pathfinder 1e – What are the major differences between Aberration and Monstrous Creature?

Information about Creature Types can be found here. More specifically, here are direct links for Aberrations and Monstrous Humanoids.

Statistical differences include

  • Hit die is d8 for Aberration vs d10 for M.H.
  • BAB is 3/4 for Aberrations vs Full for M.H
  • Saves: Aberrations have “Good” Will Saves while M.H. have “Good” Reflex and Will Saves (both have average for the unlisted Saves)
  • Different Skills counted as “Class Skills”

Just as important are the descriptions of the creatures.

Aberrations are described

An aberration has a bizarre anatomy, strange abilities, an alien mindset, or any combination of the three. An aberration has the following features.

while Monstrous Humanoid are described

Monstrous humanoids are similar to humanoids, but with monstrous or animalistic features. They often have magical abilities as well. A monstrous humanoid has the following features.

By this description, Centaur might have been aberrations, but the fact that they came about in a natural way and their mindset being similar to that of the humanoid races suggests that M.H. is the better classification for them. Driders’ unnatural origin makes the difference.

dnd 5e – What happens when the exit of an Arcane Gate is blocked by a creature or object?

What are we talking about here? Let’s illustrate with a small tangent first: Imagine the portals are facing each other in a ‘trap’ (so from the outside or ‘back’, they appear invisible as in the spell text).

narrow corridor: ::::|<-:::->|:::::

The arrows indicate the direction one may enter the portal. Clearly if this was a ‘real’ physical situation like a StarGate(tm), a creature would enter from the left side through the leftmost portal (which is invisible from the left, according to the spell’s wording). Once it passes through, it is stuck in a trap that it cannot escape, assuming the corridor is perfectly a 10ft-diameter circle. (If you open it in a bigger corridor, then the creature might be able to Squeeze by.)

What happens if the gates are placed extremely close together? There are two ways to model the gate:

  1. “linked doorways” scenario — If a creature sticks its arm through and the portal powers off, and the creature doesn’t make a check of some sort, the creature loses its arm. If this was the case, an oversized vehicle would merely not pass through (and would experience really painful sheer forces if it was going in at high speed). In this scenario, a creature could ‘feel’ through to the other side, and might be unable to move through if there was something blocking the exit portal (DM might rule differently for enemy creatures blocking the portal, since that kind of blocking is somewhat different than physical blocking).
    • This is likely the scenario (unless GM rules otherwise), as evidenced (slightly) by the spell description: “Any creature or object entering the portal exits from the other portal as if the two were adjacent to each other”, and thus rulings should (absent strange edge cases) assume the squares/hexes are effectively adjacent to each other (and merely obscured in mist) for the purposes of things like “can you AoO / Opportunity Attack creatures through an Arcane Gate if you have Blindsense”, “do Arcane Gates provide Cover”, or “can an Arcane Gate cause adjacency to help enable a Sneak Attack”, barring GM modification.
  2. “infinite repeated teleports” — If a creature sticks its arm through, nothing happens; either the entire creature goes through (moves into the next space), or the entire creature does not. The Arcane Gate rings are specifically filled with mist, so the DM must decide how the gates function: does stepping through merely cast something like a Dimension Door spell for each thing that goes through, or are the two areas linked in spacetime (sort of like case #1), and merely covered with mist. The flavoring seems to imply the former, but this is probably up to the DM. This scenario may give rise to some funny edge cases, depending on whether the DM rules the edges of the portal are solid or not… if not, then a vehicle might pass through while its passengers might teleport (perhaps desirable).

Thus going back to the modified situation where the portals are facing each other, but squeezed really tight together e.g. <2ft: narrow corridor: ::::||:::::. In case #1 (“linked doorways”), it has put part of its body through an invisible finger-trap (the first gate). Does the creature run through its own organs if it continues?

Consider that in D&D 5e, no spells really affect the insides of a creature’s body. You can’t summon icicles into an enemy’s brain, or teleport the dragon’s heart outside its body (except necromancy and some other schools). Thus (unless your DM says otherwise) it would be quite against the spirit of the system (and also quite broken) if this was an insta-kill. However, this doesn’t mean that 5e doesn’t account for this kind of aggravated / internal damage.

  • Dimension Door: “If you would arrive in a place already occupied by an object or a creature, you and any creature traveling with you each take 4d6 force damage, and the spell fails to Teleport you.”
  • Teleport: “Mishap: The spell’s unpredictable magic results in a difficult journey. Each teleporting creature (or the target object) takes 3d10 force damage and the DM rerolls on the table to see where you wind up (multiple Mishaps can occur, dealing damage each time).” (in 3.5e, this explicitly said you were “scrambled”)

(This would also be 5e’s answer to the ladder paradox.)

If the DM rules that Arcane Gate works like in case #1 (linked doorways), then the teleporting creature would take failed-teleport ‘scramble’ damage (it would not take it twice; typically only teleporting creatures take damage, not whoever they’re teleporting onto), and either fail to teleport, or randomly teleport to somewhere adjacent or fairly close. A DM might possibly rule you may escape the trap by taking this damage.

The full ‘algorithm’ would be as follows:

  • If the creature tries to move through, it will be able to feel the other side (and be blocked by an enemy NPC (possibly), or by a wall, on the other side).
  • If the gate is set up in a trap overlapping the creature, then if the creature tries to move through itself anyway (if it isn’t paying attention…), it probably takes “scramble” damage as above and may probably leave the way it came.
  • Spells (which don’t have “that you can see” wording) may possibly be cast through the gate, subject to DM discretion.

If it’s case #2 (infinite repeated teleports), in the trap scenario, then the creature would fail to teleport, because there is no space on the other side (it is blocking itself), so would just pass through the portal. Alternatively, the DM might rule that the creature does not block itself (so it would be stuck in an infinite teleport loop that it could trivially escape from).

  • If the creature tries to move through, one of three things will happen:
    • If there is a large physical obstruction, it will take “scramble” damage, and either fail to teleport or succeed. DM might instead say scramble damage does not exist and the portal just fails to work.
    • If there is a hostile creature blocking the other it, it might take “scramble” damage, and either fail to teleport or succeed. DM might alternatively say scramble damage does not exist and th portal just fails to work (or works and shunts you to a nearby square as you tumble across the enemy square).
    • If the teleporting creature itself is on the other side, it will just teleport constantly (but can exit the trap without damage), or DM might alternatively say nothing will happen and it can just move through the portals.
  • Spells may not be cast through this.

The text says one can rotate the gate… is this allowed if it makes exit impossible?

That would be up to the GM, but for consistency, the answer should be “yes it can” if the DM allows portals in small corridors (which opens up weird scenarios, e.g. Arcane Gate-teleporting Tiny creatures having great advantage if they can make Tiny portals by intersecting them with walls). The answer should be “no it can’t, at least not without winking out of existince” if the DM disallows portals if there is insufficient room.

Whether Arcane Gates can be spawned such that they intersect walls is in the scope of a separate question.

If you partially walk through a gate in the backwards direction, can you ‘back out’ in the direction you came from?

Yes in scenario #2, not without scramble damage in scenario #1.

pathfinder 1e – Fiery Blood damage taken by a Blood Draining Creature

How does the spell Fiery Blood interact with a Blood Drain ability?

School transmutation (fire); Level druid/shaman 5,
sorcerer/wizard 4
Components V, S, M (pinch of sulfur)
Casting Time 1 standard action
Range touch
Target one living creature
Duration 2 rounds/level
Saving Throw Will negates (harmless); SR no
The blood of the target becomes fiery and burns with
a hot, purifying flame. The target glows as brightly as a
torch and acquires fast healing 4 for the duration of the
spell. In addition, any opponent that successfully strikes
the target with a piercing or slashing attack takes 1 hp fire
damage for every die of damage inflicted on the target of
the spell.
Mythic: The target of the spell gains fire resistance 10.
The fire damage that an opponent takes when it hits the
target with a piercing or slashing weapon is increased by
a number equal to your mythic tier.

I’m looking for advice from other GM/DMs, as I can’t find any rules which elaborate on this specific situation. There are a handful of creatures which have various Blood Drain abilities,
such as a Stirge, Vampire, Blood Orchid, Mandragora Swarm, Bloodsuckle, Blood Golem, Gutslug, Pond Drinker, Leech Swarm, and likely even a Crimson Death’s “Engulf” abiilty.

Using a stirge as an example, Blood Drain is obviously piercing so they’d take 1hp damage from just exposure from stabbing with their feeding tube.
If the stirge immediately disengages, which seems likely as it wouldn’t want to ingest fiery blood, then I can see it just taking the 1hp… but if it was to drain 1 CON worth of blood, would it be reasonable to expect a 5hp (max) stirge to die from the attempt?

What is a reasonable amount of damage to take per CON point of Blood Drain when draining a creature with Fiery Blood?

dnd 5e – Is there any damage that changes with the size of a creature?

Spells which affect an area (e.g. ice storm) tend to have a set damage regardless of how much of the creature’s body is within the affected area.

Intuitively (I know this isn’t how D&D always works) if a 5ft square of a creature’s body within the area being bombarded by ice shards causes them to take 2d8 damage then you would expect a large creature (having two or more 5ft squares being bombarded) to take more damage as more ice hits them.

The question isn’t “does ice storm work this way” but are there any methods of dealing damage that do work this way? Taking creature size into account when calculating how much damage would be taken?

Can a creature with Blindsight see a Scrying Sensor? Is that sensor an object? Can it be destroyed?


A creature that can see Invisible Objects sees the sensor as a luminous orb about the size of your fist.

Blind Sight:

A creature with blindsight can perceive its surroundings without relying on sight, within a specific radius. Creatures without eyes, such as oozes, and creatures with echolocation or heightened senses, such as bats and true dragons, have this sense.

dnd 5e – Can a Death Cleric/Sorcerer use Twinned spell with a necromancy cantrip if one target has a creature within 5′ of it?

If a character had levels in both Sorcerer and Cleric, and had the Twinned Spell Metamagic ability and the Death domain Reaper ability, would they be able to use twinned spell if one of their intended targets was within 5′ of another creature who was not an intended target?

I believe this is a different question from Can I twin cast a cantrip used with reaper from the death domain? and Can the sorcerer’s Twinned Spell metamagic and the Enchantment wizard’s Split Enchantment feature be used at the same time? as it is not asking about targeting 3 or more creatures, I am asking if Twinned Spell can be used to target two creatures more than 5′ away from each other if there is a third creature that the Reaper ability could target even though the caster does not want to.

The abilities:

Twinned Spell When you cast a spell that targets only one creature and doesn’t have a range of self, you can spend a number of sorcery points equal to the spell’s level to target a second creature in range with the same spell (1 sorcery point if the spell is a cantrip). (PHB p.102)

Reaper At 1st level, you learn one necromancy cantrip of your choice from any spell list. When you cast a necromancy cantrip that normally targets only one creature, the spell can instead target two creatures within range and within 5 feet of each other. (DMP p.96)

Take the situation below, where CS is the cleric/sorcerer, dashes are empty squares, and T1 to T3 are potential targets.

CS – – – – T1 T2 – – T3

The Cleric wants to target T1 and T3 with a Twinned Chill Touch cantrip. Does the existence of T2 5′ away from T1 and the Cleric’s Reaper ability preclude this use of Twinned Spell, as the Reaper ability modifies the spell so “the spell can instead target two creatures within range and within 5 feet of each other”?

Does the fact that it can target two creatures because of the Reaper ability mean that twinned spell will not work?

dnd 5e – Can a sleeping creature reduce to 0 the damage it takes to wake up?

Probably not, but there is an argument worth considering when you make a ruling

First, I present an argument in favor of “No, it cannot use its reaction”. Then, I present a counter argument that one should at least consider when making a ruling.

Under the sleep spell, it cannot be used.

Sleep the spell imposes the unconscious condition:

  • An unconscious creature is incapacitated, can’t move or speak, and is unaware of its surroundings.

The incapacitated condition states:

An incapacitated creature can’t take actions or reactions.

Since Unstoppable requires use of your reaction, it is unavailable while asleep via the sleep spell, as you are asleep at the time the reaction trigger occurs.

Regular sleep is under-defined unless you use Xanathar’s Guide.

The rules for sleeping given in the Player’s Handbook do not tell us that regular sleeping imposes any conditions, so it will be up to the DM to decide if sleeping imposes any condition which restricts use of your reaction. However, if you are using Xanathar’s Guide, which is optional (ask your DM), we have more clearly defined rules:

Just as in the real world, D&D characters spend many hours sleeping, most often as part of a long rest. Most monsters also need to sleep. While a creature sleeps, it is subjected to the unconscious condition. Here are a few rules that expand on that basic fact.

If using this rule, Death’s Head of Bhaal cannot use its reaction while sleeping (see first section), even conventional sleep not imposed by a spell.

This is how I have ruled before about characters using reactions in their sleep, and I think this is far more intuitive than the argument I present below.

Next, I present a case that it can use its reaction to negate the damage that wakes it up.

The reaction occurs after the trigger.

The rules for Adjudicating Reaction Timing state:

Various spells and features give a creature more reaction options, and sometimes the timing of a reaction can be difficult to adjudicate. Use this rule of thumb: follow whatever timing is specified in the reaction’s description. For example, the opportunity attack and the shield spell are clear about the fact that they can interrupt their triggers. If a reaction has no timing specified, or the timing is unclear, the reaction occurs after its trigger finishes, as in the Ready action.

No timing for Unstoppable is described, so the reaction definitively happens after taking damage. But if it happens after taking damage, the sleep spell states:

each creature affected by this spell falls unconscious until the spell ends, the sleeper takes damage

So the sleeper also wakes up after taking damage. So “wake up” and “Unstoppable” would be simultaneous effects, and an optional rule from Xanathar’s Guide tells us how to rule on simultaneous effects:

Most effects in the game happen in succession, following an order set by the rules or the DM. In rare cases, effects can happen at the same time, especially at the start or end of a creature’s turn. If two or more things happen at the same time on a character or monster’s turn, the person at the game table — whether player or DM — who controls that creature decides the order in which those things happen.

Since they are both responses the taking damage they happen at the same time, and the player controlling Death’s Head can choose which order they happen in.

To be clear, I would not rule this way, and I think it is rather unintuitive compared to ruling the other way, but the ruling is not entirely unsupported; it just gets way into the weeds of patching together a ruling from under-defined rules.

tl;dr Reaction timing is often quite ambiguous, but here, you probably can’t use your reaction while you’re asleep, even if the trigger wakes you up.

dnd 5e – Does invisibility on a creature affect block vision of creatures inside of it?

Yes, while they are inside of it

From the rules for the spell invisibility:

A creature you touch becomes Invisible until the spell ends. Anything the target is wearing or carrying is invisible as long as it is on the target’s person. The spell ends for a target that attacks or casts a spell.

If you are inside of the construct then it is carrying you. The rules clearly state that anything it is carrying is also invisible.

dnd 5e – Can a Large creature enter Leomund’s Tiny Hut from below?

The other day one of my spellcasters conjured Leomund’s tiny hut so his team could sleep in peace:

A 10-foot-radius immobile dome of force springs into existence around and above you and remains stationary for the duration. The spell ends if you leave its area.

Nine creatures of Medium size or smaller can fit inside the dome with you. The spell fails if its area includes a larger creature or more than nine creatures. Creatures and objects within the dome when you cast this spell can move through it freely. All other creatures and objects are barred from passing through it. Spells and other magical effects can’t extend through the dome or be cast through it. The atmosphere inside the space is comfortable and dry, regardless of the weather outside.

Until the spell ends, you can command the interior to become dimly lit or dark. The dome is opaque from the outside, of any color you choose, but it is transparent from the inside.

I had assassins waiting for them for an ambush. One of my assassins was a Druid who transformed into a Earth Elemental and earth glided underneath the tiny hut to get inside. My thought was that if the earth elemental burrowed underneath and reappeared inside the tiny hut it would break the hut because it’s a Large elemental. Will this happen, or does it not count because it wasn’t included during the casting time?

dnd 5e – If I make a ranged attack at a paralyzed creature within 5 feet of me, do I have advantage on the roll?

Your understanding of the rules is correct, you have advantage

First off, the target is paralyzed which means, in part, that:

(…) Attack rolls against the creature have advantage. (…)

This applies to any attack rolls, be they melee or ranged or from any distance whatsoever.

Meanwhile the rules on Ranged Attacks in Close Combat state:

(…) When you make a ranged attack with a weapon, a spell, or some other means, you have disadvantage on the attack roll if you are within 5 feet of a hostile creature who can see you and who isn’t incapacitated.

So if you’re making a ranged attack and a hostile creature is within 5 feet of you (regardless of whether or not they are the target) and they are not incapacitated, you have disadvantage.

However, in this case, they are incapacitated because part of the paralyzed condition states:

(…) A paralyzed creature is incapacitated (see the condition) (…)

Therefore they do not cause disadvantage on the ranged attack, meanwhile the paralyzed condition grants advantage so you have a net result of just having advantage.

Perhaps of note is what would happen if you had advantage for attacking a paralyzed creature and disadvantage because a non-incapacitated creature was within 5 feet of you. In this case, you would be considered to have neither advantage nor disadvantage because of the rules on Advantage and Disadvantage:

(…) If circumstances cause a roll to have both advantage and disadvantage, you are considered to have neither of them, and you roll one d20. (…)