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As a general rule a point of accuracy is worth more than a point of damage.

Swashbuckler gives 1 point of accuracy ever 4 levels from higher BAB and 1 point of damage per level starting at level 3 from precise strike.

Investigator gives 1 point of accuracy and 1 point of damage per 2 levels starting at level 4 from studied combat. The action economy disadvantage of studied combat becomes trivial with Quick Study and neither it nor precise strike are per diem limited.

The Swashbuckler damage advantage is on a worse trade than one handed power attack even before you account for losing skills and a 6 level pseudocasting progression.

bitter lily wrote:

What about magical darkness? Same as blindness? Wouldn't it make a difference as to what my NPC is doing while the PCs are blinded or in darkness? I mean, if they're systematically killing the PCs, it could get very frustrating, very fast. But if they're doing something the PCs want to stop...

Still, it's very much something to keep in mind. I applied the advanced template to the Hobgoblin and stared at the results. Not nat-20-land to hit, but... I've taken the +2 natural armor off!

The reason Blindness/Deafness is bad is that it's a permanent effect. If no one has the Remove Blindness/Deafness spell or dispel magic (both third level) it's not going away. There are also non-spell permanent or long duration blindness and deafness effects like the crow swarm that should be avoided early for the same reason and require the much rarer remove blindness/deafness specifically. Short duration blindness or deafness or magical darkness only need to be considered for their effect on the encounter they're used in. In theory, things that use darkness magic have that taken into account in their CR. In practice it depends on the party's countermeasures. The way darkness and light spells interact suggest that a darkness spell shouldn't be used on a party that can't cast equal level spells, but if it doesn't produce supernatural darkness darkvision will make it moot and several PC races just have that.

The problem with the magus is that it just has too much baggage. That spellstrike thing? I don't know about Elric, but Gandalf never does that and neither does Corwin or any of his brothers. And it doesn't fit the fighter/mu from previous editions either. You use a sword so you can conserve your spells not so you can blow through them faster. The overspecialized magus spell list is a problem for the same reason.

These kinds of characters require a no frills 6 level wiz/sorc casting full BAB equivalent* class. Or in Gandalf's case a no frills 6 level druidic casting full BAB equivalent class. Also, most magic users in modern adult fiction use psychic casting components for decidedly non-psychic styles of spell. Magic words and gestures mostly show up in juvenile fiction.

* full BAB or medium BAB with a consistently usable self-buff that gives somewhere near (character level)/4+1 attack bonus. Clerics are full BAB equivalent with divine favor and after it caps out divine power. Magi are not full BAB equivalent because their ability to boost their weapon runs into the +5 maximum bonus cap on weapon enhancement and stuff like keen and shock are not of equivalent value to straight to hit bonuses.

Your character will not work. You can not build non-combat concepts as martial characters. The mechanics you want to rely on do not work. Except the animal companion, which just doesn't work for rangers. You can lean on your animal companion as a druid or hunter, but not as a ranger because of the delayed access and all the good options being restricted.

Derklord wrote:

You're still a healer without spontanous cure spells because in Pathfinder, healing is not done with cure spells. Wands, Channel Energy (with feat investment), and the Heal spell are how you heal in Pathfinder. If players act reckless because they relay on a spontanously cast cure spell, that is indeed extremly hurful to the party.

Still, I wouldn't call loosing the spontaneous casting a bonus, because the issue should IMP be solved by talking to the players. Spontanous casting of cure spells is not a strong class feature, but it's still not a bad thing to have in those extremely rare situations where a cure spell is indeed a good thing.

Talking to the other players is only a solution if you have a single group and they all listen.

If you can heal HP some people will assume that if they, through their own recklessness, create a situation where they desperately need in combat HP healing you will sacrifice your ability to do something actually worthwhile to save them even if you've said you won't. If you literally can't heal HP in combat they won't try to manipulate you into doing so by playing recklessly.

A PFS character will eventually meet those people.

The problem is what are in economics called externalities. They're costs not borne by the person making the decision. For instance dumping chemical waste in the river is a cost to everyone downstream, but not to the owners of the factory. In economics externalities can be internalised by things like fines, but in Pathfinder that sort of thing isn't possible. Especially in PFS where you can't transfer wealth between players. Healing costs the cleric actions and spells but costs the player who made the decision that lead to the need for healing nothing. This encourages players to maximize their own utility even if the gain in utility from the risky action relative to more conservative play is far less than the value of a standard action and spell from the cleric. Since you can't charge for healing the only way to internalize the externality is to remove the possibility of healing in a way the other player can't even attempt to appeal.

122. Presentation: This masterwork or magical item costs double the normal masterwork price, but the masterwork component of the price is not discounted on resale (eg. a presentation longsword +1 costs 2615 gp instead of 2315 but sells for 1607.5 gp instead of 1157.5 gp.) Roll 1d4 for appearance.

122.1 Shiny: The metal parts of the object are polished to a mirror sheen and are covered with fine decorative etchings. While this armor is worn or weapon wielded stealth is possible against visual detection only with total concealment. This item counts as a masterwork tool for diplomacy.

122.2 Dark: This metal item is beautifully blued with fine gilt appliqué. Not applicable to silver or mithril items. This item counts as a masterwork tool for intimidate.

122.3 Water: This Damascus steel object has lovely patterns of light and dark and the superior material qualities of dendritic steel give +2 hardness. Not applicable to any special material

122.4 Enameled: Every rigid flat non-cutting surface of this object is covered with fine painting in a heraldric, religious, or nationalist theme. +10 to knowledge:nobility checks to identify the original owner of this object. Not applicable to chain shirts or chain mail armor.

Ventnor wrote:
Replace "McDonalds Employee" with "Hedge Fund Manager" and your analogy makes sense.

No it doesn't. The hedge fund manager isn't working minimum wage. He's analogous to the rogue with his 8 free skill points he doesn't have to do anything extra for.

The wizard is just another guy working at a minimum wage job, but he's putting in 80 hour work weeks. The magus is the guy putting in 60 hour work weeks.

Excluding int casters from a general increase in the skill point floor is like raising the minimum wage but only for people who don't work overtime.

ekibus wrote:
You could go evangelist... you would gain inspire courage but sadly would lose the ability to spontaneously cast cure. Add that to heroism and you are putting out some solid buffs. Honestly at 8th level you could use aura of heroism...which is pretty nice. If you really need to cast more greater could pick up a pearl of power...but at like 36000 it is a bit steep.

Getting rid of spontaneous cures is a bonus. Some people tend to build glass cannons and/or play recklessly when they have someone they can guilt for cures. If you didn't prepare cures and can't spontaneously convert to them you only have to say no to giving up your fun spells once per day when you prepare spells that aren't cures.

Otherwise the only way to be "not that kind of cleric" is to channel negative energy and channeling negative energy is kind of terrible in a party that contains non-dhampirs.

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Rub-Eta wrote:
I can tell you right now that the Slayer did not make the Rogue obsolete.

Of course not. The change to class skills in Pathfinder, the ability of anyone to detect magic traps and of most people to cast dispel magic on them, the change to blink (it no longer denies opponents their dexterity bonus to AC, thus preventing it from enabling sneak attacks), and the ineligibility of splash weapons for sneak attacks made the rogue obsolete.

Unchained brought back some sort of niche, but that's the first good rogue that actually says rogue on it character sheet in Pathfinder.

In general there are two extreme phenomena to watch out for.

When using large numbers of individually low CR monsters they'll eventually fall off the RNG. The math breaks down in wonky ways. AC becomes completely useless because only natural 20s hit, damage that isn't area damage becomes overkill. Basically, at the point the encounter design rules say to stop giving XP for wimpy monsters you really do need to stop using them at all.

The other issue is when the players start to fall behind on numbers relative to monsters. Since there are only a few players they don't have to fall completely off the curve where only 1s and 20s matter before problems start. Players can't hit, can't get through DR, can't get through SR, can't pass saves against the enemy's abilities, and can't get the enemy to fail saves against their abilities. Because monsters get HD faster than PCs or classed NPCs they're problems at lower CR-APL gaps than classed NPCs. This is why the encounter design rules call APL+5 encounters impossible. They're not, but individual APL+5 monsters may be even if four APL+3 monsters would have been an appropriate challenge for a large and heavily optimized party.

Some specific abilities have specific counters and the earliest monsters to possess them often shouldn't be used until they're CR=APL as individuals, though of course using more than one to make a higher CR encounter is fine. The most extreme case is the spell Blindness/Deafness, which a CR 2 NPC wizard can cast, but for which the counter isn't available until the party has a level 5 cleric, shaman, or witch. These may need to be further delayed or eschewed entirely if the party has a slower progressing or less comprehensive healer.

DrDeth wrote:
Mojorat wrote:

The owlbear article indicates more than one plastic toy from that trip inspired a monster.


I had that set. It was a set of plastic Dinos, made in Hong Kong. It had at least three odd figures- owlbear, Bullette, and Rust Monster.

When I had a pack in the 80s they'd dropped the owlbear, but somewhere in a box in the closet at my folks house there are rust monsters and bulettes.

Lawrence DuBois wrote:
Atarlost wrote:

The fundamental problem with E6 is that it's based on a false premise.

The game doesn't change at level 7. It changes at 3rd level spells, and mostly just transmutations and conjurations at that. And stuff as mundane and grounded as being able to inflict wounds that meaningfully impair your opponent (eg. sickening critical) have steep BAB prerequisites.

No, it doesn't change at level 7. Hence E7. And E8 for that matter. Everyone has their particular tastes for what level of power is acceptable, and even otherwise troublesome 3rd-level spells are often checked by their much lower daily limit than at higher levels, the inability to have metamagic feats applied to them, and that save bonuses and save DCs are within (at least what I consider to be) a pretty decent range of each other. So it's pretty likely that you'll need to have a back-up plan in case you run out of hold monsters and entangles, and still have an ogre or two barreling down the corridor.

You're completely missing the point. Whatever realism level you think appropriate the prepared full casters will pass it at one level, the spontaneous full casters at another, the 6 level casters at a third (unless your breakpoint is 2nd level spells), the 4 level casters at a fourth, and whatever level you stop at either there are multiple completely mundane and realistic abilities locked behind unreachable BAB prerequisites or some people have 8th level spells, and one of the critical feats is so high that if anyone can get it some people have 9th level spells.

Wizards leave balance with realistic classes at level 5 (7 if you're playing with at least Napoleonic firearms and grenades), sorcerers at 6 (or 8), bards at 7 (or 10), and rangers at 10 (or 13-14 depending on their casting stat), and fighters never do except insofar as the HP as skill/luck/fatigue abstraction is not properly respected by any rules introduced at least since WotC took over the IP from TSR.

You can't put wizards on e4, sorcerers on e5 (and they desperately need the spells known they get at that level to function as full casters), bards on e6, rangers on e9, and fighters on e20 because of HP gain, BAB, and skill caps by level. You can't cap them all at the same place because martials don't get access to all of the things they really should at any level it's reasonable to cap any caster at.

Early firearms go through no rigid steel armor but all non-rigid armors and all mundane non-metal armors are pretty much useless. Advanced black powder guns go through thin full plate but not thicker breastplates worn alone or with leather, which is why plate went out but cuirasses stayed in. Smokeless powder rifles (but not pistols) go through pretty much any practical armor until synthetics.

It doesn't matter what your armor is made from if it's mail. Non-rigid armors aren't very good against non-slashing weapons.

Most natural armor bonuses should probably be DR or larger hit dice and only those that actually deflect blows in an armor-like fashion should remain AC. Those should probably also act as AC against bullets.

Really, everything works better in an armor as DR system. But not the one Paizo published because it's horrible. Soft armor DR would be bypassed by firearms.

Firearms, in turn, shouldn't misfire and should be simple weapons. Nothing usable has a 5% chance of misfiring and firearms became ubiquitous not because of superior performance but because civilians could easily be adequately trained in their use. They're essentially the next step up from crossbows. Crossbows need buffing and differentiating from longbows and firearms should receive the same.

Burnscar wrote:
Derklord wrote:
Bofor wrote:
The point is on the other end to the handle.

Nope, both ends of the handle are blunt. The pointy parts are at 45° in each direction from the handle.


Who could even lift that thing, let alone throw it. It's supposed to be a light weapon, really? It probably weighs around 8lb.

That's just about my only complaint with pathfinder's art scheme; their weapons, especially the swords, are super heavy and unwieldy. That and the boob-plate of course.

What, no hate for Amiri's bare midriff armor?

The only things I can think of are to kill all gods that can have antipaladins that have aims compatible with the antipaladin in a setting where antipaladins require patrons or to change his patron's alignment or to get him with a helm of opposite alignment.

Zon Kuthon's the best candidate in Golarion for the second. His own evil alignment seems to have been artificially imposed on him by the horrorterrors and removing their influence may return him to his previous alignment, which probably matches his sister Shelyn.

kyrt-ryder wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
Yeah I actually would not mind moving away from resource management. Which means a new spell system. This might be beyond the scope of this thread.
There's nothing wrong with having different characters on different resource tracks.

Yes there is. Having characters use resources differently makes them balance differently across different levels of activity. The basic unit of balance for fighters is the encounter. The basic unit of balance for wizards is the day.

Since the basic unit of balance for monsters is the encounter Vidmaster7 is right to want to do away with resource management. It's more natural to design with the encounter as the basic unit of balance because no matter how much fighting a day should contain some encounter sequences will naturally have more while not having reasonable resting points. Per encounter balance without per diem resources allow every day to be exactly as encounter filled as the narrative requires rather than forcing the narrative to bow to the 5 encounter per day averaging CR=APL (or whatever you adjust it to because your players bring characters that suck less spectacularly than Harsk) schedule the per diem balance requires.

Cyrad wrote:
Actually, I think amulet of mighty fists is priced as a slotless weapon enhancement bonus.
Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
It takes the neck slot.

And weapon enhancement bonuses as normally priced don't take a slot. Taking a hand is not the same since it's inextricably linked to taking a weapon. Unarmed strikes also take a hand since you can't do anything else with your hands while unarmed striking. Unarmed monks are the only exception and they still need the help compared to manufactured weapon using monks.

RainyDayNinja wrote:
ChaosTicket wrote:
Elven Curved Blade only works for a Unchained rogue. For anyone other Dexterity build its specific one-handed weapons.

But with 14 Strength, you don't even need Dex-to-damage. My wife plays a fighter with an ECB like that, and still does amazing amounts of damage, even when not getting crits.

For a magus, sure, you need a one-handed weapon for spell combat. But for a bard, a two-handed weapon works fine. And a tengu or half-elf can get proficiency without spending any feats.

Tengu can. Half-elf can't. Skill Focus is a throwaway for a lot of classes, but on a bard it's a pretty solid feat because of versatile performance. It's also a feat worth taking on intimidate builds even without versatile performance because greater margins of success translate into longer duration. There's also options to swap for psychic sensitivity and abilities equivalent to iron will and spell focus transmutation. Classes with slow will save progressions are usually advised to take iron will. Between those options a lot of the time you are giving up a feat for your proficiency on a half-elf.

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A lot of the rules break down without any grid. This seriously skews balance. Spells with templates either become far stronger or far weaker depending on which way they fudge. Same for AoO builds. Flanking reliant builds usually get boosted because they don't have to actually count tiles and find that their move action can't get them into flank without eating an AoO. Movement speed differences are devalued. Archers get better and improved precise shot becomes redundant because LoS is impossible to adjudicate.

Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Derklord wrote:
@Cole Deschain: The word "witch" is closely assossiated with evil, something that really shows in and hampers the class. This basically comes from the Bible explicitly forbidding the practicing of all kinds of magic;

That actually comes from a bad translation and King James himself having an issue with witches - which didn't even exist in Biblical times.

Exodus 22:18 (what I'm assuming you're referencing) "Suffer not a witch to live" was, in the Hebrew, referring to a specific type of spell-caster who did curses etc. (some have argued that they actually used poisons) So - it's basically saying to execute magical murderers/assasins - which isn't all that crazy of a rule.

Edit: Depending upon your perspective of "witch" (especially long before modern Wiccans) it might not have been a bad translation - but it definitely wasn't originally meant to encompass all spell-casters.

If that's what the Hebrew word really meant at the time then it's the Wiccans who made the bad translation because that's exactly what the term traditionally means in English. It's not like we have lots of non-biblical Hebrew or Aramaic texts as old as the Torah and the term isn't used in any way that gives context until 1st Samuel where it's used of a medium.

If you think about it from a Judeo-Christian perspective that makes sense. Human magic is fake and Satan is limited (see Job) so curses don't actually do anything; but mediums give false comfort, defraud widows and orphans, and falsify evidence that there is an Eternity other than that which God created. Curse-mongers just defraud people who hire curses and unlike mediums the nature of their product is not such that they must know that they're frauds. They're just really ineffective mercenaries.

The armored coat is a brigandine that opens at the front so it can be donned without assistance. It's basically a breastplate in overlapping pieces held together by rivetting each piece to a canvas outer layer. Except someone with no clue about armor construction wrote leather because he couldn't grasp the concept of hard wearing fabric being able to support that much metal.

Dex to AC is a lie unless you're a monk or otherwise unable to wear armor. The AC+max dex bonus is higher on heavier armor with lower max dex bonus. Dex only really boosts initiative and reflex and reflex is the least important save. Strength dictates carrying capacity.

Some people houserule away carrying capacity, but for those who don't strength matters. And even those who do get shirty if you try to stuff your unconscious teammate in a handy haversack.

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Wise Old Man wrote:
People say that there will always be world hunger, but it's only 450 billion to end it. Governments can do it. So everything possible.

That's PHB thinking. Anything you don't understand must be trivial. It's not. You can't solve world hunger by giving everyone food. You can't even solve world hunger by giving everyone a farm.

some reasons you can't solve world hunger by throwing money at the problem:

If people with power benefit from the existence of hunger no solution can be implemented without first fighting a war over it. Food donations often don't make it to actual hungry people in tyranical or lawless countries because they're intercepted by tyrants and would be tyrants who want to use the threat of starvation to enforce loyalty. Moving more food from the over-producing to under-fed nations won't get it to the actual hungry people.

If permanent changes aren't made to the cultures that allow tyrants to rise you don't have a long term solution. No one has figured out to do this without first completely breaking society as was done to the Axis nations in the Second World War. At some point you count the cost and find that you have millions of dead people and have brought back colonialism.

From the other end the people in developed nations pushing solutions to world hunger benefit politically from the existence of an unsolved hunger problem. Some care more about humanitarianism than political gain, but those who care about political gain are more likely to be politically influential. Removing those who benefit from pretending to want a solution while avoiding an actual solution doesn't require violence like removing the strongmen on the receiving end, but it would destroy the political voice for wanting a solution.

Not everything is possible and some people really can't sit at the same table. Certainly people at the table to roleplay criminal deviancy can't sit peacefully at the same table as people who are there to roleplay heroism. Maybe optimizers and roleplayers should be more compatible than heroic fantasy and consequence free escapist slapstick murderhobo fantasy, but it's not axiomatic.

Oracle falls afoul of the delayed spell access and spells known bottleneck on the non-HP healing that's actually important. Giving the same terrible sorcerer spells known on a list designed with the assumption that every caster knows all of the spells was a horrible idea and the oracle is unfit for purpose.

Gnomezrule wrote:
I think the Elder has the right historical take on it. The River Freedoms themselves suggest people are expected to fend for themselves.

Except for two things.

First, magic changes things. The food storage problem is solvable with the purify food/drink orison and any 5th level druid or plant domain cleric can cover about 500 acres per day with plant growth. Per spell slot for druids. How many 5th level druids and plant domain clerics are there around? That's not modern fertilizer, but it's also not nothing. Magically developed regions in Golarion are functionally mid-industrial revolution with more consistent though lower yields and less spoilage due to magic. The gains from systematic Plant Growth and the probably reduced losses from orisons on stored crops are about as far as the agricultural revolution had proceeded by the time of Cromwell's New Model Army.

Second, Kingmaker is kingdom building in unclaimed lands. You might alarm your neighbors with your revolutionary sentiments, but you don't have to worry about upsetting the feudal order internally because there are no nobles you don't enoble.

So a modern army isn't necessarily impossible to achieve in Golarion. It's very much not a small undertaking, though.

If healing is anywhere in your job description warpriest isn't really satisfactory. They have delayed access to all the condition removers and don't get heal until level 16 instead of level 11. And RotRL is the AP where the condition removers actually come up. There's even a chance to contract mummy rot.

Those shadows are a good example of why clerics are the best healers and practically the only adequate healers. Had you survived you, being level 3, could have prepared some lesser restorations and fixed the damage. As a 3rd level warpriest you couldn't. Everyone would have had to deal with the strength damage until you either leveled up or made it back to an NPC cleric. They're not the only monster with a CR equal to the level at which a cleric gets the spell to reverse their effects.

So building a better cleric is the best bet. Your warpriest stat array looks about right. I'd dump charisma to 7 to afford a little more dexterity if going for a reach combat reflexes build, which is generally considered the gold standard currently. Otherwise you really just need power attack and heavy armor proficiency, and starting at level 3 you don't have to choose between them. Oh, and you should never under any circumstances have 8 int on a 2+int class. There's a 1 skill point minimum so a -2 or even lower modifier is no worse than a -1 modifier. Take it up to 10 (you only strictly need 13 base wisdom if you expect to use headbands) or drop it to 7 for, in your stat array, charisma. It's an extra use of channel which is better than the nothing those two buy points get you in int. Or swap int and cha as Claxon suggests if you're not going for a reach build and are taking heavy armor proficiency.

In the long run you'll probably be better off using a reach EK build. If you can VMC magus as well you'll be pretty much strictly superior after you reach level 11. The spell combat action economy is the only thing the magus really does better than the EK.

Rub-Eta wrote:
darth_borehd wrote:
Simpler is not better.
Actually, it is. Especially regarding the Monk and Unchained Monk. Just take this OP as an example.

Only if simplicity is your primary goal. You're a heck of a lot more complicated than a smallpox virus, but I for one am extremely happy to see smallpox exterminated and humanity not.

And, really, if you want simple you can't beat Warrior. Just the minimum number of feat slots, the minimum number of skill points, no division of multiplication to get BAB from class level, and proficiency in all armor and martial weapons with no other features. And yet you're not suggesting the OP should switch to a warrior. Clearly you know deep down that darth_borehd is right.

Sundakan wrote:
Atarlost wrote:
Vancian feats defeat the whole purpose of feats: to distinguish fighters from each other. Without permanent build decisions characters are mechanically not individual characters who undergo growth and development but clones. Having the game mechanics encourage players to think of their characters as interchangeable cogs is bad.
"Ooh your Fighter uses a broadsword while mind uses a katana! Our characters are so different!" -Nowan Evar

That's precisely what happens without feats. Except you don't even choose, it's based on what the best magic weapons you find are.

Your fighter is from the River Kingdoms. He trained in the combat styles of that region implying something about his backstory. My fighter is from Xian Tia. He trained in the combat styles of that region. He uses a weapon specifically and exclusively associated with the military aristocracy there. He has the generally uncommon training to use two weapons with more effect than one. (TWF outside shield bashing and pugilism is mostly confined to regional styles like Florentine fencing, the Daisho, and Phillipino stick fighting and the three (by which I mean shield bashing, two fisted pugilism, and fighting with two weapons of meaningful length) aren't really the same skill set.)

How you fight reflects where you learned to fight and if applicable who taught you. Specializing in dirty tricks says something about your character. Specializing in tripping and/or grappling with your off hand probably says more about your teacher, but that in turn says something about who your character. Specializing in a regional weapon with a distinctive style says something about your character's background as well.

Sundakan wrote:
What tricks you can pull out in combat is the least important part of a character by far.

How you fight reflects where you learned to fight and if applicable who taught you. Specializing in dirty tricks says something about your character. Specializing in tripping and/or grappling with your off hand probably says more about your teacher, but that in turn says something about who your character. Specializing in a regional weapon with a distinctive style says something about your character's background as well.

Sundakan wrote:
Are you at least consistent enough to say all Wizards are the same character?

That wouldn't be consistent in d20. Wizards do make permanent character decisions because they also have feats. One specializes in metamagic, another in summoning, and a third in crafting. These too should reflect the wizard's background. It's not as clear where different metamagics are taught or where different schools of magic are more popular in the published material, but if you want deep characters it should be in your version of the game world.

Most feats should be nominally trained. I say nominally because for the feats you plan to take you can have the training in backstory without being able to actually perform the feat in real situations until you have accumulated some experience. Feats that aren't nominally trained imply a wholly or partially self-taught character and generally something about the circumstances in which he or she taught him or herself. You don't, for instance, teach yourself the same things as a gutter rat as you do as a poacher. Both are rogues, but the feat plans for street kids are completely unsuitable for a poacher and the feat plan for a poacher (sadly due to the overlong archery feat chain and unreasonable restrictions on sneak attack there's pretty much only one in Pathfinder) is completely unsuitable for a street kid.

Declindgrunt wrote:
Honeslty in all of my groups games we've gotten rid of exp we just follow the progression of what Lvl the party/pcs should be at X point

Normally that's the right thing to do, but for very small parties tallying XP might be a good idea because they'll level slightly faster than expected with the XP split fewer ways which offsets the lack of warm bodies. Just don't award separate XP. Everyone needs to have the same XP even if one of the PCs is dead when it's awarded because Pathfinder doesn't have the elastic effect 3.5 does.

Vancian feats defeat the whole purpose of feats: to distinguish fighters from each other. Without permanent build decisions characters are mechanically not individual characters who undergo growth and development but clones. Having the game mechanics encourage players to think of their characters as interchangeable cogs is bad.

Barkskin is a limited duration power eating a very limited resource. Unless the duration is at least an hour/level abilities are not a substitute for items. And almost every ability the monk used to get for free all day is now a ki power that costs per use, making ki even dearer.

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1) The forum. Seriously, it's a really crappy forum. Very limited bbcode. No wysiwyg editor. Moderator tools that are extremely limited. No post editing. Poor flagging mechanism (what good is a flagging system without a details field?) The forum is just generally extremely feature poor compared to free forum software from a decade ago. We'd be better off with no official forum because an unofficial forum would inevitably develop with actual forum software and a normal moderation policy and an infraction system.

2) The unwritten rules. Paizo is in the business of selling rules. They can't sell rules that aren't written. Paizo is in the business of selling content for a rules system. Consumers can't use rules that aren't written. Unwritten rules are for illicit organization where writing down the rules would be evidence that could get the members prosecuted. A perfectly legal corporation whose major business is selling rules has no reason to have such things. Write them down in clear English and publish them or retract them.

3) CMB/CMD. Especially size bonuses. I can't count how many times I've complained about this. It's a horrible mechanic. And unlike other changes I'd like it doesn't invalidate statblocks or spell lists.

Secret Wizard wrote:
You are the only one in that bandwagon at this point. I killed the rest of the people there myself with my bare own secret wizard hands.

Am I the only one worried that someone is boasting about having delusions of being a serial killer? That doesn't sound like the mostly harmless kind of madness.

Spear Dancing Spiral lets you treat one polearm or spears as a quarterstaff, which is a monk weapon, but also makes them double weapons which the mindblade cannot manifest until level 7 and takes an enhancement penalty on. Technically "you can use any feat or ability that functions with a quarterstaff with your chosen weapon." and weapon training (monk) and quarterstaff master are feats or abilities that function with a quarterstaff

If you have weapon training in polearms or spears you can treat all polearms or all spears as quarterstaves. If you're using your first weapon training on monk rather than going all polearm I'd suggest the horsechopper as the polearm that is the most versatile with this combo.

A horsechopper becomes a
1d6 one or two handed monk bludgeoning weapon
1d10x3 one or two handed monk trip slashing weapon
1d10x3 one or two handed monk trip piercing weapon
1d6/1d10x3 double monk weapon
1d6 one or two handed reach monk bludgeoning weapon
1d10x3 one or two handed reach monk trip slashing weapon
1d10x3 one or two handed reach monk trip piercing weapon
1d6/1d10x3 reach double monk weapon
What else do you really need?

Of course you won't get weapon training until this comes together anyways if you don't deviate and are human so maybe you want to get polearm training and pick up fauchard proficiency later on and use that as your wide crit spell combat choice instead of -- um, I think the urumi is an 18-20 weapon in the monk group. That'll let you spell combat at reach with a wide crit range.

As a human fighter you can put the style chain together at level 4 because there are no BAB prerequisites, though you'll need a lot of dex. As a gestalt with magus you can get quarterstaff mastery at level 5, which is the quickest you'll get it anyways because it has a BAB prerequisits. Well, a staff magus gets it prereq free at 1st level so that would be better, but you wanted mindblade and they don't stack.

DungeonmasterCal wrote:
I see nothing wrong with a club as a career weapon, unless you are going for maximum damage. I play characters I think would be interesting, at least to me, and I seldom pick weapons or feats that would make the most dangerous or deadly. So playing a fighter with a club would be fun, I'd think. It'd be a great flavor thing and you could tie it into his backstory as to why he favored it.

PCs have a responsibility to their group to be able to do their job. Martials already have a hard time with that when using real weapons. Just leaving a 9.5% damage boost lying on the table by using a weapon with a crappy crit range and multiplier when you could have a 18-20 or x4 crit weapon is not helping. Having a basically free 9.5% damage increase means that some of the resources you don't have to spend on damage can go to something like not failing will saves or not being useless when not in combat if you don't want more damage.

Avatar Unknown wrote:
Heracles used a club for his entire career and it seemed to work fine. Your damage output with a club as a main weapon might not be optimal, but weapon replacement is cheap, almost no one tells you to leave that walking stick behind leaving you the only armed person in your side of encounters, and depending on your GM you might even get away with Captain Caveman style gadgetry.

Heracles is not a Pathfinder character. If he were he'd be the GM's girlfriend who gets to take broken templates for free and for whom rolls are fudged.

Clubs are not cheap. Most of the cost of any weapon is the enhancement and magic cost. It's not something NPCs will ignore because it radiates magic. Also, a masterwork club is very obviously a weapon.

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Atarlost wrote:
If you're a martial character you use an x3 crit warhammer or earthbreaker.
And Bludgeoner.

Yes, that's assumed from the post I was replying to. If you're not going for bludgeoner you probably use an nodachi or scythe because they have better crit lines and do pierce or slash damage and a metal bludgeon of some sort because bludgeons can be made of silver without penalty and it's a DR handler anyways.

That's another problem with clubs. Wood doesn't bypass material DR. If you put metal striking surfaces on it it stops being a club and becomes a mace.

13) A statue garden. Around it are signs in draconic saying "beware of the basilisk. One, rather than being on a post is being held by a stone kobold.

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1) A strange library

1a) A strange library with a barbarian librarian.

1b) A strange library with an orangutan librarian.

2) A golem on a treadmill powering who knows what via a shaft or belt going through openings too small to investigate.

3) A functioning golem smithy and a functionally infinite pile of mundane iron weapons.

4) A functioning golem smelter.

5) A functioning golem mine in an endless seam on the elemental plane of earth.

6) A line of golems carrying iron ore or ingots. (multi-hex feature linking features 3-5)

burkoJames wrote:
How are you granting Katana the monk special ability to FoB with it? As well, is the enhanced crit worth losing the 2d6 base unarmed Damage?

Monk unarmed strikes just make up for them being light weapons.

At level 1 an unarmed strike does on average 5.5 with power attack ignoring crit. A temple sword does on average 7.5 when wielded two handed with power attack ignoring crits.

At level 4 an unarmed strike does 8.5 with power attack. A temple sword does 10.5

At level 8 an unarmed strike does 11.5. A temple sword does 13.5

At level 12 an unarmed strike does 15. A temple sword does 16.5

At level 16 an unarmed strike does 19. A temple sword does 19.5

At level 20 an unarmed strike does 23. A temple sword does 22.5

Every 4 BAB the two handed weapon user gets another 3 damage from power attack. The unarmed monk gets 2 from power attack and, until level 12, 1 from the increasing damage die and he starts out behind. At higher levels he gains damage faster, but because he started behind he only catches up at a level most characters don't reach and only if compared to what is no longer the best monk weapon. The unarmed monk takes until level 16 to even beat a quarterstaff.

Only at level 20 is the unarmed strike better than getting +3 instead of +2 from power attack. A katana is strictly superior to a temple sword. So are some genuinely two handed monk weapons that the unchained monk is proficient with that the original monk wasn't.
It's not like you need a free hand to unarmed strike with: all the good style strikes are kicks anyways.

Unlike the original monk, the unchained monk also gets 1.5x strength when using a two handed weapon. The same clause was also preventing the original monk from getting 1.5x strength when using dragon style in a flurry so he can equalize that, but only if he doesn't want a different style.

Unarmed monks get to use the same enhancement for all attacks, but armed monks make one style strike on only some rounds because only flying kick is worth using unenhanced and unarmed strike enhancement costs twice as much as armed enhancement and also makes your ANA cost 50% more if your GM even allows you to combine it with the AMF.

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johnlocke90 wrote:
BadBird wrote:

The basic Monk can potentially be more competitive, but it needs to be approached with a pretty ruthless determination to be effective, and the build-choices to back that up. A Dual Talent Human going 16/18STR, 12DEX, 14CON, 10INT, 14/16WIS, 10INT, 8CHA, taking Toughness as their first feat and Dodge as their first bonus feat, and wielding a temple sword in two hands with Power Attack would be an example of a far, far more effective way to go about it.

There are a ton of other ways to build a Monk, of course; but using an ability score for attack that's as good as what another melee character would use is rule no1. Monks at least get to use full BAB when they flurry, so if all those attacks are backed up with decent accuracy it can do reasonably well.

Which is to say that a bad class thats optimized well can keep up with a good class thats optimized mediocrely.

If you compare a ruthlessly optimized monk to a ruthlessly optimized barbarian or brawler, the monk gets creamed.

The optimization ceiling isn't in a bad place if you have access to the Ultimate Combat and APG style feats and archetypes. Especially if you aren't attached to unarmed combat.

Brawlers have flexibility, but if you've built your monk right Xykon's maxim is in place. Brawlers don't have numbers above the warrior. A sohei or martial artist monk or does as do other monks who contrive somehow to recover ki. Brawler is only for playing with situational feats or for people who don't really know how to select feats and need to be able to partially respec frequently until they figure it out. The optimization ceiling is very low while the optimization floor is very high. This makes it good for casual games and new players, but makes it easy to outperform.

Barbarian is not a useful comparison. Everything else bar primalist bloodrager will come up short because rage powers are actually balanced as if they were magic. But because of the alignment restrictions barbarians and bloodragers cannot be used to build monk-like characters.

The thing about the classic monk is that it doesn't have the gaping hole in its defenses that every other non-paladin martial has. On barbarians and primalist bloodragers with superstition it's limited to the first round of combat if their initiative roll prevents them from raging before being bespelled, but it's still there. Monks have strong will saves. The lower probability of turning on the party means a monk doesn't have to fight as well as say a slayer to be a better character than the slayer. They have to fight adequately, though, and the OP's doesn't.

RJGrady wrote:
If you are a martial character, the feats Bludgeoner and Enforcer can open up a whole new world of hurt.

If you're a martial character you use an x3 crit warhammer or earthbreaker. Or you save a feat on bludgeoner and use a sap. If you're a rogue you just save the feat on bludgeoner and use a sap. Or you use a morningstar and get an extra point of damage and get to penetrate an extra kind of DR and fight underwater.

lemeres wrote:


A. It is the 'ax one a stick' thing- works well enough when trying to wade through the muddy waters of weapon entomology.
B. It is just a plain better reach weapon that most of the items mentioned. It is 1d10, 19-20/x2. IE- the martial reach weapon with actual crit range.

Except it's not. Pollaxes are not standardized. They're defined by a method of construction and can have a hammer or axe paired with something else. A very unscientific look at google image search for antique pollaxes and excluding things that don't have pollaxe-like construction ndicates that most have a hammer and an axe or spike. They should be non-reach polearms like halberds. Certainly those are the options that don't already have weapons for them since a pollaxe with an axe and spike would differ from a halberd only in the method of construction.

52. The inside of the gazebo is decorated with numerous permanent symbols of vulnerability, strife, and insanity. The latter are heightened to ninth level. The symbols are recessed in the ceiling so they can't be seen from outside the gazebo, but anyone stepping inside the gazebo come within vision of all of them. The center of the gazebo contains a marble plinth enchanted with a permanent magic mouth that warns anyone who enters that they should carefully check the ceiling for traps. On top of the plinth rest a pair of +5 vorpal daggers.

Burnscar wrote:
Things that have tonnes of bonus damage generally don't care about what sort of weapon you wield, aside from crit range.

Too bad clubs have the crappiest possible crit range. You're going to be way behind Falchion Fred, and farther behind Longsword Luis than he is behind Falchion Fred.

Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:
CBDunkerson wrote:
For a high level campaign a staff with Wish burning two charges per casting would allow you to cast Wish five times consecutively and thus create a +5 inherent bonus to a stat. You could then recharge the staff to repeat that every 10 days. After boosting five stats that way you'd have recouped the material component cost of the staff... and every stat boosted thereafter would effectively be 'free'.

I would question that math.

Crafting a wish that uses 2 charges is easy and relatively inexpensive enough at ((9x18x400)/2) =32,400.

However the material component requirement alone would be 625,000((25,000X50)/2). Unless you're starting at level 18 then I suspect that amount will rarely be available. I sincerely doubt it will be for me.

Edit: Just checked and you do divide the the material cost by the number of charges also. That's new.

A staff of wish is a party benefit and should not be paid for by one character.

If you have 4 characters splitting the cost it's 164.35k per character, which is a little steep at level 17, but if the ABP assumption that only half of character wealth goes towards mandatory +# items is correct the party can afford to save up for it.

Alternately, if you can start with a 5 charge and upgrade the same staff to use fewer charges you can get everyone +2 to all stats for less than the difference between level 16 and level 17 WBL, which in turn justifies not upgrading other gear that level. You can then upgrade or sell for the same half price you spent crafting and make a 2 charge version at some point before reaching level 18.

Also, with that permanency staff consider flipbooks of symbols. And if you want enough of any one symbol it's a candidate for a staff as well. Past a certain point a staff of permanency and a staff of symbol of healing are cheaper than CLW wands. Other symbols probably aren't useful in quantities sufficient to justify their own staves, but are worth using if you have a permanency staff. Touch triggered symbols can't be used offensively, but the logic used doesn't make sense for observe triggered and the party can be attuned to the symbol and unaffected.

SheepishEidolon wrote:

Clubs have a few advantages over longswords: They are cheap, can be thrown without penalty (synergy with 'cheap' here) and they count as simple weapons. Average base damage is only 1 point lower than for the longsword, but crits only at 20 hurts. If you rely a lot on precision or elemental bonus damage, it's less of an issue.

Why the comparison with longsword? Because greatsword, bastardsword, falcata etc. need extra investment - a second hand, a feat etc.. With a club you can spend this ressource on something else. Doesn't make it superior to the standard choices, but should be considered.

EDIT: Bludgeoner feat (nonlethal damage without penalty) can be nice, if you play a merciful character - but is not club specific, just bludgeoning specific.

The price differential between a club and a real weapon becomes trivial the moment you invest 300g in making them masterwork. If you don't do that and then invest thousands more in enhancement bonuses you're going to lag really badly.

As a martial, druid, rogue, bard, cleric of Sarenrae or Caiden Caylean, or dwarf a club is costing you a 10% total damage increase since you could be wielding a scimitar, rapier, or heavy pick. Because if you valued the ability to two hand that the rapier lacks you'd be using a spear or longspear at least.

As an elf, half-orc, or cleric of Iomedae, Torag, or Norgobear a club is costing 1 damage before a 5% total damage increase because you could be using a longsword, battle axe, warhammer, or shortsword. Again, if you were two handing so it had an advantage over the shortsword you should be using a spear or longspear.

At the very minimum if you are not a wizard a club is costing you 1 damage and the ability to bypass DR/Piercing and fight underwater with a morningstar. Or if you're a monk you're losing flurry.

Ezren uses a club at all levels and that's okay because he uses it as a cane not a weapon and wizards have almost no weapon proficiencies. Anyone else is being penny wise pound foolish.

Throwing away your melee weapon is never a good idea, but if you want a weapon that can be thrown you want something that doesn't suffer range penalties against anyone you couldn't just 5' step and strike normally. A spear does more damage and flies twice as far and the price difference matters only if you're buying several of them at first level.

Shillelegh is a dead end because the enhancement bonus doesn't scale. It will be obsolete by level 8 if you spend money on your weapon at the minimum rate anyone who uses their weapon should.

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Ventnor wrote:
7.) Clearly dragons are just trying to save us financially! Once they have all the money, it will trickle down to everyone else.

That only works if the money is being spent or invested. Dragons are hoarders. Taking money out of circulation is a measure to control inflation not grow the economy. And looking at the price lists Golarion desperately needs inflation controlled.

NPCs don't usually get traits except from the extra traits feat and the character is not suitable for a PC unless the entire party is composed of outlaws. You simply won't mesh with any good or nonchaotic party and chaotic nongood parties tend to not be stable.

And even if you are in a party of outlaws you need to axe the uncontrolled kleptomania. Stealing from the party or when the party will take the heat (which is pretty much any time you're in a party) is not good social gaming.

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Terevalis Unctio of House Mysti wrote:
Is any one form of good more good than the others?

Well, I think we can rule out LG being the most good because

1 Timothy 1:9 (KJV) wrote:
Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers,

I guess that leaves it between NG and CG.

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