Charmed in Combat


Rules Discussion

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

So we are fighting a greater barghast in an AP that shall remain un-named. The DM (who is new to DMing)casts Charm on me, a PC... What happens?

I'm reading the "friendly" condition condition on page 620 and it says that PC's cannot be effected by this condition. So why would it be included in a Monster Block?

I don't think I'm effected by the spell, but for now were just running it as, if it doesn't attack me the spell doesn't end and I get a save at the end of every turn.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

While the friendly and helpful.conditions dont do anything, the "Can't use hostile actions against you clause does."

It can also be used against npcsvand shows how a barghest could have influence despite its monstrous nature.

Honestly the pc immunity to diplomacy is a failing in the system. We ignored it because it shuts down a whole region of npc rivals (my pcs dealt with a bard spy that just would have been pathetic)


It is worth noting that, if I recall correctly, there is language going into the errata that states that PCs can be affected by the Friendly et al. conditions if the source of the condition is supernatural in nature (i.e. the Charm spell). The intent of making PCs immune to such conditions is to prevent the scenario where a player doesn't get to determine their own character's reaction to an NPC organically, i.e. roleplay, which most players would find extremely unpleasant or unfun (but not necessarily all groups).

In this case, as long as neither the barghest nor its allies take hostile actions against you, you remain Friendly toward it. You are likely to agree to any simple or easy request made by it which doesn't endanger you. Note that such 'soft' mind control doesn't actually prevent you from acting as you would normally, except that you consider the barghest a friend--so you might react to combat as if one of your friends suddenly started attacking another of your friends. Most likely I believe you'd try to break up the fight without hurting anybody more then necessary depending on the strength of your friendship with other people in the party (most likely I expect your party are a closer relationship, so it would not be out of character to react to the barghest's attacks on them as you might if a friendly acquaintance of yours picked a fight with your best friend.

Now, if you either Critically Failed or were somehow already considered friendly to the barghest and Failed, making you "Helpful and cannot take hostile actions" against it, you would actively attempt to aid the barghest's any request that doesn't damage your goals or quality of life. This would not cause you to attack your allies (as hurting your friends undoubtedly damages your goals or quality of life) but you may still find yourself attempting to defend the barghest or your allies (depending whom you perceived as the aggressor) without harming anybody. Again, provided nobody directly attacks you.

Also worth mentioning is that, technically, you would not receive additional Will saves by RAW as the wording in the spell seems to indicate that the clause about 'if the creature recently threatened you' only applies to the primary Will save--however, that is a valid option for ruling what happens when you see your 'friend' attempting to kill your other friends without automatically negating the Charm spell's effects as it would if it attacked you, personally. That said, I feel like you do have enough options available to you that even if you are stuck counting the barghest as a creature you like for the whole hour, particularly as you are not prevented from acting hostilely toward it if you need to stop your friends from hurting your other friends.


Yeah, failing that Save in that fight is rough. It basically removes you from the combat. Especially considering how difficult he is to hit and damage, if he gets your beat stick, you're in a bad, bad place. It's a great candidate for burning a Hero Point.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Did your GM take into consideration that the spell has the incapacitation trait? You likely should have your degree of success be one degree better than what was rolled.


The enemy is several levels above the party. It's a severe boss encounter.


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The caster's level doesn't matter since the effect is from a spell. In this case a first level spell against what is likely fourth level characters.

CRB page 633 wrote:
If a spell has the incapacitation trait, any creature of more than twice the spell’s level treats the result of their check to prevent being incapacitated by the spell as one degree of success better, or the result of any check the spellcaster made to incapacitate them as one degree of success worse.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Yes, if the spell is not heightened, the monster's level should not matter for determining if incapacitating is relevant.


So is casting Charm (Or witch charm hex) basically a SoD? Are you supposed to just use it in battles to at least get one enemy off attacking you?


Fumarole wrote:

The caster's level doesn't matter since the effect is from a spell. In this case a first level spell against what is likely fourth level characters.

CRB page 633 wrote:
If a spell has the incapacitation trait, any creature of more than twice the spell’s level treats the result of their check to prevent being incapacitated by the spell as one degree of success better, or the result of any check the spellcaster made to incapacitate them as one degree of success worse.

Well that we missed, but given that I crit failed my initial roll, a Hero Point was spent.

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