I hope that last instance taught you a very valuable lesson.
No Kender. Never. Not negotiable.
As for Sithiss... the reason you would care about that is that your corner of the gaming table is going to be a very lonely, boring place if you don't shape up and play nice. Srsly.
As a GM, I have -- before the game begins -- done everything in my power to set up a fun and engaging game. It is NOT the GM's job to spoon-feed interest into your special, snowflake, psychopathic-loner character's mouth.
[/rant... sorry, button pushed there]
Really, if someone refuses to engage in the game, I let them stew in the corner doing nothing, AND greet their complaints with "Sorry, running a game here, b+*$@ afterwards." Afterwards, I will listen to them complain for about five minutes, and then shut them up and point out that they could have been playing with everybody else...
If they pull up their big-adventurer pants and play nice the next session, I will go out of my way to give them some shiney moments as a reward.
From a secular, purely agnostic point of view: given the number of serious and committed relationships in which I've been... which turned out horribly wrong, and would have resulted in divorces if I'd been able to marry somebody... why on earth would I want to let the lawyers into my lovelife?
Evocation is my immediate, don't-have-to-think-it-over, dump school.
Damage is why I have minions >ahem< I mean adventuring companions. :)
While I LIKE many Enchantment spells, it's usually the school I dump after Evocation: too many immune targets, etc., as mentioned above.
And it's a slightly-weighted toss-up (in favor of the former) between Conjuration and Necromancy for my specialty school. If I'm not going to multiclass (which is rare for me) Necromancy gets more attractive.
But the typical wizard is Conjuror, with Enchantment and Evocation as opposition schools.
YMMV, quite obviously...
A note on what people are mistakenly calling "extremist alignments."
The Neutral-component alignments (N/E, L/N, N/G, C/N) are FAR MORE "extremist" than the two-axis-element alignments (L/G, L/E, C/G. C/E).
Disposing of a second-axis component means that a part-neutral alignment has, by comparison, much more dedication to their non-neutral component than does someone with a second-axis position taken.
Chaotic/Good and Chaotic/Evil (for example) are not dedicated to pure chaos; that is the purview of the Chaotic/Neutral character.
Similarly, Lawful/Evil and Chaotic/Evil are tangled up in ethical stances which subtract from their moral directive: the Neutral/Evil character is by far more a paragon of Evil than either of the L/E, C/E characters.
A Neutral-Component alignment means one is more-centered on the non-Neutral component than anyone "splitting" their alignment can be.
As long as we have the current alignment >ahem< "system" in place, the class alignment restrictions ought to stand, imo.
Do I think we should keep alignment as it stands?
No, not really.
Not because it's unworkable in itself, but on account of all the arguments spawned by it. (My group hasn't ever had a problem with the alignment stuff... largely because we're all in agreement about 'what's evil,' 'what's lawful,' etc. Half of us are old grognards from back in the 1E day, so we disposed of the debate years ago.)
But, however ridiculous we may think the alignment system is, it's what we currently have.
There was another alignment thread a while back, in which I offered a solution of sorts. Replace the twin-axis system with simple descriptives:
-- Paladins, obviously, must be heroic. Everybody else grabs whatever stance and sticks to it. Druids tend towards autarchic... and a lot of Rogues.
Requires some spell re-work (the whole "Protection vs." line as well as Detect [x alignment]) but has the advantage of simplicity in determining where individuals fall on the ethical scale.
I agree that getting nifty powers from your discipline and practice (like a Monk) ought to have a Lawful alignment requirement. All the Barbarian PLAYERS I know are chaotic, and I think it plays well to have the class reflect that.
I'd be tempted to make Druids Neutral, period; people seem to think that being Neutral on on axis precludes zealotry on the other, which is a false-to-facts assumption. Having only one non-neutral alignment value means you have NOTHING in between you and absolute dedication to THAT value (be it good, chaotic, evil, lawful). There's nothing balanced about a single-axis placement, inherently. And Druids (imo) ought to be about a balanced existence and perspective...
Anyway... alignment is not an indispensable part of the game; but it's HERE, at least until PF 2.0 (long may it be delayed). The only forum in which that MATTERS is Organized Play: all others may houserule it gone, or changed, or whatever.
It makes 9th level spells impossible; at some point, all spells were "new" spells. Using "it's new, so it's higher-level" means no 9th level spell would ever have been researched/created.
As for your second point, why shouldn't a creative, new spell outshine "the ordinary ways?" Once more, we have an argument favoring the punishment of creativity.
The limitation of player creativity is inherent in GM approval for spell research already. There is no good reason to push a spell above the level in which it would naturally (as determined by the GM) fall. If a proposed spell's proposed level is insufficient, of course the GM should raise it until the level is commensurate with its power.
But making it higher-level "just because?" Once more, this is a shoddy, lazy metric that shouldn't be encouraged.
If a GM doesn't want to deal with spell research, that's his/her decision. But they ought to be honest about that, and rule that way, rather than add discouragements to research.
Diego Rossi wrote:
Right, because having divine magic isn't a matter of divine intervention at all.
You're not getting the Mystery; no, it isn't confined to the scope of a single deity. It draws its power from all deities which share in its ineffable aspect.
Finally, even if a Mystery is entirely god-forsaken, the god/dess of Death is going to have to be dealt with in a raising/resurrection: it is a direct interference with his/her domain.
I'm more referring to the earlier "GM can immediately adapt a side quest on the fly when someone dies and not throw off that nights game" argument, which would have to be part of implementing a side quest as the solution plan.
I missed that statement.
And I've been advocating a quest that comes up... sometime... in the nebulous future. [I.e., when it's convenient.]
I'm not arguing that a negative energy fireball is an improvement on the standard fireball. I was objecting to a blanket "it's a new spell, so (despite being essentially comparable to spells of [x] level) it has to be level [x+1]."
A general argument about spell research, not a specific argument about a particular researched spell. Hope that clarifies things.
If it's a "long-running game with the same group looking for more than tropes," do you expect me to believe the GM incapable of adapting a quest that is meaningful and "more than tropes" from his/her experience with said group?
Eh, I'm not going to jump through teh Internetz and force you to use the idea. I think owing a favor makes more sense than material expenditures; it works well for me. I'm of the opinion that it isn't unreasonable as an idea for general use; obviously, folks disagree. Go figure.
Diego Rossi wrote:
Who said anything about the caster being constrained? I'm talking about the recipient of the spell, not the one doing the casting.
I didn't address standardization mostly because it's a futile endeavor, given the swath of campaigning styles out there.
At some point during a campaign, there will be a break in the action that might otherwise be downtime, into which doing a service to the Power(s) which reversed your death can be fitted.
I will admit that this works best with a sandbox-style game, but it isn't impossible in any format.
If nothing else, oracles have Mysteries, Witches have Patrons: perhaps not as handily anthropomorphic as a god, but (obviously) on a similar scale of power. Or whatever god has Death in its portfolio, regardless of who/what the raising person worships.
As for items -- yeah, I have <0 problem with dishing out a favor owed to the deity of the crafter of the staff (or, again, to the god/dess of Death): you just got back from being dead, quit complaining. [humor there on the end]
And one further note: AM Grognard; end of "adventure"=/=end of "adventure path." Using old terminology, when an adventure was a single module (if purchased) or similar scope of event (if homebrewed).
Finally... and Ciretose, this is food for your thoughts, too: we've been discussing how death ought to have a penalty, and how gold/gems are a bad practice of standard, and how people tend (sorry) to whine about negative levels, constitution drain, etc.
Look at the level of resistance to owing a debt to the Power responsible for one's resurrection. It seems on par with the resistance to these other penalties... which seems (to me) to indicate it's on par with them, as a penalty.
Obviously, YMMV; if you are doing AP instead of homebrew, you may not have time to repay the favor -- dunno, never used an AP.
Anyhow... I still think no deity (or other Power) is going to let a mortal revived from death get off as lightly as a chunk of change.
So sorry, but "you're punishing people for being creative" is neither a tirade nor an overreaction to a flat "must be level+1 to comparable spells" for spell research.
As stated in your initial post on the subject, that's a shoddy, lazy standard; sans any discussion of the thought behind it, if applied its primary effect -- intended or not -- would be to discourage spell research at all.
Being drunk in a dress onstage doesn't make anybody entertaining... it just makes them drunk in a dress onstage...
As for the side quest thing, it doesn't have to happen immediately (go ahead, finish your current adventure) but I really don't figure gods to allow the raising of mortals from the Vasty Halls of Death without exacting a price... no, not a silly diamond, but an act of some kind in the mortal realm which furthers the goals of the god in question. Eventually.
I dont punish people for being creative. I say you have to have a foundation off of which to develop new and unusual magics, so the foundation is the spell of the preceding level. Thank you for isolating my motives to the one that you find most offensive though.
The foundation from which to develop new and unusual magic would be a library, a lab, and as many ranks in Knowledge/Arcana for which you qualify, plus time and money spent in research.
It's arbitrary and ridiculous to bump a new spell up a level from comparable magics: was the first Fireball a 4th level spell?
Now, you have brought up points regarding the specific examples posted that might, arguably, justify being a higher level than was originally presented... but being a new spell is not a good reason, in my opinion, in and of itself to raise a spell above its peers' level.
All it does is continually relegate researched spells to be less-effective than their inherent design.
And if you fail to specify your motives, as you did in the post to which I originally replied, don't be surprised when people react to the effect of your policy rather than the intent.
Iterative attacks: when your Base Attack Bonus rises, you start getting multiple attacks in a round when you use the Full Attack Action; these are, generally, referred to as 'iterative attacks.' [Example, at 6th level, a Fighter's BAB is "+6/+1," meaning with a Full Attack, you get one attack at +6 on the die and one attack at +1.]
In order to utilize all of your attacks for a high BAB, with thrown weapons, you need the Quick Draw Feat. Or some (magical) method of getting weapons in-hand quickly enough.
That's (imo) more than a little ridiculous.
If it balances against a 3rd level spell, it's a 3rd level spell. The ONLY reason to bump it is to punish people for being creative, which sucks.
Just a note: once you hit iterative attacks (at least, once you get a third iterative attack) Quick Draw is a must-have for thrown weapons.
I have to admit I haven't really looked at the archetypes... because the bits I did look at were unappealing: typically, you lose too much with them, imo.
You might find Throw Anything to be useful (for when you run out of weapons, or if you decide to use splash weaponry much).
Hey, Ciretose; I might have one...
So, this presumes that 20th level is, in fact, a hard cap.
Every time you get raised from the dead/resurrected, you lose the top level you can attain in a single class.
So, the first death loses you the capstone of your class (assuming you were planning a single-classed hero) and requires you to multiclass in order to reach 20th level.
Subsequent deaths continue shaving off the TOP of your single-class level limit, and eventually you do reach a point of diminishing returns, where you cannot usefully gain XP.
I'd say that you can keep the level you're at, if a death would bring your soft cap lower than current level, but no further advancement...
A Wish or a Miracle could lift this penalty...
Eh, I know nobody's gonna like this, but it occurred to me while (Gods alone know why) I continued browsing this thread.
Uh, since when does a 2nd level spell qualify as "high level?"
I do agree that a clear setting-out of campaign style ans expectations beforehand can save a lot of grief.
If it has no bearing, your citation of your gaming history is just as pointless.
As for "implied condescension..."
I can't control your inference of anything from my statements. I, however, implied nothing; it was a statement of facts.
Since I wasn't implying any condescension, I wasn't trying not to be condescending. I was trying to avoid irritating you, which is pointless, since you're as prickly as a hedgehog. If you're going to take offense at value-neutral statements of fact because you dislike the facts as they stand, you're going to be offended a lot.
...and, to add to the corner-cases of why Detect Evil is not a Smite-License:
Misdirection. [The spell, not the concept.]
It is improbable but well within the realm of the possible that the shifty-looking guy pinging on Sir Hypothetical's Detect Evil scan is the unfortunate subject of a Misdirection cast by some soaked-in-the-blood-of-innocents malefactor who is hoping for the exact reaction of "Evil=Smite" from Sir Hypothetical, knowing that even without the excess Smite damage that poor Expert 2 merchant will be cut down... putting our Paladinic hero on the bench until he atones, and granting our villain some Paladin-free time to put his Evil Plan into action.
Is this LIKELY? No. But it COULD HAPPEN, and is worth thinking of in the case of Detect Evil NOT being the end-all, be-all of tactical scans...
Not to be argumentative (really not)... but, uh, to folks playing since the 80's (or the 70's), you kinda are. A newer player. I'm explicitly NOT saying that because you're newer, you think [x] about the game. But you are a decade newer to playing than me, and I've been playing for 80% of my life.
Do these statistics mean anything?
While I'll grant you that getting lumped into a category of THOUGHT by virtue of your time-in-grade can be irritating, in a value-neutral definition of terms, to many folks you are a newer player.
Uh, do go back and read the rest of the post you quoted... y'know, where I'm talking about usually having multiple Craft skills?
I agree with most of the above... but, yeah, it does have SOMETHING to do with being videogamey. Because of the way that "oops I'm dead... gotta respawn and redo this screen" happens in many (most) video games.
Now, I'm not arguing for/against making it easier to recover from PC death; but skewing it towards "easier" DOES make the game RESEMBLE that video-game functionality.
I tend -- usually playing a Rogue, so skill points to burn -- to have ranks in a Profession (Sailor in seagoing campaigns, Scribe in landbound ones) and at least one Craft, often more than one.
Mind you, I DON'T max ranks in the Profession -- stop at five, which is plenty for verisimilitude -- and Craft/Alchemy is usually the only Craft I max out, barring some oddity (I have an Alchemist with Craft/Weaver, and I'm planning on taking Master Craftsman in order to make some Wondrous Items later on in the campaign, for instance).
Not only does the Craft/Profession thing (a) represent some non-Adventurer training in my Life Before I Became a Murderhobo, but (b) means I have some skills I CAN use to support myself when not adventuring and (c) a disguise as [fill-in-the-profession skill] is REALLY more believable when you have the skill to back it.
Finally, I just like being able to Use Magic Device with Fabrication scrolls to furnish a house or stock a library, etc.
I have always felt the kill it if it pings evil is a GM problem. They way we always played it is detect evil is asking your deity's opinion. Pinging evil is your god directly telling you that, yes the person you are detecting is better off dead. If your don't want that well as the GM now is the time to speak up (as the paladins God) or forever hold your peace.
Just because your house ruling on Detect Evil works that way doesn't mean that's the way it actually works for the rest of us. Speaking of holding your peace.
I'm one of those folks (as player and as GM) who thinks the whole WBL idea is a wonky, relatively useless piece of the game. Particularly given the way people seem to be taking a tool for building characters starting at higher-than-first-level and turning it into some kind of holy writ about how much treasure "should" be available to a group.
But that's a different thread, nevermind...
Anyhow, to deal with your questions.
All of these issues depend upon your game, your judgment. Given that you describe the campaign as "high-magic," it isn't beyond the pale that any or all of the above items might end up available.
It sounds to me like you're WANTING to give them some extra, portable storage space... so why not do it, regardless of their level? I mean... OMG, now they're above WBL! Teh Gamez Broked!
Not really, I promise; the game will be just fine. If you're really concerned about what it will do to WBL, just start handing out a little less treasure, and over time the party will fall back into WBL compliance.
In the meantime, letting them have some extradimensional space for their stuff isn't a hideously-game-changing choice. At worst, they'll make fewer trips back to town, and will be able to haul big treasures out of dungeons without multiple trips and/or needing wagon and oxen.
I submit that the earliest level to grant stuff like this to a party is "when you feel like it."
Liz Courts wrote:
Nevertheless, it's very confusing for those of us who weren't perusing the Superstar forums to come into a dislocated thread: several of the above posts make >no sense without the context.
Wow... just... wow.
First, HOW is the above situation NOT a case of unlawful killing?
Second (once more for the cheap seats), go read the alignment section in the CRB; you will find "murder" under the description of "evil" acts.
Zahir ibn Mahmoud ibn Jothan wrote:
Wow, exactly wrong: the problem here is NOT the evil characters. It's the player of the deceased Rogue making a freaking PALADIN in a pre-existing party comprised of evil characters... how no-brainer can you get? KNOWING the other party members are evil, you make a character that CANNOT work with the party on anything other than an extremely short-term basis, and will have to be getting Atonements for doing so?
Uh, you might have not noticed, but the evil humans were also "outside society's boundaries;" their supposed membership in society is a nonissue.
Likewise, if their location doesn't commute their membership in society, how are you getting to "no laws apply" to the wererat?
It isn't monstering 24/7; MOST of its time will be spent in human form, doing human things: hunting, foraging, cooking, etc. All those day-to-day survival things that PEOPLE DO.
EVEN IF there is no law enforcement in the region, a paladin doesn't "go wild" in a lawless region: they behave AS IF the law were in force. Meaning trials preceeding JUST PUNISHMENT for all. Not, "OK get out of here" for humans and "No, your begging for mercy doesn't matter, you're dead" for a "monster" which is human 90% of the time. Talk about chaotic behavior...
This whole mess is beginning to smell of table variation/house rule territory... I mean, aside from PFSOP, it really doesn't matter that there is a 5k diamond material component. If you dislike it, change it. Problem solved.
I know, this doesn't address the underlying issue of spell balance within a level.
I prefer the formerly-deceased person to owe either (or both!) the deity whose priest cast the Raise Dead or the God/dess of Death a favor... but that's just me. I suppose it could be argued that the gods trust their servants' judgment when it comes to deciding who stays dead and who gets up, and the diamond is just a fiat cost of doing business. I don't find that particularly satisfying.
YMMV, yet again...
[PS: LOVE Jhereg novels... and they are a model for "raising the dead just takes work," rather than being inherently expensive. Everybody in the thread who hasn't, go read them.]
@ Wind Chime:
Magic is the little stuff that the Gods let their servants use, that wizards can puzzle out, that sorcerers are tuned to.
Gods' power is not, repeat not, available to mortals... in order to get it, one must ascend.
Which is, really, the best reason to become an adventurer...
I've adopted a modification to Knw/Local: each rank grants applicable awareness for a particular locale. It does work better in a campaign with a lot of travel, rather than one that is centered around one area (though in a case like that, the out-of-the-box Knw/Local would work fine, anyway).
So, by 5th level (assuming you're maxing ranks) you could know
... and if you have Knw/Local, but are in a strange place, you do better on DCs than somebody with no Knw/Local (highly subjective, yeah, but it's been working OK).
Provided there isn't a particularly odd campaign setting (i.e., one type of monster dominant/consistently appearing -- undead, I'm looking at you) most character types aren't difficult to make some contribution to a group. In my experience.
What is FAR more frustrating to me than a suboptimal build are suboptimal PLAYERS. You know, the ones who can't seem to remember their characters' basic abilities? Or the ones who, for whatever reason, can't seem to get the idea of cooperation with a group, are disruptive, won't pay attention, etc., ad. infin.
Yes, it is possible to build a character that (to my mind) isn't especially playable. But you kind of have to WORK at it; one of the things I've enjoyed about Pathfinder since I started playing it is that the system's basic structure gives relative competence mostly built-in.
A great deal of "optimal" really depends on an individual campaign; a character well-suited to one may not be in another. The best way (imo) to avoid problematic builds is to have clear set-up discussions/guidelines/whathaveyou at the start of a game. And -- if you're the type of player who moans about other people "not pulling their weight" -- maybe at the start of things would be a great time to share your system mastery with less-adept players.
Cursed and Geas'd wrote:
Scroll back, read carefully. >Hint< Look for my little icon pic. I liked the Ratfolk way back in the thread...
I didn't think you didn't mean what you said, Gauss; but when what you're saying is not in line with the description of the spell under discussion, there's some room for inference about the underpinnings of why you're saying it.
In any case, I do apologize; wasn't meant as more than a nudge-in-the-ribs kind of way, certainly not to give offense.
Likewise, though, I did go on to say that I wouldn't grief you (or anybody) about dragging stuff into the rope trick rather than limiting stuff to the gear-out of creatures heading into it.
Finally, "responding to [a bad habit] in kind" isn't particularly productive. Hairsplitting RAW vs. RAI arguments get tedious quickly. As I'm sure you're aware. Using a ridiculous read of a rule in a debate (no offense meant here -- but I do find heat source (for metalwork, as a particular)=candle a rather ridiculous read) doesn't further the discussion.