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Alzrius's page

Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber. Pathfinder Society Member. 2,254 posts. 70 reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist.


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1) I buy weird dice - things like d3's, d11's, d16's, etc. - and have them in my dice bag along with my regular dice. I have so many of each type that it's now gotten to the point where hunting for the "normal" dice each week has become cumbersome, much to the amusement of my group.

2) I really want to play a pony character (from Ponyfinder).

3) I once played a dwarf paladin with a German accent, to counteract the standard "Scottish dwarf" stereotype. When my group made some Nazi jokes, I ran with it. He talked about how "ze gnomes" were taking everyone's jobs and hurting the local economy. As a consequence, the standard of living was low (*arm out, palm down, fingers together*), and so needed to be raised up heil for everyone (*raises arm upward*).


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I enjoy the guides, and appreciate those who put in the effort to make them.

While I don't care for homogenization of characters, I don't see the guides as being complicit in that; discussion and analysis of various options is just that, an examination of various choices. If someone wants to make a character that's light on RP and heavy on optimization, they're going to do it, guides or not.


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Caineach wrote:
I recently watched Aldermin of the sky. It was amazing and I want more.

Your comment made me smile, since it underlined how you and I really agree on nothing. :)


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So I'm watching some series now, and I've noticed something interesting: there's a split among translators about what to do when the characters say something in English, where the meaning isn't self-evident to English speakers. Some translate it literally, while others translate it in terms of what it means.

That obviously sounds rather nebulous, so some examples are in order.

In Keijo!!!!!!!!

Spoiler:
Sayaka uses "K-acceleration" to boost her speed; when she says the name of the technique, she literally says "K-acceleration" in Japanized English. However, the translators subtitle it as "W-acceleration."

This is because, even though she pronounces the "K," we're told (via Rin, the person Sayaka defeats when she first uses that technique) that she's using it as the first letter in kuikomase, which is basically Japanese for "wedgie." The translators obviously knew that there was an issue there, since they'd need to translate that word in the subtitles, rather than leaving it as-is. So they made the decision to turn "K-acceleration" into "W-acceleration" (for "wedgie") in the subtitles. They chose to go with meaning over being literal.

On the other hand, in Assassination Classroom

Spoiler:
Irina is referred to as "b+@$&-sensei" by her students (the censoring here is Paizo's, not mine or the show's). This is partially a pun on her last name (Jelavic), since the last syllable starts with a "v" and - as she herself notes - Japanese has trouble distinguishing between "v" and "b," and ends with a "tch" sound.

However, this is also a dig towards her style of assassination. Irina is a femme fatale, using seduction and sex to get her target to lower their guard before she moves in for the kill. Hence why, as a foreign-language teacher, all of the material she presents is erotic in nature (e.g. her first lesson being how to say "You are incredible in bed" in English). In other words, she presents herself as being slutty.

That's where the joke comes in. In Japanese, "b$&%~" - spoken in English - means "slut." So they're actually calling her "Slut-sensei." The translators, however, decided to leave the English as-is, keeping the literal spoken dialogue in the subtitles, despite the loss of the meaning.

(I've seen a few translators do the same thing for the beginning of the first episode of Overlord, where the note that Momonga reads about Albedo says that she's a "b#@#!," due to that being what's literally written, despite the understanding that what it's actually saying is that she's a slut.)

It's interesting to see these sorts of translation issues come up, and how different groups handle them differently. Personally, I prefer the former method, as I think that accurately conveying the meaning of what's being said is more important than maintaining literal accuracy.


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Orfamay Quest wrote:
Alzrius wrote:
Rysky wrote:

For example:

1d20+14 failure
1d4
1d6
1d20+14 success
1d4
4d6

Hey look at that, after 2 tries and 5 hours the Nereid succeeded, but she only has 2 CON now.

Which kills her.

Seriously, the drop from Con 24 to Con 2 (that it's staggered over time makes no difference) means that she's losing 11 hit points per Hit Die. Being a 12 Hit Die creature, that's a loss of 132 hit points...against her 126 hit point total.

You always get at least one hit point per die, irrespective of your Constitution score (essentially, the penalty to hit points is bounded), so it won't kill her. Now, granted, reducing her hit points to 12 is going to make her very unhappy,..... but it won't kill her.

Looks like the derp is mine, then.

Sorry Rysky!


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Rysky wrote:

For example:

1d20+14 failure
1d4
1d6
1d20+14 success
1d4
4d6

Hey look at that, after 2 tries and 5 hours the Nereid succeeded, but she only has 2 CON now.

Which kills her.

Seriously, the drop from Con 24 to Con 2 (that it's staggered over time makes no difference) means that she's losing 11 hit points per Hit Die. Being a 12 Hit Die creature, that's a loss of 132 hit points...against her 126 hit point total.

Even being able to successfully make a new shawl isn't a guarantee that she'll survive the loss of her old one.


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Sir RicHunt Attenwampi wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Werewolves are and have always been vulnerable to sharpened breadsticks, it's simply that it's extremely difficult to make a breadstick sharp and silver isn't that hard to get your hands on.
It's true. You never hear of werewolves attacking an Olive Garden restaurant. With their copious use of garlic, it's also safe from vampiric predation.

Nobody attacks anybody when there's breadsticks close at hand. Just look at the mayhem that ensued when one guy used a baguette.

Don't even get me started on all of the mimic-related sandwich deaths that happen every year. And heavens help you if several of them can get together and summon their god...


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If that were to happen, I'd be super ticked that I invested so much in my low-level human cleric with the terrible Strength and Constitution scores, rather than being a point-whoring munchkin who played a noble drow wizard 20 with 10 mythic tiers and the half-celestial template.


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Bit of errata: Sonja's flat-footed AC should be 19, not 20.


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Lord Fyre wrote:
  • What other female protagonists have similar attributes to what works for the character?
  • There are some similarities to Telerie Windyarm, from Larry Elmore's SnarfQuest comics.


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    Haladir wrote:
    No game is better than a bad game.

    Okay, I know what you meant here, but it sounds like you just said that there's nothing better than a bad game.


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    Blayde MacRonan wrote:
    Dragon Ball Super's "Future Trunks" arc has been insane. Zamasu/Goku Black is without a doubt the most over the top villain in Dragon Ball. But he's the challenge that Goku and Vegeta needed, because the stakes have been upped considerably for them.

    I just watched this week's episode, and I agree; things have gotten insane...in the best possible way! This feels like the very best parts of classic DBZ, where things go insanely over-the-top, to the point where it can't get any wilder...and then it does!

    I'm absolutely loving this arc, and judging from the preview for next week's episode, it's just going to get better.


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    BigNorseWolf wrote:
    Its english. You can verb anything.

    "Verbing weirds language." -Calvin


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    Sundakan wrote:
    Have played one of them (Savage Worlds). Being required to choose between higher stats (needed to up skills), upping skills, and buying Edges in a system where leveling is fairly slow is one of the only irritating parts about the system.

    Having also played one of them (Marvel Superheroes, aka FASERIP), I had the opposite experience. The dual-use of karma points as being spent to guarantee success when trying an action, while also requiring very large hoards of them in order to improve existing powers/acquire new powers, was a brilliant way of making advancement possible while still creating "soft" limits. Especially since you lost all of your karma points if you killed someone or didn't rescue innocent bystanders.

    Quote:
    People who disagree with you do not need their "horizons broadened". They just don't agree with you.

    By that same token, people who don't like something don't need to have other games "recommend" to them. They're just saying what they don't like, which is sort of the purpose of this thread.


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    Irontruth wrote:

    I apologize. I didn't intend for my post to be aggressive or condescending.

    If you do want to discuss it, I'm willing. Otherwise I'll drop it.

    Thank you, I appreciate that. Let us speak no more of it.


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    Irontruth wrote:
    The reward system of D&D isn't new or novel, it's been there since before it was called D&D.

    This is a skillful way of confusing the issue, since you've slyly conflated "class abilities" with "advancement." In fact, the idea of "rewards" and "advancement" is entirely separate from the issue of making sure that you get new class abilities each and every time you level up; that's kind of the point that I was making.

    Your whole bit about "the reward system of D&D isn't new" purposefully ignores the fact that back then, virtually every level for every class was a dead level, and yet gaining XP and leveling up was still incentivized. That was because levels were simply adding to existing abilities (primarily defensive in nature, such as the ability to receive more damage via increased hp, or avoid damage with better saves).

    It was when gaining some new ability in addition to that became expected that the meta-mechanics became a goal unto themselves, instead of being something that would help accomplish a character's goals.

    Quote:
    You're essentially railing against the evolution and improvements in understanding of a subsystem that has been present for the entirety of gaming.

    Not so much, no. The idea that leveling needs to have cookies added to them or they're "dead" isn't an improvement to the game itself. It's just a heightened expectation on some people's part.

    Quote:
    BTW: there are games that don't use levels and don't include advancement. I can recommend some if this is a huge issue.

    I strongly urge you to go and play those games. If you do so, you'll develop a greater understand of why "dead levels" are a canard, and broaden your horizons.


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    Sundakan wrote:
    Talonhawke wrote:
    Alzrius wrote:

    I hate the term "dead levels."

    I first heard about this in an old WotC article which set out to "fix" this problem.

    For those who don't want to read through that page, "dead levels" are levels in a class progression where you don't gain a new class ability (or an improvement of an existing ability). Note that spellcasting classes gaining new spells (or even spell levels) are still considered to be "dead levels" if there isn't a separate class ability given as well.

    I absolutely can't stand this, since even aside from the sense of entitlement (e.g. the idea that there "should" be some new class ability at every single level), I hate how it reinforces the meta-game involved in D&D/Pathfinder. I much prefer to have the focus be kept on what the characters accomplish, not what abilities they have.

    The problem for a lot of classes what they can accomplish is tied to what abilities they have.

    This.

    It's kind of why the classes exist in this game.

    Maybe that's a problem for a lot of classes, but characters are more than their class abilities.

    Call me old-fashioned, but I'm of the opinion that what you can accomplish is primarily determined by role-playing, including a combination of ingenuity, preparation, and good die rolls. Obviously that won't be enough to let you do whatever you want, all of the time (particularly if the dice roll badly), but if you can reliably pull that off then I'm fairly confident that there's a way for you to contribute and have fun just as much as if you hadn't received a new cookie when you leveled.


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    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

    I hate the term "dead levels."

    I first heard about this in an old WotC article which set out to "fix" this problem.

    For those who don't want to read through that page, "dead levels" are levels in a class progression where you don't gain a new class ability (or an improvement of an existing ability). Note that spellcasting classes gaining new spells (or even spell levels) are still considered to be "dead levels" if there isn't a separate class ability given as well.

    I absolutely can't stand this, since even aside from the sense of entitlement (e.g. the idea that there "should" be some new class ability at every single level), I hate how it reinforces the meta-game involved in D&D/Pathfinder. I much prefer to have the focus be kept on what the characters accomplish, not what abilities they have.


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    It's coming...

    KonoSuba season 2.

    January 11th, 2017.


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    Klorox wrote:
    Well, create a flesh to plush spell ;)

    No need to create it; it can be found in the letters column (as a staff response) in Dragon issue #190.


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    SAMAS wrote:
    Sundakan wrote:
    I was hoping this was part of their Funimation collab for a second, but meh. I cannot stand the Japanese cast for Dragonball Z/Super. There is no reason a 45 year old man should sound like he did when he was 8.

    You mean Goku? His Seiyuu actually voices Gohan, Goten, Bardock, and all associated Fusions.

    And she's Eighty.

    Eighty and awesome! I love Masako Nozawa's voice work, and I'm glad and impressed that she's still going strong!


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    UnArcaneElection wrote:
    I have yet to hear of a nerd deity manifestation . . . .

    That's because those are the gods who show up to whine about how the new world that everyone's making is inconsistent because it has lizard-people but not muskrat-people, or complains about how the floating islands aren't aerodynamic. Eventually the rest of the pantheon just stops inviting that guy, and the mortal world forgets that he exists.


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    I'm looking forward to making the Switch!


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    Jay707 wrote:

    So a player in a game that I am also in took 1 swift action and 2 immediate actions in one turn for saving throws...etc, and I called him on it. He then said "You are purposefully trying to kill my character." and got angry at me for "rule lawyering him to kill him."

    Note that I do the same thing to myself, having to look something up after my turn was done and wasn't sure, even if it was not beneficial to myself and speaking up about it. Including anyone else that isn't aware or playing the game correctly.

    Should I just shut up and let people do whatever and let them bend the rules to their favor?

    I do the same thing, pointing out what the rules are even when it doesn't favor other party members, or myself for that matter. While I've gotten dirty looks for it over the years, my group recognizes that it's impartial, and doesn't hold it against me (for which I'm grateful). So I don't think that you did anything wrong.


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    Guy St-Amant wrote:
    Do you even know what a simulation is?

    Do you? I'm seriously asking, based on what you wrote following this.

    Quote:
    The problem is representation, "picking and choosing what/how to model", the more contradictions in representations, the more likely the simulations won't work.

    Questioning the efficacy of simulationism is moving the goalposts; no one is arguing for an RPG to create a full-scale model of a fantasy universe in its entirety. Rather, this is a discussion about the correct definition of what "representation" - as "the problem" with RPGs - is. More specifically, I pointed out that it wasn't an issue of "why you can't model a fantasy universe," since taking that sort of holistic approach to modeling a setting (which is what that line of thinking does) is a simulationist stance, whereas representation means figuring out which bits and pieces to model and why.


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    Charon's Little Helper wrote:
    Snowlilly wrote:
    We should all just say to heck with it and play FATAL.
    I must say - I have wondered how many copies of that game sell just because people are curious about just how bad it is due to it being referenced as an example of a horrid game.

    Rumor has it that a few print copies were produced, before the author was torn to shreds by invisible attackers in broad daylight on a crowded street in Damascus, and survive in private collections and archives to this very day.


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    Guy St-Amant wrote:
    @ Alzrius, he/she is right, the problem is representation, the problem with simulationism come from the problems of representation.

    I disagree. Defining "representation" as "can't model an entire fictional universe in anything less than another universe" - which was the term that Orfamay used - is an issue of simulationism, which is concerned with portraying the holisticity of the game world as best it can. By contrast, "representation" is a question of "picking and choosing what to model," which is entirely different from how to showcase an entire universe.


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    Orfamay Quest wrote:
    <shrug> Well, you're wrong.

    *sigh* Except that I'm not.

    Quote:
    ... which is one approach to the problem of representation, but not the only one. Another approach is to incorporate only those elements which are important to the narrative, and you may or may not want to incorporate them realistically, which is the approach that people usually call "narrativist."

    The thing about that is that it doesn't actually "represent" the game world, which is at the core of your position. On the contrary, the narrativist approach deliberately eschews the aspects of the wider game universe that aren't necessary to the meta-game construct of the story that's being told, and so flies directly in the face of issues of representation.

    Quote:
    Of course, that's actually a false dichotomy; no one is actually a hard-core simulationist, as the failure of Campaign for North Africa illustrates, but almost every successful RPG incorporates some elements of simulation into the game (rather than going through a purely narrative approach -- the only purely narrative RPG I can think of is The Adventures of Baron Von Munchausen).

    The failure of this line of thinking is that it relies on imprecise terms such as "hardcore" simulationism, to say nothing of loaded terms like "failure," despite games with a high approach to simulationism still being made and played. In other words, this entire premise relies on weasel words.

    Quote:
    So, to recap, representation is the problem.

    Except now we've definitively shown that it's not.

    Quote:
    How much, how accurately, and in how much detail? There are a lot of proposed solutions, of which "simulationism," to wit, "represent as much as you can as faithfully as you can" is a bad but often cited solution.

    This is a moving of the goalposts; you previously talked about "represent an entire fictional universe" as being the problem, but are now moving away from that to talk about issues of "the narrative," which is inherently unconcerned with representing an "entire fictional universe" to begin with, because the entirety of said universe isn't important to the narrative. Hence, issues of representation as you've defined it are no longer an issue at all.

    So you're wrong on that one.


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    RDM42 wrote:
    You might as well ask why baseball teams bother with the minor leaguers instead of just only signing players currently in the majors.

    Inapplicable analogy is inapplicable. Real-world basketball teams don't have magic (or, since we're talking about gods, divine powers) to heal injuries, ward off aging, resurrect the dead, etc. To say nothing of the startling differences between a CR 1 creature and a CR 9 creature being far and away more than what you'll find between a starting lineup rookie and a major league player.


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    So it occurs to me that there was a theme I missed with regards to the finale. I was rather surprised by this, because in hindsight it seems obvious, even though the episodes themselves didn't call attention to it.

    Spoiler:
    That theme being that the entire rescue team was made out of reformed villains: Discord, Trixie, Starlight, and Thorax (well, Thorax was never really a villain, but being a changeling he was presumed to be by everyone).

    Really, while it seemed like the finale was about Starlight regaining her confidence as a leader, it was really (or at least, also) about how good deeds can come back around when you need them most. Had Discord been left a statue, had Trixie and Starlight been locked up for their crimes (and I heard quite a bit of grumbling in the fandom about how Starlight should have been punished for the events of The Cutie Re-Mark), and had Spike not advocated for everyone to give Thorax a chance, Equestria might have fallen to the changelings.

    This was, in essence, a story about the virtues of forgiveness and redemption, and I'm quite impressed at how organic they made it seem. Not calling that out allows for the lesson to speak for itself, and it does so quite powerfully.


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    RDM42 wrote:
    Do cr1 petitioners stay cr1 petitioners? And if you say 'but it takes a long time!' Does it really, on the time scales that gods care about, to advance them? It's like making an investment, with time and interest all those small amounts add up.

    The idea of advancement is true for everything, not just petitioners. Any creature can gain class levels, improved natural Hit Dice, templates, mythic tiers, etc. We might as well ask "do CR 9 creatures stay CR 9 creatures?"


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    Orfamay Quest wrote:
    Alzrius wrote:
    Orfamay Quest wrote:
    I'd say the biggest issue with PF, with TTRPG, and indeed, with games in general, is representation. Basically, it's not possible to represent an entire fictional universe in less than another entire universe.
    As a nitpick, I've usually heard that referred to as "simulationism" rather than "representation."
    No, simulationism is one proposed solution to the representation problem.

    No, I don't think that's true. Simulationism is the issue of simulating a game world with the greatest fidelity that's (practically) possible, which sounds exactly like what you're calling "representation."


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    Orfamay Quest wrote:
    I'd say the biggest issue with PF, with TTRPG, and indeed, with games in general, is representation. Basically, it's not possible to represent an entire fictional universe in less than another entire universe.

    As a nitpick, I've usually heard that referred to as "simulationism" rather than "representation."


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    johnlocke90 wrote:
    Rovugag is in fact a full deity as he has 5 domains and only full deities get 5 domains.

    That's a technicality; I'm suggesting that he might be some sort of incredibly powerful non-divine entity that, insofar as mortals are concerned, can still grant spells, similar to things like the Eldest or the Great Old Ones.

    Quote:
    Regarding petitioners, per the mass combat rules 100 CR 1 petitions is equivalent to 1 CR 9 monster. And petitioners are way more common than CR 9 monsters. An army of petitioners is much stronger than you think.

    No, they're exactly as strong as I think, which is not very. The idea that petitioners are "more common" than higher-CR creatures is entirely made up, since there are no rarity ratings for creatures. All this idea shows is that a CR 9 creature is one hundred times more worthwhile than any single petitioner, to say nothing of higher-CR monsters.

    Quote:

    Edit: The afterlifes are vastly different. In hell you basically spend all your time getting tortured. The Abyss you start out as a disgusting Larvae thing that lives off the filth of the abyss. In Abaddon you get hunted down by daemons that permanently end your existence.

    Even if you survive and get promoted it sucks. The promotion process for devils is stuff like "be impaled on a spike for 100 years, turn into a slightly stronger devil".

    All the more reason to worship evil deities, then. That way, you can be as evil as you want to be, and you'll go to their realms when you die, rather than be left out in the wilds of the evil planes all by yourself. So that right there incentivizes evil worshipers.


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    johnlocke90 wrote:
    The flip side is that a lot of the neutral and evil gods don't make sense with significant amounts of worshipers.

    I don't quite understand why neutral or evil gods wouldn't have significant number of worshipers the way good deities would. It's not like the afterlives for one are different than the other; they're all basically you taking an eternal job in that god's service. Few evil deities actively punish their followers for living a life of evil.

    Quote:
    For instance, Rovagug is never going to have many worshippers.

    As I understand it, it's still questionable whether or not Rovagug is a god or some sort of super-powerful qlippoth.

    Quote:
    By requiring worship, you constrain what kind of gods you can create.

    I don't believe that to be the case, if for no other reason than you can have plenty of cults that worship eschatolic or nihilistic deities, despite how insane that is.

    Quote:
    Edit: Also, the gods have obvious incentives for worshippers. Those worshippers go to the gods plane when they die. The god isn't directly empowered by the worshippers, but he does get helpers who can do his bidding.

    Except, again, those petitioners aren't worth very much. It's more worth a god's time to recruit a stronger creature - which will be almost anything - rather than to rely on a horde of CR 1 petitioners.


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    Okay, I just wrote a really long post with my impressions of the season finale, and the forums ate it (and I didn't think to save it first), so I'm going to try and recreate it:

    (As a note, I'm putting this in spoiler tags even though it's already been aired domestically. Better to be safe than to ruin things for someone.)

    Spoiler:
    • I had a little bet with myself as to whether or not this season's finale would be connected to the season premiere. While seasons one and two had finales that weren't related to their premieres, every season subsequent to those has (though season three's was very indirect). Interestingly, this season seemed to try and split the difference, as there was no direct connection to The Crystalling...save for those last few moments where we glimpsed a changeling (now known to be Thorax).

    • I have to give the show major props for handling internal logic and self-consistency so well. Given the sheer scope of the kingdom-level threat, it would have been very awkward if Discord hadn't been involved. Bringing him in was the right move on the showrunners' part, particularly with his being uncaring about everything until he realized that Fluttershy had been taken.

    • On a similar note, the characters were all very smart about realizing that the way to deal with shape-shifters was to ask them something only the real person would know, to the point of proactively coming up with a code! It's nice to see the characters reacting intelligently according to the threats that they face!

    • That said, how in the hay were the changelings able to take all four (well, five, but Flurry Heart doesn't really count yet) alicorn princesses...apparently not only without a fight, but without even having Queen Chrysalis be there to do it (the implication was that she was in her castle while all of it went down)? While we know that Luna and Celestia can be taken unaware (e.g. Princess Twilight Sparkle - Part 1), that ordinary changelings could have done so seems like something of a stretch.

    • How in the hay were the changelings able to enter Luna's dreamwalking and pull her away from Starlight's dream? Seriously, how did they do that?!

    • I was never a fan of Trixie the way a lot of bronies seemed to be, but I have to admit that she's growing on me, a lot. She's gone from a belligerent braggart (even if the Mane Six did interrupt her show), to a crazy-tyrant-turned-apologetic-pony, to learning about friendship with Starlight, to a hero who helped save Equestria. She's really stepped up and changed, and I really think she deserves an episode in the future highlighting how much she's grown.

    • I'm really hoping that Starlight turned a corner with the events of this episode. Her character this entire season has been about her dealing with her insecurities, whether it's been with making new friends, reconciling with old friends, learning friendship lessons, and now trying out leadership again. It's entirely in-character for her, but I'm ready to see her becoming more confident from now on.

    • So yeah, now we have even more evidence that the comics aren't canon, since "The Return of Queen Chrysalis" arc (the very first comics!) had the Mane Six going to the Changeling Kingdom and using magic there.

    • I know that Thorax had mentioned it in The Times They Are A Changeling, but I still clucked my tongue at the idea of the changelings having a permanent kingdom of their own. Chrysalis' speech in A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2 alluded to them being itinerant (e.g. she sounded like she had only recently discovered Equestria), and that made sense given that they were stealth-based parasites who need to blend in to an existing population in order to feed (even if they can apparently store the love energy they've taken, somehow).

    • I've heard (and I have no idea how true this was) that season six's theme was supposed to be "explore Equestria." Clearly that wasn't the case, since the Changeling Kingdom was the first new locale we've been to all season (the closest we otherwise had was a few new parts of the Dragons Lands).

    • I'm sorry, I know that it's "magic" and all, and that Thorax also theorized it previously (and again here with the crystalline wings), and that it was clearly meant to be reminiscent of the pupae-to-butterfly transformation (e.g. Thorax briefly being in a cocoon before he emerges), but the entire thing with the changelings transforming made no sense! If they need to drain love in the first place, then it doesn't follow that they'd be able to generate it on their own to share with others. It's obviously allegorical to personal growth (e.g. from being selfish and taking what you want, to being selfless and giving to others), but giving away the very energy that sustains them - and having that evolve them to a form that, it's implied, doesn't need to be parasitic anymore - doesn't seem logical. (And I really wish we'd learned more about what these new forms could do.)

    • So now the number of episodes where Queen Chrysalis' voice doesn't have that weird modulation (The Cutie Re-Mark - Part 2 and To Where And Back Again - Part 2) outnumber those where she does (A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2). Did the show staff just decide that they liked her better without it? Because I thought that was cool. On the other hoof, her entrance, where she moved her body in alien ways, was super creepy! So I suppose it all balances out.

    • I'm always glad to see a villain be available for a return, but I have to wonder just how much more use we can get out of Queen Chrysalis. We've seen her use the whole "changeling invasion" schtick three times now (albeit one of those was in an alternate timeline), and now that that's closed to her, I'm honestly not sure how much more of a threat she can pose. Obviously, the writers can come up with whatever they want, but at this point she seems pretty well over and done with.

    • Was there really a need for the show to canonize that Discord is a "draconequus"? He's a singular, unique entity - of chaos, no less - so giving him a taxonomic classification seems rather redundant. "Discord" is who and what he is.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
    GM Rednal wrote:
    @Alzirus: They expand it literally. In Mummy's Mask #6, the article "The River of Souls" explains what happens to the departed. A great many of them simply end up merging with the plane itself (as in physically enhancing it), and even dead Outsiders tend to contribute to their homes in the same way.

    Which speaks not at all to deities having to do anything.

    Quote:
    Deities, meanwhile, tend to rule over specific realms - and the more petitioners they get, the sturdier their realms are likely to become.

    Except that's going to happen anyway, since there's no particular shortage of souls with any particular alignment or other inclination towards a particular planar destination. Having deities try to shepherd souls towards a plane that already has souls going to it is like hand-cranking a windmill on a blustery day.

    A plane that doesn't have souls going to it is in deep trouble (unless it's, say, a demiplane safely encased in another plane). Which, come to think of it, could make for a pretty awesome planar adventure...

    Which would cause a deity about as much inconvenience as having to move to a new house, since there's no reason they can't just skip out on a neighborhood that's going to seed (e.g. a plane that's crumbling) and set up a new realm elsewhere.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
    GM Rednal wrote:
    Well, we know that mortal worshipers tend to go to a deity's divine realm after they die. Functionally, that can expand the amount of territory they control, as well as generally support their alignment.

    Expand it how? Those new souls are petitioners, which makes them among the very weakest planar denizens. Having a single CR 10 creature on your side would be worth more than almost any number of petitioners in terms of being able to claim and hold territory.

    Quote:

    The Maelstrom tends to reclaim everything else at a certain pace, and if my understanding of Pathfinder's cosmology is correct, a certain amount of new souls coming in is basically required maintain the plane.

    So, y'know, there's the whole basic self-preservation bit. XD

    Except souls go to the Outer Planes anyway, regardless of whether or not they worship a deity, so there's still no reason for the gods to keep paying so much attention to the Material Plane.


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    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

    So apparently there's going to be a compilation movie for Overlord.

    Between this and the recent Ple Ple Pleiades OVA shipping with the eleventh volume of the light novels, I'm starting to have some real hope for a second anime cour. That's because these are indicative of continuing interest in the series to the point where it's presumed to be profitable to continue animating.

    Certainly, I hope that's the case!


    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
    MannyGoblin wrote:
    A big difference with the Pathfinder deities is that they don't have the 'Must have worship' baggage that the FR deities and perhaps the DL deities have. So slipping up and down the divine ladder isn't something that happens.

    I personally don't care for that. Having gods depend on the amount of worship they receive nicely gives them an incentive to care about what's happening on the mortal plane. Otherwise, you need to come up with another reason for why the gods care so much about how things are going on the Material Plane.

    I can't find where, but I've seen people bring this up to James Jacobs, to which he's replied "the reason why the gods have an interest in mortal worship is a secret," which strikes me as an evasion rather than an answer.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
    Greylurker wrote:

    well well well

    Looks like Crunchyroll has one last card to play this season

    Dragon Ball Super starts streaming october 22nd

    http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2016-10-19/dragon-ball-super-to-simulc ast-on-crunchyroll-daisuki-animelab/.107853

    Woot! Excellent! I've been having to watch it online, so this is a welcome change!


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    GM Rednal wrote:
    For what it's worth, Dicefreaks gave stats to the Avatar of Asmodeus in the last volume of their Gates of Hell series. He's got a Divine Rank of 21 in Hell, 1,610 HP, a basic AC of 97 (even a touch AC of 63), and a bunch of Salient Divine Abilities that basically add up to "lol, you lose". Plus a horrific artifact. That's probably a good place to start if you really want to use stats... and it's worth keeping in mind that this is STILL less powerful than his true form. XD

    That was based on the depiction of Asmodeus from the 2E Guide to Hell, which suggested that he's one of the primordial beings that predate the formation of the planes, and helped give them their current arrangement and structure. Pathfinder's Asmodeus is still an ancient deity, but doesn't have quite the same pedigree.


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    Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
    I'm just challenging the notion that you need stats for narrative purposes. that they are a pre-requisite for internal consistency.

    I don't believe that sentiment is an accurate representation of the notion in question. Unless I missed something, nobody is saying that you need stats for narrative purposes, full stop (or at least, aren't saying that everyone, rather than themselves, needs such things). Rather, some people are saying that, for them, such materials are very helpful in terms of clearly outlining the narrative possibilities, as well as stimulating creativity regarding what those possibilities can mean for the wider game world.

    You're arguing against an absolute principle that nobody is putting forth.


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    Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
    Again it's how you write things. In Fritz Leiber's setting of Nehwon, the relative power of Gods is an intensely volatile affair, with major upsets happening fairly often. the faith that's at the glorious temple at the top of the street, may be reduced to being the hovel at the lower end in the course of a single story. (Now of course I'm talking about the Gods IN Lankhmar.. the ones that you'd actually have clerics for, as opposed to the Gods OF Lankhmar... those mummified figures whose only worship is an occasional basket of fruit tossed in the door and are only seen when the city itself is under mortal threat... they have no worshippers to speak of.)

    Fair enough; I'm presuming some basic adherence to the presumptions in D&D in general, and Pathfinder in particular (notwithstanding campaign assumptions that deviate from these, such as, say, D&D Lankhmar). If you alter those, then everything else will change accordingly; I doubt most gods would have stats in, say, Eberron, for example.


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    Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

    It's one way of top-down, but not the only way. Top/down can start with just the continents and countries, and the gods as opposed to being the bealls and end alls of the works, can actually be at the bottom of the evolutionary process. After all if you design your gods to depend on the beliefs of their worshipers, pantheons may actually diminish or disappear if their believers are conquered or eliminated in war.

    Lankhmar's Street of the Gods is an excellent example. The temples of the Gods advance, and decrease in position and prominence to the exact proportion of how their faiths are doing.

    I didn't say that it was the only way, just that I think that starting with what the gods (or other most powerful beings in the setting) can do is the epitome of top-down design.

    That said, I disagree that gods being affected by issues of requiring beliefs puts them at the "bottom" of the process; being affected by something doesn't mean that you're subordinate to that thing. That's particularly the case when the issue involved is one that's a gradual process, one that requires a large number of people to actuate, and isn't something that can be easily coordinated among them.

    The issue of a god's power being influenced by current issues of how widespread their faith is is likely to be an issue that spans years, if not decades or centuries (outside of massive disasters affecting the near-total base of their worship, at which point the deity is likely to become personally involved, since their own life is effectively on the line). When compared to the fact that a deity is an exceptionally powerful entity that can take quick, decisive action that will have an immediate impact on others, then it's hard to rate such issues of gradual erosion as being of greater importance when ranking the entities of power that ultimately give shape to a campaign world.

    Now, those can be aspects of a world's historical context, but in terms of designing who/what is a major player on the campaign world-stage right now (e.g. at the moment the campaign starts), that's not likely to factor very highly in determining why the world is in the state that it's in. At most, it'll be one issue that the gods take into account when performing their undertakings, but it's not likely to be some sort of serious check on their influence.


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    Vidmaster7 wrote:
    So I think the reason that iv heard before of their stats being kind of gamer porn where you can just go wow look at those numbers and abilities is as far as it would go for me.

    I've heard this before, and this idea - that there's no reason to stats out gods except for indulging in gratuitousness (as though there's anything wrong with that where a personal project about game design is concerned) - strikes me as overlooking some more salient points.

    World-building is typically done one of two ways. It can be bottom-up, which takes the idea that you should start with things that are most directly relevant to what happens during game-play, and extrapolate out from there, or be top-down, which is that you start by creating the most salient features of the world that would affect its development and current organization, and then extrapolate out from there.

    Both philosophies are entirely legitimate, and both have their strengths and weaknesses. Bottom-up design, for example, is likely to quickly produce things that are immediately-useful, but can lead to problems of internal logic and self-consistency if there's no effort to keep a greater design ethos than ad hoc creation of what's likely to be of immediate relevance during a campaign. By contrast, top-down design lends itself to creating a world with a large degree of verisimilitude, but runs the risk of the designer losing sight of the practical elements of game-play in creating a cohesive world.

    Making stats for deities is, to my mind, the epitome of top-down design. Being the major power-players of a campaign world, what gods can do directly influences how the world looks, in terms of their actions and reactions being the defining - or at least major - factors influencing the behavior of less powerful individuals, but also quite possibly on the physical world itself!

    It's been mentioned here that politics is another consideration besides gross martial ability (which is what stats are taken to represent, though I don't think they're quite that simple), but really the two aren't orthogonal at all. As Carl von Clausewitz noted, war is the continuation of politics by other means, and this works in reverse as well. Political actions are undergirded and supported by martial power, either in terms of what can be offered as assistance (other resources can be offered as assistance, of course, but these are still safeguarded by martial prowess, otherwise an antagonistic force would come in and take them by force) or what can be used as a threat.

    Personally, I think that this is a great way of engaging in world design, even if bottom-up methods have been in vogue for some time now, and doesn't deserve the level of derision (in the form of people suggesting that this isn't a worthwhile endeavor, or wondering why someone would think it was) that it tends to receive on these forums.


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    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

    Personally, I've always felt that a project like this would best be done using the old 3.0/3.5 (those rules did get a mention in the official 3.0->3.5 update booklet, after all) rules for creating gods.

    Don't forget that there's a notation in the Core Rulebook's contact other plane spell that says that the Inner Sea deities are all intermediate gods. So with that, Pharasma is probably a rank 15 deity, Rovagug would be rank 14, and the others would be rank 11 or 12, depending on how they're described.


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    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

    It certainly seems like a worthwhile endeavor - Tar-Baphon has stats for how he is now, and when he was alive he mixed it up with Aroden directly, after all. (Sure, he lost, but we now know that he threw the fight.) So yeah, if he could fight a god, then surely PCs could, and stats would be rather germane to that.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

    One of the major issues that comes up when critiquing Pathfinder is that some options offer more narrative control than others. The big one in this regard tends to be full-progression casters versus non-casters.

    But leaving aside that fairly major distinction, what specific options - e.g. spells, feats, magic items, archetypes, etc. - offer a great deal of narrative control? Leadership is an obvious choice, but what else?


    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
    Dragon78 wrote:
    Well yesterday's episode was really good.

    I can't bring myself to agree. I found it to be, while not bad per se, one of the weaker episodes in recent memory.

    Part of this was because I really couldn't get invested in guest characters Sky Stinger and Vapor Trail. Their actions, particularly Vapor's, just seemed off to me. When Vapor confessed the truth to Sky, we subsequently got a scene of the two of them being mad at each other...but why was Vapor mad at Sky? She was the one who'd been lying to him for some time; how does she have any right to be angry?

    Subsequent to that, Vapor's desire to excel as a Wonderbolt felt like it came out of nowhere. There was no buildup or foreshadowing to show that she was growing out of her shell and wanting to excel on her own. Instead, it was just her suddenly saying to Rainbow Dash that she wanted to do the best she could.

    For that matter, after their (extremely quick, even by pony standards) reconciliation, how was it that Sky had anything useful to offer when Vapor was training? I can understand her giving him tips on how to fly better, but the idea that he could offer her any tips was awkward, since he was the one who hadn't actually been putting in the requisite work required to gain such experience.

    And just to nitpick, that bit with Misty showing up at the end to call Rainbow Dash back because of a "Wonderbolts emergency" felt too flimsy as a joke. Even leaving aside that it was obviously to bookend the episode with another "but I was just there!" line, it seemed odd for there to be an emergency of such severity that an off-duty member of the closest thing that Equestria has to an air force needed to be called back up, and yet was tossed off as a joke.

    Throw in the lack of world-building (save for an off-handed mention of a new town, "Stratusburg"), and this really didn't strike me as an episode worth mentioning.

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