[RPG] What are the examples of a successful DC 30 Ability Check that uses a Skill


Simply put, are there official examples, such as a table, of DC 30 Ability Checks that use skills, for each skill?

I would like to see what the upper boundaries of a character's potential is for a skill, but I'm having difficulty finding any references to it.

That is, I understand what Athletics does, but I'm not sure what the maximum potential for an Athletics Check (about 30) would do.

Preferably, I would like to avoid the scaling examples in the book, such as how a Dexterity (Stealth) can be contested against a Wisdom (Perception) to be Hidden. These can be applied at any level, and aren't unique to a DC 30.

Best Answer

There isn't an official table

All we get is the typical difficulty class table that lists DC 30 as "Nearly Impossible".

There are very few examples that require high DCs. For DC 30:

  • Dimensional Shackles requires a DC 30 Strength(Athletics) check for the bound creature to break out.
  • Immovable Rod allows a DC 30 Strength check to move it 10 feet.

For DC 25 there is:

For DC 20:

  • Chains and manacles can be broken with DC 20 Strength checks
  • The Locking Pit trap can be pryed open on a DC 20 Strength check
  • Rolling Sphere can be slowed down with a DC 20 Strength check
  • Poison Needle and Sphere of Annihilation traps use DC 20 Intelligence (Investigation) to detect

With Strength we have a reasonable idea. A DC 20 (Hard) allows you to slow a 40 ton boulder with around 2 tons of force. A DC 30 (nearly Impossible) allows you to push/pull with 4 tons of force.

Clearly even "Hard" tasks are far beyond all but the most exceptional of normal humans.

There are a number of skills that scale, for example jump distance or carrying weight per Strength score:

  • 10 STR: Carry 150 lbs, jump 10 feet, high jump 3 feet
  • 20 STR: Carry 300 lbs, jump 20 feet, high jump 8 feet
  • 30 STR: Carry 450 lbs, jump 30 feet, high jump 12 feet

There are some high DC saves too:

  • A Kraken must make a DC 25 Constitution save to avoid throwing up after taking 50 damage from a swallowed creature
  • Some Ancient Dragons have a legendary wing attack that requires a DC 25 Dexterity save to avoid