Disrupting spell casting questions


Rules Questions


I am going to playing in a game and I would like to know if the following are legal to disrupt a spell.
Thanks

1) If a spell has a casting time of 1 round (not 1 standard action) any damage done to the spell caster disrupts the spells casting?
2) If I use a ready action to say “I am looking for someone casting a spell and then I am going to do X to see if I can do damage while they are casting the spell or disrupt the concentration required to cast the spell.” From reading the book I assume any action the can cause damage, shoot, hand to hand, spell, thrown rock, or an effect that would make casting require too much concentration would disrupt the person trying to cast the spell and cause them to waste the spell slot and take 1 standard action.
2a) Can I attack and then ready the action for the next round to disrupt any spell casting? Or do I have to only say I am looking for a person casting a spell to do X for that round? (I assume only the ready action but after reading the book I was a bit confused on this point)
2b) From the book it seems if my ready action occurs in that round then my initiative count changes to right behind the person I am trying to disrupt their spell but if I say I am taking 1 round to focus on my task of disrupting spell casters and do noting for that round then I keep my initiative order? (The difference is 1 round of inaction vs acting in the round of declaring the ready action)
3) Does this make disrupting spell casters easy and thus cause them to loose spell slots as all it takes is a person looking for spell casters and then trying to disrupt the casting? Or is the fact that it essentially requires 1 person to do nothing except look and react to casters balance out?

Thanks
MDC

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Answer to number 1:

Concentration and Interrupted Spells pg. 331 wrote:
Normally, you can concentrate even in a distracting situation, but if you’re casting a spell and you take damage from either a successful attack that targeted your AC or from an effect that you failed a saving throw against, the spell fails.

2. Since your Readied Action is not purely defensive, it resolves after they already cast their spell (assuming it isn't a 1 round cast), so it would not disrupt them.

2a. Readying an Action is a Standard Action that you take on your turn, so no, you could not attack and ready in the same round.

2b. Yes, if the initiative loops back to you without your Ready going off, you can act on your normal initiative.

3. See number 2. A better way to disrupt spellcasters is to get into melee and hit them with an attack of opportunity, which resolves before the spell has been cast. (See also: Step Up and Strike)


Forty2,
Thanks a lot from some of the examples presented in the book I assumed (my bad) that ready actions were taken in response to something and interrupted (or possibly interrupted) actions.
MDC


Forty2 wrote:

Answer to number 1:

Concentration and Interrupted Spells pg. 331 wrote:
Normally, you can concentrate even in a distracting situation, but if you’re casting a spell and you take damage from either a successful attack that targeted your AC or from an effect that you failed a saving throw against, the spell fails.

2. Since your Readied Action is not purely defensive, it resolves after they already cast their spell (assuming it isn't a 1 round cast), so it would not disrupt them.

2. Attacks of opportunity resolve before the triggering action, as a specific exemption to the normal order of operations (page 249). Additionally, you can specify to ready an action for when a foe begins to cast a spell (page 331). In this case the trigger is when the target starts casting, in which case you are allowed your readied action immediately afterwards, which occurs before the casting would be complete.

CRB, 249 wrote:


Attacks of opportunity are always resolved before the action that triggers them.
CRB, 331 wrote:


You are most at risk of taking damage while casting when a spell’s casting time is 1 round or longer, you have provoked an attack of opportunity, or a foe readied an action to attack you when you began to cast. However, if you are taking ongoing damage (such as if you are bleeding or on fire), your spells are not disrupted in this way.


Tarreb wrote:
Forty2 wrote:

Answer to number 1:

Concentration and Interrupted Spells pg. 331 wrote:
Normally, you can concentrate even in a distracting situation, but if you’re casting a spell and you take damage from either a successful attack that targeted your AC or from an effect that you failed a saving throw against, the spell fails.

2. Since your Readied Action is not purely defensive, it resolves after they already cast their spell (assuming it isn't a 1 round cast), so it would not disrupt them.

2. Attacks of opportunity resolve before the triggering action, as a specific exemption to the normal order of operations (page 249). Additionally, you can specify to ready an action for when a foe begins to cast a spell (page 331). In this case the trigger is when the target starts casting, in which case you are allowed your readied action immediately afterwards, which occurs before the casting would be complete.

CRB, 249 wrote:


Attacks of opportunity are always resolved before the action that triggers them.
CRB, 331 wrote:


You are most at risk of taking damage while casting when a spell’s casting time is 1 round or longer, you have provoked an attack of opportunity, or a foe readied an action to attack you when you began to cast. However, if you are taking ongoing damage (such as if you are bleeding or on fire), your spells are not disrupted in this way.

I think you are commenting rules from Pathfinder. This is the Starfinder Forum. In which the rules do go in line with what was stated above.


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

Nope. He quoted the page number, I looked it up, and it says exactly what was quoted. Readied actions disrupt spells according to the description of paragraph 4,under concentration and interrupted spells.

However, you're right in that readied actions that are not purely defensive occur just after the actions that triggered it. So it seems that 'hooray' we have found a rules discrepancy.

Houserule until a developer can respond.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

If the trigger is "starts casting a spell" and the readied action happens after the trigger, the target is still casting.


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

Can someone tell me how the PC knows the enemy has start to casting the spell?

Without somatic and verbal components the only clue a PC has is when the spell starts to manifest. I can accept tha a long casting spell starts to manifest when it haven't been cpmpletely cast, but if a magic missile is manifesting, well then the spell had been cast. At least in my opinion.

Also, [url=http://paizo.com/paizo/blog/v5748dyo5ljv8?Five-Differences-Between-Starfinder-Rules-and]HERE[/ooc] Owen K. C. Stephens talks about it saying <<First, reactions resolve directly after the triggering action. So if you cast a spell and someone readied to shoot you if you cast, if the spell has a casting time of 1 standard action you get the spell off before the AoO gets made.>>

Yes, it's readied for in case someone cast and not ready in case someone "start" to cast. But if you accept "start to" as a valid trigger everytime you ready an action you could make the reaction before as you should always remember to say starts to:

If someone starts to shot at me, I'll shot. If he just aim at me I'm I will not shot as it not triggers the clause
If the enemy starts activate an alarm, I'll shot.

Then, why to say the reactions ocurr after the trigger if all you need to bypass it is to say "at the start of the trigger"?

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
Randalfin wrote:

Nope. He quoted the page number, I looked it up, and it says exactly what was quoted. Readied actions disrupt spells according to the description of paragraph 4,under concentration and interrupted spells.

However, you're right in that readied actions that are not purely defensive occur just after the actions that triggered it. So it seems that 'hooray' we have found a rules discrepancy.

Houserule until a developer can respond.

Huh, fancy that.

I'd rule that only characters capable of identifying a spell (i.e. those trained in Mysticism) could make that specific of a trigger.


Thanks for the page number and quote, I do not have my book anymore and thought that I read something that would allow me to counter spells that way.

From my memory, spell casting is obvious in nature and you cannot hide it. So anyone can possibly notice you are casting a spell.

The big question I had was I seem to remember the book implying that 1 round casting took longer then 1 action and from the fluff to me it was implying that if the caster took damage at anytime from their start of casting until the spells generated effect then the spell would fail.
Note: I often have questions such as these with more cinematic combat systems (words used by others) as it seems my understanding of cinematic and the books can vary from agreement to disagreement and thus to make it easy needs more examples of common situations and probably uncommon situations also. This is also an issue when you have page count limitations but can be easily cleared up by FAQ and web publications.

MDC


Randalfin wrote:

Nope. He quoted the page number, I looked it up, and it says exactly what was quoted. Readied actions disrupt spells according to the description of paragraph 4,under concentration and interrupted spells.

However, you're right in that readied actions that are not purely defensive occur just after the actions that triggered it. So it seems that 'hooray' we have found a rules discrepancy.

Houserule until a developer can respond.

In my game I'm ruling that readied actions can't disrupt standard action cast spells based on Owen's note in the comments on a blog post here.


Ah, I found my confusion. He was quoting Attack of Opportunity rules to a question of READYING.

Which the rules of readying state:

Page 249 wrote:

Ready an Action

You can prepare to take an action when a certain trigger occurs by using a standard action. Decide on a standard, move, or swift action and a trigger. You can take the action you chose when the trigger happens. This changes your initiative count to the current initiative count for the remainder of the combat. If you used a reaction on your previous turn and then chose to ready an action, you still regain your reaction at the beginning of your original turn, not when you take your readied action.

If your readied action is purely defensive, such as choosing the total defense action if a foe you are facing shoots at you, it occurs just before the event that triggered it. If the readied action is not a purely defensive action, such as shooting a foe if he shoots at you, it takes place immediately after the triggering event. If you come to your next turn and have not yet performed your readied action, you don’t get to take the readied action (though you can ready the same action again).

As pointed out, there is the discrepancy, which is probably a holdover from Pathfinder that slipped passed the editors. Based on Owen's response above (In Sebastokrator's post), the intended rules are indeed intended to be the ones on page 249.


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

As an aside the rules under Ready an Action as quoted above by TrinitysEnd are that the readied action takes place after the triggering event, not triggering action. Triggering event is however undefined.

I'm not sure if that is deliberate so it puts it in the hands of the GM or it should read triggering action as described in Owen's post linked earlier. If action then does that mean a double move action can be interupted (takes place after the first move action but before the second) but the Run action cannot despite it being over a greater distance(As it's a single Full action)?


The main issue I see is that if you have some mechanism to disrupt spells (ie AOO or counter spell) it can really depend on how you craft the rule to as if other things should be able to disrupt the spell being cast. ie just because you say AOO can disrupt the spell it is in essence the damaged caused that disrupts the casters ability to cast the spell. (trying to avoid terms used in PF like concentration and concentration checks)

Since it is an act spell casting that others can notice and then possibly disrupt it makes logical sense that other actions could also disrupt spell casting.
If I was running/GMing SF I would have people make some type of perception check to see if they notice the person casting the spell if the action they declared was "I am on overwatch to shoot spell casters as they are casting".

Note: I was not surprised by the Dev's post they went through 6-8 play test rule sets as depending on where you start out and where you want to be are different as well as the fact that you can make a change in one area and it can affect others dramatically and often times unintentionally. The end goal is generally to have the system make sense but I have seen many cinematic cbt systems or light cbt systems gloss over theses areas and in the long run it dramatically huts the game.
MDC

Scarab Sages Starfinder Design Lead

As for how you know if someone is casting a spell; under Casting Spells on page 330: "A cast spell always has obvious effects that are noticeable by nearby creatures; it is not possible to clandestinely cast a spell."

Player and GM can discuss that those effects are, but once you begin casting, it's obvious.


Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:

As for how you know if someone is casting a spell; under Casting Spells on page 330: "A cast spell always has obvious effects that are noticeable by nearby creatures; it is not possible to clandestinely cast a spell."

Player and GM can discuss that those effects are, but once you begin casting, it's obvious.

Thanks that is what I seem to remember.

Double thanks for including the page # as it often makes life easier in so many ways.

Again it is not an easy issue to decide as it can have a large difference in player experience.
Which was again why I asked about how I understood spells that took 1 round to cast. ie to me it seemed that it took the whole time to be able to cast the effect. But the rule mechanic seems to say you cast on your turn but you essentially take the rest of the round to finish casting.
If I were GMing after reading the book I would have ruled that if the spell has a casting time of 1 round (not 1 standard action) and the person was damaged before the effect formed the spells effect would not happen. I do not know how many spells this would affect but the main one I saw was a mass sleep effect.
1) I thought this was a conscious issue the dev's built into the game to balance some annoyance of sleep effects. Like the fact that there are other spell effects that have been changed from PF (I know now that SF is not PF, but picking up the book for the first time it is something I did not know.)
2) A question here, what is the game effect of a casting time of 1 standard action vs 1 round?

Thanks
MDC


Mark Carlson 255 wrote:
2) A question here, what is the game effect of a casting time of 1 standard action vs 1 round?

If the casting time is 1 standard action:

You can also take a move action
From Owen's post here, you can't be interrupted by a readied action

If the casting time is 1 round:
You can't take a move action
You can be interrupted by a readied action


Andy Brown wrote:
Mark Carlson 255 wrote:
2) A question here, what is the game effect of a casting time of 1 standard action vs 1 round?

If the casting time is 1 standard action:

You can also take a move action
From Owen's post here, you can't be interrupted by a readied action

If the casting time is 1 round:
You can't take a move action
You can be interrupted by a readied action

if the casting time is 1 round you'll be interrupted by any hits before your next turn. No readied action required.


here's my take on it, but i really want it confirmed before actually using it...

"i ready an action to hit that specific guy with x if he starts casting a spell"

the enemy starts to cast a spell <-- this is the event trigger. the event has occurred, so my readied action goes off.

my attack, which was readied and aimed at the enemy, is released. this ends my turn and alters my init order.

the enemy continues to cast his spell <-- their action that i had set an event trigger on is not interrupted (yet)

my attack arrives and scratches them for 1 point of damage.

they flinch while casting, unable to concentrate on the task at hand, so their spell goes up in a flashy waste harming nobody. enemy turn ends.

am i interpreting this stuff correctly? if not, what am i missing?


jcheung,
That is how I read the RAW.
But I also read it as if I ready the action in one round and do nothing then I can in every round after that continue that action without changing my intit order.
So if I act in the first round: I adjust my init to right after the caster that I interrupted or tried to interrupt.
But if I take a whole round to prep my readied action then I can continue to try and interrupt any spell casting action.

I was thinking of my operative being more of a sniper focusing on those who cast spells. That is if I am not thrust into the front line position by the rest of the group taking less "fighting" classes. ie envoy, 2 spell casters an my operative.
MDC


i don't understand what you mean by taking a whole round to prep. a readied action is only a standard iirc... if you mean something like 'i spend a round preparing to beat the s%*# out of any casters' and then stop 3 casters in a 6 second period, i would call foul play...

as far as keeping your action ready, if it wasn't a spell, i don't see why you can't hold it? waste of actions though, imo

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