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Old 03-20-2021, 08:10 PM   #1
phiwum
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Default Engagement question

According to the latest PDF of RAW, anything that poses a threat may engage, even an unarmed puny goblin wizard. After all, a wizard could punch and 1d-4 is nothing to sneeze at. Scary.

But it made me wonder about critters who are immune to normal damage. Suppose a fighter with a normal (non-magical) sword steps adjacent to and facing a salamander. Is the salamander engaged? Aside from spitting, the fighter cannot do anything to harm the salamander, so I tend to the the salamander is not engaged.

I reckon this is a somewhat practical question. If you can engage a salamander, then two characters could effectively trap it in place while a third got a bucket of water from nearby. The salamander would still have options, of course, but it would be a solution if you could, pardon me, stand the heat.

I honestly regret that last sentence, but I will let it stand.

While I'm on the subject, does a Magic Fist do regular damage or half-damage to a salamander? It's definitely magical, but the damage is kinetic, so I'd be tempted to treat it as an enchanted weapon.
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Old 03-20-2021, 09:52 PM   #2
Rolando
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Panama
Default Re: Engagement question

I think perception of danger is what is important. If the salamander feel threatened by the non magically armed fighter it will be engaged.

With the same idea in mind a big, powerful, magical creature may feel non threatened by a fighter and ignore it, in practice not being engaged by the fighter but maybe allowing the fighter an attack as if attacking the target from behind (?).

If there is no GM and this is a competitive and tactical scenario or board game type game I would say the salamander is engaged even if it can't be harmed, because the rules are clear there, even if they make no sense, that is what a GM is for, in part to adjust rules to make sense in cases like this.
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Old 03-20-2021, 10:42 PM   #3
Terquem
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Idaho Falls
Default Re: Engagement question

How, exactly, does the salamander know it is safe from the fighter's sword? Until there is an actual attack the salamander can only hope she is safe.
Bluffing is sometimes effective
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Old 03-21-2021, 08:12 AM   #4
phiwum
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Default Re: Engagement question

That's a very obvious point, Terquem. Duh.

I don't know how I overlooked that. Danger is in the eye of the beholder.

Thanks.
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Old 03-21-2021, 08:16 AM   #5
hcobb
 
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Default Re: Engagement question

Note that images engage until you decide to walk through them.
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Old 03-21-2021, 10:46 AM   #6
phiwum
 
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Default Re: Engagement question

Quote:
Originally Posted by hcobb View Post
Note that images engage until you decide to walk through them.
Right. More evidence I was overthinking the obvious.
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Old 03-21-2021, 01:14 PM   #7
amenditman
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
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Default Re: Engagement question

Quote:
Originally Posted by phiwum View Post
Danger is in the eye of the beholder.
Always hated fighting Beholders, those eyes are really dangerous.
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Old 03-21-2021, 01:24 PM   #8
phiwum
 
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Originally Posted by amenditman View Post
Always hated fighting Beholders, those eyes are really dangerous.
You should be ashamed of yourself.
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Old 03-21-2021, 02:12 PM   #9
hcobb
 
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Default Re: Engagement question

Q: What is the penalty if my character ignores engagement and just walks away?

"Surely that's just an image of a giant tree spider behind me."
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Old 03-21-2021, 03:04 PM   #10
phiwum
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Default Re: Engagement question

Quote:
Originally Posted by hcobb View Post
Q: What is the penalty if my character ignores engagement and just walks away?

"Surely that's just an image of a giant tree spider behind me."
I don't think they can. The psychological effect of the image is too great.

On the other hand, could a salamander, who knows he's immune to most weapons, choose to ignore engagement? I reckon I'd say no for the same reason.

The alternative would be a free hit, of course, but then we'd need a reason why an unarmed and puny goblin, who's just as harmless to a man wearing leather armor (aside from double or triple damage) can't be ignored. Best to keep it simple. You're engaged unless there's an overwhelmingly good reason the figure isn't dangerous -- one your character knows.
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