Forbid Action, Greater supposed to be rounds / level?


Rules Questions


D20pfsrd entry shows it as rounds/level duration... It seems like that’s a pretty ridiculously strong spell if it’s for rounds/level. Do affected enemies get new saves every round? Or is it essentially just game over if they fail once? Maybe it just got copied wrong and isn’t supposed to be rounds/level?


It is rounds per level. It is strong.


Consider that Major Curse exists, as a permanent duration spell, which causes you to be unable to act 50% of the time, they needed something that was at least close to that level of power (they're the same spell level).


Yes it's rounds per level, and no you don't get a new save every round.

Greater Command is the same level of spell (and Command is the partner to Forbid Action). Command is stronger since the people who fail their save can ONLY do what you command them to, whereas if you Greater Forbid someone to attack they can still cast spells or whatever. To balance this out Greater Forbid Action doesn't allow subsequent saves, while Greater Command allows a new save every round.


MrCharisma wrote:

Yes it's rounds per level, and no you don't get a new save every round.

Greater Command is the same level of spell (and Command is the partner to Forbid Action). Command is stronger since the people who fail their save can ONLY do what you command them to, whereas if you Greater Forbid someone to attack they can still cast spells or whatever. To balance this out Greater Forbid Action doesn't allow subsequent saves, while Greater Command allows a new save every round.

You are wrong

GFA is unquestionably the better spell.... not only doesn't it allow additional saves, turning this into an almost multi-target SoD, but as well..

Attack: The target cannot take any action that involves an attack roll, or uses a spell or ability that targets a foe or an area that includes a foe.

It invalidates martials and massively impacts on the effectiveness of any caster - in all probability invalidating them too as they will only be of use if they have prepared SM/SNA or some kind of wall effect. Any caster affected by this spell will in all probability either leg it or die!


doc roc wrote:
MrCharisma wrote:

Yes it's rounds per level, and no you don't get a new save every round.

Greater Command is the same level of spell (and Command is the partner to Forbid Action). Command is stronger since the people who fail their save can ONLY do what you command them to, whereas if you Greater Forbid someone to attack they can still cast spells or whatever. To balance this out Greater Forbid Action doesn't allow subsequent saves, while Greater Command allows a new save every round.

You are wrong

GFA is unquestionably the better spell.... not only doesn't it allow additional saves, turning this into an almost multi-target SoD, but as well..
Attack: The target cannot take any action that involves an attack roll, or uses a spell or ability that targets a foe or an area that includes a foe.
It invalidates martials and massively impacts on the effectiveness of any caster - in all probability invalidating them too as they will only be of use if they have prepared SM/SNA or some kind of wall effect. Any caster affected by this spell will in all probability either leg it or die!

You're right, it handily defeats martials. But casters can still buff, summon, cast wall-spells, heal, or even cast something like Black Tenticles (provided they don't include an enemy in the AoE). Or they could simply retreat for ~1 minute and come back when they can attack again.

On the other hand Greater Command can stop you from performing any action:

COMMAND wrote:
Halt: The subject stands in place for 1 round. It may not take any actions but is not considered helpless.

Or you can force enemies into your prepared Pit spells, or wall of Fire, or the afore mentioned Black tentacles, or even just your own allies' AoO's:

Command wrote:
Approach: On its turn, the subject moves toward you as quickly and directly as possible for 1 round. The creature may do nothing but move during its turn, and it provokes attacks of opportunity for this movement as normal.

(... then use your own movement to rinse and repeat for 11 rounds.)

I agree that Greater Forbid Action is stronger, but the single save is the reason it's stronger. If they were equal in the save department it Greater Command would be unquestionably stronger than Greater Forbid Action.


MrCharisma wrote:


You're right, it handily defeats martials. But casters can still buff, summon, cast wall-spells, heal, or even cast something like Black Tenticles (provided they don't include an enemy in the AoE). Or they could simply retreat for ~1 minute and come back when they can attack again.

The problem is that you're assuming that a caster would have these spells available to them at that specific time.

Any caster, especially a full caster do not generally hang around when they have a massive proportion of their abilities shut down for the duration of the combat.

Having used this spell successfully a great many times on casters, I can say with complete confidence that the caster experiences death very quickly afterwards. If they run, send someone to run after them and kill them...or just blast/arrow them in the back.

And lets not forget, if you did use it against a 'caster heavy' group of enemies and you wanted to be triply sure you could just...

Cast: Target cannot cast spells or use spell-like abilities.

I have never used Greater Command in my gaming career.... the power difference is that obvious.


I'm not sure what your point is. I agree that Greater Forbid Action is steonger, but if they both had the same rules for saves that wouldn't be true.

Let's assume they both have the same rules for saves - you save only once when the spell is cast.

Would you rather prepare Greater Forbid Action in order to cast:

Attack: The target cannot take any action that involves an attack roll, or uses a spell or ability that targets a foe or an area that includes a foe.

OR

Cast: Target cannot cast spells or use spell-like abilities.

Or would you instead prepare Greater Command to cast this spell:

Halt: The subject stands in place for 1 round per level. It may not take any actions but is not considered helpless.

One of those options is clearly steonger than the other.

The multiple saves vs 1 save is a HUGE distinction between the spells - and makes Greater Forbid Action the stronger spell - but what I was saying is that without it Greater Forbid Action would literally be a useless, weaker version of Greater Command.


MrCharisma wrote:
I'm not sure what your point is.

Basically.... if you read your original post is states that GC is the stronger spell!!

I have never cast GC and wouldn't even cast it if it were a level lower ...thats how obvious the power difference is.

Saying that GFA is only stronger because of the save difference is a bit like saying Wizards are only better than Fighters because of their spells...... well duuuuuuuhh!!


What MrCharisma is saying is that the ability to tell someone what they must do (Command) is stronger then the ability to tell them what they can't do (Forbid Action.) If everything else is equal, Command is stronger.

As you and he both agree, everything else isn't the same, the save every round is a rather huge difference and certainly makes them closer to equal. Your contention that GFA ends up being stronger is certainly supportable.

Personally, I'm not so sure you are right, but I think it depends on the play style and meta aspects of the particular game/group. Command is a very strong spell for keeping the enemy from getting away, something I and my players tend to value highly. The fact that there is a save every round is fairly irrelevant since usually whoever is important enough to be targeted by command is going to be the focus of the group and they are almost certainly not going to survive to their second save anyway.

Some groups play in such a way that 3-4 rounds of combat is about as long as most fights are going to last. Others play in a way where fights going ten or more rounds is more typical. Clearly, the utility of GFA vs. GC is going to vary based the environment you are in.


I think we're on the same page, just a misunderstanding a out what I meant with my first post.

Personally I agree that Greater Forbid Action is stronger than Greater Command because of the single save. If it were only targeting one enemy I'd probably agree with Dave Justice that the subsequent saves don't matter all that much, but since it targets up to 9 enemies when you first learn the spell you pretty much guarantee at least one will save if given a second chance.

I think they're both great spells.

Either way I feel like we've answered the OP's question.


Pretty much the only way I would even vaguely consider casting GC is if I were dealing with a single target, but then as a 5th level spell slot there are more cost effective single target SoS/SoD options out there any way, so the point is moot.

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