Drained Condition Clarification


Rules Discussion


I want to make sure the drained condition is being applied correctly in my games. Lets say we have a lvl 3 halfling cleric, 10 con no toughness, who is drained 3. Their HPs before drained would be 30, what order is the drained applied?

A - HP loss first, then Max HP loss, the character would go from 30/30 to 21/30 then to 21/21.

B - Max HP loss first then HP loss, the character would go from 30/30 to 21/21 then to 12/21.

The A makes sense to me, but I have seen the B implemented in a lot of games.

As a follow up would it change anything if the character was already down hps? say they were already down 10 HPs, 20/30. Because A would stay the same but B now has 2 potentials:

1 - Max HP loss only lowers current HP if it has to to match current max hp, then hp loss, so 20/30 to 20/21 to 11/21

2 - Max HP loss always lowers current HP also, then hp loss, so 20/30 to 11/21 to 2/21.

Again 2 is how I am seeing this implemented. Seeing as I have seen drain applied by more PCs in my games then enemies this implementation is helping the PCs more, but I would like an official reply from someone at Paizo to make sure.


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drained:

Quote:
When a creature successfully drains you of blood or life force, you become less healthy. Drained always includes a value. You take a status penalty equal to your drained value on Constitution-based checks, such as Fortitude saves. You also lose a number of Hit Points equal to your level (minimum 1) times the drained value, and your maximum Hit Points are reduced by the same amount. For example, if you’re hit by an effect that inflicts drained 3 and you’re a 3rd-level character, you lose 9 Hit Points and reduce your maximum Hit Points by 9. Losing these Hit Points doesn’t count as taking damage.

seems pretty strawightforward to me:

you first lose the HP, then you reduce your maximum by the same amount.

So, if you are at 30/30 and hit by drained 3, you first lose 9 hp, then you reduce your maximum by 9. so you end up at 21/21

if you are at 20/30 you first lose the hp, then you reduce the maximum by the same amount, so 11/21.


The rules seem to say that there is no order in which the reductions are applied. They happen at the same time.

You lose a number of hit points... ...and your maximum hit points are reduced by the same amount.

So you figure out what X is and subtract it from both sides of your hit points. In your examples,
30/30 ▶︎ 30-9/30-9 ▶︎ 21/21, or
20/30 ▶︎ 20-9/30-9 ▶︎ 11/21.


A wound going away because you got drained seems too wonky IMO.
I'd say damage remains consistent and gets subtracted off your new max hit points.

With the other interpretation you could use a Bloodseeker to increase your healing! (Not by enough to make it worthwhile, but as an example to show the absurdity.)


Castilliano wrote:

A wound going away because you got drained seems too wonky IMO.

I'd say damage remains consistent and gets subtracted off your new max hit points.

With the other interpretation you could use a Bloodseeker to increase your healing! (Not by enough to make it worthwhile, but as an example to show the absurdity.)

Wounds don't go away in any of these examples, I'm not sure what you mean. The difference between you max HP and your current HP doesn't change, if you were down 10 HP before you would be down 10 HP after being drained.


theservantsllcleanitup wrote:
Castilliano wrote:

A wound going away because you got drained seems too wonky IMO.

I'd say damage remains consistent and gets subtracted off your new max hit points.

With the other interpretation you could use a Bloodseeker to increase your healing! (Not by enough to make it worthwhile, but as an example to show the absurdity.)

Wounds don't go away in any of these examples, I'm not sure what you mean. The difference between you max HP and your current HP doesn't change, if you were down 10 HP before you would be down 10 HP after being drained.

In your interpretation, when the Drained 1 condition ends, the creature returns to max h.p., without the original wound ever have been healed.

That's the wound that goes away.

Creature gets gashed, then gets their blood drained by a separate attack, then gets their blood restored and the gash has gone away? Seems silly.
Meanwhile, another creature merely gets their blood drained and is as bad off as their ally who got gashed and their blood drained?
Also silly.
That all reeks of manipulating numbers like a corrupt accountant (not that I think you're doing this nefariously, but that's the end result).

ETA: Your interpretation also means that the person who gets gashed then drained is better off than the one who got drained then gashed.
The end results should be equivalent.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Castilliano wrote:


In your interpretation, when the Drained 1 condition ends, the creature returns to max h.p., without the original wound ever have been healed.
That's the wound that goes away.

Losing the drained condition doesn't restore the lost HP, only your max HP. You'd go from 30/30 to 21/21 from drained and then to 21/30 when the condition ends.


Squiggit wrote:
Castilliano wrote:


In your interpretation, when the Drained 1 condition ends, the creature returns to max h.p., without the original wound ever have been healed.
That's the wound that goes away.
Losing the drained condition doesn't restore the lost HP, only your max HP. You'd go from 30/30 to 21/21 from drained and then to 21/30 when the condition ends.

But that would happen to the person wounded before being drained too.

A different wound disappears depending on order of application, which to me indicates that's the wrong interpretation (though the part you're covering is correct).

Dark Archive

Castilliano wrote:
Squiggit wrote:
Castilliano wrote:


In your interpretation, when the Drained 1 condition ends, the creature returns to max h.p., without the original wound ever have been healed.
That's the wound that goes away.
Losing the drained condition doesn't restore the lost HP, only your max HP. You'd go from 30/30 to 21/21 from drained and then to 21/30 when the condition ends.

But that would happen to the person wounded before being drained too.

A different wound disappears depending on order of application, which to me indicates that's the wrong interpretation (though the part you're covering is correct).

I don't get what you're trying to say here; Squiggit and others have pointed out that no wound "disappears" when the condition ends. You don't heal any of your injuries, because your current HPs don't change, only your max. HP.


Let's say two PCs are fighting side by side: Al & Bob.
Both are level 4 with 40 max hit points and full health to start.

Al gets hit by an arrow for 4 damage.
Al & Bob both get the Drained 1 condition.

Bob now has 36/36 hit points, but Al has ?/36 hit points?
If the answer's 36 (as some say), then the arrow wound effectively disappeared. That's an error IMO so I'd say Al has 32/36 hit points.

---
The free healing trick applies to a position I thought somebody was saying, but apparently hadn't been. That would require ignoring the arrow damage (as above) PLUS 36/36 returning to 40/40 when the Drained ends (and still only aids minimally). Again, nobody seems be saying both those things that I can tell, though I lean toward the latter half (but am oscillating). Except again I also count the arrow damage as still applying.


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Castilliano wrote:

Let's say two PCs are fighting side by side: Al & Bob.

Both are level 4 with 40 max hit points and full health to start.

Al gets hit by an arrow for 4 damage.
Al & Bob both get the Drained 1 condition.

Bob now has 36/36 hit points, but Al has ?/36 hit points?
If the answer's 36 (as some say), then the arrow wound effectively disappeared. That's an error IMO so I'd say Al has 32/36 hit points.

---
The free healing trick applies to a position I thought somebody was saying, but apparently hadn't been. That would require ignoring the arrow damage (as above) PLUS 36/36 returning to 40/40 when the Drained ends (and still only aids minimally). Again, nobody seems be saying both those things that I can tell, though I lean toward the latter half (but am oscillating). Except again I also count the arrow damage as still applying.

Yea nobody was saying anything close to that.

Al would start at : 40
The arrow takes him to : 36
Drained takes him to : 32 (with a temp max HP of 36)
Drained ends and he's : 32 (with a max HP of 40)


Then I'd misread, and we're all in cozy agreement. :)


I know that this post is not a new one but I would like to ask you all for a further clarification, please.

What will happen after a 4th level character of 40 hp - who gets drained 2, resulting in a new total of 32/32 hp - takes a long rest?

In which order do I reinstate his regained hit points gained from his rest, and his decrease in the Drained condition level?

Does this happen simultaneously of one after the other?


Cool Tiefling wrote:

I know that this post is not a new one but I would like to ask you all for a further clarification, please.

What will happen after a 4th level character of 40 hp - who gets drained 2, resulting in a new total of 32/32 hp - takes a long rest?

In which order do I reinstate his regained hit points gained from his rest, and his decrease in the Drained condition level?

Does this happen simultaneously of one after the other?

in the long run it shouldnt make that much difference since even if you pur rested hp 1st and restore condition second (resulting in fewer than max hp) you can always spend 10mins patching those hp up while the rest of the party does their daily prep.

but imo, since there is already a rule for start/end of turn effects that happen simultaneously (that rule being that the player can decide the order of operations of stuff happenning simultaneously) I would simply extend that to the described situation.

effectively, allow the player to choose the order of operation for stuff happening in the same exact "instance".

Shadow Lodge

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As with PF1e Barbarians and other temporary Constitution adjustments, it might help to look at these numbers from a different angle:

  • a) Label your max HP as 'Maximum Damage I Can Take' and change this value when you are drained or your Constitution score otherwise changes.
  • b) Instead of tracking your remaining HP, track the actual damage you have taken.
  • As long as 'a' is larger than 'b', you are fine...


Taja the Barbarian wrote:
As with PF1e Barbarians and other temporary Constitution adjustments, it might help to look at these numbers from a different angle:
  • a) Label your max HP as 'Maximum Damage I Can Take' and change this value when you are drained or your Constitution score otherwise changes.
  • b) Instead of tracking your remaining HP, track the actual damage you have taken.
  • As long as 'a' is larger than 'b', you are fine...

Thanks for your reply, but it doesn't really concern me that much. My sole question was in regards to healing hit points together with a decrease of the Drained condition.

But ty anyway ;-)


shroudb wrote:
Cool Tiefling wrote:

I know that this post is not a new one but I would like to ask you all for a further clarification, please.

What will happen after a 4th level character of 40 hp - who gets drained 2, resulting in a new total of 32/32 hp - takes a long rest?

In which order do I reinstate his regained hit points gained from his rest, and his decrease in the Drained condition level?

Does this happen simultaneously of one after the other?

in the long run it shouldnt make that much difference since even if you pur rested hp 1st and restore condition second (resulting in fewer than max hp) you can always spend 10mins patching those hp up while the rest of the party does their daily prep.

but imo, since there is already a rule for start/end of turn effects that happen simultaneously (that rule being that the player can decide the order of operations of stuff happenning simultaneously) I would simply extend that to the described situation.

effectively, allow the player to choose the order of operation for stuff happening in the same exact "instance".

Thanks for your time to write me a reply.

My concern isn't really whether it makes any difference or not. But regaining hp always does happen before the decreasing of the Drained condition when using Foundry to host our weekly game. And then a guy on Reddit asked this exact question which prompted me to ask in here.

As it poses no problem in my own game I am just after getting the RAW explanation just to ease my curiosity and to help that guy on Reddit.

Cheers


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

As far as I can tell there doesn't seem to be any order of operations for the benefits of Rest.

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