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D&D 3E
Quick rule's question. 
23rd-May-2005 01:39 pm
Disney-Mermaid MythandMagic
Okay, so if I were to cast a spell when standing within 5 feet of an enemy, that enemy gets an attack of opportunity, right? And if that attack hits, then I have to succeeded a concentration check, DC 10+damage dealt, right?

But I can take a 5 foot step back and avoid the AoO, right?

Okay, so in that case... in last night's game, I was casting a spell in combat and I took the 5 foot step back, thus avoiding the AoO. However, in this case, the spell in question was one that took a full round to cast. According to the PhB, it would then come into affect at the beginning of my next turn. So, when the enemy took their turn to apprach and attack me, does that mean that I am still casting the spell, and thus still need to succeed a concentration check?

The GM and I weren't sure and we assumed this was the case, but do any of you know where in the rules books it would address this issue? Is the concentration check only for attacks of opportunity, or for any time when you are attacked during the casting of a spell? And if a spell takes a full round action, does that mean that you are casting it until the beginning of your next turn, or just that it doesn't come into affect until that time?
Comments 
23rd-May-2005 06:52 pm (UTC)
I'm pretty sure it's any time you take damage period, unless you're Casting Defensively (which still takes a concentration check and only protects against AoOs); however as I'm at work, I don't have the book in front of me to give you a page number.
23rd-May-2005 06:57 pm (UTC)
Also at work and presently bookless, but that sounds right, and makes sense. I'm fairly certain that taking damage from any source while you're in the process of casting leads to a Concetration check. And yes, a full round casting time means just that - you are in the process of casting from the time your initiative number comes up and you start until your next initiative and the spell comes into efect.
23rd-May-2005 06:56 pm (UTC)
Well if its a full round action to cast the spell, then you spend the full round casting the spell (until the beginning of your next turn). It doesn't make any sense to me if you finish casting the spell and then 5 seconds later something happens.

And I without rules to quote, I'd say that because you're spending the full round casting, any attacks you take during that round could disrupt your spell. That's why spells can be balanced with a high casting time: they become difficult to cast under pressure.
23rd-May-2005 09:02 pm (UTC)
You and your DM handled the situation correctly. This is why "1 round" spells are such a hassle. You are considered to be casting the spell for your entire round. If you had been attacked between turn one and turn two -- say you were hit with an arrow -- you would have had to make a Concentration check to continue casting your spell. Unless you Cast on the Defensive (Concentration DC 15 + spell level) you provoke an attack of opportunity from anyone within 5 feet of you for the entire casting time.

And worst of all, they made Sleep a 1 round spell in 3.5! That was a surprise, let me tell you.
23rd-May-2005 10:14 pm (UTC)
*laughs* Yeah, in this case, the spell was call lighting, which caused a great deal of confusion because they turned it from a 10 minute casting to a 1 round casting from 3.0 to 3.5. Luckily for my character, she just *barely* made her concentration check to keep the spell up, then proceeded to roll the 3d6 and get a total of a *3*. THEN she lost consciousness in the next round and lost the spell. Talk about a waste of time. -.-
23rd-May-2005 10:20 pm (UTC)
Ergo, invisibility is a conjurer's best friend. ^_^
23rd-May-2005 10:41 pm (UTC)
Everyone who's posted so far has been right - if a spell takes "one full round" to cast (note distinction between "one full round" and "one full-round action") then any damage you take during that round prompts a Concentration check.

One addendum to this, however: effects that cause continuous damage, such as Melf's acid arrow or being lit on fire only contribute half their damage to the DC of the check. In these cases, however, you must make the check even if the spell is a standard action. Example: Turn one, the goblin sorceror pegs you with an acid arrow. You swig a potion. Turn two, the goblin sorceror throws a fireball at your allies. You take 6 damage on his turn from the acid. On your turn, you hit him with magic missile and have to make a DC 14 (10 + 3 for the acid + 1 for the level 1 spell) Concentration check or lose the spell.

I'm quoting from memory and this might be a 3.0 holdover.

(Also note: being lit on fire probably has its own reasons for forcing you to take a concentration check other than the damage-per-round).
24th-May-2005 12:00 am (UTC) - This why AoO have a poor rep.
Back when 3e was still being teased out, Attacks of Opportunity were shown as a reason why wizards didn't stand on the front lines. But then, when the books actually came out, not only did magic-users have the ultra-easy "step back 5 feet" way of getting out of harm's way, but if they wanted to stand there a measly DC 15 concentraction check saves the day.

IMC, someone engaged with a spellcaster is engaged with that spellcaster, and no ammount of stepping back is going to save you if you don't have someone to step in between you and the baddy.
24th-May-2005 01:59 am (UTC) - Re: This why AoO have a poor rep.
How about archers?
24th-May-2005 09:11 am (UTC) - Re: This why AoO have a poor rep.
They made a feat to help that in Eberron CS, lets you immediately move 5' to follow whoever's dancing with you, but you have to blow an action point to do it.
24th-May-2005 03:36 am (UTC)
When you take a step back, you'd be retreating from a threatened square, prompting an AoO anyway.
24th-May-2005 09:13 am (UTC)
5' steps don't incur AoOs for movement.
24th-May-2005 11:54 am (UTC)
A five foot step isn't included in the AoO list.

A full round spell will need a concentration if your attacked during any time between your current turn, and your next turn, since your flapping your arms about like your doing the funky chicken (I really have to play a wizard in a chicken costume).

However the five foot step is great on the basis that the enemy doesn't get a free attack (AoO) and his next attack, instead he can only have his normal attack as per usual.

Archers or anyone with a bow don't get an attack of opportunity should someone take a five foot step within their threat area (or so I'd assume, DMs make their own decisions) due to having to knock an arrow or two.
However, should an archer wish to fire into combat they are allowing the other person an AoO against them, since they aren't armed for melee.

A new loophole for this is an elvencraft bow, which counts as a club for a shortbow, and a quarterstaff as a longbow. ontop of this you have defensive archery which also doesn't provoke AoO during attacks into melee with a bow...

Personal Note: This is why I love Necromancers, free combatant for the price of a downed foe or a death spell... pays to be evil.

24th-May-2005 09:52 pm (UTC)
If only Animate Dead didn't cost 50gp and take so long.
24th-May-2005 04:03 pm (UTC)
Lame. They should.
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