Question about: Storm Cage (Spellstorm Mage Attack 11)

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What happens when part of the cage cannot form because of a wall?

Does the cage form in part, or not at all?

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Storm Cage


Encounter: Arcane, Conjuration, Implement, Lightning, Thunder


Area burst 2 within 20 squares


Target: Each creature in the burst


Attack: Intelligence vs. Reflex


Hit: xdx + Int modifier lightning and thunder damage.


Effect: You conjure a wall in the 16 outer squares of the burst (forming a square enclosure). Any creature that starts its turn adjacent to the wall or moves into a wall square takes 10 lightning damage. Moving into a wall square costs 1 extra square of movement. The wall does not grant cover or concealment. It lasts until the end of your next turn.

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The Storm Cage Wall will not form where a Blocking Terrain exist, such as a wall having no Line of Effect to that square.

Basically because you conjure a Wall in the outer squares of the Burst, those Burst's outer squares will be ones that were part of the Area of Effect originally, which won't be any one occupied by a solid wall, unless that Wall is small and isn't a Blocking Terrain.
Up to the DM, but I'd probably rule that the cage conforms to the shape of the obstruction, as long as this doesn't lead to either it being more than 16 squares in size (in which case, a gap is left in an area adjacent to the blocking terrain) and as long as this doesn;t lead to there being no space between the squares of the wall.

But there's no hard-and-fast rule one way or the other, and it would probably be simpler to work it the other way - the cage goes on through the wall to the original size.

It's also worth noting that unless the cieling's only 1 square in height, you can just jomp over the wall.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
The Storm Cage Wall will not form where a Blocking Terrain exist, such as a wall having no Line of Effect to that square.

Basically because you conjure a Wall in the outer squares of the Burst, those Burst's outer squares will be ones that were part of the Area of Effect originally, which won't be any one occupied by a solid wall, unless that Wall is small and isn't a Blocking Terrain.



So lets assume that the origin of the blast is next to a long wall. The Blast area is now 3 x 5 squares, instead of 5 x 5 squares.

Does this mean that the wall now forms in the remaining outer 9 squares of the blast area?


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But there's no hard-and-fast rule one way or the other, and it would probably be simpler to work it the other way - the cage goes on through the wall to the original size.

Yes, that makes most sense. In other words: the wall only forms in the outer squares of the blast that actually exist.

It's also worth noting that unless the cieling's only 1 square in height, you can just jomp over the wall.

Good point! But isn't that a bit ridiculous?

What is the point of a wall that most monsters can jump over, or if they are a bit larger, simply step over?

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Well, they can't just step over, 4e doesn't work that way.  But yeah, it is a little ridiculous - however, high jumping like that isn't easy.  It would require a very good check.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
Well, they can't just step over, 4e doesn't work that way.

Yes, I just realized that would be the case, or a large creature could just step over difficult terrain.

But yeah, it is a little ridiculous - however, high jumping like that isn't easy.  It would require a very good check.

Yes. If I am not mistaken, then with a running start it would require Athletics DC 20 and from a standing position Athletics DC 30 to jump a wall which is 5 feet high and 5 feet thick.

This is also relevant when using powers such as Wall of Fire.

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The Storm Cage Wall will not form where a Blocking Terrain exist, such as a wall having no Line of Effect to that square.

Basically because you conjure a Wall in the outer squares of the Burst, those Burst's outer squares will be ones that were part of the Area of Effect originally, which won't be any one occupied by a solid wall, unless that Wall is small and isn't a Blocking Terrain.



So lets assume that the origin of the blast is next to a long wall. The Blast area is now 3 x 5 squares, instead of 5 x 5 squares.

Does this mean that the wall now forms in the remaining outer 9 squares of the blast area?





Yes. The number of outer squares will indeed depend on the actual size of the Area of Effect. The Power assumes a full effect. But it will depend on the number of squares having the effects to determine the number of outer squares that will compose the Zone.

If you look at Rule Compendium P.220 the Area Burst Power image doesn't show that Wall space as highlighted in purple squares to reflect they are affected because you need Line of Effect to any space you wish to create an effect. You can't cast a Fireball inside a Wall for exemple.

Lastly, each squares of a Zone must be within Line of Effect of the Origin Squares also. So you cannot have a Zone inside a Wall.


PHB 273 Line of Effect: You need Line of Effect to any target you attack and to any space you wish to create an effect.

RC 121 Zone: The Zone fills each square in the specific area, which is usually a Burst or a Blast. The squares must be within Line of Effect of the Origin Squares.

Does this mean that the wall now forms in the remaining outer 9 squares of the blast area?

Yes. The number of outer squares will indeed depend on the actual size of the Area of Effect. The Power assumes a full effect. But it will depend on the number of squares having the effects to determine the number of outer squares that will compose the Zone.

If you look at Rule Compendium P.220 the Area Burst Power image doesn't show that Wall space as highlighted in purple squares to reflect they are affected because you need Line of Effect to any space you wish to create an effect. You can't cast a Fireball inside a Wall for exemple.

Lastly, each squares of a Zone must be within Line of Effect of the Origin Squares also. So you cannot have a Zone inside a Wall.


PHB 273 Line of Effect: You need Line of Effect to any target you attack and to any space you wish to create an effect.

RC 121 Zone: The Zone fills each square in the specific area, which is usually a Burst or a Blast. The squares must be within Line of Effect of the Origin Squares.


OK, thanks. That makes things clearer.

But now I am wondering: the way we have played it so far is as follows: the wall only forms if all 16 squares of the wall can form. In other words: the power becomes just a blast if any of the outer squares has no line of affect from the origin.

The motivation being the rules for forming walls in general. But now I have my doubts whether this is correct. After all, the rules for walls (D&D Essen. p 110) forming only states that they must be contiguous.

And the normal rules for walls may not even apply to this power. What do you think?




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Rules disconnect: power is not a zone. It is a Conjuration however, and Conjurations can exist inside of walls/terrain just fine (unless they say they occupy squares, but this one doesn't). The Wall rules also don't really care. Now LoE rules say "unless otherwise noted" and the Conjuration rules, as a general rule, say Conjurations are not in any way effected by terrain.

Further if you're working in 3D it'd really be the outer cubic area.... and how does it work when enlarged?

TL;DR: This power is probably stupid.
Oh yeah Alcestis is right its not a Zone. I am so used to The Burst create a Zone....that i must have read that the Wall was one but it isn't. Wink
Rules disconnect: power is not a zone. It is a Conjuration however, and Conjurations can exist inside of walls/terrain just fine (unless they say they occupy squares, but this one doesn't). The Wall rules also don't really care. Now LoE rules say "unless otherwise noted" and the Conjuration rules, as a general rule, say Conjurations are not in any way effected by terrain.

Further if you're working in 3D it'd really be the outer cubic area.... and how does it work when enlarged?

TL;DR: This power is probably stupid.

Ran into these issues during my first 4E campaign, since our Wizard was a Spellstorm Mage with Resounding Thunder.  I think Alcestis is right: the power is stupid.  FWIW, our DM ruled that the wall conformed to the outer edge of the burst, whether that was larger thanks to Resounding Thunder or smaller due to blocking terrain (or both).  But I don't think there's any RAW to support that interpretation.

t~

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