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As a Planescape fan, I also have to give a shout out to the Lady of Pain's mazes. The Lady of Pain is a mysterious being who never speaks but merely appears periodically within Sigil; the torus-shaped city at the center of the Outer Planes. Although she's generally believed to have power on par with a minor deity, nobody dares worships her for she appears suddenly before those who offer her prayers; cutting them to ribbons as the shadow of her bladed headdress passes over them.
Those who somehow threaten the peace or safety of the city itself eventually take a wrong turn down an alleyway or corridor. They attempt to backtrack only to discover that they can't find their way to where they were. Although the environs appear familiar, additional exploration only leads them further and further astray. That's when the horror of their situation becomes clear; they've angered the Lady of Pain and so she has cast them into their own personal extra-dimensional maze from which they are unlikely to ever escape.
They race around in desperation through areas that seem superficially similar to the city they know so well; offering them a false hope that they're close to escaping. Finally, gaunt from hunger and standing upon teetering legs, they loose themselves either in death or madness, but always with the certainty that the way out lay just beyond the next corner...
It's a racial stronhold.
While expanding the borders of his kingdom, a human monarch ran into a tribe of kobolds who, through devious traps, guerrilla tactics and rapid breeding, managed to forestall the annexation of their traditional territory. Finally, the monarch had had enough of wasting time and resources and signed a treaty with the kobold chieftan; allocating the kobold's a modest territory reserved for them alone.
Both sides being content to leave each other alone for the time being, the human monarch continued his kingdom's expansion—conquering all the lands surrounding the kobold's reservation and beyond; effectively boxing in the kobolds. Eventually, the kingdom's settlers began settling the surrounding lands and encroaching more and more on the kobold reservation. The kobolds set out to defend their land; digging tunnels below ground and piling the quarried stone above ground into defensive walls surrounding important sites like wells, gardens, residences and hatcheries. The fortifications grew outward as additional walls were raised and joined together into confusing configurations; all of them festooned with devious traps to keep the human settlers out.
The kobold's tactic worked; human settlers grew ever more reluctant to enter the reservation lest they lose their way, stumble into a trap or fall prey to a kobold ambush. Soon social status among the kobolds became tied to the building of their fortifications and families began competing; seeing who could build higher & thicker walls, more confusing layouts, or concoct the most devious traps. The fortifications slowly transformed into a mulit-layered maze of above ground corridors and subterranean passages; all of it trapped with arrow slits, murder holes, pits, deadfalls, choke points and dead ends.
As the years passed and the kobold population grew the maze came to cover the entirety of the reservation and actually began encroaching on the humans' land. Kobold families would band together, make their plans, stockpile building materials and then suddenly erupt out of the maze under cover darkness. A farmer who's land bordered the Reservation might awaken to find his livestock gone, his crops pilfered and half his fields now enclosed by a hastily erected wall. By the time the king's guard would arrive to investigate, the entirety of the farm may lay within a network of walls festooned with deadly traps. If the walls were knocked down during the day, they would be rebuilt by a veritable army of kobold masons the following night.
In successive years, the kingsdom's army has occasionally declared war and set out on crusades to overrun the maze, rout out the kobolds and topple the walls with force. They occasionally meet with some success after suffering substantial losses; only to discover that while they labored in one part of the maze, it has spread out twice as much on its opposite side. And so it continues to this day; the maze slowly spreads outwards, climbs higher and grows deeper as the humans either retreat out of its way, loose their lives inside or beat futilely against its walls.
Maze building has grown into the kobolds' entire culture. They use the maze itself as their primary means of offense and defense. When invaders enter a part of the maze, the kobolds evacuate and let the maze itself fight the invaders. Although some key killing zone choke-points may be manned by kobold warriors, it's the kobolds' combat engineers who are the real threat. They generally keep out of sight, maneuvering around invaders along secret tunnels and corridors and using their prodigious maze-building skills to quickly move walls sections mounted upon hidden tracks or using carried bricks and alchemical quick-setting mortar to erect new walls; seeking to enclose and trap invaders.
Other races could easily be substituted for the kobolds, such as goblins, dwarves or gnomes. The maze could even have been built by multiple races who've banded together for mutual protection from humans; giving different parts of the maze a race-specific flavor. Magical qualities could have been added to the maze by the builders layering spells over a period of years; perhaps resulting in the maze growing into sentience. If it's desired that the maze be uninhabited, the builders could have been wiped out by famine, infighting, pestilence or even by their newly sentient maze having turned on them. 2¢
It's no good. It was the fine folks at Hero Lab who I was trying to convince. I made my case but this is their response:
Hero Lab wrote:
"We have had this report and the discussion about the way MoMS bonus feats work before. By our interpretation, the text of the Master of Many Styles bonus feat section which refers to "appropriate style feat" means the previous feat in the chain. It doesn't allow you to leap from the entry feat to the final feat in the chain."
I can understand that they've embraced their own interpretation. What baffles me if their insistence on enforcing that interpretation within their software. The Master of Many styles archetype automatically obliges users to follow a sequence in selecting the feats in a style group; all other selections are blocked out. It'd seem preferable to enable all options and allow their users to pick the interpretation their group adheres to.
I generally like HL, but now I have to either jump through hoops to make my character work properly or ditch it in favor of pen and paper. Muh.
Sorry. Frustrated. :(
This is sort of an odd request. I know there are countless threads covering this question and there's little to no disagreement since the rule in question is spelled out fairly clearly.
At 1st level, 2nd level, and every four levels thereafter, a master of many styles may select a bonus style feat or the Elemental Fist feat. He does not have to meet the prerequisites of that feat, except the Elemental Fist feat. Alternatively, a master of many styles may choose a feat in that style’s feat path (such as Earth Child Topple as one of these bonus feats if he already has the appropriate style feat (such as Earth Child Style). The master of many styles does not need to meet any other prerequisite of the feat in the style’s feat path." Please note that no prerequisites are required for the bonus feat beyond having its associated style feat*,* so all "Monkey feats" should be available.[
As written in the part I bolded, it seems that a Master of Many styles is free to choose any of the feats in a style's path while ignoring the prerequisites, except of course that he have the initial style feat itself. My question is, is there a citation somewhere from Paizo confirming this is the case? I'm trying to convince someone (no, not my GM) that this is how the class ability works but he contends that the path's feats must be selected in order and insists on seeing something official to that affect. Any help?
For one, your statement is untrue. all other resource dependent abilities, arcane pool, smites, bardic performance, also have little to none in means of replenishment.
Hm. You may be right. Seems odd seeing as how there are magic items out there for everything else. I guess it's an unstated designed philosophy that class abilities shouldn't be augmented with magic.
As per the title, I'm trying to flesh out my first barbarian character and I'm hunting around for a way to replenish rage rounds. Seeing as how most of a barbarians' abilities revolve largely around rage, running out of rage rounds during a long day of adventuring seems to be a significant issue. I know there's Barbarian chew, the Extra Rage feat and a few other ways to add rage rounds per day, but they aren't terribly effective or practical. There's also the Elemental Kin archetype, but setting yourself on fire before raging seems rather convoluted and odd. I'm surprised that I can't find a ready-made spell or magic item that replenishes rage; a slow burn spell, a bear-sark vest of mounting fury or an elixir of endless rage. Am I overlooking something?
I'm curious whether pairing these three elements is a viable combo.
While raging, as a free action the barbarian may leave herself open to attack while preparing devastating counterattacks. Enemies gain a +4 bonus on attack and damage rolls against the barbarian until the beginning of her next turn, but every attack against the barbarian provokes an attack of opportunity from her, which is resolved prior to resolving each enemy attack.
While using the Snake Style feat, when an opponent’s attack misses you, you can make an unarmed strike against that opponent as an attack of opportunity. If this attack of opportunity hits, you can spend an immediate action to make another unarmed strike against the same opponent.
Now assuming you're raging and have already spent a free action on your turn to activate the Come and Get Me rage power and an opponent indeed attempts an attack against you:
1. the attempt to strike you provokes an AoO from you.
Result, three attacks to your opponent's one. If your opponent is foolish enough to continue and attacks you a second time during his turn, you immediately repeat steps 1–5; skipping step 6 because you've already expended your next round's swift action; that is as long as you still have AoS left from your Combat Reflexes feat.
Is this correct?
if he's a player, I'm like 90% sure it's a Taninim monk since their archetype specifically forbids flurrying.
Sorry to disappoint, but I wasn't planning a taninim monk. I had to look it up before I remembered that it's a 3P PC dragon-race. An interesting notion to be sure.
For what it's worth, I tend to agree with Bandw2, Claxon & Graystone that it's unlikely that the monk's Unarmed Strike ability itself is the sort of "effect" that would provide the means to "enhance or improve" the character's other natural weapons. But I needed to check. Although attractive as a notion, it's a circular logic that seems to make it both cause and effect. I can certainly appreciate the opposite viewpoint and would understand if the devs ruled it so, but I find it unlikely to be the case.
Since having the character's natural attacks not becoming secondary would directly improve the character's natural attacks, might that not qualify as an "effect that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons"?
Not looking to contradict anyone; just want to make sure I get it right. Any all insight is appreciated.
Yeah, I know this has been addressed and debated countless times. That's part of my problem; I can't make heads or tails out of all the threads out there. I'm looking for help in connecting the dots and either confirming or refuting some confusing parts.
Let's say that the character is a medium dragon with monk levels. The idea is for him to fight with two monk unarmed strikes along with the two weapon fighting feat (not flurrying) along with his natural attacks (bite, claw, claw) as part of a full attack routine. The two monk unarmed strikes are, say, a horn butt and tail slap. Disregarding eventual iterative attacks from the unarmed strikes, this character would have five attacks: a bite, two claws, and the two unarmed strikes.
The questions are, what are the penalties to hit with each attack and which attacks receive the character's full Strength bonus to damage and which, if any, get only half the Strength bonus to damage? Does the following line from the monk's Unarmed Strike class feature affect this in any way:
"A monk's unarmed strike is treated as both a manufactured weapon and a natural weapon for the purpose of spells and effects that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons."
If the character's unarmed attacks count as natural weapons, would that make all his attacks primary?
The Songbird of Doom: A Guide to a most unlikely tank and Mechanism of Mass Destruction (Warning: GMs will hate you)
I'm aware that I'm trying to shoehorn psuedo-lycanthrophic abilities into a point buy system not designed for it. It just seemed to be the best way to create the desired race with the Advanced Race Guide without inventing an altogether new ability and assigning it an ad hoc RP cost.
That being said, your suggestion is pretty much what I'd been aiming for, certainly simpler and does seem to be roughly balanced around 11-13 pts or so I'd say. Good suggestion.
As per the title, I'm looking to make a human character with the ability to change into a wolf; only those two shapes, no werewolf hybrid form. Does such a thing exist anywhere already?
Assuming it doesn't, I was looking at how I might do this using the Advanced Race Guide. I figured the easiest way to go about it would be to create a wolf and then simply add the lesser change shape ability to give it a human form. However, I find the point total rather high considering that all the canine bonuses aren't normally usable while in human form. Anyone have a better idea how that might affect the Race Point cost? Here's my preliminary writeup for the race. And suggestions are welcome. Thanks!
The Songbird of Doom: A Guide to a most unlikely tank and Mechanism of Mass Destruction (Warning: GMs will hate you)
This is my Bloodmarked Skinwalker build so far:
1st: Barbarian (urban) 1 [Bat Shape feat]
Are there any obvious flaws or issues I've overlooked?
The Songbird of Doom: A Guide to a most unlikely tank and Mechanism of Mass Destruction (Warning: GMs will hate you)
Initially, the Unchained Rogue looks to be tailor-made for this build but, upon trying to incorporate it, it becomes apparent that its abilities become largely redundant once you add in a level of Swashbuckler and the Amulet of Mighty Fists (Agile) that the build necessitates. A shame; it'd be nice to streamline the build a bit with the Unchained Rogue. Meh.
Even in the real world we're starting to discover a staggering amount of subterranean organisms which by some estimates may, pound for pound, actually outweigh our above-ground biosphere. It's not so hard to imagine that, with the preponderance of vast subterranean caverns and tunnels in most fantasy worlds, that much more elaborate and sustainable ecosystems may develop. Giant mushroom forests, subterranean rivers teaming with blind fish and fungus-scrounging herbivores aren't really all that outlandish. All of it together could form a tightly efficient and sustainable food chain.
As for dwarves, they serves as a bridge between the realms below and those above. Dwarves are often depicted as mining and smithing the deep earth's riches and then trading them to surface dwellers. Although dwarven merchants love money, what they're more likely to trade for is what their kinsman are in short supply of underground; grains (especially barley & hops!), vegetables, meat, leather, wood, etc. So their diet is likely a mix of what they can farm & fish below and what their traders bring down from above.
Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:
This is why I couldn't bring myself to play a pyrokineticist. You'd basically have to take expanded element just to have something to do should you come across something immune to fire.
Same here. Looking over the class, I figured I'd likely pick earth or to deal damage since it's not vulnerable to energy resistance. And that's what's frustrating; fire is intuitively the most dangerous/scary element yet it rarely is in game play.
I've read through the class and like what I see so far. I don't know if my points have been addressed in this thread. If so, I apologize.
I was a little dismayed to see that, like most other element-based classes I've seen since 2e, the kineticist is split so that each practitioner is largely limited to a single element. For many years I've been wanting to see a true elementalist; one who wields the power of all four elements. Seeing as how Avatar has popularized the idea, I hope there are plans to make this a viable PC option starting at level 1.
For those who focus on a single element such as fire though, are there plans to include a class ability that automatically reduces an opponent's energy resistance or immunity and that scales up as the PC increases in level? Such characters are attractive to play at a glance, but without such an ability tend to be paper tigers in my experience since energy resistance is so common. No one is afraid of a pyromaniac who fails to burn anything.
Purple Dragon Knight wrote:
One could hypothesize that the walls of the extradimensional space have a constant temperature X, that is inferior to lava's temperature, which results in a constant heat flow from the lava to the wall of the space. If the extradimensional space is a perfectly closed system, like a perfect thermos, then yes one could keep ice or lava in there.
Trying to apply real physics to magical effects is always fraught with peril. The interior of a Portable Hole is an extradimensional space with finite boundaries, but those boundaries aren't really "walls" in any conventional sense; they're planar boundaries. I'd say that heat can't dissipate out through those boundaries when the opening to the hole is closed for the same reason that PCs can't tunnel their way through them: there's simply nothing beyond them; nowhere for the heat to escape to.
Purple Dragon Knight wrote:
I would argue against it for the very reason outlined here, as the item was probably not designed to be weaponized as such.
If you're looking for a way to limit what PCs can place within a hole, I'd propose looking at the nature of the item itself. A portable hole is essentially a circle of magical cloth 6-ft across. Even when placed upon a flat surface and the center of the cloth effectively disappears, some measure of it's cloth edges remain; characters need that edge so they can pull the hole away from a surface. Having that fabric edge where lava (or acid) can flow over it into the hole would seem to be a very bad idea. If the fabric suffers sufficient damage, the item will eventually be destroyed. Certainly there are workarounds that clever PCs can devise to get damaging substances in and out of the hole safely, but it's still a risky proposition; one which thrifty PCs may prefer to avoid for fear of loosing an expensive item. Just my 2¢.
It's a tricky matter and will depend largely on how your GM views Intelligence. Even the basest familiar starts with an intelligence of 6, which is several orders of magnitude smarter than even the best trained mundane animal; perhaps akin to a child of middling years. If dogs can be trained to understand voice commands, I think it's only fair to assume that an Int 6 familiar can understand far more of a master's intent. I'd say it's a given that familiars understand most of their master's plain spoken instructions (perhaps with a bit of pantomine thrown in for good measure) about as well as a six or seven year old might. "Go to that window over there to see if there's anyone there then come back to me. Be careful and try to stay hidden. Okay?" is well within even a dumb familiar's ability to understand. Keep in mind also that a familiar automatically shares a master's skill ranks so, if the master has learned languages through the Linguistics skill, so has the familiar; so the question of it being able to understand spoken language (even if it cannot yet speak them) becomes moot.
As for communicating back what it's seen, the animal can answer yes or no questions easily enough with a nod or shake of its head while numbers can be tapped out. It can recognize things familiar to it, remember details and then answer questions about them, again, about as well as a child could. Race, gender, clothing worn, weapons and armor, number of people, activities of those assembled are all within their ability to conceptualize; it just might take awhile to get the information out of them with a series of yes or no questions. If the familiar knows some languages through the Linguistics skill, then I suppose you could employ something like a Ouija board for it to spell out answers.
My 2¢. YMMV.
So many good uses for a portable hole. Too many people to teleport? Put a couple in the portable hole. Can put allies in it and sneak them into an area with you. It's only 10 mins of air for 1 person, but even so it's easily abusable.
This. A caster can scoop up the party and fly, dimension door or teleport into a hard to reach area with his whole party in tow. A stealthy scout can do the same at unleash his buffed and readied party on an unsuspecting target. If you need to keep your party, rescued NPCs or prisoners in the hole for more than a few minutes, have them enter suspended animation via readied Sepia Snake Sigil notes kept inside.
We also stole, er looted, the entire library out of Delvehaven the same way.
This. Adventures are chock full of grandiose room descriptions with fancy furnishing intended as mere window dressing. But with a portable hole you can lift those "rows of floor to ceiling bookshelves" every villain seems to have in their lair. Pick up armoires, four-poster beds, desks, statues and whatnot to furnish your own newly purchased house. One character I had collected the thrones of defeated BBEGs, stocking his dining room in gaudy majesty. :D
Thanks for the math breakdown. My problem had been that I hadn't known how to reconcile average damage with the reduced chance to hit; but I get it now. Following the model and running my own numbers, I see that my current cutoff point is indeed at AC 22; 23 and up is better without Power Aatack.
AC 22, 40% chance to hit with +9, of 10.5 dmg x 4 = 16.8 dmg.
AC 23, 35% chance to hit with +9, of 10.5 dmg x 4 = 14.7 dmg.
Now that I know the math however I can see that, in my case at least, either Improved Natural Attack or Arcane Strike have a better return for damage on average than Power Attack. It'd probably be different if I were getting 150% Str on attacks. So I'll aim to get those two feats first and pick up Power Attack down the line.
Note that you can't take the large evolution until 8th level though.
Large sized is gained from enlarge person. At 8th level I'll be huge.
I am also playing a 5th level synthesist, 4 claws, 20 str.
I'd be curious to see more of your build at present.
Your synthesist build is going to focus on attack spam -- those secondary attacks are all going to be at 50% strength, and 50% of the normal power-attack bonuses, but you'll still make up for it through sheer numbers... mostly.
Claw attacks are all primary. For the sake of keeping it primary and for ease of boosting with spells and feats, I'm going to keep focusing on claws; so no secondary attacks ever.
Always Be Power Attacking
That seems to be the take-away from this. Is there a simple rule of thumb for when it's best to stop power attacking; say like when I'm missing on attack rolls equal to my full attack bonus +5 or +10?
Looking at comparable damage boosting feats, I'm just wondering if the added damage/lower to-hit of Power Attack (+4 dam. x 4 = 16; -2 to hit) outpaces the damage of say Arcane Strike (+2 dam. x 4 attacks = 8) or Improved Natural Attack (increase 1d8 die to 2d6 x 4 = 10) for this character.
Power Attack is one of those feats which I've read is a statistical must-have for melee builds but which I'm always hesitant to make use of since the penalty to hit makes me nervous. How do you properly gauge when to use it? People will say it depends largely on the AC of your target but, for a combat that lasts only 3-4 rounds, spending a round or two trying to determine the exact AC and then running some numbers to figure out whether you've reached a viable Power Attacking opportunity seems too time consuming to be worthwhile. Can someone to whom Power Attacking is second nature help me figure out how I should go about getting the most out of this feat?
For reference, I'm playing a 5th level Synthesist who is large, with 20 Str, and with four claw attacks; dealing approximately 1d8+5 per hit.
I'm currently playing what is essentially a half-elf summoner (synthesist). The character concept is that she's a dryad who's been bonded to a treant (her eidolon) after her original tree was destroyed. Since they now share a life, when the dryad is awake the treant slumbers and vice versa. So when the half-elf summons her eidolon the "dryad" merges into the treant and falls asleep while the "treant" wakes up. I play them as two different characters with seperate personalities.
I used the Race Point system to swap out a few of the half-elf's racial traits and abilities to make her a fey with a few dryad-like qualities while the eidolon has a Plant Appearance evolution (based off of the Undead Appearance evolution, but switching the two types).
The dryad handles most of the social interaction of the pair while the treant is the party's tank. It's a lot of fun. :)
Maybe not appropriate for you, but my sorcerer's favorite way to walk through walls was the Elemental Body I spell to gain an earth elemental's earth glide ability paired with invisibility and possibly silence.
In most dungeon settings as well as stone buildings it's ideal for scouting out terrain; using the walls, floors and ceiling surrounding rooms as your own personal secret passage while briefly peeking into adjoining chambers. Bypass traps and sentries, map out the whole dungeon, identify primary targets and then report back to the party to develop a strategy. Dimension door would then allow us to pop in on the unprepared BBEG. Taking out the BBEG first and then working our way back out of the dungeon become our defacto approach. Very effective.
Pretty much any character with extradimensional containers crammed with a wide array of mundane equipment can pull off this concept. Really, the only things holding you back is how much stuff you can carry, how much you're willing to spend to acquire all this stuff and how well you know the rules for each item you're carrying and how each might be exploited to maximum benefit. You have to be the type of player who, when presented with an obstacle, can mentally review his inventory and quickly conceptualize how that stuff might be used to overcome the obstacle. If you have trouble coming up with clever solutions in real life, you'll probably be disappointed in the character.
The other possible hiccup is if your GM is not receptive to the idea. Those who don't appreciate offbeat ways of dealing with obstacles might not support your character concept. Some GMs prefer to have their obstacles be insurmountable as a means of keeping the PCs on a linear path that they've plotted out beforehand. Proposing ways of knocking down those obstacles can push that sort of GM into a panic and they'll instinctively shut down your clever plans as a way to maintain the plot. Of course not all GMs are like this, but it's something to keep in mind.
There are a few feats, traits, class abilities and racial abilities peppered throughout game that somehow incorporate the use of mundane equipment. I imagine most are too focused on a specific piece of equipment to be generally useful for the sort of know-it-all character you're aiming for however. Maybe I'm wrong on that count though.
As I said, pretty much any character can be a gadget master if he's got enough equipment on hand, but a few races and classes seem better geared (heh heh) to embody the concept. Dwarves and Gnomes seem best suited to be gadgeteers. Classwise, I'd say the Investigator has "MacGyver" written all over it, with the Sleuth archetype further bolstering the improvisation angle nicely.
AFAIK, there's no penalty for attacking him assuming you have sufficient reach or range with your weapons. He does receive a +1 on melee attack rolls against those on the ground floor however; again, assuming he has sufficient reach with his weapon(s).
Depending on positioning of attackers and defenders and the construction of the balcony, it's conceivable that the NPC and attackers might receive a +4 bonus to their AC because of cover provided by the balcony itself.
I know I'm late to the party, but I just picked up this supplement and am looking forward to making a bat-kin character for an upcoming game. I was just wondering if someone could clarify the intention behind the bat shape feat.
Bats are normally diminutive. Do you become a tiny bat or do you become a diminutive bat, but use the tiny animal ability modifiers from beast shape 2? Does the feat contain a typo, and it should read beast shape 3, which does allow diminutive animals?
Wow. A lot of heated debate on this issue. I'm glad to read people's take on it though, so keep it coming.
In assessing power vs cost, I think the most straightforward approach is to compare it to a permanent enlarge person spell which is 2500 gp. Power-wise, the benefits (and penalties) are in effect every combat, which is the only time it matters power-wise and seems to be the main concern of those who propose an increased cost for the item.
Each option has pros and cons on its side. On the good side, the permanency spell requires no actions to activate, takes up no body slots and can't be stolen. On the downside, there's the added hassle of not being able to end the effect when it would be helpful to do so and there's the risk of having a high level opponent dispel the effect permanently. As for an equivalent item the main benefits are that the effect can be ended when desired and it can't be permanently dispelled. On the downside, it costs more, takes up a body slot and the item can be taken from you.
In my mind, the difference between the two isn't so great and consequently the prices for each should be fairly close to each other. I'd say increasing the price for the item by 1500 over the cost of the permanent spell and adding in the body slot requirement easily makes up for the added benefit of being able to discontinue the effect when desired. If the price we're much higher than the 4,000 that the guidelines propose, I'd probably just opt for the permanency effect and use reduce person spells as needed to get around obstacles. Thoughts?