Failed Aid Another on Diplomacy Checks


Rules Questions

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Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

And by my reading the Aid another is doing what they say they do.

And constantly trying to dismiss another person's opinion on the matter by blasting them as house rules isn't really doing anyone any favors. I'm not reading the rule and going "I don't like it, I'm going to change it," I'm reading the rule how it reads to me.


I'm not 'blasting' it as a house rule: I'm calling it a house rule because it differs from the clear and unambiguous text of the rule itself.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

It differs from your reading of the clear and unambiguous text, and since I'm not the only one who thinks so it might not be that clear and unambiguous.


I suspect you know very well what the result would be were a FAQ written on the subject.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Not really, I was of the stance that Invulnerable Rangers could take the Improved Damage Reduction Rage Power. The FAQ said otherwise -_-

Story aside while I'll hope a FAQ goes one way there's not really any way to know for certain.

Silver Crusade

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Rysky, are you being intentionally obtuse? The Aid Anither action says you make the same skill check as the person you are aiding. It then says you apply the same bonuses and penalties to that roll. It further goes on to state what the results of a success are. Since there are no stated results for a failure, there are none other than not gaining the benefit of a success. Full stop. End of discussion.

Now, where is your confusion?


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Seriously, I don't understand the confusion either.

If you try to 'Aid Another' in combat, and fail, do you impose a -2 on your ally's attack? Or a -2 on their AC? No, because it's not in the rules. Likewise for skill checks.

People are quite literally inventing rules out of thin air.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bigdaddyjug wrote:

Rysky, are you being intentionally obtuse? The Aid Anither action says you make the same skill check as the person you are aiding. It then says you apply the same bonuses and penalties to that roll. It further goes on to state what the results of a success are. Since there are no stated results for a failure, there are none other than not gaining the benefit of a success. Full stop. End of discussion.

Now, where is your confusion?

Correct, you make the same skill check as the person you're aiding, and skills come with consequences for failure.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
_Ozy_ wrote:

Seriously, I don't understand the confusion either.

If you try to 'Aid Another' in combat, and fail, do you impose a -2 on your ally's attack? Or a -2 on their AC? No, because it's not in the rules. Likewise for skill checks.

People are quite literally inventing rules out of thin air.

No, because there's nothing in attacks that does that. There IS however rules for failing skill checks. So no, not really inventing stuff out of the air.


I was this close to asking
"What if you aid another in combat with a weapon that deal 1 damage to you if you fail your attack roll by 5 or more ?"
Then I decided against it...

Silver Crusade

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Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.

There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Vista wrote:


1) Aid Another. "You can help someone achieve success on a skill check by making the same kind of skill check in a cooperative effort. If you roll a 10 or higher on your check, the character you’re helping gets a +2 bonus on his or her check. (You can’t take 10 on a skill check to aid another.)" The Aiding character had to make a Diplomacy check vs DC 10. This part was non-controversial.

2) Diplomacy Check Influence Attitude. "If you fail the check by 4 or less, the character’s attitude toward you is unchanged. If you fail by 5 or more, the character’s attitude toward you is decreased by one step." The Aiding Character rolled a Diplomacy check of 3, which failed the DC 10 check by 5 or more, therefore the Indifferent NPC became Unfriendly (towards both characters since they were making the skill check cooperatively). The principal character was still allowed to Influence Attitude towards the NPC based upon the new Unfriendly attitude.

I believe my ruling accurately represents the rules as written however my players threw a tantrum and one even quit the game over this ruling. Just wondering what the forum thought.

So if the aiding character failed by less than 5, would the initial diplomacy check have then auto-failed because "the character's attitude toward you is unchanged"? No matter what the main roll was? That is the consequence of even a mild failure with the Diplomacy check.

Personally, I think your interpretation of the rule is a bad one because it means the helpers' failures are more important than the main diplomat's success. And I don't believe that was likely the rule writer's intent. Had it been so, I would have expected some caveat to have been included in the aid another rule that failure to aid could invoke the consequences associated with the main skill check.

I can see failure on an aid check netting a -2 under certain circumstances (drawing some inspiration from Mutants and Masterminds, I'd consider applying a -2 penalty for any aid another check that misses by more than 5). But effectively scotching the attempt no matter what the base roll is? That's far too harsh for someone offering abstract, unspecified aid.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

If I Aid Another in combat to help someone hit against an opponent that has the mirror image spell up and get a result of 5 to 9, does an image pop? Missing by 5 or less normally pops an image.

If I Aid Another on an Acrobatic check to jump and only get a result of 5, how far do I move?

There are a lot of cases where having a failed Aid Another check give the same consequences as the failed check would give very strange results.

Silver Crusade

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Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.

And that's a house rule. If the rules don't lay out a consequence for failure, there is none.


The DM/GM rules on Diplomacy. After all he determines the starting attitude of NPCs in encounters. Diplomacy, as used in modules and such, is always ad hoc and inconsistent. So and so becomes friendly because you do this, unfriendly because you do that, and diplomacy rolls are just a last resort when the role-play aspect is at a loss.

Also, the questions are whether the Diplomacy roller is speaking for the group, trying to change the NPCs attitude, or simply trying to convince them to do a particular thing. Some one may like you but that doesn't mean they'll do whatever you want them to do. Some one may dislike you but they still may think a request or bargain is reasonable.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

The character making a Diplomacy check to Aid Another is not making a check to influence a creature's attitude, so the penalty for failing by 5 or more does not apply to the Aid Another check.

The Exchange

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The person performing the skill check has a failure condition, the person performing the aid action is NOT trying to improve the target's condition, they are simply trying to assist in their party members argument. Failure to do does not mean they called the target an ignorant fool and pissed them off at the whole party. It means

Diplomacy wrote:

Check: You can change the initial attitudes of nonplayer characters with a successful check. The DC of this check depends on the creature's starting attitude toward you, adjusted by its Charisma modifier. If you succeed, the character's attitude toward you is improved by one step. For every 5 by which your check result exceeds the DC, the character's attitude toward you increases by one additional step. A creature's attitude cannot be shifted more than two steps up in this way, although the GM can override this rule in some situations. If you fail the check by 4 or less, the character's attitude toward you is unchanged. If you fail by 5 or more, the character's attitude toward you is decreased by one step.

Action: Using Diplomacy to influence a creature's attitude takes 1 minute of continuous interaction. Making a request of a creature takes 1 or more rounds of interaction, depending upon the complexity of the request. Using Diplomacy to gather information takes 1d4 hours of work searching for rumors and informants.

Aid Another wrote:

You can help someone achieve success on a skill check by making the same kind of skill check in a cooperative effort. If you roll a 10 or higher on your check, the character you're helping gets a +2 bonus on his or her check. (You can't take 10 on a skill check to aid another.) In many cases, a character's help won't be beneficial, or only a limited number of characters can help at once.

In cases where the skill restricts who can achieve certain results, such as trying to open a lock using Disable Device, you can't aid another to grant a bonus to a task that your character couldn't achieve alone. The GM might impose further restrictions to aiding another on a case-by-case basis as well.

When you Aid another, you are NOT attempting to succeed at the skill check to improve the attitude of the NPC you are dealing with. Your target is not even the NPC, The target person you are interacting with is the person you are adding. You assist them by making a DC 10 check of the appropriate skill. If you fail the DC 10 check by 1 the person gains no bonus, nothing is lost. If you fail the DC 10 check by 100, the person gains no bonus, and nothing is lost.

Only the person performing the primary check to improve the attitude of the NPC need beat the DC to success, or fail by 5+ to reduce their attitude.

As for a trait (or other bonus) to diplomacy to improve the attitude of an NPC not applying when you perform an aid another action for that purpose. While I've never really considered it, sticking strictly to RAW, I would probably be OK with that not applying when you are aiding. It does not say it works when aiding someone for that purpose, and to be entirely honest, anyone who would likely need that to help with a DC10 probably hasn't taken it. And anyone that has taken it can probably auto succeed a DC 10 to aid by level 3 without it!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.
And that's a house rule. If the rules don't lay out a consequence for failure, there is none.

There are rules for failure, in each individual skill.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Going off the no penalty for failure since you're not actually making an influence roll train of thought I would agree that you would not get to any add specific bonuses to influencing on it.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Rysky wrote:
Going off the no penalty for failure since you're not actually making an influence roll train of thought I would agree that you would not get to any add specific bonuses to influencing on it.

Well, you're certainly not going to shift the attitude of anybody one level per 5 points you beat your DC 10, are you? If that doesn't apply, then why does the penalty of losing an attitude level by blowing the check by more than 5 apply?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bill Dunn wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Going off the no penalty for failure since you're not actually making an influence roll train of thought I would agree that you would not get to any add specific bonuses to influencing on it.
Well, you're certainly not going to shift the attitude of anybody one level per 5 points you beat your DC 10, are you? If that doesn't apply, then why does the penalty of losing an attitude level by blowing the check by more than 5 apply?

(the bonuses I was talking about was about abilities that gave you bonuses to specifically influence attitudes rather than just bonuses to diplomacy)

Because the altered consequences for success are spelled out but there aren't any altered rules for failure.

Liberty's Edge

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Vista wrote:
I believe my ruling accurately represents the rules as written however my players threw a tantrum and one even quit the game over this ruling. Just wondering what the forum thought.

I disagree that it accurately reflects rules as written, but I do think it is a very reasonable house rule. In my opinion, though, a house rule should not be applied for the first time after an action has been taken unless it is to the players' advantage. So I'd say it's a good rule, but not such a good ruling.


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I skipped a lot of post so I am going to ask a simple question.

Does anyone here believe that aid another checks are intended to give penalties on a failure?

I'm not asking what can a GM do, or what you feel makes sense.

This is a simple yes or no question.

I'm not even asking you to cite evidence.

If enough people say they think that is Paizo intends I will just create an FAQ. If this is more of a "it's not "the rule", but it is acceptable "for purposes of simulating real life" or something similar that is a different discussion altogether.

Because I rambled on I will repeat the question.

Does anyone here believe that aid another checks are intended to give penalties on a failure?


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wraithstrike wrote:
Does anyone here believe that aid another checks are intended to give penalties on a failure?

I do not. I believe, in fact, that they were specifically designed not to give penalties for failures to encourage cooperation among the group. The alternative is basically to put the 2+Int characters who aren't wizards in a position where they have nothing useful to do, which is a recipe for bored players.


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Orfamay Quest wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
Does anyone here believe that aid another checks are intended to give penalties on a failure?
I do not. I believe, in fact, that they were specifically designed not to give penalties for failures to encourage cooperation among the group. The alternative is basically to put the 2+Int characters who aren't wizards in a position where they have nothing useful to do, which is a recipe for bored players.

I agree that it is not supposed to give a penalty. I feel like it is a very small percentage of the gaming population that believes it. If that is the case I am not going to bother with an FAQ.


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The rules do not support a penalty on a failed aid another check, nor should they. It disincentivises players to get involved.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Orfamay Quest wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
Does anyone here believe that aid another checks are intended to give penalties on a failure?
I do not. I believe, in fact, that they were specifically designed not to give penalties for failures to encourage cooperation among the group. The alternative is basically to put the 2+Int characters who aren't wizards in a position where they have nothing useful to do, which is a recipe for bored players.

I agree.

But if there were the possibility of a penalty, mainly to discourage an excessive amount of "me to-ism" on checks where literally everyone throws the die just to try to get that +2, it should be in line with the benefits of success such as a -2 for really blowing the aid another check and no more.


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Bill Dunn wrote:
Orfamay Quest wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
Does anyone here believe that aid another checks are intended to give penalties on a failure?
I do not. I believe, in fact, that they were specifically designed not to give penalties for failures to encourage cooperation among the group. The alternative is basically to put the 2+Int characters who aren't wizards in a position where they have nothing useful to do, which is a recipe for bored players.

I agree.

But if there were the possibility of a penalty, mainly to discourage an excessive amount of "me to-ism" on checks where literally everyone throws the die just to try to get that +2, it should be in line with the benefits of success such as a -2 for really blowing the aid another check and no more.

This is where the GM steps in. As an example if someone is trying to disable a lock only so many people may be able to fit in the area.

Silver Crusade

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Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.
And that's a house rule. If the rules don't lay out a consequence for failure, there is none.
There are rules for failure, in each individual skill.

Then it's a good thing the Aid Another action isn't the same as a skill check.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
wraithstrike wrote:
This is where the GM steps in. As an example if someone is trying to disable a lock only so many people may be able to fit in the area.

For some skills, certainly. I'm talking more about the choruses of "me too" that accompany attempts to aid another with diplomacy, intimidation, bluff, and similar ones not so obviously limited as an attempt to pick a lock.


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Bill Dunn wrote:
Orfamay Quest wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
Does anyone here believe that aid another checks are intended to give penalties on a failure?
I do not. I believe, in fact, that they were specifically designed not to give penalties for failures to encourage cooperation among the group. The alternative is basically to put the 2+Int characters who aren't wizards in a position where they have nothing useful to do, which is a recipe for bored players.

I agree.

But if there were the possibility of a penalty, mainly to discourage an excessive amount of "me to-ism" on checks where literally everyone throws the die just to try to get that +2, it should be in line with the benefits of success such as a -2 for really blowing the aid another check and no more.

There's nothing inherently wrong with excessive "me too"-ism, considering this game was specifically designed for cooperative roleplaying, and having players get involved (instead of, for example, doodling around on their phones or other electronic devices).

Wraithstrike already suggested an obvious (and book-backed) solution, which is to limit/remove the ability to use Aid Another on certain subjects, and gives Disable Device to pick a lock as an example.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.
And that's a house rule. If the rules don't lay out a consequence for failure, there is none.
There are rules for failure, in each individual skill.
Then it's a good thing the Aid Another action isn't the same as a skill check.

We're just going to disagree on that.


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Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.

So, if you fail an aid another on a climb check, you fall?


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If we are going to use the logic that a skill check is a skill check in all regards even when using aid another, and must follow the same rules, does that also work when aiding another on saves, attack rolls?

If not then why not?

If we are going to support this ruling then we have to be able to use the rules to see how it works in every aspect of the game so I have questions now.

In addition if you make a 10 you still might not be within 5 of the diplomacy DC. In that case does it give the +2, and also give whatever penalty is applied for failing by more than 5? You still didnt meet the DC required for the original check. You only made the "aid another" DC"

If not is there a rule that says the consequences of failing by more than 5 are ignored if you are aiding another successfully.

Is there a rule that says you must fail by more than 5 and fail the aid another check?

For diplomacy it says "If you fail by 5 or more, the character's attitude toward you is decreased by one step."

Does this failure for this specific skill mean that attitude step decrease is applied to the main speaker, the person aiding or both?

When aiding in other situations(not diplomacy) who is impacted and why?

PS: I am 100% that there is no penalty. I just want to see how those who support it answer the above questions.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bill Dunn wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
This is where the GM steps in. As an example if someone is trying to disable a lock only so many people may be able to fit in the area.

For some skills, certainly. I'm talking more about the choruses of "me too" that accompany attempts to aid another with diplomacy, intimidation, bluff, and similar ones not so obviously limited as an attempt to pick a lock.

*nods*

That's my thinking for the main reason behind it, to prevent party members dogpiling to get a very high bonus.


Bill Dunn wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
This is where the GM steps in. As an example if someone is trying to disable a lock only so many people may be able to fit in the area.

For some skills, certainly. I'm talking more about the choruses of "me too" that accompany attempts to aid another with diplomacy, intimidation, bluff, and similar ones not so obviously limited as an attempt to pick a lock.

The GM can still do it here. It is like those situation in real life where everyone is trying to give their opinion at once. When fewer people speak more are heard.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
_Ozy_ wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.
So, if you fail an aid another on a climb check, you fall?

Yes.


Rysky wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
This is where the GM steps in. As an example if someone is trying to disable a lock only so many people may be able to fit in the area.

For some skills, certainly. I'm talking more about the choruses of "me too" that accompany attempts to aid another with diplomacy, intimidation, bluff, and similar ones not so obviously limited as an attempt to pick a lock.

*nods*

That's my thinking for the main reason behind it, to prevent party members dogpiling to get a very high bonus.

Then why didnt the rules just say for <insert certain skills> only _____ number of people can aid?

In addition you often have a better chance at making a skill check assuming you have more than one person who is decent at it if they make their own checks than by adding a +2. If the "aid another penalty" was actually in the book people would just double up on skills more to get by it the higher skill checks.


_Ozy_ wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.
So, if you fail an aid another on a climb check, you fall?

Great, now if Paladins (or Antipaladins) use Aid Another to Climb, they lose their powers. Congratulations! [/sarcasm]

Just what we need, more reasons to turn Paladins into arbitrary selfish jerks with sticks in their bums.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
wraithstrike wrote:

If we are going to use the logic that a skill check is a skill check in all regards even when using aid another, and must follow the same rules, does that also work when aiding another on saves, attack rolls?

If not then why not?

If we are going to support this ruling then we have to be able to use the rules to see how it works in every aspect of the game so I have questions now.

In addition if you make a 10 you still might not be within 5 of the diplomacy DC. In that case does it give the +2, and also give whatever penalty is applied for failing by more than 5? You still didnt meet the DC required for the original check. You only made the "aid another" DC"

If not is there a rule that says the consequences of failing by more than 5 are ignored if you are aiding another successfully.

Is there a rule that says you must fail by more than 5 and fail the aid another check?

For diplomacy it says "If you fail by 5 or more, the character's attitude toward you is decreased by one step."

Does this failure for this specific skill mean that attitude step decrease is applied to the main speaker, the person aiding or both?

When aiding in other situations(not diplomacy) who is impacted and why?

PS: I am 100% that there is no penalty. I just want to see how those who support it answer the above questions.

(You can aid another on saves?)

The penalty for failing an attack roll is that you miss, if you fail would the person you're aiding auto-miss? I would say no. Again because skills have specific consequences for failing by a certain amount.

The DC of the original check isn't relevant to you aiding another on that check. Your's is DC 10

You do raise a good point though who the attitude is lowered in regards to. Hmm, I guess it would it depend on if the GM plays it as attitudes vs each individual person or vs the group as a whole. If it's for each individual person I would say it would apply to the person butting in and failing the Aid Another check.


So, as a suggestion to the OP:

Perhaps tone it down so that if you fail by 5 or more it's a -2 to the check? We're firmly in house rule territory here, but that could be a better compromise that might leave both players and GM happy. That way there's an element of risk, but hopefully that element of risk is really small, and if it does happen it won't ruin the social encounter entirely.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
wraithstrike wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
This is where the GM steps in. As an example if someone is trying to disable a lock only so many people may be able to fit in the area.

For some skills, certainly. I'm talking more about the choruses of "me too" that accompany attempts to aid another with diplomacy, intimidation, bluff, and similar ones not so obviously limited as an attempt to pick a lock.

*nods*

That's my thinking for the main reason behind it, to prevent party members dogpiling to get a very high bonus.

Then why didnt the rules just say for <insert certain skills> only _____ number of people can aid?

In addition you often have a better chance at making a skill check assuming you have more than one person who is decent at it if they make their own checks than by adding a +2. If the "aid another penalty" was actually in the book people would just double up on skills more to get by it the higher skill checks.

Because skills are varied and capable of lots of things, something a blank "only 1 person can aid someone on Diplomacy checks" wouldn't cover very well.

And to your second point, and? It's kinda already like that, with plenty of people putting ranks into Perception and Stealth so that they have a higher chance of success as a group.


Rysky wrote:
_Ozy_ wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.
So, if you fail an aid another on a climb check, you fall?
Yes.

What if you succeed on an aid another check, but still fail the climb DC by 10 or more? Do you help the person climb, but fall yourself?

The Exchange

wraithstrike wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
This is where the GM steps in. As an example if someone is trying to disable a lock only so many people may be able to fit in the area.

For some skills, certainly. I'm talking more about the choruses of "me too" that accompany attempts to aid another with diplomacy, intimidation, bluff, and similar ones not so obviously limited as an attempt to pick a lock.

*nods*

That's my thinking for the main reason behind it, to prevent party members dogpiling to get a very high bonus.

Then why didnt the rules just say for <insert certain skills> only _____ number of people can aid?

In addition you often have a better chance at making a skill check assuming you have more than one person who is decent at it if they make their own checks than by adding a +2. If the "aid another penalty" was actually in the book people would just double up on skills more to get by it the higher skill checks.

I would allow an aid on a pick lock attempt, someone could study the lock or make a knowledge engineering check to know something about it, then proceed to make a disable device check to relay that knowledge to the person actually making the check. Only 1 person can perform the physical actions, but multiple people could help by giving tips or advice.

Also even if you say you don't allow the aid another for picking a lock or disarming a trap, it still doesn't mean you can't aid another to use disable device to interact with a 10' long control panel. So that's a solid reason why they 'SHOULD' never say that you can't use the aid another action for skill X. Just because they can't think of a way it will work now does not mean that will always be true.


Glorf Fei-Hung wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
This is where the GM steps in. As an example if someone is trying to disable a lock only so many people may be able to fit in the area.

For some skills, certainly. I'm talking more about the choruses of "me too" that accompany attempts to aid another with diplomacy, intimidation, bluff, and similar ones not so obviously limited as an attempt to pick a lock.

*nods*

That's my thinking for the main reason behind it, to prevent party members dogpiling to get a very high bonus.

Then why didnt the rules just say for <insert certain skills> only _____ number of people can aid?

In addition you often have a better chance at making a skill check assuming you have more than one person who is decent at it if they make their own checks than by adding a +2. If the "aid another penalty" was actually in the book people would just double up on skills more to get by it the higher skill checks.

I would allow an aid on a pick lock attempt, someone could study the lock or make a knowledge engineering check to know something about it, then proceed to make a disable device check to relay that knowledge to the person actually making the check. Only 1 person can perform the physical actions, but multiple people could help by giving tips or advice.

Also even if you say you don't allow the aid another for picking a lock or disarming a trap, it still doesn't mean you can't aid another to use disable device to interact with a 10' long control panel. So that's a solid reason why they 'SHOULD' never say that you can't use the aid another action for skill X. Just because they can't think of a way it will work now does not mean that will always be true.

It's not even that they don't allow the aid another for the lock picking, it's that the book doesn't allow the aid another for it, and is used as a specific example.

Aid Another wrote:
In cases where the skill restricts who can achieve certain results, such as trying to open a lock using Disable Device, you can't aid another to grant a bonus to a task that your character couldn't achieve alone. The GM might impose further restrictions to aiding another on a case-by-case basis as well.


Rysky wrote:
_Ozy_ wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes you are, because the Aid Another action specifies results of the check. The specific consequences laid out in the Aid Another section override the general consequences laid on in the skills section.
There's specific consequences laid out for success, but none whatsoever for failure, therefore I default to the normal consequences for failing the skill check.
So, if you fail an aid another on a climb check, you fall?
Yes.

That's a good way to make sure its never used except on checks with not failure condition beyond failure out side of having roughly a +5 in the relevant check just to prevent critical failure. I mean the group ties off a rope to a block and tackle to haul the cleric up a cliff with rope and somehow the wizard rolls a 5 and ends up tumbling over the cliff to his death even though he was the last man on the rope and a good 20 feet from the edge.

The Exchange

That is a general rule, and an example, not a statement that you can never assist someone when they are trying to open a lock using disable device.

As a general rule, if you are not trained in a skill that requires training to use, you can not aid someone in it.

As an example of this, if only the party rogue is trained in disable device, then none of the other party members can aid them in picking the lock.


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I'm going to join the chorus that RAW the Aid Another rule does not have, or imply, a penalty for failure. Further, that RAI it was intended to encourage dog-piling to keep players vested in the game. After all, the first section of the Aid Another rule reads: "You can help someone achieve success on a skill check ..." It doesn't say that you can help someone achieve success OR FAIL on a skill check ..." (emphasis added)

Rysky -- normally I find your comments very well thought out and convincing, and I would even agree with you that there should be negative consequences of excessively failing the Aid Another (at least under some circumstances), but this time I think the lanaguage is clear.

As a side note, I will sometimes use very poor Aid Another rolls to aid in description -- the NPC may clearly snub the character with the poor roll and focus on the lead diplomat.


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Rysky wrote:


(You can aid another on saves?)

Well it actually says "You can also use this standard action to help a friend in other ways, such as when he is affected by a spell,". I am assuming that aid is still in the form of a +2.

Rysky wrote:


The penalty for failing an attack roll is that you miss, if you fail would the person you're aiding auto-miss? I would say no. Again because skills have specific consequences for failing by a certain amount.

So you are saying that only the skills which say "if you fail by 4 or less..." such as diplomacy or disable device for disabling traps have a penalty on aid another?

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