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Volnagur the End-Singer

Anguish's page

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules Subscriber. 3,158 posts (3,164 including aliases). 2 reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 2 aliases.


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Note: some of my post may read as sarcastic. It's not. I'm grinning and being friendly. And yes, the depth of reply is in itself parody.

Ranishe wrote:
Complexity for complexity's sake is not a good thing. Indeed, complexity is a turn off almost universally*. Depth (the main benefit of complexity) is what is usually chased.

swoosh put it best, but I'll go ahead and agree with you. Complexity for its own sake is a bad thing. Fortunately Pathfinder's complexity is purposeful, with that purpose being fun. Yay!

Quote:
For example, having to stack different bonus types.

Wait, wait, wait. You've got a typo there. You used "having" instead of "being able". Being able to stack different bonus types.

Quote:
Does that actually accomplish anything? All that rewards is players who delve through the various books for all the different ways to combine all the different bonuses.

Well, screw them, right? Because they're having WrongBadFun. Look. There's maybe a half-dozen different types of bonuses. And spells and magic items tell you what they are. You act like it's some sort of insurmountable difficulty to see that a cleric's guidance spell still works if someone's wearing a cloak of resistance +1.

Quote:
Is it nice to figure out the optimal way to make that combination? Sure. It's kind of like a puzzle. Does it make a better system? Not really.

Yes, really. Because all of the sudden your cleric player has something that they can do to help other PCs make their saves. If your next move is to pull out the "dependency on magic items sucks" card, well, let's keep in mind that there are other spells and class abilities that impact saving throws and may or may not stack with guidance, often lending itself to... TEAMWORK. Right. Dirty word. It's a better system when multiple characters can work together to get a job done. Hence things like Aid Another and flanking.

Quote:
It makes a harder to balance system. You create a new item that you want to give a bonus to AC. What type of bonus? Morale (it can be increased by moment of greatness)? Luck (it can be increased by that trait everyone takes)? Armor? Does it stack with magically enhanced armor? Natural armor (similar question)? Sacred because you want it to stack without making an exception to the "no same bonuses stacking" rule? Untyped? But if you have untyped, why all the different kinds?

Hey look... themed bonuses. That's so cool! It's like there's a richness to the underlying numbers that supports immersion.

Quote:
Is it important to the system that shield and armor bonuses stack, but shield bonuses do not? Indeed, why don't shield bonuses stack? Can I not defend myself with a shield while another magical shield defends another flank? (maybe this paragraph got a little verbose...)

It's important to the system because there's an mathematical expectation of a certain range of numbers. Attacks at such-and-such a level should be a certain number, plus/minus acceptable variance. Giving players choice as to how to assemble their character is awesome. There's a trade-off between offense and defense when you go sword & board. There's a trade-off between mobility and heavy armor. The base rules on stacking - why you can't use a magical shield and a physical shield and benefit from both - simply keep the numbers sane (mostly).

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The system as a whole is messy.

And yet... the 3.x rule-set is the longest-lived ever. And I'm sure - but can't produce a citation - best-selling ever.

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And while one can say "well you don't have to use everything" how do I know what I want to use?

Wait a minute. That argument literally breaks down to "I want there to be fewer choices so I don't have to know what I'm missing."

Quote:
If I'm in the CRB, and want to play a combative character with an array of supporting skills, but who isn't a ranger (because I don't like favored enemy, or don't want casting, whatever), what do?

1} Post a thread and ask for advice?

2} Recognize that if you had a Pathfinder 2.0 without all the extra option books you object to, you couldn't do #1, so the answer to your question would be: suck it up, buttercup.

Quote:
The slayer would be great for my concept, but that's in a later book. Unless I've read everything I don't know what options exist for me to ignore.

I don't think it works that way. If you haven't read something, you've ignored it. Mission accomplished!

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Unless I've read the thousand and a half feats (which I have, not that I remember even a quarter of that...), how do I know which ones best fill out a concept I have?

Starts with G, ends with "oogle.". I use it a lot and I too have read a tonne of this stuff. "Pathfinder increase earlobe size" is almost guaranteed to find a trait or spell, or magic item. But again, my point is that because of the bloat that you're carefully not naming by name, you CAN find enlarge cartilage.

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Should I take Gory Finish or Killing Flourish? The latter is better and can be expanded by Gruesome Slaughter, but I have to be a slayer, and be using those feats.

Screwed if I know. I'll research that when a} I'm building my own character, or b} feeling helpful and decide to post in an advice thread.

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Will my gm allow that class? Those specific feats?

Does your GM have an e-mail address, or is this 1952?

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I was initially planning to take just cornugon smash to use intimidate in combat, but those two feats would better fill the idea of "showy & terrifying combatant."

Okay.

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Of course, if I hadn't gone through the enormous list of combat feats, I wouldn't know they existed.

A quick search nets me the alleged statistic that the average person spends over 80 minutes a week on the crapper. I'm going to go ahead and suggest that feat-reading is a great way to optimize that time. Heck, I'll offer that empirical testing has very much proved the theory. I know whereof I speak.

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And while the game is still playable without all the expanded material, a lot of character concepts are severely limited (I believe throwing weapons were expanded with weapon master's handbook, but I've not tried assembling such a build so am not sure).

Aaaand full circle. Back in the pre-APG golden days, all you had was one, nicely managed and memorized 500 page book. All I had was the aching yearning for more variety in my Lego box. The good news is that today you and I can both be happy. All you need to do is disregard everything that isn't the CRB and you've got your bloatless Pathfinder 2.0 All I need to do is not be you. Win-win!

Quote:
*I can't think of anything off hand where one say "I like X because it's dense and incredibly difficult to get into, but no deeper than some other system"

Mmmm. Look, I get it, humour aside. Sometimes a nice Kevin Smith fart & poop & pot movie is exactly what the mind needs. But sometimes you just want to sit down and watch True Detective or Westworld or Battlestar Galactica and spend an hour riveted by complex plotting and intricate detail. OMFG what is Rust/Maeve/Adama going to do next?!? <<By the way, if you spoil this week's Westworld season finale on me, I'm going to have to hurt you.>>

Feats, spells, classes, items, archetypes, traits, and gods you don't know about aren't a problem. So if you don't like bloat, stop reading about Ultimate Whatever. It's a crunch book. It's not for you. Don't worry about if there's something awesome in there. It's not for you.


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Steve Geddes wrote:

Yeah, it's hard to overstate how valuable backwards-compatibility was seen by the fans back when PF was being playtested.

Now, I suspect it's a very, very small minority who think it's important.

Tome of Battle, Spell Compendium, and Magic Item Compendium all still get lots of use at my table.

But here's the important bit: if you break 3.5e compatibility, you're breaking Pathfinder compatibility.


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pauljathome wrote:
1) simplifying lots of places where there are 2+ nearly identical rules. Eg, various types of terrain that slow down movement add complexity for very little gain

Shrug. Without examples I'm not sure where this is going.

Quote:
2) remove the garbage spells, feats, archetypes, classes, etc

One man's garbage is another man's treasure.

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3) somewhat normalize in power the remaining spells, classes, etc. Of course, to do this would require admitting that the caster/martial diversity IS a thing.

Disparity, you mean. But hey, it IS a thing. That thing is: a feature, not a bug. I can only speak for myself, and clearly a lot of people disagree, but that disparity is a selling point for me. Having classes who can truly influence the world (via spells) is a whole "advanced" game, for when a player masters "flank, Power Attack, full attack". Normalizing means "removing powerful spells", which means vanilafying the game. My Pathfinder goes to 11. I'll vote no for making it only go to 10.

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4) somewhat reduce how much effects can stack (or put limits on them).

Also disagree. The variety of different bonuses that exist are a feature. It lets players add an entire game of looking for ways to succeed. Again, Pathfinder is playable and fun for new players, but also still fun for people who are looking for more challenge.

Quote:

Done right, you could come up with a system that was significantly simpler and more balanced while allowing all existing AOs and modules to be run unchanged.

A lot of this could actually be done by JUST selecting existing options. Eg, rogues and barbarians are all unchained, fighters automatically get some of the new goodies, etc

Do not want.


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Zolanoteph wrote:
As an optional system, will the DM let me variant multiclass? Will he let me use the unchained Rage rules?

Will the DM let you take Leadership? Will you be allowed to craft magic item? Will you be allowed access to purchase magic gear or is that entire section of the book for the DM to pick from? Is encumbrance strictly enforced or not? Do you need to track arrow consumption precisely after mid-low levels or can that be hand-waved safely?

There are a tonnes of options even in Core that require DM consultation. "Is this rule permitted" applies to pretty much any game, regardless of if you start including additional books.

"I need to talk to another person at the table" isn't much of a justification for a new game edition.


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There's also the western star ioun stone which has a nice caster level of 12th.

So two hours.

Admittedly double the price but it's slotless and invisible.


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MrShine wrote:

It seems to me like "Perception" should be mostly an innate ability, with options for feats, spells and special abilities to enhance it, much like the saves are. I don't really see how one can "train" their perception on a regular basis - one's senses are limited. I can't force my eyes and/or ears to get any sharper on their own.

I understand the gameworld use as an important tool for information gathering as well as contesting Stealth, but something doesn't seem quite right.

Thoughts?

Because some people are inattentive.

Because some people are bad at recognizing what they see as what it is.
Because some people don't know what signifies hidden things.

All of which can be improved with effort, time, and experience.


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Werebat wrote:
What you are saying is that Paizo TRIED really hard to be inclusive, but I didn't ask which setting was INTENDED to be more progressive, I asked which one actually WAS more progressive.

Eberron was never about inclusion. Changelings were about "look, we made a shape-shifting race". Paizo has had numerous adventures have explicitly non-straight NPCs, where the only purpose for their existence was inclusion.

Referring to monster alignment is kind of... weird, I think, when it comes to the topic. Monsters are monsters... they're the part of a GAME where nuanced exception-to-the-rule type individuals really act as a huge depressing speed-bump on the fun highway. The first time I encountered a bunch of goblin babies, the game screeched to a halt for an hour while I tried to imagine my PC's head-space. The second time, the same thing happened. It still happens today. And that's with the "virtually always evil" guidelines. It sucks. Having some enemies where you can relax the worries and just play a murderhobo is good for the game.

Oh, and what's with the racism in Eberron? I mean, warforged aren't just people, they're people who - as a race - were sadly abused during the Last War. Their reward for having served in everyone else's stupid war? They're forbidden to procreate. Wow. Just wow.

Previous paragraph was rhetorical. Conflict, racism, hatred, misunderstanding, and general intolerance is what helps makes plot happen.


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DrDeth wrote:

Thank you.

So to recap:
Swarms of Tiny creatures can be partially hurt by arrows.
Swarms of Fine/Diminutive creatures can't be hurt by arrows.
Swarms of any size can't be hurt by rays.

Got it.

That's how you read it, fine. Which is why we need a FAQ.

I really, really don't mean this confrontationally, but that's what it says. I haven't yet read anything that supports the idea that the three sentences that tell you what swarms are and aren't damaged by do something other than what they explicitly say.


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Steve Geddes wrote:
Goth Guru wrote:
Ported over, where?
To the newly created 5th edition (and beyond) subforum.

Am I the only one who finds it amusing that it's "5th edition (and beyond)", expecting full-well that if there's a 6th edition, we'll be having this same discussion then, asking for a dedicated 6th edition area to avoid confusion?


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MrAmiSuzuki wrote:

Is a full round action multiple single attacks or a single declared action that has multiple attack rolls?

This stems from a continuous True Strike item debate on Reddit.

Do not debate the merits of True Strike items, I don't care. I am not trying to make them or defend them.

I am question how the trigger would work, and more so how it wouldn't.

FRA technically only grants one single attack action, with multiple BAB attack rolls. You would then not have True Strike active past the first until your round was finished.

I do not understand your question. But I'll pretend.

A full round action is a type of action that consumes both your move action and your standard action. It can be used to do many, many things. One of those is a "full attack", which is one or more melee or ranged attacks, depending on your BAB, and any additional effects like haste or Two Weapon Fighting.

A full-round-action does not grant "one single attack action". It grants multiple attack actions. You can - for instance - mix melee and ranged, and indeed some combat maneuvers.

The true strike spell says "You gain temporary, intuitive insight into the immediate future during your next attack. Your next single attack roll (if it is made before the end of the next round) gains a +20 insight bonus. Additionally, you are not affected by the miss chance that applies to attackers trying to strike a concealed target."

It specifically calls out "your next attack" and "your next single attack roll". So even if you've got iteratives or other sources of multiple attacks, the true strike spell applies to precisely one of them. The inclusion of the word "roll" makes it very clear what true strike does and what it does not: apply to more than one attack.

If you create an item that lets you cast true strike at will, it will apply to one and only one attack. Most magic items are command activated, requiring a standard action, which means this item would give you +20 on one attack every other round.

That said, it's also possible to create continuous effect items. That gets a bit debatable. I'm pretty sure that continuous effect items that "stop" have to be started again as a standard action. For instance I recall a flaming weapon that is shut "off" has to be activated as a standard action, but it then remains "on" until it is shut off. In theory, a continuous effect true strike item would be "on" until its spell discharged, on your next item. You may - or may not - need to activate the item again. I'd expect table variance on this from DM to DM. I admit to not being 100% confident on this entire paragraph, so if someone comes along and corrects me on it, I won't be shocked.

Hopefully something here answers your question.


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Brother Fen wrote:
Why should Paizo have a dedicated 5th edition forum? They don't owe WoTC or you one.

It's a good idea. There are groups that are hardcore Pathfinder who might dabble in 5e. Keeping them communicating here maintains contact with Paizo products. As well, there are groups who are hardcore 5e who might dabble in Pathfinder. Again, letting them communicate here maintains contact with Paizo products.

That said, I've been biting my tongue throughout this. I'd hate for someone to misinterpret me making a joke about anyone not realizing that "4th edition and beyond" includes 5th edition as an "edition war" post, rather than friendly joshing. So hey. Have a paragraph to make it clear it's humour, right after a paragraph embracing the target of that josh.


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tony gent wrote:
Where is the wonder gone and the excitement when players find a new item among a treasure trove...

Familiarity breeds contempt.

Remember the first time you encountered a troll and the darned thing wouldn't die?

Remember the first time you encountered a swarm and your weapons couldn't harm it?

Remember the first time you found an immovable rod and couldn't figure out how to activate it?

Remember the first time... whatever.

When you're new to the game, everything is a wonder. Everything is amazing and fresh and if you loot a +1 ooze bane scythe you'll happily abandon your Weapon Focus (longsword) and take Exotic Weapon Proficiency (scythe) next opportunity, because "OMFG this thing is magic!"

Monsters, spells, feats, traps, haunts... all amazing when they're new. But once you've played the game for a decade, the sense of wonder ebbs. You start to play the game differently. It becomes a game of experimentation. "I wonder if I can make a fighter that uses nothing but improvised weapons effective..." "I wonder if I can pull of an incredibly stealthy character that non-lethals everything..."

Once you start playing for concepts, or playing WITH the rules, the game becomes about seeing how those rules work. It's not about the wonder. You know what's in your Lego box now, and you're interested in what you can build.

You'll never truly get back the wonder again, without changing game systems. All you get is the occasional new monster or spell that works differently and is a pleasant challenge to figure out. But that's okay, as long as your DM isn't forcing you to get all excited over the +1 handaxe he rolled on a random treasure table because he thinks you should be in awe over... stuff that isn't helpful or thematic to what you're working on.


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Q: How many creatures can you target with a single ray?
A: One.

Q: Is that a specific number?
A: Yes.

Q: Are swarms immune to rays?
A: Yes.

Q: Is there an exception somewhere?
A: Maybe. If so, it's an exception.


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Chemlak wrote:
ChaosTicket wrote:
I do wonder if Specific Magic Armors can be upgraded to have higher enhancement bonuses?

No, but...

GM can agree it.
GM gets to price it.

I don't agree. Certainly (for instance) if a PC has Craft Magic Arms and Armor, they could spend the appropriate time and materials to increase the enhancement bonus on an existing item. There's nothing suggesting that pre-built unique armors are exempt from upgrades. Since the Pathfinder rules generally spell out what you can do, seeing that the rules provide for upgrading items, that's sufficient to turn this into a "yes".

I think.


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Currahee Chris wrote:
1- Devils- yes!!! they are very very deadly indeed. I have always used demons (with the exceptions of Chain Devils (Kytons) and Winged Devils.

Just being pedantic... devils and demons are different things in Pathfinder and current editions of D&D. Demons are chaotic evil, sort of elemental rule-less monsters that can't usually be reasoned with. Devils are lawful evil, sort of deal-makers and weasels, like lawyers basically.


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Dragon are apex predators. They should be used sparingly, and when they appear they should dominate a situation. The battleground should be one of their design, and their tactics should be brutal, efficient, and intelligent.

Demons are much, much more common and can be slaughtered by the dozens.

So yeah. They both have their places.


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Alni wrote:

Just need a confirmation that I understood the rules...

Copycat (Sp): You can create an illusory double of yourself as a move action.
Grace: Casting Time 1 swift action

So I can cast both AND then cast whatever spell I want to attack?

Edit: Do I also get a 5-foot step? I think not, since copycat is a move action ... but making sure. I assume I get the free actions though.

Yes, and yes. In whatever order you wish:

[STANDARD] - cast a spell
[MOVE] - activate copycat
[SWIFT] - activate Grace
[NON-ACTION] - 5-foot step
[FREE] - talk about it

The best way to think of anything involving "move" is "is it movement, or is it a movement-equivalent-action". If you move 30ft, that's movement. If you pick up an item, that's a move-equivalent-action, which is not moving.

Note: some cases allow a 5-foot step even if you've been relocated. For instance, you can take a 5-foot step then cast dimension door, which will cause you to be in a different location. This is valid even though you took your 5-foot step because you haven't used a move action to move. Also, typically standing up isn't considered moving, even though your body rises from prone, because you remain in the same square, even though there is some table variance on this.


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Zhern wrote:
GM Rednal wrote:
Well, Anguish is more zen about it than I am... but I'm still pretty chill myself. XD As long as I believe work on something is proceeding, I'm basically satisfied - I'd rather the product be done right, and if that means delays, so be it.
Oops, I should have scrolled back up before attributing the zone out quote.

No worries, man. Not like I'm likely to get upset at not getting credit, hey? <Grin>

Oh, and yeah, Torment. I'm backing that too. No clue when it was, or is, due.


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ckdragons wrote:
Can we have the option to delete our own posts? I understand the option is there within a small window of time, but after that the post seems permanent. Would like to be able to delete a post at any time. Thanks.

Given the room for revisionist history, I don't think this will be a thing. Nor - for most purposes - should it be.

Mostly, if you said it and it's not against the rules, it should stand.


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Sub-Creator wrote:
I can't see myself backing another project via kickstarter in the near (or distant) future.

Shrug.

I've had flawless success with Kickstarter projects so far, with about 20 backed. I've been able to keep my backing only to projects from companies that I trust to deliver.

But here's my word of advice: ignore the "expected delivery" date.

Basically, once something is funded, I typically "zone out" and stop paying attention. Things show up unexpectedly for me from time to time, because I just don't stress about the timelines. In fact, for me, updates are often an unwanted distraction. All I really want to hear is "your stuff shipped".

So anyway, think of Kickstarters as patronage. You're assisting an artist at creating something. Maybe it'll flop and you've lost your money. Maybe it'll be on time. Maybe it'll be delayed. Whatever. Just patronize companies and individuals you wouldn't mind giving money to, and sit back and relax. That's my advice.


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Befuddled GM wrote:
If they budgeted that the revenue from the Blight was going to support the company (or provide a significant portion of the companies income) through July and now that same amount of revenue is having to pay the way through January (at best? I just dont see anyway we get a physical product before then) it seems like cash flow could start to become a significant issue.

To a certain degree, this is a non-concern. Small companies like FGG (probably) have zero full-time employees drawing hourly wages. Instead, remuneration is based on work-performed. So authors get paid per word written. Artists get paid per artwork created. Layout people get paid per page/project completed. Editors get paid per word.

It doesn't matter if an editor can't edit for two months; the company doesn't pay that editor during that two months. When they do get the editing done, they get paid for the work performed.

So cash-flow isn't usually an issue, except where you have a regular schedule. If you're expecting your profits from product B to come in to pay for your print costs from making product A, and product B is delayed, that could be a problem. Otherwise delays are just delays.

Frog God is a very small group, really. Long story short is everyone's got a day job and real lives, and at the moment those (as well as some other project issues) are getting in the way of getting this done on schedule. There's really a 0% chance of this being vaporware.

Lack of updates doesn't mean anything. It's very hard to justify writing a "got two more pages done this month, nine hundred and seventy eight to go" update isn't a} satisfying or b} a worthwhile use of time when you could spend that time working on one more page instead.

That isn't to say waiting doesn't suck... it does. It's just... this is what it is.


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Now you've got me thinking I should get a Don't Ask Me Anything thread, just to be different.


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Ravingdork wrote:
What do you guys think?

It's a slippery slope.

Line-of-effect was given definition for a reason. Presumably, to create a framework that makes it easy to impartially judge when and how a creature can be attacked. It's a simplified model of reality, as is most of the game, but the purpose is clear.

By gaming the system, sticking your arm through a hole that is explicitly too small to grant LoS, you are trying to work against the rules' purpose.

Were this allowed, what is good for the goose is good for the gander, and you should expect bad guys to start shooting arrows at you though holes too small to allow you to return fire, and similar shenanigans.

Basically, once you are permitted to work around the rules, the rules change, and that won't be in your favor long-term. Even if you start asking "well, what if I have Still Spell," you're just running against the grain of the rules. This isn't an area where the rules are silent, or where they leave room for creative solutions. This is an area where you aren't intended to attack through a wall, or a mostly-wall.

The simplicity of the simulation can't handle this detailed a "but in reality I could" situation. It's not meant to.


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People complain when someone starts a new thread. "Search!"
People complain when someone resumes an old thread. "Necro!"

People complain. This is the one constant.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
<things and stuff>

Holy oop! Your alias isn't "Clever Kobold". All these years, out of the corner of my eye I've always been misreading that. Wow. Amazing how the human brain can "iconify" actual words.


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Headfirst wrote:

Before this picks up any more steam, let's just assume that everyone here understands that businesses need to make money to stay open, okay?

The original question was whether or not non-crunchy material would be enough to keep Pathfinder afloat, not how long the game would last if the company shut off the lights, locked the doors, and never touched the product again.

You're missing a key point:

Crunch expands not because it is made, but because it is purchased.

"We" want crunch. "We" want bloat. "We" have spoken with our wallets, and Paizo has listened. By advocating reducing bloat, you are advocating ceasing to make products "we" wish to purchase.

By "we", I of course mean "those who buy crunch", of which I am but one of many.

The math has already spoken. You are not unique in your wish, but you are out-voted. I'm sorry that you cannot get what you want, but since it would be at the cost of what I want, I'm not that sorry.


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Sundakan wrote:
Anguish wrote:


Please no. On the greatest strengths of this forum is that it can't be cluttered with crap. Guaranteed for every on-topic image like "here's a map of our encounter, can chararcter do X", there will be at least three "here's a puppy" images. Or goatse.
This kinda speaks volumes about the immaturity of this board as a whole, if true. Of all the boards I've been on and moderated, there's only one story I have where somebody went around posting shock imagery, and he was TRYING to get banned. Just disappeared for a couple of years, then came back and blew up his account.

First, keep in mind that this hobby is exceptionally accessible to people of a massive variety in ages. Ten-year-olds can spend a few bucks on dice, and because of the PRD, play without any further expense. Yes, some nice adventure modules and/or minis all help but dice are the one thing you actually need. So immature? Sure, in many, many cases literally so.

Second, I think people in general are immature, in this sense. I don't honestly expect a statistically significant number of goatse posts, but I absolutely, positively expect we'd see wall-to-wall meme pictures. Why post a single sentence when you can drag in some 1024x768 JPEG of Monty Python with a few words overlaid? Why say "I agree" when you can post a picture of Barak Obama with the text "I agree" overlaid? Why - in short - use words to convey your viewpoint on a forum when you can use a picture instead?

That's really my point. I absolutely get it that there are cases where a picture would be useful. But this is a textual medium, and it should - in my opinion - remain textual, not visual. But people tend to think the crap meme-picture they're linking to is a LOT more entertaining or useful than it really is. So given the ability, I expect a tonne of near-zero-value posts.


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George Blalock wrote:
Any tips on building encounters or adventures themselves?

Don't overthink it. More specifically, don't overplan it.

Each session you'll need enough material for one session. Don't worry too much about having a big bad evil guy for ten levels down the road. Just write a situation that applies to tonight, and run that.

Example of how to do this...

What to tell the players:
"Some monster slinks in from the woods and makes off with one of the town's youngster every few nights. Nobody's seen more than a shadow, and the best witness was drunk at the time, but whatever it is, supposedly it walks upright!"

What you know:
Okay, behind the scenes, maybe there's a lycanthrope in town. Nobody knows because she's been keeping it a secret. She's absconding with the kids, but it happens she's actually just smuggling them to another village about ten miles away, and abandoning them. Why? Because she's got a grudge against the townfolk after <whatever> and just wants to demoralize everyone until the town fails.

What you prepare:
Prep up a end-of-session lycanthrope fight. Prep up some woods monsters. Prep up something to happen in town as a distraction... perhaps a local necromancer or other bad-guy who gets accused and discovered, and is a red herring. Now you've got four or five encounters. Good to go.

How to flow:
Decide what comes next... in vague terms. Where did the villain from tonight's session contract lycanthropy? Maybe... maybe she wasn't ever bitten. Maybe she was cursed by a witch/hag because <reason>. Once you decide that very simple "next step", at the end of the night, tease that when the lycanthrope fight is done. Maybe have a mysterious tattoo, or artifact. Or maybe a voice in the head of whoever kills the lycanthrope "you've destroyed my daughter, but I'll have my vengeance soon!" Or have the lycanthrope revert to human form, released from the curse and she fesses up as she dies. Shrug.

Point I'm making is... worry about tonight. Create a problem (lycanthrope), a situation (village with abductions), and some supporting encounters, as well as an exit (hag). Let the players figure out how to solve the problem and make sure the situation makes sense, so they can invent solutions. You don't need "the way to find out the solution"... just make sure the situation is rich enough that whatever the players do (if it's sensible), it can lead to success.

NEXT session, do the same thing only write your material around the hag, and decide THEN what comes after her.

This requires improvisation. You can learn that. You can learn to be comfortable reacting to the players and letting them guide things, while you simply link situation to situation to situation. The story becomes a cooperative telling.

DON'T try to write an adventure path where things are laid out from 1st to 17th (or whatever). An AP works because there's an understanding between GM and players "there is a fixed story, please play it and discover it, but please follow the hints and guidelines given towards the written end-game". Writing your own is - sort of - losing the best part of home-brew stories: spontaneity.

Good luck.


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wraithstrike wrote:
The GM is not forced to add something just because you say it exist there.

That's an interesting take I hadn't seen at all. I'd imagined the GM was adding things <i>other</i> than what the OP was naming, to avoid things they knew about. Didn't see the angle that they're adding the creatures the OP mentions because "they belong here".

And this is why we have discussions.


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James Jacobs wrote:
2: Celestial Plate Armor devalues the cool factor of celestial armor by spreading it around. Unique armor and weapons are more interesting when they're not spammed across all armor or weapon types.

I just wanted to bring up a possible different point of view. Food for thought as it were.

Unique goodies are awesome because a designer spent time coming up with a clever package of abilities that are generally different from the "this is a +2 equivalent" menu. They aren't awesome because they're "chain shirt" or "full plate" or "warhammer".

When a player sees a unique item which is appealing to their impression of their character but the one thing that is a menu pick - the physical item itself - doesn't match something their character could or would use, that's a not awesome.

That's when you hit "ask your GM for special permission to find/create a variant version of this." The fewer times in a game a player has to ask their GM for a favor, the better. Not because it's an adversarial relationship, but because players shouldn't be asking for exceptions frequently. Save the exceptions for when they really matter. And "it's a warhammer" versus "it's a longsword" shouldn't (usually) matter.

Anyway, I hear what you're saying and I don't disagree. But I can't help but think that a little bit of dilution to ease the frequency of "this would be awesome for my character but I've got Weapon Focus (not this) and Weapon Specialization (not this) and the Greater feats for same... so... I guess I'll just use some (+1 flaming not this), instead of this."

Note: I'm replying to the reason you've given, not the specific. I've never read the celestial plate armor and don't care about it in particular. I'm more interested in the design philosophy.


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I let my players have 25 with the stipulation I don't want to see more than one score at 18 after racial adjustments and no scores below zero.

That lets them spread out, but cuts back on max/min.


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Umbral Reaver wrote:
Good grief. I wasn't expecting this degree of hostility. Sure, it's a bad idea. I give up.

Credit where credit's due: it's an interesting idea. And a new one. So that's good.

Problem is that it is a bad idea. For this game.

The biggest issue is that it violates the principle of heroism.

"Oh, Doug just failed a save against being charmed by the evil guy... because he sort of wants to work for the evil guy. Well, screw him. Let's just go ahead and recruit someone who doesn't harbor secret desires to undermine our whole heroic save-the-world plan."

Basically, the moment it becomes known that characters fail saves because they want to, their motivations become questionable, at which point they become untrustworthy people.

But again, otherwise an interesting and unique idea.


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Zigniber wrote:
Actually, I believe that this is something that Jufo and his/her group was running correctly. In your example, while the 6th level wizard doesn't lose their prepared Fireball due to the two gained negative levels, spells have a minimum caster level to cast equal to the class level that you first got that spell level at... so a Fireball would have a minimum caster level of 5 for a Wizard, meaning the Wizard couldn't actually cast Fireball (or any other third-level spell) even though the spell is still prepared. Likewise, the Druid in Jufo's group wouldn't be able to cast third level spells while level 6 with two negative levels, but could if she hits level 7, as she'd then have a (modified) caster level of 5 to cast third level spells with.

I don't think that's correct. Spells don't have a minimum caster level. Sure, scrolls and potions and other consumables do, in terms of the default assumption is that they are crafted at the CL at which the crafter gets the spell slot. So yes, a scroll of fireball is assumed to be CL5th, but there's nothing inherent in fireball that demands CL5. The closest thing is in the wizard class, which doesn't grant the slot until 5th level. But negative levels don't change slot access.

If the intention of negative levels was to deprive casters of the ability to cast spells based on spell levels, they'd do that. But they don't. Explicitly.

Actually, that's why scrolls are priced differently based on what class creates them. A sorcerer making fireball scrolls starts at CL6 while a wizard starts at CL5. It's the caster that matters, not the spell. A sorcerer gains access to fireball at 6th, so that's assumed to be the minimum... for him. With a negative level involved, that assumption is false; a 6th-level sorcerer with 1 negative level functions at CL5, and would use Scribe Scroll to produce a CL5 scroll of fireball, and it would be priced the same as a wizard.


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Xemnas wrote:
The Rp issue I'm running into is how do you role play a demonic paladin that slays demons?

Not hard, if your Int score isn't below 10.

Is your paladin a demon? No.
Is there a dilemma? No.

Take a look at your type and subtype. If your brother was aasimar, presumably you're human. So humanoid(human). Which isn't outsider(evil,demon). If you're not a demon, you're not a demon, regardless of if an ancestor was or not. It's like getting a transfusion. Sure, there's something you don't like in your blood, but it's not you.

Move on.


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dragonhunterq wrote:
negative levels wrote:
Spellcasters do not lose any prepared spells or slots as a result of negative levels
While the druid has a caster level of 4, they can still cast 3rd level spells. If they level to 7th, they can cast 4th level spells, but at caster level 5.

Just to expand on this for Jufo...

The word "level" is used a lot of different ways. When someone's "caster level" is reduced, it doesn't mean "their level as a caster".

So, for instance a "6th-level wizard" can cast fireball because they got access to "3rd-level spells" when they hit 5th-level. When they first learned fireball, they'd cast it and do 5d6 damage. When they leveled up to 6th, their fireball spells started doing 6d6 damage, because that spell says 1d6 per "caster level".

If our 6th-level wizard takes two negative levels, their "caster level" is reduced to 4. So their fireballs do 4d6 damage.

Negative levels were designed to be simple to run; you just take -1 to a bunch of stuff (including your caster level) for each one. You don't actually count as having fewer real levels. A fighter doesn't lose their feats, a barbarian doesn't lose his rage powers, and casters don't lose spell-levels they gained access too. Everyone's just a little weaker at whatever it is they're capable of.


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Jufo wrote:
I am not afraid of admitting my mistake, but more afraid of coming about seeming.. cheesy?

Communication is king.

"Last session I gave you a ballpark number. Turns out I was off. You each are owed another 3,000 XP based on what you did last session".

Big hint: don't bring up the imaginary cheese. If you say "hey, I'm totally not giving you more XP because I want you stronger because I have plans or something..." then you're going to raise suspicion. Just bloody hand out the XP and move on.

Oh, and um, do it now. Otherwise they won't have time to level their character sheets before the next session.


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Chrion wrote:
"Why can't wizards heal people via. arcane magic?"

They can.

I repeat, specifically a bard gets cure light wounds as an arcane spell. I'm sure if I work hard enough, I can find a trait or feat laying around that lets a wizard cherry-pick a bard spell and put it on their list.

I also repeat, the designers of the mechanics of the game chose to - mostly - delineate the separation of magic themes to give different players things to do. Paizo has not bothered to codify that design decision into the canonical lore of their setting. Because of the reasons I mentioned.

In Forgotten Realms, you have you answer. In Golarion, the answer is that the people who wrote the setting left that detail completely blank. You as the DM are free to fill in that blank however you wish. You will not get a better answer than this, for this game.


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Chrion wrote:
Anguish - I went to the forgotten realms setting because that was the only place I could find any sort of robust discussion of what magic is, where it comes from, how people in the world access it, etc.

That's fine, but that's a different game. It's really no different from discussing how things work in Ravenloft, Dragonlance, or Eberron.

That said, it did help to give us an idea what you're looking for.

Quote:
Saying that it just is, is indeed an answer, but not a satisfying one. But again, from a game design\mechanics perspective, I understand that might be the best\only answer possible.

Well, to be fair, it's not satisfying to you. Many/most of us aren't worried about that particular detail of lore. To me, "it just is" is no different from getting fundamental about gravity and other laws of physics. They just are. At least in Golarion.

And no, "magic is" isn't the only answer possible. As you identified in Forgotten Realms, there is lore regarding its origin. It's just that in this game, there isn't.

Understand, Pathfinder is relatively new. When Paizo was sitting down and writing the setting, they made some very conscious decisions about how things work, and the biggest one is that: players matter more than anything else. So in Golarion, there isn't an Elminster, for instance. There are no real big-name NPCs that are movers and shakers. Even the deities are off-screen, assumed to be amusing themselves and they basically don't interact with the story that PCs participate in. Getting granular and detailed about "what is magic" is probably one of those things deliberately left undefined, so "what are the PCs doing?" stays foreground. But that's just my guess.


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Chrion wrote:
I've been looking into some of the lore of the D&D\Pathfinder worlds, looking to find out what magic actually is. From what I've found it looks like all magic comes from a Deity (or nature somehow) whether it be Mystra and The Weave for arcane magic or some specific Deity for divine magic. Even divine magic, however, seems to need the medium of The Weave to be accessed by divine casters. There is also the Shadow Weave which functions the same as the Weave but is basically its inverse and is tended by a different deity.

That's the Forgotten Realms setting. In Pathfinder's setting, Golarion, there's no "magic-producing/ruling/controlling" deity. Magic just is.

Quote:
There also seems to be things that divine magic can do that arcane magic simply cant. For example, all healing magic is divine and not arcane.

That's actually not true. Bards get cure light wounds as an arcane spell. Truth is that there are thematic differences, but the lines are blurred. For instance, with the right domain, a cleric can cast fireball.

Quote:
More interestingly, however, all resurrection magic is also strictly divine magic. At first I thought that this might be because all magic that involves the manipulation of the soul would be divine magic, but that isn't actually true, arcane magic can manipulate souls as well, e.g. magic jar.

Again, not completely true. The wish spell is arcane only, and it can emulate any non-sorcerer/wizard spell of 7th level or lower. So a high level wizard can actually go ahead and resurrect someone.

Quote:
I understand from a game design standpoint why wouldn't want clerics to be able to do everything a wizard could do and vice versa, but is there an in-game or lore based explanation as to why only divine casters can heal and rez people and arcane casters can't?

No. Because it's not true. It's generally true, but not universally so.

As you say, from a game design standpoint, the desire is to have different choices players can make. Classes and their abilities were created to make the choice matter. They need to be different. So while fighters and barbarians are similar, they're not identical. Similarly wizards and clerics are similar but not identical. From that mechanical origin, Pathfinder's settings speaks to the ways specific classes access their abilities. It doesn't speak to generalities because - again - the lines are not rigid.

Maybe clerics get healing spells given to them by their deities because like keeping worshipers alive. Arcane casters can do it, but don't generally bother because there are all those divine casters around to do it for them. Why study something you can just get a guy in a robe to do for you? Shrug. My point is that the fluff in Golarion doesn't speak to what you're asking, probably because there isn't a rule separating different spells rigidly into one category or another. Divine/arcane is more about how someone gets access to a spell and how they cast it than what the spell does, beyond theme.


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Bill Webb wrote:

We have been neating the ponies...errr editors.

Its moving along, this thing is just so darn big. It may be a bit for the main book, but we should start sending out a few of the pdfs of the modules etc sometime in November. I asked Greg to post a detailed updaylte soon.

Bill

Tiny little narcissistic feedback for you. I get the PR urge to dribble out whatever part of a project is done as soon as it is... but I figure I might not be alone in finding that a bit annoying.

Did I already download all the chunks yet? I dunno. Where's the download link for that part I forgot? I dunno. How many parts are there anyway, for what I pledged? I dunno.

Personally I find it a lot less stressful to go from "this project isn't done and I don't need to think about it" to "oh, it's out and I should double-check ONCE that my pledge matches what I've been allowed to download".

I'm probably unique in this... but maybe not.


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Dragon78 wrote:
Catfolk should be core, but more then likely the last two will be new.

Really, there should only be three core races: human, catfolk, and hologram.

Incidentally, for anyone who cares... Series XI just started up last week. 28 years and still smegging up the universe.


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Marco Massoudi wrote:
and counting...

With deepest appropriate respect, please, please don't.


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How do you explain it? Simple...

"The rules - for balance purposes - allow the use of Spellcraft to identify spells as they are cast. Those same rules - for creativity purposes - are silent as to how it works. It's left to me, the GM to flavour the details, just like I do when I describe how a sneak attack or a critical hit works."

Aaaaand you're done. Back to playing the game instead of micromanaging edge conditions.


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Swiftbrook wrote:
Unfortunately a great piece with a crappy distribution. I do expect to see this as a repaint, maybe even right away like the beds in the last set. I'll look for them on the secondary market, I'm guessing for around $12 to $15. Expensive for multiple of a simple mini, but in the range of consideration.

Exactly. Honestly, the way dungeon dressing minis are being handled is frustrating (almost) everyone. People who don't want them are frustrated because they happen at all. People who do want them are frustrated because they're exactly the sorts of things that you want in large quantities, but they're effectively one-per-case.

There's money being left on the floor while customers are annoyed.

I'm not sure what the answer here is, but maybe something like a dressing-specific "kit". 6 molds, 5 of each inside. Most of these are pretty simple so ideally the average price could stay in the $5 realm, making such a kit $150. I could see some people buying two (or more) kits. No case-incentive, no rares, just a bunch of molds that are useful in bulk but not overly complicated to make.

It's just really hard to get excited over - for instance - this very nice pillar when I know I'd be looking to make scenes with upwards of a dozen of them, and know that it's never going to happen because of the scarcity of what is just a pillar. Sculpting on this took nowhere near the time a monster/NPC/PC would, and there appear to be a total of three paint steps (base, inject brown runes, inject blue runes), with no difficult angles or micro detail (face/eyes/hands) needing special handling.

Sigh. The dressing experiment is good, but frustrating.


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HyperMissingno wrote:
Isn't there an entry somewhere that says that everyone aside from those kids that get tossed into the wild and are raised by animals know creating undead is an evil act?

I figure it's a laws-of-physics thing and instinct. You don't need to fall off a cliff to feel uneasy beside one. You don't need to be bit by a spider to fear them. Some world-truths are programmed in.

Tapping into negative energy in a world where such a thing exists very likely is like juggling poisonous spiders at a cliffside. Sure, some people can (and will) do it, but to most people the very idea is repulsive.


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Daridan wrote:
I'm having a hard time finding a comprehensive list of all the books that have psionic classes. I had been under the impression that Ultimate Psionics had them all the classes and archetypes, but then I was shown a couple of books from a friend that had some that arent in there, such as Zealots and Pathwalkers from the Path of War book. I'm having a hell of a time finding a comprehensive list of all the books that have them. Does anyone know of a comprehensive list of all psionic classes/archetypes sorted by which rulebook it comes from? Just checking the Paizo store has like 140 books listed for psionics, and it doesnt really help since it doesnt tell you specifically which ones are covered in the ultimate psionics.... Would appreciate some help with this, thanks!

As has been said, there really isn't such an index. You're probably accustomed to seeing things on d20pfsrd organized so you can look for these things, but since the psionics ruleset is non-Paizo, and because d20pfsrd is 100% volunteer labour, the coverage isn't total.

That said, here's the deal. Ultimate Psionics is the base product you start with. It's sort of like the Core Rulebook in terms of having the normal classes and powers and feats and whatnot. After UP was published, there have been some additional newer releases that have some psionic content in them. There have been "splatbooks" which expand specific classes, such as the Soulknife. There have also been psionic archetypes presented in at least one of the Path of War books (definitely PoW: Expanded). PoW:E was actually fully released about a month ago, so we're talking very new here.

But as has been said, you're looking for the books by Dreamscarred Press. You can probably look for a release date to give you an idea when things came out, since you're looking for post-UP content. Also, as far as I know, not all of Ultimate Psionics has been posted to d20pfsrd either.


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Misroi wrote:
Whoa, that's the first time I've heard the Race Card played on Second Darkness. Does that pop up at some time after Book 3? Because I've played through those first three books and really haven't found anything racist in them, and I think you're going to have to defend that charge when Paizo - a leader in diversity in gaming - is the one being charged.

I'm pretty sure what's being talked about is in-character racism. Drow are horrible, horrible people. Surface elves are also horrible, horrible people. Technically the drow are more sympathetic because at least their Bestiary entry says they're supposed to be evil. Surface elves evidently just choose to be jerks.


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
That GM was pretty miffed about the Mythic rules after that.

I'm sure that GM was also miffed by the existence of save-or-die spells too.

The ability to do massive amounts of damage isn't especially... special. Sure "save or die has a saving throw" and "what about SR?", but both of those are fairly easy to arrange in your favor, and "massive damage has AC" and "what about blur or mirror image?"

Mythic is many things, and absolutely, positively ramps up the game of rocket-tag, but the particular sentence I've quoted makes me laugh.


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1} The ability to change shape and colour at will (applies to footwear).
2} The ability to appear of a different body-shape than reality.
3} The ability to vary visible cleavage based on attractiveness of the observer.
4} The ability to be wrinkle-proof.
5} The ability to be self-cleaning.

But seriously, the question is missing details. What are the daughters going to do in these dresses? If we're talking about adventurer daughters, the needs are very different from court ladies-in-waiting types.

Also, the correct answer is "whatever they want".


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TOZ wrote:
If a FAQ or errata are enough to kill your fun, your fun was a fragile little thing.

Thank you for posting that so I don't have to.

Frankly, if the handful of feats, abilities, and items that get nerfed are the difference between fun and not-fun, I suspect the players involved are overly reliant on the closest-to-broken they can get.

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