Swallow Whole rulings


Rules Questions


I have a few questions about the swallow whole monster ability and how it works with other things:

1-a) If a huge creature swallows a medium creature and then polymorphs into a medium humanoid, what happens to the swallowed creature and swallower now that the swallower is both medium and loses the swallow whole ability?

1-b) If a living creature causes an issue, if and when the swallowed creature dies, would there be an issue with the polymorph then?

2) At what rate does the stomach HP heal?

3) Does damage to the stomach affect total HP, and healing to the creature affect the stomach HP?

4) Do temporary natural armor increases apply to the stomach AC (unlikely to happen, but still curious)?

5) How many creatures can another swallow?

6) Does the stomach damage continue even if the swallower is dead?

7) What does an unconscious/paralyzed/dead swallower mean for the swallowed?

8) Can a creature target another creature inside a third creature's stomach?

9) More of an interpreted question, but if a creature drops their weapon inside another creature, what is the (if possible) process to retrieving the weapon?

10) Can the swallower in anyway "regurgitate" swallowed creatures and/ or items willingly?

11) Can a creature choose to do less/none of their stomach damage to a swallowed creature?

12) Do items also take the stomach damage?

13) Does swallowing a creature affect a creature's current carried weight?

Sorry for the long list, I only originally intended for the first six questions, but found more questions I wanted to ask as I wrote it.

Any insight would be welcome, and I would also like to hear personal reasonings to these questions when there is no actual rules answer.


My opinions:

1-a) If a swallowing creature loses the Swallow Whole ability due to a polymorph effect, or changes size in a way that it can no longer keep the swallowed creature inside, the swallowed creature is ejected outside with no additional damage to them or the swallowing creature.

1-b) The Swallow Whole rules are indifferent on whether the target of swallowing is dead or alive. However the dead body can also be considered an object. That means that it can meld with your body like your gear, or get resized with you. Melding wouldn't cause any problems, but resizing might, if in your new form you lose the Swallow Whole ability. In that case the dead body would have to be ejected upon transformation, and it would recover it's original size.

2), 3) Stomach HP is part of the creature's total HP. When a creature with damaged stomach recovers HP, naturaly or from healing, they can decide whether it heals stomach wounds or other wounds (if such exist).

4) I would say that generally no, though a GM may say that some effects that affect your whole body (and not just your skin) could improve the stomach's AC.

5) By RAW there's no limit, though it would make sense to put some limits. I'd suggest one creature one category smaller than the swallowing creature, while smaller creatures count as 1/2 of a creature one cattegory bigger. So a Huge swallowing cretaure could swallow one Large creature, 2 Medium creatures, 4 Small creatures, etc.

6) I'd say yes, until the creature is freed.

7) A helpless creature counts as having Dexterity 0, which lowers its CMD and makes escaping the stomach easier.

8) Not from outside, unless it doesn't require a line of effect to do that. Most attacks, bursts, spreads and emanations wouldn't work. But you could still try to scry on a swallowed creature, and things like that.

9) If the swallowing creature doesn't throw up the weapon on its own, killing it and opening its stomach from outside seems like the only method.

10) I'd say so, My interpreatation is that the swallowing creature doesn't need to repeat grapple checks after it swallowed a creature, but it can choose to do so and fail on purpose, which would move the swallowed creature to its mouth.

11) I don't think so, the action of stomach is automatic and unconscious.

12) No, the listed damage applies to living creatures. Remaining in the stomach for a longer time may eventualy ruin the items, but it won't happen that fast.

13) Yes, just as the rider increases the carried weight of the mount.


Adjoint wrote:

My opinions:

2), 3) Stomach HP is part of the creature's total HP. When a creature with damaged stomach recovers HP, naturaly or from healing, they can decide whether it heals stomach wounds or other wounds (if such exist).

Thank you, you've given me what I asked for, but could please elaborate on this particular answer a bit more?


Creatures typically only have a single hp total. If or when they don't usually any rules will be in the creatures stat block and/or description. So unless such specific rules exist the damage done to the stomach/innards is part of the total hp and would heal as part of the creatures total. If you're keeping separate totals for some reason (such as needing to do 'x' to carve a hole to escape) I'd just heal both at once.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Quote:
4) Do temporary natural armor increases apply to the stomach AC (unlikely to happen, but still curious)?

Yes, if it is an enhancement to natural armor. It is a whole-body effect, why it shouldn't affect some part of the body?

Quote:
The Armor Class of the interior of a creature that swallows whole is normally 10 + 1/2 its natural armor bonus, with no modifiers for size or Dexterity

If instead, it is an increase to the natural armor of the creature 1/2 of the modified natural armor (sans enhancements) is used to determine the base AC of the interior of the creature, then the appropriate effects are added.

Deflection will be added, armor enhancements wouldn't, for straight armor bonuses you should look what is the origin of the effect, insight, and dodge wouldn't be added.


So, just to make this clear to me, you add to the stomach AC half the creature's natural armor, deflection, and other untyped?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Some Duck wrote:
So, just to make this clear to me, you add to the stomach AC half the creature's natural armor, deflection, and other untyped?

Deflection, luck, profane, sacred, untyped, enhancements to natural armor for sure.

Half of the natural armor increase (it is a separate effect from the enhancement).

Bracers of armor and Mage armor are iffy. In theory, they cover the whole body, but Mage armor says "An invisible but tangible field of force surrounds the subject of a mage armor spell, providing a +4 armor bonus to AC." and the bracers says "These items appear to be wrist or arm guards. They surround the wearer with an invisible but tangible field of force, granting him an armor bonus of +1 to +8, just as though he were wearing armor.", so I would rule that they don't cover the interior of the creature.

I wouldn't add dodge, insight, morale bonuses.

Circumstance: it depends on the circumstance.

BTW: remember that the swallowed guy count as grappled, with all the relative penalties, but the swallowing creature isn't grappled.

I wouldn't apply precision damage as the swallowed character can't select and reach a vital spot, (generally) the swallowed creature is in a specialized gizzard, not in a normal stomach.

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