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At 7th level a Dread gains immunity to fear, but by this point they already have an aura of fear which causes all creatures within to lose immunity to fear and take penalties on saves against fear.

Since a Dread would be a creature within 10 feet of itself, would it be affected by its own aura?

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Remember, the answer to this may vary depending on the state of consciousness of the Dread in question. –  Metool Jun 4 at 7:15
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I suppose the obvious follow-up question is, what happens if there are two Dread within 10 feet of each other? And does it matter whether they're considered enemies of each other or not? –  Ilmari Karonen Jun 9 at 8:15

2 Answers 2

up vote 7 down vote accepted

The short answer is that NO, it does not cancel out their own immunity. As people have pointed out, this is a problem beacause "aura" has not been defined in the rules.

We will add errata to our powers and abilities to denote this, so that things become clear.

Andreas Rönnqvist

Dreamscarred Press

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Ultimately, I don't think attempting to define "aura" is too useful, because the word is used to mean so many different things in the game (the things that detect magic or detect evil highlight, the supernatural abilities of paladins and liches, as well as spells like holy aura); I think it's rather that each of these effects needs to spell out when the origin of the effect is exempt from it (since by default he would be included). –  KRyan Jun 4 at 20:49
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Welcome! We're always glad to have authors and publishers around. Be welcome and ask some questions :) –  Brian Ballsun-Stanton Jun 6 at 5:23

Aura of Fear states:

At 3rd level, a dread radiates a palpably daunting aura that causes all enemies within 10 feet to take a –4 penalty on saving throws against fear effects.

(emphasis mine)

As the character is not her own enemy, then no, this does not affect her.

An Aside about RAI:

I suppose you could read the following sentence in isolation of context and come up with the idea that it does:

Creatures that are normally immune to fear lose that immunity while within 10 feet of a dread with this ability.

However, there's precedent for the idea that negative effects don't usually hit the person who cast them even if they're in the center of the effect. Most other "Aura" abilities specify; for example, Elemental Aura:

Creatures adjacent to you when this spell is cast and at the start of your turn take 2d6 points of energy damage of the selected type.

(you cannot be adjacent to yourself)

Archon's Aura:

Any hostile creature within a 20-foot radius of you must make a Will save to resist the effects of this aura.

(you are not hostile to yourself)

Couple that with the preceding sentence which specifically calls out enemies as being effected by the aura and you have what I believe to be the intent: the aura only effects enemies, period. You and your allies do not lose immunity to fear.

Dreamscarred Press Specifics

It was pointed out in the comments that my examples are core Pathfinder material from Paizo while this class was written by Dreamscarred Press. So I combed the Psionics material and found more examples of this kind of confusion. Corrosive Aura:

You surround yourself with a corrosive aura, damaging all who come near. Each creature that ends its turn in your square or adjacent to you takes 1d6 points of acid damage.

By definition you always end your turn in your square. So you'd take 1d6 damage a round.

Worse, Regenerative Aura clearly intends to include you:

Psionic power radiates out from your body, causing all living creatures within range to rapidly heal as their healing ability is hyperaccelerated.

Untouchable Aura is the only one written to exclude you:

Anyone trying to make a melee attack against you must succeed on a Will save or lose their attack action as they recoil in fear from the images inside their mind.

(Unless you attack yourself).

If I were the DM, I'd just rule that DSP is terrible at explaining what they mean and go with the solution I offered earlier, because this stuff is giving me a headache, but there's evidence to support a ruling the opposite way on both this and Corrosive Aura. I'd not rule one of them one way and the other the other way, I'd go both or none.

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It might be difficult to argue precedent based on monsters written by someone else (e.g. Paizo, when the dread was written by Dreamscarred Pres). Does DSP have any creatures that use verbiage like the elemental aura or archon? –  KRyan Jun 4 at 13:00
    
Also, @AndreasRönnqvist could answer the question of intent directly. –  KRyan Jun 4 at 13:01
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Thankyou for pointing out instances where we could have been clearer, I'll do my best to ensure that those get into the errata. –  Andreas Rönnqvist Jun 4 at 20:19
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Just a point on Untouchable Aura - Confusion could indeed force you to attack yourself while UA was active... –  YogoZuno Jun 4 at 21:48
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I like the answer as is. (They don't say the same thing.) –  Jonathan Hobbs Jun 6 at 2:21

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