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The spell Black Tentacles does not say how high they can reach up. Could it grab some Stirges that fly over the area of effect for example?

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There's a remarkable lack of information about the third dimension in the area info for spells... – Rob Sep 14 '12 at 8:38
This is why we had a heated discussion in our last session. – David Allan Finch Sep 14 '12 at 8:40
There's a bit more clarification in the SRD but only for spheres; – Rob Sep 14 '12 at 8:46
up vote 7 down vote accepted

Yes, it could, unless the stirges are flying over 20' high - at the spells centrepoint anyway.

The SRD clarifies that any spell with a radius extends into the third dimension in a similar fashion.

Black tentacles has a 20' radius of effect and only effects creatures in the area of effect, therefore as long as the stirges have room to fly above that height they're safe, otherwise they're going to get grabbed.

Since the effect is a sphere they could squeeze past in a corner if there's room, I'd give them a flying roll for this to not miss a flap and become tenticalificed.

This does create another question however, how high do spells extend if they have an area of effect but don't have a radius (looking through a load of AOE spells they seem to have done a good job of covering this actually, most spells have a height specified or are a radius effect) Maybe I need a question "how high is a square?"

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A square is one square high (10 feet). – Zachiel Sep 14 '12 at 14:36
@Zachiel - A square is 5 feet high. – Cthos Sep 14 '12 at 19:04
Source for this? – Rob Sep 14 '12 at 19:42
When you move upwards you still use squares to measure vertical distances. D&D's world is divided in cubes, like in a Tomb Raider game, and every cube has a 10' base, so it also has a 10' height. The area in one square --> the spells extends upward "in a similar fashion" – Zachiel Sep 15 '12 at 8:38
@Zachiel, D&D uses 5ft. squares. It astonishes me that you don't know that, but feel confident commenting. – John Rhoades Dec 3 '12 at 5:15

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