Is this random area of effect spell deviation house rule broken?


Whenever an AOE spell is cast, the actual target center (for circles) or target angle (for cones) differs from the intended target by a factor of 5 feet/degrees * spell level / caster level. Direction of deviation is determined by throwing 1d8 with 1 representing “north or up” and the clockwise each subsequent number representing a quarter change (1d2 for cones left or right)

Explanation

My players and I use Fantasy Grounds for our online role playing.

Up until now, whenever there’s an area of effect spell (spike growth, fireball, etc) I simply draw a circle or whatever center at the point they indicate and we use that to track the AOE of the spell. That’s all fine but due to the mechanics, it produces a couple of undesirable consequences:

  1. They get laser like precision, being able to cast spells that affect the maximum number of enemies and never hit an ally.
  2. They are aware of where effects start so they can avoid the affected areas while enemies don’t.

For the second point we’ve agreed to simply not show them where the exact area of effect is, I will see it but they won’t. That improves it but they can arguably still keep it in mind with precision by simply counting squares on the map.

We have, therefore, agreed to introduce some randomness in the “aiming” of the spell. You intent to put the center somewhere but, since you’re just human after all, you don’t get it perfect.

Current line of thought is to make it small but noticeable, maybe up to 2.5 to 5 feet away from your intended target. That’s easy to make it random but there have been chats for making it rely on spell caster level vs target ability or vs spell level (I.e. distance from intended target is 5 feet * spell level / caster level).

Example

You are a level 5 wizard casting a fireball spell. You select a target center, and roll 1d8 getting 5. The fireball impacts at a point roughly 3 feet below your intended location.

Note

After seeing the linked question, I still prefer this to a check against an AC. Isn’t this system no matter how good you are you’ll never get it exactly right (which is how good aim works in real life). The better you are, the closer you get, but a level 15 wizard will still get it wrong by a feet.

Deadhand Style Feat Stacking Fear Effect

As written, this feat has some undefined qualities and I’m interested in knowing more specific details. As of right now, I am unaware of any errata or comments from the devs’ that clarify.

Deadhand Style, from Horror Adventures

Benefit(s): While using this style, if you have at least 1 point in your ki pool, you gain a +2 bonus on saves against fear effects, and the DC of Intimidate checks against you increases by 4. As a swift action, you can spend 1 point from your ki pool to empower your unarmed strikes. Creatures hit with your unarmed strikes must succeed at a Will save (DC = 10 + 1/2 your character level + your Wisdom modifier) or become shaken for a number of rounds equal to your Wisdom modifier. This is a mind-affecting fear effect.

Will hitting a creature multiple times cause an increase in severity of the fear condition? Most effects that cause fear will list specifically that they don’t (such as Intimidating to demoralize), but there’s also the general no stacking rule, so I’m unsure.

Related question

Another related question

What are the degrees by which an Arcana Check can modify or effect the characteristics of a spell being cast by the player?

Sorry if the initial wording seems off, basically what I’m trying to get a bearing for is how or in which ways does the Arcana Skill influence or effect actual spells being cast or other spell-centered details? Ie, is rolling on the Arcana skill able to influence the effect or characteristics of a spell? Or does that fall primarily within relation to magic items and not casted spells?

Does the target of sanctuary lose the effect of the spell if they attack an illusion?

This question is inspired by on this question but is focused on the sanctuary spell instead of the rage feature.

The last line of the Sanctuary spell is –

If the warded creature makes an attack or casts a spell that affects an enemy creature, this spell ends.

I am slightly doubtful of the split-up of this sentence, does it mean any attack (thus even attacking an object like a door could end the spell) or only attacks against creatures end the spell ?

On a second note if the target of Sanctuary attacks an illusion does it count as attacking/affecting an enemy creature ?

Can you dispel a magic effect you can’t perceive?

Discussions about Dispel Magic seem to imply that as long as you can perceive a magic effect in range of the spell, you can try and dispel it.

See Can the Dispel Magic spell end a Darkness spell? and this quote from @Miniman:

knowing where it is means that you know where it is. This allows you to use spells like Dispel Magic to remove its invisibility.

But what if you can’t perceive it?

Two scenarios come in mind:

  1. In combat, an evil wizard casts Invisibility on himself, walks away from the fray and uses the hide action on his next turn. Since PCs know/assume/deduce he’s invisible and certainly in range of the spell, can one use Dispel Magic to end the spell?

  2. PCs enter a 80’×80′ room. Can one declare: “I dispel any Invisibility spell in range”, thus revealing one (the closest?) invisible enemy in the room?

What’s enough to enable a caster to cast Dispel Magic on a magic effect:

  • perceiving (seeing, hearing, smelling, etc.) it?
  • knowing/assuming/deducing it’s there?
  • or merely suspect/predict it?

How does this magic item’s effect interact with itself? (Out of the Abyss)

In Out of the Abyss, the Maze Engine has a random chance of

The book includes a specific duration for this effect (until the end of the Engine’s next turn).

However, from the previous page:

How do these two rules interact? My first thought is that it would shut down immediately, but that would mean the listed duration can never be relevant.

Can you activate a spiritual weapon while inside the effect of Otiluke’s Resilient Sphere?

One of the rules for the Resilient Sphere spell states:

Nothing, not physical Objects, energy, or other spell Effects, can pass through the barrier, in or out, though a creature in the Sphere can breathe there. The Sphere is immune to all damage, and a creature or object inside can’t be damaged by attacks or Effects originating from outside, nor can a creature inside the Sphere damage anything outside it.

What if the person trapped inside of the sphere had cast a spell like Spiritual Weapon?

I believe the sphere would prevent you from casting Spiritual Weapon once you are inside of it. But what about activating it if you have cast it before entering the sphere?

Is there any other effect that induces sleep other than the Sleep spell?

Well, I can’t simplify more than the title.

This question came from KorvinStarmast’s answer and is related to Viishnahn’s question. The sleep spell states

This spell sends creatures into a magical slumber. Roll 5d8; the total is how many hit points of creatures this spell can affect. Creatures within 20 feet of a point you choose within range are affected in ascending order of their current hit points (ignoring unconscious creatures).

Starting with the creature that has the lowest current hit points, each creature affected by this spell falls unconscious until the spell ends, the sleeper takes damage, or someone uses an action to shake or slap the sleeper awake. Subtract each creature’s hit points from the total before moving on to the creature with the next lowest hit points. A creature’s hit points must be equal to or less than the remaining total for that creature to be affected.

And the Bugbear Chief (from the Monster Manual) has a feature that states:

Heart of Hruggek. The bugbear has advantage on saving throws against being charmed, frightened, paralyzed, poisoned, stunned, or put to sleep.

The thing is: the only sleep inducing effect I am aware of is the sleep spell, which does not require any saving throw. So, this last part of the Bugbear Chief seems useless, since the only effect inducing sleep won’t be affected by his advantage at all.

Sure, it could be there preemptively for future content or even in case someone homebrews such effects, but, other than that, are there any other (official/published) sleep-inducing effects other than the sleep spell? In particular, any that does require a saving throw? These could be poisons, monster or class features, magic items, or other spells that I’m not aware of.