A creature, including a ghost, can see only a limited distance on the ethereal plane, due to the nature of the plane itself.

When a ghost is manifested, they are still on the ethereal plane, but are under the effects of the manifest ability. This would seem to imply that the vision is limited, however the Prime Material does not have the same visual qualities as the ethereal plane, which might imply that it is not limited.

(If not, that might explain why ghosts manifest....)

How far can a manifested ghost see into the Prime Material?


I would say that if nothing is specified about the ghost's vision explicitly, then it is just like any other monster type / playable race.

Those monster who are blind usually specify it in the monster's stat block. If they have the ability to use scent, have blindsight or darkvision (and any other such power/weakness for that matter), it is usually specified.

If nothing is specified, then I would consider it to be "normal vision" ... like those playable races that do not have darkvision do not specify that they have "normal vision", I would personally rule it is the same for the ghost/other monsters (as I think that is what is intended by the rules writers).

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    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already, and check out the help center for more guidance. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Jul 5 '19 at 19:29

Found it!

Manual of the Planes, p.55 says, in part:

Unlike most planes, the Ethereal Plane allows vision across the planar border to the plane it’s coexistent with: the Material Plane. No matter where you are on the Ethereal Plane, you can see the corresponding part of the Material Plane. Vision is limited, however, to 60 feet both on the Ethereal Plane and onto the Material Plane. Furthermore, the Material Plane appears as if wrapped in fog, so ethereal observers can’t discern precise details such as normal writing. It’s easy to discern faces and landmarks, however...

Therefore, manifested or not, a ghost (or any character or creature on the ethereal plane for that matter) cannot see more than 60' on either the Prime Material or the Ethereal Plane.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think that is a correct extrapolation from what is being communicated. The part about vision being limited refers to anyone standing on the Ethereal looking on to the Material or further in to Ethereal. But when a ghost manifests it is both on the Material and Ethereal. The Ghost template mentions that the base creature doesn't lose its special abilities except as noted. Special abilities meaning qualities in this case could be low light vision, dark vision and so forth. \$\endgroup\$ – MichaelDorf Jul 5 '19 at 21:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MichaelDorf please make your comment an answer with supporting rules text. \$\endgroup\$ – nijineko Jul 7 '19 at 18:31

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