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I'm trying to figure out which bonuses apply to Flame Spiral's Effect text:

Effect: Until the start of your next turn, any enemy that enters a square adjacent to you or starts its turn there takes 1d6 fire damage. An enemy can take this damage only once per turn.

Some of them very obviously do: Enhancement Bonus does, the sorcerer's bonus damage feature does, Gauntlets of Blood can, Implement Focus/Elemental damage feats can, etc. The following 4 bonuses are the ones I'm questioning, presuming that the damage is converted to Lightning or Radiant:

  1. Dragonshards: "You gain a +1 bonus to damage rolls with [typed] attacks that use the augmented weapon." Does "attacks" here apply to attack rolls (wouldn't work with Effect) or attack powers (would work with the Effect).

  2. Dual Implement Spellcaster: "When you use an arcane attack power and you are wielding a magic implement in each hand, you can add the off-hand implement’s enhancement bonus to damage rolls." This presumably works, but does it check for the implements when you use the power, when the Effect happens, or at both times?

  3. Gifts for the Queen: "When you hit with a lightning or radiant attack power, you gain a bonus to damage rolls on that attack..." Does "that attack" mean that attack roll (wouldn't work with the Effect) or that attack power (would work on that power, presuming that you hit.) See also for comparison the item below, which I'm pretty sure doesn't work.

  4. Ring of the Radiant Storm: "When you hit an enemy with a lightning or radiant power and deal damage to it, you can roll the damage twice and use either result." I'm pretty sure this doesn't work, because it very clearly links the damage and the hit, but I mention it in case I'm wrong and for way of comparison with GftQ above.

(Couldn't 4e's designers have come up with standardized phrasings?!)

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They did come up with standard phrasings - but they had to improve them as they went along. –  doppelgreener Sep 1 '13 at 20:51

1 Answer 1

up vote 8 down vote accepted

It involves rolling a die, therefore it's a damage roll.

Per the Glossary:

Attack: An attack roll and its effects, including any damage rolls. The word "attack" is sometimes used as shorthand for "attack power". Some attack powers include multiple attacks, and some powers, such as magic missile, are designated as attacks yet lack attack rolls (using such a power counts as making an attack if the power has a target).

1) A case can be made both ways on this one. Flame Spiral is obviously an attack power. The question is whether only its Attack & Hit lines constitute an attack, or whether the Effect line is also an attack. The glossary quote Brian Ballsun-Stanton was kind enough to point out to me could certainly be interpreted to mean that the Effect line was an attack (and if you're not the DM, it's the section I would point out to your DM to try to get this one ruled in your favor), but I'm not aware of an official ruling saying that that's really how it works, which means it's ultimately a DM judgement call. My group (and I suspect quite a few others) only count Hit lines for things like this, but that's still a house rule, regardless of how common it may be.

2) This one definitely does apply. You're rolling a die, so it's a damage roll. Flame Spiral is an arcane attack power. It checks when you roll the damage, though, so don't swap out that off-hand implement.

3 & 4 are both definitely no. They explicitly say "when you hit", so their benefits only apply to damage rolls in the Hit line of the power.

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