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Questions tagged [nonlethal]

For questions about attacks and abilities that are designed to subdue a foe nonlethally (possibly by knocking it out or incapacitating it), especially the mechanics surrounding such mechanics or abilities. For questions about designing encounters as a whole instead, such as those where enemies choose not to kill party members, see [encounter-design].

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How do the "Vorpal" and "Merciful" magic weapon special abilities interact on a crit?

Say someone manages to either find or create a +1 merciful vorpal weapon and confirms a crit – what happens? I personally see 2 possible outcomes: Merciful takes effect and stops vorpal from ...
Pacattack's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
1k views

What creatures are immune to nonlethal damage?

Inspired by this comment (and the question to which it’s found under), what creatures in PF2e are immune to non lethal damage? Is there a complete list?
LessPop_MoreFizz's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
161 views

Does taking nonlethal damage count as being damaged?

The protean scourge (Monster Manual III, 126) has the Split ability the beginning of which says: Split (Su): When damaged, a protean scourge splits into two identical versions of itself [...] Page ...
Chemus's user avatar
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19 votes
3 answers
2k views

Is there a way to knock a creature out from a distance?

Per the below rules, it looks like that a PC can only knock a creature out with a melee attack: Sometimes an attacker wants to incapacitate a foe, rather than deal a killing blow. When an attacker ...
Toto's user avatar
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29 votes
5 answers
6k views

What mechanic is there to disable a threat instead of killing it?

Is there a built-in mechanic in D&D5e for when the players choose to disable or neutralize a threat as opposed to kill outright?
Regress.arg's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
1k views

How can I turn nonlethal damage done to an enemy into lethal damage?

I'm looking for ways to ensure an enemy dies on the exact blow I want them to, and one of the solutions I came up with was to drop them with nonlethal damage, then convert it to lethal. Is there any ...
ThanosMaravel's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

Can a spellcaster choose to deal nonlethal damage with a touch weapon-like spell?

The rules for nonlethal damage state: You can use a melee weapon that deals lethal damage to deal nonlethal damage instead, but you take a –4 penalty on your attack roll. Does this allow for a ...
Wannabe Warlock's user avatar
13 votes
3 answers
4k views

Can any creature be knocked out?

Reading the question Can you knock a Banshee unconscious?, I see that mu is too short's answer quotes the rules from the Player's Handbook on knocking a creature out, saying that: When an attacker ...
eirikdaude's user avatar
13 votes
3 answers
6k views

Can phenomenal amounts of damage still be non-lethal?

As a follow up to this question: is it possible to deal non-lethal damage even after dealing an enormous amount of damage to a target in a single turn?
Clarus_Nox's user avatar
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11 votes
2 answers
885 views

Is there any reason not to always try to knockout rather than damage?

I was re-reading the rules of Call of Cthulhu (5th Edition) today whilst preparing an adventure and saw the knock out rules: Use this rule to render a target unconscious rather than to do physical ...
Averroes's user avatar
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12 votes
5 answers
3k views

Can I kneecap an enemy instead of killing it?

Let's say that an enemy goblin is escaping from battle and a ranged Ranger wants to stop him without killing him (e.g. by hitting him to the leg). How is this managed? I am interested both in the case ...
firion's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
353 views

Can dragon fire adept's breath weapon deal nonlethal damage?

Dragonfire adept player wants to gain Vow of Peace feat, which demands you to deal nonlethal damage to humanoids and monstrous humanoids. Is it possible or not? Please note, that he has Vow of Poverty ...
Momonga-sama's user avatar
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10 votes
1 answer
3k views

Can you knock out Animated Armor and/or Zombies?

When making a melee attack against a creature that reduces it to 0 HP the attacker can declare the attack incapacitating rather than lethal: "the attacker can make this choice the instant the damage ...
nitsua60's user avatar
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48 votes
6 answers
13k views

Can massive damage knock out rather than causing instant death?

Suppose, as happened last night, a character intends to subdue rather than kill an opponent. She made a melee attack, hit, declared her intent to knock out. The damage roll was enough to reduce the ...
nitsua60's user avatar
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17 votes
4 answers
39k views

Can spells or spell-like abilities do non-lethal damage?

I'm working on a Paladin/Warlock combination, based off of Pureferret and Miniman's work, and as part of this, I noticed Miniman's remark that Repelling Blast won't be that useful, because as a ...
Shalvenay's user avatar
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26 votes
11 answers
2k views

Excuses for opponents using nonlethal force? [closed]

In plotting out low-level encounters at the start of a campaign (especially with new players) I prefer to create opponents who don't want to kill the PCs right away. Instead, I generally have them ...
Epiphanis's user avatar
  • 2,606
7 votes
6 answers
2k views

Knocking out NPCs

Alright, so I'm thinking up a stealth based mission that involves sneaking into a guarded manor and stealing an artifact. Needless to say, it would be best if this was a quiet affair. I have most of ...
Mitharlic's user avatar
  • 2,194