Hindering Terrain, zones and other things and saves.
So I have been thinking about this for some time now, as it comes up from time to time and I've decided to change my ruling on how terrain, zones and similar work and interact with the saving throw for hindering terrain. After a lot of thought, this is how such things will work in my games from now onwards (This applies to both monsters and PCs - noting that lethal terrain rules are different for PCs than monsters. PCs if they would be killed automatically by say a ridiculous fall of 800+ feet or a black hole of doom terrain feature, get 3 saves - exactly like death saving throws and not a "save or die", which is stupid and not fun for PCs).
When do you get a saving throw?
You get a saving throw any time forced movement would send you into terrain, hazardous zones, traps or similar effects that cause automatic damage or status effects
. For example, if you are pushed into a Wall of Fire, you get a saving throw to fall prone at the edge of the Wall before being pushed into it. This is because the wall of fire does automatic damage on the forced movement, so will count as hindering terrain despite being a power. A giant pit will count as well and this is similar for any situation where you are falling off a ledge.
You get multiple saving throws as well for every time you are moved in and out of a dangerous terrain feature, trap or zone. For example you are slid 10 squares into a wall of fire, you fail your save and are slid in to take damage. The power slides you out of the zone and then back in, you get a second save
to avoid being forced into the terrain again. As soon as you save you are knocked prone at the edge of the hazard and you cannot be moved any further.
Another example, you are slid into a pool of acid that inflicts 1d8+8 acid damage (I'm making this up off the top of my head btw) on entering a square. You get a save. If you fail and are slid into a second square, if that ALSO inflicts damage you get another save and so on until you save. If you make a save you fall prone in the acid (which isn't probably the best resolution) and go no further. This is an example where every square of movement in the terrain does damage - you get a save for every square of movement that would inflict damage. Noting that if you are pushed 12 into a zone/terrain feature that doesn't do more damage for every square you move if you fail the initial save you can be moved where-ever the creature that did it wants.
A pit trap that has been exposed and is now a 10 foot deep pit. You get a save before falling in.
A ledge with a long fall.
A wall of fire after the wall has been created (As it inflicts damage when you enter it).
A zone that inflicts automatic damage when you enter the zone.
A river of lava.
Falling into a lake of acid.
Essentially: Will this inflict automatic damage or damage without an attack roll
when you enter it? Then it counts as hindering terrain and you get a saving throw.
When don't you get a saving throw?
Monster auras are specifically excluded
from this, as well as powers that make a conjuration such as a Flaming sphere (the damage is inflicted on your turn). In the case of a monsters Aura, it never grants a saving throw and in the case of powers, if they do not inflict damage at the time your movement is forced you don't get a saving throw. For example the hidden pit trap above before it is triggered doesn't grant a saving throw, because when the trap is triggered the attack against your reflex is the saving throw. Any trap, zone or terrain that requires an attack roll when you enter it does not
grant a saving throw - your "saving throw" is the attack against whatever defense it is attacking. This means you cannot save when being pushed into a zone like grease, that makes an attack against your defense but you will get a saving throw when pushed into a trap/zone that does automatic damage when you are forced into it (Like an exposed pit trap's falling damage or a Wall of Fire).
A hidden pit trap that will make an attack against your defense upon entering - but after it is exposed see above.
A trap with a non-damaging trigger (like a pressure plate or similar - unless the traps activation would inflict automatic damage and you were aware of the trap).
A zone that inflicts automatic damage at the beginning of your turn, but not when you are pushed into it. Similarly, you get no save if you are pushed into the zone or terrain and it has to attack you for its effect.
Terrain, zones and powers that do not inflict damage when you enter them
. This never grants a saving throw, so if a zone would damage you at the beginning of your turn it won't grant a save. The ruling here is meant to deal with stacking large amounts of automatic unpreventable damage with forced movement, for example a shift 12 power that lets you move a monster (Or PC for that matter) through a Wall of fire multiple times stacking up huge amounts of automatic damage. Or pushing something into and out of a zone multiple times that does damage for every square of movement the creature is pushed/slid/pulled through. Similarly for a terrain features that deal damage on entry like a puddle of acid, brimstone hail and a howling wind (all examples from my two current games).
Auras - Special example as a monsters aura never concedes a saving throw. It's an exception.
Do I get a saving throw?
A) Does it inflict automatic damage without an attack roll on entry or being moved next to it?
B) Is it a terrain feature, a zone, a conjuration or a trap?
If both are yes, then the answer is yes.