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Must the direction of a pull remain the same for the entire pull, or can the direction the target is pulled in change mid-movement?

One example: Say I use an ability to pull a target two squares, but after only one square, moving the target again in that direction would no longer be viable (an obstruction appears, etc). Will the target continue to be pulled? Can or should it change to a viable direction?

Another example: Say a Caster (C) and her Target (T) are standing like this (where o is an empty square):

T o o
o o o
o C o

Would pulling the target two squares to the target's east be a viable pull, or would it be unviable after one movement because the target would have to be pulled downwards too?

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In my understanding of pulls, the target must move closer to you. So in this case the target would get pulled diagonally to the square in front of the caster. –  RMDan Jun 23 '13 at 5:06
    
If I understand you right, you're pretty much just asking "how do pulls work?" If so, this possible duplicate answers your question: rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/8767/… –  SevenSidedDie Jun 23 '13 at 5:12
    
@SevenSidedDie The two questions are asking very different things. –  doppelgreener Jun 23 '13 at 5:16

1 Answer 1

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Yes, you can change the direction of a pull in mid-movement - the target does not have to move in a straight line. The target cannot be pulled past you so that it starts moving away again - that would be a slide.

Pulling has a pretty simple definition:

Pulling a target means that each square of the forced movement must bring the target closer to the creature or effect that is pulling it.

That's it. That's all there is to it. A "Pull" - in the game's abstract terms - is forced movement wherein each tile of movement is closer to you than the last. There's nothing in there about straight lines or momentum. You can pull someone in a zigzag, so long as every individual movement between squares brings the target closer to you.

In addition, Forced Movement says the distance you move someone is a maximum: you can move someone any distance up to that amount, including not at all. This means you pull someone either until they cannot be pulled closer, or until you decide you want to stop pulling them.

Regarding your second example

Actually, this isn't a viable pull in any way: the target and both tiles to the east of it are the same distance away from the caster: two tiles away. In 4th edition, diagonal movement is the same as horizontal or vertical movement. In this situation, the two viable pulls are these:

x o o        x o o
T o o   or   o T o
o C o        o C o

where x is the target's old position, for reference.

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