot ceilings.

REALTOR: ...

GLABREZU: Never mind. *devour*


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This particular misunderstanding of the rules ended up helping my party a lot in RotRL. Like you, the player interpreted "the top of the area" to mean the ceiling of the current environment, and the GM didn't double check it, so he beat a trio of rune giants with one spell.

Silver Crusade

PossibleCabbage wrote:
Firebug wrote:
Real physics goes out the window when magic is involved.
I disagree, magic introduces new forces, but doesn't change how the world reacts to them.

Pathfinder isn't a physics simulator, and trying to apply real-world physics to the game is both counterproductive and tedious. For the purposes of this spell, it takes you one round to reach the top of the effect (regardless of if the effect is 10 ft tall or 140 ft tall) and you stop when you hit the top. Neither of these things correspond to real world physics, and there are tons of rules (both mundane and magical) that change, ignore, or otherwise bin physics. I recommend just rolling with it, or you'll end up going down a frustrating and slow road.


It's possible that the gravity is pushed upwards rather than removed when the spell takes effect. Then, there would be a region of extremely strong gravity, enough to decelerate the falling targets.


increddibelly wrote:

I always prefer reverse gravity in combination with a ceiling.

First, they take a ton of falling damage from hitting the ceiling.

How often do you have ceilings higher than 20-30'? 1d6-3d6 isn't a ton of damage.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
Firebug wrote:
Real physics goes out the window when magic is involved.

I disagree, magic introduces new forces, but doesn't change how the world reacts to them. Magic lets you push the guy standing 100 feet away from you, that you wouldn't already be able to do without magic, and ignores Newton's third law as there are no forces acting on the wizard who does the push, but the person being pushed still reacts precisely the same way they would had they been subject to the same force via non-magical means.

Magic introduces new physics, it does not change how the old ones work in the absence of magical intervention.

You're right! I don't think I've actually encountered this spell since 2e when it was an infinite column of reverse gravity.

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