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Cordo Crowfoot
Here for a while
(2/10/03 12:29 am)
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Blinding Spittle and washing your eyes out
Sorry for a rules type question here, but one of my players avidly reads the D&D Rules board.

My group has been making using Blinding Spittle quite a lot recently (Druid 1, MoF, ranged touch attack ray at -4, target blinded until they can wash out their eyes with no save if it hits).

They attacked the Fire Bridge complex, knocked down (not killing) the two troll guards, Krell, and D'Gran, casting blinding spittle on Krell and D'Gran in the process.

In response I will have Krell and D'Gran start to carry waterskins with them to wash out their eyes (being blind is really bad, especially when there is a two-handed fighting Rogue around).

What do you think is reasonable for the "washing out your own eyes" action? Move-equivalent? Full-round? AoO?

I'm guessing move-equivalent that does get an AoO (on top of the move-equivalent to retrieve the waterskin).

Trithereon
Here to stay
(2/10/03 3:36 am)
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Re: Blinding Spittle and washing your eyes out
This is my thinking ...

I'd go with a standard action that provokes an AOO, as it sounds much like applying an oil or quaffing a potion. Unless the waterskin is in hand, then it would require a move-equivalent action to retrieve it.

madfox
Still here? Wow.
(2/10/03 3:59 am)
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Re: Blinding Spittle and washing your eyes out
Mmmm.... I wonder what should happen if the bad guys start wearing googles...

Siobharek 
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(2/10/03 6:30 am)
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Re: Blinding Spittle and washing your eyes out
Heh, Wormspike at the Main Entrance is wearing goggles. He might start a trend.

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

madfox
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(2/10/03 6:43 am)
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Re: Blinding Spittle and washing your eyes out
You know, the more I think about, the worst that spell sound. Or does it actually tell what happens if people were full helmets, goggles or other eye protectors?

Siobharek 
Still here? Wow.
(2/10/03 6:52 am)
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Re: Blinding Spittle and washing your eyes out
You know, it's an old Greyhawk spell (for Iuz). Used in the World of Greyhawk, it's bound to raise a few eyebrows.

Anyway, a 1st-level spell that blinds is bound to grant a saving throw, right? Even in addition to a ranged touch attack (yeah, at -4, but gimme a break), it should grant a Fort or Reflex save. If not, that spell is pretty bent, IMO.

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Cordo Crowfoot
Here for a while
(2/10/03 7:30 am)
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yep, no save
I double checked and it does say "Saving throw: None"... :\

It does have a written caveat "This spell has no effect on creatures without eyes or that don't depend on eyes for vision." So while it doesn't say straight out that goggles would protect against it, I think the players would accept that reasoning.

I agree that it is darn powerful, Blindness/Deafness doesn't require a -4 ranged touch attack but you at least get a save against that, and it's 3rd level.

Siobharek 
Still here? Wow.
(2/10/03 7:38 am)
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Re: yep, no save
Look, FR is almost by definition unbalanced. Rule-0 the darn thing and smack a save on the spell. If your players start bitchin', tell 'em that you also correct balance issues in their favour if and when they occur.

I know my tone may suggest otherwise, but I'm serious: If you don't like the spell, and one of the characters use it a lot, then it might pave the way to some DM vs. player conflict, because in order to make encounters challenging, you have to target that spell, and that character, alone. So suddenly there's gonna be a lot of blindsighted critters, or a lot of goggles, and your players might feel that the world has changed - and not in their favour - because of one piddly little spell.

Besides, all that spitting sounds pretty gross to me ;) It's Japan you're playing in, not China, right?

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

madfox
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(2/10/03 7:45 am)
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Re: yep, no save
Quote:
Look, FR is almost by definition unbalanced.


You know that is rather unfair, since in my experience there are no more unbalanced things in FR products as in regular WotC products and as far as spells are concerned there are also some doubtful spells in products with a better reputation, like for example Malvahoc products (have you ever taken a look at welter and tried it in your games?). In fact, in some cases (like the Guild Wizard of Waterdeep) the FR variant is actually more balanced then the regular version (Wizard of the Arcane Order from Tome and Blood).

Blindness is a 2nd level spell with a save, but no attack roll and it has got a permanent duration. Anyway, if the blinding spittle can be washed away, I would add a duration to the spell (if normal water can wash it away, so can tears). Further then that I see little reason to nerf the spell. On a side note - is it a touch attack or regular attack?

Edited by: madfox at: 2/10/03 7:46:44 am
Siobharek 
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(2/10/03 7:54 am)
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Re: yep, no save
I'm sorry: I have a gut reaction when it comes to FR.

The spell is (as described earlier in this thread) a touch attack at -4. I'd say that with aFort save, it should be OK.

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Cordo Crowfoot
Here for a while
(2/10/03 7:58 am)
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to hit
It is a ranged touch attack, so target numbers are usually 9 to 11. :( So they hit much more often than not. Even though I am using the -4 to hit for "Shooting or Throwing into melee", which I am not sure I should be doing since pg 124 of the PH seems to indicate it only applies to shooting or throwing a ranged weapon.

madfox
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(2/10/03 8:04 am)
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Re: to hit
It applies to spells as well. Anyway, I do agree that it either requires a saving throw or a relative short duration (something like 1d4 rds).

Taxman66
Here for a while
(2/10/03 10:06 am)
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Re: to hit
Not only is there a -4 for 'firing into meele' but there are also likely to be cover modifiers (depending on positioning).

The firing in to meele penalty is one of the reasons I like Wizards who use those type of spells to pick up Percise Shot.

Taxman
"It takes an uncommon mind to think of these things, Hobbes." - Calvin

Cordo Crowfoot
Here for a while
(2/10/03 2:04 pm)
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cover
Yes I have been using the cover rules too, but since this character is fast and usually towards the front of the party, he can usually make cover a non-issue by adjusting his position.

Also are you all absolutely sure the -4 for firing into melee applies to ranged touch attacks? It's not at all obvious, especially as the PH (and D20 modern) both say it is specifically for a missile or weapon thrown into a melee.

Edited by: Cordo Crowfoot at: 2/10/03 2:07:36 pm
Infiniti2000
Here to stay
(2/10/03 2:31 pm)
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ezSupporter
Re: cover
Quite sure. Rays are ranged touch attacks and, as such, follow all the rules for ranged touch attacks. This not only includes the -4 penalty for firing into melee, but -4 penalty for prone targets, -2 penalty for kneeling targets, cover bonuses, etc.

SRD (my emphasis):
"Ray: Some effects are rays. The character aims a ray as if using a ranged weapon, though typically the character makes a ranged touch attack rather than a normal ranged attack. As with a ranged weapon, The character can fire into the dark or at an invisible creature and hope the character hit something. The character doesn't have to see the creature he or she is trying to hit, as the character does with a targeted spell. Intervening creatures and obstacles, however, can block the character's line of sight or provide cover for the creature the character is aiming at."

Cordo Crowfoot
Here for a while
(2/11/03 6:23 am)
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Re: cover
I'm playing the devil's advocate to a degree here, but that quote doesn't convince me 100%. It just says that the ray is aimed as a ranged weapon... Which could just mean to use BAB + Dex modifier. It doesn't follow to me that it definitely means "follows all the rules in all circumstances just as if it were a ranged weapon."

For firing into melee, the PH, SRD, and D20 modern also all use similar language:

"If a combatant shoots or throws a ranged weapon at a target that is engaged in melee with an ally, that combatant suffer a -4 penalty on it's attack roll."

Why do they specifically say "shoot or throw a ranged weapon" and not just say simply make a ranged attack? It is almost as if they are leaving other ranged attacks (such as ranged touch attacks) out on purpose.

SSShadowcat7
Here for a while
(2/11/03 8:53 am)
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Re: cover
Just to add my little bit here...

I don't know the official wording, nor do I want to look it up, but we also play that a ranged touch attack (such as with a spell) has everything applied to it that any other ranged attack would. Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, -4 for shooting into melee, cover modifiers, prone modifiers, threatening a crit for rolling a 20, etc.

All these things work just as well with ranged touch spells as with missile & thrown weapons. That's all IMO, of course. But I believe the rules back me up...I just don't know where they are. :)

Siobharek 
Still here? Wow.
(2/11/03 9:19 am)
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Re: cover
Check Tome & Blood, p. 38. It describes various feats and their applications to weapon-like spells. Blinding spittle isn't a ray, I know, but it falls somewhere between the definition of a ray and an energy missile (p. 37: "The spell creates something physical as a projectile, or that the caster can hurl, such as Melf's acid arrow or produce flame"). Under the Precise Shot discussion (p. 38) , it says: "You can fire a ray or energy missile into a melee without suffering the usual -4 penalty to ranged attacks".

I think that's pretty conclusive: Blinding spittle, if fired into a melee, gets a -4 attack penalty in addition to the -4 already stated in the spell as I understand it.

Cover is anoter matter, isn't it? I mean, that's if somebody is between yourself and your target, isn't it?

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Cordo Crowfoot
Here for a while
(2/11/03 5:52 pm)
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Re: cover
Good point Siobharek. Not that there isn't the possibility that Tome and Blood itself could be wrong. :)

Cover I never had a doubt about...

Anyway for my campaign, next session I think I will just try to address it with waterskins/goggles, especially as the Fire Bridge complex now knows that they use the spell that is completely fair for me to do. If it still creates a problem I will think of adding a save. I was thinking maybe reflex, as you are getting out of the way of a missile or closing your eyes quickly rather than fortitude.

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