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Locate Creature (mage spell) debate

 
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Lanthorn
GreySage


Joined: Sep 09, 2009
Posts: 2430
Location: SW WA state (Highvale)

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2016 8:30 am    Post subject: Locate Creature (mage spell) debate Reply with quote

Please access your own copy from The Tome of Magic and read the 4th level mage spell named "Locate Creature."

Question: If the creature is dead, can this spell locate it? I am in a debate with a fellow player/DM on this issue. I will offer my stance later after a few of you have chimed in.

Your turn.

-Lanthorn
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AuldDragon
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Joined: Feb 12, 2014
Posts: 116
Location: Maryland, USA

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2016 11:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would say no. I would consider a corpse to be an object, which the spell can't locate. I would also not allow it to locate undead, golems, and similar creatures that blur the line between alive and not alive.

There is also a Locate Remains spell (level 1) in the Wizard's Spell Compendium if locating a corpse is required.

Jeff
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xo42
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Joined: Jan 11, 2009
Posts: 218
Location: Montgomery, Alabama

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2016 4:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the spell would locate the (now dead) creature if for no other reason than the spell description doesn't say it won't identify creatures that are currently dead. I can see your point AuldDragon that the creature is now an object, however since it was at one time a living creature I think that gives it more of a "presence" than an object like a book or a door has and I think the spell would indicate it's location, even when dead.
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Cebrion
Black Hand of Oblivion
Black Hand of Oblivion


Joined: Feb 16, 2003
Posts: 3733
Location: So. Cal

PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2016 11:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll agree with AuldDragon and say that the target can't be dead, inert remains. A corpse is the remains of a person/creature, but isn't a person/creature. If you did include dead remains, where would it end? "I was able to locate the creature...well, its dust pile (as it has been dead for 100,000 years)...behind the stone altar. Totally a creature though." Razz Um...no. A dust pile is no more a creature than a dead body is. Better to port over the 3.5E spell find corpse, which does what its name says. It also finds undead.

A construct (i.e. golems, etc.) is not a creature, but an object (an animated one), so locate creature wouldn't work on them, but locate object would.

As to undead, I would consider them to be creatures (not being literal inanimate matter, and certainly not being objects). Then you have a spell for objects and another for persons/creatures. Or, you can port over the find corpse spell, and then you have spells for the objects, the persons/creatures, and for the undead. Without that spell though, I would allow undead to be the target of a locate creature spell.
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Lanthorn
GreySage


Joined: Sep 09, 2009
Posts: 2430
Location: SW WA state (Highvale)

PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2016 8:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

AuldDragon wrote:
There is also a Locate Remains spell (level 1) in the Wizard's Spell Compendium if locating a corpse is required.

Jeff


AuldDragon for the slam dunk! on the answer! I'd completely forgotten/overlooked that spell! This is why I ask so many questions. Collectively we are more knowledgeable than our individual parts. So bear with me next time I have a query.

Thank you all, and honorable mention to our draconic friend.

-Lanthorn
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