12
\$\begingroup\$

The description of the Periapt of Proof Against Poison (PoPAP) says that "poisons have no effect on you. You are immune to the poisoned condition and have immunity to poison damage."

So I'm wondering if a character could get drunk while wearing a PoPAP? There's no "drunk" status condition in D&D 5e, but drunkenness is caused because you've consumed enough alcohol to poison yourself, however slightly. Also, does the wearer of the PoPAP know they've been poisoned? Like for instance, if someone put spider venom in their food, would they know the food was poisoned when they ate it?

\$\endgroup\$
  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ You have two separate questions here - to get the best answers possible, I recommend asking them in separate posts. \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Oct 21 '16 at 14:23
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Of interest: Lethal Doses of Water, Caffeine and Alcohol \$\endgroup\$ – Makyen Oct 21 '16 at 20:37
20
\$\begingroup\$

Both of these are DM calls.

So I'm wondering if a character could get drunk while wearing a PoPAP? There's no "drunk" status condition in D&D 5e, but drunkenness is caused because you've consumed enough alcohol to poison yourself, however slightly.

The problem here is that (outside of things that deal Poison damage or grant the Poisoned condition) there isn't any really great definition of poison. "The dosage makes the poison," and even water can cause intoxication and death in sufficient doses.

We usually bunch things that kill us with a "small" dose into the poison category, and things that kill us with a "large" dose into the not-poison category, but there's a lot of leeway in the middle.

Things that are immune to poison being immune to alcohol is a common trope. Alcohol isn't necessary for us to live, and has a variety of negative consequences. Thus, poison.

On the other hand, the effects of alcohol are pretty mild in typical dosages. It's unlikely to kill you, and may not even have a significant impact on you if you consume it slowly. Thus, not poison.

Which way the magic judges, is up to your DM.

Like for instance, if someone put spider venom in their food, would they know the food was poisoned when they ate it?

I think the general rule for spells applies well enough here. For spells, it works like this:

Unless a spell has a perceptible effect, a creature might not know it was targeted by a spell at all. An effect like crackling lightning is obvious, but a more subtle effect, such as an attempt to read a creature's thoughts, typically goes unnoticed, unless a spell says otherwise.

So, does the spider venom have a specific flavor, smell, or texture? The character can still discern that. If not, then the character doesn't get a "your amulet of poison has protected you" warning.

Of course, your DM could just as easily rule that you can feel the magic working. That there's a tingle in your stomach as the poison is attacked, or that the periapt glows, or similar.

| improve this answer | |
\$\endgroup\$
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ As you say, the dosage makes the poison. I take poison immunity as meaning the dosage doesn't make the poison--you're immune to all forms of overdose. Since drunkeness is in effect harm from poison it won't happen. \$\endgroup\$ – Loren Pechtel Oct 21 '16 at 19:34
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Amusing note on that quote: The original phrasing actually says "only the dosis makes a thing not a poison". \$\endgroup\$ – Cubic Jun 27 at 8:47
1
\$\begingroup\$

Here's my take, look at what is the source/cause of the effect.

If a player was slipped...lets call it 'jamba juice'. It's not magical (like a potion), and it causes the same dice penalties and bonuses inebriation causes. You can't really justify it as anything else but poison or disease (maybe because it has bacteria in it) as the cause.

I'd rule that alcohol is a poison and you would be immune to its effects. I'd say any substance that could cause a game effect (no effect no reason to clarify), doesn't have a magical component to it (because then at that point...hey it's magic) or if it does that isn't explicitly labelled as poison (Poison Spell, Dagger of Venom, etc) and doesn't produce its effects solely by absurdly excessive consumption (IE: Water Poisoning.)

This could lead to players being idiots of course (like consuming tree leaves which I'd rule it doesn't kill you, but you don't get sustenance from it) but so be it.

As far as if the player knows they've been poisoned. Depends on how they got poisoned. Obviously if they get bitten by a Cobra, it would be obvious. Cut by a poisoned blade...I'd offer a high DC spot check. For food, I'd say raw wisdom check with DC depending on the poison and how well you do determines if it comes across as odd flavor or outright you know it's poisoned by the taste. Otherwise no, most of the time the pain or effects are the only things you can use to ID a poison. Stopping the cause, removes those effects.

| improve this answer | |
\$\endgroup\$
-3
\$\begingroup\$

Poison

a substance that is capable of causing the illness or death of a living organism when introduced or absorbed.

So by the definition I got from Google, I would say that since alcohol is a weak poison, it still is a poison and this the item works.

If you encountered poison in your food you might get a skill check to tell, but you do not get to automatically know.

| improve this answer | |
\$\endgroup\$
  • \$\begingroup\$ This is inaccurate according the wikipedia -1. \$\endgroup\$ – Snappie Oct 21 '16 at 14:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ Your link takes us to the biology definition, not the disambiguation one. \$\endgroup\$ – Fering Oct 21 '16 at 16:04
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Notice that water and oxygen are also poisons under this very loose definition. Does a Periapt of Proof Against Poison also prevent water or oxygen from “having an effect on you”? This is probably not a useful definition for answering this question. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Oct 21 '16 at 17:37
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Only in the effect that they are poisoning you. Drowning in water is not poisoning so it would not protect you in that way. \$\endgroup\$ – Fering Oct 21 '16 at 17:39
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I wasn't talking about drowning either. Water injected into the blood stream is “capable of causing illness or death … when introduced or absorbed” because it destroys blood cells, and drinking enough water (“absorbed”) can actually cause death from water poisoning. So: using a definition of “poison” that describes pretty much everything in the world isn't useful when the question is about where the line is between poisons and anything else. Another definition might be better. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Oct 21 '16 at 17:48

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.