'Discern next of kin' spell - does the target know their mind is being read in any way? What about LoS?

This sounds like a cool spell, but there is no mention of whether or not the target knows someone is reading their thoughts in any way. The descriptor only mentions a Will save is necessary. This is a crucial bit of information, since it would change the spell drastically if the target would know what is happening (or worse, who is doing this).

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Another thing is LoS; the spell has 60ft. range, but no mention of LoS, just 'target'. Is there a prevalent core rule that says spells which have a target require LoS unless otherwise mentioned, or can I just scry on someone as long as I know their general whereabouts within 60ft.?

Thank you.

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level 1
· 5y
A good rule of thumb is to ask yourself which interpretation better serves the interests of the game.

Also whether an interpretation would make something completely useless, non-functional, or game-breaking in either direction.

level 1
· 5y


Succeeding on a Saving Throw

A creature that successfully saves against a spell that has no obvious physical effects feels a hostile force or a tingle, but cannot deduce the exact nature of the attack. Likewise, if a creature’s saving throw succeeds against a targeted spell, you sense that the spell has failed. You do not sense when creatures succeed on saves against effect and area spells.

A creature that succeeds on its saving throw is aware that something happened, but it doesn't know what happened unless it perceives the casting and makes the Spellcraft check to recognize the spell.

Unless someone has some other guidance that I'm missing, I'd rule that a creature that fails its saving throw against a mind-affecting spell doesn't pay attention to the fact that a spell was cast on it. The spell implicitly prevents the creature from reacting in a way that would keep the spell from having the stated effect.

In some cases, a GM might rule that the creature becomes aware of what you did to it after the spell ends. The D&D 5e version of charm person explicitly states that the charmed creature knows that it was charmed and who charmed it after the spell ends, but most Pathfinder spells don't include this clause. Because there's nothing more specific in the Pathfinder rules, I typically have the affected creature realize after the fact that something doesn't feel right, but it doesn't automatically know whom to blame unless it makes the skill checks to interpret what it remembers.

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/#TOC-Aiming-a-Spell says

Some spells have a target or targets. You cast these spells on creatures or objects, as defined by the spell itself. You must be able to see or touch the target, and you must specifically choose that target. You do not have to select your target until you finish casting the spell.

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I interpret that to mean that for any spell that targets, you must have line of effect to the target.