Sage Advice Collection

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 91DR042 Dragon #42 After the surprise dice are rolled, what happens? How does weapon speed factor fit into this? What was the line in the DMG referring to “multiple attacks” and speed factors (page 66, under Weapon Speed Factor) about?  The first part of the question is detailed under the initiative section of the DMG found on page 62, with the nonsurprised being going first. A weapon’s speed factor can partially negate the initiative gained by surprise when slower weapons are used versus high-speed weapons (consult the section on page 66 for details). There are several allowances in the rules for beings attacking more than once in any given melee round and these must be taken into consideration when using weapon speed factors (Rangers and Paladins receive multiple attacks after gaining experience and beings of larger hit dice attack the low hit-point creatures in multiples). 
 92DR042 Dragon #42 I have a player character elf with psionics, but according to a recent issue of The Dragon, elves are not allowed to have ‘psionics. How come elves were allowed to have them originally (check an old Monster Manual), but now are not? Was it only Non-Player Character elves that were, or all elves? Since my elf has psionics, should he be allowed to keep them or should he give them up?  Normally, elves are not capable of having psionics. The reference in the old Monster Manual refers to the rare and unusual exception. As with any rare and unusual ability, psionics for elves should be limited to NPCs, Whether or not your elf should continue to have psionics is a decision your DM will have to make. 
 93DR042 Dragon #42 How much experience are the various Girdles of Giant Strength worth? I seriously doubt 200, when Gauntlet; of Ogre Power are worth 1,000.  The Girdles are only worth 200 points for several reasons. First, while they do add to the strength of an individual, they do little to add to the intelligence or cautiousness of that being. Secondly, while the strength of a giant is given, the giant’s innate toughness is not conferred upon the wearer. This means that while a giant could smash its fist through a wooden door, a human would break bones when doing it. While a giant could hurl bars apart, a human would rip flesh in the attempt. The gauntlets, on the other hand, offer a great deal of protection for the hands and arms and thus are worth more. 
 94DR042 Dragon #42 When an offensive spell’s range is “touch,” does the touch have to be with a hand?  Yes. 
 95DR043 Dragon #43 Is a Paladin’s protection from evil in a 1” or 10 radius?  According to the Players Handbook, a Paladin continually emanates a protection from evil (as per the spell) in a 1” radius around him/her. This translates in game distances to 10 yards outdoors and 10 feet indoors. 
 96DR043 Dragon #43 Are lawful good characters able to use poisoned weapons?  Page 107 of the Players Handbook discusses poison in detail, with the major conclusion being that poison usage should be severely limited. Ultimately, the decision lies with your DM. 
 97DR043 Dragon #43 According to the Players Handbook (page 27) thieves can be neutral good, but Sage Advice (TD #35) says that thieves cannot be good. Which is correct?  The Players Handbook — but remember, good thieves should be very rare. 
 98DR043 Dragon #43 Is experience for psionically slaying monsters the same as by spell or by weapon?  Yes. 
 99DR043 Dragon #43 In an adventure we had recently (with three characters, all of whom were no higher than second level) we had to fight a wraith and a wight. We were at our every-other-week meeting and one of the PCs forced a friend of ours to DM. The “volunteered” DM never said whether the adventure was first level or not. We managed to kill the wraith without loss with silver arrows (fortunately it was a weak wraith), but when fighting the wight the PC who forced our friend to DM was hit and lost a level of experience (he was a second level paladin). Also on the adventure that PC received a sword that was plus 2 against giant weasels only. Now the PC has erased the treasure and experience for the adventure and acts as though the adventure never took place. He says that the ideas in the adventure were stupid. Is this right?  No, it is not right! Whenever a PC decides to go adventuring anywhere he/she takes a risk and therefore must bear the consequences. I’m sure that had the PC not lost a level of experience that he/she would have gladly reaped any benefits, i.e. treasure or experience points, 
 100DR043 Dragon #43 Can magic-users bring their spell books into dungeons or on overland adventures?  It is perfectly all right to bring spell books anywhere one wishes, but those who are wise will realize several factors which would discourage this action. From page 39 of the DMG, one sees that a great deal of uninterrupted time is needed to recover spells, and this time cannot be taken in a dungeon filled with wandering monsters. Area-effect spells like lightning bolts and fireballs will ruin books that are very expensive to replace (check page 115 of the DMG for details on cost). Damage can also be taken from creatures like blue dragons and black puddings whose attacks eat away at materials. Simple traps like falling into a pit filled with briny water can also take their toll on the pages of a spell book. 
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