In D&D 4e, would a player marked with ink from star indigo seeds (which are said to shine as bright as candle) be penalized when trying to sneak through the dark or elsewhere?

This is from the compendium:

Star-Indigo Seeds, 1 pouch

The star-indigo plant grows only in the wild fields of the Feywild. By day, the plant’s flowers resemble those of any other vegetation. In the twilight just after sunset, its flowers glow slightly. At midnight, gazing down on a field of star-indigo plants is like looking at the night sky in reverse, as its flowers shine as brightly as the stars. Feywild creatures often arrange star-indigo seeds in symbols and messages that can be seen only in the dark of night. Dyes made from star-indigo plants pass their nocturnal glowing quality to clothing and ink, and an object colored with these dyes emits light equivalent to that of a candle.


1 Answer 1


Generating light in an environment shrouded in darkness sounds like an opportunity to use a situational modifier that makes the stealth roll more difficult. I am having difficulty finding how candlelight held by the person attempting stealth would affect their roll, but I do not expect the penalty to exceed -2. It may also affect cover or concealment.

If the Star Indigo takes them below Total Concealment/Superior Cover(included for relevance to hidden, not darkness), it means they cannot remain hidden.

If this dye does not remove the aforementioned level of cover/concealment then there is no penalty to the hidden state.

There doesn't appear to be a mechanical notification of increased difficulty in the text you've provided, so it sounds like it's up to your whim.

In environments where lightsources are plentiful (poorly-to-moderately lit city streets) this modifier may not apply to its full extent, or at all.

A counter to this may be to become invisible; however, it is unclear if the dye responds to invisiblity (and may be up to GM fiat).

"Invisible" is still detectable, but not by light-based vision which means glowing, a normally visual phenomenon, wouldn't matter.

"Hidden" means undetectable, and may be the more pressing matter for the person attempting to stealth to and fro.


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