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Darkvision through a telescope

Moon-Lancer

First Post
Jhaelen said:
While I don't agree that darkvision is truly black/white only (i.e. I think it includes greyscale) you are wrong on this one.

I recommend you check out the Renaissance movie. It's true black&white but you can still see everything accurately, especially if things are in motion.
You forget, In order to make such an effect possible, you need to deliberately add contours so shape is not lost. Its not a natural effect. In other words darkvision would need some type of edge finding. darkvision would be like detecting shapes and adding an outline. The artest making shots like this carefully considers what the background is in relation to the figure.

Although i do thank you for the link. It looks very awesome, and i'm going to watch it. I love stuff like this.
 
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Moon-Lancer

First Post
frankthedm said:
3.0 DMG had a fine example of a mindflayer in normal and darkvision. All contrast was accomplished with the changing from black to white.
do you have a link? i don't have 3.0 dmg. I remember seeing it once, but i forget what it really looks like. I'm sort of in the dark here.
 
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Jhulae

First Post
Moon-Lancer said:
do you have a link? i don't have 3.0 dmg. I remember seeing it once, but i forget what it really looks like. I'm sort of in the dark here.
It's of a mindflayer that's been poorly photoshopped so it's white and the background is black.

SKR stated, in effect, that he disliked that picture immensely because that's not how darkvision was supposed to be portrayed.
 

Mistwell

Legend
Branduil said:
Well, you can do whatever you want in your own games, of course. But I think an interpretation of the rules which results in my character not being able to see the sun or the moon is utterly ludicrous.
If seeing the sun or the moon is an encounter, it's probably ludicrous.

The rules for using spot to see something are for when an encounter starts, not when role playing aspects of your game come into play.
 

Branduil

First Post
Mistwell said:
If seeing the sun or the moon is an encounter, it's probably ludicrous.

The rules for using spot to see something are for when an encounter starts, not when role playing aspects of your game come into play.
So basically you separate "spot" from "actually being able to see things"? Sorry but I'm having a hard time seeing how that's either desirable or logical.
 

Mistwell

Legend
Branduil said:
So basically you separate "spot" from "actually being able to see things"? Sorry but I'm having a hard time seeing how that's either desirable or logical.
Now that's funny...since YOU guys are the ones advocating that spot is not to be used to see distant things regardless of whether or not those things are an encounter, unless that thing is hiding. I'm only saying it's used for distant things that are hiding OR which are an encounter. Take a position already...is spot used to see things that are not hiding, or not?

I separate "spot check to determine when an encounter starts" from "ability to see distant things that are not a challenge themselves".

The rules do this in more than one place. Overland movement to get from one city to another is not the same as overland movement to get from your starting square to the opponents square after initiative starts, for example.

Is it really that illogical that the rules treat things that happen during initiative different from things that happen outside of initiative? To me, it's logical. If it's part of the challenge, it requires a check. If it is not part of a challenge, it does not require a check. What's so weird about that?
 

Slaved

First Post
Mistwell said:
Now that's funny...since YOU guys are the ones advocating that spot is not to be used to see distant things regardless of whether or not those things are an encounter, unless that thing is hiding. I'm only saying it's used for distant things that are hiding OR which are an encounter. Take a position already...is spot used to see things that are not hiding, or not?
This seems very illogical.

First it starts off with saying that others are advocating not using spot to see distant things.

Next you say that you are only talking about using spot for hiding things or encounters.

After that you make up a question that does not look connected to any point that you were trying to contend with.

Along with that it looks like you still have not actually quoted the sources you are supposedly using and you seem to have changed your stance that was given at the beginning without a post about it, unless I missed a post somewhere.

In total it looks very disjointed.

From earlier
Mistwell said:
Spot skill is often used with an opposed hide check, but not always (and that is explicit in the rule). It's used for all sorts of things, from "Sometimes a creature isn’t intentionally hiding but is still difficult to see" to "Spot checks may be called for to determine the distance at which an encounter begins". As far as game rules go, if you ask your DM "Can I see any details on the side of that barn that is a mile away" your DM is likely going to ask you to make a spot check versus a fixed DC adjusted for distance.
I am still waiting to see where in the rules it says what these set difficulty classes are for seeing objects that are far away but are not hiding nor hidden. I have looked at the spot skill and at page 22 in the dungeon masters guide, neither say what you have implied that they said.


Without the very important link you are trying to make, namely that sight has a fixed range, there is no reason to believe that darkvision gains any good benefit from a telescope. We know that darkvision goes a maximum preset specific distance before it simply does not work, regular sight does not have such a limitation. Although even if it did that still would not prove that darkvision range would be doubled through a telescope. The logic countering that stance has been shown a few times.
 

Jhulae

First Post
I'd probably leave a game where I'm walking toward a city that suddenly disappears because there's a guard I'm going to 'encounter' and suddenly my character can't see beyond 300'....

I wouldn't leave a game where my character is underground in total darkness but can't see anything beyond the specified range of her darkvision.

I see lots of quotes of the rules, but I also see you missing lots of the nuances of the words.

"Sometimes things aren't intentionally hiding but are difficult to see". If something is *not* intentionally hiding and is *not* difficult to see, then no spot checks are even needed, whether it's an encounter or not.

The fact that you *may* use a spot check, listen check, or spotting distances to determine beginning encounter range also means you *may not* choose to use all or any of those things.

Regardless, (and to stay on topic) Darkvision rules state that there is a "Specified" range for a creature's darkvision (as given per the creature's stat block). That means that the range given is the maximum distance that creature can see with it. I don't see how that can be interpreted any other way.
 
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werk

First Post
Jhulae said:
"Sometimes things aren't intentionally hiding but are difficult to see". If something is *not* intentionally hiding and is *not* difficult to see, then no spot checks are even needed, whether it's an encounter or not.
Everything is difficult to see, or rather, has a difficulty to see, it's just the severity of difficulty that changes. It's like: there is no cold, only varying degrees of heat.

If something has a spot difficulty of -30...it's pretty hard to not see, but it is still difficult in the purest sense of the term.

The fact that you *may* use a spot check, listen check, or spotting distances to determine beginning encounter range also means you *may not* choose to use all or any of those things.
You need to back this up somehow, because I disagree. The only way I see you can start without using those things is to be surprised constantly...both sides... :confused:
 

Mistwell

Legend
Slaved said:
This seems very illogical.

First it starts off with saying that others are advocating not using spot to see distant things.

Next you say that you are only talking about using spot for hiding things or encounters.

After that you make up a question that does not look connected to any point that you were trying to contend with.

Along with that it looks like you still have not actually quoted the sources you are supposedly using and you seem to have changed your stance that was given at the beginning without a post about it, unless I missed a post somewhere.

In total it looks very disjointed.

Not going to spoon feed it to you if you accuse me of not citing my source, which I have done multiple times at this point (and you well know it, because you repeat it below).

Can spot be used to see someone not hiding, or not? That's the question I am posing to you. You can dodge the question, or not. Right now you seem to be dodging.

From earlier

"Spot skill is often used with an opposed hide check, but not always (and that is explicit in the rule). It's used for all sorts of things, from "Sometimes a creature isn’t intentionally hiding but is still difficult to see" to "Spot checks may be called for to determine the distance at which an encounter begins". As far as game rules go, if you ask your DM "Can I see any details on the side of that barn that is a mile away" your DM is likely going to ask you to make a spot check versus a fixed DC adjusted for distance."


I am still waiting to see where in the rules it says what these set difficulty classes are for seeing objects that are far away but are not hiding nor hidden. I have looked at the spot skill and at page 22 in the dungeon masters guide, neither say what you have implied that they said.
Well then you and I are reading the same sentences and coming to a different conclusion. The spot skill says it can be used to see things that are not hiding but are still difficult to spot. To me, that would include distant things (which would be hard to see, but which are not hiding). It also gives spot modifiers for seeing things at a distance, without mentioning hiding, which again implies to me that it is used to see distant things that are not hiding. The DMG then says you use spot, listen and sight ranges to determine when an encounter begins, without any mention of hiding, which again implies spot can be used to see distant things that are not hiding.

All of that to me says you can use spot to see distant things that are not hiding. If you don't read it that way, I'm not sure what else I can do to help you out. Can you at least admit that it is one reasonable interpretation of those three rules I just cited that you can use spot to see things at a distance which are not hiding, or are you still convinced that your interpretation is the only possible reasonable one?

Without the very important link you are trying to make, namely that sight has a fixed range,
It's in the spot skill. I've said that before, given examples, and spelled it out. You're going in circles.

there is no reason to believe that darkvision gains any good benefit from a telescope. We know that darkvision goes a maximum preset specific distance before it simply does not work, regular sight does not have such a limitation. Although even if it did that still would not prove that darkvision range would be doubled through a telescope. The logic countering that stance has been shown a few times.
There is some logic to that stances, but it's not irrefutable, and it's been refuted. We have two competing reasonable interpretations of how it would work. Your continuing repetition of your position and assertion that anyone who disagrees with your conclusion cannot possibly be right is less than compelling. I understand that yo think you have it right. I don't understand that you think you MUST be right and that there is no chance at all that you are wrong. It's an unhelpful attitude at best.
 

Mistwell

Legend
Jhulae said:
I'd probably leave a game where I'm walking toward a city that suddenly disappears because there's a guard I'm going to 'encounter' and suddenly my character can't see beyond 300'....
The guard is the encounter, not the city. And the guard DOES get a chance to spot you before you spot him. In fact, that is one of the examples given in the DMG.

I wouldn't leave a game where my character is underground in total darkness but can't see anything beyond the specified range of her darkvision.

I see lots of quotes of the rules, but I also see you missing lots of the nuances of the words.
What you read as nuances I see as you inferring things not written there to further your preconceive notion of how the game should work. Which is fair, but it's also something one should be cautious about.

"Sometimes things aren't intentionally hiding but are difficult to see". If something is *not* intentionally hiding and is *not* difficult to see, then no spot checks are even needed, whether it's an encounter or not.
Things which are distant are difficult to see. Which is why a check is called for to determine when an encounter begins, when the two parties are distant. One party might see the other party first, and the DMG is specific about that being something that happens. Are you really denying that a character 5000 feet from you (out in the open) is more difficult to see than a character 5' in front of you (out in the open)?

The fact that you *may* use a spot check, listen check, or spotting distances to determine beginning encounter range also means you *may not* choose to use all or any of those things.
Sure it depends on the circumstances. In other words, are they circumstances where it would be more difficult to see, such as a great distance? That seems to be how the DMG handles it.

Regardless, (and to stay on topic) Darkvision rules state that there is a "Specified" range for a creature's darkvision (as given per the creature's stat block). That means that the range given is the maximum distance that creature can see with it. I don't see how that can be interpreted any other way.
And there is a maximum range of normal sight as well. The question is, what does x2 magnification mean in your game? If it would extend the maximum distance you can see with normal vision in your game (which I think is one reasonable way to handle it), then because darkvision functions like normal vision but in black and white I would suggest that you have a spy glass extend the maximum distance you can see with darkvision as well.

So, what effect does a spy glass have in your game on normal vision?
 

Slaved

First Post
Mistwell said:
It's in the spot skill. I've said that before, given examples, and spelled it out.
I have asked you again and again and again and again and again and again to tell me where exactly, quote it, tell me the difficulty class numbers that you are saying it gives. Over and over and over again I keep asking you to actually show these things that you say are there in ways that we can actually use here.

But you keep refusing. At this point I am just going to assume that means nothing in the rules actually support your stance and that you are just trying to waste peoples time.
 

Mistwell

Legend
Slaved said:
I have asked you again and again and again and again and again and again to tell me where exactly, quote it, tell me the difficulty class numbers that you are saying it gives. Over and over and over again I keep asking you to actually show these things that you say are there in ways that we can actually use here.

But you keep refusing. At this point I am just going to assume that means nothing in the rules actually support your stance and that you are just trying to waste peoples time.
I hope the aggression can be toned down a bit in this debate.

Here is the link to one of the responses I offered to your question:

http://www.enworld.org/showpost.php?p=3799138&postcount=56

and here is a repeat of the relevant portion:

And if it is bright sunlight out, and there are no obstructions of any sort (including any type of terrain obstruction), a human with a spot modifier of 10 will still never be able to see something 300 feet away (unless they use a spy glass). Their maximum spot check is a 30 (with a roll of a natural 20), and they have a -30 on their check for the distance.
Here is again the spot rule:

Spot checks may be called for to determine the distance at which an encounter begins. A penalty applies on such checks, depending on the distance between the two individuals or groups, and an additional penalty may apply if the character making the Spot check is distracted (not concentrating on being observant).
Condition Penalty
Per 10 feet of distance –1
Spotter distracted –5
As for the DC itself, like almost all DCs for skill checks, it's determined by the DM based on the circumstances. Here is the DC chart for skills, from Page 63 and 64 of the PHB,

Table 4-3: Difficulty Class Examples Difficulty (DC) Example (Skill Used)
Very easy (0) Notice something large in plain sight (Spot)
Easy (5) Climb a knotted rope (Climb)
Average (10) Hear an approaching guard (Listen)
Tough (15) Rig a wagon wheel to fall off (Disable Device)
Challenging (20) Swim in stormy water (Swim)
Formidable (25) Open an average lock (Open Lock)
Heroic (30) Leap across a 30-foot chasm (Jump)
Nearly impossible (40) Track a squad of orcs across hard ground after 24 hours of rainfall (Survival)
The very first check is "Notice something large in plain sight" and it uses a Spot Check with a DC of 0, which should leave no remaining question that there are DCs for spot checks of things that are not hidden and in plain sight. That DC is 0, but per the spot rules it would be reduced by -1 for each 10 feet (and further if the spotter is distracted). It would get easier (as implied by "large" in the DC check description) if the thing you are spotting gets very large, and harder if it gets smaller, and that would involved a circumstance modifier depending on the size. But regardless, at some point you will not hit that (possibly modified) DC 0 spot check if it is too distant, because of the spot modifiers. Hence, for all characters, there is a maximum distance they can see things using normal vision (just like there is a maximum distance you can see things using darkvision).

When it is light out, the max distance a human with no ranks or bonuses in spot can notice something large in plain sight is 200 feet (natural 20 rolled, -20 for distance). On average however, with a roll of a 10, they will only notice things out to 100 feet.

When it is dark out, the max distance a drow (120 foot darkvision) with no ranks or bonuses in spot can notice something large in plain sight is 120 feet (a spot check of 12 or better, -12 for distance). On average however, with a roll of a 10, they will only notice things out to 100 feet.

Now, to see what effect the spy glass has, we just need to decide what "Objects viewed through a spyglass are magnified to twice their size" does for these distances, if anything.
 
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werk

First Post
Slaved said:
I have asked you again and again and again and again and again and again to tell me where exactly, quote it, tell me the difficulty class numbers that you are saying it gives. Over and over and over again I keep asking you to actually show these things that you say are there in ways that we can actually use here.
I have a hard time understanding why you are so passionately arguing the spot rules without referencing those rules.

If you glance at the rules for spot (this is the rules forum, no?) you'll find many of your own answers...I hope.


www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/spot.htm
and
http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/usingSkills.htm

I find it improbable that you have looked at the rules relevant to this debate and feel a need to carry on so.
 

Piratecat

Writing Fantasy Gumshoe!
Slaved said:
I have asked you again and again and again and again and again and again to tell me where exactly, quote it, tell me the difficulty class numbers that you are saying it gives. Over and over and over again I keep asking you to actually show these things that you say are there in ways that we can actually use here.

But you keep refusing. At this point I am just going to assume that means nothing in the rules actually support your stance and that you are just trying to waste peoples time.
Instead of getting angry at people, it's generally good form in the Rules forum to make sure you've gone to the PHB or the SRD and have read the relevant section yourself. That stops a lot of arguments and confusion.
 

werk

First Post
I still don't think you could extend the range of darkvision with a spyglass though, regardless of the effect one may have on spot dynamics.

:D
 

Slaved

First Post
Mistwell said:
As for the DC itself, like almost all DCs for skill checks, it's determined by the DM based on the circumstances. Here is the DC chart for skills, from Page 63 and 64 of the PHB,
FINALLY! You actually posted something that might substantiate your position. I am glad that it happened eventually but saddened that it took so very long.

It still does not mention reading at a distance but at least it is a good start at seeing things at a distance!! :D

Unforutnately this still does not put an absolute limit on sight ranges in the way that Darkvision does. That means that your linking the two is still missing important steps. Do not give up yet! You might find something.

Werk said:
I have a hard time understanding why you are so passionately arguing the spot rules without referencing those rules.
The Spot skill does not mention the topic of debate. The best information so far has actually come from a place completely outside of the Spot skill description. It is still vague and left in the hands of dungeon master arbitration rather than having rules set for consistancy but at least it is a start.

Mistwell said:
The very first check is "Notice something large in plain sight" and it uses a Spot Check with a DC of 0, which should leave no remaining question that there are DCs for spot checks of things that are not hidden and in plain sight. That DC is 0, but per the spot rules it would be reduced by -1 for each 10 feet (and further if the spotter is distracted). It would get easier (as implied by "large" in the DC check description) if the thing you are spotting gets very large, and harder if it gets smaller, and that would involved a circumstance modifier depending on the size. But regardless, at some point you will not hit that (possibly modified) DC 0 spot check if it is too distant, because of the spot modifiers. Hence, for all characters, there is a maximum distance they can see things using normal vision (just like there is a maximum distance you cam see things using darkvision).
I am glad that you found something to help support your case! Unfortunately it does not give any guidelines or help us know what the difficulty classes will actually be. That section of the rules tells us to use the rules in the skill to determine the difficulty class but there are no rules given to determine how difficult the task will be in the spot skill description. We also do not know what type of action it takes. If looking for a particular building among other buildings is reactive then we know what it takes to perform the action. Using the skill in the way that you suggest and that part of the rules state vaguely then very strange things can happen such as a ranger spotting a favoured enemy but not the hill it is standing on!

Also if a party uses aid another then someone could suddenly see twice as far as they could before. One moment there is nothing but open space and the next moment there is a building all because the guy next to you is looking around as well. Unless the dungeon master says that a Spot check can not be aided or if the players handbook has an example or two that the system resource document lacks.

Piratecat said:
Instead of getting angry at people, it's generally good form in the Rules forum to make sure you've gone to the PHB or the SRD and have read the relevant section yourself. That stops a lot of arguments and confusion.
Oh I have! That is the problem!! Spot does not have the text that would be needed nor does page 22 of the dungeon masters guide. I was not angry merely frustrated that a claim was being made and was not being supported. Since this is the rules forum after all a rules claim should be backed up by rules I would think. After asking who knows how many times Mistwell finally put up a rules quote that helps back part of his-her position. Progress!! :D It is still incomplete though. Perhaps more progress will be made eventually.
 

Hypersmurf

Moderatarrrrh...
There are, I fear, limits to the amount of condescension we will tolerate.

Those limits are back there somewhere.

-Hyp.
(Moderator)
 

Branduil

First Post
The example of noticing something large in plain sight obviously already takes into account distance modifiers... it's simply referring to something anyone would notice. Putting aside a strict reading of the rules, which I still don't agree you are right on, someone can obviously see large city a mile away from a hilltop, or the moon on a cloudless night. There is no such thing as a limit to how far you can see with normal vision. None. You could theoretically see something on the other side of the universe if it was large enough.
 

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