James Jacobs wrote:
Will there be any more details on these going forwards? It is not evident to me how to stat up a troop of say orcs using those rules.
James Jacobs wrote:
Ahhh I had forgotten that part. That claim is certainly interesting, did not realise that King was picking up some Lovecraft lore! That adds a certain spin on what I had been taking as a "straight" dark Christianity story.
James Jacobs wrote:
I have just finished The Stand. I don't recall Flagg claiming to be anyone specifically, I took him to be a fallen angel. Perhaps THE fallen angel. But he certainly was fallible, and even sort of killable. What makes you think he is above a Demigod?
I backed this on Kickstarter and it is just great. Really top notch writing combined with a very non linear flow and an imaginative setting. I can highly recommend this!
Furthermore David is a class act. Super professional and delivered on time. I am really happy with the whole package!
I will throw in here that some images are a touch blurry and in some cases a bit dark. This could be artifacts of the printing itself I may add. It did not lessen my enjoyment of the book, but it is noticeable enough to be worthy of comment.
Steve Geddes wrote:
Yep I agree for some groups it's irrelevant. My games feature tons of mechanical interaction (combat etc) and on multiple occasions I have had to alter players characters for them as poor choices made while playing Pathfinder has led to situations where some players were doing 80-90 points of damage per round vs some doing 20-30. As stated some people are fine with this, most of the folks I play with have felt disheartened from it.
GM DarkLightHitomi wrote:
I don't buy that argument. A huge part of DnD is combat, skill checks and casting magic spells for most groups out there. Of course there are plenty of other play styles out there, but the mechanics of DnD is what makes it DnD. Of course anyone can contribute to the story non-mechanically. What I think works well in 4e is that it's very hard to make poor decisions about mechanics and have your character underperform against the game mechanics. In essence, system mastery is a bad idea. I have no ideas how that leads to your above conclusion about the interaction with the world. The mechanics should be reflected in the setting and be reflective of the setting.
The point of a balanced system is NOT that it is balanced. It is that there is a balanced baseline. From there the players and GM can unbalance it to their hearts content. Pathfinder is difficult for some people because by level 5 you can have characters that are really well optimised and some really badly built characters. And that is never fun, your character is doing less well than others because you didn't know how to build it. Sure some, like Steve above, have fun intentionally playing dump characters. But note the intent.
Why I love 4e is that I can have players build characters and be very sure that they will all have the ability to contribute to the story. And then I go about intentionally unbalancing the party. In my latest campaign the ranger has just had his companion awakened, I have essentially statted it up as an artifact level of power, and it now acts as if it was a separate PC. I have now given that PC two turns per round of combat. And I did it knowing all the implications of that decision.
Hi James. I realise you aren't the rule guy, etc, but I would like your take in this one. Mythic surge is written up as:
Surge (Su): You can call upon your mythic power to overcome difficult challenges. You can expend one use of mythic power to increase any d20 roll you just made by rolling 1d6 and adding it to the result. Using this ability is an immediate action taken after the result of the original roll is revealed. This can change the outcome of the roll. The bonus die gained by using this ability increases to 1d8 at 4th tier, 1d10 at 7th tier, and 1d12 at 10th tier.
Let's say you use this on an attack roll, and get a 16 on the d20 and a 4 on the d6. My reading is that you effectively rolled a 20 and you therefore crit. Conversely, you can never miss due to a 1 since the minimum is a 2. I am making this assumption since the wording is "increase any d20 roll" rather than referring to a bonus of some sort. Do I have the right of this?
Wow, I just checked out the preview for Book 2 and I cannot WAIT to get my hands on it!
Lord Mhoram wrote:
Agreed. I don't have a huge issue with it myself, but the feedback from some seems to show that the fluff needs to justify the crunch for some folks.
Fabius Maximus wrote:
I am genuinely interested in the reasoning here. Pathfinder already does this!! Why are barbarian rage rounds limited per day? Why can the bard perform only so many times? Why can a monk only flurry so many times per day? Why can a rogue once per day possibly avoid going below 1 hp? Why can a cavalier do heaps of extra damage only a couple of times per day, and even more weirdly, if someone else kills your target you can't repeat it? Why can the gunslinger only do a couple of "grit" tricks per day?
There are plenty of classes in Pathfinder that have precedent for this type of limited tricks. Why does this mechanic strike such a nerve?
In my opinion what was a HUGE missed opportunity for wizards was to develop the rule system outside the core. Here is how I see 4e core. It's a nice, dynamic combat system with enough standard adventuring skills thrown in to work in your standard fantasy adventure scenarios. It is balanced enough that picking a class is more about what role you want to play, not about having to follow a certain build to drop out of the effectiveness curve. And within tolerances you cannot build a character that massively overshadows others in combat, or for that matter a character that is hopeless in combat. In short, it is a hugely solid CORE.
What that means of course is that if you build subsystems outside of that core you can do so with the intention of NOT being so balanced. Professions, crafting, backgrounds, downtime, mass combat, social combat, subsystems could have been plugged in (not skill challenges!!!) on top of the solidly balanced core to purposely allow imbalanced characters in other ways. The bugbear of Pathfinder for me is trap feats and skills points that go to more flavour skills in place of "more useful" skills. 4e solidly addressed that issue, but failed to capitalise by building subsystems and supporting them that allow for purposely designed imbalance.
For example better ritual design could have given arcane casters their own "thing" with rituals on other classes could get. Druids and rangers could have pets that were just flat out better than other classes. Fighters and other Martials could have taken Warcraft, siege and leadership of troop roles. I could go on. This is in essence what pathfinder does over 4e, it understands that classes can be better or worse than other classes in certain roles. 4e was "that close!" to being able to really pull that off. And it would have been glorious!
Just to put some context to my "like or dislike" of this video clip (spoiler: I didn't like the music) I was commenting within the context of:
Paizo: Watch our new video clip it roxorz!
You will notice from my tags that I am a heavy subscriber to pretty much everything Paizo makes. This invests me in their world of course, but also as a paying customer I think also allows me to make my voice heard as to whether something they are doing works to my tastes or not. I COULD vote with my wallet, the traditional way to show a company dislike, but I like most of what Paizo does so I keep my subscription in place even for products that I am not 100% sure I want or will use. Instead I choose to say in a measured way (I hope) when something does not appeal to me in the hope that Paizo will learn that at least one person did not go for that idea, not so that I can get something off my chest or demand a product direction shift, but more so that Paizo as company can learn from the "misses" (there are very few) to make more "hits".
Sure. Shipping is to Australia. The damaged items are almost always packed in those flat white envelopes. Generally the corners get banged up but sometimes there is spine damage. I can live with it but I don't love it.
It's not just Paizo of course. All my Frog God kickstarters have also suffered damage, again almost always on the corners.
I am not "bothered" by the damage all that much, but I would not hate the items to turn up undamaged!!
I have personally had multiple Paizo items with banged up covers unfortunately. It probably is running about 20% damaged for me. Items are very usable but I just wanted to throw in the not every customer is getting pristine stuff.
James Jacobs wrote:
As you probably know White Wolf had an imprint called Black Dog that they used to publish their more mature content. Do you think that something like that could work for Paizo to allow a release of more mature content?
Hi James. Just reading Dragons Demand and the quests in that book are interesting. You call them out specifically right up front, something I have not seen before. The APs generally call out a particular accomplishment rewarding you with some xp but this is a new way do do it for Paizo (I think?). What is the idea behind this change?
Exalted scratches that itch for me.
I want to chime in here as well and say how much I am also enjoying this book. It is great to see Paizo tackling these areas of the game with rules codification. Some of these systems are going to be trickier to adjudicate the the more traditional core rules, I would expect that some of the player base will take a little while to get their heads around these rules.
One overarching comment on the rules in chapter 3, these rules could have used some cross standardization. Contacts operate across a 1-5 range, fame 0-100, relationships to 40ish if I recall. A standardized new set of stats that were uniformly graduated may have been a bit less fiddly. Love this chapter however.
Well.... Yes. Piers and waterfronts are key economic drivers in worlds that lack aircraft. If your settlement does not want to trade there are better options. Water hex trade routes are easier to establish and can bring in a lot of BP.
I love the fact that you have moved away from an economy based on selling other people's stuff (my players, not so much). One major question though: Why do Waterfronts still cost 90BP and Magic Shops cost 68BP? After all, not only can't you profit from selling their major items, but the upper limit of a settlement's Base Value is set by settlement size, so their boost to bv is insignificant: any settlement with basic buildings will hit that limit in short order.
For the benfits of piers and waterfronts check out page 232 bottom right hand side.
James Jacobs wrote:
My bad wording! I meant more, how often do you see it happen. I was trying to ask with your breadth of playing experience do you often see it. Thanks for t he answer!!
The magic item crafting system discussion has always intrigued me. The most commonly complained about "problems" with the system seem to me to be that:
1. that PCs can create what they want in terms of magic items, or
To me Ultimate Campaign partially solves both of these issues by extension of its other content.
The first "problem" gets transformed into an opportunity. Previously GMs can either give PCs magic items as loot, give them gold which they can use to buy magic items, or the PCs can use said loot to craft the items they wanted. Either way the GM was giving some gold piece equivalent as treasure, just in different forms. The only issue I had with crafting is it felt a little "dull". Pulling an ancient, storied sword from a horde is cool, and then the PCs get to learn all about it. Crafting ended up at my table becoming "well we just netted 64,000 gp, lets thumb through Ultimate Equipment and work out what to craft". The new Talismanic components system is great in my opinion for taking that slightly dull approach to crafting and allowing GMs to add some spice into it. Need some Dragon Bone for your next wand?
The second issue also gets tangentially solved (even though it is not an issue for my table generally) by the majority of the content of Ultimate Campaign. A large part of this book essentially creates fun money sinks for PCs. If your PCs end up wandering the world, staying at inns, and getting to moderately high levels, they will eventually end up with way more money than they will ever need to survive, and will end up wanting to spend tons of gold on magic items to enhance their abilities. Once they get into building their own empire, be it martial, religious or trade based, there will always be plenty of places for their spare cash, and also importantly time, to go. Rather than PCs lounging around like teenagers, get them to spend up big on things that makes their characters important in the world, rather than on items that purely buff their stats.
In my view this book demonstrates to me that Paizo is willing to tackle subjects beyond raw combat and exploration in the hardcover line. And I heartily approve of this direction and would very much like to see further rules books that explore the non-combat side of the game further!
So you feel that every torch ever made gives off the exact same illumination? By RAW they do.
This whole issue was a complete and utter mess. I lost track of who was saying what, the characters were poorly positioned in the panels and the lighting was terrible.
I read it, had effectively no idea what happened, and worse could not be bothered to read it again to even try and work it out.
James Jacobs wrote:
That is indeed a very good explaination oh mighty dinosaur. Those creatures did not occur to me straight away. Sign me up for another book!
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Well you certainly will have interest from me! I dont really care whether it is a Bestiary or not (I am guessing not!) but this is exactly what I would love to see from Paizo in the monster space. I really like the "Revisited" takes on monsters, but you only get one monster per type in those books. There are heaps of classic monsters as you have stated above and having some way to populate an entire Goblin village from CR 1-8 would be great. Really getting in deep with monsters as versatile foes (what do you mean the orcs are healing each other!) also is a cool way to build deep encounters quickly. Stacking 3 orc barbarians with 2 orc sorcerers and a orc cleric would make for a tough fight! Goblin hang gliders!
James Jacobs wrote:
Awesome to hear!!! I really would love to see Absalom done big. So much potential there. The other book I am dying for is GMG II. More advanced GM topics and how to GM over 10th level. It is a hole in the Paizo lineup due for attention. Pathfinder is an awesome game, but it requires a vast amount of system mastery (ie time) to get good at GMing.
John Kretzer wrote:
That's where I saw it! Thanks. I picked up Guide to Absalom a few weeks back.
James Jacobs wrote:
Thanks! I read so much material across so many editions I could not be sure! Do you miss ep? I kinda have a soft spot for them myself.
I would like to see some new ways to use monsters. Some templates to allow creatures to easily scale up and down the level range a good distance (+/- 5) with some "common build" options such as wizard, ranger or barbarian. A nice logical way that allows a "swarm" effect to be applied to low CR creatures so large numbers of creatures can be easily thrown at higher level PCs. And my personal favourite a set of guidelines to allow creatures well above the normal scale to be designed.
GM enjoyment IS different now then when I began in 1982. Those rule sets ascribed nearly ultimate power to the GM. I won't go any further unless someone needs more, but anyone who has played those rules knows what I mean.
However I am only talking about DnD. Many other games never had that level of GM control. And the storytelling game surge from 1990 onwards with the "troupe" style play certainly began a trend moving to a more collaborative playing style. Lots of games encouraged this style, and it was really DnD 2nd ed core that lagged somewhat.
DnD 3.0 just caught up to where most games already were. GMs in 3.0 now had a comprehensive ruleset covering most eventualities which now set player expectations. Making up rules and situations ad-hoc via GM fiat was no longer required.
So, the days of GMs having complete control over the vast majority of the game rules are gone. Now they have to interact through those rules with the players. For GMs who don't enjoy that, I can see how that may grind.
Peter Stewart wrote:
+1. I have had this happen to me a number of times. I never shy away from it, I let the players have their victory. That is how I feel the game should be played. In fact I talk about this every few sessions with my players. If they defeat my BBEG in one shot at the end of 1 years play, I let it stand. However I then use my monsters to their fullest extent against my players and rarely pull my punches. 3 character deaths in the first 3 Carrion Crown books.
PS my posting style is "abrupt" and can come across as a bit unfriendly. Apologies in advance!
No sigh required. They gained TWO LEVELS by "defeating" a badly run encounter. However, as I later mentioned if they enjoyed themselves then that is the ONLY thing that matters. I was merely pointing out that they did get an easy victory handed to them.
Another point I want to make is that this messageboard is rife with player optimisation strategies and design (which I am totally fine with I might add, I get value from it myself) but when someone dares to give another GM some optimisation tips vs players the game is no longer "fun".