Hardness vs Weapons with elemental damage


Rules Questions


this is kind of a dumb question but something i'm not sure about. Let's say a fighter has a flaming longsword and is fighting a robot with hardness. when reducing damage, do you reduce the total of the longsword damage and the flaming quality, or do you reduce them separately?


total

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Separately.
They are two different effects. One is energy damage, the other is slashing (for a longsword) damage.

Consider how it works against a creature with DR or one with the right energy resistance:

DR and no energy resistance: the slashing damage is reduced, the energy damage is applied in full

no DR and energy resistance: the slashing damage is applied in full, the energy damage is reduced

DR and energy resistance: both the slashing damage and the energy damage are reduced

Hardness applies separately against both and both are reduced


Also remember that most things with hardness may still be considered objects (even if also Constructs, like animated objects), in those cases, energy attacks typically do only half damage before applying hardness.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

September 2014 blog:

How does hardness work for creatures? Does energy damage such as cold deal half damage to creatures with hardness (Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook 173-174) even before applying the flat numerical reduction?
When a creature with hardness sustains damage, subtract its hardness from the damage dealt. The rules for halving damage, doubling damage, dealing damage with ineffective tools, immunities, and the like only apply to damaging inanimate objects.
(This is apparently a question the Design Team has received a few times during the development of Iron Gods, so they were ready to go with an answer!)


Is that a Pathfinder ruling/FAQ or a Pathfinder Society ruling/FAQ?

I would have to say I find it highly suspect, and not the least bit counterintuitive, that if you can't cut a rope with a club, that the fact that it animates suddenly means you can smash it apart with a club. I similarly find it highly unlikely ('stupid' would be a go-to word, but let's hold off), that if you animate an ice statue, suddenly it loses its immunity to cold, ice typically being hardness 0 (even though there's no listing of ice's energy immunities, I think for the most part its cold resistance should be at least 'pretty high' if not just immune). And I think that's pretty reasonable. Again, though, I did say if they are still considered suitably 'objects', which I think animated objects fall into a special category of (meaning they had to be given 'some kind of type they best resembled), rather than golems or such things.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Pizza Lord wrote:

Is that a Pathfinder ruling/FAQ or a Pathfinder Society ruling/FAQ?

I would have to say I find it highly suspect, and not the least bit counterintuitive, that if you can't cut a rope with a club, that the fact that it animates suddenly means you can smash it apart with a club. I similarly find it highly unlikely ('stupid' would be a go-to word, but let's hold off), that if you animate an ice statue, suddenly it loses its immunity to cold, ice typically being hardness 0 (even though there's no listing of ice's energy immunities, I think for the most part its cold resistance should be at least 'pretty high' if not just immune). And I think that's pretty reasonable. Again, though, I did say if they are still considered suitably 'objects', which I think animated objects fall into a special category of (meaning they had to be given 'some kind of type they best resembled), rather than golems or such things.

September 204 blog

Bestiary wrote:
Unless an animated object uses a Construction Point to be made of another material, all animated objects are made of wood or material of equivalent hardness.

Normally rope can't be animated as a creature, the options are "wood or equivalent" or "metal".

There is an Animimate rope spell, but it doesn't make it a creature.

I suppose you could make a rope construct (1st ed. AD&D Unearthed Arcana had a spell to make one), but probably it will have specific rules and a specific CP cost for the material.
The one made by the 1st ed spell was immune to bashing and piercing damage if I recall correctly.

Same thing for one made of ice, I suppose.


Description of hardness from PRD Bestiary Universal Monster Rules:

When a creature with hardness takes damage, subtract its hardness from the damage. Only damage in excess of its hardness is subtracted from its hit points. A creature with hardness doesn’t further reduce damage from energy attacks, ranged attacks, or other types of attacks as objects typically do. Adamantine weapons bypass hardness of 20 or less.

Format: hardness 10
Location: Defensive Abilities.

No reference to a blog or faq needed.


Java Man wrote:

Description of hardness from PRD Bestiary Universal Monster Rules:

When a creature with hardness takes damage, subtract its hardness from the damage. Only damage in excess of its hardness is subtracted from its hit points. A creature with hardness doesn’t further reduce damage from energy attacks, ranged attacks, or other types of attacks as objects typically do. Adamantine weapons bypass hardness of 20 or less.

Format: hardness 10
Location: Defensive Abilities.

No reference to a blog or faq needed.

Nice find.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
blahpers wrote:
Java Man wrote:

Description of hardness from PRD Bestiary Universal Monster Rules:

When a creature with hardness takes damage, subtract its hardness from the damage. Only damage in excess of its hardness is subtracted from its hit points. A creature with hardness doesn’t further reduce damage from energy attacks, ranged attacks, or other types of attacks as objects typically do. Adamantine weapons bypass hardness of 20 or less.

Format: hardness 10
Location: Defensive Abilities.

No reference to a blog or faq needed.

Nice find.

Actually, it is better to cite AoN: url=https://aonprd.com/UMR.aspx?ItemName=Hardness]Hardness[/url] and not the Legacy version, at least it references the book.

But that piece of text doesn't resolve the OP question. His question wasn't about halving energy damage.
The basic question is if the weapon damage and the fire damage are stacked and the hardness is subtracted from the stack or if they are two different instances of damage and the hardness is subtracted from the weapon damage and the energy damage separately.

My position is that the two damages are separated set and hardness is subtracted to both.

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