How does the Darkvision ability (or spell) work beyond range? A lot of creatures have Darkvision: range 60 feet. Does darkvision simply stop working past there? Do you get penalties to sight-based checks (or aiming ranged weapons) past 60 feet?

Let's take a hypothetical straight, infinite tunnel that's pitch-black. A kobold with darkvision: 60 ft is standing in the corridor. Does it:

A) See perfectly for 60 feet, then there's a wall of blackness that it cannot perceive past. A creature standing exactly 61 feet away is perfectly concealed.

B) See perfectly for 60 feet, then starts taking range penalties every 60 feet after that. so a creature standing exactly 61 feet away has a -2 to be seen, a creature at 121 feet has a -4 to be seen, etc.

C) Some other option I hadn't foreseen.


Darkvision simply stops working there.

It's important to note that Darkvision isn't just really good eyesight in low levels of light - that would be low-light vision.

Instead, darkness functions similar to infrared vision. You cannot see colors, and your vision only goes a certain distance, after which it is blackness.


Darkvision is the extraordinary ability to see with no light source at all, out to a range specified for the creature.

As a result, after that range, they cannot see as there is no light source.

| improve this answer | |
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hrm. Addendum: In a place with inadequate lighting, would those with darkvision have low-light beyond the range of darkvision? \$\endgroup\$ – Wolfman Joe Sep 8 '14 at 19:30
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @WolfmanJoe - Only if they had both abilities, and the distances don't stack. \$\endgroup\$ – Bobson Sep 8 '14 at 19:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Bobson The PFSRD link I posted says: "Darkvision is black-and-white only (colors cannot be discerned)." \$\endgroup\$ – SurrealAnalysis Sep 8 '14 at 19:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ Though I did update it moments after posting it, so it's possible you got the old link. \$\endgroup\$ – SurrealAnalysis Sep 8 '14 at 19:38
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Creatures that "see" using darkvision don't use light for it, so there isn't any logical reason why many of them would have any kind of light based vision at all. \$\endgroup\$ – Quentin Sep 8 '14 at 20:17

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.