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Mechashef

The Silence Spell

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For the "Silence" Spirit Magic the description initially states:

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A spell to suppress noise created by the movement of an adventurer, monster or objects.

Then goes on to add:

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However, it does not stop deliberately created or inadvertently loud noises: such as ... similar loud or sharp sounds caused by fumbled Move Quietly rolls.

So it doesn't protect from a fumbled Move Quietly roll (fair enough) but:

Does the adventurer need to attempt a Move Quietly Roll at all?  If Silence suppresses noises created by the movement of the adventurer, does the description mean that it will suppress the adventurers noise without them having to make a Move Quietly roll?

I see three ways of interpreting it:

  1. It does such a good job that a Move Quietly roll is not required, in which case it would presumably be best to not use it with Move Quietly to avoid the possibility of rolling a fumble.
  2. A Move Quietly is still required.  In this case what affect does the spell have?  Does it mean that a failed roll still doesn't make any sound?
  3. A Move Quietly is not required, but some other roll (perhaps an Agility) should be made to give the possibility of a fumble (this is not supported by the text, but is more of just a thought). The player could choose whether to roll a Move Quietly or an Agility roll when checking for the fumble.

How do people interpret the description?

Thanks

 

 

 

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The text you quoted means the spell suppresses noises enough that a failed Move Quietly is still quiet enough to count as a success.

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31 minutes ago, Mechashef said:

So even without this spell a failed Move Quietly is still less noisy than not attempting the skill at all?

I don't think so, no.  If you fail a Move Quietly, you have... well... failed to move quietly; largely IMHO as if you hadn't tried.  Some situations, failing a roll has more-severe in-game consequences than other situations... failing a Move Silent vs the bakers' wife, to filch a pastry, may be worse than failing a Move Silent past the Storm Bull'ers, to get that shard of Truestone out of the Marsh...

Any reasonably-alert person nearby gets a Listen roll, and may hear you.  Someone not alert may (GM call) be put on alert:  "wait, did I just hear something?" (i.e. they begin Listening, and will get to roll if you fail to move quietly again) &c...

But under the effects of Silence, even a failed Move Silently gives potential Listen'ers no roll to Listen for you, puts noboby on alert, etc...

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I feel like the minimalist approach to the description is that Silence removes the ENC penalty to Move Quietly rolls for its duration, or perhaps other penalties similar to "the clank of plate armor while its wearer tries to hide in shadows." It could feasibly also apply to other sound-affiliated Stealth checks, like Hide (because of that sentence).

But, that's not very exciting now, is it?

I'd probably play it that the opponent only gets a Listen roll if the sneaker fails (no roll on a successful Move Quietly), and on a fumble something significant happens, like knocking over a vase or breaking a branch underfoot.

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11 hours ago, Crel said:

I'd probably play it that the opponent only gets a Listen roll if the sneaker fails (no roll on a successful Move Quietly), and on a fumble something significant happens, like knocking over a vase or breaking a branch underfoot.

This seems (from the example given with the Move Silently skill) to be the default, no-Silence-spell situation.   From p.189 of RQG (the base skill, no spell):

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... Her Move Quietly skill is 30%. Not great. She rolls and gets a 62, failing.
... However, their Listen skill is an appallingly low 15%, and the gamemaster gets results
of 28 and 65 for their rolls.
While Sorala made noise while moving over the rock pile,
she doesn’t make enough noise for them to hear. She continues,
unimpeded, and counts this visit as a victory for knowledge.

 

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Hrm, good point. Perhaps just removal of ENC penalty as default, with GM discretion on more interesting effects. That kind of makes sense from a game balance perspective--after all, it's only one MP.

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Thanks

Having the spell just remove the Move Quietly penalty for noisy armour does make sense.  As has been pointed out it is only a one point spell.  The worst penalty for noisy armour is 50%, so under some conditions the spell can still give quite a good "bang for its buck" (or perhaps a very quiet bang for its buck).

 

It would be nice if the description in the manual was a bit clearer.

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The RAW doesn't explicitly say this, but I may just rule that it moves all (non-Fumbled) Move Silently results one step better -- Failures become successes, and rolled-successes become criticals.

 

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For those who missed it, Jason answered this question in the Core Rules Questions thread.

 
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On ‎11‎/‎13‎/‎2018 at 8:42 PM, Mechashef said:

Does the Silence spell have to be used with the Move Quietly skill or does it have other applications (such as suppressing the noise of a person or horse when they are moving without attempting a Move Quietly roll)?

When used with Move Quietly does it only remove the penalty for noisy armour or does it have other effects (such as changing a fail to a success)?

The spell suppresses normal movement sounds, unless they are deliberately (or disastrously) made. 

The sounds generated while walking around in your armor (bronze chain rustling against bronze plates, sword scabbard rubbing against your hip, leather squeaking, sandals slapping on the ground, breathing, etc.) will be suppressed, as will the clop-clop of your horse's hooves. 

So no, you don't have to make a Move Quietly roll, but if you want to do anything specific that isn't naturalistic movement, you should take that precaution. 

It doesn't shift a success... it's a binary thing. It covers some things, but not others. If you engage in combat while under the spell's effect, the onlookers would see you, hear your combat sounds, but would not hear your normal movement sounds (except in the case of a fumble). 

 

 

So the Silence spell can be used to sneak up one someone without the need for a Move Quietly (MQ) roll.

I'm not sure if Jason's answer is an explanation of the spell description, or is changing it to correct it.

I interpret Jason's answer to mean that if the character was to open a door or window that may creak then a MQ roll would be required. That is based on: 

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So no, you don't have to make a Move Quietly roll, but if you want to do anything specific that isn't naturalistic movement, you should take that precaution. 

And me assuming that opening a potentially noisy door is an intentional action that could be expected to make an unusual noise.

Presumably a failed MQ roll in this case would result in noise that Silence would not suppress because it isn't a naturalistic movement?

 

Based on Jason's reply what natural type movements can people suggest that would:

  • Require a MQ roll
  • Have any resulting sound supressed on a fail
  • Not have any resulting sound supressed on a fumble 

 

I was thinking of a character trying to jump up and reach a ledge.

I can imagine a success or a fail resulting in minor natural movement type sounds that would be supressed by this spell but a fumbled jump resulting in the adventurer failing badly, falling and making a noise that is not suppressed.  But that doesn't require use of the MQ skill. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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