PF2 Rules Mode Exploration

Pathfinder 2 – Rules Review

Mode – Exploration

In pathfinder 2 there are three main modes of the game, Encounter Mode, Exploration Mode and Downtime Mode. Here I am examining the Exploration mode and where to find all the references in the game.

Characters enter Exploration Mode when you have stowed, sheathed or unloaded your weapons. You also enter into this mode when you ready to travel or step away from character by character interactions via initiative.

What is Exploration Mode?

Exploration Mode is meant for when a narrative of what your doing without needing timing to work out order of play. “A mode of play used for travelling, investigating, and otherwise exploring. The GM determines the flow of time.”

Exploration Mode Activities

The bases of this can be found in the Core Rulebook on page 479.

List of all known starting activities:

  • Avoid Notice (p479) – Exploration
  • Defend (p479) – Exploration
  • Detect Magic (p479) – Concentration, Exploration
  • Follow the Expert (p479) – Auditory, Concentrate, Exploration, Visual
  • Hustle (p480) – Exploration, Move
  • Investigate (p480) – Concentrate, Exploration
  • Refocus (Core p300)
  • Repeat a Spell (p480) – Concentrate, Exploration
  • Scout (p480) – Concentrate, Exploration
  • Search (p480) – Concentrate, Exploration

Skill based activities:

  • Borrow an Arcane Spell (p241) – Concentrate, Exploration. You use Arcana to prepare a spell from someone else’s spellbook.
  • Coerce (p247) – Auditory, Concentrate, Emotion, Exploration, Linguistic, Mental. You use Intimidation to threaten a creature so it does what you want.
  • Cover Tracks (p252) – Concentrate, Exploration, Move. You use Survival to obscure your passing.
  • Decipher Writing (p234) – Concentrate, Exploration, Secret. You use a suitable skill to understand archaic, esoteric, or obscure texts.
  • Gather Information (p246) – Exploration, Secret. You use Diplomacy to canvass the area to learn about a specific individual or topic
  • Identify Alchemy (p245) – Concentrate, Exploration, Secret. You use Craft and alchemist’s tools to identify an alchemical item
  • Identify Magic (p238) – Concentrate, Exploration, Secret. Using a variety of skills, you can learn about a magic item, location, or ongoing effect.
  • Impersonate (p245) – Concentrate, Exploration, Manipulate, Secret. You use Deception and usually a disguise kit to create a disguise.
  • Learn a Spell (p238) – Concentrate, Exploration. You use the skill corresponding to the spell’s tradition to gain access to a new spell.
  • Make and Impression (p246) – Auditory, Concentrate, Exploration, Linguistic, Mental. You use Diplomacy to make a good impression on someone.
  • Repair (p243) – Exploration, Manipulate. With a repair kit and the Crafting skill, you fix a damaged item.
  • Sense Direction (p252) Exploration, Secret. You use Survival to get a sense of where you are or determine the cardinal directions.
  • Squeeze (p241) – Exploration, Move. Using Acrobatics, you squeeze though very tight spaces.
  • Track (p252) – Concentrate, Exploration, Move. You use Survival to find and follow creatures’ tracks.
  • Treat Wounds (p249) – Exploration, Healing, Manipulate. You use Medicine to treat a living creature’s wounds.

Traits used in Exploration Mode

  • Auditory – Auditory actions and effects rely on sound. An action with the auditory trait can be successfully performed only if the creature using the action can speak or otherwise produce the required sounds. A spell or effect with the auditory trait has its effect only if the target can hear it. This applies only to sound-based parts of the effect, as determined by the GM. This is different from a sonic effect, which still affects targets who can’t hear it (such as deaf targets) as long as the effect itself makes sound.
  • Concentrate – An action with this trait requires a degree of mental concentration and discipline.
  • Emotion – his effect alters a creature’s emotions. Effects with this trait always have the mental trait as well. Creatures with special training or that have mechanical or artificial intelligence are immune to emotion effects.
  • Exploration – An activity with this trait takes more than a turn to use, and can usually be used only during exploration mode.
  • Healing – A healing effect restores a creature’s body, typically by restoring Hit Points, but sometimes by removing diseases or other debilitating effects.
  • Linguistic – An effect with this trait depends on language comprehension. A linguistic effect that targets a creature works only if the target understands the language you are using.
  • Manipulate – You must physically manipulate an item or make gestures to use an action with this trait. Creatures without a suitable appendage can’t perform actions with this trait. Manipulate actions often trigger reactions.
  • Mental – A mental effect can alter the target’s mind. It has no effect on an object or a mindless creature.
  • Move – An action with this trait involves moving from one space to another.
  • Secret – The GM rolls the check for this ability in secret.
  • Visual – A visual effect can affect only creatures that can see it. This applies only to visible parts of the effect, as determined by the GM.

Content Updates

  • 2021-08-05 – Updated the layout and menu.
  • 2020-06-16 – Added Refocus
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By thedarkelf007

I am a long term gamer, I run 6 RPG's a fortnight, host board game, card game and LANs each about once a quarter and have an addiction to buying more games. Games I am currently running are Pathfinder (1st and 2nd Edition) and Dungeons and Dragons (5th Edition).

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