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Advanced Race Guide Preview: Letting the Cat out of the Bag

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Actually, we are letting the cat out of the book. Last week, after previewing the tengu section of the Advanced Race Guide, we asked you what you wanted to see next. We received many good suggestions, but it seems that many of you wanted to see the catfolk.

These lithe and agile creatures make excellent monks, rangers, and especially rogues, but they also have a mysterious side, as they are sometimes able to control luck and can draw on supernatural powers and spells that are very catlike in nature. This week’s preview examines just some examples of these themes in the catfolk section.


Illustration by Kieran Yanner

Catfolk Rogue Talents

The following rogue talents can only be taken by catfolk.

Deadly Scratch (Ex): A catfolk rogue with this talent can apply poison to her claws without accidentally poisoning herself. A catfolk rogue must have the cat’s claws racial trait and the poison use class feature before taking this talent.

Disarming Luck (Ex): Once per day, when a catfolk rogue attempts to disable a device and fails by 5 or more, she can reroll the check as a free action. She must take the result of the reroll, even if it’s worse than the original roll.

Graceful Faller (Ex): A catfolk rogue with this talent lands on her feet even when she takes lethal damage from a fall. If the catfolk rogue also has the nimble faller racial trait, she takes damage from any fall as if it were 20 feet shorter than it actually is.

Nimble Climber (Ex): A catfolk rogue with this talent gains a +4 bonus on Climb checks. If she has the climber racial trait, she can take 10 on her Climb checks even when in immediate danger or distracted.

Single-Minded Appraiser (Ex): A catfolk rogue with this talent is skilled at determining the value of sparkly things. She can always take 10 when appraising gems and jewelry.

Vicious Claws (Ex): A catfolk with this talent uses d8s to roll sneak attack damage instead of d6s, but only when she uses her claws to make the sneak attack. A catfolk rogue must have the cat’s claws racial trait before taking this talent.

Catfolk Feats

Catfolk have access to the following feats.

Black Cat
Bad luck befalls those who dare to cross you.
Prerequisite: Catfolk.
Benefit: Once per day as an immediate action, when you are hit by a melee attack, you can force the opponent who made the attack to reroll it with a –4 penalty. The opponent must take the result of the second attack roll. This is a supernatural ability.
Special: If you take this feat and don’t already have all black fur, your fur turns completely black when you take this feat.

Catfolk Magic Items

The following magic items are often created and used by catfolk.

Daredevil Softpaws
Aura faint enchantment; CL 3rd
Slot feet; Price 1,400 gp; Weight 1 lb.

Description

This pair of magical softpaw boots (see above) allows the catfolk wearing them to gain extra maneuverability while moving through hazardous areas. As a free action, the wearer can click her heels together to grant herself a +5 competence bonus on Acrobatics checks made to move through threatened squares or to move through an enemy’s space without provoking attacks of opportunity for up to 10 rounds per day. The rounds need not be consecutive. Furthermore, anytime the wearer of the boots successfully moves though the space of an enemy without provoking an attack of opportunity, she gains a +2 bonus on attack rolls against that enemy until the end of her turn.

Construction

Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, cat’s grace; Cost 700 gp

Catfolk Spells

Catfolk have access to the following spells.

Steal breath
School transmutation [air]; Level bard 2, druid 2, sorcerer/wizard 2, witch 2
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S
Range close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Target one living creature
Duration 1 round (see text)
Saving Throw Fortitude negates; see text; Spell Resistance yes
You pull the breath from a creature’s lungs, dealing damage and leaving it unable to speak, use breath weapons, or cast spells with verbal components. If the target fails its saving throw, it takes 2d6 points of damage, and it cannot speak, use breath weapons, or do anything else requiring breathing, and a visible line of swirling air leaves the target’s mouth and enters your mouth.
If, during the duration, the target moves out of range or line of effect to you, the spell immediately ends. This spell has no effect on creatures that do not need to breathe air.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland
Designer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Catfolk Kieran Yanner Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
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Dark Archive Star Voter 2013

Is steal breath only for catfolk? Cause that is an awsome spell...

Dark Archive

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Ok what the heck happend the catfolk seem to have gone from the mostly humanoid look in the Bestiary to Khajit? Also oh god not the multijointed (No way in hell I am ever wearing boots) feet


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I would assume so. Or that it can be learned only by being taught by a Catfolk.

But man, this book looks better and better with each passing week. I especially like the Black Cat feat. Cool flavor to it :P


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Kevin Mack wrote:
Ok what the heck happend the catfolk seem to have gone from the mostly humanoid look in the Bestiart to Khajit?

I'm assuming it's just a slight variation in their appearance and that they have a variety of possible features.

Beyond that though, considering we see an item labeled as boots, and the Bestiary 3 shows a humanoid form with feet and this form has paws (and no boots), I think we can just say it's artistic liberties taken with the image.

Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Nice abilities but hate the art for them, the bestiary 3 version is an awesome pic but this just horrible.


I also like the black cat feat!

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
Nice abilities but hate the art for them, the bestiary 3 version is an awesome pic but this just horrible.

Yeah hope if there is other art in the book it is more like the Bestiary and less this

Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The Vicous Claws rouge talent is awesome though. Also like the Nimble Climber rouge talent as well.


Interesting abilities. The Black Cat feat looks like a good thing to save for a critical threat or some other rainy day.

One thing though--for Nimble Climber, there's already a rogue talent of that name in the APG. Also, even if you take it with Climber, and get the ability to take 10 with a +4, it seems worse than just taking Wall Climber and gaining the ability to take 10 at a +8 with a 20 foot climb speed, all for one talent and for any race.

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Agreed love the talents although I am curious if Something similair to catfolk pounce made it into the book.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

It has to be said:

catfolk rogue

Paizo Employee Designer

ulgulanoth wrote:
Is steal breath only for catfolk? Cause that is an awsome spell...

It's a spell available to and likely developed by catfolk, but other casters can learn it. There is nothing in the spell rules that limits it to catfolk.


12 people marked this as a favorite.

I don't think the art should really matter that much to people. In case anyone has forgotten, this is a fantasy game and you can imagine creatures in it looking like what ever you want. And anyway, it's not bad artwork at all. Sure, it looks a little more cat than folk, but don't crap all over someone else's art just because because it didn't turn out the way you liked. Personally, I prefer Wayne Reynolds to most other artists who illustrates for Paizo, but I still appreciate other people's contributions.

I'm sorry if I seem grumpy. I just get tired of seeing everyone complaining so much every time a new preview comes out.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
Nice abilities but hate the art for them, the bestiary 3 version is an awesome pic but this just horrible.

I like the art from B3 for them better too. But the art here is not bad art, just not what I think of when i think cat person. Just saying I don't think it is "horrible" art. Kinda like a lot of the huge horn tiefling art.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Also, I'm not trying to create a trend of week-by-week animalistic race previews but I'd really like to see one for ratfolk. I want to make a ratfolk alchemist and I'm hoping there'll be some pretty awesome options for them.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

Love the Steal Breath simply because it has origins in urban legends.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Cats don't do that, it's the little tiny blue goblin dude!

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16 , Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

I must be missing something, but I'm not familiar with anything cat-related about Steal Breath. It sounds like an awesome spell, but what ties it thematically to that race?

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

I love that Black Cat actually turns your fur black. :D


Tamago wrote:
I must be missing something, but I'm not familiar with anything cat-related about Steal Breath. It sounds like an awesome spell, but what ties it thematically to that race?

an ancient myth

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Champion Voter 2013, Champion Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

Didn't know today was Tuesday, May 1.35, 2012...

I also like all the hints towards racial traits!

Lantern Lodge

Love the art, much better than the anime catgirl from B3.

The Steal Breath spell is very nice, but the racial limit is silly. It sounds like a Witch spell more than a cat spell.

As for the rogue talent, I just hope there are some more race specific ones for other races.


The catfolk art from Bestiary 3 and the art above from the ARG work fine together. I'll just assume they're like the two versions of Klingons (forehead ridges vs. augment virus "smooth" foreheads)... maybe catfolk DNA is more prone to variation, or some have a little rakshasa blood mixed in?

Marathon Voter 2013

15 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Ambrosia Slaad wrote:
maybe catfolk DNA is more prone to variation, or some have a little rakshasa blood mixed in?

Of course it is. DNA is basically just a bunch of string, and cats love to play with strings.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Dragon78 wrote:
Nice abilities but hate the art for them, the bestiary 3 version is an awesome pic but this just horrible.

Personally, I really like the art for them in this article, and don't care for them in bestiary 3.

However, I won't ever go radically overboard as you did, to say that any official Pathfinder art is "horrible".


5 people marked this as a favorite.

Bah Catfolk.....how bout Dogfolk or Lizardfolk.
Do catfolk gain natural ability excrete deadly allergens?


Cuàn wrote:
but the racial limit is silly.

You know, I get the feeling this is going to be a trend for these blogs. This isn't aimed at Cuàn, but people in general. Just look at the Treesinger in the Elf blog and you'll see people wanting to remove the racial limit.


The more I see, the more I want this book ... and considering I wanted this book from the get-go ... well ;)


I dig the art a lot more, though the clothing looks awkward on it. But I prefer more Kajit style.

Lantern Lodge

Tamago wrote:
I must be missing something, but I'm not familiar with anything cat-related about Steal Breath. It sounds like an awesome spell, but what ties it thematically to that race?

Snopes to the rescue: Cats Suck Babies' Breath

Okay that right up is a little saccharine but the idea is there.


So glad that catfolk are so much less anime now. And only the face is even remotely Khajit-like The Khajit are every bit as humanoid as the B3 artwork. I for one, like the digitigrade legs, and the far more feline face over the ripped from Merle and Aisha Clan-Clan, anime inspired look that B3 used, all it needs is a sailor inspired school uniform to make it even more anime.

Steal Breath seems to be an ideal spell for a black-furred catfolk witch, with an almost voudou or gypsy theme, especially when combined with the black cat feat (evil eye anyone?). The rogue talents however, are to me at any rate, a waste of ink in the book since, I have no desire to play a rogue. Still I see that some people enjoy rogues, so they are as necessary as information of elves and halflings (two other page wasters, as far as my own play-style goes.)

Now can we please get some info on either Half-Orcs or Orcs?

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Azten wrote:
Cuàn wrote:
but the racial limit is silly.
You know, I get the feeling this is going to be a trend for these blogs. This isn't aimed at Cuàn, but people in general. Just look at the Treesinger in the Elf blog and you'll see people wanting to remove the racial limit.

On that note, single-minded appraiser is a rogue talent that's all about staring at sparkly objects. Yet it isn't available to tengu. Boo, racial restrictions. Boo.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Am I just missing something on the Deadly Scratch ability?

Paizo Blog wrote:
Deadly Scratch (Ex): A catfolk rogue with this talent can apply poison to her claws without accidentally poisoning herself. A catfolk rogue must have the cat’s claws racial trait and the poison use class feature before taking this talent.
Isn't that already what Poison Use does?
pf2d0srd.cm wrote:

Poison Use

At 1st level, a ninja is trained in the use of poison and cannot accidentally poison herself when applying poison to a weapon.

Are natural weapons not normally considered weapons for this ability? Does this talent provide any actual benefit?


VikingIrishman wrote:
Am I just missing something on the Deadly Scratch ability?
Paizo Blog wrote:
Deadly Scratch (Ex): A catfolk rogue with this talent can apply poison to her claws without accidentally poisoning herself. A catfolk rogue must have the cat’s claws racial trait and the poison use class feature before taking this talent.
Isn't that already what Poison Use does?
pf2d0srd.cm wrote:

Poison Use

At 1st level, a ninja is trained in the use of poison and cannot accidentally poison herself when applying poison to a weapon.
Are natural weapons not normally considered weapons for this ability? Does this talent provide any actual benefit?

I always assumed that under normal circumstances natural weapons couldn't be imbued with poison.

Liberty's Edge

J-Spee Lovecraft wrote:
I always assumed that under normal circumstances natural weapons couldn't be imbued with poison.

Hrm...maybe I watched too much Princess Bride as a kid, but I always had that "I've spent the past few years building up an immunity to iocane powder" line run through my head in those instances. Paizo should make cases like this slightly clearer.


Tamago wrote:
I must be missing something, but I'm not familiar with anything cat-related about Steal Breath. It sounds like an awesome spell, but what ties it thematically to that race?

My grandmother actually told my parents when I was born that they should get rid of their cat because it would "steal the baby's breath". That's the only way I knew about it so I was amused to see it here.


There is a precedent already with a feat called Adder Strike in the Ultimate Combat.

Quote:

Adder Strike (Combat)

You can quickly apply poison to gloved hands, protected feet, or other protected body parts, delivering the poison with your unarmed strikes.

Prerequisites: Poison use class feature, Craft (alchemy) 1 rank, Improved Unarmed Strike.

Benefit: As a swift action, you can apply one dose of contact or injury poison to two body parts that you use for unarmed strikes. You must still protect yourself against exposure to contact poisons you apply in this way.

Normal: Applying poison to a weapon or single piece of ammunition is a standard action.

Sczarni

Odraude wrote:

There is a precedent already with a feat called Adder Strike in the Ultimate Combat.

Quote:

Adder Strike (Combat)

You can quickly apply poison to gloved hands, protected feet, or other protected body parts, delivering the poison with your unarmed strikes.

Prerequisites: Poison use class feature, Craft (alchemy) 1 rank, Improved Unarmed Strike.

Benefit: As a swift action, you can apply one dose of contact or injury poison to two body parts that you use for unarmed strikes. You must still protect yourself against exposure to contact poisons you apply in this way.

Normal: Applying poison to a weapon or single piece of ammunition is a standard action.

Yeah, except that one makes it a swift action, and lets you poison two different "weapons" at once. It would still be possibly useful even if one could poison natural weapons normally.


Trinite wrote:
Odraude wrote:

There is a precedent already with a feat called Adder Strike in the Ultimate Combat.

Quote:

Adder Strike (Combat)

You can quickly apply poison to gloved hands, protected feet, or other protected body parts, delivering the poison with your unarmed strikes.

Prerequisites: Poison use class feature, Craft (alchemy) 1 rank, Improved Unarmed Strike.

Benefit: As a swift action, you can apply one dose of contact or injury poison to two body parts that you use for unarmed strikes. You must still protect yourself against exposure to contact poisons you apply in this way.

Normal: Applying poison to a weapon or single piece of ammunition is a standard action.

Yeah, except that one makes it a swift action, and lets you poison two different "weapons" at once. It would still be possibly useful even if one could poison natural weapons normally.

What I mean is, even though it has the prerequisite Poison Use, it still remarks that you have to protect yourself from exposure to poisons. And it still mentions you need gloves or foot protection to do such a thing.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
VikingIrishman wrote:
Am I just missing something on the Deadly Scratch ability?
Paizo Blog wrote:
Deadly Scratch (Ex): A catfolk rogue with this talent can apply poison to her claws without accidentally poisoning herself. A catfolk rogue must have the cat’s claws racial trait and the poison use class feature before taking this talent.
Isn't that already what Poison Use does?
pf2d0srd.cm wrote:

Poison Use

At 1st level, a ninja is trained in the use of poison and cannot accidentally poison herself when applying poison to a weapon.
Are natural weapons not normally considered weapons for this ability? Does this talent provide any actual benefit?

From what I can garner, the rules never said that natural weapons do not count as weapons for this ability. However, in the case of contact poisons, simply touching the poison would make you susceptible. Perhaps this ability is merely a way to protect against contact poisons?


I like these bits better than the tengu kite-fighting from last week.

I hate to sound like a sourpuss, but...

Quote:
She can always take 10 when appraising gems and jewelry.

Would it kill you to add a boilerplate phrase like "even when in immediate danger or distracted" or "even if stress and distractions would normally prevent her from doing so"? Otherwise, it makes people think that you can't normally take 10 on Appraise.


Cool stuff. Awesome blog entry.


Related: how many house cats do you guys think it would take to kill an average, unarmed man?

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Now that's a catfolk.

I thought the one in Bestiary 3 looked a little too human in the face.


I think 10 could probably do it.


Yeah, I love the more feline catfolk. The B3 one, while good art, was basically a person with a tail and cat ears. Digitigrade and cat-face are the way to go.


I don't mind racial restrictions at all...

...when they're limited to things like the Black Cat feat, or tied to the catfolks other racial abilities (like their claws), but things like the ability to take 10 on appraise whenever you want don't really have any foundation in a specific race.

It's not fun or flavorful for SOME OF US[/capslockforemphasis] to lock generic options like that into ONE race just for the sake of making exclusive options.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
J-Spee Lovecraft wrote:
Related: how many house cats do you guys think it would take to kill an average, unarmed man?

Depends on the man, I have a friend I am fairly sure a single kitten could take down.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
GrenMeera wrote:
From what I can garner, the rules never said that natural weapons do not count as weapons for this ability. However, in the case of contact poisons, simply touching the poison would make you susceptible. Perhaps this ability is merely a way to protect against contact poisons?

I believe, as a general rule, natural attacks and unarmed strikes are not considered to be weapons. This is the reason the monk class specifically calls out its unarmed strikes as counting as both manufactured weapons and natural weapons.

PRD wrote:
A monk's unarmed strike is treated as both a manufactured weapon and a natural weapon for the purpose of spells and effects that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons.


Foghammer wrote:

I don't mind racial restrictions at all...

...when they're limited to things like the Black Cat feat, or tied to the catfolks other racial abilities (like their claws), but things like the ability to take 10 on appraise whenever you want don't really have any foundation in a specific race.

It's not fun or flavorful for SOME OF US[/capslockforemphasis] to lock generic options like that into ONE race just for the sake of making exclusive options.

I kind of imagine a catfolk that's appraising an object just holding it between his paws, rolling over on his back and licking and biting the object while purring.

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