Nature oracle final revelation rule abuse?


Rules Questions


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

It has recently come to my attention the loop: Nature final revelation (become animal)->Feeblemind->Awaken->Nature final revelation(become plant)->etcetera that apparently allowes the oracle to gain unlimited racial HD. Has this ever been officially addressed?

Silver Crusade

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

Seeing as how you have to be 20th level to even attempt that I don't think it's much of a concern (no comment on whether it even works or not).


Feeblemind wrote:
Target creature's Intelligence and Charisma scores each drop to 1. The affected creature is unable to use Intelligence- or Charisma-based skills, cast spells, understand language, or communicate coherently. Still, it knows who its friends are and can follow them and even protect them. The subject remains in this state until a heal, limited wish, miracle, or wish spell is used to cancel the effect of the feeblemind. A creature that can cast arcane spells, such as a sorcerer or a wizard, takes a –4 penalty on its saving throw.

I would argue that the text I have bolded is an effect of the Feeblemind spell. Even if they were awakened (which would take outside help), they are going to need a heal, limited wish, miracle or wish spell to gain the +2 HD.

However, I don't see anything explicitly wrong with it after a brief review. Also, the oracle can't have an enhancement bonus to INT greater than +1 or it will be ineligible for Awaken.

So, Oracle with less than +1 Enhancement bonus to INT and then

Become Animal -> Feeblemind -> Awaken (get +2HD) -> Heal -> Become non-animal -> wait 24 hours -> become animal.

Each cycle is going to take a couple of days with the help of a sorc/wiz(feeblemind) and a druid/shaman(heal/awaken).

Sounds like a good idea as an NPC or BBEG for an epic campaign, but otherwise probably not going to come up.


Why feeblemind?


Feeblemind sets your Intelligence to 1, which is an important piece because Awaken can't be cast on something with an intelligence higher than 2.


couldn't you just have an undead minion with int drain do it?


So, no. Because, if you can restore a creature's int to full with a spell, then even if it's int is "dropped to 1", it's int isn't ACTUALLY 1.

And no, Lady-J. As with many random things you say, that doesn't work. It's even less costly than Feeblemind, because it can be reversed with Restoration.

Your ACTUAL intelligence must be 1 or 2, not your "current" intelligence, due to a variety of damage factors.

No matter what spell you use, or drain you incur, if you have an 18 int, you have an 18 int as far as Awaken is concerned.


Zarius wrote:

So, no. Because, if you can restore a creature's int to full with a spell, then even if it's int is "dropped to 1", it's int isn't ACTUALLY 1.

And no, Lady-J. As with many random things you say, that doesn't work. It's even less costly than Feeblemind, because it can be reversed with Restoration.

Your ACTUAL intelligence must be 1 or 2, not your "current" intelligence, due to a variety of damage factors.

No matter what spell you use, or drain you incur, if you have an 18 int, you have an 18 int as far as Awaken is concerned.

Ability Drain

Ability drain actually reduces the relevant ability score. Modify all skills and statistics related to that ability. This might cause you to lose skill points, hit points, and other bonuses. Ability drain can be healed through the use of spells such as restoration.

meaning if you are hit with ability drain your ability score is reduces and you no longer have that number as your ability score meaning if you had 18 int and you get hit with 17 int ability drain your int score is now actually 1 and is no longer 18 which makes you a valid target for awaken as you only need 2 or less int for awaken to work


Isn't the problem with this that it loops at all, rather than the means used in that one step? It hardly matters whether there's one way of reducing your Int to 1 or multiple ways of doing so.


No, Lady-J, you have an int of 18 with 1 point of Int drain. Your base stat is still 18.


Zarius wrote:
No, Lady-J, you have an int of 18 with 1 point of Int drain. Your base stat is still 18.

that is ability damage not drain


No, it's not. It's drain. Ability DAMAGE would be an 18 int with 1 point of int DAMAGE, which would actually have no effect.

Like a virtual size change for the purposes of weapons, ability drain doesn't actually change your stat. If taking points of ability drain reduced your real stat, using Restoration wouldn't fix it.

That's what EVERYONE here is missing. It's not REAL damage. It's like taking non-lethal damage. Yes, if it hits 0, there's effects, upto and (in the case of Con) including death, but it's still not real damage to your stat.


Zarius wrote:

No, it's not. It's drain. Ability DAMAGE would be an 18 int with 1 point of int DAMAGE, which would actually have no effect.

Like a virtual size change for the purposes of weapons, ability drain doesn't actually change your stat. If taking points of ability drain reduced your real stat, using Restoration wouldn't fix it.

That's what EVERYONE here is missing. It's not REAL damage. It's like taking non-lethal damage. Yes, if it hits 0, there's effects, upto and (in the case of Con) including death, but it's still not real damage to your stat.

there is real damage, ability drain rules even call out that it actually changes the stat, and that you can fix it with restoration, so if you have 10 int and you get 5 int drain you now have 5 int, not 10 if it were ability damage you would have 10 int but you would be working as though you had 5, that's the difference between the two abilities


Zarius wrote:
So, no. Because, if you can restore a creature's int to full with a spell, then even if it's int is "dropped to 1", it's int isn't ACTUALLY 1.

Ability Drain specifically states it changes your score, and at least at one point, it was intended that Feeblemind actually did reduce your score as well.

A good time to clear this up would have been when people were using this combo much earlier than level 20 before Animal Soul was errata'd. Very few people ever get to level 20, let alone play past it, so this side circumstance that most DMs probably wouldn't even allow hasn't really needed to be addressed.


If you can use magic to restore it, it's not real damage. Regardless of the 'intention', by raw the ability drain can be undone without even 'major' magic (7th +). It's not real. It's just different, and harder, to undo than ability damage.


I do see one limiting factor to this.

Awaken wrote:
To succeed, you must make a Will save (DC 10 + the animal’s current HD, or the HD the tree will have once awakened).

So, eventually, whoever is casting the awaken spell will be unable to make the save DC to awaken the character again. I suppose they could take 20, but now you're spending 40,000gp and 20 days per +2 HD.


I would not allow a take 20 on a spell. They would need to cast it until they got the die roll necessary to succeed.

I haven't maximized caster level before...DC at 20 is going to be DC30 and then +2 for each cycle... When does the DC become challenging? DC 50 or 60?


You can't take 20 on a saving throw, period. Take 10/20 is for skill checks only, period. A nat 20 would work, but still.

Scarab Sages

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Zarius wrote:
If you can use magic to restore it, it's not real damage. Regardless of the 'intention', by raw the ability drain can be undone without even 'major' magic (7th +). It's not real. It's just different, and harder, to undo than ability damage.

So HP damage is not real?


That's a pretty drastic example. Why not explore other effects of their Feeblemind stats not being their normal stats, like feat prerequisites or Ex-ability limitations? Or not being able to Handle Animal them, despite Handle Animal having a clause that allows it to work on non-animal creatures.

Or take it in the opposite direction; even otherwise permanent ability bonuses can be taken away, too.


@Yuri Nope. :P I was clearly referring to ability drain. It's like 'permanent' negative levels. They aren't really permanent. And they aren't really negative levels. Unlike second and third edition, you don't literally loose levels, thus reducing your actual XP. You just take a set of penalties that don't go away until you start throwing around mid-level healing magic.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Rules Questions / Nature oracle final revelation rule abuse? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.