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D&D 3E
Rules Question 
11th-Aug-2009 03:45 pm
So, if I have a Rogue character in the middle of a Darkness effect who has Darkvision firing arrows at another creature within the Darkness (who does not have Darkvision) is every attack a Sneak Attack?

And what if he is inside the Darkness, shooting a creature outside the area of Darkness but still within 30'? Sneak Attack?

My understanding of the rules is that he would get a Sneak Attack in both instances due to the veritable blindness the enemy suffers. But I am asking because I think I am missing something obvious.

As always, thanks for the help!
11th-Aug-2009 07:53 pm (UTC)
The problem that I see is that the darkness spell/effect doesn't do what it used to do. Here's the description:

This spell causes an object to radiate shadowy illumination out to a 20-foot radius. All creatures in the area gain concealment (20% miss chance). Even creatures that can normally see in such conditions (such as with darkvision or low-light vision) have the miss chance in an area shrouded in magical darkness.

Normal lights (torches, candles, lanterns, and so forth) are incapable of brightening the area, as are light spells of lower level. Higher level light spells are not affected by darkness.

So, that tells me that 1) darkness wouldn't affect a rogue's sneak attack at all and 2) darkvision doesn't give you any benefit in the darkness spell-like effect - you still have a miss chance when attacking someone in the darkness effect.

Someone else might correct me if I'm wrong, though.

Edited at 2009-08-11 07:54 pm (UTC)
11th-Aug-2009 08:15 pm (UTC)
That seems to clinch it, since a rogue can't benefit from SA while there is a miss chance.
12th-Aug-2009 02:21 am (UTC)
Really??? That's news to me. Huh. I assumed that, with displacement-like effects, the "miss" represented you going for the wrong image...but if you made your miss-chance roll, that means you got the right image, and so your sneak-attack worked.
12th-Aug-2009 12:44 pm (UTC)
The exact text from the SRD reads:

A rogue cannot sneak attack while striking a creature with concealment or striking the limbs of a creature whose vitals are beyond reach.

I overstated it slightly to say that you couldn't SA with a miss chance, but as a general statement, someone with a miss chance is said to have concealment of some sort (even invisibility is listed as 'total concealment')
11th-Aug-2009 07:56 pm (UTC)
This should follow thsame as the rules for invisibility in my mind.

I have a rogue/shadowdancer character along the same lines who has a ring/wonderous item that grants the Ebon Eyes ability to the wearer and will cast Darkness 5 times per day.

11th-Aug-2009 08:38 pm (UTC)
darkvision does not work under magical darkness, and you cannot sneak attack if you have any mischance to the target.

if you are in the darkness effect and the other person is not, and you are trying to sneak attack them because they are not aware that you are attacking them, you would need to make a hide check and attempt to catch them flat footed.
12th-Aug-2009 04:12 pm (UTC)
It seems from the darkness spell's description that it obscures the vision of everyone inside it, kind of like a black fog would. So a rogue inside a darkness spell would have to leave the spell's area of effect to make a sneak attack.
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