Can you choose to do no damage with a power that does damage?

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Can you choose to do no damage with a power that does damage?


Example : Hallowed Advance (Cleric 5 Daily) does damage on hit or miss and has a special effect. If I just want to do the special effect but not damage can I choose to deal zero damage to target? Can you choose to automatically miss or do you have to roll an attack?
No.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
No to all questions.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
The target must also be a credible threat in order for the power to function. If it isn't (such as if you're trying to trigger the effect by swinging at an ally), then the power's Effect doesn't happen no matter the result of the attack roll.

If the target is a threat but you don't want to kill it for some reason, you can choose to knock the target out rather than killing it if you reduce it to 0 HP.
The target must also be a credible threat in order for the power to function. If it isn't (such as if you're trying to trigger the effect by swinging at an ally), then the power's Effect doesn't happen no matter the result of the attack roll. If the target is a threat but you don't want to kill it for some reason, you can choose to knock the target out rather than killing it if you reduce it to 0 HP.



More likely, the Cleric is a Pacifist Healer cleric and might want to use this to give more healing to an ally, after the ally is teleported.  But since it "hits or misses" and "deals damage", if the target is bloodied, the Cleric will be stunned after the attack.

It's not too bad, though.  I have it on my Pacifist cleric.  I just try to use it only on non-bloodied enemies.
What about powers that do damage but have a zone effect?  Like the Wizard's Fountain of Flame. 


Fountain of Flame

You weave a fiery pillar that spins like a top. With each revolution, it douses your enemies with searing heat.


Daily        Arcane, Evocation, Fire, Implement, Zone
Standard Action      Area burst 1 within 10 squares


Target: Each enemy in the burst


Attack: Intelligence vs. Reflex


Hit: 3d8 + Intelligence modifier fire damage.


Miss: Half damage.


Effect: The burst creates a zone that lasts until the end of the encounter. Any enemy that enters the zone or ends its turn there takes 5 fire damage. An enemy can take this damage only once per turn.


************


Does there have to be an enemy in the burst area for... "The target must also be a credible threat in order for the power to function."  Can't the non-hit-effect activate without a "credible threat", like if I'm trying to use the attack to flush out or guess where a hidden enemy is?  You can attack random squares.

What about powers that do damage but have a zone effect?  Like the Wizard's Fountain of Flame. 
Show


Fountain of Flame

You weave a fiery pillar that spins like a top. With each revolution, it douses your enemies with searing heat.


Daily        Arcane, Evocation, Fire, Implement, Zone
Standard Action      Area burst 1 within 10 squares


Target: Each enemy in the burst


Attack: Intelligence vs. Reflex


Hit: 3d8 + Intelligence modifier fire damage.


Miss: Half damage.


Effect: The burst creates a zone that lasts until the end of the encounter. Any enemy that enters the zone or ends its turn there takes 5 fire damage. An enemy can take this damage only once per turn.



Does there have to be an enemy in the burst area for... "The target must also be a credible threat in order for the power to function."  Can't the non-hit-effect activate without a "credible threat"?




The first power you listed is the same type of power.  The Effect: would normally happen regardless of whether you hit or miss.  The problem is the part of the sentence that says "in order for the power to function."  If the power doesn't function, the Effect: doesn't happen.  Period.


The first power you listed is the same type of power.  The Effect: would normally happen regardless of whether you hit or miss.  The problem is the part of the sentence that says "in order for the power to function."  If the power doesn't function, the Effect: doesn't happen.  Period.


But you can attack random squares to "guess" where a hidden enemy is.  I just happen to want to use a burst attack, and don't see why the zone wouldn't be laid down as a result.  It's like I chucked a bottle of napalm, the initial burst wouldn't to damage to anyone if no one was there, but the fire still burns.
I think there is a difference between "what happens on a miss" and "what happens regardless of a hit or miss".  That's why there are separate listings for hit, miss, and effect.  If it was something that definitely required a target, it would be listed under miss, or specifically mention a target under effect like the cleric power.

*edit*
Effect: One ally within 5 squares of you can teleport adjacent to the target and make a melee basic attack against it as a free action. In addition, that ally can spend a healing surge.

It specifically says target, and a target is secondary to the burst.  You select where the burst goes, and the -target- is anyone who happens to be in that burst.  That's the difference between the cleric and wizard powers listed, the cleric is "target: one creature" and the wizard's is "target: creatures IN burst".  The burst comes first.

They are functionally different in how the attack is delivered, so they are not the "same type of power" as you say.
There would have to actually be a hidden enemy for there to be a meaningful threat. If you use fountain of flame with no enemies present, then the power does not do anything. If you use fountain of flame when there is a hidden enemy then there is a meaningful threat and the power works and is able to create the zone even if the hidden enemy turned out to not be in it. With Hallowed Advance, targeting an ally would have no affect because while they are your ally they are not a meaningful threat.

Legitimate Targets RC 108. 
Each creature/enemy in burst is allowed to be 0.

The bag of rats rule prevents you/allies from gaining without a credible threat. Like if the burst healed each ally in it, that wouldn't work (or rather you could use the power, just not heal). But you/allies didn't gain anything with fountain of flame.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

Each creature/enemy in burst is allowed to be 0. The bag of rats rule prevents you/allies from gaining without a credible threat. Like if the burst healed each ally in it, that wouldn't work (or rather you could use the power, just not heal). But you/allies didn't gain anything with fountain of flame.



You absolutely can use a power that heals friendlies in a burst even if there are no enemy targets.  That does not violate bag of rats.

The name - bag of rats - it has meaning.  It's designed to curb exploitative functions of offensive things that give you a benefit.  It is not designed to prevent you from using your powers suboptimally for half of their specified gain.  Effect lines always happen.  Bag of rats does not apply to them, in general.  You use the power, the effect happens, and the power is expended.  Working as intended.  Whether the power does things other than the effect line is irrelevant.  Whether it is a purely beneficial utility or a fancy-shmancy daily power that both helps you and hinders them is irrelevant.

Now, there are exceptions to everything, and things like Brand of the Sun would be an exception to it, in my opinion.  But that's the major complication with bag of rats, it's always a judgment call.  But that judgment is made easier if you actually look at whether what you're doing is like whacking a rat in a bag.  It is a lot like it for, say, hitting the ground, or a wall, or whatnot with Brand of the Sun.  But even then, "I'm striking at any hidden creatures that may be threatening me in Square X" must still be valid, because doing that has to be valid if there are actually creatures in that square.  So we're back to "effect lines always happen."  And, to be honest, using one of your powers and a standard action to grant a saving throw without having to make the check is not the biggest balance issue in the game.

I take particular issue with the overuse of Bag of Rats because it is one of the greatest areas where creative use of powers gets shut down and discouraged, and that's a bad thing in general but especially bad in 4e given how infrequently people bother to improvise.  Unless they're really being abusive, don't call Bag of Rats.  Really.  I mean it.  Covering every last questionable edge case is not what it's for.  It's for the really big, really stupid stuff.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
I take particular issue with the overuse of Bag of Rats because it is one of the greatest areas where creative use of powers gets shut down and discouraged, and that's a bad thing in general but especially bad in 4e given how infrequently people bother to improvise.  Unless they're really being abusive, don't call Bag of Rats.  Really.  I mean it.  Covering every last questionable edge case is not what it's for.  It's for the really big, really stupid stuff.


+ Graham's number

However, even a strict application of the Bag of Rats rule as stated in the RC would not stop Fountain of Flame from creating its zone. By RAW, the restriction only applies to effects that "occur upon hitting, missing or otherwise affecting a target". Nothing in the text of Fountain of Flame says that the creation of the zone is dependent upon hitting missing or otherwise affecting any targets. So using the zone to block a currently empty doorway would be perfectly legal. A DM that disallows such a use isn't merely "overusing" the Bag of Rats/Legitimate Targets rule, he's outright making up a new rule based on a gross misunderstanding of the existing rule's intent.

Incidentally, ND's wording "in order for the power to function" does not exist in the current (RC) version of the rule, which now only stops specific effects from functioning, not the entire power. The version of the rule in the DMG1 does contain the "power" wording, but is irrelevant, since it's been superseded by the RC version.

"My flying carpet is full of elves."

There would have to actually be a hidden enemy for there to be a meaningful threat. If you use fountain of flame with no enemies present, then the power does not do anything. If you use fountain of flame when there is a hidden enemy then there is a meaningful threat and the power works and is able to create the zone even if the hidden enemy turned out to not be in it. With Hallowed Advance, targeting an ally would have no affect because while they are your ally they are not a meaningful threat.

Legitimate Targets RC 108. 


I read the rule, and it doesn't seem to apply to the zone from Fountain of Flame.  "When a power has an effect that occurs upon hitting, missing, or otherwise affecting a target, the effect takes place only if the target in question is a meaningful threat."  The zone has nothing to do with a "target".  The rule has to do with things like "on a hit, one of your allies is healed" or something like that.  Completely different than just putting down a zone.  Fountain of Flame is a spell with two separate effects, you're just wasting the one if no one is there.  It's not really any different if I just cast my Druid's Grasping Tide into the darkness to try to flush out a hidden enemy, is the DM supposed to tell me that there is a "meaningful threat" hidden in the random squares I am targeting so the spell can go off?  The only difference is that Grasping Tide's zone only effects targets it hits (that's why it is specified in the "hit" blurb", while Fountain of Flame's zone is listed under "effect".


I have read on the enworld forums that powers like Moment of Glory can be used even if there are no apparent enemies.

Moment of Glory 
Standard Action Close blast 5
Target: Each enemy in blast
Attack: Wisdom vs. Will
Hit: You push the target 3 squares and knock it prone.
Effect: You and each ally in the blast gain resist 5 to all damage until t he end of your next turn.
Sustain Minor: the effect persists

So you guys are saying that blast and burst spells that have Effects stated seperately from the Hit description can be used anytime, but melee powers with the same won't work? 
It depends on the specific power and the specific usage.

Bag of Rats is not like other rules.  It can't be applied methodically, dispassionately, objectively.  It is by its very nature a subjective check on stupid cheese that people come up with to game the system.  Unless someone's really, really breaking things, do not use bag of rats.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
I had a player once who tried to make me believe that he could use moment of glory at the end of an extended rest and sustain it for the rest of the work day. lol.  That got shot down pretty quick, but that would be an example of a "bag of rats" situation where a player tries to game the system.
"Non nobis Domine Sed nomini tuo da gloriam" "I wish for death not because I want to die, but because I seek the war eternal"

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/19.jpg)

Because it violates the rules, not because it's bag of rats.


Limitations: The creature can sustain a particular effect only once per round and for no more than 5 minutes. During that time, the creature cannot take a short or an extended rest.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
i find its still a good example though, the player wanted to have a party wide buff for an entire day and got upset over my decision not to allow it, because of the rule you provided.  But none the less, he tried to game the system.
"Non nobis Domine Sed nomini tuo da gloriam" "I wish for death not because I want to die, but because I seek the war eternal"

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/19.jpg)

...by ignoring a rule?

None of this is relevant to bag of rats, though it does serve an example of how if you cheat, you can game the system.  Grats?
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition


I picked the 1st burst spell that, as a cleric I gained, as an example - Moment of Glory of the discussion regarding being able to use burst or blast spells even when there is no aparent targets in an area. I didn't pick it to discuss its sustain effect. I should have picked Hymm of Resurgence instead.

Being new to D&D 4e I am wanting to know if I can use powers like Hymm of Resurgence that have a Hit effect but also a seperate general power Effect to make use of the seperate general power Effect out of combat.

It seems most posters say yes you can use powers to gain their beneficial general Effect description without having to specifically hit or attack a target at the DMs discretion. 



   
Moment of glory can only last 5 minutes or until a rest, whichever is shorter, like Mand12 said.  It can last through an entire lair assault, but not 5 different encounters.

I wouldn't have that much of a problem with a player using moment of glory before combat starts mainly because its a daily.  They are using up a daily and risking it if combat doesn't start right away or they get stunned/dazed at the beginning or something.  The bigger issues is encounter and at will attack and utiltity powers that automatically grant temp hitpoints.  As a DM I would discourage using them precombat even though RAW for some of them it works.

My bag of rats rule if I ever DM 4E will be in my opinion your PCs honestly believe their is a potential threat for a power like brand of the sun to work.  If we have been fightly invisible enemies than yeah go ahead and attack a square, but not if you stepped on a trap while walking down a random hallway and a PC wants a save against ongoing damage.

I have a dispute with the reasoning that the target must be a credible threat in order for the power to function. If this were to be true, then powers would only ever be able to target enemies.



"Deep Freeze" a swordmage daily attack, is target of one creature. Creature includes allies and self, self is a creature. The very existence of being able to target allies with an attack spell begs for the ability to perform the attack in a reduced capacity. I feel it is quite absurd to expect a character to swing full strength at themself or an ally.



I feel that a good resolution might be to allow the damage to be reduced to the minimum possible. Deep Freeze rolls damage of 2Weapon plus Int, minimum damage would be 1 + 1 + Int mod. An int of 18 would make the minimum damage equal 6 hit points, quite acceptable in order to be able to stick that effect onto yourself and then use the Ensnarement mark to punish enemies. It's also quite acceptable in order to form a cold zone of punishment around an ally that doesn't do melee very well.



What do people think of using this minimum damage idea to target self with a power?

It's a house rule.  It borders on bag of rats.  It's entirely up to you if you want to use it, but I wouldn't.
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.

I have a dispute with the reasoning that the target must be a credible threat in order for the power to function. If this were to be true, then powers would only ever be able to target enemies.



"Deep Freeze" a swordmage daily attack, is target of one creature. Creature includes allies and self, self is a creature. The very existence of being able to target allies with an attack spell begs for the ability to perform the attack in a reduced capacity. I feel it is quite absurd to expect a character to swing full strength at themself or an ally.



I feel that a good resolution might be to allow the damage to be reduced to the minimum possible. Deep Freeze rolls damage of 2Weapon plus Int, minimum damage would be 1 + 1 + Int mod. An int of 18 would make the minimum damage equal 6 hit points, quite acceptable in order to be able to stick that effect onto yourself and then use the Ensnarement mark to punish enemies. It's also quite acceptable in order to form a cold zone of punishment around an ally that doesn't do melee very well.



What do people think of using this minimum damage idea to target self with a power?




If powers were only ever able to target enemies, then a Dominated character could never be told to attack their allies.  You have to think of all consequences of a houserule when you set one up.  If you create this houserule, then your players are going to expect to be able to continue "pulling their punches" when they are told to attack their allies as well.

The better houserule would be "Don't attack your allies".  Period.  D&D 4e is not designed to work as PvP, so don't try to make it work as PvP.  If the party Warlord wants to use a power which gives a buff to his allies but there are no enemies nearby, he can attack himself and deal damage as normal.  That's the "drawback" of wanting to help your allies when you have no enemies nearby.

You may misunderstand me. I'm not suggesting that there be a rule that powers can only target enemies, because that would break lots of things.



I'm saying that the combination of two things...


1) Powers can target creatures - enemies and allies and even yourself.


2) Characters (generally) do not want to injure their allies by swinging at full strength.


... provides a basis for an option to so-called 'attack' without the possibility of burying your sword into your ally. Or yourself.



How this would apply to dominated characters is, they don't have the option. They don't have the free choice. They aren't of free will to prevent themself from attacking, so they aren't of the free will to swing with reduced force. Simple as that, it's a matter of their mind is not their own.



There already exists a method for an attack that doesn't do real damage. The character can attack a downed enemy in such a way that does no damage and merely knocks the enemy unconcious. How about a similar option that can be used on the self or allies, is what I'm saying.



How about, for example, a sanctioned option for a swordmage to give themself a shallow cut of minimum damage, fulfilling the damage portion of a power and yet not inflicting the full possibility of 2d8+Int that happens when swinging with intent to kill.



It's that "intent to kill" part that is not present when you are looking to be affected by an effect such as Deep Freeze. It's actually not a bad effect to have on yourself, but does it pass the sanity test to expect a character to actually attempt the grievous harm of a full strength attack in order to have it?



And therein is the crux of my position - that it is simultaneously imbalanced to allow pulling of punches on an enemy, to knock them unconcious while doing ZERO damage... and yet require full strength attacks with the possibility of doing MAX damage to an ally or even yourself. Where's the sanity in that?



I feel that it would be a bit too much to ask for the ability to put an effect on a creature while doing zero damage - it's part of an attack with a weapon after all. Which is why I asked about doing minimum damage, the lowest possible number that the dice could give you. In the case of Deep Freeze with 2d8+Int, that would be 2 points plus Int mod, maybe as much as 6 points total depending on Int score. Note that's on par with a good solid combat hit using a club on an enemy, so it's not like nothing.

If your attacking yourself with deep freeze, then your attacking yourself with deep freeze.  Any adjustments on damage is a houserule.

Now, you don't have to do it with your best weapon (i.e. attack with your bare fist), but then you'd loose the enhancement bonus on the aura damage.

Personally i would pick up some cold resist.  Possibly get superior fortitude as well.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

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