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Can you combine the Witches' Charm Hex and Diplomacy to significantly change someone's attitude?

Can diplomacy be used at all on a subject under the influence of the Witches' Charm Hex?

Charm (Su): A witch can charm an animal or humanoid creature within 30 feet by beckoning and speaking soothing words. This improves the attitude of an animal or humanoid creature by 1 step, as if the witch had successfully used the Diplomacy skill. The effect lasts for a number of rounds equal to the Witch’s Intelligence modifier. A Will save negates this effect. Whether or not the save is successful, a creature cannot be the target of this hex again for 1 day.

Diplomacy (under "Try Again") says:

You cannot use Diplomacy to influence a given creature’s attitude more than once in a 24 hour period.

However it wasn't actually a Diplomacy check, just "as if". Still RAW (rules as written) this means no, right? RAI (rules as intended), was "as if diplomacy" merely descriptive (i.e. in a similar fashion to), or did it mean to prevent a diplomacy attempt? The Charm Person spell does not have this clause so discussions about how Charm Person and Diplomacy interact may not be valid.

If you could use diplomacy (perhaps if it's a different character doing the talking); could this be followed by a diplomacy attempt for shifting the attitude another 2 steps?

Thus could it go from hostile to unfriendly with the hex and from unfriendly to a better state by diplomacy? When the hex fades, what would their remaining state be?

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I'm cleaning up this question to meet our site standards (one coherent question). Just to get it out of the way, saves to witch hexes are all the same just like spell saves are all the same, 10 + 1/2 level + INT mod, and 1/day means 1/day for you, other witches may still hit them with the hex (this was clarified in a FAQ). Natural ones do not always fail skill checks. Yes, a lower stat gives a penalty on saves or other resistance calculations. –  mxyzplk May 19 '13 at 13:26

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

Probably.

There has been no clarification on the ambiguous "as if you had used Diplomacy" language. In general it's accepted that you can lay the Charm Person spell on someone, improve their attitude further with Diplomacy, and since those are two separate effects, when the spell fades they're left with however many levels of attitude improvement the Diplomacy did. As the Charm hex is of small benefit (1 level improvement) and short-lived (albeit a standard action and near undetectable), I see no reason not to allow it. Do note that the Charm hex works on animals and humanoids but Diplomacy only works on humanoids (whose language you can speak) so you'll need Handle Animal to get more out of animals.

Also if you're going this route please notice that before Helpful, there's additional checks required to get them to do things (with the Charm Person spell these are replaced with opposed CHA checks):

If a creature’s attitude toward you is at least indifferent, you can make requests of the creature. This is an additional Diplomacy check, using the creature’s current attitude to determine the base DC, with one of the following modifiers. Once a creature’s attitude has shifted to helpful, the creature gives in to most requests without a check, unless the request is against its nature or puts it in serious peril. Some requests automatically fail if the request goes against the creature’s values or its nature, subject to GM discretion.

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The ruling I've generally seen is that when an ability functions "as" another ability or is "otherwise identical" to another ability, those abilities are still separate and treated as such when comparing things like bonus stacking, limited uses/day, that sort of deal. Admittedly I don't have a citation for you, but it makes me think your answer's probably right. –  Lord_Gareth May 19 '13 at 14:05
    
Yeah, otherwise it would say "allows the Witch to make a Diplomacy check as a standard action blee blee..." –  mxyzplk May 19 '13 at 15:11

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