Hidden Presence spell followed by Charm Person


Rules Questions


A PC wants to cast Hidden Presence spell on a target, and then Charm Person.
I use the text of the Invisibility spell to interpret Charm Person is considered an attack, which ends Hidden Presence spell.

https://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/h/hidden-presence/

https://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/i/invisibility/

https://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/c/charm-person/

"For purposes of this spell, an attack includes any spell targeting a foe or whose area or effect includes a foe."

My question is, does the Hidden Presence spell end while Charm Person is being cast, allowing the target to witness the spell casting (verbal, somatic and manifestations)? Or does Hidden Presence end immediately after Charm Person was cast, and thus the target has no memory of witnessing the verbal, somatic, and manifestations?


My interpretation is that the Manifestations are visible even if the caster is not.

Beyond that, I think in general when you break invisibility by attacking, you still get the benefit of invisibility for the duration of the attack itself - for example, if you sneak attack while invisible, you get the usual bonuses for attacking from total concealment, but you reappear immediately after. I would apply a similar standard to spells - you are no longer invisible, but they didn't get to see your somatic components.


Matthew Downie wrote:

My interpretation is that the Manifestations are visible even if the caster is not.

Beyond that, I think in general when you break invisibility by attacking, you still get the benefit of invisibility for the duration of the attack itself - for example, if you sneak attack while invisible, you get the usual bonuses for attacking from total concealment, but you reappear immediately after. I would apply a similar standard to spells - you are no longer invisible, but they didn't get to see your somatic components.

Regarding the exact time that Invisibility or Hidden Presence ends. I’m leaning that way also. And by that interpretation, the Hidden Presence spell would be in effect until just after the charm spell was cast. And thus the target would have no memory of the verbal, somatic components of the charm person spell.

But it’s kinda debatable if they would have seen the manifestations of the spell while affected by Hidden Presence and remembere those. For Invisibility, I say yes, since In Pf2e (and maybe somewhere for 1e also) the developers have said spell manifestations are visible even with invisible casters. But for Hidden Presence there are the lines:

“You make yourself completely undetectable to the subjects by erasing all awareness of your presence from their minds. The targets can’t see, hear, smell, feel, or taste you, including with extraordinary or supernatural senses such as blindsense, blindsight, scent, or tremorsense. They can’t pinpoint your location by any means, including detect spells.”

Maybe the best compromise is give the target another save to break the spell because the appearance of spell manifestations trigger this clause:

“If you take an action that creates a sustained and obvious change in the target’s environment—for example, attacking a creature other than a target or moving a sizeable or attended object the target can see—the target immediately receives a new saving throw.“


-mostly Advice -

Spellcasting Manifestations are visible even if the caster is not. Personally I interpret the effect as in the caster's square(s). Every GM has to interpret it someway or the other.

It sure sound like someone is trying to be a stealthy weenie and do some subtle to hidden casting. There are well known methods that take some research on these boards.

As a GM you are not a free font of information or vetting of silly ideas. Players have to try them out. You DO have to answer Spellcraft and Knowledge checks as the dice dictate. You should look at their skill scores and say, yeah, your character pretty much knows "that won't work" or whatever is core knowledge (DC of their skill score, take 10 means they have to stop and think about it).
If you are too free with private info you'll spend all your time telling players what will and won't work and they won't have tried anything or gotten anything done.

It's the player's burden to do due diligence.

The -magical- casting might be a hostile act (most people can't identify the spell) and having to make a save confirms that it IS hostile. It's going to end the moment someone has to make a save or take damage. Hidden Presence is even worse than Invisibility as it applies to creatures in the visual area. You can't really chop up a round too fine unless there are Readied Actions or Immediate Actions. The aggressor gets the benefit of invisibility for the attack and then it ends as that act ends his spell duration.

The target remembers Manifestations, having to make a save and then this wizardy looking guy pops in where the manifestations were.... hmmm.... yeah, it's mostly slash 'n hack first, ask questions later. Worse if he remembers seeing the guy earlier as that means assassin? rouge? thief? murderer?... none of it good.
Failing the Charm Person means he remembers the guy as friendly but now it's modified by just being attacked by said friendly buddy.
While the charm is hard for the target to notice, it's rather easy for his friends and cohorts to notice that he's under an enchantment effect.


Azothath wrote:

-mostly Advice -

Spellcasting Manifestations are visible even if the caster is not. Personally I interpret the effect as in the caster's square(s). Every GM has to interpret it someway or the other.

It sure sound like someone is trying to be a stealthy weenie and do some subtle to hidden casting. There are well known methods that take some research on these boards.

As a GM you are not a free font of information or vetting of silly ideas. Players have to try them out. You DO have to answer Spellcraft and Knowledge checks as the dice dictate. You should look at their skill scores and say, yeah, your character pretty much knows "that won't work" or whatever is core knowledge (DC of their skill score, take 10 means they have to stop and think about it).
If you are too free with private info you'll spend all your time telling players what will and won't work and they won't have tried anything or gotten anything done.

It's the player's burden to do due diligence.

The -magical- casting might be a hostile act (most people can't identify the spell) and having to make a save confirms that it IS hostile. It's going to end the moment someone has to make a save or take damage. Hidden Presence is even worse than Invisibility as it applies to creatures in the visual area. You can't really chop up a round too fine unless there are Readied Actions or Immediate Actions. The aggressor gets the benefit of invisibility for the attack and then it ends as that act ends his spell duration.

The target remembers Manifestations, having to make a save and then this wizardy looking guy pops in where the manifestations were.... hmmm.... yeah, it's mostly slash 'n hack first, ask questions later. Worse if he remembers seeing the guy earlier as that means assassin? rouge? thief? murderer?... none of it good.
Failing the Charm Person means he remembers the guy as friendly but now it's modified by just being attacked by said friendly buddy.
While the charm is hard for the target to notice, it's rather easy for his friends...

Thanks, I like how you think and agree with all this. For Hidden Presence, the noticeable/visible spell manifestations would allow an additional save per the last section of spell description. Basically it’s a pretty subpar way by itself to conceal their spell. If only there was a feat out there for concealing spells….. /s :)


Average Joe 23 wrote:
Thanks, I like how you think and agree with all this. For Hidden Presence, the noticeable/visible spell manifestations would allow an additional save per the last section of spell description. Basically it’s a pretty subpar way by itself to conceal their spell. If only there was a feat out there for concealing spells….. /s :)

I imagine it'll be about making a lot of rolls and comparisons with a bit of panned-ultimate intrigue. Last guy tried to sell me some cure-all composed of tears of razmirran jelly, he struck me as falsely focused so I defeated him with my illusion of calm about some silent images. Mime yer words.


Just a thought... Invisibility and Hidden Presence are both second level, but they're not the same, though the effects might be similar. Hidden Presence is the low level psychic whisper "Ignore Me" over and over and it works while Invisibility bends light in somewhat interesting and somewhat contradictory ways (like you can still see and light from a torch still shines, but whatever...)

Charm person isn't an attack, or else it would rarely ever work given the +5 to the save on every target.

PFSRD wrote:
. . . If the creature is currently being threatened or attacked by you or your allies, however, it receives a +5 bonus on its saving throw. . . .

So charm person seems to work as a non-hostile, but non-beneficial, spell.

PFSRD wrote:

Succeeding on a Saving Throw

A creature that successfully saves against a spell that has no obvious physical effects feels a hostile force or a tingle, but cannot deduce the exact nature of the attack. Likewise, if a creature’s saving throw succeeds against a targeted spell, you sense that the spell has failed. You do not sense when creatures succeed on saves against effect and area spells.

So, if they saved against the charm person, they'll feel it, but they don't necessarily know what it was (that's what a spellcraft check would be for. I think) but if they didn't save, they wouldn't have an idea that they've been affected.

PFSRD wrote:

. . . The targets can’t see, hear, smell, feel, or taste you, including with extraordinary or supernatural senses such as blindsense, blindsight, scent, or tremorsense. They can’t pinpoint your location by any means, including detect spells.

The targets remain unaware of your actions, provided you don’t make any attacks or cause any obvious or directly threatening changes in the targets’ environment. If you attack any of the target creatures, the effect ends. . . .

Since they can't see or hear you with hidden presence... they can't see or hear you casting the spell. They can hear you with invisibility.

Since charm person is targeted, but not obvious or directly threatening, it doesn't end the effect, and if they fail the save, they don't get the danger ping that warns them something is off.

That's how it seems to me in this specific instance. Of course, I've been wrong before.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Te'Shen wrote:


Charm person isn't an attack, or else it would rarely ever work given the +5 to the save on every target.

Charm person is an attack.

CRB, p. 208 wrote:
Attacks: Some spell descriptions refer to attacking. All offensive combat actions, even those that don’t damage opponents, are considered attacks. Attempts to channel energy count as attacks if it would harm any creatures in the area. All spells that opponents resist with saving throws, that deal damage, or that otherwise harm or hamper subjects are attacks. Spells that summon monsters or other allies are not attacks because the spells themselves don’t harm anyone.
Charm person wrote:
If the creature is currently being threatened or attacked by you or your allies, however, it receives a +5 bonus on its saving throw.

Merriam Webster on line definition of currently: "at the present time"

The spell could have used a better definition, but I (and I think most GM) read that as "concurrently", i.e. at the same time, essentially not counting that casting of Charm Person for the save bonus.
If you prefer to put it another way, the spell is an attack, but it doesn't give a bonus against itself (but would give the save bonus if you try to Charm the same person again the next round).

Liberty's Edge

As most people posting, I read the combo as:
- the casting has the usual manifestations;
- creatures under the effect of Hidden Presence won't notice them as they consider what you do inconsequential;
- Charm Person is an attack and Hidden Presence will end.

Note that Hidden Presence is an enchantment, not an illusion. The targets disregard you, you aren't invisible to them.


Average Joe 23 wrote:

In Pf2e (and maybe somewhere for 1e also) the developers have said spell manifestations are visible even with invisible casters. But for Hidden Presence there are the lines:

“You make yourself completely undetectable to the subjects by erasing all awareness of your presence from their minds. The targets can’t see, hear, smell, feel, or taste you, including with extraordinary or supernatural senses such as blindsense, blindsight, scent, or tremorsense. They can’t pinpoint your location by any means, including detect spells.”

I have Manifestations mentally categorised as 'not part of you' (unlike your clothes and gear).

Some examples of how Hidden Presence works in my head:
If you dropped some caltrops on the floor, a person who couldn't perceive you would see the caltrops, appearing out of nowhere, because they are no longer part of your gear.
If you were carrying a torch, they would see the room get brighter and feel it getting warmer, but they wouldn't see the torch itself as long as you were carrying it.
But if you set fire to a table, they would see the fire.
I think Manifestations would appear from nowhere in the same way.


@Diego:
Diego Rossi wrote:
CRB, p. 208 wrote:
Attacks: Some spell descriptions refer to attacking. All offensive combat actions, even those that don’t damage opponents, are considered attacks. Attempts to channel energy count as attacks if it would harm any creatures in the area. All spells that opponents resist with saving throws, that deal damage, or that otherwise harm or hamper subjects are attacks. Spells that summon monsters or other allies are not attacks because the spells themselves don’t harm anyone.

Meh... I get that I'm wrong, and you're technically correct there, Hermes... but charm person is a spell that doesn't cause harm, and even after it lands, you'd still have to talk them into things they wouldn't normally do (the charisma check).

And is that accounting for beneficial spells with a save? Because they have a save, and by that listing, everything with a save counts as an attack. How does that interact with an enemy masquerading as an ally? The spell just fizzles because they're bluffing? Or the bull's strength works until the backstab and then he has to make a will save to shake off a beneficial 'attack'? @_@ (...obviously not...)

Diego Rossi wrote:
Charm Person wrote:
If the creature is currently being threatened or attacked by you or your allies, however, it receives a +5 bonus on its saving throw.
Merriam Webster on line definition of currently: "at the present time"

The point you made is if the spell triggers a save then it is considered an attack. If charm person is considered an attack spell, then the target would get the +5 to the save because the Caster IS Currently ATTACKING Them with a spell. They are, at the present time, being subjected to a spell with a save, therefore an attack, by the caster, so they would ALWAYS get the +5. So... stop being cute with your Webster reference, Emmanuel Lewis.

It would seem that isn't the way the spell is Supposed to work looking at the text of the spell, but that is the way it Does work by your cited rule of what constitutes an attack.

Liberty's Edge

@Te'Shen
Yes, it applies to "beneficial spells with a save" and even at those without a save, if the target doesn't want the spell.
And that applies if an enemy disguised as an ally tries to cast a harmful spell, but it doesn't apply if the disguised enemy is casting a beneficial spell.

The first thing you must realize is that "beneficial" and "harmful" spells don't exist, as far as the game goes. The difference is "wanted" and "unwanted" spells.
My friend has been Dominated by a vampire and I want to cast Protection from Evil on him to suppress the domination? It is an unwanted spell and an attack. My motivation doesn't matter.
It is the same thing if I was casting Cure Light Wounds.

The "disguised enemy" scenario makes the spell wanted, but then we ould fall under the third clause: "otherwise harm or hamper subjects" are attacks. If the final result of the spell is to "harm or hamper" the target, the spell becomes an attack.

Charm Person has a problem with it being an attack. As I said, most GM don't apply the modifier generated by the spell to the save against the spell, but RAW it applies. RAW, it is self defeating.


@Diego2:
Diego Rossi wrote:
. . . The difference is "wanted" and "unwanted" spells. . . .

That is a fair point.

Diego Rossi wrote:
Charm Person has a problem with it being an attack. As I said, most GM don't apply the modifier generated by the spell to the save against the spell, but RAW it applies. RAW, it is self defeating.

. . . RAW, it is self defeating . . .

And that brings me to the nebulous point that rules, like laws, are typically generalized things. The specifics get weighed by DMs, like judges. If you accept that the Rules As Written... nevermind. I'm supposing you get it, I'm bad at expressing myself, and I'm already tired of my point.

Good luck and happy gaming.

Liberty's Edge

Yes!


Diego Rossi wrote:

Yes, it applies to "beneficial spells with a save" and even at those without a save, if the target doesn't want the spell.

The first thing you must realize is that "beneficial" and "harmful" spells don't exist, as far as the game goes.

A distinction between "harmless" and "harmful" spells does exist within the game rules:

Quote:
Saving Throw: Will negates (harmless)

I wonder, are characters supposed to be able to identify whether they want a spell cast on them or not when the caster is invisible and they don't have Spellcraft?

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Rules Questions / Hidden Presence spell followed by Charm Person All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.