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5E Greater Invis and Stealth checks, how do you rule it?

Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
Except it is not. People keep saying this but that is completely made up and would lead to countless blatantly absurd situations.
I would say that this not being the default leads to far more absurd situations. I mean, maybe you're locking down on default? That just means that this is what happens unless something bumps it, which has been my position throughout. The default isn't inevitable or required, it's just what happens normally. If you don't think that it's the normal thing for creatures to notice other creatures, I guess we can talk about that, but it might be weird.

Invisibility say that the creature cannot be seen. That is not mere fluff. Whether exact location of something can be pinpointed automatically, with some difficulty or not at all depends on may different factors. This game has a human being in charge to adjudicate such factors.
Sorry, but does this address something I said? You seem to be trying to refute something I said, but I can't for the life of me understand what this disputes because I agree -- this is what the spell says.

Also, knowing the location of a creature means you can approximate where it is within a five square foot area. I dunno about you, but that's not particularly precise at all. Which is why you get disadvantage on trying to attack the creature you only know is in that five square foot area. We aren't talking about knowing that you're exactly there, on that spot, eating an apple.
 

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Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
My response from now on: the rules do not state that you always know where every creature is during combat*. Nor do I think they imply anything one way or another. It's up to the DM and the situation.

Feel free to run it anyway you want.

*There are other situations where a PC will not know exactly where an opponent is, typically because of total concealment.
100% agree, you do not always know. They could be hidden, for instance, or the GM might determine that the specific situation is such that it warrants a different ruling, but the default is that you do. Any other default position make a hash of the other rules (like hiding) and creates some very odd situations, which is what I think you're trying to avoid.
 

I would say that this not being the default leads to far more absurd situations. I mean, maybe you're locking down on default? That just means that this is what happens unless something bumps it, which has been my position throughout. The default isn't inevitable or required, it's just what happens normally. If you don't think that it's the normal thing for creatures to notice other creatures, I guess we can talk about that, but it might be weird.
Certainly the default is that this is game run by a human being that tries to approximate what would be reasonable given the fictional situation that is being described? Automatically knowing locations of things you cannot see is not reasonable, unless you're Daredevil. Automatically knowing locations of things that are fully visible to you is pretty reasonable. This is exactly not rocket science.

Sorry, but does this address something I said? You seem to be trying to refute something I said, but I can't for the life of me understand what this disputes because I agree -- this is what the spell says.
You seemed to be constantly focusing on 'can hide' part and omitting the 'cannot be seen' part.

Also, knowing the location of a creature means you can approximate where it is within a five square foot area. I dunno about you, but that's not particularly precise at all. Which is why you get disadvantage on trying to attack the creature you only know is in that five square foot area. We aren't talking about knowing that you're exactly there, on that spot, eating an apple.
Being able to know a location of a person with five foot accuracy when they might be dozens of feet away from you is pinpointing.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
100% agree, you do not always know. They could be hidden, for instance, or the GM might determine that the specific situation is such that it warrants a different ruling, but the default in the games that I DM is that you do. Any other default position make a hash of the other rules (like hiding) and creates some very odd situations, which is what I think you're trying to avoid.

The adjusted quote I can agree with. It's DM preference. Sometimes being invisible means you will automatically be undetected, sometimes it's uncertain, sometimes the odds are so high that you will be located that there is no need for a roll. I don't think that affects the other rules on hiding at all.

Other than that: the rules do not state that you always know where every creature is during combat*. Nor do I think they imply anything one way or another. It's up to the DM and the situation.

Feel free to run it anyway you want.

*There are other situations where a PC will not know exactly where an opponent is, typically because of total concealment.
 

Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
The adjusted quote I can agree with. It's DM preference. Sometimes being invisible means you will automatically be undetected, sometimes it's uncertain, sometimes the odds are so high that you will be located that there is no need for a roll. I don't think that affects the other rules on hiding at all.

Other than that: the rules do not state that you always know where every creature is during combat*. Nor do I think they imply anything one way or another. It's up to the DM and the situation.

Feel free to run it anyway you want.

*There are other situations where a PC will not know exactly where an opponent is, typically because of total concealment.
This makes a hash of the other rules, though. If there's no default to notice, what is the default? Not noticing? Noticing 50% of creatures? I mean, what I'm saying is that, all things being equal, you will notice other creatures. This is what default means -- the resting state, or normal assumption under normal conditions. This really shouldn't even be controversial in the slightest -- your edit is nonsensical. If you don't use noticing as a default, your game looks very different from any other game I'm aware of. I'm 100% positive that you actually use noticing other creatures as the default position in your game, but, for some reason, are thinking that agreeing with that statement means accepting that you must rule this to be true, which I've taken great pains to say is not what default means. So, I'm at a loss as to why this is the sticking point.

The sticking point, if there is any (I don't really see one, but you keep responding to me in the negative), is in what changes the default. I look at Invisibility, and it doesn't change the default explicitly, but instead provides either new options to do so with established means (hiding) and also provides a new input to the normal decision process about what's going on in a scene and making rulings. The default is still that you're noticed, but there's not additional reasons why that might be changed. If nothing else exist, then invisibility alone does not alter the default assumption (which I've said multiple times). However, invisibility can certainly take a situation that wouldn't normally deviate from the default and cause ruling otherwise. This is where we might disagree -- what causes are sufficient to rule otherwise -- but that's not what we're arguing about here.

Defaults are just baselines. Baselines are just where you start, not where you end. If you don't think that the normal baseline is that you notice other creatures, then we violently disagree about how the game should be run. And, point of fact, you have less evidence for your position than I have for mine in the rules, and mine is largely inferred from existing rules. You're welcome to claim some other position, where noticing isn't the baseline assumption that things like hiding change so that you don't have to do any work to explain why invisibility makes you hidden, but don't claim the rules say anything like this at all -- they lean strongly in the direction that you do normally notice other creatures and it takes an effort to alter that.
 

NotAYakk

Legend
Except it is not. People keep saying this but that is completely made up and would lead to countless blatantly absurd situations.
Now in 4e, it was true that you know where creatures are in combat unless they are hidden from you.

In 5e, if there are a bunch of monsters bashing down a door who aren't hidden from you, you probably know ... there are a bunch of creatures bashing down that door, unless things are noisy locally.

There is no reason to think you know how many of them, where exactly they are located, etc. You can hear the thump, thump, thump of the door being bashed down; they are definitely not hiding.

Now, suppose there is a hole in the door, but that hole has the darkness spell covering it. So you can't see through the door.

You could make an attack through that hole (possibly with a melee weapon), and if there are monsters there, you'd roll to hit. With disadvantage, because you cannot see them. Even though you don't know what square they are in.

If they stop bashing and hide, you now only have the information of where they where before they hid. And now you have to guess where they are in order to attack them. If you guess wrong, you miss without rolling.

---

Poping the stack, the annoying imp goes invisible and flies away. You can shoot at the imp at disadvantage even if you don't know where it is. Make an attack roll at disadvantage. If you hit, you guessed where it is and shot it. If you miss, you failed to guess where it is, and your shot goes wide.

If the imp takes the hide action, you now first have to guess where the imp is before making that a shot. If you guess wrong, you auto-miss. If you guess right, you attack at disadvantage. You only know if you guess right if you hit. (but you can see your attack roll, and that might give you some info)

---

This prevents invisibilty from being a "free hide" -- an unhidden invisible creature can be attacked without having to guess where it is, so not as good as hidden -- without giving characters echolocation. It does mean that creatures that attack hidden foes can use the very attack to figure out where the enemy is!

(Note that many spells require you to be able to see the creature you attack; they won't work on invisible foes, even if they aren't hidden or if you guess where they are. And fireball requires you to target an area, not a creature; even an unhidden invisible creature can require a guess.)

---

Is that sensible?
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
This makes a hash of the other rules, though. If there's no default to notice, what is the default? Not noticing? Noticing 50% of creatures? I mean, what I'm saying is that, all things being equal, you will notice other creatures. This is what default means -- the resting state, or normal assumption under normal conditions. This really shouldn't even be controversial in the slightest -- your edit is nonsensical. If you don't use noticing as a default, your game looks very different from any other game I'm aware of. I'm 100% positive that you actually use noticing other creatures as the default position in your game, but, for some reason, are thinking that agreeing with that statement means accepting that you must rule this to be true, which I've taken great pains to say is not what default means. So, I'm at a loss as to why this is the sticking point.

The sticking point, if there is any (I don't really see one, but you keep responding to me in the negative), is in what changes the default. I look at Invisibility, and it doesn't change the default explicitly, but instead provides either new options to do so with established means (hiding) and also provides a new input to the normal decision process about what's going on in a scene and making rulings. The default is still that you're noticed, but there's not additional reasons why that might be changed. If nothing else exist, then invisibility alone does not alter the default assumption (which I've said multiple times). However, invisibility can certainly take a situation that wouldn't normally deviate from the default and cause ruling otherwise. This is where we might disagree -- what causes are sufficient to rule otherwise -- but that's not what we're arguing about here.

Defaults are just baselines. Baselines are just where you start, not where you end. If you don't think that the normal baseline is that you notice other creatures, then we violently disagree about how the game should be run. And, point of fact, you have less evidence for your position than I have for mine in the rules, and mine is largely inferred from existing rules. You're welcome to claim some other position, where noticing isn't the baseline assumption that things like hiding change so that you don't have to do any work to explain why invisibility makes you hidden, but don't claim the rules say anything like this at all -- they lean strongly in the direction that you do normally notice other creatures and it takes an effort to alter that.

IMHO the DM changes the default. A DM has to make all sorts of calls all the time based on their personal preference, hopefully with feedback from their group. I get that a lot of people would like more concrete instructions, what I see as a strength of 5E others see as a weakness.

I'm not getting into further "I'm right, you're wrong" arguments. The correct answer is whatever works best for you and your group.

Standard disclaimer on this topic: the rules do not state that you always know where every creature is during combat*. Nor do I think they imply anything one way or another. It's up to the DM and the situation.

Feel free to run it anyway you want.

*There are other situations where a PC will not know exactly where an opponent is, typically because of total concealment.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
This makes a hash of the other rules, though. If there's no default to notice, what is the default?
The default is noticing unless something like hiding, invisibility or being behind a rock puts the outcome into doubt. Noticing is just perception and we have rules for that.
 


Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
IMHO the DM changes the default. A DM has to make all sorts of calls all the time based on their personal preference, hopefully with feedback from their group. I get that a lot of people would like more concrete instructions, what I see as a strength of 5E others see as a weakness.

I'm not getting into further "I'm right, you're wrong" arguments. The correct answer is whatever works best for you and your group.

Standard disclaimer on this topic: the rules do not state that you always know where every creature is during combat*. Nor do I think they imply anything one way or another. It's up to the DM and the situation.

Feel free to run it anyway you want.

*There are other situations where a PC will not know exactly where an opponent is, typically because of total concealment.
What do you change the default to, then? I'm curious. Because, you know, default just means the usual, so what do you change the usual to?
 

Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
If being invisible or behind a rock but otherwise within range of being noticed puts the outcome in doubt, then what’s hiding for?
This is why I say the default is being noticed -- because the hiding exists to explicitly change this and hiding isn't exactly easy. If the default position is not being noticed, then what is hiding doing and why?
 

DM Dave1

Adventurer
But there is a part that says that hidden is both unseen and unheard, so if you are either, you are not hidden. If you are both, you are hidden regardless of how you got that way.

How does one get to be both unseen and unheard in combat without the Hide action in 5e?

Yes and no. You wouldn't make the orc roll to perceive an opponent in combat who is visible. You only call for a roll if the outcome is in doubt. In a battle where lots and lots of noise is happening, to me the outcome of hearing a walking, invisible, unarmored creature is clearly in doubt. They would have to make a perception roll, even if the invisible creature is not hiding.

With that ruling, you've just made invisibility more powerful than the 5e rules state. Not saying that's a good or bad thing, but it is what it is. 5e rules would simply apply disadvantage to anyone trying to attack said invisible creature. You are essentially giving the PC/creature a free Hide action just for the sake of being invisible in a rowdy, noisy place, right? If the invisible PC/creature wanted to really be undetected in a rowdy combat, a DM might give them auto-success on their Hide action (or bonus action for Rogue), or perhaps give them advantage on the Stealth check to Hide given the noisy environment. But give them a free Hide without expending said Action? Not sure that position is really supported by the 5e rules.
 

If being invisible or behind a rock but otherwise within range of being noticed puts the outcome in doubt, then what’s hiding for?
Putting the outcome much more in doubt. Different DCs, advantages and disadvantages exist for a reason. In such a situation hiding roll would represent avoiding to making noise. Now obviously trying to detect someone based on the noise alone is much harder than if you can see them.
 


This is why I say the default is being noticed -- because the hiding exists to explicitly change this and hiding isn't exactly easy. If the default position is not being noticed, then what is hiding doing and why?
There is no 'default position' because there is no default situation. What are the 'default' creatures involved, what is the 'default' ground like, what is the 'default' amount of ambient noise, what is the 'default' terrain like and what are the other 'default' obstacles and structures?

Hiding is for making you harder to detect than you would be otherwise. What that 'otherwise' is depends on myriad other variables.
 

DM Dave1

Adventurer
Combines use of invisibility and silence spells would achieve this.

Requires some coordination with allies as both are concentration spells, but that is certainly a good example of becoming unseen and unheard without using the Hide Action.

Or more mundanely standing silently behind a completely line of sight blocking terrain.

So you might give them a free Hide without having to expend the Action?
 


DM Dave1

Adventurer
Sure. They don't even need to be able to take an action. A person lying unconscious behind a completely LOS blocking terrain is pretty dam well hidden (assuming that no one saw them to collapse there of course.)

They are technically taking the Hide action if you give them the benefits of hiding and they do not take another action.

A related question is: would you let them take another action before or after doing something that sounds a lot like trying to Hide in combat ("mundanely standing silently behind a completely line of sight blocking terrain.")?

(A person lying unconscious can't take an action anyway so is not really relevant to the question at hand - not to mention there is no guarantee they are being silent in their possible death throes/throws or even if they are just asleep.)
 


Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
How does one get to be both unseen and unheard in combat without the Hide action in 5e?

You could be beyond hearing range in a battle. That's a DM call. Combat is very loud and even though you are aware of your surroundings, you can't focus on them without ending up dead. Your focus is the enemy trying to kill you, so an invisible opponent 100 feet away is very likely to be unheard.

You could also be under the effects of silence.



With that ruling, you've just made invisibility more powerful than the 5e rules state. Not saying that's a good or bad thing, but it is what it is. 5e rules would simply apply disadvantage to anyone trying to attack said invisible creature. You are essentially giving the PC/creature a free Hide action just for the sake of being invisible in a rowdy, noisy place, right?

No. I don't ask for a hide roll. I simply set a DC to notice the "hidden" PC and go from there. If the Invisible PC want control over the DC, because rolled hide check will often be higher that ser DCs, he can use an action to do so.

For example, if an invisible PC is in a noisy tavern, but is not trying to be quiet, I'd set a moderate DC to detect. It's pretty easy to exceed that with a hide roll, even at level 1. At mid and high levels you will exceed a lot.
 

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